Sunday, November 6, 2011

Taco Soup

My friend gave me a recipe for Taco Soup a verrrry long time ago. I had never had it before and when I came across the recipe a few days ago, I thought I would make it. It was delicious! 

 I put it over tortilla chips and put grated cheddar cheese on top.
 Maybe you have already tried Taco Soup, but if you haven't, you really should!
Do you want the recipe? Sure you do...and I will give it to you.

1 lb ground beef or ground turkey
1 cup chopped onions
1 16 oz can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup fresh or frozen corn
8 oz canned tomato sauce
2 cups water
2 14.5 oz cans peeled and diced tomatoes
1 4 oz can diced green chilies
1 packet taco seasoning mix
1 cup shredded, cheddar or monterey jack cheese
1/2 cup sour cream

Cook the ground meat until browned, drain
Place the ground meat, onion, chili beans, kidney beans, corn, tomato sauce, water, diced tomatoes, green chilis and taco seasoning mix in a slow cooker. Mix to blend and cook on low for 8 hours.
Ladle into individual serving bowls (over tortilla chips) or serve with flour tortillas. Top each with 1/8 cup 8 shredded cheese and a tablespoon of sour cream.
Serves 8
Thanks for visiting! Have a great day! 
Mrs. T

Friday, November 4, 2011

Update on Charlie

 I had told you about Charlie, who had adopted us last summer.  What I didn't tell you was that when Charlie came to us, she had a tumor.

I tried doctoring her up while I waited for someone to clam her. No one ever came, so I finally talked my husband into taking her to the veterinarian (he is was not a big cat fan)! After a very expensive trip to the vet, he told me I now owned a cat. We had never had a cat before, but she must have known she came to the right house!

Here she sits at the door with Suzie, waiting for someone to open the door and let them in. When she first came in the house, she didn't like the dogs at all. They had never been around cats and I think they were trying to figure out what she was and  why she was at their house.

The dogs and cat (and dad too!) must have been playing hide and seek...Dudley and my husband found her!

 My husband can't have a snack without all eyes and noses on him!

 Charlie and my husband...ha, he said he didn't like cats! They have become good pals now. He even came home from the store with a collar for her, with a bell on it. I asked him why the bell. He said so he would know where she was at. He can't say he doesn't love Charlie!

I thought when my kids left home that my house would stay cleaner and I wouldn't have anyone to pick up after anymore. I didn't figure that my dogs and cat would take their place. I was out of the room for awhile and when I came back in, this is what I found. Guess the dogs and Charlie were having a camp out. Dudley is on the floor with a blanket and pillow, Suzie is on the couch with a blanket and pillow and Charlie is laying on the back of the couch. She is feeling right at home! Kids...uh I mean pets....Gotta Love Em!

Thanks for visiting! Have a great day!
Mrs. T

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

No Pears Wasted Here!

We Have A Large Pear Tree In Our Backyard And I Didn't Want The Pears To Go To Waste, (Or My Dogs Eating All Of Them). As You Can See Suzie Is There In The First Picture Eating A Pear. She And Dudley Like The Pears Too Much! I Even Caught Them Getting Into A Bag Of Them  That I Had Sat On The Floor To Give To One Of Our Children.  I Guess They Wanted A Snack! I Really Like Pears Too And Wanted Some Way To Preserve Them.

I Have Never Learned How To Can And I Don't Have A Dehydrator, But I Found Out That I Could Actually Freeze Pears.

Want To Know How?

Wash And Peel Pears, Cut Them In Half Or Quarters And Core.

Add 1/2 Teaspoon Ascorbic Acid (I Used "Fruit Fresh") Per Quart To Avoid Discoloration (Optional). Seal And Freeze.  Oh, And Make Sure You Write "Pears" And The Date On Them. If You Are Anything Like Me (You Probably Aren't) You Will Forget What Is In The Package Or How Long It Has Been In The Freezer.

I Pealed And Pealed And Pealed And In The End I Froze About 20 Packages Of Pears. I Used My Seal A Meal And It Worked Great!!
I Had So Many Pears And I Really Didn't Want To Peal A Ton More (My Arm Was Getting A Little Tired). Some Of My Children Had Already Taken Some And Another One Took Two Boxes Of Them.  A Couple Of Ladies Came To Pick Up The Leftover Wood From This Project  Http://Avisitwithmrst.Blogspot.Com/2011/10/Shedchicken-Coop.Html  That I Had Posted On Craigslist.  I Gave Them Some Too! No Pears Wasted Here!!

Thanks for visiting! Have a great day!
Mrs. T

Monday, October 31, 2011

Paw Prints To Scarf!

