Friday, December 5, 2014

Turkey Bones! ..Make Your Own Turkey Broth

All those leftover bones!  Did you know it's really easy to make broth?




Bones 

There is no wrong amount.  The more bones the more water.  You can't go wrong here.  If you just need a little, you can divide the bones up, freeze and make broth whenever you need it.  The bones in this picture were previously frozen (and still are).




Pot & Water

The more bones, the bigger the pot.


Throw In

The stuff that makes broth taste good.  You'll want onion, celery (I use the leaves I saved from when I cut up my veggie tray), cloves of garlic, salt & pepper.  Just need to be in chuncks, you'll strain them out later.



Simmer

Simmer for a bit.  Needs to cook to get that great flavor.  If you're in a hurry you can keep it down to an hour.  If not, keep it lower and give it a couple of hours.



Strain

You'll want to pour it through a strainer.  If you have meat left on your bones, let the bones cool and then pick off all the meat.  You can use that for casserole or soup, Yum!

Beautiful Broth


You can use it now.  Or you can divide it up and freeze it.   I usually don't need to divide it up (benefit of a huge family).  I save leftover ice cream containers and freeze it by the gallon.




Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Thanksgiving In A Box

Do you have loved ones who you'll be missing on Thanksgiving!

My daughters is over 2,000 miles away at college. #dontsendyourkidstocollege.  Too far to come home for a long weekend.  I am sure Thanksgiving will be hard (for all of us).  So we decided the least we could do was send her Thanksgiving In A Box!


Included:

1 can of Gluten Free Turkey
1 Yam 
1 Can of Pumpkin (for Pumpkin Pie in a Cup)
1 box of Craisins 
1 bag of Gluten Free Cookies
3 small wooden block pumpkins (handmade by little siblings)
1 small burlap garland
1 Card
1 Box full of Love and Prayers


Here's Tennyson painting her wooden block (scavenged from a huge bucket of blocks upstairs)



























TiAnna has allergies.  I had previously sent her the Pumpkin Pie in a Cup Recipe check out the link here to my previous post
http://countryfords.blogspot.com/2014/11/pumpkin-pie-in-cup.html



 and

 the Pumpkin Spice for it check out the recipe here
http://countryfords.blogspot.com/2014/11/homemade-pumpkin-pie-spice.html





Pumpkin Pie in a Cup

What could be better than Pumpkin Pie in 2 minutes?  Since my daughter is gone to college and has some major food allergies and needs to make most of her meals in her dorm, in a microwave!





Pumpkin Pie in a Cup 

(Gluten Free, Corn Free & Dair Free BONUS!)

1/2 Cup Pumpkin
1 Egg
2 TBSP Sugar
1 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice 

homemade see my previous post http://countryfords.blogspot.com/2014/11/homemade-pumpkin-pie-spice.html




Step 1:

Beat the egg by itself 

Step 2:

Add the spice & the sugar.  Give it a good stir.

Step 3:

Add the pumpkin.  Give it another good stir.


Step 4:

Microwave 2 minutes.  Microwaves vary.  Give or take 15 seconds.

ENJOY!  


This truly tastes like a good homemade pie.  Minus the crust (which I don't need anyway and makes it gluten free).   So the next time you're craving pumpkin pie try this!




Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice

I Love Love Love Pumpkin Pie Spice!  Weather you use it in pie, lattes, pie in a cup.  It's amazing!  So much easier to make when you already have your spice ready.


Start with a cute little jar.  I save the plastic lids off peanut butter and stuff and they fit on most jars.

Pumpkin Pie Spice 

3 TBSP Ground Cinnamon
2 tsp Ground Ginger
2 tsp Groun Nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp Ground Cloves

(most recipes call for 1 1/2 tsp Ground Allspice, but I am not fond of it so I left it out)



I put all of the spices in the jar.  Put the lid on and shook it.

Tadah!!!!


You know have Pumpkin Pie Spice ready to add to all your favorite fall recipes.







Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Easy Appliance Cabinet

I love those new kitchens with their special skinny cabinets just to hold all those small appliances.  But I don't live in one of those kitchens.  I am definitely blessed to live in a beautiful house all be it a "cookie cutter".   So I recently set my mind to making it my own.  Organizing and adding the character I've always wanted.

First Stop - Easy Appliance Cabinet




This spot was originally a small eating nook.  Housing two stools and very rarely used.  No one ever wanted to eat here.  I mean who would?  While everyone else is gathered around a huge table, two little guys would be facing the wall.  Not fun!

I don't know why it takes me so long to decide it's okay in my own home to alter things.  I finally made the decision to get those stools out of there and put this corner to good use.

I do a lot of cooking and I have a lot of kitchen gadgets.  My cupboards are all bursting at the seems (another blessing).  I decided if all the blenders, crockpots, mixers, and bread machines were in one spot, they' ld be easier to get to.  Thus, more ORGANIZED!  Love it!
So, for my birthday I asked my husband for labor only.  Smart right?

