Gardening

Spring has Sprung

What a beautiful day today!! Getting all pumped up for the planting to begin and a lot of yard projects!!

What plans do you all have?

Putting finishing touches on chicken coop and waiting for the fence to come and be put up plus my friend is giving me some nice netting to put over the run area for we have hawks that like to come here and kill my birdies!! Man that ticks me off!! You definitely don’t want predators getting those or your chickens!

Now the garden beds are up and filled with dirt plus I also made some drain pipes for easier watering and to get it deeper in the soil for a better root system, I have to admit for years Hubby would put the sprinkler out and then later I’d go behind him and water with the hose! Lol well it wasn’t enough and then the leaves stayed all soggy.

Moving on to drainage pipes

garden beds

I also made a Herb Bed closer to house(kitchen herb garden) and planted seeds in it today with one more area yet for cilantro.

I divided the bed into 4 sections as to not over crowd the plants.

I lined the bed with garden fabric and mixed some planting soil and organic fertilizer in the dirt prior to planting so I’m a happy Gardner today!

Have y’all planted or started your Herbs?

Now onto filling some large pots for flowers and more herbs then some crafting decor for the back porch! Then I’m done for today!

I’m not 30,40,or 50!!! ūüėúūüĆĪ

Have a happy gardening day or whatever your doing!

Seeds and Seedlings

https://pamelamarston.coM

Healthy Recipes

Healthy Pumpkin Muffins

Great Tasting Muffins for anytime!

                                            Pumpkin Muffins

  1. 1 Dry Spice Cake mix
  2. 1 Can Pumpkin Puree
  3. 1 egg
  4. 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  5. 1. Cup dried cranberries
  6. 1/2 c chopped nuts
  7. 1 tsp Mexican vanilla
  • Mix above ingredients well with wire whisk making sure you get all the dry mix stored in batter.
  • Divide evenly into large muffin tins that are sprayed with a release agent and bake 350 degrees 15-18 min
  • Makes 20-24 muffins depending how full you fill with batter. I usually fill them 3/4 full.
  • Great for breakfast, snacks or Anytime! ¬†Enjoy!

healthy recipes

Healthy Recipes

Two Ingredient Pizza Crust

                             Healthy Pizza that taste good!!

 

2 ingredient dough: (6 sp total)
1/2 C self rising flour
Slightly less than 1/2 C plain Greek yogurt

Mix together (will be crumbly-keep working with it). Roll into a ball and then place on greased pizza pan and flatten or roll out(I used parchment paper instead of cooking spray because I don’t like my pizza pan sprayed).
I sprinkled Italian herbs on the crust before the sauce.

I used:
1/4C pizza sauce (1 sp)
1/2 C low fat mozzarella cheese (4sp)
Mushrooms
Green pepper
Onions
I would’ve added chicken if I’d have had some. I added Turkey Pepperoni.

Bake in oven at 375 for 23-25 min

11 points for entire pizza. So filling!

healthy recipes

Home Page

One Goal At A Time

Spring is finally here in Yellow Banks a long with nearby flooding, But that’s normal living on the Mississippi! While 6 blocks alway on my Urban Homestead the plans begin for cleanup, prepping for gardens and new chicken Coop along with all the flower beds! I love love beautifying the yard and being outside .

Well the three garden boxes are finished along with one that was salvaged from the river with all the flooding ( you can’t believe what you find floating down stream)! Finders keepers is the flood river ruleūüėČ. Anyway the salvaged boards are 2×8 and I cleaned them up a bit and hubby put them together for me. I used Linseed Oil on all my boxes to protect the wood and two are in the garden patch then the salvaged one comes out tommrow! Now the big plan is the Soil and it’s a must here with all the sand we have in our area.

I love the idea of raised garden boxes for myself and always wanted to so this was the year!

It sure will help on the back and have a lot more nutrients for my plants to thrive, for they haven’t done well in years!

