Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Zucchini Overload

Do you have an overload of zucchini right now?  I have to say, I don't.  For whatever reason, my plants just didn't produce anything this year.  Of course, I really love baked goods with zucchini in them, so I picked up some at a local farm for $.25 each this week, to be sure that I have plenty for the winter.  
I shred all of my zucchini, yellow and green with my Kitchen Aid and my shredder attachment into my big bowl.   I especially like to shred up those huge, overgrown zucchini's!  Those big seeds get mixed right in.  If the seeds are too big, I'll just take them out and use the flesh only. Then I measure out the shredded zucchini into freezer bags two cups at a time. 
I like make all my freezer bags flat for my freezer, so I can stack them neatly and in less room.   I've found that most of my favorite recipes use two cups of shredded zucchini, so I'm ready to go all winter long for our muffins, breads and cakes.
I'll share one of my favorite recipes: Green Muffins!


Green Muffins                

  • 3 Cups flour
  • 1 TBS baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and spray muffin tins with Pam
  2. In a mixer, beat eggs  for 1 minute.  Beat in milk, oil, and sugar.  Stir in zucchini until well blended. 
  3. Add dry ingredients a little at a time. Mix will be a little lumpy.  Spoon batter into muffin tins.  Sprinkle with sugar.
  4. Bake 20 minutes, or until muffin tops are golden brown and spring back when you touch them.  Cool muffins on a rack.
I will work on sharing my Chocolate Zucchini Cake recipe here too, so stay tuned.  

Monday, September 21, 2015

Dream Journal

It's so easy to feel disappointed when a dream you have doesn't happen.  Whether you are working your own business, trying to lose weight, or really anything in life that you are trying to do!  I found this quote this morning, and thought it fit into what I've been working on myself: a Dream Journal.
This last week, I've started a Dream Journal.  I'm trying to be more positive and focused on achieving my dreams.  I've just opened a Word Document on my computer, where I spend most of my time while I'm working, and titled it Dreams and Goals.  Then I put bullets into a list form, and started to add. 

Some dreams are very specific, like "Earn $_____ a month."  Others are more vague, but I know I would love to do them, like "Give sports teams food when I want to."  This one came from sitting all day at my daughter's tournament and I enjoyed giving the girls granola bars between matches.  I would just love to be able to do that whenever I felt the urge, with money not being an issue. 

I revisit my list each day, and really think positively that I can achieve these Dreams and Goals.  Do you have dreams and goals that seem like they may never happen?  Well, what's stopping you?  If you had a focused list, I know that it will happen - someday!  I would love to help you make your financial dreams come true - We can dream more and achieve more together!  Join Me!  Want to join me on my weight loss goals?  I've recently lost 35 pounds and would love to coach you to that too - Weight Loss.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Tuesday Posts: Asking questions

So if you remember, I shared a posting schedule here that I found, and on Tuesdays it recommends to "Ask a question, share a photo contest or quiz, or post a fill-in-a-blank sentence."  I started trying to come up with a question to post in my groups and couldn't make up my mind! 

Then I had a brilliant idea: look it up on the internet!  So cliché, isn't it?  I used to type in "Ask fun questions."  Low and behold, hundreds of lists of fun questions to ask came up!  Try it!  It works! Take your pick, and you now have a list of interesting and fun questions to ask to captivate your audience on your Facebook groups and Business pages!

Here are some of the ideas I came up with to try out on your blog or Facebook page to gain interaction from your audience:
  • What is the last text you wrote in your phone?
  • What is the last picture you took on your phone?
  • What have you always wanted? Did you get it?
  • What is your greatest strength or weakness?
  • What are your nicknames?
  • What do you do if you can't sleep at night?
  • Do you save old greeting cards and letters?
  • What is your guilty pleasure that would be impossible to give up?
  • Are you likely to avoid conflict or meet it head on?
  • Do you read the newspaper? And how often?
  • If you had to give up one of your senses, which would it be?
  • Do you prefer people to shoot straight with words, or tread lightly?
  • What position do you sleep in?
  • How difficult is it for you to forgive someone who refuses to apologize?
  • What is the best news you've ever received?
  • What is your favorite way to unwind at the end of the day?
  • How did you keep in touch with people before Facebook?
  • What makes you feel inspired?
  • Which TV family is most like your own?
  • If you had 3 wishes, what would they be?
  • What is your favorite board game of all time?
What are some great questions that have worked for you?

