Friday, December 24, 2010

Chicken Enchiladas


* Broiler chicken
Taco seasoning
Flour tortillas
Shredded cheese
Can green enchilada sauce

Place chicken in crockpot, sprinkle with packet of taco seasoning and 2 cups water.  Cook on high.  Once done, debone and place meat in a skillet.  Cook with another packet of taco seasoning and 2 cups water on stove.  Simmer until water is gone.

Spray 9x13 pan with non-stick spray, pour some enchilada sauce on the bottom of pan and spread out.

Take flour tortilla and spread chicken in the middle in a line.  Sprinkle with cheese.  Roll up and line in pan.  Once the pan is full, pour sauce over.  Sprinkle with cheese. 

Bake at 350 for about an hour or until cheese is melted and bubbly.


* I also use rabbit, guinnea hen, or any other yummy meat you can think of!

And a picture of the carnage that is usually left when we have these at home.  I'm actually surprised there were two left!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Eggnog Cinnamon Rolls



1 cup eggnog, warm (you can use regular milk if you prefer)
2 1/2 t yeast
2 eggs
1/3 cup melted butter
4 1/2 cups bread flour
1 t salt
1/2 cup sugar

1 cup packed brown sugar
2 1/2 T cinnamon
1/3 cup butter, softened

4oz whipped cream cheese
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 t vanilla
1/6 t salt

Warm eggnog or milk melt butter, place in bowl with yeast to proof.  Add eggs, salt and flour.  Mix well.  (I use my Kitchen aid with bread hook instead of kneading it).  Let rise until double.

Roll out on a lightly floured surface in a rectangle, let rest while you mix butter, cinnamon and brown sugar.  Spread over dough.  Roll up and use a string to cut into 12 pieces.  Place in lightly greased 9x13 pan and let rise until double.

(Fun hint, instead of the second rise place them in 2 disposable square baking pans, cover with tin foil and freeze.  When you want them, take them out and let defrost for a couple hours and rise.  Great for an easy breakfast!)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes.  Mix cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, vanilla and salt.  Spread on warm rolls.


Friday, November 19, 2010

Homemade Holidays

I LOVE the holidays.  Even if I'm still in a little denial that Thanksgiving was next week, I am looking forward to the upcoming season.  I've even started my planning.

Last year, I got the quilting bug and made some blankets for gifts.  This year, I plan to do the same thing.  I always do some baking as well.

Are YOU doing anything homemade for the holidays?  Here's some of what I did last year

Cathedral Rag Quilt for my Mother in Law 

Teacher's quilts for my kid's teachers.  School colors and apple cut-out apliques.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Wheat Pita Bread

brainy farm wife,brainyfarmwife,pita bread recipe

2T yeast
2 cups warm water
2T sugar

2T dark molasses
4 cups wheat flour
1 cup ground flax meal
1 cup all purpose flour
2t salt

Add yeast, water and sugar in mixing bowl and allow to proof (apx 10 minutes).  Add molasses, wheat flour, salt and flax meal and mix.  Slowly add all purpose flour until smooth.  (I always use my Kitchen Aid to mix breads)

Grease a large bowl and place dough inside.  Set in warm place and allow to double, about 1 hour.
*Tip - if it's colder in the house due to winter, put a pan of water on the stove and turn on low.  Place a cooling rack over the pan and place the bowl with dough over that.  It will give the warmth the yeast needs to rise.

Punch down dough and knead.  Divide into 12 pieces.  Roll out to desired thickness (about 1/8 inch or so) with rolling pin.  Lay the pieces out on the lightly floured counter and cover with a towel.  Allow to rise apx 30 min.

Pre-heat oven to 400 with the baking sheet inside.  If not using a nice stoneware pan, sprinkle with cornmeal to prevent sticking.

Place dough rounds on sheet, as many as will fit at a time.  Bake for 8-10 minutes until tops have a slight browning.  Remove to cooling rack.  Once cooled, slice in half and cut pocket if needed.


