Sourdough Bread and Knee Update

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The other night I started some sourdough starter from the Betty Crooker Cookbook.  (Get this cookbook!)  All that you do is dissolve 1 teaspoon of yeast in 1/4 cup warm water.  Then mix in 3/4 cup milk (I warmed it up to room temperature to not shock the yeast) and a cup of all-purpose flour.  Beat until smooth and cover with a tea towel.  Let it sit in a warm place for 24 hours.  Then give it a good stir and cover with plastic wrap and let it sit for 2-3 days.  The above picture is after the 24 hours and a good stir.

Sourdough bread is great because once you start this starter you rarely have to have yeast in the house.  You should use this starter at least once a week to keep it fresh.  The dough makes FANTASTIC cinnamon rolls.

I’ll share the bread recipe and pictures when it’s sat for a bit.

And onto my knee.  I get to keep running and doing whatever, but get to do it while sporting a sexy new knee brace.  I have to wear the brace all the time except sleeping for a while, but will be wearing it while working out for a good long time.  I was just told to make friends with it.  Sigh.

I also brought up a bulge in my upper abs that I found while testing for ab separation awhile back.  I have a hernia.  So anyone have any suggestions for some great ab exercises?

I found this one by Tracy Anderson.  She says that her workout also helps tighten the skin, which I need help with. 

 

Has anyone ever did her workouts?

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Liebster Award!

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A BIG Thank You to Maple Creek Cottage for sending this my way!  It’s so nice to know that I’m not writing into thin air!

Rules

This award is given to new or up and coming bloggers who have less than 200 followers…the award is then passed along to other bloggers in the same category to help spread the word and support one another. What to do:
1. Each blogger should post 11 random facts about themselves.
2. Answer the questions the tagger has set for you, then create 11 new questions for the bloggers you pass the award to.
3. Choose 11 new bloggers (with less than 200 followers) to pass the award to and link them in your post.
4. Go back to their page and tell them about the award.
5. No tag backs.
So here it goes!
11 RANDOM FACTS:
  1. I met my husband while working at Wendy’s more then 10 years ago.  It’s a wonder how we’ve made it this long.  We did NOT work well together!
  2. I have a diploma in Therapeutic Recreation.  What’s that you ask?  I’m professionally trained to PLAY!
  3. We have 1 cat named Jacob, but we’re really dog people.
  4. We also have more guppies then we know what to do with.
  5. I can roast a turkey like no other!  (The secret is in the brine!)
  6. But can’t make gravy to save my soul.
  7. I didn’t always want a quiet life in the country.  I used to want to be a doctor in the city somewhere.
  8. I would give my left arm to travel to Australia.  And my right leg to go to Europe.
  9. When Empire Records came out, all I wanted to do was work in a record store.  I actually cried when I got the job as assistant manager at CD Plus years ago.
  10. All I want are bees.
  11. I could live off of sour cream and onion chips.

And here are the questions I get to answer:

1. If you could live anywhere in the world, and do anything – where would you live, and what would you do?
Australia and be a sheep farmer.
2. What is your favorite way to eat pasta?
With sausage, tomatoes, peppers, onions and cheese!
3. How many electrical plugs are plugged into your computer power bar?  Don’t lie.
None!  We only have the lap top!
4. How do you drink your tea?
With lots of milk!
5. Do you read the weekly flyers?
Did, but now we don’t get them anymore.  😦
6. The next farm animal on the list is….
If we ever get to the point of animals, it will be chickens.
7. How do you feel about Queen of England?
She’s a tough old bird.
8. What is the first thing you do in the morning?
Turn on the tea pot.
9. How long have you been blogging?
Off and on for about 2 years.
10. If you could renovate any room in your home, which one would it be?
The kitchen!  It’s a little out dated.  I should take pictures for you…it’s laughable actually.
11. What is your favorite moment of the day?
Bedtime!
Here’s my list of nominees:
Hopefully I did that right and you all have under 200 followers!
Here’s some questions for you:
  1. Tea or coffee?
  2. Sunrise or sunset?
  3. What would your perfect day look like?
  4. What’s your favorite way to eat potatoes?
  5. What’s your favorite thing to do with your kids?  If you don’t have kids, what’s your favorite kid activity.
  6. Tents or RV’s?
  7. What does your dream pizza have for toppings?
  8. What is your dream pet?
  9. Who’s the person that you would want to meet?  Can be anyone!
  10. What’s at the top of your bucket list?
  11. What do you think the best TV show is/was of all time?

There you have it!  Thanks for playing!  And thank you again to Maple Creek Cottage!

ETA:  I can’t find a way to get in touch with Little Homestead in the Valley.  Hopefully maybe she’ll see this or maybe someone can share the link with her pretty please?  Thanks!

A Little Work Out!

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This week I have been plauged by the flu and a messed up knee.  I go to the doctor on Monday to see if my running career is over (for a few months!) before it began.