The coop well that’s another new goal this year we revamped a little shed into a coop and he sure looks good with plenty of room. Still have to do some touch ups and fencing for the chickens safety and their run but looking forward to this new adventure with chickens ūüźď

If your interested in learning more about garden boxes check out my link! Garden Boxes

Well Gota go more work and I will add more as the progress continues!

Healthy Living

Hows The Work Outs Going?

Hopefully your still at it!  Are you getting bored?  Hows your routine doing?

Well you might say something like this “I’m bored with it, I’m tired of doing the same things or I can’t just get into it like I was”.  These are all familiar statements when we work out and a-lot of reasons why we QUIT!   But we can’t have that!  So let’s talk about it see what we come up with and I’ll give you some tips and things that helped me.

Is your energy low? Just Dog Gone Tired or  feeling down and just want to stay home and sit on your butt?

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I hear ya!  I’ve been there done that several times and IT DID NOT HELP ME!   It put me in a bad place of feeling like a  failure or defeated and ,  I  just gave up!

Listen we are not going to QUIT!   REPEAT NOT QUITTING!!!  So then How do we get our mojo going??  Well one thing that worked for me was a Buddy System, finding someone who will work out with you at least several times a week, or maybe if you live long distance from them set up phone call times to support each other and talk about how the day went, what kind of workout you did, maybe you tried a new work out or machine, what you ate or plan on eating for dinner etc.

I still do this today!!  I have a cousin and one of us call daily to report to each other and  pump each other up we maybe share some healthy recipes,  Hey we have bad days but we don’t give up!  Tomorrow is another day and just get back to it!!

Maybe you like to work in a group setting or meeting new people like a gym or yoga class or maybe a hiking or walking club and don’t forget Zumba!  That will shake things up!

Spring and Summer are coming how about joining a sports league like baseball, or soccer.  Something I like to do is listen to an audio book while I work out and I actually look forward to the workout because the book keeps me coming back to exercise and the book pulls me in if that makes sense.   Speaking of Spring to get more steps and workouts on my own I worked in the garden this past week, I helped revamp a shed to my chicken coop, raked and cleared out garden area and built raised wood boxes anything to keep moving and burning some calories!   Do you have a fit bit or I watch that can track your movements/steps?  Some even have workouts you can pick and reminders to get up and move!  Not from couch to fridge, But move and walk around a few min!  A few years ago I bought one of those BIG bouncy balls you sit on and etc, Well I sat on it and bounced my butt around while watching tv and at the same time to arm workouts!  Needless to say I fell backwards and hit my head on the floor!!  OUCH!!  Do I still recommend it?  Heck Yes!  It was fun and changed things up a bit (and my head) lol.

Not sure I ever mentioned this, but I’m not a young chick!!  But Dang I’m not dead either so If I can do this stuff so can you!!  I have faith in You!

Something cool I like to do to get me pumped up or in the grove is to go buy new workout cloths!  But be careful, Its addicting man!   I also like to check out the workout equipment and weights not that I can afford it all but I also keep my eyes open on the for sale pages you see on-line or garage sales!  That where I purchased my first exercise bike!  The options are out there we just sometimes have to think outside the box and see things in a different perspective.

This is my all time favorite machine and If I had the room I would get one for home!

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    My Favorite Workout Machine for my arms, shoulders and gut!

If you’re a gardener like me I love walking around the town and checking out their gardens and flowers, I also love walking in the woods or forest, I’m a nature kinda girl I love my trees and birds.  I guarantee it will clear your mind and give you a sense of renewal and energy!

 

Think about someone who could help you out and support you in your activities toward your workout goals, someone who would help you get out and move more.  Write your goal down and what activity you’re going to do AND how you are going to accomplish it!  Don’t write a whole bunch of goals be specific and take it one step at a time.

Your Buddy plan:

One Strategy you can try this month:

Who will join you:

One step: I will do this week:

 

Now go find your buddy!  Be it a physical person  beside you or a phone buddy!  It makes it fun and you can help each other with accountability  and new ideas!!   Try something new and get out in nature!!   You got this!!!  I’m right beside you all the way!!

