Saturday, September 29, 2012


We have been wanting to compost for a while.  We kind of pretended to start back in with the horses and their poop but that is all that goes in there - horse poop, our neighbor comes over once a year and cleans us out of our horse poop so that she can till it into her garden.  We are thinking about doing the same.

Back in July, we went to Half Price Books and I found an awesome book about composting.  I had so many questions and it was hard getting the answers online.  I was so happy when I found this book because it explained just about everything I needed to help me out.  I finished the book while I was in Jury Duty- so that took me about 2 days time since all I did was sit in the jury waiting room waiting to be called to a case.  After I finished the book I was determined to make a compost bin.   It took me a few weeks but I collected a bunch of free pallets from the feed store to create it.  Then these pallets just waited by the goat barn until we put them together.

Last weekend, Thomas and I finally got our act together and made half of our compost bin.  I am so excited to get started.  We have already put some dried leaves, sunflower stalks and horse poop in, as well as some used coffee grounds and tea bags.  We don't have enough to make a "hot compost" but we will be turning and adding stuff so hopefully we will have a good amount by next spring to add to our veg garden!!!

Have you completed any projects lately?

♥ Ashley

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

[recipe] Stuffed Green Peppers

I think that I might have mentioned that Thomas's Aunt brought us a load of produce when we met up in Ellensburg over Labor Day Weekend.  She brought us tomatoes, peppers, rhubarb, zuchinni, and cucumbers.  I wanted to make sure I got some use out of the tomatoes before they went bad - since most of them were VERY ripe so I made a marinara sauce. And then we thought we would make some stuffed peppers to use those up as well.  I think it turned out pretty good for my first attempt.

For the marinara sauce:

I cut up a bunch of tomatoes - maybe like 80 or something (they were all different sizes from cherry to large)
2 Tablespoons of tomato paste
1 large onion
6 cloves of garlic
3 teaspoons each of dried parsley, dried basil, and dried oregano
1/4 cup of fresh basil chopped
plenty of salt and pepper

Saute the onions and garlic in some olive oil then add in the tomatoes and let stew for about 30 minutes on medium heat.  Then add in the rest of the ingredients and simmer for another 45 minutes or so.  I used a hand blender to puree it so it had a velvety consistency but its your choice.  And that's about it, enjoy it over pasta, in a lasagna, or with stuffed peppers.  YUM

For the peppers: (serves two)

1/2 pound of ground turkey
1/2 cup of cooked white rice
1/2 an onion
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp red pepper flakes
and similar herbs used in the sauce
salt and pepper to taste

Saute the onions and garlic, add in the meat and brown.  Once the meat is browned combine it with the other ingredients and about 1 cup of the marinara sauce.  Cut off the top of the peppers and clean out.  stuff with the meat mixture place in a baking dish and cover with the marinara sauce.  Bake in the oven at 375 for about 45-55 minutes.  Oh and you can add some cheese if you like!

Linked to Tasty Tuesdays


♥ Ashley

Monday, September 24, 2012


Is anyone there?......................................Its me...............Ashley...............hello?

Wow, isn't it crazy how life just takes hold of the reins sometimes?  I have been missing you all.  While I haven't been posting much (ok anything at all) I have been able to keep up with your blogs .... well a little bit anyway.  I can get through a few a day but then when I get around to being able to check again its been a few days and I have to start all over. 

I didn't think that I could be this busy at work and then here I am.  I am starting to get my groove on at work and things are falling into place.  Going back into the classroom was not as scary as I thought it was going to be.  I am thankful that I get to ease in to things with only being in the classroom for one period this semester.  I can't really say that I have been overwhelmed (but my facial skin might disagree with that statement) but I am able to really concentrate on my classes and I feel good about things so far.  I am enjoying my kids and I feel comfortable lecturing to the class.  But I am sure that you don't really care to be bored with what I do for a job so lets get to some more interesting things.

