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snooch
09-04-2011, 01:48 AM
By request :)

We can sticky this in a day or two so it doesn't run off the page. I'm not crunchy, so I'll leave you be now :yo:

tiredwalker
09-04-2011, 09:24 AM
Oooooo! Thank you! Look at all of this space...what should I do with it? Let's see, I can make a chicken coup there with little egg boxes. Have some little Nigerian goats there for milk. And a garden! A big, green garden to grow so much for the kids and put all of my compost in! YAYAYAYAAY. Oooo, I could get some sheep too, to mow the back field and sheer for wool that I can spin and knit with all winter long!

Virginia
09-04-2011, 12:43 PM
Yay!!! I'm so excited :)
I'm a crunchy wanna-be.So I will probably just sit back and admire everything you other ladies post here ;)

Sam
09-04-2011, 12:52 PM
Awesome! Thanks Snoochie Poochie Poo!

OK since you have the goats and chickens and the garden I will add the cheese and butter making and bee keeping! (Ok bee keeping is a little out there but wouldn't all the fresh honey and beeswax be great?)
And I will get DH to build us a nice bat house to keep the mosquitos away!
I actually have a praise in this area: Last week I was not having a good week At. All. I was really starting to question whether or not this lifestyle was a good fit for us.

Then the next two days was like God telling me that this was, in fact, His will for us. The first thing was when I was putting my chickens up that night, I was walking out of their yard and in the corner of my eye I saw our first egg! It was so exciting! I took it and rushed in and told DH to close his eyes and hold out his hand and I put it in his hand. The look on his face showed me that he needed that kind of reassurance as well.

The next day dh was working in the garden and came in with some very skinny celery. Now, the back story to this is that back in July I planted celery and carrots, I had a huge bag of carrot seeds so I planted them in with the tomatoes and with the celery. The celery I just planted in one spot. I was so excited about the celery I made a special little patch for it and put lots of good compost in there and made sure it was in a good spot.
Nothing. Nothing sprouted but some volunteer tomatoes and carrots. I was so dissappointed, I looked every day but did not see any celery seedlings at all, so I just gave up and figured I got some bad seeds or old seeds or something, that happened with my pablano peppers.
So evidently, I somehow got my seeds switched up and planted the celery where I thought I was planting some carrots! The tomatoes have gotten so big but aren't producing at all so I rarely even glance over them, lol. I have other carrots and garlic intercropped with them so I just kinda let the tomatoes be shade and hadn't even thought to check them.
So when DH came in with those celery that he picked, and said they look like they are thriving, it was an awesome surprise and it just made me realize that, yes, this is the life for me. :P

Sam
09-04-2011, 02:45 PM
This is something I am planning on doing for Christmas gifts, and for myself too.
http://www.diynatural.com/homemade-vanilla-extract/

BelovedDaughter
09-04-2011, 02:46 PM
*Subscribing*

christiankate
09-04-2011, 03:18 PM
Just curious... what is "Crunchy Ladies?"......

Virginia
09-04-2011, 03:20 PM
I think of "crunchy" as someone who tries to live a more sustainable lifestyle. People who garden, compost, recycle, knit their own clothes, make a lot of items from scratch, etc. are "crunchy" :)

...other people think of "crunchy" as neo-hippy, liberal tree-huggers. That is not my personal definition ;)

Sam
09-04-2011, 03:40 PM
Pretty much what V said, lol. Although the term "Crunchy" always makes me think of Nature Valley Granola bars, *Shudders* and then I get a toothache, lol.

OneLoneTree
09-04-2011, 04:40 PM
^^^I was just going to say this... like granola!

Jolinar
09-04-2011, 06:15 PM
Pretty much what V said, lol. Although the term "Crunchy" always makes me think of Nature Valley Granola bars, *Shudders* and then I get a toothache, lol.

Those are so gross but it's what I picture.

I am monkey in the middle. I left the core group what what I called Super Crunchies because I just couldn't live up to the impossible standards.

I am working towards being more self sufficient. I do what works for my family.

To most people though, we rarely eat take out and I haven't used a disposable diaper in over 18 months so I must be half way to bonkers. :D

tiredwalker
09-04-2011, 06:59 PM
I'm not a super crunchy person either; I don't eat mashed yeast or anything like that. I honestly just think of myself as old fashion. This is how my baba grew up and it worked for her and her 6 brothers and sisters.

I started the compost today and am really excited about it. I think it's going to work. Our tomatoes were a total bust this year. I bought these special cages and they were just pieces of junk that cost extra. The plants fell over, the limbs snapped, and the ripened tomatoes are mushy. Next year, I am buying from http://www.seedsavers.org/. They have all of the heirloom seeds I could ever fit on my patio and more.

I've got the bug to make some fresh mozzarella cheese and better cleaning supplies.

I was so happy today. Dh randomly told me that he was proud of me for sticking to being a vegetarian. He didn't think I was going to do it. He said he wouldn't be able to do it, but was happy about how I've changed our family's diet. I don't eat meat, but I do buy dh and kids meat from a local happy animal farm. I only use meat as an add in to the rest of the food instead of as a main dish. YAY.

DIANAC
09-04-2011, 07:57 PM
Christianmama, I had to ask Mr.Google what is crunchy. So, I am not alone in my ignorance. I was always "crunchy". I always cooked my food from scratch, almost never-never take outs or pizza. I also always baked from scratch. My kitchen is low-tech and I use cast iron toasting pan for toasts. I make jams. I am a compost fanatic. I always thought that I was old-fashioned. But now I hear that I am maybe "crunchy".

tiredwalker
09-04-2011, 08:13 PM
I think crunchy also implies long haired hippy too. I used to have long hair, but I had to shave after a week of trying to go natural...to prickly for my level of dedication :D That was college btw.

Xinnamon
09-04-2011, 08:16 PM
I have always thought of "crunchy" as a more parent-related term, e.g., natural birth, no/selective vaccination, breast-feeding, cloth diapering, co-sleeping etc. :)

I am into funky, healthy organic food, but I don't know if that's enough to make me crunchy. :D I'll like to learn more though!

Sam
09-04-2011, 09:42 PM
I have always thought of "crunchy" as a more parent-related term, e.g., natural birth, no/selective vaccination, breast-feeding, cloth diapering, co-sleeping etc. :)

I am into funky, healthy organic food, but I don't know if that's enough to make me crunchy. :D I'll like to learn more though!

Well I think that can be a big part of it, but I think the general idea is living a simple, natural, responsible life. The thing about that is, that can mean so many different things to different people. Old fashioned is another good term.:)

Manna
09-04-2011, 09:50 PM
I'm just semi-crunchy, but love getting tips and ideas from you ladies about how to improve in areas!! :)

Sam
09-04-2011, 09:55 PM
I wouldn't say I am full blown crunchy, but I am taking baby steps towards self sufficiency. My dreams are much bigger than my reality these days though, lol.

Virginia
09-04-2011, 10:08 PM
So, my problem is that I don't know HOW to do a lot of things (sew, crochet, knit, garden, compost, can, etc.). I know there are books out there on these subjects...but I don't know which I want to start with! I don't like knitting and crocheting :(

How did you ladies learn how to do what you know how to do? I don't really have anyone who can show me how to do things right now. But I really want to start learning now.

Sam
09-04-2011, 10:33 PM
The Everything Sewing Book was very helpful to me, and youtube still is a very good resource for learning how to sew by hand. Some things you just have to SEE, they just don't make sense when you read it, KWIM?
Another book I really like is Country Wisdom and Know How It covers a little of everything lol but I warn you, it is a BIG book! It can be a little overwhelming but its fun to flip through cuz you'll stumble upon something you never saw before. :)
A good book about preserving food is The Beginner's Guide to Preserving Food at Home by Janet Chadwick. She doesn't just cover canning and pickling, but freezing and root cellaring and has a wealth of other tips to make preserving easier.
http://pickyourown.org/allaboutcanning.htm#Canning This is a pretty good site about canning and preserving.
PBS has some pretty good shows about gardening and crafting as well. :)

DIANAC
09-05-2011, 08:19 AM
Sam , do you mean sewing by hand instead of the sewing machine?
Christine, I learned how to sew, needlepoint and other things watching my mother and grandmother. Some churches have sewing/knitting groups, that could be a start. Most importantly, ask the Lord and He will send you a proper teacher.

tiredwalker
09-05-2011, 09:51 AM
I left college not knowing how to do any of this stuff. But when I started getting interested, I enlisted the help of my mom, dad, and Baba. Grandparents are great for passing down the skills. My mom and dad taught me how to cook.

I also learned a lot through books (like Sam recommended). My dad had no carpentry skills, but he wanted to build a deck...so he bought a book. Teachers are great and so are online videos. They have them for just about everything.

Jolinar
09-05-2011, 11:46 AM
We can't do organic - shopping for allergies is expensive enough. Also since many people avoid corn because it's GMO - most organic stuff is tainted with oat - DD is allergic.

Virginia - I have found the easiest way to learn things is to look online - find written instructions and then hunt down a youtube video. I would have never learned how to fold a prefold without videos. I even learned some new hair styles with videos. :)

Sam
09-05-2011, 02:42 PM
Sam , do you mean sewing by hand instead of the sewing machine?
Christine, I learned how to sew, needlepoint and other things watching my mother and grandmother. Some churches have sewing/knitting groups, that could be a start. Most importantly, ask the Lord and He will send you a proper teacher.

Diana, I do both, and Youtube has been especially helpful mastering hand stitches. I was totally at a loss as to what slip stitch, whip stitch, back stitch, any of that meant, and had a hard time understanding how to do it by reading instructions, I had to see it for it to click in my head. I have also turned to Youtube when I was unsure how to do something on my machine. Its just a great learning tool.

Jolinar, I can't afford to buy organic either. When I garden I do try to use more organic measures but some times i just can't, like my peach trees, if I did not spray insecticide on them they would get eaten up, I have not found anything non chemical that works. :(

tiredwalker
09-05-2011, 03:15 PM
We are really lucky about where we live. We have three farmer's markets on different days of the week within 7 miles of us. Most of the farms are organic and they just pack up the stuff in crates the night before and haul them down in trucks. We can get everything from sheep/goat/cow cheese, to honey, to meat and produce. Nothing has to be shipped across the country, so it's unwaxed and all that. AND it tends to be cheaper than the grocery store because all of the produce is all the way from CA. I can get a nice, bright green head of celery for $2 or get a half squished, white one for $3.50 at the grocer.

During the winter, we can get the green house produce from the same farms at the CoOp for a little more. I don't mind paying it. I can't even tell you how thankful I am. It was nothing like this when I lived in CA.

snooch
09-05-2011, 06:33 PM
Three pages of posts already :) This thread will be stickied in a minute :D

DIANAC
09-05-2011, 08:31 PM
Diana, I do both, and Youtube has been especially helpful mastering hand stitches. I was totally at a loss as to what slip stitch, whip stitch, back stitch, any of that meant, and had a hard time understanding how to do it by reading instructions, I had to see it for it to click in my head. I have also turned to Youtube when I was unsure how to do something on my machine. Its just a great learning tool.


Oh, I am also not good with terminologies. Many times instead of taking out my sewing machine I just do small jobs by hand.

Sam
09-06-2011, 12:14 AM
I do that too, Diana. I don't have a set place for my sewing machine to stay so if something just needs a few stitches I just do it by hand, or if I am watching tv with the family I'll hand sew. Much quieter and not a whole bunch of stuff to get in the way.

WanderingJuniper
09-06-2011, 12:20 PM
YAY! The perfect place for me to share my excitement! :D My husband and I are going to the Mother Earth News Fair (http://www.motherearthnews.com/fair/home.aspx) at the end of the month with my cousin and his wife. During our trip the four of us are going to discuss the logistics of starting an intentional community sustainable homestead that may eventually lead to enough income to allow both my husband and myself to work from home instead of just me. There are so many seminars I'm going to sit in on and just absorb the knowledge. So excited!

Also, I spent most of my Labor Day weekend in the kitchen prepping for winter. I'm not yet finished but I should be by the end of the week.
I have some more applesauce to can along with pears, and more tomato sauce.

The pickyourown site is really helpful. I also got my hands on the Ball preserving book.

My grandma taught me how to sew by hand while my mom taught me how to use a sewing machine. There is something really soothing about sewing by hand. Making hacky sacks and bean bags is relaxing.

Sam
09-07-2011, 11:08 AM
Thats awesome WJ! I would love to do something like an intentional community, and with my brother being my neighbor, and another neighbor that we really get along with it could work, but with the other 3 houses in our little area wouldn't. One is a single dad that says he admires what we are trying to do, doesn't feel like he has the time, the other two look at the rest of us like we are beneath them and do not talk to us. *rolles eyes*

My main goal is similar to yours, to allow DH to work at least part time, or have the freedom to explore other options, God willing.
I feel led to really work on improving our financial health in the next year and I am going to be spending the rest of this year in serious prayer about it. If its God's will I believe that 2013 can be a year for making drastic changes like converting to solar and wind energy. Becoming that much more self sufficient.

I also have something kind of cool to report, Monday my parents came over to visit and I was talking to them about my idea of making vanilla extract for Christmas presents. We were talking about the alchohol and I was thinking surely I could just use whatever is cheapest, since its not really the taste of the liquer but the alchohol content. My Dad actually got pretty excited about the idea and said that when I get the vanilla beans to let him know and he would buy all the liquer I needed. He also said that he thought he saw a bunch of antique glass bottles in my Papa's house that would have been my Granny's, he is going to look again and if he finds them I will use them.
He has really been my cheerleader through all of this and it has not been expected at. all. It is however, how he grew up and I am beginning to realize that its possible thats how he wanted to live as an adult but alot of unforseen events prevented it.

WanderingJuniper
09-07-2011, 11:59 AM
Sam, that's kind of funny about your dad. Mine is the same way. He grew up with a grape vine off his deck, helping his dad make wine in the basement. The house had two huge apple trees that him and his siblings used to pick with their dad while grandmom made applesauce and apple butter. There was a pear tree and a raspberry bramble along the back fence. They had a huge garden, for being more or less "in town." Grandmom used to make sauerkraut and my uncle raised rabbits one year. It was just life. They didn't have loads of money but I never heard them complain at all. My dad did what he could when i was growing up but somethings couldn't be helped with certain circumstances.

Now he's basically given us permission to use his property as we wish. The only thing I have gotten resistance on from him is fruit trees. Between his goats and the deer he's afraid they'll be ruined before they bear any fruit. Well, that and ducks. We have two male ducks and I wanted a couple females but he said no. They are too messy and the water issue is difficult without a pond.

Sam
09-07-2011, 02:02 PM
WJ could you fence off a corner of the land for a small orchard? I love my fruit trees. It breaks my heart how many we lost due to this drought. :sigh: The good thing, though is that when we replace them we will be able to put them where *we* want them, and in a more orderly and organized way, the old owners who planted them put them all over the place, which is fine, but I would rather have them further from the house because they attract wasps like no one's business! Its great to think about being able to pick a peach right from my porch, but the massive black wasps that swarm them is not so great. :(

WanderingJuniper
09-08-2011, 10:57 AM
Yeah, the bees, yellow jackets and wasps that come with fruit trees can be horrible. It's worth it through if they aren't right by the house.

