Sunday, September 27, 2009

found in nature pain killers

I suffer from migranes, and am a big boob when it comes to pain. We do have some ibuprofin in our food storage but I think I would rather hold onto that in case of severe pain. I have books that talk about plants that are natural pain killers but I am a little scared to try them. Has anyone else had to resort to this? Or done it as an experiment? How effective was it? Any side effects?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Fried Green Tomatoes

When I see bright, shiny and oh so lonely vegetables just sitting there I can’t help myself. I have to buy them. It’s like they call to me “please please just take me home… I would go so well with that recipe you’ve been thinking about“. On a trip to the Farmer’s Market with the Boy, my sister and her husband I stopped at a stall I frequent often enough to buy some green onions. Then some cherry tomatoes. Then some carrots (the Boy won’t eat baby carrots anymore, spoiled brat) and then I saw them. The holy grail of my obscure vegetable cravings: the Green Tomato.

I bought the two tomatoes they had left, and scurried home with my spoils. The next day, I found a recipe and went to work. I sliced the tomatoes (the recipe calls for 1/2 an inch thick, I wouldn’t go that thick actually. 1/3 is the biggest I’ll go next time) and slathered them with salt and pepper.


I’m going to be honest. This is about the last step of this recipe I should have followed. I got it from a site I’ve gotten terrific recipes off of before (not Pioneer Women, FYI) , so I had quite a bit of faith in it. Not a good idea. The recipe called for dipping the seasoned tomatoes in milk, then flour, then eggs, then cornmeal and then pan frying them. Don’t get me wrong, they were okay. But they weren’t… right. Fried green tomatoes seem to be a lot like Fried Chicken; in that everyone has a way they like it. Some dredge, then coat. Some just coat. To coat people use cornmeal, bread crumbs, flour or cracker crumbs.

Personally this “double dip” technique I didn’t like. And I also wasn’t a big fan of the cornmeal. Next time I think I’ll go with a more simple recipe. Season with salt and pepper, egg dip, breadcrumbs, fry. In that order. In fact I think I might add some hot sauce to the eggs ala Paula Deen Fried Chicken for some spice. Even with my disappointment on the crust, they were pretty good, and look very pretty. Topped off with some homemade ranch, and they made a good afternoon snack.



A co-worker of my husbands asked him last week if we wanted any tomatoes. He said he had a ton and would give me all that he didn't want to use himself. Now, I got visions of spaghetti sauce, tomato sauce, bottled tomatoes, ketchup and all sorts of wonderful tomato based products dancing through my head and told Hubby to tell him I would take anything he was willing to give me. I would in turn give him some spaghetti sauce or whatever else I had made that he might want.
Hubby came home from work yesterday evening and told me this co-worker had sent me something. I got all excited untill he picked up his lunch pail. What I had in mind would not fit into his lunch pail. He pulled out a ziploc bag with four tomatoes in it.
The co-workers garden had been raided and these 4 tomatoes were all that was left! He spent all spring tilling and planting, all summer watering and weeding. He went away for the weekend and came home to an empty garden. They cleaned out everything he had grown. He has NOTHING to show for all of his hard work. Why would someone feel they were entitled to something they had no part of producing? I don't know how this individual feels. but I would be furious if it happened to me.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Up to my elbows in apples

My neighbor paid my boys to pick and deliver around 70 lbs of apples to me. I had no idea this was happening untill they pulled a wagon right into my kitchen and started unloading them. I quickly called my mother and got her apple pie filling recipe. I have made 18 quarts so far. I plan on making a few more and them moving on to apple butter. There are still three more trees to pick so I should have plenty. If anyone else has an urge to do anything anywhere near this big of a scale, I would strongly recommend an apple peeler. I bought one that peels, cores and slices the apple in seconds. It cut my prep time in 1/3. It is going to be a good Thanksgiving : )

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Jessica Simpson, this one is for you.

Ok so Hubby finally got a coyote yesterday. He skinned it and salted it and rolled it up. Today I get to take over the process of tanning (no, Ryan. I am not using brains.) the hide and disposing of the carcass. Bleck. Sound like fun? We (read I) will salt it for three days and then dry it and scrape it again. This is a practice hide and the dog gets it anyway so I am not too worried about making mistakes. I will let you know how it goes.

Monday, September 14, 2009


I have had the chance lately to reflect on grief. Everyone feels grief at one time or another. It can be from the death of a loved one, the ending of a relationship, the last day of a job, or even because something you loved broke. we can be 10 or 110 and still have moments of grief. One thing I have realized is that no one feels grief the same way. Sure others can feel sympathy for your loss but NO ONE will feel exactly the way you do. I think the worst thing to say to a grieving friend is "I know how you feel." You may have shared a similar experience but you do not know how that person feels about their loss. My biggest moment of grief came not at the death of a friend or grandparent close to my heart. It came at a miscarriage. I had had one before many years ago but this one hurt more. This pregnancy we were trying for. I was almost desperate in my need for us to have a second child. It took years to get pregnant. When I did and then lost it I thought I would not be able to survive. That baby had a name, a face in my head, a life of possibilities. It reminded me that my grief was not less or more than anyone else though. It was just mine. Respect those you love who grieve by letting them.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

What have you done this week to prepare?

