December 31, 2009

Our Christmas

Santa left a Radio Flyer Classic Walker Wagon under the tree for Chloe this year. This thing is real cool and hopefully will help Chloe on her path to walking. Right now it is the perfect size to push her around in, as she squeals with delight.

I made a batch of these French breakfast puffs over the holidays. I got the recipe from my new favorite cookbook The Pioneer Woman Cooks by Ree Drummond.

I picked this cook book up at the bookstore a month ago, looking for new inspiration in the kitchen. Even if you don’t make a single recipe from this book you will enjoy reading it cover to cover as you learn all about Ree and her family and their cattle ranching life. For me the cook book has to have a photo of the end product, and this one does not disappoint. She actually has a photo for every step in each of the recipes. The best part is every recipe I have made from this book has turned out perfectly. I made the Enchiladas for Christmas Eve, they were great. I have also made the Meatloaf & the Penne ala Betsy. Both turned out wonderfully. These are not fancy recipes where you need to go to specialty stores to find the ingredients, just good hearty recipes for you and your family to enjoy.

I also made some homemade applesauce for Chloe this holiday. While the apples were boiling on the stove the whole house smelt wonderful.

The applesauce turned out tasty. Chloe loves it. I was able to freeze half of it in ice cube trays. This way I am able to just take a few cubes out on the days she is having some and it is perfect portion size. The recipe I used you can find HERE

We had a white Christmas this year. The ground is still covered in snow. We were able to take Chloe out in it for some photos. She is sitting on a bucket. She is not sure what to make of the whole thing. In the background on this photo you might get a glimpse of our heard of alpacas.

Note from Chloe
Psst. Everyone keeps talking about Santa. Yea I met the guy; every time I see him he looks a little bit different. Mom & Dad keep mentioning something about at least he has a real beard now. If my parents met this guy when they were kids he must be really old. I am not sure what all the hub bub is all about around this guy but I will let you in on a little secret. Grandparents are where it is at. As far as gift giving they blew Santa right off the page. Here is the deal breaker, Grandparents send gifts all year round not just on one day, and they love you whether you are naughty or nice. Seriously you can do no wrong in your grandparent’s eyes. Hugs & Kisses from your Granddaughter.

December 23, 2009

Chloe Meets Santa Twice as Nice

With all the hustle and bustle we still managed to take Chloe to see Santa.

Not only did we take her once to the Mall near our home, but we managed to drive to a Mall much further away and visited their Santa Too. Both of these first photos where taken by their cameras and purchased for our memories.

I managed to click off 2 photos of my own below. She did so well and did not cry one bit.

Cheers to you and may you be safe with your loved ones.
I hope all of your holiday wishes come true.

December 21, 2009

Harvesting Pumpkin Seeds

This October I picked up one of those Cinderella pumpkins along with some regular Jack-o-lantern pumpkins I used to decorate for the fall. I love the Cinderella pumpkins (Rouge Vif d’Etampes). They are just so whimsical looking. From what I read on them they are the best pumpkins to use for homemade pumpkin pie. I planned on harvesting the seeds from the pumpkin and hopefully growing several of my own.

Back in the days of college when I had little to no money at all, I would often take walks in nice neighborhoods with some baggies of wet paper towels and a sharp pair of scissors. I would snip clippings from plants that I liked that were easily reached from the side walk. Then I would take them home and stick them in jars filled with water. I would wait for them to grow long enough roots then plant them in pots. Another way to cheaply acquire plants is by saving the seeds from the fruit of a plant. Well I finally got around to cutting that pumpkin open. I live in a very dry climate so I still have pumpkins that have not rotted yet. Make sure you harvest the seeds from a pumpkin that is still fairly healthy looking, no mold.

I washed the seeds in a colander with just cold water. Then I lay them in a Tupperware container over a towel. Through out that day I would mix them up making sure they would not stick to the towel as they dried. The key to harvesting the seeds is to make sure they are dried completely. I will probably leave these in this container for several months in a cool dry place. Then I will make up an envelope with a picture, name and date.

Then I chopped up the pumpkin and tossed the pieces out to one of my side pastures for the deer & elk. The pumpkin lasted not even 24 hours.

Here is a herd of Elk that I have been seeing almost daily. They have been coming around at sunrise and sunset. At this photo shoot I counted 15 in the herd. Sorry for the quality of the photos. I took them through my laundry room window. I had never seen elk before moving to the mountains of New Mexico. They are huge and basically step over our 5ft fencing. They are amazing to watch.

The pumpkin was just one of my projects I was hoping to get done during my time off for the holidays. I can cross that one off my list. What have you been up to or would like to be doing this holiday season?

December 18, 2009

Playing with Video

My new camera has video capability so I have been playing around with it, trying to figure out how to use it. My family has all been on my case that they want to see Chloe in action. Here is a start. This is Chloe in her jumperoo burning off some of her energy.

December 16, 2009

What Day Is It?

Chloe is doing the cutest thing lately. She has started to push down her bumper in her crib and peek through the bars to see who has just walked into the room. It is so precious I just have to laugh every time she does it.

Lately I feel like I am loosing my mind. I am feeling the crunch of the holidays. I am usually so organized and have it all together. I feel as though I have lost my place in the story book of my life. On any given moment I am asking myself these questions.

What day is it?
What time is it?
Did I rinse?
Where was I?
What did I forget to do?
What am I doing?
Is it time for bed?

I am so looking forward to next week and some time off. This year we do not have any family visiting so it will just be the three of us. I am so glad I do not have to prepare the house for visitors and we can all bum around in our pj’s as long as we want. What could I possibly ask Santa for that would ever top my little bundle of Joy? I can not think of anything. I already have everything I wanted. Here are some photos of Chloe.

December 9, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

December 6, 2009

Snow Storm = No Power

We had a hell of a week out here in the country. A snow storm came in and eventually knocked out our power. Being in small town USA I think there was one guy working on it. Here are some photos of our property.

After 24 hours of no electricity we packed up and moved to a hotel. Chloe and I hung out in the room in our pajamas and enjoyed the heater and some Disney channel.

Eventually the electricity came back on and we were able to go back home. We still have several inches of snow and it is blustery cold outside. But all is well with the world in our cozy home with electricity. I wanted to give a shout out to my family in Florida. Thanks so much for checking up on us to make sure we are ok. There is a certain disconnect from the world when you are down to just trying to provide the basic needs for your family, and it can feel like you are all alone. Much love to the family, whom lives so far away but kept us in their thoughts.

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