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Showing posts from May, 2011

Holiday Weekend...

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For being a holiday weekend, this weekend went by quickly! I would wish for a holiday week, but I know better than that!

We treated this weekend like a holiday since it was also the last day of school on Thursday. The kids went to bed late, slept in, had friends over, had sleepovers, went to graduations, and generally they just relaxed except for getting chores done. Now we get to face the busyness of June - softball, little league ball, drivers education, and swim lessons!

What did I do this weekend? I am starting to wonder! I did get my kitchen cleaned up and floor scrubbed. I realized my dandelion wine was a complete failure - the color was green instead of gold. I was pretty careful about the green stuff not being in the mix so I am not sure what happened. Dumped that down the drain! Maybe I will try Honey Mead instead.

I made strawberry jam for the freezer. Yum! I just used the recipe from the Sure Jell company. It seems to work everytime. I also want to make the strawberry-rhubarb…

Great Article!

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Laurie at Living Well Moms has posted a great article about the FDA controlling the food we eat:



Check it out! Thanks!

Last Day of School!

Today is the last day of school for the kids!

Congratulations to Jordan on her 8th grade promotion!!! She will be a high schooler next year!

I usually look forward to this time with a lot of relief because I am so ready for the craziness to be over. We will still have some craziness with high school softball for the older two girls and little league ball for the younger two kids. I really look forward to July when most of the ball season will be over with!

Time for a family meeting - we need to hash out the summer chore chart and daily schedule. I still work full-time and we don't have a lot of time at night for getting chores done. I believe kids should do chores around the house and yard. This teaches them responsibility and how to manage the house. I think we need to change up the chore chart because the kids are getting resistant to doing the chores assigned. We also need to add in mowing for the older two girls and getting clothes hung up on the line this summer. I want to use…

Rhubarb Jam

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I got my first batch of Rhubarb Jam made this year! Woo hoo! Looks good too! I wish I would have taken more pictures, but here is the recipe and pictures:

Rhubarb Jam

5 cups rhubarb, chopped finely
4 cups sugar
2 boxes of Jell-o, any flavor (I recommend anything red colored)

Mix chopped rhubarb and sugar together in a bowl. I use the pot I am going to cook the jam in so I don't dirty more dishes. Let the rhubarb and sugar sit for an hour.

Add the two boxes of Jell-o and mix well. Bring to a boil on the stove and let boil for a half-hour. Watch carefully and stir often!


Fill sterilized jars with hot jam mixture. Clean top of jars, add lids, and screw on rings. At this point you can do one of two things: (1) turn the jars over on their tops and let the heat seal the jars or (2) process in water canner for 10 minutes. This recipe will make 2 pints or 4 - 1/2 pints.


Sorry about the fuzzy photo, but you get the idea. Also in the back on the photo is my experiment into making my own vanilla ex…

Monday, Monday

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Hello again! It's Monday! The weekend was good, but nothing got done. I guess I would have to be home to get anything done...

No jam got made, but I think I will at least get one batch done tonight before and after the concert since the rhubarb has to sit in the sugar and jello for at least an hour before it starts cooking.

I am also going to get started on making the dandelion wine tonight. We need to pick a gallon of dandelion heads, pour boiling water on top of them, and let them steep for three days. Hopefully the yeast will be here by then!

I did get two bags of rhubarb chopped and put into the freezer. I am putting 2.5 cups in each bag to make it easier for the recipes I use. Dane would like a rhubarb pie so maybe we will get that made in the next few days. Got to satisfy the growing boy's appetite!

We also got the rest of the garden in the actual garden plot except green beans. I ran out before I could finish the row. We need to get additional containers for the tomatoes a…

Canning Goals...

Aren't goals great? I usually shy away from them. I hate to fail myself by setting goals that I might not attain. However, with this goal, I don't have a choice. We are going to can/dehydrate/freeze whatever we can from the garden this year. I don't want to be on food assistance anymore. I hate being on anything from the government. At the time I applied, I was desperate and needed to feed my kids. Now that I am a little more wiser about my food choices and the burden I am on others by being on food assistance, this needs to end.

My first goal is 100 jars of canned goods. Since my garden is just getting going, the progress is slow for this goal. I do have seven quarts of chicken stock done which is great considering how much we love homemade chicken noodle soup and chicken and noodles. Also, this is great since I conquered my fear of the pressure canner...

I also have two pints of Strawberry-Banana Jam in the freezer. I took this recipe from the Ball Blue Book Guide to Pres…

Welcome to Living Life in Rural Iowa!

Hello to everyone! Thank you for stopping by to visit!

A little about this blog and me: I am a mom to four kids whom you will hear about more in later posts. We are a busy bunch living in the great state of Iowa. We keep busy with sports, choir, and running back and forth to school! I work full-time in an office as a bookkeeper. I will be sharing some of their achievements as well as our daily life.

Mostly I will be posting articles on:
     book reviews
     recipes and cooking
     canning and preserving
     food storage
     preparedness
     gardening
     home projects
     parenting, mainly single parenting
     rural living
     politics and more....

I do not profess to be an expert on anything, but am constantly learning. I am also a tad opinionated and will step on people's toes from time to time. I made mistakes, but I try to learn from them.

I hope to hear from all of you! Thanks for reading!