The university was having community appreciation day at the football stadium. When you got there each person was given 3 free tickets for food which we could use at any of the different booths (if you wanted more you could buy them). There were also a bunch of booths with different things to see and do and there were different music groups (Native powwow music, Celtic music, country music, etc) playing on the stage.
We went to get our food first and there were some pretty long lines but we actually had a lot of fun visiting with the people around us and having people we knew stopping to visit as well. Some of the food to chose from were Italian pasta, pulled pork sandwiches, chicken wings, spinach dip, mini hamburgers, strawberry shortcake, caramel apples and chicken bites. They also had french fries, pop and fry bread that didn't require a ticket.
Here are all the kids enjoying their apples. Very sticky but quite yummy!
After we ate we checked out the different activities for kids. The different sports teams had various things set up were the kids could try running the hurdles (Aaron figured we must be at a kids Olympics) , shoot baskets, try hitting a hockey puck, play soccer or play with all the football pads. They thought it was pretty fun. There was going to be fireworks too but it had gotten too windy so they had to cancel.
All in all it was a pretty fun free family evening.
Our community has free or very frugal events regularly, maybe yours does too. Some ways to learn about them are:
- The newspaper. This is a great place to find out about stuff. Check the calendar of events.
- Online. Google your town and events. Go to your Chamber of Commerce website.
- Look at posters. We happened to find out about this event from a poster on the door of our chiropractor.
- Listen to the radio. (I rarely use this method but I think it does work.)
- Be involved in your community.
Have you enjoyed any fun events in your town lately?
I have not yet ever donated blood (I had signed up before but then got pregnant and I have been pregnant or nursing for a lot of the last 9+ years) Ken has donated before but it was before we lived here so it had been quite a while. We finally got around to signing up when we had a booth next to the Blood Bank's at the fair. Now that we are signed up (and hopefully next time I will be able to donate!) I am out to encourage the rest of you (if you don't all ready) to donate blood as well! In our town if you become a member of the blood bank they ask you to donate 2-4 times a year, the blood goes to people at our local hospital. Also with the blood bank if anybody in our family needed blood (parents included) they could get blood for free. Another option for giving blood is responding to a blood drive. Your blood might then go to where it is needed most.
Blood is such a vital thing, without it we can't live but God has made it so that healthy bodies can make more of it, so we can safely give some away to someone who desperately needs it. From your blood, a life might be saved. Thinking about blood certainly makes me think about the One, Jesus Christ who was willing to shed His blood for us that we might live. He was willing to give His life for our salvation - not just for a good life now but for all eternity. His gift is amazing!
Seafood (I had shrimp this week but that is rare.)
Dried fruits like apricots, prunes and raisins (I do eat these fairly regularly but I guess I'll try to up my intake.)
Nuts ( I eat but I'll try to do more)
Beans, especially lima beans (ditto to above)
Green leafy vegetables, such as spinach and broccoli (and ditto again)
Blackstrap molasses (Hmm.. I need to figure out ways to use this. )
Whole grains (I eat a lot of these, going up might make me fat! :-)
Iron-fortified breads and cereals (check the label) (I eat a little but most of the stuff I eat is from scratch.)
We enjoyed reading about the:
- Sea Cows (or Manatees). We had a big laugh when we read about Spanish explorers thinking they were mermaids! :-)
- Daytona 500. This is what Aaron was most interested in visiting.
- The Alligators. Did you know that they hiss when they are annoyed? If they are hissing at you I would recommend a speedy get away.
- Disney World
- All the citrus fruit that is grown.
- Sponges which grow along the coast of Florida. We read that they are an animal with no brain. Thinking about that I found it a little gross that people use dead animals to wash up with!
- The Capital building, one of the few that are skyscrapers. We found the picture to be rather odd for a capital building.
- How hot it is. A blog reader wrote about that "I live in Florida. And I can confidently tell you, its hot. And humid. We have beaches, lakes, forests and swamps. I do believe key lime pie is the state pie, but oranges are the state fruit. We have big cities and small towns. We decorate our palm trees at Christmas and wear shorts year round.Did I mention its hot?"
Sarah,Thanks so much for sharing about Florida! We have really been enjoying studying about it. It has had different things that we have not come across in the other states, like sea cows, sponges and all the Hispanic and Spanish influence. I can imagine how hot is is and that does make me very thankful to be living in MN!
