Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Be The Change

My favorite meal of the day is breakfast.  Mainly because it's my husband's specialty.  But also because it's just so darn good.  My sister and I were leafing through Country Living Magazine yesterday and she was drooling over the breakfast served in this article.  It features sausage, pancakes, and Maple Pecan Butter.  Want to know what excites me most about this menu?  I can raise everything I need for the entire meal here on the farm.  When I look at a recipe I think, "Do I have everything I need to make it already at home?"  That's the beauty of self sufficiency and one of my main goals for our farm. 

Last year we planted a small nut grove and this spring we plan on adding Sugar Maples to the farm and Heritage Hogs.  We have milk for the butter and we have planted wheat to make the pancakes.  Yes, it will take a long time for the trees to grow large enough to produce nuts and sweet syrup but we have to start sometime. 

We want to leave our children with the resources and the knowledge on how to provide for themselves in the future and not just financially.  Times have changed and it's vital to know where your food comes from and how to obtain it.  I joke that I don't want to be Amish (they are fabulous people but I love my technology too!) yet I grew up watching Little House on the Prairie and find knowledge there not just entertainment (my kids also love to watch it).  I believe it's important for young men to know how to hunt for food, start a fire and of course do dishes & laundry.  (That's right we will arrange a marriage for a price.  Joking!!!  I'm a believer in TRUE LOVE).

My boys got the cutest book from a ChickFilA meal a few months ago and I just love it. In the book it's the farmer's birthday and all of the animals are excited about what they can give the farmer:  cow-milk, sheep-wool, pig-sausage, hen-egg, horse-pulling wagon, dog-friendship.  I believe that's what God intended; for us to give the animals a happy life and that they in turn want to give back to us.

What's your favorite recipe and how can you start becoming self sufficient by producing all that's in that recipe?  Salsa is a great place to start or salad because all you need is a small spot on your balcony or backyard to grow all you need for just a few dollars worth of seeds or plants.  I hope your winter days are spent dreaming of small differences you can make in your life that will affect the next generation.  It doesn't even have to be food related.  It could be trying to live more green, starting the habit of an hour a day just talking to your child without the distraction of handheld electronics, calling a good friend once a week.....These practices will all affect your future and your childs.  I'll close with one of the most common sayings you'll hear but it's so true:

Be The Change You Want To See In The World.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Inside Scoop: What's in the farmgirls make up bag?

As the granddaughter of beauticians I've been wearing lipstick and painting my nails (to coordinate my outift) since I was a toddler.  I've toned down over the years (Hallelujah!) but still don't like to leave the house without lipstick & mascara on.  As a farm girl I've got a few other suprises in my make up bag.  This is my current favorite lipstick from Loreal.  Take this fun quiz to see what your lipstick shape says about you.

I have another favorite lipstick that is suited especially for my skin color.  A couple of years ago I read Color Me Beautiful to determine what colors look best with my skin coloring.  You can buy the product colors to suit you here.

I had to buy this lip balm when I saw it at the feed store.  I really love this product!  All natural, pretty local to me (Wichita, KS) and invented by a woman!!!!  I'm seriously considering getting the bumper sticker.  Check out I Love Chicken Poop.

Pretty pill box, lip gloss, black eyeliner, mascara, favorite earrings and broken bracelet I can't seem to part with.  What's that on the far right you say???

My handy dandy pocket knife!!  Yes I use this for opening toys, haybales, you name it.  Well, I don't clean my fingernails with it like a real redneck......

Enjoy your weekend future farmgirls of America.

Monday, January 16, 2012

My Weekend in Pictures (with short descriptions)

I must first let you know that I am in no way a photographer.  Until the iPhone I have been the mom who never had the camera and begged the Good Moms to send me copies.  Hubby had bought me a cool camera I just never knew how to use it.  Still don't.  But I'm determined to learn.

I was tickled pink with delight at this gift of a gorgeous electric butter churner from the sweetest lady at our church.  I cannot wait to make butter!!!!  Thank you Thank you Thank you!!!  Best. Gift. Ever.

My boys play hockey.  Here is a cool shot of one of them going after the puck at a gorgeous outdoor rink.  We had to leave before dark to get there in time for the 8:20 game.  We were late.  And got lost on the way home.  Shhhh don't tell my husband I told you.

Hubby worked on our remodeling project.  Currently my three small boys share a room.  It's very crowded......thus the remodeling of the basement.  Therefore I must clean out all the goodies that are in the basement to make room for construction.  Here are a few of the items I have been gathering to decorate the boys' rooms with.  I have quite the collection started so that means a lot of hard work for me. 

These homemade noodles were super easy to make and tasted better than they look.  I did not take any pictures of the burnt homemade spaghetti sauce or the black garlic bread.  Not kidding. 

