Monday, December 30, 2013

What I have been up to. . .

I realized that tomorrow is the last day of 2013. I am taking a deep breath and crossing my fingers that 2014 will be much better. I know that my life wont be filled with the drama and deceit of the last year because I have cut evil people completely from my life - never to return! I have spent this year at every turn feeling the loss of my husband. People say that it gets better with time. I guess because after that first year I wont be able to say - this is my first Easter without him, or our first Anniversary apart. But I still have the occasional wound because with the beautiful 6 year old he left me with there are still many milestones that he will miss. We still talk about him a lot and she is still very clingy to me, but this year I am determined that we will focus on this actually pretty awesome life that we have built since he has passed. I have to say, though, before I move on that he would have loved it here. It is everything we always talked about in a home of our own, and I do consider it his as well, because it was OUR dream to escape and live our lives on our terms minus the bitter jealousies and manipulation we had dealt with for so long.

On to our lives. . .

I have been pretty busy lately, canning and dehydrating. My family has canned vegetables from the garden as far back as I can remember, and I have always enjoyed it myself. I finally have a place to store all of these jellies and fruits, and even meats, so I have been canning up a storm. I have recently discovered dehydrating and am now madly in love with it. I always thought those dried up little pebbles would be gross and tasteless, but after some experimentation, I have discovered that it is hard to tell the difference once everything is cooked up. As I write this I am actually saving about $8 on minutes rice! I boiled up a cheapie 3 pound bag of regular rice, rinsed it really well and slapped it on the trays. Once it is done it will cook up just like minute rice - perfect every time! Better than a coupon!

After much soul-searching, I purchased a pressure canner. It took me a couple of months to actually try it, and the unopened boxed stared accusingly at me from on top of my upright freezer until I finally worked up the nerve to try it. My oldest daughter and I have been canning chicken and dry beans (partially cooked first) ever since we tasted the first batch!

Another thing I am enjoying is baking homemade bread! Of course, I do cheat by making the dough in the bread machine, but I shape it and bake it in the oven. The shape that we enjoy is braided the best because you can just rip a hunk off whenever you feel peckish!

I cant wait until spring! I didn't have much of a garden last summer. It took me a while to replace my stolen tiller. When I finally got it, I went with raised beds for a few veggies- we ended up with some corn, beans, and squash. 2 cucumbers, 4 watermelons, and 6 tiny little tomatoes. So sad. We haven't had a garden for the last 5 years, because of the constant harassment. Now that I am on my own land, I have been researching greenhouses to extend my growing season (maybe year round), and I have decided that I am definately going for it this year! I have always wanted a greenhouse and I want to try my hand at hydroponics as well - we'll see how it goes. . .

I expect next month to be pretty hectic. This will be Jordan's first cookie sale as a Daisy. I really can't wait, but I am dreading it a little too. I sure hope all my friends and relative know that I am hoping for dibs on all their cookie purchases this year!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

My Life Upgraded

I am a Grandma again! My daughter had her second child at 10:30 this morning by C-Section. Mom and baby are doing fine. In honor of this new life I have decided to move on with mine - no longer in fear of harm or retaliation.

This is my first post since my husband was hit by an 18 wheeler. It's been over a year. A lot has happened - he passed away in July of 2012. Although I have stayed very emotionally numb and busy, I haven't taken time to do a lot of the things that I enjoy. Crafting and blogging being two of those things.

I have recently taken up Project Life, which is a life saver. I have so much to catch up on. I bought the Jade Edition and a set of cards from HSN during their CRAZY sale, and now I'm hooked! I decided today that I would start blogging again to stay sane and to help me document my life so I can journal better in my layouts.

When my husband died, part of my healing process included following a dream of ours to buy this property and put a home on it. At first I hesitated because of survivor guilt, but then decided that it would be a tribute to him if I follow through with his vision of our home together. I have to say that in light of the terrible things that happened after his death- it is a good thing that we escaped that horrible place and my daughter and I are safe on the land that he wanted so badly to live on. I wish I could post details, but I am still trying to decide if I will prosecute or not...

Anyways; now that I live on 3 beautiful mountain acres I am also planning on building a greenhouse - A dream I have always had, and a chicken coup! I will be survivor woman - lol. I'm not one of those end of the world conspiracy people, but from past experience I know that we are trapped on this mountain for at least 2 weeks out of the year, so we really do need to stock up and prepare for storms and such.

So far I have planned for my gardens for next year by propogating seeds for blackberries, blueberries, and strawberries. They are wintering over in my refrigerator right now waiting for me to plant them in the spring. I already have an organic celery, 6 herb pots, and tomato, pepper and watermelon seedlings sprouting on my kitchen window sills. I got a late start this year on gardening because my tiller mysteriously disappeared and I couldn't replace it until a few weeks ago. I still have time to put the watermelon in raised beds, but I am desperately hoping to have my greenhouse up before cold weather hits this year and my seedlings will be ready to transplant.

I see that I still have a couple of followers. I will be posting more now that my daughter and I are starting to get into a routine. I am still working on the house - A repo doublewide that I got for a song, but I am finding a little more time since most of the urgent stuff has been done. I can putter around a do the rest of the decorating and fine tuning as things come up. I am looking forward to posting my progress and crafty things as I ease back into "Living" and getting to know myself again.