Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween

Gasp! Look who showed up at Mimi and Papa's doorstep!


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Those nasty gnats!

Gnats! Gnats! Gnats! During the growing season, it seems anytime you bring fresh produce in the house you bring in a few gnats with it. They are around you, fly around at you're head and simply drive you to an exasperated state. Last Saturday I bought some asian pears. I brought them home and put them in a bowl on top of my kitchen counter along with some other apples. I also had two bananas sitting there also. Before I knew it, I had gnats or fruit flies what ever you want to call them everywhere. Yep! They drove me to an exasperated state alright. In the kitchen near food is the last place I want to spray pesticides. So I thought I would give this method a whirl. All my fruit on the counter went in the fridge. I then took a small canning jar( any small jar will do) In the jar I put 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar, 3 drops of dawn dish soap, I then covered the top with plastic wrap, using a rubber band to secure it. With a toothpick I poked holes in the plastic wrap. Trust me, the pesky little boogers think it's food and dive into the jar. They can't get back out and drown. Within 24 hours my gnat problem is solved. It works! If you are bothered by gnats or fruit flies this time of year. I urge you to try this method. Cheap, safe, non toxic and best of all goodbye gnats!


Grandkids, Abigail, Jocelyne and Jasmyne enjoying some Papa time last Sunday!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Hope you all had a good weekend. Here is my menu plan for this week. Nothing fancy, just keeping it pretty simple this week.

MONDAY-Chicken and noodles, steamed broccoli, angel food cake

TUESDAY- homemade chicken vegetable soup( from the leftover broth and chicken I didn't use for the chicken and noodles Monday), grilled cheese sandwiches, applesauce

WEDNESDAY-venison bbq meatballs( I promised my dad I would make these and give some to him, he just loves these) mashed potatoes, tossed green salad


FRIDAY- ham and beans, cornbread, some kind of fruit or dessert, not sure what right now

SATURDAY-Macaroni and cheese, li'l smokies, green beans

SUNDAY- Defend for ourselves!

For lots more planning ideas, check out menu plan Monday hosted by Have a good week!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Thankful Thursday

This popular meme, thankful Thursday, is one of my favorites. This meme is really good for me when you go through many trials and challenges. Some days are easier than others to count our blessings. There is seven things I am thankful for today.....

1.God. God is at the top of my list to be thankful for. I am so thankful for him as God is very important in my life. Without God life is pretty meaningless.

2. Friends. What would life be without friends? very lonely and boring. As humans we enjoy the company of each other and sense of belonging. So I am thankful for my friends.

3. Shelter. I am very thankful to have a home, Many do not. Imagine trying to survive without a home. A place that keeps us cool in the summer and warm in the winter. A place that keeps us dry and safe. That is a blessing.

4. Love. The love of my husband, parents, sister, children, grandchildren, friends, my dog. For the love I receive and the love I give. I am thankful for love.

5. Having all I need. I do not need fancy cars, lots of money or designer items. I am blessed with having what I need. That is enough for me.

6. Peace. I am at peace with myself and with all. I have peace with God my savior." For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life" John 3:16. I treasure peace in my home and my surroundings daily. It's a comfort and a blessing.

7. Health Good health is a reason to be thankful. I know so many others that are far worse off health wise.

What are you thankful for?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I want him!

I want him! My friend and neighbor has a new litter of kittens at her house. Isn't he sooo cute? All kittens are adorable and it can be tempting to take one home without thinking of the consequences. There is the litter box thing eew! no room to put one in this little house. There is the trip to the vet for vaccinations and worming. To prevent unwanted kitties there is neutering. Do I want to start buying cat food again? We have already lost 3 kitties sniff...sniff... and our small yard looks like a pet cemetary already. two ways about it, puppies and kittens are adorable. Its easy to be transfixed by the tiny paws and tiny noses and big bellies galloping around. For now I think I will just enjoy him at Beckys house.

Monday, October 19, 2009


Hope you all had a good weekend. I know I did. I spent most of Saturday with my sister shopping and lunch. It was a fun day. This week is clean out the freezer week. I need to clear some older food out to make room for new. Hubby started hunting this week ( bow season is in right now here in Indiana) and that means more venison. I will have to make room for this. I am pretty confident he will get his deer this year. There hasn't been a year yet he hasn't, at least with his muzzle loader anyways. (this will be next month) So, the menu this week goes like this.