Sarah R said...
Well here is something interesting you may not know. If you happen to see a sea cow, don't touch it! They are sweet and very lovable, but they are a protected animal. If you are seen touching one, you will go to jail. No joke!
We did enjoy the food we tried as well, including Florida Strawberry Muffins.
Miami Beach Cake which I changed the recipe some but it was quite yummy. Below Jonathan is enjoying a piece. Key lime pie is a Florida specialty and we all thought it was yummy too!
I read that Pineapples aren't largely grown in Florida to sell and ship but many people have them growing in their yards. We enjoyed pineapple on our waffles one morning.
Some facts about Florida:
- Became a state March 3, 1845 (it had been under Spanish rule earlier). It was the 27th State.
- The Capital is Tallahassee
- It is called "The Sunshine State"
- The motto is "In God We Trust"
- The state song is "Old Folks at Home" by Stephen Foster which I had fun singing to the kids.
- The state flower is the Orange Blossom.
- The state tree is the Sabal palm.
- The state bird is the Mockingbird.
- The state animal is the Florida Panther.
- The state beverage is Orange Juice.
What do you know and like about Florida?
- The state tree is the White pine and the bird is the Robin.
- Michigan is a major builder of automobiles.
- Michigan is the only state touching four of the great lakes.
- Gerald Ford, Henry Ford, Thomas Edison and the Wright brothers came from Michigan.
- The upper peninsula has little people but has about 150 waterfalls and lots of forests.
We tried a bunch of Michigan recipes and they were all pretty good!
We tried Chicken a la' King.
We made Applesauce Raisin Batter Bread.
Spanish Tortillas with black beans and rice was quite yummy.
We also enjoyed the Banana Breakfast Shake.
We enjoyed Mixed Greens with Baked Goat cheese toasts!
The Boys enjoying Maple Walnut Granola. The Cornish-Finnish Michigan Pasties were quite good. It was also a very big batch so we had leftovers.
Started another blanket last night but will now limit myself to just a few hours an evening..
See you at Fernwood Market tonight? The sun is shining..the sky is blue...it looks like NO RAIN!
GREAT NEWS!! my granddaughter Charlotte asked me if I'd like to go to a BeachBoys Concert...I said "Sure would IF you and Christopher go with me" she's 8 and he is 6...they have been singing to my BeachBoys cassette in my car for YEARS. They know the words to all the songs!
She smiled and said "Yes, we all are going to go to the concert for YOUR birthday!!" What a neat way to find out about my birthday gift...YES!!! Now we hope there are tickets available...keep your fingers crossed.
Sunday Breakfast: Pancakes with Chokecherry or maple syrup
Dinner: Brown Rice, Fried Pork, Corn on the cob (from our garden!!), Cabbage Salad.
Supper: Shrimp, mashed potatoes and green beans.
Monday Breakfast: Scrambled Eggs and potatoes and toast
Dinner: Pork, Chicken, Brown Rice, Cabbage Salad, Stir fried veggies, bread and pie (WE don't normally have this big of lunch but we had invited the workers from the Church building site over.)
Supper: BBQ Pork on Bread and Salad.
Tuesday Breakfast: Blueberry Muffins and Eggs.
Supper: Chicken on a stick, fried onions on a stick, bananas on a stick, potatoes on a stick and Popsicles.
Wednesday Breakfast: Lefse
Supper: Indian Tacos
Thursday Breakfast: Cereal or Toast.
Supper: Walleye, baked potatoes and a veggie.
Friday Breakfast: Eggs, Hashbrowns and fruit.
Supper: Wild Rice Hotdish and Corn.
Saturday Breakfast: Oatmeal or fend for yourself.
Supper: Swedish meatballs on potatoes or noodles and Broccoli.
This week we are eating "Minnesota foods" for the most part. Can you think of any "MN" foods that I missed? (other than Lutefisk, that was an intentional oversight.)
...using a template made from heavy cardboard..1. draw a circle using big mug/bowl..to make size you want
2. cut circle in half (this is the template now)
3. place 1/2 circle template on section of card that you want..cut out the beautiful part of the front of recycled Xmas cards.
4...make the cone/bell..string them at different intervals on thick Xmas Yarn(remember to make a large knot inside the cone/bell so it does not slip down
5...make loads of strings all different lengths...attach them to a big red velvet Xmas bow...and give them out as Door wreaths/decorations.
