Saturday, October 31, 2015

I caved!

So Grim and I got talking the other day as we usually do. And the discussion turned to the broken oven that sat in the kitchen. The oven used to work and then the igniter got funky, and would cause the oven to shoot flames out of the vents. So I choose to stop using it. At one point we tried to fix it. Lets just say that didn't go quite as well as we hoped. With the oven out of commission I used the space to house all of my cast iron pans. Not a bad trade. Then a few months ago the burners started acting up. Not wanting to light, even though it was clicking like crazy. One burner had flame for miles and the other barely anything on high.

I muddled through because I really didn't want to spend the money. I have used the toaster oven, the counter top electric roaster and my numerous crock pots to bake in. Everything has cooked well. But Grim got thinking about all those Christmas cookies that I use to make and didn't last year. (It was such a nice break not to make them all). Of course out come the puppy dog eyes and the begging from little miss and Grim. They want Christmas cookies and everything else an oven can offer.

Who am I to deny my family one of our biggest traditions. So off to several stores we went until I found what I wanted. American made, big oven, griddle, 5th burner and broiler on the bottom.

So here she is! The latest and greatest addition to Grim Wytche Farms!

Guess, I will be making bread before this weekend is out!

Happy Halloween!


Thursday, October 29, 2015

Abandonment Issues

I'm back, did you all miss me! LOL! We went up to see our monsters that are away at University! It was a great couple of days. We really missed them. We missed them so much we even brought the oldest her boyfriend. The first night we were there we went to the schools hockey game. Home team won! It was a great game. Very old school, if you know what I mean. The next day rained all day. So whats a family to do?!? We went shopping. Even the fella's got in on it. I was finally able to get a pair of winter boots. What I should say is that I finally able found a pair that I love. They have water proof stitching, wool lining and they are knee high. I even got myself a pair of lifetime warranty wool socks. If they ever get a hole in them they will replace for free. I'm thrilled about this part! Can't go to the dorms without going grocery shopping. You know for the kids that didn't pay attention to the fact that mom usually buys sale, couponed, or discounted items. They now have enough food to get them through till they come home at Christmas.

The next day we hiked on of the big hills and then we went out to the bog. We also got to meet all of the friends. It was nice to be able to put a face with a name.

We are all home safe and sound. The trip took me completely out of my routine. But I did pretty good. Grim has been home this week on vacation. So we have been trying to get stuff done around here.

Tuesday, we got the engine put back together. We need to get the timing reset and it should be good to go... Well, as good as a car with no fenders can go! Soon, she will be back together completely.

Wednesday, we had to go and pick up a dresser for his mom who is in a nursing home. The one she had didn't work very well. So my SIL purchased a new one, and since we are the only ones that have a truck we picked it up and delivered it. Then we met up with my SIL and her family and had supper together at our favorite Chinese restaurant. Oh, almost forgot Grim got a laptop of his own. Now he doesn't have to be stuck in the basement by himself on the old desktop.

Today we have been running around like crazy. Doing a ton of little things and one big one. Grim got me a new stove. Its a whirlpool, made in the USA. I'm so happy. Its going to be delivered tomorrow and I will be baking bread before the day is out. Little miss says she gets dibbs on using the oven first to make cookies.... LOL! We really have missed having an oven. I can't wait to put the electric roaster in the closet.

It was 38 this morning. I'm hoping for November 15th before turning on the furnace. We will see. Last year we made it to November 9th. 2 of the windows are completely shut, storms and all. I foresee more being shut up soon rather then later. But they are calling for 60+ next week. This weather is crazy.

Gotta go do dishes,


Thursday, October 22, 2015

Feeling Accomplished

With everything said and done. I ended up with 49.5 quarts of tomato puree out of 2 bushels. 1 quart jar of dehydrated yellow peppers from about 1/4 bushel. 1.5 quarts of Sweet Hungarian peppers dehydrated from 1/2 bushel and a pint of dehydrated green peppers from 6 average peppers. I was also able to get 6 bags in the freezer of 28oz each of pumpkin puree. That came from 17 pie pumpkins.

Not sure if I'm going to do anything else. But I know for this week I'm done. With yarn projects on the hooks and house cleaning to do. I think its still going to be a busy weekend!

