Gluten Free Cinnamon Buns

Another gluten free baking success!!

These buns are yeast free and are quick and easy to make.

I recently purchased this book and highly recommend it:
Gluten-Free on a Shoestring, Quick and Easy: 100 Recipes for the Food You Love–Fast!

You can click here for the recipe on her website.

As always, I used my favorite gluten free flour blend from Better Batter.

I will probably make a few minor changes next time, like using this maple icing recipe from Pioneer Woman, but they were still a big hit in our home!

Gluten Free Valentine Sugar Cookies

Many of you know that my dad has Celiac’s disease, so I’m often trying new gluten free recipes for him. But this year I’ve made it my mission to perfect the gluten free cookie tray for Christmas… I don’t want a child with a gluten allergy to go without cookies during the holiday season, it’s just isn’t right!

This is my version of ‘no child left behind.’ Every child deserves a cookie! A pretty cookie!

As such, I’ve started conducting GF cookie experiments, and this was my first go at the rolled sugar cookie.

I made both chocolate and vanilla sugar cookies and both were delicious… dare I say, BETTER than gluten cookies?! The taste was great, but the texture and canvas were perfect for decorating. This is a big deal for me!
Chocolate cookie recipe
Vanilla cookie recipe
Royal icing recipe

I made these cookies for Ella to take to her homeschool Valentine’s party and for Craig to take to work. I packaged them and then remembered that I wanted to take photographs. Oops.

A certain little boy was bored with my activities.

Groundhog Cookies

It’s no secret that I love to bake cookies, but these are extra special. Every year I make groundhog cookies in memory of our dear friend Alice.

I sent this tray with Craig to share with his co-workers and I’ve also made a tray for service project that Ella and I are doing.

Chocolate groundhog sugar cookies
This time of year can be dreary, particularly in our region, so why not bake some fun cookies to share!Chocolate groundhog sugar cookies
Ella made large gum paste flowers for the hearts and small ones for the girl groundhogs to wear in their hair.Chocolate groundhog sugar cookiesSugar cookie recipe.
Royal icing recipe. 


Wood Splitting

All hands on deck! We need more wood!

This winter has been crazy… well below average temps and quite a bit of snow. 
This weekend we really need to stockpile the wood as Craig, my dad and Ella are leaving for a mission trip to Honduras. 
Evan did really well running the log splitter.

Until his feet started to, “freeze off.” At which point he ran around and played in the snow. Hmmm…

Temperatures were single digits and the wind chill was near zero or below. It was COLD!!
Ella had been stacking wood in the heated garage and was warm.
There is something about working your property for survival (heat) that is good for the soul. Although they like to complain, the kids feel good contributing to the homestead because it gives them purpose. And everyone needs a purpose! This is one of the things that I think I was missing when we lived the city life; I enjoy the hard labor, getting your exercise from working, and being independent. Need heat? Grow trees, split wood, burn fire (grunt like caveman). And there she is… isn’t she a beaut? I’m told that this is one of the nicer wood gasification boilers. When the temps are really low, we feed it about every 3-4 hours, it is located in our detached garage. It heats our home and our water quite nicely. We do have propane as backup, but with prices soaring we are thankful that we don’t have to use it.
And for the record, I only took photos for about 10 minutes, then my job was stacking wood.
Vladimir was happy to have the help as he usually does this by himself.

First Snowfall at the Homestead!

Oh my goodness, it’s sooooo pretty!! Dad transplanted the blueberry bushes a few weeks ago, and I love the way the snow clung to its branches.

Something tells me the days of hanging around outside are over.
The chickens are holding up in the coop. Remember the scene in Polar Express when Santa declares, “the first gift of CHRISTMAS!!!”

Anytime something happens for the first time at the homestead, we use that same expression… “the first snowfall of the HOMESTEAD!!”

Here are a few others we’ve said:
The first shower of the homestead
The first wedding of the homestead (first time I photographed after moving in)
The first BYOP of the homestead
The first grilled meal of the homestead
The first sickness of the homestead
The first trick or treat of the homestead (no one showed up)

Trust me, the list goes on…