The Thomas Jefferson Way

I’m homeschooling now. I was avoiding writing about it here on my blog because I considered this a food blog. Then as I thought it about it the other day, I changed my mind. Having only a food blog is not very balanced. I do so much more than just cook. (Although that does take up a majority of my day.)  I make art quilts, mother, homeschool, organize, clean, can food, mend clothes, energy work and the list goes on.  This blog is about finding balance. As I desperately try to do that I want to share what I do with all of you!

I follow a philosophy of education called Leadership Education or Thomas Jefferson Education. I am new to this.  I read a book about it almost 2 years ago as I brought my oldest child home from public school.  I found it inspiring but didn’t pursue it more.  Then last October I brought my other 2 children home.  Then I started to panic.  My oldest had a lot of education under his belt since he was in 7th grade. All year I left him to  himself to find his path. Little did I know how well that was working.  I was just so busy with other kids and I knew he was detoxing and I felt the Lord tell me to chill.

So this last few months I’ve read a lot more of the Leadership Ed books and joined a commonwealth.  I am now one of the co-directors and the treasurer. It’s been very busy.  My middle two have been detoxing and they are doing great. I love seeing them being in charge of their education. I love that I don’t have to sit down and require things of them. It’s all about me learning and studying which has reawakened a love of reading and writing I had left behind for years.  I love learning along with my kids. Whatever they are excited about I help them find books or websites about it and we study together.  It’s so great!  I help my children find their mission in life and I see that I am finally finding mine!

I’m so grateful for the balance that homeschooling has brought to my family.  We have our days of imbalance as we adjust to everyone being home all the time but it’s worth it!

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Homeschool

I haven’t been on here for quite some time. My life got turned upside down with the decision to homeschool my kiddos. It’s been wonderful and so far I love it. New recipes have been on the back burner and will be for a while. I’m hoping to share some of my homeschool successes on here as well. If you need a certain recipe let me know and I can put it up. I just recently made one that I love. It’ll come soon. Think Brats!

My email has been hacked

I think my email might have been hacked so if you get a weird email saying outstanding news don’t open it. I will get back to you when I know what to do. You can contact me via facebook if you need me.

My email has been hacked

I think my email might have been hacked so if you get a weird email saying outstanding news don’t open it. I will get back to you when I know what to do. You can contact me via facebook if you need me.

Grass-fed Butter Makes Everything Better

I was just about to buy some butter from Azure Standard. We typically buy Rumiano butter. It grassfedis grass fed with no hormones. It is fantastic! I have never tasted a better butter out there. I think it’s better than Kerrygold and far cheaper.  Well last month I bought some for $2.15/lb which is amazing for grass-fed butter. I wish I would have bought 3 cases. Alas, I did not and now the price shot up to $4.00/lb.  I was having a little sticker shock over here so I started shopping for more types of butter that Azure carried. Willow Maid is one that several other bloggers use. I started to research if it was grass-fed. Which I haven’t found any info on it yet. I did a pretty in depth web search (which means I spent more that 30 min on it.) to no avail. So I called Rumiano cause I found some website that said they maid it.

Yeah I called the company. Anyone who knows me knows I don’t like making phone calls to strangers.  Well I got to talk to the guy who makes the actual Rumiano butter! (Wish I would have thought ahead to chat with him last month when we actually visited the Rumiano cheese factory in Crescent City, CA while on vacation with my kids to see the Redwoods.)  He was very nice and very helpful. I thought I’d pass on the information that he shared.

He said Rumiano packages the Willow Maid but it doesn’t come from their milk that makes the Rumiano butter.  So still don’t know where the milk comes from for WIllow Maid.  Rumiano butter is actually 84% butter fat. Typical butter is 80% butter fat. They also process their butter European style. Which makes it creamier with a better texture. (Boy is it!!)  Their cream comes from Jersey cows that are local to California and eat mostly grass all year round. They also purchased new equipment that has helped them have a superior product.   I asked him about the price going up and he said there is butter shortage going on, he didn’t know why and that dairy prices in general have been crazy lately. Which I have to agree with. Usually in spring the dairy prices go down but butter at Costco was almost $2.50/lb the other day.  Really the best prices I saw on butter was last November to December. I stocked up on Land O Lakes butter at $1.44/lb one day.  I bought a 20 lb case and about 1/2 way through learned it is produced by a Monsanto company! Ack! Well we finished the box but we won’t be buying that kind of butter anymore.

The only place I’ve found where you can get this fabulous butter is Azure Standard.  Buy it by the case of 15 lbs to get a better price. It freezes marvelously even just in the original packaging. When you open it you will see it’s very very yellow. Now when I have to buy store bought butter (gasp!) it is almost white in comparison.

That very yellow color comes from the cows eating grass which then makes CLA or conjugated lineolic acid, which has strong anticancer properties and it encourages build up of muscle and prevents weight gain(Nourishing Traditions, p 17). But this precious nutrient disappears when cows are fed even a little grain.

So how do I balance paying such a steep price for butter?

#1 Try to but it when the price goes down and stock up.

#2 Rotate using other healthy fats such as coconut oil, palm oil, homemade lard (cheapest).

#3 Because of the high butterfat content you don’t need as much. I find when we put this butter on popcorn we taste it better and we use less. It’s like buying concentrated butter.Kind of.

#4 When we ate popcorn with store bought butter (I was out and my azure order is due today.) I felt a little sick afterward. I don’t feel that way after eating popcorn with Rumiano butter on it.

So I really get no kickback or free anything from this post. Wish I did. But I don’t. Don’t know how to go about doing that. So if some company namely Rumiano wants to send me some free butter for advertising for them, feel free! I’ll tell you if they do.

Stuffed Acorn Squash: The Perfect Fall Meal

This is one of my all time favorite fall recipes. It’s really easy and pretty cheap. It’s easy to make double it or make it for one.  I love winter squash. It’s so versatile. You can bake it, saute it, puree it, fry it put it in muffins or pies. Can you tell I love it?  I should grow more of it. I only got 5 butternut squash this year. One year I grew only acorn squash in a small little garden I had. That’s it, just squash, and the one plant produced over 50 acorn squash!! Yea, I’ve never had a crop like that, actually after that I couldn’t look at another acorn squash for years.  I’m back to loving it again.  My kids love this recipe as well. I will try to remember to take a great picture of it to post here at a later date.  I’m really not good at photography and don’t intend to learn how to get better at it as I have enough on my plate.  Oh well, there is my big confession for the day.

Stuffed Acorn Squash

Ingredients

  • acorn squash
  • 24 oz ground pork or turkey
  • 1 c chopped celery
  • 1 c onion chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 3/4 c applesauce
  • 4 slices whole wheat bread cubed (3 cups)

Halve squash; discard seeds. Place cut side down, in baking dish or on a cookie sheet. Bake, uncovered, in a 350 degree oven for 50 minutes.

Meanwhile, for stuffing, in a skillet cook pork, celery, & onion till meat is no longer pink and veggies are tender. Stir in salt, curry powder, and cinnamon; cook 1 min more. Stir in applesauce and bread cubes.
Turn squash cut side up in dish. Place stuffing in squash halves. Bake, uncovered, 20 minutes more.

This works great to cook the squash early in day while prepping lunch and make the stuffing, then place in fridge. Then assemble and bake when ready to eat dinner. This feeds my family of 6 nicely.