|My grandfather's family and farm early 1900's|
Photo: Great grandparents at their farm in Blandinsville, IL, with five of their six children .. my grandpa was yet a twinkle in grandma's eye. Stable boy and governess also pictured. Hodges farm, circa 1903-4
Saturday, March 31, 2012
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
|new shelves for storage|
I recently purchased a 'Grandpa Jake's Campfire Cooker for Dutch oven/outdoor cooking .. and can't wait for our fire pit to dry out to try my hand at outdoor cooking.
|sprouted wheat drying|
The 'old' skills are still being practiced and have now become routine; that's what happens when you practice, practice .. and practice.
Hubby retires next year so we are getting 'ready' to live on his pension. Paying off all debt has been our major goal as we enter this new phase of life. With all of the uncertainty in the world, we don't want to have the added stress of a mortgage hanging over our heads after retirement. Earlier this month we said goodby to Wells Fargo Bank and house payments. In a few days it will 'hit' me when I don't have to write THAT check any longer. Oh, don't worry .. we got hit with a tax bill to take its place after losing some tax deductions last year (daughter moving out .. no more school tuition payments .. little mortgage interest) .. it's going to take a bit of 'mental' adjustment to equate more tax with outgoing payments that could be written off. I think we will still be ahead of the 'game' once I wrap my mind around the idea :)
Our storage room is coming along with the addition of new heavy duty shelving. Each individual (new) shelf holds about 1500 pounds of weight .. so it is perfect for heavy canned goods. Our extra kitchen gadgets now have a place that can be easily accessed. And all of my canning jars are neatly stacked in their original boxes by size. Most of the year our storage room is in the 50's F .. summer in the low 60's F, which is perfect for storing garden seeds and canned goods. It's also windowless .. so nice and dark keeping potatoes from sprouting.
What new/old basic skill have you recently mastered or are working on?
Friday, March 16, 2012
Wednesday, March 14, 2012
Our family enjoys waffles for breakfast so I often make a large batch and freeze the extra for midweek. My go-to recipe has the additional step of whipping egg whites .. which on frenzied weekday mornings, makes me rethink making them. I recently found a recipe that omitted this step .. and produces a great tasting waffle, from the 1887 White House Cookbook, it's called ~ Continental Hotel Waffles. Doing a little research about this hotel, I have come to the conclusion that it's the same place now called, The Willard Intercontinental.
"A most celebrated historic Washington DC hotel, the Willard InterContinental Washington, has been the focal point for elegant dinners, meetings, and gala social events for more than 150 years. An institution, this grand Washington DC historic hotel has hosted almost every U.S. president since Franklin Pierce in 1853."
Here's the recipe ~
Put into one quart of sifted flour three teaspoonfuls of baking-powder, one teaspoonful of salt, one of sugar, all thoroughly stirred and sifted together; add a tablespoonful of melted butter, six well-beaten eggs, and a pint of sweet milk (fresh milk); cook in waffle-irons, heated and well-greased. Serve hot.
Saturday, March 10, 2012
To preserve brooms: Dip them for a minute or two in a kettle of boiling suds once a week and they will last much longer, making them tough and pliable. A carpet wears much longer swept with a broom cared for in this manner. (I'm sure this is meant for natural brooms)
To Ventilate a Room: Place a pitcher of cold water on a table in your room and it will absorb all the gases with which the room is filled from the respiration of those eating or sleeping in the apartment. Very few realize how important such purification is for the health of the family, or, indeed, understand or realize that there can be any impurity in the rooms; yet in a few hours a pitcher or a pail of cold water - the colder the more effective - will make the air of a room pure, but the water will be entirely unfit for use.
|Home of my great grandparents, Osmond, Nebraska|
To prevent lamp wicks from smoking: Soak them in vinegar, and then dry them thoroughly.
Selected from: The Original White House Cookbook, 1887 Edition
Fresh air is a must in our homes .. especially during the winter. Prior to electricity, when wood or coal was used to heat, and oil lamps gave light, indoor air quality was very poor. Homes were not built as air tight as modern homes, so there was some exchange of outside air. Our modern homes are very air tight making it important to have good ventilation. Keeping a window cracked at night when the furnace is not cranked up .. will sometimes suffice. At every opportunity, you should air out your home for the health of your family.
Thursday, March 08, 2012
Two days this week I was away from home all day long. Eating out .. even being careful .. has led to food allergies (hives) .. so it's nice to be back in the kitchen making our own food. I've even noticed inflammation in my hands from not so stellar food ingredients. Our food system in the U.S.A. is pretty doomed unless you go above and beyond the fare offered in the general market/restaurant.
Have a blessed day!