Monday, December 12, 2011


We started making our own yogurt a little while back. It is MY FAVORITE THING TO EAT ON THE PLANET (besides frosting)!
This is so easy to make, it is cheap and has nothing in it but milk! Seriously, this is it:
1. Heat milk up to 180 degrees.
2. Let it cool to 110 degrees.
3. mix in yogurt (from your last batch, or store-bought if this is your first time). I add about 1 1/2-2 cups if making a gallon. For a half gallon, of course, 1 cup would do fine.
4. Pour into clean jars, bowls, whatever.
5. Maintain at 110 degrees for 6-10 hrs.  I place mine into my picnic cooler, add 2 closed mason jars of hot water beside them and place towels around those jars. Shut the cooler and go to sleep for the night. In the morning I put the yogurt in the fridge to chill.

You can strain the yogurt through a cheese cloth if you like greek-style yogurt. This stuff is great! For $2.50 I can have a gallon of yogurt without additives! You can add fruit, any sweetener you like or just eat it plain. But you may never want store-bought again!

It's beginning to look a lot like christmas

I SWORE I wasn't going to decorate for Christmas except for our stockings and our little (2 foot) tree this year. "The kids don't care, no one joins in, I liked when I was little. We had everyone in on it, carols blaring, it was fun." 

Then, the very next day, Wolf pushes away from the dinner table and announces, " What we need is some classic Christmas preparations. Chop, chop, let's get started." Next thing you know, I'm sucking on a candy cane, wearing a Santa costume and happily unwrapping the 17th nutcracker!
Olivia does NOT like Grandma Claus!
Our first gingerbread house! We cheated, we used graham crackers!

We all got into it, even Grandma Jo! The "battle scar" on Vladdie's cheek is his new thing. He markers fake battle damage onto various parts of his body pretty much daily now.

There is a tiny smooshed marshmallow snowman made by Vlad. He has blue facial features. Can you see him?

A gummi bear is fishing for shark (crackers) in his pond!

Vladdie Claus!

So, I never mentioned T-giving this year. We had a lovely day that was very intimate by our standards. Mum and Mark helped us to celebrate and we had a really nice visit with good conversation, and of course great food! We were very casual and enjoyed not caring if the house was clean. Plus, can you say "elastic waistband" ?
I decided to try my bread recipe in a different shape for a change. They were cute! Everyone really enjoyed the roasted butternut squash and cauliflower, another new addition to the usual recipes.

The boys had fun learning about the first Thanksgiving and made Native American headdresses. They really got into "Charlie Brown's Thanksgiving" so next year we might have toast, jelly beans, popcorn and pretzels!