Sunday, September 27, 2009

Here is what is waiting for me today

This is only half of the ironing pile...

Mom harvested her grapes and brought them ALL over to our house.

Thanks! I think.

So...ironing and juicing.

And haircuts later.

When do I get a day off? and yes, I am whining.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Upon viewing a lighthouse over at the coast...

"Look mom...A lightbulb!"
-Matthew, age 5

Thursday, September 24, 2009


Amidst all the canning and cooking lately, we took a day off, loaded up the kids in the prison van and headed to one of our state parks because we felt guilty for ignoring them so much while canning.

Gorgeous waterfalls...lots!

There were several that we were able to walk behind...amazing!

Total distance hiked...5 miles

Number of tired toddlers...3

Was it worth the hike?...completely!

Number of kids wanting to do the hike again...0

This picture makes me look like the waterfall is coming down directly on my head...nice.

Just getting started on the torture hike...we are all ok, not all of us...grumpy teenager excluded, as usual happy!

Matthew...little trooper!

Joseph...insistent on carrying Lily again not like I argued. After all, who actually wants 25 pounds of chub strapped to one's body. Oh wait, guess I already do.


Are you getting annoyed with my "..." yet? If not, then I'll keep going.

How many teenagers do you know that would pack their own strangely healthy lunch?...0?

With a plate for his salad????? Who's kid is this anyway?

According to the kids and adults this was the best part of the trip...lunch!

What We've Been Doing

Freezers full of main dishes...6

Number of meals ready to eat...150 (this is OUR size meals)

Happy, grateful mama...1 crazy

Pears...400 pounds

Peaches...150 pounds

Sore, tired aching feet...2

Freezing veggies...too many to wrap my tired brain around

Corn...120 pounds

Green beans...120 pounds

Squash...10 quarts

Grated Zucchini because it is taking over and I can't deal with it anymore...36 quart bags

Number of parents who are praying for frost so that the squash plants die...2

Number of people in my family who love Sloppy *Tims...11

*We are a politically incorrect family and have renamed the Sloppy Joe's, Sloppy Tim's because our Joe is not "sloppy" and was offended. Our Tim, however, is very sloppy and has earned this title...for now.

I get a ton of questions regarding my style of cooking and freezing meals.

It is beyond valuable to me to have this system in place!

I can't even fathom what our grocery bill would be like if we ate out all the time or bought a lot of processed, ready-to-eat foods. I can't even remember the last time my kids had fast food. We go out to eat as a family one or two times a year. Not because I am a food snob...but because, it's expensive!

Every night my family eats a home cooked meal. And most days, I don't even cook. I can't imagine it any other way.

We eat a wide assortment of foods like, chillies, soups, casseroles, meat pies, lasagnas, burritos, sandwiches, and bean dishes.

I have a master list hanging up in the kitchen with all the meals listed and how many of each meal we have. When we pull something out of the freezer, we remove that item from the list.

Cooking in bulk is so easy...and so worth it!

I wish I would have started this years and years ago. I take our favorite recipes and times them by 2 or 3 in order to make one big enough for my family. I then times this new quantity by 4, so we can get four "our size" meals.

I make a master list of all the different ingredients needed to cook all the meals that I plan on making. I do this before I go and then organize the list into different sections, like produce, dairy, etc...

After purchasing all the food, I start cooking! I usually will chop, shred, brown or cut up all my ingredients before getting started, just to make my life easier and we all know I need lots more of that.

When done, we allow them to cool. Plastic wrap first, tinfoil second and 5 gal white garbage bag over the top and then labeled. After pulling one out of the freezer to serve, I pull everything off, put the foil back on and then stick in the oven. If the item is still frozen, I put it into a cold oven and then turn it on as to not crack my dish.

I totally encourage everyone to try cooking ahead, I can't say enough good things about it!


Monday, September 14, 2009

My computer has been sick

We are having a "tech genius" friend of ours look at it.

When I get it back, I'll catch up my blog.

Pinky promise.