Sunday, December 19, 2010

Super cute bento!

I just found a super cute site for bento making!  I had no idea what bento was until about three days ago, and now I am in love!  Abby has decided that she wants a bento box for Christmas...  I just wish she could have decided earlier so that I could have ordered her one... 

Now that I have your curiosity peeked, I should tell you what bento is.  Bento is Japanese lunches - a full lunch packed into a tiny little box, and can be very decorative if so desired.  You really should take a minute to look them up.  Go ahead.  I'll wait. 

Back yet?! Cute aren't they!  If you're as amazed at this super cute foodie craft as Abby and I are, you should pop over to for some awesome tutorials and cute pics.  (And the occasional giveaway...  like the super cute bento giveaway going on now!)  Hope you enjoy it as much as we are!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

@#$%*&^ SNOW!!!!!

How on earth do you get stuck in the snow in the middle of town when it stopped snowing over 24 hours ago!  I give this a HUGE WTF for the day.  I had to have my car towed out of 6" of snow in the middle of the road in Glendive today.  The city is "too busy" to plow the side streets.  REALLY?!  I will be sending them a copy of the towing bill, since if they had done their jobs Robin's service wouldn't have had to do theirs.

But anyhow, after all the fun involved in having my car towed, we had Dre's b-day party.  He had a pretty good time, everyone ate cake, and we all enjoyed each other's company for the rest of the night.  Nothing too exciting after the towing.  But, I did get a minuscule amount of Christmas shopping done.  I need to get one more thing for Mike, and just about everything that the kids need.  Why do I always wait for the last week or two to even start my shopping?! I must be nuts! That's my only explanation.

Friday, December 3, 2010

I hate winter.

Really, I do.  Winter blows.  Especially in North Dakota.  As in the wind is always howling across the prairie, snow drifting into my driveway, truck and car both getting stuck anytime we try to leave the house.  And I'll tell you right now it's a dang good thing that I love my husband so much because it's his fault I'm here.  I would be living in Oregon or Washington right now if it weren't for him loving his job and wanting to be close to his family...

Ok, so really it has worked out better this way - we were able to help Cody out when he needed it, can visit with the family when we want and have built an awesome sense of community in living somewhere so... small.  I actually know people who serve on the city council!  I know the mayor!  I know most of my neighbors, and most of the people in my neighborhood!  (None of these things are meant to sound prestigious - everyone can pretty much say the same thing after living here for two weeks.)

The point is, sometimes we need to be happy with mediocrity.  Sometimes good enough just is.  And sometimes we need to look around us and see with open eyes the things we have been missing and taking for granted.  With that being said, I hope that you go out and do something great for someone else today, and in the experience find that it was good for you too.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Stuff I got going on now...

Wow.  It's already December and I haven't posted since May!  I suck again!  But here I am, back again, trying to keep you updated on what goes on here. 

Homemade applesauce... yum!
It was a long summer and fall around here - we (my husband and I) took physical custody of Cody, followed by a court hearing in which we took legal custody of Cody.  (Cody is my youngest brother, youngest sibling)  He spent the summer here with Mike and I and the kids working on projects in and around the house.  We truthfully didn't get all that much done since we were doing a lot of legal business, and working away at our jobs.

Speaking of jobs... I am now working midnights.  Under a different supervisor, at the same place.  And you know what?  This job somehow seems way better now!  Far more tolerable!  Who would have thought that all I needed was to switch from mornings to nights?!

Cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving
As far as food goes, I have been lacto fermenting away some vegetables in my kitchen, and making up buttermilk with real live cultures.  After which I realized that I almost never use buttermilk.  So if anyone has a use for it other than fried chicken, pancakes, waffles or biscuits, PLEASE let me know?  There has to be something I can do to get my family to ingest this stuff!  (And just drinking it is out of the question...)  The lacto fermenting is going great though.  I made my first batch of sauerkraut and far be it for me to gloat, but it is WAY better than what I have been buying at the store!  It is slightly sweet still from the cabbage, yet zesty and zippy like a good kraut should be!  And it was cheap to boot! 

Dill crock - 1st attempt
We've also been making lacto fermented pickles - we had a batch of cukes for Thanksgiving, and a mixed dill crock as well.  It's funny, once I started looking for lacto fermenting recipes I found a few in my cookbooks over and over.  "Euell Gibbon's Dill Crock" was in about 5 of my cookbooks, but one suggested using straight vinegar and salt as the brine... Eewww!  (I should know, it was my first attempt - and my last before buying "Wild Fermentation" by Sandor Ellix Katz)  Let me just say, two books every human should own would be "Wild Fermentation" by the aforementioned Sandor Ellix Katz, and "Nourishing Traditions" by Sally Fallon.  After finding these I started a batch of Kim chi.  I can't wait to try that one out!
Kim chi!!!!