I am learning to knit.  I'm terrible!!!  I can crochet but knitting has been hard for me to catch on to.  Luckily I have some very sweet & patient friends who are trying to teach me.  I can't wait until I can use these new knitting needles I got for Christmas without swearing under my breath.

I LOVE to read!  And I usually read several books at once depending on my mood.  I have these by my bedside right now.  I like to read fiction back and forth with books about subjects I want to learn.  I am also back and forth between 2 books on my Kindle that I try to take with me.  I usually read books about financial goals (Suze Orman right now), spiritual, gardening and something fun I want to learn about.  What are you reading?  I'd love to know.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

What's A Girl To Wear

Do you ever watch "Whats Not to Wear?"  The unsuspecting fashion do's & don'ts?  Well I did not name my blog Amusing Provincial (funny farmgirl) for nothing.  While I was not on the show I did have a similar scenario.

Over the past few months my oldest son has been obssessed with trying to get a deer.  Which unfortunately he never did.  However weekends have consisted with accidently washing the camo clothes (who knew they were supposed to stink!), buying expensive deer corn and depoisiting it accordingly.  And moving the Deer Cam around the property.  Last week's shots only included one dear.  Moi.  Unbeknownst to me I was being photographed as I did the chores morning & night.  In my galoshes & flannel pajamas.  In the muck boots with a towel on my just washed hair.  And don't forget the last minute chore run before church of ballet flats and cute scarf.  Luckily for me these photos have already been deleted.  Oh my.

So what's a farmgirl to wear when doing her chores?  During the summer when my full time occupation is to lounge by the pool and weed the garden my must haves to wear are a comfy skirt, a floppy hat and an apron.  Yes sometimes I find myself at an event and look down to see that I have muddy knees, but it's so much cooler.  A hat is essential to keep the sun off your face and hair out of your eyes.  And the apron must have lots of deep pockets to hold eggs and fresh veggies.  Here's my favorite I purchased at a flea market:

Another one that my beautiful mother in law helped me make several years ago is this one that I love to display.

There are oodles of cute looks to copy from Pintrest (follow me!) and I've discovered this fun blog you might enjoy.  And of course one of my favorite places to shop is Junk Gypsy.

You never know what I'll be wearing or wear you might find me (art museum in fabulous block prints, tea house in frilly lace or rowdy restaurant in boots & bling) but home is where I can't wait to get back to.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Oh so yummy butter!

I remember the first time I had real butter.....I was helping a neighbor lady who lived on a dairy farm and she served homemade bread with real butter.  And real Farmers cheese.  Oh so yummy!!!!

I'm having a few girlfriends over tomorrow so this morning I put my hair back in cute scarf fashion and donned my great grandmother's apron - ready to tackle the kitchen. (You wear boots and blue jeans to the rodeo, sweats to the gym, "work clothes" to work don't ya?  Why not dress to cook?) On the agenda: homemade bread and butter.  If you follow me on Pintrest you can easily see that I love both.  (I will have a link to follow me on Pintrest just as soon as I figure out how!)  Even though I have been at it for 4 hours it really doesn't take long to do....just a few simple steps but it takes time for bread to rise and bake and such.  Here is a link to my current favorite bread recipe:  Courtesy Providence Hill Farm  It's super easy and delicous!

My hubby did good this Christmas and bought some items off of my Amazon Wish List.  I got this darling butter mold and a bread basket, garden book and perfume I wanted.  I also got an army blanket and camping plates.  Yes they were on my list but I had them on there for other of these days I'm going Glamping and going to blog about it.  :  ) 

Back to the butter.  I learned how to make this from the sweetest lady I met at Garden Club and I love how easy it is!  All you do is buy some cream from a local dairy.  I do milk goats but they do not naturally have cream that rises to the top like a cow would.  I do have on my Wish List (pay attention honey) a Cream Seperator that would do the trick for my goats milk.  And I would love one of these wooden paddles to use when I make butter.Wooden Spatulas & Paddles

Anyways....Add the cream to your KitchenAid and let it whisk on low about 4 min until it reaches the whipped cream stage.  You can take out half of it if you choose and add sugar & vanilla and top that lattice apple pie you just made.  Or turn up the dial to high for about 10 more minutes and let it do it's thing.  It's extremely messy so I put a towel over mine.  Before you know it you now have butter and buttermilk which can be used for pancakes and lots of yummy things.  Place the butter in a separate bowl and rinse it with cold water.  You may now add any salt or herbs you'd like.  I chose to salt some and put in the butter mold and made Orange Mint Butter with the rest:

                             1 stick butter 
                             2 Tablespoons Honey
                             1 Tablespoon finely chopped fresh mint
                             1 teaspoon orange zest
                             1/4 teaspoon salt

That's it!  The other butter is still in the mold in the freezer but here is what it looks like when we served it at Christmas.

Pretty darn cute, huh?