Monday, March 30, 2015

Monday Message

Build a new skill by trying to make your own yogurt. Scroll down for a list of different techniques!

"Peace is fragile, civilization itself is fragile. The economy is particularly vulnerable..."I do not know what the future holds. I do not wish to sound negative, but I wish to remind you of the warnings of scripture and the teachings of the prophets which we have had constantly before us. I cannot forget the great lesson of Pharaoh's dream of the fat and lean kine and of the full and withered stalks of corn. I cannot dismiss from my mind the grim warnings of the Lord as set forth in the 24th chapter of Matthew. I am familiar, as are you, with the declarations of modern revelation that the time will come when the earth will be cleansed and there will be indescribable distress, with weeping and mourning and lamentation. . . . Now, I do not wish to be an alarmist. I do not wish to be a prophet of doom. I am optimistic. I do not believe the time is here when an all-consuming calamity will overtake us. I earnestly pray that it may not. "As we have been continuously counseled for more than 60 years, let us have some food set aside that would sustain us for a time in case of need. But let us not panic nor go to extremes. Let us be prudent in every respect. And, above all, my brothers and sisters, let us move forward with faith in the Living God and His Beloved Son... (Gordon B. Hinckley,October Conference 2001.)

President Hinckley spoke this not so long ago. I remember him saying this in conference. I often think of the Pharaoh’s dream and how without the warning things would have been much worse. Imagine if they ignored the warning or if they thought they would someday get to it or thought no way could that be true... I hope we Listen to The Prophet’s voice and heed it.

My Yogurt

In a blender place three cups of water, 1 1/3 c. dry milk powder (mine is non instant)... and put 1 large tbsp of store bought yogurt, use plain or vanilla, I like vanilla Greek yogurt for the starter, it has to say "live culture" on the container. 

I blend and pour into my jars in my yogurt maker, put on lids and let it go for 24 hrs.

When served we put jam on and stir but you can do any topping you wish, nuts and honey granola, etc. 

You can add some powdered gelatin in the blender but you cannot use it for the starter. You could pour out a plain container and add gelatin to the rest in the blender, not a lot, a little gives you mild flavors. If you like more add more, it is what you like.

This is how I make it now that I have a yogurt maker again, but I will share how I did it in the past and how a few on the internet do it. But this is the easiest and fastest way. The yogurt maker is a gift from my husband, it was fifteen dollars. I think you can look around to see what you would like.

You can use your own for a starter but after two times or so it breaks down. If you have a favorite brand and it has plain or vanilla and has live cultures then use that, you will be pleasantly surprised. - here is yogurt showing the milk I use and the three methods, step by step directions are in the following link. 

This is how I used to do it with a cooler:

This one is more fiddly but thought I would put it in so you could have it too 

 I, for years, did the cooler method. You can use milk but I use powdered milk for everything. So give yogurt a try, it saves money if you have yogurt a lot! - my favorite pizza dough. I searched for thirty years for the best crust, this is not only it but it is so handy and tastes better than eating out by a long shot!  this is such a great idea for you young mothers! Start saving those wipe lids, too fun! I could see this in memory or even pick primary songs, too cute.

In the sewing room...

On skill building I know I have shared with you before my pattern system. In the picture it shows my binder of pattern envelopes, only the insides are put in the brown envelope with number that then is filed in a file cabinet (is where I have children's patterns) or the adult ones are filed in a wire drawer. I have a binder just like this one for children. I can easily see the back info and can locate my pattern easily. A good system to start when you first get started. I however did not find this system till a few years ago which was a job! Never too late though!

The other binder with polka dots is still in progress. I am learning the machines I have by going through and making swatches and writing info in a way easier to read than the dreaded manual, which is also in the binder. 

I wondered if this was just busy work but it has proven to be a great tool. Whether you want to do such a binder is up to you but I think learning all that your sewing machine can do is a great thing in stretching yourself.

I think both of these are great to consider as you begin to sew or further your skills on sewing. - get yourself organized, find a place where you can leave your machines up. You are more likely to mend faster if you can just sit and sew rather than building a pile then dragging out a machine. I used to set it up in our bedroom in some corner and it would be up and ready. - this is a good place to start learning your seams and make friends with that sewing machine.

