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Thursday, May 28, 2015

The Easiest Way to Cut Watermelon

Over Memorial Day Weekend I learned that I have been cutting Watermelon wrong my entire life. The Boy and I love the show The Kitchen on Food Network. Within the show they have this segment called Food Hacks. When Geoffrey Zakarian, one of the chefs and hosts of the show, made the statement that we've been cutting watermelon wrong our whole like I was like, "No way, but I am going to watch this." He was right. After a trial this past weekend I back up his claim. His way really is the perfect way to cut a watermelon.

Step 1. Chill your watermelon in the fridge.
Step 2. Cut your watermelon in half.
Step 3. Cut lengthen ways across your watermelon. Trying to keep each cut the same width apart. About an inch works great.



You can see my knife skills weren't perfect but you get the point. 

Step 4. Pull out a slice an enjoy! 


There you have a it! There is hardly any mess, and it is a super easy way to serve your family or guests. Plus if you are making a salad or need cubes you can quickly slice up these sticks. 


In other news we are officially done calving! This little heifer calf was our only black calf this year and the second last calf to be born. I stole the picture from the Boy's @jjbcattleco Instagram account so you will have to go check him out. 


Thursday, May 14, 2015

The Easiest Brownie Recipe

This post could have alternately been call "The Best Brownie Recipe on Earth!" I didn't think I was a huge brownie person until I tried these brownies, but now we can't get enough of them.

It all started with my sister-in-law making Cadbury Creme Egg Brownies for Easter. They were so good that I knew I had to make these myself. So off to the grocery to store I went to get the ingredients (brownie mix, eggs, oil and obviously Cadbury Creme Eggs). However, since it was after Easter there were no more Cadbury Creme Eggs left. Since there was no way I was waiting until next Easter to make these brownies I began thinking about what could be substituted. Rolos. Yup, mini Rolos would the answer, and they were perfect.

Ingredients
1 box Betty Crocker Fudge Brownie Mix 13x9 Family Size aka awesome brownie base
2 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup water
1 8 oz. bag of loose mini Rolos (I liked buying the bulk bag because then I didn't have to unwrap all of them







1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees
2. Line a 13x9 baking pan with tinfoil, allowing the tinfoil to come over the edges. This makes it easier to pull the brownies out of the pan.
3. Spray the tinfoil with oil
4. Mix just until all the ingredients, except the Rolo, are incorporated. It is important not to over mix brownies
5. Fold in the whole package of Rolos
6. Pour evenly into your foil lined and greased pan
7. Bake for 25-27 minutes. I feel like because of the Rolos they take a little longer to bake. Let cool for 30 minutes before cutting.


This recipe also freezes really well in case you want to make ahead and serve later. Does your family have a sweet tooth or make a favorite chocolate recipe.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Top Antibiotics used in Humans vs. Livestock

Thanks to restaurants like Chipolte and Panera you probably think about antibiotics way more than you have. These companies love the fear marketing slogan antibiotic-free meat. The truth is ALL meat is antibiotic free. No antibiotic residues are present in meat due to the withdrawal periods and other precautions requited by the government.

When we give antibiotics to our cows we write down the date given, the antibiotic and the withdrawal date. Not many of our cows are going to slaughter because they are breeding animals, but just in case we did sell one for meat purposes we would look at that information to make sure the withdrawal date was past before selling. This is a good video that explains the process.

You may also have heard about antibiotic resistance. This is where the bacteria become resistant to antibiotics often because of over use. Many people are worried that by using antibiotics in animals we might be creating a resistance problem.


However, take a look at this graphic about the top antibiotics used in humans vs. livestock. I thought it was very interesting to see that what we are using to treat our sick animals doesn't hardly come into play in human health. You can read this post of mine about why we give antibiotics and see how it can help an animal feel better.

On our farm we will continue to use antibiotics, however we will also continue to use them responsibility so that we can help animals become healthy, and ensure you have the best meat in the world to consume.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Basement Remodel

So I have a little secret... we have a new basement! Like strip it down to cement, build it up from the ground, and now it is the looks beautiful kind of basement. We didn't plan on getting a new basement. When we bought the house it was finished, however four months after moving into we discovered a host of problems, and those problems took much longer to fix than expected.

The timeline went something like this.

  • September 2013 - find mold and water in our basement 
  • May 2014 - start the demolition ourselves, make pretty good head way, the Boy cuts through a water pipe with a saw so we call in the pros
  • September 2014 - the contractor finishes demolition 
  • November/December 2014 - finally start on the remodel 
  • January/February 2015 - make a ton of progress
  • March 2015 - all the finishing work is complete, and I host a shower for 50 ladies the day after the basement is finished. Yes, juice was split on the carpet! 
Since the timeline drug along so slowly we weren't sharing too much about the renovations. However, now I can't wait to show it off! 


Since we literally took down every wall in the basement, redid all the plumbing and HVAC it allowed us to redesign the layout of the basement. We love the new look so much more!


I don't have a ton of pictures of the old basement, but you can tell it was time for an update. 


Since we live on a farm it was really important you could come in our front door and head straight down stairs with your dirty boots or clothes. This built in allows us plenty of extra storage, and the floor is very easy to mop down. The door on the right-hand side leads to our laundry room and more storage. Although the floor looks like wood it is actually vinyl! We call the color Skye because our pup blends into it perfectly. 
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