Today I did a little workout here at home to see how I felt.  My stomach stayed where it was supposed to and we’ll see how my knee if feeling tonight.  I also did about 15 min. of stretching after to help loosen up my lower body.

So here’s the work out!  I did each exercise for 30 seconds with a 10 second break and I did it twice through.

  • Squats
  • Tricep Dips
  • Left lunge
  • Right lunge
  • Push Ups
  • Plank
  • Squats
  • Left Leg Lift
  • Right Inner Thigh Lift
  • Right Leg Lift
  • Left Inner Thigh Lift
  • Plank

Took me about 15 minutes.

I’m so over Winter!

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We’ve had a pretty mild winter up until the last view weeks.  School has been cancelled twice in the past two weeks because of storms.  We’ve shovelled more snow then I ever want to again.  And it’s only the middle of February.  I know that it’s nowhere near over.  If it had spread itself out over the course of the winter, I think I could have handled it a bit better.  But two weeks of snow, then it all melting into spring and then Mother Nature lauging at us again tends to wear this girl down.  Image

So what’s a Momma to do?

Plan her garden of course!

Truro Seedy Saturday is this weekend and I will be buying as many seeds as I can this weekend.  My goal this year is to start as many seeds myself as I can.  (And to pray that our garden doesn’t flood out this year!)

Here’s our tentative plan:

  • Green Beans
  • Kale
  • Broccoli Raab
  • Paste Tomatoes
  • Tomatillo
  • Cherry Tomatoes
  • Spinach
  • Peas
  • Carrots
  • Edamame
  • Peppers!  (Green, sweet, hot, etc.)
  • Maybe onions

Last year we had a lot of challenges.  Too much rain, then drought, then a flood that wiped out the end of the season.  Blight on the tomatoes.  Underestimating how much chard will come back (that stuff never dies!).  A 3 year old and a 1 year old don’t make the best gardening compainions.

But we are ready for the new year!  We will be renting a plot from the community garden again and are reassured that the flooding was a rare occurance and should not happen again.

ImageGo check out your local Seedy Saturday!  Free classes (I’m taking the session on seed saving at the very least) and an overall good time.

Happy Valentines Day!

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Our first dance at our wedding five and a half years ago was to this song. Makes me melt everytime I hear it.

Hope your day is full of love and romance!

From Scratch Free Magazine!

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I just found From Scratch Magazine and am in LOVE!

Plus it’s FREE!!!!  (Keeps getting better, eh?)

Enjoy and share!

Saving money on LAUNDRY!

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Clothes drying on the rack

So when we moved, I knew I’d have to figure out some ways to save money.  We were saving on rent, but were going to have to use oil heat.  And in an old drafty house, that still means keeping space heaters plugged in everywhere to help keep the oil bill down.  I’ve been at my wit’s end trying to figure out where I can cut costs.  I’ve been trying to feed 5 people on a limited budget, trying to cut gas costs, but when the temperature is -25, you can’t even walk the kids 10 minutes up the road to preschool, and really, we don’t have a lot of fun that we spend money on anyway.

So I was looking around on Facebook and found this link on the Eco Nuts Facebook page (it was in a blog posting they did.)

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Even more clothes hanging in the shower!

So I put in my numbers (I only do about 25% hot washes which are the diapers) and figured out that I am spending $510 a year just on laundry!!!!  $43 a month! Yes, this chart doesn’t take into account what percentage of clothes you hang up or how much energy your individual machines use and probably many other variables that I am not thinking about, but the number shocked me!

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Then I did some more math.  If I never used the dryer (who am I kidding, but if I cut it out to only when necessary) and switched to homemade laundry detergent (which I calculated crappily at 5 cents a load) I could save around $390 a year!  Or about $30 a month.  That’s a big chunk of change!

So I have made some laundry detergent and have been testing it off and on and really like it.  It will be months before we’re full-time on the homemade since I still have 2 jugs of detergent that my husband bought months ago on sale.

Here’s the recipe with links to the items I purchased (I upped the amounts.  I think I doubled it):

1 cup of finely grated soap (I will probably try harder to find Sunlight or order Fels Naptha next time.  You can also use Ivory or castile soap.)

1/2 cup of borax

1/2 cup of washing soda

The directions say to use 1/2 a cup of detergent per load, but I get away with a couple of tablespoons easily.  I used the directions from the side of the borax box.  This is a non-sudsing soap.  There will be bubbles, but not anywhere near what you are used to.  Don’t be alarmed!  Your clothes are still clean!  If you want liquid or another powder recipe, a simple search will find you tons!

So for drying, I only have the one drying rack pictured above at the moment.  I’ve been trying to get my husband to build me one, but it will probably be a while.  As soon as the warmer weather hits (and I mean above 0 for a few days!) we’ll be fixing the clothes line outside so I can take advantage of the sun.  But I have been hanging all shirts on hangers in the bathroom and that’s been working really well.

Take a look at that link and let me know how much you could save on your laundry!

ps.  I do about 12 loads a week!  (I’m drowning in laundry!)

 

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