Thursday, January 31, 2013


I have been pinning some stuff on blogging so I wanted to share some of those thoughts and ideas with you this week.

This link talks about cautions for blogging as a business.

Business or Fun

This one tells us about cleaning up our blogs.

Blog Clean Up

What kind of blog do you want to have? Find something you are good at and share what you know, its that easy. But you also have to think about how many people will really be viewing your blog depending on their interests.

My blog started out with a plan to reach women and help them to stay in tune with the spirit to get through every day life. I wanted to them to share their stories of how they get through daily life and help one another but it was slow going. Now things have picked up because I have added a few more thoughts to my blog.

Sundays are about spiritual things, Tuesdays are about food storage and emergency preparedness, then Thursdays are for anything I want to do, like this one for blogging. I have been thinking about adding family history stuff because that is a real big passion for me. I love to help people do their family history.

Anyway, I hope this will be helpful if you are thinking about it or just getting started. Here are some more links for blogging. Have fun, getting started

Blogging for cash

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

How to Can Chicken Soup

 I found a real easy way to make chicken soup and how to can it so you can save it for your food storage. I did purchase my cans of chicken noodle soup and paid $18 for a case (24 cans at $.75 each). But I really want to try this process as well. I think it will be fun and challenging plus a great feeling of success because I made something from scratch that I know what is in it. It will be a whole lot healthier.

The link below says that you make it without noodles then the noodles can be added when you want to serve this to your family. I hope you have fun with it. I think it will save you more money in the long run. Isn't that what its all about; saving money, eating healthier, and storing food for hard times?

Canned Chicken Soup

Sunday, January 27, 2013

I love Lemonade

This is my favorite saying. When I first saw this saying I knew it was meant for me. There have been times in my life that I would be so frantic over my situations and trials that I thought I would fall apart. But this saying has helped me to become more rational and calmer when I have to deal with life's challenges.

I remember once when I was so overwhelmed with just trying to survive and care for the needs of my children. My finances were so tight and my ex-husband had lost his job so he couldn't send any money. I was so afraid of what was going to happen to us. We lived all the way across the country from our family so we had to do things on our own most of the time.

I was so tired one day after working from 3AM - 6AM throwing newspapers then going into town 30 miles away to pick up part of the newspapers for the Sundays papers and deliver them to all the carriers from 7AM to 2PM. I was so exhausted and near tears, then I found out that there would be no child support for awhile, I was ready to crack.

I got in the shower and broke down so my children wouldn't see me fall apart. I cried for awhile and then I heard someone say "Why are you crying, you know it always works out?" Then I stopped crying and realized that it was true. It is how I handle my trials that make all the difference. It was time to make some lemonade. If I kept crying then I would not be showing my faith in Jesus Christ's promise to always be with me.

I knew it would all be ok, and it was. Its hard going through the trials but if we can just take a moment to stand back and see the whole picture then it gets easier to work through. At least that was my experience. I trusted in my Savior to help me and He always did, and still does. I love him so much and I am grateful for his constant companionship.

It is just up to me to dance in the rain and know it will all be ok in the end, just keeping enduring it every day. We are never alone.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Easy to sew gift ideas

I have been pinning some really cute and easy to do crafts. I would like to share some of those with you. I haven't done them yet but I plan to when I get a few minutes to try them.

The first thing is called a Snappy Bag, it can be made for just about anything you want to carry in it. Rather than give you the instructions I am going to refer you to the Crafting Chicks web page. They have a pretty cool web page.

Quilting has always been a challenge I have wanted to complete. Here is one that looks so easy to do and would make great gifts.

I really have come to love Pinterest because I can pin something and come back later to look at and try out. I'll do a post sometime on different quilting projects I have pinned and want to try someday.

This next one was a fun web site about using your old scraps. I always hate throwing scraps away because you never know what you can do with them well here are some fun ideas.

