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Monday, May 18, 2009

A blogaversary party over at "Like a warm cup of coffee" and your invited!

To celebrate her blog's one year blogaversary Sarah Mae is giving away oodles of great stuff. Go to her blog "Like a warm cup of coffee" and check it out!

Personally I think the party is for me since May 20th is my birthday. I am just guessing!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Homemade Popsicles

Today I am participating in Frugal Fridays at - you will want to pop on over and see all the other great tips!

One of my favorite things of summer is Popsicles. I love me some Popsicles. But with 8 Popsicle lovers in the house I have discovered some wonderful ways to make them cheaply and with a modicum of healthiness.

Freeze lemonade or fruit juice or Koolaid in ice cube trays or a Popsicle mold or small plastic cups to make yummy treats for your family.

You can freeze gelatin in ice cube trays and then use them as ice cubes in punch - it doesn't water down the drink.

You can mix one cup of fruit juice and one cup canned or fresh fruit in a blender. Put in a container and freeze. You can add sticks when it is about half way frozen, then continue to freeze.

Another yummy idea is to blend 1 sliced banana with one tsp vanilla, fruit chunks and one cup of plain yogurt. Pour into cups and freeze. Homemade frozen yogurt!

Watermelon treats are made with equal parts seedless watermelon, OJ, and water blended and then frozen in small cups.

Finally, freeze grapes - individually - these taste almost like candy they are so delicious.

Use your imagination and the possibilities are endless.

Easy peasy lemon squeezy!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Unimportant Favorite Things Meme

I have been tagged for a meme - and like the dear lady that tagged me over at A Real Momma's Day Book - I only know one other blogger. Well, we will see if I get the courage by the end of this post to tag some perfect strangers!

My Six Unimportant Favorite Things

The smell of a clean body right out of the shower or bath. I love the smell of babies, big kids and especially my husband when they are squeaky clean.

Sushi - I love all things sushi -ish. Real sushi, maki rolls, sashimi, edamame, wasabi, ginger, white rice, fried rice yum yum yum!

Garage Sales - I guess with the economy the way it is heading this may become an important favorite thing, but for now I just love to go and dig through other peoples stuff and hope to find a treasure. In the early days of my marriage I clothed my kids from there, bought lots and lots and lots of knickknack/decorating things. When I homeschooled I bought hundreds of children's books for mere pennies. I have a library as good as a school library. Seriously.

Books - I am addicted to books. How to books, school books, religious books, recipe books, get thin yesterday books, science, math, youth books, dang near anything that isn't adult fiction.

Movies - I love to go to the movies at the theatre and buy me some plain popcorn and a huge diet coke and lose myself in the world of make believe. At home I can't sit still long enough to watch a movie. Always something that needs done. But at the theatre - I have paid and I get to enjoy!

Lilacs - I love the smell. I am in heaven during lilac season. You will see me randomly sniffing a bush. I have fantasies of stopping and cutting off branches of big bushes I pass. Just to have the smell in my car.

Out on a limb here - I tagged MommaB - check out her giveaway while you are there! I also tagged Sarah at Real Life, and my friend at The Truth Will Set You Free

One last thing -- the rules. Mention the person who tagged you, list your six Unimportant Favorite things, and then tag six other bloggers. (I know I only tagged 3 but they are all wonderful!)

Monday, May 11, 2009

What Do You do with Leftover Porkchops?

There are 9 people living in my house. Sometimes there are 9 people eating dinner - sometimes there are 4 or 5. It is hard to gauge things like pork chops - which everyone loves. The other evening I cooked for 9 and only 5 ate. That leaves 5 leftover pork chops (Doug eats 2 when he is home).
What to do - First I cut up 2 and made pork and bean soup. Then I made pork fried rice, and with the last 1.5 chop I made bbq pork. Everything I used was just hanging out in the fridge, freezer or pantry - yea!

Pork and Bean Soup

Carrots - sliced thin and little
Celery - same
1/2 onion chopped small
fry in extra virgin olive oil until soft
add about a tsp of chopped garlic
To this I added about a cup of navy beans and 1.5 cups blackeyed peas 2 cups of water, chicken flavored soup base, and veggie flavored soup base. I added 1 cup of brown rice then bring to a boil, I then added a glug of white wine (1/4 cup maybe) and a handful of spinach. Cook until spinach is soft and remove from stove. Add salt and pepper to taste.

