Â Â This will be my “almost” last post for the week, which makes me sad since I really enjoy writing and sharing new things with you each week. AS many of you know, tomorrow begins the time with family as we are up and away in the Twin Cities saying goodbye to our Grandmother’s earthly body. Had a few pretty sad moments today…..crazy how grief can just sneak up on you and whack you upside the head in the strangest places and moments.
Â Â Its not that, for her, I am not happy that her pain is over, and that she has gone to the one place she longed for more than being with all of us. Its just that we will really REALLY feel the loss of her presence, her questions, her laugh, her voice, her hugging our children and playing with them, seeing them grow up loving on her. Losing someone you love is tough.
Â Â Since we moved down here about 8 years ago we have not seen this Grandma, or actually the whole family, as much as we used to. We would visit and call as much as we could, but that is something we had to come to terms with over the subsequent years…now it is painful to consider, knowing it would have been a little more time with her. Sometimes the pain can come sweeping down in other ways too–today as I was looking for pictures of her, I came across one from when my oldest was really little. My mother had been in a terrible car accident in Colorado, and I had to suddenly leave my medically fragile small daughter (she could not fly), and my young husband to make it to her bedside since they thought she was going to pass away. Grandma Bea stepped in and spent “the most amazing week she ever had” with everyone. It made a really difficult decision on my part so much easier knowing everyone was in Grandma’s care, and I never forgot that sweet sacrifice on her part.
Â Â We had two bigg-ish things happen today here at The Welcoming House–literally and figuratively. The Welcoming House Blog had one of its first times ever of jumping over 800 READERS in a single day. That is some pretty amazing stuff to a simple rural girl with a heart for canning, sharing, encouraging, and walking people through life here at my welcoming house. I am excited, again, for the future of what this holds and to see what will happen between now and Christmas with this blog. I was blessed to have been invited to share on the radio program on Saturday, and had a great time doing it. I am very excited to see what is going to happen with my review of the Tropical Traditions Top-Of-The-Line Coconut oil I will be talking about next week, as well as a foray into dehydrating different foods and then using them in full meals with recipes for you.(even *gasp* HAMBURGER)
Â Â But also just as exciting was logging onto my email today and finding that I am receiving more and more emails from YOU asking questions, making comments, suggesting topics. Thank you SO much for taking the time to reach out and send me an email! Please know that I keep all the suggestions in a folder, and pull from them when I need an idea for a blog post. That can happen more frequently than you know, especially when I am worn out from all that I do around here! I also got another exciting email today that made me cheer—my Wonder Mill from the Grain Mill Company is on its way, and I will soon be holding it in my grubby (aka floury) little hands!!! I have been brainstorming all the wonderful ideas and recipes I will be sharing with you and I tell you what, it is going to be hard to limit them to just FIVE ideas to submit for their contests!! I hope you will be waiting as excitedly as I am for that coming early next month.
Â Â Well to finally get to today’s post, I wanted to share with you two more ‘meal in a jar’ recipes that we use around here quite frequently. Now, know that this is just scratching the surface, and that I have an e-book in progress that is ALL meals in a jar for those canning enthusiasts out there. But these two,and the two I shared yesterday, are the top four in our rotation. I also have canned meatballs, and sweet and sour chicken or pork, but these two round out the list of meals we use almost every weekend.
Â Â I hope that your family enjoys them as much as our family does. I will probably do a post late Friday or Saturday. Please pray for our family as we walk through this time of sorrow this week.
- This soup is also actually excellent if you add about 1/4Â cup bacon crumbles or sausage to it if you want to change up the recipe (but the you then need to process it for 90 minutes with the meat included to be sure it is safe for shelf stability)
- Top with veggie stock, or chicken stock if you prefer. Process for 40 minutes (veggie stock), or 45 minutes (meat stock) for the regular recipe listed above.
- When we go to eat this we actually use a hand blender and puree, topping the thick soup with homemade croutons and cheese shreds, or plain yogurt and chives with a thick slice of homemade bread.