PB2

I’ve said it before, but, here in our family, we love peanut butter. We like it all kinds of ways too – creamy, crunchy, with peanuts, with cashews, hazelnut and chocolate, and now even powdered.

 

  We’ve recently discovered PB2. It comes from a company named ‘Bell Plantation‘.

This stuff is so yummy. It’s also a lot healthier than regular peanut butter because 85-percent of the fat calories have been removed when they pull out the oil and dehydrate it into a powder. It’s preservative free, all-natural, and has no artificial sweeteners. It comes in plain or chocolate.

P1010251  It’s very user friendly – the ratio is 2-1. Two tablespoons of PB2 powder to one tablespoon of water. Mix well and depending on the consistency wanted add more water for a creamier version (less water for a thicker version). This peanut butter really doesn’t taste like the processed stuff. I tastes more like natural peanuts.

P1010252 To give you any idea of how much peanut butter mixes up, this is half of a bagel with a thick layer of peanut butter and there was still quite a bit left in the little bowl.

I will admit this product does cost a bit more than a traditional peanut butter, but with a longer shelf life I’d say it’s worth the difference. It’s also a good alternative to regular peanut butter for those who like to keep an emergency disaster kit.

I can’t wait for a ‘free’ Saturday to make up a batch of peanut butter chocolate brownies….

Enjoy~Bam

 

Meet Maverick

Well, I couldn’t do it…I couldn’t  go that long without getting a new pet. Really, my husband and son were a little more ready to jump in to animal ownership again. My husband wanted another dog, my son was a little indifferent but was leaning more toward a cat.

Last Saturday the local Humane Society had a huge adoption event at the state fairgrounds. Apparently they have this event twice a year. I’d never heard of it until we saw a commercial for it on T.V. We ended up getting there about an hour after they opened and literally most of the dog crates were empty already. Of course they had more coming in but I was really surprised to see how many people walking out already with a new pet. All of the animals had been spayed/neutered, chipped and fully vetted for the year, and the adoption fee was reduced to $30. They had about twelve different Veterinary places there and were advertising over 750+ animals that needed to be adopted.

We started in the cat area and my son fell in love with this little guy right away.

IMG_20140703_074109_339 This is Maverick…he’s such a sweet kitty. He’s about ten months old, missing the tip of one of his ears and has had some sort of eye infection that has left one of his eyes looking a little cloudy, other than that he’s healthy.  He’s long and lanky, loves laying on the couch pillows while we’re watching T.V., being held, and having his neck and chin rubbed. I’ve never seen such a docile happy kitty.

If you’re in the market for a new pet, I would hope that you would try your local Humane Society. It’s a great place to find an animal that just wants to be loved.

So happy for the new addition to our family~Bam

 

Garden update

I’m so excited to say the garden has so far exceeded our expectations, even though the squirrels tried their best to destroy it. They love digging around in the dirt, trying to bury their ‘goodies’.

P1010244 My husband came up with this idea and so far it’s worked out really great. We haven’t had any unwanted ‘guests’ since he’s put it up. He trimmed down some cedar and screwed in the chicken wire. He decided to make three separate closures in case I wanted to take them out and weed, but, I’ve found that I can reach everything just fine without having to remove them. He attached them by adding large screws to the top of the bed, and drilled matching holes in the cedar that’s attached to the chicken wire, then the wood screen just sits on top in holes, loosely locked into place.

P1010246 The peas really like it too, they’ve become quit attached.

P1010242 The green beans are really taking off too. They were attaching themselves to the wire and the peas. We put in garden stakes so they can grow upright.

P1010241 I can’t wait to see what the next couple of weeks bring!!!~Bam

 

Cherry Marzipan tea

I love tea. Hot, cold, with sugar or milk or honey, fruit flavored, plain and even unsweetened. About the only way I won’t drink it is with lemon. I think it’s because when I was little my grandma only had sweet tea with lemon (she was from the South – what can I say), and other than milk, juice, or coffee, tea was the drink of choice.

