Friday, July 31, 2015

Frugal Friday

It is hard to believe that this is the last day of July. My goodness the summer seems to be just flying by.

I have had a very frugal week and kept spending to just some bills and a few needed groceries. In fact I have managed 4 no spend days so far.

Meals have been made with what is on hand in the meat freezer, and we have had a couple of use it up before it goes bad suppers as well. I am sticking very close to my menu plans this month another wonderful thing.

Harvey and Kris went fishing last Saturday and have replenished our dwindling supply of fish fillets in the freezer. Pretty much free food, and two of the men in my life get to bond a bit more.

As you all could see from my previous posts I have been working on harvesting a few items from the garden. Today I picked 22 jalapenos and managed to do a bit of pickling.

Three lovely jars with more to come. The guys love these on their hamburgers!

Tomorrow I plan on picking some more cherries and dehydrating them. They turn out like raisins and I use them in baking muffins and loaves. It's a nice change from the usual raisins as they are slightly tart and a bit more on the chewy side.

Laundry was done as usual in cold water where I could and hung in the basement until the rain stopped on Monday.

Hubby repaired one of my outside solar lights, a fairy surrounded by flowers that light up in different colours once the sun goes down.

I continued with my frugal exercise of walking every day. I do a long walk in the morning and then a shorter walk in the afternoon.

I have also been reading a free novel on my Kobo ereader. I have quite a few downloaded and am working my way through them all.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Fast and Furious (and I Don't Mean The Movie)

The past few weeks have seen the garden growing by leaps and bounds. Now it is harvest time and I am up to my elbows in fresh fruit and veggies. Not that I am complaining, but there are days that I wish things would slow down a bit.

Today, I picked more cherries and made our cherry liqueur for the winter.

Four jars that will be ready to be bottled in three months.

While I was picking cherries, Harvey was busy picking peas. After 2 1/2 hours of shelling peas I ended up with these......

One extremely full bag and one partially full bag. Blanching and bagging for the freezer will wait until tomorrow.

The smaller bag is enough for a meal for Harvey and I, but it won't be our first taste of fresh peas. I did shell enough for our supper tonight.

Supper was the stuffed peppers using the leftover meat loaf. It actually turned out very well. I warmed the leftover meat loaf up and added some cooked rice. Then stuffed the peppers. I poured some leftover tomato soup over the peppers and baked them at 350 F. During the last 15 minutes I sprinkled some shredded Italian cheese over top and continued to bake them until the cheese melted. Total baking time was 45 min.

Harvey really enjoyed them, and I made a whole new meal out of leftovers. Win Win.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Nasty Tuesday

The weather is miserable today. Cold, misty, and the wind is howling. If this was winter and we had any snow at all it would be a major blizzard!

The wind is whipping the trees back and forth and our deck is covered with small branches and leaves.

I did manage to get out early in the morning and pick some herbs to dehydrate. I should have enough dried parsley to fill my container now, and another pick should see enough sage and mint done.

Harvey did another picking of beans yesterday evening and so today I blanched and froze another 15 bags for winter.

The rest of the day was a very lazy one. Really with the weather like this it is best in my opinion just to curl up with a good book, which I did for most of the afternoon. I finished one novel and started another one which I am having trouble getting involved in. Hope the action picks up in it very soon.

Tonight I am working on my embroidery project and enjoying a mug of hot chocolate. The perfect ending to a quiet day.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Menu Monday


Meatloaf, mashed potatoes, and green beans from the garden.


Leftover pork roast. I think I just may try another pork hash recipe.


Clean out the fridge, or I may just take the leftover meatloaf and stuff peppers with it.


Chicken drumsticks, boiled potatoes and corn.


Soup and sandwiches. I think probably Veggie soup.

Saturday (and the beginning of a new month)

Hot dogs, beans and fries.


Roast Ham, mashed potatoes, and peas.

Lunches will be the usual sandwiches or leftovers.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Sunday Ramblings

Today we said good bye to Kris as he headed back to Regina and Ray his cat. However, since there is a football game going on Harvey was told to keep his phone near him so Kris could text him throughout the game. I have a feeling that they are both not happy as their beloved Roughriders have more than likely lost another game.

I made the birthday pie yesterday.

