Recipe For Zucchini, Sweet Potato and Kale Soup

Oh…my…goodness, I just had the best soup tonight! I made the recipe before but tonight this Zucchini, Sweet Potato and Kale soup was…simply, amazing!


I got the original recipe from the Yin Yang Diet. I kind of changed it a bit. :D

Zucchini, Sweet Potato and Kale Soup Recipe

1/2 onion chopped

2 Tablespoons olive oil

pinch of sea salt

black pepper to taste

1 zucchini, chopped

3 cups sweet potato chopped, cubed

1 bunch kale or a couple handfuls, chopped

1 tsp. dried basil or 2 tsp. fresh basil

pinch of red pepper flakes

8 cups chicken broth, homemade bone broth is best! Vegetable broth can be substituted.

1/2 cup millet, uncooked

Shaved parmesan cheese

Saute onion in olive oil until softened.soup3

Add sweet potatoes(grown by me!!!) and zucchini, salt and pepper.

soup2Cook on medium, stirring, for 10 minutes. Add broth and millet, bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer slightly covered for 20-30 minutes until millet is cooked.

You can sub in pasta, quinoa or rice(cook according to package directions).

Before serving add red pepper flakes and kale and basil. Serve with shaved parmesan.

So delish!!!

Enjoy –


Posted in homesteading, recipes | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

A Day in The Life of …ME!

“What’s it like for a day in your life, Anne-Marie?” This question was asked by a good friend of mine last week while we were catching up up on life.

Well I mentioned an average day of what I do but didn’t really think about everything I do for an entire day! Have you ever tried to write down every chore you did throughout your day? I bet you would be surprised at the amount one person can accomplish or NOT accomplish in a 15 hourish span.

Here is what A Day in The Life of Anne-Marie looked like a few days ago:

Got up at 6:30am – late for me but John had to go in to work an hour later this week. Had a quick cup of coffee waiting for the sun to come up. I eat a fast snack – handful of almonds and a cheese stick. Started a load of laundry.


7:00am Off to the barn to feed critters. Fed the chickens, filled their water buckets, fed horses and closed their stalls. Let goats outs to go to their “yard” and NOT run into the horses stall to see what they got. :D

Luke leading the goats to their pen. Good doggie!!!



Come on ma!

Come on ma!

I get to the pen and realize they finished all the good eats so I MUST move it to a new grazing area, sigh… has only been 4 days since we moved it last time. Each panel is 16 foot long and the process takes about 1.5- 2 hours because I have to move them through briars and make paths for them to fit in and for me to walk through without getting all ripped up from those pesky briars! Being taller would DEFINITELY come in handy here.


My little goats do a great job of eating all the leaves from poison ivy, privet, kudzu, blackberry and more but they do leave behind the stems which get in the way as you walk through them. That is a project for another day!

While I relocate the panels, Cookies and Cream roam close by to graze and sometimes a little toooooo close by and I mean exactly on the panels that I am trying to move or in the goat shelter as I move it – ha!


Cream happy as a clam!!!

Cream happy as a clam!!!

13 14 16

silly goats gotta stick their heads out!

silly goats gotta stick their heads out!


Finally all 6 panels are moved, staked, zip tied and I need…a…break.

My faithful companion –


Whoa it’s about 10:00 and I am STARVING!!! O wait! I forgot, I have to take my mushroom water tub(Red metal tub in the background) that was a temporary watering thingy for the goats and move it back to the mushroom logs. Over the fences and through the garden(my short cut).

I added four logs to the tank to soak for 24 hours so I can have some shiitakes soon.

I added four logs to the tank to soak for 24 hours so I can have some shiitakes soon.

Checked on the other logs…

Time for a real breakfast. And more coffee – one was not enough. Hmmm I think I will make some eggs.


While enjoying a much needed break, I catch up on a few emails. Start my power point for this Saturday’s Mushroom Workshop. Fold laundry, start another load.

Now I must mend a fence so the horses can go out in the pasture. One of our horses plays this game of seeing how many times he can squeeze his big quarter horse body through two fence boards…sigh…


Not MY horse –

She is a good girl!

She is a good girl!

Caught in the act

Caught in the act

Finally I get in the shower so I can look “normal to go out” and feel better too!