 

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Healthy Recipes

TACO SOUP  

A great easy and low point soup for a side or a nice lunch

Makes (12) 1 cup servings 5 Points

Ingredients: 1 lb. ground turkey, lean ground beef, or soy crumbles 1 large onion, chopped, 1 clove garlic, 1 pkg. Hidden Valley ranch dressing mix, 1 pkg. Taco Seasoning   3 cups water ,1 can green chilies, 4 cans of beans (pinto, red, and other) 2 cans whole kernel corn,  3 cans chopped tomatoes( I substituted 1 can for 1 can or spicy

bowl of soup and two silver spoons
Photo by Navada Ra on Pexels.com

tomatoes.

Brown meat and onions drain. Mix Hidden Valley Ranch dressing mix, taco seasoning mix, water and chilies into meat. Then, without draining, add all of the other ingredients. Simmer 15 minutes or longer. You can reduce the amount of can foods in this to make a smaller recipe and it still is amazing. Enjoy!

CHICKENS

The Coop Is Done

Been a long time coming, But I’m finally getting my chickens!

Today was the day!   My son and I with a little help from hubby turned my old Tea House into a chicken coop!  It was a lot of work and fun at the same time.  The day before I began taking things out, pulling nails, moving mowers, chairs, and such to prepare for today.   We started with the support boards then built the boxes (6) and then cross support under the boxes to have better space for clean up.  It’s a good things to think ahead how to make it easier for you when it comes to the cares and cleaning.  Lord knows there will lots of clean, sweeping and washing!!  I also have a little screened window on the north and south side of coop with a lowered shutter to lock closed, So that will be good air ventilation in the hot summer months.

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Chicken Coop Boxes

We also re-enforced the corners of the inside building and will be putting up some safe insulation between the rafters later.  Electricity will be coming next week along with the fencing for run and protection.  This chicken lady is so excited!!  Its been a long time coming and yes I know there is a-lot of work involved but the fact that its one more thing I can do towards self-sustaining our home then I feel it’s just fine. Theirs not a lot I can have as an urban homesteader or I would have goats and a milk cow too!

Hey its a start and along with my new garden boxes and plants the area is going to be a beautiful place for my( Lady’s) chickens to live.  I’m still learning about them and will continue to learn as I go.

My son did a nasty thing today when we were all done and son was loading up he had me come back to the coop and said look in here mom ” Your first chicken”.  That nut had brought a dead chicken and laid it on top the nesting box!!  I was shocked and somewhat amused at the same time,  Of course he grabbed it and rebadged it to take back to his farm!   Geezzz  Boys!!!  I won’t post that picture!

Well it was a good day and more to follow along with some hard work, But at least I’m getting there and also getting my exercise in!

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All in all I accomplished my goal with the help of family and hard work.  The coop is done all but a few details  AND the eggs will be in the incubator this weekend and the count down begins!!!

This CHICKEN MOMMA IS EXCITED AND HAPPY TO GROW OUR URBAN HOMESTEAD!‚ô•

Home Page, Stories and Thoughts

The Putrid Smell Still Unforgotten

A Featured Short Story from Blogging Grandmothers.

http://174-085-176-175.dhcp.chtrptr.net/

One flashlight flash meant danger, two flashes meant safe, but
then she saw three flashes that night from beyond the swamp.

They had never talked about what three flashes meant and now she was worried and not sure what to do.  

She remembered one flash, two flash but Not Three! ¬†Her husband and father ¬†had told her to stay there incase her little brother showed up which she was hoping for and ¬†trying not to¬†think ¬†of the worst while they were in the swamp area searching for her lost brother. ¬†Thoughts¬†keep running through her mind, what if¬†he’s hurt, or an¬†alligator got him or whatever, She could only think negitive thoughts¬†and an¬†occasional happy memory of fun times with her little brother.

dock surrounded by body of water
Photo by Dariusz Grosa on Pexels.com

As she sat there on a damp stump she could hear all kinds of noises some familiar some not so!  Owls hooting, occasional cracks of wood, growls of alligators in the distance and splashes in the swamp and scratches on what she thought was bark on a tree and the weird sounds almost similar to a human voice but not quite.  Goosebumps rose on her arms and chills ran down her spine with the cold night wind and so many unfamiliar sounds!  She could feel tears weel up and kept fighting it off trying to stay strong, but she felt so helpless just sitting and waiting while wondering and praying.