I don't know if I can fence or not. We'll see. I'm going to keep pushing it if we don't plan to move to our own property in the next few years.

Wish I could send some of this water your way. We're dealing with flooding for the second time in two weeks. Neighbors across the street had water flow right into their living room yesterday and our street looked like a river. I should have had a whole month more for tomatoes but it looks like what I picked over the weekend is all I'm going to get now. The yard's been flooded out at my parents and all the low tomatoes are rotting.

Sam
09-09-2011, 11:27 AM
So I recieved Animal, Vegetable, Miracle in the mail this week (got it for FREE! :P) So far I am loving it. I can respectfully disagree, though, with her beliefs that plant life explains evolution. I can honestly say that the more I learn about plants, the more I see that it was designed by a very loving God. But, I can over look that as an agree to disagree arrangement and say that I really am enjoying it. I LOVE that she put her youngest daughter in charge of the chickens. Its something DH and I plan to do with Cassy when she gets old enough. Heck, she can already catch them better than we can! I think its so good for kids to be involved in that, as a matter of fact, when I was 13 my Dad tried his hand at selling cattle. It didn't pan out but for several months my aunt (who lived with us, and was 14 at the time, confusing I know, lol) and I had to get up very very early and tend to the calves before we went to school. It was really something I can look back on as a wonderful memory. How I bawled my eyes out when they were sold!
I just think its very tragic that alot of adults, and most kids, don't have the slightest idea where their food comes from, and a good majority don't care either. I do not want my daughter to be one of the kids you see on Jamie Oliver who think honey comes from bears and cheese comes from macaroni. :(

DIANAC
09-09-2011, 12:36 PM
Yay! Cassy is change of the chickens!

Sam
09-09-2011, 12:39 PM
You know how much she loves them things!

Mrs_B
09-09-2011, 05:28 PM
^^ Too cute!

On many occasions I find myself longing for a simpler lifestyle, but I'm afraid of spending money and failing or not sticking with it.

DIANAC
09-09-2011, 06:08 PM
Yes, I see now that she can catch them good! Cassy, the chicken Manager!!!!

Sam
09-09-2011, 06:22 PM
^^ Too cute!

On many occasions I find myself longing for a simpler lifestyle, but I'm afraid of spending money and failing or not sticking with it.

I know what you mean, thats why I have been taking baby steps for a few years. First it was just cooking everything from scratch and having a small garden, then it was making my own cleaners, and step by step its snowballed into the monster it is now, lol.

DIANAC
09-09-2011, 09:37 PM
Sam,( gulp!) how do you make your own cleaners? I remember many-many-many years ago we used to polish the furniture with a vegetable oil. And my grandmother used to scrub the pots with sand. My mother used to take the rugs and carpets outside and beat them instead of vacuuming them. Windows were washed with water and dried with a newspaper. But I stopped doing all this when I was introduced to modern conveniences. So, what do you do????

Sam
09-09-2011, 10:07 PM
Oh Diana, its so easy! For all purpose bathroom and kitchen cleaners, I just use one part white vinegar and one part water in an old spray bottle! Its about a$1.50 for a gallon of store brand vinegar that will last a long time, and the spray bottle is free if you just use the bottle from an old cleaner, if you are worried about the scent, you can add essential oils or sometimes I use a few drops of orange extract. For scouring, deoderizing, lots of stuff really, I use baking powder, talk about cheap! Furniture polish is 1 1/2teaspoons of whatever cooking oil you have, 3 tablespoons of water and 4 tablespoons lemon juice. I put it in an old dish soap bottle and squirt it on an old rag.
I still use Windex, but I do use newspapers though. I also make my own laundry detergent, one bar of Fels Naptha, 3 cups Borax and 3 cups washing soda, all found in the laundry isle.

Sam
09-09-2011, 10:14 PM
Oh and TW, I just read the cheesemaking adventure in AVM, and now I am absolutely dying to do it! I got on the New England Cheesemaking Supply Co's website and could buy one of everything! Our budget this month is already toast but next month this is a priority! I WILL be buying at least the cheesemaking kit.
Oh I read the recipe for mascarpone and I just wanted to jump through the computer screen and dive in!

Mrs_B
09-10-2011, 02:14 AM
OK I can say that I have made my own cleaners. Generally I use baking soda to scrub anything tough to clean, like the bathtub, but Mr.Clean and his magic erasers may have eliminated that for me. hehe.

christiankate
09-10-2011, 03:52 AM
I'm going to pop my head in here.......

I grow my own citrus! I love it.... lemons, limes, oranges and grapefruit!

I'm trying to become more in touch with nature. I recently watched a shocking video called, Food Inc. It really makes you think about where your food comes from!

My uncle also has a farm and he makes his own maple syrup! It's wonderful!

DIANAC
09-10-2011, 10:23 AM
This season so far I made 12 jars of figs preserves. I also finished drying basil. I think I will have another harvest of basil before frost.

Manna
09-10-2011, 06:06 PM
This season so far I made 12 jars of figs preserves. I also finished drying basil. I think I will have another harvest of basil before frost.

Oh, I LOVE fig preserves!!! Growing up we had a fig tree in the back yard, and I miss having fresh figs around. I was always the one who snuck into the fridge to pick out the biggest fig pieces in the preserves =P

tiredwalker
09-10-2011, 08:08 PM
Oh and TW, I just read the cheesemaking adventure in AVM, and now I am absolutely dying to do it! I got on the New England Cheesemaking Supply Co's website and could buy one of everything! Our budget this month is already toast but next month this is a priority! I WILL be buying at least the cheesemaking kit.
Oh I read the recipe for mascarpone and I just wanted to jump through the computer screen and dive in!

I know right? So great. I have to wait a while, but boy am I excited.

christiankate-I didn't see that, but I read, Eating Animals, Food Rules, and In Defense of Food and it really confirmed a lot of my previous thoughts. I've comletely changed how my entire family eats. We spend just a tad more for higher quality, mostly local food , I make our meals from scratch, and we are just thriving. Interestingly enough, Dh and I have lost some weight even though we are eating more "no-no" foods like real butter and ice cream (from happy cows just up the road).

OneLoneTree
09-10-2011, 10:00 PM
even though we are eating more "no-no" foods like real butter and ice cream (from happy cows just up the road).

Real butter is not a "no-no" food. In spite of the myths the "diet nazis" have been pushing on the public, people need fats in their diet, and eating fat does not make you fat. Better you eat real butter than fake spreads made with hydrogenated and vegetable oils. It's like comparing real sugar to HFCS.

OneLoneTree
09-10-2011, 10:03 PM
Generally I use baking soda to scrub anything tough to clean, like the bathtub, but Mr.Clean and his magic erasers may have eliminated that for me. hehe.

I mentioned this in the Hair thread, but baking soda mixed with shampoo will remove hairspray residue from your hair. I tried it this morning, and it worked like a charm. It is also good for cleaning hairbrushes, and worked like magic in cleaning the bathtub.

tiredwalker
09-11-2011, 10:14 AM
Real butter is not a "no-no" food. In spite of the myths the "diet nazis" have been pushing on the public, people need fats in their diet, and eating fat does not make you fat. Better you eat real butter than fake spreads made with hydrogenated and vegetable oils. It's like comparing real sugar to HFCS.

That's how I figure too. Our bodies know what to do with the real stuff. It's certainly not health food, but it's not a fake food.

Sam
09-11-2011, 10:30 AM
That's how I figure too. Our bodies know what to do with the real stuff. It's certainly not health food, but it's not a fake food.

Thats pretty much what Cassy's pediatrician told me. It may not be the most healthiest, but its alot better than even the healthiest prepackaged stuff.

tiredwalker
09-11-2011, 08:27 PM
Sam, I thought you would appreciate this. The Farmer's Diner in AVM is about 7 minutes from my house. We went there this afternoon and it was great. Dh had a bacon burger and I had an omlet and it was all local. Even the hot sauce was from Vermont. I've not had a chance to do something like that. It's in one of those old road-side diners with a built on extra dining room. Loved it!

~Kellee~
09-11-2011, 08:50 PM
I really admire all you ladies. I'm slowly making the changes to more natural organic products but the price gets to be a little hard to swallow sometimes. Our area doesn't have much to offer either so that makes it difficult.

DIANAC
09-12-2011, 12:24 PM
Oh, I LOVE fig preserves!!! Growing up we had a fig tree in the back yard, and I miss having fresh figs around. I was always the one who snuck into the fridge to pick out the biggest fig pieces in the preserves =P

And I been wondering what happens to my preserves! So, it's you!!!!

GM
09-12-2011, 12:31 PM
I made beet plum jam :) I have enough to last us years :P
I'll be making apple butter soon. We have so many apples.

We had a successful garden this year :D DH is itching to move to a farm and have cows, chickens and other animals. I might become the new pioneer woman if that were to happen...:attention::cry:

Sam
09-12-2011, 12:36 PM
Send me some apples!!!! My apple tree died. :( I don't think it would have produced anyway since there was only one.

Sam
09-12-2011, 12:37 PM
Sam, I thought you would appreciate this. The Farmer's Diner in AVM is about 7 minutes from my house. We went there this afternoon and it was great. Dh had a bacon burger and I had an omlet and it was all local. Even the hot sauce was from Vermont. I've had a chance to do something like that. It's in one of those old road-side diners with a built on extra dining room. Loved it!

Thats awesome! I read that part of the book yesterday! I am about 2/3 of the way done with it already, I love it!

tiredwalker
09-12-2011, 12:37 PM
I really admire all you ladies. I'm slowly making the changes to more natural organic products but the price gets to be a little hard to swallow sometimes. Our area doesn't have much to offer either so that makes it difficult.

It took me a really long time to get there too. DH and I have been really poor at times and it's hard to justify such expenses when there are much cheaper foods available. I totally get that. Because we now live in the north east, it's actually cheaper to buy local in the summer because all of the regular food has to be shipped in from CA and with gas prices, well, you know how the story goes. Plus, VT has a lot of old hippies who have been living this way for a while and it's gotten into the local culture...lotta hippies :P

I found this website http://www.localharvest.org/farmers-markets/ that might help you find something in your area. I've found that the farmers' markets are cheaper than organic foods in the stores because they are local and have no middlemen.

One interesting thing that I have noticed is that dh and I eat much less when we eat this way. I think the food is higher in nutrients from the well groomed soil and so we don't have to consume as many calories to get what we need. We've both lost several pounds...not bad for eating butter, full-fat maple yogurt, and half and half. The book In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan has been helpful in navigating the murky water of nutrition and food.

Sam
09-12-2011, 12:54 PM
Yeah I agree that it takes baby steps, I am still years away from my goals. It gets frustrating sometimes but then I realize that if suddenly I was able to do all the things I want to do, I would be overwhelmed and probably give up.

snooch
09-12-2011, 01:05 PM
GM, would you mind sharing your apple butter recipe? I love mine, but I find it to be so time consuming that I make it about once a year, if that. I'm always looking for new recipes because we love apple butter so much here :D

WanderingJuniper
09-12-2011, 01:22 PM
Snooch have you seen the recipe for crock-pot apple-butter? Really easy. I make it about twice a year because my middle daughter puts it on everything!

~Kellee~
09-12-2011, 01:23 PM
It took me a really long time to get there too. DH and I have been really poor at times and it's hard to justify such expenses when there are much cheaper foods available. I totally get that. Because we now live in the north east, it's actually cheaper to buy local in the summer because all of the regular food has to be shipped in from CA and with gas prices, well, you know how the story goes. Plus, VT has a lot of old hippies who have been living this way for a while and it's gotten into the local culture...lotta hippies :P

I found this website http://www.localharvest.org/farmers-markets/ that might help you find something in your area. I've found that the farmers' markets are cheaper than organic foods in the stores because they are local and have no middlemen.

One interesting thing that I have noticed is that dh and I eat much less when we eat this way. I think the food is higher in nutrients from the well groomed soil and so we don't have to consume as many calories to get what we need. We've both lost several pounds...not bad for eating butter, full-fat maple yogurt, and half and half. The book In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan has been helpful in navigating the murky water of nutrition and food.

Yeah I agree that it takes baby steps, I am still years away from my goals. It gets frustrating sometimes but then I realize that if suddenly I was able to do all the things I want to do, I would be overwhelmed and probably give up.

Thanks ladies. I tend to be an all or nothing personality so I think that's where I'm having trouble. I need to realize that I don't need/can't change everything all at once. Luckily DH is totally on board with making these changes.

TW, I've actually read Michael Pollan's books and I love them. It's kinda what sparked my interest in this.

snooch
09-12-2011, 01:56 PM
Snooch have you seen the recipe for crock-pot apple-butter? Really easy. I make it about twice a year because my middle daughter puts it on everything!

Oooh no I haven't! That has to be easier than what I'm doing in a skillet for two hours. Do you happen to have a link handy?

GM
09-12-2011, 02:22 PM
GM, would you mind sharing your apple butter recipe? I love mine, but I find it to be so time consuming that I make it about once a year, if that. I'm always looking for new recipes because we love apple butter so much here :D



I've never made it :D I figured I have to start sometime :P I was going to use the recipe on Simply Recipes.com but now WJ mentioned the crock pot...

WanderingJuniper
09-12-2011, 03:04 PM
This (http://www.hillbillyhousewife.com/crockpotapplebutter.htm)is close enough.

I don't really use a recipe. I fill my crock pot with peeled, cored and quartered apples, set it on low, add a cup of apple cider and cinnamon. Then I walk away until it's all reduced and tasty. I don't like my apple butter really sweet which is why I use apple cider instead of the cups upon cups of sugar other recipes say to use.

A friend of mine does this after dinner and by breakfast it's ready. The house smells good and their is a tasty topping waiting for you to make pancakes.

Oh golly I am HUNGRY!

snooch
09-12-2011, 05:06 PM
Awesome, WJ, thank you! I like brown sugar in my apple butter over white (white sounds kind of nasty to me) but that recipe looks so easy :)

MsDahl
09-12-2011, 06:02 PM
How many apples do you use just about? Are they medium sized and are they red or green apples? That recipe sounds so yummy!!!!

Manna
09-12-2011, 10:50 PM
The idea of making it in a crock pot sounds amazing!!! What kind of apples are best in it?

snooch
09-12-2011, 11:45 PM
I've only ever made apple butter with red apples. They are the sweetest, and I think yellow or green apples would be too tart for my tastes.

WanderingJuniper
09-13-2011, 10:01 AM
I don't know what kind of apple makes the best. I have always just made it with whatever seconds the orchard has for $5. :box: It's a HUGE basket for $5!

