Tuesday, October 29, 2013


Fall is here. Lots and lots of colorful leaves. They wont stay for long. Gotta enjoy these beautiful leaves while we can.
Poplar trees.


Oak canopy.

Quaking Aspen.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Weekend In A Nutshell

For a weekend with nothing planned we sure found a lot stuff to do. Most of it did need tending to. For starters my Husband and son winterized the boat and covered it and then drained all of the water out of the camp trailer. Those were things that were important to get accomplished. Husband mowed the lawn and we even did a bit of chicken watching and chatting with the neighbors over the fence. We even aquired some railroad ties from them that they were getting rid of. Not too shabby I think.
This is one of several loads of black walnuts we raked up and got rid of. I hate the way those things smell. Kind of a spicey pungent smell that got stuck in my nose. We are not fished yet with their removal as there are still more attached to the tree that will continue to fall over the next week or so. Oh and by the way, they hurt when they fall out of the tree and land on your head.

We took a few breaks to watch the clucks in the yard doing their scratching and hunting in the fresh cut grass. 

This is the old rabbit hutch we are borrowing from the neighbors to put the rooster in. After much conversation over the fence with the neighbors, the Husband and myself, we thought the lady clucks could use a break from the roosters,, eh em, shall we say "attentions". He won't leave the gals alone. He is really feeling his oats. Talk about above and beyond the call of duty. Hoping the break will help increase our egg production and give the poor gals a rest. 

Little Bit, the rooster enjoying the yard and his ladies.

Little Bit isn't so little is he?  He wasn't really named cause he was little. It came from the comment we kept saying when we first brought the peeps home. You see he wasn't doing so good. Husband kept saying he just needs a little bit of time. We gave him electrolytes and kept a close eye on him. All he needed was just a little bit of time and some electrolytes and he was as good if not better then new. He grew into a big strong handsome roo.
So there you have it. Our weekend in a nutshell. With a little background on the rooster thrown in.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Grandma's Ham and Bean Soup

This has got to be the best soup. It is basic in its ingredients and prep and leaves you feeling full and is a great comfort soup. I remember this soup as a staple in our home as a child. It smelled so good when my Mom would make it and it always hit the spot. This is a recipe from my Grandmother. I am sure when she had this cooking on the stove it had the same effect on her household as it did my Mom's and now mine. 

My Grandmother's Ham and Bean Soup Recipe:

Pinto beans, northern white beans and kidney beans.
*Your choice on quantity.
Ham hock
14oz can of diced tomatoes
Seasonings to include: salt, chili powder, cumin, garlic and onion.

You can chose to soak the beans over night or do the quick soak method. I do the quick soak. I let my beans soak in a pot of water for an hour and then drain and rinse. Fill the pot back up with fresh water and place the beans back into the pot. I then boil the beans for a 1/2 hour and then add the ham hock and continue to boil for another 1/2 hour. At this point I pour the whole pot into my crockpot and turn on high. Season with salt, chili powder, cumin, garlic and onion. (Sometimes I do fresh onion and garlic chopped and then sauteed in olive oil and add the sauteed onion and garlic to the crockpot.) Keep in mind here that your seasoning amounts will depend on how big a batch of soup you are making.

Add 1) 14oz can of diced tomatoes with juice. This is good for 2 to 4 cups of beans. Again if you chose to do a larger batch then 2 to 4 cups of beans you might want to add another 14oz can of diced tomatoes.

You will also want to add a bit of water to the bean mixture if the mixture seems too thick. 

Cook time in crockpot is approx. 3 to 4 hours.

Beans and ham hock waiting to become soup.
That's it. Check your settings on your crockpot. I set mine on high and walk away.  

Bean Soup and Broccoli salad. Yum.

I have to tell you, the house smelled scrumptious when I walked in from being at work this afternoon. Soup was done and I threw together a tossed green salad and dinner was served. Thanks to my  Grandmother for a tried and true, timeless recipe once again. This is a tradition that we will continue here at our little homestead.                                                                                                                                                          Enjoy!!
Bat our cat was my supervisor today while I made soup.
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