Friday, July 30, 2010

picked out the faucets

Well.... I have been busy picking out our bathroom fixtures. We are buying them from Mountaineer Wholesale Supply in Charleston. They use Delta faucets... so I got a catalog and I've been looking online. It took a long time, but I finally decided to go with the Lahara series. Here is a photo of what we are getting. This photo has the Roman tub, the showers & tubs, and the faucets. I haven't selected the kitchen faucet yet because they don't have a Lahara kitchen collection. :(

I drove over to the lot yesterday to see if I could hold my siding samples up to the brick....but the brick wasn't there yet. What was there was a bunch of block. They are going to be using that to do the foundation.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Please Vote for WHS!!

Please click the link above. It should take you to a page where you can vote for WHS (or any school of your choice) to win $500,000! You have 20 votes and you can only vote for one school 5 please share some of your votes with Winfield High School in Winfield, WV! I want a new classroom!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

~pancake love~

I really hope that my last post didn't make me sound like a food snob! I decided that I should share my homemade pancake recipe since it is super cheap and easy.

I know a lot of people who use Bisquick & other mixes to make pancakes (& other baked goods, etc.). Here's an easy rule of thumb to remember about prepackaged mixes: If it says "Just add water" DON'T BUY IT. As a rule, I avoid all prepackaged mixes because they are generally cheaper if you make them yourself plus they are LOADED with trans fats and preservatives. The only kind that *might* be worth buying are the ones where you add your own milk & oil, but you should still check the label for "hydrogenated oil" on the ingredient list.

Look at the Nutrition Facts label of Bisquick Original. Check out the trans fats!! (Also keep in mind 1/3 of a cup would make 2 REALLY SMALL pancakes)

My pancakes are pretty good and they are very healthy. I fed one to my 3 year old nephew without syrup and he gobbled it up! I never make them the same way twice, but here's the basic recipe:

Erin's Multi Grain Pancakes


  • 1/4 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 cup ground flax
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour (if you are a health food junky, replace this with more white whole wheat flour)
  • 1/4 cup white whole wheat flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 dash salt (optional)
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar (optional)
  • 1 cup low-fat or fat free buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • drizzle of olive oil
  • 1 to 2 scoops of vanilla flavored whey protein powder (optional)
  • 1/8 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (optional)


  1. Place the oats into a blender or a food-processor. Grind until the oats are a flour-like powder.
  2. Begin warming a non-stick skillet or griddle over medium heat.
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients: ground oat flour, all-purpose flour, flax, whole wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, and protein powder. Mix well.
  4. Add egg and buttermilk to the dry ingredients.
  5. Mix until all flour is incorporated. Let batter rest for a minute until it becomes bubbly.
  6. You know how to make pancakes...but the drizzle of olive oil goes into the pan.

I make these A LOT so let me share what I do that makes preparation as easy as Bisquick. I take an old oatmeal container and I mix up enough dry mix to almost fill the whole thing up. I usually use about 8 cups of the flours (oats, white whole wheat, all-purpose, flaxseeds, buckwheat, etc.) I mix in about 3 Tbsp each of baking soda and baking powder, about 1/2 cup of sugar (brown sugar or sugar in the raw would be better), and 1/2 tsp. of salt.
I just keep all of that in my pantry and when I want to make a batch, I measure out a cup of the dry mix and add 1 egg and a little more than a cup of buttermilk. And there you have it.... pancakes as quick as Bisquick! The wet batter will keep in the fridge for about 3 days. (Although is usually separates so you have to stir it up and sometimes you may need to add a little more milk.)
Now to go with those pancakes....Turkey Sausage!! But, what about all those nitrates in sausage? Make your own! Here is a link to a recipe that uses ground turkey to make sausage. I tried it out yesterday and it was pretty good. I'm sure it would have been better if I had given it time for the flavors to mingle before I cooked it.
~Enjoy your (from scratch!) breakfast!

Friday, July 9, 2010

"Let food be thy medicine, and let thy medicine be food." ~Hippocrates

I'm a HUGE fan of Dr. Oz. He says to make the produce aisle your pharmacy. I couldn't agree more. Eat your veggies now, avoid the doctor later!