Let's see, I made applesauce the other weekend and about 10 LARGE honeycrisp apples filled my crockpot. I have a big family sized crock pot. So if you have a smaller one 5 big apples or 8 medium would probably do it. I'm totally guessing.

tiredwalker
09-13-2011, 10:22 AM
I don't know what kind of apple makes the best. I have always just made it with whatever seconds the orchard has for $5. :box: It's a HUGE basket for $5!
I used to do this with tomato seconds and salsa. I could get 10 pounds of heirloom tomatoes as big as my face for about $20. They would have a small bruise or a tiny patch about to go moldy and I would slice it off plus a little and it was the best salsa in the world. It was great. They just couldn't sell them at $4 a pound because of the defect...and I was happy to help them with that problem :D

Sam
09-13-2011, 03:02 PM
This is going to have to be one of the first things I make when I make my own cheese:

http://www.ciaoitalia.com/seasons/season-2100/-whipped-ricotta-parfait-with-cherries

And then this:
http://www.ciaoitalia.com/seasons/season-2100/episode-2120

And definitely this:
http://www.ciaoitalia.com/seasons/season-2100/buratta-with-roasted-and-marinated-asparagus/telephone-wires-i-suppli-al-telefono-i

tiredwalker
09-13-2011, 03:42 PM
That first one really does it for me. I'm hoping to get some supplies for christmas...PLEEEEEEASE!

Sam
09-13-2011, 03:43 PM
Oh I know, right! I was drooling all over the place! I love Ricotta cheese.

GM
09-14-2011, 01:02 AM
Apple Butter making has begun tonight :) I have my crockpot going :D We'll see how it turns out!

spiersdodgerblue
09-14-2011, 04:13 AM
If it turns out I would like the recipe :)

GM
09-14-2011, 10:29 AM
I estimated everything :)

I filled my crock pot with quartered apples (from our tree)
~ 1/2 cup of apple cider
~1/2 cup - 3/4 cups of brown sugar
1/4 tsp of cloves
1/4 tsp of nutmeg
2-3 tsps of cinnamon

Throw everything in the crockpot, stir, cook it on high for about an hour, stir again, turn to the lowest setting (mines 10 hours) and go to sleep :) The house smells soooo good :) I made toast with it for the kiddos this morning but it really needs to thicken. They couldn't wait though :)

Sam
09-14-2011, 12:45 PM
I. JUST. FOUND. A. LOCAL. ORGANIC. FREE TRADE. COFFEE. COMPANY!!!!! :faint:


And they aren't unreasonably priced either! From the looks of it they are around the same price as brands like Starbucks. So going to buy some this weekend!

WanderingJuniper
09-15-2011, 11:46 AM
Isn't that awesome?! I found one this summer. It is a little pricier than the ones at the grocery store but it is whole bean so it is worth it to me. Fresh ground is so much tastier than pre-ground coffee any day.

Sam
09-15-2011, 11:55 AM
It is so much better! I haven't been able to buy good coffee for quite a while but I am going to splurge this weekend. My poor coffee grinder will be so happy to be used again!

tiredwalker
09-18-2011, 07:26 AM
I'm hoping to go apple picking today at my favorite u-pick place. I'd like to get a ridiculous amount so I can freeze some apple slices for pies and sauce later as well as make some sauce now and a big fat pie....and maybe some apple butter. I tried it once and wasn't a fan, but it could have just been that particular jar. hmmm.

tiredwalker
09-20-2011, 06:01 PM
I think I figured out the composting issue for now. The bin wasn't working for our particular area. I dug up my cuks and maters because it froze and they were done. Now I'm just digging a hole, mixing/cutting it all with a shovel, and covering it up. We don't produce a ton (a bowl a day) because I try to use as much of each thing as I can, so I think we'll be good until we get snow.

Apple picking was a success. I made an apple crisp that was pretty good and once we're back in action from the stomach bug, I'll start making applesauce and apple butter.

DIANAC
09-20-2011, 08:37 PM
I think I figured out the composting issue for now. The bin wasn't working for our particular area. I dug up my cuks and maters because it froze and they were done. Now I'm just digging a hole, mixing/cutting it all with a shovel, and covering it up. We don't produce a ton (a bowl a day) because I try to use as much of each thing as I can, so I think we'll be good until we get snow.


That is exactly what I do. Last year I juiced alot and used the pulp for composting. But in the winter as the ground was frozen I stored the pulp in small baggies and put them in the freezer in the spare refrigerator. In the spring I had a good time composting all those wonderfully frozen bricks.

WanderingJuniper
09-21-2011, 11:53 AM
Composting has posed a challenge for us. Since we livein a town home I can't figure out an out of the way location for the bin. I also have the challenge of the bugs it draws along with the odor in the summer. I know I already push one of my neighbors to the edge with our non-traditional back yard and creative front gardening. I have no desire to push her over the edge because of bugs and smell but I'd really like to compost. My soil needs the attention that a good amount of organic matter could provide.

felinity
09-21-2011, 12:34 PM
Include LOTS of "brown" material: dried leaves, even shredded newspaper. That should help keep your bin from smelling.

Alternatively, you could try one of those self-contained compost tumblers.

Sam
09-21-2011, 01:13 PM
^^ Yep, brown stuff (carbon) is key. When we go to sell our pecans this year I am going to ask the processing plant what they do with the shells, I know they use them to pave their driveway (which is REALLY smart, I thought) but they go through millions and millions of pecans so I am sure they wont mind loading me up with a truckbed or two full for my compost.
I read on another forum about a guy that even composts dead animals and does the whole "humanure" thing. BUT he gets all the leaves and grass clippings he wants from the town's landfill. His compost pile is as big as my house and he has pipes running through it for hot water.

tiredwalker
09-21-2011, 01:42 PM
I don't think I'll ever be ready for humanure! That's a crazy big compost! You have to be a little careful though. My old neighbor's caught on fire once. It was pretty big and hot and poof it went.

WJ-the burying thing really seems to work well with no smell or bugs. The hole is deep and I really whack the tar out of all of the stuff to grind it all together. Once it's mixed and all that, there's not much left for critters to feast on and it's buried under, so flies don't get to it.

I think the main problem with my bin was lack of brown. There really wasn't much brown for me to put in there so the bugs and smell started to creep in there.

Sam
09-21-2011, 01:49 PM
Yeah I don't think I could ever do humanure either, lol. He said it would burn you hand if you touch it, and he used a backhoe (I think thats what they are called, lol) to bury the animals deep in there. Its really a compost mountain! :P

tiredwalker
09-21-2011, 06:44 PM
Holy smokes! I love apple butter! It's not ready quite yet, but it's bubbly and brown. I tasted a sample of applebutter before and it was grainy. Mine was looking that way too, so I ran it through the blender and it got REALLY smooth. Now is just a put of bubbling brown goodness. My whole house smells like apple cider too :D

snooch
09-21-2011, 07:10 PM
Try it over pork chops, TW. It is to die for :)

tiredwalker
09-21-2011, 07:54 PM
Unfortunately, I've converted to veggie, but that does sound delightful...perhaps for the chitlins and hubs. I was sorta thinking about just drinking it.

tiredwalker
09-24-2011, 03:05 PM
Today was good. One of my sunflowers was ready so I harvested the seeds, roasted them with salt. and composted the rest of the plant. We're off in just a little bit to get more apples. I think I'm going to slice and freeze them with a little lemon juice for crisps and sauce later. I love fall.

Sam
09-24-2011, 03:28 PM
Jealous! My sunflowers got eaten by critters before they got very big at all. :( We are really going to have to find a solution to the critter situation as they ate all my lettuce,spinach and sunflowers this year and we are also wanting to plant peanuts and potatoes next year.

tiredwalker
09-24-2011, 05:17 PM
That is so frustrating. I actually had about 15 nice strong sunflowers in two patches. When they were waist high, the woodchucks mowed them down. We were left with 4 in the front yard. Plastic chicken fencing was very effective for us in the garden.

I've been inspired by some half sour dough bread that I got. The ingredients are: Whole wheat flour and sea salt. That's it. So I'm going to make this starter: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/sourdough-starter---wheat/detail.aspx and start trying my hand at making bread at home.

Sam
09-24-2011, 05:39 PM
Yeah thats what I am going to have to do with my sf's. We have a nice drip irrigation system already in place b/c of our pecan trees, and I am going to plant in a few of the empty spots and put some chicken wire around them, or maybe a bucket with the bottom cut out.

I love to make bread. I did the Herman sourdough starter for a while but didn't stick with it long enough to let it get really good and aged. I really ought to start that again.

Sam
09-24-2011, 06:22 PM
Oh, and I got a lovely monster zucchini out of the garden today, and we have baby pumpkins! I soooooo hope we planned it right so we can have pumpkins for Halloween!

tiredwalker
09-26-2011, 11:21 AM
Awesome!

Today I dried some celery leaves. I bought an almost fake looking head at the FM and the guy said they dry the leaves as an herb. I usually throw them in a stock, but this sounded great. So I dried and crumbled an entire sandwich baggie full (like I said, crazy head!).

I started my sourdough starter with a different recipe (1 cup whole wheat flour w/ 3/4 cup warm water) and am waiting for the lovely action. I was able to get a hold of some local recently ground wheat, so hopefully it will ferment correctly.

I am also waiting for some dough to rise. I couldn't wait the five days for the starter, so I bought some yeast to make a yeast bread. We'll see how it turns out.

AND...my husband thinks I'm crazy :P ("you know, they have bread at the grocery store :laser:)

Sam
09-26-2011, 05:24 PM
Thats great! I have never been able to get whole wheat bread to turn out right. Its always very dry and hard to eat without a gallon of tea to wash it down. So I usually use half whole wheat and half unbleached all purpose. Let me now how your sourdough works out, I may have to try it too!

Sam
09-26-2011, 05:26 PM
Oh and my husband tends to give me "the look" every now and then. LOL Like "ok she has gone off the deep end!" LOL he has the same dreams as me but I tend to dream BIG! :D

tiredwalker
09-26-2011, 08:19 PM
The bread was terrible. It was far, far too dense. It wasn't too dry, just dense like a brick. The kids loved it with butter and jam though.

I have a loaf of sour dough from a local baker and the only ingredients are whole wheat flour and sea salt. It's the best bread ever and I'm willing to die trying to make it.

I'm fortunate enough to live about 7 miles from the only King Arthur Flour in the world and I can take a class if I need too. God bless King Arthur and his cooking classes.

Sam
09-26-2011, 08:30 PM
I love King Arthur flour. I "like" them on FB lol and always seeing that they are having conventions and stuff like that. What a great thing to live so close!

tiredwalker
09-27-2011, 07:22 AM
Well my dear, if you ever decided you need to take a class, I'd love to take you through our lovely valley :)

WanderingJuniper
09-27-2011, 02:19 PM
Oh and my husband tends to give me "the look" every now and then. LOL Like "ok she has gone off the deep end!" LOL he has the same dreams as me but I tend to dream BIG! :D

I used to get that look too! But not anymore. We got back yesterday from the Mother Earth News Fair and my husband is a complete convert! He's swimming in the deep end like a dolphin now.:tongue: The man is on board completely and totally on board. I won't share all our deep end ideas because they are a bit non-traditional even for the crunchy crowd but still.:thumbsup:

I think I fell in love with Angora Rabbits this weekend. Told my oldest we could get one and how I saw a young teen sitting with on in her lap spinning the thread while petting the rabbit and I thought she was about to cry cause I told her she could learn to do it if she wanted.

Sam
09-27-2011, 02:57 PM
LOL how funny. Dh tends to not take change very well, he really really does desire for us to live a sustainable life, lol but I think the idea of making cheese and keeping bees and that kind of thing tends to be overwhelming for a kid who grew up on hamburger helper and El Campo tv dinners, ya know?
Tha rabbits sound really cool! I read about spinning yarn and thread but I think it would kill my hands!
You should totally share your ideas! You never know, we might be as radical! We've already discussed humanure! LOL

Sam
09-27-2011, 03:05 PM
We are probably going to be getting more chickens, and possibly a couple of goats soon, but its not under the happiest circumstances. Since my neighbor passed away this weekend, his wife says she can't afford to feed them. We don't have anywhere to put the goats but DH and I may talk to her about leaving them where they are and we'll take care of them there. Its really really sad about his passing. He was a really good man and DH and my brother are both really upset about it. I am just so heartbroken for his wife.

tiredwalker
09-27-2011, 10:22 PM
That is really sad. I'm so sorry about your neighbor :(

Well, bread #2 was totally poo. HOWEVER, this next batch looks very promising. I've got some no knead Italian country bread bubbling in the bowl, and it looks just like the video. It's ridiculously easy too:

Mix together:
4 cups flour (all purpose white and up to 1 cup of another kind)
3/4 tsp yeast
11/2 tsp sea salt
2 cups warm water
-Cover and let rise for 18 hours in a quasi-warm place
-Punch down (should be VERY sticky and kinda flat to begin with) and put on a floured piece of plastic wrap (stuck to the counter w/ water), lightly flour, form in a ciabatta shaped loaf, and turn out onto a cornmeal covered sheet pan.
-Let rise 2 hours and throw into an oven for 35-45 minutes at 425. That's it. It takes some waiting, but the actual work time is about 5 minutes.

Sam
09-28-2011, 11:50 AM
Hope it turns out for you! Have any of ya'll made your own essential oils? I watched a how to video on how to make carrier oils with plain old vegetable oil and rose hips. My rose bush out front has a ton of them so I may try that and then maybe try and make lavendar oils next year.

tiredwalker
09-28-2011, 12:00 PM
The bread tastes GREAT. It's got very good texture and everything, but it's stuck like glue to the pan. I'll work on that next time :P

Never done the oil, but that sounds great!

Sam
09-28-2011, 12:32 PM
You may have to grease and flour the pan like a cake.

tiredwalker
09-28-2011, 12:47 PM
Yeah, I think I didn't put enough oil in the pan. I put some, but not nearly enough. Here is the video recipe I used and it's really great: How to Make No-Knead Ciabatta Bread - Amazing Italian Bread - YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YX_6l2bmvQI)

It's super simple. He uses instant yeast which I couldn't find, but it translates to 3/4 tsp regular yeast. I'm going to make another batch tonight and hopefully we'll be set.

Sam
09-28-2011, 02:20 PM
I think tomorrow I am going to order my vanilla beans for my vanilla extract! Yay!
And when it is done (december) I am going to try making this cake mix to have around:http://www.grouprecipes.com/72425/basic-cake-mix.html
But I am going to add the vanilla to the mix instead of having to add it when I make the actual cakes. Then I am going to bag the mix in individual bags (love my seal a meal) to keep in the freezer.

WanderingJuniper
09-29-2011, 10:52 AM
I ordered some lye yesterday so I can explore soap making.
I also have a request out on Craigslist. I think I've found some affordable well bred Angora rabbits.

Sam
09-29-2011, 11:33 AM
Let me know how soap making goes. Have you ever done it before? It seems kinda scary to me, lol.

tiredwalker
09-29-2011, 11:39 AM
Ooooo! Soap making seems great. Sam, it scares me too. My mom used to make it and sell it at her farmers' market for $5 and it always sold out. It was really nice and never dried out our skin; my dad even used it as shampoo. It's good stuff! I hope you enjoy WJ!

WanderingJuniper
09-29-2011, 04:10 PM
Thanks. I actually am hoping to have a stand at the farmer's market in the next year or two. I've been using hand-made soap for a while now and it is fantastic.

