Y’all. This nursery has come along WAY slower than I would like. Partly because I either don’t have energy, can’t make a decision, or I’m waiting on someone or something. Anyway T-minus 23 days and it’s ALMOST done. Possibly the most exciting thing, these acrylic floating shelves for books.
I’ll tell y’all something, it KILLED Sr. to put those nine holes in the wall for these but I absolutely LOVE them.
Now on to the rest of the walls and finishing touches. And I cannot promise there won’t be more holes 😜
As I shared in another post, I’ve come to love finding beautiful pieces to add to our home. From furniture to stemware, these vintage pieces are adding a bit of character, comfort, and even class to our home. In addition to furniture, I’m becoming quite fond of crystal and silver pieces. Silver is something I’ve always had but never really cared for until recently. I just didn’t have much use for it and it didn’t go with anything else we owned. When I was a teenager my Mother and I ventured into an antique store while visiting family in Washington state. She found a silver-plated tea set that she insisted on buying and having shipped home to Texas. She was so excited and said it would be given to me when I got married. I didn’t understand her enthusiasm but weeks later a large white box was delivered to our door and sent straight to the attic with all the other new and old treasures Mother was storing away for when she had grandchildren.
After Sr. and I married, Mom brought me my silver set the first time she came to visit our first home (a rental then). I had no idea what to do with it. Over the past 13 years, that ray and tea set has been either hidden away in a cabinet or on a shelf as a poor attempt to decorate; only to be dusted once in a while and polished even less. I even acquired a silver urn/bucket somewhere along the way.
While I’ve found some function for the tray from time to time – only when I want to feel fancy – I’ve been hesitant to use any of the teapots given they have some tarnish and I have no idea how to properly clean them for serving drinks and not killing someone.
Maybe I needed to become a little more “refined”, my first few silver hairs, or just the right inspiration but this Christmas I finally found a purpose for that beautiful old silver.
As I was setting everything out for mimosas for a small Christmas brunch we hosted last month figured I could use the silver urn as an ice bucket. This decision was then followed by searching if this was actually what this urn was for and how to clean the tarnish FAST without polish.
I just loved how the Mimosa station turned out with the silver tray and urn.
The mimosas were pretty delicious too!
Since then my Pinterest has been flooded with pins like “Ideas for Decorating with Silver” providing me with new ideas and ways to clean and care for my old silver.
Oh, and I finally found a great way to display at least one of my pieces, the tray. It adds some vintage interest to the collection of cutting boards and serving trays on my counter. How do you display/use your silver?
Oh! And if you have any tips for me on caring for silver/silver-plated service ware, put them in the comments! I am all ears!
The week Brian Sr. came home from his brain surgery and we were blessed with so much help on the Camp Farm from mowing the yard to delicious dinners. Honestly, I haven’t had to think about dinner all week. It’s been glorious, and super helpful as I pick up Sr.’s activities. So. much. laundry. We are so thankful for the continued support. Check out these awesome cookies my friend and colleague, Kyle made and sent to us from Houston!
As for Sr., it’s been pretty rough with severe nausea and pain. Mornings are the worst for him and walking is still pretty taxing as his neck is regaining strength and balance is still off. He’s supposed to work up to walking 5 miles a day. The first day he could gather strength to get out side and walk, he only made it across the street and back. We have a long way to go but each day he makes it a little further down the neighborhood and this weekend, he was able to walk with out his walking stick.
Ella and Grace have been playing entrepreneur all week, with an “Amazon delivery” adventure and having lots of meetings. It’s quite the business of the future. I don’t even have to order the items, the just show up in bags with “invoices”. And they are things I love, like my favorite books or high heels from my closet. 🤣
Little Miss Grace has gotten quite good on a bike and earned herself a shiny new one! And Jr. finally earned enough to get his new bike–thanks to his cat sitting job and helping in the yard and garden.
The hens continue to grow and have proven themselves capable of being able to roam free in the back yard mostly un supervised… I guess this means they’re now free range!
In the gardens, plants have been loving the sunshine this week. We’ve seen tons of growth in both the house gardens and big garden. My favorite peonies came into bloom and Ella and Grace helped me make a trellis for the peas and to support the green beans.
With all the extra sun, the soil in our growing rows was starting to dry out and crack. We hadn’t gotten around to adding mulch to the rows, or even deciding what kind of mulch we’d use, so I added grass clippings from our last mow. I’m hopeful this will be a good, free, solution.
Grace found our first strawberry and the girls helped me pull seeds out of a few melons and cucumbers for later planting since our first round of them didn’t take after all the heavy rains a few weeks ago. My sweet friend, neighbor, and fellow gardener, Amiée, brought us a few of her extra cucumber plants as well as a few extra goodies! I mean, I couldn’t be more excited about this book, y’all!
I think wildlife is fascinating. When I find bugs and animals I want to take care of them.
