June 2013

After getting the hand me down mixer/blender/food processor from my parents which then proceeded to die while cooking mashed potatoes for 150 (another story); a few years ago we broke down and purchased a Kitchen Aid Mixer. I love it!! We got a great deal and the ice cream maker attachment for free.  I have decided to try to make full use of it this summer.  Earlier in the month I made a delicious non dairy mango sorbet with coconut cream, almond milk, mango, tad bit of sugar and a touch of orange liquor.  Yummy. Since then Nick has been asking for Vanilla, so today was the perfectly hot day.  I found a 4 ingredient vanilla ice cream recipe. With half/half, heavy whipping cream, sugar and vanilla, I have found my new, favorite, easy, no cook vanilla ice cream recipe. The whipping cream made it light and fluffy and it almost overfilled my 2qt ice cream maker.  I then added some Peppermint essential oil and chocolate chips to 2 cups worth and froze the rest as vanilla.  ImageFluffy and Creamy

ImageAll ingredients organic except the vanilla, at 1/2 the price of organic ice cream and with less ingredients too.

ImageMint Chocolate Chip and Vanilla Ice Cream

ImageKitty cat was begging for a treat. . . I put it down to see how fast she would go at it.  I barely had time to grab a camera and snap a picture before she was totally trying to lick at the bowl.  Yuck, I gave her some on my finger!

It is an exciting time of year as I was able to bring home some peas and a bag of spinach this week.  I have been working hard keeping the weeds down at my two garden plots this year.  The weeds kind of got away from me but after spending about 7 hours in each plot it is now manageable to 2-3 times a week when I water, I will also weed.  My fellow gardeners have also shared basil, mint and lettuce with me.  I am loving it.  photo

Here are my snow peas growing up tall and the spinach in front.


First harvest. . . beautiful handful all for me!

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2nd garden was planted a bit later, but the volunteer sunflowers are really taking off this year.

Also growing here is cabbage, peppers, beans, beats, potatoes . . .


My zucchini, lettuce and broccoli plant are doing well.

IMAG00122nd bag full of produce- Spinach, beat tops, purple basil for a yummy salad.

Nick is currently working near Longmont, CO so Friday we took advantage of him already being an hour north of our house and I met him up there so we could explore a different area of CO.  We took off and drove through the Poudre Canyon and enjoyed the beautiful scenery along highway 14.  At highway 103 (Laramie River Road) we headed north towards Wyoming border and found the Tunnel campground. We settled in for the night and on Saturday headed north for a drive and wanting to test Ferns capabilities off roading.  We found some great trails in the North Middle Mountain areas and around the Hohnholz Lakes. We almost wound our way to the other side to CO road 125. We headed back and made a fire to roast some brauts.  Sunday we packed up camp and headed out west on 14 to 125 at Walden. We the headed south towards Granby on Stillwater Pass Road, Forest Road 123. It was a great detour through National Forest and we stopped for lunch with a great view overlooking the town of Grand Lake.  After stopping in Grand Lake for ice cream, we headed into Rocky Mountain National Park. We took Trail Ridge Road through the park, stopping for bathrooms, pictures and small hikes.  Towards the end we found a great little pull off to make some coffee, sit, chat, and watch the wildlife.  We then made our way to Lyons, CO the home of Oscar Blues Brewery and Pub for dinner and beer.  What a great weekend!!


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The weekend of June 21-21 we decided to just camp for one night and then do a warm up hike in Rocky Mountain National Park.  My goal this summer is to hike a 14ner so we need to train and practice.  We headed northwest out of Longmont again and found some national forest right off of Highway 7 in Boulder county very close to the Wild Basin RMNP entrance.  We camped among some great rocks and cooked on the stove due to the fire bans.  Saturday morning after coffee and breakfast we packed up camp and headed to the hike.  I think we got to the trail head by about 9:30. Our goal was to get to Ouzel Lake which is almost 5 miles one way. There was quite a number of people on the trail heading up to Ouzel Falls, then it started to thin out.  We ate lunch at the Lake and enjoyed taking pictures the whole way.  Although after almost 10 miles we were both tired and a bit sore at the bottom.  Heading home for sleep in our bed felt great!

Here is a video of pictures from both weekends.

Almost every year we try to get members from our church to come camping with us over Memorial Day Weekend.  This year we were blessed by the Curry family with an overnight. We then had almost everyone else come join in on the fun Sunday morning.  We made biscuits on a stick and eggs.  Had fun watching kidos and playing games. We found a great spot in Deer Creek Campground right along the creek which was great for sleeping.

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IMG_4101This is what my deck looked like on April 18th.  In great anticipation of wanting to dig in dirt and plant my garden, everything was on my deck and we got snow.  We continued to get snow for another week or so, which made it difficult to get into the garden until much later than I wanted and much later than last year. I guess that is how it goes.  It make me thankful that I can go to the store for food and not depend on what I’ve preserved and can grow.

Anyway, I compensated by growing sprouts, celery and green onions on my window.  The celery I have since planted in my garden.IMG_4115

IMG_4116This is my third year trying sprouts and they really do not like me, except for the squash or pumpkin in the fore ground.  So most of my seeds and plants were planted late April.  I had a fun planting day with friends and their kidos.  Some dug and some ate dirt but we all had fun together.

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