I've been reading a blog by a friend of mine lately. Her name is Jessica and her blog is This Blessed Life.

I was really interested in her blogs about her goal to eat "clean." Eating clean means free from unnatural products like chemicals and preservatives. If you know me very well at all you would know that I am SO against shoveling spoonfuls of processed foods into my mouth. I can only imagine how picky I will be if and when I ever get pregnant...and then, my poor children will never taste a "cheesy-poof" (I know, bless their little hearts!)

I watch parents feed their kids and grandkids pizza, chicken nuggets and other garbage for dinner. It kills me! They never get a vegetable!! (Fries do not count) Jesse (my DH) is fairly picky about "health" food and I've usually been able to make food that he enjoys. I consider myself pretty good at taking a recipe and making it healthy. I also try to cook on a budget, so it can be really challenging.

A few months ago my wonderful MIL came to live with us for a short period of time. She went grocery shopping before she came. I've never seen so much garbage food in all my life! She is extremely EXTREMELY frugal (I'm being nice here...hehehe) and shops mostly at stores like Aldi and Sav-a-lot. She brought peanut butter (all trans fat) and margarine (which Jesse & his family lovingly refer to as "butter" HA!) This "butter" was almost ALL trans fat but of course listed 0 grams on the label. (I later told her that the stuff scared me and I made her throw it in the trash can) She brought applesauce and the label was horrendous! What's the point of eating applesauce that is loaded with corn syrup & ::gasp:: high-fructose corn syrup! Last time I checked, plain ol' apples are delicious! This is just the start of it...she also uses Crisco to make frosting and boxed cake mixes to make birthday cakes. I'm not sure how it's going to go over when my future children aren't allowed to eat those birthday cakes!

For those of you saying, "What's wrong with Crisco?" please, please do a little research (try Googling "Crisco") There is a site that talks about the Rise and Fall of Crisco and the history of the product. It's a pretty amazing story really....I'm not linking to it because I don't have permission.

Being frugal does NOT mean that you have to eat chemi-foods. Hopefully in the future I will post more about what I eat and some of my recipes!!

I could honestly write a book about healthy eating... but I will leave you with this. If you want to do something (easy) to increase your health elliminate all hydrogenated oils & all high-fructose corn syrup from your diet. Become a label reader.

Want more info? Here are some books that have helped me.....

Thursday, July 8, 2010

just a lot of signatures...

I remember when we closed on our first house.  Jesse and I were both still in college at Marshall and we worked at the Cracker Barrel in Barboursville.  We knew we were going to be around that area for awhile so we decided to buy a house in Ona.  It was pretty exciting being that it was our first house.  It was just a cute little country house in the woods..but it had a nice big yard and a charming white kitchen.  I remember when we went to the closing...WOW.  Who knew that you had to sign and initial so many papers!!  It gets really old.  But...its exciting because at the end that massive stack of papers........ is a key.   
Today... will be just a bunch of signing, signing, initialing and signing.  Bleh.  There will be no key at the bottom of the stack.  Delayed gratification... Patience.  That's what I'm learning!!   Hopefully we will see some progress on the lot when all this is over. 

Friday, July 2, 2010

photos~take 2 (part 2)

We drove back out to the lot tonight.  We brought Ty this time and Mike & Emma met us out there, too.  Mike is concerned about the drainage of water because of the insane slope at the back of the property.  We are going to make sure we get a drain of some sort.  We are really going to need some ground cover and maybe some small shrubs for that slope.  Anyone have any good recommendations?  I would love to get someone to come cut some steps into the hillside and then we could put a little firepit area up at the top.  Our lot goes back past those pine trees that you can see back there. 
I can't wait to have a backyard!  Right now my backyard consists of a 7' x 4' deck on the back of my apartment that is about 3 feet from my back neighbors deck.  They sit out there all of the time, blow their stinky cigarette smoke at us, and they are REALLY loud.  Very annoying.  So, yes, I'm looking forward to getting a fairly private backyard.  The other big thing that I'm looking forward too is having a refrigerator that makes ice!! I've never had a refrigerator with an icemaker and I think it will be awesome!  I will be posting photos of the 'frig for sure!! hahaha. 

photos~take 2