Monday, December 22, 2014

Menu Monday!

Christmas is coming this week!! Lots of planning and prep work, packages to wrap, more cookies to make and a Christmas menu to plan and purchase for... all before Wednesday! Whew! … but I'm looking forward to the time together with my family. Hope your Christmas plans are coming together nicely. In the meantime, dinner still needs to be planned each night this week! How are you hanging in there? Menu planned? Christmas dinner planned? Do you have a traditional Christmas dinner? On Christmas Eve or Christmas day?

Yummy pinto bean soup, rolls, salad

Crockpot chicken philly sandwiches, chips, veggie platter

Christmas Eve Dinner with my family (still working on that menu)

Leftovers – Christmas Day is eating the leftovers from Christmas Eve

Marinated chicken, rice, cesar salad

Pizza casserole (new recipe to try), salad

Clam chowder, dinner rolls, salad


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Homestead Holidays!! Strawberry Cranberry Jam

***I posted this last year.. made this and gave it away as gifts.. it was so good!! And so easy..  frozen store bought strawberries and fresh cranberries..  very easy to make!!



If you’re looking for an easy, fun project that could also be a nice gift this may the answer!! I made a batch of this and it is soooo good!! As a gift it would be perfect coupled with a loaf of homemade bread or rolls, or even just given on its own. What is nice about this recipe is that you can use frozen strawberries and fresh or frozen cranberries. I bought several bags of cranberries in November and put them in the freezer. When I made this jam I used both frozen strawberries & cranberries.

This recipe makes a lot!! So you will have plenty to give as gifts and for your family to enjoy.

Here is the recipe:

Strawberry Cranberry Jam
Makes approx. 13 half pint jars

3#’s frozen strawberries
12 oz fresh or frozen cranberries
1T lemon juice
2 boxes pectin
1t butter
8 cups sugar

Put strawberries, cranberries, lemon juice, pectin and butter into a large, 6 to 8qt, stock pot. On medium heat slowly bring to a boil. Stir to prevent it from sticking. Simmer and stir until fruit breaks up. If you want to hurry the process you can use a stick blender to smooth it out, or leave the fruit a bit chunky, the choice is yours.

Turn up the heat to high and add sugar. Stir to dissolve sugar. Bring it all to a hard boil (a boil that cannot be stirred down) and boil and stir for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Fill half pint and/or pint jars. Put new lid on, ring on and put in a boiling water bath. Boil for 10 minutes. Remove from canner and let cool.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Menu Monday!

Another week flies by and it's time to plan the menu again.  A planned menu just makes life so much better. :)  Grocery shopping is on my to do list today as well as a few other household chores.  Hope you all have a great Monday!! 

Lasagna, french bread, roasted broccoli & kale

Crockpot hamburger/tater tot casserole, salad

Mexican chicken casserole, refried beans, brown rice, salad


Bulgogi (Korean dish, made by Leanne), brown rice, kimchi

Chicken noodle soup, dinner rolls, salad

Tuna patties, roasted potatoes, green beans


Thursday, December 11, 2014

Christmas Baking: Sugar Cookies...

What would Christmas be without sugar cookies... every year we make them.. it is just a tradition. This year my daughter Leanne made the cookies.. even got my son Isaac to join in on the fun...

I used a new recipe... one I found here (and it was very good!):

What are your favorite Christmas cookies.. what are your “must haves” each year?


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Homemade Gift Idea: Dish Towel Apron

I posted this idea a few years ago..  but it is so easy and so quick to make..  and is darn cute!!  Just thought I'd share it again!!  

Christmas is fast approaching! If you’re in need of a quick gift idea this dish towel apron may be just the project. It requires basic sewing skills and goes together very quickly. Using dish towels means no raw edges to think about!! :)

You will need 2 cotton dish towels that coordinate and some ½ or 1 inch twill tape.

I purchased my dish towels at Target. I got 5 in a package and the cost was $10. You will use 2 for the apron. I figured $4 an apron was pretty good (plus the cost of the twill tape, I had some on hand already). For my pack of 5 dish towels I got 2 aprons and an extra towel for my kitchen, or it could be put in a gift basket along with the apron.

You can find detailed instructions for the apron on this site: 

Lay out your towels…

Sew them together….


Use the twill tape for the neck and ties…

And you are done…


Monday, December 8, 2014

Menu Monday!

One week into December and my daughters and I are gathering together our cookie recipes. Hopefully we'll be baking up some goodies this week. Plus there is always so much to do this time of year. Menu planning is a must! How's your menu planning going?

Korean soup (my daughter did not get this made last week so it will be made tonight), egg rolls and salad

Pork chops, mashed potatoes, salad

Lasagna, french bread, mixed veggies


Enchilada bake, refried beans, tortilla chips & salsa, salad

Homemade pizza

Chicken veggie soup, dinner rolls, salad


Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Out the Kitchen Window...

In the past I lived in 3 apartments and a house with no kitchen window. I was so happy when we moved into our little homestead to see that I had a kitchen window above the sink.. I spend a lot of time at the kitchen sink.

Over the many years I've lived here I've seen a lot out my kitchen window. I've watched kids playing and growing, goats and horses up at the house eating the grass.. I've enjoyed the morning sunrise coming through my window. I've seen my whole view covered in white snow in the winter, I've watched my hubby and boys mowing the grass and working on the property, I've watched the UPS man coming up my driveway to deliver my packages, I've seen visitors driving up to see us..

So much of life happens right outside the kitchen window. Today, I was at the sink, once again, washing a few dishes.. I looked up and this is what I saw...

Life right outside the kitchen window.. priceless...