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Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Mind Numbing

With Sophie's Universe in the works and week #9 finished. And with a flurry of last minute preparedness happening in the form of tomatoes, peppers, pumpkins.... Oh my! I needed to so something I didn't have to think about. Now before I go and offend... That is not my intention.... I can knit, doing just the knit stitch without looking at or counting each and every stitch. I am making a shawl of my own design. Very simple. Knit, yarn over and continue knitting to the end. Turn and repeat. See mind numbing.

But that is just what I need right now. Not to count stitches, learn new ones, figure out if I can flub a mistake or have to frog the whole thing. Tiring! I love Sophie, and I love the little hexies, that I haven't shared yet. 

So without further ado!

As you can see its Heartland by Lion Brand. 180 Kings Canyon, In this photo it looks gray to black. It is really green. I am inspired by "Outlander" by Diana Gabaldon. Which is an amazing read. I'm only done with 4 of the books and have the rest on audio in the closet just waiting for a little more time.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2015


Does anyone else hate the weather forecasters? I know I do. I had a ton of work to do yesterday, when I checked the weather. It said that Monday would be very nice but Tuesday (today) would be raining. So added to the list of things I absolutely had to get done, I added running out and getting laundry hung on the line outside as it looked to be one of the last nice days. And since I was doing laundry I got 2 loads hung in the basement as I didn't want to take the chance of them not drying before the rains came!

Its sunny and 59, right now!!!

I could have waited and got all the laundry done outside!


Anywho, I got 25 jars of tomatoes done yesterday. Only 24 made it though. I had the strangest thing happen. One of the lids and rings shot off the jar in the canner. I swear I thought it was a shot. Never had that happen before. I also got most of the peppers done. What is left will go into the dehydrator today!

Back to more tomatoes! 

Have a great day!


Friday, October 16, 2015

Busy Day!

Today has been that day... Since my feet hit the floor, I've been running! Got Little Miss off to school and came home got some walking done. Had my coffee and breakfast. Then off to the farmers market. I got 2 full bushels of tomatoes, 25 lbs of sweet potatoes, 1/2 bushel of pie pumpkins, 1/2 bushel of sweet Hungarians, plus a few little things.

Then I had to drop off Grim's coat to be fixed. Its leather and I don't do zippers. Simply because it exceeds my abilities. And he wants to be able to wear it at some point this winter... LOL! Then I went to 2 florists and the cemetery to find out how I can order the topiary balls that I see in the winter. Of course no one had an answer.

So off to a yarn store that is going out of business. They had 40% off everything in the store. I should not be left alone in situations like that. I mean really shouldn't have been there by myself. I ended up with 38 skeins of DK yarn. 19 different colors. This is the first time I've had the opportunity to purchase DK yarn and it will be the last for quite sometime. Then I went to Michael's because I had a 30% off coupon. I got the yarn for What is called the popcorn blanket. Once I start that I will post the site for the pattern.

Then off to Aldi's I went. I had to get the bi-weekly grocery shopping. With that done, it was time for lunch. Since I was out I stopped in at Jimmy Johns and got an Un-wich. Love those things. Then time to head home and unload. This is why I had monsters. They should be here to unload, but alas, I had to do it. I got a work out I'll tell you. Up and down the porch, carrying 25 boxes. There are still 4 big pumpkins in the car. Grim will have to carry those in, I ran out of steam.

Once I ate lunch, I put all the cold stuff away and got started on the rest of the peppers from the last 1/2 bushel. They are in the dehydrator as I type. I need to get dishes done, laundry and finish my steps for the day.

Grim and I will be taking Little Miss for Pizza for dinner tonight. After I will work on Sophie and hopefully, get 1 or 2 of the newest scrap project done. All before I get to sleep tonight.


Thursday, October 15, 2015

Week 8 completed!!

Here is week 8 of Sophie's Universe. So very happy to be moving along on this. Only 12 more weeks to go!


Wednesday, October 14, 2015


One of my dearest blogging friends Skippy from I Make Soap has fallen ill and is in the hospital. Her husband has asked that we get the word out for those who might not already know. There is an address in the comments section of  "Say your prayers, my friends" to send a card.

