Saturday, July 19, 2014

THM Strawberry Cheesecake in a Jar

I found this cheesecake recipe on Pinterest. It is not a THM recipe, but didn't take much to convert it. The original recipe can be found here. It is for one serving, but I multiplied by 4 to make 4 jar servings.  That way I could freeze some and have a convenient, delicious dessert on hand.  I like this recipe because it doesn't call for whipping cream, which I don't always have.

This is how I made it.

  • 1/2 c fat free sour cream or fat free greek yogurt
  • 3/4 c low fat cream cheese
  •  3 Tbsp Truvia
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs, beaten fluffy 

    Mix together and distribute evenly into 4 236ml greased canning jars.   Microwave, 2 at a time, for 1 min.  Open microwave door for 20 secs.  Then microwave again for 20-30 secs.
    Place in fridge until cooled.  In the meantime, slice enough strawberries to fill the jars to the top. Mix them with some Truvia or other sweetener.  When the cheesecakes are cooled, fill the jar to the top with strawberries and place the lid on.
    They are better eaten the next day, if you can wait. And if you're not going to eat them the next day, put them in the freezer and take out the morning you want one. Just place in the fridge for the day and you will have a delicious, healthy dessert waiting for you.

    Thursday, July 10, 2014

    Month at a Glance

    I can't believe it's been almost a month since my last post!  We have had GLORIOUS weather here and have been taking complete advantage of it. We also had our Stampede 2 weeks ago and we were able to take in 5 shows this year, including a free Corb Lund concert.  Probably only folks from Canada will know who that is:)

    Anyway, here are some of the things we've been up to this past month;

    We are in the middle of a garage build. Larry found a great deal for a 24x24 garage kit and bought it.  But before we build, we had to move our old "garage" out of the way. 

    Larry and Rebekah are adding cross beams and braces so they can jack it up and put the wheels under it to move it.

    Larry and Rebekah are half way to the new spot! I can't believe we moved it with our small tractor!

    Just this week we were able to pour the cement pad.  You can see the old garage in it's new spot in the background. Hopefully we can get the TranX trailer cleaned out so that we can sell it to help pay for the new garage.

    My hubby celebrated his birthday last weekend.

    My Grandpa passed away last month. I will miss him.

    Now on to my garden.  I am having huge troubles with the quack grass.  This is the first time this ground has tilled up and it is lacking all the nutrients it needs. We added lots of donkey manure and old straw.  Next year I'm sure the soil we be better. But, we are getting blessed with plenty of good plants growing.

    At one end of the garden I planted a berry patch.  Here are some of the blueberries ripening. I can't wait!  We also have Haskap berries, raspberries, blackberries and rhubarb planted there.

    A zucchini plant. I can't wait for zucchini this year. Otherwise known around here as Trim Healthy Mama pasta.

    I planted a lot of cabbage this year. I love it fried with bacon, butter, onions and a little garlic. I'm going to cook up some and try freezing it.

    This is canola.  I noticed as it started growing that bugs were eating it. And from the leaves, it looked like it is from the cabbage family. So, I left it growing around my cabbage and so far I don't have any bugs in my cabbage.

    This is the first time I've grown kohlrabi.  In fact, I don't know much about it. But Larry bought me some seeds for Mother's Day because his mom always grew it when he was a boy. I was so excited to learn (after 20 years of knowing him) that there are other vegetables other than potatoes and corn that he would eat.  If anyone has any suggestions on what to do with it, I'd appreciate hearing from you.

    And finally, some of our apple trees are producing this year.  We just had some hail last night though, so I will have to see if there if any damage.
    We also went to the beach twice, celebrated Canada Day, had our homeschool field day and had a quick visit with our brother-in-law, nephew and neice.

    Now, I'm off to a farm yard sale.  I'll post if I find anything wonderful.

    Saturday, June 14, 2014

    More Family Vacation - Virginia & Nevada City

    As I was laying in bed last night, I realized I hadn't included pictures of the last part of our trip to Virginia City and Nevada City Montana.  Nevada City is more of a ghost town than Virginia City. It was fun looking around the old buildings and panning for gold.

    Here are some pictures.

    Jacob and Ben looking around inside an old building.

    An old general store.

    Panning for gold and gem stones.

    The expert looking at one of Ben's gem stones.

    An old gold mine entrance.

    This is the oldest school house in Montana. It was my favorite building.

    The other half of the school house. You can see part of the teacherage through the doorway.

    On a Trim Healthy Mama note, I was able to do some shopping while down south of the border for THM things.  I bought lots of Dreamfields pasta from Walmart for $1.78 a box.  In Canada we pay $3.49/box and we have to order it.  I also bought 10 packages of low carb tortillas for $2.60/pkg.  I would have to order them up here for $4.60/pkg.  Totally awesome!