Friday, October 8, 2010

Super Cheesy Scalloped Potato Recipe


I LOVE cheese.  And I love potatos.  What better way than to put them together for a side dish that will break the mold of mashed or baked potatos??  Best part, you can make them up ahead of time and put it in the fridge for a day or so until you're ready to cook it!  This picture is from the leftovers that I sprinkled some MORE cheese on and warmed up in our toaster oven.  Mmmmmm.  Best lunch!

12-16 medium potatos peeled and sliced (I use a mandolin to get nice, even slices - cooks better!)
2 cups shredded Colby Jack Cheese
1 cup shredded Mozzerella
1/4 cup chopped onion (or dehydrated diced onion)
1 1/2 cups sour cream
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup
1 1/2 cups milk
1 package bacon, cooked and diced
4 Tablespoons melted butter
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

Peel and slice potatos and place into 9x13 casserole dish (I would recommend spraying the sides with PAM).  Shred cheese and mix together.  Take 2 cups and mix in with the potatos.  In a seperate bowl, combine sour cream, soups, milk, butter, salt, pepper and 3/4 of the bacon and mix well.  Pour over the potatos.  Sprinkle with remaining cheese and bacon.  Also good sprinkled with fresh chives!

Bake at 350 for apx 60 minutes, or until potatos are tender to the fork and cheese is slighly browned.


Thursday, October 7, 2010

Lemon Blueberry Nut Bread

lemon blueberry nut bread recipe
1/3 cup softened stick butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
3 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
2 Tablespoons grated lemon peel
1/2 cup choped walnuts (or nut of choice)
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries (do not defrost frozen before adding to batter)
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar

Cream together butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Mix in eggs one at a time, making sure they are well beaten.  Add lemon juice.  Combine flour, baking powder and salt in seperate bowl.  Add slowly to mix with milk (using a standing mixer, I slowly pour in both at the same time.)  Mix well.  Fold in the lemon peel, nuts and blueberries.

Pour into greased loaf pan and place on lowest rack in pre-heated oven at 350.  Bake for 60-70 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.

Cool for apx 10 minutes before removing from pan.  Place on wire rack and drizzle glaze over the bread.  This gives it a sweet finish and helps lock in the moisture.  You can also prick the bread with toothpicks for more of the glaze to soak into the bread.


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

V is for Victory: Recipes

I got the coolest present this weekend.  My Father-in-Law gave me this wonderful cookbook that he received from a neighbor.  Since I'm a bit of a history buff (given that is what I studied for my undergrad degree) and WWII is one of my favorite eras, I was very excited to receive this!  I can't wait to dig through the recipes and see what's in there.  Can you imagine some of the cool, old-fashioned, lost recipes I'll find?  I'll be sure to share some of them with you!


Look at that! 1943!

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Quilt

Finally finished a quilt I started way back before the move and summer of craziness.

I found the MOST adorable fabric at (one of my favorite websites) and just had to make something with it.  I decided to do the Cathedral Rag quilt, because I thought the circles sewed into squares with the peeking out colors would be perfect.  The circles are sandwiched with red flannel in the middle.

This is the front, with the rag-side showing:

Here is the back.  I *LOVE* the fact that the caterpillars frame the gorgeous colors.

And here's a picture with the back and front together, so you can get a feel. 

Wouldn't this make an adorable baby shower present, with a copy of the book?  I'm debating giving it as a gift or selling it.  I'm just not sure.  I kindof need some money to buy this adorable Pokey Little Puppy fabric to make a quilt!  That is my favorite Little Golden Book story EVER!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Chewy Chocolate Cookie with Peanut Butter Chips


2 cups butter, softened
4 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 3.9 oz (4 serving) instant chocolate pudding
4T unsweetened cocoa
5 cups flour
2t baking soda
2t salt
10z package peanut butter chips

Preheat oven to 375

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  One at a time, add eggs and beat well with each addition.  Add pudding, cocoa, soda, salt and mix.  Add flouur one cup at a time.  Mix in peanut butter chips.

Use a small cookie scoop and place on ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake for 12 - 14 minutes or until tops are cracked.  Remove and cool completely on cookie sheet.


