Friday, May 8, 2009

Homemade Frozen Pops!

Hey, I am back for at least today with a fun little treat. Without giving much gory explanation I have been dealing with horrible morning sickness and battling on and off with dehydration as a result. It has been a wild ride, but thank the Lord for sea-bands, ginger, modern medication, smart doctors, loving friends/family and the approaching second trimester!

My son and I made home made applesauce today and turned a good portion of it into Popsicles. We love Popsicles in the summer time, but I refuse to buy the sugar filled ones from the store. These are so easy and incredibly yummy.

You will need to invest ($1-$3) in the Popsicle holders. They have them most places like the dollar store and target.

Here is my home made apple sauce recipe:
Here is the quick how-to. There are many ways to do this. We will experiment to find the best possible applesauce, but will attest that this was pretty darn tasty!

1. Gather your apples, make sure they are a sweet kind such Mac's or Jonathons, your bowl and your lemon juice. Get your peeler ready!

2. Peel your apples and core them.

3. Put your apples into a deep pot of water, add a little lemon juice for taste, and boil.

4. Add your cinnamon and enjoy the smell while the apple's cook!

5. When the apples are mushy remove them with a strainer and process them in a food processer. This will make very smooth applesauce. You can also forgo this option and just smoosh them by hand. This will make nice lumpy applesauce. Either way~ yummy!

Now, eat it up! One 3lb bag of apples made three containers, two of which we turned into popsicles.

We did not add sugar to our applesauce, but you can if you like.

Now, take one more moment and enjoy the remaining juice as cider or make more popsicles out of it! I placed it into a nice pitcher and really savored it. Can't wait to make this again!

Follow this or your own way of doing it. Then place the cooled apple sauce into the Popsicle holders and freeze. These make such GOOD popsicles and they come without the sugar.

We also like to make home made Popsicles out of pear nectar and apricot nectar. I have a memory of my mom using orange juice too. Give it a try. Kids love to make them and it is worth waiting for them to freeze!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

A note from the Out of the Box mommy

Alright, alright...for those of you who have bravely stepped up and shared your opinions on our choice to take a break for the good of our own families, I would like to take a moment to respond. First of all, thank you for those of you who have either understood our choice, or have had responded with grace even though you did not understand. My initial thought was going to just click "delete" when a comment was not encouraging, and move on with my life because I really just don't want to have to answer to anyone at this time, but one comment showed me that it would probably be wrong for me to do that. So, here it is, although, it is only one of several that have said very similar things:

"You do realize some women manage to work full time AND cook while pregnant? And some of them have other kids, too! How hard is it to toss cream of mushroom soup into the crockpot with some random other crap and call it a "meal"? Crystal Paine (Money Saving Mom) is 40+ weeks pregnant with 2 little girls, is still blogging, still twittering AND still cooking.

You are an embarrassment to working mothers, and women in general."

Okay, so several things could be said here. :) I would like to start though, by reminding moms not to size themselves up against other moms. If you feel like you have to do it all because someone else is doing it all, please be encouraged and know that you can take a deep breath and do only what YOU are being called to do. If you feel like you are a failure if you aren't working 40 hours, keeping up a blog, having a perfectly picked up house, spraying on makeup before the hubster comes home, and lighting a candle over dinner each night then PLEASE give yourself a break! Crystal Paine, in particular, is an inspiration and I thank her regularly for the way she has inspired moms. I applaud her for being as efficient as she is. Her blog has gone from a hobby to a full time job and she is marvelous at it. Our blog is still a hobby, and not producing (even remotely) that kind of income. There were days when I was staying up very late to post pictures and I had to ask myself, "why am I doing this?" I needed a break. I was continuing to post just to avoid people leaving comments like the one above. I would HATE for anyone to call me "lazy" or "an embarrassment to women!" so I kept posting. Finally, after admitting where we each were at (I will spare you all the details, although between the three of us: battling depression, morning sickness, and not being home for days at a time is among them) we all said, "You know what? We all need a break. Let's take one. We'll jump back when we can do the blog and not have it be at the expense of our own families, and ourselves.

Fellow moms, are you feeling beaten down? Take time to pour into your spirit and do not let other moms work you down and make you feel small when you don't measure up to the expectations they are placing on themselves. Your situation is unique, just like everyone else. We are all on our own unique journey.

I would like to end with a verse that was in my Bible Study this week.
"Blessed are the merciful, because they will be shown mercy."
Matthew 5:7

Thank you to the ones who have shown us mercy at this time.

Monday, May 4, 2009

"Meal Planning Mommy Land"

Thank you to those of you who have been concerned and missing our posts! It is nice to get positive comments from our readers who really do enjoy our blog.

Would you believe that all 3 of us are pregnant at the same time?! We have a mommy in 1st trimester, one in 2nd and one in 3rd. Not to mention the fact that we already each have 1 or 2 toddlers we are chasing after! I am sure you can imagine the exhaustion, sickness, and overwhelmed feeling we are all 3 going through at the same time!

We absolutely LOVE, LOVE, LOVE doing our blog and do not want to stop posting completely. Over the next few weeks there will not be any new posts until we are feeling up to cooking, posting and spending time online again.

BUT that doesn't mean you should stop visiting our blog! Would you believe that we have posted over 344 times since August of last year? There are around 30 different meal plans (approx. 200 different recipes) archived on this blog for you to re-use over and over! Not to mention all the bonus recipes and feature weeks.

We have some great recipes, freezer meals and lots of great ideas for the future of our blog. Stick with us, readers! Keep checking back, you never know when something new might pop up!

Until that time... keep using our recipes, e-mailing us, and praying for the new additions to our families!