Monday, November 30, 2009
Speaking of practice, I would like to talk a little bit about the religion that I practice. I think that many people think that those of us that don't go to church regularly, and believe in things like Spirit Guides and afterlife are not Christian based. I have found the opposite to be true. I am what I like to call a Naturalist Christian; I believe that God is all around us all the time, and that we have his guidance no matter where we choose to celebrate Him; and for me, it makes the most sense to honor him in the spectacular natural surroundings that he has given us.
I think my issues with organized religion started when I was very young. I'll never forget the first time I showed up in a church by myself as a teenager. It was a Methodist church that my family belonged to in Evergreen, but did not go to often. I was trying to just go in and enjoy a church service because I was going through a difficult time in my life (who isn't as a teenager?) and was hoping for some guidance, or at the very least comfort. I got neither. I got looks of scorn and many curious stares. I could feel the room closing in around me with the unasked questions. "What did she do wrong? Does she need to repent?" I had even overheard someone say that they thought I was pregnant! I was just barely sixteen and this left me with a rather bad taste in my mouth; I left that church bawling my head off.
Now, I know in my heart that there is absolutely no way that God would want anyone to feel that way, or to think a person must sacrifice anything for his love. Not money, not time, not pride, and certainly not the part of you who makes you the strong individual that he created. It feels so wrong to me that churches have become such a huge business, and that there is so much money and conflict involved with them. Just because it is a church group parents are forgetting to make sure their kids are safe. People are giving a good portion of their income to their church even when they can't really afford it, or even just feeling guilty about not doing what the church asks of them; it just doesn't sit well with what I believe God wants for us.
I feel that He would want us to be happy, and to celebrate the love and life he has given us. I feel that He would want us to spend our time taking care of our families and Mother Earth. I feel that God is with me everyday of the week, and in no particular building (especially one that was built with other peoples money)!
I have to laugh about how I picture the Spirit world and how it works. I see it almost like a multi level marketing idea. With God at the very top of the triangle and then various levels of Spirit Guides working their way up the tiers. Now this may sound very simplistic and silly, but it makes a lot of sense to me. I have worked with my Spirit Guides, but I would never claim to have spoken to God. I can only hope that He is watching over me and my guides, but I know that my Spirit Guides would not sway my beliefs or want me to suffer for anyone or anything. In my opinion, God and Spirits only want happiness and prosperity for us.
So...make your very own miracle today and everyday!!!!
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Good Morning! We are back in our picturesque little town, but enjoyed ourselves tremendously in another little picture perfect town two states away! We got to spend some qualityt ime with our relatives who have been a part of my whole life, but rarely get to see. My day with my Great Aunt Jaris is one that is burned into my memory. To be able to sit around and chat with my Grandma's favorite sister was time I would not trade for anything. The men all had a great time playing farmer too. They all got to ride in the combine, and Nathan even got to take the load of corn to town in the semi with my cousin. Isabella had a wonderful time with her cousins, especially one that she has become pen pals wih this last year. It was great because they are only one year apart, which is exactly what her Mom and I are, and boy the memories we laughed about from when we were kids! I was a bawling mess yesterday on the way home because my kids kept telling us thank you, and how much fun they had and how they love that part of our family! It is just such a reminder of how important family is, and how important it is to pass that love of family on to the next generations.
That's when we learned that the dog had been around for quite a few days. One of the neighbors had called at least a couple of days before that wondering if the pup belonged to my family. So, apparently when she couldn't find the owner, she dumped the dog again. See, when you live on the outskirts of town, you learn that it is not uncommon for people to take unwanted animals out into rural areas to dump them. Now, this little tiny baby had been dumped twice. We kept her in the truck for the few days that we were there, except when all of the kids were oohing and aahing over her, and she was a perfect angel. As we expected, no one claimed her, so she came hme with us.
Did I mention that she's just a baby? I might have forgotten to mention that she is a Great Dane baby, so she won't be tiny for long. It's really ironic (or just meant to be) that she looks almost identical to our Great Dane Sophie, who we lost many years ago to old age and cancer. The only way we had been able to afford Sophie way back when was because she was a breeder throw back. When I say that, I mean that she was a Harlequinn (white with black spots) that turned out to be black with just a few white markings. I am pretty sure that our baby got dumped for the same reason and the fact that she has a broken tail; thankfully it is not at all painful to her, but very crooked.
