Sunday, July 20, 2008

A few more gifts...

sweet boy...exploring the beach...on a hunt for God's treasure

three little awe of God's creation...watching the proud waves halt

brothers...running...giggling...jumping...sand between toes...brothers

curious boys...watching with of God's creatures

Happy Birthday My Nursling

One year ago on July 19, 2007 our baby girl was born. My nursling turned one yesterday. What a wonderful first year. Happy Birthday Little One, you are much loved by us all.
As I reflect on the first year with my little girl I am so grateful for the way she has already caused me to examine my words and actions. When I think that she will one day be a wife and mother and her attitudes toward her husband and little ones will be greatly influenced by my attitude now, it causes me to stop and reflect frequently.
Thank you Lord for the blessings of a daughter.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Gifts from his hand...

Baby girl...tousled morning hair...excited giggles when she realizes Bo is in bed with us.

Sweet girl...pointing at everything...grunting...babbling...reaching with those sweet chubby arms for me to lift her into mine...irresistible

butterfly wings...God's stunning

blackberries...ripe...limbs hanging heavy...juice running down three little chins...fingers stained a deep purple. morning breeze...time alone to reflect and provide for my family

two brothers...playing so well together...hugging...telling each other they are best friends

Bo..crying in the night...trembling with to calm those fears...God reminding me to be accessible at all times...just as he is accessible at all times.

Boo...snuggling on the couch after nap...pillows...blankets...time together

Chris...taking the time to talk...the hour is late...he must rise early

Chris...graying hair...maturing..daily being refined into a man God uses

God reminding me that my purpose be a suitable helper for Chris and his calling

shade of the tree...blanket on the ground..eager ears and hearts...listening to God's word...amazed at his miracles...bursting into songs of praise

little hands inspecting God's creation...butterfly wings...birds nest with shells...cicada shell...shiny green beetle

Enjoying Him...
Holli...who thinks it has been too long since I've recorded his gifts

Friday, July 11, 2008

Roasted Chicken Meals

When I cook one of the delicious chickens we buy from a local farm, I want to stretch it as far as I can. So here's what I did last time.

Dinner 1: Roast 2 chickens (Use one for supper and reserve the remaining chicken for stir-fry stew and chicken salad)

Roast chicken
Fresh green beans
creamed potatoes
fresh cucumbers

Place chicken carcass in stock pot and simmer overnight.

Dinner 2:

Chicken Stir-Fry Stew (adapted from Nourishing Traditions)

2 cups leftover chicken soaked in 2 Tbs. lemon juice
1-2 cups peanuts (my family loves peanuts, I use a lot)
2 carrots thinly sliced
2 cups broccoli, lightly steamed
1 yellow squash chopped and lightly steamed
1 zucchini chopped and lightly steamed

4 cups chicken stock
3 tablespoons naturally fermented soy sauce
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 cloves garlic minced
2 tablespoons rapadura
1/4 teaspoon powdered ginger (I'm just guessing here! I just sprinkle it in the broth.)
A few red pepper flakes
arrowroot for thickening

Marinate chicken in lemon juice. Saute chicken in olive oil. Remove and saute peanuts.
Saute carrots a couple of minutes. Mix chicken stock, soy sauce, rapadura, vinegar, garlic, ginger and pepper together in a separate bowl. Add chicken and peanuts back to skillet with carrots and pour sauce over these. Add a couple of tablespoons of arrowroot mixed with 2 tablespoons of water and simmer until thickened. Add Broccoli, squash and zucchini. Mix well and simmer 5-10 minutes.

Serve over brown rice.
*I omit the onions and peppers that are in the original recipe.
I added the squash and zucchini and it turns out well.

This recipe serves 6-7 easily. I have a family of 4 eaters and we can have it for supper another night and freeze a couple of portions also.

Dinner 3

Leftover stir-fry stew

Dinner 4
Chicken salad
homemade bread

1-2 cups reserved chicken
1 small cucumber chopped
1/2 cup grapes chopped
1 apple chopped
1/3 cup Walnuts chopped
2-3 tablespoons mayo

Mix well and chill.

Enjoy cool chicken salad on a hot afternoon, maybe even a picnic in the shade.


Dinner 4
your favorite chicken casserole



Monday, July 7, 2008

Colorful Variety-Healthier Family Challenge #2

Here's a little challenge that goes right along with purchasing your fruits and vegetables at the market. How many different colors does your family eat on a given day? week?

Just for clarification, I mean how many colorful, whole, unrefined foods are you preparing for your family? yourself? Grape kool-aid and a colorful pack of Skittles or M&M's do not count:-0 We need to be providing wholesome colorful foods for the bodies that God has placed in our care.

So grab a pen and paper or post a comment on here, sharing how you are doing with eating your colors!

Boo-homemade yogurt, blackberries, boiled egg, sweet banana pepper, grapes, blueberries, herb biscuit, supper will be soup with squash, tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, green beans, cabbage and rice

Bo's will be the same except no blackberries.
Shater aka Lou Lou's will be the same except no sweet banana pepper, or grapes and add banana
Mine will be the same except no sweet banana peppers
Chris will have the veggies in the soup tonight and I'm not sure if he took fruit to work.

We normally do not have that many veggies during the day. The soup I made tonight has lots of veggies. It's easy to get frustrated if you think you should eat from every color group every day. Keep a list of what you eat in a given week and see if that is easier. It gives you seven days to get your color groups eaten.


Weekly Menu July 7-13

I hope everyone has tried shopping at a local farmer's market for the produce on your menu.
Here's our menu for the week:

leftover soup (I'm just making this today. We had a couple of parties for the 4th that we attended and ate supper at those.)

BBQ baked potatoes
homemade BBQ sauce
roast (pull roast apart and pour sauce over)
various toppings: onions, cheese, butter

Wednesday: leftovers

chicken stir-fry stew and rice



blueberry pancakes

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Our Weekly Menu and Market Finds

Breakfast options: eggs and fruit (blackberries or oranges), oatmeal, peanut butter on a banana, or homemade yogurt and granola with maple syrup and fruit

Lunch options: variety plate:(boiled egg, almonds, cheese, cucumbers, tomato and blueberries), peanut butter and banana (if not chosen at breakfast), homemade bread with peanut butter and jelly, chicken salad (made with cucumbers, walnuts, grapes, chicken, and a boiled egg) with crackers and cheese or leftovers

Dinner Menu:

Day 1: meatloaf (Chris said my meatloaf was the best he had ever had;-)
fried potatoes
steamed cabbage
squash casserole
cucumbers with apple cider vinegar

Day 2: Fish Cakes (salmon and rice)
fried squash
steamed kale
cucumbers with apple cider vinegar

Day 3: leftovers

Day 4: tabouli

Day 5: Baked chicken
lentil/rice casserole
herb biscuits
cucumbers with apple cider vinegar

Day 6: leftover soup (leftovers I've been saving thrown into a pot of homemade chicken stock.)

Day 7: supper with my grandmother

Local food treasures found at the market:

green beans
cabbage (a couple of weeks ago, just cooking it)
cucumbers (bunches in our CSA box)
sweet banana peppers
2 dozen eggs

*We picked 1 gallon of blackberries off of the 2 bushes I planted in our yard three years ago.
*We went to Chris' uncles farm and picked 3 gallons yesterday. I hope to make a little jelly and juice then freeze the rest.

See how many wonderful, fresh fruits and vegetables are available at your local market!

Join me for the challenges.