Three hundred pounds of apples makes for some wonderful apple sauce, dried apples, and pie! This is just some pictures of my big apple canning day that we did in October.
Some quick, but yummy food to nourish our bodies during the big day.
And finally... A picture of my super cool pantry. I love it :) Hope you enjoyed a quick peek of our busy day.
- Abby Jo
It's that time of year people... Pumpkin everything, sweaters, cozy blankets, and lots of hot beverages. This is such a lovely pie to make with any pumpkin or squash out of your garden. I grew up eating pies made with Blue Hubbard squash. I always thought they were pumpkin pies, I didn't even know the difference! However, as I started helping my Granny make pies, I realized we were making them with squash. They taste really good, so either way make ye some pie!
Pumpkin Honey Cream Pie
3 C. Fresh pumpkin puree
1/4 to 1/2 C. Honey (more or less to suit your taste)
1 C. Heavy Cream
1 tsp. Salt
1/2 tsp. Nutmeg
1/2 tsp. Ginger
1 tsp. Cinnamon
Preheat oven to 375F.
This recipe makes two smaller pies or one large deep dish
In a large bowl whisk together pumpkin, eggs, and honey.
Add the spices and cream, whisking thoroughly until it’s smooth.
Roll out the pie crust and fit it to the pan. Now fill the crust with pumpkin filling and let it settle in. Cut all that extra dough away from the sides, but leave enough to crimp the edges all pretty and rustic-like. Your pie is ready for the oven!
Bake for 40 minutes, or until it’s set in the center.
And now I leave you with a picture of Baby Boy enjoying these fleeting Fall days.
- Abby Jo
I linked up to Farmgirl Friday!
Wow, does time fly or what? Fall is here, my favorite time of year. Somehow I must slow this season down, there is always so much to do... School, canning, soccer, putting the garden to bed, and preparing for winter.
Above are some wonderful copper pots I scored for only five dollars at a thrift store! Ready to be cleaned :)
I need to start canning more apple sauce and drying apples, I have 300lbs to get through.
Below is just day to day, wonderful life. I have several recipes all photographed and ready to go, I just need to get up early and post one of them!
- Abby Jo
This is the story of my counter, I would like to bring my counter stories to you once a week!
What brought this crazy idea to my head? I was looking through pictures on my computer, and I thought "Wow, I have a ton of pictures of my counter loaded with daily life". My counter is ever changing on this little homestead. And even though, at night or before guests arrive it's usually clean (most of the time), it's one of the most heavily used areas in our home.
So starts this series...
Skimming cream off my freshly delivered milk. A bag of apples that were picked locally, sit awaiting their destiny. Tomatoes just canned the day before are awaiting the pantry, and a pitcher is just hanging out in the back ground. This picture makes me truly happy. It's life little domestic tasks, such as preserving food, making a warm apple tart, skimming cream for butter (and my coffee), that spells out what homesteading is all about to me... The food!
I may not be milking my own cow or goat, as I have in the past. But in the act of buying local, supporting my farmer, gleaning, growing my own food, and then preserving, and cooking with it, I am bringing the best of homesteading into my home.
Lunch wiped out by my children, produce from the garden, my water jar that follows me around the house, and crumbs.
Tomatoes to be canned, garlic ready to be stored, chicken cooling, before we pick off the meat for soup.
A little glimpse into the daily life of my counters :)
- Abby Jo
This year we went all out, tearing both the front yard and side yard out, so we could put in a "Food Forest" permaculture style. Daniel and I are big on reading (books & Internet), watching youtubes, and then just jumping in feet first. It has always served us well, and we get things done. Things don't always turn out perfect, but we learn, and that's the whole point!
Permaculture gardens are a little labor intensive at first. We had to dig the trenches on countor to the way the land lays. Our goal was to collect as much water naturally within the man made swells. We planted heavy and close together, with lots of mulch. We also used the chop and drop method. When plants are done producing, we chop and drop and it becomes instant mulch. Once the initial work was done, it has been the lowest maintenance garden we have ever had. We had hardly any weeds, didn't have to water as much, and it really flourished.
This year's garden feeds us and then some. I really can't wait until next year, I'm planning on adding more plants and perennials.
We will put the garden to bed for the winter with either a heavy straw or wood chip mulch. I have had success with both methods. Depends on what I can get my hands on.
I made my sauerkraut this year with cabbage from the garden.
