Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Gluten Free Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread

My 7 year old daughter woke up on Saturday morning REALLY wanting some pumpkin bread. All the big kids had already gotten up and eaten cereal for breakfast but I decided I could still make this and they could eat it for morning snack. It turned out so delicious. Everyone loved it. I found a general recipe on my All Recipes app but tweaked it a little and I am glad I did because it was so good. This will definitely be a keeper recipe that we will have often this Fall.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bread


1 2/3 cups all purpose flour (or gluten free flour- I use Namaste all purpose gluten free)
1 cup        sugar
1T            cinnamon
1t             baking soda
1/4t          baking powder
1/4t          salt
1 pinch    ground nutmeg
1 cup       pumpkin puree
1/2 cup    butter (melted)
2              eggs
1t             vanilla
1 cup       chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350*. Grease a loaf pan. Stir together flour, sugar, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder, salt and nutmeg in a bowl. In a separate bowl (I use my Kitchen Aide mixer) mix together butter, pumpkin, eggs and vanilla.  Add flour mixture to wet ingredients and continue mixing. Add chocolate chips and stir with a spoon. Pour into loaf pan and bake for 1 hour or until your knife comes out clean.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Field Trip: Colorado History Museum

This past Friday we had to take our two girls for some allergy testing at their Dr. office in Denver. My husband took the day off from work to come with us since its a longer drive than I like and to help wrangle the toddler. The girls did great and it was a really good visit. Afterwards we grabbed some lunch then headed over to the Colorado History Museum. The kids had a great time last time we went and they have a new exhibit with toys from the 50's, 60's and 70's. The kids had so much fun looking at them and playing with some of them. We all had a really good time. We didn't stay too long because we didn't want to get stuck in rush hour traffic heading home.

Playing with the cash register.

Milking the cow.

Way up high saying hello.

Big sister having a turn milking the cow.

Shopping in the store.

Taking a car ride.

He LOVED driving the car.

Taking their pictures to be in an old fashioned yearbook.

The boys trying out the outhouse

The girls' turn.

Having a little picnic.

Waiting for the chickens to lay eggs.

He loved these dogs.

Watching old commercials.

The commercials were fun to watch.

Having slinky races.

This contraption was very interesting and fun to play with.

Playing with nerf balls.

Tons of fun doing the hula hoops.

Loved the Mr. Potato head.

He decided to climb right in to the dollhouse.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Canning peaches

I have been trying to can quite a bit of the yummy summer produce lately so that we can enjoy it all year long. I really enjoy canning things, it gives me something to do besides my normal "mommy & teacher" jobs. I decided I would take pictures the last time I canned peaches to show everyone how easy it is. There are a few items you need to have on hand first besides just peaches. You need a water bath canner or a pressure canner. I use my pressure canner and just use it as a water bath canner so I don't have so many pots laying around my house. ( I hate clutter!!) You will need jars (Costco has a great deal on pint jars right now 12 jars for $6.50 which is roughly fifty cents a jar). A jar lifter is good to have to get the jars in and out of the canner and a jar funnel and a magnetic wand. You can usually buy a canning kit at Wal-Mart that has all of these things in one box. A rubber spatula is good as well so you can get all the air bubbles out after you add boiling water to your jar of peaches.You will also need some lemon juice so you can soak your peach slices is a mixture of mostly water with a splash of lemon juice.

My big box of peaches- local Colorado peaches were $.88/lb this weekend. They are so sweet and juicy!

Things you need- (forgot to add in the magnetic wand)

Bring a big pot of water to a boil, add enough peaches where they aren't on top of one another and leave in for about 30 seconds.

Take them out of the water and let them cool in a bowl for a few minutes. They will be pretty hot to try to peel right away.(Just use your hands) Once you start peeling, it will come off very easily. Put the peaches in another bowl without the peel until you have peeled all of the peaches. Then make cuts in the peach the size of slices and gently try to pull the slices off the pit without making a mess of the peaches.

After you get the slices off, you want to put them in some lemon juice water so they wont go brown. Leave them in this mixture at least 15 minutes.

When your ready to put them in your jars, drain off the lemon juice water.

Put them in jars, have some water boiling on the stove while the peaches are in the lemon juice water so that after you put them in jars you can add the boiling water pretty quickly.

Fill the jars 1" from the top with peaches and the boiling water.

Use the rubber spatula and glide it around the whole jar to release any air bubbles that might be in the jar. Put your lids and rings in boiling water for a few minutes before the jars are ready. Use your magnetic wand to get the lids and rings out of the boiling water and use a towel to screw the rings on so you don't burn yourself.

Use your jar lifter to put the jars in your canner. Then make sure it is filled with water about 2" above the top of the jars. Put the lid on and heat on high until boiling. My canning book says to boil for 25 minutes (pints) 30 minutes (quarts) at sea level and go up 2 extra minutes per 1000 ft. above sea level. So I boil my pints for 37 minutes because we are about 6000ft. above sea level. I always set my kitchen timer to do everything exactly the amount of time it needs. Make sure when they are finished you use your jar lifter to take them out of the canner, set them on the counter and listen because over the next hour you will hear that wonderful "pop" sound that lets you know your jars are sealed and you have succeeded in your canning venture!

Here is your finished product! So yummy and no HFCS in it, just water!! I canned about 30lbs of peaches this past weekend so we should be set for this next year. Good luck if you decide to try your hand at canning peaches!