Category Archives: Miscellaneous
Anything that doesn’t fit neatly in another category.
Today, I was thinking about things I have purchased through the years that I can call one of my favorite things. Not many things make it on my list. I decided I would share with you a few of my favorite things (random things). Maybe you can share some of your favorite things with us?
1. My top favorite thing is, without question, my Cuisinart Stand Mixer. I did a lot of research to be sure I got the right mixer, and it has been faithful to me throughout its use in my Cottage Kitchen. I love to keep it bright and shiny. I think that always shows a sign of ownership pride. I wish I felt like that about everything.
2. Bright and shiny, I realized it was one of my favorite pieces. I found it at TJ Max marked down because the inside of the lid was bent a little (I just used some pliers and bent it back–it doesn’t look perfect on the inside rim of the lid, but it seals perfectly). This is another item that I love to keep shiny. I love the handles on the side and the lid. It feels really substantial without feeling too heavy. I use it a lot to make spaghetti and meatballs in. It makes the list.
3. This is one of my favorite Goodwill finds. I don’t really go into Goodwill that frequently, but years ago, I was visiting someone and needed to kill some time, so I stopped in to look through a Goodwill in Jacksonville, FL. I didn’t go in really expecting to find anything–I was just killing time. I ran across two of these beautiful saucers. They are actually a little larger than saucers, but smaller than a dinner plate. The coloring and design on the plate made it a lifetime keeper for me. I think I paid like .20 for each one. There is something about it that makes me smile when I see it. It’s “pretty.” 🙂
4. Remember, I said RANDOM things. 🙂 I ran across this picture in my phone and had to post it as one of my favorite things. I LOVE farm fresh eggs. Look at that? Isn’t it gorgeous?? This egg came from one of the hens that my dad owns. I actually hated to actually cook it, so I had to take a picture of it in order to at least be able to look at it. I know–sounds crazy. I just really appreciate things like this. When I look at it, I just think about how awesome God is. I truly am able to find beauty everywhere.
So these were a few of my favorite things. I am sure you have some favorite things. You may even have pictures of them in your phone (like I did). Share them with us! I would love to see what things you value.
What a privilege we have as parents and grandparents! And what a responsibility! Can you think of a better way to spend two hours on a Sunday afternoon than following behind a 16-month old Farmer-in-Training? I can’t, and there are a few thoughts I’d like to share with you, after the jump.
Click to read more —> Train up a Child…
What food legacy will you leave behind? Fast food, microwave dinners, prepackaged meals, left overs? After being gifted with the talent to cook and bake basically anything I want, I have started considering the legacy that I WOULD have left behind if God hadn’t gifted me with such a talent. I have cooked most of my adult life, but it was really basic cooking. I still am no gourmet by a long shot (not that I would want to be). My legacy would have been one of super-sized menus and prepackaged meals.
Somewhat out of necessity, I started really watching what I purchased when grocery shopping. I made a rule for myself–buy only things that you have to cook yourself (and no, Hamburger Helper doesn’t count). Not only did I notice that my grocery bill dropped, but my cabinets and freezer were nearly always full. Add to that good news, a home that smells like “from scratch” cooking, and the combination is a little hard to beat. I can’t even remember the last time I purchased a “prepacked” meal. The only thing I buy that would even get close to that would be the meatballs that are already prepared for you. I like meatballs over hamburger meat fried out, and they taste good. The time investment in making them myself would cause me to avoid meals with meatballs, so I felt that one diversion was ok.
Magazine titles such as “Cook’s Illustrated,” “Cooks Country,” “America’s Test Kitchen,” and “Mother Earth News all played an integral role in my success as a home cook. While I haven’t studied them a lot, I have gleaned a lot of knowledge from their helpful pages. Now, I am not intimidated by those who cook well. The process doesn’t confuse me. I have organized my kitchen, so I know where everything is and it’s comfortable for me regardless of what dish I am conquering.
Now, the family heritage project. I have started a project encouraging people to write down the recipes of those meals they enjoy for the sole purpose to pass them along to the next generation. Yeah, it takes a little time to write it all down, but it is very much worth it. Not only are you leaving instructions to a memory they will likely want to relive again and again, you also helped to instill better eating habits (as long as your recipe isn’t how to heat a frozen pizza). 🙂 So here is the first card in my family heritage project.
I can’t think of a year in my life that was so full of changes. These are all good changes, which is really nice for a change. I just can’t believe that it all happened to me. It’s like winning the lottery but way better!
1. I had an uneventful, quite successful pregnancy.
2. I had a BEAUTIFUL baby boy 7/5/2012 (who is actually playing with my toes at this very moment–hope he doesn’t suck them like he does his own ewww).
