Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Early morning....

I sit here and there is nothing but the sound of the coffee machine brewing in the background.

Everyone is still fast asleep, trying to catch up with the tiredness that has enveloped our bodies for the past week.  A good kind of tiredness though, one that is brought about by staying up way past our bedtime laughing and chatting, playing in the front yard, walking, swimming and just being plain goofy.


The great thing about family is that even if you haven't been together in many years, that bond is always there and you pick up right where you left off.

I'm loving watching the kids together and you can tell they are family, they do and say the same things, they act the same way and it's quite hilarious at times lol


The two girls get along beautifully, they are just two years apart so they can relate to a lot of things.  They've started taking their daily walks, just the two, they walk down the street and see the horses and chat and it does them a world of good.


And these two goofs are exactly the same.  We laugh at how alike they are.

I have to say, I just love watching cousins together, there is nothing like that bond.


My beautiful girl.  I love this child as if she were my own.  When she was born, my brother and sister in law had to work so she stayed with me for the first year of her life and we created a bond that still remains to this day.

My sister in law will sometimes joke and say that she's my daughter LOL


My Nicholas is loving having his cousin around, someone who is always there, shares his room, plays, laughs, jokes.


I love this boy, he has the sweetest heart ever and he makes me laugh with the things he says and does.


And this boy, I love him too LOL


And this girl, my child, my crazy quirky funny child.  I love her to death.


And my brother, I am SO happy to have him here with me.  I have missed having a sibling nearby, someone I can laugh with about the stupid things we did as children, sit for hours and talk about the funny things that our family did, the fights we had as kids and all those things in between.  Just so glad he is here now.


We've been soaking in every minute, every second of every day.  We know there is much work, stress and craziness headed in our direction as we all try to adjust to our new place, find jobs, get kids started with school etc. 

But the beauty of it all is that we're in it together and we'll be there for each other.


Honestly, if I have to face any kind of struggle, I am glad that I'm doing it with them.

I want to thank you all for being so understanding right now, I know I'm the worst blogger at the moment and I haven't been by to say hi to anyone, but I promise you that I haven't forgotten you all and will come and catch up very soon. :)

Monday, July 29, 2013

Happy Homemaker Monday - 07/29/2013

I can't believe it's already Monday again, this week has just flown by.

Hoping you all had a good week and that this one ahead is just as good and productive as the last :)

I'm missing my blog something fierce and I am trying to get settled into a routine now that my family is here, so that I can return and blog daily as I always have.  Won't be long, I promise.  Alrighty, on to today's HHM. 

Happy Homemaker Monday

The weather.....I can't tell you how much I love summer in Idaho.  Looks like this week we'll be in the higher 90's which is just fine with me :)  Loving this summer, it's hot but it's nothing like Arizona heat.  Have a great week coming up, mostly in the 90's.

Right now I am....Laying in bed, my hubby is snoring next to me, the pugs are snoring at my feet.  I decided to go ahead and get the Happy Homemaker post up before I get up so that I don't get distracted doing other stuff and forget about it.

Thinking....About what I need to get done today.  My niece and nephew will be trying Connections Academy too so I am helping them get registered.

On my reading pile....Nothing right now, haven't had a chance to grab my Kindle or any book.  But I do have to return the library books and have a few on hold that I will grab, so I'll start reading as soon as I get those.

On my TV.....So behind on everything, haven't watched TV at all this past week so I know I have a lot of shows to catch up on.

What I found while surfing the net....I'm leaving this one blank today as I really haven't been on the computer, so I have nothing to share.  

On the menu for this week....Have to go grocery shopping on Thursday so only have meals planned until then.   

Monday - Italian Beef Sandwiches
Tuesday -  Roast Chicken and Potatoes
Wednesday - Homemade Cheesy Garlic and Pepperoni Pizza
Thursday -
Friday -
Saturday -
Sunday -

On my to do list....
Have a load of laundry to finish, fold and put away.  Also have a load to iron.
Run by bank to get a form notarized
Return books to library

In the craft basket....My dishcloths were set aside this week as I welcomed the family.  You know how that goes, but I need to pick them back up and get right into it.  Have a few ready for sale so I'll be listing those here this week :) 

Looking forward to this week....Getting back into a routine, helping my family get settled and grabbing my crochet hook again.  