As she sat there in the cold dark night with only a flash light she could feel the anxiety building up within her and feeling damp, cold, and helpless not knowing what was going on deep in the swamp area with her family much less what was lurking about her.  Her nerves got the best of her and she stood up quickly beginning to pace back and forth as fearful thoughts kept swimming in her head,  Then suddenly she heard a loud noise in the distance like the scattering of large birds screeching all at once and scouring out of the trees and just as fast, a loud growl and banging thuds on the trees.  Within seconds later she heard several gun shots and two flash lights not far apart of one another go on and off one time;  She remembered what her husband  had told her about the warning signs.

At this point Sally was so scared she turned to run and tripped over a broken stump, crying, wet with mud and moss all over her she gathered up all her courage and stood facing the swamp area when she noticed more flashes!  But this time it was each three times!  Sally panicked not knowing what they meant and terrified of what it could mean.

She held her head in her hands and began to weep uncontrollably then suddenly she heard a growling sound and crashing of trees in the distance, ¬†She thought for a second; It couldn’t be an alligator, But what was it? ¬†She began walking stepping backwards away from the frightening sounds then quickly out of the damp darkness she noticed large yellow eyes glowing from the swamp and a pungent, putrid smell and SUDDENLY with a large strange sound and thud in front of her was this unimaginable creature like nothing she had ever seen standing within two feet of her with long dark hair all over its body and huge hands and feet. ¬†As she stood there unable to move from unfathomable fright she could smell that scent she noticed earlier but much stronger now burning her nostrils. ¬†She glanced up toward the beast and noticed it was holding a limp ragged object in its arms and as the beast moved forward towards her a few steps she recognized a plaid material half covered in mud. ¬†She thought quickly could this be? No it can’t be my BROTHER! ¬†Sally had recognized the red and white flannel shirt her brother had on that morning. ¬†Suddenly the creature dropped the body on the ground in front of her and she heard a faint noise from it; ¬†She knew then it was her brother and knelt down to check and comfort him all the while her brother lay their unconscious .

australia black and white cold dark
Photo by Kat Jayne on Pexels.com

She was so involved with her brother for a few seconds she had almost forgotten about the hairy creature; Then suddenly the hairy unknown creature let out a loud growl or scream she wasn’t sure and turned and ran back into the swamp as loudly as it had appeared! ¬†At this point Sally fell to her knees besides her brother and cried while gently wiping the mud and blood from his face when she noticed his cell phone in his T-shirt pocket under the flannel shirt. ¬†She reached for it and luckily it still had power and she called 911 for help. ¬†While waiting her thoughts returned to her husband and father while fear and anxiousness overcame her again as tears flowed down her face thinking out loud “what more or how much more could she take”. Were they alive? ¬†Did that stinking creature kill them? ¬†Sally began pacing back and forth on the swamp’s edge and checking now and then on her brother, While it seemed like hours when in the distance she could hear the sounds and sights of emergency vehicles in the distance and a sigh of relief eased her mind for a few minutes all the while still wondering and praying for her husband ¬†and father.

Two months had past now and her brother recovered physically and the search team never found her husband and father. ¬†To this day as Sally’s life goes on but no where the same as before that day, she hears whispers and pointed fingers every time she goes to town to remind her over and over again of the terror and untold truth that only she and her brother will carry with them the rest of their lives. ¬†The day the Flash lights blinked three times.

 

 

 

 

Gardening, Home Page

Get Ready to Garden Tips

Spring is slowly approaching us here in the mid-west finally.

Are you ready? Let’s gather our supplies and get digging.

Let’s do this! Here’s a few things you will need.

You have your plan down and maybe have planted your seedlings by now and soon to be transplanted, Plus the other seeds or plants to put in,  so what else you might say is needed?