Look what I made in less than 1 hour! 

I have made several of these now, in all different colors. It is approximately 33" long and has pockets on each side. If you live in a part of the country that gets really cold then this is perfect for that time of the year and it is just the right length so that you can put your hands in the pockets comfortably to keep them warm.
Want to know how you can make one too?
I used fleece fabric for this one, but you can use whatever fabric you want to. I have made some out of wool and a lightweight micro suede fabric and also made some without the pockets using brocade and challis fabrics for a designer look. 
This one I made so it is reversible, white on one side and paw prints on the other side. I don't have a pattern so made my own.
Cut 2 pieces 34" x 7" of each color and 2 pieces, one of each color 9" x 14". 

Take one of each of your long pieces and put right sides together. Sew down the long sides. 

Take your smaller pieces and put right sides together. Find the middle of the 14" side (7") and draw a line down the center with an erasable pen or chalk.
Go to your machine and with the fabric pieces still together, put your sewing foot along the edge of the line and sew down the side (do not sew on the line), then turn around and do the same on the other side. You should now have a seam on each side of the line you drew. 

Now cut down the line, you should have 2 pieces with 2 different colors on each piece when opened up.
Turn over the top of each piece to make a 1/2 inch hem. If you have fabrics that will ravel then turn over 2 times but only 1/4 inch each time. 

Now take each of your smaller pieces and put them on each end of the longer pieces, right sides up. (If you want to mix it up a little, you can switch the colors around. I chose to have the paw prints on the same side and the white on the same sides). Sew across the bottom (ends) of each one.

Lay the pockets flat and sew up the middle (from bottom to top of pockets) in the seam.

Put the other side of the long pieces together (the opposite sides of where the pockets are) and sew across the ends.

Now you should have one long piece. Fold in half length wise making sure the sides of the pockets line up.

(You should probably pin together so they stay in place). Now sew around the outside edges. Stop near the middle and leave a gap, about the size that you hand will fit through. 

Finish sewing the rest of the outer edge. 

Put your hand in where you left the gap and turn right side out, making sure a pocket is on each side. I use a knitting needle and push the corners out at the ends. 

You can either hand sew the gap closed or as I did on this one, topstitch all the way around.

If you would like, you can take extra fabric and make 2 small rice bags which can be heated in the microwave. Then put them in the pockets and this will keep your hands extra warm. Do this at your own risk though! I have never had any problems and have made many.
If you make one, I would love to see it!
If you have any questions, please leave me a comment or feel free to email me.

Thanks for visiting! Have a great day! 
Mrs. T

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Shed/Chicken Coop

Remember This Picture From Yesterday?

This Shed/Chicken Coop Has Been Recycled Into 2 Projects. Remember I Said I Have Been Wanting Chickens?

We Have This Small Deck In Our Backyard And My Husband Suggested We Build A Chicken Coop On It.

My Son Picked Up Some Pallets And We Used Some Of Them For The Walls Of The Chicken Coop. Not Very Professional, But It Worked, And It Really Is Sturdy!


We Used Some Of The Wood For The Additions To The Inside Of The Coop. There Are 14 Slots For Chickens To Lay Eggs; They Came With The Shed/Chicken Coop.

We Used The Metal Roofing From The Shed/Chicken Coop For The Roof And The Sides Of Our Chicken Coop. We Had Fencing Left From Another Project That We Used To Put Around The Chicken Coop.  We Are Planning To Let Them Out At Times To Roam The Yard.

Above Picture Is Charlie Our Cat, She Is Waiting To See The Chickens For The First Time. Here Are Dudley And Suzie Letting Them Know They Want Them To Come Out And Play!

And Here They Are….Meet Salt And Peppa!!

I Was Thinking About The Names Molly And Henrietta, But My Husband Wanted Their Names To Be Salt And Peppa. He Runs Around And Picks Up All My Recycling/Upcycling Projects And Our Chickens So I Thought He Should Have His Way! And The Names Fit, Don’t You Think!!