I have a new favorite tea…Cherry Marzipan. I was down in Nashville (Indiana – or locally known as ‘Brown County‘) a few weekends ago and my friend was telling me about this really cool tea shop called Sweetea’s. Then she proceeded to tell me about this delicious Cherry Marzipan flavored tea. Yep, she was right, it’s really good stuff. I even love just sniffing it, because It smells just like fresh cherries.

Even Dr Oz lists it as one of his favorite tea’s saying: “Tea Forté Cherry Marzipan Dessert in a mug, made from acerola cherries, toasted almonds, and raspberry leaves”.

The Cherry Marzipan tea is a loose tea made by ‘Tea Forte‘. It’s organic and Fair Trade certified. A little on the pricey end but really all things considered it’s a great value. It also lasts for a long time in it’s dried state. They have all kinds of delicious and unique flavors. Not only that, but it’s a great anti-oxidant, and good for your skin.

Sweetea’s is a tiny eclectic, off the main street little delight. They have a good variety of loose teas, single brew tea bags, tea cafe cups, and stylish teapots.They also have these drinks called ‘bubble tea’ and you can mix flavors of tea with these little ‘bubbles’ of flavored juice, they put it in your tea and serve it on ice with a really big straw (so you can suck up the flavored bubbles, they burst in your mouth to release the juice). Really, who thought this up?? I don’t know, but, it was really good, and the next time I’m in Brown County this will be the first place I stop for another ‘bubble tea’ and of course more Cherry Marzipan loose tea.

If you are ever in Brown County take time to stop and check it out. You won’t regret it.~bam

Garden – 4 week update

I can’t believe it’s only been four weeks since we started our garden. I’m so excited to say this year’s garden is already doing better than last years.

Radish Radish. This is the first year I’ve grown radishes. My thought was I can just pluck them from the garden and have one or two rather than buying a bag of them and wasting most of them, since I’m the only one who will eat them. I had to pick one to see how big it was. It was a pretty good size. I’d say a week longer and they’ll be full size. I think we’ll be able to have two batches of radish this year – we’ll see.

Peas The peas are looking good.

Pole Beans We have green pole beans. Yum. We had these last year and they were so good lightly sauteed in butter, with some salt and pepper. Can’t wait.

Onions The onions are trying to take over.

Squash Here’s the squash. I’m not sure how it’s going to do. Last year we didn’t even get this far with them.

Carrots The carrots are slow going. This is the first year we’ve planted carrots, but after doing some research it seemed they will grow in a square foot garden. Time will tell.

Green Pepper If you look close there are two little green peppers!! Peppers are expensive at the grocery. Most of these guys are going in the freezer for winter. (My husband loves to use a lot of them in the chili he makes).

Strawberry The strawberries are looking good. One leaf got eaten by some little critter. My husband’s working on a chicken wire netting for the top. (I’ll post more on that once it’s done.)

Tomatoes Can’t wait for the tomatoes. I could eat a tomato everyday and never tire of them. Freshly picked, sliced with a little sugar on them…nothing better. Okay, maybe sliced with cottage cheese, freshly cooked in pasta sauce, fresh Pico de Gallo. I could go on and on.

lettuce  Lastly, the lettuce is starting to come up. Last year this little vegetable was so tender and made some great salads. It seems to be growing a little slowly this year.

My son is impressed that we haven’t used any fertilizers or chemicals on it. I’m just happy to have fresh, clean, food.

Happy Gardening~Bam

Memorial Day

Memorial Day, to me means remembering all of those who died in the war and those who served in the US Military that didn’t die.