I am stealing the idea from the boys. It will at least get me thinking about what I did or what I need to do to get ready for a major disaster. This week, I added to my savings and bought some canned goods to replace those we have recently eaten. Hubby also bought some bullets but that was more for entertainment than storage. I am still trying to find the time and motivation to go to spinning class. I have the wheel, they have the wool, why not, right?
Maggy and Lila, feel free to edit and add any preps you made.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Obama's speech to the children

What do you think? Did your kids watch it? My kids watched it. I wasn't too worried about them being brainwashed in a mere 30 minutes. My kids don't listen to anything anyone has to say anyway! I read some of the speech online and didn't see anything out of line. The basic message was "Stay in school, get good grades and make your dreams come true" Hrmmm, yeah that one is really frightning, isn't it? I talk to my kids about doing well in school on a daily basis. I asked my boys when they got home if they had watched it. Butch and Spike say they didn't see it. Bruiser watched it but couldn't remember what it was about. See, no worries, they pay just as much atttention to a boring presidential speech as we always did when we were kids. No big deal, no brainwashing, nothing out of line at all. I guess I just don't see what all the hubbub was all about.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Yeah, someone got branded

So our camping trip was a disaster by Hubby and I's standards. The kids on the other hand think it was awesome! I think the dogs agree with the kids.
We got where we wanted to camp late and pulled into the first spot that we could fit our enclosed utility trailer. We started a fire and got to work on dinner. Then we unloaded the wheelers and got our beds set up in the trailer. The kids were running around playing in the campfire and river trying to give their mother a heart attack. We finallly got everything together and ate dinner. We put the kids to bed and turned the dogs loose. We sat by the fire for a while and listened to the hound plunk around in the river. We finally dragged him out of the water and went to bed.
The next morning we found a much nicer spot and moved everything over. The kids and dogs ended up in someone elses camp at way too early in the morning. By the time we got everything set up, Hubby and I were at each others throats and wanted to go home. But we bucked up and had breakfast. Then we went for a 4wheeler ride. Hubby was first in line followed by Butch on his wheeler and Bruiser on his motorcycle. Spike was riding with Hubby. I brought up the rear with the boston terrier on my lap and the hound on the back rack. The hound has quite an attitude and throws a huge hissy fit because we werent in the front of this little procession. Each time we passed a camp, I would put my hand around his muzzle to shut him up. Things went along like this for a while untill Bruiser started having problems with his motorcycle. He would lose power each time we went up a hill. He would have to paddle with his feet and go full throttle all the way up the hill. We dealt with this for a while untill we found a cool place to stop and rest for a while. Hubby worked on the bike for a while and we started back to camp. The bike got worse and worse untill the clutch finally fell apart. Hubby used the winch on my wheeler to hook the bike onto the front of my wheeler. Bruiser rode with me and the dogs were on the back. This made my machine really heavy in the front and caused me to fishtail all the way back down the hills to camp. Quite the sight we made all the way home. We FINALLY made it back to camp and made sandwiches because we were starving.
We took the boys into town (its really more like a small village) for icecream and just chilled for a while. Then we went back and started the fire for dinner. We gave up on stroganoff and just roasted hot dogs over the fire and I used the dutch oven to make cobbler. After dinner, we went for a walk on the river and lost the hound. He had caught a scent and took off. We got back to camp, got on the wheelers again and went looking for him. We finally found him and he spent the rest of the night on his chain. Eventually the kids got tired and fell asleep and soon afterwards we did too. We FROZE all night long, it was soooooo cold! We got up in the morning and decided to get an early start on packing up and going home. This whole trip the kids were playing in the fire, lighting stick on fire and waving them around making smoke signals. Thus the branding occured. Bruiser was waving his stick around and hit Spike in the ear. We handed him a can of cold soda to hold on it and finished packing.
Home at last! I have washed my hair twice since then and still can't get the smell of camp fire out of it. Oh well, we all made it home in one peice.

