Soups – Tips and tricks to making the best soup you ever had!

Soups – Tips and tricks to making the best soup you ever had!

Soup is one of those foods that everyone should know how to make!

Food historians tell us the history of soup is probably as old as the history of cooking. The act of combining various ingredients in a large pot to create a nutritious, filling, easily digested, simple to make/serve food was inevitable. This made it the perfect choice for both sedentary and travelling cultures, rich and poor, healthy people and invalids. –

But it isn’t the history of soup that makes it great. Soup is a wonderful way to make BIG flavors with modest ingredients. As a kid, I hated soup. I found it salty, or mushy, lacking in yumminess. But since I have been cooking for my family, I have formed a little love affair with the stuff. I make some sort of soup every week and it couldn’t be easier. For you, I have gathered some handy tips you can do to take your soup from just OK to slurptastic! Continue reading


Turn any smart phone into a free voip phone + free text message

Image representing Google Voice as depicted in...

Image via CrunchBase

Have an old smart phone lying around? Why not turn it into a free voip house phone?  I only have experience using this with an android phone (with no cell service attached). Thanks to google voice and you can easily make 100% free phone calls over your wifi. You are already paying for wifi at home, why not use it to make free calls? Of course this technology is not as reliable as your regular cell phone service, or as convenient in some cases since you can only use your phone wherever  wifi is available (good thing starbucks is everywhere!). And I have had some trouble using it to authenticate a craigslist account so there might be other instances where this option might not work for you.

Bundled with google voice is the ability to send and receive sms messages right to your inbox or to your android.

Setting up your phone is easy to do:

 Get a Google Voice number.

 Download Sipdroid application on your phone

 Open the Sipdroid application on the phone. Select settings and add your Google voice account information.

Sipdroid will register automatically register an account for you at and configure your google voice account also.  While you’re in settings you might want to check the Call Options (I  and Wireless Options (Here, I check the options Select Wi-Fi Ap & Screen on) to make sure your settings are all in order.

Once you have a little green light, you’re ready to make calls. IMPORTANT NOTE: Once you register with through the application, you should log into your account at and update your information, othewise they might delete your account and you have to register a new one.

Text messaging works a little different, to use that download the google voice application or just send from your gmail inbox!

Good Luck!

English: Sipdroid 1.0.7 on a HTC Hero mobile phone

NOTE: Sometimes Pbxes stops working for no real reason, but it is easy to resolve. Simply log into your account. Click Personal Data then change your time zone and save changes. Then change it back to the correct one. Actually any change to your settings seems to refresh something and gets your voip working again.

Become More Self-Reliant – Start Here

Use It Up, Wear It Out, Make Do WWII poster

Adventures in Aquaponics

GROW O'ahu

Use fish to grow food without soil.  This pretty much sums up what aquaponics actually is, the combination of “aquaculture” or raising of fish and “hydroponics” growing of plants in water.  It’s becoming really popular, but systems can get pricey. Our little house is entering our seventh month of experimentation with this system and I have a few things to share about our journey.

This is the first system we tried.  It was a kit available locally and we spent a good deal of time talking story with the guy who sold it to us as he was a wealth of knowledge.  It was worth the money we spent because we were newbies, hadn’t done much homework and just wanted to try it out.  This small set up was perfect for that.  And we feel that since we bought the things, we can call and ask questions!

A variety of…

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Home Made Deodorant for Long Term Storage

Let there be light…

The best idea for cheap lighting! A headlamp around a gallon of water = ambient light for your tent and a great night lamp when the power is out.
Photo: Seriously clever! A headlamp around a gallon of water = ambient light for your tent and a great night lamp when the power is out.