Monday, October 31, 2011


I just found a neat website that I thought I'd share.  It has a great listing of all the edible berries, mushrooms, and plants that can be found in regions of the northwest.  I've always been very interested in knowing what edible things might be growing every year on our property and in the surrounding forestlands.  Hey, it's free gardening, and you don't have to spend any time planting, weeding, or watering them. ;-)  What's not to love?  Seriously though, I think this is an important subject...someday it may be necessary for folks to forage for their food...and knowing the difference between poisonous plants and the edible ones could be life and death. 

This site has pictures, descriptions and warnings for every single plant on their website.  Pretty neat stuff!

The "V's" Birthdays and Kyle's 1st Gun

We celebrated Valerie's birthday last weekend.  :-)

She went to a Steven Curtis Chapman concert in Seattle.  Steven started the "Show Hope" organization that helps people adopt orphans from all over the world. 

He's an amazing musician, as well as a great singer and songwriter.  I am very thankful for all of the great lyrics to his songs.

This morning we celebrated Victoria's birthday...she wanted chocolate chip waffles for breakfast.

Kyle bought is first shotgun on the same day that Valerie and Mommy went to the concert. 
He was very excited, and is still anxiously waiting to try it out. 

Our Neighbor's Tree

Our neighbors decided it was time for this tree to go.  Their house is right underneath of it, and parts of it had obviously been dead for awhile. 

So they hired a guy to climb up and take it apart, piece by piece.  It was the neatest thing to see!!!

I don't know how those guys do that.  It makes me dizzy just watching him!

Joe's Birthday

It's been awhile since I've blogged hasn't it.  Well, things have been busy, as usual. (Which is no excuse, I know.) 

To sum up our last couple of weeks: 
We all continue to eat cake and ice cream at least once or twice every week and breakfasts that consist of nothing more than sugar and carbohydrates. 
If you know my family, you know why.  :-)

Joe wanted a John Deere themed birthday, which basically means everything has to be green and yellow.  I was unable to make the meal completely green and yellow unfortunately. Green meatloaf? ..ahh don't think so.

It just don't get no cuter!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

What History Has Shown Us

A Bird’s Eye View of the Cycle of Men and Nations:
1. From bondage to spiritual faith
2. From spiritual faith to great courage
3. From great courage to liberty
4. From liberty to abundance
5. From abundance to selfishness (matirialism?)
6. From selfishness/materialism to complacency
7. From complacency to apathy
8. From apathy to dependency
9. From dependency back to bondage.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Granola Bars

I know I know.  It’s been too long since I’ve posted any recipes here.  Here’s one that I tried out yesterday.  These make a great healthy (sorta, they taste almost like a dessert) snack when you’re on the go!  They are also rather versatile, so you can add all kinds of different things to them if you’d like!

Granola bars

2 C. Rolled oats
¾ C. Flour
2/3 C. Brown sugar
½ C  Wheat germ
½ C. Flax seed meal (The recipe didn’t call for this, but I found it on sale for cheap and decided to add it.)
3/4 C. Crispy rice...(recipe didn’t call for this, but found them for cheap and added! Yum!)
¾ tsp cinnamon
¾ tsp salt
¾ C raisins, or some mini choc chips, or dried fruit

½ C. honey
1 beaten egg
½ vegetable oil
2 tsp vanilla

I also added some protein powder, but not a lot since that stuff is expensive and make things taste really weird. :-}

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Generously grease a 9x13 baking pan
2. In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients except last 4.  
3. Make a well in the center of the mixture; add the rest of the ingredients.  
Mix with your hands, and pat into the 13x9 pan.  
4. Bake for 30-35 min, or until golden brown in the edges.  Be sure to cut them several minutes after taking them out of the oven, or they will harden and you will be unable to cut through them! 

They've Lost Their Heads!

…no more chickens to feed!  Yippee!  In fact, now they’ll finally be feeding us! J J
Kyle and I successfully butchered and cleaned 6 of our 7 old hens.   It was a great experience for both of us.  I definitely need to do some more learning about how to easily gut one of those guys.  
At any rate, we’ll all be having plenty of chicken noodle soup in the next few months!

How to Butcher a Chicken

Guess what we’re doing today?

You guessed it…butchering chickens.

We have about a dozen hens that have gone on strike for about a year now, and we figure, that’s quite long enough when you consider how much their “layer” pellets are costing us.  The price of an egg from one of these girls was about enough to drive us all into the poor house, not to mention the extra work and time it takes to clean their coop and feed and water them.  

So, Kyle and I are planning on butchering them and using them for stew hens…if it all goes easily enough.  If not, we’ll just consider it a loss and bury them all somewhere.  

Wish us luck!  J J 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

More pictures

Yummy doughnuts!

Joe swimming at the hotel pool.


Daddy throwing Joe

Leaving Bremerton on the ferry

It was very cold and a little windy at times, but it sure is a very fun ride!

Us girls inside the ferry
One of the guys that worked there on the ferry invited us to come check out the room where all the controls are.  That was really neat!

And here we are at the flight museum! 

TOO CUTE!!!!!!!!!!!


Well, it's been a long, fun weekend.  Our family went to Bremerton for a night and two days to celebrate Joe and Mommy's birthdays.  Of course, the whole family doesn't fit in a hotel room anymore (legally, that is:)  so we always bring our camper and sleep a few of us and a couple of dogs out there when we go on overnight trips.  That's always fun...and admittedly a little chaotic.  :-)

I'm gonna post pictures in two rounds; all of these pictures are from my camera, and the next post will be from my mother's. 

No, these sheep weren't in Bremerton lol.  These next few pics were ones that I took back at Maris Farm but did not get a chance to post yet :-)
These are called Jacob sheep.  Many of them have 4 horns, which makes them an interesting creature.
I LOVE their cute little faces though!!!!

A couple of cute piggies.

These were some neat  multi-colored dairy goats.  Love the spots!

These are the loads of tomatoes that I got this year.  This is probably only a third of what I harvested, canned, left in the garden, and threw out.  What a year!  Just wish I had picked them all before they started rotting :-(
See all the tomatoes that were left in the garden?

Mt. Rainier on the way up to Puyallup

Ready to go! 
He looks like he's up to something doesn't he. ;-)

The first day at the Bremerton hotel was very relaxing.  It was a drizzly day, so we mostly hung out inside the room and watched the History channel and Animal Planet.  Thankfully no one had nightmares of tiger or chimpanzee maulings or snake bites and  snake stranglings.  Personally I enjoyed learning the history of ice cream, BBQ, fast-food, hot dogs and the strategy in the layout of a grocery store.  Now that was reeealy cool. 

The second day, we went to the Boing Museum of Flight.  It is an AMAZING place. 

More to come!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Some More Pictures!

Another couple pictures at Riffe Lake!

We went out to Maris Farm in Puyallup after taking all of those group pictures. 

Kyle was thoroughly enjoying roping his siblings.
He said " I need to get myself one of these!  This is fun!"
I wasn't thrilled with the idea ;-)

The cutest cow I've ever seen!!!!

The cutest pumpkin too!

Back at the train station in Elbe!