As I mentioned, she has been an absolute doll, never chewing or going potty in my truck. We had given her the sleeping bag that I carry in case of emergencies, and she would crawl up inside of it and sleep for hours. She is skin and bones, but that will not take long to fix; she'll be on a bi-hourly feeding schedule for quite some time. I'm thinking she's a couple of months old because she still has her umbilical hernia, and tiny little sharp teeth to go along with it!
Make a miracle today!
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
The beautiful rolling hills that are in between the two small towns that my families live in, always bring a smile to my face. Not at all like the rough terrain we live in, but feeling like home all the while. I don't know if it's the fact that we all live a similar lifestyle, or just their welcoming attitude, but they are family through and through.
We left late yesterday, not until about 6:00, and had to stop on the way to repair my son, Thomas' phone so that he could text while we are away from his teenage friends for so very long, you know, four days. The Verizon store of course took forever, but we had a nice dinner while we waited and off we went.
Nathan had come up with a great way to spend our $100 gift card from the HGTV people, and that was to spend the night in a hotel on our way to Iowa. You know how kids are, a swimming pool is a vacation to them, so we talked Tom into leaving a night early. We rolled into Ogallala at about midnigtht and headed straight to bed at the good old Best Western. We, of course, will swim this morning at eight and head out after that.
I wanted to thank you all for your encouraging comments about our visit from HGTV, I will let you know when I hear anything about an air date. But, for now, have a safe holiday weekend and if you're travelling, do so with the utmost of care! Make a miracle today!
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
In the night I just kept hearing a little voice that told me to check into it a little farther. As you know, I am a strong believer in everything happening for a reason, but I am also very suspicious at heart, I am finding out. But, I figured that between it being my favorite channel, and my birthday, this was some sort of sign. Well, lo and behold I went onto the website for High Noon TV and surprise, surprise! The show was real, just not set to air until Spring!
The show is My First Sale, a spinoff of My First Place if you are familiar with their programming. A local family was chosen because they are selling their first home and they want to buy a ranch. Our little piece of paradise was chosen to do lifestyle shots and to teach the family a little bit about life on a ranch. It is a family of six, with four little kids all under the age of about seven, none of whom have been around animals much. The crew from HGTV was three, a producer, a camera man and a sound guy.
After a very busy week of getting our releases in, and getting the house and ranch ready, we were as proud as punch when they pulled in! Although it was a little chaotic (I don't know if my poor chickens will ever recover from being chased so much-ha!), I think the filming went really well. I don't think that we will be on the show very much, but our great critters behaved very well and will definitely not be on the editing room floor. We were filmed quite a bit as we did our regular llama education talk and introduction, all the while trying to teach the kids a little bit of safety when it comes to large, and even small animals.
It was a whirlwind couple of hours. Trying to herd the animals into a certain light, running to get another haltered llama (because one of the little girls bit her sister over holding the lead rope; I don't think that one will make the cut-ha!), and trying to catch the chickens after they were already freaked out for their big debut on TV, is not everyday occurrences here at the ranch. I am now very empathetic towards anyone working with animals on TV, animals are not always ready for film, like our sheep for instance (they spent their time madly trying to get away from everything, scared to death!). But, we did it and they got some great footage; they even paid us $100 for our trouble!
Whether Tom and I make it to the big screen (Yes, I know it's not big screen, but throw me a bone here...) or not, it was fantastic exposure for our businesses. We, of course, were wearing Royal Ranch hats and denim shirts and the producer even reminded Tom to "plug us" once with one of his answers for the home owners questions, so we'll see. They had heard of us through word of mouth and Google, so it was a huge "Atta girl!" that all this hard work we're doing is really paying off. I will post again when I hear it is going to air!
Monday, November 23, 2009
Good Morning! I hope you all had a great weekend and are excited about the short week with a holiday thrown in! I had the most unbelievable weekend; Saturday was my birthday, and we had very special visitors at our ranch yesterday. But, since today is my regular Metaphysical Monday, and I was excited about today's post as well as telling you about our great visitors, you will have to check back in tomorrow to see who our guests were. I'll give you a hint....it starts with HG and ends with TV, no, no, I'm not giving you any more info-ha! Now I know you have to come back!
