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Showing posts from March, 2007

Lentil Chili

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I made this last night for dinner and it was good tasting, easy and fairly quick to put together..can’t ask for more than that in a healthy meal!

Lentil Chili
Crystal Miller

3 ½ cups lentils
8 cups water
1 T salt
1 lb hamburger
1 medium onion, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped, optional
4 t chili powder
1 t cumin
1 can Rotel tomatoes

Combine lentils, water and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer 45 to 50 minutes or until lentils are soft.

While lentils are cooking fry hamburger, onion and jalapeno pepper (if using) until hamburger is no longer pink and vegetable are tender.

When lentils have finished cooking add hamburger onion mixture and remaining ingredients.Serve with tortilla chips or cornbread a nice tossed green salad for a yummy dinner.

Tuesday on the Homestead

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Today was a regularly scheduled day.Housework, school work, laundry, food preps.. I have had two business as usual days after my nice birthday weekend…It sure did feel good to get so much pampering from my family!! My girls really went all out to make the day special for me and to allow me to just sit back and enjoy the day…My husband brought me home some beautiful flowers and a mushy sweet card..Gotta love that man!!!I especially appreciated the phone call from my wonderful sister in law, Debbie..we had such a good time chatting..usually we email but now and again a phone chat is just so nice..Thanks Debbie!! Love Ya!! 

Ok back to Tuesday… my kitchen and baking loving daughter Emily was at it again today.She made a delicious short bread cookie that I enjoyed with a cup of herbal tea this afternoon and right now is working on come chocolate crackle cookies..I am pretty sure she will be posting the recipes to that soon..

The sun finally made an appearance this afternoon and that was all…

This Weeks Menu

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I have had a busy couple of days and just now am getting around to posting my menu for this week…

Sunday:
A great birthday dinner prepared by my kids!!

Monday:
Clam Chowder and homemade bread

Tuesday:
Lentil Chili, tortilla chips, salad

Wednesday:
Goat stew, veggies and dip

Thursday:
Homemade pizza, buffalo wings

Friday:
Red Bean and Sausage Soup, homemade bread or rolls, coleslaw

Saturday:
Chicken noodle soup, bread, veggies and dip

Saturday on the Homestead

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Well more spring cleaning was done today!!The kids tackled their bedrooms, closets and the hallway.All the kids have their rooms upstairs so it can get kind of scary up there every now and again.. LOL..Actually it was not too bad, I just did a major clean out of the upstairs in January; so this was just clean and purge recent clutter.

Tobin and I went and took some recycling to the local recycling center and then went and got some more hay, not quite a ½ ton..hopefully that will last awhile as the new green leaves and grass are just starting to grow and that supplements the goats for the spring and summer.

The day was just wet, wet, and wet again.. yuck.. I talked with my oldest daughter today and she said it was sunny and nice in MontereyCA..awwww…I would love it!! I told her to enjoy some of it for me..They get their orders next week so we will see what the next move will be for her and hubby and baby.

I also talked with my oldest son today.He is currently in Ft. BraggNC.He is doing lo…

Orange & Fruit Smoothie and Spring Cleaning

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Emily and Leanne made everyone smoothies after our afternoon of spring cleaning.We managed to get the major rooms of the house torn apart, cleaned and put back together this afternoon!!! Amazing what team work can do!Emily and Leanne started the living room while I was at swim lessons with the kids.After we were home and had lunch we each started in different areas and managed to tackle the dining room, sun room, kitchen (actually we still have work to do in the kitchen but a lot did get done) and the laundry room.

Yesterday I picked up my Azure order and in my order I had a 38lb box of organic oranges!!Soooo needless to say we are eating lots of oranges and finding good uses for them. One of those uses was making a whole fruit smoothie, using oranges instead of orange juice like we often do.


2 to 3 whole oranges, peeled and separated into pieces
2 cups frozen strawberries
1 ½ bananas
1 apple, peeled, cored
½ cup yogurt
½ cup milk
Sweetener of choice, to taste, if desired

Put all in blender …

Thursday on the Homestead

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Well this is the end of what has seemed like a long week.Tobin had to work 6 days this week and we are both looking forward to our weekend.

Yesterday I did grocery shopping and went to the feed store for the monthly animal feed trip.. sure does fill up the back of my van!

I had all the kids with me and that was enjoyable.After we left the feed store we stopped at Starbucks and the older girls and I had a coffee drink..well mine had coffee in it theirs was strawberries and crème..

Then we went to Winco and then onto Costco where I bought everyone a polish dog and drink..can’t beat a $1.50 per person lunch..then we dropped off the boys cameras (finally.. I forgot to take them on the last trip).. soon we will get to see all the DisneyLand pictures..

Finally we ended our afternoon at Wal-Mart, picking up a few things and then a beautiful drive home.The sun was shining and Columbia River Gorge was just awesome to see..

Today I was hoping for a day at home but I need to take the girls to their …

This Weeks Menu

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This weeks menu.. posted kind of late!!

Sunday:
Hamburger Noodle Soup
cornbread
salad w/ hm ranch dressing

Monday:
Chicken, rice and broccoli casserole
salad

Tuesday:
Pork roast
Laurie’s macaroni and cheese
salad

Wednesday:
Tacos (lentil taco filling) w/all the trimmings

Thursday:
Navy bean soup
cornbread or biscuits
carrot sticks and dip

Friday:
Ashli’s 5-way Cincinnati Chili over potatoes or pasta
salad

Saturday:
Salmon or clam chowder
coleslaw
rosemary bread sticks

Snuggly Soft Baby!