We Got Our Chickens For Free On Craigslist. The Woman Also Gave Us A Heated Water Dish, A Heat Lamp And Some Chicken Feed. She Was Going To Give Us A Smaller Chicken Coop Too, But My Husband And Son Couldn’t Lift It, So It Was Left Behind. I Had Told My Son Earlier That I Wanted It So I Could Get A Rooster And Then I Could Put A Hen With It And Hopefully We Could Have Baby Chicks. My Husband Told Me I Couldn’t Have A Rooster. (Do You Think That He Just Told Me They Couldn't Lift It So That So I Wouldn’t Get One? :) lol)  The Woman He Got The Chickens From Said The Chickens Seldom Lay Eggs…Well It Has Been A Couple Of Weeks And Still No Eggs, So Am Thinking They May Be Done With The Laying Days. That Is Ok Though, We Just Wanted To See How Raising Chickens Was Going To Be, How Our Dogs And Cat Would React To Having Them Around And How We Do With Them Over The Winter. If All Goes Well, We Will Get Some Chicks Come March. Unless Of Course, If Anyone Has Any Extra Chickens That Lay Eggs And They Want To Get Rid Of Them, I Will Gladly Take Them Off Your Hands If You Live Close By. I Think I Should Have Been Raised On A Farm!!
I’ll Be Back Soon To Tell You About The Other Project That We Built With The Recycled Shed/Chicken Coop. 

Thanks For Visiting! Have A Great Day!
Mrs. T

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Scored With Yet Another Craigslist Find

Mrs. T Here, Time Just Seems To Get Away From Me. Now That The Cold Weather Is Coming Our Way, I May Get More Blogging Done...Hopefully.
My Family And I Had So Many Projects Going On Over The Summer, Some Rather Big. We Didn't Get Them All Completed But Came Very Close.
I Am Going To Tell You About One, Maybe Two Of The Projects, But First I Want To Show You Some Of The Flowers From My Yard. 

Here Are My Peonies And Some Of My Roses
And Some More Of My Roses And Some Other Flowers (I Forgot The Name Of Them).   Several Of My Rosebushes Are Still In Bloom  And Look So Pretty.

And Here Are My Dianthus And My Tree (Can't Remember The Name
Of It Either) Don't You Just Love It When My Memory Fails? Flowers?
I Really Love Flowers And Have Them In Many Areas Of My Yard.

Now On To The Project Or Two...Take A Look At This Picture?
And This One?

There Was An Ad On Craigslist For A 10' X 12' Greenhouse And A Shed/Chicken Coop For Free. Yes I Said Free! The Only Condition Was That The Person Who Got Them Had To Take Them Down. Well, With All My Wisdom, Yes I Said "My Wisdom"...My Family Might Think Otherwise...    I Emailed The Person And He Called Me And Told Me If I Would Take Them Both, I Could Have Them. Of Course I Wanted Them Both!...I Had Been Wanting To Get Some Chickens And Had Always Wanted A Greenhouse. And I Love To Recycle/Up-Cycle So Things Stay Out Of The Landfills.
I Called My Youngest Son, Shayne, And He And I Went To The Location And Took Down The Greenhouse. He Did Almost All Of The Work..I Supervised..

Here Is A Picture Of It In The Process Of Being Put Up On Our Property. 

Here It Is All Finished. There Were Several Hands Putting This Up, Thanks To My Sons, Shayne And Cameron And My Son-In-Law Tom And My Wonderful Husband Who Tolerates All The Projects I Keep Coming Up With!


Inside The Greenhouse Were Some Great Cedar Potting Benches That Go All The Way Around The Greenhouse In A U Shape...He Gave Those To Me As Well. I Also Received A Garden Cart From The Man and His Wife. I Don't Have A Picture Of It Right Now, But Am Planning On Sanding It Down And Repainting It Next Summer.

I Have Some Green Peppers And Tomatoes In The Green House Right Now.

This Is My Garden Area...I Call It My Secret Garden.   It Is A Work In Progress. The Greenhouse Sits Across From My Garden Shed Now. When We Moved Into Our Home In March Of 2009, This Area Was Covered In Really High Weeds. We Planted Grass And Have Been Working On It Each Summer. I Have Planted Blueberry And Raspberry Bushes, Along With Strawberries And Rhubarb. I Plant Vegetables Each Year Too. I Also Have Mint Planted Along One Side Of The Garden Shed And Also Have Some Flowers Planted In Various Places. We Have A Pear Tree In Our Backyard, And Have Planted 2 Cherry Trees, A Peach Tree And An Apple Tree. I Ran Over The Apple Tree With A Cart That I Was Pulling Behind Our Riding Lawnmower, So No More Apple Tree.

Here Is My Turtle Bench. I Collect Turtles And My Oldest Son, Eli Got This For Me As A Gift.

  Here Are Some Radishes, Green Peppers And Strawberries (Don't they look delicious?) From My Garden. I Evidently Didn’t Take Pictures Of My Other Vegetables. Do You Have A Garden? What Do You Plant? Since I Have Never Had A Greenhouse, Do You Have Any Pointers For Me On How To Get The Best Use Out Of  It?

I Will Be Back Tomorrow To Tell You About The Shed/Chicken Coop.

Have a great day!
Mrs T

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