Not my best crust, as it cracked before I could get it all together, and I could not repair it. This allowed some of the filling to escape. Still it tasted not too bad, if a bit tart for my taste. Harvey and Kris enjoyed it however.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Fishing, Birds, and Corn

Harvey and Kris went fishing today. Got them out of my hair so that I could bake bread and make Harv's pie (more about that tomorrow). I also got to have a quiet day weeding the garden, and doing other such tasks.

This is the area on Rafferty Dam that they love to fish in.

 Nice and quiet, perfect for my two men to bond.

After a very long time of not catching anything, some lovely Walleye to add to the freezer.

I was informed that they would have fished longer, but the heat (it was 36 C here today) got to them. Oh well at least we have some lovely fresh fish residing in the freezer.

When the boys arrived home they decided to sit on the deck with a cool drink. I had been talking about a poor little robin that seemed unable to fly very far. Kris searched through the garden until he found it.

Poor thing was scared silly. Kris waited a few moments and threw it in the air. Guess what? The little thing flew away, well at least into the next yard.

Kris was impressed with the height of our corn. He just had to get a picture of him standing beside our one row.

Kris is close to 6 feet tall so the corn towering above him must be almost 9 feet. Darn, Harvey is going to win our bet!!

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, July 24, 2015

A Special Birthday

Today Harvey celebrates his 65th birthday, and of that 65 years we have spent almost 40 together (it will be 40 in 6 months).

As you can see from the date this was taken a few years ago, but he hasn't changed much over the years. He still loves to fish, and best of all still loves his family.

Happy Birthday honey, and may we celebrate many more.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Jamming It

I managed to actually get some cherries this year (hopefully more to come). Last year was not a good one with only a very few appearing. The year before was awesome, but one morning I woke up to a denuded tree. The robins got them all before I could pick what I would have liked (you think the greedy things would have left a few). This year, probably because the pickings were so slim the majority of the robins have not flocked to fill their greedy gullets.

So this morning I headed out early and managed to pick quite a few.

A large square tupperware type container almost full!!!

What to do with my harvest?

I decided to make some jam.

The prepared fruit, sugar and pectin boiling away in my old dutch oven. I have had this pot since we were first married and just cannot seem to give it up.

The finished product. I would like to know one thing however. The recipe says I would get 6 full jars. Hmm, I only count 5 full jars and a partial jar.  Oh well, I have enough cherries left to make another batch tomorrow.

Summers richness to have during the cold of winter.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Just A Small Peak

Thought that I would share an update on my newest project with all of you.

Another one of Mom's stamped embroidery projects. A baby quilt. Slowly but surely getting it finished. I am hoping to have this quilt top more or less finished (need a name and date to put in the empty block) by the end of next week. Then I will be moving on to the next project of Mom's that needs to be done and out of my stash.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

All's Quiet

It has been a very laid back and unexciting day here on the old homestead.

Harvey washed the deck and I returned the furniture to it's appropriate spots. Seems as if Harv has a bit of a problem returning things to where I had them. I was informed that he was unable to fit everything back on the deck. Hmmm, wondered if he even tried once I went out and looked at what he had done.

I dried a few herbs (need to dry more, probably tomorrow). The amount I got was not even enough to fill my jars, so definitely not enough to keep us through the winter.

I spent some time curled up on my chair reading. I only had a few chapters left in my book and did not want to put it down.

Answered a few surveys for points as well as a couple of emails.

Cleaned up in the sewing/craft room, gathered items to give to the Salvation Army in my quest to declutter my home, and worked on my embroidery project. Oh yeah, found lots of other projects that I would like to get completed that I never even knew I had!!!

Best of all it was a no spend day, one of the things I love most about being able to achieve.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Menu Monday

Ahhh, long warm (okay hot) days, and warm (okay hot) nights seem to be drawing to a close around here. I am getting up to much cooler temperatures outside and not needing to use my fan as much at night. Hmmm, I guess one could say that summer is almost half over.

Menus for this week are as follows.


Spaghetti, meat sauce and salad.


Leftover chicken, I think I will add a couple of boiled eggs to the mix and have a type of chef's salad.


Leftover spaghetti (not sure if I will bake it or just warm it up), sliced fresh veggies and dip.


I might just make Tuna Pasta Salad. Haven't made it this summer as of yet and we really enjoy it.


Harvey's birthday and I am thinking we should BBQ his favorite thing. Pork Chops!!! Served with salad, tin foil potatoes, and more than likely fresh beans from the garden (we will be picking again very soon, I know it).