Looking around the house....More like looking around the bedroom.  The sun is shining through one of the windows and it looks gorgeous :)  There are two baskets of laundry in the corner, one is already folded and the other needs folding.
From the camera....
The kids have been taking the dogs for walk every evening, they just love it :)

On my prayer list.....
My brother and sister in law as they make this huge change.  It's not easy and they are loving it but are also struggling to adapt to the way things are done here.  I pray that they are able to find jobs and get their lives on track, it's what they've always wanted :)
My husband as he starts job hunting this week.

Bible verse, Devotional....
Lord, the Lord Almighty, may those who hope in you not be disgraced because of me; God of Israel, may those who seek you not be put to shame because of me.
– Psalm 69:6 (NIV)

Friday, July 26, 2013

Hello everyone :)


It's been a few days since I've last been on here, but I've just been so very busy with my wonderful family.

Tuesday night we picked them up at the airport.  I have to tell you that the best thing about us is that we always pick up right where we left off, no matter how many years have gone by without seeing each other.

My niece and nephew are so big and grown up, and of course it's always wonderful seeing my brother and my sister in law.  My only wish would have been to have all my siblings nearby, but who knows, maybe one day :)


The past few days have been spent catching up on the last few years, eating good food, drinking wine and laughing until our sides hurt.  It's the beauty of family time, you can be yourself, be silly, say what you think and show how you feel without having to worry about anything or anyone taking it the wrong way.

The kids are loving having their cousins nearby and we're all loving watching them get to know each other and bond.


I tell you, I haven't laughed so hard in so many years, you know that laugh until your side hurts and you're in tears kind of laugh???  Oh and I needed it so.

Anyway,  it's going to be very busy the next few months as we help them get settled into their new life.  If you have a moment, I would ask that you pray for them, this is such a huge change from their previous lives and it will take some getting used to....there's jobs to be found, a home, a whole life to set up.  I have no doubt that they will shine and do amazingly well.

So, just wanted to come in real quick and give you an update.  Now I'm going to bed, I am sooo tired, we've been going to bed super late each night and I think I'm finally crashing. 

Have a blessed night.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Cooking Thursday - Portuguese 10 Egg White Cake

Good morning everyone, sorry I haven't been updating as much, but the family is here and we've been treasuring every second and making up for lost time.   But I'm here with a recipe this morning, so let's get right to it.......


Bolo das 10 claras2
Bolo das 10 Claras
Portuguese 10 Egg White Cake

10 egg whites
pinch of salt
2/3 cup softened butter
1 and half cups sugar
3 tablespoons of milk
2 cups of flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
Juice and rind of 1 small lemon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a cake pan with butter and flour.

Start by adding the egg whites to a big bowl, add in a pinch of salt and beat until firm.

In a separate big bowl, beat the softened butter and sugar until creamy.   Add the lemon juice and rind and the milk.  Mix well.  Add in the flour and the baking powder and mix until all ingredients are well combined.

Take a spoonful of the egg whites and add to the cake mix, slowly fold them in from bottom to top without beating.   Keep adding spoonfuls at a time and folding in gently until all the egg whites are mixed in.

Pour into the cake pan, sprinkle sugar on top to give it a nice crunchy crust and bake for 35 minutes or until golden brown and cake is done.

Remove from pan and serve.

Monday, July 22, 2013

A Simple day!


Woke up quite early this morning, the sun was just starting to come up over the mountain.

I hadn't had quite a good night's sleep as I was so excited at the prospect of my family getting on their flight in the morning.  As we speak they are on their second of FOUR flights to get here.  I'm telling you, it's a rough journey, I've done it once before as you may remember, when I went back home to South Africa.

Praying they are doing well.

Anyway, I do enjoy getting up very early and stepping out onto the deck while the whole household is asleep.

The only sounds are usually the birds and a rooster somewhere behind my property.  Always makes me smile.

Today though there was another sound thrown into the mix.....


Yep, cows. They were all over the field right across from our house. Oh what a beautiful sight to see.


I watched them for a bit while my coffeepot brewed away, and I also checked in our little birdie that just hatched yesterday afternoon.


Just waiting for his little brother/sister to hatch next.

After a big cup of coffee and a quick chat with hubby, I got right onto my homemaking.

First on the list was making the butter using the cream that I skimmed from the raw milk. Not only did the butter form much faster than the heavy cream from the store, but it's just a gorgeous color yellow and tastes phenomenal.


Next on the list, some buttermilk bread. It's been about two months or more since I made my last loaf and I was just itching to get in there and baking the bread.