I was nervous about it before but i sat in on a few classes over the weekend that helped me settle those nerves. I absolutely could not do this with my kids home or younger than they are. It would be dangerous that way.

tiredwalker
09-29-2011, 04:47 PM
That's exactly how I feel. With a 3 yo and a 1yo, lye cannot be in my house. I know I would make it safe, but it would be a constant stresser. Good luck with the farm stand!

tiredwalker
10-02-2011, 06:17 PM
Yay! I found a bread recipe that's great in the bread pan. It's a basic sourdough and calls for 11/2 cups starter, 2 cups bread flour, and 11/2 tsp salt. A little kneading, waiting, and punch down/shape/plop in pan and it's good to go.

WanderingJuniper
10-03-2011, 02:56 PM
I found a breadmaker this week fo $7.50! I am loving making our own bread again. I took some to a picnic over the weekend and didn't have any to take home.I missed having fresh bread around.

I think I'm going to try and make yogurt tonight. I'm kind of nervous. My friends tried last week and they were not pleased with the results. I'm working with a different recipe so maybe I'll be more successful.

Does anyone have a vaccum food saver thingy? I'm thinking about it for freezing veggies. I tried freezing beans using the method from my cookbook and I wasn't impressed.

Sam
10-03-2011, 03:21 PM
Are you going to use store bought yogurt as a starter? Thats what I have been thinking about doing but I need to do some research as to which yogurts are live culture.

I have a Rival Seal-a-Meal that I got for a wedding present and I use Food Saver brand rolls for it. I really like it. I just blanch the veggies, tray freeze them and then pack them with the seal a meal. I like how I can make the baggies as small or as big as I want. Plus, the Food Saver rolls are better quality and you can boil them or microwave and reuse them.
When my seal a meal goes out I do plan on investing in the Food Saver brand one. They are expensive but worth it IMO.

WanderingJuniper
10-04-2011, 01:54 PM
Yeah, I'm not making yogurt again. I followed all the directions but it just didn't thicken. I can get really good affordable natural local yogurt from a farm down the road. I'm just doing that.

I used live culture plain yogurt from a local dairy farm. I spoke with the person who makes their yogurt and asked if it would work and she said it is what they use to make their yogurt. If I ever really want to do it again I'm just going to splurge for a yogurt maker.

That's good to know about the Seal-a-Meal.

Most of the kitchen stuff that is expensive is worth it.

Sam
10-04-2011, 02:56 PM
Well that sucks. Sorry it didn't work out for you. :( I have heard that you can thicken it up with dry milk, but..... I always am a little standoffish about dry milk.

WanderingJuniper
10-05-2011, 03:46 PM
That's how I feel about powdered milk too. I tend to think if I'm going out of my way for healthy and local that powdered milk is a step backward.

Anyone know if it is too late for me to grow kale or cabbage outside? I'm in PA. The plants would be transplants. I want to replace my pepper plants since they are finished. My containers look sad when they are empty.

tiredwalker
10-06-2011, 12:09 PM
WJ- I was still thinking about trying to do my own yogurt sometimes just for kicks. Was the end result of your yogurt thick enough to be strained into a thicker yogurt or was it really watery?

My weather guy said that we're (New England down to PA) supposed to have an Indian summer situation through the weekend, but is expecting to get a big cold surge in the middle of next week.

I'd totally plant the kale, but bring it inside in the evening if it's practical. If you have water walls you could use those too.

Sam
10-06-2011, 02:32 PM
I wish we all lived closer together so we could get together and figure out some of these things together, or attend classes and demonstrations together. Everybody locally thinks I am nuts or worse, lol.

GM
10-06-2011, 02:58 PM
I wish we all lived closer together so we could get together and figure out some of these things together, or attend classes and demonstrations together. Everybody locally thinks I am nuts or worse, lol.

hmm:loco::crazy:

Sam
10-06-2011, 03:31 PM
hmm:loco::crazy:

:P

WanderingJuniper
10-07-2011, 11:35 AM
WJ- I was still thinking about trying to do my own yogurt sometimes just for kicks. Was the end result of your yogurt thick enough to be strained into a thicker yogurt or was it really watery?
Not much thicker than whole milk at all. It tasted yogurty but was not thick like even the thinnest yogurt I've had. I think I messed up by accidentally leaving the kitchen window open with my cooler in front of it. I never leave my window open at night.:cry:

My weather guy said that we're (New England down to PA) supposed to have an Indian summer situation through the weekend, but is expecting to get a big cold surge in the middle of next week.

I'd totally plant the kale, but bring it inside in the evening if it's practical. If you have water walls you could use those too. I might do it just for some practice. What's a water wall? The only thing I can think of is a fountain but I'm struggling to figure out how that plays into protecting the plant form frost.

I wish we all lived closer together so we could get together and figure out some of these things together, or attend classes and demonstrations together. Everybody locally thinks I am nuts or worse, lol.
That would be so fun. I'm actually blessed enough to have a neighbor who grew up similarly to me. Her mom raises chickens for eggs and has a sustainable garden. So when she comes over and I'm canning tomato sauce she doesn't even blink at the event.

Oh can I just share that I went to the farm where I buy our milk yesterday with the kids and the farmer invited us into the barn to meet the cows. It was such a fun surprise. All the cows had names there were about 25 or so cows. They were the happiest cows I'd ever seen! We even got to see a week old calf with its mom. It was really cool to have the kids know exactly where the milk we drink comes from not it a milk comes from cows kind of way but in our milk comes from these cows. The kids kept talking about whether ttheir glass of milk with dinner was from Jellybean, Kat or Sparkle. The farmer's children name each new cow. :D

Sam
10-07-2011, 12:06 PM
How awesome WJ! There is a farm about 50 miles from me that always does a corn maze in the fall, and since the drought has ruined crops I think they are making up for it this year by offering other activites. One of them is a milking demonstration. I want to do that so bad! I am going to see about buying some too. The laws here in TX are still pretty strict about raw milk, last I checked you can only buy from the farm, so it may not be something we get to enjoy very often, as this farm is 50 miles in a direction we never go, lol.



:faint: I just found a local ranch that has been around here since the 1800's and has been selling grass fed, humanely treated, non steroid etc etc.. beef the entire time. The only reason they can not be certified organic is because its simply impossible for anyone to have anything certified organic here. The Oil and Gas industry has pretty much ruined that for everyone here.
How have I never heard of this? I know there are lots of ranches around here but I never knew you could buy the meat locally, most of the ranches ship their cows off.
There weren't prices but it seems like we will have to order a very large amount at a time, so it may have to wait until income tax time to stock our freezer, but it would definitely save for the rest of the year!

WanderingJuniper
10-07-2011, 12:33 PM
The laws are so different from state to state about raw milk. It is really crazy. Funniest part about our visit in the barn was my daughter. She had on good clothes and was nervous it was going to be really messy and stinking. She rolled up her pants and held her breath. Then instantly she announced rather loudly, "It's so clean! I didn't even need to roll my pants. And it just smells like outside, not stinky at all." The farmer quick covered a chuckle about it.

That has to be really frustrating to see food being grown and raised around you but watch it get shipped off to somewhere else.

We're doing something similar this year with out tax return There is a bison ranch the next county over. We're talking about splitting a side with my parents and in-laws. I can't eat beef, even grass fed organic beef, but I can eat bison. It takes real planning to have high quality local food year round. We're behind the ball this year but better off than we were last year.

I have to find time this month to go prep our wood supply for heating our house. I hate this part of choosing a different path. I love a woodfire warmed house but really don't care for the prepping of the logs and hauling them home etc. It's about the only thing I complain about with this path.

Sam
10-07-2011, 01:56 PM
I know what you mean about feeling behind the ball this year. I feel the same way, like there is so much else I should be doing but have not been able to do, or just haven't done. (some things I have no excuse for, other than laziness, lol) Like you, though, we are doing much better than last year. I have also learned so much that I may not be able to use right now, but later, and I think that counts for something too. :)

I lucked out on the firewood thing, a couple of months ago DH got this wild hair and cut down almost all our dead pecan trees (Stupid drought :() and cut and stacked all of it for firewood, and grilling wood. So its something we wouldnt have to worry about later on. If that hadn't had happened I would be complaining too, lol.

Oh, I made my own cream of chicken soup yesterday. I had been meaning to for a long time, because of just all the nasty unpronouncable ingredients in store bought stuff, but never got around to it. DH loves casseroles and stuff like that so we eat it quite alot. I had made my own stock for the first time so I decided to make CoC and used it in chicken pot pie last night. It was so good! It really made a difference! I did mess up a little though, I tasted the stock and thought I put way too much thyme in it, and threw the rest of it out, but in the pot pie you really could not taste it, I should not have thrown it out. :(. Owell, lesson learned.

tiredwalker
10-07-2011, 04:15 PM
WJ- I guess they're actually called "wall o water" http://www.gardenharvestsupply.com/ProductCart/pc/Wall-O-Water-3-Pack-p3949.htm My parent's used them all of the time for spring planting. It's like a green house only for individual plants.

That's lame about the yogurt. I don't think I'll try that one for a while because failing on stuff like that drives me crazy. Besides, I've got a great source for jersey cow yogurt that is just killer. Even my non-eater will devour it (but only if she's "painting" with it on a cookie sheet).

Sam- That's awesome about the beef!

Sam
10-15-2011, 04:49 PM
So I bought 2 lbs of that local coffee today. It smells Deeeeelish! Its $13 a pound though which is not bad but still a little to 'spensive for my poor self, lol so I am going to make it my "Sunday Coffee" to make it last and drink my El Cheapo coffee the rest of the week.

And I ordered my vanilla beans! They should be here this week!

WanderingJuniper
10-17-2011, 12:02 PM
Except that as soon as you get a taste of your Sunday Coffee you won't want to drink that other stuff. :box: I had Folgers at my parents over the weekend. I forced myself to finish the cup because I wasn't going to be an ungrateful guest. They made the caffeinated kind just for me.

Kind of a funny:
I was working to meet an important deadline for my job last week. Usually I can work a half day on Fridays without a problem. I do our shopping then. I go to two farms, an orchard, the farmers market and then to the grocery store for anything I couldn't get from a local business or farmer. I sent a text to my husband to let him know I wasn't going to have time to make all my market running and that we'd be eating from the grocery store this week.

His respons was "Eeeeewwwwww... Not grocery store food. It's so gross!" :P He was the one most resistant to our changes and now he's the one bummed that we don't have the raw cheese for his lunch.

Sam
10-17-2011, 01:06 PM
Except that as soon as you get a taste of your Sunday Coffee you won't want to drink that other stuff. :box: I had Folgers at my parents over the weekend. I forced myself to finish the cup because I wasn't going to be an ungrateful guest. They made the caffeinated kind just for me.

Kind of a funny:
I was working to meet an important deadline for my job last week. Usually I can work a half day on Fridays without a problem. I do our shopping then. I go to two farms, an orchard, the farmers market and then to the grocery store for anything I couldn't get from a local business or farmer. I sent a text to my husband to let him know I wasn't going to have time to make all my market running and that we'd be eating from the grocery store this week.

His respons was "Eeeeewwwwww... Not grocery store food. It's so gross!" :P He was the one most resistant to our changes and now he's the one bummed that we don't have the raw cheese for his lunch.

Ha! You're probably right :P. I did make another pot of the good stuff this morning, but hey, its monday! They also sold tea but I decided I better not even try that! As much tea as I drink I would go bankrupt! LOL

Thats funny about your DH, he sounds alot like mine. He resists almost any thing new or any new idea but when he finds out how good it can be he acts like it was his idea, lol.

My tomato plants are finally producing like crazy, and of course there is not much time left until it starts to freeze.
I want to make tomato sauce and spaghetti sauce but I don't have a canner yet. Think I can freeze it instead?

tiredwalker
10-17-2011, 03:12 PM
I always freeze sauce. I don't put shrooms in the spaghetti portion going in the freezer though because it changes the texture.

GM
10-17-2011, 03:24 PM
Except that as soon as you get a taste of your Sunday Coffee you won't want to drink that other stuff. :box: I had Folgers at my parents over the weekend. I forced myself to finish the cup because I wasn't going to be an ungrateful guest. They made the caffeinated kind just for me.

Kind of a funny:
I was working to meet an important deadline for my job last week. Usually I can work a half day on Fridays without a problem. I do our shopping then. I go to two farms, an orchard, the farmers market and then to the grocery store for anything I couldn't get from a local business or farmer. I sent a text to my husband to let him know I wasn't going to have time to make all my market running and that we'd be eating from the grocery store this week.

His respons was "Eeeeewwwwww... Not grocery store food. It's so gross!" :P He was the one most resistant to our changes and now he's the one bummed that we don't have the raw cheese for his lunch.


Ooohhh...Raw Cheese :)

Totally random but CA state is trying to make it illegal to sell RAW MILK at grocery stores :( They're willing to keep crap in the stores but make good stuff illegal...:cry:

Sam
10-17-2011, 03:46 PM
The raw milk laws are STOOOOOPIT!

Sam
10-17-2011, 04:16 PM
Do any of ya'll know if you can freeze raw milk? The closest Dairy farm I can find that sells it is more than an hour away, so I would really need to buy alot so that I would only have to go once a month or so, ya know?

GM
10-17-2011, 04:34 PM
Do any of ya'll know if you can freeze raw milk? The closest Dairy farm I can find that sells it is more than an hour away, so I would really need to buy alot so that I would only have to go once a month or so, ya know?

Found this from www.organicpastures.com. this is the brand we buy :)
1. Does freezing damage raw dairy products?
Freezing puts raw milk products to sleep and has little effect on the important health benefits that raw dairy products provide. Enzymes and bacteria are fully active when they awake after thawing. Some vitamins are reduced by trace amounts after being frozen. The flavor is sometimes slightly affected by this and is not always apparent. All OPDC products may be frozen. Thawing should be done by placing the frozen product in a regular refrigerator for a day. Milk should be shaken to mix up the butterfat after thawing. Warming the product to room temperature just prior to drinking will also make the fat blend in better with the milk (if it has clumped or separated during freezing). Some consumers report that rapid thawing of frozen raw milk makes for better taste. To do this place frozen milk container into warm water for an hour and then place back into refrigerator when thawed and drink it in the next two days for best flavor.

tiredwalker
10-17-2011, 06:44 PM
Ooohhh...Raw Cheese :)

Totally random but CA state is trying to make it illegal to sell RAW MILK at grocery stores :( They're willing to keep crap in the stores but make good stuff illegal...:cry:

Fire Cheetos aren't nearly as dangerous :P

Sam
10-18-2011, 10:29 AM
I am making this bread today:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/leftover-oatmeal-bread/video/index.html
I love Alton Brown :)

WanderingJuniper
10-18-2011, 11:53 AM
Ooohhh...Raw Cheese :)

Totally random but CA state is trying to make it illegal to sell RAW MILK at grocery stores :( They're willing to keep crap in the stores but make good stuff illegal...:cry:

It is ridiculous! I have friends who live in Philly. They get raw milk as part of their coop twice a month and order double so their friend in NJ can come pick it up. I'm surrounded by states with Raw dairy bans. NJ, DE, MD, & WV. Thankfully PA is still one of the states permitting retail sales. Although I can get it cheaper directly from the farmer. :thumbsup: Can't beat $5 for grass fed fresh milk.