Well, I hope you can have fun with some with these. You are welcome to check out my Pinterest for some more fun ideas here.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Chicken Soup Recipe


I challenged you last week to get a case of chicken noodle soup. Maybe that would cost too much but another option would be to make your own and can it. Below are some easy recipes for homemade chicken noodle soup.

This one can be made using your food storage:

Chicken Soup for One
2 tsp chicken soup base
1 cup of small egg noodles
1/4 cup dried carrots
2 oz. chicken (1/4 cup)
2 cups water
1 tsp dried onion
1/8 tsp salt
dash of pepper

Mix all ingredients and simmer. That's an easy one.

Chicken Soup Using Dry Soup Mix
1 chicken, cooked, deboned, cubed (1-2 cans of chicken chunks may be used)
7 chicken bouillon cubes
carrots and zucchini as desired
2/3 cup of dry soup mix
salt and pepper to taste

Just follow package of dry soup mix adding ingredients above. Add chicken at the end because it has already been cooked. Simmer and enjoy.  Oh, just add noodles when its about ready, once they are soft enough its ready to eat. That one is easy too.

Personally, I like the idea of making my own because I know what is going in it. Sometimes it doesn't taste like the canned stuff but that because we are use to prepackaged stuff and not homemade.

Next week I will talked about the best techniques for canning your own soup.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Celebration of Life Day


I don't celebrate birthdays any more due to the age that I would be if I did celebrate them. It's nice though, when people acknowledge this day but where did this idea of the celebration begin? I have found some interesting things that I want to share today.

Some say that celebration of birthdays began as a pagan ritual. They felt like evil spirits would visit on this special day so the gathering of family and friends would protect them from those spirits. Even blowing out candles was believed to be related to the pagan celebration.

Some said that only royalty has big celebrated birthdays that is why when you do genealogy research you can see a lot of records for royalty. Also, that is where the idea of birthday crowns came in.

It has been said that the Germans started birthday celebrations for kids in the 1700's. I also read that Christians didn't actually celebrate birthdays because they were a pagan celebration. There aren't too many records in the scriptures mentioning birthday celebrations so I'm not sure when it became a thing for everyone, but it's all pretty interesting.

Celebrations are good for people. We like to celebrate holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, etc, face it, people like to party.  We feel good when we celebrate great occasions. We surround ourselves with those we love and that helps us feel the joy of the celebration.

As you probably guessed today is the day I was born. I use to think America celebrated my birthday because there would be a big celebration in DC, I finally figured out that it was for the Presidential Inauguration...bummer.

Oh well, a few years ago I decided to not have any more birthdays so I would lose track of how old I was getting. Unfortunately, everyone else remembered. This past Friday, my colleagues at work celebrated by serving a cake and bringing me my favorite flower, the Tulip. It was all very nice and I appreciated their kindness. I shared with them that I do not celebrate my birthday any longer. One team member said well then its your celebration of life. I liked that!

I started reflecting on that idea. I thought of the Savior and how we love to celebrate His life and all that he did for us. I also thought  that I could learn to love this celebration if  I could look at all the good that we do in this world. Our acts of service and words of kindness throughout that year can be a good reason to celebrate life. So that is what I will be celebrating from now on as I reflect in all the good that I have done and all that I can do the next year.

Celebration of life, I like it...just as long as we don't put a number with it. :)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Square Foot Gardening

Only once in my life have I ever had a garden and it was small but successful. I was so proud of myself. I loved eating the produce it gave me. Some how the vegies seem to taste better, try to figure that one out. Anyway, I am ready to try it again so I have been doing some research on the best way to garden for my family, who, by the way, doesn't like vegetables (but I do).

I remember reading a book years ago about square foot gardening. It was actually for kids but it works for small gardens. It seemed logical and I think that is the direction I want to go this time. It doesn't require a lot of work like a larger garden would be so I am there with that.

There are all kinds of books and websites that can help you learn how to do this but I am going to share just a few tips that I have learned about it.

1) Find a nice sunny spot for your garden.