Got the dough rising on the kitchen table and then went off into the yard to get the sprinklers on



While puttering around out there , I headed into the horse pasture which I hadn't yet been to




Really enjoyed just walking around, snapping some pictures and enjoying the fresh air


Within an hour and a half, I had gorgeous fresh buttermilk bread


and paired with that beautiful butter, it was just YUMMY!

But my time in the kitchen wasn't over, because the Pastor and his wife were coming over tonight to visit and get to know us better.  I wanted to be able to offer something to drink and eat but didn't want to go the cookie route, so first I was going to make Cream Cheese Pound Cake, but then I changed my mind and made  simple but delicious Portuguese 10 Egg White Cake.

It's especially delicious with a cup of coffee, which I think will be my breakfast tomorrow.


Wanna come over? :)

So, that was my day.

Tomorrow is going to be super busy, I want to make sure that all the bedrooms are ready for my family, also have to take the books back to the library as I ended up not getting around to doing it today. By tomorrow night we'll be headed to the airport to pick them up and I am just bursting at the seams. Hope I can sleep tonight LOL

Which I think means I need to take my happy behind on to bed, so that is what I'll do. Have a restful night sweet friends :)

Happy Homemaker Monday - 07/22/2013

Good morning ladies, sure hope you enjoyed your weekend as much as I did mine :)

Woke up early this morning to the sound of cows and chickens.  I tell you this country life just never gets old and I could never imagine myself in a concrete jungle, ever again.

On to this morning's Happy Homemaker Monday :)

Happy Homemaker Monday

The weather.....Loving this summer, it's hot but it's nothing like Arizona heat.  Have a great week coming up, mostly in the 90's. 

Right now I am....Drinking my morning coffee flavored with Vanilla Creamer, writing up this post and listening to the swish swish of my KitchenAid while it churns fresh butter. 

Thinking....About my brother and sister in law and niece and nephew, they are currently on their first flight across the ocean to the USA.  Can't wait to see them tomorrow. 

On my reading pile....Nothing at the moment, returning my books to the library this morning and have a few on hold to grab.  All about homesteading, chickens, Amish and cooking...MY kind of reading :)

On my TV.....My Portuguese soaps and a few British shows I want to catch up on.

What I found while surfing the net....San Francisco Herb Company, a great website to purchase bulk herbs and spices, and pretty inexpensive too. 

On the menu for this week....Starting this week I'll be back cooking for a big family, it's been at least 15 years since I've done it and I have to tell you that I'm a little nervous LOL  But I think cooking to me is like riding a bike, so I'm sure I'll get right in there and not flinch. 

Monday - Fish Fillets in a Cilantro Sauce, Butter Rice
Tuesday -  Seafood Sub Sandwiches
Wednesday - Taking the family out to dinner
Thursday - Mexican Bow Tie Pasta, Garlic Bread and Salad
Friday - Grilled Thighs & Drumsticks, Potato Salad, Speedy Brownies
Saturday - Italian Beef Sandwiches
Sunday - Homemade Cheesy Garlic Pizza

On my to do list.... excited it's something I don't get to do often *roll my eyes*
Finish the Guest Bedroom
Get Dressers in the bedrooms
Make Sour Cream Pound Cake for the Pastor's visit this evening
Library run

In the craft basket....Dishcloths, that's all I'm doing...just dishcloths.  Have these adorable Wiggly ones which will be up for sale soon.  

Looking forward to this week....Seeing my family and getting them settled in.  Eating yummy food, drinking a glass of wine, chatting, catching up, pool time, barbecuing etc. 

Looking around the house....The sun is coming in through all the windows and it's just beautiful in here.  I have all the windows wide open to let in the fresh air and all I hear from outside are cows mooing and chickens off in the distance.  Need to sweep and mop, but other than that the house is clean :)

From the camera....


On my prayer list.....
Brother and family for a safe flight.
Friends and family needing prayer right now. 

Bible verse, Devotional....
I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.
—John 17:23

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Farmer's Market Saturday

One of the things I most missed while living at our previous place, was the lack of Farmer's Market in the area.

I dreamed about the fresh eggs, the delicious produce and the ability to get raw milk.  Now I know there is a lot of controversy about the raw milk, some say it's dangerous and it could be bad for you, others can't help but talk about the benefits and how much healthier it is to drink.

I'm one of those, I truly believe that it's healthier for you, and the taste is nothing like you've ever had.

