Friday, March 30, 2012

Sneaky Canines--Fenugreek Tea

March 30, 2012

Last night as we were gettin' ready for bed, we brought Little Dove, Our mama wolf, in for the night. She loves bein' with us, and she is such a sweetheart.

Unfortunately...

She is really smart, and she is always figurin' out ways to get what she wants. I'm not sayin' she is SPOILED or anything like that....

Well, as she was gettin' comfy on her big cushion on Brian's side of the bed, my little Min pin/chihauhua mix, Poblano, came up and they started to 'rassle', like they always do. That goofy "Popo" thinks she is a big wolf, also, and she loves to tumble with the other 'bigguns'.

As I watched them, it seemed as if they were havin' a secret conversation. Little Dove seemed to be whisperin' in Popo's ear, and thelittle mutt was listenin' hard.

I suddenly had a flashback to the old TINY TOONS cartoons show. I imagined Popo askin' Dove,

"What are we gonna do tonight, Dove?"

And DOVE replied....

"The same thing we do every night, Popo...TRY TO TAKE OVER THE BED!"

Okay--*I* thought it was funny....

ANYWAY....

I learned about fenugreek tea a couple of months back, and I love the stuff. I take two tablespoons of fenugreek seeds in a crockpot, fill it with water, and set the temperature on low for several hours. I usually put it on after dinner, then at bedtime, I turn off the crockpot and let it steep overnight. I then drain the liquid into a large gallon jar, add water tot he top, and I further divide the tea into guart conainers by puttin' two cups of the concentrated tea in each container, then fillin' the rest of the way with water. I put the containers in the fridge and once they are cold, I drink the tea throughout the day.

It's a very refreshin' drink, and my research tells me there are many health benefits to drinkin' the tea. Google fenugreek tea, you will learn some really interestin' facts.

One of the reported benefits is supposed to be it helps with diabetes. I'm NOT recommendin' this as a treatment--I am not a doctor, I don't diagnose or prescribe--I'm just sharin' a story of what happened with my own family.

Brian's mom is pre-diabetic, and since she knows I am big on natural medicine, she asked if I knew of anything that might help her. I told her she could try the fenugreek mixture, and she agreed.

When she began, her blood sugar was 143. After about a month, it is now 103. She drinks a few glasses throughout the day.

I dunno if it was the tea, but I know she and her doctor are pleased with the new blood sugar readin's. I brew up a batch for us both every few days, and we really enjoy it, even as just a cold drink.

Well, I got chores. Later ya'll.
© 2012 by Evelyn Edgett

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Brian's New Job--Juicin' and Dehydratin'

March 29, 2012

Things are quiet around here today. Brian has started his new job, and so Obie and I are alone most of the day. This will continue until he gets through his orientation period, then he will go to the second shift. Then he will leave for work around 1:30 in the afternoon, and get home around 3 a.m.

I love second shift. I have always had more energy in the evenin's, and I do some of my best creative work at night.

So this means that we DON'T have to get up at 3:45 a.m. any more. We can sleep until daylight, have a family breakfast, do chores together and have lunch together, then Brian will leave, and Obie and I can have lessons together, do evenin' chores and relax until his bedtime. Then I will have time for a little 'feminine fixin'--you know, I can finally do my nails and facials, long hot soakin' in the tub--that kind of thing. I can then either spend time writin' on the book, or if I don't have the 'oomph'--I can enjoy a good novel, read my Bible, or watch a film on my laptop. Then when the Redneck gets home, we can have some time together before sleepin'

I dunno why, but our family always seems to function better on second shift. We have missed it.

Okay, as to what some reecent projects have been--

This mornin' I am researchin' how to plant DEVILS CLAWS. I have a few seed pods a lady gave me last fall, and my research has told me that the green pods can be eaten, the dried pods can be used to make baskets, and I am still lookin' into the use of the pods to treat rhumatism.

Obie and I have also been lookin' around our area for wild edibles. We have found several small blackberry vines along the road, but so far we haven't found any poke sallet or staghorn sumac. We DID however, find a huge growth of mustang grape vines along the fence near the back of the property. There are already TEENY little grapes in bunches on the vines. We will be keepin' an eye on them and hopefully we will be harvestin' some for makin' jelly.

I think I mentioned gettin' a juicer for my birthday. Well, I have been juicin' my heart out ever since. I found a lot of information on YOUTUBE.COM, and lots of little hints and tips to save time and maximize your results.

