Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Overnight (or not) coffee cake

This is a long time - go to - recipe that is both very yummy and frugal!  I especially enjoy the flexibility of this recipe because it can be mixed up the night before so all I have to do is bake it in the morning or it is equally as yummy mixing in up and baking it right up.  This recipe is always well received and is a great one to use during the holidays.

I have shared this recipe before, but it is worth posting again.  This coffee cake can also be baked in muffins and I'm sure the delivery people, mail carriers and bus drivers would all appreciate a muffin this busy time of the year!  We gave them to our snow plow driver one very snowy winter and they enjoyed them.


Overnight (or not) Coffee Cake
Mix together in a large bowl:
2 cups flour
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg

Stir in:
1 cup sour milk (1 tsp vinegar or lemon juice with the milk)
3/4 cup oil
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla

Crumb topping:
Cut the following together with a pastry cutter or with two knives until well blended.
2/3 cup flour
1/4 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Mix and refrigerate overnight in a 9*13 GREASED baking pan. Top with crunch topping in the morning. Bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes until tooth pick in center comes out clean. You can also just bake it right away without refrigeration. If I am going to make it the night before I prepare the crumb topping and just store it separate till morning. ENJOY!!

Have a BLESSED day,

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

My son's fight is just not his own!

Leukemia has brought out the best in our community!  God has showered his love to our family through so many people being the hands and feet of Jesus in our life!  This week is "Wes Week" at his local high school.  BLESSED does not begin to even describe how we feel.  As a mom with a son fighting this cancer it absolutely melts my heart to see the ARMY of people fighting alongside my son!!


Here is a TV news report about my son and his school's "Wes Week".....  I thought that some of you might be encouraged by my son's Million Dollar Smile, and the love that shines through on this video.

Here is the link to Wes' Caring Bridge site if you would like to follow his journey to VICTORY!! 

Have a BLESSED day,

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

GOD is BIGGER than leukemia

 Life has shoved us off the edge of a cliff, but you know what?? We have landed safe in the arms of Jesus! NOTHING can separate us from the LOVE of Jesus! And IN HIS arms and though HIS power Leukemia has no hold on our 15 year old son, Wesley!! 

 12 days ago he was diagnosed with (pre- B, A.L.L.) leukemia.   God has shown up in so many ways and God continues to show himself faithful!!  Please pray for him!  Prayers move mountains!!  God in the business of healing!!

Have a BLESSED day,

Sunday, July 22, 2012

YOU can make it HOMEMADE!

Yes you can!  Join me for  CLASSES !!  (north central Indiana)

*Learn new skills
*Have fun with friends
*Hands on classes
*Take home product

Make JAM
NOODLE making

Class sizes are limited so email me today to sign up!
ChoosingSimplicityHomestead @ gmail.com


Class Topic

Date and Times
2 sessions available

Class Fee

Save $$
Sign up with a friend class fee
Class Size Limit

Food Preservation - Fruit Jam

 Freezer and Canned

Tuesday, Aug 7th
9-11am /   6:30-8:30pm


$10 each
10 people

Yeast Bread

Tuesday, Aug 14h
9-11am /   6:30-8:30pm


8 people

Food Preservation – Water Bath Canning

Tuesday, Aug 21st
9-11am /   6:30-8:30pm


8 people

Food Preservation – Pressure Canning

Tuesday, Aug 28thth
9-11am /   6:30-8:30pm


8 people

Noodle Making

Tuesday, Sept 4th
9-11am /   6:30-8:30pm


$10 each
10 people

WOW this homemade liquid dishwasher soap lasts a LONG time!

 SIX months ago I made up this $3 batch of homemade liquid dishwasher soap..... I am just now finishing it up!  That means that it cost me a grand total of 50 cents a month!  I run the dishwasher at least once and a few times a week I run it twice a day.  I have been using this recipe for several years, but I never kept track of how long a batch lasted till now.  I am officially pleased by not only how well it works but how long it lasts.  

A penny saved is a penny earned! 
Have you tried this recipe, yet?
Hope it woks well for you!

Have a BLESSED day,

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Once upon a time the grass was green....

 This picture was taken by my front porch back in late May.  Oh, my how different things look now.  It is sad this drought so many of us are going through.  I was just looking through pictures tonight on my camera and was struck by the beauty we had this spring.  In the background you can see the large wind turbines that are a part of one of the nations largest wind farm.  I should take some pictures of the current "blonde" grass (as my husband calls it).  I guess that sounds much better than dead.

