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Archive for the ‘Homekeeping’ Category

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Nov
05
2014

Good morning fellow farmgirls!

Happy Wednesday!  Is it really November 5th already?

I’ve been thrown for a loop the past couple of weeks.  As many of you know, my husband works in a land far, far away.  Exotic and warm 365 days a year.  With beautiful scenery and unusual foods. And now he is in the process of moving even further away for work – or is it now closer since he was already half way around the world.  Now he’s headed to another beautiful exotic land of 56 separate ethnic groups and of those people currently has 5 major different language families and 129 different languages excluding dialects and sub-dialects. His rig is moving off the cost of a beautiful island with gorgeous beaches and 5-star hotels.  Oh never mind.  I was trying to make it sound romantic. The truth is, his rig will be off the coast of Sanya, Hainan Island, China. Yep. That far. It looks absolutely amazing. But I venture to say I will see it only in pictures. When he gets off work the very last thing he wants to do is stay where ever his rig is. He wants to come home and sleep in his own bed and eat food we cook and see his family as much as possible. We talk about me meeting him in some of these exotic locations but truth is, I don’t want to travel that far by myself and he wants to come home. And frankly, I am happy to see most things from a distance. I told him once how thrilling it would be for me to travel over to Malaysia and us go into the jungles and actually see a tiger in the wild. He quickly pointed out that when I finally saw the tiger, it had been watching me for quite some time. Valid point.

I said all that to say, he will be later coming home than we expected.  Not sure when and neither of us are terribly happy about that fact.  But it what it is and we will celebrate his homecoming when he arrives.  And treasure the time we have as we always do.

So that might never get crossed off my bucket list. HOWEVER, one thing I did get to cross of my list was absolutely thrilling and brought me to tears several times in a short period of time. And if you stay with me for this little story, you will find a recipe from Milk Cow Kitchen by MaryJane Butters at the end of this post. :)

I want to preface my report from the night of 30 October 2014 by telling you all how very much I respect President Jimmy Carter, farmer from Georgia. I know all the things people criticize him for. Well aware of them. But here’s the thing about that: he is a fine, benevolent, charitable, honorable man. That is so much more important to me than 4 years of his life (and ours) trying to run a government like he ran his life. Trying to bring the environmental issues we were facing into the light. Brokering a peace treaty between two people who no one ever thought would sit down together much less discuss peace. Plain and simple he was too good a man for the filth that is Washington. There should be no shame in that. None. So if you have a criticism, keep it to yourself. It will fall on deaf ears here.

President Carter is why am a card carrying Democrat. Not that I have never voted for a Republican because I have. More than once. But he and people like him are the reason I have not lost hope for the human race. No one used their post-term life to more of an advantage for the good of those who need the most which is in turn for the good of all.

He is the kind of person we should all want to be.

From his Wikipedia page: a concise list of his post-presidential accomplishments and works:

Carter has been involved in a variety of national and international public policy, conflict resolution, human rights and charitable causes. In 1982, he established The Carter Center in Atlanta to advance human rights and alleviate human suffering. The non-profit, nongovernmental Center promotes democracy, mediates and prevents conflicts, and monitors the electoral process in support of free and fair elections. It also works to improve global health through the control and eradication of diseases such as Guinea worm disease, river blindness, malaria, trachoma, lymphatic filariasis, and schistosomiasis. It also works to diminish the stigma of mental illnesses and improve nutrition through increased crop production in Africa.

A major accomplishment of The Carter Center has been the elimination of more than 99 percent of cases of Guinea worm disease, from an estimated 3.5 million cases in 1986 to 148 reported cases in 2013. The Carter Center has monitored 96 elections in 38 countries since 1989. It has worked to resolve conflicts in Haiti, Bosnia, Ethiopia, North Korea, Sudan and other countries. Carter and the Center support human rights defenders around the world and have intervened with heads of state on their behalf.

In 2002, President Carter received the Nobel Peace Prize for his work “to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights, and to promote economic and social development” through The Carter Center. Three sitting presidents, Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, and Barack Obama, have received the prize; Carter is unique in receiving the award for his actions after leaving the presidency. He is, along with Martin Luther King, Jr., one of only two native Georgians to receive the Nobel.

