Thursday, July 29, 2010

Made in America

This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Ramblers Way. All opinions are 100% mine.

Do you have little towns near you that are almost skeletons? I had a friend tell me that the town she grew up in is no longer even there. The main businesses moved to other places and few people stayed in that area.

We love to go to the little Mom and Pop stores. You might pay a bit more, but I guarantee you the customer service is a whole lot better. We have local hardware stores in the small towns around us. They meet you at the door almost and help you find everything you need. We used to go in one near our last house. They would remember you and ask how your latest project was coming along. I even had one man spend about 10 minutes in the basement looking for a small part I needed that may have cost 39 cents. In the end he brought up the part in several sizes. I had no idea what size I needed. He told me to just take them all and bring back the wrong ones. I could pay for my part then. I like service like that.

Many companies have shifted their operations out of the country to get things done cheaper. Cheaper has a price tag that many don't think about. We also lose some of the homey feel of old towns and buildings. Have you ever looked at the older historical buildings? They have charm and character that is rarely put into the newer buildings and stores. They just re-did an old opera house near us. I am so glad they chose to preserve it instead of just gutting it and using the building for something else. Lots of time and effort went into the project.

Another thing that we like to look for when we shop whether it is food shopping or clothes shopping or really anything we shop for. We look for the Made in America label. Not only do we see lots of recalls of products that aren't safe, but also, it keeps jobs here.

Ramblers Way Farm is all for changing the way American business is done. They make fine woolen apparel using 100% domestic resources. They make sure it all comes from here in America and is made here in America. They also try to help distressed small towns by setting up manufacturing facilities that are helping to revitalize those communities. Their corporate facility is in a refurbished building that was originally built in 1792 in downtown Kennebunk, Maine.
The building has been restored to its original condition, while being modernized to meet today's environmental standards. They have even achieved the coveted Gold Lead Certification level!

Check out Ramblers Way Farm and see what all they have to offer.

Visit my sponsor: Made in America

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Summer Days...

It is kind of hard to see the fog in this picture, but there was a low lying fog on the ground. The sun was just coming up and hitting the top of the barn. It was beautiful.

That same morning, there was a spider convention in our yard. It is amazing that there is no webs there at night and then next morning there are dozens of them all around the yard and in the weeds.


One of our friends came to fish in our pond. He caught this monster catfish. He did throw it back.

Remember the chrysalis I showed you.... well George has emerged!!! Isn't he beautiful? I put him out on my wreath to let his wings dry.


This puppy is so much fun to watch. She loves her pork. :) This is a little stuffed pig I had laying around. It is really soft and I thought it might be a sleeping buddy for Skye. She loves to chew on it.


She is starting to become a little pudge. :) She loves to eat. I weighed her today. She is up to 4.36 pounds. I had a hard time finding a collar that was small enough to fit her neck. We like to put her on a leash when we take her out at night. She would make a nice owl snack, so we don't want her getting too far away from us. She hates her collar. She is always scratching at it. She walks all curled around trying to decide if she is going to take another step or scratch. :)

I had left over dog chew toys from Dixie. I also got a few more at a clearance sale. I know how puppies love to chew and I wanted to be sure she had plenty to chew on instead of our shoes or furniture. I used have saved my money. Here are 2 of her favorites. One is a stick and the other a rock she got in our driveway. :)

Last night I was outside with both dogs. Star has a bone out there we had given to her. Skye kept trying to get it and Star finally barked right in her face really loud and she backed off. Then when Skye saw the chance, she snatched the bone and came running as fast as her short legs would carry her to sit down next to me. Star ambled over and when she saw her chance, snatched it back and went back over where she had been and laid down to guard it.

Skye does not like being out in the sun. She runs for the closest shade. Here she is high tailing it to get under one of our lawn chairs.

I sat her down in the side yard to try and get her to go to the bathroom. She took off for the front porch. :) When she is in the house, she likes to be in the air conditioned office.

Our Black-eyed Susans did really well this year.

I love Summer. Today for lunch I had a sliced cucumber from our garden, a tomato we got at a road side stand, about 10 blueberries from our bush and about 10 blackberries from one of the brambles out by the barn. :) YUM!!!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A Tasty way to Lose Weight!!

