Tuesday, November 25, 2014

How to Make Homemade Honey & Cinnamon Butter in a Stand Mixer



Recently, another homeschooling friend and I took our kids to a local farm for a field trip. While we there, we had the opportunity to watch a farm show where the children learned a lot about different animals.

Part of the show taught the children where butter comes from and how it's made. It's such a simple process that it's really quite incredible that, with some agitation, a liquid can turn into a solid! (And a yummy one, at that!)

At the farm show, they poured some cream from raw milk into a baby food jar, put the lid on, and let every child at the farm show have a turn shaking it. About 20 minutes later, the cream was gone and in it's place was beautiful, golden butter. My friend mentioned that she had made butter in the past with heavy whipping cream and did the same process in her Kitchen Aid. That sounded fun to me and was a lot more appealing to me than shaking a jar for 20 minutes!

So, with Thanksgiving being this week, we are taking a laid back approach to school and focusing on reading books about Thanksgiving (this one is excellent!), making an alphabetical list of things we're thankful for and I thought it'd be fun to give the kids a chance to make their own butter in preparation for the Thanksgiving meal on Thursday.

We had a friend from church over today when we made our butter and she suggested trying a cinnamon honey butter and we're glad we took her up on that idea! It has just the right amount of sweetness and I can only imagine how scrumptious it will be on a nice warm roll on Thanksgiving Day.

The butter making process is ridiculously simple. So much so, that what started out as a homeschool lesson may very well turn into a regular process around here.

The kids took turns estimating how long it would take to make the butter and much to the older ones' dismay, our Kindergartner was the closest! Forty-one minutes after adding the cream, we had a nice golden butter. (I'm guessing you could cut down on the time if you have a splash guard for your Kitchen Aid and don't mind cranking up the speed. We don't have one though so I took the slightly slower speed in order to avoid mopping heavy whipping cream off my ceiling). :)



Here is what you need:
 
1 pint heavy whipping cream
2-3 T honey
1/8 t. cinnamon
 

Step 1: Pour one pint of heavy whipping cream into your mixer. Slowly work your way up to a good speed.

Step 2 (optional): Let your children take turns guessing how long it will take to turn the cream into butter. (We used the stopwatch setting on my phone and that worked great.) Ours took 41 minutes.

Step 3: The liquid cream will first turn into a whipped cream. Keep going.

Step 4: The cream will now turn into butter. At this point, you will probably need to stop the mixer and scrape the sides a bit. Then finish up if necessary.

Step 5: Drain the buttermilk that is left behind once your butter is made.

Step 6: If you want a salty butter, add salt to taste. We chose to go with a honey-cinnamon flavor and added about 1/8 t. of cinnamon and 2-3 T of raw honey. I found it best to mix the flavors in by hand.

This butter is so yummy and I can't wait to try it on a nice warm roll!



 
Thanks so much for visiting Purposeful Homemaking. I'd love for you to stay connected through the following social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest. Don't forget to sign up for emails on my right sidebar so you don't miss anything!

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I am blessed to have the following sponsors on Purposeful Homemaking. Interested in adding your name to the list? Check out my advertising policies.

This post may involve product that was received in exchange for a review or contain affiliate links for which I will earn compensation should you choose to make a purchase. I am disclosing this information in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Thank you for your support of Purposeful Homemaking.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

See the Light {Art Curriculum Review}

http://www.seethelightshine.com/store/art-class-dvds/art-class-dvd-volume-1-free-shipping.html


As a homeschooling Mom of children ages 9,7, and 5, there are certain subjects that I don't feel adequate to teach. While these may not be life altering subjects, they are ones that I believe will help our children to become well-rounded individuals. And, not knowing yet what God has called each of our children to as a vocation, I want them to be as prepared as possible.

God has been so faithful to help our children learn some important skills that are above and beyond reading, writing and arithmetic and I am thankful for that. He has provided a dear lady from church to teach them how to sew, a wonderful young lady to come to our home for piano lessons, Latin through DVDs and now, Christian based DVDs to teach art.

I feel like our homeschool curriculum is well-rounded and is helping to meet the goals I have as a homeschooling mother.

That being said, I'd like to tell you a little bit about our experience with See the Light art curriculum.

We received two DVDs to review, Art Class Volumes 1 and 2. Each DVD is like having a personal art teacher in our home! Throughout this series, a large variety of techniques are taught by a professional artist and each lesson helps point our children to God, their Creator.

I use these DVDs with our two oldest children, ages 9 and 7, and feel very satisfied that they are getting great art instruction. They are able to do each lesson independently, providing me a break to get other things done. Each lesson is easy enough for them to follow along with that they didn't get frustrated, yet can see improvement in their drawing skills.



Each DVD retails for $14.99 and has 4 lessons plus 1 bonus lesson. Volume 1 covers the basics while Volume 2 covers shape and space.

The children enjoyed these art lessons and I am happy with them as well. I plan to continue to work our way through the various art instruction DVDs that are available from See the Light.