So, back to my birthday. A few months ago when I first started really studying the Metaphysical world, I went into my local book store and was surprised to find out that it is almost entirely metaphysical. That in itself was a pleasant surprise, but on the counter was a flyer for a psychic that was doing readings. I got that feeling in my stomach, you know the one that I talk about quite often in these posts? The feeling that something inexplicable is going on around you, and that you're somewhat of a pawn in a much bigger game? Yes, that's the feeling I got, and before I could even read further, I knew that the readings were scheduled for my birthday.
Now, I have never been to a psychic, and have often thought that many of them are simply pulling on the heart strings of people who are really reaching for something, maybe even anything. But, with all of the upheaval that I was experiencing in my spiritual quest, I felt it was time to at least see how it is done. I did as much research on the guy as I possibly could and talked the old man into coming with me.
You see, Tom is on the fence about this whole metaphysical thing. His very logical brain has a hard time with a lot of it, but living with me, he can't deny that some very strange things happen around here. He is afraid of it, I think, he talks a lot about what if something negative comes from my guides (or a psychic), will I believe it and how will it affect our lives? What if the death card (metaphorically speaking) is played or something?
I have tried quite a few times to explain that the communication with Spirit Guides is never negative. They are there to do just what their title says, guide. Not scare us, or make us feel afraid to live, or afraid to die. They are simply here to help get us through the maze of life. So, I knew that if the psychic had anything at all negative, than he wasn't for real or at the very least, not talking with my guides. I guess I should not say "anything at all negative", because of course we would all want to know if our guides felt that there was avoidable danger; but again, to me that seems like positive news.
To be honest, the whole reason I wanted to go was to test myself. A person who has the ability to connect with their Spirit Guides always feels as if they are making it up, I know for sure I do. I have read this in many of the books as well. Often times the stuff that comes through is not at all clear, sounds like a familiar voice, but mostly information just gets into our brains, we don't know where it comes from, it is just there. So it leaves me with plenty of questions. Am I crazy, or does this really happen to other people? Am I just making it all up and remembering things I didn't know I knew? So, like I said, I figured this was as good as time as any to check it all out. I was also very curious if he would say anything about me having "powers"
Well, the deck was stacked against the guy. He had no hope against my naughty Spirit Guides. I could almost hear them laughing as this poor man struggled through probably one of the worst readings he's ever had. I'm pretty sure he was getting something, and that was a big brick wall. In my mind I kept hearing over and over again that I did not need this guy in the middle, and my communication with my guides was going along just fine.
I almost had to bust out laughing, the psychic just kept saying "I'm having a hard time getting anything"; I, on the other hand was getting plenty of input. They did allow him a few bits of information, but it was all stuff we had already done. We pretty much just ended up talking about publishing books, something we both had in common. The fact that he told us he couldn't get much makes me believe that he is probably legit, just blocked. From the laughing and voices I heard in my mind, I found out that my guides really have a sense of humor. I even looked at Tom multiple times, afraid that he could hear the jokes as well, that's how clearly this was all coming through.
But most importantly, I learned from this session. I learned that I am definitely not crazy, or making things up. I feel strongly that my guides pointed me down that path to teach me a lesson about listening to myself. I am the only one that can take this journey, and that I will learn everything I need to know in due time. I also learned that at least one of my guides is a rebel like me. Now that made me really proud!
Sunday, November 22, 2009
I talk about Tom every now and then, but I'm not sure I have been able to demonstrate how much this man means to me. Tom and I met when I was 18 years old, and were married by the time I was 20. I fell in love with him because of his sense of humor (I tell him it was his cool Harley, so this will be news to him-ha!) and his strong "American freedom" attitude. He is like me, and looks at "normalcy" in a whole different way, and doesn't get caught up in how things are "supposed" to be done. We get it done, any way we know how, and we do it together.
I know that many people thought I was too young to be getting married, especially to someone seven years my senior, but our love is stronger than anything I can imagine, so it made perfect sense to us. Thankfully my parents could see how much we meant to one another and were very happy to host our wedding at their home, the home I grew up in. Even back then I was very connected with the earthy side of myself, and had always wanted to get married in the spectacular mountains that I love so much. A big thank you to all of you who were a part of our special day, and so supportive of our great marriage.
I have to tell you a quick story about my wedding day. My parents live on North Turkey Creek Road, which is a very curvy canyon. Tom and all of his groomsmen, plus about twenty other bikers, arrived at our wedding in roaring style. They had all met at our house a few miles away and had ridden their beautiful and loud Harleys up that canyon that I had learned how to drive in. We could hear them coming for miles before they were there. To see all of those big bad bikers ride up in their white tuxes on their noisy bikes, made my heart swell with pride. Those are the sort of friends you have for your entire life, and I felt blessed to be marrying the "leader of the pack"!
