Friendsgiving 2020

Let’s just put a disclaimer out here because… I know most people’s feelings about get together this year. They aren’t popular. I would also like to state that most of the people that were here have had Covid. No, we didn’t give it to each other… all at different times… so during this event, we had the immunity and no one got Covid at this event. Now that that is out of the way…

Friendsgiving 2020

So KW’s mom has a picture very similar to this at a Thanksgiving when she was about 18 months of age (so a bit younger than he is here…). We decided to recreate the picture. I really wanted to put the pictures side by side, but after digging through all of Deb’s photos, we couldn’t find Shaye’s picture like this… It also took a little convincing KW that this was okay to do, even though apparently he likes butter just as much as his momma did.

They’re not Leggins, They’re not Jeans, They’re jeggings… aka Turkey eating pants! (think Joey from Friends) (more…)

Thanksgiving How To: Choose a Turkey

Here we are… 3 weeks before Thanksgiving. It is time to start thinking about that Thanksgiving feast. And while Thanksgiving might look a little different this year… there are still things to consider.

  • Pie or cake or dessert?
  • How many types of potatoes?
  • Fresh or Frozen turkey?
  • How many people are you feeding?
  • Whole turkey or just turkey breast this year?
  • Does it need to be Organic?
I can’t help you decide on dessert. I mean really, go with both if there is a question. And potatoes… probably 3. That’s how many Monica made in that one Friends Thanksgiving Episode. But the turkey, I can help you there… The tips you will learn here will work not only for this “weird” year but for every year! That’s what we want too. Normal… whatever that may be… because I sure hope this year isn’t the new normal… like people keep claiming.

What size turkey do I need?

(more…)

How to: Onion

Onions are one of those tricky vegetables. I’ve had friends (usually little kiddos) that can’t pronounce it correctly. The most common for a while was yonion. :). And it makes a lot of people cry. I can’t say everyone because I don’t cry cutting up onions, but I run people out of the house cutting up onions. My favorite thing to do IS cut up onions. So I always volunteer to cut onion for people. ALWAYS. 

So why do Onions make you cry?

Onions produce the chemical irritant known as syn-propanethial-S-oxide. The synthase enzyme converts the amino acid sulfoxides of the onion into sulfenic acid. It stimulates the eyes’ lachrymal glands so they release tears.

Do some Onions make you cry more than others?

It takes a lot of precise chemical reactions to produce tears. White, yellow, and red onions all have a higher concentration of the onion enzyme necessary to create syn-propanethial-S-oxide while sweet onions, green onions, and scallions have fewer of the necessary enzymes.

Do different Onions work better for certain things?

(more…)

Vampire Folklore

VAMPIRES

In vampire folklore, a vampire initially emerges as a soft blurry shape with no bones. He was “bags of blood” with red, glowing eyes and, instead of a nose, had a sharp snout that he sucked blood with. If he could survive for 40 days, he would then develop bones and a body and become much more dangerous and difficult to kill.

Today vampires are widely believed to be very old, tall, attractive, intelligent and aristocratic, sleep in coffins on native ground, have an insatiable thirst for blood, and who must be staked through the heart to be killed. In contrast, folkloric vampires (before Bram Stoker) are usually peasants of low intelligence, recently dead, do not need their native soil, and are often cremated with or without being staked. (more…)

Black & White Photos

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a hundred times… there’s something so classic and beautiful about a black and white photo. I recently watched The Ghosts of Girlfriends Past. Spoiler (but it’s an old movie so…)… at the end of the movie he photographs his brother’s wedding. All the photos they show were in black and white. I’ve always wanted to photograph a black and white wedding. Now, would I only want black and white wedding photos, probably not… BUT!!!!

October 10th, I got to photograph my husband’s friend since junior high’s wedding. It was pretty exciting. And while I edited all photos in color… I turned them all black and white too.

Oh… and if you notice below I have 3 cameras… I’m NOT a professional videographer, but I got to play and make them a video too. It was a lot of fun!

