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Simple Summer

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  • Sheryl Simons
    The Simple Life It is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all. ~Laura Ingalls Wilder Simple Summer I hope you let the kids stay up
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 13, 2007
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      The Simple Life

      "It is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after
      ~Laura Ingalls Wilder

      Simple Summer

      I hope you let the kids stay up past their bedtimes this
      summer – at least once! Take a walk after dark away from all the
      city lights and don't light up the campfire just yet, (this is where
      camping comes in handy!) Watching the August meteor showers has been
      a favorite activity of mine since I was in my teens. It's awesome –
      better than fireworks! Where we live you can hear the coyotes
      howling and just enjoy nature after dark. The sky literally lights
      up after your eyes adjust. Maybe someone will point out some
      constellations. You can tell the kids about how sailors used the
      stars to guide their ships. Ask them what guides their ships. Talk
      about what can happen to a ship that goes off course, and that leads
      to what happens when we go off course. It's easy to get off course
      in the dark, when you can't see your feet! Besides being a great
      learning experience, it's fun and simple.

      I hope you get to take the kids to a beach for the day. Look
      at all kinds of shells, count ships, notice sea birds, seaweeds,
      minnows – and watch out for poison ivy (which grows near the beach
      around here!). Just use it as a discovery day. If you take plenty of
      sunscreen, and maybe you can find some shade or take an umbrella.

      I hope you take the kids to the garden and let them help find
      tomato worms, potato bugs, and help pick corn. Let them see nature
      at work. They can pull a few weeds, and help water the plants. Talk
      about rain and sun and how the garden grows, and how we help make a
      good garden. The birds and spiders help by eating bugs. Show the
      kids how some veggies grow up and some grow under, like potatoes and
      rutabagas, and radishes. Give the extras to neighbors who don't have
      a garden, or put it for sale by the road. Sell extra pumpkins and
      squash. And can or freeze what you can for the winter months. Make
      corn pancakes for breakfast (using leftover cooked corn). Show the
      kids how much the jars cost at the store ($1.00 for a small jar of
      applesauce) so they can see how much you save. Let them see how
      fragrant a fresh jar of tomatoes or pickles smells when you take the
      lid off – like summer in a jar!

      Enjoy summer, and don't ever stop seeing the lessons that are all
      around us!
      * * *
      "Every action of our lives touches on some chord that will vibrate in
      eternity." ~~Edwin Chapin

      "Life is a big canvas, throw all the paint on it you can." ~~Danny

      "Everyman's life is a fairy tale written by God's fingers." ~~ Hans
      Christian Anderson

      * * *
      Simple Buttermilk Fried Chicken Recipe

      1 (3 pound) fryer cut up, 2 cups buttermilk or plain yogurt, (or use
      2 c milk mixed with 2 t vinegar) 1 large onion, sliced 1/4 cup
      chopped mixed fresh herbs (parsley, tarragon, thyme – or your
      favorite) 1/2 t paprika 1/2 t cayenne pepper
      1/2 t garlic salt, 1/2 t onion salt, 1 t cayenne pepper, 1 c flour, 1
      c crushed saltines, Salt and pepper, 2 cups high smoke-point oil such
      as canola oil, or peanut oil, or other grapeseed oil

      Soak chicken overnight (at least 8 hours and up to two days) in
      buttermilk with onions, herbs, paprika, and cayenne pepper.

      Drain chicken, leaving some herbs on chicken. In a large paper or
      plastic (sturdy) bag, mix flour with seasonings and 1 t ginger, 1 T
      chicken boullion powder, 2 T brown sugar (don't be afraid to throw in
      your own combination of spices – the Colonel uses 11!). Meanwhile,
      heat 2 cups oil in a large, heavy-bottomed skillet such as cast iron
      or stainless steel or electric skillet on medium high heat until a
      pinch of flour starts to sizzle when dropped in the hot oil (but not
      so hot that the pan is smoking, approx. 360`).
      Place chicken pieces in zip-lock bag with flour, salt and pepper and
      shake until thoroughly coated. Add chicken to hot pan and fry on 1
      side for 12-15 minutes, until golden brown, and then use tongs to
      turn the pieces over and fry for another 10-12 minutes, again until
      golden brown.

      Place on a rack over a cookie sheet or broiling pan for the excess
      oil to drain.

      Keeping it Simple,

      Please contact me with recipes, questions, comments and simple living
      ideas that work for you. Email: thesimple_life@.... Join the
      online newsletter to print recipes and look up previous columns.
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