One really simple thing I found was on A RAW LIFESTYLE channel. The young lady there was showin' how she made juice in the mornin', and while I watched her, I noticed that she had placed a plastic grocery bag in her pulp 'catcher'. The pulp wsa then easily removed and dealt with, and cleanin' up is easier.

I also found a DVD that I want to see--FAT SICK AND NEARLY DEAD. It's a film by Joe Cross. He is a man who woke up at age 40, about a 100 pounds overweight, high blood pressure and other complications, and he had an autimmune disease that gave him permanent hives. This poor man was takin' all kinds of medications, includin' I forget how many steroids each day.

He decided that he was gonna get well, and so he began juicin', eatin' raw foods, exercisin', etc.

The results were amazin'. He looks wonderful now, and he sounds a bit like Gerard Butler. (Yeah--I KNOW the diet had nuthin' to do with his voice, but come on--I LOVE Gerard Butler's voice!) Check out his website--www.fatsickandnearlydead.com.

One other goodie I found on YOUTUBE. A CHOCOLATE SMOOTHIE!!!!!!!!!

Relax--it's a vegan recipe. I think you may like it. It's on the EASY TO BE RAW channel.

I have also been usin' the pulp from the juicin' to make muffins, breads, cookies, etc. I have even cooked it down and added it to my dog's food portion, 'cause the vet said that it would be good for them. They seem to love it.

However, I STILL have pulp comin' outta my ears! A 50 pound bag of carrots can generate a LOT of pulp. Marqueta, over at www.sweetefelicity.blogspot.com, told me about makin' crackers in a dehydrator usin' the leftover pulp.

I told my freind Eleanor, and she tried it. She is now dryin' all kinds of pulp, and addin' sprouted flax seed and spices.

Sooo...I have decided that my next health related purchase will be a dehydrator. I found a nice model at CABELAS, and hopefully will be pickin' it up this weekend. It's about $200, but I figure that as much as Obie and I love chips and crackers, by usin' leftover pulp, the machine should pay for itself by the end of summer (I mean, seriously--hve you priced a bag of plain old chips lately? And I'm not talkin' about those SPECIALTY HEALTH FOOD STORE CHIPS--I'm just talkin' plain old LAYS. OUTRAGEOUS!). I also have a dog biscuit recipe that I like to make, and I have been researchin' recipes that incorporate the pulp to make treats. I will post the adapted recipe once I get it worked out with our vet.

Oh, I wish I had a camera--it's GORGEOUS here right now.

Well, I got chores. Later Ya'll.
© 2012 by Evelyn Edget

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Fixed Blog Problems--Sort Of, And Many Blessin's All At Once

March 27, 2012

Well, I at least got my paragraph spacin' fixed in this new format, plus I went back and fixed the one before that. As far as comments go--they don't seem to wanna be fixed. I hit all the right buttons--but I get nothin'. Oh well, I'll figure somethin' out later.

We have had a phenomonal weekend. Brian had been workin' at a place where he had to drive an hour both ways to work each day, and we all hated it. Not only was he unable to be with us for two hours each day--the gas prices were kickin' our financial back sides.

So, we started prayin'. Did he stay there--or did he look for another job?

Well, God answered our prayer by havin' him laid off--turns out the company hired TOO MANY people for the new location, and over extended themselves. So they had to let some folks go, and since Brian was the last one hired, he was one of the first to go.

Okay...we now knew that he was suppoed to look for another job. {{Duh}}

He hadn't been off for too long, when he got a call to come in and interview for a job MUCH closer to home.

HE GOT IT!!!!!

Now he drives over less than half of the distance, it is a better shift, AND it will be easier for Obie and me to get the use of the truck if we need it.

TADA!

While he was off, we got several projects done that could only be completed with Brian there--we got to take part in several activities we would have missed had he been at work--it was just nice to have had an impromptu vacation. We had enough money put by to take care of our needs, and my pantry and freezer kept us well fed.

THANK YOU FATHER GOD, for answerin' our prayers and providin' for our needs.

THANK YOU JEFF YEAGER AND ANGELA COFFMAN! You helped me learn a lot of skills that got us through the short time Brian was out of work.

Okay--now on to some other blessin's that whacked us up side the head recently.

