Saturday, January 14, 2017

My Off the Grid Fantasy

The forecast is calling for a severe ice storm over the next twenty-four hours, as in the kind of ice storm that snaps power lines and makes travel impossible. On my Facebook feed, my friends' responses range from "Oh no! Praying it passes us!" to "Yeah! Bring out the chain saw and the rock salt!" 

Once the news of the impending storm hit, I started getting an excited, tingling feeling. Mr. Man-of-the-House is right there with me! The threat of a storm brings out the very best in him. We spent yesterday making soups (in case we lose power), bringing enough firewood into the house and garage to get us through until spring, and stocking up on kerosene and candles.  Oh, and just in case we do lose power, we did all the laundry. Going without electricity for days would mean no washer and dryer.

As all forecasts invariably do, the prediction of when and how much ice we will be getting began to change. As the projected amounts of ice dropped from an inch to a half an inch, my heart began to sink a little. Yes, I know, that's still a lot of ice. Yes, I know that great amounts of property damage can ensue from an ice storm. I understand that there are people who will have to get out on the bad roads and risk their lives to go to jobs that they cannot miss. I'm ashamed to admit that I'm still praying for a big ice storm. 

Thursday, January 12, 2017

High Protein, Non-fat "Ice Cream" Recipe


I am in love with ice cream! Unfortunately, ice cream is high in calories, fat and sugar. Bummer. Thanks to ice cream (which apparently does NOT love me as much as I love it) and a few other tasty foods, I had packed on some pounds over the past few years. 

Last September, I decided I should drop a few pounds. I started to monitor my calories through the free version of MyFitnessPal app. I quickly discovered that ice cream is a little too expensive for my diet, calorie-wise. I'm only 5'2" and the 1200 calorie target that I needed to hit daily to shed some excess weight didn't allow for things like ice cream, or Twix bars, on a regular basis.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

The Magic Jar (the Power of Positive Thinking)

Happy New Year! Yes, I know I'm a few days late but I've been more than a little distracted from my humble blog lately. And by lately, I meant to say at least a year or so. 

2016 was a year of soul searching, but not in an earth shattering, mind-melting sort of way. Rather, the voice in my head began to sound something like this, "What are you doing with your life?",  "When are you going to do something that actually matters?", and "You DO realize that your life is probably half over, don't you?"

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Yes You Can Plant Dried Beans From the Grocery Store and Grow Green Beans!

Check out our green beans which were planted from dried beans in the grocery store! Dried beans can be a very economical source of seed as you can see in this video -


Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Easy Beef Stew & Dumplings - Cheater Series

To all my busy friends, I hesitated to share this recipe with you because it's so shamefully easy! If you had any respect for me at all, I'm quite certain you will lose it after watching this video. But my kids love it and it does come in very handy when I'm crazy busy. So here it is - Enjoy!

Monday, August 29, 2016

Urban Garden Update August 2016 - It's a Jungle Out There!

Take a walk with me through our back yard jungle - I may rethink how closely I've planted our plots next year! 


San Antonio Style Tortilla Soup Recipe (Cheater Version)

In an effort to help out my kindred spirits, those poor overwhelmed souls who want to make home-cooked meals every night of the week but sometimes have more demands than time, I've decided to share some of my family's favorite "cheater" versions of my home cooking. Hands down, my San Antonio Style Tortilla Soup is the fastest from start to finish. If I crank my burner up to high, I can have dinner on the table in 15 minutes flat! That's impressive in my house!

One of the nicest things about this recipe is that (except for garnishments) the ingredients can be kept on hand in your pantry or long term food storage indefinitely. This makes the meal perfect for unexpected company or a backup dinner!