Practice seams by making swatches or even bean bags.

These are a few things to make you think about being frugal this week and remember to keep working on your storage! Our grandmothers did this to help when times were sparse, we can do it too as budgets are tight. Learn many ways to stretch what you have and also find joy in it… be content with what you have, it helps you and your family remember things are just that. In a few years they won't even matter, they will be outdated and trash, so push forward and be happy.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Monday Message

Have recipes/techniques that you use on a daily basis? Create a "go-to" binder to refer back to them easily!

"Too often we bask in comfortable complacency and rationalize that the ravages of war, economic disaster, famine and earthquake cannot happen here. Those who believe this are either not acquainted with the revelations of the Lord or they do not believe them.  Those who smugly think these calamities will not happen, that they will somehow be set aside because of the righteousness of the Saints, are deceived and will rue the day they harbored such a delusion.  The Lord has warned and forewarned us against a day of great tribulation and given us counsel, through His Servants, on how we can be prepared for these difficult times.  Have you (we) heeded His counsel?" Ezra Taft Benson, Jun. I think this is a simple idea to make breakfast special and great way to use up bread! - good info, I would add that I use it too for drain cleaner when drains slow due to clogs. Pour baking soda follow with vinegar, it foams and pushes the clog down. I then follow with some boiling water, no chemicals needed! for those who are gluten free. - gluten free this is a great list of budget meals. are you afraid to cook with food storage? - this is good to have in your binder, then put sugar and molasses on your storage list.

Think about getting back to basics… "Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without" is what we need to put up on the frig to help you to remember to be frugal, to live with in our means and be happy and content with what we have.

We try to improve ourselves and surroundings.

Just a little change here and there... remember the go-to binder I am working on that I said was white? Well it had the clear pockets all around so I found a couple of pieces of scrapbooking paper and cut them and slid them in to spruce up the binder. So I had all on hand, it cost me nothing to help create something that will save me time. There are things I use more frequently that would save me time going and looking in my two binders of recipes.  

One is my food storage recipes which I went through my file and looked at the recipes and found the ones that if I did not have eggs or cheese I could still make if I had those things stored. I found that most of our favorite family recipes fell into that category and that I already stored what these called for. I think if you look closely you might find the same in your recipe box.

The other binder is recipes we liked or I want to try, it is called my working recipe binder.

But the now pretty binder pictured at the top has things I use more often... as seen in the picture I use it for enchilada sauce, white sauce, my milk conversion chart, my yogurt recipe, the diner pancakes, my popovers, the bread recipe from the blog, the recipe for tapioca pudding, my taco seasoning recipe. I continue to add as I go, this is for my convenience so I can find the info fast. 

Yes, I could go look them up on the internet but for me this is faster as I am in the kitchen and though there are tons of recipes on the internet these are my tried and true nothing else will do, plus I believe in hard copies too.

It might sound like busy work but already it has proven a vast time saving tool.

When I worked in a stake calling there were so many wonderful sisters all over the area. One I was so impressed with lined her drawers with pictures from her old “Ensign” magazines for the beauty and to be inspired while she was working.

I have been teaching myself to tat… it has been a stretch for me but I was reading an article that called tatting “poor man’s lace” it went on to talk about pioneer women who took tatting supplies with them as they went to Utah as it does not take up space and can easily be carried in one's pocket. Why did they do this? To beautify their surroundings.

I remember well the day I went to purchase a 25 lb bag of flour, it had been 3.49 and jumped a dollar. I was not very happy and went to ask a stock person why. He said, well it always goes up this time of year, it will come down again. My budget was tight and I seriously thought about not getting it but I did and it has never come back down, just continues to climb in price... I leave that with you to remind you to be working actively on your storage. 

We are at the mercy of droughts, price increases and unemployment and failing health, among others. These are not suddenly new things, our grandmothers time was that way too on back from there. There is wisdom in food storage or else we would not be warned over and over again. It is important, even if you glaze over when I talk about it. I am just saying, please don't put it on the back burner, you know that one marked some day... be working, doing your best. President Hinckley said do the best you can….and so we shall right sisters??

