Monday, October 12, 2009

Read Along: Week Sixteen - Camping on the High Prairie

I love camping. I’ve roughed it, tented it, trailer’ed it and enjoyed rustic cabins. I just like being away from the hustle of cities and I love looking out a window and seeing nature right outside. But after two weeks I am more than ready to go home to real bath tubs running water and electricity!
I am writing this post on a damp and cold autumn day in October in mid-west Ontario. I know within a month we will probably see snow. But the trees are changing colors and I am sure we will still have a few more sunny days to enjoy outside. And of course, we will soon have piles of leaves to clear from the yard. So here is what I have planned for the our family, and I hope everyone else will enjoy participating as well.

  • 1: Lets make beans! Soaked beans are a food Ma could have carried with them, but they would take too much time to make.
Baked beans and chili are a staple for camping in our region and comfort food at our house. I especially like putting them in my crock pot and forgetting about them until supper. Homemade baked beans are my favorite, but I rarely have time to soak the dried beans and cook them. But I have come up with a recipe that makes canned beans taste really good. (and you need the cans for the next project!)
Home-style Baked Beans
4 cans of Beans in Tomato sauce (Pork and beans)
1/3 cup molasses
1 1/2 tsp dried mustard
1 onion chopped fine
1 pkg of sausage
Cook the sausage and onion together and cut the sausage into 1 inch pieces.
Add all the ingredients to the crock pot and stir. Cook on low for 4 hours.
Serve with Corn/Johnny cakes

It would be great to see your bean or chili recipes as well, feel free to post!

  • 2: Twinkle little star! Lets make some stars…
Knit or crochet Christmas tree star ornaments. Use them as gifts or on the front of cards Crochet a tree skirt Make a blanket
Here is a beautiful paper star and Sewing versions are also available.
But here is the project I encourage the most. Tin can luminaries! They are perfect for the next two seasons. Put them up as fall decorations and use them right through to Christmas. They would look perfect as accents around a jack’o’lantern or as lights for caroling in December.
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1 large can, washed and label peeled. You can leave it silver, or spray paint with a paint meant for metal.
Tea light candle, burnable or LED battery powered (From dollar stores in Christmas section)
coat hanger (or strong wire)and pliers with wire cutters (optional for hanging luminary)
1/2 inch doweling 1 1/2 feet long (optional)
small screw in hook. (goes with doweling)
Fill the can to the top with water and freeze until solid in the freezer (this keeps the can from crushing when you hammer)
Mark out a star shape and any other desired design with dots using a marker.
Place the nail on a dot and hammer through the can into the ice. Repeat for all your dots. Hammer two holes near the top rim across from each other for the wire handle if desired. Melt the ice and dump it out. Dry the inside and place candle inside.
To hang from a hook or tree….
Cut the coat hanger and thread through the two top holes. Bend into a handle shape and bend ends of wire up to keep from coming off.
To carry while burning….
Screw the hook into one end of the doweling and hook the handle of the luminary over it.
Hint: use a piece of dried spaghetti as a lighter if you don’t have a BBQ match or fire lighter.

  •  3: As a family, plan a fall yard work day.(It doesn’t matter what climate you’re living in, there is always seasonal clean up to do.)
Then the fun part! In the evening, Clear an area for a small camp fire. (As a child we would build it in the recently harvested vegetable garden at the edge.) Check with your local fire department for the local rules on backyard recreational fires. Most areas do allow small, contained fires. Don’t use the fire for burning brush or leaves. Here is a link for building fires and fire safety if you have never built one before. As dusk settles, light your luminaries for extra light and eat bowls of chili or baked beans and Johnny cakes as a family around the fire. Enjoy the sunset and make a wish on the first star.

by HatsFineandFancy 

p.s Don't forget the marshmallows! 


  1. I have to laugh because I was coming on here from another blog to see if it could help out the Ravelry group! I just joined a few days ago and knew you had a blog, but did not realize it was this one. :) LOL!!!

  2. HeeHee! I keep it a week behind our group page so we get first dibs at the crafting. Welcome aboared, and your help is welcome!


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