Red Sauce Recipe

A wonderful, versatile sauce. This does make a lot of sauce, so if you are planning to make it, either plan for a lot of sauce based recipes in the week after you make it, or can or freeze it.  Since it’s fairly easy to double or triple, why not make as big a batch as your pot can hold and freeze what you don’t use? A great staple to have on hand for busy days.
Thanks to Jyn for teaching me how to make the basic recipe. This has been tweaked and scaled down a bit from the original.
Veggie Loaded Red Sauce @godschicki

RED SAUCE

1 #10 (bulk size) can of tomato sauce
2 tablespoons butter or bacon grease
1 large sweet onion
1/4-1/2 large head of garlic
1 4oz can of tomato paste
1 tablespoon onion powder
1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon dried basil
2 tablespoons brown sugar
salt and pepper to taste
Optional:
2-3 carrots, chopped
2-3 zucchini, chopped
1 large or 2 small eggplants, chopped
2-3 large beets, quartered (you will want to wear gloves when chopping!)
Mince onions as finely as you like them (if you don’t want to find evidence of them in the sauce do it very fine). Brown in a large pot with the butter or bacon grease (you will need to get the whole can of sauce in there), stirring frequently. While the onion browns, peel and finely mince about 1/4- 1/2 head of garlic (I use my mini food processor and get it very fine). 1/2 a head of garlic will give your sauce a bit of a bite, which if you like spicy foods is nice.
When the onions are nearly brown add garlic and cook until soft and the onions are browned.
Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil for just a minute or two. Bring down to a simmer for at least 30 minutes, or until the veggies are soft (but I usually do mine for 2-3 hours), stirring every 15 minutes or so. This gives me a nice, thick sauce and takes out a lot of moisture from it. We like our sauce thicker.
For pasta with meat sauce simply brown some hamburger (drain if not very lean meat) and add sauce.
I personally like adding a lot of veggies when I can. Sometimes I put in a few carrots, some eggplant and zucchini while it it simmering and then use my stick blender or blender to whiz it up. I like it chunky, but hubby isn’t keen on that, so saucy it is. I’ve also added kale, but it made the sauce somewhat green, so just be careful. It is a great way to sneak some more vegetables into your family’s diet, though it’s not super authentic red sauce then.
I love this sauce. It can be used in so many different ways. Spaghetti, Chicken Parmesan, Lasagna, Baked Ziti, Baked Stuffed Shells, Pizza and soups are a few of the ways I have used it.

Lessons from the Garden

I’ve been going through my old blog and looking over posts. I found this little reminder of some lessons I ponder every spring as I plan my garden.

Lessons From The Garden @godschicki

Lessons From The Garden

Working in my garden has taught me many truths about growth in our Christian lives.
There’s no real order to these right now, but here are a few of the lessons I’ve learned.

A Garden Is Like a Relationship

A garden takes work, just as a relationship does. You can’t throw out some seeds and expect a perfectly manicured garden to appear. You have to prepare the soil, removing weeds and rocks.  We have to maintain it, being vigilant to take care of any weeds that pop up or any diseases that plague our plants as soon as can be. Like the garden, we must draw near to God and work on that relationship. We must spend time with Him. Ask him to reveal the weeds of sin in our lives and the diseases to be dealt with.

Sins Are the Weeds of the Soul

If your hand causes you to stumble,cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out. And if your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell.

Mark 9:43-45

 Weeding is something that must been done to keep a garden growing. The roots of weeds will quickly choke our the plants your are trying to grow, tangling them hopelessly with their own. They steal vital nutrients from the soil. When you weed, you must not only get the leaves, or sprout, but the root as well. If you don’t take the root of the weeds, they will grown right back. We must ask God to reveal the roots of sin in our lives. Does a TV show cause you to sin? Stop watching it. Friends influence you to sin? Stop spending so much time with them. Surround yourself with godly friends who will encourage you to pursue God and hold your accountable.

Watering Your Garden

When watering your garden, you must water the roots deeply. If you only water the very top of the soil, the roots will stay there, not growing deep into the ground to help keep the plant stable. A plant with a shallow root system will be easily knocked over. We must drink deeply of the living water and ask God to continually fill us. Again, it’s a part of spending time with God, seeking His face. How many times are we okay with a little devotion, maybe a little verse of Scripture, from a book instead of drinking in God’s Word? We must root ourselves in the Word of God. Then we will know the Truth for ourselves and not be easily swayed or blown over.

