Thursday, August 31, 2023

We had a hawk


I caught him just starting to fly off with what ever he caught. 

We saw an Eagle sharing a meal with the buzzards. 

Both of us are tired of eating zucchini, cucumbers, roma green beans, cantaloupe and watermelon. ( M said her family doesn't want anything that is coming out of the gardens right now either as she sent over corn)Thankful that I have enough of the green beans I can pull the plants. SO guess what is in the frig.... zucchini, cucumbers, roma green beans, cantaloupe, and now M's corn.

The red and golden cherry tomatoes have calmed down a bit. The "big" ones I use for canning is still mostly green but we have some medium size that just turning so I can  go pick them this weekend we can have them on sandwiches or as a side with cucumbers and onions.


Monday, August 28, 2023


 Charlotte waiting with her Daddy at Vet's

Charlotte wanting attention

The heart flower garden has filled in 

I run the dishwasher usually once a day. This is 5 gallons professional for 10 gallon water dishwasher. My dishwasher is 5 gallons so I will use half of what they say to use which is 1 ounce which is 2 tablespoons. I will use 1/2 ounce which is 1 tablespoon. SO I  have soap for 1280 loads. That's 3.5 years for us. 

Hubby asked for a colored tablespoon so he would know it goes to the dishwasher soap. I told him it didn't matter what color the tablespoon was as it needed to go in the dishwasher after he put the soap in... I'll be putting the soap in as he acted confused. 

Daughter 4 came up to clean the garden shed, she started in the 1st bay of the barn when she realized I still had not got through the last boxes of Daddy's stuff. Then she sorted the garden stuff that was in the 1st bay. While she was lecturing (admitting she struggles with letting things go), all of a sudden she stops and asks why I am having trouble getting up and down. Hubby answered, because we are old.  HUM. She offered to come up once a month if we can give her gas money and she can borrow her older son's car as he has the only car in the family that is safe to drive long distance. She has NO car as she blew her engine. That is the 3rd kid to do that. What part of check your oil and get your oil changed do they not understand SIGH. She told her dad that the idiot light didn't come on. 

I cleared the garden shed while she helped her Dad load the truck to take stuff to Goodwill. There is a truck load of garden pots to go to B or the other greenhouse. We have a couple tools we no longer use that I think M would take, a child's snow shovel for sure. The "trash" bags that need to go to trash is on the barn porch. ALL of them are bubble wrap or foam that no one around here accepts. Daughter 4 made sure I would finish the 1st bay as she put everything in front of the metal cabinets that has the toilet paper in LOL.

Ten bucks with the new job she won't be able to come up at all. BUT It's a good start and I now know not to give Hubby boxes for burning as he doesn't burn them.  I told him to take the large boxes over to M that we set aside. She uses them to cover the floor when they butcher. He said he will do that later this week, if not done by Friday I will do it .

He spent last night at the hospital with his Dad who had a tumor in his colon removed. They took 12 inches of the colon also. He has refused chemo. Seeing what it did to Mother at age 80, can't say I wouldn't do the same. Hubby is swinging by to see his mom and check to see if the grass needs mowed. His Dad can't do ANYTHING for another 7 weeks. No driving, no mowing, no house keeping as he runs the vacuum cleaner. NOTHING. MIL is going to be driven nuts.

Great grandbaby had VAD surgery as she's 33 weeks and they have to be 36 to have a shunt put in. She is doing better as the brain bleed has clotted.  She is sucking on a pacifier so they are looking at taking the feeding tube out this coming week if she sucks longer on the pacifier.  They have a bedside camera on her so her older sister (and her parents ) can look on the phone app and see how she is doing. Older sister says baby has a boo boo and tells her good morning and good night and she loves her. 

Hubby has been referred to ENT due to losing his voice in late afternoon/ evening. He called our primary as he had not heard anything for two weeks. They called the ENT, they are on vacation, so he wouldn't hear anything until probably the first week of Sept unless the partner comes in and starts earlier. Our primary doctor said it's taking longer and longer to get people into specialist. A lot of them are now checking with insurance to see if they can get paid. Once we go on Medicare, it shouldn't be as hard or long.

His appt with the neurologist is Nov 1st for testing for feeling in his legs and plan for his dementia. 

He did get a laugh , I was checking the calendar, checking my to do list and he asked what I was doing. I answered I thought I was forgetting something and was checking to see what it was.... he thought that was funny that I thought I forgot something. I did forget something, that was to finish fall cleaning the pump house. It's done now.

I am wore out already and it's only Monday.

Prayers for peace

Blessed Be

Friday, August 25, 2023

Living on a Little by Caroline French Benton.