A continuation of Harvey's birthday. Youngest DS will be home to take him fishing and I can get a birthday cake made to serve for dessert tonight. Main course will be Chicken Breasts on a bed of rice, covered in mushroom sauce. Salad served once again.


Clean out the fridge.....or perhaps Roast Pork, roast potatoes, and corn.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Sunday Ramblings

Today at Mass we learned that we are made to feel joy, and to share that God given joy with others. Lately I have been so wrapped up in a situation that I haven't felt much joy. Worry, yes, joy no. The homily opened my eyes to the knowledge that God doesn't want us to worry overmuch, instead he wants us to be happy. He never gives us more than we can carry. I need to remember this and hold it in my heart.

Today and yesterday were busy ones in the garden. Seems as if once those fresh vegetables start to come in it is a never ending chore to pick and process everything.

Yesterday I picked some of the kohlrabi.

These two plus one more were peeled, sliced, boiled and served with a lovely cheese sauce for supper last night. They had gotten a bit large and so were slightly woody in some places. I will need to get out a pick a few more tomorrow. Both Harvey and I prefer them smaller, when they are much tenderer.

Today after Mass and a brunch made by Harvey we spend an hour or so picking green beans.

A rather full pail of about 2 1/2 gallons.

Some fresh beans for supper and then the rest were processed for the freezer.

Enough for 12 meals this winter. I also took a bag of the fresh beans to a friend who loves green beans.

Does this mean the beans are finished? Not by a long shot. Harvey figures another big pick and then a couple of smaller ones. They are still flowering!!!

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, July 17, 2015

A Small Trip Around the Garden

Ahhh, a lovely quiet day. My stress is now over, and hopefully will not return.

Thought I would do a short trip around the yard today.

The corn has taken off and is finally taller than the potatoes.

Hoping for some corn feasts later this summer. Harv only planted 12, but at 2 cobs a plant and only two of us here 12 lovely meals.

My impatience corner. Harvey figures this looks like a blanket heading to the deck. I love the bright splash of colour these make in a rather dark corner.

Beans, hiding in the bushes. Tomorrow will be a picking day.

Lots of cherries, if I can just keep the birds out of the trees. It is a fight every year to gather enough to satisfy our winter needs. Last year the birds beat me. I may just pick a few now to make jam as it doesn't matter if the fruit is really ripe or not for jam making.... A bit sour is just fine.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Thursday Tid Bits

I am not sleeping very well, due to stress. It is also causing me not to want to eat. Good for losing weight, but not for health!!! Hopefully tonight will see a change.

Yesterday we were in the big city for a doctor's appointment. Harvey had a consultation with a plastic surgeon about the rather large growth on his head.

This will be operated on shortly (we hope), but not just before we leave on our little get away to Jasper during September.

I made a lovely main dish salad on Tuesday and I am going to share the recipe with all of you. It's a real good way to use up some of that leftover roast beef. If you are lucky enough to have any left over that is.

Beef Salad

2 cups beef cut in strips
1 cup thinly sliced celery
1 tomato cut in bite sized pieces (I used the leftover small tomato assortment I had)
2 sliced green onions

1 tbsp salad oil (I used olive oil)
1 tbsp vinegar
1 tsp sugar (you can leave this out if you want)
1 tsp prepared mustard (I tried honey dijon this time)
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper


Combine beef with celery, tomatoes, and green onions.
Mix oil, vinegar and sugar in a small bowl. Add mustard, salt and pepper. Stir. Add to the beef mixture. Toss to coat.

Serve on shredded lettuce.

I usually make a double batch of the dressing as I like everything to be well coated. I also use iceberg lettuce, but this time I used the leaf lettuce from our garden. Mmmmm, good.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Thrifty Tuesday

Instead of buying something new to work on in the evenings (it really is too hot to knit), I decided that perhaps it was time to start working on some of the many embroidery projects my Mom had gathered together.

I could have started another cross stitch project, heaven knows I have plenty of those, but straight embroidery goes so much faster.

I started this dresser runner the first week of the month.

I finished it late last night and all that is left is the hemming.

Today I started this baby quilt top.

I think it will move along fairly quickly and keep me out of trouble in the evenings.

Fact of the matter Mom seemed to collect a great many quilt tops so I plan on getting some of them finished this summer. They will make lovely gifts later on.

