Sunday, August 31, 2014

The Frugal Kitchen: Crockpot Orange Chicken

With school and sports having started up again I am finding myself using my crockpot much more often.  Here is an orange chicken recipe that has two variations; one for everyday and one for more special occasions.


one or two skinless chicken thighs per person
 10 ounces orange juice
1/2 - 1 tsp salt or soy sauce
hot sauce or red pepper flakes to taste
1 Tbsp sesame oil
2 cloves of garlic minced
1/2 tsp dried ginger or one inch of fresh ginger, finely minced
1/2 - 3/4 cup orange marmalade
2 Tbsp corn starch
2 Tbsp water


Remove skin and bones from chicken thighs, then cut into 1 inch pieces.  Dredge in additional corn starch.  In a small amount of oil fry the chicken on all sides until browned.  Place in crock pot, then continue with general instructions.


Place chicken thighs in crockpot.  In a small bowl mix orange juice, salt/soy sauce, hot sauce/red pepper, sesame oil, garlic, and ginger.  Pour over the chicken.  Cook on high for 3 or 4 hours; or on low for eight.  Remove bones from chicken thighs and pull apart with fork.  Mix corn starch and water together, then mix into juice.  Add orange marmalade and pulled chicken.  Cook for 1/2 hour until sauce is thickened.  Add the sections from an orange.  Serve over rice.

Place chicken and orange juice mixture in crockpot
Make sure that you adjust the seasonings before serving.  Add more hot sauce, salt/soy sauce or marmalade if necessary.

I hope you enjoy this easy recipe.

God bless,

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Frugal Clothing: M. Mac

It isn't often that I recommend a specific brand or store, but I sometimes (after years of trial) will tell you about a sure fire money saver.

For the last five years I have purchased cotton knit dresses from M. Mac.  They are located in California and their clothing is completely made in the United States.  The dresses I have purchased are of a very high quality, last for many years and hold up beautifully to machine washing and drying.

I still own the first dress I bought from them and it still looks as good as it did when it was new.  It is printed with M. Mac's most popular screen print, the rock fish pattern.

Rock Fish
I tend to buy their maxi dresses with short or long sleeves and a modest neckline.  Here's one of my favorite designs:

M. Mac has started selling their dresses through Amazon, so it is easy to order.  I will provide a link below.  Some people may think that a price of $60-70 (American dollars) is expensive, but for a dress of high quality that will last for years it's actually inexpensive.

I would rather buy one or two high quality items a year to add to my wardrobe than ten pieces from a big box store that will have to be thrown away after a year of washing.  I plan on sharing more of my frugal clothing finds in future posts.

God bless,

Thursday, August 14, 2014

John C. Campbell Folk School Part II

After our week at the folk school we had finished quite a few water color paintings.  We had learned new techniques and were allowed to experiment to our hearts' content.  On the last day there is a get together (show) to allow all of the classes to show off their work.

My birch trees

Other watercolors
Here are some selections from other classes:

Wood carving


Wood turning



Stained glass

Bead making


I didn't get photos of boat making, country cooking and nature photography.  The cooking class served refreshments for the show and nature photography put on a slide show.

Overall, this was a fun trip for my daughter and I.  She's not an extremely social person, but she made some friends and had some new experiences.  The Intergenerational week at the folk school is something I can see us doing again.

God bless,

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Good Reads: Lost Legacy

Lost Legacy (Zoe Chambers Mysteries, #2)Lost Legacy by Annette Dashofy
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Lost Legacy is the second book in the Zoe Chambers mystery series. It is a very well written and professionally edited novel.

Zoe Chambers father died 27 years ago, the victim of a drunk driver. A more recent suspicious death and a visit from her cold mother and step father cause Zoe to begin looking into the real cause of her father's death. She is helped by her friend (and maybe love interest) the police chief.

I love the characters, even the evil characters, like Zoe's mom, are interesting. They have depth and are well developed.

The mystery kept me guessing up until the end. I used to work in law enforcement and it is obvious that the author did her research.

I highly recommend this series. The books end with a satisfying HFN.

ARC provided by Henery Press via Netgalley.