Wednesday, January 23, 2013

A Lemony Quick Tip

Do you have some lemons that you will not be able to use before they start to go bad? Well here is a quick tip that you might like. Wash them thoroughly and then dry with a paper towel. Slice them up and place them right into a Ziploc freezer bag. Pop them into your freezer. Now you have a slice of lemon to add to you water for a refreshing drink. Or a slice of lemon to freshen up your garbage disposer, use a slice to rub onto your wooden cutting boards to neutralize the odor after cutting onions or garlic. I also use mine to wipe down the counters for a quick anti bacterial clean without chemicals. You can also put a few into a small saucepan with water and set it on a low heat setting to freshen up your house. So there you go, a quick tip that will keep you from throwing away those leftover lemons.

Friday, January 18, 2013

My Current Schedule

When I wrote the word schedule I couldn't help but laugh because it is hardly a schedule but merely a goal I have set for how I want each day to go. Here it is:

6:00 am - Bible reading and personal prayer time
7:00 am - get myself ready for the day
7:30 am - get the kids dressed and ready for the day
8:00 am - make breakfast
9:00 am - eat breakfast with the kids
9:30 am - clean up time, kids play time
10:30 am - run errands if needed or make shopping/to do lists
12:00pm - make/eat lunch
12:30 pm - kids down for nap, lay down for quick rest with baby, the older kids play quietly
1:00 pm - school time with the girls
2:00 pm - free time for kids, work on chores and laundry catch up
3:00 pm - Bible reading/song/prayer time with the kids
4:30 pm - kids read quietly or play outside while I start dinner
5:30 pm - dinner time
6:30 pm - showers (on Tuesdays & Fridays) or family fun time, reading books or playing games
7:00 pm - bed time for kids

Well there you have daily schedule. In the evenings I try to do the dinner dishes but usually the baby wants me to hold her all night. So I usually sit in my rocking chair playing with my sweet girl until she falls asleep. It's important to have daily goals so that I can accomplish the necessary things every day, especially time with the Lord.

I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me.
Proverb 8:17

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Here it is again...Easy Green Chile with BONUS Tortilla Recipe

Pork Green Chile
1 large onion chopped
4-6 cloves garlic minced or crushed
2 Tbsp olive oil
3 lbs lean pork cut into bite sized pieces
salt and pepper (do not add too much)

Add above ingredients to a large pot and cook until golden brown

1 large can of diced tomatoes with juice
6 diced green chiles (adjust to desired heat)
6 cups water
chicken bullion cubes (enough for 6 cups broth)

Add to pot. Bring to boil, cover and set on medium low heat for 45 minutes. Then add a mixture of flour and water to thicken to desired consistency. Return to heat for 15 minutes or until thickened.

While you are waiting for 45 minutes to pass why not whip up some homemade tortillas.

Flour Tortillas
3 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder

Mix together well.

3 Tbsp oil  
OR 3 Tbsp & 1/2 tsp of lard 
(if using wheat flour increase amount of oil/lard used by 1 Tbsp)

Mix thoroughly into flour mixture by hand. Add 1 cup VERY hot water. With care mix with your hands until dough forms and knead for a few minutes. Cover and let dough set for 5-10 minutes. While this is setting you can warm up your skillet or pan on medium heat. You will have to adjust the heat setting based on your own cook top. Things that you might want to consider: is your burner large or small? how hot will you pan get if left on the burner for the duration of rolling and cooking each tortilla? Personally I always end up turning the temp down when I get into cooking the tortillas. 

Now that your pan is warm and your dough is set you can divide it up into little balls. You make them the size that your prefer. Something to think about is the size of your pan. Now you are ready to roll out your tortillas. Cover the balls of dough your are not using. And while you are learning just focus on rolling one at a time and cooking one at a time. I remember watching my grandma while she made tortillas. It was impressive! She used all 4 burners and rolled out her tortillas perfectly round. But that was after 40+ years of making them. :)

When do I decide to flip the tortilla?...well that is for you to decide. Some like their tortillas with little brown specks, while others prefer theirs a little less cooked. If you mess up...the burned ones will taste alright with cinnamon, butter, & sugar. 

These two recipes go together like peanut butter and jelly. Once you make your own fresh tortillas it is hard to go back to anything store bought! People will give you compliments on your delicious green chile & tortillas...and you can take all the credit :)


Monday, January 7, 2013

A yummy discovery...

A couple months ago I received a cookbook called, The $5 Dinner Mom Cookbook. I really like her recipes. They are simple to prepare and I haven't tried one that our family didn't like. One of my favorite recipes in her cookbook is BBQ Lentils. I have made a new discovery, I LOVE LENTILS! I have made lentil soup in the past, but I did not know that there is a whole lot more that you can do with them. I double the recipe for my family and we have the leftovers for another meal! Here it is...

BBQ Lentils
1 cup red or green lentils
1 cup BBQ sauce
1 Tbsp brown sugar or honey
1 clove garlic, crushed

In a saucepan bring to a boil, lentils, 3 cups of water. Simmer for 20+ minutes until the lentils are soft. After they are fully cooked mix in BBQ sauce, brown sugar/honey, and crushed garlic. Simmer for a few more minutes.

These lentils are great on top of a bed of rice with a side of acorn squash. The best part about this recipe is that it is VERY inexpensive. Brown rice and lentils together are a complete protein source, add squash on the side and you have a complete nutritious meal to serve your family. Hope you enjoy this recipe as much as our family!

Sorry I do not have a picture, I gobbled them down before I remembered to take one!

Friday, January 4, 2013

Homemade Christmas...

This year the kids received all homemade gifts from my husband and I. I made all of the girls some cute little diapers for their babies with a matching diaper bag and ring sling. I also made Silas a beard and Donnie built him a wooden pulpit. The kids love their gifts. Don't you know little girls dream of being a little mama? Maybe one day Silas will even be a preacher. My husband and I embrace this dreaming. It is great to see them pretending. 

Hosanna wearing Guiny's ring sling

I made each of them 3 dolly diapers

One small diaper for Guiny's "smaller" baby

Christmas morning...look at that grin!
So happy!