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Pizza Pockets / Calzones

I was looking for a new lunch item for my kids, and made them some pocket pizzas.  Because, cold pizza is ALWAYS a good meal.  But, pizza is expensive!  And, I used this really cool pocket meal thing I just ordered from Avon as well. 

It was a HUGE hit with the kids, and I also made some for me for work.  I brought one in to my friend, and she claims the bread was so heavenly it has divine restorative powers.  Hmmmmm.

2 T yeast
2 T sugar
2 cups warm water
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 t salt
2 T italian seasoning (I love pampered chef's!)
2 T garlic powder
6 cups flour

Disolve yeast and sugar in warm water in mixing bowl.  Add seasonings, oil, salt and flour a cup or so at a time until dough is well blended.  Allow to rise until double, about 1 hour.

1 lb italian sausage
1 can spaghetti sauce
Mozerella cheese, shredded

Brown sausage, drain.  Add sauce to blend.

"Toppings" as desired
Endless ideas!  I even found some mini pepperoni!
I LOVE black olives and mushrooms
Best part - you can make each kid their own special blend.  YEAH!  Everyone gets the pizza they want.

Putting it together
Take balls of dough, depending on the size of calzone you would like to make.  Roll out to about 1/4" thick.  If you're going to use one of the pie molds (which the kids love) use the cutter side to cut the two pieces, then place one on the mold, fill will sauce mix, cheese and desired toppings.  Place the other piece of the dough over then seal closed.
Or, rolling into a circle, fill will sauce, cheese and toppings, fold over and seal.

Place on ungreased cookie sheet and bake in a pre-heated oven at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Cool on cookie sheet, enjoy!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Capturing August Photo Winners

Well, I only had three people enter my photo contest.  And while I admit I'm a little sad, I decided that each of these three is going to win a prize!  So, if you're not local to me, then I need you to email me your mailing address and I will be doing some baking this weekend with a goody package made just for you!

The winners are:
I chose this picture from the ones she submitted because I agreed so much with her caption. She said it best when she said "Doesn't every parent love to see such expressions of joy on their child's face and hearing their squeals of laughter?"  This picture truly captures the fun and spirit of their excitement and enjoyment in the month of August, 2010.

She submitted some amazing pictures documenting her journey's in August.  However, I happen to know the subject in this one and know just what a triumph it was for both her, her team AND their manager for him to allow them a rainbow mohawk for accomplishing a goal.  Rock on!

Submitted by the one person I haven't ever actually met, she captured some amazing pictures and now I feel both a kinship to her, as well as a desire to visit where she lives!  With a true love of history, this picture captures the idea of so many memories, stories, and also a striking image that something that once used to be so vital for the existance of a community can easily fall by the wayside.  So many lessons to take away from this picture.  I love it!

Thank you all for your entries!  Stay tuned later this week for September's contest!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

A Season of Celebrating

September is my birthday month, and I'm planning a big party to combine sharing this with a housewarming at the new farm.

As I was thinking about it, I wanted to find a way to use the celebration time to share with others the many blessings my life has brought me.  After pondering a few ideas, I came up with this one.

I want to collect items to donate to my son's special education classroom to provide tools specifically for the increasing number of autistic spectrum students. 

There are two ways you can contribue. 
  • Item Purchase - I have created an Amazon wish list and you can select something in particular that you would like to donate.  Purchase it and it will be shipped to me.  I will collect all items and bring them into the school.  (I will be sure to post pictures).  AUTISM WISH LIST
  • Donation - You can make a donation of any amount.  This amount will be directly used to purchase items from the autism wish list.  DONATE HERE
Please note - I am not a non-profit organization and these donations will not be tax deductable. I am simply a mom wanting to find a way to give back and support the schools that have so well supported my son.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Crabmeat Artichoke Dip

This is one of my favorite appetizers to bring or make for any gathering.  I usually double it, because it always goes quickly!

