Life on a little urban homestead in the making, with ideas for self-sufficiency, food preservation, thrifting, cookery,
gardening, crafts, vintage stuff, and more...

Jan 25, 2015

Pantry/Dark Days Challenge Meals, Vintage Chicken Wire Frame, Freebies :)

 Pantry/Dark Days Challenge Meals-
I realized the other night I did a combo! Pantry Challenge and Dark Days. I used frozen red bell peppers, frozen pepperoni, leftover cheeses, my frozen homemade/organic pesto, and local pizza dough. A double header! Tonight we're having Jambalaya (the mix is pretty good!) with shrimp and Andouille sausage. I have leftover bread to go with it, and salad with homemade dressing.

My Inspiration

Vintage Chicken Wire Frame-
Last summer I saw the frame above in Idaho City, and snapped a quick pic. They had planed the wood down to bare. On the way home I found an old, chippy, $10.00 local window frame at Habitat, and Dave and I broke out the glass and added leftover chicken wire. I thought it woulds be a great way to display my vintage kitchen items.

I recently took a small wire brush to ours, and I got to decorating today, it took a few tries for placement but easy easy otherwise. Dave added the wire and bracket to the back. All done! Here's the print that was there before, over our dining room table-

New frame-

Total cost- $10.00

Since it was much heavier, Dave added 2 brackets on the back and hung on the studs. I don't think it's going anywhere! Since it's hung with raffia I can change the placement pretty easily if needed.

Yesterday I was reminded of the adage- one person's trash is another treasure! I met with some fellow librarians to hang out, and some brought swappables. I scored a hand-beaded butterfly, with glass beads. I thought it was plastic until I got it home and looked up the name on the tag Pretty much a fair trade deal and glass beads! Really nice. I hung it over my computer in the dining room-

Reminds me of Spring!

I also got a new pitcher from Italy, nice! I decided to plant my new ivy in it :)

I like the green b the green kitchen items. Maybe I'll train it up the chicken wire! Love freebies!!!

Jan 17, 2015

One Month Pantry Challenge- Doing An Inventory

One Month Pantry Challenge, Doing An Inventory-
Last weekend I ran out of time to do a good inventory of our freezer and large pantry closet. I did it tonite. I found this helpful- 1 Month Menu Plan Grid  It's a nice sized, free printable menu grid/calendar. I also found this nice, simple freezer inventory list here-

This got me started to write the basics of what we have, in the freezer and pantry closet. Unlike most people we don't have a lot of frozen meats, since we don't eat a lot of meat. We eat lots of vegetarian foods!

We had 2 meals so far- frozen chicken smothered in homemade frozen pesto, with leftover french bread and salad. Ditto the leftover chicken, with taters and more salad.

Tonight I made- Spicy black bean soup and corn bread, good for a cold, rainy night. I use the pre-made "soup" as a base and added what's in the photo, + 1 more can of corn & spices. I mashed the canned beans slightly. Yummy and filling with the corn muffins made with buttermilk.

Main pantry closet

Chest freezer, a great investment!

Our version will look a bit different, since we're not feeding a family with kids. With just the 2 of us, our meals can be more flexible. I know I won't be able to do a whole month without fresh veggies, milks and fruit. I may buy more meats too, since I don't store a lot of those. Some of the items in my pantry are for long term/emergency food storage so they are off limits for this purpose. I am generally just challenging myself to use up more everyday stored foods, to rotate them and then will work on replacing with newer foods. I have a lot more fish than I thought so I'll make a Finnish Salmon Pie. I made it last year, added lots of peas, and great flavor! There's always lots of fresh eggs too. Speaking of the hens- they'll get any freezer-burned foods (if any) so they will be recycled :)

I got out these handy sheets I hadn't used yet to play with menu planning-

Here's a few more tips to save money! Lessons Learned on the Front Lines of Frugality

Jan 15, 2015

Liebster Award!

Liebster Award!
I received an email today saying my Little Homestead blog had been nominated for a blog award! What fun! It's always nice to have people acknowledge all the years spent building a blog up. I received it from Britni at Homeschoolinmommychronicles  Britni says-

The Liebster Reward is and award being passed around the blogosphere to up and coming bloggers. The rules are as follows:

    Acknowledge and thank the blog who nominated you. Done
    Look for an award image that you like, and post it on your blog. Done
    Answer the 11 questions asked by the person/blog who nominated you. Done
    List 11 random facts about yourself. Done
    Nominate 11 blogs with under 1,000 followers to receive the award. Done, but I will do 3. I don't follow that many blogs, sorry.  
    Let the bloggers know that you nominated them. Done
    Give them 11 questions to answer. Done

Here are my answers for Britni's questions:

    1-When you were a child, what was your dream job? Do you have that job today? No, I never had one specific job, but I LOVE being an elementary librarian!!!

    2-What are your 3 favorite books? Rumi- The Essential Rumi, The Lord of The Rings books, and Ordinary People As Monks & Mystics: Lifestyles for Spiritual Wholeness. Quite a range, eh? :)

   3- If you have to move out of the country, where would you move to? Either Scandinavia (probably Norway or Sweden), or France/Italy/Spain. 

   4- Can you cook? YES! I'm quite a foodie, and have lots of great compliments over the years.

    5- Is there any post you’ve been planning to do, but have been postponing for awhile now? Yes, news of my death ;)

   6- If you could have any super power, what would it be? Why? Invisibility! Think of the information you could glean! Just don't get run over by a truck...
  7- Do you prefer the beach or the mountain? Why? Mountains, hands down- trees, water, snow, clean air and wildlife...
  8- What movie did you love to watch as a child? The Sound of Music

  9- What is something that your learned recently? How to play school politics :)

 10- What is your favorite season of the year and why? Winter- no yard work or food preservation!

 11- What TV series do you watch? I have Netflix and just finished Firefly, great Scifi show! Otherwise- NCIS New Orleans, NCIS and Chicago Fire.

Here are my 11 random facts:

1-I hate school politics
2-I LOVE Traders Joe's chocolate bars with whole hazelnuts, oh my!
3-I hate shallow people, not hate, but find them INCREDIBLY boring
4-I LOVE SNOW!!! I could live in Minnesota, Wisconsin, you name it. BUT I would need green summers too
5-I worry about aging
6-I worry about my adult kids stupid mistakes- I hate having to sit back and watch them happen
7-I love my adult kids :)
8- I love my best friend, who is also my hubby Dave :)
9- It pains me to listen to women of all ages constantly criticize themselves, especially how they look. It's pure self-loathing. Who taught them that???
10- I just want a decent night's sleep- every night :(  Long story...
11- I'm listening to my cat snore right now :)

I'm nominating....

Jackie @ Bornimaginative Wonderful posts and amazing photos!!!

Margo @ Thriftathome  Great ideas, family stuff and photos!

Susan @ E-i-e-i-omg-bybiddie  Just too freaking funny, and really inspiring, doing it all alone :)

I'm asking the three lovely ladies these sames questions-

    When you were a child, what was your dream job? Do you have that job today?
    What are your 3 favorite books?
    If you have to move out of the country, where would you move to?
    Can you cook?
    Is there any post you’ve been planning to do, but have been postponing for awhile now?
    If you could have any super power, what would it be? Why?
    Do you prefer the beach or the mountain? Why?
    What movie did you love to watch as a child?
    What is something that your learned recently?
    What is your favorite season of the year and why?
    What TV series do you watch?

And what are your 11 random facts?

Thanks all!!! 

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