Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Eat From the Pantry Challenge

With coffee in hand at 4 am as I tried to pry my eyelids open, I read this challenge. Followed a couple blogs and decided this was my ticket for the new year.

Check these sites out and read all about it.

At Thanksgiving my kids were thunking me over how big my pantry is in this very small house, that I could feed them and their kids( not hardly as it would be 22 of them) and us for a year.

Even though I got my "stock- up"( a nice way of saying pack rat of food) ways from my parents, they mentioned I should use up what is available. I grew up where the garden was the main source of veggies thru the year.So a years worth of food is what I am use to seeing and having. In these times , going to the store is now a habit I am trying to break and eat from my pantry.

What didn't help was I told my oldest daughter I would give her my old freezer since it would be empty by Thanksgiving since I got a new one.I reloaded the freezer . Okay it was filled with veggie broth using the recipe Gayle Bryant published over at and turkey broth from all the turkeys we deep fried and roasted including the carcuss that was my older daughter's and the 2 hams I was given for Christmas from friends.I didn't have room for any of it in the new deep freezer or the freezers to the 3 refrigerators. I did say pack rat correct????

SO my goals for Jan. is to

#1 to not throw food away due to being too old, not ate or what ever reason I can make up

#2 Only buy dairy and fresh produce for the month

#3 only shop twice for food items

#4 to clear out the old freezer to give to my daughter as promised

# 5 to shop once for non food items( our biggest costs so far)

I will start putting pics up of my pantry.Remember pack rat

If you are going to take this challenge go over to read all about it and link up with her.

Blessed be

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

new to blogging

making a MckLinky work..I think LOL

one of the things of starting a blog for the first time is trying to figure out all the new gadgets and things you can work with.Especially for those like me that aren't into the computer, internet world that much to begin with.

so in my head...I've put this as I would when starting to make a new recipe...a bit of this and a bit of that and taste and see or taste and throw out

so please be patient with me as I work this out

Blessed be

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

A Merry Christmas to everyone, may your holidays be safe and bright

go enjoy the day

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

winter solstice

Thanks to Gayle at for the picture of this tree she had on her site.

shortest day of the year...YAHHHHH , why does that make me happy??? because it's over with today, the days will start getting longer and longer one minute at a time. The worse is over with after today. Hey if you tell yourself something on a regular bases you will believe it after awhile.LOL

I think I will make a sheppard's pie ( or hamburger pie or chinese pie depending on which kid of ours you talk to). Nice earthy root veggies on top of left over sloppy joe that was shoved in the freezer. Some cheddar Bisquick biscuits to go with it.

meantime, it's time to load of the car and deliver the first load.

Blessed be

Monday, December 21, 2009


the holidays are in full swing. I am finishing up the grandkids afghans and making the last of the candy . Hubby and I did the cookies over the weekend. Tomorrow I will deliver to 2 of our kids, the others still need to work out connections.

every morning and every night I stop and remember why we have this it pagan or Christian.

now if I can just figure out where I shoved my fudge recipe LOL

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

thinking about being frugal

The winter holidays are upon us. Most of us are running around like we are chickens with no heads....sigh

Old man winter is giving us our first taste of the season here in OH.I can tell you this old body isn't ready at all BUT food wise I am ready.

I did go to the store yesterday for fresh veggies which are all nice and cozy in my refrigerator after being cleaned and cut with the peelings in to a gal freezer bag that went into the freezer to make veggie broth later when I am baking cookies for the kids and grandkids later this week.

I was asked what the hardest part of being frugal was...I would say that it would be time. Being frugal takes time. Our pioneers didn't have the time a lot of us think they did.If you think about what a woman did during the normal day of milking cows, churning butter, preparing 3 meals along with the bread, cookies,pies and cakes. cleaning without a vacuum. Dishes washed after every meal because they were the only ones. Fire for the fireplace and stove. grinding coffee beans by hand, dealing with the kids, schooling the kids, medical issues as they came about.Not talking of washing the laundry,by hand and drying it on a line outside or across furniture in teh house during the bad weather,making ALL the clothes etc....I could go on and on. Their dutch ovens was the forerunners of our crock pots.I still use my dutch oven when times get pushed. Frugal meals come out of it easily, a tough roast with root veggies. a soup or stew with or without dumplings. My kids,including the sons use the crock pot for the same things.

some thing to think about as we run around this holiday

Blessed be

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Tday.

We had our dinner last Sunday. Less conflict with children that are from split families and those that have in laws that feel the holiday must be held on the actual day.

so today hubby and I are snacking thru the left overs and prepping the rest for the freezer for future meals.

my youngest and I did kick ourselves Sunday while prepping the crudite( veggie) trays and peeling 20 lbs of potatoes. We throwed the peelings into the trash can then remembered we had wanted to keep them for broth following Gayle's recipe from

Probably would have gotten over 6 gals of broth. That's a lot of soups for this winter for half our family is out of work and it doesn't look good to finding even part time work to make ends meet.

so we are thankful for what we have, what we can share and pass those Blessings to you and yours

Blessed Be

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

stocking up

stocking up, putting up, putting by....words that you are hearing quite often in this time.

words I grew up with.

I try to stock for the year. Yes I live with in driving distance to the store. Hubby can even stop on his way home from work if needed.

I do it for several reasons.

First, it's in my blood right along with gardening. I now live in the city, rent from a wonderful young lady who would not be happy to find me plowing her yard up. So I have already planned to do raised beds following the square foot gardening plan ( which I used in the country and would tell any one and every one to follow this plan). I always have something to process with a garden

I do home canning, dehydrating, oven slow roasting and freezing.

Second reason... I get a sense of security from seeing the food on the shelves. I won't go hungry and I could feed my grown children and their children if needed. Not for the year I try to plan for for us but I could take us all a good few months.

Third reason, if I am not in the store, I am not spending. Most of us go to the store for milk and bread and come back with a lot more items and a lot less money. When you are struggling to pay the basic necessities the groceries is where you can take the hit and still have a good meal to sit down to.

Fourth reason, my kids and grandkids love getting home made food for Christmas or any time during the year.It is a gift of myself.

enjoy your day...

until next time

Blessed be

Monday, November 16, 2009

Hi I am Chef ( Julia) Owings

I am a Personal Chef , not cordon bleu trained .

I am a wife, a mother of 6( over 18 but I am not sure about the "grown" part), grandmother to over 20 not counting their pets and the "mommy" to 2 very large dogs.

This is probably not the best timing I have for starting a blog. So forgive me if I spit and sputter in getting this rolling

I am looming( lap loom) afghans for all the kids and grandkids. should have started it earlier and worked more steady on it during the year. Writing 1667 words each day for the Nat'l Novel Writer month and cooking Tday dinner for around 50. Most dishes made from scratch and I do all the cooking. OKAY hubby deep fries 2-3 small turkeys but I still roast a large one amongst the 100 dishes that is served. We have our dinner on the Sunday before Tday so our kids that are in food service or in military can come for dinner. Also keeps the "we spent last yr with your parents" arguements down.

If that wasn't enough, we bake 120 dozen( yes you read that correctly) cookies for the kids, not including candy, buckeyes etc. AND our one son volunteered us for 60 dozen cookies for Operation Thank You to send to the troops. Some times all you can do is love them for believing in you. AND ask for the money for ingredients.

I just wanted to pop in, say hello and get this blog rolling.

until we meet again

Blessed Be