There was a HUGE sale to help raise money to send some church kids to camp. I found several things that we needed at a great price, and while I was schmoozin' with the folks who ran the sale, I learned that if there was anything left after 2 p.m.--it would be free to anyone who wanted it.

I quickly paid for my purchases and drove to my friend's thrift store. I asked if she wanted what I could get for her and she said sure. So at 2 o'clock, I arrived, and while there had been a TON of things sold and money raised, there was still a lot of things left over. I told the organizers that I would take anything and everything left over if they wanted ot get rid of it.

The ladies were thrilled, because they hadn't had a CLUE what to do with the leftover clothes, CDs, books, etc.

We took two truckloads, and a trailer full of goodies to my friend's store. She was grinnin' from ear to ear as we unloaded a lot of goodies that she will be able to make money for her family with. The church folks were happy that they didn't have to haul the stuff all the way to a bigger town for a donation or just have to dump the stuff.

*I* was happy, 'cause I LOVE to swap and deal with folks. And yes, I got a few things for free out of it. I got a used computer desk for my writin' space--some praise and worship CDs--a few more books that after I'm done readin' will go to the local library as donations--a set of bunk beds for a friend's grandkids--and my absolute favorite of all...a necklace from my friend's shop. It is a small electric guitar made out of resin. It has big angel wings and rhinestones on it. It's pink and black, on a silver chain. She said it was my 'finders fee'! I love it.

I wore it that night to go out to eat at a local road house, where one of our favorite singers was gonna be performin' that evenin'. I got a ton of complements on my new accessory. We didn't get to hear the concert, however, 'cause the singer got sick and had to cancel. Oh well, the food was EXCELLENT, and we had a good time anyway.


So, Brian started his new job, we had a wonderful weekend, and I got to do my wheelin' and dealin' that I love so much. All is well here at the Cowboy Cottage today, and I am feelin' blessed all over the place. Is my life perfect yet?

Nope. But I know Who's in charge, and He says in Jeremiah that He has only good planned for me.

Well, I got chores. Later ya'll.
© 2012 by Evelyn Edgett

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The New Format, Some Catch Up, A New Book Review

March 21, 2012

I have figured out that I don't like this new format that my blog is in. I moved to that new Google mess support thing, and now I see that my posts are all crammed together in one huge paragraph, my profile has disappeared, and my comments feature has been turned off. I want my OLD BLOGGER BACK!

{{sigh}}

If I can get back to my olf BLOGGER format, I will. until then, I will play with this new format and pray that I can get things back to normal.

Speakin' of prayer--this mornin' I was feelin' a little down--you know--kinda hinky from just little things that frustrate you in life. I went and worked the food bank for a while, checked the mail and did some grocery shoppin'. I had left the guys at home, just so I could have a bit if alone time.

As I was headed down the road home, I suddenly puled into the parkin' lot of a little thrift store outside town. I walked in, and two of the sweet Christian ladies who run it welcomed me as always.

I asked, "Ya'll DO believe in prayer, right?"

They wholeheartedly answered, "Yes MA'AM!"

I pointed to myself and said, "Hit me. Right now my faith is as low as my boobs without a bra."

They laughed, and we gathered together in a circle and had a prayer meetin' right there. They prayed for me, and I could just feel the Spirit of God with us.

Afterwards we talked a while about faith, and how we all need a 'booster shot now and then. It was great.

Okay--catchin' up. I told ya'll how I got sick for a while, and now I am over it. We are settlin' in well here in the 'cowboy cottage'.

I had my birthday a while back, and Brian bought me a brand new GE Juicer--I LOVE IT!
My friend Eleanor gave me a 50 pound bag of carrots, and I have finished it already. I have been really workin' towards a raw foods lifestyle--I won't ever give up meat entirely--I love it too much.

I have been feelin' like Queen Esther lately too. My friends Jana and Erin, stylists at a local hair house (that sounds odd...hair house...oohh--gotta come up with a better way to say beauty shop.), have been usin' me to test out some of their mad skills. Jana cut my hair and colored it, and Erin plopped me into a facial chair and waxed my eyebrows. WOW! I look pretty darn good these days. I think they are plannin' on a make over attack one day....that should be interestin'...

The book is comin' along--slow but steady. We have have made changes in how the format will read, and some of the gtoals have been revamped, but it is still basically as originally planned.

