Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Hatfields and McCoy's Miniseries

The Hatfield Clan

The History Channel had the premiere showing of this Mini-series this week. The special stars Kevin Costner. The shows can be watched online at the History Channel. I really enjoyed this 3 part show, it is great history brought to life. I recommend this show. BTW, the old man with the long beard is Devil Anse Hatfield. This photo was taken during the feud years.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Chicken House Ideas

I have been thinking about getting hens for a couple of years now. The problem is that I don't want to have them here on the farm. Why? We get deep snow and have many predators that will be a problem.  I have been trying to convince a friend who lives in town (where hens are allowed) allow me to put a few hens in his overgrown and unused backyard. I kinda like the blue one in the bottom photo. I think that in our rainy climate a covered chicken yard will be important. I have seen some chicken houses and yards built under those inexpensive metal carports that are popular, that really helps with keeping them dry during the long rainy season in western Oregon.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Growing Basil

Long ago I purchased basil starts, not knowing that growing basil from seed is very easy. On Sunday, I transplanted my tiny basil starts into larger places to grow. I sow the seed in a 4" pot, there were around 100 starts. When the plants have two sets of leaves, I transplant about 10 plants into their own 4" pots. I cut out the smaller starts, and leave the stronger, larger plants. I have a small greenhouse to grow my starts in, but a sunny window will work well. I let the plants grow to about 6" tall and transplant again...into the garden or large patio pots. I have found that a second planting later will provide nice basil for most of the summer months. I love fresh basil, and it dries very nicely in the microwave for the rest of the year. As Martha would say, It is a good thing!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

PicMonkey Free Website

I want to spread the word on this terrific website PicMonkey. It is free. They just made the photo collage available, and I made this Lilac collage from images I had on my computer. This is a great resource!

Friday, May 25, 2012

I am loving Brave Girls Club online classes.

Hi everybody!  I have been taking this online class for the last several weeks. I had some trouble getting myself into the groove of the class...but, finally it all came together in my mind. I am working on the class much of my free time, and have still a lot to do. The class allows access to it thru the online link until July 15, 2012. I may not finish by then...I will be well on the way and understand what I need to do. You can find out about the classes at Brave Girls Club.  This is completely different from Mary Jane's Farmgirls. maryjanesfarm

These two groups meet my needs, in two different ways. Together they help me stay happy and centered into living my best life. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Cast Iron Skillet Brownies

I am always looking for interesting ways to cook. This recipe is fun to make in a cast iron skillet. I think that i can easily change it to a dutch oven recipe.

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup dutch process cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 T unsalted butter
  • 1/4 heavy whipping cream
  • 8 oz chocolate chips

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and sugar. In another bowl mix together the flour, cocoa, and salt.
  3. In a medium cast iron skillet, bring butter and cream to a simmer over medium heat. Add the chocolate chips and stir until melted about 1 minute. Remove from heat, allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the chocolate mixture to the sugar mixture, whisking until well blended. Fold in the flour mixture.
  5. Pour the batter back into the skillet.
  6. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 40 minutes.
  7. Serve warm from the skillet, with ice cream.
Note - If desired, sprinkle more chocolate chips on top of the batter before baking.

I think that this recipe will work well in a Camp Dutch Oven.

This recipe is from Simply Food Love a food blog by Carla that is simply charming.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Dear You, Trust Your Voice.

Here is another wonderful art work by Kelly Rae Roberts. She is inspirational. This style of painting faces has become very popular. I find the faces to be simply charming...and I hope that you enjoy them too. Check out her website for a newletter that she sends out

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Traveling The Trail

Pacific Crest Trail in the North Cascades National Park

The thing to remember when traveling is that
the trail is the thing, not the end of the trail.
Travel too fast and you miss
all that you are traveling for.
Louis L'Amour

I saw this quote today, and thought right away that I had to put it on the blog. Yep, don't watch your feet all the time, or hurry everywhere you go...look around for the inspiration and beauty that you might miss. This photo just takes my breath away... it is the grandeur of nature in all it's glory.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Honeybees Gone Wild

I am so happy that there is a domestic honeybee hive somewhere near to my farm.  There is no one keeping bees around here, so I think that this is an escaped swarm that set up housekeeping near here. Hurrah...for the present time I do not need to think about keeping bees. The bees are busy in the garden...pollinating the fruit trees, and berry plants. Great News!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

The Strawberries are Blooming!

