Friday, August 29, 2014

View from the porch

Relaxing on the porch tonight.  Shane is mowing down the pasture. 

The alpacas don't seem to mind at all.  

They move to graze somewhere else.  Oblivious to the fact that if they would keep the grass chewed down better, he would not have to do this.  They just look at him, not getting it at all!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Around the farm

A look around the farm this morning....

The ladies (also known as chickens) like to eat scraps.  I try to give them something every day.

Here they are eating a tomato.  They LOVE the color red!
Tomatoes and strawberry tops seem to be their favorite.

This morning they gave me a double yolk!

The garden is not producing high volume anymore.  This morning's pickings were 2 zucchini and a few tomatoes (for supper tonight).  Also collected this morning are eggs and something new to my basket - 2 small apples.

The alpacas eating their breakfast.  Although Bogo has grass in her mouth, she still gave me a smile.
My husband named her Bogo (Buy One Get One), because when we bought her, we were told that she may be pregnant.

Marina, the barn kitten, hanging out on the front porch.

This old apple tree needs pruned or cut down.  It doesn't produce very good fruit.

This is one of the apple trees that we planted in Spring 2013.  I am sooooo excited - it has an apple!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A framed place mat

I wanted a pop of color in my office.  I looked at all types of art work, but most of what I liked cost more than I wanted to spend.  While strolling through the home sections of Wal-Mart, this place mat caught my eye.  It would not fit into my kitchen decor, but the pop of colors were perfect for my office.

It has the light background which matches the sofa.  The blue coordinates with the pillow, lamps, curtains, and maps/globes that I have in the room.  And, it has that pop of color that I wanted - orange, yellow, red, and green.  Now I just need to find an orange throw to put on the sofa. ;-)

Here is how I made a table place mat into artwork...
Find a place mat that you like.  No need to cut the place mat.

Find a picture frame similar in size (it does not need to be exact). 

Position the place mat to fit, looking at the front to position, as needed.  
My place mat hangs out just a little.  You could trim if it is much bigger.

I like how it looks and I love that it is original!

You could also use a pillow sham, hand towel, favorite fabric (new or vintage), and so on.  
The possibilities are endless!  Be creative.

Linking to Thursday Favorite Things

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Hammock by the creek

Come and relax in the hammock by the creek.

Do you hear the birds?

Can you hear the water?

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Kara's Delicious Potatoes

My youngest daughter loves to cook!  We take a recipe and "tweak" it a little, then re-name it.  This recipe was given to me years ago, and we have tweaked it to make it our own.  Not only does Kara love this dish, but so does most everyone that tries it.  It is often requested and has pretty much became a staple that we take to cook-outs, reunions and get-togethers.  It also graces many a holiday table.  Because it is sooooo delicious and Kara makes it frequently, we have named it "Kara's Delicious Potatoes".

Even when she was younger, she would pretend cook with her play kitchen set.  I still have it in our basement.  It symbolizes such fond memories that I cannot part with it.

As she grew out of that stage, we moved on to more pretend....We pretend to be on a cooking show!
I love making great food and awesome memories in the kitchen.

I hope you enjoy this recipe.

1 bag (28 ounces) frozen potatoes o'brien
(The o'brien potatoes already have the onions and peppers added)
[The colors are so pretty]

1 can (10.5 ounces) cream of chicken soup
salt & pepper

12 ounces sour cream 
(I use light sour cream)

Mix all together.

Spread into 9 x 13 baking dish.
Chunk 1/3 of a large block (32 ounces) pasteurized process cheese (such as Velveeta) on top.
Pour 1 stick of melted butter on top.

Bake at 350 degrees for 1 to 1 1/2 hours (stirring every 20 minutes or so), until bubbly.

Kara's Delicious Potatoes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1 bag (28 ounces) Potatoes O'brien
1 can (10.5 ounces) cream of chicken soup
12 ounces sour cream
salt & pepper
1/3 large block (32 ounces) of pasteurized process cheese 
*can use shredded cheddar, but I like the gooeyness of the process cheese in this dish*
1 stick butter, melted
Mix potatoes, soup, sour cream, s&p together.
Place in 9 x 13 baking dish.
Chunk cheese on top.
Pour melted butter over.
Bake for 1 to 1 1/2 hours, or until cheese is melted and all is bubbly.  Stir every 20 minutes while baking.

Friday, August 8, 2014

A $2 yard sale find

I recently found this picture at a yard sale and automatically knew the colors would go well with our wall paint color in the half bath.  I have been thinking for a while that I would like to decorate this room in seashells, so it's as if the picture was calling out to me (smile).

The background color in the picture is set off by the green painted walls.  The blue/green color in the vase match a couple glass pieces that I already had.  The flowers in the vase are beautifully simple.  And the gave me the desire to finally create something with the seashells that we collected at the beach last year while on vacation.

I hot glued some seashells to a craft frame that I already had.  I love the picture I put in the girls having fun in the ocean waves.

To round out the seashell theme, I used a candle holder that I already had.

And, I purchased this seashell soap dispenser.

So tell me, do you like going to yard sales?

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Zucchini, zucchini, and...

more zucchini 

I am a little embarrassed to show my garden with all of the weeds, but I need to show you this ONE plant.
Yes, that is ONE plant!

I planted two zucchini plants, but this one has produced an abundance of zucchini this year...and still is!

In the past, when my parents would give us zucchini from their garden, I would normally make a couple loaves of bread.  Well, this is the largest garden that I have planted and I couldn't bear to waste such good food.  After all, that is why I planted a become more self sufficient and to eat the food that we lovingly grow ourselves, right?  Eat we did - and are eating - and will eat!

Let me tell you about some of the things I made with zucchini:

  I made my tried and true zucchini bread (a recipe from Better Homes and Garden cookbook).  We ate some and I froze some.

I made zucchini muffins with walnuts (a recipe I found on-line).  I froze some of these also.

I canned zucchini pickles (they taste like bread & butter pickles).  I plan on taking a jar of these to upcoming cookouts and reunions.  I also canned zucchini relish.
I used recipes for both of these from the Ball Blue Book guide to preserving.

Other things I have made with our abundance of zucchini are:
Z soup
Z fries (breaded with corn meal and parmesan cheese)
 roasted Z
 sauteed Z in olive oil with s&p
 fried Z (coated in flour, egg, bread crumbs)
 pasta salad with Z
 quiche with bacon, cheese and Z
scrambled eggs with shredded Z
stuffed Z (also known as zucchini boats)

My family's favorite zucchini recipe so far is zucchini lasagna.  Use your favorite lasagna recipe, but instead of pasta noodles, use thin strips of zucchini.  Delicious!  And, although this is their favorite, they we are tired of eating zucchini everyday, so.....we have been giving some away.  

What is your favorite way to prepare zucchini?  I'm still looking for different ways (smile).

Saturday, August 2, 2014

A piece of Grandma's house

As a child, I spent a lot of time at my grandparents.  I have many fond memories - family dinners, playing in the creek, playing in the "rock house", chickens, cows, riding 4-wheelers. We still enjoy the land, but my grandparents and their house are gone.  This coat rack is made from a piece of wood taken from their house when it was being torn down.  My husband added the hooks to the front and a hanger to the back.

I love the rustic look - no sanding, no staining, no cutting.  A piece of Grandma's house.

Sharing at     Metamorphosis Monday     The Scoop     Wow Us Wednesdays

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