Thanks so much for visiting Purposeful Homemaking. I'd love for you to stay connected through the following social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest. Don't forget to sign up for emails on my right sidebar so you don't miss anything!
 
Current Sponsors
 
I am blessed to have the following sponsors on Purposeful Homemaking. Interested in adding your name to the list? Check out my advertising policies.

This post may involve product that was received in exchange for a review or contain affiliate links for which I will earn compensation should you choose to make a purchase. I am disclosing this information in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Thank you for your support of Purposeful Homemaking.

Monday, November 17, 2014

100 Clutter Free Gift Ideas {PLUS $500+ Giveaway!}



Are you looking for ideas for Christmas gifts that won't clutter up your house? Me, too! I have compiled a list of 100 Gift Ideas that won't take up much space in your home. Our own personal story of downsizing is what fueled many of these gift suggestions and many of them are on our own family's Christmas lists.

And, to help you with that Christmas shopping, at the bottom of this post you will find a Rafflecopter Form that will give you a chance to win either $500 in Paypal Cash or a $100 Amazon Gift Card.

Not only have I compiled a list of Christmas Gift Ideas, but I'm joining over 50 other bloggers who all have different gift guides that they have compiled. You're bound to find ideas for every person on your list this Christmas with that many suggestions!


100 Clutter Free Gift Ideas

I chose to go with a Christmas Gift Idea list that would focus on gifts that are practical, educational, don't take up much space or are things that are family wouldn't normally be able to afford. Basically, things we'd put on our own Christmas lists.

There are several personal reasons for this type of a list.

One being, we live in a bi-level styled home that is just under 1200 square feet. Our home does not have an open floor plan which makes it challenging for a homeschooling family of 6 to not trip over things (and the occasional person) and still have room to stretch.

I also know my own heart and its tendency to want more and more stuff. I don't think I'll ever be able to rid myself of that struggle, but it doesn't mean I have to embrace it.

In the past, I have dreaded December 26 because I woke up with that empty, somewhat depressed feeling that "it" was all over. I don't want to feel like that each year come the day after Christmas and I certainly don't want our children to experience it either.

If I can focus on the Christmas Season and what it represents, it helps me to not turn inward thinking of what I hope to get and then being disappointed because my expectations weren't met. I think that's why so many people deal with depression around the holidays. We have all of these crazy, unmet expectations and when our focus is wrong, our ideals come crashing down around us.

But that's not to say I don't look forward to the joy and excitement on our children's faces come Christmas morning! It is so fun to hear their excitement and expressions of thankfulness, even over the more practical gifts. We love to lavish our children with love in our own unique way and this year we want our children to receive gifts of time and special interests.

Here's a list of 100 ideas to help get your creative ideas flowing as you start to work on your Christmas list.

2015 Clutter Free Gift Ideas


Movies:

Miscellaneous:
  • Gift Card to Favorite Restaurant
  • Gift Card to Coffee Shop (even for the kids!)
  • Gift Card for Activity (miniature golf, bowling, jump house, skating, trampoline place, or event tickets)
  • Gift Card for Favorite Makeup Shop
  • Gift Card to Joann Fabrics for someone who loves to craft or sew
  • Loose Leaf Tea and a Tea Glass (We're huge tea drinkers around here and the kids love their tea glasses!)
  • Bass Pro Shop Gift Card (Our boys LOVE getting these and I love it when they do! It lets them pick out fun out door items to keep them busy or new camo clothes or hats)
  • Money for kids' savings account
  • Sprinkler for the kids
  • Family Vacation
  • Day Trip
  • Favorite Foods
  • Movie passes
  • Amazon Prime (free 2- Day shipping for one year, movie access, etc.)
  • Homemade Food (special treats for each member of the family)
  • Free babysitting
  • Family photo session

Music/Books on CD/Electronics:

Educational:
  • Butterfly Garden and Caterpillars
  • Classes (Music Lessons, Swim Lessons, Sewing, Wood-working, Art, Gymnastics; and maybe add something to go with the lessons like fabric, new swimsuit, new art supplies, leotard, etc.)
  • Zoo Pass
  • Museum Pass
  • Infant Swimming Resource Lessons (ages 6 months-6 years)
  • Magazine Subscription
  • Tinkering Station
  • Cooking Date with Mom or Dad (schedule a time, choose a recipe, pick the ingredients)
  • Dinner out with mom or dad
For the Home:

Stocking Stuffers:

Games:
Books for Kids:
Gifts for Her:
  • Massage
  • Pedicure
  • Manicure
  • Romantic Getaway
  • Cleaning Service (even if it's for just one time!)
  • Accomplishing something on her "Honey-Do" List
  • Hair cut at a fancy salon
  • Monthly flower delivery
  • Gift Certificate to It Works!
Gifts for Him:
  • Guys Night
  • Romantic Getaway
  • Car Wash Tickets
  • Oil Change Tickets
  • Gift certificate for a round of golf
  • Hobby Gifts (tees for golf, ammo, membership to a shooting range, gun cleaning supplies


Be sure to enter the Rafflecopter form below for a chance to win either $500 in Paypal Cash or a $100 Amazon Gift Card! For more gift giving ideas, check out the linky below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
   


Thanks so much for visiting Purposeful Homemaking. I'd love for you to stay connected through the following social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest. Don't forget to sign up for emails on my right sidebar so you don't miss anything!


