Tag: baking

Fall is Finally Starting!

Hey Everyone!

The cool off has begun, the days and nights are starting to be cooler (for the most part), the days are getting shorter (sunset is now before 7:45 pm), the light looks different, the air is starting to smell different, some of the leaves are starting to turn. While we are still having a few hot days here in early September, we are officially in early fall here!

Over the weekend, I went out to one of the farm stores on Sauvie Island with my parents to pick up some beets and whatever else looked good.

Over the weekend, we did some cooking and I made pumpkin pies. One regular and one dairy free. This is my dairy free pie:

My mom and I canned pickled beets yesterday;

And today I did some gardening. I also saw a perfect spider web.

We have so many tomatoes now.

I am so ready for autumn to really be here in full force.

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Best Weekend I have had all Year!

Hey Everyone!

This weekend has been quite relaxing.

Yesterday I spent the day doing home stuff, and basically whatever I wanted to do. I washed a pair of socks and put it out to dry.

I had also rewashed a bulky shawl because it had gotten super stretched out, so I have been letting it dry and shaping it as it dries. It is still damp even though I washed it yesterday, but it is holding the shape I want it to have better.

Yesterday I also did some gardening and some cooking and baking. Last night for dinner I had cooked some quinoa, then added it to some spinach and tomatoes that I was sautéing up in some olive oil seasoned with some salt, garlic and lemon juice. It turned out super good. I also had a side of roasted rosemary garlic potatoes on the side.

I had also made a batch of cherry brownies for dessert.

I have really been enjoying a few days of knitting and Homemaking to my hearts content, and it is really making me want a place of my own again. A place that I can make my own, and have my own kitchen. I want a big garden to grow fruit and vegetables, a place to be able to make meals for a family of my own, as well as having friends over.

So yeah, I have been thinking a lot about what I want my future to look like and what I need to do to make it happen. It is not going to be easy, but making it happen will be so worth it.

I don’t need anything fancy or extravagant, I definitely prefer simple and putting the hard work in to be able to gain practical skills that I can then pass on and share.

This is a Homemakers Summer

Hey Everyone!

The summer heatwave is still raging in full force. With that heat and in some areas strong wind, the wildfires that are burning, are continuing to burn hot and fast.

I have some friends who live in Redding, and have evacuated where they live due to the Carr fire. They have left town for a long weekend, taking their important documents and a few personal possessions. They don’t know what they will find when they go back, or it they will still have a home. Out here in the west we have wildfire season and we have the occasional earthquake. Most areas around here, are in summer burn ban mode with the exception of those camping in one of the campgrounds along the coast, but even there they are restricted. This summer has been so hot and dry.

Beings that it has been so dry, I have taken to watering the garden regularly. There has been a lull in the amount of raspberries I have been getting the past couple of weeks. Today I finally got a pint of berries, which I am hoping is a sign that the second crop is coming on.

Today I also baked three loaves of zucchini bread. One chocolate and two regular.

My mom had gotten a large zucchini squash from one of her coworkers, so I made zucchini bread with it. That one zucchini made all three loaves.

Over the past few days, I have been keeping an eye on the tomatoes that are growing in the garden. There are finally tomatoes on the vines and a few of them are huge for cherry tomatoes. They just need to ripen up.

I also finished up this pair of socks this week.

I got them washed and blocked today. I washed and blocked today, beings that it is still hot outside.

I am working on getting as many pairs of socks knit up this summer, and get them washed and blocked while the weather is warm to hot.

There Comes a Point in Life

Hey Everyone!

Today I really wanted to make brownies today. I made gluten free vegan cherry brownies.

I have also been rewatching Grimm and working on my knitting. Between Grimm and a short stretch of cooler weather is making me Autumn to be here so bad.

Grimm has been one of my favorite shows since it started back in 2011. I own all 6 seasons on DVD, so I am rewatching it from the beginning. It reminds me of Fall and Winter because most of of it aired during fall and winter. There are also scenes that were filmed during fall, which is my favorite season.

A few of scenes from the first episode of the first season were filmed not far from where I grew up.

When the weather cools off a bit I want to get out hiking again. While it is hot, I am trying to get socks finished and ready for cold weather and hiking. This past week I picked out the yarn I intend to use to knit up the next twelve pairs of socks, once I finish up the two pairs I have going.

The past few days I have been out exploring the city a bit, and kind of getting a feel for other parts of the city. There are areas, that I could see myself settling down in, granted I could find a good job. That is the crazy thing. For so long I have been trying to leave, because where I am at right now isn’t working for me. Now, there is a part me me, that if I could find a job here, and move to one of these areas I have fallen in love with, that is more me and the kind of life I want to live, I would stay.

Pioneer Girl

Hey Everyone!

The story of my life this week has pretty much been knitting, working outside in the garden and reading in the evenings.