It is so angering that our nation is handcuffing our farmers in so many different ways. Our bodies were not designed to eat the way we eat in modern post industrial culture.

Stop protecting me from myself and start educating the general public. I know the supposed "risks" I'm taking when I drink raw milk and eat raw mozarella, which btw is sooooo good. Yet, we don't get the opportunity to educate ourselves on GMO food because apparently there is no need to label when the genetic structure of our food has been tampered with.
:director:
I'm sorry but maybe we need to stop messing around with our food supplies and kick it back to simple, chemical free, un-modified, REAL SLOW FOOD and see what happens to our diabetes epidemic or the number of children who suffer from cancer. Do you know how many children in my life I know personally who have suffered from lukemia? Two year olds and 4 year olds and 6 year olds. EXHALE. I'll stop now. :box:

In the name of health and safety we've made generations sick and at risk. :(

tiredwalker
10-23-2011, 11:11 AM
WJ- come to NH, the 'live free or die' state. You don't even have to have car insurance or wear your seat belts/motorcycles here. Raw milk is everywhere!

My coop just started selling local duck eggs. I think I'll get some next week just for a change of pace.

It's good to be home after a week at my parents. I love my mom, but man, she just goes crazy when we come. There was every kind of chip and pop. Oh, but they're organic bean chips...it's still a starch fried in oil with too much salt! Today we're doing a New England in fall version of leek and potato soup. It's got a small pumpkin and white beans in the mix along with a veggie broth full of greens. The final product is pureed and sprinkled with parm cheese and sunflower seeds. I can hardly wait!

Sam
10-23-2011, 12:08 PM
I can't find raw milk within 100 miles from me and its 10-12 a gallon. :sigh: I posted a status on FB asking if my local friends knew where to get it and a non local friend replied with "Why, do you really want undulant fever? Sorry but the health risk is too great" :doh:
I looked that up and you almost have to try to catch that. Is it just me or does it seem like people are almost afraid of whole and natural foods? I can't tell you how many people (like DH's sister who is supposed to be a health nut) who refuse to eat farm fresh eggs. They have to come from a store. :doh:

That soup sounds really good, TW! I am making soup today too, but its "whatever soup" lol which is basically where I throw some chicken, stock, and whatever veggies I have in the dutch oven and just let it go, lol. It never tastes the same but its always good! I always have to cook extra chicken though because for some reason, whenever I debone a chicken, husbands and kids come out of the woodworks and gobble up about half of it, lol. Cassy seems to be having a little stomach bug though so she will just get the broth for dinner. :(

Our tomatoes are FINALLY producing! In October! I am going to be over loaded lol but thats great cuz I am gonna be making sauce and freezing whole and diced and crushed and stewed tomatoes to last the winter! Hooray! I wish I had a canner but I am still not quite sure I can even use a canner on my glasstop stove. :(

Duck eggs are awesome! I wish my female duck would lay eggs but she hasn't so far. Try them when you bake and in pancakes, it makes a world of difference!

OH! I got my vanilla beans in the mail! Woohoo! Now just waiting on my dad to buy the vodka, I would, lol but we are brooooooke. :P

tiredwalker
10-23-2011, 01:34 PM
I had a whole response written out, but I decided it's time to reign myself in a little bit. I totally agree with you. The fact that the commercial industry uses the safety procedures really gives is great, but it wouldn't be possible for them to operate if they didn't. The conditions that they raise the dairy cows and chickens in is deplorable and is a super breeding ground for disease. I would never recommend that someone drink raw milk or eat unpasteurized eggs from a commercial farm. But if the cows and chickens were raised outside on clean land and were well taken care of, go for it.

Yay for tomatoes! Better late than never. It's been in the 40-50's lately, so we don't have much going on...our garden has been closed for winter for a month now :P

I hope Cassy gets better soon. Tummy aches are the worst :(

GM
10-23-2011, 08:32 PM
I had a whole response written out, but I decided it's time to reign myself in a little bit. I totally agree with you. The fact that the commercial industry uses the safety procedures really gives is great, but it wouldn't be possible for them to operate if they didn't. The conditions that they raise the dairy cows and chickens in is deplorable and is a super breeding ground for disease. I would never recommend that someone drink raw milk or eat unpasteurized eggs from a commercial farm. But if the cows and chickens were raised outside on clean land and were well taken care of, go for it.

Yay for tomatoes! Better late than never. It's been in the 40-50's lately, so we don't have much going on...our garden has been closed for winter for a month now :P

I hope Cassy gets better soon. Tummy aches are the worst :(

Agree!

~Kellee~
10-24-2011, 09:07 AM
I hope you ladies don't mind me asking this, but I was looking at our local organic store and everything seems so expensive. Have you found doing this you've saved money or you spend more now? How much do you average per week or month for groceries?

Sam
10-24-2011, 11:10 AM
I can't afford to buy all organic. What I do save money on is just straight cooking from scratch, and buying cheaper cuts of meat like chicken thighs and leg quarters and stuff like that instead of boneless skinless breasts. I try to grow most of my own veggies although I know that its not possible for everyone.
Have you looked at Farmer's Markets? Also, it is probably too late this year but you might try to find a community supported garden. You pay a fee and have to volunteer a few hours a month and you get a box of local grown food every week.

tiredwalker
10-24-2011, 11:26 AM
We spend $120 a week no matter how we eat. When we switched it over, I started purchasing more expensive items, but we ate less over-all. The bulk bins are our savior in this one for: nuts, groats or steel cut oats, beans, rice, flour, sugar, and spices. Instead of individual cups of yogurt, we get the 32 oz tub.

The most expensive items we purchase are milk (three gallons local milk $12), veggies (organic, mostly local), and meat (local, humanely raised). I only buy two pieces of meat a week, so I stretch them out in soup, pasta, and stir fry. The other meals are vegetarian with seeds, nuts, eggs, or cheese.

We stay away from many snacky foods because they are expensive and are loaded with simple carbs. If we have the munchies, there is fruit (fresh or dried), nuts, or "Heritage O's" which are like Cheerios but packed with fiber. My girls happily eat sprinkles of these with yogurt.

I am able to fit this into our budge, but it involves a little more time in the kitchen for what we like to eat. I make my own stock from the ends of veggies that would be put in the compost or garbage and bread from locally grown wheat--I don't even have to search the ingredients for HFCS!

I didn't switch over immediately either. I just started experimenting and before long, I was a convert. It was pretty cool to see my kids eating farm fresh eggs with diced tomatoes and spinach and yogurt from a local farm. They're not the biggest kids in the world, but they have rosy cheeks, shiny hair, and plenty of energy.

~Kellee~
10-24-2011, 11:35 AM
Thanks ladies.

We don't have any farmers markets or co-ops here. Well there is one from the organic market here and it's $27 a week for a mix of 4 fruits and 6 vegetables which to me seems expensive. Maybe it's not though?

I can't find any place around here that sells bulk items either so the specialty ingredients are really expensive, even if I only want/need a little bit. We can't really garden because we live on base and I'm not sure about any community gardens but I may research that.

Sam
10-24-2011, 11:42 AM
We don't buy snak-y things either, but I do make some. On Tuesdays every week I do the bulk of my cooking and I will make little things like potato pancakes (I just pan fry them in a little but of EVOO) (Cassy LOVES them) and taquitos and chimichangas (baked, not fried) with leftover meats, beans, cheeses and veggies. I keep the potato pancakes in the fridge where Cassy can reach them (she loves to eat them cold, lol) I do other stuff too, just depends on my mood and what we have around.


Also, this isn't food related but I save ALOT of money by using white vinegar, baking soda, water, lemon juice and salt as cleaners. I also repurpose old t shirts and socks for rags, and use old newspapers to clean windows and mirrors.
The beauty of this lifestyle is that you can definitely take baby steps. I have come a long way but I still have a long way to go but thats ok. No one is keeping score. :)

WanderingJuniper
10-24-2011, 12:39 PM
TW, that soup sounds fantastic! And so seasonal. I'm struggling to figure out what to eat fresh seasonally right now. Just another thing that was lost through the generations.

Duck eggs are fabulous! We raised ducks when I was a kid. They beat chicken eggs anyday. My kids had some ducks a while back and we'd get about half a dozen eggs a week. My husband refused to share them with anyone. It was kind of funny.

Kellee,
Figuring out how to eat more whole and natural is a process especially on a budget. It continually evolves in our family. I can feed my family of 5 for 1 week on $150. I can feed them with ease on $200 a week.

It comes down to knowing what your non-negotiables are and what you personally are comfortable with. My non-negotiables, when realistically possible, are animal products. We consume less overall meats including fish & chicken in order to have ethically raised and environmentally responsible cuts. Yes, I pay $8-9 per lb for ground bison over $3 per lb standard beef but I dont' focus my meal on it. It's an ingredient not the star of the meal.

I do not buy organic produce unless it is comparable in price to standard.

It also comes with shifting what we call meals. I am currently eating an apple, carrot two slices of cheese, bowl of pretzels and some rice pudding as my lunch. It isn't a cohesive meal but it is a well balanced meal nonetheless.

The really interesting thing to me was once we really committed to eating differently than the SAD we actually needed less food. The food we were eating was meeting the needs of our body in ways the processed foods were not and we didn't eat many processed foods to start with.

I made garbage broth last week. It was so good. It's just vegetable broth made out of my leftover veggie bits. I put them in a bag in the freezer until I was ready and then put everything in my crockpot for 8 hours with a fresh carrot, onion, garlic, celery and salt. Then strained it and froze it in 4 cup quantities. This was virtually no cost food.:thumbsup: I'm making a version of Irish potato stew with it tomorrow.

tiredwalker
10-24-2011, 01:16 PM
That seems like a pretty good deal. Here is generally what I pay:
$3 for 1 bunch kale
$4 head of broccoli
$2-5 hard squash
$4 quart of brussel sprouts
$3 head of lettuce
$3 1/2 quart green beans
$7 1/2 peck apples (small sack)

That's a lot, but that's probably all your veggies for a week. Can they give you a list of expected items? It could be a great deal, but if you end up with 3 onions, 3 heads of lettuce, and 4 apples not so much.

It can be really hard to find a good deal on good stuff. I know that many stores bend to consumer requests. I bet if you got enough gals to put in requests, the BX would start to carry the items you want or at least some of them.

Sometimes you just have to do the best you can with what you have. If you can get the good veggies, do that and save on the other stuff. Milk is a big one for me, but bare minimum, I make sure it doesn't have growth hormones. It doesn't have to have to be organic or raw. If you can't do all organic veggies, get ones that count, like leafy/thin skinned ones. You can't scrub the spray off of a raspberry or lettuce, but bananas, oranges, hard squash, etc are not as big of a deal.

Organic frozen veggies and berries are also cheaper than fresh. That's a good way to deal as well.

It doesn't have to be all or nothing, but it can be very frustrating while you're trying to figure it all out.

**Sam, can I have your taquito recipe? Dh always wants the ones from the freezer case with 45 ingredients in them and I just can't do it.

We do the cleaner thing too. I was always worried about making laundry detergent for our HE front loader, but I found the recipe that does a way better job than my store bought...go figure.

**WJ, eating seasonal veggies is great for cutting costs too. When it's in season, it's cheaper. Animal products are big for us too. It's pretty amazing how much better the products taste as well.

~Kellee~
10-24-2011, 01:45 PM
They gave an example of one box and its:
2 Rome apples
2lbs Bananas
2 Red Bartlett Pears
4 Oranges
1 bunch of red leaf lettuce
1 lb mini eggplant
1 pumpkin pie
1 lb snap beans
1 bunch of red radish
2 lbs red potatoes

We shop at Publix (a local grocery store) because the commissary was such poor quality. There were many times I had meat, dairy, and produce go bad well before they should have.

Another thing I struggle with is that I base my meals around a meat, starch, veggie because that's the way I was raised. I need to shift my focus to have less meat centered meals.

tiredwalker
10-24-2011, 02:45 PM
That is a fantastic deal! Take it!

I struggled with that too. Every dinner was a huge piece of meat, two soggy veggies (had to pick one), and a slice of white bread. It's only been lately that I've started using meat as more of a seasoning than the central focus of the meal. I went veggie for a while (I'm back to meat because we're trying for another baby and I'm nervous about not getting enough nutrition), and it was a really big eye-opener. I never once had tofu and the food was fantastic. There are so many good recipes that make veggies a super star and add some whole grains as a bulk/filler. My new favorite food is a mushroom sandwich--toasted bun, good condiments/lettuce tomato, then a mixture of hot caramelized onions, chopped browned mushrooms, and melted cheese. Heaven!.

GM
10-24-2011, 03:27 PM
That is a fantastic deal! Take it!

I struggled with that too. Every dinner was a huge piece of meat, two soggy veggies (had to pick one), and a slice of white bread. It's only been lately that I've started using meat as more of a seasoning than the central focus of the meal. I went veggie for a while (I'm back to meat because we're trying for another baby and I'm nervous about not getting enough nutrition), and it was a really big eye-opener. I never once had tofu and the food was fantastic. There are so many good recipes that make veggies a super star and add some whole grains as a bulk/filler. My new favorite food is a mushroom sandwich--toasted bun, good condiments/lettuce tomato, then a mixture of hot caramelized onions, chopped browned mushrooms, and melted cheese. Heaven!.

Dr. Oz :P suggests thinking of your meat as a side dish. So he showed an example of veggies and grains with a tiny portion of meat on the side.
I was trying to find the clip but I can't :P

Jolinar
10-25-2011, 09:45 AM
I agree look at any food guide the majority of our diet is plants with a little meat and dairy.

MsDahl
10-26-2011, 12:00 AM
Dr. Joel Furhman has a food pyramid that correlates to what the discussion is in here right now....thought I'd share

http://www.drfuhrman.com/images/foodpyramid/foodpyramid-large.png

Sam
10-26-2011, 11:18 AM
Another thing I struggle with is that I base my meals around a meat, starch, veggie because that's the way I was raised. I need to shift my focus to have less meat centered meals.

I tend to strugggle with that also, Kellee. We are bona fide meat potatoes and cheese eaters here, and I tend to get intimidated easily by trying new foods and especially veggie dishes. (other than opening a can) I have a word document with recipes that I copy and paste and make myself try them, lol.