With very little you could get baking soda or salt. If you are struggling and think I don’t understand you would be surprised to know I do understand. Pray for opportunities to gather your storage, you will be blessed and those of you who are blessed with incomes put food storage as a priority before a want and you will be blessed, don’t wait.

Sister Shook

Monday, March 16, 2015

Monday Message

This week's Monday Message is chocked full of things you can do just using this basic, very versatile bread machine recipe - CLICK HERE FOR THE RECIPE!

"Too often we bask in comfortable complacency and rationalize that the ravages of war, economic disaster, famine and earthquake cannot happen here. Those who believe this are either not acquainted with the revelations of the Lord or they do not believe them.  Those who smugly think these calamities will not happen, that they will somehow be set aside because of the righteousness of the Saints, are deceived and will rue the day they harbored such a delusion.  The Lord has warned and forewarned us against a day of great tribulation and given us counsel, through His Servants, on how we can be prepared for these difficult times.  Have you (we) heeded His counsel?" Ezra Taft Benson, Jun. 1980.

We live in a marvelous time with microwaves, toasters, crockpots, bread machines, mixers…etc. all to aid us in our work & help us to have time to do the things that are important. I want everyone to know how to do things without the aid of machines but I also want you to use the machines to their fullest - it too is a skill worth having.

I use most of these machines every day. I recently drug out my bread machine to try a bread my friend Liza had been making. The recipe was our friend's mother’s recipe, her name is Mary.

Liza makes kits in quart jars which helps her be able to do this quickly -

So then I decided for you I would make more variations… - this is fantastic.

I also thought I would try to make the bread using half of the dough for hamburger buns (divided into 4 buns) and the other half for platz. I have never had a great success with hamburger buns as they were always too heavy… until now. These were wonderful!

Liza says she too makes the buns but she uses a cookie sheet and they are just as good. The pan I used I got two of at a yard sale for a dime each. 
Not sure of their real purpose. They are made in England (that's what is stamped on the pans) but they make great burger buns.

For the platz I flatten the remaining dough into a pan. At this point you can put jam over it or pie filling.

Then you make a topping of half a cup of each flour and sugar and cut in three tbsp butter. Once it is mixed and looks like cornmeal, spread over the pie filling. 

Bake the hamburger buns for 25 minutes and the platz for 35 minutes, both at 350 degrees.

I also used the dough to make cinnamon raisin swirl bread by pressing it out and buttering it (or you can use butter spray) then sprinkling sugar and cinnamon and raisins. Then roll up and place in a pan, rise and bake.

You can do so many things to that basic bread recipe. I added seeds like sesame, millet and poppy to make Seed Bread.

Just use do two tbsp brown sugar instead of the white sugar the recipe calls for then add….

one tbsp  sesame seeds

one tbsp millet seed
one tbsp poppy seed

Everything else is the same, easy!

I added molasses in place of liquid to make Anadama Bread. You can add nuts and craisins, yum! 

I could make squash bread by adding squash or pumpkin. I think you can see that you can do anything you put your mind to! And with this being the best ever bread recipe, you can make it in a variety of ways.

I have also tried other types of breads for the machine. Using half of the dough I did a french baguette and with the other half I made eight bread sticks.

French Baguettes/Breadsticks

This makes two baguettes or one baguette and eight bread sticks or sixteen bread sticks!

1 c. water
2 1/2 c. all purpose flour
2 1/2 tsp. gluten
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp yeast

Put in bread machine for dough cycle. Shape and rise and bake.

In the pictures I sprinkled the bread sticks with salt and garlic powder then they just had to rise and bake.

For the baguette I slashed the top and brushed with egg white and a bit of water then topped with sesame seeds. I let it rise and then bake using 350 degree oven, cook bread sticks till golden (same with baguettes).

I made English Muffin Bread too, it was good as well.

Check out these links for a few more fun things I bread machines!  - this is a good thing to print off for your binder. What if you did not have or could not eat eggs then what?  - this I leave with all good thought.

Keep working on your skills and your storage.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Monday Message

Scroll down for this family-favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe!

