Monday, November 7, 2011

Baby Love!!

I once again am in the throws of nausea thanks to a little peanut growing away in my belly. The kids are excited, although Caleb has decided he only wants a little brother and wants us to not keep it if it is a girl. The mind of a four-year-old! :) Whenever we say to Amelia, "Where's the baby?" her usual response is "Don't know." But now she enthusiastically says, "In Mommy!!" She is growing into such a cutie. We love how she runs into our room ever morning with her sqeaky high voice saying, "Mommy? Daddy? Hi!! Hi!!" Natalie just keeps asking, "Baby's coming out now?" She doesn't quite understand how long it takes for the baby to grow. We are overjoyed to be adding to our family and can't wait to meet this newest member around June 19th 2012.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Going to the Chapel!

One afternoon in October, Caleb and Natalie decided to get all dressed up so they could get married. Here are their "wedding" pictures.

Saturday, September 17, 2011


You've probabl notice by now that my blogging is rather inconsistant. Sorry for that. Life gets in the way with my three little munchkins! Here are some pictures I recently took of my beauties.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Oh the places I've been...

It has been one of "those" weeks. A week where lots goes wrong and yet I am still alive! It all started when I pulled my external hard drive out of the back office and out to the living room to attempt to back it up onto another hard drive. But of course, tragedy struck and it was knocked off the table and the main motor failed. So here I have ten years of my life in pictures, not backed up, and seemingly lost forever! Since then, I found a place that can recover my data, as long as the head did not scratch the disk too badly. So although it is extremely spendy, I am hopeful to once again have baby pictures of my three children, pictures from my honeymoon, and many moments in between.

I also had my oven spark, catch on fire, and short out. The bright side is that it is time to upgrade to that gas range we've been wanting! The down side is the very unexpected cost and a limited ability to cook. So, my yogurt has been put on hold, as well as many other cooking adventures. I will be back in the swing once our new range arrives in a couple of weeks.

Until then, it is spring cleaning time around our house. I gutted and re-organized the pantry yesterday and plan to attack the upstairs play room this morning. Happy May Day!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

In the Meantime...

Because I have been to busy lately, I have not been able to complete the yogurt making. So I thought that I would share a great new recipe with you that our family loved. It comes from the "Nourishing Traditions" cookbook and is good as a side dish or light lunch.

Rice and Carrot Casserole


2 Cups organic brown rice

2 Tbl. butter

2 Tbl extra virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, finely chopped

1 tsp dried thyme

4 whole cloves

3 cardamom pods (or a pinch of dried if it's all you've got)

grated rind of 1 lemon

4 cups of chicken stock

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 cup grated carrots

1/2 cup raisins


In a heavy flame proof casserole (I used my cast iron enamel pot), melt butter and olive oil. Open cardamom pods and add seeds to casserole (or a pinch of dried cardamom) along with thyme, cloves, lemon rind, and onion. Saute until onion is soft. Add rice and saute until milky, a couple of minutes. Pour in stock, add salt and bring to a rolling boil. Stir in carrots and raisins. Boil, uncovered, for about 10-15 minutes until the water has reduced to the level of the rice. Reduce the flame to lowest heat, cover tightly and cook for at least 2 hours or as long as 3 hours. Do not remove the lis during cooking.

Serve as a side dish to whole roasted chicken (I used it with my beer can chickens) or other mildly seasoned meat. I was thinking this would probably be really yummy with grilled kabobs, too. I ate the leftovers in a fresh corn tortilla and it was a great lunch!


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Yogurt Adventure

I tried a few soaked grain recipes! Among the successes are pancakes, sourdough bread (of course!!), yogurt herb bread, and banana bread (the recipe I shared previously). My one failure has been waffles that were chewy inside, yuck! Now I am focusing on making better choices with the dairy my family consumes. We love milk. For several years I have been desiring to have only unhomogenized whole milk in our house. I would REALLY love raw. But unfortunately, raw milk is illegal to sell or buy in the state of Idaho. I recently found a dairy that provides organic, grass-fed, low temp pasteurized milk. So I decided to bite the bullet and pay $3.25 per HALF gallon for it. But I look at it this way...Homogenization changes the fat particles so that our body no longer recognizes them for what they are. So they clog our arteries! The powdered nonfat milk added to skim milk for flavor is just as bad! The cost is worth the investment in my family's health. Also, we love yogurt. Can I say that again? We LOVE yogurt! Our kids have yogurt every night before bed, we drink it in our smoothies, and use it to bread our oven "fried" chicken among many other uses. But the yogurt I have found to be the most healthy among all the grocery store options (no powdered skin milk, full fat, and low added sugar) is $2.88 a quart. That comes to $11.52 a gallon! Talk about expensive. And I am compromising some of my desires, since the one yogurt that meets all my basic criteria is not organic, is pasteurized, and also made with cream which makes it 18g of fat per serving! So, I have decided to jump ship on store bought yogurt. At a price of $6.50 a gallon, I can make my own yogurt with that yummy unhomogenized, organic, grass-fed milk! Way less expensive. So, there is even a cost savings along with this health benefit, which is even more motivation to try it.
On the docket for tomorrow: Home Made Yogurt. Here I go. Wish me luck. I'll take some pictures and report back in a day or two.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Grain Soaking

I have been reading a new cookbook called "Nourishing Traditions" by Sally Fallon. Well, it's actually more of a textbook. Sally Fallon makes a lot of out-of-the box claims about diet and nutrition and backs it all up with case studies from cultures around the world. One of the claims she makes is that the grains we eat were meant to be soaked, or fermented, before being eaten. Soaking the grain in buttermilk, yogurt or other cultured milk, breaks down the phytic acid contained in the bran (or outer layer) of the grain. This increases the vitamin content of the grain and makes the nutrients it contains more available when digested. I have been playing around with my favorite banana bread recipe to try and make it a soaked grain recipe. I think I have come up with a formula that works quite well. So I thought I'd share it with you so you can try it if you'd like.


1/2 C plain yogurt with active cultures (I use Nancy's)
1/4 C water
1 1/2 C whole wheat flour/spelt
1/4 C butter, softened
2/3 C raw honey
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1 C ripe mashed bananas
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt


Combine flour, water and yogurt in a medium bowl. Leave in warm place for 12-24 hours to soak (On your kitchen counter will work fine).

After soaking grains: Mix butter, eggs, honey and vanilla until creamy. Add bananas and cinnamon and mix well. Add soda, salt and flour/yogurt mixture. Mix until combined. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 1/2 hours or until toothpick comes out clean and thermometer reads 195 degrees.

Allow bread to cool in pan for 15 minutes or so. Turn out on a cooling rack and allow to finish cooling completely. The bread will be very moist.

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Terra Stopher Photography