 I am not sure which blogger mentioned reading this but it sounded interesting so I got it on my kindle... then ordered the paperback. I took it in the car while we were running errands and going to visit his parents. Good conversation for us. I usually use my leftovers for lunch the next day, she remade her leftovers for another supper and used what bits were in the frig for her lunches. Even though she only spent $1 a day TOTAL for their food (her, hubby and maid or in this case her maid was her sister)... the line of planning is even correct for this day and age.  

The other day we went to check on Hubby's parents. His mom who has mild polio insisted we come for lunch. His Dad went in to surgery today to remove cancerous tumor in colon. He did fine. We usually go to take them out or visit at non eating times.

His mom had bought three times the amount of groceries as she doesn't drive much and wanted to just tell one of the family she just needed eggs and milk, maybe bread while FIL recovered.  The costs worried her as they haven't really stocked anything even during the pandemic as the store is around the corner maybe a half mile away. She is going to stock up some more because she doesn't think he is going to want to go out if it's really bad outside this winter. Stocking up she got away from while working in town. Just stop at the store on the way home. 

 She got a boneless whole ham that was on sale. She cut it into half slices so they could either eat it as a sandwich or as the main meal. Bagged most of it for freezer. Said it came out at $1 for meat at one meal.

 She took the slices that she kind of messed up (her words)while slicing it with an electric knife and used the best ones for our meal. She took the end pieces, diced them in her small food processor. She pan fried the ham with a little oil (yes she knows it's cooked but FIL wants it fried) and put it in the microwave on  6 minutes on level 1 to keep warm while she finished the meal ...

Now I am thinking it's going to take more than 6 minutes to get this meal together. 

She put the frozen veggies with a good splash of water in the pan and turned it on high. Turned the water for the instant mashed potatoes on high also. 

She put the diced ham in the skillet she fried the other ham in, tossed it around a bit then mixed up flour and a bit of water to make a paste and put it in, lowered that heat on that pan while waiting until the veggies were boiling. Turned the potato water down to simmer. Turned veggies off, drained the water into the pan with the ham bits and rue to make gravy, stirred it, decided she wanted it thicker, added more rue paste and then a splash of milk, a healthy pinch of ground black pepper and had me stirring it while she finished the potatoes. Turned off the microwave that had a 30 seconds left. Put everything in serving dishes and sat down to lunch. 

This 87 year old woman that could only make hamburger gravy and mashed potatoes at the age of 21 when she got married, now kicks butt in the kitchen. I made sure she knew it also and told FIL she was great in the kitchen.

Lesson, She didn't buy anything special for our meal, she used "scraps" to make the main dish, used veggie water (never have I thought to use that) for the gravy. She added cottage cheese and grape jam and a jar of pickles along with bread and butter to the table.  Something I grew up with (well not cottage cheese or jam) but don't do myself. I always had bread and butter on the table when the kids were growing up but neither Hubby or I are much of bread eaters even though our doctor just told us to increase our grains (he knows I bake or we get our bread from the Amish)

She texted me the next day and told me they had ham sandwiches with apple slices and baby carrots for supper and she diced what was left of ham, added it to the bit of diced ham she didn't put in gravy, chopped up the leftover veggies  and tossed it in water and when it got warm enough, she added the leftover mashed potatoes and leftover gravy and a splash of milk to make a cream soup to go with their  grilled cheese sandwiches for their lunch the next day and sent the leftover soup home with her one grandson that is single.  She told me she still struggles to not cook too much and toss it away as they don't have a compost pile like she did out on the farm. 

I looked at Hubby and told him what she did. He said he noticed she used smaller pans for the 4 of us that we do for the 2 of us. I texted her to find out what size pans she used.  I use 10 to 12 inch fry pans and 2-3 quart sauce pans. She uses 8 to 10 inch fry pans and 1 qtr. to 1 1/2 qrts  sauce pans. UNLESS she is making spaghetti, then she uses the 3 qrts. sauce pan.

I call my 8 inch fry pan the egg skillet as that's the only I use it for. Going to be changing that.

Have a good week, stay safe

Prayers for peace

Blessed Be 

Butt dragging.

 window casement windows protected

Still allows air so no mold when I open those windows to air out the basement.

A friend gave me her curtains as she bought new. I will be putting them up after I get done with the fall cleaning. I am thinking front room.

Hubby paid off the work truck (now called 350) and cancelled his DOT numbers. When they terminated he cancelled the business insurance. He has a refund coming and when it comes in , he can close the business checking acct. Taking longer to close it down than it did to get it up and running. 