The night of 30 October 2014 was surreal for me. It was a pleasure to be able to take Ben with me and have him hear the inspirational, generous nature of this man who even in his 90th (90????) year still works and teaches and gives not only his money but his time. Public service is a noble thing to pursue.

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As he stood on the stage of the Shreveport Municipal Auditorium, President Carter talked about all the things he has helped implement in his home state of Georgia. How he promised a huge change in the lives of Atlanta poorest residents before he realized that those residents numbered 500,000. Instead of backing out and not following through, he put things no one else had tried into motion. Divide and conquer. He divided the 500,000 who lived mostly in South Atlanta into 20 sections and went out and got corporations and educational institutions to join him in making the needed changes. Mrs. Carter was leading one group and when she went out into that community she found that these people, the poorest of the city, were actually paying more for necessary products than those that could better afford things. Shame on the corporations who do such things.


He brought to light so many things that I had never considered. It is so easy to look away. So much easier. He could have retired to his ranch, hosted bar-b-qs and rode horses. But that’s not the person his mama raised. His mama Miss Lillian, who joined the Peace Corps at age 68. Yeah. I know right?


President Carter toured projects in Shreveport-Bossier City and spoke about the things he saw and the changes he’d been made aware of. He gave us all a lot to think about. There is so much work to be done and much of it isn’t the kind of thing you can just throw money at. That’s the easy part oddly enough. Many of the needs require people with time and patience and talents and a willingness to share.


President Carter and people like him are why American is still the great place it is and why people are still dying trying to get here.
So I didn’t cry the WHOLE night. But yeah it was a very emotional night for me. One I will never forget. I feel so privileged to have seen him speak in person.
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There’s no doubt that usually a president’s public image is enhanced by going to war. That never did appeal to me. ~ Jimmy Carter

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As promised for your patience here is a great recipe from Milk Cow Kitchen by MaryJane Butter.  I will make this recipe for supper tonight and give you a follow up tomorrow.  Best part – GLUTEN FREE!!!

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Crust

  • 1 large head cauliflower
  • 2 cups mozzarella, shredded
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Toppings

  • 1/2 cup basil pesto
  • 2 1/2 cups mozzarella. shredded
  • 1 Roma tomato, thinly sliced
  1. Fill a medium saucepan halfway with water. Cut cauliflower into florets and add to pan. Bring to a boil and cook until tender. Drain.
  2. Using a cheese grater or potato ricer, finely grate cauliflower. Place cauliflower in a thin dishtowel and wring out any extra moisture.  After removing excess water there should be about 2 1/4 cups grated cauliflower.
  3. Preheat oven to 450. Line a pizza pan with parchment paper.
  4. Combine cauliflower, mozzerella, eggs, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.  Spoon mixture onto pizza pan and spread out evenly, forming a raised crust at the edges.
  5. Bake pizza crust for 20 minutes
  6. Spread pesto over the crust; top with mozzarella and tomato
  7. Bake for 10-12 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbling.

WOOT! Sounds so good.  And it is a rainy dreary day so this will be filling yet light at the same time.  I’ll give you the low-down tomorrow.

Here are the links to the previous recipes and posts for the  Milk Cow Kitchen Give-Away:

Blueberry French Toast Casserole

Pumpkin Pie Ice Cream

Sweet Corn Casserole

Scalloped Potatoes

Four-Cheese Macaroni

If you haven’t read the interview with MaryJane here’s your link to that: Meet MaryJane Butters

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You can find out more about MaryJane Butters by visiting:
RaisingJane.org
MaryJanesFarm.org
HeritageJersey.org

Peace out peeps.

Jul
04
2014

WOOT! Gooseberry Patch GiveAway! WOOT!

