• Survive

    Tips for Cleaning Under the Refrigerator

    You know those nights where you can’t sleep and you lie there thinking of everything in the house that needs to be done? Well, I had one of those nights recently, and as I lay there I heard the refrigerator humming on and off. Should it be turning on that often? Was it about to go out? Wasn’t I supposed to clean the cooling coils once a year? I had never done that. Nope, not once in my 8 years of married life had that task been checked off! Surely, the refrigerator was on its last leg and it was due to my lack of cleaning skills! So, the next…

  • Sourdough Sandwich bread
    Eat,  Make

    National Homemade Bread Day

    November 17 is a great day to warm up the house and fill it with the unmistakable aroma of fresh, homemade bread. I’ve got my French Country Boule Sourdough bread started and this time I’m adding bacon!!! Just flour, water, salt, and sourdough starter that I made on my kitchen counter from flour and water. Simple ingredients that I always have on hand. Usually, I will make a sourdough-Molasses sandwich bread once a week but for special occasions, it’s nice to have a crusty artisan bread. After friends gave us sorghum grown on their family farm in North Carolina, I have been subbing it for honey in many of my…

  • Purple Cherokee and black vernissage tomato

    How to Prune Tomatoes

    Are you tired of the tangled mess of your indeterminate (they keep growing) tomatoes? Those little round tomato cages just don’t hold up to my heirloom giant tomatoes and plants! If you are wondering if there is another way, check out our video that shows how we grow our plants in our greenhouse. We use string (baling twine) and hang from the top of our greenhouse. Then, just loosely wrap the bottom end around your young tomato stalk and tie. As the stem grows, wrap it around the string, so it grows vertically. Finally, prune the suckers off of the plant. It will produce larger tomatoes and you can plant…

  • garlic scapes
    Eat,  Grow,  Survive

    June Garden Update

    Garlic scapes, sweet potatoes, and experimental crops such as celery, Chinese Cabbage, and Luffa sponge are starting to grow here in Western Montana. Check out the video and find out how these crops are doing. Spoiler alert: we’ve already had one crop failure! 😉

  • Costco haul

    What to Buy at Azure, Costco, & Amazon

    Do you ever wonder if something at Costco is a good deal? Or maybe you are using an online store such as Amazon or Azure Standard. Hmmm, what do people buy from these places? I have asked these very same questions; so today, I am sharing with you what our family buys from three bulk foods stores. Azure Standard, Costco, and Amazon. These items repeatedly show up on my shopping list, and I feel confident they are a good deal. ( At least here in Montana) Please let me know some of your favorite items to buy at these stores! I’m always looking for a good deal or new food…

  • kids reading books

    The 15 Best Kids’ Books

    Every child seems to latch onto a favorite book as they grow. Over time, their taste for books changes, yet there are some books that are timeless. This is a list of books that we have read and reread over and over to our kids, ages 0-10. You may be able to find these books in your library. Our public library knows us by our names since we visit at least once a week. The library has saved us so much money in buying books for school; it is a great resource. If you can’t find these books at your library, or if you would simply love to own a…

  • 2011 Folk Festival in Butte, Montana

    Montana Folk Festival Yearly Adventure

    Our Family’s Annual Vacation In And Around Our Home State Okay, I know this is a summertime event, and it still feels like we are in deep winter right now, but it’s fun to plan and dream about warmer weather! If you have ever wanted to visit the state of Montana, or even if you have lived here for years, this is an event everyone should experience once. Our family has a special attachment to this venue. Kevin’s business, Doodl Creative Studio, has provided much of the graphic design and marketing since its inception, including website, posters, and signs. As a result, we have been attending this event as a…

  • Easy Pallet Hay Feeder

    Easy Pallet Animal Feeder

    Grab some scrap wood, screws and a couple of pallets to get your hay off the ground. After a couple of months of throwing our sheep’s hay on the ground, we realized that they were pretty picky about getting dry, clean feed. As you can see in the video our pasture is full of hay that no one was eating. So we came up with this idea to get the hay up off the ground with good draining and ventilation. This little feeder only takes about a couple of hours to build from start to finish. It is basically two old pallets with generous spacing in the slats. You could…

  • Sweet Potato Brownies

    Healthy Sweet Potato Brownie Recipe

    Happy Valentine’s Day! I’m the sort of mom that makes brownies for her kids for Valentine’s day. Skip the candy hearts and refined-sugar-filled chocolates this year and try these ooey, gooey, rich, dark chocolate treats with a side of vegetables! 😉 Seriously, everyone in the family was a fan. Box brownies are easy, ooey gooey, and yummy. But you know what I dislike about the boxed brownie mix? The sugar that I know is in it and all that vegetable oil! So this recipe uses nut butter and the creaminess of the sweet potatoes to keep the brownies rich and flavorful. I started with a clipping from the newspaper for…

  • Kefir waffles

    Kefir soaked Waffles

    I had to share this recipe for light, fluffy waffles that are soaked overnight in kefir! So, our family loves making and using milk kefir. My kids and I prefer it over yogurt. I completely stopped buying buttermilk and just substitute kefir in whatever recipe calls for it. We have made delicious muffins, biscuits, and pancakes. Until recently, I hadn’t tried using it in waffles, but my sister-in-law gave me a great recipe for Kefir pancakes that soak the flour overnight! I adapted it to make waffles and they are some of the best! Plus, I feel they are healthier because soaking the freshly ground wheat flour overnight helps reduce…