Hubby bartered wood at Sawmill, their Englisher that runs the loader got his hours changed at work so he can't move wood during the day. He okayed Hubby running his loader especially since the sawmill pays all costs and maintenance of  it. It's not very often but every stick of wood for winter helps. We need 12 more cords of wood. E said there is about 1 back in the woods he needs Hubby to bring out and can have.

Daughter 4 is coming up to help clean out the garden shed. Hubby is going to fix the floor and then use it for a wood shed as N and E said if we fill it, we would have enough for the winter as it's what they used it for. She might get sucked into cleaning the front bay of the barn also since she just changed jobs(got laid off as they can't get supplies in) and is short on pay. BUT she already has another job that starts Monday.

We harvested all kinds of tomatoes, eggplant, cucumbers, zucchini, Roma green beans, mini bell peppers, kale, thyme, basil, oregano, cabbages, cantaloupe, watermelon, tan pumpkins and golden raspberries.  Hubby asked me to not plant anything except the garlic next month. He's tired of eating "garden" as he put it. NOW if I plant something that will grow into late fall... that's okay. 

I spent $49 at grocery store, saved 47 %. I got very small (think they were cut from a small tenderloin) porkchops marked down to $3.98. I used them that night and the next day for lunch.  We will only need milk the later part of the month.

Hubby built braces for the two rose trellises at the deck for the climbing roses from scrap wood in the barn.

Since I had to clean up the mess in the basement, I got rid of 4 large boxes of stuff that we donated, had some things to go to recycling tomorrow and quite a few boxes that Hubby is drying out to burn later. 

Charlotte's allergies kicked up and she was bloody raw from itching. We got her into the vet for her shot. Twenty four hours later she is a lot better. I had ran out of eggs so she wasn't getting her daily egg... that won't happen again because within a few days her allergies went nuts. Hasn't had that problem all summer since I put her on egg daily. Vet doesn't understand what ever is in the eggs that stops her allergies but is glad we found out it did as the shots are $150 on top of office call.

Daughter's 4 daughter had her baby at 29 weeks at 3lbs. 15 1/2 inches . She had to have shunt surgery yesterday due to brain bleeds. Doing okay

Hubby's dad  is having surgery today to remove cancerous tumor plus 12 inches of his colon. 

Our primary doctor has referred Hubby to ENT (regretfully it's a 1 1/2 hrs. from us for this specialist as our regular ENT won't touch it) to find out why he keeps losing his voice mid afternoon to evening. Doesn't matter if he doesn't talk much or what ever. He had throat surgery in 2006/2007 due to polyps. Since he chewed tobacco, cancer could happen. Daddy lost his voice due to smoking even though he had quit years before he got the cancer. He feels like all he does is go from one doctor and test to the next... both his parents said YEP old age does that as both his brothers and sister already are doing the same. 

Prayers for peace

Blessed be

Thursday, August 24, 2023

I am thankful for the rain

BUT Hubby spend 2 days caulking and flex sealing the casement windows.

We aren't the only ones trying to keep our head above water. Poor toad. 

Monday, August 14, 2023

It's been forever

 since I've be on. 


this happened... I thought Sh.., which one of the refrigerators or freezers took a crap and what was I going to be trying to can or pass to kids (it's okay with 6 kids and 10 adult grandkids). 

Nope it was the casement window Hubby forgot to finish caulking and flex sealing. I forgot I have to now check to make sure he completes jobs with his dementia, more like dealing with a teenager with ADHD been there more than once. And as big as the mess looks, the pile was my canning supplies. Tatter lids took the hit, which is nice as I can sanitize them and only lost 1 box of wide mouth metal canning lids. I lost all the empty card board boxes my  jars go in when they are empty. I am not putting anything back there until he can caulk and flex seal that window. I guess the 1.75 inches of rain we got was too much at one time.  Even with all that rain, it came down in a way the ground sucked it up.

Then I dealt with this 

 There is 6 cucumbers under the zucchini. I got 2 quarts of green beans, 9 quarts of tomato sauce, dehydrated the golden cherry tomatoes (red cherry tomatoes got toss in with other tomatoes) . I ate the broccoli, froze the grapes in the kitchen refrigerator. I shoved the zucchini and cucumbers in the frig. Onions are curing in the barn

THEN E sent the boys over with a wheelbarrow full of corn

SIGH. No room for a turkey now as the corn has taken it's spot. I got 53 meals out of this corn so we have a total of 79 meals corn. I also made corn cob stock and canned it , 18 pints for corn chowder, polenta, and mush, maybe the autumn stew from Home chef that Son 2 was doing would be good for it also. 