    Friday, June 13, 2014

    Family Vacation

    I can't believe how blessed we are. We have just returned from our first family vacation.  Larry delivers brand new hydro vac trucks all over the States and parts of Canada for a living and we were able to follow along his last trip to Nashville, TN. 

    We had an agenda of things we wanted to do and Nashville was the first on our list. We were there for their CMA Music Festival, so the town was alive.  Rebekah really likes country music and she was super excited to be in Nashville. In fact we enjoyed it so much, we're hoping to go back for a longer stay next year.

    Larry dropped off the truck in Nashville, then he was at the wheel in our van. Praise the Lord! I didn't mind driving on the highways, but the city was a little trickier.

    From Nashville we headed to Lexington, KY.  I thought this was the nicest part of our trip because it was the only place we stayed 2 nights and it was only a short drive from Nashville, so we had time to relax. But I have to tell you a story of God's goodness and provision.  On the way to Lexington our alternator died, which in turn killed our battery. But the van was still going.  It didn't get really bad until we were within a few miles of our hotel.  Luckily, Larry was the one driving and he knew how to keep it going. (If I had been driving, I would have pulled over on the side of the road and turned it off. Then we would have been stuck) We had no battery power. We couldn't roll down the windows or anything and it was getting very hot in there!  We just made it to our hotel and once we turned it off, it was dead.  But, I am so grateful to be married to a man that knows how to work on cars.  Larry got up early the next moring, took a taxi to Napa, bought an alternator and a wrench and had our van up and running in 10 minutes!

    So we were able to stay on our schedule, which was heading to the Creation Science Museum.  I must say, I loved looking back through history from a BIBLICAL perspective.  It was really awesome.  We spent the day there, then headed back to our hotel.  After spending so much time in the hotel pools, Jacob was able to teach himself to swim. That was really exciting to watch.

    The next morning, we drove down to Fort Boonesborough in Richmond, KY.  This is something we wanted to do since we did the unit study on Daniel Boone.  It was really interesting. It is a living history museum with re-enactors.  They are so knowledgeable on their history and we learned a lot.  The wood worker took a fancy to Rebekah and showed her how to turn the lathe and shape a table leg.

    From Kentucky we headed over to Virginia City and Nevada City Montana.  They are 2 ghost towns from the gold rush over 150 years ago.  While we were there, we were able to explore the ghost town, take 2 train rides and pan for gold. We found 2 flecks of gold and a whole bunch of real garnets and amethysts and 1 sapphire.

    After that we were Alberta bound for home.  And isn't it nice to come home?  We were so blessed by all we saw and are so grateful to finally enjoy a family vacation.   Here are some pictures.

    Here we are just starting out in Red Deer, Alberta. Jacob got the first turn driving with Larry in the truck.

    Jacob and I at a cool rest area in Tennessee.
    This is at the Riverfront Stage in Nashville for CMA Music Festival. They had all kinds of free concerts here, but we missed all of them.
    The Ryman Auditorium. It was raining in Nashville that night, but it was so warm.
    This is in front of the Grand Ole Opry. We had a tour inside as well. Totally cool!
    While Larry and the boys were swimming in the outside pool while it was getting dark in Kentucky, they noticed glowing things flying around.  They were fireflies! We have never seen these things before and I am so amazed by them. I think they are one of God's most amazing creations.  Jacob and Larry caught 2 to show me in the hotel room.
    While we were at the Creation Science Museum, the boys went for a camel ride.
    This was a moving dinosaur at the Creation Museum that the boys thought was cool. 
    Here is Rebekah working on the lathe at Fort Boonesborough. The wood worker said she had a real knack for it. He was so interesting to listen to. Next time we go we will make sure we have more time to explore the whole state park there. It is so full of history.
    Jacob posing with the scarecrow in the garden, but you can see a lot of Fort Boonesborough in the background.
    This is an old graveyard in the state park that we wanted to go back to, but we never did. Next time:)
    So, that is just a short summary of our awesome family vacation.

    Monday, May 26, 2014

    6 of My Favorite Trim Healthy Mama Recipes (Lately)

    Spring has sprung here in Alberta and I have been spending a lot of time outside in the garden. But I wanted to take time to share 6 of my favorite Trim Healthy Mama recipes from the last couple of months.

    I found the recipe for this Bullet Proof Pumpkin Spiced Latte on Pinterest at this link.  This is so yummy. I have always been addicted to Pumpkin Spiced Lattes and didn't think there would be an alternative that I could drink on THM, but this tastes just like any latte I've had in the past.

    I found a recipe similar to my Cheesy Ham & Egg pockets on Pinterest, but they rolled theirs up and I like just folding it in half.

    I start by frying 1 Tbsp chopped onion in 2 tsp butter. Then I add 1 or 2 eggs, depending on how hungry I am. I scramble the eggs with salt & pepper until cooked and place the egg on a piece of ham and top with 2 slices of cheese. Like in the following picture;

    Then I put a little more butter in the pan and fry the ham on one side for 30 sec - 1 min., then flip and fry on the other side.

