Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I need to start Blogging again!

Well life has been so BUSY around our home that every time I sit down to write a little one needs me. I have not had any time to do anything other than our normal routine. It started as not wanting to blog so much during Lent, and then I found myself not being able to. I have decided to put my blog into my daily routine, I miss it horribly.

So, I have been up to pretty much the same things I have always been up to just schooling, cooking, cleaning, and learning each and every day.  We are a few weeks into Lent and I have just spent more time away from the computer then I used to. It is nice to take breaks from things once in a while and just free your head from things. As I was freeing my head of things, I still took lots of notes for my Blog and every time I did something fun or something happened I wrote it down to share.  My husband said that it should be okay to set aside 1hr a day to journal my thoughts and find some quite time to myself.  Have I ever said how much I love my wonderful husband :) Well I do!

Here is a recap of the past 3 weeks- We bought a new puppy a 9week old male pure Breed German Shepherd. He was born on my husband’s birthday and his name is Otto we think he's a keeper:)

I was also told by my dentist this week I have a moderate case of periodontal fun fun. It runs in my family and with all the babies I have I am not shocked.

I have also been thinking a lot about our Faith and how much more I need to lean on God for all my anxiety. As a mother of 7 daughters 11 and under I have a fair case of anxiety, wanting to stay as healthy as I can. So I will be leaning on the Lord more then I have. I always like to do things on my own, not the best idea when I have a Savior willing to help.

Back to Blogging! I missed you all!


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

60/365 - 76/365

60/365 CJ playing with her feet

61/365 My Anniversary flowers from hubby.

62/365 Two floor Target

62/365 a sweet cat in the pet store

63/365 Cheeseburger soup

64/365 Breakfast

65/365 We love Kashi

66/365 Sunday Bread

67/365 CJ loves to jump and play

67/365 Baby Carseat :)

68/365 Getting ready for St. Patricks Day

 Shove Tuesday Rum Bread Pudding

69/365 Ash Wed Dinner Black bean burritos

70/365 Elsa's snack

71/365 30 lbs of the world's best cottage cheese

72/365 Still jumping and playing

73/365 Making spelt buttermilk pancakes

74/365 Our tired girl

75/365 Sister love

76/365 Kiss me I'm Irish Happy St. Patricks Day

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Days before Lent

Lent is a time for prayer and thanks to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  Not many Christians take part in Lent I find this sad. When we joined the Catholic Church 4 yrs ago it was then I found a real understanding. I have learned so much from the Church, things I will take with me forever. We no longer are with the Catholic Church we are visiting an Orthodox Presbyterian Church  now with family integrated values. This seems like a good fit for our family and we are so happy to have found a church and faith to call home after many years of searching.  I was sad however to learn they don’t do anything for Lent or even Good Friday.  So my family and I will do things like we have for the past 4 yrs just on our own. I have to say I do like the idea of taking Lent as a personal family time. We are not being told how to pray or how to do things as a family over Lent. I feel much closer to the Lord and I feel this is better. My husband and I prayed about what we needed to do as a family, keeping family traditions was something we decided to continue since our girls learn so much from it and draw closer to God’s word.

 My family and I take Ash Wednesday till Good Friday very serious I find it sad that for many years we did not even know what it was. My faith was strong during the years we did not practice Lent, but I also lacked a lot of knowledge in the bible from churches not teaching the whole truth. I am not very fond of Luke Warm teaching s and I don't need to feel all warm and fuzzy when I leave. A reason I feel in love with the Catholic Church and my current church.  During our early years as a new Christians we were searching for the whole truth we wanted to live for Christ 100% at least try because one can never be perfect.  I cannot believe how many churches will skip this time all together, not even to touch base a little on this time of year. I am not here to judge others that’s not for me to do, I just become sad about things and this is one of them.  I fall deeper in love with the Bible and our father in heaven each and every year around this time. The things our Lord did while on earth and the events that took place these 40 days before Easter are so important. As a family we will pray much deeper, read the Gospels, and try to walk along the road that Jesus took for our salvation. We also know that it is only by the Grace of God and our Salvation in Christ that we can make it to Heaven.  