I have enough to keep me busy for the next little while and will make quite a dent in items taking up room in my sewing/craft area (as well as saving money on gifts).

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Menu Monday

Ahhh, back to the normally scheduled posts. Things were so hectic and busy that posting became sporadic and well off the top of my head.


Smokies, pasta and salad


Leftover beef roast made into a main dish salad (so hot here that main dish salads or BBQ is the only way to cook if possible).


We need to head into the city for a doctor's appointment. Supper will be out.


Clean out the fridge night.


Soup and sandwiches (making soup and using up those chicken carcasses I have been keeping in the freezer).


Ham steaks, tinfoil potatoes and onions, salad.


Roast chicken, roasted potatoes, carrots and salad.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Sunday Ramblings

My energy level has been at an all time low this past week. It has been so hot and humid that going outside is a chore and once in I just want to sit and cool off. I am sure hoping that the upcoming week brings a change.

Today we had Bishop Jim Weisgerber once again as our priest presider. He is Father Brian's cousin and likes to fill in once in awhile. I guess he is finding retirement a bit draining and he needs to get busy once again.

Today is the 15th Sunday in Ordinary Time and since the church was so hot Bishop Jim kept his homily very short. He mostly spoke about prophesy and how we as Catholics draw back from that. His explanation of another meaning of the word makes sense. He said we could think of the word as meaning "explaining the word of the Lord." This is something we as the Body of Christ need to do more of. I know that when the Jehovah Witnesses pay us their monthly call (I just can not shut the door in their face) I find myself explaining my faith to them. This has lead to some excellent discussions and I think that I have made some headway in having them realize that 2000 years of Catholic teachings means something. They have also come to realize that I and Harvey are very strong in our faith and they have no chance of converting us.

Today, I did get a bit of energy and chopped up all the rhubarb I picked a few days ago.

From this rather large bowl of cut up rhubarb I have made 4 rhubarb sponge pies. They are in the oven right now, well three of them are, the fourth will be put in once the three are baked. I still have lots left, so I will be making a cake to freeze and perhaps some muffins. Still lots to pick and freeze for winter use.

While I was chopping rhubarb, Harvey came upstairs and said we were under a Tornado Watch.....

I went outside and snapped this picture.

You can see that the sky is fairly dark, in actuality the sky was just black. Nothing really came from it, but all the backyard and side yard was packed up so that the wind (which had come up considerably) could not throw things around. We did get a tiny bit of rain however.

My datura is blooming. I love the flowers and hope to save some seed pods this year.

This is just one of the many blossoms that appeared tonight. This is actually the first day we have had more than one blossom at a time. No scent but lovely big trumpet shaped flowers that look absolutely beautiful while they last.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Mobile Again

Well, we did it. Did what you might ask. Well we bought a replacement for my beloved Enclave.

A brand new GMC Denali Terrain. It is quite a bit smaller than the Enclave, but really we did not need that big a vehicle any longer. I think I might be adding to our OnStar package in a month or so. We need to use up the minutes we bought for Hands Free Calling. I figure a year and then we will cancel. I will also need to update our XM radio in three months.

On to gardening news.

This year I decided to colour block the yard. The very front patio is in shades of white and pink, the main door (well the door we use each and every day) is done in shades of yellow and cream, and the back patio and deck are done in shades of red and white.

Thought I would share the main door area with all of you.

Mini petunia's, as I call them. I know they are called calibrocia (spelled incorrectly of course). Look at those two white with yellow stripes. Not too sure where they came from.

Lovely yellow mini roses.

More pale yellow mini roses.

Do you see a theme here? Cream mini roses to round out the colour scheme.

Surprisingly, even with the heat we are having over the past two weeks, the plants seem to be thriving.

I looked after a friends yard and garden this past week and part of last week. They brought me a lovely gift for doing so (I told them I did not need anything).

This is a Maple Cream liqueur that is only sold in Quebec. I think I am going to enjoy this over the summer and fall.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Harvest Has Begun and Giant Mutant Potatoes

This past week has seen the beginning of harvesting the garden.

Surprisingly enough we are starting to get rather large cucumbers off very small vines.

These are three that I picked since the first three I picked to take to the family reunion. I don't think that I will have to buy cucumbers for a while. I made lots of dills last year so I will not have to make any this year. Relish on the other hand needs to be made. Harvey and our sons just love my homemade relish. It is from a recipe that Harvey's mother used.