Ziggy is a bug. When I found Ziggy last week, we were in the garden. We were looking at the kale, green beans, and other stuff. I was walking when I saw him. He had stripes on his wings that made a zig-zag pattern.
I scooped him up with my hands then I walked around with him and put him the pot with pansies and forget-me-nots on the back deck. I wonder if he is still there.
A few days later, when my Dad was in the hospital and our Aunt Rosey was taking care of us, we found a toad. We named him Harold but I wanted to name him Kyle.
We let him swim in the pool. Brian swam with him. 🤣 We were going to to keep Harold but the inernet said not to keep wild toads. Now I’m asking Mom and Dad if I can get a pet toad from the store. Mom’s not a fan of the idea.
I love that our house has a big yard full of wildlife.
Last week the girls and I baked our first strawberry-rhubarb pies of the season. If you’ve been reading the blog from the start you know how much I love this pie. I’ve been perfecting my recipe since we moved here and I first discovered we had rhubarb growing in the house-gardens. This of course was the start of our “cooking show” videos. We shared the first video with you earlier this week on how to make my favorite pie crust. Before we jump to the video let me tell you how to make this pie… and why I make it the way I do.
The first time I made this pie, it came out all watery and soupy, a little too tart and not very pretty. I played around with strawberry to rhubarb ratios which made it a little sweeter and prettier–I have green rhubarb so it looks like strawberry-celery pie; more strawberries adds more color. However, I still had a messy, soup of a pie. The additional strawberries actually made this problem worse. I mean, call me crazy, but I think you should be able to use your pie spatula and not a spoon to serve your pie. My search continued.
Many recipes that addressed the soupy issue called for plain gelatin, something I’ve never carried min my pantry. Finally, last year I came across this recipe which called for corn starch (something I always have in my pantry) to battle the watery juices from the strawberries. This recipe also had two big differences to the previous recipes I tried–half the sugar is brown sugar and the use of orange juice.
The brown sugar adds a richer sweetness, due to the molasses, and actually retains moisture so it helps make a more dense pie filling. I actually prefer dark brown sugar over the light brown sugar the original recipe calls for and use the dark in my pies. I also add a little more vanilla for some more depth.
I also LOVE the citrus notes the orange juice adds to the pie. The orange pairs so nicely with the strawberries. I like it so much I incorporate more OJ in my own recipe. I’m also pretty picky when it comes to orange juice, I like Simply Orange’s High Pulp. It makes a difference, I promise!
2 1/2 to 3 cups chopped rhubarb (chopped in 1/2 inch or smaller pieces)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch (use up to 1 Tbs more if needed)
2 Tbs orange juice
2 Tbs butter
A pinch of salt
Tools and Equipment
Spoon for stirring
Measuring cups and spoons
Basting or pastry brush
Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees.
Prepare filling. In a large bowl, mix together strawberries, rhubarb, sugars, salt, orange juice, and corn starch.
Prepare pie dish. While the filling settles, roll out your crusts. (If you don’t have your crust made yet, no worries, the longer that filling mixture sits they more those flavors blend.) Place bottom crust in the dish.
Fill the pie. Give your filling mixture one more stir (add more corn starch if it’s really juicy, however, you’ll have some juice that you’ll leave in the bowl). Add a few pieces of butter on top o the filling.
Close the pie. Cover the filling with your top pie crust. Get creative with this! You can use cookie cutters to add a design, do a classic lattice, or fun edging. Take your beaten egg and brush it on the crust. Sprinkle with sugar.
Bake. Place the pie on the cookie sheet and bake the pie for 20 minutes. Then reduce the oven temperature to 350, keeping the pie in the oven, and continue to bake for 20-25 minutes.
Cool. Allow the pie to cool for 2-3 hours – place on a cooling rack to help it cool faster.
Enjoy! Our favorite ways to eat the pie warm with vanilla ice cream or cold for breakfast but there’s really no wrong way to do it!
Now for the video. I feel like I should add some context first. This video features several high-speed clips as the girls were kind of over the whole baking and recording thing after a one-hour intermission between the pie crust video and pie filling video to make more crust (I forgot we were making more than one pie so had to whip up a double batch of crust before moving to the filling). Therefore, the filling video took WAY longer than it should have (even with kids) but includes some silly song and dance action for your entertainment.
The redneck pool, aka redneck hot tub, is a bit of a tradition in my family and brings up fond memories of hot summers and water fun.
Summer is HOT, especially down in Texas. Growing up, whether on a hunting lease or our own ranch, we always managed to find an old livestock trough/stock tank to turn into our own mini water park. My mom would make me a swim suit, usually out of those red shop rags, and me, my brothers and my cousins would spend all day crammed in that game and playing with the hose to keep cool. Eventually we had a house with an in-ground pool but the old stock tanks were just as fun!
