Monday, November 27, 2006

Our Christmas Decorations!

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Here you have it, our Christmas decorations. It has the outside of our house decorated, with Santa and all the lights, and even our Christmas tree, and one of the Angel on top of the tree. The Angel is very special to us, we got her many, many years ago, way before we even had kids, lol! She is lighted and she moves her wings, while holding a lighted "candle". It is very beautiful. Everyone have a blessed Christmas this year.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Turkey

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Let there be smoke!

This is what we do to our Thanksgiving Turkey!! We smoke it...
The first pic is of our homemade fire starting is a blazing with some small
hardwoods and when it is going well, then we will place them in the smoker.
The second pic is of Kenny carefully watching the burning wood for dad.
The third and fourth pic is of Cullen loading the wood into the smoker. The wood is place
in the burning area with wet wood on top of the burning wood . the wet wood then smokes
and adds tons of smokey flavor to the turkey. In this case, we are smoking with apple
wood...which has a sweet delicate taste for the turkey.
Stay tuned for the rest of the pics coming up of the turkey cooking and finished!!!!!!!!! Posted by Picasa

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Fresh cooked Pumpkin!

Today was a "cooking" day. I spent most of the day cooking. I like to cook up some "extra" meals and freeze them up for those "quick" meals that are needed. After I finished with all of that, I decided to cook up the extra pumpkins I had "laying " around. I cut them in half, and then Simone cleaned them out. After they were all clean, then i place the halves into a large roasting pan with some water in the bottom and placed that into the oven on 350 degrees for about 1 1/2 hours. We then took it out and let it cool so that we could work with it. We placed into re-usable freezer containers and zip lock bags that all went into the freezer. This will make some good eatin' later...pumpkin muffins, pumpkin pancakes, pumpkin bars, and of course, pumpkin pies.

I do have one nice pumpkin left and we will be using that for part of our Thanksgiving meal. I will take in, cut off the top (much like when you carve a pumpkin), clean it out, then fill it with sausage stuffing and bake it for about 1 hour in a 350 degree oven. This will be great, I will serve the stuffing right in the pumpkin container and when we scoop the stuffing out, we will get the soften, cooked pumpkin in each scoop. I took this idea from a friend of mine, who gave me a recipe for beef stew that you do the same way...and serve the stew in the pumpkin and scrap the pumpkin out. It sounds so lovely and I thought the pumpkin would be great with homemade sage and cornbread stuffing.

Well, it looks like all our prepared pumpkin is up and ready for use in our baked good. The only real problem now, is what to bake with it first.

Heathy Eating !!

Well, the family is doing well with our healthy eating...about 2 months ago, we decided to start eating "real" foods and get healthy. Cullen and I are tired of being run down and want to feel better and well as have heathly children. We have cut white sugar, hydrogenated oils, enriched flours, high fructose corn syrups from out regular diet. This has been a real challenge because most regular packaged foods have one or more of these products in them. It has caused a major change in the way we not only eat, but cook and buy food. We already grow most all of our own meat, and eggs, and some of our fruit and veggies, but we needed to do more.

We are finding that more time is needed to cook, you cant just throw our a package of stove top any must have your own whole wheat bread and corn bread to make stuffing from more instant box have to bake and make whole wheat goodies with honey...and no more quickie meals at fast food joints...more home cooking and pre made, pre frozen meals for those quickie times...

Overall, the change has been good and we are actually doing well at this. The biggest issue is actually hand grinding wheat...this is time comsuming and hard work and needs to be done constantly to keep up with the needs for baked bread, and such. We are working on getting a different set up for this but not sure what I want at this time.

Anyone care to share their whole food recipes...feel free, I could always use more!!!