I have to run errands, visit the grocery store and meet a friend to exchange vitex berries for strawberry plants. I am so excited to get strawberry plants. :D We met at Growers Outlet, I was determined not to buy anything there but managed to get some kale and swiss chard – they were only a dollar each!!!!

These will NOT be planted today.

Afternoon outing for the chickens. They usually get about 3-4 hours to go run around anywhere they want EXCEPT the gardens. I don’t let them free range all day because of predators.

27 9


I finished my power point for Saturday and typed up preliminary outline for a last minute class on Nutrition that I am doing for a Home Health Care company in two days.

Time to start the feeding process again! I get the horses fed and locked up again and place a small amount of feed in the goat’s stall and leave the door open. They know the way home.




Now dinner for us – John should be home in about an hour.

Homemade sauce(from the freezer) with added meatballs is on the menu. Pasta for the man and zucchini noodles for me. Homemade Italian wheat rolls. Yum!


Clean up, close chicken house, prepare honey’s lunch for tomorrow and I am DONE!!!

So what did YOU do today? ;

Enjoy your week,


Posted in homesteading | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Make Your Own Antioxidant Herb Sprinkles!

Do you buy spices at the store or do you make your own blends? How would you like to make your own Antioxidant Herb Sprinkles to add to your spice collection?

antiox blend 1

Seriously this is easy, peasy and you can subsitute ingredients to make it more to your likin’. The original recipe came from Rosemary Gladstar’s Medicinal Herbs, A Beginners Guide which you can find on Amazon for about $10. Rosemary’s recipe calls for equal parts of all of the ingredients but there are some spices like rosemary and thyme that I reduced the quantity. Do what you wish with it and share with me what you did!!! :)

First, a bit about each ingredient:

Sesame seeds: Sesame seeds are an excellent source of copper, a very good source of manganese, and a good source of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, zinc, molybdenum, vitamin B1, selenium, and dietary fiber. The seeds contain sesamin and sesamolin, which are known to lower cholesterol, prevent high blood pressure and increase levels of vitamin E. You can purchase good organic sesame seeds HERE

Dulse flakesDulse(Palmaria palmata) is a type of seaweed, there are many! Seaweed is high in iodine, the natural way to get your dose of iodine. Dulse is also abundant in complex polysaccharides or long chain sugars. These dietary glyconutrients are helpful for building immune health, nourishing the skin, soothing inflammation and detoxifying the body. Find Dulse Flakes HERE

ParsleyParsley (Petroselinum crispum) helps eliminate excess fluids from your body, supports your immune and nervous system plus boo coos of vitamins – vitamin B12, A, C and K.

ThymeThyme (Thymus vulgaris) – Great antioxidant! Protects and increases the amount of healthy fats in cells particularly DHA, an important fatty acid for the brain and heart. Thyme oil is one of our best medicinal oils to have, like its cousin oregano with many of the same medicinal benefits: Due to thyme oil’s antibacterial, antispasmodic, antirheumatic, expectorant, hypertensive, and calming properties it has been known to help  relieve and treat problems like gout, arthritis, wounds, bites, and sores, water retention, menstrual and menopausal problems, nausea and fatigue, respiratory problems (like colds), skin conditions (oily skin and scars), athlete’s foot, hangovers, and even depression.

SageSage (Salvia officinalis) – Did you know what salvia means? The botanical name comes from the Latin word “salvere,” meaning “to be saved. Cool and its not just for turkey!  ;) Sage is an astringent herb, natural antiseptic, enhances mental clarity, useful in sore throats, colds, menopausal symptoms and nutritious to boot.

It is is also an excellent source of fiber, vitamin A, folate, calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, and B vitamins such as folic acid, thiamin, pyridoxine, and riboflavin in much higher doses than the recommended daily requirements, plus healthy amounts of vitamin C, vitamin E, thiamin, and copper.

RosemaryRosmary (Rosmarinus officinalis) – High content of rosmarinic acid known to be an antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anti viral. Good old rosemary and means remembrance so yes it IS helpful for your memory especially when studying for an exam. Grow a beautiful bush – easy to grow as long as you don’t overwater it. But if you can’t grow one you can always order organic rosemary leaf HERE.