Current Sponsors

I am blessed to have the following sponsors on Purposeful Homemaking. Interested in adding your name to the list? Check out my advertising policies.

This post contains affiliate links for my ebooks for which I will earn compensation should you choose to make a purchase. These are paid sponsor posts but all opinions are my own. I am disclosing this information in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Thank you for your support of Purposeful Homemaking.  

Friday, November 14, 2014

When a Season of Life is Hard

photo credit

There are seasons in life that are harder than others.


We're tempted to quit, to say we're not qualified, that we don't know how ends will meet and everything within us wants to run away to an easier place.

But, most of the time, the only way to get through to the spring in our life is to put our heads down and walk through the winter.

The dark of winter in our soul can either drive us to the Shelter of the Almighty or toss us, shipwrecked onto the cold, icy shore.
 
"God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not fear, even if earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the seas. Let the oceans roar and foam. Let the mountains tremble as the water surge! Be silent, and know that I am God!" Psalm 46:1-3, 10


The Winter of Life

It is inevitable that the storms of life will come. But that doesn't mean we have to weather them alone.

Find Someone to Talk To

It's easy to feel like we can't talk to anyone about our struggles because we think they might encourage us to quit and choose a different path. Or we worry that they will think we brought our troubles on ourselves so now we'll just have to deal with them.

Sometimes life is hard because the choice we make is hard, but it doesn't mean we made the wrong choice. But it sure does help to have someone come alongside us and cheer us on until we get to the other side.

Take a Break

Truth be told, I feel guilty going out alone for coffee. For some ridiculous reason, it makes me feel like I am being selfish. But you know what I would tell another woman who told me that? There's nothing selfish about recharging your soul so you will have more to give to others.

If going out for coffee gives me an opportunity to let the weight of the season I am in slide off my shoulders for one hour so I can come back with fresh eyes, why is that wrong? If an hour or two alone lets me read a book that inspires me to be a better mom, wife, homeschooler or friend, why should I feel guilty?

Give Yourself Time with God

Has your soul had life poured into it by the Word of God or perhaps a message on line? Even Jesus made time to get away. Alone.  "Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer." Luke 5:16

When facing a difficult season of life, that's the time, more than any other, that we need to be reading God's Word. In fact, we should increase the amount of time that we would normally spend in His Word. The harder life is, the more we read should be our motto.

If You're Married, Communicate Your Struggles to Your Husband

You're not doing anyone any favors by bearing your burden alone. Ask your husband to  pray for you and talk to him about what is going on in your life. He'll be better equipped to pray for you if he knows what to pray about and hopefully he'll be sensitive to the burden you are bearing. 

"Two people can accomplish more than twice as much as one; they get a better return for their labor. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But people who are alone when they fall are in real trouble. And on a cold night, two under the same blanket can gain warmth from each other. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer." Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

Don't Neglect Fellowship with Other Believers at Church

For some reason, it is our nature to want to hide when we are struggling. We don't want others to know our weaknesses because we're just not sure what they're going to think or say about us. 

I completely get that.

But I have to ask myself, is that the way God wants me to be? Is my pride standing in the way of God working in my life through another believer? Maybe someone needs to be encouraged because they see that God can use their struggles to help me.

"So when we are weighed down with troubles, it is for your benefit and salvation! For when God comforts us, it is so that we, in turn, can be an encouragement to you. Then you can patiently endure the same things we suffer. We are confident that as you share in suffering, you will also share God's comfort. He will rescue us because you are helping by praying for us." 2 Corinthians 1:6-7, 11

Satan often uses the tactic that makes us think we're alone in our struggles. But I bet for every one of my struggles, there's a handful of other believers in my church struggling with a similar thing. If we'd realize we're a body that builds and not judges, I think we'd see our churches function the way God intended them to.

As a blogger, a wife, a Momma, a sister, a daughter, I don't have all the answers to life's struggles. What I can do is point you to Jesus because the more you know Him, the more you'll experience His power which will give you the confidence to say "I can do all things through Christ!" Praying that you know Him better, today.

Thanks so much for visiting Purposeful Homemaking. I'd love for you to stay connected through the following social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest. Don't forget to sign up for emails on my right sidebar so you don't miss anything!

Current Sponsors

I am blessed to have the following sponsors on Purposeful Homemaking. Interested in adding your name to the list? Check out my advertising policies.

This post may contain affiliate links for which I will earn compensation should you choose to make a purchase. Sometimes I have  paid sponsor posts but all opinions are my own. I am disclosing this information in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR Part 255, Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. Thank you for your support of Purposeful Homemaking.
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