Well, where to start?? This year my garden has struggled. Hard. It started by a bull jumping my garden fence and tromping the tenderly transplanted seedlings to the ground. Not to be deterred, I replanted by seed. A late start, yes. But I just have to have my garden!
But spring skipped us. I mean ALL of it. We got no storms as is typical in our NE Texas spring season, but we got no rain either. Then the heat & humidity of our summers hit – again with no rain. It’s a sad thing, but I’m making adjustments to try to squeak by.
Y’all know since we’ve added our Porch Addition, RancherMan & I love to spend our evenings out there. Aaaaaahhhh – it’s been a hard day, it’s been hot & humid and our bodies are tired, let me tell ya!
So we get together in this lovely outdoor living room, swinging gently, sipping something cold and talking about our day. This is our comforting routine almost every night.
But, this time of year there’s something threatening to cut short these special evenings together – Mosquitoes! Dang they’re everywhere! Their bites can transmit all kinds of nasties! You really do have to be careful and protect yourselves. What’s a country girl to do?
It’s hot, hot HOT out there, y’all! Here in NE Texas it seems we went from winter to summer with nary a mild spring day between! So I’m focusing these days on cooler foods and cold desserts. But I wanna keep it healthy too. RancherMan loves, loves, LOVES ice cream, especially when it’s this hot outside. But it’s just not healthy to indulge in such a high-fat treat too often.
I’ve written before about making a mock fat-free ice cream using frozen bananas and pudding mix. The pudding makes the ice cream more creamy and less icy. But I was looking for something even a little healthier. So I started making our ‘ice cream’ using the frozen bananas for the sweetness and frozen fruit for an extra punch of flavor.
Summer’s HERE, y’all! RancherMan & I work our homestead every day, so much of our daily activity involves being outside. Sun protection is important but we both hate the feel of sunblock. Plus I don’t like the thought of slathering chemicals on my skin every day anyway.
So we’re careful to protect our skin by covering it instead – wide-brim hats (helllooooo cowboy!)and long-sleeved lightweight shirts are often worn while mowing the yard or doing hours of tractor work. But c’mon – although it helps, that’s not much actual sun protection. I need to find clothing that protects us while keeping us comfortable.
I love my solar oven. I’ve said it time & time again, I hate to fire up my electric oven during the heat & humidity of our Texas summers. Not only does it cost fuel for the stove to operate, but boiling eggs adds even more heat inside our home. That requires our air conditioning to work overtime cooling it back down, therefore costing even more money.
Several years ago I bought a solar oven and I absolutely love it! What a great item in your Emergency Preparedness toolbox! Then at a Mother Earth News Fair I attended a few years ago, a solar-cooking seminar presenter told us how easy it was to cook ‘hard-boiled’ whole eggs in the solar oven without even using water. Color me intrigued!
I bought my solar oven several years ago and I use it a lot. Living in NE Texas, the summers are hot, humid and sticky. I hate to fire up the oven in my kitchen.
So it’s the solar oven to the rescue! I’m able to keep that cooking heat outside where it belongs!
But today the temps outside are spiking and humidity is on the rise. It’s absolutely miserable outside! So I’ll be utilizing my solar oven to make my casserole. The recipe below shows regular oven instructions though. So read on, dear friends!