"The best place to have some food set aside is within our homes, together with a little money in savings.  The best welfare program is our own welfare program. Five or six cans of wheat in the home are better than a bushel in the welfare granary. ... We can begin with a one week's food supply and gradually build it to a month, and then to three months.  I am speaking now of food to cover basic needs." Gordon B. Hinkley, "To Men of the Priesthood," Ensign, Nov. 2002, 5.

I love what Elder Robert D. Hales has to say about Provident Living, click the link to watch his message:

When I was 18 I married my high school sweetheart. I knew nothing about cooking and grocery shopping or how to use washers and dryers at the Laundromat. That was almost 41 years ago. I am still married to my high school sweetheart but I learned many things since then.  

I know what it is like to be newly married and I know what it is like to be a mother and now a grammy.

I prepared to get married by starting a hope chest which was just cardboard boxes with items I would pick up at yard sales and such, these were needed to start my married life. Dishes, a rolling pin, a quilt I made, and on and on... so preparation has always been part of my life.

As life went on our pay was not much and I would have to learn how to make it go far. I still work at that, pay never goes far.

When my husband was in the air force money was very tight, they just don’t get paid enough. I would plan out how many meals we would need before getting paid again then I would add a meal or two. We had couples who lived on both sides of us who would have no food by payday and would need to borrow from us that extra meal. So knowing this I tried to have more meals to share.

We joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and from then on I have learned so much. I learned how to be a good mom by watching other mothers at church. We had classes that taught us how to cook, to can, to garden. My learning continues, but I have lived and learned so much that I am happy to help others to learn so they too are prepared. 

For income shortfalls, for unemployment, for sickness, unexpected bills, etc… life goes up and down so fast it is like riding a roller coaster. You will get queasy. You will be out the money. When you are up you can see clearly, when down you do not know what lies ahead.

Even if you think you have been educated and now you have finally arrived... what possibly could happen? You have a great income, a nice house, cars etc. What could happen? Plenty. I am here to tell you plenty and more can happen… life is learning it is hard at times but always worth it.

So when I get preachy for you to prepare for times in your life that it is not as well as you thought it always would be, just remember I have already been there and know what you need to do to help you over some of the rough patches.

I have always gained knowledge from those who were older and lived their lives. Yes, things are different now... but not so much. Men and women meet, fall in love, get married, have kids they loved just as much as you do. Styles change, yes, but wisdom only gets better.

So learn from me, what I have learned and am still learning. Yes, we may have different interests. Your hair is pretty and mine is gray, you have kids and mine are grown. I have not forgotten how busy it is with little ones. It is for them that you work so hard to prepare. It is for them you make homemade cookies...

So store up what it takes to make cookies!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

1/2 c. margarine
1/2 c. plus 1/3 c. shortening
1 c. sugar
1 c. brown sugar

Mix this well and add:

2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla

Then I really cream this together, all of it so far, maybe three to four minutes.

Then add:

3 c. flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt

Mix just enough to incorporate it stop and add:

12 oz pkg choc chips
half to one c. chopped nuts either walnuts or pecans (if you have picky kids you can leave out or take out half and add nuts to the other half)

Drop bake at 350 degrees till golden.

These have been a childhood favorite, came out of a Betty Crocker cookbook as old as I am. This is my children’s favorite as well. 

Stock up your shelves with food for your family and others too.

You might say eeewwwwwwww food storage that means making a million things with wheat and beans, but it is as simple as the cookie recipe above. Store what you like and what your family likes. When hard times come in our lives, and they will, that is not the time you want to have no storage.

I have been covering life skills. You don’t have to be the best seamstress in the world, just be able to sew on a button or hem or, as I have been doing, remaking some dresses. I can tell you it is easier to make then remake or refashion but to be able to do it and build on that skill is a huge savings.  

Learn to make bread by hand and once you know how then find a cheap bread machine. I can tell you that I am not a fan of bread baked in the machine but I am a fan of using it on the dough cycle and shaping it, letting it rise and baking in my oven. I see them all the time at goodwill for three to five dollars. 

