Make-It-Yourself Pumpkin Seed Snacks!
Those expensive bags of toasted pumpkin seed snacks are so easy to make for yourself at home. They cost a lot of money and you truly can do it – it’s simple. Here’s how:
I take the cleaned out pumpkin, fill it with a piece of floral foam, soak the foam and arrange fresh flowers in it for a table decoration. If you are afraid of leakage, insert a small vase in the pumpkin and fill it with flowers.
Or, I split the pumpkin, put it on a cookie sheet with sides and a little water and bake split side down in the oven until it’s very soft. I then flip the halves over, scoop out the flesh and bake fresh pumpkin pie, cookies or cake. The cooked pumpkin can be frozen in bags for use over the winter – instead of buying the canned stuff!
In winter, our homes are closed to the outside air, and sometimes the indoor air can get a little stale. To remedy that problem, I make a homemade simmer for almost no out of pocket money, and I also share this with family and friends as gifts for Christmas, or ‘just because’.
I dry orange, lemon and apple peelings during the year on a cookie sheet lined with a paper towel. It sits on top of the refrigerator where it’s nice and warm and the stuff dries quite well.
To make a batch, you would need about 1-1/2 cups each of the dried peelings and mix that with the following:
Break up the dried peelings into smaller pieces, mix with the spices and store in a glass jar until needed.
To use: put a spoonful or two in a pan on the stove and heat to scent the air, or use one of those electric ‘simmer pots’ that can be purchased almost anywhere.
A small canning jar filled with this mix, tied with a big red bow makes a wonderful last minute gift for teachers, your fellow co-workers, or friends you just want to remember at a special time.
(I take a quart jar of this mix to the Black Hills Stock Show every year and have a simmer pot going in my booth when we are open. People follow their noses to the scent and can’t believe something so simple can smell so good. And, I actually use year-old, or older spices for all this. It’s a good way to clean out the cupboard!)
A reader sent in a hint about her "make-it-myself" doggie beds. She has several elderly dogs since she does rescue work. (May God Bless her for this!) Dog beds are expensive, but she had gone to a yard sale and found a foam mattress topper for $10 and proceeded to cut it into chunks to fit into dog beds. She says they work quite well, keeping the dogs comfortable, and after two years’ time are still in very good condition. She said that the cost of four ‘new’ dog beds would have been over $200, so she’s saved a good amount of money and her furry friends are sleeping like kings!
A reader reminded me that kids need to "Do things with their hands – besides play video games!" She suggested that parents could have the kids make inexpensive Christmas ornaments for grandparents with nothing more than the lids from the frozen juice you prepare for breakfast, a nail, and some odds and ends.
A reader writes:
My kitchen drawers were showing their years, and since I can’t afford to replace the kitchen, I needed some way to spruce things up. My daughter had recently put some scrubbable wallpaper behind her cookstove and had some scraps left – so I took the ‘bits and pieces’ home and lined the inside of my drawers with them. It sure does make them look better – and now they are easier to clean!
A reader writes:
I make homemade angel food cakes, but of course there are the yolks to deal with for another day. I put them all in a quart canning jar and put a little water over the top before placing in the refrigerator for another use. The yolks do not go bad this way, and I can use them in a sponge cake in a couple of days, thus not wasting the rest of the egg.
A reader writes:
If the brown sugar, cookies or marshmallows get hard, a cut half of an apple placed in the jar with any of these for a day or two. It will restore the softness, and then you can ‘use all you buy’!
READERS: If you have tips or ideas to share, send them to Pennywise, Box 518, Kadoka, SD 57543 or email them to [email protected].
P.S.: Please be sure to mention the "Farm And Livestock Directory" when you respond!