I will sing a song of thanksgiving.... today we did get some rain!  Not sure how much, but there was wet stuff coming down to the parched land!!  Praise God!!

What is it like in your neck of the woods?  Is the grass green or "blonde"??   We have lost so much.... hoping that things are still alive in root systems and will come back.  This kind of year really teaches me to not take for granted rain!

Have a BLESSED day,

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Homemakers Creed (printable)

Being a HOMEmaker is truly a act of love from the heart.  It has nothing to do with "paid employment" status.  Whether you are full time at home or spend some of your time in the world of paid work you can be a HOMEmaker!  I saw this creed posted today by Time-Warp Wife and knew I had to share it.  ENJOY!  To print it off to hang on your fridge click here.

Have a BLESSED day, BE a BLESSING! Heather

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

We are blessed!

 Happy 4th of July from our house to yours!  We are truly blessed to live in the USA!  We are taking some time today to thank God for our nation and pray for our nation.  The flag flies proud on our homestead!

We live a simple life.... a life that this wonderful country allows us to do.  We have freedom to attend a wonderful church and welcome friends into our home for Christian fellowship.

We are raising our four children to experience dirt under their fingernails and pride in their heart for a job well done.  We are small business owners, we work hard.  We also raise a garden, fruit, pigs and chickens.  We play hard, too!  We choose to learn and grow and appreciate.....

This 4th of July I take time to be thankful for our great land.  A country that though far from perfect is a wonderful place to live and raise our family.  May God bless America!

Today my 13 year old daughter, Robyn, and I spent a fantastic afternoon together in our farmhouse kitchen.  We cooked and baked and talked.  What day of celebration would be complete without some special food??  Robyn made lemon bars and homemade chocolate chip cookies that she used to make ice cream cookie sandwiches.  I whipped up 2 cheesecakes with fresh blueberry and strawberries on top.  The sausage is browned and ready to put into the crock pot tomorrow with the baked beans.  Simple TIME spent with my daughter building memories, growing our relationship and teaching valuable kitchen skills. Nothing in life is sweeter than TIME with loved ones!!!

Enjoy your 4th of July!!

Vintage Images from here.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

My favorite way to us browning bananas.....Chocolate Banana Muffins (or cake)

I'm all for regular old banana bread, but I am a CHOCOLATE girl at heart and have a husband that loves chocolate, too.  So when I came across this recipe for Chocolate Banana Muffins a few years ago it quickly became a family favorite.  I whipped up a double batch today (one for us and one to share).  Easy, Yummy, and CHOCOLATY Banana!!

This recipe will make a dozen large muffins or if you double the batch it will make a 9x13 cake. Today I actually trippled the recipe and made a dozen muffins and a cake. The muffins freeze really well for quickk grab and go snacks or to pack in lunches.   ENJOY!!

 Chocolate Banana Muffins
1-1 /2 C flour
1 C sugar
1/4 C baking cocoa
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 1/3 C mashed ripe bananas (2 to 3 medium)
1/3 C vegetable oil (I used olive oil)
1 egg
1 C miniature semi-sweet chocolate chips (optional.... I don't usually add them)

In a large bowl, combine the first six ingredients. In a small bowl, combine bananas, oil, and egg; stir into dry ingredients just until moistened. Fold in chocolate chips. Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups three-fourths full. Bake at 350-degrees

Have a BLESSED day, BE a BLESSING! Heather

Friday, June 15, 2012

There was a day.....Uncle Sam encourages SELF SUFFICIENCY??

We have come a long way from this.... but we are doing our part!  I have been collecting 32-35 eggs a day from our own back yard flock.  YUMMY!

Have a BLESSED day, BE a BLESSING! Heather

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Practicing Lent with a social media fast.....

The church we attend does not formally practice Lent.  However, we as a family believe in the value of fasting.  After all.... Jesus said "WHEN you fast".  We teach our children that giving up something our flesh loves/enjoys during the lent season we can grow closer to God.  When our flesh longs for the item we have given up we go to God instead.  It is a very real reminder that we are FLESH and that we NEED our Savior!!  During this time of lent we each prayerfully decide what to give up.

I am going to be giving up social media and blogs again this year.  I know I have not been blogging as much as I used to but I find that I spend way too much time on facebook.  Social media has its place, but for the time of lent it will not have a place in my life.  I did this same fast last year and was very blessed by it.

I am also giving up another fleshly love.... sugar!!  I must be crazy!  Yup!  Crazy about Jesus and I want to make HIM my source of comfort rather than that chocolate cake I love to bake and  eat.  I will tell you my family is a little concerned I will stop all baking and that they will be forced to give up sugar, too!  LOL!  I assured them that I will still produce a treat or two!

