Recent Posts

The Best Darn Tomato Sauce You Will Ever Make!

We have been busy little bees around here. Tomato season is upon us, and though the tomatoes around here are lacking in size, they are not lacking in taste. My mother-in-law recently made lasagna with her homemade tomato sauce and we discovered something. My husband REALLY prefers her homemade sauce over the canned stuff from the store. This may sound like a “guys always like their momma’s cookin the best” situation, but it’s more than that. The canned stuff always messes up his stomach a little, and he never likes to do leftovers the next day, I have to wait a day before sending leftovers in his lunch. Not so with his mothers homemade stuff. I think it has to do with the fact that there are also carrots and onions in her recipe that help to counter the high acidity from the tomatoes. That’s my best guess at least.

Did I mention that it is D-e-l-i-c-i-o-u-s?!

The first batch we did we froze. Since our freezer is full of a recent frozen fruit purchase, we are canning the next batch. I think we will end up with 10 plus quarts of the tomato sauce. This is my first time canning and I’m so excited! Since its tomatoes there is no water involved, which is kind of a bummer since that is the part I’m really nervous about, but that will have to wait until next time.


This recipe is originally from Tupperware of all places. Back in the day when putting up food was still a normal part of life, Tupperware came out with their Square round freezer containers. They were trying to show how you could freeze your food instead of canning.


Tomato Sauce


You will need:

20 large tomatoes (or in our case, 7lbs of really small tomatoes), washed, cored, and cut into chunks

3 onions chopped (about 4 cups)

4 large carrots or 6 smaller ones (shredded or sliced)

8tsp Parsley

3T Sugar

2T Salt

3/4tsp Pepper

Place all the ingredients into a large pot. Slowly bring to a boil, stirring often.

Lower heat and simmer 45 minutes or until mixture is thickened.

Let cool slightly and then pour into blender or food processor. Start on low and work up to high speed until smooth.

If you are freezing- Pour into serving size containers and allow to cool completely before placing it in the freezer to prevent freezer burn. Secure seal, date it, and place in your freezer.

If you are canning- Return to pot and reheat. Pour into prepared jars, leaving room at the neck. Place sterile flat on and secure ring. Date it and place in your pantry.

Update: It’s probably best if you water bathe them in hot water. You can reheat, pour into the jar and just place them in your pantry, but you need to always pull from the bottom where it is hottest, and you risk them going bad if it wasn’t hot enough (that’s what happened to me. 5 jars of sauce down the drain. Made me sick.) It’s best to follow the instructions in “Ball’s Blue Book Guide to preserving” just to be safe. Sometimes old methods aren’t the best for beginners (like me!)


(Please note the amazon link is my affiliate link)


I am linking this to             The Morris Tribe Blog Carnival

Monday Mommy Confession #40

WARNING: There is a gross factor to this post so don’t say I didn’t warn up! If we as women/moms can’t share this stuff and laugh about it then single women and soon to be mommies aren’t going to get the full, real picture of what our lives are like and what to expect, good and, well, not so good.

I have been blessed with a head FULL of hair. Lots and lots of it. You can ask my hair stylist, she can attest! I get it from my mom. Growing up she had LONG hair, like down to her butt long, and when it was braided it looked like a giant rope. I have not been able to grow it that long, but it is that thick.

I was fortunate that with my first two children I did not experience postpartum hair loss. I didn’t dodge that bullet this time.

Lately I have been spending half my time in the shower pulling off hair from my hands, shoulders, back, and the bottom of my hair.

The shower wall-I stick it there so it won't clog up the drain

One day Joel walked into the bathroom when I was drying off with my back to him and instead of “hey baby”, I got “you know you’re covered with hair right?” Totally not what a girl wants to hear.

everything I pulled off during my shower and I think from brushing my hair afterwards

Oh well, its starting to subside, so hopefully things will get back to normal soon. And really you can’t even tell, I have that much hair people!


Has anyone else been struck by post-baby hair loss?

The Health Benefits of Line Drying Your Clothes

Everybody knows that hanging you clothes out on the line instead of using your dryer saves you money. But did you know there are health benefits to line drying your clothes? Here’s a list I came up with (while hanging out a load of wash).

Get your vitamin D.
Experts say you need 5-30 minutes of sunlight twice a week without sunscreen to receive the vitamin D you need. Spending a few minutes hanging each load will more then get you the dose of vitamin D you need.

Elevate your heart rate. Lugging a basket full of wet clothes is quite the workout. For me it’s up a flight of stairs, through the back door, down three stairs and thirty feet over to the clothes line. Then it’s up and down, up and down, grabbing a new item to hang up. By the time I’m done I’m a little winded.

It’s free quiet time. Do you ever just need a minute of peace and quiet, a little mental health break from your dear children? They may express utter excitement to help you at the beginning of the day, handing you clothes pins and the like, but give them five minutes and they will be bored and leave you alone for the rest of the day!

Spiritual Health. It’s a great time to get some one on one time with God. Depending on where you live, you can even talk out loud without worrying about someone hearing you.

Chase those blues away. According to, in order to keep your serotonin levels up, you need 30 minutes of sunlight each day. Serotonin is what regulates whether you feel super good or depressed (i.e. its a mood regulator). Hang a couple of loads of laundry and you are there.


Do you have any other health benefits to add? Have you experienced any of the benefits listed above?


I’m linking this to:

            The Morris Tribe Blog Carnival

Our Move to Kansas: We’re Here!

The month of June was a long and full one. First my youngest brother’s wedding, and then we left the very next day for vacation with Joel’s family, then three full weeks of packing.

Joel and my brother loaded up a truck full of our belongings and drove them down a week and a half before the actual move, with the hopes of being able to do some work on the rental to get it ready before we move to go on the market after the renters moved out. Alas, we still had more packing and errand running to do before we left so we didn’t get to it. We’ll be making a trip back this week to hopefully finish up the house and get in on the market. By then my brother and his roommate will be completely moved out and we can blow through the work!

For now, and the next couple of months or so, we will be staying with Joel’s parents while Joel starts the business and we look for a house to rent that fits our needs (and our budget).

We still have some belongings in Nebraska. We were going to rent a trailer and haul it down when we came done but decided it was too hot and would put too much strain on the engine. So it is staying for now and we will bring it back this week when we return and drive home at night so that it will be cool enough.

We also left our other car in Nebraska. We are trying to sell it and it seemed less complicated to sell it in Nebraska versus licensing it, drive it down to Kansas, sell it here, and then return the plates to the DMV in Nebraska to get our refund. We’ll see how it works out. We may end of driving it back to Kansas anyway.

For now, we are settling in as best as we can. Most of our stuff is in storage, with just the essentials with us at the house. I look forward to having our own place and getting to see my things that have been packed away for the last two years. I also look forward to getting rid of a lot of stuff. We sent boxes and boxes to the Goodwill when we moved out to my parents, but I think I will find the makings of a decent garage sale when I start unpacking everything!

Well, that’s it for now. Thanks for listening to my ramblings.

Do you have anything exciting happening in your family this summer?

I’m linking this to:            &   The Morris Tribe Blog Carnival

Monday Mommy Confession # 39

Working out when you have children means a twenty Minute workout is really a 35 min workout with multiple “water breaks”. So much for keeping my heart rate up.

And this was DURING nap time. Sheesh!


Tell me, what do you do to get an uninterrupted workout?

Recipe: Texas Caviar

Guest Post by: Andi S.


Today’s delicious recipe is…drum roll please……Texas Caviar! It is the perfect light and refreshing chip dip for a hot summer day – sweet and sassy. Great for a side dish or even an appetizer! The recipe makes so much for very little cost. It is the easiest, cheapest, and most delicious side! You can’t beat that.


Here is that abundant Texas Caviar recipe:

2 cups celery

1 onion (I use 1/2 white onion)

1 drained can shoepeg corn

1 drained can pinto beans

1 drained can black eyed peas

1 drained can black beans

1 small jar pimentos

Lay’s Fritos Scoops

Mix all of the canned beans, corn, and pimentos in a large bowl.

Dice the celery and white onion and throw it into the mix.

Mix everything well.

Boil and stir: 3/4 cup sugar and 3/4 cup white vinegar until sugar is dissolved. Let it cool completely.  Add 1/2 cup veggie oil. Now pour this over all the veggie/bean mix and stir well!

It’s best if it’s refrigerated for 24 hours before serving.

Bon appetite!

 Andi is an avid reader, tea drinker, and adventurer. She hopes to someday see Sequoia trees in California and a Wimbledon match on a beautiful June afternoon. She recently graduated from Creighton University and will continue to pursue God’s will for her life.

I’m linking to:   

This Crazy Life

So as I shared here, baby Lucy joined our family almost two weeks ago. It’s been kind of crazy around here. Not only have we been making the adjustments to having a baby back in the picture, but in less than two weeks my baby brother is going to be getting married here at the farm! There has been lots of hustle and bustle trying to get everything ready for the wedding. They will be getting married in front of the barn in the “forest”, so there has been a lot of clearing of trees, weeds and misc. trash left by the previous owner that was never taken care of. It is looking amazing out there. There was also lots of busyness in the house as well. We are doing all the food ourselves so we spent the weekend baking cupcakes and cooking pasta and throwing it in the deep freezer.

Yesterday was my mom’s last day of work, so after that we will be spending lots of time cleaning the main floor for the wedding.

There is still so much to do! The girls’ dresses are ordered but they still need shoes, Joel still needs a tie and socks, I still need to get my dress (did I mention that four of the five of us are IN the wedding! Lucy gets to hang with Grammie during the wedding.)

Then the day after the wedding we leave for vacation with Joel’s family. Are we crazy? YES! But after all of this I am looking forward to vacation and having lots of family who want to play with my girls. I’m hoping to get caught up on some of the lost sleep I’ll have accumulated over the weeks leading up to vacation.


Tell me, what kind of craziness do you have going on at your house right now?

And Now There Are Five!

Just a short 11 days ago we welcomed Lucy Annabell Terrell to our family. It was 10:29pm on May 11th, and after 14 hours of labor, our 10lb 4oz, 23 ¾ long baby girl joined us earth side! She is such a beauty and a joy! I will share the details of her birth later, but I wanted to take a minute and properly introduce her to you.

Thank you all for your prayers and well wishes as we waited for Lucy to join us!

Monday Mommy Confession #38

I know I’ve shared about the unrolling of toilet paper in my house before, and it’s no surprise that it happened again. This time though, my eldest roll it all back up again. It was scary though. I forgot to take a picture of her finished product. I’m a little obsessed when it comes to toilet paper being rolled back up. I know it’s not going to look perfect, but I like it to look nice. And since I have nowhere to stash it that the girls wouldn’t discover and use it for their various projects, I have to resort to re-rolling it back on to the tube.

Here is what it looked like after I re-rolled it:

I know some would say why bother, but it doesn’t happen very often so I’m not going crazy over it. Matter of fact, I think I can count on one hand how many times it has happen with both girls total.

So tell me, what is your little quirk?

Monday Mommy Confession #37


Today, instead of sharing with you one of my less than perfect moments, I’m going to brag on my girls. Not everything in the life of a mommy calls for a slap to the forehead. There are lots of really great things that happen and often times they can happen without any instigation from the mommy.

I really do have two of the most thoughtful girls. Even at 3 ½ and 2, they are thinking about how I feel and how to make it better.

A few days ago, we were getting ready for breakfast and Emma remembered me saying that it hurt me to sit on the kitchen chairs (this discussion took place two nights earlier when I switched out my chair for the birthing ball). She then declared that she needed to remove my chair so that I could sit on the ball. I tried to tell her that was unnecessary, but when I turned around she had already removed the chair and her and her sister were rolling the ball in from the porch! They rolled it into place and patted it, proudly saying “there you go mommy! Now you can sit on the ball and your bottom won’t hurt!” (Keep in mind, I’m 40 weeks pregnant so that’s why it hurts to sit on hard wooden chairs).

Oh, they were sooo proud of themselves. I couldn’t help but smile.

Was I going to sit in the chair? Yes, I was and probably would have been fine. But how could I say no to such awesome thoughtfulness and servanthood from my girls.

Are they always such sweet angels? Ah, no. Matter of fact we had multiple melt downs before breakfast. Such is the bi-polar lives of children. My girls bless me so much though and I could brag on them all day!


Tell me, what is something your kids have done that totally blessed you?