Friday, May 29, 2015


My heart is full to bursting this morning as I realize my baby is not a baby anymore... 
My beautiful girl not only turns 18 today, but she also is officially graduated. 
Oh my heart. 
God in His infinite wisdom gave me this wonderful, beautiful, precious flower to love and care for. To teach, train, nurture and grow... And here she is at 18 years.

I love you so much, Cameo. I could NOT be any more proud of you. 
You are one of the kindest souls. 

You are very much like your Daddy, quick to see the good in people. 
You have good instincts. 

People are drawn to you. You have a joy for life, I like to think you got that from me. ;)

You're a hard, diligent worker. 
You are smart... You think through problems and can figure out good solutions.
Don't worry about hating math. ;)

You are funny. You make me laugh... all. the. time. 

You're adventurous. Always eager to give something a shot. (Another Moma trait, ha ha)

You are a shining light for the Lord. Lead by example, my love. There is a world needing to see your light for Him!

You're smile brightens any room. It has since you were a baby.
Cameo, I love you so, so much. I think you are one of the most wonderful young women I've ever had the privilege of knowing and I am SO incredibly blessed to be your Moma. To be able to watch you grow all these years and to see where you go from here. 

I am here for you... 
Supporting you, loving you and encouraging you...

For always, 
Your Devoted and Loving Moma


Thursday, May 28, 2015

Strawberry Yogurt Pops

We all know that on a hot day, nothing is more satisfying than something nice and cool. We also know that if you reach for those popsicles from the store... you are getting nothing but colored sugar water.  Not a good thing. So in the spirit of Alton Brown (by and far one of my FAVORITE chefs!) 
Why buy something when we can make it better??? 
Here we go.

If you remember, last year, I bought these popsicle pop molds
I've used them SO many times, and the only problem is... I need another set. 6 is hardly enough for our crew. That's a good thing!

2 cups mashed strawberries, we like a little bit of chunk in ours, but you could puree if you don't
1 cup yogurt
1/3 cup honey
2 tsp vanilla
(Also...  you could mix more fruit into this easily or substitute another fruit entirely! 
It's all up to you!)

Mix well and fill your molds. 
This made more than our six molds could hold, so I put the leftovers in tiny pyrex bowls for my husbands lunchbox. Single serve homemade strawberry yogurt? Yes, please!
For your pops, place in the freezer and chill till frozen through. 

Grab em and enjoy when that summer sun starts beatin down on you!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Creativity in the Kitchen

When trying to eat healthy and maintain a tight budget, you have to get creative in the kitchen. You also have to put some forethought into your week. Look at your life and activities and think about what your plans are for the week. 
Will you be having any expected company that week? 
Will there be any late nights away from home... 
Think about what you have available in your fresh items, what you have that you can pull out of the freezer or the pantry shelf. What can you make out of something else? These things will make your food dollar go MUCH farther and really help make sure that there are plenty of good choices for food available so you don't want to get that $5 pizza, again. ;)

Here are some examples of what I have been prepping this week to help us out.

I had one gallon of milk left from our weekly milk run. I turned that gallon into 4 quarts of yogurt. With those 4 quarts of yogurt, I have made or can make this week... fruit and yogurt popsicles, granola w/yogurt, smoothies, I can add it to chicken salad, ranch dressing for veggie dipping or salads, etc. Taking that one gallon of milk and making it into yogurt opened up a wide array of other possibilities for us. 

Another thing while cleaning through my freezer, I found some beef bones. I roasted the bones in the oven and made a beef bone broth afterwards. We all know how wonderful bone broth is for you! Last night with the broth, I flavored some beef patties and made a gravy to pour on top. Who said you just have to drink the broth? You can get that broth goodness into your family in other ways too! Use the broth to cook your rice! Or in some soup! Those are EXCELLENT ways to get creative in the kitchen!

I also roasted a chicken early this week. With the chicken I deboned, I used the meat for chicken casserole for one meal and with the extras I made chicken salad! After deboning, same thing... I used the bones and made some chicken broth. I then canned the broth that I rendered. 

Keeping my sourdough going is another important factor in my kitchen. I feed it regularly and use it several times a week. I've made about 6 batches of Sourdough Banana Bread with some overripe bananas this week. Some for a church outing and some to have for some friends coming to visit and some for my husband to take along to work. I hope to make a couple of loaves of bread towards the end of the week for the weekend. 

It takes some work and thought, but really makes a difference! 
I hope that helps out a little bit and you enjoy working 
towards making your kitchen a more creative place!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Quick Sourdough Pancakes

I know if you have followed my blog for any amount of time, you know my love for pancakes. I love pancakes in all shapes, forms, sizes, and usually all recipes. It's a deep love. 
I try to always start my pancakes the night before with my sourdough so it really gets the MOST benefits possible from the souring process. Well, sometimes that doesn't happen. Sometimes, I drop the ball and forget to start the sponge.
All is not lost!
It may not be the PERFECT sourdough pancakes, but the recipe I am going to share with you today is a GOOD recipe and you can still use your sourdough and get some good from it, even if it isn't all the benefits from the souring overnight process. 

Quick Sourdough Pancakes

1 cup sourdough
1 cup flour
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup oil
2 eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk
2 Tbsp sucanat/cane juice crystals/sugar

Mix and fry.
Makes approximately 15 pancakes... give or take. 

AND, Happy May 1st!