Saturday, December 17, 2011

Kamut and "Nativity"

Today I cooked up some Kamut. The amount of water Chef Brad said to put in was too much. I was wondering if my Pressure Cooker was broken. It is chewy and tasty. It tastes like grain. I want to try a salad with it for dinner, but I have been working too hard and am tired by dinnertime. Megan and I bought these cool spoon strainers. First time I used it, pretty cool!

Steve talked me into buying all my Christmas food and etc. here locally. I'm glad. I was going to either stop on my way to get the kids for Christmas that would be the 23rd-way to crazy for me. So I thought I'll just go this week to Albany just to get the food and come straight back. That's when Steve said, how much more would it be when you consider the gas and the time. I realized he was right. I need to stay here. I have so much to do, not counting the wear and tear on me because of the driving.

I watched Nativity on Netflix tonight! FUN! Corney, not an acdemy award winner, but sweet great British humor. If you have'nt seen it, check it out!

love you all!

Monday, December 12, 2011


I have had a goal to try all the different whole grains for breakfast. So one at a time I have been putting a new grain in my pressure cooker before I go to bed and cook it up. The next morning is a new adventure. Now it is not a new grain every day, it is more like a new one every week (at least that is my goal, not always a reality!)

I have to say Spelt is so far my favorite! It is totally bland in a pleasant way, but therefore picks up the flavors of the other food and spices in the cereal instead of drowning them out. It has a nice soft texture. I am excited to try it in salad. I will let you know.

Spelt is a super grain meaning it has the 8 essential amino acids (like meat), it is 60% more protein than wheat and contains lots of other good things. I will have a hard time not making it my regular breakfast cereal!! love you all!!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Christmas outfit

I wanted to look Christmassy, so I went and bought me some red tights and searched my closet for things to go with them. Voila! It was fun. The comment I got a lot was just that "you look Christmasy!" Plus I have worn these shoes before, but today they got a lot more attention. Love you all!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Thanksgiving with Mom and Dad

We had a very quiet Thanksgiving. Mom and Dad came and it was very nice. We had a good time. Mom and I worked our little fannies off cooking the day before and the day of. Mom brought a to die for Cheesecake-chocolate-how can you lose with that! I brined my turkey for the first time. I was soooooooo yummy. My dad took one bite and said mmm this is so tender and delicious. Now this wasn't the polite kind this was the react before you can think kind of comment. I was very pleased considering dad usually can't eat anything and react like that unless it is mom's. :-) I tried Chef Brads recipe it worked great. I also cooked it without stuffing for the first time. I loved what it did for the turkey, but will have to work on the stuffing turning out as good. I made two stuffings this year, mine and Chef Brads. Steve said he wasn't to excited about it, but I noticed he had 3 helpings over the two days. It had black quinoa, mushrooms, bacon and lots of other stuff. It was tasty! But again I need to figure out how to make it more moist. I think I cooked it too long. The coolest biggest surprise was the gravy-it was to die for. I did the turkey just like he said, with lots of fresh herbs, a couple of lemons, onions and some carrots. I didn't have to do anything but add thickening to the drippings-it was amazing. I cooked the turkey on a rack (my cooling rack :-) ) for the first time without foil. I was afraid it would make it dry, it didn't. The key was brineing it for 24 hours and taking it out of the oven at 160' instead of 180. I will do it that way again. Steve said I put too much rosemary, that will be hard for me to change, but I will compromise and do half as much, but I will not eliminate it! I also made Chef Brads orange rolls, they were a big hit! Steve wants them again but with more glaze. They had uncooked amaranth in them, I thought I would like them better without it, but Steve really liked it that way. So Thanks to Chef Brad we had a yummier healthier Thanksgiving dinner. It was a great two days. The day after Thanksgiving I put up all my outside lights. It was so much easier than last year. I love them!!! Well that is more than enough for now! love you all!!!!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Decorating for Christmas

The Saturday after Thanksgiving I set up the tree for Christmas. I was behind the tree doing something and bending down . I stood up and without paying attention when I stood up I turned really quickly and hit my head harder than I can ever remember. Steve asked me what happened and I finally said "I can't talk". Finally after I got it together we could not believe how big the goose egg was. I had Steve take pics of it. I wish I had taken pics a week later. The ugliness spread down to my eyelid and is still there. I still have a sharp bump on my head. Steve said it was a good thing I didn't hit my nose or it for sure would have been broken. Enjoy!
A few days later I had Steve help me get down the Santa's. It looked so cute and funny so we had to take a pic of them. Of course this isn't all of them, several I had already put in other places.Well, more another day!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

October before Maddie was born.