My beloved husband has also given me the life that I couldn't have even dreamed of. Due to our strong sense of old fashioned parenting, he has made it so that I have been able to stay home with our children all of these years. Although I have a very difficult job, sometimes I think Tom's is even harder (shhh, don't tell him I said that!), to have to be the sole provider for a family of five is not an easy thing to accomplish. He is still very involved with parenting as well, which I am so very proud of! My kids really look forward to their adventures with their Dad.
Speaking of adventures, Tom has been more than supportive when it comes to the crazy business ideas I have come up with, and supports me with everything he has. But, his adventurous side is a little more daring than mine. One of his favorite things is being naked (as a matter of fact, Tom is actually Naked Johnny, our logo for Naked~Nure!), yes you read that right. Not that he is a nudist, just a rebellious guy who likes to shock people every now and then. Like the time I bought him a helmet for his bike. Tom really enjoys the freedom his harley brings him, so the helmet was just a concession on his part so I would not worry about him quite so much. To continue that feeling of freedom, the first time Tom rode his bike with that helmet on he had it and a pair of boots on, that's it! I'll never forget the look on the neighbors faces as my tall, skinny, and very white husband did a couple rounds around the neighborhood, naked as a jaybird, laughing all the while. Now that is confidence in who you are!
The picture is of my birthday gift from him. He made it with love, I know, because he normally does not like to work with wood. But, knowing that I am such a "green girl" and love everything about the forest, he couldn't have gotten me a better present! He says my poems are rubbing off on him, so this is what my card had to say:
Friday, November 20, 2009
Thursday, November 19, 2009
The EPA has a website that is pretty full of information. It has a list of drugs that are safe to flush, and points out that many drugs have this information on the bottle or in its paperwork. When in doubt, do NOT flush it, and this applies to all over the counter medicine as well. I was really surprised to find out that if you have no other options, put the medication in a sealed container with something yucky, like coffee grounds or kitty litter and then put it in the trash.
Interestingly enough, many states are just now coming up with ways to donate your medicine, which I was sorry to hear. With as many people as there are who can't afford their medicine, it seems like a great idea. This is what Louise at the Colorado Health Insurance Insider had to say:
I’m very curious about how the whole thing works. The donated medications can come from medical providers or individuals, but have to be unopened and sealed, and are checked by pharmacists to ensure safety. But who has unused medications sitting around? I know lots of people might have a few pain pills left over from a surgery, but they usually use at least a few pills out of the bottle first. As for medical offices and hospitals, wouldn’t they have a steady stream of need for the medications already? I think it’s a great idea to donate and recycle unused medications – I’m a big fan of donating and recycling just about everything – I’m just not sure where the supply is coming from. But it seems to be coming from somewhere – in states like WY and IA, drug recycling programs have netted hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of medications for uninsured residents who would otherwise likely have gone without their prescriptions. So far, at least 33 states have passed laws allowing for donation, recycling, and reuse or prescriptions, and these programs are still new – many are in testing and pilot stages, so the full potential is far from realized. It sure beats having the drugs just go to waste in a corner somewhere.
I stringly agree with this opinion. It would even be worth going through the red tape if we knew the meds weren't going to waste. I did read a couple of places that organizations like UNICEF take life saving prescriptions to third world countries whose population really needs them. To be honest, their website was just way too slow to load and didn't have a very good search engine, so I moved on. It was a little bothersome to me that there really is not a definitive answer as to WHERE to donate your unused meds, and even if you do there are many rules regarding this, like they need to be unopened-What?
So, I guess for now these are the best steps to take if you have medicine that is expired or unused:
- Check the EPA website and see if your medication is on the list of things that are safe to flush.
- Hope that your state is one of the ones with a recycling program and take it there.
- Talk with your Pharmacist, he/she may have a recycling program, or may let you bring it in for them to put in their hazardous material disposal.
- If all else fails, try the kitty litter method.
- ALWAYS remove the label on the bottle, no matter how you are disposing of it. Most medicine bottles that I have come across are recyclable, so toss the bottle in the recycling and get rid of the medicine separately.
I hope this helps, Mom; thanks for the idea!