Pruning is Essential

There sometimes comes a time for pruning. It can be a dead branch/vine, a burnt out part of our ministry that we must seek if it’s God’s will for us to continue in this ministry, and if not, it’s time to prune it. Sometimes, to make plants more productive, to let more of the plant’s nutrients go to other fruits, you prune blossoms off. Sometimes we take on so many ministries, that they aren’t being given what they need. That is when we must seek God’s will for the ministries we are a part of, if we are able to give it our best, and reevaluate which ones God is calling us to.
A few of the many lessons I’ve thought about while gardening.
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A Natural Mama's Guide to Pediatrician Questions

 
 
One very important thing to do when preparing for baby is to choose a doctor for them. The earlier the better!
Because of some of our natural ways, we opted to go with a family doctor instead of a pediatrician.  We don’t see eye to eye on everything, but on the important stuff we do and he is respectful of our wishes that he doesn’t agree with.
Here’s our list of ‘interview’ questions. I hope you find it helpful.
Please do your research on each of these question yourself, deciding where you stand (and why). Decide what things are important in the person caring for your child, and which one(s) are ‘deal breakers’ before you go to interview your little one’s potential doctor. Think of how you will handle having to constantly defend your parenting choices.
Natural Mama's Guide to Pediatrician Questions
General Questions

  • Where did you go to school?
  • Can you tell me a bit about yourself?
  • Do you have any specialties?
  • Do you have hospital privileges?
  • Is there another doctor in the practice?
  • Who covers your patients when you vacation?
  • What are your office hours?
  • What would I do after hours?
  • How long does it usually take to get an appointment?
  • Are there separate sick/well visit waiting rooms?
  • Do you do your lab work in house? Where would we go to have labs done?
  • How often do you prescribe antibiotics?
  • Do you have any kids?
  • You may want to ask about their faith/beliefs.

Breastfeeding/Feeding

  • How do you feel about breastfeeding in general?
  • How long do you recommend breastfeeding for?
  • How do you feel about exclusively breastfeeding for 9-12 months?
  • How do you feel about delaying solids until 9-12 months?
  • How do you feel about extended breastfeeding (past age 2)?
  • How do you feel about breastfeeding on demand?
  • How do you feel about tandem nursing?
  • If we had to supplement, how do you feel about homemade goat’s milk formula?
  • What do you recommend starting baby on as far as foods go? (Grains are essentially packing peanuts, filling, but no nutritional value for baby)
  • What do you think of starting baby on avocado and egg yoke with breastmilk?

Vaccines

  • What are your thoughts on vaccines in general?
  • What are your thoughts on selective/alternative vaccine schedules?
  • Do you see patients who choose to not vaccinate or do selective/alternative schedules?

Miscellaneous 

  • How do you feel about co-sleeping/bed sharing?
  • How do you feel about home-birth?
  • Do you see patients who have home-births?
  • How do you feel about using natural remedies/homeopathic treatments before prescribing a drug?
  • How do you feel about homeschooling?
  • How do you feel about circumcision?
  • How do you recommend caring for intact sons?
  • How do you feel about crying it out?
  • How do you feel about attachment parenting?
  • How do you feel about chiropractic care in general? For kids?
  • How do you feel about amber teething necklaces?
  • How do you feel about fluoride?
  • How do you feel about using essential oils?
  • How do you feel about fluoride?
  • How do you feel about cloth diapering?
  • How do you feel about homemade cleaning supplies/laundry soap?

Did I miss anything? What are some other things you asked about?
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Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle 2018

Blog Reboot

I’ve been playing around with the idea of seriously blogging (not just journal type blogging) for quite some time now. I tried a bit to make my old ‘blog’ into more of a blog, but I’ve decided to try this out for a while. I have so many ideas, but as I stare at this form, I’m kind of blanking. I think my first post should be something substantial, but what?
With two sick kiddos, not much has gotten done around the house today, but that is okay. Dishes and laundry can wait for a bit. The kids are only little once. I will take all the cuddles I can get from my sweeties. I just wish they felt better. As I write this, I am wearing one little one and have the other’s head in my lap while they nap. :Sighs: So sweet.
If you have little ones, drink up all the sweet little moments. Write some down for when they get older, for when you get older.