Michael and I have been wanting and trying to lose weight for a long time. Nothing seemed to be working. We have been praying and asking the Lord for His help in doing this. We finally decided to try and combine Weight Watchers with Nourishing Traditions. We are not being exact with either, but it seems to be working. We have both lost weight each of the last 5 weeks. On two of those weeks, we each lost 4 pounds. One of the weeks, I only lost 1/2 pound, but it was still a loss, for which I am grateful.

I have been trying to come up with creative meals that taste really good. Last nights menu was wonderful, so I thought I would share it with you. I had about 1/2 pound of hamburger thawed in the fridge that needed to be used. I browned it with some onion, garlic and mushrooms. Then I added some canned tomatoes from last years garden. With the hamburger, I did not want to use pasta and add the extra points, so I made zoodles. Zoodles are sort of like spaghetti but are made from a zucchini. It is a great way to use the zucchinis that grow way to big. I have a Spirooli which does this for me, but I have found something identical to it with another name (thanks to Marion). I am hoping to get some to sell in the store. Until then, you can get it through Amazon.



It does more than just zoodles and is very easy to work and to clean up. I did one large zucchini. I put the zoodles in a steamer basket and sprinkled salt, pepper and freshly ground garlic powder. I did drizzle a wee bit of olive oil on them as well. Then I steamed them just enough to warm them, but not make them soggy. I served the hamburger mixture over the zoodles. Michael said that I could do something like that 4 nights a week and he would love it. Our zucchini plant died, so he wants to try and plant another one.

YUM!!!!

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Monday, July 26, 2010

Count Your Blessings Monday!!




Here is an opportunity for all of us to give thanks unto the Lord for a blessing in our lives. If you would like to take part great. If not that is OK too. If you would like to share your blessing, just leave it in the comments. If you want to use the picture above and list a blessing on your own site, then leave a URL to your site in the comments. There is no pressure here. I just know that I am incredibly blessed and I would like to share that and give thanks to Him who all blessing come from. This is a way that we can encourage one another. I know that I am often encouraged when someone shares a blessing with me. I think that many times we forget that it is a blessing to be able to breath, to get out of bed, to hold a baby... Share your blessings with us. We can share so many other things.... special gifts, recipes, let's take the time to share how God has blessed us!!

Today, I am thankful for prayer. Just think, we don't have to travel to some temple somewhere and have another man do our praying for us. We have direct access to God Almighty through His Son, Jesus Christ. It does not matter where you are, or what words you use, He is as close as speaking His name. We can commit our day to Him, commit our family to Him and rest in His loving care. We can cry out for help or for solace. We can be forgiven. His mercies are new every day. Great is His faithfulness!!!

What are YOU thankful for?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

What's On Your Table?

I have a good friend who always sets such a pretty table. She has collected several dinnerware sets over time. She has table cloths and napkins that go along with the different sets. She made many of those. She adds little things she picks up to give some ambiance. :) She served us a Mexican meal one time and she brought out a little fake cactus in a pot and set it in the middle of the table. It was so cute. I have seen sombreros that serve as a relish dish. I keep telling the Wonderful Neighbor woman to put hot chili peppers in her kitchen. The color would go with her walls and she is known for liking HOT food. Her favorite hot sauce is called Scorned Woman. :)

I have everyday dishes and I also have a good set of china. I like to bring the china out to celebrate different occasions. I bought blue glasses to go match them when we had Joshua's betrothal supper. I wanted it to be extra special.

There are other ways to dress up your table. You can make place cards, or have little hostess gifts at each place. Get a book from the library that teaches you how to fold cloth napkins into different shapes.

Place mats and table runners can also add to your place settings. It makes people feel special when you take the time to dress up your table. Don't just wait for company either. Take the opportunity for your family as well. Give your children a night where they can help decorate the table. Let your daughters practice for when they have their own table to set.

I will be doing a review or give away for CSN stores again. They have lots to offer in all their different stores. Check them out.

What do you do, to spice up your table for family and friends?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Butterflies, Blooms & Puppy too!!

We put our batch of broilers out into the field in their chicken tractors. We still had the 2 little rooster chicks. They got a whole pen to themselves, back by the layers. They look so tiny in the big pen. One of them is a Buff Orpington. The other one is starting to look like a Barred Rock, but we are not sure yet.


This shows you how tiny Skye really is. We weighed her the other night. She weighed 2.98 pounds.

She was the mighty hunter. She is very brave. She went back into the flowers and explored. I caught her as she came back out.

