Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Missing H-O-M-E

I am feeling Home sick, in the most literal sense. The thought came to me to share why I love my home so much :) Hope you enjoy the photos!!
All but three of our cats,
and last years' kittens.
"Neigh"boring horses :)

Cat-in-action: preparing to pounce,
and therefore trample,
mom's flower bed.
A sibling with her kittens - cuties
Hey, guess what this is!
HEAT for the WINTER! :)
And dad chopped it!
And the entire family hauled it!
And it was awesome!!!
The ancient, antique and vintage barn :) Isn't it purty!!
The flower garden, or at least some of it

Hay-bails - my favorite still-life
victim... I mean subject,
for photography
Some calves that live down the road :)
Aren't they SOOO cute!!
September's Sun-Set
Our garden
My dog, the yard, all loveliness, and the sunshine :)
Baby potatoes
:) SPRING!!! :)
The view of our "back yard" from an up-stairs room
Some "weeds" growing next to the river
The drive on the way home

Saturday, October 24, 2009


Because God is, again, refining my family by fire (quite literally) I will not be posting on this blog much, if ever, for several months. House work and family help will be taking up a great deal of my time, and so I will be unable to have much free time to spend on the computer (or free time, period.)

If you would like to know more about the refinement, or would like to keep updated with my family and how we are doing, please feel free to visit

God richly bless and keep you and your families.
May He pour out His abundant blessings and joy over you
and Have a Happy Holiday Season!
God bless,
Miss Elisabeth

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


A picture of a moth, during one of my
late-afternoon walks
There is something so picturesque -
so beautiful -
even captivating,
about a field full of hay bails drying out underneath
a late-Summer sun

Our "neighbors" :)
Angus cows
We have had a horrible number of
all over the place! In the garden,
sun-bathing on the house,
on the cement... It's disgusting!
Some of our Bountiful Harvest.
We'll be canning these beautiful clusters of spheres
very soon.
Home made grape juice is very much enjoyed,
especially on Christmas and Thanksgiving
This is not a view of our house, but from our property of
another "neighbor," who lives
about a mile and a half, maybe two miles, away.
I enhanced the coloring on this picture...
Looking out our dining room window.
Overall "dining room window" shot
Need more be said?
Wild flowers speckle the sides of the roads.
This Spring wild roses were rampant.
This Summer, wild daisies, black-eyed Susann's,
sunflowers... and these enchanting little
yellow buds
decorate the fields, road-sides
and just about anywhere they can take root.
Butterfly and bird pictures are probably my favorite,
although frogs are fun to capture
on the camera as well.
Here is a monarch atop our blooming onions.
And our roosters. 4:30 Am they begin their
"every half hour" crowing sessions.
We named them Lafayette and Napoleon
(which we took from The Aristocats,
the Walt Disney movie)

And all of us kiddos during our family vacation at the beginning of August.

Enjoy the rest of your Summer,

and God richly bless :)

Miss Elizabeth

Monday, August 24, 2009

August is the Last Summer Month...

"The sky is blue. The sun shines.

The sune shines and shines.
The cows doze away the noonday.

You know it is hot when the old
cat comes out for a breath of air.

The flowers are growing, too. Flowers
need hours of attention in August heat.

The vegitables need attention, too..."

This passage is just a bit from one of my favorite childrens books The Year at Maple Hill Farm, but Alice and Martin Provensen.

August has been a lovely month so far. Not only has it been filled with the adventures of traveling with seven people in a mini van over a ten day period, but the flowers seem to have a bit more flair and vibrance this time of year. There are frog everywhere!.. another one of my favorites: catching frogs and taking pictures of them:) Although, they rarely stay still enough to get a good picture (they are not very photogenic).

We've been blessed with an abundance of vegitables from our garden and some fruit as well. The grapes are ripe and we'll be canning grape juice tomorrow, which will be a lot more fun than this afternoon because the weather man claims it will rain tonight, chasing away this horrid humid heat! Thank God! It's hard not having central air conditioning on the great plains, although after a while you learn to grin and bear it.

On some strange whim I took my little sister (and myself:) out on a drive down some gravel roads - mostly unused roads with breathtaking views of rivers running around, alongside and under them. The night air was truly beautiful. Crickets sang strongly. Frogs bounced across the road happily (most of them had very unhappy endings as they were squashed into the road by car tires). The moon was just a sliver of silver in the vibrant bluish hue night sky....

It is amazing that God creates such breathtaking beauty with a simple phrase "let there be."

Mom and I canned peaches this afternoon, I cut grapes to can tomorrow, and mom made salsa to can tomorrow too. The salsa is pretty good, although I think it could stand to have a bit more zang.. or spicey flavoring to it, however I live in a "low spice tolerance" home where the majority of the people think that garlic chicken is VERY hot and spicey.

In the middle of our family vacation at the beginning of August I spent a day with my older sister at her college in Kentucky. To be quite frank, I have not had so much fun in many, many years. Which, in my opinion, is just pitiful, but this mostly has to do with the fact that I am overall unhappy in the place and situation I am in life right now. But this season will too soon end, as so many other season have ended in the past, I am here, right now, in this place, with these people, for but one fraction of time and the rest of life is an unknown path to take - a great adventure awaiting you and I :)

God richly bless and keep you this week.
Miss Elizabeth

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Gardening on Saturday

Gardened ALL DAY on Saturday. The weather was incredible! Sun shining bright, intoxicating aroma wafting on the Summer breaze and clouds only before dusk. Truly incredible!