I also managed to get this rather large bag of leaf lettuce picked.

It doesn't even make a dent in what is left to pick.

Funny thing, Harvey only gives the garden a good soaking once a week and today I wondered out into the potato portion of the garden. Yikes, I think we have mutant potatoes growing!!!! I have never, ever seen potatoes this tall in our garden.

Here I am standing in the midst of the potato patch. I am 65 1/2" tall so these potatoes are at least 50" tall and still growing!!!! If this keeps up they will overtake the corn very soon. I do hope that they are not all top with nothing under them.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Minus a Vehicle

Today we sold my baby.

I no longer have my Buick Enclave CLX sitting in my driveway. Now comes the long search for a new vehicle. Harvey says he should buy a new truck and then get me a little puddle jumper of a car. No way!!! With the snow we get, it would be very hard to get anywhere during the winter. I will, however allow him to deal on the Terrain (Denali model) that I picked out however. Hopefully he will manage to knock some off the price.

We also had some visitors this morning.

My brother and his twin girls Katelyn and Kurstin.

So you may ask between the visit and the sale of the car if I got much done in the house? The answer is No. I really do have to buckle down and get things done tomorrow.

Now on to the reason why I needed to keep my sanity while at the reunion.

While I get along fairly well with Harvey's brothers the same can not be said about his sisters. It always seems as if one of them needs to find something in me lacking.

This time one of them jumped down my throat when I went to ask if I had won something at the silent auction. Her exact words in a very loud and snippy voice were "We'll handle it Jackie." I backed off and waited, and waited and waited still more. I watched this sister run the prizes to every other person, congratulate them and the prize I bid on just sat there. Finally I mentioned to another sister that I would like to know who won the sunflower torch as I had bid on it and it was still sitting there. She went right away and asked Mrs. Snippy who had won, came back and told me it was mine.

Then by complete accident I stood by Mrs. Snippy and at that time got the dirtiest look. Stayed away from her for the rest of the night. Waited until the end of the night to pick up the other two items I won, paid and then we left quite quickly after.

I probably should not be so thin skinned, but that is the way I am made and can't change that. I have however changed how I view this sister and will never be completely at ease around her again.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Family Reunion 2015

We made it back from the Phillips Family Reunion late yesterday afternoon, and I am finally caught up with laundry, sleep and whatever else I needed. In fact for a change I feel quite rested.

Sharing a few pictures with all of you of the weekend.

Our newest member of the family Brea Faith, with her mom and aunt.

The newly married couple, Loran and Wendy.

Tausha, the niece (by adoption) that we haven't seen for probably 10 years. She now promises to come to all the reunions.

Now what kept me sane through the whole thing.

Long, early morning walks by the lake,

Watching the geese families swim in the fog,

and finding strange fungi while having a lovely walk all by myself.

Tomorrow, I will let you all know why I needed to stay sane.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Family Reunion Time

I have been slightly busy and will continue to be busy for the next three days.

It is the start of our biyearly reunion on Harvey's side of the family. Yesterday was spent trying to get lots of those odds and ends completed and a bit of the packing done. The key was taken over to a friends, with whom I have made arrangements to look after Shania.

Much time has also been spent on the phone with Kris. Kramer Tractor (the Caterpillar dealer here in Saskatchewan) has been taken over by Finning (think I spelt that correctly). It has just dawned on him this past week that much of his job is being shifted to corporate and now he is worried about being made redundant. To make matters worse he is once again having car problems and just might not be able to make it down here for the reunion. This is the son that suffers periodic episodes of depression, and when something like these two things at once occur you can hear him struggling in his voice to keep a cheerful outlook.

The good thing is, that many of the packages he put together for the new company, and the help he has given various departments is noticed and has been mentioned. Harvey and I told him to just keep right on working hard, and if it happens, it happens. He can always move home for a bit if the money gets tight between jobs.

I doubt very much there will be internet access where we are going (except in the main lodge) so I don't know how much you will hear from me. Hopefully once we are back on Monday I can post some pictures of the weekend.

Everybody have a wonderful day.

God bless.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Canada Day, We Are 148 Years Old

Just wishing all the Canadian bloggers a Happy Canada Day. Now we are off to watch some fireworks.

Everybody have a wonderful evening.

God bless.