TW, sorry, I forgot about the taquitos. I don't have an actual recipe for them, but here's what I do:
I start with about 12 tortillas, and fry them one at a time in a small pan with just enough EVOO to cover the tortilla. Just a minute on each side or so, enough to make them pliable. If you make enchiladas then you know what I mean. If you find you need more you can always fry more.
Then I take whatever meat I have leftover (I like to do this after we have cooked a big meat like a brisket or pork roast, or whole chicken even) shred it, mix in any veggies or beans you want (sauteed onions, peppers and garlic are good, corn is good, and black beans are awesome!) then plop about 2 tablespoons on each tortilla and roll them up. If you have a hard time keeping them rolled you can use toothpicks to secure them and take them out after, but I find that if you just smush them up against each other on a cookie sheet (seam side down) they stay put just fine. Now, bake them at 350 for about 30 minutes till they are crispy.
If you want to do a whole bunch and freeze them you can, just tray freeze them, make sure they aren't touching, and pack them in freezer bags.

tiredwalker
10-26-2011, 12:13 PM
One thing that's helped me in the veggie meat/dairy ratio (besides using a little meat as a seasoning) is to put a big portion of veggies on the plate and a tiny piece of meat. Bacon and eggs/pancakes are a classic combo, but not so good for us. What I started doing instead is slice a tomato for each person and give two small pieces of bacon with it.

Instead of eggs and toast, I scramble eggs with tomatoes and/or confetti sized chopped spinach (green eggs!) and serve one veggie egg with a piece of fruit or veggie. I'll probably serve one-two taquitos with a big salad.

The hardest was the one eyed captain (egg in a hole). Instead of two one-eyes, I just make take one piece of bread, make the hole, put a slice of tomato, crack the egg, and seal the other side with another slice of tomato...now I call them red eyed captain :)

Thank you for the recipe! My dh is going to be so happy :)

Sam
10-26-2011, 12:32 PM
Yeah, when I had to see a dietician for gestational diabetes, she told me its much easier to just start incorperating more and more fresh veggies and fruit in your diet rather than restrict the bad stuff. You know you are going to want it more if you tell yourself you can't have it!

The taquitos are really good over a bed of lettuce and tomatoes with lots of pico de gallo, avacado and sour cream. I guess they are like you said, an ingredient, not the main focus. :)

I love the idea of the red eyed captain! Going to have to try that!

WanderingJuniper
10-26-2011, 03:31 PM
I got all my supplies today to make soap. I'm nervous and excited. I'm going to give it a try on Friday morning while the kids are at school. It's my hope to make a few different soaps to pair with some knitted washcloths for Christmas as gifts for the extended family. I'm thinking a kitchen helper soap, one that removes onion and garlic smell from your skin, and either an woodsman's friend bug repellent soap or a handyman special soap that has lots of grit to it to help in removing the stains from working on cars and stuff. I figure its something for the women and something for the men all in one gift. For the little kids I'm probably going to make a calming surprise soap that has a bath toy in it with a colorful, soft washcloth.

tiredwalker
10-26-2011, 03:41 PM
That's awesome! Good luck with learning the process!

tiredwalker
10-27-2011, 01:58 PM
Okay Sam, I found a recipe using 100% whole wheat flour that is actually good:

In a large bowl combine:
4 cups whole wheat flour
3/4 tsp yeast
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 cups warm water

Mix completely (it should be fairly wet, don't worry about kneading it) and set aside for 18 hours

After 18 hours, punch down, and reform it. It should be very wet and very sticky, almost unformable. Plop it into a very well greased loaf pan. I also put a large strip of parchment paper down to help me lift it out. Put it in a warm place to rise for 2 hours. Cook at 425 until it's got a dark crust and is pulling away from the pan (35-50 minutes).

Using butter to grease the pan helps the bottom get nice and dark as well as TASTAAAAAAY!!! ...and they should make a candle that smells so good :P

Sam
10-27-2011, 05:16 PM
Thats awesome! The ingredients don't get any more simple or natural than that, and only 4 of them! I bet it cost less than .50 a loaf! Gonna try it for sure!

tiredwalker
10-27-2011, 11:05 PM
Yay! Think next time I make it, I'll bake at 400. The inside is a little bit moist since it was in a loaf pan and not baked on a regular sheet. It's not a brick by any means, but if you want a lighter loaf, replace one or two cups with white flour. FWIW, the three children gobbled it up :)

Sam
10-28-2011, 10:59 AM
Thats awesome, I can't wait to try it. I am desparate for a good whole wheat recipe. We love it but I just haven't mastered it home made. I have great luck with half and half, which is good, but not the same. :P
I wonder how it would taste if you threw in some oats and sunflower seeds? I'll wait till I master it to start trying to add stuff though. :P

We planted 4 different kinds of pumpkins but only one has actually produced fruit. :( Owell, its the best kind for pie. I have one that is just about ready, I am going to try my hand at making my own pumpkin pie filling, and I am so roasting the seeds! I am actually more excited about that! :P
Its also fixing to be pecan season! Yay for a little extra money! Would ya'll mind praying for a good harvest for us? The drought has killed a few weak pecan trees, and alot of our fruit trees but the ones that survived seem to have produced pretty well. Anyway the extra money provides some really needed breathing room. And just think, if you buy pecans, there is a miniscule chance that they came from me!

WanderingJuniper
10-28-2011, 11:22 AM
Can we buy pecans directly from you? :D

Sam
10-28-2011, 11:49 AM
Actually...... I probably could, if you wanted. When I go to sell them, I always pay to have some shelled for us to keep. I could just have them shell more, to send to you. :D

DIANAC
11-01-2011, 10:57 PM
I posted this on FB. One lovely lady suggested that I share this article with you as well. Here is an interview with Alton Brown, Food Network star and a follower of Christ.
http://intouch.org/magazine/content/topic/the_miracle_of_food
Many of his thoughts echo my own.
One bright wintry afternoon my grandmother was desperately trying to make me, a 4 year old and a very poor eater to have an apple. Eventually she exclaimed pointing to the ceiling "look, God is giving you an apple "and I saw a red apple dropping from the ceiling, as she secretly threw it that way. I was so impressed that I ate that apple. Since then I began thinking of food as a gift from God. I enjoy cooking and shopping for produce. When I see abundance of fruit and vegetables at the market I am filled with gratitude to the Lord who blessed this country because I remember empty shelves in food stores in the Soviet Union where fresh fruits and vegetables were only available during the short summer months. As I clearly accept food as a gift from God, I have a certain "respect" for it. I do not like to waste food but I like to cook abundantly such that there is plenty on the table for unexpected guests and plenty of left overs to give away. In the small way this is a reminder of how abundantly God provides for us and that there were leftovers when Jesus fed thousands. Because of my respect for food, I like to serve it on my good plates even the every day meals. I clearly see that my ability to prepare food (many times I was complimented for my cooking) is a gift from God. I want to be careful for my heart not to be filled with pride for my good cooking, but to always remember to give glory to God and to accept this as an opportunity to bless others and to serve. Food can also become our idol as if by eating the right food we can guarantee our good health. But we have to remember that our health comes from God. In Greece I visited the isle of Patmos where apostle John, an old man lived in exile. I visited his cave. Just like his accommodations, his diet was also simple. But he lived a long life. According to tradition he was 90 years old when he died, which in those days was an unusually long life. Obviously this was because God had a purpose for his life and not because of his diet.
I wanted to share these things with you.

WanderingJuniper
11-02-2011, 11:26 AM
Actually...... I probably could, if you wanted. When I go to sell them, I always pay to have some shelled for us to keep. I could just have them shell more, to send to you. :D

That would be awesome! PM me what you would want for them and we can figure out shipping and what not. :)

WanderingJuniper
11-02-2011, 12:16 PM
Diana, that was a great interview. I really couldn't agree with him more.

I wish I could remember which book I was reading, it wasn't a "food" book by any means, but the author (maybe Donald Miller?) was talking about the amazing gift that is food and how you can't deny it is a gift from God because you put this tiny little seed in the ground and you can water it and make sure it gets sunshine but really it has nothing to do with anything you do. That seed will grow into food because God wants it to and He uses His magical soil and time to make it happen. Okay, I probably royally messed up the reference but the idea stuck with me.

I've had carrots grow in my front garden years after I lazily dropped a seed packet there one day. I did nothing to nurture these plants or encourage them along the way but they came to grow and be a meal for my family in a time when the surprise provision was very much a blessing. I absolutely love that.

It is so important to honor what God has created as a gift to us. The church my husband grew up in taught that recycling was a treehugger's way to worship the earth. I was so sad when I first heard them actually teach that because it is undeniable that God is the creator of this amazing natural world and we can honor him and worship him when we care for it and prepare the food it provides with care and intention.

DIANAC
11-02-2011, 02:31 PM
WJ, I so agree with you, especially on the subject of recycling. This amazing cycle of life and of all living things is designed by the Creator. I love composting, which is nature's way of recycling. In my kitchen not a scrap of compost-worthy remains is allowed in the regular garbage!

tiredwalker
11-02-2011, 03:01 PM
I totally missed this article. Thank you Dianac! He's my favorite chef of all time...and I've had the chance to eat at the culinary school...heaven! I had no idea he was a Christian.

GM
11-02-2011, 03:13 PM
I watched Alton on a cooking challenge show and he was such a jerk that it change my opinion of him (and DH's)...Now I'm not sure what to think of him :(

DIANAC
11-02-2011, 04:05 PM
I totally missed this article. Thank you Dianac! He's my favorite chef of all time...and I've had the chance to eat at the culinary school...heaven! I had no idea he was a Christian.
What did you have?!

tiredwalker
11-02-2011, 08:18 PM
So embarrassing...
It was for our anniversary and I was 9 months pregnant and wearing a horrible pepto pink dress my sister bought that made me look like an elephant in a tutu . I think I ate lamb and something chocolaty for dessert. I know it was well worth the money for the two of us, but the thing I actually remember was the awesome corn dog and French fries I ate the next day at a road side shack while heading into NY.

Maybe we'll head back there when I'm not feeling like a beached whale :D

It's call the Inn at Essex. They have all of the culinary students work there: http://www.vtculinaryresort.com/
Regular folks can take cooking classes there and it's not to far from NY :)

DIANAC
11-02-2011, 09:28 PM
Ooh, TW! I firmly hold that an expectant mother looks absolutely adorable regardless of how big she is. Oh, a pink dress. I have a picture of me 8 1/2 months wearing a pink sundress that looks like it was a tablecloth at an italian restaurant.
I would love to take a cooking class there. But, I do not think it will happen.

Sam
11-18-2011, 11:35 AM
I have been on a crunchy little roll here lately! I had to harvest a ton of green tomatoes a few weeks back because we had an unexpected freeze that killed everything in my garden, right after the tomatoes started really producing! It was so frustrating but anyway, lol I filled every vase, glass pitcher, glass mixing bowl with green tomatoes so that they don't take up counter space and so I can keep an eye on them. So far I have made 2 batches of tomato sauce. Its really good! Yesterday I made pumpkin puree out of the only pumpkin our garden produced. I have enough for one pie and one loaf of pumpkin bread. I will probably make them on Tuesday.
My vanilla extract will be ready just in time for Christmas, to give away as presents. Thats going to be fun! I started it a month or so ago and it already looks and smells just like vanilla, but it still tastes like vodka. :box::decision::dizzy:

My brother and I were talking about what a cool Thanksgiving we are going to have. Its his year to host, and he is serving 2 heritige turkeys he raised (the exact same kind in AVM) pumkin pie is coming from my garden, and a few other things like devilled eggs and stuff will be coming from either his or my chickens. Pretty cool, huh? Hopefully next year it can be even more homegrown, if the drought lets up.

Sam
11-18-2011, 12:09 PM
Oh and I am supposed to be harvesting pecans this weekend and early next week, so WJ, hopefully I can PM you with details soon!

snooch
11-18-2011, 12:24 PM
My vanilla extract will be ready just in time for Christmas, to give away as presents. Thats going to be fun! I started it a month or so ago and it already looks and smells just like vanilla, but it still tastes like vodka.

This is almost enough to bring me over to the crunchy side!

WanderingJuniper
11-18-2011, 12:59 PM
I wouldn't mind some vanilla vodka. ;)

WanderingJuniper
11-18-2011, 01:03 PM
Sam, that sounds like an awesome Thanksgiving. My dad tried to convince my mom to get turkeys last spring but she wasn't having any part of it.

Kind of a crunchy thought but not entirely, I've been working with my kids in the kitchen and talking about our food choices etc. It has been really interesting. My younger daughter is excited to start a blog with me about wheat free foods kids like her would actually like. She is going to take all the pictures and pick the food we share while I supervise the cooking and do the writing. There is so much out there for gourmet GF recipes but doing wheat free on a budget and keeping it kid friendly has been a journey.

Sam
11-18-2011, 01:03 PM
Lets just say I make a pretty good vanilla coke. :P

Sam
11-18-2011, 01:14 PM
Sam, that sounds like an awesome Thanksgiving. My dad tried to convince my mom to get turkeys last spring but she wasn't having any part of it.

Kind of a crunchy thought but not entirely, I've been working with my kids in the kitchen and talking about our food choices etc. It has been really interesting. My younger daughter is excited to start a blog with me about wheat free foods kids like her would actually like. She is going to take all the pictures and pick the food we share while I supervise the cooking and do the writing. There is so much out there for gourmet GF recipes but doing wheat free on a budget and keeping it kid friendly has been a journey.

Yeah, I'll bet thats a journey! Cassy's poor little system couldn't handle gluten until she was about 15 months old. Even that was hard.

We have talked seriously about getting turkeys and meat chickens and although I think its a great idea, and I know that my animals would be much better off than chickens and turkeys bought from the grocery store, well, its hard. I'll be perfectly honest, I am a wuss. I will have to toughen up a great deal if we are to do this.

WanderingJuniper
11-19-2011, 02:28 PM
It is hard. Two years ago we had Rhode Island Reds and got a straight run with the intention of keeping two roosters and putting the others in the freezer. It was difficult for me. My dad actually did the dispatching of the bird. I did the processing with the help of my daughter. I didn't want to but the government really has backyard chicken owners in a bind. I couldn't find anyone willing to process my birds for me because it could risk their certifications etc. If we do it again my husband knows he'll have to be the dispatcher.

The birds tasted so much better than anything I've ever gotten even from the farmer's market. I just don't know if I can commit to doing it again.

ETA: I always feel like I am crossing some taboo boundary when I talk about the fact that I raised a few of our meals from egg and earth through to roasted chicken, potatoes and green beans. Yet, the same people who flinch during these conversations don't blink when they order a steak dinner or chicken parm at a restaurant. :sigh:

Sam
11-28-2011, 10:28 AM
It is hard. Two years ago we had Rhode Island Reds and got a straight run with the intention of keeping two roosters and putting the others in the freezer. It was difficult for me. My dad actually did the dispatching of the bird. I did the processing with the help of my daughter. I didn't want to but the government really has backyard chicken owners in a bind. I couldn't find anyone willing to process my birds for me because it could risk their certifications etc. If we do it again my husband knows he'll have to be the dispatcher.

The birds tasted so much better than anything I've ever gotten even from the farmer's market. I just don't know if I can commit to doing it again.

ETA: I always feel like I am crossing some taboo boundary when I talk about the fact that I raised a few of our meals from egg and earth through to roasted chicken, potatoes and green beans. Yet, the same people who flinch during these conversations don't blink when they order a steak dinner or chicken parm at a restaurant. :sigh:

I know exactly what you mean. As a matter of fact my MIL did that same thing to me over Thanksgiving. She knew my brother had raised the turkeys for our dinner and when I was talking to her (just before Thanksgiving) about what I was going to bring over to her house she said "Just don't bring that roadkill from your brother's house" Insulting, much? I didn't know what to say but I got really convicted at that time about how I should respond so I just said "Well it will be pretty tasty roadkill!"

