Duh!!!!!

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Today is a fun filled day with the boys hockey game and the tween has a football game to cheer at.  But after barn chores  I am off for a walk to try and make something I wear feel loose!!  Happy Sunday 🙂

Peaches

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This is our 2nd batch of peaches.  Sometimes it’s very busy trying to fit in the old traditions with today’s world and conveniences.  It’s just as easy to stop at a store and buy your peaches, but there is a feeling that goes along with knowing you had the only hand in making your own things.  That is something you CAN’T buy.

Last night at 9:30 p.m.  I hot processed and canned our last batch of peaches.  It was the night before our first day of school, we also had a duck brought to our home earlier in the evening as it was stranded as a baby and we will nuture it until it’s old enough to fly off.  There were barn chores, hockey practice, dinner to be cooked, and I worked until 4:00.  So it was a full packed evening but when we open that jar of peaches during the winter, it will make it ALL worth while!!

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First batch of peaches we canned

I will share my canning procedure in a different post soon!!

Dilly Bean and Dill Pickles

first batch

I hit up a local farmers market today on my lunch break and they had a perfect selection of beans and small (perfect pickle size) cucumbers on sale. I am still waiting to harvest ours so I bought some.  I spent less than $5.00 and made 5 pint and 1 quart size jar of dill beans and dill pickles.  I canned them and they will sit now for about 2 months before we will open them as the longer they sit the stronger they!! 

Dilly Beans are a fabulous treat.  The bean flavor combined with the dill and garlic makes for a wonderful eating sensation.  My kids will eat at least one jar a month sometimes more if I let them.  I also can some for them to sell in their stand they set up in our yard. We sell pint jars for $5 and people buy them right up!!  That covers the cost of the ingredients and the jars with a little left to add to the “kids” fund.

Here is my recipe and pictures are at the end:

Dill Beans and Dill Pickles

2 cups Cider Vinegar

6 cups water

1/4 cup pickling salt

2 Tablespoons minced garlic

put all in a pot and bring to a boil.

Wash and cut the ends off the beans. Discard the ends. Then trim the beans to fit into your jars (I have used all sized jars it doesn’t matter if you want them long or to fit into a 6 oz jar).  DO NOT THROW OUT YOUR TRIMMINGS!!  You can put them in a freezer bag for soups or you can steam them for a dinner!!!

(you have to follow canning methods same as any other item you can)  If you don’t know how to can, please google it.  It’s so easy!!

Using the hot jars, stuff them with the beans/cucumbers making sure to rotate the jar so they are standing upright and not shoved in.  Stuff in 3 nice size sprigs of dill in between the beans/cucumber.

Using the funnel, ladle the hot brine in to cover the beans/cucumbers completely leaving 1/2 inch headspace at the top of the jar.

Wipe the jar and place the hot lid on.  Place the ring around and tighten until just tight.  Process in a hot water bath (canning method) for 10 minutes.

The brine makes enough for about 5 pint size jars.  If you are worried about running out, make a double batch.  Whatever you don’t use, let it cool and store in a sealed container in the fridge until you are ready to can more.  You can reheat it or add it to the new batch you make.  I made a double batch as I will make another 5 jars of dilly beans when our beans are ready and I will make at least 8 more jars of pickles (sliced larger cucumber style) again when our cucumbers are ready. It’s stored in the fridge and I will add it to the next batch of brine I make when the time comes.

ingredientstrim to size scrapsbrine photo 4-2 tiltphoto 2-3 cukespickles beans

 

Storing Berries (Flash freezing & Refrigerator storage)

When any berries or fruits are in season it’s a scramble to get them at the best possible price for two reasons. First because they are wonderful to eat/snack/cook with after a long winter and second because you can freeze or can them so you have wonderful fresh natural fruit for the whole year!!

Our local grocery store had buy 2 pints of blueberries and get 3 free. That is 5 pints for the price of 2!!!! Of course I bought 10 as that will hold us through the year with pies and frozen berries for yogurt, oatmeal, pancakes, smoothies, and blueberry syrup for ice cream.

Here is what I do with our berries to keep them as fresh as possible in the refrigerator and how I store them for the winter in the freezer:

FLASH FREEZING: Wash the berries and remove all stems. Pat them dry with papertowels or a non lint dish cloth. Lay them on a cookie sheet and let them air dry so they are not wet. Once dry place in the freezer for 30 minutes. Remove them and store them in freezer bags. They will not stick together so you can grab as few or as may as you will need and will be perfectly sweet when you remove them to use.

TO KEEP IN THE REFRIGERATOR:: Place the berries in a large bowl with a teaspoon of white vinegar and cover with water (you do not have to remove stems unless you want to). Let sit for about 4 minutes. Rinse thoroughly and pat dry. Place them in an airtight container laying them flat on a papertowel. Use a papertowel in between each layer. Place top on. These should hold your berries in the fridge much longer than if you just place them in there in the containers they came in.

Last Day today (update)

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I am posting this update for two reasons.  First today is the last day of this fitness challenge that I have done since June 1st.  The second is it’s therapeutic for me with the situation facing us with our family dog tomorrow…UGH!!!  So on to the update:

These past few days have been a challenge for sure.  But I put on a pair of capris today that were tight in my waist and thighs and they fit comfortably.  I may not have lost much weight but the muscle is evident in the inches lost.  Starting I could only do sets of 5 of the leg lifts.  I can now do a set of 20 with the last 2 being a push to get through. I was able to do 10 push ups pretty easily in the beginning and I can comfortably get through 15 in a set now.  Squats get my heart rate going and I feel them in the soreness of my thighs and hamstrings but it’s a good soreness!!