MONDAY- (Breakfast for dinner) eggs, bacon, hash browns, toast, and fresh fruit

TUESDAY- Chicken and stuffing in the crock pot, mashed potatoes, corn

WEDNESDAY- Goulash, garlic bread

THURSDAY-Fried pork chops, butternut squash, apple sauce

FRIDAY- Sticky chicken, potatoes, pea salad

SATURDAY- Stir fry ( I will use some of the leftover chicken from Friday for this)

SUNDAY- On our own today!
For more fantastic menu plans check out http://orgjunkie

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Welcome hunting season

It's hunting season and that means hubby is on his hunting adventure again. While he's off in the woods I'm alone alot! While some wives complain about their husbands gone all the time during deer season I choose not. While I do miss him, lets face it, You might as well kiss him goodbye for the rest of hunting season. Welcome to hunting season! I accept it! Yes, I know he would rather be in the woods than with me and would rather spend his only day off freezing his rump off in a deer stand for hours on end without moving a muscle until a prize deer crosses his path.Yes, I will be prepared to drop everything at a moments notice to come outside and admire his kill. Again I will run the nastiest load of bloody laundry that my washer has ever had to tolerate and it will once again become socially acceptable in my household to smell like deer urine or acorns. I will once again help skin, quarter, pack and freeze deer meat down in my dads basement forming an assembly line. I will keep a smile on my face. If I let things like this get in the way of my happiness then I am going to be miserable all season long. The choice is mine, mind over matter. I don't mind because It is truly one of the things besides fishing my hubby enjoys. He can enjoy his man time and I will enjoy my man free time. I will clean out my freezer. This will make hubby happy because he will actually believe that you believe he's going to get the big one. I will stay busy by enjoying a relaxing day doing some baking, visiting my neighbor and best friend, blogging, reading, fall cleaning and getting my house organized before the holidays spending time with my sister, and Oh! It's the perfect time to maybe do some of that holiday shopping without my husband peeking in the bags. So, for those of you married to a deer hunter, Keep in mind deer hunting is an opportunity to fill your freezer with plenty of healthy meat. Remember, life will go back to normal after hunting season.

Thursday, October 15, 2009


I woke up this morning and this is what I saw.......Brrrrrr!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Time to start thinking of winterizing

It's that time of year when people take out their docks and boats out of the water until next spring when they all have to go back in again. Well, at least here in Northern Indiana that is. DH has been busy one by one day by day taking out docks. Our dock and pontoon is still in the water and will probably be one of the last ones to come out. When our pontoon comes out of the water you then have to winterize it. Winterizing your boat is the equivalent of spring cleaning for your home, yet it is done 6 months earlier and involves some very essential preventive maintenance to protect it from the cold weather and extended period of inactivity. The man who sold us our pontoon is supposed to help us winterize it. As we want it winterized the very same way he had done it, because right now she is a sweet sounding motor especially for her age and we want to keep it that way. So, I will write about this process later. Now, you do have to properly cover your boat with a high quality boat cover or tarp that is fastened securely. We have a large canvas we are using. You can also have your pontoon shrink wrapped but, that can get costly every year. However it does provide 100 percent waterproof protection. We will then set our pontoon on blocks. We do not have a trailer and will have to rent one just to get it out of the water.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Is it Tuesday already? Wow! the days and weeks go by so fast when you are busy. I need to apologize as I am a day late for my menu plan. Last week was crazy and this week is starting out the same way here at the Herlan household. Company in and out, grandparents day at the school, Going to Shipshawana, IN all day with my sister, visiting relatives, Birthday party ect. It may have been busy but it has been good. Because of unexpected plans and being more busy than usual, some menus got changed and therefor I will try to have this week what I was supposed to have last week. So this is what my menu looks like this week...

MONDAY- fish ( Cod) fire roasted veggies, leftover birthday cake from granddaughter's birthday

TUESDAY-Hubby is bringing home subway subs after work

WEDNESDAY- 15 bean soup, corn bread or homemade bread ( haven't decided)


FRIDAY- spaghetti, tossed salad

SATURDAY-chicken and rice, butternut squash

SUNDAY- on our own!

Check out more menus at !

Friday, October 9, 2009

Grandparents Day

Today was a special day.Our grandaughter Jasmyne is almost 6 years old and in kindergarten.She invited her Mimi and Papa to grandparents day at school. Yep, my first grandparents day. Papa had to work and couldn't get out of it but Mimi went alone. Children kindergarten through the fifth grade sang and put on a skit for their grandparents. What fun! It was a joyful event. The gym was packed with smiles all around among grandparents and staff members. No one in the audience cared about whether the singing was on key or the words understandable. In fact if prideful beaming could produce energy there would be no need to light the gym today. It was remarkable. No performers have ever been more appreciated. Then there was the trip to the classroom of each grandchild. Jasmyne ran into my arms., so happy to have her Mimi there. She beamed and giggled and couldn't wait to show her Mimi everything from where she sits in class to her artwork posted on the walls. We also had cookies and punch together. Amazing! I cannot believe how much she has grown. What a joy to be there with her. I do not remember my grandparents being around at any of my school functions or my parents being there for my own kids school functions. But, then again, I don't ever remember grandparents day back then. I am glad I was there for Jasmyne and hope to be there for many more.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