If you look back a few weeks ago I gave you the best bread recipe ever to make homemade bread in a machine. That recipe is older than I am and I gave you tips to change regular flour to bread flour. Yes, this makes one loaf at a time but you probably won't use more than one huge loaf a day and if you do make it several times a day to get ahead. There is always a way to work it out. Just because I tell you one way doesn't make it right or wrong it’s an idea.

When I suggest things like pressure canners, vacuum sealers, dehydrators... just put them on your list when thrifting or going to yard sales. These are tools we should keep our eyes out for and if you have them, keep others in mind and pass the word along.

Same with a good sale, let others know.

These items help put up food from your gardens.

So make some cookies, get some milk, put up your feet and make a plan of action.

Set some goals and work as best you can towards them. We are all learning and sharing.

One thing I have started is a go-to binder. Mine is white and is an inch thick, just to give you an idea of size. In this I am putting the recipes I need more often like that bread recipe, my yogurt recipe, the hot cocoa recipe, the powdered milk conversion chart, and the diner pancake recipe I gave you last week. Just search around the blog for wonderful things and ideas. I am just starting it but this should help to have handy.  I just love this gal, she gets it on food storage you can learn a lot from her.

Storage is not just about food, like toilet paper, toothpaste what your family needs are. We had girls and should have bought stock in pads... Yes I hear them Mooooom! But keep these things in mind along with a well stocked first aid kit…

Follow along on the Monday Messages for fun and learning and sharing. If you have a topic you would like like me to cover or if you have ideas to share, let's all share! Email me at 

Thursday, March 5, 2015


Julekaga sounds like...yoo-ley-key-yeh

In pail of bread machine add:

1 tsp salt
2 tbsp shortening
2 tbsp sugar
1 1/4 c. water
3 c. all purpose flour
3 tsp vital wheat gluten (if you use bread flour omit this)
1/2 tsp cardamon ground
2 1/4 tsp yeast
1/2 c. citron fruit, you can sub craisins or raisins
1/4 c chopped almonds

Put on dough cycle

I let it go beyond beeps till it looks like this picture:

Then shape in loaf and put in sprayed pan or you can free form if you wish. Spray dough and cover with plastic wrap, then let rise. 

It took only twenty minutes to rise after that to the height you see above so I always start preheating the oven when I start the rising in pan.

Bake 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

I put a cooling rack on top of tinfoil so I can ice it right out of the oven.


2 c. powder sugar
1 tbsp softened butter
half tsp almond extract
hot tap water, start with tbsp and add till you get a frosting

Ice while hot and add chopped almonds on the icing right away before the icing sets.

Then I move the loaf to a regular cooling rack that I have on my cutting board. If you leave it over the tinfoil the bread will sog up on the bottom.

I made this using the white bread recipe I gave you a while back and created another variation.

It smelled so good even Missy wanted to give it a try! She gave it two paws up!!

I will continue to make many things from this white bread recipe and will do a whole Monday Message on it coming soon!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Monday Message

I ABSOLUTELY love these diner-style pancakes. Scroll down in this Monday Message for the recipe.
I have been called again into Provident Living… I will try to be a guide and resource to all. I want to hear from you and just what you would like for me to cover. If you feel you need a personal hands-on lesson I could work with you.

I will try to share great recipes that are budget-friendly and taste great!

I would like you to start a binder, label it My Provident Living Working Binder or something along that line.. and some dividers, divide it so it can be a working binder.

Use the front half for recipes I give you, that you tried and liked, so divide as you like. My binder has grown too large for everything so in my working recipe cookbook I have breads, breakfast, main dish, salads and soups, desserts... you get the idea.  This does not need to cost you, just look around the house for binders etc. Also, in this you could put menu ideas and have a section on budget. Go back over the blog to gather things you liked. I am a firm believer in hard copies but you could set up your computer as well.

If you choose to have another binder on food storage, in the front write what you store and an inventory, a list of what you need to get…be sure to put in things you learn so you can refer back to them and build on this. What skills do you yet want to learn? You can learn at your own rate, you do not need to wait for me. Make it your own.

Use this blog as a resource, pick out what will work for you. Picking and choosing some things you may want and others not. I try to keep a broad area so there is always something.