This picture was taken years ago at YellowPointLodge...at a girl's getaway weekend...I took 'my stuff' along and had quite a few people making them in the main room of the Lodge...
ALSO: I make these hanging bell wreaths..on a more personal level..using old photos of past Christmases...if you make them as a single tiny bell..they hang nicely on the Xmas tree.
Michael's Craft store is bringing in their Xmas 'stuff'..so watch for those red bows on sale.
see http://homefree.blogs.com for Karen's chimes made from the recycled lids of tin cans...AMAZING!
- Arkansas became a state on Wednesday, June 15, 1836 ~ the 25th State!
- The state flower is the Apple blossom (great choice in my opinion!)
- The state tree is the Pine
- The state bird is the Mockingbird
- Arkansas is called "The Natural State". The scenic beauty of Arkansas makes it so tourism is a big factor in the state's economy.
- The honey bee is the official state insect.
- Some names you might recognize from Arkansas are: President Bill Clinton, Mike Huckabee and Johny Cash.
- The first Wal-mart was in Arkansas
- Arkansas is #1 in rice and poultry production.
- Arkansas is one of the few diamond producing states and the only place in the world with a public diamond mine.
Something we enjoyed eating was the Chicken Fajita Salad. They suggested tortilla chips on the side so I made my own.
Did you know that Arkansas in the only state to pass a resolution on the right way to say its name? ( By the way it is "Ark-an-saw")
What do you know and like about Arkansas?
Our tradition is to always start out with gifts. Sometimes I wonder if that puts to much focus on gifts but at the same time I like to get it done soon so they aren't wondering all day and they get to enjoy the gifts on their birthday. Also I don't care for giving our gifts to the kids when we are having any friends come over as I like our focus to be on enjoying our time with them, not gifts. This year Mara and Aaron were both very excited about Jonathan's coming birthday and have been working on making him presents much of last week and before. One gift that Mara made was a very detailed lift a flap book. It was fun to watch her work so carefully on something to give to her brother. One of the gifts I made for him was a wallet. He has been wanting one and I figured that it wouldn't be very hard to make. It went together quite quickly (using imitation leather and a snap for the coin part) and I was pleased with how it turned out. Jonathan likes it too. I have been wanting to make a large percentage of our gifts and that has been going well for the most part. We did make several gifts for Jonathan but did make one major exception.
Jonathan's bike had gotten way too small. We had tried to encourage him to earn money to buy a new one but he kept getting distracted from his saving to buy something or another. We decided that we never had bought him a new bike for a birthday (and we have for Mara and Aaron) so we decided to go ahead and get one for him this year and we explained that next time he would have to earn (from jobs we give him) his next bike.
He was super excited about the bike. He said he had hoped for one but really didn't think he would get one. He has wanted to go on lots of bike rides ever since. He and Aaron have also enjoyed racing on our lane as Aaron has gotten quite good at riding without training wheels now.
One morning a week some of Jonathan's friends come over to play. This week we arranged for them to come on Jonathan's birthday. Above they are enjoying the special birthday snack we made ~ Ice Cream sandwiches!
We made the Ice cream sandwiches using Chocolate chewy cookies (made with whole grains) and ice cream. It was our first time to try making them and we thought they were a success. They were much cheaper too!
Besides the boys coming over, Denise a friend from church and a little girl she is watching came over for part of the morning and lunch. For supper My parents and siblings that are in town as well as another friend came over. All of the meals yesterday were ones that Jonathan picked, Sausage and biscuits and gravy for breakfast, Mac and Cheese (and I added veggies) for lunch and Pizza and Salad for supper.
Jonathan also requested an ice cream cake. This we also made ourselves. I had bought vanilla ice cream on sale for $3 a gallon. We used 1/2 gallon. To make it we put a layer of ice cream (I cut the bottom off of an ice cream bucket and then put the lid on, turned it upside down and used it for a cake mold. A friend uses a spring form pan and I think that would work better but I don't have one) and then a layer of crumbled homemade choc. cookies, then another layer of ice cream and then a layer of choc. candies (free from Walgreens), peanut butter and marsh mellows then another layer of ice cream and then we decorated the top using green tinted coconut, farm toys (which we did wash!), cookies, candy and peanut butter for the house, peanuts for the driveway, blue candy for a river and a molded tootsie roll for the bridge. We all had a lot of fun making it and we thought it was pretty good to eat too!
