Friday, May 27, 2011

Eatin' Fred

Sorry I’m behind in my posts peeps, I’ve been a busy lady. After all that basement work, my poor home and yard have needed some tender lovin’ care. Today I have a very simple recipe to share with you. I’ve thought a lot about this and I’m not sure if you can even call this a “recipe”.  I am actually just going to tell you a bunch of stuff that is yummy in a pan together. You can add to or take away from it to make your own yummy goodness.

This is Fred. Why is it Fred? I have no idea. Fred is just what my Mom calls it so that is what I call it. This could be a unique name to my family or millions of people around the world may call it Fred. I have no idea. Fred sure does taste yummy though!
Hello Fred:

·         Cabbage (I recommend slicing up as much as you can fit in the skillet with all the other ingredients)
·         Onions sliced or diced it’s up to your preference
·         Potatoes again, slice or dice (I don’t like taters in my Fred, but my sister loves them, again your preference)
·         Dice smoked sausage, kielbasa, turkey sausage, brat wurst (basically some kind of yummy sausage/meat product that comes in a long snake form) I buy whichever is on sale
·         Oil
·         Salt and pepper
Ok, coat your skillet, large or small, with a thin layer of oil and throw in your potatoes if you are going to add them. Cook those for a few minutes alone since they need a longer cooking time. Then add all of the other ingredients and cook until they are nice and browned. If Fred starts to stick to the pan or looks parched, just add a ¼ cup of water and scrape him up. Poor Fred, we’re goin’ cook him good!
I have been creative with Fred. I have had an abundance of cabbage these last 2 weeks so I have eaten Fred a lot, and no, I’m not sick of him yet. I would eat him today if I had more cabbage. Anywho, I have cut up chard and added that to Fred. I’ve also added fresh spinach. I imagine that any number of different things could be added to this dish to make it yummy. My sister, #3, says that carrots are also excellent in Fred.
What makes Fred so delicious? The flavors in the pan all meld together. The cabbage soaks up the meat flavor. Wow this makes me hungry and it’s 8:30 am. Fred is easy to make and yummers to eat.  Cook up ol’Fred and give him a try! Leave a comment if you get to try him and tell me what you added.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Well little man is finally not whining and crying this morning. This is honestly the first day in 1 whole, long, tiring week that he has been happy. Thank you Lord! Momma couldn't take much more. I truly am grateful. Now to the life we've been living the last few days.

We worked like dogs this past weekend. There is a giant blue dumpster in my front yard that is almost full of my basement! That's right folks she be goin' down fast! Hubby and I have smashed (my fave), hammered, crow barred, ripped, and sawed our way through our basement. This needed to be done 4 or 5 years ago but life kept getting in the way. Babies were busy being born or I was too pregnant to be any help. And frankly, I'd rather run to the mountains and play than work!

I have to say though it feels great to get that nasty junk out of my house. There were several places that the people before us put untreated wood against unsealed block or concrete. Seriously people this is a major no-no. Can you say mold and mildew? Yuck. Demolition will be done in a couple of weeks and then the major work of sealing and painting will  begin. Thank you Lord for a smart, handy, sweet, fantabulous provider of a husband.

Yesterday, a truck load of  "just put that in the basement" stuff headed out of here. For years, we just put it in the basement if it was in the way, or we bought a new one, etc. No more! A commitment has been made by both of us and we no longer will be putting "it" in the basement. We have a truck with a king cab. There was no room for anyone except the driver to ride. That's how full that puppy was. Hopefully someone can use all of the stuff. Sarah over at Thrifty Decor Chick calls this decrapification. Boy does it feel good to be decrapified!

Our goal is to make the basement a safe place for our family. We may build a bedroom down there but that is probably all. Depending on God's plan for us, we hope to move again in a few years (5 maybe). We want to follow His will for us so we'll see how it goes!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Mad Baby Blues