The Wonderful Neighbor girl brought me 2 Georges the other night. You will have to see my other posts to know why I call them Georges. :) They were Monarch Butterfly caterpillars. I gave one to Brittany and kept the other. Mine is already in his chrysalis. If you go to this search, you will see some of the Georges of years past. I got some good pictures of each step of the way. You can witness a miracle. Besides Monarch George, I also now have a Fennel George (Swallowtail Butterfly) who was on my fennel plants and an unknown George that was also on the Fennel.

Ya'll are going to be sick of seeing our puppy, Skye. :) She is the cutest thing.

She loves to follow Star everywhere. Star has been very patient, but we do give her breaks by putting Skye elsewhere.

Both dogs were napping in the office. Skye got tired of sleeping alone so she got up to go find Star....

She snuggled up to Star. After awhile, Star got tired of her moving around and got up and moved....

The puppy moved too.

And again.... :)

I was outside and the sheep came running up. The pup went for the electric fence. I had to grab her and hold her. She is too little to learn about that yet.

The other sheep would hear me talking and then they too would come running.

The lambs are getting so big.


Here come some more. :)



I found this guy on the ground. I put him up on a plant. He must have just come out of his chrysalis or something. A friend was here and she said there had been one just like this in her driveway. It had problems flying as well.




Monday, July 19, 2010

Count Your Blessings Monday!!




Here is an opportunity for all of us to give thanks unto the Lord for a blessing in our lives. If you would like to take part great. If not that is OK too. If you would like to share your blessing, just leave it in the comments. If you want to use the picture above and list a blessing on your own site, then leave a URL to your site in the comments. There is no pressure here. I just know that I am incredibly blessed and I would like to share that and give thanks to Him who all blessing come from. This is a way that we can encourage one another. I know that I am often encouraged when someone shares a blessing with me. I think that many times we forget that it is a blessing to be able to breath, to get out of bed, to hold a baby... Share your blessings with us. We can share so many other things.... special gifts, recipes, let's take the time to share how God has blessed us!!

I am sure it is not hard to guess what I am thankful for this week. :) Our new little pup. She is a wee tiny thing. I told my friend that I feel like I have been at Romper Room today. :) She is so fun to watch and so smart. She did not like her little crate, so we put her under a laundry basket and she does better. We have a larger crate we are going to move into the house tonight. It needs to be cleaned out really well. It is so amazing to watch something so tiny catch on to things. As soon as she wakes up from her many naps, we take her outside and tell her to go potty. She is already getting the hang of that. She likes to go in the shade though. When I took her out one time today, the sun was right over head and there was only one small strip of shade not much wider than she was on one side of the house. She ran to it, stood sideways to be totally in the shade and did her business. :)

She looks really black in these pictures, but she is dark brown. All our dogs were like that when they were little.


Michael took this picture of her.

This gives you an idea of how tiny she is. Star has been very good at tolerating her. She bugs the stuffing out of Star though. I try to distract her away when she becomes to big of a pest.

Star was trying to get an itch and working very hard at it. The pup came up under her leg and she was not happy to be disturbed when she was busy. :) She hopped away.

Star is such a good girl. If this little pup will be as good as she is, then we are set.

God worked out all the details so that we could get her now while we still have Star. I am very grateful to Him for allowing her to come and live with us.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

New Life On The Farm!!

We got our new puppy today. Friends were getting a puppy from a different litter from the same breeder. Since it was so far away, they just picked up our puppy for us as well. However, she is only 5 weeks old. We are pretty sure her name will be Southern Blu Skye. We will call her Skye. Here she is with Star. She is a red color also, it is just a very dark red at this point.





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Thursday, July 15, 2010

Touring the Yard

The weather has been in the 80's this past week. Today, it was supposed to get to 92. Currently, it is 87. I went out to check on things and took my camera with me.

We just moved the sheep back to the other pasture. We are letting have a small area of tall weeds to eat down for us. :) Look how big the babies are getting!!



I did not plant many sunflowers. I had more to plant and just never got out there. Here are some of what is blooming in the garden.



This is a Queen Anne's Lace.




I believe these are Phlox.

I have a Morning Glory Vine I have been trying to kill. It let me know, I did not succeed. :)

The Black Eyed Susans really spread this year.

The Echinacea is blooming out by the birdbath.

I got 10 quarts of green beans out of the 5 gallon bucket of beans.

Here is last night's haul. :)

The cucumber vines and squash plants are not looking too good. That is NOT a good thing. Especially the cucmber vines. We eat lots of pickles.

Hope you enjoyed touring the yard with me.