She didn't respond. :P


I have some (hopefully) exciting news! I *think* one of my hens is preparing a nest! I went out to feed them Friday morning and checked for eggs and there weren't any in their nesting box. I just happened to glance in their coop and saw one little egg in the corner (they never lay in there) and you could tell she dug a little hole for it. My MIL says it sounds like she is starting to build up her nest to sit on them. Babies! DH and I are beside ourselves with excitement. It will be a challenge keeping them healthy through the winter but I think we can manage.

GM
11-28-2011, 11:00 AM
I know exactly what you mean. As a matter of fact my MIL did that same thing to me over Thanksgiving. She knew my brother had raised the turkeys for our dinner and when I was talking to her (just before Thanksgiving) about what I was going to bring over to her house she said "Just don't bring that roadkill from your brother's house" Insulting, much? I didn't know what to say but I got really convicted at that time about how I should respond so I just said "Well it will be pretty tasty roadkill!"

She didn't respond. :P


I have some (hopefully) exciting news! I *think* one of my hens is preparing a nest! I went out to feed them Friday morning and checked for eggs and there weren't any in their nesting box. I just happened to glance in their coop and saw one little egg in the corner (they never lay in there) and you could tell she dug a little hole for it. My MIL says it sounds like she is starting to build up her nest to sit on them. Babies! DH and I are beside ourselves with excitement. It will be a challenge keeping them healthy through the winter but I think we can manage.

Congrats...grandma :):attention::drum:

Sam
11-28-2011, 11:15 AM
Goober! :P

sugarplum
11-28-2011, 01:45 PM
Sam, that sounds like an awesome Thanksgiving. My dad tried to convince my mom to get turkeys last spring but she wasn't having any part of it.

Kind of a crunchy thought but not entirely, I've been working with my kids in the kitchen and talking about our food choices etc. It has been really interesting. My younger daughter is excited to start a blog with me about wheat free foods kids like her would actually like. She is going to take all the pictures and pick the food we share while I supervise the cooking and do the writing. There is so much out there for gourmet GF recipes but doing wheat free on a budget and keeping it kid friendly has been a journey.

Ooh, share the link when you do! My diet is much more "kid like" than "gourmet" and a lot of the GF blogs and recipes out there frustrate me because they are just not my thing. I just want regular down home food...not fancy crap. :D Hooray for your daughter for wanting to take that step and educate people - what a grown up little girl!

Sam
11-29-2011, 09:36 AM
Well when I went out to feed my chickens this morning I saw two eggs in the nest! I think I can officially say we are building a nest! We are going to have to find some where for them to stay through the winter, I think this weekend we are going to see if we can make the well house managable for them. I am not really sure how long it will take the eggs to hatch but I am guessing mid winter.

snooch
11-29-2011, 11:33 AM
That's so cool, Sam! What a great experience it will be for Cassy to watch them hatch :)

LoriDee
12-24-2011, 07:56 PM
Oh i want to join this thread! I'm semi crunchy lol I live in the country, so it's easier to live that way. There is so much more I want to do though. Once I become a SAHM and wife, it will be on!

Y'all are killing me with the chicken talk. I really want some chickens. It's the only kind of meat I don't have in my freezer that is natural right now. DH hunts, so we have deer and wild hog in abundance and we buy in with family on a cow for beef and we also fish. So now I need chickens to eat and lay eggs and I will be good to go. We eat garden vegetables as much as possible.

I still have a lot of learning to do and projects to undertake, but it's fun. I really love the idea of being as self sufficient as possible.

I do cloth diapers and My baby is just now starting on solids so I'm going to start making baby food.

Sam
12-28-2011, 11:56 AM
Welcome LoriDee! I need to get back into the swing of things. Right now i am just trying to get my house back in order after Christmas, and then am going to start on my sewing room. After that I need to go through my seeds and start ordering what I need. DH is going to till up the garden soon so that when it freezes it will kill the grass and weed seeds, but I need to find my garlic! I can'e believe I lost it but I can't find it in that dang garden anywhere!

Sam
12-28-2011, 11:57 AM
Oh! And my brother hunts too and is kind enough to share with us, so alot of times we don't have to buy beef, but I am planning on contacting that local ranch to buy some with my income tax check.

tiredwalker
12-28-2011, 04:23 PM
Welcome!

I'm already getting excited for spring. I've been perusing the Seed Saver's Exchange website and dreaming of warmer weather and moon & stars watermelon. http://www.seedsavers.org/Items.aspx?hierId=8

sigh :)

tiredwalker
02-09-2012, 05:03 PM
Okay, now that the queasiness of the first trimester is over, I'm back to being a crunchy lady. I'm also losing my portion of income in a few months, so we're going to have to really make our dollars stretch. In the last couple of days I've gotten the following accomplished/figured out:

1. Laundry soap made x's 5. I switched to Ivory and figured out that I need to shred it several days in advance, let it dry, and then run it through the blender.
2. Found a little extra $ and used it to buy chicken fence to keep the woodchucks out of the garden in spring.
3. Found and made dish detergent. I'm trying it out right now. I like the recipe (equal parts borax and super washing soda). If I hate it, I can always just grate up a bar of soap and add it too the laundry soap.
4. We're dropping the grocery budget from $120 to $80, so I'm planning the garden of the century and am going to start looking up/storing recipes that are simply, healthy, and inexpensive (hello rice maker!)
5. While dd2 is awake and at home, she's either in cd's or panties. Let's get rid of that huge diaper bill!

*Dishes are finished washing and perfectly clean. That's an easy switch!

Jolinar
02-10-2012, 09:02 PM
There is a cookbook for using your rice maker for rice, lentils, whole grains.

My 2 year old alone eats about 1lb of brown rice a week. She cannot have oats and I figure how is rice for breakfast really that different from oatmeal. LOL.


http://www.amazon.com/300-Best-Rice-Cooker-Recipes/dp/0778802809/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1328925736&sr=8-3

tiredwalker
02-10-2012, 11:17 PM
Awesome! Thank you so much. Hey, rice is totally a breakfast food. Both of my grandmothers used to make us warm rice with milk, cinnamon, and sugar.

christiankate
02-12-2012, 10:23 PM
Starting to get crunchy! I got planter boxes and seeds for onions, peppers, tomatoes, and carrots! Cant wait to start my "garden"

tiredwalker
02-13-2012, 08:52 AM
Spring cannot come fast enough!

Sam
02-13-2012, 10:12 AM
No kidding, TW! Well, actually, I need to till up the garden and have it hard freeze one more time to kill the grass/weed seeds. Then we need to build our tomato trellises and our teepee thingy for peas. But I am sooooooo ready for some good homegrown fruits and veggies!
My friend works for the local food bank and they recently were given a lot in town and they plan to do a CSA, so exciting! I am so looking forward to being a part of that.

Rainbow Flower
02-13-2012, 10:27 AM
Guess I'm more a sandwhich lady :P

tiredwalker
02-13-2012, 03:28 PM
Sam- I'm glad someone else has the itch too :P I wish we had a house so I build things like that and have a substantial garden! We are expanding a little this year as my landlord doesn't care that much...I bet his son will be happy to have less to mow.

It's been such a warm and precipitation-less winter, but we still have some ice/snow left on the ground. However, my MIL just sent us a $50 gift certificate to Home Depot! YAY. I'm pretty sure dh doesn't have plans for it, so I'm geared up to get some gardening logs to make some raised beds, topsoil, and good tomato cages. My fun money for next month is going to seed saver's exchange and I'm going to load up on leafy greens, tomatoes, and every good thing. Then I have to way until the first of June to do anything...LAME!!!

Sam
02-29-2012, 09:46 AM
Who has spring fever? Memememememe!!! My fruit trees are already blooming, so I am praying that it does not freeze hard again. Easter is usually when it's safe to say that winter is over, so we have a little while to go. DH bought a tiller on Monday, we don't have to use his mom's any more. I think this weekend we are going to get the tomato trellises built and the pea "teepee" built. I need to get those planted soon. Then its broccoli and cauliflower. I didn't have any luck with them last year but, last year was no ordinary year. We are also going to try growing potatoes and sweet potatoes. I am hoping to plant some more fruit trees to replace the ones that were killed last year, but I am kind of scared to. Some people say this drought will break this year, some people say its going to be another year. Not good when you are trying to do the whole locavore thing.

tiredwalker
02-29-2012, 12:57 PM
Blooming! I'm so jealous! We're supposed to get up to 12 inches of snow today. The nurseries are still under stocked, and I can't wait to get my supplies for this year!

BelovedDaughter
02-29-2012, 08:02 PM
I'm hoping to get a garden going this year. We moved into the house too late to start one last year.

GM
02-29-2012, 08:52 PM
My nectarine and plum trees are full of flowers :D

Sam
03-01-2012, 12:04 AM
I am worried about mine because we always have one freeze before Easter. Last year it killed our blooms on a few of our trees. You can't feel safe until the Mesquites have started budding and they haven't.

tiredwalker
03-23-2012, 09:32 AM
Holy cow, I never thought I'd be glad for the end of a warm run in March. It's been in the mid 80's for several days and the trees are about to explode with leaves. The pessimist in me is waiting for the hard frost. I actually got a little overheated too. Crazy!

So. I used the homemade dish washing detergent for a while. It worked well for a little while, but then it started leaving a build up on the dishes and didn't get stains out of the cutting board...and I have big issues with that. Back to store bought for us!

Sam
03-23-2012, 10:03 AM
TW, I am a huge fan of Seventh Gen unscented dish detergent. I tried making my own for a while too with borax, washing soda and citric acid, but like you said it left a build up.

We have tilled up the garden and Cassy and I spent the whole afternoon digging up dinosaur bones in it, lol. We won't plant until the mesquite trees start turning green. Thats when we know there will not be a hard frost. Usually Easter weekend but I think we may plant sooner. We are going to try our hand at growing potatoes this year, but I am afraid that my husband will use all of them as ammo for his potato gun! I had broccoli that survived the winter and finally started to produce. I thought I would let it get a little bigger and it bolted. :( I think this winter I am going to try my hand at building a cold frame for broccoli and cauliflower and celery.
I really really want to can this year. We just didn't produce enough last year due to the drought. My peach trees already have little peaches on them, they look like something out of a Dr. Suess book when they are that little. Its cute.
My brother and SIL's goat had 3 babies last weekend! I asked if they are going to milk her but they said they don't think they will. Makes me sad. :( I can't wait until I can have my own goats and get to milk them! I would get a milk cow too if I could but that is so much work!

Sam
03-23-2012, 10:10 AM
Oh, and I have kind of an issue. We are almost completely paper free in the kitchen, but on the rare occasions I fry stuff, I use paper towels. I have tried using regular old kitchen towels but I don't think they do a good job. Plus, I just don't like having to wash all that oil out of them. Anyone have a solution?

tiredwalker
03-23-2012, 12:56 PM
Are the paper towels to absorb the grease from the food or to clean up after?

I use paper towels in the kitchen for and really gross jobs. I figure, if it's from a paper farm, then that land is designated for trees and not homes. We don't use tons (a three pack per month), but I don't worry too much about it.

Sam
03-23-2012, 01:21 PM
To absorb the oil.

tiredwalker
03-23-2012, 03:11 PM
Hmmm. Can you put them straight on a drying rack? It won't get the excess grease off as well, but they won't get your towels greasy and they'll stay crunchy.

Sam
04-19-2012, 09:55 AM
We decided we aren't going to do a garden this year. :( This drought just hasn't let up and last year we worked so hard and it just didn't produce as much as it should have. Plus, even though we are our well is supposed to be part of a huge aquifer, we still need to conserve as much as we can. So we are just going to ride this drought out and hope for an awesome garden next year. Dh's aunt and uncle installed a grey water recycling thing in their house, I would love to do something like that. I am going to talk to them about it, but it wouldn't do for the garden, since its so far away from the house. Plus I am just not sure about the soaps and stuff affecting the plants.

Its kinda funny, you hear about people getting the blues and feeling down when it rains but here its just the opposite. We celebrate the rain! LOL
Sigh, I am blabbering, my dreams of being a locavore this year just aren't going to happen. I guess thats a silly thing to be sad about.

tiredwalker
04-19-2012, 11:33 AM
That's a total bummer and it's not silly at all! We lived in the desert in So CA when I was a kid, and I remember the few times that it rained; we went outside and played in it! The air smelled so fresh and the dust cleared out of the air for a day or two. It totally sucks that you can't have a garden this year, but conserve you must!

I'm having a hard time waiting to put in my garden. It's not going to be grand by any extent, but I do have enough chicken fencing to keep the woodchucks out. Hopefully, the little we do get will not be ravaged by critters. It's getting harder for me to move around, so DH is going to have to learn to be a gardener this year...bettin' he's not going to enjoy it much :P I'll have to entice him with visions of homemade salsa.

Sam, I'm so bummed for you. I hope the rains come and just dump for a couple of weeks, but not so much for a flood.

Sam
04-19-2012, 11:42 AM
Its just so depressing watching my precious trees wither and die too. :( We have an irrigation system and we use it but they need rain water. One of the main reasons we fell in love with this place was the trees. Well, the upside to this is that when the drought is over and we can replant trees, we can place them exactly where we want them. The Northeast corner of our place would be the perfect place for a little fruit tree orchard. At least they will be away from the house (they attract big nasty wasps) and I can plant exactly what I want. It will take work, because the irrigation on that part needs some work, but its a good thing we like doing that stuff.
We are definitely not going to plant any pecan trees until the drought is over for. sure. They are $54 bucks a piece! We've lost so many that we don't want to pay a fortune just to watch them die to. :(
Pray for rain!

tiredwalker
04-19-2012, 02:38 PM
:( It's so awful watching that happen. We've never had drought do that to our trees, but gophers. My sis and I chipped in to buy my mom a beautiful tree (12 ft long and thick already) to help develop shade in the yard. Three hours after we planted it, the dang dog broke the entire thing off at the base and was carrying it around like a big stick. That was one of the few times the neighbors got to hear us yell "G-- D--- dog!!!" Another involved an entire rotting cow leg, but we'll save that story for another day.

Sam
04-19-2012, 06:29 PM
I think I am going to just use this time to finish all the little projects and ideas I have started. LOL Thats a huge character flaw of mine I am determined to fix. I don't finish things I start.

tiredwalker
04-19-2012, 07:29 PM
That's a great idea.

tiredwalker
10-07-2012, 01:38 PM
Okay, it's almost winter, so I'm going to bring the crazy crunchy inside.

I've decided to give the no-pooing a try. My hair is short, so the greasy adjustment time should be too unbearable.

The deodorant is fabulous! 5 tbsps coconut oil mixed with 1/4 cup corn starch and 1/4 cup baking powder actually works and works well. I don't feel sweaty, and I smell like the tropics...which should help me daydream well around February. Of course, it's not 100 degrees outside, so I don't know how well it will work in the heat.