Yesterday I was sooooo frustrated with my children. My patience were “Gone with the Whine” (see what I did there?). Aydan has been in an exceptionally bad mood since he started cutting more teeth. I complained to more than one person how I was going crazy. The little booger wants me to hold him constantly.  Everything made him mad and the screaming was driving me batty.
The other monsters were just being messy, loud, wild kids. They do the normal things that kids always do like make gigantic messes and wait for me to clean them up, ignore my first request for them to do something, ask for candy constantly. I don’t understand the candy thing because we do not normally have candy laying around, so I think this particular kid takes after her Papa and Aunt Rae-Rae. (I’m southern ya’ll that’s pronounced Ant). She has a major sweet tooth.
I was desperately trying to get supper on the table before Hubby got home from work and watching a local news show at the same time. Multi-tasking is the art of doing too much at once and not doing any of it great. I am a pro multi-tasker. Any who, the news anchors were visiting an area in my state that had been hit by a tornado and they showed pictures of victims that had died. The last picture was of a very sweet baby . My heart broke.
What would this family that had lost their precious child give to have a cranky 18 month old? What would they think about my impatience with my kids? I’m not saying that I will never again get frustrated with my yay-hoos, but my goodness did the Lord give me a kick in the rear yesterday.
I was very convicted about my attitude and asked for forgiveness. Today will be better because I will make it better. I will also hug the stuffins’ out of my babies today.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Stawberry Bread

I think I promised a recipe for strawberry bread.  I got the recipe from my favorite site for recipes. If you’ve never been there check it out. My favorite part is the reviews because they give you so many ideas on ways to change the recipe for your liking. No, I was not paid to say that either. Click here to see the original. Here goes:
  • 2 cups fresh strawberries
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ vegetable oil
  • ¾ unsweetened applesauce
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/4 cups chopped pecans (optional but yummy)
Slice the strawberries, sprinkle with sugar (not the 2 cups just some extra) and set aside. Heat oven to 350 and grease two 9 x5 pans. Mix all of the dry ingredients together. Slightly beat the eggs and add them to the strawberries along with the oil and applesauce. Mix it all together, add the nuts and pour into the pans. Cook 45 to 50 minutes. Cool in the pans for 10 minutes (or more) and then cool on a rack until completely cool.
The original recipe called for 1 ¼ cup of oil. I changed that to the applesauce supplement. The next time I make this recipe I will try it with all applesauce and no oil. Applesauce does make for dense, moist bread. Try it and see what works best for you. Some people like to add more strawberries and some people like to crush a portion of the berries before adding them to the mix. That just sounds like extra work to me!
This really is a yummy dessert or breakfast bread. Serve warm or cold, with whip cream, cream cheese or vanilla ice cream. It freezes well too.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Frozen Taters Anyone?

Recipe time! This week I baked several different yummy things and I want to share with you the recipes, so today let’s talk taters. I had a whole bag of Russet Potatoes that were soon going to be staring at me if I didn’t do something fast.  I went to Heavenly Homemakers because I wanted to try her method for storing hash browns in the freezer. I tried to make hash browns once upon a time…it did not go as planned. The “hash browns” turned into one solid mush pile that was quite unappetizing.
At Heavenly Homemakers, she recommends baking the taters first. Say what? Oh yeah, bake ‘em baby. Starch was the culprit that caused my big , mushy, gunk pile of “hash browns” (quotes because they were NOT hash browns in the end!) I cleaned those dirty taters up, poked holes in them, put in a pan that I lightly oiled and stuck them in the oven on 350 for 1 hour.
Hot taters

Then you wait. You wait for them to cook and you wait for them to cool. When you are ready to shred, dice, or slice them, wait longer.  You want them to be very cool. I would say from my dicing and slicing the 3 main things to remember:
1) Don’t overcook the taters. I think 45 to 50 minutes would have been enough. You do not want them to fall apart while you are shredding them.
2) Let them cool completely. You could burn yourself and again, they will fall apart.
3) Use a very sharp knife or shredder depending on what you want your end result to be.
I decided not to go with the shredded hash browns. I didn’t want to pull out the food processor so I got my trusty knife and cutting board out and went to work.I diced half of the taters and froze them. I did not peel the potatoes because I like tater skins. Lots.
Then I sliced the other taters into fries. I oiled those puppies up a little, put sea salt on them, and baked them in the oven on a cookie sheet for 45 minutes to 1 hour on 400. Turn them over several times while they are in the oven, careful not to break them.
Before their second baking

Hubby raved! He loved them and said that they are the best ever. They were a huge hit and they were almost all gone at the end of supper. Have a blessed day peeps!

yummy taters!

