A Picture Post

The weather was beautiful Saturday. We picnicked, fished, and hiked at Claytor.

The weather was beautiful Saturday. We picnicked, fished, and hiked at Claytor.

Bambi LOVES to fish and hike too. :)

Bambi LOVES to fish and hike too. :)

This tree looked just like a swing.

This tree looked just like a swing.

I made this cake for the bestest friend ever.

I made this cake for the bestest friend ever.

I made this cake for the bestest friend ever. Happy Birthday, Donna!

Happy Birthday, Donna!

What? You've never seen a goat wearing an okra face mask? :)

What? You’ve never seen a goat wearing an okra face mask? :)

Mr. Haney chewing his cud.

Mr. Haney chewing his cud.

A treat by Madison. Brownies with chocolate icing and chopped nuts.

A treat by Madison. Brownies with chocolate icing and chopped nuts.

Not much to report in the garden. The peas are getting bigger.

Not much to report in the garden.  We have gotten so much rain. The peas are getting bigger.

The hostas are growing. I love seeing green!

The hostas are growing. I love seeing green!

What Quentin did while I was mowing! :)

What Quentin did while I was mowing. :)

Enjoy each and every day!

:)Vicki

Dandelion & Violet Jelly

It’s a rainy day in Floyd. The rain is supposed to stick around for a few days. It is still spring, though, and spring is beautiful.

Creeping phlox are blooming on the hillside. The peach tree is as well.

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We had a nice, sunny weekend. I got the yard mowed and did some weed-eating.

Dandelions have taken over the front yard, and violets are growing through out the goat field. We love weeds and harvested a bunch to make jelly. :)

We have been making dandelion jelly for years. It is lovely and tastes a lot like honey. This year I used the recipe and tutorial found here. It turned out perfectly and set up just like jelly.

007The violet jelly turned out so pretty. Madison did it on her own from start to finish. I was really surprised at how yummy it tastes! The recipe she used is here.

004008I hope everyone is having a wonderful week and remember when life gives you weeds, make jelly!

:)Vicki

A Beautiful Spring

It has turned into a beautiful spring here on our little homestead. I just love when the grass starts greening up and the tulips start blooming.

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014We dyed our Easter eggs last Saturday and had a visit from the Easter bunny. Easter Day was spent with Quentin’s parents at their house. Quentin’s mom made a delicious Easter dinner, and Madison made the desserts.

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A small bunny made with leftover batter.

A small bunny made with leftover batter.

The spring garden is coming along. Peas, carrots, and broccoli have been planted. The potatoes have been cut and will be ready to be planted on Friday.

015I hope you all had a wonderful Easter with your families!

:)Vicki

Happy Spring! A Picture Post

We are having our usual spring weather. There have been nice near 70’s days that look like this:

Venison steaks on the grill are yummy!

Venison steaks on the grill are yummy!

Kabobs ready for the grill

Kabobs ready for the grill

Enjoying the sun with a few cats :)

Enjoying the sun with a few cats :)

And then there are days that look like this:

Snow!!!!!!!!

Snow!!!!!!!!

We have fertilized all our fruit trees, blueberry bushes, and grape vines. I have also planted my peas. The plants in my little greenhouse seem to be growing strong. They have been moved indoors once more. It’s just way too cold out right now!

004Spring flowers are blooming, and I just can’t wait for our temps to stabilize.

016A couple of weeks ago Madison impressed us all with this homemade banana pudding made with homemade vanilla wafers.

It was so yummy!

It was so yummy!

And McKenzie did an excellent job making this Dreamsicle Salad for Madison when she had a tummy bug.

003We are on a yogurt kick again, so I have been trying to keep homemade yogurt in the fridge.

021Tonight, we took an Easter bunny cake to share at bible study. It was so fun to make(and eat).

009Soon enough it will be nice and warm out, and we will be busy keeping up with the garden.

And I can’t wait!

:)Vicki

I am linking up to:

http://www.betterhensandgardens.com/simple-saturdays-blog-hop-32815/

This Week’s Menu

Supper:

-Baked Chicken Legs, White Navy Beans

-Trout, Roasted Carrots, Green Beans

-Steak with Peppers & Onions, Broccoli & Cheese

-Chicken Stir-Fry, Roasted Cabbage

-Venison Roast, Cauliflower, Broccoli, Carrots

-Steak & Mushrooms, Cucumber Slices

Lentil Chili, Cheddar Cheese

Breakfast:

Eggs

Omelets with Spinach & Mushrooms

Bananas

Banana Smoothie

Plain Yogurt with Fruit

Lunch:

Tuna or Salmon Salad

Egg Salad

Chicken Salad

on lettuce

Carrot Sticks

Leftovers

 Snacks:

Bananas, Smoothies, Banana Ice Cream, Nuts, Fresh Pineapple, Raisins, Oranges

Fishing, Menu, & Homemade Chicken Stock

We had a really nice, sunshiny day Thursday with lots more nice days coming up. Our temps are supposed to reach into the 70’s this Monday! Thursday afternoon was spent at a creek near our house. The fresh air really does a body good!