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Free Breakfast

I love nothing better than being able to use leftovers in a new way or even make breakfast from the fruit of our labors.  In this case, I provided a Taco Soup and Corn muffins for the Youth Group at church this week, so had way too many corn muffins left over to eat.  My family doesn't eat "old" breads, since I bake fresh so much, so I knew these corn muffins would go to waste if I couldn't figure out how to use them. 

My grandmother used to make bread pudding when she had leftover or old bread.  I've even found a recipe for making bread pudding from leftover donuts that tastes pretty close to my grandmother's bread pudding.  I was thinking about what I could do with my corn muffins and decided to make it into a bread pudding for breakfast!  The best part was, that not only did I have leftover muffins, but a neighbor gave us free milk from her cow, I used huckleberries we picked in the forest, and I was able to use eggs from our own hens!  That means, we had breakfast for FREE!  I love that!

So here's the recipe:
Huckleberry Corn Bread Pudding

8 cups corn bread/muffins - cubed
1 cup huckleberries (can substitute blueberries) - fresh or frozen
4 cups milk - I used  fresh cows milk, but I've also used skim milk.  Using a half and half will make this creamer
5 eggs
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 cup brown sugar - topping
Preheat oven to  300 degrees. Butter or spray 9x13 casserole pan.  Place cubed corn bread in pan.  Sprinkle huckleberries over it.  Whisk the rest of the ingredients together and spread over the bread and fruit.  Sprinkle 1/8 cup brown sugar over the top for  topping. Let stand 10-15 minutes, so the milk soaks into the bread. 
Bake for 60-75 minutes at 300 degrees.  Serve as is, or top with whipped cream or ice cream!
Enjoy! My Recipe Magic 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Posting Schedule

I got this posting schedule in a networking group I'm in on Facebook.  I always try to credit my sources, but in this case, it's all over and I can't find the person that created it.  I apologize to whomever made this great schedule, but I want to share it with you. If you have a Facebook group, business, or a blog, I think it's a really great idea to have a schedule or plan for what you post.
Along with this post, the first place I saw it, the lady that shared it stated that when you post on Facebook, it should be only 10% promoting your business and the rest personal interactions and developing a relationship.  That really resonated with me, because although I know that many businesses and direct sales people use Facebook and blogs to promote their businesses.   There's nothing worse than only hearing promotion after promotion!  (And I'll be honest - I'm very guilty of this myself.)
I've been trying to use it as a guide on my private Facebook VIP group for my business (You can join here) and even on my business page here.  It has also made me think about trying to nurture this blog a little more too.  I know there are many really successful blogs that have a very active schedule, but I find myself falling very short!
Some of this schedule is still hard for me to do. I don't feel like I have too much imagination or even originality.  I'd love to hear where people come up with ideas to do each of these things on the schedule!  I can tell you this, it would be great to actually get ahead of the schedule and not be doing today's post!  I have lofty plans, at least!
Here's my interaction for Tuesday:  What do you think about having a schedule for your website?  Do you keep to it?  For my part, if I attempt even five days of this a week, I'm reaching my intended audiences far more than I'm currently reaching.  I'd love to hear what you think!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Making Room in the Freezer

As the fall harvest begins, I was finding several different bags of fruit in the freezer from last year that we hadn't used yet.  On top of that, we had an obnoxious amount of rhubarb this spring already!  What started to be a batch of Huckleberry jam, turned into an afternoon of making jam and sauces! 
The jams I used from last year's berries were huckleberry, raspberry, strawberry rhubarb and cherry. My favorite recipe book is The Ball Complete Book of Canning, which if you don't have, you should get!  It has every recipe that you could possibly use and more. Only one recipe have we not likde and that was the Cherry Jam, where the optional ingredients we didn't like.  We leave them out and we love it!
 I still had over 30 bags of rhubarb in my freezer (what can I say we love rhubarb coffee cake all winter long, but this was a little much!) so was checking out the recipes in my canning book.  I've made Strawberry Rhubarb Pie filling and Rhubarb sauce, which my family didn't care for the texture.  Then I found a recipe for Victorian BBQ, which used rhubarb and raisons in it.  I thought, why not?  The jars in the far right row of the picture are the BBQ sauce.  I slow cooked a roast with the Victorian BBQ over it and it was a hit with the whole family!
This took me about three hours in one afternoon, and I now have about 35 jars of jam, 7 jars of Victorian BBQ sauce, and more room in the freezer for the incoming harvest!
If you're wondering how I have so much energy after canning everything in the freezer, raising 5 kids and homeschooling, you should check out my favorite Energy Drink!