Heirloom Tomatoes, they make me swoon.
My big boys, they are almost six feet tall this year, can you guess how tall my sunflowers are?
Our corn was super tall this year, as well.
This is a picture heavy post. I can't help it, I love pictures of fresh garden produce, green plants, and dirt!
I have had this desire to grow cantaloupe and watermelon as long as I can remember, but our climate is a little on the cold side. We have hot days, but the night can dip too low for growing these gems. I decided this year would be different, I would hunt out some heirloom cold climate melon seeds and just do it! I figured why not? I sure am glad I tried :) These mini versions were full of flavor and I now want to grow an entire field!
We ate so much good food, all Spring and Summer long.
Think big next year, start planning NOW! Dig that old yard up, and grow food. It's so much fun, but trust me, it gets addictive.
- Abby Jo
I love to share what I learn with people. My friends know me as a natural mama, because I use home remedies, herbs, and essential oils. They work very well, and I turn to them often. However, my own heath has been a puzzle most of my life.
When I was a kid I had ear infections, and my parents took me to the doctor ALL the time. I was regularly on antibiotics. As a pre-teen I started getting horrible migraines. I went thru a slew of testing and they could find nothing wrong with me. I have pretty much lived with migraines my whole life. Later in life, I figured out that all those years of antibiotics, and a standard American diet, equaled poor gut health. On top of all that, I developed thyroid and adrenal problems. So, about seven years ago I changed my diet. I went homegrown, organic, whole foods; you get the idea, and cut out processed foods. My health has really improved over the last seven years. However, I still had nagging gut and hormone issues. I couldn’t figure out why, I ate so many foods to help heal my body, but now I believe my body wasn’t properly absorbing and digesting the nutrients. This last year, I spent a lot of money trying to figure this all out with Doctors, Naturopath, acupuncture, cleanses, and supplements. I felt a little better, but nothing life changing. So, when my friend called me to share about Plexus a Health and Wellness Company that is changing her health and her life. I listened, because I knew what she had gone thru the last couple years with poor health and debilitating pain issues, and honestly, I was willing to give anything a try. And maybe that’s were some of us have to get.
One of the first things I felt when taking Plexus, was more energy. Especially during those afternoon slumps, I started sleeping like a rock, and I have a drive again! And best of all, no more migraines, and I’ve started losing inches. This is not an overnight deal. It takes some people months for the body to start restoring itself, but you do feel good things happening along the way. I went from being an exhausted mama, with low blood sugar, gut issues, and hormones out of whack, to feeling healthy and full of energy again. I have way more to go in this journey, but because of the incredible changes in my health, I want people to know that you don’t have to feel tired and wiped out all the time. It’s not normal to go through life exhausted, or dealing with gut, hormone, inflammation, and yeast issues.
I know this has been a great way to jump-start my health, and the health of many others! If you would like to learn more about these products, check out our website Energy4mama.com.
And please feel free to contact me for more info or questions; I’m here for you.
I’m not going to be talking about Plexus on our blog all the time, so don’t worry! I might share with you about my personal progress from time to time, but other than that we are a blog about simple living, homesteading, growing and cooking good food. I just wanted to share with you that I now have more energy to pursue those things dear to my heart.
- Abby Jo
Disclaimer: I’m not a doctor, nutritionist or personal trainer, and I'm not giving medical advice. I'm simply sharing my own personal experience with these products. This page is for educational purposes only. And if you want an ingredient list or more information to take to your doctor, please contact me.
Every year we take our kids to an antique show, it's a family tradition. I had planned on going to my friend's Pickin on the Prairie Antique Show. However, my back was giving me fits and we could not go that weekend. I had heard about this show "Funky Junk" and found out they would have a Tiny Home on display! I was so excited to go check it out in person. I LOVE Tiny Homes, I wish my husband and I would've started out with one when we were first married. Now my kids want to build one to start out in :)
Lots of fun things to look at...
I love all the cool ideas I get from these shows, and the kettle corn was delicious!
Now for the piece de resistance...
This Tiny Home was very well built and roomy (in a tiny sort of way). The pictures don't do it justice. This Tiny Home was built by Little Foot Tiny Homes.com
All in all, we had a very nice day. Have you ever been inside a Tiny Home? Do you like the idea of living in a smaller home or a Tiny Home? I believe as a homesteader, you would have to have other options for your food storage like a root cellar, out buildings and such for tools of the trade. However, I love how the whole Tiny Home movment has made people think outside the box, I'm always for that :)
- Abby Jo
It's our second time out with our tent, and we are loving it. We swam and ate to our heart's content.
