Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Wilderness Escape

As I started packing for vacation to Minnesota, I thought back to our first 2 years of marriage living there and all the wonderful memories...


winter camping...

camping out on Lake Superior...

and so much more. Cross country skiing, polar dips, building quinzees, BWCA trips, the list goes on. But I tell you, were it not for these books, I don't know if I would have been willing, let alone eager to experience all this stuff. I wanted to be a pioneer woman ever since I was a little girl reading these stories . Turns out I married a pioneer man at heart and we lived the first season of our marriage in this beloved cabin pictured below with no plumbing, an outhouse 10 yards away, and a lot of warm, cozy memories.

So, Minnesota, here we come! We've missed you and can't wait to play again!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Football Fever

It's that time of year, my favorite sport is about to start. In fact my husband is flipping back and forth between the Olympics and the pre-season game on ESPN as I write. This will be my 3rd season doing the fantasy football thing, something I had wanted to do for a long time. I've been the only female in my league the last two years and though I've not ended out the season winning the championship (yet, watch out, boys), I have to say I've given them quite a run for their money at times. If you follow football at all I recommend this fun passtime to dabble with this coming fall and winter season. Go Eagles and go Woodburners (my fantasy team)!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

No Strings Attached

Ever go on a walk with a little one in a stroller? Ever spend more time picking up the toys that precious little one chucks to the ground over and over than you do walking? Well, that may be because you have no strings attached to your stroller! Here's an idea that is so simple that most of you may have already thought of it, but if you're like me sometimes the brain foregoes the obvious. Simply tie a fairly thick string on one side of the stroller, loop some toys onto the string and tie the string to the other side of the stroller. Happy walking!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Simple Pleasures

Talk about simple, I love toiletries. I'm always curious at the combination of toiletries that people have and like. Here are some of my favorites right now.
  • My shampoo (only 99 cents on Tuesdays at my local grocery store)
  • My body wash (I love lavender)
  • My face wash (it makes my face feel very soft)
  • My deodorant (I like the apricot scent plus no antiperspirant means no underarm stains)
  • My foot cream (great for summer)
  • My pore strips (these work great)
Also check out my sister-in-law's sister-in-law's products at the link for Simply Pure under my favorite websites. Yes, I said that right, my husband's brother's wife's brother's wife would be another way to say it. So what are some of your favorite toiletries?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Pillow Project

A finished project can be oh so satisfying, but sometimes the project can be so overwhelming that the finished product is a long time coming. Here's an idea that breaks up the project into small parts that you can feel satisfied about every time you complete a section and then multiply that satisfied feeling when you're all done!

What I've done is knit or crocheted 8 squares and then hand sewed them all together, four on front, four on back. I used a different stitch for each square. The stuffing is an old pillow I had as a child that is thread bare beyond repair, so it has sentimental value. This is also a good way to use up yarn that you don't have enough of for other projects.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Ranch

How many wives get to hang out at their husband's place of work all day every day if they want? I don't know, but even though his work hours are long and sometimes it's hard, I feel very blessed to be able to share in what he's doing and have my son around so many fun activities and people. It's one of my favorite things to spend a day at the ranch.

Activities like...

the Alpine Tower,

games on the ball field,

hanging out at the pool,

watching the horses,

and just enjoying the scenery.

And of course there are the people...

Monday, August 11, 2008

Porch Thoughts

I'll let this speak for itself and only add that it is one of my favorite things that God does when He points me to exactly what I need to hear.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Cooking Marathon

One of my favorite things to do is cook a bunch of meals in a day and freeze them for later. If you have a place like this nearby it's quite convenient and extra fun to do with a friend. I've also done it at home and have found that it costs about the same. Doing it at home makes for a long day and a lot of clean up, but on a day like today when I can reap the benefits, it makes it all worth it. Here's what the hubby and I had tonight:

Shepherd's Pie

Yield: 4 servings
1 Tbs olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 lbs. ground meat
1 cup sliced mushrooms
2/3 cup hummus
3 Tbs butter
1 squash, julienne
1 zucchini, julienne
2 sweet potatoes

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place sweet potatoes in oven and cook for 35 minutes. Saute' onion in olive oil for 2-3 minutes over medium heat. Add meat and mushrooms, cooking until done. Stir in hummus and set aside. Saute' squash and zucchini in 1 tablespoon of butter until just tender. Take sweet potatoes, peel away skin, and mash with 2 tablespoons butter. Grease a 9 x 9-inch casserole dish with butter. Spread the meat mixture evenly in pan. Cover with vegetable mix. Spread mashed sweet potatoes over top. Cover and freeze. When ready to eat defrost and cook in 350 degree oven for 20 minutes. Uncover and let cook for 5 minutes.

It's not your typical Shepherd's Pie, so if it's usually not your thing, you just may like this dish after all. I got this recipe from Jordan Rubin. And when it's all said and done, whether it's your big day of cooking, or cleaning up after any meal, I like to use this to do one of my not so favorite things: the dishes.

Friday, August 8, 2008


Today my favorite thing is staying in my p.j.'s all day while playing with my boy and enjoying the fall like weather. While I don't recommend living in your pajamas, every now and again it's good to tone down any trace of Type A personality you might have and just relax. If you need convincing, read this.