I have always wanted to grow pumpkins and have my grandchildren come into my patch and pick out one. Unfortunately my Grand kids live too far away. :-( I also didn't know if pumpkins would grow. So this year I decided to give it a go. I have had two empty beds outside for the last two years. I planted pumpkins in one bed and corn (for decorations again assuming they wouldn't put on ears amazingly they did! ) in the other bed. Well, much to my wondering eyes should appear!? Pumpkins galore!! I knew they wouldn't all ripen in time or get big enough because I planted them late, sooooo I pruned them down to 4 pumpkins. It was so much fun to watch them grow. October came and I was wondering if they would turn Orange in time. We went to a show of Jake's in Portland and I asked Ruby if she would like a part green, part orange pumpkin. She thought that sounded pretty cool. They hadn't bought any yet so I asked them if they wanted them, they said yes. I brought them up to Portland on my way to Amy's.The beginning of my dream coming true! Two years from now when we are back in our house on Idaho Street, I plan on growing a pumpkin patch. I will then get Jake and Lyndsey to bring their chillins down or I will come and get them and have them pick out a pumpkin! Then I will have kids from church come. I'm pretty excited about this! I also will grow corn outside, I never dreamed it would actually produce corn! I used the stalks for my entry, they looked pretty cool!
Another thing I did this year was can lots of Italian tomatoes. The kitchen gets pretty wild but boy is it good. I also canned some zucchini soup. It turned out OK, I think I need to work on that. I also look forward to being down by my greenhouse on a daily basis so my zucchini doesn't get soooo big!One of the things I love about my greenhouse is the perfect environment for peppers!! I got so many this year that I froze some for the winter! Aren't they pretty!?Miles had a b-day in October, sad to say I didn't get to give him his present. I made these fun capes. I had to drop them off on my way to California and Miles wasn't there. Here are his super hero capes! Lyndsey says the one with the M is his favorite.Well it is getting late. Will post some more later! Love you all!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Home again!!!

Is there anything sweeter than this!? I don't think so. Amy has posted most of the pics so I don't know if I will post very many. The service I love best in this life is serving my own children. There isn't anything else quite like it. They are so grateful, but even if they weren't I would still love it best. There is something about being a mom that will make you do things that seem impossible. I had a great example, my mom. I was thinking about her a lot this week. As I helped Amy and Mike learn the little but important things about babies, like how to burp them, how to calm them down when their tummies hurt, other things that I can't remember right now. But for some reason my mind went back to my little apartment in Provo and my mom showing me all things I needed to learn with Rebecca. She was amazing, staying up late at night calming her as she cried, so I could sleep, lying to my friends that I was sleeping so I wouldn't have guests to soon. Bringing me good books and keeping conversation light. Then I started thinking about how most of the things that make me a good mom I learned from my mom. Taking my kids out of school to be spontaneous and fun. Or taking me out of school take me to the beach to cheer me up when I had lost it one day. Getting up every morning and making me a hot breakfast (when I was the only one at the time) before seminary. She would stand at the counter across from me and talk, or more likely listen to me talk while I ate my breakfast at 5:30am with her hair all wild. I love that memory. I also will never forget the morning I was complaining about something (not about her) and she interrupted me and started saying" I the most important, me the... etc"she went on for a full 30 seconds or more. The amazing thing was I got it, it really made me think, I "tried" as much as a 16 year old can, to be less self centered. She knew when to open her mouth and when to listen, she is still that way-an amazing woman and mom!!! She loved and loves shopping, I have so many memories of shopping with her and my Aunt Ferry and my cousin Debbie. We would be in our dresses, because in those days you would never go shopping in pants, then at lunch we would go out to eat at the Bon Marche downstairs. I felt so mature. I will always love her for that as silly as it sounds, I felt so big. We practically lived at the lake and the beach, my mom loves the beach, that is probably why I live here now! I loved that, the lake I suppose that started with my dad, he loves the outdoors, I think my mom learned to love it. I took my kids to the lake because of that. I learned to be assertive from her. She was the "take back queen". I watched her take things back and she always got her money back. I carried on the tradition. I remember once when we were shopping and we saw this outfit that was so cute, but my size wasn't on the racks. Mom asked them what size the one was that was on the wall, and I am not exaggerating, about 20 ft up in the air. It was my size, she told them she needed them to get it down so I could try it on, they did! One day at Kaufmans she had them take the clothes off of the manikin in the window so I could try it on, they did. Both times we bought the outfits. I could go on and on. She still worries about me, I think that must never go away. If I don't blog for a while she will email me and ask me if everything is alright.
I have truly been blessed to have such a good mom. I wouldn't be the mom I am if not for her.
Well, I finally read every ones blogs and commented. I want to get caught up and post some pics of Jake's kids and some other pics I have. But for today this might be it! love you all!!!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