1 8oz package softened cream cheese
1 cup mayonnaise
1 garlic clove, pressed
1 14oz can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 8oz package imitation crab meat, chopped
1 cup parmesean cheese
1/2 cup sliced green onions, with tops
1t lemon peel
1/4t pepper
1/4 cup chopped red pepper

Preheat oven to 350.  Blend together cream cheese, mayo and garlic.  Add chopped artichokes, crab meat, parmesean cheese, green onions, lemon peel and pepper, mix well.

Bake 25-30 minutes (45 min if doubled) or until a golden brown around the edges. I usually use a deep, round stoneware pan for this, you can use a variety of sizes, etc. The thicker it is, the longer it will need to bake.

Sprinkle with the pepper and additonal green onions.  Serve with crackers, pita chips or fresh bread.

This is also good toasted on an open face sandwhich, with lots of extra cheese sprinkled on top.  (Oh, I love cheese).

Thursday, September 2, 2010

August Photo Contest Submission Guidelines

I hope you were better at taking pictures last month than I was.  I admit, I just got overwhelmed getting the kids ready for school and the end of summer craziness.  I do want to applaud your efforts for any attempt that you made!

Here are the updated contest submission process and guidelines.

1) Become a fan of my Facebook page by clicking THIS link and then the 'like' button.
2) Upload a picture on the Wall like this:
3) Once the picture is uploaded, click on it and it will take you to the picture. 
4) Click "edit caption" and include the following information (this is your submission form and MUST be included)
  *  Date taken
  *  Subject(s) of the picture
  *  Why this represented your day
5)  Cross your fingers for good luck!

  • Pictures must have been taken in August of 2010 by you
  • You may enter up to 5 of your favorite pictures of the month
  • Deadline to submit is Friday, Sept 10, 2010
*Note* By submitting a picture you are giving me the right to use the image on my website, blog and facebook page.

Winner will need to provide a physical mailing address within one week of annoucement and will receive a gift basket of some of my favorite goodies!

Looking forward to seeing all of your great entries!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Our newest farm additions

Yeah!   We got piggies.  They're not very friendly yet, but I'm sure we'll change that soon.  They're just a couple of weeks old.  Meet Bacon, Pork Chop and Link.  teehee

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Bread Overload

Had to share my August picture for today.  I stayed up last night and did a bit of baking.  I had some poor planning and made some committments without knowing the dates and a few things all hit at the same time.  Luckily, you can get 4 mini loaves to each regular loaf recipe, and I have 2 Pampered Chef stoneware pans that make 4 mini loaves each.  (I love those pans!)

I love the fact that you can take one recipe and still make a variety of types of bread.  I made:
  • Chocolate, Chocolate Chip Zucchini
  • Chocolate Chip Zucchini
  • Lemon Poppyseed Zucchini
  • Banana Bread (with and without nuts)

Monday, August 2, 2010

August Contest

I said that as soon as I hit 200 fans on Facebook I would start hosting some contests, and I got my 200th fan this week.

As I posted my first August: 1 day at a time picture I began thinking about how I'd like to get to see just who my fans are and what their lives are like.  So, here's the contest:

Take pictures of your life in August!  You can do the Facebook 1 day at a time thing, or just random pictures of your life in August.  Please have them be taken during this year. To enter, either tag me, "The Brainy Farm Wife" on facebook (you'll have to like my page, first) or submit the link to your blog with the picture here, the official contest thread. 

At the end of the month, I will select a winner from the pictures entered.  Prize is to be determined, but will be something yummy!

Become a Fan of the Brainy Farm Wife on Facebook

It's photo-journal time.  Grab your camera or camera phone, and start snapping!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

August - 1 day at a time

A friend of mine posted a great idea on her facebook page that I wanted to try and challenge you try as well.

Each day in August, take a picture and post it.  It can be anything!  Just title the album "August - One day at a time".

I was thinking just earlier today, how quickly it all goes by and I can't believe it's already August!  So here's a great way to reflect on each day and remember.

Here is mine for today - a relaxing Sunday Afternoon, and watching the goats graze outside my bedroom window.

