Desert Blooms

I don't want spring to end.  
I had fun the other morning snapping pictures of 
everything that was blooming in my yard. 



Orange Blossom 


Cape Honeysuckle

Red Salvia

Purple Stock 


 White Stock


Purple Lantana

Yellow Lantana

Nasturtium - from seed - often reseeds itself

Green Bean Blossom

Pomegranate Blossom


Mexican Lavender

English Lavender


Mount Lemmon Marigold

Blue Plumbago

Firecracker Bush

Lupine - Great wildflower from seed

Desert Marigold  / Angelita Daisy

Alyssum - great from seed


Autumn Sage

Sunflower - Autumn Beauty Variety


Aloe Vera Spikes

Star Jasmine

Daisy Euryops

African Daisy - Wildflower from seed - reseeds itself

Anna Apple Blossoms


Springtime in Arizona.... Short But Sweet.

I am loving the spring weather and emerging flowers and leaves. I know it won't last, but I am savoring every minute. Here are a few shots of my front yard.


Give your dishwasher a break.

One reason I love freezer cooking is the time it saves which enables you to do other things. A favorite book of mine "Confessions of an Organized Homemaker" by Deniece Schofield calls this saved time "accrued benefits".  Accrued benefits from saving time in small ways throughout the day allow you to have time for the things that really matter. And really, that's what it's all about. 

But freezer cooking is not the only way to save time. Another way that has helped me save time is to assign a water cup to each person and keep them near the fridge.

When someone needs a drink, they use their cup and put it back. The cups get washed every other day or so. My dishwasher is not full of cups that have just been used one time for a drink of water. And I get to spend that extra time however I would like. 


Homemade Wheat Bread - The tip that makes it quick and easy!

Recently I started making homemade wheat bread again. My family loves it, but it can take the entire morning by the time you grind the wheat and then make the bread. I decided to use my freezer to help out with this problem. I spent one morning grinding wheat and then putting 12 cup portions into freezer bags (that's the amount my recipe calls for). 

 Now when it's time to make bread I pull a bag of flour out of the freezer and dump it in my recipe, no measuring needed. My recipe calls for an additional 3-4 cups of bread flour so I can adjust that flour to make the bread the right consistency. This has saved me so much time. I make bread at least once a week now and my family is really enjoying it. I love that it is simple and doesn't take my entire day!

Here is my recipe, it is very simple and so good!!!
Single Rise Wheat Bread 
Add the following to mixer:
6 cups warm water
3 tablespoons Instant yeast
3 tablespoons vital wheat gluten
2 tablespoons salt
1/3 cup oil
2/3 cup honey
1 can applesauce (about 2 cups)
12 cups whole wheat flour
4 cups bread flour

Mix all but flour a few times. Add whole wheat flour. Add bread flour one cup at a time until it pulls away from sides of bowl.  Let mixer mix the dough for 10 minutes. Shape into 5-6 loaves and put in a cold oven to rise until double - about one hour. Set oven temp. to 350 ℉ and timer to 32 minutes and bake. Remove from pans and cool on wire rack. Brush tops with butter.