About Me

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Indiana, United States
Updates on our homeschooling family with ten children, a handful of chickens, a couple horses, three bunnies, and six cats. Visit our website at PeacefulHome.net


Grocery Spending

Food Only

Oct 2010 - $231.39

Nov 2010 - $998.22

Dec 2010 - $340.29

Jan 2011 - $855.15

Feb 2011 - $203.17

Mar 2011 - $916.52

Monthly Average $590.79

Weekly Average $137.85
Our family's website, PeacefulHome.net, is in the process of changing hosting companies and is currently inactive. Our plan is to move this blog over once construction is complete. Please stay tuned for updates!

Favorite Recipes

When our family really loves a meal, it can be voted into the "Black & White Cookbook." After receiving a majority vote, it is penciled into the humble composition book that contains all the family favorites. These are the meals that, when asked "What's for Dinner?" the children are excited about my answer. Here are a few of our trusty favorites.


Baked French Toast
a.k.a Flipper-Over Toast
· ½ cup butter
· 1 cup brown sugar
· 1-1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
· Bread, you can tear or cube
· 6 eggs
· 1-1/2 milk
· dash of salt

Melt butter in a 9 x 13 pan; stir in brown sugar & cinnamon. Cover with bread. Beat eggs with milk and salt; pour over bread. Bake at 350° for 30 or until the egg is cooked. You can make it the night before, cover with foil, refrigerate overnight and bake in the morning.

Almond Granola
· 12 cups oats
· 2 cups brown sugar
· 1 cup coconut (optional)
· 1 cup butter
· 1 cup oil
· 2 teaspoons vanilla
· 1 teaspoon almond extract
· sliced almonds
· 2 raisins (optional)

Melt butter and mix all ingredients except raisins in large bowl. Spread in 2 to 3 - 10 x 15 baking pans with sides. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool, sprinkle on raisins.

Ginger Snap Granola
· 12 cups oats
· 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
· 1/2 cup molassas
· 1 cup butter
· 1 cup oil
· 2 teaspoons cinnamon
· 1 teaspoon ginger
· 1 teaspoon salt

Melt butter and mix all ingredients in large bowl. Spread in 2 to 3 - 10 x 15 baking pans with sides. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool.

Peanut Butter Granola
· ½ cup butter
· 1 1/3 cups peanut butter
· 1 cup honey
· 1/3 cup brown sugar
· 2 teaspoons vanilla
· 1 teaspoon salt
· 12 cups oats

Melt butter and peanut butter and mix all ingredients in large bowl. Spread in 2 to 3 10 x 15 baking pans with sides. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool.
Honey Granola
· 12 cups oats
· 1 cup butter
· 1/2 cup honey
· 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
· 1 teaspoon salt

Melt butter and mix all ingredients in large bowl. Spread in 2-3 10 x 15 baking pans with sides. Bake at 350° for 20 minutes. Remove from oven, let cool.

Pancake Mix

12 C Flour (part white, part whole wheat)
4 C Dry Milk
3/4 C Baking Powder
3/4 C Sugar
2 T Salt

To make the pancakes, mix together:
1 1/2 C Mix
1 C Water
1 egg
2 T oil

This makes around 15 pancakes. We make a double batch - triple if Dad's home! I love to freeze leftover pancakes for a quick breakfast later on.


Pinto Bean Mix

Great for refried beans or other Mexican dishes calling for pinto beans.
· 2-3 pounds of pinto beans
· ¼ cup dried onions
· 1 teaspoon of minced garlic
· 2 tablespoons of butter
· 2 tablespoons of salt

Wash and sort beans. In a Dutch Oven combine beans and enough water to cover. Bring to a boil. Boil 2 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and let stand for one hour.

Drain and discard water. Rinse and return to pot. Add enough water to cover, onions, garlic, and butter. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until beans are tender. Add salt (this is crucial to flavor!). Cool the beans.
Measure meal-size servings into a blender and process. Freeze flat in baggies.

Franks n’ Beans

· 2 - 28 oz. Baked beans
· 1 package hotdogs
· ¼ cup ketchup
· 2 teaspoons mustard
· 2 tablespoons brown sugar
· 6 slices of bacon, fried crisp

Cut hotdogs into small pieces. Mix with all ingredients except bacon in a 9 x 13. Crumble up bacon and sprinkle on top. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes.

Main Dishes

Homemade Tomato Soup

This is almost as easy as opening up a can and so good for you! I think this is actually a triple batch (I lost count at some point), so feel free to cut it down to suit your needs!

· 4 T Butter
· 1/2 C Flour
· 12 C Milk
· 64 oz. Tomato Sauce
· salt & pepper to taste (about 2t and 1/2t respectively)
· Parmesan Cheese

In a Dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat. Stir in flour until combined. Whisk in milk until smooth and creamy. Heat until thickened, stirring frequently. Add tomato sauce, salt and pepper. Heat through. We like sprinkled with Parmesan Cheese.
Spoiler Sandwiches

Emelie loves the cheers when she makes theselunch!

· Sliced bread

· Peanut butter

· Mini Marshmallows

· Chocolate Chips

Heat griddle to 350°. Peanut butter bread and place on griddle. Sprinkle with marshmallows and chocolate chips (about 7 per sandwich). Top with second slice of bread and flip when brown.
World's Easiest Mac n’ Cheese

· 2 tablespoons butter
· 3 cups milk
· 2 cups uncooked macaroni
· 1 cup water
· 1 teaspoon salt
· 8-10 cheese slices
· Pepper to taste

Melt butter in a 9 x 13. Add macaroni, salt, and pepper. Mix with a fork until thoroughly coated. Pat smooth with fork. Cover with cheese slices. Pour milk and water over cheese. Cover with cookie sheet and bake for a hour at 350°.

Turkey Ranch WrapsBaked Stromboli Sandwich

· 8 thin slices cooked turkey
· 4 flour tortillas (6 inches), warmed
· 1 large tomato, thinly sliced
· 1 medium green pepper, cut into thin strips
· 1 cup shredded lettuce
· 1 cup (4 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese
· 1/3 cup prepared ranch salad dressing

Place two slices of turkey on each tortilla. Layer with tomato, green pepper, lettuce and cheese. Drizzle with salad dressing. Roll up tightly.
Yield: 4 servings.

The universal favorite meat/cheese combination is Ham & Cheddar Cheese, but also yummy are Turkey & Swiss and Salami & Pepper Jack. For the bread, I use homemade bread dough equal to one loaf for each sandwich. You could use frozen bread dough to be even quicker. Two sandwiches feed our crew.

· 1 lb Frozen Bread Dough, thawed
· 2 Tbl. Butter, softened
· ½ lb. Sliced Deli Meat
· ½ C Shredded Cheese

Roll out dough to about 10x15 inches; spread with butter. Top with sprinkle of cheese, meat, rest of cheese. Roll up jelly-roll style; pinch to seal and tuck ends under. Place seam-side down on a greased baking sheet. Cover and let rise for 20 minutes. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Let sit for a few minutes, then slice and enjoy!
Odds and Ends

Better Butter

We like to make this spread which has the great taste of butter and the healtheir benefits of olive oil. It spreads on toast right out of the fridge and is so yummy!

· 1 lb. of Butter, softened

· 2 C Olive Oil

· 1/4 C Dry Milk

· 1/4 C Warm Water

Blend all together in a blender and store in the fridge. This recipe can be easily cut down. This lasts us about 3-4 weeks.