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Friday, September 18, 2015


                                                           Tomatoes, to be canned.

                                                                  Tomato thief.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

What Do You See?

I have been hanging onto these women's shoe lasts, or shoe forms, or shoe stays, or whatever you call them for years. They were not too difficult to come across when I was regularly doing the yard sale thing.
Now, the question is: What creative things can you make with these? They look fun all gathered into a vintage vase. I "see" lots of little speckled mushrooms, or perhaps the colourful centres to some funky flowers.  Attached at the centre to create a large star burst?
Of course, they still work well in shoes too.
Any ideas?

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

September ATCs

I traded Artist Trading Cards for years with a group not far from home. Then we moved and I mailed them in. That group lasted just over ten years. It was an amazing gathering of artists and other folk. Each month was an exciting get together so see the new art everyone had created.

For a while my mom mailed in her own ATCs. Since the group disbanded, we continue to trade each month. She usually chooses the theme and we mail three to each other. I normally forget to make a copy for my own records but today I actually scanned them.  The theme for September was "silhouettes."  They are simple but I am pleased with the result and they will mail well too.

Monday, September 7, 2015

A Real Food Weekend

 It may have been Labour Day weekend and it may have been great to see son number three too, but we were all at various stages of the same virus that had swept through last week.  No one was feeling very perky.  However, garden produce waits for no man, or woman.  Saturday morning, Marty helped process a big box of plum tomatoes from a friend.

 The vintage Vita-Mix I have made quick work of them, turning everything into one fabulous sauce.

                                   After it cooked down for a while it was time to can it up.

We got 7 quarts. Not bad.  Some of my own late-blooming tomatoes are sitting on the jars.

 I had the foresight to take a chicken out of the freezer for dinner on Sunday. It was fun heading into the back yard for the potatoes. I love those blue ones. Little gems. Purple mashed potatoes anyone?

 Today, while I made a batch of spaghetti sauce, Marty finally got to make himself some Einkorn pasta.

 We hung it on the old drying rack at the back door. The dogs were mesmerized by the floating food way above their heads.

The pasta turned out well and tasted great. The Mizithra ( a dry, salty sheep cheese) was the perfect counterpoint to the tomato sauce and nutty-flavoured Einkron noodles.

Today everyone is better than they were, and on the mend thankfully. And I have leftovers. Bonus!!

Thursday, September 3, 2015

The Page Turns As Do The Seasons

I turned the page on the calendar this week. You just know it's September when you look outside.
You know that autumn is around the corner when you wake to cool misty mornings.

The goldenrod creates a yellow border around the property.

Extra warm days, as summer holds on just a little longer. There is a "bee tree" nearby. Here they are "bearding" -cooling down the hive.

                                                The sunflowers are happy harbingers of fall.

                                             Heirloom tomatoes are portrait-worthy.

                                     The burning bush begins to show off its autumn wardrobe.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Some Thrifting

 There have not been more than a couple of yard sales that we have gone to this summer but there have been a few fun finds along the way.
This book, publishes in 1969, is a story and photo essay dedicated to "The little children of the forgotten streets of all the big cities, who, with noble naivete, romp and play, amid rubble and decay-happily unmindful that all gardens are not the same as theirs."
At the back of the book I discovered a note: this is number 519 of a limited edition of nine hundred copies. July 1969. I can find nothing about this on-line at all.

 Some great old glass chandelier crystals. They will clean up very nicely.

 An ancient little creamer with a goat on it and a "Hooded Merganser" figurine.  That will get tucked in with my accidental bird collection.

A perfectly aged mirror with a metal frame, a tiny pin cushion souvenir shoe, a pair of worn wooden shoes, tiny box, and a pair of skittles. Oh, what about that box? you ask. I  know, eh! Looks innocent enough on the outside.

                                         Inside the lid is this lovely illustration.

 I found this neat figure at Goodwill. Unfortunately his face has a crack. the top was taped on so when I got home I was thrilled to find it was a humidor with space in the lid for a sponge to keep the moisture just right for storing tobacco. Still, a neat find.
That other box? Well, let me show you.

                    It holds two thirds of a carving set with bone handles.

                          And those handles need some cleaning but,look! Lovely carved fish.

                                             Yet another intriguing container.

 Inside, a Swiss Elna sewing machine. Cool green colour and the first sewing machine to offer a great assortment of decorative stitches using cams. Dates to 1956-58.

                                           A view of where the cams go.

The carrying case opens and flips over to create a sewing surface. That's really cool!

I also came across this unusually coloured mohair bear. The pale nose stitching is a real distraction so I will give him a more bear-like nose.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Golden Days Of Summer

                              We were fortunate to get some fresh corn from friends recently.

                                                   BEST corn ever! Delicious.

 I was going to give the cobs to the chickens for them to enjoy but then came across a recipe for corn cob jelly.

 So I made some. Just because you can. The chickens were still thrilled with their twice boiled corn cobs.

 I also had purchased some fresh pineapples. I wanted to try my hand at Tepache, a fermented pineapple beverage. It is made using the pineapple skin.

                  With the fresh fruit inside I made some pineapple-lime jam. It was a success.

 There was still some fruit left and I came across a recipe for a pineapple casserole. Well, it "looked" interesting however it was not so tasty. Sad face. Five cups of pineapple wasted. Well, not all new things are destined to become "new" favourites, are they?

                                              I hope that your week is off to a good start.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Little Snapshots

 It's been quiet around here. Lots to do, more rain, plenty of weeds and chores or one kind or another. It's been down right pleasant temperature-wise this week.   I spotted this little squash plant in my herb garden. We'll see if anything comes of it.

Tucked deep under the lilac bush I spotted this lovely little moth, resting on a blade of grass. A wonderful pale green with a fringe along its wings. I was pleased it stayed put for its photo shoot.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015


             We pulled these from our garden over the weekend. Nine Nappa cabbage. Yum!

                        Our very first try at growing garlic. Not bad. I'll tuck in more this fall.

                                                Roots Down veggies at the market.

                                        Gladiolas at a friend's house. Love that colour!

 Green and purple beans from our garden. Too bad the purple ones turn green when you cook them.

                                                             A walking stick.

                               Hot out of the oven, shepherd's pie baked in a cast iron skillet.

                                    Peas! Last year was a total fail so this is exciting.

                                                         Dewy Hollyhock.

                                        I love Queen Anne's Lace in all it's stages of growth.

                     Lots of excitement after Aaron rolled over the log in the chicken yard.

Pretty much sums up the summer so far, lots of black clouds, with some blue skies tossed in for good measure.


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