Seasonal Changes

I know that Autumn has been here for almost a month. We have even had a really cold snap move in about 2 weeks ago and move out just as fast. The leaves are not just changing but dropping at an alarming rate. But late last night and this morning, real seasonal changes started. I started sneezing last night. I really didn't think about it. I needed to finish my steps for the day so I was outside late, then didn't want to go right to bed so I worked on my Sophie's universe. When I noticed I had a chill. Right then I should have gone and make a cup of tea. But noooooo! I suffered though the chill. I even put on a hooded jacket to go to bed with. Didn't help one bit. I woke up numerous times thoughout the night sneezing. Then by the time I got up this morning, snot and phlegm, sore throat, ear ache and of course way more sneezing. So since this will turn into something fast if I don't act..... Off to the drugstore I went. Because I couldn't find my allergy pills anywhere in the house. In my defense though, I couldn't see much with the watering eyes. 

I'm feeling much better now. The sneezing and all the other symptoms are kept at bay. The chill is still with me though, even after having my cup of coffee. Looks like it will tea and soup all day today. I know the family will be thrilled with the prospect of soup of supper.... LOL! Oh, well! At least its a crap tastic kind of day..... So maybe they won't overly mind much!

Again, no pictures of the finished cabbage rolls. But I did manage to get 4 bags full into the freezer last night. They will be pulled out and used around the holidays! I also got 3 trays of peppers dehydrating. There is still more to do but I just haven't had time. Maybe tomorrow!


Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Good to my Word!

I got started first thing Monday morning. Well, that is to say I got started after about an hour of searching for all of my utensils. My fault I asked children to put things away the last time I used them.... A year ago.

I start with carrots, celery and onion.

Then I mix in the meat and rice and spices.

Peppers are cleaned and the tops cut off.

Into the roaster they go.

Covered in a sauce of tomato soup and homemade tomato juice and of course more spices.

I let it cook on low most of the day. Sorry I didn't get a picture of them finished. But by the time they were cool enough to bag up I was tired. We ended up getting 7 bags of 3 peppers. 21 Stuffed peppers!! Now I know that if there isn't anything in the house to eat. He just has to take a pack out of the freezer and take it to work for lunch!!

As you may have guessed we are a house divided. He's a stuffed pepper man and I'm a cabbage roll kind of girl!

Two heads of cabbage blanched and cooled with the ribs cut out.

29 Cabbage Rolls cooking as I type. The only difference between the spices used is in the peppers I use something called slap your mama. And in the cabbage rolls I added dehydrated kale from last year.

These are the pepper tops from yesterday. I chopped them up and put them in the bowl. Which is 3.5 cups. Normally, to most people that would have been waste. Not here. I will be cutting up the rest of the peppers from the bushel and dehydrating them all. 

Not a bad haul, considering that I had no intention of doing anything this year...

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Monday, October 12, 2015

Inspiration from out of No where!

You know how I said that I didn't can anything and there really wasn't a plan to can anything until next year! The best laid plans of mice and men. I was checking out a blog hop last week and I found a great blog Thoughts from Frank and Fern. As I was reading the blog I noticed that it is very similar to SciFi Chicks writings. (Miss You) It always seemed like when I was ready to call it quits with the whole homesteader dream SciFi Chick would write something that would make total sense and put me back on the right track. Well, I guess I needed to find their blog. Because it has once again lit a fire under me.

I went to the market Friday. I picked up, a bushel of delicata squash, 50 pounds of potatoes and onions. 2 huge hubbard squash and a bushel of yellow peppers, 2 giant heads of cabbage. I will be making stuffed cabbage and stuffed peppers today to put up in the freezer. I will be heading back out to get 4 bushels of tomatoes to put up, plus whatever else I can find.

Its my job as wife and mother to make sure my family is taken care of. First and foremost! And to do that successfully, I feel I need to get my butt back in the kitchen. Please, no sexist comments about making sandwiches.... LOL! So, sending blessings my way, as I feel very much like the grasshopper this year vs the ant! Luckily, I still have time.

Oh, almost forgot!

The front and the buttons are done! I actually wore it out on Friday night! Its a little akward. As I had to deviate from the pattern. But I still love it! First time making a clothing item for myself. Many more to follow I'm sure.

Grim told me not to look at anymore yarn projects. Little did he know this had already arrived. Its going to be the Spice of Life CAL.

And I got week 7 done on Sophie's Universe. Plus, I had enough time to start on week 8. It is already 4 foot. Side to side. This thing is going to be massive once its done. One day I will get the gauging correct. Until then I will just keep making them big! LOL!