    Seriously? Tuna melts on THM are delicious!  I used the bread in a mug recipe from the book and cooked it in 2 equal portions on my waffle maker for the base.  Then I mixed 1 can chunk tuna packed in water with 3 Tbsp reduced fat mayo, 1 chopped green onion, 3 chopped bread & butter pickles and salt and pepper.  I divided this mixture evenly on the bread and topped with thinly sliced tomato and cheese.  Then bake at 400 for 15 mins.  So, so good!

    This recipe blew me away. Again, I found it on Pinterest and here is the link.  I grew up near Nanaimo and we ate a lot of homemade Nanaimo Bars.  These don't taste exactly like the original, BUT they are an awesome second.  The only thing I did different from the recipe was use Skinny Chocolate for the top chocolate layer. You can find that recipe in the book or online.

    This cabbage is so good on it's own or as a side dish. I love it!  The recipe is on All Recipes here.

    This is just in time for summer. It was very hot here the other day, so I made up a batch of this slushy.  I didn't use any banana to keep it a fuel pull on THM. Sprite is my favorite slurpy flavour, so this really hit the spot for me.  I don't like to consume aspartame very much, so I won't have it all the time, but I definately look forward to having it again.  I found this recipe on Pinterest at this link.

    So there you have it. My 6 favorite THM recipes from the last couple of months.

    This post is linked up to; Thrifty Thursays Hope in Every Season

    Monday, May 5, 2014

    Gardening in Alberta

    This is our second year living on this acreage.  There was not a garden spot when we moved in and we didn't own a rotor-tiller until this past fall.  But that all changed this weekend. My husband braved the freezing temperatures and blowing winds to till up a garden spot. I asked him to pick the location so that it wouldn't be in his way and he picked a wonderful spot.  He tilled it up yesterday, then today him and Jacob worked for hours in their snowsuits spreading donkey manure on the whole garden. Then Larry tilled it again.  Just at the moment they were done and came in the house, it started snowing! 

    This is Jacob and Larry in the morning spreading manure on the garden.

    This is soon after the snow started. We got much more than this.

    I am so happy and can't wait to get out there.

    Thursday, May 1, 2014

    Homeschool Convention and New Curriculum

    I was able to attend the Alberta Homeschool Convention in Red Deer, Alberta a few weeks ago.  Rebekah was able to attend as a teen homeschooler as well. Unfortunately, the topics of the sessions were not really anything we were interested in. But, there were a few that we enjoyed. Rebekah joined in on a few of the youth sessions and I sat in on about 4 sessions over the weekend. I took away 2 huge reminders.

    1.  Accept the differences in your spouse.  This was important for me to hear, because Larry and I are EXTREMELY different. I think we are from different planets sometimes.  We just see things from totally different perspectives. BUT, this is not a bad thing. It is a good thing.  She reminded us when we are facing a situation when we really think things should go OUR way, to ask ourselves if this is going to matter in eternity, or next month for that matter.

    2.  Our reactions show where Jesus is in our lives.  I tend to be quick to react to my feelings.  But, that doesn't show the love of Jesus to my family. 

    Anyway, when we weren't in session, we were SHOPPING!  Actually, it got a little boring, but the boys were in the kids program, so we were kind of held captive by their schedule.  I did find some wonderful deals though and here they are.
    I bought a few read alouds.  I was wanting to talk about the First and Second World Wars with the kids and a friend told me about the "My Story" series.  I found some at the convention. They are living history books and I hope we can learn a lot about the wars from them.   I also bought a living Spanish history book and a couple others.  Rebekah has been reading the Elsie series and I found one of them at the used book sale.
    I found this complete Old World History and Geography by A Beka for $30.  It came totally unused with the textbook, teachers manual and quiz and activity books.  History and geography are Rebekah's favorite subjects and she dove into this right away.

    I bought a lot of Rod and Staff Curriculum.  We have been using the grade 3 and 5 English and I really like it.  I like that it uses the bible for sentence examples and it is conservative.  I didn't get anymore English, because I think that is enough. But, I bought grades 4- 8 of spelling.  Which looks so awesome. It teaches root Latin, Greek and french words and it teaches some English.  I also bought grade 2 Socials and grade 4 health for Ben and Jacob.  I bought grade 6 history about Latin America. I only bought that year because I have read that they teach a lot of Mennonite history, which we are not particularly interested in.

    I  was able to find Teaching Textbooks Pre - Algebra version 2.0  for Rebekah at the used book store and a home economics workbook on top of all that. So, we are pretty much set for the next 2 years at least and I have to keep reminding myself of that. It's so easy to buy curriculum you don't need.  I'd like to really get rid of everything we don't use, so that we can have just the bare essentials, clutter free and fitting in the cabinet we use for our homeschool books. Some day, maybe:)