I planted an all new strawberry patch last summer, in a never before used raised planting bed. Last week there were two hard frosts, 27 & 29 degrees. I was so worried that the strawberry flowers were destroyed. My worries are over now, the plants are full of blooms. The promise of the fruit, the beautiful red, ripened in the sun...yum, nothing is better than picking strawberries in the garden...and eaten right there.  I want to make strawberry topped dessert!! I need a good recipe for the strawberry syrup!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Dutch Oven Bacon Cornbread

Today was Mountain Pass Kookers May cookout.  A friend has been making this fabulous Bacon Cornbread several times...everyone loves it, and you might too. The Jiffy Mix is an overlooked product that is the base of this recipe.

This recipe is for a 12" Dutch Oven, cooked at about 350 degrees.

Fry 2 lbs of bacon until good and crispy in your dutch oven, Remove the bacon and about half of the grease.

Mix up the 2 boxes of cornbread as described on the package. Then add two standard cans of creamed corn, stirred into the batter. Stir in the crispy bacon. Pour back into your dutch oven that is still pretty hot and has bacon grease in it. Bake at about 350 degrees until done in the middle. This is great while still warm!

Friday, May 11, 2012

It's Been 16 Years, and I Miss Her.

In loving memory to Tressa Alice Hawley. My Mom.

It has been 16 years, that she has been gone.
I still think about her often.
She missed so much during that time.
I know that she is with me always.
Happy Mother's Day.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

The Fluff in My Life

I have come to the conclusion that I am spending too much time looking at the fluff in my life, and not taking much time making sure that I am on the right path, and working on my goals and mission.

Fluff - the activities that take over..when you really need to focus on other things. Examples - TV, Internet, Reading, Sleeping, Watching it get the idea. This is a personal thing, everyone is different.

Before I retired from the US Forest Service things were very different. I could barely keep up with the important activities...there was literally no fluff.

My time is not going to last forever. This was brought home to me last week, when a girlfriend, who is also 60 yrs old, had a stroke. She will eventually get better... My focus is on Fluff, now I am going on a Lo-Fluff diet...just cutting back to a reasonable amount.  Think about the concept...what is your Fluff?

Monday, May 7, 2012

Follow Your Heart

by Kelly Rae Roberts

Wow, this pretty much says how I am feeling. I am taking a class online that is leading us through lessons of setting a personal mission statement, and then finding the important ways to follow our heart. I need to focus on the class this week, because I am a week behind in my lessons. Brave Girls Club is offering the online class Soul Restoration II.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Grateful Thoughts

The people who appreciate you 
are so important to your life. 

The author of this quote is unknown to me. Think about is so true. Positive people are good to be near, they help us feel our best and appreciated. They are the people to surround yourself with, to be your best self. Without these people, life would be much more difficult to live. Be grateful for these special people, they make life better.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Ideas for Art Journaling

I have been out and about the last few days. My Sis and I were just goofing off and playing. We ate out for dinner, and visited several antique stores and thrift stores. I forgot my I didn't get any great photos to share. I found inspiration at some of the things that other woman have created. I am working on an art journal for the Brave Girls Club online class that I am taking. I purchased two very old photos of girls. I am going to make copies to use in my art. I like the idea to tie ribbon along the spiral binding in this photo...and I am going to use that idea on my own. I have used pretty paper and lace on the far, it is not finished yet. I will post a picture on the blog when I am done.