Showing posts from January, 2008

Saturday on the Homestead

Today a new snow storm moved in. We have been very dry and cold and now I guess things are changing.. can’t wait for winter to end.. I am not a fan of being cold.. LOL.. In the meantime we are keeping our wood stove going around the clock. Plus we have an ample supply of hot water.. have not had our hot water heater on in a couple of months now. 

The day has seemed quiet and calm. Jacob and Sierra went to a church sleep over with their youth group and Emily and Leanne are house sitting so it was just me and Isaac last night.. that was fun. We snuggled up and watched an episode of Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea and Perry Mason. Jacob and Sierra arrived home this morning after only a couple of hours of sleep and promptly went to bed.. they are just now getting up. I joked with them and told them they are now on the night shift schedule and could go to work with dad! Jacob liked the idea, Sierra was not as thrilled.. 

I did a little crocheting on my afghan today. It is very slow going. I …

My Grain Mill

I have had a few people asking me ay if we had made a decision on a new grain mill so I thought it I would share about that. I have had my new mill for about a month now. I have made 18 loaves of bread a couple batches of dinner rolls and some french bread sandwich rolls. So far I am quite pleased with the results.

After lots of research and time Tobin and I decided on a Retsel Grain Mill (Mill Rite was the one I purchased). I received it at the end of December. We opened the big box and set it up almost as soon as the UPS man had left. Then we ran some grain through it as they instructed and the next day I used it for the first time and made some dinner rolls. I really had missed not having a grain mill. I was buying whole wheat flour from my food co-op (Azure Standard) and the grocery store occasionally. There is such a huge difference to me in store bought whole wheat flour and my own home ground flour. The taste of freshly ground flour is so much better.. it has a fresh taste that…

More Crockpot Cooking...

I am still on my crockpot cooking spree.. and loving it! Yesterday Tobin and I were going into town in the afternoon. I put my dinner together in the morning in my two crockpots. The meatballs went into my big 6qt. crockpot and my mac and cheese went into my smaller one. When we got home later in the evening Leanne had added some applesauce and carrots w/ranch dip to the meal and were all ready to eat! And the mess of making the meal had been cleaned up long before we sat down, making kitchen clean-up a breeze as well. 

BBQ Crockpot Meatballs
Crystal Miller

2#’s hamburger
2 slices homemade wheat bread, cubed
2 eggs
½ small onion, chopped or amount to taste
½ to 1 teaspoon Spike or seasoning salt
salt and pepper, as desired

1 cup barbeque sauce, homemade preferred
1 cup peach jam, or apricot will also work

To make meatballs combine hamburger, bread cubes, eggs, onion, salt, pepper and seasoning salt. Form into small balls and put in an 11x15 pan. Bake for 20 minutes or until a meatball cu…

Making Pasta

On my menu tonight was seafood pasta. It was my version of my friend Laurie’s recipe for Shrimp Pasta. I made it with shrimp, scallops, and crab (imitation crab) it was yummy. But the most fun was that Emily and I made the pasta for the dinner. 

I bought a pasta maker on ebay a few months ago but had not used it. I was a bit intimidated by the process so I had left it in the box. Emily was home today and really wanted to give it a try. So we pulled out the box and gave it a whirl. It was EASY and fun!! I don’t know why I waited so long. 

We made fettuccini. The recipe was basically 2 cups flour (I used half white and half whole wheat pastry flour), 1 egg, 2 T oil and approx. 4T water.. I added that as it was mixing. 

Here are some pics of our pasta making time..



Here is Laurie’s recipe for Shrimp Pasta:

Laurie Bostwick

1/3 cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound shrimp, peeled, deveined and remove tails
2/3 cup clam juice or chicken broth
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 …

Menu for the week

Seafood Pasta
Garlic cheese biscuits

Chicken ala King (crockpot)
over brown rice

BBQ Meatballs (crockpot)
Mac & cheese
Green beans

Baked ham
Brown rice pilaf

Cheesy potato and ham (crockpot)

Taco soup
Tortilla chips and salsa

Lasagna (crockpot)
Homemade french bread

Updates from the Homestead

It has been over a week since I have had a chance to blog. I have been super busy with lots going on. 

This last week I had 3 trips into town; one for grocery shopping, one with Tobin and the third one with Emily to purchase some fabric. Those days in town really seem to throw the schedule off for me and I feel like I am racing behind the curve to keep the wheels turning here at home. 

Also this last week my boys’ best friend Andy spent the whole week with us. His parents went on a week long vacation to Hawaii (aww.. sun, warmth, water.. gotta love the thought right now as we are headed for some cold temps this week! )

This last week also seemed to be a busy computer week for me too. I had my message board moved to a new server and it ran into numerous issues that were caused by the old server. I had a tech guy that was so great to work with! He worked tirelessly to get the issues fixed and the board moved. We did end up losing some posts, but the faster moving board seems like an ok pr…

Black Bean Chicken Chili

Yesterday morning I was clueless as to what I was going to serve for dinner. I have been busy this last week and my menu planning suffered so I was just winging it. This meal was a joint brain storming creation by Emily and me. 

3 cups dry black beans
12 cups water
1 T salt
1 large onion, chopped
1 ½ lbs boneless chicken (can be thighs or breast), cut into bite size pieces
1 T minced garlic
Olive oil
1 cup frozen corn
1 can Rotel type tomatoes (spicy tomatoes)
2 T chili powder
1 T hot sauce, opt

Put beans, water and salt into a large soup pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and let simmer for 2 ½ to 3 hours or until beans are tender and cooked. After beans have cooked, drain off a couple 2 or 3 cups of the liquid and reserve for later.

In a large frying pan cook onion, chicken and garlic in olive oil until the chicken is completely cooked and the onion is soft. Add this to the beans.

Add frozen corn, tomatoes, chili powder and hot sauce (if using) to the bean/chicken mixture. Add some of the…

Crockpot and Soup Meals for the Winter

Here are a couple of recipes I made this last week. They were delicious and perfect for these winter evenings. 

Crockpot Chili
Crystal Miller

1 lb hamburger
1 cup chopped onions
1 cup chopped peppers (these can be green or red or yellow peppers or a combo of any of them)
1 cup chopped celery
2 14oz cans diced tomatoes
4 to 5 cups cooked red beans – Reserve a couple cups bean broth from cooking the beans
2T chili powder
1T hot pepper sauce (such as the brand Tabasco)
1T minced garlic
1t salt

In a medium sized frying pan cook the hamburger and veggies until the meat is completely cooked and the veggies are tender. Put in crockpot. Add remaining ingredients and enough reserved bean broth to give it your desired consistency. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.  Serve with tortilla chips and salsa or cornbread and a green salad. 

Potato Sausage Chowder
Crystal Miller

3 to 4 lbs potatoes, peeled and chopped
½ to 1 lb sausage, cooked
½ an onion, chopped
2 cups frozen corn
1 can evaporated milk
salt and pepper to tast…

Tuesday on the Homestead

Thank you all for the sweet comments about my new grandbaby..we are so happy about this!I could be wrong and just may be but I have this feeling it is a girl..we will have to wait until she has an ultrasound to see if I am right or not..but Emily had the same feeling too.I found myself looking at little girl baby clothes yesterday while I was in Costco! LOL..
We were all surprised this morning when we woke up to a white wintry morning.It was beautiful out!But I was so happy that Tobin was home and able to take Emily to her nanny job.I just don’t drive in this stuff.By tonight it is raining and just barely above 32 and so I am thinking it will be melted by tomorrow.
The day was quiet.I made a big pot of potato sausage chowder.It just seemed a good say for soup.I got 5 loads of laundry done and dinner made and that was about it.The kids worked on school and Tobin worked on tax stuff.
Tomorrow Tobin and I will be going to town to run some errands and have a little time out together.I am sur…

Updates from the Homestead

Well Sunday is just about over and I have a few quiet moments to do a blog posting. The kids, except for Isaac, are all at Bible study this evening.

My weekend was busy, busy.. I made 30#’s of soap! I need to replace all that soap that went flying off the shelves during the holidays and add a new scent or two for spring time, which is a little ways away but with curing time and all it should be just about right. I am sure I will need to make some more in another week or two. 

My week ahead looks like we will be getting back into our regular routine. The kids start back with their homeschooling tomorrow. I am looking forward this.

The big, big news of the weekend: My daughter Carolyn called me and told me that she and Jonathan are having a baby!!! I am soooo excited! Caden will have a little brother or sister some time in September! I can’t wait to be a grandma again.  I hope I am able to get away and be there for this birth. She said she wants another home birth and they both want me an…

Happy New Year!

I started my New Year out with a quiet day. My younger three kids had gone to their friend’s houses so it just left me, Tobin, Emily and Leanne. Emily said to me… “Don’t you notice how peaceful it is today Mom?” .. haa.. haa.. yes she was right! I took advantage of that peacefulness and got my newsletter sent out and then cleaned my bedroom. It was in need of some deep cleaning. It looks so much better now! I also washed 4 loads of laundry. In the evening I finished up all my book keeping work for my ebusiness so I could hand it all over to Tobin in preparations for taxes.. So all in all I thought it was a very productive day. Tobin and I went and picked up the kids in the evening, so that ended the peacefulness.. LOL.. 

On New Years Eve, I lost my internet connection. I thought it was the fault of my satellite company and I was busy that day so I just waited thinking they would solve the problem. But when it did not get solved I called the tech people and they got me back up and runni…