A Surgery Update

Friday, February 26, 2016
Some of you may be wondering why I have been silent the past couple of weeks.  Well, I had surgery last week that was supposed to be one of those, no big deal types of things.  Of course with me, nothing is "no big deal."

I have been dealing for the past three years with a blocked nasal drain which normally would allow my tears in my eyes to drain into my sinus cavity.  It sounds worse than it is.  And honestly I thought of it more as a nuisance, rather than anything else with my right eye watering all the time.  Last month when I went to get my eyes checked, I realized that what I thought was just a nuisance, was starting to affect my vision.  I finally decided it was time to take the plunge and get the surgery that I needed.

A Surgery Update   www.hensleefarmadventures.com
Home after surgery, and that is a "yes" on my forhead.  There was no mistake on which eye it was!

The doctor said that the worst part about the surgery was the general anesthesia.  He also said I would be up and around the next day, that I could go back to work, and that I would have only a small incision on the side of my nose that would be hid by my glasses.  I would soon realize that none of these statements ended up being true.

A Surgery Update   www.hensleefarmadventures.com
The infection has started.  This actually isn't as big as the swelling got, but you get the picture. ;-)

Two days after the surgery, I started swelling.  When I called the doctor, I found out that I was getting an infection.  Antibiotics to the rescue!  But thanks to that, I started having headaches, really horrible sinus headaches.  So no work for me.  No posts as I couldn't really see to do anything.  No wearing glasses as they sat right on the overly large incision.  Nothing was as I thought it would be.

A Surgery Update   www.hensleefarmadventures.com
Still swollen, but doing much better after antibiotics.  And yes, that is the same shirt.  My fav...LuLaRoe Randy Tee!
 The silver lining in all of this?  My eye didn't water anymore.  Yay!  

Today, I feel like I am finally starting to mend.  The sun is shining, it is Friday, and my master closet will soon be finished (can't wait to share that post with you!)

So look for some new posts next week.  I hope to be back in the swing of things and I can't wait to start sharing with you some of the things that we will be doing on the farm this spring. 

Oh, and look for an announcement to be made in the next couple of weeks.  I'm so excited, and Steve is even more excited!  I don't want to tell you just yet, but we will be sharing it with you very soon! 

Thanks for checking in and catch you next week!

Our Own Little Coffee Bar

Tuesday, February 9, 2016
I've been seeing pictures of coffee bars on Pinterest and have always wanted to do something similar in our house.  Coffee is a pretty important beverage in our house, with the only things that come before coffee is Jesus and family!

I was able to acquire an old antique buffet from my grandfather.  I believe that it belonged to my great-grandmother and she used it as a buffet.  When my grandfather had it, he used it as storage for his tools in his little wood shop. 

After both of my grandparents had passed away, it came to me (because really no one else wanted it).  Even though I loved it and thought it was beautiful, it was dirty and the drawers had oil spilled in them, the doors were falling off and it smelled to high heaven!  It took several years for me to get that smell out of the drawers.  I scrubbed it on a monthly basis and put fabric sheets in it. I honestly thought that the oil would never come out and the smell would always be there.  I almost gave up hope on ever being able to use it.

When I did start using it, it first became storage for my then toddler son's underwear and socks which I put in the top drawers and books in the bottom part where the doors are.  When we moved to the home we currently live in, I thought that we didn't really have room for it.  I let my niece use it as a kitchen island which was so cute! She took the one remaining door off and put baskets below.  She put utensils in the drawers. I was happy that it was being put to good use and staying in the family.  However, she moved and was not able to take it with her, so I took it back and decided to make room for it.

Buffet before

It was actually perfect because I needed storage for my grandmother's china that I inherited from her. I was able to put the buffet right off the kitchen and put the china in the bottom part, table cloths and other holiday themed items in the middle drawer, and tea towels and dish cloths in the two upper drawers.  I just set some decorative items on top to make it look pretty. Although if you look at the picture above, it just pretty much looks cluttered!

What really spurred me on to create the coffee bar was when our coffee pot died one morning not too long ago.  We were looking to buy another coffee pot, but it had to be something that my husband and I both liked, but didn't take up too much room since I had it sitting near the sink and my baking station. 

I thought that moving it to this buffet and making it a coffee bar would give me more room to bake (yay!) and also allow me to keep all the coffee and tea items together.  I told my husband about it and showed him some pictures on Pinterest.  He loved the idea!  It also allowed us to purchase a coffee pot that was function, fun, and funky!

Our new coffee/tea bar
Here is our coffee bar.  The only thing new in this picture is the coffee pot.  The canisters, which sorry I didn't get a close up picture of, say coffee on one and tea on the other.  I also have a cup stand that was given to me by my mom all sitting in a tray that my husband bought for me.  You can't see it very well, but I also have my coffee bean grinder that was a gift from my sister several Christmases ago.  And of course next to the lamp is my homemade spice tea mix.  To get the recipe for that click HERE.

Yummy spiced tea.
I also cleaned out one of the top drawers and was able to put coffee, tea, and hot chocolate in it so it would be easily accessible.

Everything is right at hand.

We love our new coffee bar!  My husband said that his was one of my better ideas and I am so glad that we carved out a little space and reused things that we already had to be able to create this.  I am sure as we use this it will evolve into an even more organized space that our family will love and use. 

Think you can't have a coffee bar?  That's what I thought, but start looking at your space in a different light.  Start imagining how things would look in different places.  And there is no reason why you can't carve out a little space for yourself.