She's Here!!!!

Maddison Winegardner is here! She was born October 22,2011 at 5:55pm after 42 hours of labor!!! She weighed 7pounds 11ounces, pretty small for our family. She is 19 inches long and cute as a button as you can see from the pics. She started nursing very shortly after she was born. Amy and Maddy are doing great! As Amy's Midwife put it, "you are a Birthing Warrior"!! She never cried, she handled her contractions amazingly. But after 36 hours of labor that wouldn't progress past 7 centimeters, she said she was ready to go to the hospital and get an epidural and some Pitocin. I will let Amy tell the story, but I repeat she was nothing less than amazing! The pics of Amy are just like she looked no makeup, coming hair or anything. Isn't she beautiful! Here are some pics of Maddy when was under an hour old! With Daddy!
With Mommy
And of course with Grandma!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Chef Brad

Well, about a month and a half ago I said I was going to tryout a new grain every week and blog it. I did try some new grains, but then life got crazy. I didn't get to try some of the recipes and breads I wanted because of the craziness. But I am home and even though I will be leaving on occasion, it is time. I will highlight what I have done so far and what I am doing now. While Lizzie was here we made some Rigatoni that was to die for. It was a yummy comfort type of meal that tasted like it took us all day, and it took about a half an hour from start to finish all in the pressure cooker. We did it like he did with white noodles,but millet in it. Steve and I are so used to whole wheat pasta that I might try it with that next time. I didn't take a pic :-( . After Lizzie left, I tried barley and am pretty sure blogged about that. I tried Oat grotes next (whole oats). I basically never had time to or took the time to try some of the recipes, so I would cook up a batch of grain and then have it for breakfast with fruit The next day I had some leftover crab, so I made a crab omelet with oat grotes. Before the cheeseWith Chesse Next I did Quinoa. I had had it before but not really done much with it. This time around I ate it for breakfast, threw it in my salads, and anywhere else I could think of. I had it cold and hot. About that time I was getting really pumped. I decided to order some things that I needed if I was going to try everything. So onto Chef Brads website, and then onto Amazon to order what I learned from Chef Brads site. I didn't order anything from Chef Brad's site because he has a 25.00 min shipping charge at least for sending it to me. Two days later, Yippee! Here they came!I felt just like the box says!Have I tried all this yet? The pans, salt, and yeast. I have yet to use the Pizza stone and paddle, but I will and I will share it with you!!! About that time I went to Lizzie's to babysit. Lizzie had tried Chef Brads bread recipe and we decided that it wasn't as good as ours. So I made our recipe with some more white flour, we decided that the way we make it with only 2 cups of white flour is the best. When I got home my xagave was there and my Farro. So I tried my Farro. First as always a breakfast cereal which I didn't take a pic of , but they all look basically the same. As far as taste, they all taste a little different but not a lot. The Farro cooked up better after sitting all night long on warm, it kind of opened up more, I liked it better that way. I wanted to do something different for a change, so I cooked up some more farro and decided to add it to my bread like he does on his show. So I cooked up some more Farro and put it in my bread recipe using Kamut flour. I only made a half a batch in case we didn't like it. It made 2 and a half loaves. I used the half a loaf to make one loaf into the shape of French Bread and put it in my new French bread pan. The dough before I cooked itAfter I cooked itI didn't slice it before I cooked it or do anything different. Side of bread below.I have to tell you, it may not be the most beautiful loaf I have ever made, but I can say that Steve has NEVER raved over any loaf of bread as much as he has this one. Now the bread he ate was the one shaped like French bread and only about 3" in diameter and about 2" tall. He couldn't get enough of it. I don't know if it was the Farro, or just putting a cooked grain in it. I'm going to try it with the other grain he did it with and see. After that cool experience I was pumped to try another recipe. Sooooo I tried his Farro Torte, I took some pics of it cut, but they didn't turn out. I didn't have a big enough pan to cook the whole torte in so I put it in two pie pans. One of the torte I put crab in, mmmm..... The other just the normal recipe. I froze that one.Steve took a bite of the torte above and said that's good, then with every bite he liked it more until he ate about 1/2 the pie. I had to share the tomatoes and squash from my greenhouse we ate with the torte.Do you like my fat free (not) squash. I agree with Julia, butter makes everything better! Well, my next thing I want to use my Farro for is risotto. I have never made it before, but I want to try it. I will tell you, Farro is expensive because it comes from Italy. But I think if I had gotten it from my little health food store it would have been a lot cheaper. I would try the things Chef Brad does with the less expensive things first. He said the torte could have been made with any grain. I do like Farro though.