I ask that you pray for our family as we each fast during lent and pray for all individuals practicing Lent.  God has a great desire to be the number one priority in our life..... we just have the tendency to fill up our hearts with all kinds of other things instead.  See ya again in April!

Have a BLESSED day,

Friday, February 3, 2012


The DAILY MUNDANE of life needs to be broken up by CELEBRATING life!  I really love creating celebrations for our family to enjoy.  I make a BIG deal out of the usual Birthdays, but I also like to celebrate special days throughout the year and make members of our family (and friends) feel special and blessed.  It brings joy to the dailiness of life.

Ahhhh.... February, the traditional month of love!  My husband and I have never really celebrated Valentine's Day because we celebrate our "Dating Anniversary" on February 4th.  This year we celebrate 19 years!  Wow!  In May we will celebrate our 16th Wedding Anniversary.  LOVE!  

WAY BACK in February of 2008 I posted the following Frugal Love Game.  This is a FUN way to add a little spice and celebration to your marriage and worth a re-post! Break up the daily mundane of life with a little extra FUN in the ROMANCE department!

Simply Frugal Romance Game

Create some new fun in the Romance Department!!
It is easy to let things go as "usual" in the area of intimacy. However, with a little creativity this game helps mix things up!

The Love Dice
This game can be purchased, but why when you can make it yourself for next to nothing
(and it will be personalized just to your style).

What you need to make the game:
* 1 dice
* 1 3*5 card

Directions to make the game:
* On the 3*5 card number it 1-6
* Next to each number list an action (kiss, touch, show... etc... this is a G rated site... be creative)

How to play:
*Each take a turn rolling the dice three times in a row....
*Then the spouse follows the numbers and does what the card says
(for example, He rolls a 3, then a 5, then a 1... so you will do what the card says for 3, then for 5, then for 1)
*Take turns
*Have fun... don't be surprised if you ditch the dice after a turn takings... it has a way of creating the mood!

Have a BLESSED day,

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Loving in the right LOVE language

Do you know what your LOVE LANGUAGE is??  What about your loved ones??  This is a great online quiz resource from Gary Chapman, author of the book The Five Love Languages.

My husband and I took the quiz a while back and I was surprised by the results.... I thought I KNEW what his love language was!  Now I know how to SPEAK in the right language.... makes him feel much more loved!

They also have one on there for teens.... my daughter is going to take it now .......she has been watching me type this up and her interest is piqued! 

If you take the quiz, or already have before, leave a comment and share what your love language is!


Thursday, January 26, 2012

Need a speaker??

Need a Speaker??

Are you part of a MOPs group? Women's Bible Study? Women's Minisrty? Home Makers Club?
A part of a group of women??

Pass on some encouragement to your group!
If you are located Within 3 hours from Lafayette Indiana I would love to speak to your group.

Encouraging Topics for the Home Front:
* The BLESSINGS of the family meal
* Money saving on the grocery budget
* Nitty- gritty on Meal planning
* Let's get cooking! Basic, easy cooking skills.
* Cooking from the garden
* Home made bread
* Training up the next generation. Skills and recipes to teach to our children.
* Fabulous and simple deserts
* "Old-Fashioned" Kitchen Skills
* More than Survival.... the power of routines

Spiritual Topics:
Standing on God's Word through the storms
The Power of Praise
The Woman we love to hate: Proverbs 31

Let me know if any of these topics fit in with your ministry focus.
I am so passionate about the wonderful role that God has given to us as women. I believe that God has GREAT things for us and for our families when we are walking in HIS ways and not being deceived by the world. The enemy has put up a HUGE attack on the family and he is taking the family down by destroying the 'worth' of a woman. Praise God that God's word and ways stand firm forever and that our role as wife and mother is very worthy!!

Equipping women in the home and in their spiritual life is a way that God uses to strengthen and build strong families that serve Him!! No woman wants to feel like a failure in the home, but we need training!! The world is a different place than it was a few generations ago... we aren't receiving the same training and support from the older generations. We aren't being equipped with the skills and knowledge it takes to manage a home efficiently. Women's ministries have a wonderful opportunity to step in and serve women at these practical levels. I would be happy to minister to your Women's Group!!

Contact me:
Heather Corbin
simplefamilysupper @ ffni.com
Have a BLESSED day,

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I'm going to let you in on one of my favorite SECRETS!