If you have already created a coffee bar, then please tell me about it in the comments below!  Or let me know what you think of our space!

Cheeseburger Salad

Thursday, February 4, 2016
My husband and I decided to go on a diet.  After the holidays we both had put on a couple of pounds.  Okay, maybe it was more than a couple.  I knew that I had been feeling extremely bloated, exhausted, grouchy, etc.  I thought I would follow in my sister's footsteps and cut out wheat and sugar.  We are on day 4 and I feel so much better!  No more bloat, I have a ton of energy, and I can actually remember things.  I think this is going to work!

You may wonder what we are eating, well it is a lot of veggies and fruit with lean meats and grains that aren't wheat or have a high glycemic value (think white rice).  I thought I would share with you one of our favorite meals, that is perfect!

My husband loves cheeseburgers.  He could eat them every day. Every. Single. Day.  In the spring, summer, and fall he grills every chance he gets.  This salad is perfect in recreating the cheeseburger experience without eating the bun.

The first thing to do is to make a basic salad based on what you would put on a cheeseburger.  Here are the ingredients that I used.

Salad Ingredients
If you want to be authentic about it, I would use iceburg lettuce shredded, and a red onion.  However, this is what I had on hand.  I love romaine and I also love to get the artisan lettuces that Aldi has, so since I had both, I used both.  Then I added cherry tomatoes (they were on sale), homemade dill pickles (lime pickles would also be yummy!), shredded cheese (any kind you like or have), and of course some bacon pieces.  You could also make it into a mushroom swiss burger salad by using swiss cheese and adding mushrooms to the mix. 

This looks yummy just like it is!
 After your salad is made and chilling in the fridge, then get your burgers ready to cook.  Since it is winter and extremely cold at the moment, I got out the stove top grill to grill up my burgers. It's not quite the same, but it's better than nothing!  You can find a great burger recipe here.  Or just season up your burgers how you wish.  Besides using my go to recipe, I also like to use Cavender's Greek seasoning.  A friend of mine got me started on this seasoning and it is great on hamburgers and steaks!

While your burgers are cooking, you can make the dressing.  The dressing is of course, what you would put on your cheeseburger. 

Dressing Ingredients
You will want to mix:
  • 1/2 cup of whipped dressing (or mayonnaise if you prefer)
  • 1/4 cup of ketchup (make sure and get a low sugar one if you like)
  • 3 Tablespoons of mustard
  • Salt and pepper to taste
You can see from the picture above that we used spice brown mustard.  I actually prefer Dijon mustard in this recipe, but I didn't have any on hand.  You can also use just regular table mustard.  If you would like you could also add in a little relish to your dressing as well, but we don't care for that.  If you want to play around with the amounts, go ahead.  Be sure and taste the dressing and adjust to suit your tastes.
Dressing, just waiting for that delicious salad.
All that is left is putting it all together.  I don't put the hamburger patties in the salad.  I like to put the salad on my plate, then the hamburger patty, and top it off with shredded cheese, bacon pieces, and the dressing.

So good!!!
This really is a great salad.  It is really good during the summer when you can grill the burgers outside and also grill some onions while you are at it.  

I hope you try this recipe out and let me know what you think!

A No Spend January Update and an Organization Project

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

It is hard to believe that it is already February.  I had intended on giving you an update on how my No Spend January went, but I ran out of time before I even realized it.  So a quick update on how the month went.

A No Spend Update and an Organization Project www.hensleefarmadventures.com

At the beginning of January, I really didn't take the no spend challenge seriously.  Now that's not to say I spent lavishly on things we didn't need, but I also did little to reel my spending in.  That was not the case for the second half of the month.  I looked at our budget and our bills and realized that the spending had to be shut down for the rest of the month in order to get the bills paid.  January is always a difficult month for us with it being right after Christmas and taxes.  There was absolutely NO spending for the last two weeks of the month.  I started making things from scratch.  We started eating out of our freezers and pantry and made do with what we had.  We made it through the end of the month and we were able to pay all of our bills.

As for February, I plan on keeping my spending down and I also plan on buying as little groceries as possible.  Our freezers are packed to the brim with food and so is our pantry so I really don't think that we will starve.  I need new tires and I have to get them this month, so our extra money will be going to that purchase.

The other project that we started in January was to clean, organize, and declutter.  We started off great, but it soon got derailed as we decided (during a no spend month, mind you), to enlarge our master closet.  We are still in the process of working on it drywall soon to come, so I started cleaning out cabinets to keep up with our decluttering process.

If you remember we had cleaned our entry closet and our pantry.  Well, I have a corner cabinet in my kitchen that needed major decluttering, so I decided to tackle that this weekend.

A No Spend Update and an Organization Project www.hensleefarmadventures.com
My "baking" cabinet

It may not look like it, but I did take items out and throw out old stuff.  This is my go to cabinet when I cook.  With this cabinet I now know what I have, and where it is.  No more rummaging around looking for things.  It feels so much better to be able to have this organized and will help to cut down on my cooking time.  I do have a separate spice cabinet on the other side of my stove that is just spices.  That cabinet will be next.  I know I have some spices that are outdated that need to be thrown away.  It feels so good to get these little things done.

As for February, I will continue to curb my spending and I will be sharing with you some of our favorite meals that like to make.  I look forward to sharing a Cheeseburger Salad recipe with you on Thursday!

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