Fresh Start

It’s been so long since I last posted. There’s no use in trying to catch up.  We’ll just consider this post a fresh start.

Josh got me a pre-loved Kitchen Aid mixer for Christmas and I’ve been trying to perfect my recipes and finally found my favorite.

Appalachia Homestead’s Ultimate Bread Recipe

Good, but nothing spectacular.

Julia Child’s Sandwich Bread Recipe

Rose up nice, but bland.

And the winner…Scratch With Sandy’s Amish White Bread Recipe

Ahhhhhmazing!

The first time I made the Amish White bread, I kept exactly true to the recipe and then brushed the tops with honey butter. ::drool emoji::

The second time I attempted it with half the sugar and it’s still REALLY good. I also took the second loaf and stuffed it with a cinnamon raisin butter sugar mixture.  It didn’t hold together well but tastes so, so, so….good!  I will perfect my methods on that one, but I definitely feel like this is a versatile base recipe.

Monty agrees.

I honestly don’t think I will buy store bought bread ever again.

In other food related news…

I started a lettuce mix in the cold frame in October and it is doing amazing! It has made it through snow and temps down into the single digits. All thanks to a little scrap wood and an old window.

It’s now double this size and we’re harvesting for salads.

I’m also already starting seeds indoors for the gardens and prepping new areas to plant.

Onions and celery, neither of which I’ve ever grown but am really excited for.

Tiny onion sprouts that make me so, so happy. In February as I dream about a bountiful garden I just go in the “grow room” and stare at my seedlings. And it’s so exciting when you see noticeable changes. Josh loves it when I make him stare at mostly inanimate objects.

We still have the chickens and are getting more than enough eggs!  At times we’ve had over 7 dozen eggs in the house.

It’s been a terrible flu season so I made my own elderberry syrup.

None of us have gotten the flu, just some congestion and sinus stuff here and there.  Nolan got a cough and I gave him an elderberry and honey cough syrup (not this one, the one by Zarbees) and he got over it way faster than the norm.

Okay, so that it’s not all about food/ingestibles…

Nolan participated in his first Pinewood Derby this past weekend!

He’s a Lion Cub, which is a new Den they added last year and it’s kinda like an intro to Scouting. Below is a little collage of videos and pictures taken of his car during the race.

He ended up winning his Den!

And also, this picture below makes my heart hurt a little. Such a big boy! Conversing and hanging out with the older kids like it’s nothing.

Well, that’s it for this update.  I’ll do my best to keep it more current. Thanks for reading. For your reward, here’s a cute picture loving on his dog.

Spring is sprouting

Well, the garden is in!


I used the same gate and fencing from the backyard in last year’s garden. I had to buy one more roll to complete it.

I picked up a few more t-posts and two cattle panels for the tomatoes, cucumbers and pole beans.


I’ve got the broccoli, kale, lettuce, carrots, bunching onions and some spinach planted. I need to start some more Kale and spinach. I’m trying to use the spinach as a border.

I still need to get the chard in and I’m waiting for it to warm up before I put in the tomatoes and peppers.

I bought a heat mat to get the peppers to germinate and it’s working great.


I learned how to make this grow box on YouTube.


Once the seeds germinate and sprout I move them into the windowsill or cold box.


I moved a few things out of the box today and moved cucumbers in. Re-potting them from the soil blocks where they started to sprout into the Styrofoam cups.

I’m also growing herbs and flowers and ended up sprouting some spaghetti squash seeds because I couldn’t resist when they were already sprouting inside the organic squash I bought at the store.


Now they’re growing quite well in the pots. I guess they’ll go down on the hill with the other larger plants like the watermelon.

I’m thinking of growing the eggplant and zucchini in containers to save room in the garden.


The cold box is working very well, too! Everything is staying protected and thriving.

So that’s the current update and hopefully everything will start taking off soon.