Make a miracle today!
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Good Morning! Don't you just love it when your family does half of your job for you? Well, that is the case with today's post. You know, it was really ironic that Irina (my German exchange sister) sent me a note on facebook regarding clothes lines in America, because I had been thinking of trying to use my dryer a lot less, but thinking about it doesn't really count. I, of course, will include her huge compliments in the note that I have copied here.
I love reading your blog, I am amazed at how much and how professionally and yet with your very personal style you write. I had to laugh hard about the fridge cleaning.
Yesterday I was thinking about the little conversation we had about dryers. There was a long article in our newspaper about the fight FOR clotheslines in the US! I had no idea that there were areas where they were outlawed! Colorado apparantly just passed a law against the outlawing. I found this link to the information in English which I'm sure you'll be interested in, if you didn't already now! Matthias and I made a vow to each other to NOT buy a dryer when we become parents, as friends of ours just recently suggested we probably would.
The conversation that she is referring to is one that we had over a post on how green I am. Well, Irina really put me in my place (LOL), I had blogged about double spinning your clothes because it takes them much less time to dry that way, and she reminded me that they don't even have a dryer, and think that spinning twice is even too much energy to use. Since that time it has really gotten me thinking. Why do I only hang bedding out in the fresh air to dry? Should The Royal Ranch have a clothesline? Well, of course it should! And, most importantly how do we as Americans rank when it comes to using our eco-friendly resources? This is what Irina had to say when I asked her if they were more "green" than most Germans, and how they are compared to us lazy Americans (again, LOL):
Yes, I think we are more eco-aware than the average German. We are e. g. pretty good in not taking the car when train, tram or bicycle does the transportation job, too. But we do have a car (rather Matthias has one), Matthias is car pooling to work, while I take the bicycle or the tram. But we are no heroes and do use the car occasionally.
But I also think that the average German is more eco-aware than the average American. It probably partly has to do with our history and the times during and after WWII where resources were scarce and "saving" was a survival attitude. I remember my Grandma sending me to the bakery (and that was in the 70ies) with the paper bag from the day before, or the day before that. Why getting a new one when the old one was still good? Or wrapping paper. My mother always kept and reused (didn't iron, like some do!), and I do the same thing. The unwrapping takes longer and gets more exciting when you carefully open to not harm the paper, too.
Please feel free to blog about this, but please don't think I'm missioning.
I would love a little feedback from my great readers though. Do you all use clotheslines? How do you keep your clothes from feeling stiff when you do use one? Does your town/state have a law regarding clotheslines? Do you always dry your clothes outside, or do you have an indoor rack?
The pictures are of a clothes rack that my Mom fell in love with when she was visiting Irina a couple of years ago. I really want to thank my German family for their help on this, Matthias even sent me these pics from the hospital where he was on call! Speaking of that, when they become parents, does that make me an "American Exchange Aunt"?
Monday, November 16, 2009
Sunday, November 15, 2009
That's my boy!
They even sounded good playing, with frozen
hands and all.
I have mentioned this band and director before, but yesterday their half time show was way above and beyond. As you see by the pictures, half time was practically a blizzard and those kids and Jesse went out onto that field like Champs. Not only that, but they laid down their instruments in the snow covered field and danced Thriller, by Michael Jackson! To see this crowd, full of what I lovingly call Mountain Hillbilly's, on their feet, cheering at the very original "marching band" performance, warmed my heart more than the sun could have if it had chosen to come out, which it didn't.
The Platte Canyon Huskies are in the playoffs, being the only undefeated team, and we were host to the first play off game yesterday. The town really gets into their high school football, and again as I have mentioned, our Sheriff Fred Wegener, calls the game. Blessedly I was working the Dawg House (our Husky version of a concession stand), and was not sitting in the snow most of the time. But, there were plenty of people who were, and were having a great time doing it. The players are outstanding this year, and almost all of our games have ended in a shut out! Really keeps the crowd pumped.
I had heard about the band practicing for the Thriller dance, and had gotten a real chuckle out of the fact that the director, Jesse, had put it to vote whether he should dance with the kids or not. It was, of course, overwhelmingly voted that he perform as well. So, out there in the middle of a couple of inches of snow, they danced. And they did it with marching band pride. Man I love this little town...
Make a miracle today!