Thursday, May 12, 2011


I have to tell you about last night. Hubby and I finally lay down to sleep at 11:30pm. We were tired (as usual) but we still chit-chat and make each other laugh with our silliness. I won’t go into detail about our conversation but it did include Luke and Yoda. Yes, from Star Wars.  Anywho, as we slowly calmed down and drifted to la-la land, we heard the baby gate crash to the ground. The baby gate is at the end of the hall blocking our 12 year old pug from coming down the hall and waking the entire house. Pugs snore loudly. I used to be able to look past it, but after the children, I value sleep more than gold.
Brian jumped out of bed, knocked his lamp over, failed to turn it on twice, and took off down the hall. I got in the hall in time to see him disentangle Dylan from the gate. Hubby, “Are you okay?” Dylan, complete silence and that creepy sleepwalker stare. Of course he needed to use the bathroom, but he was asleep!
This is not an uncommon occurrence in our house.  Hubby once called me at work when we had a new puppy, the poor dog needed to go outside and Hubby is calling me at work saying, “I think the dog needs to print, I don’t know what to do.” I told him to go back asleep. I woke up once to find Hubby patting the wall down on my side of the bed, I said, “What are you doing?” He answered with a whimper; he was asleep and had made a wrong turn on the way to the bathroom. There have been many instances of sleepwalking over the years. Dylan completely freaked us out the first time he sleepwalked he just came in the living room and mumbled intelligibly then he tried to pee in the foyer. My little brother would sleep walk as a kid. He would come in the room, turn the light on, and stare at you. Creepy.
Naomi has recently joined the ranks of the sleepwalkers. She is scary. She will laugh uncontrollably and never wake up. She does not remember anything the next day. Now if we hear a noise we head down the hall wondering who is roaming the halls. Have a blessed day peeps!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Tanga Grill Giveaway

Check out this contest with Tanga. Sign up to win a free grill and I could win one too! Me likey free stuff! 

Lots Goin' On!

I hope the grapes have pollinated each other. I’m doubting it seriously though. I think that the new plant is just not mature enough. I have to weed today. The carrots are screaming out for help,”Here I am to save the day!”.  

Carrots in need!

My tomatoes are still a little green around the gills but they are growing and I am taking heart that they will be able to survive.
All of my potatoes are thriving, although, birds like to potty on my trash can potatoes, I don’t know why but I sure wish they would stop!
I know it's a bad picture but help please! The ugly dirty stick thing in the middle is the green bean plant.
Something ate it!
Some of my green beans are growing, others never had a chance. Do you know what killed them? Leave me a comment if you do, I want to prevent this with my second round of beans.
The onions are growing pretty well even though Hershey likes to run them down when she chases squirrels. On a side note, Hubby forgot where the girls and I planted the sunflowers and he MOWED them down. It is rare that he mows (I like to mow) and the one time he does he viciously murders my baby plants J
Oh, I just had to add some pictures of my lovely flowers, they make me happy!

For more gardening fun go to Getting Freedom, Smockity Frocks, and The Finer Things
Now to my list from yesterday, I have marked the accomplished items off:
1)      Dishes
2)     Laundry
3)     Vacuum
4)     Make homemade hash browns to freeze
5)     Bake lunch bread
6)     Bake Strawberry Bread
7)     Bake Strawberry Muffins
8)     Freeze Strawberries
9)     Weed-Eat
10)  Weed the garden
11)   Unclog the bathtub
12)  Return stuff to Target
13)  Trim Dylan’s hair
14)  Dye my hair!
I think I did great! Today I may bake some muffins and freeze the rest of the strawberries. It’s going to be hotter than snot today, so if I work outside it will be early this morning. Here are some pictures of my breads:

I froze one dish of diced potatoes. The chore of getting out the food processor to shred the taters for hash browns seemed like a huge mess waiting to happen, so instead I diced the potatoes and froze them that way.Homemade French Fries were my choice for the rest of my taters and man they were a huge hit! All gone except for one little helping. I'll have pictures of these tater-happenings as I post the recipes.
The girls and I had a kettle corn disaster but other than that the day was  perfect. I’ll post recipe some recipes tomorrow. Have a blessed day peeps!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Today's Agenda

I have a lot of things that I hope to accomplish today. Hope. Here is a list off the top of my head:
1)      Dishes
2)     Laundry
3)     Vaccum
4)     Make homemade hash browns to freeze
5)     Bake lunch bread
6)     Bake Strawberry Bread
7)     Bake Strawberry Muffins
8)     Freeze Strawberries
9)     Weed-Eat
10)  Weed the garden
11)   Unclog the bathtub
12)  Return stuff to Target
13)  Trim Dylan’s hair
14)  Dye my hair!
I think I’ll be doing good to accomplish 5 or 6 of these things. I’ll update you later on how I did and how my baking goes. I’ll post some recipes if they are any good. I better get moving!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Foamy Soap Epiphany

