Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Healthy "Instant" Potatoes

Here they are! The potatoes are mostly dried. I had a few trays that I had to turn the potato "sheets" over to finish drying the other side, but I wanted to show you the ones I did get finished. I have to say that this is what I will be doing this fall instead of digging a root cellar:-)
The peeled/chopped potatoes are soaking in cold water with fresh squeezed lemon juice to preserve the whitish color of the potato.

Pot is ready for cooking! This is my largest stockpot filled to nearly the brim with chopped potatoes

Cooked and mashed potatoes spread on unbleached parchment paper and placed on the dehydrator trays


Isn't this the coolest thing you've ever seen??!! lol!

Here are three trays all powdered up and ready for storage!
The first "half" of my new shelving my husband built me last night! There will be another section made tonight that attaches to this making it a double depth shelving system. We had a good laugh about this shelf  because when he brought it in the house it stood up all nice and straight all by itself!!!! It didn't fall apart or anything!! lol! My husband is NOT a carpenter so we were right proud of his "carpentry" skills....lol!!
Doesn't all that food just make you feel warm and "fallish" all over?? It does me!! I'm glad the first round of many to come is over, but this inspires me to be diligent and get all those shelves, and the ones to come, nice and full for winter! Three more bushels of corn to do this week before Saturday's market, so I'd better go get all my other work done...lol! Happy-Fall-is-around-the-corner-Day!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Little Red Hen Monday

The canning season has hit! 

In some ways I am glad it's here, but in many others I wish it would go away tomorrow...hahaha! I have found some ways to simplify things by using my dehydrator more so that has made quite a difference. Today I have canned 19 jars of apple/peach butter, 11 jars of black bean and corn salsa, and five jars of tomato soup. I have two 5 gal. buckets of canning tomatoes on the way so this was an easy day!

Doesn't this look SOOOOO yummy??

Black bean and corn salsa...all of it came right from my garden, even the black beans!Oh, I know I only have 9 jars in the picture...two more were still in the canner:-)

Apple/Peach butter
Last weekend's food processing was much easier than this weeks...I only had to put up a bushel of corn:-) Easy! LOL! Well, this year it was "easy" so to say. This year I did it WAY different. All I did was shuck it, cut it off the cob, put it in the dehydrator, and whalla! All done!

My bushel of corn fit into a 1/2 gallon jar and one quart jar:-) You want to talk about saving space in both pantry and freezer??? THIS IS IT! Oh, the little bit of dried green beans you see there are about two gallons of beans:-) Those are super easy too!

If you want to use your corn (or beans) simply place the amount you want to use in a bowl, cover with water, let them sit at room temp until they are completely rehydrated, plump, succulent, and ready to cook for eating! The corn tastes just like you sliced it off the cob and the green beans don't have that AWFUL freezer taste or slimy canned taste! They just taste FRESH!

What's really neat about doing things this way is that you preserve the vital nutrients and minerals in the food. Now, some things have to be canned for "survival" food purposes, I get that, but if it can be dried, then by all means, DRY IT!

Since I'm about to wrap up the last bit of canning for today, I have a couple gallons of potatoes that I am going to turn into healthy dehydrated Instant potatoes! STAY TUNED!

Happy Little Red Hen Monday!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

16 months old!

"Helping" clean up his mess!

Taking a wagon ride with Addy and CJ

Climbing in his favorite chair

This is truly Caleb's chair! If you're sitting in it, he'll come over and pull on you to get out, climb up and sit down for a minute, climb back out of the chair and go his way. If you sit down in it again, he'll come back, fuss at you to get out of the chair and repeat the process! He has totally claimed it and he's sticking by his guns....lol!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Happy Fourth of July!

Yes, I know...it's not the fourth, but here's some pictures from our fun day!
Swimming pool time!

So thankful the Lord provided something for the kids to cool off in!

Shopping at the Columbus market while the kids played games at the School with the precious people from Crossroads!

Love my farmer friends!

Dad and the blueberry man:-) oh, and his squash "wilson" that a farmer gave him...they even drew a face and hair on him and Dad brings him to market every week! LOL!

JD having fun on the rides!

Audrey, Adalyn, and their friend, Emmalyn "swinging" around!

Adalyn and Karrington are getting ready for the fireworks in Mooresboro!

Late Night = unhappy baby:-)

Enjoying being "mommied" by Kylie - our little mother to all the babies:-)

Mommy and her baby!

Daddy and Caleb sleeping while the fireworks were exploding overhead...men can sleep anywhere, anytime!!

We had a great time and enjoyed getting to have our good friends, The Elliott kids, join us for the day while their parents were out of town celebrating their anniversary! Such a fine bunch of kids and they were such a help and blessing that day! We truly have a great country and I'm looking forwards to studying American History this year with both girls in school using this awesome curriculum https://www.thelearningparent.com/products.asp?cat=27&product=22 called "The Mighty Works of God - Divine Providence, Liberty and Justice for All, and Self-Government". This is something that I can do with both girls and I'm very happy about that!! They will also be using Presidential Penmanship from this same site together as well and I think that they will enjoy learning about their Presidents and Country while perfecting their handwriting skills.

It is mind-boggling to realize that it is July 9th and that our school is is quickly approaching AGAIN! We're going to do things a little differently this year with our school calendar. We're going to revolve it around the Harvest/putting up food season this year to make it a little easier for Momma to do both:-) We'll start school in August and go straight through until March and then stop for Mar. April, and May to do planting and take any little trips that we can before the spring butchering comes. Then start school again in June and go till August when all the tomatoes and stuff come in, resume in September, and then go from there! Just something a little different this year, so we'll see how it goes! Caleb is a little more flexible now that he is walking everywhere so he's more content to entertain himself than before:-)

Speaking of July, it's now "CHRISTMAS IN JULY" in this house! We start listening to our favorite Christmas CD's (which my husband so sweetly loaded into Media player so that I can listen all day!!) and planning our Christmas Cards and making our lists to begin working on our Christmas gifts! I know people think it's CRAZY to think about Christmas in July, but when it's been nearly 100 degrees all of June and all of July so far, thinking about Christmas just makes you feel cooler, SO I DO! LOL! September through January are my absolute most favorite months of the year! I LOVE winter!

I hope you all had a great time of fellowship together this Fourth of July and we must not take that privilege lightly! Our current Administration has shown quite well that it is against anything that promotes "Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness" and we must NOT take what we have for Granted! My husband and I spent time reading the Declaration of Independence and thanked our God for those men who were willing to pledge their lives, families, and fortunes for freedom for ALL men, even freedom for men to oppose their beliefs. All but two of those men died penniless and many of them lost their entire families as well. Such sacrifice! I am thankful for them and I hope and pray that if the time comes again for such sacrifice that we, as Americans, will have the same courage to do the same! God Bless America!