3. I found a new love for my kitchen and for cooking/baking.
4. I have started the process to start my own cottage food kitchen.
5. Although I have plenty to lose, in spite of my pregnancy, I haven’t gained a pound over the course of the year! Yay breastfeeding!!
6. I have finally seen the look of true happiness on the face of my mom and dad. They are totally in love with my son (their 1st grandchild).
7. I left my full-time job (after working outside the home for 24 years) and dedicated myself to care for my son in our home complete with homeschooling.
8. I have seen and heard my husband speak of me to others with satisfaction and pride regarding me as a mother and a homemaker.
My, my, I could go on. I am so happy!! As I begin wrapping up the requirements for my cottage food kitchen, I ask myself, why didn’t I do this before? Well, before–the food in our home came from a cardboard box. Yeah, I could cook, but after working and being just the two of us, we just “picked something up.” Oh the money we spent! Oh the calories and fat we consumed!!
Life is changing. Life HAS changed! I wake to the cooing of my son, or perhaps the screaming that communicates, “I’m wet or hungry or I’ve got gas give me my medicine NOW,” instead of an alarm clock for work. My day is full of changing diapers and making bottles for my wonderful baby (instead of having to deal with a bunch of adults who act like them). My home now has the fragrance of bread, cake or supper, instead of the stale smell of air barely breathed. I never thought I would ever echo my mother, but I wouldn’t change a thing.
I can say that before the birth of my son–we were merely existing. Now, we are LIVING. I am SO happy to be alive, and I bake to share that same feeling with others. There is nothing like fresh, homemade baked goods. I have found “my thing.” My niche. I hope you find yours.
I have gotten a bit behind in writing on here. But I guess that is ok cause it is my blog lol. The holidays and all my baking adventures just had me so busy i lost track of time. Now that the holidays are over with, at least for about a month, I figured it was time to do some catching up. So keep your eyes out cause I have several things to write about. I hope that everybody had a wonderful Christmas and New Years.
How many of us have four legged family members? I know my chihuahua is a big part of my family. She is always there when I am sad or alone to offer comfort. I feel that they deserve yummy home made treats just as much as we do. So i decided to get in the kitchen today and make dog cookies and I must say I am proud of how they turned out. My sister-in-law was wanting to eat them they look and smell so good. And of course they were a hit with my baby girl. She is eating for four right now and is a picky eater when it comes to treats. She devoured three of them before I could even blink. I even got two orders (one quite large) within half an hour of posting the pic online. I am going to have a busy few days whipping up more. And I am going to try more recipes to see what happens.
You will find out that I am a do it myself kinda girl. I love to get in the kitchen and make things myself instead of just going out and buying things pre-made. Although some pre-made things are pretty good they don’t always live up to something that is made by hand in your kitchen. Making from scratch may cost more in the long run but you cut out all the additives and/or preservatives that are added into the pre-made items to make them last longer sitting on a store shelf. Big companies also have the added benefit of being able to buy ingredients in bulk cheaper than what you or I can get just going to the local grocery store.
Today I decided to make some home made fondant for my cake decorating. Buying the fondant already made in a store is crazy expensive and although I have not tried it myself, I have heard that the taste leaves something to be desired. So me being me I decided to find a way to make my own. My first attempt is now sitting in the fridge ready to go on a cake. It is supposed to set overnight so I am still unsure of the taste as of right now. I am excited to see how it tastes and works on a cake. If it works out then it will be an amazing tool for my cake decorating. Not to mention the cost of making one batch (covers an 8 or 9 inch round cake) is about three dollars. To buy that amount of fondant in a store is about twelve dollars and up.
I love Christmas time. Some people get really hung up with the commercial part of the holiday, but not me. I love being with my family at a special time of the year for Christians (regardless of whether the date is accurate or not). I also love the sights, sounds, and feeling of family during this time. Share your Christmas preparation with us. The above post is a reblog from my mother’s blog.
I reluctantly reveal my secret to the “perfect deviled egg”. Reluctantly because I hate to shatter my daughter’s image of the eggs. My secret is, let an egg be an egg. One thing is for sure, we tend to add too much to our food. Sometimes I want simple favors. For example, another item on our menu was potatoes. Not potato salad. Not potatoes Au Gratin, just boiled potatoes with the option to add sour cream, butter, cheese, etc. I chose potatoes with salt and pepper. I just wanted to taste the potato. So the same theory went into my deviled eggs. Egg yolks with a few white mashed, add mayo, mustard, garlic powder, kosher salt & pepper to taste and a sprinkle of paprika . No pickle relish. OK, so that isn’t totally letting an egg be an egg, but the egg was the star of the favor. Now, what really made the eggs taste so special was presentation, with a sprig of dill from my herb garden. Presentation, presentation, presentation. Taste is such an individual thing. For me, at this time in my life, less is more. If you enjoyed an array of special family favorites, please share a few of your favorites with us.