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Thursday, October 8, 2015

On and Off the Hook!

Well the Pink and Grey blanket is done. It only took a year! It would have been finished much sooner but after I got into it, I realized I didn't like the colors and the pattern was horribly monotonous. Maybe had I made it the size of a throw, I would have liked it much better. Making it for a Queen sized bed was where I went wrong with it. An untested pattern to me, and just way to big of a commitment. Any who, my mom loves it. So in the end I guess that's all that really matters.

These were originally were going to be leg warmers but they will end up arm guards instead. They are made out of Hobby Lobby I love this wool. I honestly, love their product. It is so easy to work with. Not a lot of snagging, and its soft. These were started last year also. Finished!

New project. I had to adapt the original pattern. Of course I used different yarn then what the pattern called for. So..... It looks a bit different. I'm also not going to add the hood, Just a large collar. I still need to the front and the edging. I'm hoping to have this done by the weekend. As this is going to be my new fall jacket. Once its done I will share where to get the pattern from.

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Tuesday, October 6, 2015

October Reflections

I love my blog... I really do... but the last year or maybe 2 life has taken some unexpected twists and turns. Some really good and some very disappointing.

We are making great SLOW progress on the property. I would love to be there full time, but that simply isn't possible. Everything we plan takes about 3 times longer then I plan for. At home we have friends and family that we can call on when we need help. But there we are all alone, doing the things we want to get done. Plus, its not like we are that skilled... LOL! This year we did manage to get the barn floor done and the barn itself sealed up. The doors now lock and we don't have to worry about big critters getting in. We learned how to use solar power. Very Cool! Even broke the first set of panels, thank god for Harbor Freight. We got half of the woodshed built. Built a solar oven.... It needs to be tweaked before I try it again. And have ideas for lots of other project.

At the house, we are making progress. With the oldest 2 gone exploring their educations, that left and empty room and a really trashed house. The empty room is being turned into my studio. I had always thought of it as an office... But I do so much more then just work in my space. I create, I relax, I meditate and I yarn! So a Studio it is!! So far the relaxing hasn't happened. Once the room was completely emptied for all the former occupants things, painting happened. Then curtains, then the moving of stuff, out of the living room, where it had lived for the last few years. Things are coming up from the basement and other things are going to storage. What ultimately started as a 1 room project has some how turned into a whole house project. Its coming along.

I came to a hard realization. I'm fat. Well, I was.... Since the end of August I have been exercising everyday and watching what I eat. I use myfitnesspal to track my food intake, fitbit tracks my steps and my weight tracker keeps track of my progress. I stated at 230.2 pound. I am down to 218.1 as of today. This isn't a diet. I am really trying this time to make a lifestyle change.

We should have our car back in running order before the end of the year. It has been in pieces for the last couple as Grim has painstakingly took it all apart and fixed all the wrong with it. I won't bore you with details that I don't even understand. But the engine is getting some TLC before the fenders go back on. Hopefully, we will get her out at least once this year. But if not for sure as soon as Spring gets here she will be road ready!

Now the disappointing ~

I haven't canned anything this year and I haven't put anything up in the freezer. Not sure if this is just a sign of the times for me or if I will pick it up again in the future. I use to be passionate about it, now not so much. Maybe taking the year off will help to make me want to do it again next year.

My MIL is slipping fast at the nursing home. Her doctor told us that once she went in that it would just be a matter of time. When we go and see her, her hold on reality is fleeting. There are times when she doesn't recognize us and other times she thinks we are someone else. And then there are times when she remembers who we are and remembers a reason to not like us. It is a very frustrating situation.

I lost 2 friendships this year. Both because we really just didn't have anything in common anymore. Not that there was any type of discord. They went there way, and I went mine. It saddens me though. They use to be such a large part of my life that its just weird. And then I had someone from my past show up quite unexpectedly. This brought up a lot of things. Eventually, I had to come to the understanding that there is a reason my past didn't come to the future with me. This person was very unhealthy then and is still toxic now.

Grim, had put in for another job. It would have been great. We would have been much closer to the girls. I found an absolutely gorgeous house. We would have been closer to the property. It was located in small town USA. Perfect!!! Only, problem was there was a hiring freeze just after he applied for it. So that fell through.

Tomorrow will bring more successes and failures!
Challenge Accepted!