I wanted to let Ya'll know about a book I found recently--MAKING IT. RADICAL HOME EC FOR A POST-CONSUMER WORLD, by Kelly-Coyne & Erick Knutzen. It's from RODALE PRESS.

The book is about makin' a difference in your life by changin' things right where you are--startin' with what ya got. The authors have a 1/12 acre farm in Los Angeles. They also have a blog (www.homegrownevolution.com) that is very popular. They also wrote a book THE URBAN HOMESTEAD, which is considered "the contemporary Bible on the subject."

The book is divided into sections--different projects you can try, either as fast ones that take anywhere from a few monents to a day's efforts--all the way up to projects that take a few weeks or months to accomplish. You can begin with a simple oil lamp or be really adventurous and try making mead.

I recommend this book to anyone wantin' to try homesteadin' and self sufficiency on a small scale. The authors are walkin' what they're talkin', and the instructions are easy to understand and follow.

I give it "two trowels up"--check it out.

Now let's see if this post comes out like it should.....

Well, I got chores. Later Ya'll.
© 2012 by Evelyn Edgett

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Didja Miss Me?

March 29, 2912

Hey ya'll, I can't believe it has been so long since I last posted, but I have been really busy.

Not the "wow I can't believe how crazy my schedule is I have to jump through hoops and catch my own backside as it falls through how the heck am I ever gonna get caught up wih all this STUFF!?!?!?!?!?" kinda busy.

Naw--I'm actually used to THAT kind of busy. Sort of addicted to it, too, if I'm being honest.

Nope--the busy I have been experienceing has been simply the type where you mind your own business, take care of your own household, meet your family's needs and just get on with LIVING kind of busy.

THAT is not so usual for me.

What happened was I came down with an illness that laid me low for several weeks. Nothing really exreme, just a virus that made the rounds in our area, and I had my turn with it.

After the initial aches, pains, chills and fever, I was mostly just weak, and had to cut back everything I had been doin'.

I had to REST. I had a real chance to "be still and know that He is God."

I had time to THINK.

To ruminate upon a lot of things in my life.

I am well now, and things are NOT back to normal.

They are better.

First, I realized that I needed to declutter a few more things in my life, and as a result, I dumped FACEBOOK. I mean, I am completely OFF their website. It took some doin', but I got myself erased.

Don't get me wrong, I think that FB has a place in the world--it is a great way to keep up with other folks and find old friends and family.

It is also a place where folks just go NUTS, arguin' over stuff that doesn't mean a hill of beans. I enjoyed many of the things that I found there, but I finaly decided that for myself, I needed to just go away for a while, and not be distracted by all the things that other folks were doin'. I made arrangements to keep in touch with many of my friends via other venues.

I have thought long and hard about keepin' this blog runnin', also. It began as a way to sharpen my writin' skills, and to see if I had any talent that others might be interested in. Many of the folks who read my blog have said that yes, I have some talent, and they didn't want me to delete the blog, just leave it up if I don't do anything else, 'cause they are still referin' other folks to it.

Well, after a lot of internal debate, prayer, and just waitin' to see how I felt after a time--

I have decided to keep the blog goin'.

Please, hold down the applause.

The fact is, I just enjoy bloggin', and I am amazed that anyone wants to read my stuff!

So, I will keep doin' my thing on here, as long as I feel that it is fun and productive.

I will be changin' part of the focus, however, since I no longer live in such an isolated area, and my home right now is on a plot of land that doesn't belong to me--I can't really say that I am bein' a 'traditional' homesteader. Instead, I feel that I have moved into the realms of what is known as "urban homesteadin'", or "hobby farmin'".

Oh, I'll still be workin' on simple livin', producin' much of our food and other needs, and of course, THRIFTOLOGY is still a large part of my life. I will just be doin' it on a smaller scale in a different venue.

Some of my projects will include startin' a produce co-op with some of my friends, doin' a little flea marketin' on weekends, blendin' and sellin' essential oils, and of course--I'm WORKIN' ON THE BOOK.

And as soon as I can, I am plantin' some tomatoes in a container--'cause let's face it--I GOTTA GROW SOMETHIN'!

I will also be reviewin' several books that are aimed at urban homesteadin'.

Okay--I think that will be enough for now--I will post some catch up stuff later, so you can get an idea of what I've been up to since last we met.

Well, I got chores. Later Ya'll.
© 2012 by Evelyn Edgett