I have typically been going out in the late afternoon / early evening to check on the raspberries and the other plants in the garden area we have. I got the lettuce planted earlier in the week, and it seems to be taking really well. I prefer going out a little later, while the sun is still up so I am not out in the heat of the day, especially on the hot days. This week in and of its self has not been too bad to be outside working around.

With what little gardening I am doing where I am at, it is giving me a little taste of what gardening is like, and it is making me want a place of my own with some acreage, so I can have a nice big fruit and vegetable garden in the backyard, a flower garden out front. I would love nothing more than to have fresh homegrown organic berries and vegetables all summer long.

This evening my mom and I had gone for a walk, so I got even more fresh air and time outside in the lovely summer evening breeze. If all summer evenings were like this evening, I would actually enjoy summer. I would enjoy spending part of my day outside in the garden, as well as time inside cooking, baking and using the fruit and vegetables that I brought in from the garden in the evening meal for that day.

As much as the raspberry bushes scratch up my arms and hands, and it does get hot working around outside, the one thing that really gets me are the mosquito bites. Not only are they itchy and annoying, but they also carry the possibility of disease. I am not really a fan of mosquito repellant, the last time I used any was like twelve years ago when I had gone to Missouri. I have taken to wearing a long sleeve shirt and an old pair of jeans to help protect my arms and legs from getting all scratched up from the raspberry bushes, mosquito bites and from getting sunburned. I would rather be a bit hot than deal with the other three.

Earlier this week I started wearing my Carhartt baseball cap when I went out go garden earlier in the week, to help keep the sun out of my eyes and to keep the part in my hair from getting sunburned. Today I actually put sunblock on my face, chest, and arms since I had noticed that I had gotten a bit of sun on my chest yesterday and it was a bit red. While I love being outside and getting fresh air, I am also trying to protect my skin from sun damage.

Making my own citronella candles to have burning while I am out working in the yard and garden is totally on my homesteading bucket list. My homesteading bucket list also includes things like baking my own bread at least weekly, making my own sourdough bread and rolls from scratch, making my own rosemary potato rolls from scratch, raising chickens (both laying hens as well as chickens for eating), having a freezer full of fish and meat (like venison, moose, elk and such) preceding each winter. I would also love to have a cold room full of home canned fruit, green beans, tomato sauce.

Why do it myself when they have all of that at the grocery store? let me tell you something, when it comes to things like canned fruit and store bought baked goods, the store bought has nothing on the flavor of home canned. Yes, it is a lot of work but is part of the point. I have always loved home canned peaches, pears, cherries, garlic dill pickles, as well as homemade bread, cookies and homemade food in general. It is also better for you. I also love being tired at the end of the day after working hard throughout the day.

I am also one of those people who likes knowing where my food comes from and seeing where my food was raised or grown. That is one of the many things I like about living in the Pacific Northwest, we have the right kind of climate that is perfect for growing everything I like to eat, and if it isn’t grown in the state, it is grown in one of the neighboring states. I am all about supporting local as much as possible.

I do appreciate living in the 21st century for many reasons, food quality and dependence on a grocery store are not two of them. I have heard and read the stories about my great grandmothers and grandmothers and all they did from scratch. One set of my great-grandparents were homesteaders for awhile, while they were raising many of their nine children, and I know that another of my great grandmother’s was an avid gardener, so I come by it naturally. I also grew up learning how to can and make somethings from scratch. I have loved working outside, growing things in the ground, playing with dirt, getting dirty, doing things like gardening, fishing, canning, cooking and baking from scratch ever since I was a little girl.

Being able to be self-sufficient and know how to live off the land, and do what used to be simple things, like making a meal completely from scratch, for many in my generation seems like a lost art when it was the norm in the past century. I would love nothing more than to expand on what I already know, and then share what I know with others who are interested in it, but don’t really know where or how to get started.

 

Cabin Fever; The saga continues

Hey Everyone!

2018 has been a rough one so far for illness. I am sick for the third time this year and we are really only 2 months into the year.

All I want is to be healthy again and some half way decent weather so I can go hiking again.

The conditioning cream and the insoles I bought for my hiking boots came today, so I was able to condition my new hiking boots this afternoon, since they are full grain leather. I definitely want to protect them and have them last as long as possible.

Even though I am sick, today has been productive. I got some laundry done, and got my boots conditioned. I have gotten several blog posts written on a couple of my blogs, including this post. I have also been looking for a job.

Today has already been a two cup of tea day, and is about to be a three cup of tea day.

I will be giving essential oils a try here in the near future, to see if they help me stay healthy, help with my allergies and with stress. I am going to be trying a few blends.

I have too much going on this month to be sick again. I have a ladies retreat in a couple weeks that I will be attending as well as a concert the weekend after and I want to fit in at least a couple hikes before Oregon Spring Break.

