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

Monday, June 24, 2013

18th Century Historical Cooking

I came across this great series of 18th century cooking demonstration videos by Jas. Townsend and Son for those that like alternative methods for off grid cooking.  Enjoy!  The video below shows how to make 'mushroom ketchup' ..

Baked Beans


Sourdough from Leaven

18th Century Meat Pies

You will be able to find MANY more similar videos by the same company from any of these links.

Mucking Things Up

More government control = poorer outcome.  Case in point.  Our son attends a summer camp through a local charitable organization that services people with developmental disabilities.  Most of these clients receive some type of government assistance due to their disabilities.  Until recently the organization set up goals to work on for each client.  Now that EVERY aspect of service is filtered through big brother, the 'goal setting' aspect has been dropped and those attending camp have no goals and are  just 'warehoused' with twaddle to do at camp.  Time to get hopping mad as this is a waste of tax payer's money with no outcome to show for it.  On top of this, I pay a CONSIDERABLE amount of cost share per month for this 'service.'  Sometimes I feel like a salmon swimming upstream.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Nutrition DOES Matter

A few posts ago I wrote about my youngest son's visit to the pediatrician.  Last week we had another visit with a specialist .. hematologist .. blood doctor .. at our local Children's Hospital.  I'm not going to lie that it was easy to walk into this part of the hospital .. the pediatric oncology dept. with beautiful children being treated for cancer.  Our son's white blood count has been dangerously low the past 6 years but has not had the markers of leukemia or cancer.  As a parent my heart was in a very low spot.

So in April I began giving him a few supplements and continued with the farm fresh food.  His test results from this past week's blood draw show a remarkable improvement in his WBC.  It's gone from 2.7 to 4.  Four is the bottom end of NORMAL.  His hematologist does not think a bone marrow test is needed.

The only change:   SUPPLEMENTS ~ fermented cod liver oil, magnesium, a ten day gut cleanse to help eliminate any overgrowth of fungus .. followed by a good probiotic and two essential oils rubbed on his feet at night.

 Diet ~ fresh farm eggs with bright orange yolks.  NO PROCESSED foods .. Lots of organic green cabbage, asparagus, oranges, brown rice, pastured chicken/pork/beef.  Homemade buttermilk/ranch dressing for good gut bacteria.

In two months he's gone from being a lethargic teen to having ENERGY!  So the next time I hear his doctor mutter under his breath that my attention to my son's diet sounds boring I may not be able to still my tongue.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Practically a Backyard Vacation

The Mr. had four days of vacation this week .. so we ventured less than 200 miles away; a mid-day start .. and at our destination by 4 PM.  Traveling with our special needs son AND staying in a hotel .. eating out .. and trying to take in a hike or state/national park are a bit much .. add driving and sitting in a car for hours on end .. and you have a bunch of cranky people.

This year we opted to rent a private cabin that was our little home away from home.  It had a full size kitchen, two bedrooms,

 great room, 1-1/4 baths, laundry room .. mud room .. and a wrap around porch, fire pit, hammock  ... Oh .. and lake/forest views. 

Two boxes of food supplies and a cooler were easily packed.  I brought my 12 inch cast iron skillet cuz I never travel without it (; 

For some reason, I really enjoyed cooking.  The Mr. helped by washing the dishes each night.  We watched movies, popped pop corn, drove to town and walked around a museum village .. even took a stroll along a riverbank.  The sun set about 9:45 PM .. so the extended sunlight made for some good reading on the wrap around porch.

Who needs a fancy vacation far away when you can practically have one in the backyard? 

This by far was a thrifty way to spend our days.  The rental was less than staying at a moderately priced hotel.  Bringing our own food saved us even more.  Our time at the cabin was more enjoyable than sitting around in a single hotel room.  This type of traveling will hopefully be repeated (often).

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Oh My

Two months in between posts ..

Pre-occupied I suppose is a good excuse! 

Now that school is out .. and 95% of the garden is planted .. my tasks have been more home maintenance oriented.  Windows, screens and sashes.

  Mowing lawn and weeds alike.  Waxing my linoleum floor (secret delight).

 I LOVE to walk barefoot on freshly waxed linoleum ... takes me back to my childhood before the advent of no-wax floors.  It really was a pain to strip floors and apply fresh wax .. I can handle the master bathroom and consider it a luxury in a weird sort of way.

The Mr. has pulled out box after box for me to sort through:  PAPERWORK!  UGH!! 

The computer has been replaced along with a new printer.  You know I had a Kodak printer that had no driver updates for Windows 8.  I HATE disposable stuff!!

Maybe I'll blog my way through summer.