Creating Time

I often get asked, “how do you do it all?” I will admit we do have busy lives with 2 babies, 5 dogs, 2 ponies, 2 full time jobs, multiple part time jobs, and a farm to maintain, but we manage to get it all done. Time management plays a big part in “doing all the things.” Here are some tips that have helped me along the way.

Stay Organized: We have a shared calendar app called Cozi. This allows us to both manage the family schedule and know what is going on in the day to day. It will notify one another when the other person made a change or a new entry. I also meal prep on Sunday nights and get my meals ready for work that week. I also write out what the dinner is for each night of the week so there is no confusion or arguing what is for dinner.

Make time for you: Talk with your partner about your plans or what you would like to do and make time for it. If I want to do something, I make sure Kevin knows and can be around to watch the girls. Same goes for him. We also take the girls with us whenever we can. We do not often leave them with family to watch and they get the experience the fun and hobbies we enjoy.

Have a stay-cation: I am blessed with a full-time job that recognized work life balance and are given a number of personal days to use at my leisure. I LOVE using some of these days as stay-cation days to work around the farm. We take the girls to daycare and use the day to keep up on things around the farm that aren’t easy to do with two babies (mowing, mulching, weed whipping, spraying, etc.). It gives me a sense of accomplishment to be able to cross things off my list.

Understand it is okay: It is okay to not always have a clean house, it is okay for your kid to have fruit snacks for breakfast, it is okay to ask for help, it is okay to not have dinner made until 9pm. Life isn’t perfect. With my 1st child I beat myself up over little things like this and it mentally wore me out. I am not saying this is every day habits to live by but sometimes, it is okay. By learning that life isn’t 100% all the time, I have learned to enjoy the little things more and not try to create a perfect life ALL the time.

Be present: This is my 2019 yearly goal. Being present. I struggle with this in the fact that I do run two small businesses from my phone. I have to manage those in the evenings when that is my “family time.” I am learning to be present in each element I am in to give my best self to anyone in by presence. I am a work in progress!

It is okay to say NO: This was also hard for me early on as I am a YES person and if I say NO, then who will say YES? I would say yes to everything and ran myself ragged. I learned after baby #1 that I couldn’t possibly keep saying yes to everything. And, if you say NO enough times, people will stop asking! Tada, free schedule heheh.

The most important thing is do things that make you happy. You have one life to live and it is yours and no one else. You do you!

Kick the Canner to the Curb

In all reality, canning take too much time! Here is an easy hack on how I freeze my produce to get back some precious time!

Snapping green beans to be blanched

I have never been much of a green thumb however I have really wanted to get to a place where I can provide veggies for my family! As funny as it sounds, I am not much of a veggie eater. I thought by producing from my own two hands, it would encourage me to try new things!

Last year Kevin built a garden for me which included 4 ft tall fences (thank you deer). I had a successful harvest in 2018 so I did it again in 2019.

How to freeze Green Beans

We had a really wet spring but I managed to get seeds in between rains. The biggest lesson I learned with a garden is “do what works.” This can happen in a number of ways but they one I want to focus on today is with the final product. Having 2 babies 2 yrs and under, time is very precious. I decided to try freezing my product last year rather than canning it. I do not have a pressure canner or a place to store all those cans where they will not freeze. ALL my produce gets froze and stored. For the veggies, Beans, peas, and corn. I will blanche and vacuum seal (lasts 1 year in deep freeze). The tomatoes I turned into pizza and spaghetti sauce and froze in freezer bags (good for 1 year). Below I walk through the process I used with freezing the beans.

1: Pick Beans fresh and wash in cold water

2: Snap Beans: Snap the ends off and snap into edible sections (2-3 per bean)

3. Put in a pot of boiling water and blanch about 4 min- the color will turn a rich green. They will be a tad firm yet.

4. Vacuum Seal and freeze!

This method has saved me a lot of time and the end result is still SO good! Having fresh garden product in the middle of winter is a great treat!