You can keep up with each picture via my Facebook Album throughout the month.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

German Pancakes

Since we have chickens, we always have lots of eggs and I'm always looking for ways to use them in my cooking.  The kids are huge fans of "breakfast for dinner" meals, so tonight I made German Pancakes.
4 eggs
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 Tablespoon sugar
pinch salt
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 Tablespoons melted butter

Optional Mix-ins
1 can apple pie filling
Ground sausage, with or without cheese
Chocolate Chips

Blend eggs, flour, baking poweder, sugar and salt in standing mixer.  Slowly add milk, then vanilla and melted butter.  Let sit for an hour, or overnight (in the refridgerator).

Preheat oven to 425.

In 10inch pan, spray inside and sides completely with non-stick spray.  Place pie or other fillings in pan  (or you can use 2 8" pie or cake pans).  Pour batter over.  Bake for 15 minutes in the preheated oven.  Reduce temperature to 375, bake for 10 more minutes.

Remove from oven, slide onto place, slice and serve warm!
I have teenage boys in my house, and this recipe, which says it serves 4, will maybe serve 2.  If you're lucky.  So, for a family of 6 I tripled this recipe, then used four 8" pie pans.  I would take a measuring cup and distribute out the batter evenly to balance it out.  With all 4 in the oven, I cooked it 5 minutes extra with each temperature.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Summertime Success: SNACKS!

We've all had the same problem.  When they are home for extended periods of time, kids get bored and want to eat!  And good heavens, can they eat!

I will have to admit, I got this idea from a Super Nanny episode and adapted it for the kids. 

Here is what we do.  The big baskets contain snacks.  The top blue one is for cupboard snacks, the one on the right is for stuff in the fridge.  The kids then each have their own, smaller basket. For things such as popcicles, etc, I have a craft/popcicle stick with that treat written on it that they put in their basket. They were able to choose 2 treat snacks, at least 1 had to be healthy (string cheese, raisins, etc).

 Each night BEFORE BED, they pick out three snacks for the next day and put them in their own basket.  Then, during the day, they are allowed to eat those snacks anytime they want, without asking, before 4pm.

This gives them choice, an opportunity to plan and think and they can see it all visually. 

No more "can I have...." questions all day long! 

Good luck!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Welcoming the Goats

Shortly before our wedding anniversary my husband asked me what I wanted, and I laughed and said "a goat".  Well, I definitely married the right man - because I got exactly what I wanted!  Now, it is a bit off-season as most are born in the spring.  But we found a couple of ones we liked. 

First is Thor.  He is a 3 month old Fainting Goat.  He was kind of picked on in the herd we got him from, and I have a soft spot in my heart for the underdog.  He is so sweet, he thinks he's a dog and will just hop into your lap.  I'm hoping to get a few does and breed and raise fainting goats.  They are just so sweet.

Next is Sheeba.  As in, Queen of Sheeba.  She is a year and a half old, and has that teenage mentality of thinking she's in charge of everything.  We got these two first, and she would keep letting poor little Thor know that she was top goat in the herd. She is a pygmy/cross and won't get much bigger than she is now.

Next are the first of our milking goat herd.  They came with names, but I have to get a feel for them to see if they fit their personality.  For now - the mom (Misty) and daughter (Snowball).  They are pure-bred Nubians and are just as sweet as can be.  But momma sure lets Sheeba know that she is now top goat!  They are much bigger than the other two but very friendly.
Our anniversary date fell during our family reunion a couple of weeks ago.  We were discussing the fact that I was getting some goats for my present and my mom (who is a big fan of jewlery for her gifts) said "I think my daughter needs a lesson on gifts!"  My dad laughed and said, "I think my wife is the one who needs the lessons." 

I sure am lucky to have a man in my life who supports me in both my brainy and farm wife aspects of my life!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Mexican Shepherd’s Pie

Mother Hubbard Recipe
Remember that old nursery rhyme? The one we’ve all related to a time or two when we’ve looked blankly into our kitchen cupboard and fridge wondering what to put together for dinner? Well, I’ve dubbed those recipes that I come up with during those days “Mother Hubbard Recipes”. Fortunately for my family, they tend to fare better than the dog in the rhyme.