Antioxidant Herb Sprinkles Recipe

aka: Scarborough Fair Blend – if you are old enough to get that!

1/3 cup lightly toasted sesame seed, organic -see below

1/3 cup Dulse Flakes, organic

1/3 cup Parsley flakes, organic

1/3 cup sage, organic

1/8 cup Thyme, organic

1/4 cup rosemary, organic

NOW these measurements will make almost 2 cups of the spice so at first take it down to tablespoon measurements to be sure you like it. Example 1/3 cup to 1/3 tablespoon etc…

– to toast add seeds to a dry frying pan and heat on med-low for just a few minutes until you start to smell the toastyness and they just start to change color. Remove immediately to a bowl.

Mix all of the above – if you prefer, you can grind it to a powder but I love to get all the bits and pieces!!! If you like you can also add black pepper, sea salt but don’t overdo the salt with the dulse. Enjoy the sprinkles on your egg dishes, sauteed veggies, meats, fish, uh just about whatever you eat. I think it would blend well into an Italian Dressing too.

antiox blend 2

You may have tried the Gomasio recipe that I posted recently which is delish but this one adds a more mediterranean flavor.

If you don’t care to make it yourself, you can always purchase it from me either locally at Buckles General Store or on my Etsy store.

Enjoy your day!


Posted in herbal remedies/recipes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Revisiting Trim Healthy Mama

I think I need to revisit my Trim Healthy Mama plan.

My pants are a bit tight…I have been eating too many good things….not junk, good fattening desserts, breads, ok so maybe some junk like potato chips and french fries. Ugghhh! Sigh..

To jump start me I downloaded a free menu plan from The Laundry Moms here I already have the Trim Healthy Mama book but putting together the menu can sometimes be a challenge if you don’t prep yourself. The Laundry Moms made a menu with the page number to each recipe in the book and a grocery shopping list!

How EASY is that? IF I stick with it, I will pay the $7/month to get more menu plans for a couple months. I do however change some of the recipes(can’t help myself) especially if it has things like turkey bacon bits – eeewww or beef or any other weird food.

Last night I made spaghetti for hubby, spaghetti squash for me and we both had sauce. John had it with ground beef and mine had peppers and onions. Homemade marinara used two ways!!! AND cheese of course, ;)

Today for breakfast I made a yummy Sweet Cinnamon Quinoa and the recipe is below.

It takes no time at all. You can even back a double batch of quinoa and put it in the fridge for another day. By the way I got the tricolor quinoa at Aldi’s for $3.99 for a POUND! Holy moly that is a great price and organic. I LOVE Aldi’s – I should be a spokesperson for them and I would do it if they traded for groceries!!! How cool would that be?


Here is the deliciousness –

Sweet Cinnamon Quinoa – double batch recipe

  • 1/2 cup quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • pinch salt
  • almond milk
  • cinnamon you can get organic here from Mountain Rose Herbs
  • stevia, truvia

First bring the quinoa, salt and water to a boil. Reduce heat and cover. Set timer for exactly 15 minutes.


You will know the quinoa is done when you see the little tail like parts on the quinoa and it looks fluffy with all water absorbed.


Take half and put into a bowl, add as much almond milk that you like, unsweetened please! Then add about 1/4 teaspoon of ground cinnamon and a packet of truvia if you’d like. I also added a tiny handful of blueberries. :)


Very satisfying! OH and if you wish, for added fiber and nutrition, you can add a teaspoon of ground flaxseed meal.

Enjoy –


Posted in recipes | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Goats on the Farm!

Well I finally did it! Our new additions are Goats on the Farm. :D

20151014_073546 (1024x576)

These two little guys are so stinking cute!!! Why do I have goats you ask? The opportunity came up, I have room, I need overgrowth of privet, briars, blackberry, poison ivy, kudzu to disappear, they are cute, just because, never had goats and why not?!

It may also have to do with the fact that the kid is now in college and I want SOMETHING else to love and take care of. I did not say SOMEONE cause we are not having any more children or any other people in the house.

Dear hubby said yes and I was excited :D We had to get more fencing to make a temporary, movable paddock and could not do electric because there is just too much brush to get in the way. We decided on the cattle panels AND the best part? One of my sweet friends bartered 6 panels with me. Cool and happy, happy, happy.

