Pioneer Momma

Trading the city life for the simple life.

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Pioneer Momma
Pioneer Momma

Big Changes in the Works…

Mornin’ friends!  Just a quick post to let you know about the upcoming changes on Pioneer Momma!  I am super excited about these, so join me in my happy dance, will you? :-)

1.  I wrote a book!  Well, an ebook, and it’s FREE!  See that new bar at the top of your screen?  That is where you so graciously enter your email to sign up for the brand new weekly newsletter.  In exchange, you get a free ebook!  It’s called Six from One: 6 delicious recipes from one pot of chicken stock.  A worthwhile read, if I do say so myself.  The weekly newsletter will be an alternative to getting daily post updates, and you’ll be first to know about upcoming giveaways, events, and projects.  Plus I’ll probably throw in some freebies every once in a while, cause that’s how I roll.  Who doesn’t love free stuff?

2.  The shop is open!  There’s only two items in it right now, but not to worry, there will be bunches soon.  I figured I’d open it now, and add as items are completed.  Any suggestions?  Shoot me an email here and I’d love to hear what you’re looking for!

3.  The Weekly Worksheets for next year will be a little different.  There will be one primary worksheet, which will be the free version on the blog.  If you prefer more use out of your worksheet, I have more thorough (and super cute) versions in the shop.  The one you see below works for every week, as you can input the week in the top right.  I am also working on a 12 month variation of this worksheet, so there will be themes according to what month/holiday is coming up.  You’ll be able to get the whole package all at once, in one convenient download.

2015 Weekly Planner Worksheet

4.  I’m writing a real book!  This announcement may be a bit premature, as I am still in the beginning stages and searching out a publisher.  But from what I’ve researched, I’d better have a darn good pitch to get the hardcover version published the way I want.  BUT, I fully believe in my idea, and am completely determined to make it work.  Since it would be my first published version, if I don’t get picked up, I’ll make it an ebook. :-)

5.  I’ve updated a few things in the look of the blog.  I think it flows better, and I’ll probably alter things in the future, but I’m pretty happy with how it looks right now.

That’s not all!  I have a few things up my sleeve that I am working on, and will announce them as soon as I can.  So kindly enter your email right up there at the top, check out the latest linkup, and stick around for some gettin’ back to basics fun!

Y’all have a wonderful day :-)

 

 

**THIS WEEK’S BOOK CLUB QUESTION:  This is the last week of reading Leaving Time, by Jodi Picoult.  What do you anticipate the ending to be?  What were your overall thoughts on the story?  About the elephants?  Email your answers here to be included in the final post.

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What’d You Do This Weekend? #55

Is everyone done prepping menus for Thanksgiving?  I know we all say this each year, but it seems like time has gone by so fast!  Hubby’s got Thursday all planned out, and I even have our Christmas dinner mapped.  Talk about thinking ahead!  This is probably the first time ever that I’ve been so prepared.

Bubba’s parent teacher conference went super well, and he is one of the class’s top students.  Have you ever heard of lattice multiplication?  Holy moly, I hadn’t until he brought it home one day and taught me…where was that when I was a kid??  No dropping zeros??  I’m all for that.

You might notice something different at the top of the page (look up!)…if you aren’t a fan of daily emails, but still want to keep up with the projects, recipes, stories, and giveaways, you can drop in your email to get the weekly newsletter.  Once a week you’ll get a fun newsletter filled with the posts and other tid-bits of the week prior (AND super secret updates for future events!).  A big thank you for those of you who’ve already signed up!

This week I shared Holiday Sweet Potato Mousse, Free Multi-purpose Fall labels, and my contributor post for Eyes on the Source for Roasted Butternut Squash Soup.  I’ve also got this week’s worksheet for you!  Click here or on the pic below to print yours out and start planning your week.

Weekly Worksheet: 2014 Week 48 (printable) by PioneerMomma.com

Click to print yours!

 

Holiday Sweet Potato Mousse by PioneerMomma.com  Roasted Butternut Squash Soup by PioneerMomma.com for Eyes on the Source

Hope y’all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!! :-)

On to the features!  As always, I love to see what everyone’s been doing, and Stumbled, pinned, and shared many of your posts.  Be sure to check out Tumbleweed Contessa for her favorites of the week.  Here are mine:

MOST VIEWED:  GARLIC ROSEMARY ROASTED POTATOES BY PINK RECIPE BOX

Garlic Rosemary Roasted Potatoes Recipe | www.pinkrecipebox.com

Garlic Rosemary Roasted Potatoes Recipe | www.pinkrecipebox.com

FEATURES:

Herb and Butter Roasted Turkey Breast by Simple Recipes

Herb and Butter Roasted Turkey Breast by Simple Recipes

Payday Bars by Tackling Life

Payday Bars by Tackling Life

Clay and Glitter Ornaments by Happy Girly Crafty

Clay and Glitter Ornaments by Happy Girly Crafty

Now, let’s get on with this week’s linkup!  To old, new, and future bloggy friends, welcome to the party!  I can’t wait to see what y’all bring to the table.  Link up as much as you want, and those ideas will be shared on BOTH blogs.  Be sure to say hello!  So share, mingle, create, and have fun!  Feel free to grab a button at the bottom of the post.

By linking up, you agree to let Pioneer Momma use the picture linked by you, in the case of a feature.  If I am unable to grab the pic from your page, you will get an email from me in the couple days ahead of the linkup requesting a pic file to use.  Each feature pic includes a link back to your original post.  The features are pinned and shared on various social media, each linking directly back to your original post.  Thanks for linking up with us!

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Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup by PioneerMomma.com for Eyes on the SourceI’ve been fascinated this year, throughout our gardening experience, about the wide assortments of squashes there are.  I mean summer squash or zucchini, pattypan squash, all the winter squashes; it’s amazing!  Probably the best part about all of them is the wide variety of delicious dishes you can create using them.

Butternut are one of the squashes currently in season.  And what better way to enjoy it then to have a yummy warm cup of Roasted Butternut Squash Soup?  The whole family absolutely loves this recipe.  In Bubba’s words, “Mom, will you PLEASE make this again??”.  Can always count on that kid for an honest opinion!

This soup is uber healthy, as butternut squash is packed full of beta-carotene, antioxidants, and vitamins.  Need fiber?  Yup, it’s got that, too.  Pair it with the antibacterial properties of garlic, and delicious spices, and you’ve got a scrumptious meal option fit for a healthy body.  After all, with all the Christmas goodies coming up, it would probably be nice to have a cleaner soup option on the menu to break it up!

**Want to see the recipe?  I’m over at Eyes on the Source today sharing it and would love for y’all to stop by!  See you there :-)

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Free Multi-purpose Printable Fall Labels

Remember what I said about organizing the other day?  Well pretty much every piece of holiday decor came from raggedy boxes I have no plan to use in the future.  In the recycling bin with those!  While this is kind of a good thing, since it means I get to replace the boxes with nice big Rubbermaid containers, I really had my heart set on pretty labels!

These free Multi-purpose Printable Fall Labels can be used for so many things (check the ideas on the side of the sheet!).  I have some on a few jars of pectin-free strawberry jam I plan to gift this season, and am working on some place holders for Thanksgiving.  For those, simply cut out and fold some matching card stock, and secure the label to it.  There really are so many uses for pretty little labels, the possibilities are endless.

These are yours, free!  Click here or on the picture to print yours out.  Enjoy!

Free Printable Multi-purpose Fall Labels by PioneerMomma.com

**Show me your label uses on Instagram!  I love to see your creative ideas!

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Holiday Sweet Potato Mousse Recipe

Holiday Sweet Potato Mousse by PioneerMomma.comRemember this delicious guest post I did for Scarlett’s Excellent Adventures last year?  I thought it’d be high time to bring it back here in time for Thanksgiving next week (yes, next week!  Yikes!).  Meal planning has been coming along nicely, and it seems to get only easier to adjust to the dietary requirements of family as time goes on.

One of the biggest things we have needed to change in the last few years is our eating habits.  My son eats a gluten free diet and I have developed so many allergies it is a joke in our house that all I can digest is cardboard (they are getting better, though!).  We like to eat as natural as possible, and as healthy as possible.  An easy way to transition into a lighter fare is to base new recipes off of traditional favorites.

Thanksgiving is full of traditional favorites, and a huge one around here is sweet potato casserole.  I came up with a lighter version of the dish, this Holiday Sweet Potato Mousse recipe, which means tasty goodness and less guilt!  The following recipe tastes best if you eat it right away (warm sweet potatoes), and you can season more or less to taste.  I like the sweet potato to be the main star of the show, so my seasoning isn’t too strong.  If you want more of a spiced flavor, add some more in.  It’s versatile!  Happy eating!

HOLIDAY SWEET POTATO MOUSSE

(serves about 4-5 small parfaits)

Ingredients

1 large sweet potato

1 egg

1/2 tsp. cloves

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Crumble Ingredients

1 small bag sweet potato Pop Chips

1/4 tsp. molasses

2 tsp. brown sugar

1/4 tsp. ginger

3/4 tsp. coconut oil

Directions

1.  Crush the bag of Pop Chips and pour into small bowl.  Add molasses, brown sugar, ginger, and melted coconut oil.  Mix well, until coated, then set aside.

2.  Peel and cut the sweet potato into chunks, then boil them in large pot of water until softened.  Drain water from potatoes.

3.  Empty potatoes into large mixing bowl and whip on med-high speed with egg.  If you are a little wary about not cooking the egg, theoretically the egg cooks with the heat of the potatoes.  Or you can do what I did and just nuke it in the microwave for a minute after whipping. :-)

4.  Continue whipping the sweet potato and add in cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon.

5.  Layer small parfait glasses with crumble, then sweet potatoes, then a dollop of fat free whipped cream, then garnish with remaining crumble.

Voila!  That’s all!  They are super simple to make, and look like a million bucks.  Just don’t tell your guests how easy it really was…Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

 

**This week’s Book Club question:  “Compare and contrast the memory and relationship interaction of an elephant herd with their matriarch with that of a human mother and child.  Why do you think the author is sharing these little lessons throughout the story?”  Email your answer to me here to be included in Friday’s post!

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What’d You Do This Weekend? #54

How was everyone’s weekend?  Ours has been full of evening walks in town, pulling out the Christmas decorations, and planning the holiday menus.  The Christmas lights in town are going up nicely, and one tree is even lit early (sneaky little dude!).  Hubby’s knee is doing super well, and he is recovering from surgery quite nicely.

On our most recent walk we went into a book store that also sells art, and I finally got up the courage to inquire about it.  Turns out, anyone can bring their paintings in, and it can be added to the register!  I have an “appointment” to talk to the owner again after the holidays, when the artwork will be rotated for new artists.  So nervous about selling my work, but kind of excited to try it!  Here is one from my Instagram that I had done a few months ago, between running errands through the day.

Minus the watermark, of course :-)

So hopefully I can come up with some more, and we will see what happens!

On to the features!  As always, I love to see what everyone’s been doing, and Stumbled, pinned, and shared many of your posts.  Be sure to check out Tumbleweed Contessa for her favorites of the week.  Here are mine:

MOST VIEWED: OVER 50 INEXPENSIVE HANDMADE GIFTS THAT THEY WILL LOVE TO RECEIVE BY FINDING MORGAN

Over 50 Inexpensive Handmade Gifts That They Will Love to Receive by Finding Morgan

Over 50 Inexpensive Handmade Gifts That They Will Love to Receive by Finding Morgan

FEATURES

Homemade Doughnuts Recipe - Little House Living

Homemade Doughnuts Recipe – Little House Living

Holiday Ambrosia Salad by New South Charm

Holiday Ambrosia Salad by New South Charm

5 Dog Safe Thanksgiving Foods by Two Little Cavaliers

5 Dog Safe Thanksgiving Foods by Two Little Cavaliers

Now, let’s get on with this week’s linkup!  To old, new, and future bloggy friends, welcome to the party!  I can’t wait to see what y’all bring to the table.  Link up as much as you want, and those ideas will be shared on BOTH blogs.  Be sure to say hello!  So share, mingle, create, and have fun!  Feel free to grab a button at the bottom of the post.

By linking up, you agree to let Pioneer Momma use the picture linked by you, in the case of a feature.  If I am unable to grab the pic from your page, you will get an email from me in the couple days ahead of the linkup requesting a pic file to use.  Each feature pic includes a link back to your original post.  The features are pinned and shared on various social media, each linking directly back to your original post.  Thanks for linking up with us!

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Weekly Worksheet: 2014 Week 47 (free printable)

Can you believe the holidays are here?  Already??  It seems the year has flown by!  We weren’t really too much in the holiday spirit last year, but this year all of us are beyond excited.  We took a lovely walk around town the other night to see where the Christmas lights will be this year.  That main street is absolutely beautiful this time of year, between the old architecture and the twinkling lights.  Love it.  That is one aspect that I will definitely miss about living here.  But I’m sure our forever home will have something similar nearby.  Hey, even if it doesn’t, we can make our own glittery wonderland!

Some of you are already getting feet of snow!  How are you liking it?  What is your favorite way to keep warm?

This week’s worksheet features a lovely fall tree, as the ones near us are midway into losing their leaves.  The streets get littered with beautiful oranges, browns, yellows, and pinks.  Yes, pinks!

Weekly Worksheet: 2014 Week 47 (free printable) by PioneerMomma.com

Click to print your worksheet!

Here’s how our week will look…

What’s for dinner?

Sunday – Chili dogs and french fries

Monday – Chicken Tikka Masala with garlic hummus, rice, and flat bread (recipes up soon!)

Tuesday – Beef stir fry with steamed veggies

Wednesday – Fish (whatever is in the freezer) with rice and steamed veggies

Thursday – Crock pot meal (TBD)

Friday – Leftovers

Saturday – Boys’ Night

***

This week’s goals:

Home – Put out all Christmas decorations and label boxes/containers as we go.

Personal – Take vitamins every morning (I tend to easily forget to do this, but I feel a scratchy throat coming on)

Blog – Finish packets and organize for ease of transfer.

Tackle – Make fall chandelier and post tutorial

***

Focus Word:

System

I chose this word because we are taking out all the Christmas decorations, and I tend to just put them in whatever boxes I can find.  It would make it easier to label boxes as we take things out, so next year we can get it all done in only a few hours!

Ready to plan your week?  Click here or on the picture above to print out your free weekly worksheet printable.  Happy planning!

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Book Club Friday: Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult (Nov. #1)

Leaving Time by Jodi PicoultThis month we are reading Leaving Time, by Jodi Picoult. The novel is based around Jenny, a thirteen year old girl, who is desperately searching for answers about her mother’s unreported disappearance ten years earlier. So far, I find it quite an interesting read.

One thing that surprised me is that Jenny is just a kid. I thought that she was in her twenties, from the summaries I read. Could have completely stepped over that fact, though. Needless to say, it did take a minute to get used to, since we would be hearing (audiobook) the story from her perspective. She is a very intelligent character and so far, has a good story development.

Serenity is the psychic that Jenny seeks out for help finding her mother. I quite liked the background of Serenity, regarding her former fame and fall, after the case with the little boy. I felt for her, and could easily see why she was stressed at the thought of involving herself in Jenny’s case.

I’m not quite sure about Jenny’s father. Part of me wants to fast forward to see what really happened, and if what happened had anything to do with having a breakdown and not reporting Alice’s disappearance. I do know that I didn’t really care for the description of the facility he was in. Maybe that’s because we have been on the other side, but eh..that part just irked me a bit.

I stopped reading when we find out about the private detective, and that he may or may not be Virgil, the original detective on the case ten years ago. I am very excited to see how that pans out, and if it is him, why did he “die”? What happened to the ceremony? Why is he in hiding?

Now about the wallet. My jaw did drop when Jenny pulled the scarf out of the tree and down came Alice’s wallet. Part of me now thinks that she really is dead. The other part really wants to know how her wallet got twenty feet up in a tree in the first place!

This week I asked what you make of the use of elephants in the story. I think that the journal entries and the descriptive pieces about the elephants relationships have a kind of parallel to human relationships. Especially when referring to the mother and calf, after the stillborn birth. That story, and the first one we hear, about the one in the zoo, were very hard to hear. I never really knew so much about them, and am glad the author included them so effortlessly into the story.

How about you? What do you think of the book so far? Do you think that Serenity is regaining her third sight? How do you suppose Alice’s wallet got stuck in the tree? What happened to Jenny’s father? I’d love to hear!

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Garden Fresh Salsa Recipe

**This post was originally written by me, for my contributing post for Eyes On The Source.  Thought it was time to bring it back here for some more bloggy love, and help you use up the rest of those tomatoes!**

Garden Fresh Salsa Recipe by PioneerMomma.com for Eyes On The Source

The harvest time for most tomatoes is coming to an end right about now.  Fortunately, you can still make some delicious dishes with the few still left on the vines!  Normally I would preserve ours by canning tomato sauces, chili, that sort of thing.  But when you only have a few tomatoes to use, it’s time for salsa!

This recipe is super easy, and the whole family loves it.  This salsa is kind of a play on pico de gallo, just with a few more goodies.  My son doesn’t like cilantro too much, but ate it up in this salsa recipe.  He had tacos for miles!

We used both red Roma tomatoes and Yellow Pear tomatoes.  The Yellow Pear tomatoes are about the size of a cherry tomato, but have a pear shape and a bit milder taste.  They are so fun to eat!  We got these from a gardening neighbor, but will definitely be growing them next year.  The plants produce hundreds!

Garden Fresh Salsa Recipe by PioneerMomma.com for Eyes On The Source

Ready to make some salsa?  Let’s get started!  Here’s what we did:

Ingredients

7 small Roma tomatoes

7 Yellow Pear tomatoes

1 Tbsp minced garlic

juice of 1 lime

1/4 Cup chopped cilantro

1/3 brown onion (can chop this into smaller pieces if preferred, before going into blender)

1 1/2 Serrano chiles (test them first!  Each one can have a different amount of heat.  If you like more, keep the seeds.  If you need it milder and find the chiles hot enough themselves, seed them before adding them to the mix)

Salt and black pepper to taste

Directions

1.  Rinse and dry all veggies.  Cut the tomatoes in halves and place in blender.  Add garlic, lime juice, cilantro, brown onion, chiles, and salt and pepper.  Pulse about 4-5 times, until a pretty consistent texture has been achieved.  Voila!  Salsa :-)  Although you can eat it right away, you’ll get the best taste by covering it and placing it in the fridge for about an hour before serving.

Garden Fresh Salsa Recipe by PioneerMomma.com for Eyes On The Source

Hope y’all enjoy this recipe!  It is a great way to start saying goodbye to summer and hello to the fall season.

**What type of tomatoes do you like to use for your salsa?  Do you add different types of chiles?  I’d love to hear!**

Garden Fresh Salsa Recipe by PioneerMomma.com for Eyes On The Source

**Book Club question:  What do you make of the elephants thus far and how they are used in the story?  Email your answer here to be included in Friday’s post!**

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What’d You Do This Weekend? #53 (and this week’s worksheet!)

My not-so-little boy turned ten today!  I can still remember his big bald baby head like it was yesterday.  How time flies, and it’s been quite a ride.  That kid has taught me more in ten years than I’ve learned my whole life.  I am so incredibly proud of him and all the hard work he’s done to accomplish everything he has.  Happy birthday, Bubba!  Mommy loves you :-)

In keeping with that theme, I’m putting up this week’s worksheet, made in a birthday party theme!  Gotta celebrate all we can!  Click here or on the pic to get your free printable worksheet and start planning.

2014 Weekly Worksheet: Week 46 (free printable) by PioneerMomma.com

Click the pic to get yours printed!

On to the features!  As always, I love to see what everyone’s been doing, and Stumbled, pinned, and shared many of your posts.  Be sure to check out Tumbleweed Contessa for her favorites of the week.  Here are mine:

MOST VIEWED:  STARBUCKS-INSPIRED CINNAMON DOLCE LATTE BY PINK RECIPE BOX

Starbucks-Inspired Cinnamon Dolce Latte Recipe | www.pinkrecipebox.com

Starbucks-Inspired Cinnamon Dolce Latte Recipe | www.pinkrecipebox.com

FEATURES

Spicy Beef Chili - The Salty Kitchen

Spicy Beef Chili – The Salty Kitchen

Yoga with Kids by The Seasoned Mom

Yoga with Kids by The Seasoned Mom

DIY 3D Flower Wall Hanging |  littleredwindow.com

DIY 3D Flower Wall Hanging | littleredwindow.com

Now, let’s get on with this week’s linkup!  To old, new, and future bloggy friends, welcome to the party!  I can’t wait to see what y’all bring to the table.  Link up as much as you want, and those ideas will be shared on BOTH blogs.  Be sure to say hello!  So share, mingle, create, and have fun!  Feel free to grab a button at the bottom of the post.

By linking up, you agree to let Pioneer Momma use the picture linked by you, in the case of a feature.  If I am unable to grab the pic from your page, you will get an email from me in the couple days ahead of the linkup requesting a pic file to use.  Each feature pic includes a link back to your original post.  The features are pinned and shared on various social media, each linking directly back to your original post.  Thanks for linking up with us!

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Eyes on the Source Contributing Writer

DIY Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer by PioneerMomma.com

Holiday Sweet Potato Mousse by PioneerMomma.com
PioneerMomma.com Thankful Turkey Thanksgiving Craft for Kids
Free Printable Chore Chart for Kids by PioneerMomma.com

Free Printable Chore Chart!

Shaklee Independent Distributor, Kelly Burtelson

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