Here are our plans for Fat Thursday, Fat Tuesday, and Ash Wednesday.

We start our plans earlier then some. My husband’s family is from Poland so the Thursday before Lent called Tlusty Czwartek (Fat Thursday.)  We eat Paczki sweets all day long since we will be fasting starting Ash Wednesday. It is celebrated here in the United States on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday called Shove Tuesday. Here is a little more information on Tlusty Czwartek (Fat Thursday).   We give up meat and sugar throughout Lent; we eat lots of fish, salads, vegetables and soups. We do eat eggs and dairy during this time but as a family we love Meat and sugars so this is a sacrifice to us. 

We will take part in Shove Tuesday by adding some Irish and American fun. I am 50% Irish so we will add some traditions from Ireland as well. For Breakfast will have a very thin pancake kind of like a crepe sprinkled with lemon and powdered sugar, Cheeseburgers and shakes for lunch, Dinner a New Orleans Style cuisine with a little Jazz and a little Irish music. Our dinner   will be Jambalaya and Sweet Potato biscuits, for dessert Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding with Rum Sauce from Paula Deen Celebrates!: Best Dishes and Best Wishes for the Best Times of Your Life . We will be using our own homemade doughnuts for this, at least I think so will see how it goes.

Plans for Ash Wednesday will be personal and simple

 I will be going out for a Mexican lunch with our Pastors wife I can't wait she has become such a great friend. For dinner this year I will be serving a Black beans and rice along with flour tortillas. The recipe can be found over at Catholic Cuisine

We will miss going to mass to receive the Ashes which I am a little sad about, but the Lord has indeed left a peace in my heart about it. We will be going to our Pastors house for the weekly bible study this year instead.  My heart is still in love with the Catholic traditions and mass, I just have had a really hard time with all of the teachings. Know I am not against the Catholic Church in anyway.  When we went to Mass I loved it and felt so close to our Lord, I just never felt a peace in my heart it never felt 100% right to us.  I pray that this Lent all of you find time to keep Christ very close to your heart, remember his sacrifice to all of us.  This is a perfect time of year to fast and give thanks for all our Lord has done for us.

Peace and Blessings,

Monday, March 7, 2011

51/365 - 59/365

51/365 A wondeful little book We Help Mommy

52/365  My husbands Peter Rabbit book The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Little Golden Book)

53/365 Another Winter Storm

54/365 High chair funtime

55/365 my second oldest daughter teaching her younger sister how to rinse dishes.  Priceless!

56/365 Claudia helping mommy

57/365 Claudia's first time with Rice Cereal

58/365 We love Organic Valley

59/365 Protesters marching against the Wisconsin Governor on a SUNDAY!

Saturday, March 5, 2011

47/365 - 50/365

47/365 Our 12yr old mixer going in for repair

48/365 Our smaller red mixer that works

50/365 The start of a Macaroni Salad

Friday, March 4, 2011

Chicken Minestrone Soup

When my husband was off of work last month, I  found myself cooking a lot.  If you saw my last post on Chicken/Veggie Stock you know I make large quantities of food. Meals that will last 3 days meal or I can freeze for later dates. I do this so I can spend more time with my husband and children. I am very careful about what I feed my family, so when I cook it's from scratch.

So this week I made Chicken Minestrone Soup. This pot of soup will last my family for about 4-5 dinners, or I can freeze half for a later date. This soup like most I make is almost 100% organic.
Each night you can try new things with your soup, here are some of our favorites.
  • Sour cream and Homemade Croutons
  • Cheese of your choice, We enjoy Parmesan or Extra sharp Cheddar
  • Homemade rolls, and Jalapenos
  • Crackers and salad
  • Serve it with a fruit salad
You could also add what every meat you want to this soup. Over lent you can make this without meat and add Spinach, and eggplant.