Then the housing part…the goats would go in the barn at night but during the day,  they needed a shelter that could be moved as we moved the paddock. John found a big piece of some kind of bendable heavy duty plastic sheeting and attached it to the bottom of the “future” chicken tractor, well maybe now just a permanent goat shelter.

Adding and moving some of the boards from the base of chicken tractor

Adding and moving some of the boards from the base of chicken tractor

bending the plastic to fit

bending the plastic to fit

securing with wood

securing with wood

Johnny in the house!

Johnny in the house!




Everything was put into place before the goats arrived. I put a water trough in the paddock a water bucket in their stall with shavings.

The goat yard

The goat yard

Some feed in case we need it – I think they’ll have enough with the weeds. Finally they are here!!!

Meet the goats – Cookies and Cream.

20151014_073718 (1024x576)

20151013_192433 (1024x576)


Not sure yet of the barn upon arrival. Nervous mama here.

Happily foraging in their paddock.

20151014_072338 (1024x576) 20151014_072351 (1024x576)

Checking out the house –


I go out every hour or so to check on them but I can also see them from where I am typing this post. So happy – bliss – love this life!



Posted in homesteading | Tagged , , , , , , | 7 Comments

How To Make an Usnea Tincture

Usnea is a really cool herb! It is a lichen that grows on trees and you can find tons of it where the air is cleanest. We found enough for everyone at the retreat up in Highlands. Of course we did not pick it off the trees, that is a no no!!!! Many tree branches fell with all the bad weather up there so all we had to do was pick it up. :D

So what is usnea?


Usnea is a lichen( an algae fungus combination) and it is antimicrobial, antibacterial, vulnerary and antifungal.

Uses: Known to help staph infections, heal wounds, respiratory issues, allergy symptoms, sore throat, fungal infections, urinary infections, sinus infections, vaginal infections, the list goes on and on!!!

You can tincture the whole herb for internal use –

or dry it and grind it to add to salves for topical uses.

I use it in my Not Your Mama’s First Aid Salve :)

I just finished making the tincture using the DOUBLE EXTRACTION method so I wanted to share my first video tutorial. It is in two parts so make sure you watch both on You Tube, here are the links.

How To Make an Usnea Tincture Part 1

How To Make an Usnea Tincture Part 2

The recipe I used is as follows:

Ratio of herb to liquid as weight to volume – 1:5 whether fresh or dried (That is NOT the same for all herbs)

1 ounce fresh or dried usnea, chopped up

4 ounces water

2.5 ounces pure organic cane or grain alcohol

  1. Place chopped usnea in a stainless steel pot, add water. Bring to a boil, then immediately turn to the lowest setting, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Your water should reduce down to approximately 2.5 ounces to match the amount of alcohol to be used.
  2. Take off the heat, remove cover and allow to cool for a few minutes.
  3. Pour usnea and the infused liquid into an 8 ounce canning jar.
  4. Pour measured alcohol over the mixture and mix well.
  5. Cover and shake daily for two weeks.
  6. Strain and bottle into an amber or other dark colored bottle.

Dosage for adults is 2-3 dropperfuls 3x/day as needed.

There is an amazing amount of Usnea info from Rosalee de la Foret so go visit her blog too!

Have a beautiful day!


Posted in herbal remedies/recipes | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ultimate Healthy Living

Normally I don’t post contests, promotions and such but every so often there is a great deal that is hard to pass up and share with YOU!

Last year I bought this amazing bundle from Ultimate Healthy Living and this one is unbelieveable. Seriously…..

There are so many ebooks BUT the bonuses? I could not pass up!!! $25 in free essential oils from Plant Therapy, Free dish soap, Free online classes, too much that I can even remember. So are you interested?? Here is the info and please click the link if you should decide to buy it – only $29.97!!! Holy moly…that’s all I gotta say. ;)

Order now and get this Healthy Living Instant Library valued at more than $2100:


  • 78 eBooks and printables ($908.60 value)
  • 16 eCourses and memberships ($1,006.95 value)
  • 10 bonus products ($224.87 value)
  • Getting Started Interactive Guide
  • 1 Full Year to Download
  • 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee


ENJOY your evening,

Posted in homesteading | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment