Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Thrifty Office Table

I'm settling into my new office quite nicely!  Although I have yet to figure out how to print labels from the copier/printer/scanner on this side of the building!  I love how much sunlight this side of the building gets in the mornings.  It makes for a bright and cheery spot to come into before the day's work begins. 

Besides working, I've been busy adding in some personal touches to my office space.  I wanted a table for the wall across from my desk.  I was going to peruse the thrift stores but remembered we had a small, console table at home that wasn't getting much love.

I gave it a mini-makeover with a fresh coat of paint - from beige to this beautiful, Atlantic Gray (from the Valspar Seaside Retreat collection).  

The glass container (a .25 thrift store find) is filled with branch balls I found at the Dollar Tree in the craft/floral section.  They were 3 for $1 - and dark green, until I spray painted them white.  If the frame looks familiar, it's because as soon as I saw this post at 320 Sycamore, I ran out and literally used my last allowance dollar for the week on the exact same picture frame Melissa found at the Dollar Tree.  I also painted mine with craft paint (green tea color - .25 at Michaels!) and rubbed some of the paint away from the detail for a shabby look.  "Ora et Labora" is Latin for "Pray and Work".  I studied Latin in high school and still have a great affinity for the language.

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Soft Place To Land

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Lenten Meal Ideas

During the season of Lent, our family will be abstaining from meat (fish is permitted) on Fridays as well as Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.  Our meal plans usually include several meatless meals anyway to counter the increased cost of buying local, grass-fed and finished beef and local, pastured chicken and pork.  Here are recipe links to some of the meatless meals our family enjoys.

Taco Style Lentils and Brown Rice (Hillbilly Housewife) - I use 2 cups organic beef broth and 2 cups water instead of bouillon

Sweet Potato Quesadillas with sprouted tortillas (Animal Vegetable Miracle)

Country Creole Peas and Corn (Sue Gregg)

Black Bean and Brown Rice Burritos using sprouted tortillas

Homemade Whole Wheat Veggie Pizza

Lentil Chili topped with shredded, raw cheddar cheese and homemade corn bread (Tammy's Recipes)

Spinach Rice Casserole (Tammy's Recipes)

Golden Veggie Fried Rice (Tammy's Recipes)

Garden Chowder (Passionate Homemaking)

Crockpot Tamale Pie (A Year of Slow Cooking)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ash Wednesday

"Memento, homo ... quia pulvis es, et in pulverem reverteris"

"Remember, man, you are dust and to dust you will return."

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

NC State Campus Farmer's Market

According to their website, the farmer's market on the campus of NC State will open for Spring 2010 on Wednesday, February 17th.  The market is located on the Brickyard, in front of D.H. Hill Library (the main campus library) from 10 AM till 3 PM on Wednesdays.  Great to see the local food movement making its way to my alma mater!

Shrove Tuesday

On Shrove Tuesday (the day before Ash Wednesday, also known as Fat Tuesday or Pancake Tuesday) it's customary to eat pancakes.  I'm not so good at making pancakes, so we'll be having homemade waffles with local, scrambled pastured eggs and local, pastured pork sausage for dinner instead.  For the waffle batter, I double the recipe and use half whole wheat flour and half unbleached, white whole wheat flour.  In place of sugar, I use organic sucanat.  The recipe makes such delicious waffles.  They are good topped with organic maple syrup or fruit syrup.  They also reheat well for a snack later in the day or for a quick breakfast the next day. 

Monday, February 15, 2010


Not moving to a different house...or blog.  But I am moving from my "cube with a view" to an office on the other side of the building.  I'm excited about having another space to decorate!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Market Day - State Farmer's Market

Thursday, the boys and I made a trip over to the State Farmer's Market for some local goodies.  From In The Red Farmstead, we picked up 2 dozen pastured eggs and 2lbs of pastured pork sausage links.  And from MAE Farm, North Carolina style pastured pork barbecue and uncured, nitrate-free beef hot dogs.  Also two slushies made from local muscadine grape juice for my little helpers. 

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Heart Ragamuffin Garland

Last week I shared how I used the metal heart ornaments I picked up during the Target after Christmas clearance sales for a Heart Tree

But for the plaid and houndstooth heart ornaments, I had other plans.

I gathered the hearts along with some scrap pieces of fabric - toile, burlap, an old white cotton sheet that had been torn into cleaning cloths and the legs of a pair of well worn Old Navy cords (I remember buying those cords when Clayton was just a baby - where has the time gone!)

After some cutting and tying, I made myself a ragamuffin garland.  Along with the fabric, I added in strands of my after Christmas clearance red and white ribbon as well as the heart ornaments from Target.

And here's my ragamuffin garland hanging above the kitchen sink!

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I *heart* your visits :)

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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Simple Pleasure - Fresh Flowers

Finding these lily and hydrangea bunches on markdown at the grocery store, reminded me of how much I love having fresh flowers around.  A lovely change from the berries and pine cones of winter.

Take time to indulge in your simple pleasures!

What simple pleasures have you enjoyed lately?

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Let's Get LOST Tonight!

Heart Tree

Remember the metal heart ornaments I found at Target during the after Christmas clearance sale?

They now find themselves adorning the branches of our Heart Tree in the foyer.  Spray painted branches from our yard provide a place for the hearts to hang.  The container, a yard sale score from this summer, is tied with a red and white ribbon - ten cents from the after Christmas sale at Big Lots!

I saved one of the ornaments for our front door to hang with a simple grape vine wreath.

I finished the wreath with a big burlap bow - made from a scrap piece of burlap from the wreath I'm working on.

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Monday, February 1, 2010

Menu Plan Monday - February 1st

Welcome to another week of meals at
The Working Home Keeper!

A note about ingredients - Last year, our family made a switch to whole and nourishing foods. Most ingredients used in the making of these recipes are organic, organically-grown and/or natural (free from HFCS or preservatives). Most of our meats come from local farms where the animals are raised humanely and fed a diet that is natural to them. For cooking, I use traditional oils - olive oil, butter and organic, cold-pressed, extra virgin coconut oil. Local honey or organic sucanat is used in place of refined sugar.

This Week's Meals:


Homemade Waffles with sliced fruit & maple syrup (Tammy's Recipes)

Soaked oatmeal (The Nourishing Gourmet)

Sprouted cereal

Mixed Fruit Smoothies with Organic Kale


Usually sandwiches or dinner leftovers


With the snow coming at the end of last week, I had to make a quick trip out Friday night for groceries.  Some of the meals this week were bumped from last week or we're having them again since I had most of the items on hand.

Clayton's 5th Birthday - Dinner Out

Sweet Potato Quesadillas using sprouted tortillas (Animal Vegetable Miracle)

Shepherd's Pie made with local, grass-fed & finished beef (Daily Diner)

Chesapeake Spiced Salmon Patties (a new twist on my Momma's Salmon Pattie recipe) with organic brown rice & steamed haricots

Kale & Brown Rice Casserole (Tammy's Recipes)

Homemade Whole Wheat Veggie Pizza

Yellow Split Pea Dahl with Garlic Naan (Easy Indian in Minutes cookbook)

For more meal ideas, please visit Laura at I'm An Organizing Junkie.

Thanks for stopping by!