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Friday, November 13, 2009
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Good Morning! Yesterday, I spent the entire day cleaning my fridge. Well, that's not entirely true, I did get a couple of hours of office work done, but the refrigerator took the entire rest of the day, Tom had to even help me finish up when he got home. So, this has prompted me to add this chore to my seasonal list of house chores. I have a mental list of things I should do with each time change (If you live in AZ, lucky you!), including things like:
- Replace batteries in smoke detectors. As you know I feel quite strongly about not wasting anything, but this is one case where I make exception (we had a fire in our house when I was a kid, so I am very fire leery), replace the batteries whether you think they need it or not. I also make sure that our renters have new batteries for their detectors as well.
- Double check our carbon monoxide detector, ours has a battery back up, but is plugged into the wall, so I might only replace that battery once a year, depends.
- Change or clean out our furnace filter.
- Change out our water filter.
- Double check the temp that the hot water heater is on, and really clean the space around it.
- Change any timers that we have been using over the summer, with the shortening of the days, you might need whatever it is controlling on (for me, that is a lamp, a chicken light, a water trough heater, etc.) for a longer period of time. Also check them for any signs of wear. I know these units are UL tested, but they are a fire hazard if not used properly.
- And, now, last but not least, I am adding cleaning the fridge to this list.
Back to my disgusting refrigerator. We are not a family to let food sit in the fridge, as it all gets eaten; my family is great about leftovers and taking them for lunches. So, the fridge very rarely needs cleaning out, which is my excuse for letting it get so gross. I started by unplugging it (if your lucky your husband will have a beer fridge like mine to keep stuff cold, but if not a cooler would work great) and letting it just warm up for about an hour. During this time, remove all drawers and shelves and get those soaking in the sink, or if you have a small kitchen (again, like me) use up all of your counter space! Letting the fridge come to room temperature made the scrubbing much easier.
I then went to move the fridge to clean behind it, that is when all hell broke loose! The stuff that was underneath was unbelievable!!! The kids must've spilled something at some point and didn't tell me that it had gone under the fridge, so I had sticky, yucky, hairy (I'm not sure how it got so hairy with only a million pets in the house-ha!) goop accumulating under my fridge. Not only that, but the coils were practically invisible with all of the dust that had collected there. I got the floor taken care of, but Tom had to help with cleaning the coils. We could practically hear the fridge sigh with relief, it could finally breathe!
So, now my refrigerator is singing a different tune (literally), and I'm sure it is running much more efficiently too. I also think all that gunk under there could have been a fire hazard as well. It really was cleansing for my soul, and having a clean fridge is rewarding because it is one job that sees immediate results!
Make a miracle today!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Monday, November 9, 2009
Sunday, November 8, 2009
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Friday, November 6, 2009
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Good Morning! Like many of you, I'm sure, I have pumpkins that I refuse to not use every last bit of. So, I'd like to share some pumpkin recycling ideas with you. Being the terrible Mom that I am, I waited until after my local store only had very small pumpkins, so I started out with 4 small pumpkins, which is about the same amount I got last year from one medium pumpkin. Start by washing the pumpkins, scrape out the remainder of the innards that didn't get removed when carving, and cut them into pieces and place on a cookie sheet like this:
Bake them in a 350* oven for about an hour. I heard on the Rachel Ray show yesterday, to put the skins up, and I will try it next time, but this method has worked great for me so far. They will come out looking like this:
Let them cool for a while, and peel them. It is easiest to break the piece in half and peel from the middle out, I have found. Keep the peels for the wildlife (or chickens in my case) and put the pumpkin in a bowl. I have tried quite a few ways of mashing the pumpkin, and found my good old fashioned hand mixer did the job best. I have not tried a large food processor, because I don't have one, but my small one didn't work. The pumpkin should come out like this:
Take about 1/4 of your pumpkin, and freeze the rest (you should have three pkgs for the freezer).
Now, a few other pumpkin recycling ideas. As we all know pumpkin seeds can be roasted by covering with spices (we use garlic salt, pepper and chili pepper) and roasting at 400* for fifteen to thirty minutes. One very good thing I found with the small pumpkins is that their seeds are much more tender. If you don't like pumpkin seeds, still wash and dry them and put them out for the wildlife, they will really appreciate sharing in the Halloween leftovers. This is what ours looked like, and they were delicious.
Have a miracle of a day!
P.S. Aren't you proud of me for remembering to take pictures? And, no I'm not showing you my failed loaves-ha!!!!