Saturday, November 26, 2011

Caramel Rice Krispies

There are probably 482 different ways to make Rice Krispies. Right now, this is my absolute favorite. Even after three days of eating foods outside my normal diet and my body screaming for the return of fresh fruits and veggies, I would eat one of these if there were any left in the house.

They are also so simple to make.

Make a batch of Rice Krispies according to the cereal box. Pour one can of sweetened condensed milk, top with a layer of caramel, top with a layer of marshmellow fluff and then top with another batch of Rice Krispies.

It's like ooey gooey sickenly sweet madness.

Now I must go exercise...another thing my body has been missing the past three days!


Monday, November 21, 2011


I've been reading the book, Wheat Belly by William Davis, MD. The book discusses how today's wheat has been genetically altered eliminating much of the nutritional value of the grain. Food manufacturers have processed this once sturdy staple causing foods containing wheat to make blood sugar spike as well as having addictive qualities that make us hungry causing us to overeat.

The book discusses many different ways that today's wheat negatively effects our body. Diabetes, cholesterol, high blood pressure, acid reflux, obesity, joint pain to name a few. It gives examples of research and case studies of what happens when wheat is eliminated from the diet.

One of the things discussed in the book is that because wheat has been altered, it causes us to crave more, we aren't satisified and eat more and more. It discusses the chemical reaction that occurs in our brains because of the addictive qualities.

Wheat is a cheap "filler" and is used in a variety of foods. Foods that completely surprised me. Some of the culprits in our house are ranch dressing and ketchup. Another one is Crystal Lite. Yes, I know. Not the best thing in the world and water would be better. Our two-year-old (3 in a couple of weeks!!) loves juice. I mean we would have battles over juice. So we eliminated juice and now offer Crystal Lite or water. But reading the label it states that there may be trace amounts of wheat in there. Eliminating juice also helped with some behavioral problems we were having.

Another issue that hit home with me was weight. Since my first child and gaining weight over the course of five years, I've struggled to lose that weight I've gained. Since my third babe was born, I've exercised and counted my calories and after 6 months had lost 15 pounds. And that was during the first two months and nothing for the next four. After one week of almost eliminating wheat from my diet, I lost 3 pounds. I'm also sleeping better and have less joint pain.

Wheat Belly encourages individuals to give up wheat, starches, and gluten as well as legumes, bran, oats and many other types of grains. The author doesn't give a lot of a reason for eliminating legumes, brans, oats and some other grains other than there is a potential for these types of food to contain wheat.

I don't agree with this. I think legumes are very nutritional  and I don't see eliminating them because there is a potential for them to contain wheat.

It's been two weeks since I've eliminated most wheat and startches from my diet. The Farmer and the kids are still eating cereals for breakfast and some wheat products but have cut back on the amount they consume. And one thing I've noticed in the last week is that my kids are eating less between meals. Although since they are still quite young, it's hard to tell if this is due to them coming out of growth spurts or the change in their diet.

We're going to keep slowly making changes to our diet continually striving towards a healthier, natural diet and lifestyle. I want to do more research on using spelt for making breads and crackers. We're going to be more aware of where we're buying our processed products such as ketchup and ranch dressing as well as our oats and other grain products we do have in our diets.

I'll never completely eliminate wheat from my diet. I mean, I truly do not think I could give up cakes and cookies. But I do know that as a family, we've been eating healthier and making better choices. Where we used to have a startch or grain on our plate at mealtime, we've replaced it with a larger portion of fruits and vegetables. I've also been able to eliminate more processed foods from our diets such as no more chicken nuggets and replacing them with grilled chicken or turkey.

I do wish the book discussed organic wheat and grains versus non-organic wheat and grains. I would like to know if there is the same genetic alterations made to organics. I will definately be doing more research.


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Kids and carrots

I love cooked carrots. But I'm the only one in our family who likes cooked carrots. Everyone else likes theirs raw. But the kids complain that the carrots are hard to eat. So we rarely had carrots.

Then one afternoon I was peeling a carrot for a crock pot meal and Em came up and started eating the peels and declared..."I love eating carrots this way."

Now they eat carrots several times a week.

Do you ever have those A-HA! moments where you wish you would have thought of that a long time ago!?!?


Tuesday, November 15, 2011


The pumpkins are roasted, pureed and in the freezer. The pumpkin seeds are toasted. My favorite...cinnamon. YUMMY!

And I have been trying to figure out how I'm going to use all that pureed pumpkin. We don't eat a lot of sweets or sweet breads and my apologies if I offend anyone but pumpkin pie makes me gag.

My dilemna was solved with my dinner mistake the other night. It was last minute and I grabbed a bag of pureed sweet potatoes out of the freeze but they weren't sweet potatoes. It went quite nicely with the roasted chicken and green beans.

Pumpkin is low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium. Great source of Vitamin E, Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Iron, Magnesium, phosphorus, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, riboflavin, potassium, copper and mangenese and a good source of dietary fiber. And at 49 calories per 1 cup is a good low calorie side dish.

And the best part....the kids ate it up!!


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thanksgiving Snack Mix

I've seen quite a few of these types of recipes floating around.

To Make:
Mix together Bugles, mini pretzels, candy corn, gold fish, cranberries and raisins, pumpkin seeds. You could add peanuts and others seeds or nuts but since my kids are young, I choose to omit them.