This is really good - all leftovers or things that I needed to use up!

Pork Fried Rice

2 cups cooked brown rice - cooled.

Celery, carrots chopped small - fry in evoo.
I then added some frozen mixed mushrooms and some frozen pearl onions.

At this point, take 1 egg and scramble it - make it very thin pancake like then chop up small.

I added a little chopped garlic when the carrots were softish, then I added 2 big handfuls of bean sprouts. Over this I poured about a 1/4 cup white wine 2tbs Pad Thai sauce. When the beans were cooked I added the brown rice and cut up pork chops. Over this I poured maybe 1-2 TBS of sesame oil. When this was all heated through I removed one serving for Joe (he can't have soy) then splashed a little soy sauce on top, stirred and served -yummmy!

BBQ Pork
Cut up whatever amount of leftover pork you have into small pieces, dump BBQ sauce over. Warm. Serve on buns. Easy peasy lemon squeezy!
I realize these are not real recipes - nothing was measured, everything just dumped in. However, I hope you can see how delicious food can come from humble beginnings. The bonus is it is all gluten free (I used tamari which is made from soy not wheat) soy free (without the tamari) milk free and the cost was almost free because everything was just hanging around the kitchen without a real purpose.
"This post included in Real Life's Your Life Your Blog"

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Granola - Homemade Yummy-ness!

I made the most delicious homemade granola the other day. I posted the recipe over at
The Rock Spot. It is definitely worth clicking to try!

Happy Eating!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

5 Minutes for Mom's Mother's Day giveaway

Mothers Day 2009

Over at 5 Minutes for Mom they have a fabulous list of giveaways for Mother's Day.
You will have a chance to win prizes such as:

An HP Mini 1000 PC
Purses from Coach and Elliot Lucca
A Kodak Wireless Digital Frame
A Kodak Digital Camera
A Blu-Ray player and Blu-Ray Pride and Prejudice gift pack
Jewelry from Things Remembered
Crock-Pot® Smart-Pot® Slow Cooker
and more…

I so have my fingers crossed!! Go check it out!

Flies Flies Everywhere

The weather is warmer and with it comes those pesty annoying gross flies. We always seem to have a bajillion of them flying around my house.

After making sure my screens were in working order, my trash cans dusted with borax and any containing food have lids, be certain all counters and floors are kept "food free", made sure the compost is taken out daily, and my supply of flyswatters is handy and in use I still have too many flies.

I was thinking about buying some flystrips but then had a lightbulb moment....I bet I could make these. Without chemicals - cheaper than what I can buy at the hardware store.

I checked out several posts about them and came up with the following "recipes"

1.Combine equal parts honey, sugar and water in a saucepan.

2. Boil the mixture, stirring occasionally, until thick.

3. Remove from heat and let cool

4. Cut strips of brown packing tape, punch a hole on one end and loop a piece of string through the hole.

5. Dip the strips in the thick honey mixture and hang outside to dry, about 30 minutes.

6. Hang the strip in the area of worst infestation, and replace often.

Homemade Fly Paper
1/4 cup corn syrup

1/2 cup sugar
1. Cut 4 or 5 long strips about 2 inches wide from brown paper bags. (don't forget to loop a piece of string through it so you can hang the thing!)

2.Mix the ingredients in a bowl and spread it on the strips with a knife.

3.Hang the strips over a bowl to catch drips.

I discovered that any sugary sweet mixture will attract them. Many people suggested using a 2 litre bottle with holes punched around the neck with a little water, sugar and a banana peel, hanging from a tree for outside troubles.

Easy peasy lemon squeezy!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Makigami -

Makigami, I believe can be the wave of the future. This gentleman discovered a way to make art with tightly rolled paper that is soaked in a solution of warm water. It becomes pliable and can be used in many forms. What began as an art project has exciting possibilities. He has already made disposable pens. He envisions that:

Applications for this new material are not limited to disposable pens. Virtually any product can be made either entirely from Makigami, or with some parts made from it. Possible future Makigami products include auto parts, aviation parts, marine parts, indoor furniture, sports equipment, children’s toys, toothbrushes, hairbrushes, mop, broom and other handles, and many more.

I too am excited for the possibilities. This "material" biodegrades in 3 months. It isn't harmful to animals - or children for that matter. It uses recycled paper. It would be incredibly inexpensive to produce. A winner on all fronts!

Easy peasy lemon squeezy!