She may look cute but, don't let this face fool you! She has attitude!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Planting and growing garlic

I would like to grow some garlic for next year but, the weather here has been cold and rainy every time you turn around ugh! which makes it hard to get anything accomplished outside. I am hoping for a couple of nice days here yet this month to finish cleaning the garden and planting garlic. I love fresh garlic and use it often in recipes. To grow garlic, you first separate individual cloves from the garlic bulb. Leave some of the paper hulls on each. You choose a sunny garden location with rich well drained soil. Dig holes or rows approx 1-2 inches deep and plant cloves root side down, 4-6 inches apart in rows 1 1/2-2 ft. apart. Cover with fine soil. In northern climates you should put down 4-6 inches of mulch for winter protection. Garlic will begin growth in late fall or early spring. It is really easy as you can see. Next spring your garlic will begin top growth as soon as the weather starts to warm. The plants will grow vigorously into early summer and around late June you will notice growth cease and the plant greens will begin to yellow and lean over. This signals that the bulbs are ready for harvesting. Carefully dig up the soil and remove your garlic bulbs. You gently brush off soil. Do not wash the bulbs. Garlic can be stored in a warm room away from sunlight. It can last for many months. That's all there is to it to grow garlic. See I told you it was easy. So, there you have it fresh, delicious healthy garlic!

Monday, October 5, 2009


Once again its menu plan Monday. This week I am serving good ole comfort foods.. They are typically inexpensive, uncomplicated, easy to prepare, easy to digest and did I mention tasty? I almost always have the ingrediants on hand. DH and I love comfort foods! So, this week on my menu I am having......

MONDAY- tuna noodle casserole, apricots

TUESDAY- ridiculous easy pot roast with potatoes and carrots, homemade bread with apple butter

WEDNESDAY-beef and noodles( made with leftover roast from Tuesday) green beans

THURSDAY-5 bean soup, cornbread, pumpkin pie

FRIDAY-chicken and rice, butternut squash,

SATURDAY-spaghetti, tossed salad

SUNDAY_ on our own!

For more menu ideas check out Bon Appitite!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Bubblewrap window insulation

As the temperatures turn cooler, I have been thinking about how we can keep our heating bills down.We rent a mobile home so buying new replacement windows is not an option . Heating our little place costs us a fortune every winter.Our windows are those cheap mobile home single paned windows that have storm windows we take down in the spring and put back up in the fall UGH! I have 2 storm windows back up now and 6 more to go. Before I put up the rest, I have found you can use bubble wrap, you know the stuff that is intended for padding for breakables for shipping to stop cold air from creeping in at the windows. Our windows leak like sieves and there is no way to afford replacements even if we didn't rent at this time. I am planning on trying the bubble wrap thing. It is so easy to put up....just cut a piece to fit the size of the window pane, spray the glass with water, and gently press the bubble wrap in place ( bubble side of the wrap against the window) It is pretty effective stuff as they use it in green houses. The water holds the bubble wrap to the window all winter. No need for tape or glue. By placing bubble wrap in the winter it doubles the R value. This could cut the heat loss in half. This is going to be the least expensive and quickest fix to insulate our windows this winter season. You can guess what I'm going to be doing this week.

Applefest 2009

I live a frugal lifestyle and I love it! But, I will be truthful with you, I still waste money....if that's what you like to call it. But, because of DH's and I frugal lifestyle, wasting money, like today at the Apple fest made it all possible. It is a once a year thing DH and I do together. I must say......there is nothing like a full belly, a hot shower and getting into some warm flannel pj's after a cold long rainy drizzling day at the festival. Yes, you heard right a cold drizzling day. But hey, as always we had fun. We go to the apple fest every year! It's our day! and as always we came back home with our bellies bursting full from all that yummy fattening food the festival has to offer. Because everyone knows it all smells so good and you gotta try it all. We ate beef and noodles, ham and beans with corn bread, pork tenderloin sandwich, apple fritters, hot spiced cider, roasted almonds, New Brunswick stew oh yea, caramel apples. Yummmmmm! I think after all this food a diet is in order. Of course the raise a ruckus musical show which is our personal favorite and the wagon ride, cloggers, demonstrations, the magic show. I personally love going through all the craft barns and getting ideas mostly. So, tell me what is your favorite food at festivals? Have you been to any festivals this year?