All in all it was a successful birthday!
It ended up being a pretty fun project and the pictures show the finished product. The top picture shows the top of the pillow.
Anyway, that is the story behind the new blog look and hopefully over time I will be able to get it where I want it and hopefully I can make it a useful tool for homemaking/homeschooling.
Why do passport photos always look so bad?? I just had to scrap them as I am so excited to be travelling overseas again.
I thought she was seeming fairly ready, for months whenever I have taken off her diaper she has wanted to "go potty" and then she would go sit on the toilet. She rarely actually did anything but she loved the idea. Also she loved to go at any public places we would visit (you know, the thrill of seeing the bathrooms!) There was a time (right around 1 year) when she actually did go on the toilet a lot (#1 & 2) but then she got afraid of the toilet for a while and that was that. So much for my dreams of having a child like myself who trained at one year old.
This week we have started using underwear, I have tried to push liquids and watch the clock (The last two I do have trouble with forgetting about at times which doesn't help the situation!) Our success has been pretty much not at all but we have had lots of wet clothes! I have also told her that she would get a treat when she goes. The older children are trying to encourage her as well (as they want to share in the treat) but so far to no success. (But she is pretty willing to try.)
Anyway...Does anybody have any suggestions? Those of you who find potty training a little easier than I, I would love to hear from you!
There is something about the Olympics that I find very, very fun. I am not really interested in spectator sports as a rule but I think it is the knowledge that you are watching the best of the best from around the world along with the geography that you can learn about. I really enjoy seeing all the flags, seeing the people from different countries, hearing their stories and then sometimes getting to hear the different languages as well, listening to the different national anthems (though I do enjoy hearing ours best!) and just all that is a part of the Olympics.
That is part of the reason my blogging has been a bit less frequent (along with just being very busy), I have been busy watching the Olympics. Watching the different races (from swimming with Micheal Phelps and Darra Torres to Track and Field (and or course Gymnastics). Seeing those competitors truly give their all to win the race is truly inspiring. I can't say that it makes me want to start running races of that nature but it does make me want to run harder in the race that I am in, the one that it talks about in these verses:
"Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win. Everyone who competes in the games excercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. There I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air; but I discipline my body and make it my slave, so that, after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified." 1 Corinthians 9:24-27
There are several things that I get out of these verses:
- I need to run with a plan to win. No half hearted attempts are going to work.
- It is going to require self-control on my part.
- The prize we will win will be far better than any gold metal!
- I have a goal in mind and I run straight to the goal. (The Bible has direction for running straight towards the goal.)
- I have to keep working on it, I can't run well for a while and think I have it made. This race will last until the end of my life.
Another verse that goes with this is:
"Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnessess surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." Hebrews 12:1 & 2
- There is a crowd watching us and cheering us on!
- We need to get rid of anything that is going to slow us down. If you have watched the Olympics you have probably noticed what the racers wear. Their outfits are specifically designed for speed and for not getting in their way (a little to much in fact in my opinion). We need to use that same plan in our lives!
- We have a great leader, Jesus before us. If we just watch Him and follow Him all the way then we will be able to run a good race.
These verses really encourage me in trying to live my life for God. I hope they encourage you too!
Pixie got out of the house some how and jumped the fence into the next door neighbours yard. As it happened they are dog sitting at the moment and the dogs don't like cats. Poor Pixie is no longer with us, she has grown her Angel wings and flown up to meet up with Gizmo and Middy in Kitty Heaven.
I have some layouts to share with you all that I have done for Just Scrapbooking. But I will have to upload them later as I have a few other things I have to do now.
On a positive note. Bronte and I are getting our passports in order as we are flying to Singapore next month. Adrian has two weeks along side, Tiger Airway has a great deal on flights there .... so I thought why not. Look out Singapore here we come. We are going to do the Night Safari and have breakfast with the monkey..... that is just the start of what we have planned.
Another new thing for Aaron was learning how to ride his bike without training wheels. Last month his training wheels broke and now he has learned how to do it without them.
It is so fun to be a mom and watch me children grow and mature! I am so blessed!
Also am working with my store-demos Fri&Sat this week...which is nice...it is airconditioned!!
Spent Tuesday with Janis and grandkids at Youbou campsite..very very nice. Jackson is now walking full time AND he also remembered my car as he had stayed with me for 2 days overnight!! This is neat..he certainly did want to go for a ride with me!! Charlotte and Christopher are doing very well with their swimming...the lake is so nice and clean..I went swimming to!