What??? Why remember those who didn’t die in the war? I’m thinking about my uncle Dan. He was a Ranger – in the 2nd Battalion. On D-Day in WWII – Company “C” – One of the first troops on ground in Normandy, France. He lived to tell his story but never really did. He came back with a Purple Heart, and shrapnel in his back, but, physically he was fine otherwise. He and his wife and two kids settled down in North Vernon, Indiana to a farmer’s life. My parents, myself and most of my cousins would go on that long drive for an “easy” weekend on the farm. For breakfast he’d grab three eggs from the chicken coup crack them open into a glass and drink them down – ewe. But, I’m sure by then not much phased him. I’m sure he had PTSD. Some nights we’d all be asleep in our sleeping bags in the living room only to be awakened by this horrible screaming. I’ll never forget that sound, it was awful. I never really thought about it at the time, I was only a little girl, who had bad dreams now and again too. Now, though, looking back I can’t imagine what kind of night terrors he had. I can’t imagine the stress of being in a position that was so significant to our nations vitality, and the life of other countries like France, and Germany.

Even though Dan made it back alive and physically well. I’m sure a part of him died during that war. He loved his country and he loved his family. He was a great man and I miss him.

J.R.Moore-galley-about 1961 My Dad was in the Navy, although he wasn’t enlisted when there was a war going on but there was still unrest. He was on a Destroyer, a chef working in a tiny little galley kitchen, preparing all kinds of homemade foods and goodies to keep up morale. Everybody’s job was important. He got to travel all through the Mediterranean on his two years on-board.

I have a young cousin who’s been to Afghanistan three times now. Thankfully, he’s back home now and I’m sure his Mom and siblings are happy to see him back.

Memorial Day to me is remembering all of those millions who’ve served our country, in one capacity or another. No one will come back the same – whether the experience was good, bad, beautiful or ugly. They will forever be different.

Thank you to all!!!~Bam

Keidi

Keidi – our beloved Dachshund has gone on to “doggie Heaven”. It’s been a rough week-and-a-half. The day after Mother’s Day our Keidi started acting a little weird, just not like her usual self, she didn’t want to eat, go out and bark and the neighbors or really do much of anything. We thought, maybe, she just had too much human food from the table the day before. Usually we’ll give her some bread, ice cream, milk from the table (never meat or veggies). We had strawberry cake and my husband let her lick the plate after he’d finished so there were only a few tiny crumbs, but the cake was made with real strawberries and she has a lot of allergies, so I thought she might have been having some weird reaction to that so I gave her some Benadryl. She still wasn’t perking up to her normal self. By Thursday she stopped drinking water, even when we held the bowl up to her mouth. I left work early and my son and I took her to E-Pet 911 and they ran some blood work and ex-ray’s and they told us she was in severe kidney failure.

Oh boy, I wasn’t ready for this, but, I knew something wasn’t right. The Vet offered to keep her there to push fluids and medicine through IV, but even then there was no guarantee it would help. Also, even though we LOVE our four-legged friend we do have a family responsibility to be fiscally responsible and there’s always the “how much are we willing to let our dog suffer” because we aren’t emotionally ready to let her go? Obviously with kidney failure there’s really no turning back, no true “cure”, just life-long treatment of medicine therapy.

I still remember they day my husband went to pick her up from the breeder. It was a super cold and snowy day in January of 2000. She was six weeks old. He took a little laundry basket filled with blankets and drove about an hour one-way, after he’d worked all day even. Our son was five and he was so excited to see her when they finally got home.

Even now, I still get teary-eyed just thinking about her. She was with us over for over fourteen years. She slept with us, followed us around the house, sat at our feet while we ate, snuggled on the couch with us. She was definitely a major part of our lives.

Today, I’m cleaning up the rest of her belongings, her crate, harness and leash and all of her toys.

P1010200 Her favorite toys, clearly they’ve all been chewed on. We kept her toys in the corner of the living room and she’d go over and pick one out, play with it a while, shake it around, growl at it then just walk away when she got tired.

P1010203 This was her favorite though. She found it one day while out for a walk, picked it up and carried it home. (I wondered if she thought it was her baby??)

IMG_20131017_210625_672 This is how she slept most of the time. So happy to have known her for fourteen years. So sad she’s gone.~Bam