(more…)

Fresh Pumpkin Butter (made with homegrown Pumpkins)

This past weekend we had our annual Trails for Kids fundraising ride. We had to postpone it a little bit… because we all know there’s this Pandemic thing going on. Honestly, I think it was a good time. In April we’re always fighting rain. Now, if you think about September… you could fight fall rains, but you also have a little warmer temps… so who knows. It’s kind of hit and miss on both occasions. We actually discussed that during our follow-up board meeting.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves… first things first… a few weeks ago my I had to harvest my pumpkins early because of squash bugs. They were sitting in my wagon behind my house waiting for me to do something with them.

Jump forward a couple of weeks… I’ve now made some pumpkin purée, but I still have pumpkins running out of my tookus. That’s even with sitting a few up on the front porch for fall decór. And don’t read that wrong, I was extremely excited that I could grow pumpkins!! But my thought is, I don’t want them going to waste.

I was having conversations with my friend Jody on what we were each bringing to the bake sale at the Trails for Kids auction. She mentioned her dad was making biscuits for her to donate. She wasn’t sure if they’d be plain or cheesy/garlicky, but if they were plain, she was going to try and convince him to make Apple Butter. I mentioned since it was fall, she should also throw in some pumpkin butter. She laughed and said she a) didn’t have any, b) didn’t know how to make any, and c) didn’t have time to learn.

(more…)

3-2-1 Cake Mix and Cake

This weekend was special. It is our annual Trails for Kids fundraiser. If you have been here anytime at all… you know that usually, we have this ride in April. Also… this year has been “interesting” (to say the least!) so we had to postpone until this past weekend. All summer long we wondered if it would even happen. I mean seriously…

But the time came and it did, in fact, happen! I can’t give away any of the details on the ride just yet but know, it was a MAJOR success! That would be an understatement!

On Friday night of our fundraiser, we have a bake sale. A few years ago I had a chocolate chip cookie in a cast-iron skillet go for $130. Well, this year I had something go for more than that… but that’s another story for another time :). Yup, I’m mean.

Today I want to share a recipe I’ve shared before… BUT… the cool thing is this is perfect for camping. And since this fundraiser involves camping, what better time to share, am I right?

3-2-1 Cake Mix & Cake

Ingredients for Cake Mix Setup:

  • A box of Angel Food Cake mix
  • A box of your favorite flavor of cake (chocolate, funfetti, lemon, you name it!)
  • A ziplock bag

(more…)

The Fall Quilt

When we went to Alaska, we went to the cutest quilt shop. Our plans were to make the girls quilts to help commemorate our trip. Well, we bought material for the quilts there that you could only get there… with the plans of getting more “filler” material once we got home. Less to try and pack to get back home. 

Once my grandma and I got the quilt tops done, it was time to find backing. I went online searching for extra wide backing. I found what I wanted for the older’s quilt in Rogers, AR. So since we were already going camping the weekend that I found it, it was a hop, skip, and a jump away to go material shopping. 

In the process, I found this quilt panel.

(more…)

Pumpkin Purée

Let’s make Pumpkin Purée from the fantastic pumpkins you grew in your garden! You didn’t spend all summer growing pumpkins for nothing, after all. Oh, I guess… you can use them for Fall/Halloween decorations… but you should probably put up a few just because, right? Well today, I’m going to show you how!

Pumpkin Purée

1.Start with the pumpkins. Now, my pumpkins here are a little smaller than they should be, but sometimes you have to harvest pumpkins early. That was the case here. These pumpkins weighed in between 4 and 6 pounds. Wash them off. While you will remove the outer shells, it is best to clean off the excess soil. Preheat oven to 375˚F.

2. Make sure you have a sharp knife to be able to slice the pumpkins in half. You’ll also want a spoon, olive oil, and salt. Plus, go ahead and prepare your pans. Get a large jelly roll pan (half sheet) and line with parchment paper. The parchment paper helps with cleanup later. (more…)