So, without further ado:

Mexican Shepherd's Pie

• 1lb Ground beef
• Taco Seasoning
• 1 can corn, drained
• 1 can kidney beans, drained
• 2 cheese packets from 2 boxes of mac n cheese
• 1 cup milk
• 1 package of Corn bread mix (I <3 Marie Callender’s brand)

• Pre-Heat oven to 350 (or as directed on corn bread package)
• Brown ground beef, drain, add seasoning and 1 cup water, simmer.
• In a separate bowl, mix cheese packets with 1 cup milk, whisk until creamy.
• Add cheese sauce, drained cans of corn and kidney beans and mix well on stove.
• While that simmers, combine corn bread mix as directed on package.
• Spray casserole dish with non-stick spray, then add the meat mixture. Spoon Corn Bread mix over meat and bake for 30-40 minutes or until corn bread is lightly brown on edges and cooked.

Yup, I put a nice sized dollop of sour cream on mine. SO very good! There are lots of different ways to vary this up depending on what mix ins you desire (or have in your cupboard). Enjoy!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Summertime Success: Dishwashing Overload - CUPS!

This is a series of articles showing up throughout the summer in regards to ideas and strategies that I come up with or utilize to make the time the kids are home that much easier!

Now, I can't take credit for this idea.  My mom did this when we were growing up one summer.  Now I understand why!

Every day, we'd go through EVERY.SINGLE.CUP. in the blasted house.  Some only used for a quick sip.  Others left on the table half full of Kool-Aid or (ugh) milk.  And, really, it's just crazy.

At Wal-Mart last night, I picked up some nice, sturdy PLASTIC cups on clearance (4 for $.25  KACHING) and wrote the kids' names each on a cup.  Now they each have their OWN cup to use throughout the day, and I'll make sure they're washed each night.

Now no more asking "Who's drink is this on the table!"  That alone was worth the quarter.


Monday, July 5, 2010

Tin Foil Dinners

The best part about these meals is that everyone gets exactly what they want.  They're great for camping, or can be done at home as well.

Basic Ingredients
Hamburger patty
Chicken strips
Round steak
Steak, cut into strips
Summer or Polish sausages
Whatever tickles your fancy

Thin cut potatoes
Diced onion
Sliced carrots
Pea pods
whatever is fresh from your garden

Cream of chicken or mushroom soup
lipton onion soup mix
lemon pepper
seasoning salt


Take two 12" pieces of tin foil.  I place them crossways one over the other.  Place potatoes on foil, then layer meat with veggies, seasonings and a couple pats of butter.  Place in coals, or oven at 350 for 40-60 minutes.  Enjoy!

Here's how I did it tonight:

Had young lad dig a hole for fire

Making their dinners:

Look!  A happy face!  Oh, wait - we weren't supposed to play with our food?

Forgot a pic of it all in the fire, but here we are opening them up to enjoy!

Mmmmm, dinner!

Friday, July 2, 2010


Occassionally I cater in the breakfast for our monthly company call at work.  Traditionally I do breakfast burritos, bacon-wrapped smokies and a baked good of some sort, and fruit.  This time, I wasn't sure what baked good to do, so I requested the opinion of a co-worker who asked for Scones.

I'm guessing they were good since they were all gone! :D

Scones with Variety

3 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
6 Tablespoons cold butter
1 cup (8oz) vanilla yogurt
1/4 cup milk

Mix ins for Variety
  • Cherry Chocolate Chip
    • 1 1/2 cup dried cherries
    • 2/3 cup mini chocolate or vanilla chips
  • Orange Cranberry Chip
    • 1 Tablespoon orange extract or orange juice concentrate
    • 2/3 cup mini chocolate chips
    • 1 1/2 cup cranberries
  • Blueberry
    • 2 cups fresh, frozen or dried blueberries
  • In standing mixer combine dry ingredients.  Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  • Combine the wet ingredients (milk, yogurt and any extracts) and mix until just moist
  • Grease baking sheet and pat the dough into a 8'' circle.  Cut into wedges and seperate.  Brush with milk to brown.
  • Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown.
Instead of the circle and pie-shape, I also will double the recipe and press it into a bar pan or large cookie sheet and cut into smaller square pieces to serve more people.