I then put the cobs on the metal table out by the barn to dry so we can use them for kindling. The sparrows have been picking at them.

THEN we had a tornado go through. It hit in town. E had a little wind damage to his one barn where the door blew off, said it must not have been shut all the way as the latch was still on the barn. We get one tornado warn a year... not something that happens much.

Then I did the finances and pointed out we are over budget. I also pointed out WHERE we are over budget. I got him to leave the credit card at home and we are working at him only buying what is on his list.  He did an escort for a wide load the other day, that hauler asked if he wanted a job as rear escort. He turned it down. He knows he would be gone ALL day and anywhere from 4 to 6 days a week. He would get NOTHING done here.  This week he is scheduled to go clean up the sawmill. He got the wood wagon fixed and was going to go until I told him how the weather was going to be. He didn't want to be driving a tractor without a cab hauling a metal wood wagon in a storm. 

Then I went down with a Crohn's attack. I probably should have went to the hospital sigh... if I had been throwing up along with sitting on the toilet for 2 days I would have. I didn't do that until day 4. FYI that's usually the day I come home from the hospital. Other than wishing morphine was in this house WE handled it. Hubby fixed me dry toast immediately and started shoving fluids. He jokes I married him because he was an EMT (retired 7 yrs ago). I got a brat patty for a meal because we don't have any dinner sausage patties, For what ever reason I can hold that stuff down.  He thinks stress triggered it... didn't help that I was using core muscles to lift a 50 lb. canner that he usually puts on the stove for me. My GI strongly suggested planks and push ups. NO sit ups as my back would have a fit over that. LOL.

So we spent a lot of time of watching the hummingbirds at the feeders and dive bombing each other

It's to rain today so he probably won't be going to the sawmill. He asked what had to be done this week... two doctor appts. and pulling zucchini and cucumber plants in the garden (I am not pulling anything) I want to do some planting for fall. I need to cut tops off onions that are cured and put them in hose  (panty hose) to hang in basement or barn until it gets too cold. Clean the front bay of the barn as I want to move the canning stuff there. No worries of water damage there. 

He looked at me and said , two doctor appts that's it. I laughed. I could do that onions I pointed out... nope I would side track and start doing something I really shouldn't... probably. Even when I spend the time in the hospital I struggle to not do anything (because I would do too much and retrigger an attack) the first week home. 

Be safe,

Prayers for peace

Blessed Be

Friday, August 4, 2023


 There is no room in the 3 refrigerator freezers.

There is no room in the 3-22 cubic chest deep freezers.

There is MAYBE room for a 15 lb. turkey in the 7 cubic chest deep freezer in the barn IF I removed the ice cream maker bowl. 

At Kroger's I got on sale 2 racks of ribs and a 4 lb. box of crab legs for half price. I got yellow and orange bell peppers for 88 cents (you can barely find them around here) I picked up enough to dehydrate them also, I got red bell peppers to "fire roast" on the grill then I will freeze them for red pepper soup (barn freezer I already put their container in to save that room) I got celery for fresh and to dehydrate. I picked up some lettuce as there is none left in the garden and I haven't replanted it yet. I had a coupon for it. I got coke a cola on sale, Kroger chips, Frito scoops and bananas.

I picked up a cantaloupe and 4 fresh peaches from an Amish stand

I picked up my 27 lbs. of cherries for pie filling at Country Variety  Store and Hubby picked up 14 hand pies to freeze and some whoopie cookies. I am not crazy about that type of cookie. He got 6 that was snickerdoodle and 6 of the oatmeal.

At the Mennonite discount store ....

I found frozen brussels sprouts. I got enough for us to have for a year since no one grows them around here. I will be planting them myself next year.

I found a box of strip steaks (think New York Strip steak). For $4.10/ lb. (about half price) I got 14 steaks and they are already vacuumed bag with1 steak per bag... saved my bags. I got 2 bags of thin chicken breast and 1 bag of chicken wings, 6 packages breakfast sausage links already frozen.

I also got:  12 whole cranberry sauce, 8 canned pears, 12 mixed berries jam, 4 boxes of Stove Top turkey stuffing and 4lbs of Velveeta cheese (regular price $27 I got it for $18) and a loaf of homemade bread.  

In the gardens I know I have tomatoes, zucchini, maybe a broccoli, hopefully another round of Roma beans and maybe some potatoes to harvest. 

I need to call to see what Honeycrisp or Crispin apples start coming in. Our apples didn't do well, they are really small. 