 Cooking with Venison!
We are a deer hunting family! I had NEVER eaten deer or even really known anyone that hunted till I met my hubby..... wow, has my world changed!

Anyway, cooking with venison is something that I struggled with at first..... I just couldn't get used to it and I thought it always tasted gamy..... well, not any more!!!! I learned the SECRET!

Secret to fantastic (you will never know it is venison) meat:
VINEGAR!!!!!!!!!! The acid totally takes away the game flavor! Period.... no more!
When I brown ground meat I simply add it while browning (I don't measure, but about 2 TBL per pound). When I make a roast I just always add vinegar to the cooking juices and I cook it in the crock pot.

I have also started canning deer meat.... talk about NO game flavor and a jar full of yummy!  I will have to post on that later!!

****Linking with
Our Simple Farm

Have a BLESSED day,

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Choosing Simplicity..... Homemade Liquid Dishwasher Soap

I just whipped up another batch of  dishwasher soap this week and it got me thinking about the fact that my second all time most  read post here on this blog is about the homemade liquid dishwasher soap I use.  Isn't it funny what posts become the most popular??  I never would have thought dishwasher soap!  LOL!

I started using homemade liquid dishwasher soap back in 2009 and I enjoy being both frugal and environmentally kind.  I had used a homemade powder dishwasher soap for a long time before that.  I prefer the liquid kind.  We have "hard" well water and I must use a rinse aid (either vinegar or purchased kind) and I have to hand wash our drinking glasses every now and them because no matter what kind of dishwasher soap I use (home made or purchased) a film develops.  This recipe is a keeper in my book, so thought I would post about it again (since it has been a while).

This batch that I made this week will last me about 4 months.  Note that I marked the jug with the date... I like to keep track of usage data... it is the nerd in me!   I run my dishwasher at least once a day and a few days a week it gets ran twice a day.  For a cost of $3 I would say that this is very cost effective!

Homemade Liquid Dishwasher Soap
(This makes 1 gallon. It costs me approximately $3 to make. I store it in 2 1/2 gallon jugs.)

16 cups of water, divided
1 1/2 cups WASHING soda (this is NOT baking soda)
1 cup borax
1/2 cup Dr. Brenner's Pure Liquid Castile Soap (fragrance of your choice)

1) Bring 8 cups of water to a boil. Remove from heat and stir in washing soda, borax and liquid castile soap until dissolved.
2) Stir in remaining 8 cups water and allow to cool.
3) Pour cooled dishwasher soap into containers of your choice. It will "gell" up over next 24 hours.

To use:
give dishwasher soap a good shake to make sure everything is mixed well and to make it easy to pour out. I only put a small amount ( approx 1 rounded TBL) in the closed soap dispenser. Experiment with the amount you will need... I have found that it takes very little of this soap.  This batch will last a long time!

 I hope you like it... Let me know if you try it. I enjoy making as many of our cleaning products as possible... I especially like this homemade multipurpose cleaner.  My 7 year old son is the chief bathroom cleaner and he sprays down the sink with this cleaner every day.... love that I don't have to worry about my child cleaning with harsh and dangerous chemicals!  Safe and effective and of course money saving!  :)

****Update*****  This batch I made in January lasted me SIX whole months!!  I run the dishwasher at least once a day and several times a week twice.  I posted about how frugal and happy I am with this Homemade Liquid Dishwasher Soap here.   *****

Have a BLESSED day,

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Choosing Simplicity... Baking Cookie BARS!

Baking Cookies takes soooo long!  Cookie sheets in and out of the oven!  Ok, also, I'm not the worlds best cookie maker..... my attention deficit issues just can't handle it!  LOL!  But in the spirit of CHOOSING SIMPLICITY I give my cookie loving family cookie bars.  I know, not quiet the same, but better than nothing!

Last night I whipped up a batch of oatmeal cookie bars while the pizza dough was resting (15 minute quick rise).  These cookie bars are easy, yummy and a *little* healthy.  At least I like to pretend ... eases the guilty conscience .... that cookies with "good for you" ingredients are some how a little good for us!  Surely I'm not the only one out there that does that!!  :)

Here is the recipe for you.... I must be on an oatmeal kick because last night the pizza crust I made included oats and last week I made my favorite Oatmeal Spice Cake.  mmmm.... I must really be feeling bad about all the chocolate we consumed over the holidays!!