Friday, June 25, 2010

Home Office

Yup - this is my working spot today.  I love my life!

Note to self: buy a LONG extension cord.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Dreams can come true!

“Dreams are like stars...
you may never touch them,
but if you follow them
they will lead you to your destiny.”

I’m not sure when it started, but sometime in my early teens I decided that I wanted to live on a farm. I think a large part of it came from reading the books written by an old-school country veterinarian, James Herriot and his All Creatures Great and Small series. His well-written stories showed the hard work and pure love of animals.  At this point, I also considered becoming a veterinarian - until I realized how much chemistry was involved.

It became a dream to live on a minimum of 5 acres and have cows, pigs, chickens, etc. I wanted to live in the country on a big farm house with a wrap-around porch with a porch swing that I could sit on each evening. I would look through home plan books, and find the styles I loved.  I would imagine buying an old farm house and finding amazing treasures in the attic.

I wanted the simple life. To be surrounded by nature, the circle of life and to have it be JUST like all the books I read about life in the country. My family teased me about going to college in Southern Utah and marrying a farmer or cowboy. I even took an Agriculture class in college hoping it would help.

Didn’t meet any guys, but I did go lambing for my final.

While we all have dreams of our life, they do not always come to fruition. Often the simple realities of life get in the way of our idealized dreams.

Recently I took a psychology of motivation course and come upon a theory of motivation that basically relies on the premise that 'a goal without a plan is just a wish.' 

This leads to the question - what can we do so that our dreams become plans, and now just wishes?  What can we do to make them happen?

This weekend, one of my dreams came true.  I moved to a 5 acre piece of land.  It has a barn, a shop for the hubby, the old, original farmhouse and a run-down summer kitchen.  One quick look in it shows what looks to be an old, but in good shape, apple press.

And this was the view out of my bedroom window this morning:

I can't wait to bring you more stories, recipes and pictures of my farm life! 

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Some rain must fall - but there should be limits!

"If you want the rainbow, you've got to put up with a little rain."
- Dolly Parton

Normally, I really like the rain.  I love the smell of the air when it's clean.  I love the way it makes everything so lush and green.

And after almost 4 years in the great Pacific Northwest, I *still* like the rain.  However, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. 

Portland Averages
Average June Rainfall: 1.5 inches
Average Yearly Rainfall: 36.5 inches
Record June Rainfall: 4.08

This Year
June Rainfall, by the 9th:  3.47 inches

And yes, we've had more rain since then.  And the sun and warm weather that had originally been predicted for this week - now cooler and more rain.

The chickens are not happy with all the extra mud and are currently roaming free in the grass and old garden spot until we move this week.

We could discuss the metaphor of rain, rainbows, growth, etc.  And really, I don't mind rain. 
I just am ready for the rainbow, and not a flood.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Book Review: Back to Basics

All growing up I remember reading this book, flipping through the pictures and reading things I thought I'd never see in 'real' life (aka, skinning a rabbit).  The book edition we had was with a yellow cover, but the information is all the same and wonderful.

A few years ago I purchased this recent edition for my husband as a gift, because he used to have it as well. 

As we have slowly built our family farm, we have referred to it often.  Now, as we prepare to move to a 5 acre property, I know that we'll be using it more often.  Whether you're a small, suburban gardener or working on a more self-sustaining home, this book is a MUST HAVE!!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

New Resource Found

I have just found a new website that I am *VERY* excited to start using.  Hobby Farms!

And, I *may* just have more of a use for this in the future.  We should know soon!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Banana Recipe Throwdown Contenders

Here are the contending recipes from The Breakfast Cook's weekly cooking challenge.  Deciding to up the ante a bit, he issued me a PERSONAL challenge where we would each come up with some recipes and you, our readers, would get to vote on which one you think is best.  Here they are, in alphabetical order - poll is on the right.  Enjoy!