Apple Cider and Beer Braised Pot Roast

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It’s finally Fall.  I wait all year for this; pumpkins, scarlet maple leaves, blustery wind, butternut squash, grey clouds with bits of brilliant blue peeking through, hay bales, mega-bags of miniature chocolate bars (the best size for stashing in my apron pockets to cover ‘mommy-emergencies’), weather that justifies hours-long baking sessions, wool sock and scarf…

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Homemade V-7 (not 8) Garden Vegetable Juice Blend

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A few weeks ago, my mom made the trek out to Michigan to visit her sisters (my aunties) and my Grandma. One night while Mom and my baby sister were out there, the Shaffer girls (because that’s what they become when they’re all together again) and Grandma gathered around the kitchen table to talk food…

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Boston Coolers

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Boston Coolers are an iconic Michigan dessert.  Yes.  I am aware it’s called a Boston cooler but its origins and popularity have nothing whatsoever to do with Boston, Massachusetts.  This perfect combination of Vernor’s Ginger Ale and vanilla ice cream hails from the Boston Boulevard area of Detroit, Michigan; another Michigan icon.  And since that…

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Gorgonzola Grape Burgers

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We don’t live in one of those mystical, magical places that can grow tomatoes all the live-long year.  We have about a month, maybe two in exceptional weather conditions, where local tomatoes are worth eating.  I tell you this not to make you feel sorry enough for me that you’ll send me crates of tomatoes…

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Blueberry Butter Tarts with Mascarpone Ice Cream

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We have a winner!  And I have my power back!  Yes.  I was without power for nearly two days.  With two stinky dogs, sixteen stinky chicks, five stinky chickens, five stinky kids and two marginally less stinky adults, our power came back none too soon.  No power translated to no pump for the well, no…

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Peanut Butter Balls

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Hi friends!  The last few weeks have been maddeningly busy.  We’ve done a lot of work on our house and property, camped, traveled, been visited, and had animal crises.  I hope I have a chance in the next couple of weeks to settle back into a regular blogging routine.  With all the fresh produce hitting…

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Campfire Home Fries

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I come from a camping obsessed family.  My Dad is, by trade, a camp manager.  My Mom likes to take her blanket outside and sleep under the stars (she also wants an outdoor bath tub, but I digress.)  My sister, Jess, and her family are certifiable trail and tent nuts.  My brother, Luke, digs the…

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Watermelon Feta Salad: Think Pink Thursdays

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Ah!  The Thursday before a three-day weekend is a special kind of Thursday, isn’t it?  It’s a luxurious feeling Thursday.  Despite the rain-that-never-ends, I have an extra dose of patience (snort) and an extra measure of indulgence.  And to celebrate the indulgent feeling, I whipped up a fancy-pants lunch for myself.  I made a gorgeous…

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No-Cook Fresh Pasta Sauce

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This is what  my yard looked like this morning when I went out to check the chickens. I have a serious motivational problem when the weather is this stellar; particularly when it has been raining cats and dogs for a solid week.  The idea of doing anything other than sitting on a blanket with a…

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