Thursday, August 3, 2023

To Answer Hilogene In AZ question of who we feed

 I usually do 1 yr of food, OTC meds, first aid and cleaning products. After having 6 of the kids and grandkids come up to get supplies twice during the pandemic, we went to 18 months  as they wiped me out to 6 months and I was getting worried... there was 2 freezers almost empty. . This year I went for 2 yrs supplies on most stuff but what I have seeds to grow. 

Why? We are already seeing issues trying to get some foods in the area. 

BUT let's look at what we  use.

I bake our breads/ sweets (not much) etc. unless I get it from Amish/ Mennonite. 

I make waffles, pancakes, muffins, cakes, noodles, wonton wrappers (just starting that), flour tortillas (just starting that), crackers (just starting that) and breading for frying. I use  on average the least 10 lbs. of flour a week. If I am making noodles, I use 20 lbs. to fill my 5 gallon food grade bucket with noodles.  So I average 520 lbs. of flour a year. 

I average 240 lbs. of sugar a year, 360 lbs. for 18 months and 480 for 2 yrs. This year it's up to 340 lbs. due to extra canning of pie filling and jams. Today I pick up 27 lbs. of sour cherries for pie filling. 

I buy 3 lbs. of yeast a year (stored in freezer) I do make sour dough bread sometimes but not often as neither of us care much for it. 

We use 4 pints of veggies a DAY . That is 1460 pints for a year, 2190 for 18 months and 2920 pints for 2 yrs. 

We use 2 pints of fruit a DAY. That is 730 pints for a year, 1095 for 18 months and 1460 pints for 2 years... that is not touching pie filling, jams, jellies and fruit butters that would add 105 pints for a year, 158 for 18 months and 210 for 2 yrs. 

I can 104 pints of whole tomatoes, 104 pints of plain tomato sauce, 104 pints of salsa, 52 half pints of pizza sauce, 52 quarts of pasta sauce and 100 quarts of tomato juice. for a year. I will try for 18 months this year.  

I do pickles... asparagus, beets, zucchini, cucumbers, onions , coleslaw and kraut. 

I can chicken broth, beef broth and ham broth. 12 quarts of each per year

I can turkey, chicken, pork and beef. 

I do roasted red bell peppers. I won't this year as son 2 found  some on sale on base and bought me 6 jars. 

I dehydrate zucchini, mushrooms, onions, cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, corn, herbs and mints.

I still need applesauce, apple pie filling, apple butter, and apple jam. 

I do freeze broccoli, cauliflower, Swiss chard, Chinese cabbage, zucchini, yellow crockneck, eggplant and green tomatoes (breaded for frying). I do freeze berries. 

The last time I bought canned veggies was last year to make veggie soup. I canned enough for 2 yrs. 

I can 104 pints of chili soup a year. We also use it for tortilla chips and casseroles.

I buy 2 cases of each of condense soup, cream of mushroom, cream of chicken, cream of tomato, cheddar, fiesta cheese and Campbells chicken and noodles. I have 1 Amish if they can't get to the store, will stop for 7 cans of cream of what ever soup. She makes "pantry" soup every single day for supper and uses it for the base.

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Room left in the pantry

IF I CANNED IT, DEHYDRATE IT OR FROZE IT ... I don't want to see it on the supper table for a day, ok, a week... maybe a month.

I harvested another batch of potatoes that will give us 3 meals for the winter storage.

 I canned 18 quarts of a mix of seasonings, carrots, tomato and zucchini in a vinegar sugar syrup (think pickled beets syrup without the beets LOL)

I had to actually walk to the gardens to get 2 golden cherry tomatoes and 2 zucchini to finish the last 2 jars. Hubby laughed.

I have room for 1 jar of beets (won't be filled).

I have a row space for some store canned fruit (might not be filled unless I find apricots on sale)

I have plenty of room in the tomato section (pasta sauce, pizza sauce, plain sauce, enchilada sauce, and juice).

I have one row in pie filling in case I get the cherries. Still iffy if they are coming in and if they are getting enough to get some to everyone on the list. 

Fruit/vegetable 22 cubic deep freezer is FULL.

Pork/nuts 22 cubic freezer is taking on the over flow of fruit/veggies but has just enough to handle a couple racks of ribs, a pork loin  and 2 hams. 

The beef/ bread 22 cubic freezer is go a decent hole but since I know the turkey and prime rib will be going in there I will be keeping a good size home in it. 

All 3 refrigerators freezers are full. 

I need to finish straightening up the basement, hang the cured onions and figure out a better storage for herbs and spices.   

I need a better way to store the herbal teas.

LORD I am tired. BUT I am sleeping better since my anemia has been figure out and I am on blackstrap molasses for it. Iron pills don't work to me.