Monday, September 26, 2011

I don't know what it is.

I don’t know what it is.  Maybe turning 30?  Maybe being married? Maybe our new location?  Whatever is going on Brandon and I have found ourselves in a hodge podge of adventure.  

We are raising chickens
(not an easy undertaking we have found out). 

We have grown a garden (a first for me). 

We have grown about a ½ acre of pumpkins
(and a few weeds in the process). 

Whatever it is . . . I love it! 

We have learned a lot.  And I don’t mean just lessons about raising chickens, gardening, and pumpkins.  We’ve learned a lot about ourselves and each other.  We have had some extra laughs and made memories.  I won’t say that it was without a few aches and pains.  But in the end a lot more than just chickens, vegetables, and pumpkins have been produced. 

Today we were able to share some of this with our community.  We sold our pumpkins on a "you pick"' basis.  It was just as much fun for me to see others enjoying our pumpkins as much as we have. 



Monday, September 12, 2011

Hectic Life

An area of focus for the Wilson household this year is our calendar.  We are both making a conscious effort to review our schedules on a regular basis together.  What this looks like is that on our joint rides to work I pull out our old fashioned paper calendar and we go through together what the next month to two months looks like.  We attempted the electronic shared calendars for awhile but that didn’t seem to work for us so we reverted to the old fashion pen and paper.  We keep a calendar for a multitude of reasons.  One, sometimes things get so busy that we forget important events because we didn’t write them down somewhere.    Two, I will think I told B about an upcoming event and he will think he has told me only to realize either one of us forgot or one of us didn’t really tell the other.  And the list goes on.  Writing it down and reviewing often helps to eliminate miscommunication. 
One part of this calendar process for us is actually scheduling dates.  Yes we see one another every day at home, typically eat supper together, etc., etc.  However, a lot of times it’s easy to get caught up in the day to day events of life and the purposeful conversations or face-to-face quality time is pushed to the side.  B is working on his Ph.D. right now and it seems he either is on the computer writing or in the chair with his books reading.  So, these scheduled dates are important to us.  We both know that we are going to get the other’s undivided attention. 
This past Saturday was one of our scheduled dates.  We both have loved this shift in the weather so we decided to take advantage and do something outside. 

I prepared a picnic supper, packed a book and a game to keep us entertained, and loaded up the golf cart.  Fortunately we live close to a pond we can take advantage of.  Off we headed down Hwy 62 (yes we know it’s illegal to ride golf carts on the highway) to the perfect picnic spot.  We feasted on homemade fried chicken nuggets, cheesy macaroni with bacon, and kettle cooked chips. 

The few hours we had together enjoying the sunset, reading our book, and laughing as I beat B yet again at another game, I was reminded of how important this time is I have with him. 

The only other relationship that is more important is the relationship I have with the Lord.  So in the hectic pace of life it’s important to schedule time with my husband who takes priority over the work emails I need to respond to, laundry filling the utility room, dirty dishes spilling out of the sink, or my latest craft project.    


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Love List

While Monday’s cool weather may not be the official end to summer, in my mind fall is here!  And it happens to be my very favorite time of year. 
But . . . if you need one last taste of summer here’s your chance,

Yes you read that right, no machine required.  How you ask?  Read on.
I once bought an ice cream machine for $5 at a yard sale and for some reason I thought it was a good deal.  While a lot of the things I buy at yard sales are good deals this one was not.  I was still in a very early stage of understanding how to make good, quality homemade ice cream.  Since then I have learned that the machine is the key ingredient.  And that key ingredient can cost around $100.  Much less than the best won’t turn out good, quality ice cream.  Needless to say my $5 ice cream machine is in some landfill and my homemade ice cream skills aren’t much better.  So when I discovered this recipe on Kevin & Amanda (a website I like to follow) I didn’t believe it myself. However, after testing a few combinations I must add this to my . . .
So, feeling pretty confident in my new discovery and my newly developed homemade ice cream skills I decided to share this with my bible study group (aka women in my sunday school class).  Brooke fixed cookies and cute bottles of milk for everyone while we worked. 

There are two necessary ingredients.  Yes,only two.  Can you believe that? 
1 – 14 ounce can of sweetened condensed milk

2 cups of heavy cream

So all you do is put the 2 cups of heavy cream in a mixer and whip until the cream forms stiff peaks.

Pour the sweetened condensed milk in a separate bowl.  You can add in a variety of other ingredients to “flavor” your ice cream.  Mix the other ingredients (chocolate chips, berries, crushed oreos, cookie dough, etc.) with the sweetened condensed milk.  Click here to see Amanda’s combinations. We made two combinations; Smores and Cinnamon Bun.   (See recipes at the end of this post.)
Once the cream has formed stiff peaks fold it into the sweetened condensed milk mixture.  Fold doesn’t mean stir it.  You want the cream to stay fluffy. 

Pour into a 2 quart container and freeze.  That’s it!  The recipe says it needs to freeze for around 6 hours but just until firm is sufficient. 

(one of my combos)

Thanks girls for a fun night!

2 cups heavy cream
1 (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
½ cup mini chocolate chips
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ cup marshmallow cream

Cinnamon Bun
2 cups heavy cream
1 (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
3 tbsp melted butter
½ tsp cinnamon
½ tsp vanilla