We set it up first thing and unzipped the sides so we could have airflow throughout the day and keep cool.
This is my amazing antique commode out among the trees :)
I really am addicted to cooking food outside, it makes me feel alive. Plus, easy clean up, right?
Daniel forgot his hat, so he wrapped my scarf around his head. I think he looks pretty cool.
The key to having a good time camping or picnicking, is food prep and a list. It helps me not to forget anything and the food is ready to go. Above, is the best rhubarb cake ever. I need to post that recipe soon!
Cooking together, Daniel slightly burnt my chili. Of course, he said he wanted to add a burnt camp taste to it. It really was OK. I tried a new chili recipe and the kids loved it!
My daughter has been saving her money, and bought herself a beautiful kayak. I'm so proud of her!
Summer days come, but once a year...
- Abby Jo
I've been dying to show you our outdoor area as of late! Daniel (hubby extraordinaire) built me this gorgeous canvas outdoor room. I. Love. It. I can't sing loud enough how much I love my new space.
Daniel built the frame with scrap wood we had, making these kind of false beams (they look so cool). We are going to paint them white down the road. The canvas roof is made out of three canvas drop clothes bought at Harbor Freight. He sewed them together, riveted the bottoms and ran rope thru to secure to the sides of the house. Daniel will waterproof it soon, but for now it works great. I'll update you on how that goes.
It really helps to keep the area we call our "court yard" so much cooler, especially since we installed water misters.
We have been living outside during the evenings. I love eating, playing games, dancing, and cooling off in our new outdoor room.
I had this cool chest forever, hauling it around everywhere we have lived. I asked hubby if we could turn it into a refreshment bar, I was sure this time he would think I was nuts. However, he thought it was a great idea.
We also took wire and wired some of our wattle fencing to our ugly chain link gates, and it looks so much better. I'm training a rose to grow onto the gate as well.
I sneak out after the kids are in bed to drink my herbal tea and cool off in this lovely tub. I am so glad we have a mosquito net this year, it's really nice not being eaten alive when the sun goes down.
My hard working man, I love this guy :)
I love this guy too! One year old yesterday.
Now coming to crux of the matter, FOOD! I love to eat outside, the outdoors gets me excited about food! Maybe it's the leisurely way we eat, or the fresh air? I don't know and I don't care, give me outdoor living and food anytime. The End.
Do you love outdoor living?
- Abby Jo
This Spring my husband and I started looking for a tent trailer with a budget of fifteen hundred dollars, that we had saved up for this purpose. Our family wanted to get out of town on the weekends to forage, fish, swim, and relax. We looked at many tent trailers in this price range, they all had some issue (torn canvas, dirty, rotted floor) and to be honest, Daniel and I didn’t want another project. I was thoroughly discouraged with no prospect of finding one that would work for our family, when my husband said “Why don’t we buy a Bell Tent?” We have looked longingly at Bell Tents in the past, and always thought it a dream to buy one. Well, we got looking at the tents in the large size (Sibley 500 Pro). It looked like it would fit our family and was hundreds of dollars less than what we were looking at in a tent trailer, plus way more romantic! I say that’s win-win in my book.
This was our first outing with our lovely tent, sent all the way from Belgium. And you know what, I love it!
Yes, I bring flowers and finery when out in the woods.
We have been so busy tearing up our lawn and putting in new permaculture beds, filming a wedding, and building some new outdoor additions. We love to stay busy, but we are craving the woods now that we live in town. We plan on many more outings this year, and I hope to forage for lots of herbs, and food this Summer and Fall.
These tents are so sturdy, and it took Daniel and the boys ten minutes to put it up. I think if we all helped we could have it up in five minutes.
It's hard to tell, but this tent is huge inside! It's a circle shape with about
210 sq.ft. of room.
This beautiful little piece of paradise is the homestead of some sweet new friends. They were so gracious to let us camp out in their wooded pasture with two ponds. We had a tea party in the afternoon with them, and it was all so nice. Thank you, Sheila and girls!
We didn’t want to leave; it was such a wonderful day of rest and fun.
- Abby Jo
Daniel & Abby Jo
We are passionate about the forgotten arts, homesteading, whole foods, and simple living.
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