If you can't beat 'em.......

If you can’t beat ’em…….

So Relaxing!

So Relaxing!

McKenzie made this week’s menu and helped with the grocery shopping. She did great and only spent $109.

*Menu*

-Chicken Wraps

Taco Lettuce Bowls & Refried Beans

-BBQ & Apple Bean Bake

-Fried Chicken, Green Beans, & Baked Potatoes

Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas & Brown Rice

-Smoked Sausage Stir Fry & Roasted Potatoes

*Lunch*

Salmon and Tuna Salad Stuffed Peppers

Carrot Sticks

Oranges

or Leftovers

 

*Breakfast*

Omelets with Broccoli, Onions, & Peppers

Oatmeal

or

Honey Nut Cheerios

We always buy our chicken on the bone to make delicious, healthy chicken stock.

Then boil the chicken with skin and all in a large pot until cooked and fall off the bone tender.

Remove all the meat. The chicken is ready to be used in wraps, casseroles, sandwiches, or any recipe calling for boneless chicken.

Return the skin, bones, and everything not eatable to the pot. Add any veggie scraps you may have(I only added parsley this time) and a little apple cider vinegar. Bring back to a boil and let simmer covered for four or more hours. I let mine simmer until bedtime. Strain your stock into a mason jar and refrigerate.

In the morning, there will be a layer of fat on top. Madison uses the chicken fat to make the best biscuits ever.

Your quart of stock will have plenty of gelatin and be gelled all the way to the bottom. This is the good stuff.

You can use your stock in any recipe or heat it, add salt to taste, and drink. Quentin Jr. drank this one while he was recovering from a stomach virus.

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I hope everyone has a happy weekend!

:)Vicki

I am linking up to:

Simple Saturdays Blog Hop

&

The Sunday Social Blog Hop

&

Homestead Blog Hop

Howdy!

We are still getting used to the time change around here but really liking the longer daylight hours. Quentin had several days off in a row, so we enjoyed an early spring break.

We spent a whole day thrift shopping, went to an auction one day, and went to Gatlinburg. Now we are tuckered out. :)

My favorite thrift store find was this bean cookbook. There are a lot of good recipes I want to try. I will share them with you as I try them.

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I am also loving this kitty. She doesn’t beg for food, potty in the floor, or scratch up my furniture. Yes, she’s pretty perfect.

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Quentin’s favorite find, by far, was this Star Wars ship. He was happy it came with the pilot and especially happy that the pilot’s card was inside.

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It was 68º in Gatlinburg on Sunday. It was so nice to be outside and not freeze to death. We visited the aquarium and stayed close enough that we were able to walk and enjoy the weather.

Inside the aquarium. Madison got me this shirt when she was out shopping with Quentin last week. I have made everyone watch each of the Jurassic Park movies twice. They are good sports though. Gotta get ready for the new movie. :)

Inside the aquarium. Madison got me this shirt when she was out shopping with Quentin last week. I have made everyone watch each of the Jurassic Park movies twice. They are good sports though. Gotta get ready for the new movie. :)

We have tried some new recipes this week that are definitely keepers.

Baked Pancake Squares I made half with chocolate chips(they sank)

Baked Pancake Squares I made half with chocolate chips(they sank). Taste just like pancakes, but you don’t have to stand in front of the stove forever.

Made this cake with homemade icing. It is seriously good!

Madison made this cake with homemade icing. It is seriously good!

Baked Chicken Chimichangas. We topped ours with queso.

Baked Chicken Chimichangas. We topped ours with queso. We will be making these again and again and again.

 We did a little Easter decorating today.

We have had this Easter village since Madison was a baby!

We have had this Easter village since Madison was a baby!

Quentin wants to take extra special care of our fruit trees, blueberry bushes, and grapevines this year. They are all starting to produce a lot of fruit. Friday he sprayed everything with neem oil. The fruit tree spray is for when the trees leave out.

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My neighbor gave me two new(to me) houseplants. Houseplants make me happy. :) I had fun repotting them and getting them ready for their new home.

A Christmas cactus(I have always wanted one) and a snake plant. I was happy to see the snake plant in this list for plants that improve indoor air quality.

A Christmas cactus(I have always wanted one) and a snake plant. I was happy to see the snake plant in this list for plants that improve indoor air quality.

My seeds are starting to sprout. I moved them outside yesterday.

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:)Vicki

I am linking up to:

Homestead Blog Hop