Each item in the snack mix symbolizes an aspect of the Thanksgiving season.

Bugles represent a cornucopia, a horn of plenty.
Pretzels represent arms folded in thanks and prayer.
Candy corn represents the first winter when food was scarce and the pilgrims survived on corn.
Dried fruits represent the celebration of a harvest.
Peanuts and/or seeds represent the potential of future harvests.

While not 100% healthy, this is a good snack for the diaper bag for running errands or church. It does have a nice mixture of chewy from the raisins and craisins along with saltiness and crunch with a little sweetness.


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Sewing for my boys

The boys often get left out of sewing projects. This morning I got busy making something for each of the boys and they are also functional.

First up...a neckwarmer for the middle man.

He's been wanting one since last year and usually stole his sister's. This one is a little more his size.

I also made a pair of booties for the lil' man. He's too young for winter boots but we don't always need a snowsuit on. Fleece on the outside, fleece on the inside with a layer of cotton batting. Perfect for winter weather. I'm hoping the elastic at the top will help them stay on since right now socks stay on his feet for about the time it takes him to get from the bathroom to the living room.

This side of Wisconsin didn't get the lovely snow like many of my friends on the other side of the state. I was kind of sad, I was actually looking forward to having some snow!

That is until it actually snows!


Tuesday, November 8, 2011


This is Oscar.

Oscar is 3 years old and a new addition to our family. We've been calling him mini-moose.

Moose (Sedrick) was our dog who died last winter at the age of almost 13 years old. Moose was 125 pounds and believed himself to be a lap dog. He loved to "share" the couch and bed with anyone he could talk into it. Moose also was gentle with the kids, loved to go for car rides to visit people, and play with the barn animals.

Oscar is a great little dog. He's gentle with the kids and sleeps with one of them every night. He's never been around farm animals but loves playing with them. This morning he was head butting with the goats. He also loves to go visit people and go on car rides.

Oscar, our mini-moose, also believes himself to be a lap dog. However, since there is 110 pound difference between Oscar and Moose, Oscar ets to be a lap dog more often then Moose did.

And seriously, how could you not love that face!


Monday, November 7, 2011

Every so often us moms have to remember to breath

I seem to be going in many directions right now.

I'm trying to remember to breath.

I'm trying to remember to capture these moments when my children are still young and fresh.

I often whisper in my children's ear..."I love all of our moments together."

I often whisper this when they are naughty...please don't tell the Farmer.  :)

I worked 22 days in a row. Quite a feat for someone who will soon be unemployed and was only hired to work part-time.

I had this weekend off. I did very little except putz around the house and go to church and fall conference.

I've been very busy at church. Between KOOL (Kids of Our Lord), Sunday school, fundraising (I don't remember volunteering to be on that committee - funny how that happens), church dinners, fall conferences, and ladies group...I'm going lots of directions there also.

There was a 5 day period where the Farmer and I saw each other for a total of 114 minutes (I kept track).

I've also been preserving sweet potatoes and pumpkins and still have some beets to do.

We're slowly getting ready for winter...the weatherman did say snow in Wisconsin this week.

We got a new puppy (he's 3) and his name is Oscar.

Oscar is at the vet today or I would take his picture for you. He's a pug. He's adorable. He's great with the kids. His face is so smashed and ugly it's makes me smile.

My van is broke. I'm driving the Farmer's "run-around" car. It isn't doing a lot for my image of a hip, cool, farmer's wife.  HA!

I'm exercising every day, watching what I eat, drinking lots of water and I'm still struggling to lose weight. This is a huge struggle for me. It causes me a lot of emotional pain.

On the same note, I'm reading the book "Wheat Belly." It makes lots of sense. When I'm done, I'll write a little book review and why I believe a lot of the things said in the book.

I'm looking forward to Christmas and am restraining myself from putting up decorations now. I'm pacifying myself by telling the kids we can make Thanksgiving decorations.

I did tell the kids they can have a christmas tree upstairs...that may go up before Thanksgiving.

I will have a giveaway this week. Look forward to "talking" to you all again soon.


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Our feathered friends

I never wanted to be a farm girl. I was perfectly content with my high heels, manicured nails and hip haircut. I loved my little house in town that was oh so stylish and clean and organized.

Then I met and fell in love with a man who wanted to be a farmer. Fast forward to moving to the farm and being pregnant. I seriously think it was the pregnancy hormones that did it. I was six months pregnant and one of the guys at work said, "Hey you're livin' on that ol' farm now, I think you need some chickens. I have too many roosters right now, I'll bring some out." Roosters. What am I supposed to do with roosters. Seriously! Hens everyone said, now you need some hens. The Farmer was excited. I thought okay, I'm into organics...fresh chickens eggs would be kinda neat.

So I found a lady who had three little banty chickens. And they laid the cutest little eggs. Then the following spring our bird population exploded. We had hens and roosters of all shapes and sizes, turkeys and ducks and geese. We ordered our first batch of Cornish Cross for meat.

And that is one of the ways that I fell in love with farming.

I love finding little mother hens around the farm who find little hidden places to have a nest.

I love watching birds hatch in the spring (or sometimes the fall if I don't find those nests quick enough).

I love their curiousity. Their beautiful colors and funny hats.

I love their lovely colored shells.

And I love how they supply hours of entertainment for persons big and small.


First Annual Hen House Hop