I do the hours of research so you don’t have to! I will also share ideas that worked for me through the years, not just now when I am seasoned. I will share ideas that others have so if you have ideas that you feel like you can share please email me -

This is not about who is best at any given thing, I assure you if I were asked what I was best at nothing would come to mind. I don’t feel the best at anything but I can offer ages of things I have learned as I have lived. I can share my experiences and going from burying my first loaf of bread to now I prefer my own bread to store made. I think it only took me fifty years to get here so if I can shave off a few years for you I am only to happy to do so.

Life is tough at times but we can learn to be happy with what we have and we can continue to learn whether we feel we can do it. I am here to show you that you can do it.

Monday Message

Too often we bask in our comfortable complacency and rationalize that the ravages of war, economic disaster, famine, and earthquake cannot happen here. Those who believe this are either not acquainted with the revelations of the Lord, or they do not believe them. Those who smugly think these calamities will not happen, that they somehow will be set aside because of the righteousness of the Saints, are deceived and will rue the day they harbored such a delusion. - Ezra Taft Benson

"A year's supply of food storage is beneficial in several ways: 
1. It provides peace of mind as we obey the counsel to store. 
2. It helps ensure survival in case of personal or natural disaster. 
3. It strengthens skills in preparing and using basic foods" ("Home Storage: Build on the Basics," Ensign, June 1989, 40). 

This week I tried a fantastic recipe for diner-type pancakes...

Sift in a sifter or wire strainer, this is a must!

Sift 1 1/2 c. flour
3 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp sugar

Sift into a bowl

In another bowl melt 3 tbsp butter set aside
1 1/4 c. milk
1 egg

Just before ready add melted butter

Mix wet ingredients into dry with a whisk all at once then set aside for five minutes. You can heat your pan and then spray or oil pan. Make three pancakes, use 1/4 c. batter for each.

Do not flip till bubbles are in center.

These are the most wonderful pancakes I ever had!! And yes, just like having them in a diner, yum! ... yum is an understatement :p

This would be great to add to your food storage binder.

I am wanting to cover cooking from scratch. - for gluten free needs.

Plus, on this note I wanted to be sure to send this on... 

Banana Pancakes
Mash one banana really well.

Add two eggs mix well.

Make pancakes, serve with banana slices and syrup. These have a crepe-like quality to them. - great to print off for your binders.

Making Wise Use of our Time; Prioritizing Choices
"Time is never for sale; time is a commodity that cannot, try as you may, be bought at any store for any price. Yet when time is wisely used, its value is immeasurable. On any given day we are all allocated, without cost, the same number of minutes and hours to use, and we soon learn, as the familiar hymn so carefully teaches, “Time flies on wings of lightning; we cannot call it back”.  What time we have we must use wisely. President Brigham Young said, “We are all indebted to God for the ability to use time to advantage, and he will require of us a strict account of [its] disposition”

"With the demands made of us, we must learn to prioritize our choices to match our goals or risk being exposed to the winds of procrastination and being blown from one time-wasting activity to another. We are well taught about priorities by the Master Teacher when He declared in His Sermon on the Mount, “Wherefore, seek not the things of this world but seek ye first to build up the kingdom of God, and to establish his righteousness”.  - A Time to Prepare

Let us choose to PLAN and PREPARE as we also strive to heed daily promptings and keep ourselves open to what the Lord would guide us to do.

In my own life I've found that have a daily notebook is helpful.  I list things that I need to get done, and certain appointments, but then, I leave myself open to be flexible as to guidance of the Spirit and the needs of others.  This has been more effective for me than having a rigid daily schedule.  And, I've sought diligently to remove unnecessary things and to be more efficient when I do run 'errands'.  I try to combine them and keep them as infrequent as possible.

"Simplify" is my frequent motto.  This has blessed my life and opened me up to the things that matter most.
- Heidi Allen Garvin 

I like what Heidi says. - Ice cream with snow for those wintry family nites! a fun site to look around on.  scroll down to see what she did on dress remake for her daughter.

Watch for upcoming frugal five minutes at your Relief Society meetings...

Keep working on your storage. You are doing great. I know... storage, how exciting is that? I will try to come up with exciting ideas. If you have some let me know I will be glad to share your ideas with the sisters.

Sister Shook
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...