In just one afternoon, he built some shelves. 
  I checked the height of the appliances before he placed them.  Wanted to make sure they all fit.


I used a tension rod and placed it just under the edge of the counter.   I sewed a curtain out of a cute checkered tablecloth that doesn't fit my table.  And there you have it.

I am now the owner of a fabulous kitchen with one of those special skinny cabinets just for appliances.

It also makes a great hiding spot for the kids.


Saturday, September 27, 2014

Throwing a Graduation Party!

I really think throwing a party is fun.  I just wish it wasn't so much darn work! As this is our 4th child to graduate, this is our 4th grad party.  You would think that would make it easier, but it doesn't. Everything still takes time.  Time I don't have much of.

Plus Pinterest has changed everything!  Life use to be make a cake, cook some burgers.  But oh no! Not since Pinterest came in the picture.  It's worse than keeping up with the Jone's.  There are so many things to do on Pinterest and I personally try to do them all.  (Don't try this at home)

So how do I do it?  Planning, lots and lots of planning.  I have learned to get organized and whip out the things that can be done early.  Then the day of, it's just about the food and set up.

There are lots of party planning forms you can print for free.  Just search for them on pinterest.  I pinned a few http://www.pinterest.com/fordclan11/parties/ if you want to check them out.

Memory Wall 

Pick a theme/color you can build from.  This party is for an 18 year old girl.  She is a golfer, likes chevron and looks amazing in green.  Plus the college she is going to has green for their colors.  I wanted to display memories so I started with a Memory Wall.  I took two old pieces of metal and we painted green and white chevron on it.  Leaned it against the wall and covered it with photos and memories from her childhood.  I used magnets and clips to keep everything on. 


Centerpieces  

We had a lot of fun with centerpieces.  I started pulling out momentos from her childhood.  We painted some little squares the same chevron.  Each square had something special: a trophy, her little teapot, a gold shoe from the pageants.  Then a picture of her.  



Photobooths

This was so much fun.  I used some old corrugated metal and created two backdrops.  One a giant American Flag, the other a golf scene of course.  

Props w/ the Flag: Red, White & Blue Beads, 
An Uncle Sam Beard (made from moss), hats, mustaches, etc 


Props w/ Golf Scene: Ugly sweaters, visors, golf clubs, mustaches, bow ties, Golf sign (you can't see because we didn't have good photographers)

Helpful Hints:

Get someone good at taking pics.  I don't need a pro but I wish I had designated someone to take photos.  Really the only thing lacking from this party.

Gluten Free Menu

This party was a total Gluten Free Party.  The grad is gluten free and I wanted her to be able to eat everything.  I'll list the menu here, but will be making a separate post for the recipes.  Make some cute labels and place in front of the dishes so people know what they are eating.

Grilled Chicken
Broccoli Salad
Brown Rice Salad
3 Bean Salad
Potato Salad
Ranch Beans
Veggie Tray w/ Hummus
Watermelon
Layered Cake
Best Banana Muffins
Fudge
Lemon Aide
Sweet Tea
Ice Tea
Coffee
Apple Nachos





Hope you enjoyed my post and this helps you plan your next party.





Thursday, September 25, 2014

Mirror Spray Painted Bottles

I have been wanting to try that wonderful mirror spray paint for some time.  It looks beautiful but I was a little worried.  I am not the best spray painter.  Usually my husband will take over the job and I just blink my eyes and say, "Honey, can you help me with this one too".  However, this time I did it myself.






First I started with a whole pile of old bottle. (I have a few projects going).  I don't even drink.  I collected these from a local restaurant.  The bottles I mirrored are from syrups, jams and iced coffee!



Step 1: Clean Clean  Clean

I soaked these bottles to loosen the labels.  After I could peel most of the label off I mixed up a recipe I found on pinterest. 

Goo Gone Recipe

1 part vegetable oil with 
2 parts baking soda. 

 Just mix it in a little dish.  This gives us an oily substance with a little abrasiveness for scrubbing power.  

Rub it all over the jar.

Let it sit for 5 minutes.

Wash it off.

Next I washed them in hot soapy water and let them dry.

Step 2:  Paint

Take your nice clean dry jars outside.  I seriously hate the smell of spray paint so I only use it outside.  For this project I used Krylon Looking Glass.  
I sprayed the bottoms first. It took at least 3 coats to get good coverage.  When the bottoms were dry, I stood them up and painted the rest of the bottle.  


They turned out great.  

Things I Learned


1. This paint surprised me at first.  It comes out a bit more powerful than most paint.  Hard to keep it from running.  I would advise practicing on something you don't have your heart set on.

2.  Looking Glass paint is suppose to be sprayed from the back side to turn out like a mirror.  On a skinny bottle this is not possible.  It still is reflective just not as much as if you had sprayed from the inside.