Seafood Feast

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The last time we got together with our neighbours was a great time. Of course getting together with everyone when we can is always fun, we have a lot of great laughs and always seem to stay up way too late enjoying a few beverages but this time we filed our bellies with tasty seafood too. Jen makes an amazing spread. She cooks up all the seafood, the crawfish, shrimp, crab, and lobster, she mixes it all together with veggies like corn, mushrooms, potatoes, and carrots. sprinkles on the pomegranate and squeezes out the lemon. Then she places a candle in the middle of it all laid out on the table and we dig in. This is a meal we all look forward to her making. It is so much work for her but the attention to detail is amazing right down to the desert that of course none of us are hungry for but can’t say no to! Even full of food we all look forward to the next time she makes it again!

“Turkey Brine” -or- “The Tale of the Humungous Turkey”

35 lbs of turkey to cook and we used this amazing brine to prep the bird before cooking him… for most of the following day!!

The Recipe 


  1. 4c. Water
  2. 1c. Salt
  3. 1c. Brown sugar

Repeat this process until there is enough brine to cover the whole bird in a bucket/container/cooler (whatever receptacle you are using) or in the case of the bird in the photo it was a large rubbermaid container!!


  1. Two oranges quartered
  2. Two lemons quartered
  3. Six sprigs of thyme
  4. Four sprigs of rosemary
  5. Ice

Keep bird submerged for 12-24 hrs and then roast as you usually would!

Additional Notes:

The rough guide for turkey roasting is 20min per pound at 350°F. This is for a thawed or fresh bird, if you are starting from a frozen state you’ll need a little longer… But it’s always good to thaw your bird in the fridge before cooking anyway!

The final internal temperature of the bird should be 165°F and although it is not reccomended to cook stuffing inside the cavity anymore but if you are a rebel like me and still do, the stuffing should also reach a temperature of 165°F also!

The Story

Steve decided that we needed a “bigger” than your average grocery store bird for this particular gathering, when he arrived home this became a mild understatement! So he conferred with a co-worker and friend who grows turkeys and lined up to buy one from his family!

I was ecstatic!

Fresh turkey!

Yes please!

If you are a regular reader you know we have raised a little bit of everything here but turkeys have not been one of those things we have tried yet!  Although one day I would like to.

Steve returned home with the bird and at 35lbs my jaw dropped, where on earth were we going to cook this thing?

We made the brine… We submerged the bird into a huge Rubbermaid container and let it sit in our cold porch filling ice as we needed for the next 24 hrs.

Friends of ours were having a holiday party and so we headed down the road and proceeded to have a few too many beverages and to stay up just a little too late (or early in the morning as it were) and by that time we needed to get this humungous bird stuffed and in the oven, so while I mixed up enough stuffing to fill the cavity Steve fought, wrestled, and struggled to make the bird fit in a roasting pan, and that was the little battle, the big battle was to follow and it would be when the two of us attempted to load the big fowl into the oven… I felt much like the mean old witch from Hansel and Grettal – and how fitting, there was even a house made of candy on the counter! We shoved and adjusted and maneuvered and finally got the door shut and the oven turned on! Then we laid down for 20 whole minutes before the children began to wake up!


For the remainder of the day we were exhausted but our house smelled delicious and that night, and for MANY after we ate delicious bite after bite of that ginormous bird!!


Good day, time for an update! 

dsc00952Well the cold weather has officially hit, the weather man keeps telling me it might warm up one more time but looking into the frost covered day I’m having a hard time
believing it!

img_0402The summer was such a busy one with so many adventures! Our garden was a huge success this year! We planted early enough to have a great crop of corn that we are img_3747still enjoying, potatoes that will last for months and so much fresh foods that I was able to can, pickle, and freeze what we need for the winter months! We are so lucky to have the space and the time to enjoy a large garden! I hope of course that next year we can keep working toward a weed free garden! We worked hard this year to keep the weeds down and they still managed to get away from us in the end but every year it’s better and better!


We certainly were busy in the barn yard too this year with the addition of our baby pigs! With two sows farrowing this summer we now have 18 babies settled in their img_4216winter pen with lots of room to run, and food to eat!  And our Three sows have a boar with them now in their pen so we should be expecting another round of babies in the spring! This is the first year we haven’t done anything extravagant with our birds, in that we simply purchased a few new chickens at a spring sale and kept our flock small and manageable! I haven’t been over run by eggs this year which has been a nice change! Although with the cool weather the slow down has been a little too much and we’ve had to seek help with our egg supply from our neighbour until the ladies started laying again! We will plan to hatch out again this spring to replace some of the birds that are slowing down or not laying anymore, I think the kids are going to love the process and seeing the new babies!!


We did some camping this season too, the lake was beautiful, and camping at Moberly is always a treat! The girls got some much needed grandma and grandpa camping in without mom and dad, and Henry had some of his first camping adventures this year!


Steve and I managed to get some time in with each other too this summer… which of course can sometimes be a challenge with three young children! But with the help of our friends and family and some great babysitters we are so lucky to have we had a few fun adventures together!

We even got an old time drive in movie date in which was very fun! The movie was Grease so at one point we were watching the drive in movie scene at the drive in movie!


Steve and I have a really great group of Friends too who we spend time with often! We have had a great many barbecues, nights out,and games nights!

img_0134We searched and searched this summer looking for a play structure that would last our family many years of play! I read a blog (I wish I could remember which so I could give it due credit) that hit the nail on the head, explaining how:

We as parents do not buy extravagant play structures and toys for our children really! They are for us, the parents!

Rightfully so after our back yard was img_0117set up for the kids to freely play, gardening and yard work became that much easier! The best part of the process was when Steve showed up at the sellers house (we purchased used from a bidding site on Facebook) they thought he would be there for days unsetting it, instead he loaded it on to a trailer with a picker truck and the kids were on it by the next day!



4 Days in the Wild and 100 Years in the Wild

There are so many wonderful reasons I love living where we do and one of them most of all is our community! Everyone comes together for one another always and I don’t think I could want for a better place to raise our family!

And for 4 days (with the hard work and dedication of the entire team of volunteers) everyone comes together to participate in the Teepee Creek Stampede! This year marked the 100th anniversary of the rodeo and even the girls joined in on the calf scramble this year! My whole family was here mom, dad, and grandma traveled and camped out, it was great for everyone to experience the togetherness of this community first hand! Steve of course did a lot of volunteering again this year and it was great to have help from our friends and family to make it possible for the kids to participate and enjoy their time too! We are looking forward to next year as both Steve and I have taken on a greater roll with the organization this year!!

It really was a wonderful summer and fall and we are looking forward to next summer when we can head out and spend time in the sunshine again!

For now though we will enjoy the snowy weather and all the adventures to come!


Chicken Marinade Steve’s Awesome Recipe (It was important to him you know it was his! ☺)



1-1 ½ c. Ketchup

2 tbs. Soya Sauce

1 tbs. Worcestershire Sauce

¼ c. Chipotle Oil

1 tsp. Lemmon Juice (+more for desired taste)

½ c. Brown Sugar

Sprinkle Garlic Powder


  • 1 tbs. Honey if desire a sweeter marinade
  • 1 tsp. Tabasco Sauce if desire spicier


  1. Mix all ingredients and place in air tight container or bag with chicken for 8hrs then bbq chicken spreading marinade as you cook!

NOTE:   This is also very tasty in the slow cooker too!