The coconut oil is doing great on dd3's little buns for diaper rash cream and olive oil for our lotion is working way better than I thought. I was expecting to be greasy and break out. But my face is softer than normal and the funky skin issue by my eyes and nose is doing better.

katzankatz
10-07-2012, 04:37 PM
Okay, it's almost winter, so I'm going to bring the crazy crunchy inside.

I've decided to give the no-pooing a try. My hair is short, so the greasy adjustment time should be too unbearable.

The deodorant is fabulous! 5 tbsps coconut oil mixed with 1/4 cup corn starch and 1/4 cup baking powder actually works and works well. I don't feel sweaty, and I smell like the tropics...which should help me daydream well around February. Of course, it's not 100 degrees outside, so I don't know how well it will work in the heat.

The coconut oil is doing great on dd3's little buns for diaper rash cream and olive oil for our lotion is working way better than I thought. I was expecting to be greasy and break out. But my face is softer than normal and the funky skin issue by my eyes and nose is doing better.Interesting deoderant recipe. Maybe I'll mix up a half batch for myself. Good luck on the no poo. The longest I can stand to go without shampoo is 2 days.

tiredwalker
10-07-2012, 06:39 PM
I'm washing with the baking soda and vinegar rinses everyday...I get really greasy, but this seems to keep it at bay so far :D

The deodorant is a little gritty when it goes on, but it smooths out immediately. I'm still dry and I'm going to ask dh if I stink when he comes home. I know he'll be honest :D

~Kellee~
10-07-2012, 06:51 PM
Tw, I've started using the oil cleansing method on my face and it's the best thing I've ever done for my skin. It's never looked this good.

I do have a question though? Where do you get humanely raised meat? Organic isn't a huge factor because I know a lot of organic farms don't pay for the certification.

tiredwalker
10-07-2012, 08:42 PM
How do you do oil cleansing?

Look at higher end stores or farmer's markets/local farms. Our Hanaford's grocery story has humanely raised chicken meat and eggs as well as sustainable fish (it says "Certified Humanely Raised" basically meaning that they are given room to move and a way to exhibit their normal behavior). Our farmers' market has meat booths. It's more expensive, but I feel like it's worth it. You can also look around for local CSAs. You don't get to pick the meat they give you, but you usually get a better deal per pound and are forced to try some new recipes. Also, you might get the chance to go and see the farm. That way you can see that the animals look healthy and are living in a humane environment.

~Kellee~
10-07-2012, 09:23 PM
Luckily in our new area there seem to be A LOT of different things like that. I just have recently learned that organic doesn't always equal humane. At this point it's more important to me that the animals are raised and killed humanely than they have the organic label.

I use a mix of 10% castor oil (cleansing oil) and 90% almond oil (carrier oil) and massage it into my face for a couple of minutes. Then I wet a washcloth with pretty hot water and hold it to my face till it cools, repeat that a couple of times, then that's it. I usually apply rose hip oil right after doing this too. I have pretty dry skin and this has cleared up the dry patches, acne, and the black heads. My skin is softer and smoother. I had about a week of extra oily skin but it balanced pretty quickly.

Here is some more info on it http://www.theoilcleansingmethod.com/

She recommends doing it a couple of times a week but for me I've found it's best if I do it every night.

tiredwalker
10-09-2012, 12:10 PM
Humanely raised is more important than organic for me too. Honestly, you can taste the difference too. When my parents used to raise chickens, they were seriously the best tasting chickens ever and OBESE. I had to drain the fat out of the pan so it wouldn't over flow (like two inches of fat). I can only imagine that fresh air, kitchen scraps, little bugs, and lots of running around out side makes for good favor as opposed to squanchy, filthy, and dark rooms. It makes me sad to think of those things.

Anyhoo...I need to get some castor oil and then I'm going for the gold. I've been using olive oil as a moisturizer anyway, so this should be great. Thanks for all of the info!

Sam
10-09-2012, 03:44 PM
This drought has pretty much crushed our crunchy little hearts. :( We didn't garden, didn't compost, and that just kind of sucked all my little dreams of canning my own veggies, churning my own butter, making my own cheese right out of me. :( We have gotten quite a bit of rain here lately though, and we have been talking about next year's garden, we are going to put up a picket fence around the garden, and build permanent structures for the tomatoes, cucumbers and peas to climb. Those rinky dinky little cages don't hold up all that well. It really is a good thing that we didn't garden this year because our neighbor did and she got the same results we did last year, massive plants that produced little.
We hope to buy a side of beef from a local ranch when we get our income tax check, but our main concern is getting our place fenced in and that will probably take both our Christmas bonus and income tax refund, so we will have to see. We really need it though, people have just been driving over the back of our land like they own the place, and DH has put up these t posts to block their way, and it looks awful. So if there is any left we will try to get some beef. They can't be certified organic because of the oil activity around them, but they are humanely raised and grass fed. Deer season is coming up, though, and my brother is an avid hunter and usually gives us a couple of huge trash bags full of packages of beautifully processed venison. That usually lasts us the winter.
Meat chickens are hilarious, they get so BIG! They have to waddle around, lol. We kind of want to get some next year. OUr chickens we have now are getting to the point that they aren't laying as much anymore. :( Usually lots of people kill them and butcher them for soup chickens (too tough to do anything else with them) but I don't know if I can eat my little pals.
Hopefully we can finish our barn soon and get some goats, my brother actually got my grandpa's milk stand and doesn't have any plans to milk his goats so I plan on talking him out of the stand. :P
*sigh* I thought by now we would be doing all this already, but with the drought, and financial and other stresses really have set us back.

tiredwalker
10-09-2012, 05:36 PM
It's hard eating friends. My mom got a free chick with her last group of meat birds and he was missing an eye and had a crossed beak (like crossed fingers). He would stand on my shoulder and head when I walked around outside. When I came home from college, I mentioned how much I liked the soup and my dad just smiled and said, "Ah, Henry, he was a stringy bird and only good for the pot." Stupid soup.

I'm sorry you've had such a rough go of things. That would be really deflating. Come on rain!

tiredwalker
10-16-2012, 12:19 PM
I've converted my family to oil cleansing now. We're using it all over instead of just faces; I just keep a bottle of dish soap in the shower to get the oil off the wash cloth and shower bottom so it doesn't get slippery. Dh thought I was crazy, but I rubbed his head (he's a baldy) and neck with it in the shower and he just said, "Oh, well that feels nice." Now he uses it :P I feel safer about using it on the kids too. Maggie was a bit skeptical, but I told her the olive oil made her smell like Giada the chef. She was all over that. All of our skin looks great and my dry/oily/acne problems are not an issue. We'll see if it continues.

No poo-ing is going fine. I haven't shampooed in two weeks and have cut back the baking soda and vinegar to once every three days. My hair isn't really greasy at all. The girls are a little greasy, but they haven't been doing it for as long. Yay for French braids.

Sam
10-29-2012, 10:41 AM
I did my first crunchy thing in a while this weekend. I made rose hip oil! I had thought that my niece and my daughter had picked all the rose hips off all my rose bushes (I don't know why, but once I explained what they were, they were fascinated by them!) but I discovered a ton this weekend. It's going to be a carrier oil for making essential oils. So next summer I am going to use it to make lavender oil. :)

Do you use regular white vinegar or apple cider vinegar in your hair? I read this weekend you can use apple cider vinegar as a kind of leave in conditioner.

Historia
10-29-2012, 01:27 PM
I want to start using apple cider vinegar in my hair, but that's because I have psoriasis and it's supposed to be great for it. I'm not sure about people with normal scalps, though.

tiredwalker
10-29-2012, 01:36 PM
I've been using white vinegar, but I bought some apple cider vinegar to try out. The white stuff works really well so far. My hair is so short now that it might be hard to even get oily.

Sam
10-29-2012, 01:54 PM
My only worry is that my hair gets SUPER tangly. If I run out of conditioner, my hair doesn't get washed until I get some (not that its a big deal, I only wash my hair once or twice a week anyway) so I worry about not having a detangling agent.

Sam
10-29-2012, 04:37 PM
I tried the apple cider vinegar leave in thing. I did not use conditioner at all. My first reaction is HOLY COW do not let this run in your eyes! Ouch! But, my hair instantly felt different. It does not feal near as heavy as it usually does. I did my usual thing, dried it with a t shirt, applied gel, then blowdried with a diffuser and it is much curlier than it usually is, especially at the length it is! Thats just after one use! I think, from now on I am going to put some in a spray bottle and just spray my hair with it just before I wrap it up in a t shirt.

tiredwalker
10-29-2012, 04:57 PM
Isn't it amazing...and incredibly stingy? I used it on dd3's hair which is long, super fine, and very, very tangle-y and her hair was so easy to deal with! I love the spray bottle idea.

I have to say that the oil cleansing is going so well. I've been battling with acne since I was 12. Major blackheads on my nose and chin. They are GONE! It's amazing. I noticed a difference in the texture of my skin the first time I did it, and now it's been two weeks or more, and I look like a grown up finally! I'm so convinced.

Sam
10-29-2012, 05:25 PM
So what do you do? Just wash with straight olive oil? We always have used Dove but winter skin is already upon us and poor Cassy's little cheeks were so chapped that I put vaseline on her cheeks before bed every night. Here lately I have been struggling acne, its not all over my face but its the difficult kind that doesn't want to go away and leaves dark marks. I need to so something. I usually exfoliate once a week or so with baking soda and water, and I started using my rose hip oil as kind of a moisturizer. It really works great!

Oh, and I made some spray gel with the vinegar and gel, just half and half in an old body spray bottle.

tiredwalker
10-29-2012, 07:15 PM
I use 9 parts olive oil and one part castor oil. Wet face, massage the oil onto your face, then wipe it off with a hot towel. When I'm done, I wash the cloth with some dawn so the oil doesn't end up in the washer.

Sam
10-30-2012, 10:49 AM
Dude, the rose hip oil is really fading those ugly dark spots I have on my face, after 2 uses! I read yesterday that rose hip oil can even get rid of old scars, so I am trying it out on some ugly super old scars that I hate, and can't hide, and am constantly asked about by nosy strangers. I took a pic of them today so I can see if it's making progress or not.
I also read that you can use apple cider vinegar to clean your face. Tried it this morning, just soaked a piece of old tshirt, rubbed it on my face, got the tshirt rag wet and rinsed it off. Then topped it off with the rose hip oil. Hopefully I won't look like an old teenager anymore. :P

tiredwalker
11-08-2012, 09:54 PM
Really? I've never heard of using rose hip oil. I've got some serious scars that could use a little muting.

I melted some beeswax today added it to the olive oil I use for lotion and it feels sooooo nice! Regular OO has been working well, but the winter dry skin is setting in and the wax seals it in...and I can use it for chapstick too :) I really like the aroma of the wax too, like warm honey.

Sam
11-14-2012, 09:25 AM
You know, I am really loving the rose hip oil. On my older scars, it really does look like some of the smaller, less raised ones, are fading back into my skin. The bigger, more raised ones don't look all that different, but maybe with time they will at least shrink some.
I have also noticed it makes my pores smaller, win!
What I do on my face is massage about a quarter sized amount on my face for a minute, then run a wash cloth (i use cut up t shirts for my face) under hot water, as hot as my face can stand it. Then i place the cloth on my face and leave it there until the cloth cools off, then pat dry. I read about doing that on pinterest and she used olive/castor oil like you do, but I figured I would try it with the rose hip oil and it works very well. The only problem is I did not make a whole heck of a lot of oil, so when I use this up I may have to switch to the castor/olive oil combo.

A guy DH works with has kept bees before and was thinking about doing it again, I have been encouaging him like crazy! Free raw, local honey and beeswax! Yay! Too bad he's not our neighbor lol so those bees could polinate my garden! LOL
DH is supposed to get his Christmas bonus early this year and if its good I reallywant to start stocking up on bulk/non perishables like rice, beans, flour etc. Plus hopefully buy a side of beef, but it looks like my brother is already going to have a successful deer season, and if he does I probable wont have to. They don't give their meat to anyone but us anymore because they used to give some to his sisters, and they found out that they just let it go bad and throw it away. :( Sad that some deer lost its life just to be thrown away. :( Such a waste, I am talking about trash bags, full of prefessionally processed meat, hamburger, sausage, steaks and stew meat and roasts!, Meat that is very lean and very good and natural! Not pumped with hormones and antibiotics and fed food it can't digest properly just to fatten it up, meat that didn't spend it's life in a pen, hoof deep in poo. Not to mention, free! Oh well, that means instead of getting one trashbag full, we'll probably get 3!

Sam
11-14-2012, 10:00 AM
Oh! And I have some great news, the oil company that has been drilling around here is supposed to be suspending drilling around here, which means they probably won't drill the land directly in front of me. My hope is that it will stay vacant until we can afford to buy it. (its only valued at like 12,000)
If money were no object, I would buy that sucker and hire a landscape company to clear the whole thing and pull up all the dead pecan trees and replace a lot of them with new ones, but also plant a massive fruit tree orchard. I'd bulldoze the house (after I salvaged all the doors and windows and other things of course!) and put a small building over the basement and use it as a cellar. Oh if only my checking account was the size of my dreams! LOL

tiredwalker
12-13-2012, 02:08 PM
I just saw this. That's great! I hope you'll be able to grab it up!

Sam
01-05-2013, 10:38 PM
I've been doing the baking soda shampoo/vinegar conditioner for about 2 weeks and my scalp feels really dirty. Is that normal? I actually figured it would feel cleaner, thinking the baking soda would exfoliate my scalp. I figured maybe I'm not using enough baking soda so I added more but it still feels yucky. I know there is an adjustment period, could that be it?

tiredwalker
01-06-2013, 11:50 PM
It might be. I gave it up; I felt too dry maybe from too much baking soda. I couldn't figure it out. I was trying it on the girls too and they were so ridiculously greasy. I bought Nature's Gate by the gallon at the Co-op instead.

katzankatz
01-06-2013, 11:58 PM
I've never been able to get past a few days not using shampoo. My hair doesn't look bad, but I cannot get past how my scalp feels, and I'm not at all confident that it smells wonderful either. Every other day is as long as I'll go - don't care how uncrunchy that is:P. I haven't found vinegar to be any kind of miracle on my hair either.

Sam
01-07-2013, 12:10 AM
See, I've always been able to wash my hair once a week, not really for crunchy reasons, my hair just always is unmanageable right after I wash it. Now it's like a couple of days and I'm greasy greasy. Idk, I'll give it a little more time but I may have to switch to Pantene like a little birdie told me. :P

Jolinar
01-07-2013, 08:35 AM
I do curly girl but about once every 2 weeks I have to wash my hair with sulfate free shampoo or if I use a bunch of styling products.

BelovedDaughter
01-15-2013, 09:14 PM
I've made 2 loaves of bread in our bread machine lately and they taste so good! They only have flour, sugar, salt, water, yeast, and canola oil!

I've also been looking into "mama cloth," although I'm not a mama yet!