Sunday, September 6, 2009


I am not one for prayer requests. Yes, I pray. Often and with passion. I also am pretty private about it. I like haveing the relationship to God that I have. Well now I am asking. I found out today as I am on vacation with my family that a woman I admired and liked who has been an important member of my brother's "family" passed away this weekend. she was 23 and has two small sons ages 2 and 3 months. she and her Air Force husband were alone in the car when they were sideswiped and she was killed. Now her babies are without their mother and a friend is without his highschool sweetheart. I am a huge believer in Heaven and in there being a better place so for her I feel some peace but for her boys and husband I can't help but be broken hearted. I pray for them and that they may find some comfort when all they want is to have her back. I can't seem to stop crying for them and for me. Is that selfish? I feel so angry and hurt and I have a hard time with that usual question of WHY? Why her? Why them? Why leave those little babies without their mama? My husband said that I need to remember that there is a pland and that obviously she was needed somewhere else more than she was here. I hope that is true but I have a hard time thining of a bigger need than small children of their mother. So please pray for the Goldin family, that they may be comforted and held close and that they may have the strength to endure what no child that young should ever have too. Thank you and God bless.

Friday, September 4, 2009

I can't even find Words.

This makes me sick.

Dutch Apple Pie, I surrender to you.

So in this particular instance, I suppose last night my kitchen was my Mama’s kitchen. Or at least it smelled like it. One thing I’ve been basically terrified to try is the wonderful, spicy, crumbly sweet-ness that is Dutch Apple Pie. My mother makes a mean apple pie. Seriously, it’s amazing. For holiday’s she even makes one of my cousin’s a whole pie just for himself, because it’s all he’ll eat (frankly, I don’t blame him). So obviously although I’ve helped make this recipe 1500 times, it’s a bit daunting for me because I’m more then a little afraid I won’t measure up.

Then came the challenge. This last weekend, the Boy and I went to a friends for dinner, and since I had about 10 minutes notice, I just ran to the store and grabbed one of their bakery pies. They didn’t have a ton of choices, so I just grabbed a lemon meringue because it’s fairly generic so usually most every one likes it. Sad day for me,because in this case, that wasn’t so. Our host (or one of two I should say) not only doesn’t like meringue, also not a fan of citrus custard pies. In case you’re keeping track, that makes my store bought pie 0-2.

Now, I basically feel like an a-hole. I know that may not make sense, but I like to feed people. When people don’t eat, it upsets me. So I promised to make him a pie, any pie. Peach? Cherry? Apple? Bam, he wants apple. Alright, what about Dutch Apple? That’s his favorite! Sweet, good I know what to make! And I even have apples from the local orchard!

Tuesday I sat down to make the pie and the little voice in my head started to have a panic attack. I’ve never made a Dutch Apple by myself, let alone using only my memory to (try to) recreate my Mama’s specialty. I may or may not have stopped several times purely to spew a string of obscenities, gather myself back together and continue. Happily for me, Luck was with me and everything came out great. The dough was perfect, the apples were spiced just perfect and the crumble was sweet and buttery.


Thursday, September 3, 2009


We are taking the boys camping this weekend. Hopefully we all come back in one peice and no one else gets branded (story for another day). There will be plenty of hunting, wheeler riding and dutch oven cooking. Tell you all about it when I get home!

Ah, the French...

Dear Dad:

A funny thing happened to me yesterday at Camp Bondsteel (Bosnia): A French Army officer walked up to me in the PX, and told me he thought we Americans were a bunch of cowboys and were going to provoke a war in Iraq. He said if such a thing happens, we wouldn't be able to count on the support of France.

I told him that it didn't surprise me. Since we had come to France's rescue in World War I, World War II, Vietnam, and the Cold War, their ingratitude and jealousy was due to surface again at some point in the near future anyway. I also told him that is why France is a third-rate military power with a socialist economy and a bunch of pansies for soldiers. I additionally told him that America, being a nation of deeds and action, not words, would do whatever it had to do, and France's support, if it ever came, was only for show anyway.

Just like in ALL NATO exercises, the US would shoulder 85% of the burden, and provide 85% of the support, as evidenced by the fact that this French officer was shopping in the American PX, and not the other way around.

He began to get belligerent at that point, and I told him if he would like to, I would meet him outside in front of the Burger King and whip his ass in front of the entire Multinational Brigade East, thus demonstrating that even the smallest American had more fight in him than the average Frenchman. He called me a barbarian cowboy and walked away in a huff.

With friends like these, who needs enemies?

Dad, tell Mom I love her,

Your loving daughter.

This came from Marine LtCol Mary Beth Johnson, and this letter is epic!

(Thanks TJ)

Site goes Viral!!!

So Maggy showed me this web site and it is sooooo funny but kind of sad too. CNN even did a piece on it because it has gained a lot of momentum in cyberspace. I like that the creators told CNN they do have certain rules to what they post and what they don't. I also could see myself or people I love landing on their site in one of those frenzied mom moments we all have which is why I feel okay laughing at it. I do tend to be the queen of self deprecation though. What do you guys think? Harmless fun or derogatory?