I have also been sorting through some stuff, and seeing what I can get rid of, especially of things that don’t fit right or don’t fit period and I won’t wear. I am also trying to simplify what I have, with the exception of a few decorative things (even that I am trying to keep simple), I am trying to not have excessive amounts of material things that I don’t really need. If it is something functional, that I am currently using (or will for sure use when I move out on my own again) I am keeping it for now, but other things are just taking up needless space.

While I have no burning desire to living in a tiny home, I would rather live on acreage, with a modest farmhouse, bungalow or cottage, than a big house in the city. The one thing I would like though is a kitchen with decent counter space so I can have room to cook and bake, as well as a table that can seat several people, for family gatherings and such.

Slowly Recovering

Hey Everyone!

I am still slowly recovering from the second cold I have had this month. I am feeling better than I was over the weekend, and was feeling great yesterday. I definitely over did things yesterday while feeling so much better.

Today I have definitely been trying to take it easier and not push myself like I did yesterday.

The power had gone out for a bit earlier today. I had been working on a post earlier today while the power was out that I scrapped, and started over.

Yesterday I had decided to bake some gluten free vegan shortbread cookies, which had turned out amazing.

I love getting to use my Scottish Thistle cookie stamp. I had ordered it over a year ago, because I had wanted to try making the Bob’s Red Mill gluten free shortbread cookie mix and I have gotten plenty of use out of since.

I got a package from KnitPicks yesterday so I had wound up the bulky yarn I had gotten (one of the many things I did yesterday), and I had cast on a shawl, so now I have plenty of knitting projects going to keep me occupied while I continue getting over this cold.

On the Go day after day

Hey Everyone!

Since Thanksgiving, life has been going non stop. 3 weeks of full on, full force going and doing. The past three weeks have flown by.

Yesterday I had another interview, which I thought went well, but I have to wait and see a bit to find out if I got it.

After my interview I had gone for a little drive to clear my mind a bit. Afterward I ran a couple errands. I had stopped at Bob’s red mill, picked up a couple baking mixes, before stopping at the grocery store to pick up my brother’s Christmas present and a few other items.

I had work this morning. I even slept for a few hours since I got home, but I am still exhausted.

I had one of my orders of yarn arrive this morning while I was asleep, so I opened it up this afternoon.

The darker yarn is a worsted weight yarn, that has more yards per hank, while the off white / cream colored yarn is a bulky yarn that has fewer yards per hank (hence more hanks).

I have been enjoying being able to work on different knitting projects. I have a lot of yarn and so many ideas of what I want to make with it all. I am still working on socks, but I am also in a shawl mode as well.

As I sit here writing this, I have a batch of gluten free dairy free brownies in the over and it is overcast outside.

Rough Week

Hey Everyone! 

This week has been a tough week. There has been tragedy that has hit myself and many others I know. 

With that being said, I am drained.

I am not going to focus on the negative stuff, so I will share with you the good stuff that happened this week. 

Thursday I made my mom her birthday pie, since her birthday is this month. I made her a cherry cream cheese pie. 


Thursday I also picked up a few more Christmas ornaments and decoration-y things. While I am more of a Merida / Brave fan as far as Disney Princesses go, I already have a Merida, an Aurora and a Pocahontas ornament, I got a Cinderella ornament to add to my collection. I also got the last 3 ornaments I had seen at work that I liked. I also had picked up a string of clear mini lights, as I had picked up a fake garland with fake berries on it as well as a string of wooden snowflakes that I plan to use on a mantle or entertainment center. 


The past few days I have been working on knitting up more socks and trying to work on getting up as much of the sock yarn I have knit up as soon as I can. 

It’s too Early to put up Christmas Decorations

Hey Everyone!

This weekend I have been hearing a lot of people I know, primarily on social media, talking about how they want to put up their Christmas decorations or that they want to decorate for Christmas.

I’m over here like “Noooooooooo, it’s to early for Christmas decorations” and “I am already so over looking at Christmas decorations”. For the past two months I have been working a seasonal job in the retail industry, and we have been working on setting up our Christmas shops in store since mid September, so I am at a point already where I am over looking at decorations before the season has already begun.

This past week was crazy busy, first time I worked 5 days in nearly a month, and as Christmas is approaching it is only getting busier.

I have been sleeping a lot this week when I haven’t been working.

Yesterday I helped baked some cookies that I cannot eat since they have dairy, eggs and gluten, but it was fun.

Today I finished up a pair of sock I have been working on for the better part of a month. I had hoped to have these socks done and washed by Halloween, but that didn’t quite happen. At least they are done now, well besides the washing, blocking and drying part. I am waiting on a sunny semi warm day in order to put my socks out on the line to dry.