Curried Chickpeas

These curried chickpeas are a hearty addition to our meal plan rotation.  Preparation is quick and simple, and the smell of the sweet curry wafting through the house is a welcome addition on a chilly afternoon.  Besides being delicious, it is packed with protein and fiber, and plenty of nutrient-rich vegetables.  We like to serve it with steamed quinoa topped with freshly diced pineapple, tomato, and cilantro. For extra heat,  you can add more curry paste or a sprinkle of cayenne pepper. This recipe is also an excellent candidate for preparing in bulk and freezing. Continue reading Curried Chickpeas

Whole Wheat Brownies with Chia Seeds and Pistachios

These whole wheat brownies with chia seeds and pistachios are perfect for you sweet-and-salty chocolate lovers!  And you don’t have to feel guilty since they are also made with whole grains and fiber-rich chia seeds.   If you like even more salt to your sweet, you can sprinkle a little kosher salt on top before you pop them in the oven.  The feel of these brownies are more cake-like than fudge-like.  They have just the right texture , and are perfect served with a glass of icy cold milk! Continue reading Whole Wheat Brownies with Chia Seeds and Pistachios

Lucky to be in Love with My Best Friend

I have heard plenty of women talk about their spouses as if they can’t stand them.  They go on and on about this or that shortcoming. They fantasize about time spent away from them.  They speak about them with disrespect, disregard, and sometimes even disgust.  They talk about how they wish their husband was more this or more that.  They idealize other women’s husbands as so much more upright, handsome, successful, thoughtful, funny, hard-working, romantic, and witty.

I have a confession to make.  I feel extremely guilty and uncomfortable when caught in the middle of one of these conversations. Continue reading Lucky to be in Love with My Best Friend

Blessed to be in Love with My Best Friend

This post is in response to my wife’s post called “Lucky to be in Love with My Best Friend“.  I was a little caught off guard when I read her post today as it is not our anniversary or Valentine’s day or some other occasion when you might expect some type of romantic message from your spouse.  It happens to be my 39th birthday today but that’s not really cause for such kind words from my Sweetie.  So I’m not really sure what the catalyst was for her post but I do appreciate it and I hope that some day I will live up to the picture she painted. :-)  I confess that I felt honored but I also felt slightly embarrassed that she shared such intimate words with the world. Continue reading Blessed to be in Love with My Best Friend

Our Homestead in Suburbia

Many of you have left comments and suggestions regarding the planning of our homestead in the country.  However, one of the points of Wholesteading is that you can be somewhat self -sufficient even in the suburbs.  Currently we do not have the big white farmhouse or the acres and acres of land to work with. But what we do have works for us now and allows us some degree of Wholesteading, even in the suburbs. For those of you who are curious about what our homestead looks like in suburbia, here are a few shots that capture both the outside and inside of our little “farm” and “farmhouse”.  Continue reading Our Homestead in Suburbia

Bulk Chicken Pot Pie with Mashed Potato Crust

This recipe is not difficult, but it does take a lot of time.  I usually divide the prep into two separate days.  I make the chicken and stock on the first day.  On the second day I make the mashed potatoes and use the stock  and chicken from the first day to create the creamy chicken vegetable mixture. Then I assemble the casseroles and freeze. It’s a major investment of time but it yields five 9×13 pans of delicious, quick dinners you can grab out of the freezer and throw in the oven for a yummy, hearty meal at the end of a long, hard day. Continue reading Bulk Chicken Pot Pie with Mashed Potato Crust

Farmhouse Inspiration

It really is daunting to design a home from scratch.  There are so many possibilities, and beginning with a blank slate can be intimidating.

But beginning with a blank slate can also be PERFECT IN EVERY WAY!  Because you can design a home exactly how YOU want it!

After searching far and wide for the perfect house plan, we discovered that there just wasn’t something out there that met all of our needs and our aesthetic desires.  Many houses came close, but there was always something not quite right about the design (usually on the inside).  So, we rolled up our sleeves and got to work combining elements of many homes we loved.  Continue reading Farmhouse Inspiration

Pause Before You Honk

Are you the type of person who reacts before you know the whole story or before you see the whole picture? Do you pause before you honk?

Let’s face it.  All of us have acted in haste without knowing all of the facts.  We explode at our spouse, children, friends, and strangers before we ever try to see the situation from their point of view.  The other day I had the opportunity to witness this phenomenon acted out before my eyes. Continue reading Pause Before You Honk

Cowboy Beans (Frijoles Charros)

The first time I had these Cowboy Beans I was blown away.  They are the perfect combination of hearty, comforting, and tasty!  Nutritionally, they are packed with a load of protein and fiber .   They even have a hefty bit of veggies added. To keep things as healthy as possible,  use organic, nitrate free bacon and chorizo sausage.  Even better, use a chicken or turkey version of the bacon and sausage if you can find it (although the flavor will be somewhat different).  These beans are absolutely lovely and the most satisfying when served with the suggested toppings.  If you want to make this dish even better, pair the beans with  Sweet Whole Grain Corn Muffins with Jalapenos.  I dare you to try this. You’ll never look at beans the same way again! Continue reading Cowboy Beans (Frijoles Charros)

Sweet Whole Grain Corn Muffins with Jalapenos

These Sweet Whole Grain Corn Muffins are beautiful in every way.  Not only do they incorporate whole cornmeal and whole wheat, they have an unexpected punch of flavor from the added fresh corn and jalapenos.  Of course, you could omit the fresh corn and jalapenos, but I promise the result won’t be nearly as interesting!  These muffins make the perfect accompaniment to Cowboy Beans and to most soups in general. Continue reading Sweet Whole Grain Corn Muffins with Jalapenos