2) Build a box out of 2X6 or 2X8 wood making a 4 foot square.

3) Add in good soil for growing vegetables. Since I live in Florida sand is not a good option so we have to find dirt making sure it's the right kind for growing. Here are some suggestions I found on the Internet:

Loam - holds nutrients and drains well, it's the best choice, Clay- holds nutrients and drains slow but has some issues with oxygen for roots, Silt - holds nutrients and drains slow like clay. So do the research for the best top soil in your area. Top soil should be around 2 -12 inches thick so the vegies can get the nutrients it needs from the top soil.

4) Use string or small pieces of wood to divide your garden into 12 inch squares. There should be 16 of them.

5) Plan your garden and what you want to grow. Making a plan is very wise, you don't want to over crowd your garden either. Check to see how different vegetables do in your area and when it is best to plant. Remember to plant only the things you will eat.

And watch out for those pesty things that want to eat your garden produce, too.  I heard adding Marigolds can help with the bugs, not sure if that's correct but it makes your garden pretty. Add a fake cat or scarecrow might help with keeping birds and squirrels out.

In the book I read years ago it suggested growing in each square only the vegies you would eat in one week then plant the next square with the same vegies the following week and so on so you have a week supply of vegies for several months. I thought that was an interesting way to do it but I'm not sure I will do it that way because I have different plans.

I have also been reading a new book called, "The Forgotten Skills of Self-Sufficiency Used by the Mormon Pioneers" by Caleb Wornock. I'm sure they knew a lot about gardening. He talks about seed saving for the next time you make a garden. He says that the seeds you buy in the store today are not really good for seed saving. He suggested something called Heirloom Seeds. I am going to give them a try this year. You can find several websites that sell them online.

I am getting a little excited about this. I am the kind of person who is constantly on the go but I think this kind of garden will prove successful even with my busy schedule. Good luck on your garden, and I would love to hear about any experiences you have had with gardening in the past.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

New Challenge for Food Storage

Sooo, how did you do last month? Were you able to get some items for your food storage? Did my challenge help in anyway?

I did it and was so happy I did. There have been many times that we have had to pull some items from our food storage because of an extra unexpected expense taking our food money. So it was nice to be able to replenish it with some items that we would use. I stayed in my budget of $50 so now I am ready to try and add some more.

Last week I talked about water storage so this week I would like to make one of the challenges water. Try and get a 2 week supply for every member of your family, including pets. If its not possible then get what you can.

I would also like to make a couple more challenges that would be good items to store.

Staple - 2 week supply of water per person in family
Non-staple - deodorant for 3 month
Tasty food - case of chicken noodle soup

Last week I blogged about water so refer to last weeks post on how to store water.

For my family, we each have our own deodorant. I have two kids who earn their own money so they have to purchase their own personal items. That means that I only have to buy 3 for my youngest son and 3 for me to meet our 3 month supply. Deodorant does not have a shelf life but I usually rotate it out annually and replenish as if I was buying for the current month.

Chicken Noodle soup is tasty and most everyone likes it. It is easy to store and its life span is around 1-2 years but check the cans for expiration dates. You can tell if something is bad so don't eat it. Buying a case shouldn't be too costly.

These items should be easy to store and acquire. But as always get only what you can afford. Another option can be to make homemade soup and can it. The cost can be a little more affordable in the long run. Anyway, good luck on this new challenge.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

All things created by Him

It amazes me when people have no clue that all things were created by God. Everything in nature teaches principles of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Nature is a witness of a Creator, not just hap-instance.

Yesterday, my family and I were outside cutting down vines that had grown a lot, over the summer, on the fence. It had been a few years since we had tamed this area of the yard so there was a lot of growth happening. Also, when it rains the dirt in the driveway flows out the back gate into the cu-de-sac so we had to shovel the dirt back into the driveway as well.