Oatmeal Cookie Bars
1 cup butter
1 cup shortening (I use Coconut oil to replace shortening or you could use all butter)
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups flour (I like to use "white whole wheat")
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp salt
6 cups rolled oats
2 cups raisins or dried cranberries (optional)  (I like to use a blend of the two)

1)  Blend together the butter, coconut oil (or shortening) and sugars until creamy and fluffy.  
2)  Mix in the eggs and vanilla
3)  In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking soda, spices and salt.  gradually mix into the creamed butter.
4)  add in the oats and optional raisins.
5) Spread batter into a greased jelly roll size cookie sheet (the kind with sides) and bake at 350 degrees for 25-35 minutes depending on how done you like your cookies.  ENJOY!!

*****  Just FYI.....  These cookie bars freeze really well and make a great addition to packed lunches or snacks on the go.  I just freeze individual bars in their own baggie for quick grab and go convenience.***

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Choosing Simplicity...... Abundant Life!

In my relationship with Christ I have an abundant life!!  Abundant in my spirit measured in my heart, not in my bank account!  My God supplies all my needs and I am so thankful for that promise.  I am also so very glad that my level of peace and joy does not come from the balance in my checkbook , the house I live in or the vehicle I drive.  My JOY comes from the maker of Heaven and earth and I get very excited about knowing that this earth is not my home and I will spend eternity in HEAVEN!

If you don't have this peace, please find it in Jesus!  Call out his name and He will be there!!  He longs to draw you to His side and cover you with His grace and love.  You are loved with an everlasting love.  There is nothing you have ever done, or will do, that can make him love you less (or more for that matter).  Today, reach out and cling to the source of abundant life!!  Jesus!

Monday, January 16, 2012

"B-L-E-S-S-I-N-G" prayer for my husband

Praying for my husband is one of the most powerful things I can do for him.  Prayer moves mountains.  With God all things are possible.  The enemy does not want us to pray and will work hard to make prayer seem like it really isn't "doing anything".  However, that is far, far, far from the truth.  Prayers move mountains!  When we pray we release God's power. 

Several years ago I heard this prayer outline and I love it!  After I drop off the kids at school I pray (out load..... keeps this attention deficit girl focused) on the way home.  This BLESSINGS acronym has been such a helpful frame work for me.  It covers so much!  I encourage you to set a time each day that praying for your spouse will be come a habitual part of your daily routine.  Your spouse will be BLESSED!!

BLESSING my husband with prayer

B- Body, health, strength, safety
L- Labor, favor and success at work
E- Emotionally, encouragement, joy, peace
S- Spiritual, personal walk and as leader in home
S- Socially, Godly and strong friendships
I- Intimacy in marriage, emotionally and physically
N- Needs, specific
G- Guidance and wisdom, as the leader of home

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Oatmeal Spice Cake

Tonight we are going to meet with our monthly fellowship group.  We do a pitch in dinner and tonight I am taking an Oatmeal Spice Cake with Caramel Sauce Topping and a Chocolate Fudge Sheet Cake.  I am making a special variation of my  Oatmeal cake and mixed in apples and cranberries.... yummy!

It is an easy cake to mix up and always gets rave reviews.  Here is the recipe if you ever want to whip one up!

Oatmeal Spice Cake with Carmel Sauce Topping
Cake Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup oats
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup oil
1 cup water
2 eggs
2 TBL molasses

OPTIONAL:  3 cups diced apples or cranberries (or mixture of both)

Caramel Topping Ingredients:
1/4 cup BUTTER (not any substitutes)
2/3 cup brown sugar
3 TBL milk

Cake Directions:
1) mix together all "wet" ingredients (oil, water eggs and molasses) and set aside
2) in large bowl stir together all "dry" ingredients( flour, oats, sugars, baking soda, salt and spices)
3)  Thoroughly combine wet ingredients into dry ingredients.  Stir in optional fruit.
4) Bake in a greased 9x13 pan for 35-40 minutes or until cake tests done. 
5) Pour warm caramel sauce over warm cake!

Caramel Sauce Directions:
1) melt together the butter, sugar and milk.  Bring to simmer. 
2) Pour over warm cake


Have a BLESSED day,

SOOOOO true!!!!  Make your loved ones FEEL your love today!!!!


Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Choosing Simplicity.... corraling plastic bags

What to do with all those store bags??  When you forget more often than not to take the reusable cloth bags to the store like me..... but you probably always remember to grab yours!!

I use them to line our trash cans in the bathrooms so I keep a stash of them under each bathroom sink and under the kitchen sink.  I have found that an empty tissue box works GREAT!!   Compact storage and easy to pull one out at a time.

Have a BLESSED day, BE a BLESSING! Heather