This spring, when the chicks started getting too cramped in our storage bin turned chicken brooder, I found a great deal on a 110 gallon tank at Tractor Supply. Initially I thought once it finished it’s purpose as a brooder, we’d put it in the garden as a container for potatoes and onions. However, when I got it home I discovered a spicket at the bottom for easy draining.
This discovery meant the tank would be perfect for a redneck pool like I had growing up. We’ve been wanting a small pool for the summers but Brian Sr. Says it’ll bring mosquitoes. I think he just doesn’t want to get shafted with cleaning duties (I don’t blame him).
We first filled the tanks a few weeks ago, when it was admittedly too cold to swim. Despite my warnings the kids insisted. They splashed around with blue lips and jaws chattering 90 miles an hour. They had a blast!
Now that it’s feeling like summer, this has been the perfect distraction for the kids—especially on days like today when Brian Sr. and I are away for Sr.’s brain surgery. The kids had a blast in the pool and even coaxed Jack to hop in!
The best part is, the kids work together to keep it clean and filled. Sr. and I do nothing… well except tell Grace to stop yelling and shrieking every time she splashed. I sweat the whole neighborhood hears her, and then hears us yelling her name! 🤣🤷🏻♀️
Once the days get even hotter, I’m picturing a little redneck hot tub in in the evenings… because, why not?!
Hi! My name is Ella. I go to 2nd Grade. So far, I have had the best teachers.
We have a creek. I love to go there and get into the water past my rain boots. Then run around with all the water sloshing inside it. I think it drives my Mom crazy. Sometimes we look for salamanders. We had a pet salamander from the creek but sadly he\she died.
This year for Halloween I think I will be Mal from Descendants. Grace and I both like those movies.
For Christmas, I think I want my own kitten but my Mom has two reasons she doesn’t want me to have one…
She does not want two cats
My sister, Grace, is kind of allergic to cats.
Now, I want a cat or a dog . Once our dog Jack ran all the way down the neighborhood. My Mom had to drive in the car to get him. I think he ran down the neighborhood because he was looking for his toy (it got stuck in a tree). When we got it down for a second he did not recognize it, then he was so excited.
I like playing outside when it is warm because when it’s cold and I have a jacket, I get hot take, it off and get cold, then put it back on again. It’s annoying.
I think bugs and worms are cool. My Mom asked me to help make out new cut flower garden so I did but then I saw lots of bugs in the dirt and wanted to watch them instead. I also like pulling weeds in the garden. I like flower gardening and vegetable gardening because they both include pulling out weeds.
I like to paint and craft with my sister, Grace. I also like to make paper Airplanes. Last summer I did an acting summer camp and was in the play, Winnie the Pooh.
I love cooking cakes and cookies with my mom. For Christmas last year we got a cool old cookbook. I can’t wait to make cooking videos. I like making muffins and eating them. I have never made cupcakes and don’t like their icing. One time I made a chocolate layer cake.
I love 💕 BUTTERED BREAD more than anything in the world!
I like raising chickens. When Penny peeps I get scared and put her down. Penny is growing so fast. Since there is a couple more months until she is full grown, I am going to miss her fuzziness.
My best friend Ava lives next door. Our family and her family share the big garden. I like living next door her because we can play almost every day. Im the summer, we have picnics and tea parties.
We also throw a Galentine’s party every year for all the girls in the neighborhood plus a few special friends!
*Posts are proofread by Mom for some spelling and punctuation.
*Posts are proofread by Mom for clarity and some spelling and punctuation.
Hi I’m Brian. I’m 10 years old right now, and I was born on a Columbus Day. Some things I’m interested in are football 🏈 ,baseball ⚾️,basketball 🏀, 2K MADDEN, and WWE WRESTLING. My favorite WWE wrestlers are THE MIZ, UNDERTAKER, THE ULTIMATE WARRIOR, JOHN CENA, KANE, and ADRIAN NEVILLE.
My favorite football teams are the Cleveland Browns and the Green Bay Packers. Baker Mayfield is of my most favorite football players of all. I had fun playing football for the first time last year, even though we only won 1 game against Johnstown. We still played in the playoffs because every team gets to play in the playoffs. My mom yells and cheers a lot from the stands during my games and my Dad is a coach.
In baseball I have 3 trophies, and 6 metals. My favorite baseball teams are the Cleveland Indians and the Houston Astros.
I love homesteading because you get to do things outside, like improve a chicken coop. I hate gardening though because I don’t like bending over and pulling weeds until the weeds are all gone. But I will pull weeds for money. 🤑🤑🤑
I love having chickens because you get to play with them. I also like to eat eggs, so it will be cool when they start to lay them.
I like being a big brother because they always play with me and I like helping my mom with them. One thing that is annoying about them is they never stop arguing some days.
I like living in Granville, Ohio, even though I miss my friends back in Texas–especially my best friend, Jacob.
At least Ohio is not always hot in the the spring and summer like Texas. I like spring the most because the weather goes from chilly to warm and back and forth.