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Baby Products are in my Store!



Soaps, Lotions, Talc Free Herbal Bath Powder
~All Snuggly Soft Baby products are mildly scented~
Choose between Light Lavender Scent made with essential oils only or a nice Baby Powder Scent

How to Easily Gather Fabric: Sewing Tutorial

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This is a tutorial from the March issue of my newsletter, "Homestead Happenings".If you are not familiar with my newsletter you can get more info and sign up for it if you would like (it is free): http://groups.yahoo.com/group/HomesteadHappenings/

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How to Easily Gather Fabric
The traditional method of gather fabric has you sew a large strait basting stitch across the fabric and then pull the bobbin side to gather in the fabric. What would always happen to me is the bobbin threads would break or the task was just painfully time consuming.

I learned this trick a few years ago from a friend of mine.

You will need some cotton crochet thread:


Set your sewing machine to a large size zig-zag setting with a long stitch length.


Set your presser food on the very edge of the fabric and put the crochet thread between the feet of the presser foot.


Now slowly begin to sew a zig-zag stitch with the cotton crochet thread in the…

Isaac’s Birthday Cake Recipe

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(a.k.a. Chocolate Mayonnaise Cake)
Crystal Miller


3 cups whole wheat pastry flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 T baking powder
1 ½ t baking soda
½ t salt
1 ½ cups honey
1 ¼ cups mayonnaise
1 ¼ cup water
1 T vanilla

Combine flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl Add remaining ingredients and mix with a hand held mixer or stand mixer until everything is combined well and very smooth.Pour into a greased and floured 9x13 pan.Bake 350 for 40 to 45 minutes.

Frost with frosting of your choice.We used Honey Cream Cheese Frosting and sprinkled m & m’s over the cake.

Happy Birthday Isaac!!

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My baby is 9 years old today!!!Wow!!Where to the years go??He is growing up to be such a nice boy..Very thoughtful and helpful..he is always trying to figure out what I need before I need it!  Always wants to please his mama...  He will always be my baby..






Yea!!! More signs of spring…

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Since I have whined so much about winter I thought I would share about some wonderful signs of spring I am seeing and hearing…

Frogs croaking in the pond
Birds singing in the early morning
Visiting ducks in my pond
Weather warming up

All this happened just in the last few days..

This Weeks Menu

Sunday:
Creamed tuna over pasta
Salad

Monday:
Pizza (Isaac’s birthday)

Tuesday:
Goat stew
Homemade dinner rolls

Wednesday:
Crab alfredo over pasta
Spinach salad

Thursday:
Cider Spiced Corned Beef (crockpot)
Cabbage
Baked potatoes

Friday:
Baked chicken legs
Rice pilaf
Broccoli

Saturday:
Potato corn chowder
Salad
Homemade dinner rolls

Friday on the Homestead and Italian Beef Recipe

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Well today was a busy productive day..I got some soap made, lotion made and more lotion bars made..Those lotion bars are pretty popular!Now I need to get some items labeled and I still have more soap to make..but I am feeling good about my progress today.

Hannah did take the kids to swim lessons and then took the girls to their cleaning job that we could not get to yesterday due to the dead battery.Hannah is such a helpful daughter.. and she does it all willingly and with a smile on her face..

I did not get to my baking..Instead I made the above items.Leanne made bread and it is baking right now..smells nice.I have Italian beef in the crockpot and we are going to have that over brown rice that was left from last night (I made a double batch so I would have enough for tonight)..Hannah wanted some broccoli instead of a salad.. I thought that sound good too.. so dinner time is right around the corner.

I am happy to say I see the first signs of spring..crocuses coming up! Now if we could jus…

Thursday on the Homestead

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Well my boys arrived back from DisneyLand last night, safe and sound!They had a wonderful trip and I have 4 cameras worth of film to develop for them.After I develop their film I will post some pics..Now life will go back to normal.I guess this was the kid’s spring break.Today was just an easy going day of recovery for them.

Emily and Leanne were supposed to go to their cleaning job but when we got in the van it would not start..the battery was dead..The back door of the van had not been closed completely so it drained the battery.Tobin is now recharging it..

Lots of laundry was on the list today.The boys needed all their clothes washed, plus the bathroom towels needed washing, and it was Leanne’s laundry day..so it looks like my machine got quite a workout today..actually I still have laundry going… .

Today is the last day of the work week for us.I wanted to make some challah bread and maybe cinnamon rolls but did not get to it.. It is on my list for tomorrow, especially if Hanna…

Sierra’s Sewing Project

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Sierra made her first sewing project, all on her own, today.It was a pillow case.She bought the fabric at Walmart yesterday and washed it last night and this morning was ready to go!Since the boys have not been home this week we have had a very lax week..and I figured a sewing day was perfect for her.Emily made another skirt.. I made granola :)

Here is Sierra holding up her new pillow case:


I found the neatest Ebook in the Old Schoolhouse Store  (they have a ton of great stuff in there!!)

It was called: Learn To Sew, A Beginning Sewing Book for Girls

The book is not expensive and very fun..plus with it being an ebook you get it right away!

The next project in the book is a Bible cover.Other projects that look fun are: a tote bag, potholder, apron, skirt and more..Sierra is excited to be able to do these.

The book comes with the needed patterns and very easy and basic instructions..I highly recommend it!!