Luckily for us, one of the things we can look forward to now is the Farmer's Market that runs every.single.Saturday from May to October.  That made me so happy you just have no idea.

We've been here almost 3 weeks so this morning I decided it was time to head on up there and see what they had.

Oh goodness, let me quickly tell you that aside from the Farmer's Market part, they also have a flea market where anyone can set up free of charge to sell their goods.  I mean, really, a flea market AND a farmer's market, I don't know about you but I can't think of a better way to spend my weekend morning.


This is my haul, and I could have left with a lot more but it was the first time there and I was so overwhelmed by all the goodness around me that I decided to just start small.

First thing that caught my eye, a table run by a very sweet farm family who were selling.......raw cow's milk and raw goat's milk. NO WAY!

I grabbed a gallon of the raw cow's milk for $5. I can't get over how delicious this milk is, it's so creamy, so lovely, it's hard to describe.


My Nicholas who is the milk lover in the family has been guzzling it down, he says it's best thing he's ever had.

I plan on making butter in the morning, as well as some cheese. Just look at that delicious cream at the top already.


They were also selling this yummy cheese, it's SO SO good.


Also grabbed two dozen fresh eggs for $4. That is a steal.


Something really neat I found out the other day, is that there are quite a few Mennonite around the area. When we lived here in the past I would always see the families up at Walmart shopping for groceries, but I never thought anything about it.

When I was up at Walmart last week I saw them again and after doing a little research, and also thanks to my friend Anna on facebook, I found out that there are quite a few of them in Grandview. Guess I'll be scouting that area more LOL

Anyway, all this just to tell you that I came across a table with a very sweet Mennonite lady selling produce, and bought this bag of beans from her. Plan to return and get more of her stuff next week.


Something else that caught my eye were these organic gorgeous sweet corn on the cob, grabbed a baker's dozen for $4. Not bad at all.


Nothing makes me happier than buying fresh produce straight from the farms and I'm thrilled to know that I have it available just down the road.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

A day of puttering....

I had missed these days so very much.  Who knew that housework could invoke such feelings in a person?

Well for me it does, and today was my very first day of *normal* homemaking in what seems like forever.


Which began with a good sweep of the floors and then a good cleaning, without a mop.  I got on my hands and knees and using my hot water, vinegar and essential oil mixture, gave it a good scrub.

While I was on the ground doing this I thought back to the time where this is how all women washed their floors.  It's hard work but I think it makes a huge difference.

Now I'm not saying that I'll forego a mop completely, but at least once a week I'll be giving these floors a good ol hand scrubbing.


Had to prop the outside door open while I swept and what is better than a cute owl door stop????

Does the job, plus makes you smile when you look at it.


I think one of the things I most enjoy about this house is the light.  There's so much of it, which is something sorely lacking in the previous house where everything seemed so dark, trying to get pictures was frustrating.


I stopped around noon to fix some sandwiches for our lunch.  I do enjoy a simple sandwich with some chips on the side.


The house is pretty much complete.  There are a few things that I still need to put away as you can see by the flower stand with the lamp on it, that lamp doesn't belong there....neither does the plastic bag on the other side of the bookshelf.  Have to get rid of those tomorrow.


Got all the bed linens washed, hung out to dry on the clothesline and the beds remade.

Laundry is all washed and folded, just has to be put away in the morning and then I stopped for a quick snack.  Another bite of the yummy No Bake Blueberry Lemon Cheesecake Trifles I shared with you this morning in my Cooking Thursday.


Got a load of dishes washed....turned the sprinkler on out front and also planted a few flowers.


Have to show you this picture I took last night.  Jasmine has been begging me to cut her hair and I've been holding off because it was so nice and long, it was down to the middle of her back.

But, truth be told, she's 14 years old and has no patience to take care of curly hair, which if you have it you know it takes quite a bit of upkeep.

On Tuesday while we were on base, I finally caved and let her chop it off.  Broke my heart at first but now I just love it, I think it suits her and it makes her look so grown up.  Wish she would slow down :)

So yes, a full day of homemaking which has brought me such joy.

Ended the day with a wonderful homemade dinner, comfort food at it's best.


I'm about to sit down for the night and watch a movie with the family.  Think I'll grab my crochet though my wrist is hurting a bit tonight, not sure if it's from all the unpacking, carrying boxes, or the floor washing or what it was....maybe it's the crochet since I just got back to it and have been going full speed.

Well, we'll see. 

God Bless,