A visitor, a painted turtle,
in our three acre front "yard."
Oh my goodness! Mulberries and strawberries!
They are SO delicious!
Right before we went into the house,
after a long and hot day of outdoor work
we had the opportunity to witness
the beautiful promise of God's love and patience of human kind -
a rainbow
You can't see the rainbow nearly as well
in this picture,
but it's in the upper right hand corner of the picture
coming "out of" the trees.
Dusk on the Paririe.
That little speck, on the left edge of the photo
is actually the moon:)
The moon and the stars,
in all their wonderous glory.
As Laura Ingells wrote
"they were singing!"
The colorful specks are witness that God is an artist.
Looking at this picture, it appears
that the Author of Creation
took a toothbrush and flicked a bunch of shimmering
multi-colored speckles onto
a deep blue canvas,
does it not?

Thursday, June 25, 2009

For the Chocolate Lovers

Another simply scrumptious treat our family enjoyed this week was chocolate cookies.
They were so good!
I doubled everything, which made about 3-4 dozen cookies. We have a medium-sized family, so doubling comes as second nature :)

1 cup softened butter 1 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup sugar 1 teaspoon salt
1 cup brown sugar 2-2/3 cup coconut
2 eggs 1 cup chocolate chips
2 teaspoons vanilla
2-1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
(Since we did not have either coconut or chocolate chips, I replaced both with 2-3 cups of Hershey's Cocoa Powder)
Cream the butter and sugars. Add vanilla and eggs.
In separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda,
baking powder, salt and Hershey cocoa powder.
Fold into the creamed mixture and add chocolate
chips (if you desire).
Bake at 350*F for 12-18 minutes.

Delicious With Tea

At about mid-Summer things begin to take on a strange sort of likeness, and the weeks mediocre monotony fog into one blob of life: days are peculiarly undefineable; weeks run along together with no particular mile marker telling you what time of month it is; and the months, from about May until August all seem to be alike - hot, humid and full of garden time. Little else.
Humidity creeps up on its unsuspecting, non-prepared victim: dehydration, sunburns, irritation and fatigue are all common symptoms of the season in a non-centeral-air-conditioned, seventy-five year old farm house in the middle of the prairie.
Two nights ago we ate dinner with the storm windows open and the screen windows "protecting" our home from natures wild elements. However, the screen on the windows, somehow, failed to keep the insects and bugs out of the house. As we ate, the bugs and insects, attracted to the dining room lights, would fall onto our dinner plates in a stupor, amidst the food; smacking our foreheads; buzzing around our ears; colliding with one another...
Last night, after a long day of cleaning the porches, harvesting from the garden and finding things to keep onself occupide in somewhat challenging ways, the weather decided we had not experienced enough adventure, even when the sun had gone to bed. Somewhere around eleven thirty at night, after the two youngest children had gone to bed, mom had cleaned herself up from the garden and dad had eaten, the syrin of our small twon blared in our ears... What could it possible be now? Surely not a tornado! Of course, this was the exact problem. A funnle cloud began building about a ten-fifteen minutes North-West of our, now seemingly insignificant, farm house. Lukely, after forty-five minutes of waiting, the tornado passed.
Because the outdoors are so hot, with added humidity, and bugs rule the great plains, one finds comfort in reading, catching upon studies, and expanding their knowledge and growing in their skills as an artist, within the confinements of their home. This is especialy relaxing when chilled, iced, or blended icey drinks are available!
Creativity blossoms, and physical exersion is kept to a minumum (this is easy for me to say, considering we no longer own any aniumals that require our frequent attetions, such as goats, sheep, horses or cattle. We merely have two dogs we care for and barn cats, who generaly fend for themselves.
However, for a true working farm, a family is constatnly working to sustain the productivity level of their home! Having owned goats, chickens, ducks, geese, sheep and a horse)
Yesterday morning, as the hat rose and the humidity strengthened, I honestly did not want to eat much of anything. However, I am a firm believer in that a person ought not skip a meal, ever, if at all possible, and at the very least eat something light, high in carbohydrates and fiber, or high in fiber and vitamins, or both, but low in protien.
So, with great anticipation I took the journey of finding evough staple foods in our kitchen to bake something. After creating a mental inventory of all taht stocked our shelves (this does not consist of much, so late in the week), the most appealing sounding food that came to mind where muffins! So far, I have only baked muffins from scratch one other time, this year. They are a fun treat, when baked sparingly.
We own a lot of Taste of Home magazines, which is where I get most of my recipes for muffins - yummy! The one I found in Taste of Home's April/May 2008 issue (on page 41) was Lemon Crumb Muffins.. Ohh, ooh!! Hmm... I can smell the delictable aroma of fresh-out-of-the-oven, moist muffins just waiting to be eaten.
They were SO wonderful! Especialy with a cup of hot, or iced tea :)
Lemon Crumb Muffins
Yeild: about, 40 muffins
6 cups all-purpose flour
4 cups sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
8 eggs
2 cups (16 ounces) sour cream
2 cups butter, melted
3 Tablespoons grated lemon peel (I substituted this with one more tablespoon of lemon juice)2 Tablespoons lemon juice
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar (sucanat, if you wish to avoid white sugar)
1/4 cup cold butter
1/2 cup sugar (this can be substituted with honey, if you so desire)
1/3 cup lemon juice

In a larg bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda
and salt.

In another bowl, whisk eggs, sour
cream, butter, lemon peel and juice.
Stir into dry
ingredients just until moistened.

Fill greased
or paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full.
In a small bowl, combine flour, and sugar;
cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse
crumbs. Sprinkle over batter.
Bake at 350*F for 20-25 minutes or until
toohtpick comes out clen.

Cool for 5 minutes
before removing from pans to a wire rack.
In a smal bowl, whisk glaze ingredients;
drizzle over warm muffins.