Tools are very important for a Gardner and I have learned throughout the years that it pays to spend a little extra for a strong working tool and not a soft bending cheap tool! Nothing more maddening than trying to dig a hole or plant a flower and your tool bends right in your hand!

There are many quality tools available on-line and in your local farmer supply stores and Hardware stores. Here is a nice set on line for an idea.

https://www.amazon.com/Gardening-Organizer-Included-Accessories-Gardeners/dp/B0735BW934

What kind of tools you ask Well ,here’s a few ideas to get you thinking.

Long Handle Shovel

Iron Rake

Hand Shovel

Hand Spade

Claw

Hammer

Hoe

Don’t forget buckets, hoses, spikes, fencing or rope. Now go out their and mark your garden territory and get to digging and planting!!

Take a tour at your local garden centers and see what you come up with!

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So you have your tools now and I assume your garden is cleared and waiting for the new plants or seeds to be planted or maybe you are going to do container planting, If so be sure your containers are clean and fresh soil in them because you don’t want bacteria and insects destroying your baby plants! ¬†Also make sure they have drainage holes so you don’t drown the roots!

Make sure also that your new plants get at least 6-8 hours of sunlight to promote growth. Don’t do like I did a few years ago and forgot to Label my plants! ¬†It’s hard to tell sometimes what they are until they grow a little.

You have your new hoses so don’t forget to water in the mornings, ¬†It is best to prevent disease and will make the root system grow deeper.

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When it comes to weeding I like to do it in the mornings for one it’s not as hot and the soil is not a dry so they are easier to pull out. ¬†Mulch will help to keep the weeds down also.¬†Gardening

Did you raise your own seedlings? ¬†If so don’t forget to harden them before you trans plant them, which is letting them sit our doors for short time periods each day at least 50 degrees outside is best to get them accustomed to the outdoors and also prevent shock!

I have new baby’s that shot up yesterday! ¬†My seedlings

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Don’t forget to thin out your plants if they become to crowded plus you want to be strong and healthy.

How about some natural fertilizers!  I like epsom salt and vinegar.

Another important thing to watch for are those pesky pests! And how to get rid of them.

One good natural way to plant other plants that will deter the Pest such as Marigolds, garlic, chives, catmint,  lemongrass and thyme.  Also another good one is 1 Tsp of liquid Castile soap to a spray bottle of water, If you want to go Gangster Mad add 1 tsp of hot sauce to the bottled mixture!

Well happy Gardening and hope these few tips will get you started or thinking about a garden and rasing your own food this season!  Think Mean and Green! 

Don’t forget to check out the LInks! ¬†for more Garden Ideas!

Garden Boxes

Home Made Essential Items on an urban homestead, Home Page

Natural Smell Good Dish Soap

All Natural Dish Detergent with Essential Oils.

How about some all natural dish soap that is chemical free, smells good and won’t dry your hands out!

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Ingredients :

  • 2 TB Borax
  • 2 TB Washing Soda (can find in laundry detergent area of stores and Amazon )
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 Cup of Sal Suds ( can order on Amazon)
  • 15-20 drops of Essential Oils( I like Tea Tree and Orange, Lavender or Rosemary with my Tea Tree. ¬†It is a good antibacterial, anti fungal and anti-infectious and anti-viral oil. ¬† I usually use 10-12 drops of the Tea Tree oil and the rest what I think will go well with it such as the above mentioned ones.
  • 1/2 TB Glycerin
  • 1/2 TB nourishing oil ( jojoba, almond etc.)

In a saucepan heat the water just until boiling stage.  Turn off heat and add the washing soda and borax, stirring to dissolve.  Let the mixture cool 3-5 min till just warm then add the Sal Suds and essential oils to the water mixture.  whisk the ingredients together and pour into the dish soap dispenser.   The soap may separate after sitting for 24 hours.  If so shake the bottle till all ingredients are combined.

This is a great soap and smells good with the oils plus the jojoba and Glycerin will soften your hands.

Happy Dish Washing!!