So for July I am going to do this challenge working backwards as I am adding a Plank challenge for beginners for July. I figure when the planks get harder the Buns, Guns and Abs will get easier working it backwards!!

Here is the plank challenge for any who would like to try it:  If you decide to do either one, keep me posted!!!!

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The 30 Day Plank Challenge will send your core strength through the roof! Yes, all you have to do is HOLD this position, nothing else! It looks pretty easy, but it isn’t!

Day 1 – 20 seconds
Day 2 – 20 seconds
Day 3 – 30 seconds
Day 4 – 30 seconds
Day 5 – 40 seconds
Day 6 – REST
Day 7 – 45 seconds
Day 8 – 45 seconds
Day 9 – 60 seconds
Day 10 – 60 seconds
Day 11 – 60 seconds
Day 12 – 90 seconds
Day 13 – REST
Day 14 – 90 seconds
Day 15 – 90 seconds
Day 16 – 120 seconds
Day 17 – 120 seconds
Day 18 – 150 seconds
Day 19 – REST
Day 20 – 150 seconds
Day 21 – 150 seconds
Day 22 – 180 seconds
Day 23 – 180 seconds
Day 24 – 210 seconds
Day 25 – 210 seconds
Day 26 – REST
Day 27 – 240 seconds
Day 28 – 240 seconds
Day 29 – 270 seconds
Day 30 – PLANK FOR AS LONG AS POSSIBLE!!

**SHARE to your Timeline to SAVE for later**

Benefits of Plank Exercise:

*It strengthens your lower back
*It develops your core muscles – which include the abs, back, hips and the butt.
*Helps you to avoid injuries and encourage good posture
*Can be done anywhere
*Develops your abdominals by targeting the rectus abdominis

SUPPORT each other in Fitness!!

This is a beginner routine.. everyone starts somewhere!

 

Fitness Challenge Update

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Today is the half way point (day 15) of my fitness challenge from my earlier post.  I thought I would update you so anyone thinking of trying it can print it out and get started!!

I have to tell you I am by no means a thin person and could lose 50 lbs I am sure.  But I am VERY active.  These little challenges are a GREAT way to get yourself motivated as they start slow and you can break them down to fit into your busy life.  I did my leg lifts at 11:45 last night as I ran out of time during the day but I got them done!!

SQUATS: These do get your heart rate pumping working those large quadricep muscles in the front of your thighs.  The hamstrings in the back of your leg push you back up.  These have felt good to do but I could probably have done more to start as I am now starting to feel the sore muscles moving up to 55 squats.  It’s a good sore though and I can feel the difference in my strength with these.  I do reps of 15 each and then then a set of 10 and will keep it to 15 reps only so I can continue to do them correctly for all the benefit!!

PUSHUPS:  I am pretty strong in upper body so pushups have not been too much of a bother just yet.  I made it through 13 today with the last one being more of a push to get done.  I will break these into groups of 10 as I go along.

LEG LIFTS:  Good Lord why must your torture me???  These are my arch nemesis!!  But I will tell you the first week I could barely get through 5 so did reps of 5.  I am now up to reps of 15!!!! YAYY ME!!  This is when you see the benefit of what you are doing!!  And it’s the best motivation to keep pushing myself.

I hope some of you will give this a try.  It makes it easier starting slow and being able to do it at your own pace and whatever time you have!!

I also bought a fit bit which is a great motivational tool when in the community with your friends competing everyday to get more “steps, stairs, and active minutes” than them.  Bought the man one to give him for Father’s day today!!

 

 

Fit Bit — Water

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Ok, I admit it…I love water in pools, surrounding the Island we live on, in ponds, lakes, streams and everywhere in between.  But when it comes to drinking it….UGH…I have to force it down.  I don’t know why.  I’ve always felt that way.  I would rather drink a glass of milk than water.  Knowing the body is made up of over 70% water, I am well aware of the importance it has in my daily life.  So I thought I would share a few ways I trick myself into drinking at least 6 to 8, 8 ounce glasses a day.

Lemon Peel — it’s no secret I love lemons and they are a happy thing to me.  So I will save lemon rinds after my daughter has juiced them or from a recipe and I cut them small and slip them into a water bottle or my cup.  Seeing that bit of yellow makes me happy and it adds just enough lemon flavor to the water.  Limes and Oranges work well too but I love the Lemon!!

Small bottles or glasses — seeing a smaller bottle tricks my mind into thinking this is just a little bit so drink till it’s gone which I will.  Then I will refill it and wait a bit and do it again.  Breaking it into small batches you drink all day helps with the digestion process and less running to the bathroom which happens after you chug an 8 oz glass.

Splash of cranberry or grape juice — let’s face it color is more interesting than clear.  So I splash a tiny bit to give the water a hue of color which makes it more appealing to drink in my mind.

Decorative water/sports container — if I am running around and need to drink I will fill a pretty container and keep it with me in the car.  It is easier to drink while driving or at a light from a bottle that has a controlled top or tip on it.  Again, I pick a pattern/colors that appeal to me so I like looking at it and it invites me to drink it (yes, I have to do this stuff!!)

Water is so important to your body.  When I don’t drink enough I can feel the affects immediately with dry hands, dry lips, fatigue, hunger (which is truly thirst), and even a cloudy mind.

I hope some of the tricks help you in reaching your daily ration of water!!!