I started to walk out the back gate to shovel and it seemed that the vine grabbed at my leg and wouldn't let go, I almost fell because it had a hold on my pants. I imagined that it was pleading with me to not cut it down. But I told it that I was commanded by God to have dominion over and subdue the earth. Some time ago I had looked up the word subdue and found it meant control. So I told the vine I needed to have some control since it was over grown there. I don't think it was so happy about my decision, but it did let go.

As I began pulling the vines off the fence I found some parts of it that held on so tightly that it was impossible to pull it free. When I looked to see what held it there I witnessed small vines which had wrapped itself around the fence several times. I asked the vine, "How did you know how to do that?" It didn't answer me but it amazed me that the only way I could break it loose was to cut the small vine with pruning shears.

I began to realize that it was actually a witness to me that it was doing what God had commanded it to do. It was growing and hanging on to life the best it could. I thought of the many different life lessons we could learn from this vine. I was sad to cut it away because it was teaching me things but it needed to be done, which is another life lesson for another day.

I wonder so often how people can deny the existence of God as they view his creations. I want to testify that God is real, and everything here was created by His hand. We are all His creations, we belong to Him. All living things have a spirit and are obedient to Him, except the greatest creation in the world, the children of God.

But God knew we would be defiant and that is why we needed a Savior, to die for our shortcomings and sins. I am ever grateful for Jesus Christ and his atoning sacrifice. I am also grateful for the life's lessons that we get from nature. I feel so much closer to God when I commune with nature because we are all His creations. And, I know he loves us and has provided a plan back to him if only we will open our eyes and learn from everything he has given us. I am forever grateful for a loving Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Drawing Skills


My youngest son has really developed skills in drawing, on his own. I really am amazed at how well he is doing. He loves Anime so he started developing those skills drawing Manga characters, you know with the big eyes. He has gotten real good with those.

One skill he really wants to develop is drawing realistic. He took a picture of someone the other day and drew it really well. I was impressed, even though they still had big eyes like the Manga characters. I found some drawing websites and blogs on Pinterest for him to use and even signed him up for an art class to develop other skills in art.

Anyway, I thought it would be fun to share some of those websites with you today so you can try your hand at finding your artistic skills. So here are some I have found.

How to draw lips:
I Draw Girls

How to draw eyes:
Only Pencil

How to draw Hello Kitty:
How To Draw

How to draw one point perspective:
Elementary Art Fun

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Water Storage

I have to apologize for not starting the year out right. I missed blogging all last week but I do have an excuse, no brain. Every time I sat down to post on my blog my brain wouldn't function. That is because my two sweet grandsons came to see me and gave me their colds, plus we sat out in cold weather for a wedding. So with the combination of a cold and medication I was left without a brain.

I wrote and wrote but nothing made sense, a lot like my dreams, so I just gave up and decided to try again this week. So lets see how I am doing this week.

I wanted to talk about water storage because that is something we don't hear a lot about in food storage. It is on the list of items to store but for me it was never something I worked on much. So I did some research and my finding are listed below.

 You can pick up bottled water in cases and store what you need, remember that its 14 gallons for a 2 week supply as suggested by the experts. I work for Coca-Cola so I buy Dasani water and store it with my food storage, but I rotate it out because there are expiration dates on the water bottles. They are stored away from direct light, that's the rule for any see through bottle.

You can use soda bottles, milk jugs, or even glass bottles for short time storage. Sometimes the jugs leak, I bought some jugs of water for our pets, 3 to a case, and after a year one bottle started to leak. So watch out for that kind of thing, also don't forget about storing water and supplies for pets.

I store the Dasani for drinking water but then I have to think about storage for cooking and cleaning as well. I have heard that rain barrels are a good way to catch the rain and store water for purposes other than drinking. I have provided a couple of how to pages about water storage. I hope they help. But don't just do what they say , do the research to avoid health issues.

There are also water purification tablets that can help or even special bottles that purifies water.  And you could also invest in water purification systems. But don't go into debt for these things, start out small and build up your supply.

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