Well, it was a long one, but it's been a long time!  Hope things go well for everyone out there, and blog to ya again soon!
My canning efforts this season - minimal.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Long time again...

So I think at this point it would be fair for me to say that I'm irregular.  And I don't mean constipated.  See, the thing is that I'm just not all that egocentric.  I have no delusions of anyone actually reading all of the crap I put out there.  But I keep on going...  I wonder why?  This is what I have been doing this month...
and then some.  I have worked on several of my UFO's off of Ravelry, harvested a head of lettuce, several more meals worth of chives, moved the lovage to the front garden, planted the chard outside, and who knows what else!  I will say that I was able to go to Miles City to see Cody sing for District music festival... He rocks!  He just got a 1 at state for his solo as well as his ensemble.  And all I can think of is little Cody stadnig on the counter at McD's singing "I Beleive I Can Fly" for free toys...  wow how time flies!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Still loving the food!

So  I saw another person's blog where she had added up her whole harvest for a year so she and presumeably her readers could see what she had gotten for a harvest.  I have decided to do the same.  I plan on going month to month, with a grand total at the end of the year.  So, since I waited till now to do this, I will count the harvest from last month as well.

Sprouts: 6 lbs.
Mushrooms: 1 lb.

So far, so good!  I am hoping to harvest some chives by the end of the month, and next month I hope to have some peppers ready from the hydroponics room.  We are sprout crazy around here, so we have been sprouting alfalfa, lentils, beets, and mung beans.  We use them in eveything from stirfrys to soups to salads.  I didn't know how many different ways there were to use these amazing versitile veggies!

As far as the rest of the house, the girls and I have decided we need new skirts.  Drag out the fabric, drag out the sewing machine!  Hope to have a few done to post pics of this week!  (All of this was brought on by my long lost copy of "Sew What! Skirts")  Can't wait to have something a little different to wear on Sundays!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Food... I love food...

So, along with this growing my own food thing, I have decided to get more into foraging.  It's not as crazy as it sounds - you just eat the delicious things that grow wild in your area!  For example, there is a crap ton of wild asparagus in my area... if I can just get someone to give up the location.  And someone has posted that they had found wild morels around here!  Last year I harvested some wild lambs quarters and sauted them with a little olive oil and garlic.  Mmmmmm!  I have transplanted a stand of chives that had escaped captivity, and am looking forward to eating more of them this year.  The best part is that I don't have to do anything but sit back and let nature grow me a garden!

Along with "nature's garden" I have started to bake again.  Obsesively.  I wish I could tell you why, but it doesn't make sense to me either...  So tonites project was snickerdoodles.  I asked my sister for her recipe, but she sucks and never did send it.  So I went online and found one at, and they turned out pretty darn good according to the one kid who was still up to try them.  I haven't eaten one yet, as my deal is baking but not eating the product.  That's what makes it even more spastic...

Monday, February 22, 2010

New leaf?

So I am really into my whole growing thing right now.  (I can tell it's almost spring!)  But the thing that really has me jazzed today is that my husband chose to go to the grow room without prompting to check on the babies!  I made sure, of course to tell him how very cool I thought that was, and how I am really glad that he likes something that I am into the way I like the things he's into.  I knew that he would never get into knitting, but I am suprised at how much he is getting into growing food!  And on that note, I need to remind you all that I have the coolest hubby in the world.  And that I am very lucky to have him in my life.  Woo hoo!  Now for some plant porn!  I hope you guys like looking at naked plants as much as I do, 'cause there's gonna be a lot of it coming up!
Happy growing to each and every one of you!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

No, I won't grow weed for you!

  So I started growing things hydroponicaly. Rather, I am starting to grow things in a simple deep water culture set up. I am going to grow lettuce and spinach in a small aquaponic setup. This does not mean I will grow weed for you or anyone else. SO STOP ASKING!!!

That being said, I AM growing tomatoes, peppers, tomatillos and cilantro in this setup. So far the peppers have stated growing, the tomatillos are going crazy. The tomatoes aren't quite there yet - coming soon. (I've seen root hairs, no top growth.) This is all a part of me trying to do things more locally. I know I can get honey locally, I have a source of meat, and my father in law makes the worlds best artisan bread. I learned to make cheese, and am venturing out to get the supplies to try more than just ricotta. I have made my own yogurt - I have learned that it IS possible to live about 75-80% locally around here. (Locally to me is within 100 miles.)

I wish I could get a share in a CSA, but that is still a dream from here. So I will work with what I've got and be thankful for all of it! Oh, yeah, and I will try to post more often...