If you want to see more blanket pictures..let me know!! Have a great weekend..I'm off to work now..
"Use it up, Wear it out, Make it do or Do without"
I try to follow it a lot, using it as a way to challange myself in my homemaking skills. I find it works for clothing,household needs, hobbies, gardening and of course food. I have heard from many others about how hard they find it to use up leftovers and food often ends up going to waste at there house. That can be very hard on the food budget! While I won't say that never happens at our house, I try to make sure it is pretty rare. I thought I would share some of the ways that I use up leftovers at our house.
- First of all we do eat a lot of our leftovers for lunches. Ken has a microwave at work (where he eats lunch) and he enjoys getting leftovers for his lunch. I also like it when we have leftovers available for lunch at home because that frees up time (when I would need to be cooking) for me. Also leftovers are usually cheaper than sandwiches or something like that would be.
- If we have a large amount of leftovers from one meal (like enough for another complete supper) I will freeze the leftovers (This works with many meals- not all). Then someday when I am very busy or not feeling well I can just pull out the frozen meal. This is very nice and definitely helps save on money as otherwise I might be tempted to go out to eat or use some more expensive convenience food.
- If there is something that I don't think we will use right away then I will also freeze that in appropriate amounts for Ken to take to work, then for the days we don't have leftovers I can just pull some out of the freezer.
The above ideas work for when you have a complete leftover, but what about when you have just spaghetti sauce or just the noodles or just the gravy, what then? Below are some of the things that we have enjoyed that use up things like that.
- Just the other day I was looking through the fridge to find stuff for lunch and clean it out. I found Plain spaghetti noodles, I tiny bit of cream cheese, garbanzo beans, and about 1/2 cup of sausage gravy. I decided to mix all of it together, sprinkle a little shredded cheese on top and heat it up. Guess what? It was quite good, the kids thought so too. A key to using up leftovers is a willingness to be creative and not be afraid to try something new!
- If you have leftover rice you can make Spanish Rice, Asian Fried Rice or Chicken or Beef and Rice Burritos.
- If you have leftover spaghetti noodles try melting cheese on top or stir fry some veggies and maybe some meat and serve on top the noodles instead of rice.
- If you have leftover Spaghetti sauce put it on top of buns or slices of bread to make individual pizzas (add cheese and possible other ingredients as well and heat under a broiler). Or you could add beans and whatever else you want to make Chili soup.
- If you have leftover mashed potatoes you can make lefse, potato bread, potato pancakes or mix them with a little egg and shredded cheese and make into patties and fry them.
- For leftover Baked potatoes, make potato soup, potato salad or put in you scrambled eggs (which you could then use for a breakfast burrito).
- A little leftover Chili soup, serve of Baked potatoes with shredded cheese or over hotdogs. Or mix with rice (preferably brown in my opinion) and cheese for a yummy meal.
- Leftover hotdogs: use in potato soup or scrambled eggs.
- Old (but not moldy) bread: make stuffing, croutons or bread pudding.
- Little bits of veggies: make soup or throw them in a casserole dish or a stir fry.
- Gravy: Use in soup or a casserole.
- Oatmeal: include in your bread or pancakes or heat a little oil in a pan and put in big spoonfuls of the cold oatmeal and fry, then serve with honey.
- Cornmeal mush: Slice up and fry and serve with honey.
There are lots more ways but if I told them all this post would get very long and I wouldn't get anything else done today! :-) I would love to hear ways that you use up leftovers.
For more frugal tips visit Biblical Womanhood.
I have had lots of fun using them in our meals. I have put them in scrambled eggs, stir fries, with green beans, in rice dishes, you name it. I am not sure how much nutritional value they have but it is a bunch of organic food that is free!
Here are a couple of links about them that I found quite informative.
- Wild about mushrooms has info about them, how to clean them, cook them and preserve them as well as a bunch of recipes using them.
- Wild Harvest has nice pictures and information about them.
Do you harvest any wild mushrooms? I think it is very fun to do but something I am very careful with. You want to be absolutely sure that you know you are getting an edible mushroom. There are many poisonous ones out there that can be quite deadly and you do not want to take any chances. I am very blessed to have someone (my dad) who is very knowledgeable in this area to teach me.