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Showing posts from February, 2010

Rice Pads are Back in Stock!

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Rice Pads are now back in stock at my country store.

I use to sell them regularly and they were very popular.My daughter Emily was the one who made them.When her life got busy she did not have time for sewing them any more.
Now, my youngest daughter Sierra and her friend Makayla have picked this project up.They have been spending many evenings and weekends sewing up rice pads and are doing a great job!
If you are interested in purchasing a rice pad you can read more information about them and see the current fabric choices here: http://crystalscountrystore.com/ricepads.htm

Trim the Budget: Cabbage!!

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When the prices of veggies start climbing higher during the winter months I turn to my best winter veggie choice, cabbage!Cabbage is healthy and nutritious and can be used in so many ways.
Cabbage is high in vitamins K and C.It is also high in dietary fiber.You will also find some really good B vitamins such as, vitamins b6, b1, and b2 and vitamin A.
It is also interesting to note that the vitamin C content in red cabbage is 6 to 8 times higher than that of white cabbage. 
Cabbage is chocked full of minerals: calcium, potassium, magnesium. 
And it even contains a little bit of protein and fat (the good omega 3 fatty acids). 
The best part of cabbage from a budget stand point is that it is so inexpensive this time of year.I recently paid 45 cents a pound. I spent $1.15 for a head of cabbage that weighted around 2 ½ lbs.
Ways to incorporate cabbage into your diet..
Eat it as a side dish.I love to sauté chopped cabbage and onions in butter.When it is soft, salt a little and enjoy with your mea…

Trim the Budget: Black Bean Sloppy Joes!

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Here is another meal that makes a large serving, tastes great, utilizes a low cost basic food (beans), and is delicious!!
Black Bean Sloppy Joes


Usually sloppy joes are made with all hamburger.That can be a lot of expense in meat.The last time I looked at Costco hamburger was $2.79 a pound.One way to still enjoy sloppy joes and save some money is to make Black Bean Sloppy Joes.The black beans stretch the hamburger while giving you a delicious and nutritious meal!  You can find the recipe on my website here:  http://www.thefamilyhomestead.com/blackbeansloppyjoes.htm
Make sure to get your beans cooking in the morning so all you have to do come evening is assemble the rest of the recipe.This will also give you the afternoon to make the rolls to serve the sloppy joes on.
Making your own high quality bread products is also a good way to cut costs.White bread will always be dirt cheap, but with no nutritional value and not worth the cost.. no matter how cheap.Making homemade bread is one way to…

Salsa Questions Answered..

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My last blog post generated a few salsa questions..
Kristi asked…I have a question on the salsa - first of all, could I use Romas that I froze (with the intention of canning more pizza sauce? and secondly, how long will a gallon of the salsa keep in your fridge? 
Kristi, I have never made the salsa from frozen tomatoes.The salsa is basically a fresh type salsa.I am thinking that frozen tomatoes would work better in a cooked type of salsa.
As for how long it keeps in the fridge? We eat our salsa up pretty fast, typically.This last summer when I had some extra tomatoes I made two gallons at a time.Some of that salsa sat in the fridge for well over a month and it was just fine.The salsa is fermented (like making cabbage into sauerkraut) and that is what gives it the long shelf life.
Shell from Ohio also asked how long it would keep.. so that was answered above.
Last Question: I have a question on the salsa. Could I substitute anything for the whey?
Well, no, not really.. if you want the fermen…

Updates from the Homestead

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Life on my homestead is humming right along.I spent more days in town this last week than I like, but that is life sometimes. A trip to town takes about 45 minutes one way.For starters, I had one day in town with Tobin.We ran errands and bought some new tires for our van.Another day I took Leanne to the community college so she could take her Biology CLEP..and she passed!!!She now has 40 credits towards her degree.We are so very proud of her.
The next trip into town was to meet up with my oldest son and his wife and they took Jacob and Isaac to their home for the weekend (The big Halo party LOL ).Then Leanne, Sierra and I went fabric shopping.We bought fabric for Sierra’s bedroom curtains and some fabric for her to make askirt out of a pair of jeans.After that we went home, had lunch, I made dinner, got hubby out the door to work and we turned around and went back to town to take Leanne to her dance class (she has been taking ballroom dancing lessons since last summer), or I should say…

Rolled Oats and Quick Oats Clarified

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I have had a couple of people leave comments on my last blog post (on making instant oatmeal mix) that I wanted to clarify:
Teresa asked:
Can you use rolled oats instead of quick cooking oats?
Quick oats are rolled oats..they are just rolled thinner.There is nothing different about them other than the size they are rolled.The reason I use them instead of the regular rolled oats is that because they are not cooked they would not get soft enough for most peoples tastes.
And Stacey asked:
I'm also wondering if you can use rolled oats or traditional oats in place of the quick cooking oats...
Same answer as above..quick oats are rolled or traditional oats.. they have just been rolled thinner.
Hope that clarifies any confusion!!

Trim the Budget: Breakfast Bargain

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Breakfast is a great meal to incorporate those low cost basic foods..Grains make a nutritious and filling meal.I am always looking to simplify my weekday breakfast routine in my home. I like to get breakfast done and over with quickly so we can move onto the important issues of the day.One food my children like me to have on hand is Instant Oatmeal.I like to have it because I know they will get a good and filling breakfast quickly while making a minimal amount of mess in the kitchen while they are at it!
Today’s post will be on how to make your own instant oatmeal and a cost comparison of making your own to buying the little packets of Quaker Instant Oatmeal.
Bulk Instant Oatmeal (the recipe can be found HERE ): Here is how you make it....
Gather together your ingredients

Take half the oats (10 cups) and run a few cups at a time through your food process or blender to make smaller

Combine them with the other 10 cups of oats and add the powdered milk, cinnamon and salt



Stir well and put i…