Now onto the time of year. My tomatoes have done wonderfully and it is the first year I haven't lost a ton of them to becoming rotten. I think it is a combination of things, but also being tired of losing half my crop, so I have been more vigilant about checking them. Here I am making Stewed tomatoes to can :-) Seasoning and veggies, Lizzie, I used my new Penzeys Tuscan Sunset Seasoning you gave me!Next my beautiful skinned tomatoesChopping (those peppers are from my greenhouse!)
The finished product!
I had some left over but no jars in the house to put them in, so I used it to make me a bowl of soup. I added some Farro from the fridge and some Parmesan cheese. I was too lazy to put some beans in. It was yummmmmmy! I decided after I make a batch of spaghetti sauce to can, I am going to make more stewed tomatoes to use for soup during the winter. I'll open a jar, add some beans, whatever grain I have cooked up and some cheese, voilla yummmy soup! Love you all!!

Monday, September 5, 2011

So far Behind!

I think so many of my blogs start this way! Oh well, I will get better! so much has happened. Lizzie, Shad and the kids all came on the 4th of July. I stayed with Jacob's family for a night and then brought his kids back with me. Later in the week Jake and Lyndsey came and stayed with us for a couple of days and then took the kids back home. Not long after that I went down to Lizzies and babysat Lizzies kids for about 8 days and Rebeccas about 4 of those days also. It was wild and crazy and close together, but I will never pass up a chance to be with my kids, their spouses and my grand kids. Life is short and you just never know how much time you will have with people. Then throw in some Tuna and it has been a very busy summer. Tonight I will blog Lizzie's family visit and then the others on another day!

I have so many pics, I don't know how I could ever post them all, so I will just do the best that I can! I think I will steal most of Lizzie's from her blog for when they were here. I might have to steal some from when I babysat also, it was a little to busy for me, 6 kids all over again! We went to the light house and in the end, Kate was too short, and the Lady got all hyper with Shad when he tried to lift Tanner up so he could see better in the light part of the Light house. But I think if the day had not been so cold and windy, and the kids had been a little older, it would have been really cool. We also tried to go to the tide pools at the Lighthouse park, mistake, Strawberry Hill beats it all to heck. I was going to check it all out before they came, but ran out of time. Oh well, it made great pics! Then Steve took Shad and Tanner fishing, it was so cool, Tanner loved it and didn't get sick the tiniest bit. That starfish is the biggest one Steve has ever accidentally pulled up. The bottom pic is when Tanner fell asleep, I think they went fishing at about 4:00am
I had something planned for every day. It was so much fun. We didn't do everything I planned but we had a great time. One of the things grand kids have reminded me of is that I love to play cards. I played cards for hours over the last month. It is very educational and fun at the same time. It also helps kids learn to lose. I make sure they win more than I do, but I also make sure I win sometimes. As a result they are all pretty good losers. I always act really happy when they win so it has helped them to be very happy when the others when. Tanner and Kate are really good at it for their age. We had a barbecue on the 4th, it was too windy to be on the beach so we had it in front yard in front of the shop. It was great! Kate thinks Steve is so funny, they were good pals!
We made cupcakes, lots of shaped pancakes, painted, went to the aquqrium, a cute little pirate village (kind ofbuilt sand castles, and just basically had a great time