Saturday, April 5, 2014

More Grandparents Visit

Shannon's parents, sister, and niece came all the way from Virginia to our house for a week. Grandma brought her bag of sewing tricks to teach the girls.

needle punch is interesting even to Riley

Mom whittling down our mending/altering pile.

Grandpa helped Shannon take down and build fence around the edge of our property.

We slipped in some gametime

and dinner with friends. (We were invited in another home for lunch too, I just didn't take any photos.)

scrumptious chimichangas with fresh cilantro

individual salsa bowls

mozzarella ranch salad

a new take on strawberry shortcake
It was great to have helping hands in our daily work and projects. It was also fun to enjoy a little visiting and making memories at our new place!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Tinker General

The little shed behind our house has been fashioned into a shop. After Shannon has worked two days at a local auto repair shop, he's home for the rest of the week to tinker to his heart's content. 
Sometimes on little jobs...

...sometimes on larger longer projects.

But almost always greasy grimy and a mental challenge.

This car was at least a pretty piece hanging around our backyard!

There are a few perks to the mechanic wife's life. Like taking the various machines for a spin.

The girlies really liked this electric scooter!

Big or small, we take them all
Give Tinker General a call!

Shannon transported the long windmill pole from our old place in Sawyer, with visions of generating power up on the gentle rise at northeast 30th Avenue. 

And fixed the timing on Annie's (my old) sewing machine.

Wait! That's not Tinker General...that's tinker Daddy!

-Gotta love God's gifting in each person-

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

School Days, School Days, Dear Ole Golden Rule Days...

I'm not sure what sparked the idea, but I thought it would be interesting to take a snapshot of the contents in each child's school desk. 

So here's a fun visual of Alexander Riley, grade7

Annie Rose, grade 6

And Caroline Mae, grade 3! -Yikes!-

Science Project.
Annie was gifted with a bath bomb kit quite awhile ago and had never completed it. One day for science class the children made the glittery fizzy flowers.

She has yet to try them in the tub, but Annie says she is going to tonight!

Cora started coloring on an edge (instead of folded) corner, and so created an X instead of a diamond. She is so squirrely! Her mischievousness is starting to appear in snapshots. (This was the most civilized of 4 pictures!)

Leisure Time (schole) Art. Did you know the Greek meaning of school is leisure/free time?!

Caroline and Cora love to paint. Partly because of age and partly personality! Cora is very much into whatever Caroline does, including what she doesn't do. ("Caroline doesn't have to clear off the table!, Caroline didn't put her coat on!", etc., etc., etc.)

It certainly is nice to have something to keep small hands busy and young minds ever-learning!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Recent New Recipes

Annie whipped out a batch of hamburger buns for us one afternoon. We planned to have sandwiches for lunch the next day. For some reason they did not raise up fluffy and light. Come to find out, when she refilled the wheat container, she used barley that was mis-labeled in the basement bulk storage. So we had barley buns! They were actually very buttery tasty, but a bit crumbly.

We filled them with a ground turkey sloppy joe recipe I had clipped from a magazine years ago. (Except with venison substituted for the turkey.) We polished the sandwiches off, but the recipe ended up in the trashcan. We only save the very good or delicious recipes for future use!

Annie also made some crackers to accompany soup for supper one wintry evening. This wasn't a new recipe, but one that I hadn't mixed up for over 10 years (so, similar to 'new', right?). Anyway, Annie had never tried them. I think we may have over-measured the sesame seeds...they were still nutty crunchy yumminess!

Sesame Honey Crackers
1 2/3 c. Flour  
1/3 c. Toasted Sesame Seeds
2 T. Wheat Germ
3/4 tsp. Salt
1/4 tsp. Baking Powder
1/4 tsp. Dry Mustard
2 T. Butter
1/4 c. Milk
3 T. Honey
2 T. Oil
Mix first 6 ingredients. Cut in butter. Then add the rest of the ingredients. Stir well. Divide dough in 1/2. Shape each half in a 2" x 6" log. Wrap logs in plastic wrap. Freeze 1 hour. Slice 1/4" thick. Place on 2 greased baking sheets. Bake @ 400 degrees for 5-6 minutes. Turn over, bake 5-6 more minutes. (Or my easier variation: just bake 12-15 minutes total, no turning.)

Another new recipe we've tasted lately is Indian Curry Chicken over rice. It is tasty! A keeper to add to my personal photo album recipe book. 

Indian Curry Chicken
2 T. coconut oil
1 large onion, diced
4 c. chicken broth
1/3 c. soy sauce
6 T. flour
2 1/2 T. curry powder
1 tsp. ginger powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 c. honey
2 c. shredded squash or zucchini (opt.)
2 c. canned turkey or 4 chicken breasts, chopped

Saute' the onions in coconut oil. (If using raw chicken, add those chunks as well.) When the onions are aromatic and chicken is half-cooked, add the broth and soy sauce. Bring to a simmer. Whisk in flour, curry, ginger, & salt. Simmer until thickened. Stir in honey, squash, and canned turkey. Serve over rice.  Using canned meat and frozen zucchini made this a quick fix (not counting the time it takes for rice to cook). The original recipe called for a larger amount of seasonings & honey, but we found it a bit spicy.

Mmmmm...flavor of food!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

A View of Valentine 2014

The weekend prior to Valentine's Day we were invited to brunch with friends. The table was set so pretty -in- pink!

Valentine's evening Shannon 'picked me up' at 5:30pm for a stroll in the park before a Mexican dinner. He had it all planned and didn't even ask me for preferences (phew! escaped a hard decision)! Below is our Valentine special served.

We arrived home quite early for a date, so chatted in the truck for quite awhile. Upon entering the house, Shannon directed me to the bedroom where a lovely table for two was set with a rich & creamy dessert by the crackling fire! (What a romantic surprise!!)

Caroline added her artistic touch with a dangling sign over our bed
A special night to tuck away in our hearts to remember. 
(And that dessert was YUMMY!)

Later the next week we helped host a homeschool Valentine party.

Annie mixed up sugar cookies to decorate there.

We had a heart chain craft that could be made into a wreath.

A game for the younger children: Blinded By Love...drawing a heart while blindfolded.

Also the candy relay of unwrapping a piece with mittens on.

A season of dainties & pretties
of sweets & sweethearts
of friends & fun!