I have had an epiphany. Pay attention because this does not happen often. My kids all received some foam bath soap in an Easter bag from their Granna. They were so excited, me…not so much. I knew that they were going to go batty with that stuff and try to use it all at once. When bath time came, I washed the baby and let him play with his foamy soap. I could control his portions, all was well. Then the 9 year old had his bath and I have no involvement in that (unless he stinks or wastes my water) and bath #2 was done.
Then the dreaded girls bath. My Naomi is a wild 5 year old. She can do a lot of things by herself now, like brush her teeth and squeeze the foam out of a can. She has very little of the moderation gene at this point in her life. I tried to explain that if they used all the foam it would be gone (duh) and they would have none for the next bath. The playing commenced.
As I sat there watching the girls, having heart palpitations over my perceived wastefulness of the foamy soap, the epiphany hit, why do I care if they waste it all? Is it really even waste? Do I really need to conserve foamy soap? Will God be angry at me for not saving foamy soap? Where did my crazy come from?
You have got to understand that I save a lot of things. I can’t help it, it’s in my blood. Thank you Granny and Mom. I also think that saving things is great and beneficial, not only to be a good steward of this earth that the Lord entrusted to me, but to my wallet! I save aluminum foil, newspapers, egg cartons, plastic grocery bags, freezer bags, old socks, etc., etc. This drives Hubby bonkers. He often says in a whispery, creepy, slow drawl, “throw it away”. But I can’t. That’s waste and I may need it later on, you never know when a holey sock may come in handy, rags anyone? So I keep it. I have gotten better about keeping things that could be given away to Goodwill but really, who wants my used aluminum foil? My grandmother and mother were poor. And I don’t mean kinda poor, I mean stinking poor. I am who I am, and live where I live  with the life that I have because of their determination and frugality. I try hard not to lose sight of that fact.
BUT… does this include foamy soap? I decided no. First, I was driving myself nuts. I was totally missing out on the fun! It was their gift, so why not let them enjoy in the way they chose. If that meant one gigantic foamtastic bath, then so be it. I believe  it is my job as their Momma to teach them good stewardship, reduce, reuse, recycle and all that good stuff, but I will no longer freak over the little things. Well, at least I will try to be a better Momma and not freak over the little things ;) And I have concluded that the good Lord is probably more disappointed in me for not enjoying my children's joy, than he is worried about our foamy soap consumption.
So the other night I said, “Have fun!”, then I walked out of the bathroom and let them play. When I came back this is what I found:

And you know what? They didn’t use all the foamy soap. There is still plenty of it for another day. Apparently Naomi thought squeezing it into her ears would be great fun!  Have a blessed day peeps!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Grow Baby Grow

First of all, my feet are freezing this morning. I want socks or house-shoes but I would have to ninja dance down the hall trying desperately not to squeak, or crack, or pop the floor and wake a baby. Guess I’ll be cold.
It is time for a garden update people. I have pictures. Go me. The potatoes are growing like mad. Love it. My tomatoes are kind of an unhealthy yellow green. I really think they just are not getting enough sunlight. I had a tomato plant in the same spot last year that produced grape tomatoes until October. I guess these are more finicky. We’ll see if they make it or not.
I have carrots, lots of cute little carrots. I made the mistake of not thinning them enough last year and it really hurt them. Well to be real honest, I had one whole carrot that we were able to eat last year. It was a stunted, pitiful little thing, but we ate it and liked it. I really did not weed the garden enough and it totally killed my carrots. We are determined to get those little boogers growing this year. I’m weeding them and thinning them every other day or so, trying to keep just the carrots growing.
Okra is a growin! I replanted the areas that just were not producing plants and I plan to thin those as needed. My friendly little plant munching rabbit is wearing my poor green beans out. I do have a few bigger plants that are pulling through so I will re-seed as it warms up more. The cucumbers are doing great and the zucchinis are so-so. All of my strawberries have been eaten by that rascally rabbit.
My herb garden is so sad. I think I’m growing trees in it better than herbs, but that’s what happens when your dog wants to dig in it. I have a plan though…Muuuhahaha! My hubby will not like it, but I get whatever I want anyway (except for chickens, he truly did put his foot down on having chickens…at this house ;). This will require work from him but in the end it will save us some mowing time. I’ll let you know when my idea comes to fruition.  Have a blessed day peeps!