The PUYALLUP FAIR was happening the past 3 weekends, Thomas and I attended on the second Saturday.  We had a great time trying the "Earthquake Burger", though I would pay the extra dollar for cheese next time, checking out Hobby Hall, listening to a live band, checking out the goats and watching a huntseat class in the horse arena.  We also checked out the Frontier/Homestead exhibit that they have every year...I love that one and left with a dozen scones to enjoy the following week.  And of course like the awesome blogger I am - I took no pictures.  In my defense I talked my husband into putting my ID in his wallet so I wouldn't have to lug around my purse!! but that also meant that I had no camera.  I gotta work on that...but first or second or whatever way you want to put it...I have to get my blog on again.  I miss it.

I hope you all haven't been too lost without me for the past couple weeks...but here I am again hopefully I can stick around!!

Challenge for this post:  how many times did I use the word "but"????

♥ Ashley

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Being the New Kid at School

just checking in....

I have been a bad life has been taken over by the start of a new school year at a new school.  And then there was Labor Day.

It seems like I have been the new kid at school for the past 5 years...maybe because I actually have been.  I attended the same school my whole pre-college career so I knew just about everyone in my class since I was 3 years old.  I didn't really have to learn how to make new friends - we all already knew each other and then paid attention to the newbies if we thought they would fit in.  I had always wondered what it was like for the new kids.  I have learned the last 5 years how to be the new kid.  I don't like it and I can understand how hard it can be for kids.  I mean I am an adult...I don't really have that "need to fit in" but it sure would be nice to create a friendship with a collegue and then continue that for a second year or more. 

In case I haven't really mentioned it here on the blog or you are just starting to learn about me.  I am a teacher.  A "new-ER" teacher.  I have low seniority and my specialty is not so desireable.  Well I mean it is but it isn't really.  It is not an "acedemic" class and it is not tested in the WASL or MSP or HSPE or whatever you would like to call the state mandated achievement tests, so it seems to be the first to go when the budget gets tight - which means I get laid off.  I have been laid off 4 years in a row.  I am starting my 5th year of teaching at a new school in a new school district.  So I have to learn everything all over again and Pray to God that I get to stay here.  I teach Health and PE which are actually VERY important subjects to ones overall well-being but for some reason it gets put on the back burner and seems to be "disposable".

At my new school we have to  take a "survey" that figures out our "strengths" as an individual.  I learned that one of my strenghts is Adaptability.  I guess it makes sense given my profession and subject choice.  I learned that with my strengths I can be on the "balcony" which means tip top shape and at my best or in the "basement" which is the bad side or characteristics.  I like this terminology because now when I am off or irritated I can just say that I am working out of my basement. My co-workers understand it but now I have to teach Thomas this vocabulary so he too can understand me (like anyone actually can but lets not worry about that).  I feel as though lately (like that last two days or so) I have been living in my "basement" not necessarily in my Adaptibility strength but just in life in general. So that might have to do a little bit with why I have been absent from blogging.  I feel bad but sometimes that is just life.  I think I have just been missing my Mom.

Ok that was a little heavy...are you still with me?  Lets move on....shall we?

LABOR DAY weekend!!! glorious 3 days spent in Ellensburg Washington attending the Rodeo!!  We had a great time camping, yes I went camping AGAIN - I should get my head checked two times in less than a month I must be going crazy because this girl does NOT camp!!! haha.  

No pictures sorry.  But we sure were busy.  We went to the Rodeo, hung out at the trailer/campsite, visited with family, watched the parade, shopping in Yakima and ate food. Thomas got to go fishing with his dad and uncle and caught some nice sized trout but of course it is Catch and Release in the Yakima River so he didn't bring any back.  Oh yeah we brought our puppies with us and they were SO good!!  Everytime I go to the Rodeo I wish I rode my horses more...hopefully I will this year!

Thank you for sticking around and I love that I am getting new Followers!!! THANK YOU!!

What do you do when you are feeling low?  I would love to know.

♥ Ashley