Thursday, April 28, 2011

a call for prayer

Dear friends,
I ask for your prayers, our hometown was destroyed during yesterday's storms. We will be without power or water for a unknown amount of time.
Thank you and as soon as I am able, I will update more.

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Topsy Turvy Planter

Last year my friend Rachel, told me about a beautiful idea that I just had to try. She called it her topsy turvy planter.


It was such a hit at our house, I ended up making one for my Mother, my Grandmother, my Sister, my Mother-n-law, my Aunt, my husbands Grandmother and so on...
They are super simple to make and here's how you can make your own.

Step one.
Take one 5 1/2 foot piece of 1/2 inch rebar and drive it into the ground a couple of feet

Once you have it securely in the ground take a 10" terracotta pot and place it on the rebar, through the hole and slide it down until you have it on the ground.
Fill with potting soil.
Once filled slide on an 8" pot and tilt the pot on its side.
As you will notice I didn't have a 10" pot on the bottom, I had already used it for another project.
Anyhow, fill up your next pot with potting mix and add your flowers. I used flowers that enjoyed sun because of where I placed my planter.
Continue stacking and filling and planting until you have four 8" pots layered.
Once we put on the final pot our rebar was sticking out a few inches too far, so we took a hammer and drove it in the ground a bit more until it was hidden by the flowers.

And there you have it...
Your Topsy Turvy Planter.
Enjoy!

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Making Our Own Convenience Foods

One thing I try to steer clear of in the grocery is convenience foods. I know they are loaded with preservatives and artificial garbage. Honestly though, sometimes I wouldn't mind their 'convenience'.  Life at times can be hectic and there are days that I don't have an hour for dough to rise or I get busy and it's already time to be making supper plans...

It is important to me to make sure I give my family the best I can, so when I do *ahem* slip :) I have a back-up plan.
When I have my own 'convenience foods' in my freezer, they are a great go-to meal without sacrificing money or peace-of-mind when I take the 'fast food' road. ugh...

Frozen pre-made (by me) lasagnas, casseroles and such are wonderful to have in the freezer.
Today though, we are talking about biscuits.
Everyone loves a good ole homemade biscuit.
Perfect for breakfast with jam, with a cuppa soup for lunch or have one with some pot roast for supper. Mmmm...

To make things easier for efficient, I laid out all my ingredients in bulk.
Then we made up batch after batch and placed the NON-COOKED biscuits on a pan lined with freezer paper and popped them in the freezer for a half hour or so, until frozen.
Afterwards, all we had to do was grab some freezer bags and fill.

 I love it that I can get our 20 if we are having some friends over for a meal, or I can grab out 2 to fix for Honey's breakfast before he goes in to work.
So wonderful.

Here's the recipe:

Buttermilk Biscuits

2 cups flour (I used half white and half wheat)
3 t. baking powder
2 t. sugar
1/2 t. cream  of tartar
1/4 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1/2 c. butter, in pieces
3/4 c. buttermilk

Put dry ingredients in food processor.  Add butter and pulse til mixture forms coarse crumbs.  Add milk and pulse until dough just comes together--do not over process.  Pat dough out on floured surface {I like to use my pastry cloth} and cut out biscuits.  Bake 500 degrees F for 10 - 12 minutes.
Enjoy!



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Monday, April 25, 2011

A gift for my Sister

My Sister had a birthday a few days ago. I made her a wreath just like the one I made for our front door, remember?
I wanted to give her something else too, and since I am in total love with hoop art right now, I decided to make one up for her.
Felt roses, muslin, 1930's fabric patch, buttons, and FAMILY.
Perfect!
I hope she loves it and every time she walks by she smiles and remembers just how much I love her, how wonderful I think she is and how blessed I am to have her as my family.



My Cup Runneth Over...
Moma Chas

Friday, April 22, 2011

Hallelujah!

Here it is Good Friday!

Our weekend plans have been a little bit changed with finding out that Abram has Hand, Foot and Mouth disease and so we are going to be spending Easter weekend at home instead of with our extended family like normal.
The kids are slightly bummed because they LOVE being with their cousins, but I have high hopes of making this weekend special and meaningful at home.
One of our plans is to make Resurrection Rolls
Crafting some of these with my children...
Making these Resurrection Cookies
We will have a special meal on Sunday and we will have an egg hunt here at home, for the FIRST TIME EVER! That's exciting. :)
Even though things are not going as we hoped, we still have SO much reason to celebrate that we serve a RISEN Savior!

Hallelujah!
He is ALIVE!!!

My Cup Runneth Over...
Moma Chas

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Learning to wait


Every year we garden, our children help out some. We want them to learn to work, wait and then be rewarded.
I am constantly reminded of our "I want it NOW" generation. We can have almost ANYTHING as soon as we want it. Even if we don't have the money for it... just whip out the credit card and it's ours!
I feel like our children are forgetting or rather not learning what the saying "Good things come to those who wait"  means. 

So it inspired me to take my children and get them involved in the garden a bit more. 
Each child has picked a spot or patch of garden to call their own. They are going to be in charge of planting, watering, weeding and harvesting. The Papa and the Moma will of course supervise, but we want them to see just what eating the fruits of their labor is all about.

During this, I hope that they will learn many things. 
Responsibility: for one. Just like taking care of our animals, our plants will need daily attention. 
Patience: We won't harvest immediately. Some things will take weeks, others months before we see a harvest. (This isn't Farm Town) :)
Endurance: We have to keep on keeping on. We can't quit mid stream or our money, time and effort will be in vain.
Self-discipline: Yep, we still have to weed when it is hot and we want to go swimming. Work first, play later!
Economics: we will see how little it cost us to grow our produce rather than buy! You can buy one bunch of radishes at the store (not even organic ones) for about $3.00. You can buy one packet of ORGANIC seeds for less than $2.00!!!!  Just think of all the radishes you can eat then! :)
Health: As we study Nutrition in our homeschool, we learn even more hands on while we are working and eating out of our garden.
Physical Education: As any gardener knows... it is WORK! Hard work sometimes. No doubt we will get some nicely shaped arms, and a good ole farmers tan while working.

The plots have been divided up like this (their choices)
Cameo is going to be growing peppers. Jalapeno, Hot banana and Red Bell Pepper. 
Eli is going to be growing potatoes. Red skinned, thank you! Mmmm
Carlie and Abe asked to work together and they will be working in the strawberry patch. Mainly because they LOVE strawberries. I will have to watch these two... they will eat more than they harvest if I am not careful!

Once we get things going we will post pictures and progress. (the picture above is NOT mine... I WISH!) haha :)

I hope you all have a beautiful and productive day!

My Cup Runneth Over...
Moma Chas

Monday, April 18, 2011

The Homestead through Carlie's Eyes

Carlie loves to use my camera and take pictures...
Here is some of the sights she captured throughout the weekend.
I think the cows look like they are playing peek-a-boo
Green, green grass!
Hulda
Eli and Dixie

I love spying what she spies.
Such beauty all around!


My Cup Runneth Over...
Chas

Friday, April 15, 2011

Do you see what I see?

Spring is full of surprises on a farm. Big farms, little farms... no matter.
 Springtime is full of life!
While visiting with the cows yesterday, we got one of those surprises.
See that?
Those belong to Ruby, who has never calved before!
Here is a picture of her
She is our only one who hasn't had a calf...

Needless to say, I was PRETTY excited to see Ruby with teats.
I haven't spied the babe yet, but as soon as she brings her out of hiding, I will snap some pictures to share with you!



Here is an up-to-date picture of Ellie Mae. She is still the prettiest little thing in the barnyard.
Total love.
She is a little doll and growing leaps and bounds!

I don't know if you can tell in this picture or not, but that is Ruby on the left, Bill the Bull in the middle and Garnet on the right. Ruby and Garnet look VERY similar, but the tips of Garnet's ears are white.

In other news...
I'm not sure if you are a follower of ours on facebook or not. If you are, then you know our precious little Rocky was killed early Thursday morning.
Thankfully Rachel was unharmed.
Our search for a Great Pyrenees to help protect the goats as well as our chickens, has been stepped up a notch and we are hoping to find one asap.

As always dear friends... Thank you for stopping by and sharing your time with us. We enjoy your visits and hope to encourage you to not give up on your dream of farming, no matter how small scale or large. Ours is still very much a dream in motion. We have so far to go and so much to learn.
Learning is part of the fun though. J So until next time.


My Cup Runneth Over...
Moma Chas







Thursday, April 14, 2011

Moma's Mexican Cornbread

 Tonight we are going to have pinto beans for supper. Nothing goes better with pinto's than some YUMMY Mexican Cornbread.

Here is my Moma's recipe... I'm sure you will love it as much as I do!

2 cups Corn Meal
1 Tbsp flour
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup oil
2 eggs
1/2 can of corn or 1 small can Fiesta Corn
3-6 jalapenos (chopped)
1 medium onion (chopped)
2 cups Mexican Cheese blend, Monterey Jack, Colby, Sharp Cheddar or whatever you have on hand

Preheat oven to 375*
Mix cornmeal flour, buttermilk, oil and eggs. Add corn, peppers, onions and cheese. Pour into greased 9x13 pan, 10" cast iron skillet, or muffin tins. Bake for 30-35 minutes.

Enjoy!

My Cup Runneth Over...
Moma Chas

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Barnyard Business

The barnyard is busy with the sights and sounds of spring!
Here are some of the scenes as we take a stroll after morning chores.
Rocky... after giving us a scare TWICE, he is now a healthy happy little buckling. Such a cutie too!
Rachel is doing very well. Grazing and bleating are her hobbies. J
Our best 'setter' Mama hen is watching over a clutch full of eggs, we are hoping for a great many to hatch! J
The proud Papa, Lt. Dan is strutting his way around the homestead watching over all his ladies.
And when I get close enough, this is the what we see. The little goats gathering close to Moma Chas.
Love


My Cup Runneth Over...
Moma Chas

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Under the Weather Learning

As of Sunday, our bunch started feeling crummy. One at a time, slightly overlapping each other.  Some a bit worse than others, and it looks to stretch out a couple more days.
During such a time, we could just call it all off and not try to do anything productive. But... we haven't.
I was doing some hand embroidery over the latter part of last week when Eli begged me to let him make something. A little home-ec was perfect for a quiet, sickly bunch yesterday. J
He picked out a pattern in my book Sublime Stitching. A great little book btw.J
I ironed the pattern on some spare muslin and he went to work. I think he did exceptionally well for his first attempt. We did have to work through a few knots... but otherwise he did beautifully.
We are going to sew his creation on to a pillowcase later on and he is already ready to begin his next project... for his brother
My Cup Runneth Over...
Moma Chas

Monday, April 11, 2011

Weekend thoughts


Over the weekend we worked out in the pasture. Cleaning up some rough spots around the homestead.
Sometimes I think about how difficult trying to be self-sufficient can be. It seems at times there is not enough hours in a day to do it all. When you look around, there is always so much more that needs to be done.
Then...
I remember, we are on a journey. Taking one day at a time. Step by step.
It can be done.
Keep on keeping on.
Don't give up the dream.

My Cup Runneth Over...
Moma Chas

Friday, April 8, 2011

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Photography by the girls

On Tuesday, my girls had friends come stay the night. They wanted to have a photo shoot. They picked out clothes, props, settings...
It was great fun seeing them work.
What was even better? Seeing just how well their work turned out.
Great job girls!






My Cup Runneth Over...
Chas

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

♥ Welcome Spring ♥

I love springtime. I love to brush off the drab and make things fresh and new. I had ladies coming to my home last night and I wanted things to look nice so I made this for the door.
This little wreath is such a nice bright adornment to my front door. Bright green grass with daisies popping up here and there. Tied of course with a yellow satin ribbon .

Hello my friends, welcome to our home 
My Cup Runneth Over...
Chas

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Hoop Art Swap

A few weeks back, I participated in a Hoop Art Swap at Life Made Lovely.
I love hoop art, and I love how there is really NO limit on what you can make.
This is the lovely gift I got from my swap partner, Jess.
Like I said, I adore hoop art, so I had a place on my wall with some I had made.
The bird!
The buttons!
YELLOW! J
It was a wonderful gift and I will treasure the art that was so thoughtfully gifted to me.
May your day be lovely as well!

My Cup Runneth Over...
Chas

Monday, April 4, 2011

Eli

My son.
He is such a goof, so stingy with that beautiful smile.
Every once in a while, he gives me a little one.
I guess he decided to advertise his math program... that he LOVES!!
I love the pencil behind the ear.

Moma's boy! J

My Cup Runneth Over...
Chas