Okay, here we go!  I am going to try my very best to revive this poor nearly dead blog.  I have seriously missed being out here in the blogging world.  I love connecting with people and seeing all the things we have in common.  Like a big ol’ online hen party with a few roosters who pop by every now and then.  Periodically life grabs us by the napes of our necks, spins us around and drops us in a completely, sometimes chaotic place.  Well, that’s where I have been for almost two years. So many changes.  The constants in my life were there and it seemed I was trying desperately to hold on in a whirlwind of changes. SO, here I am.  Hoping some of you will come back on a regular basis.  And hey, leave me a note and let me know you were here Ü

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What better way to get back in the swing of things than a giveaway?  You all know how much I love Gooseberry Patch.  LOVE LOVE.  I have been a friend of Gooseberry Patch for SO many years.  Likely from the beginning, truth be told.  Most of you know how these Early Bird Cookbook Reviews go and how to win your very own copy of  FOOLPROOF FAMILY RECIPES. Oh and a little something from me as well. But, that’s a surprise!

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I wish I could draw, paint, make art like the cover of Gooseberry Patch Cookbooks!  Anywho…here’s your first recipe. Brown Sugar Meatloaf - It was scrumptious!

  • 1/2 cup catsup
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 eggs beaten
  • 1 – 1 1/2 t salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 3/4 cup saltine crackers, crushed (I used gluten free of course)
  • 1 t  Worchestershire sauce

Mix together catsup and brown sugar in a small bowl and set aside.  In a large bowl, combine remaining ingredients; mix by hand and form into a loaf.  Place in a lightly greased 9 x 5 loaf pan (I use a meat loaf pan – you can find one here.  In fact this is the very one I have).  Spoon catsup mixture over meatloaf. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for one hour.  Serves 8.

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What goes with meat better than potatoes?  These Golden Parmesan Potatoes especially!  Super simple is never a bad thing either.

  • 2 pounds new potatoes, quartered
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 t. Italian seasoning
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a large bowl, toss potatoes with oil, seasoning and garlic.  Add cheese; mix lightly.  Spread mixture in a lightly greased 15 x 10 jelly roll pan.  Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees  for 45 minutes, or until potatoes are tender.  Makes 6 servings.

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THANKS for stopping by! I hope I can keep you all interested enough for us to become old and dear friends again. AND if you will, I promise a few more recipes from this great Gooseberry Patch cookbook until we have the giveaway on July 18, 2014.  SO we have two weeks to get reacquainted and share some great recipes.

Now you know how this all goes down!  And of course as always, you can win a copy of this new cookbook.

To enter this Early Bird Review and Giveaway: All you have to do is leave a comment at the end of each post pertaining to this giveaway and Early Bird Review and consider yourself entered. I will be posting amazing recipes from this book over the next two weeks and then on Friday the 18th of July, I will draw a name from the trusty mason jar and announce the winner. You have a few chances to get your name in the drawing. And of course it would be nice of you to tell your friends if you have facebook or a blog of your own.

Find even MORE from Gooseberry Patch online!
www.gooseberrypatch.typepad.com
www.facebook.com/gooseberrypatch
www.twitter.com/gooseberrypatch
www.youtube.com/gooseberrypatchcom
www.scribd.com/gooseberrypatch

And if you like what you find here at my blog you can check out the right hand column and subscribe to my feed and follow me on twitter and facebook.

Mar
02
2014

Bright Lights Big City!

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Last post I told you changes were brewing.  I wasn’t kidding.  And how!  We are moving our happy selves to the city! Yep! That is happening.  Over the next 6 weeks or so we will be embarking on a huge adventure.

We have lived in this little country cottage for over 17 years.  And Jerry and I have lived in the country for well over 30 years.  So there are going to be adjustments but you know, it’s just time.  With my ongoing health issues and his travels for work, it just makes sense.  The time is right.  And the majority of our family lives in the area we are moving to.  I am going to give you a little tour now of our new digs.  There will be more on all the particulars later but for now I wanted to share with you this most exciting news.

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Okay, there you go – a few pictures. I WILL be back, I promise.  Likely with some CRAZY give aways!  It is past time for me to pare down my collections.  Aprons, cookbooks, etc etc.  So I hope you will stay tuned.  Subscribe to my blog feed and you won’t miss a thing!

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