Here is my Chicken Minestrone Soup Recipe, Organic and full of flavor.

You will need
A Large stockpot is needed- 16-20 quarts. (We have a 32 quart stockpot NSF certified, we found at a wine/beer making shop.)
1 Head of Garlic minced (or you can buy the organic garlic in the jar done for you),
2 onions chopped
1 full stalk of Celery, end cut off and please leave the tops on. 
32 oz of Kidney Beans (we soak our own because, it is better for you and cheaper)
32 oz of Black beans, Pinto Beans, and Garbanzo beans (again we soak our own, these are made up ahead of time and then we freeze them.
3 cans of diced tomatoes, and tomato sauce
1/3 cup Fresh Parsley, Thyme, and a little cilantro
24 cups of broth and water (the more broth the better) add more if needed.
¼ cup of salt and black pepper
2 ¼ cup of Barley (not the quick kind)
1 cup of lentils
½ cup Pasta sprinkle of Italian seasoning (optional)
1 or 2 Natural Garden Veggie bouillon cubes (optional if not using homemade broth, or more water then broth)
5 cups of chicken or you can add Venison, ground beef, or even pork  for a different taste.
If you like noodles you can add these in your bowls separately

You will add everything to your pot except the chicken. If using ground venison, ground beef  or pork cook before hand and leave it in the pot.  

 If using chicken then you will add this later when you start to simmer your minestrone.

Bring your minestrone to a boil, add your chicken and then simmer for about 2 hours.
This soup becomes thick very quickly because of the starch in the Barley. You may need to add a little water when serving on extra nights.

I will be adding my cost for this meal in the next couple of days.

Please visit Janelle to link up with others who are comfy in the kitchen

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Our 14th Wedding Anniversary

14 years ago today I said I do to the man of my dreams. I was 19 and he was 20 years old we were young and ready for life. We were married in the Army and had a very small military wedding in Tennessee. We have been through a lot in the last 14 years, and I am so glad I had my dear husband by my side.
We have changed so much over the last 14 years in the way we live our life and how we run our family.

The first year of marriage and the second we had no children, we knew we wanted them just not yet. We spent our first 2 years of marriage as a military family, he was gone a lot and I was alone a lot. I did not like it very much I hated to be alone all the time. After we were out it was then I started to miss it and so did he.  Military life is really what you make of it.

Life went on after the Army and it became very busy and I was no longer alone. At 21 I had given birth to our first daughter, at age 23 I gave birth to my second daughter I was so happy how much better could it get. Well after 4 years of marriage we found Christ and it got a whole lot better and our views on family had changed. I wanted many children not only 3 like I thought; I no longer wanted to send my girls to school either.  So, life moved on and moved fast and the Lord blessed us with 3 more girls and when we celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary and now had 5 children. I would have never thought that by the age of 29 I would have 5 daughters all being homeschooled. The first 10 years of marriage were just full of blessings.

When we had our 4th daughter the Lord spoke to me about children. I was being told to trust him in this area; it was not a church or a book that told me this but the Lord. I had watched shows like the Duggars before but never thought for even a second that I could have that many children. Well when I spoke to my hubby about this burning in my heart and told him my feelings he agreed that Children are blessings.  He told me we should allow the Lord to open and close the womb and control all of our life not just the parts we are comfy with. So, over the next 4 years I had 4 children. One of our babies we lost in an early miscarriage, and the other 3 were healthy little girls.

On my 14th wedding anniversary I have much to be thankful for. The Lord has come into our lives and just blessed us beyond anything I could even imagine. 33 years old with a loving husband and 7 wonderful daughters that we home school, and a baby angel in Heaven waiting for us a little one we will never forget.

Thank you Sweetheart for everything you have given us, thank you for always standing by your family in good times and in bad times. I pray that the Lord blesses us with many more children and many more healthy years as husband and wife.