Sunday, January 27, 2013

Idle hands

Over Christmas I took photos of some of the handmade things the talented women in my family has made over the years.  It is amazing what people can do with idle hands. 
These pot holders were tatted by my Great Grandmother, Mammy. I never met Mammy, but she sounds like a woman after my own heart.  She had a big orchard and garden and loved berries.  My Mom decided to display these works of art and hung them in the kitchen.   
I really love to look at the detail in them.  I'm so glad my Mom decided to display them.  There were many more.  I just posted my favorites.
Not much else is going on here.  It was a warm weekend, but now it sounds like we are in for a cold spell.  I hope everyone is staying warm and enjoying the winter.



Monday, January 21, 2013

A winter's day...

It has been a wonderful weekend.  I finished the top to my quilt.  I bottled my favorite raspberry wine and made rolls for the an annual awards banquet.  I even managed to clean and do some organizing around the cabin. 
I've been making plans for next year's garden.  I read The Square Foot Garden.  I have somewhat followed the theory in the greenhouse and am excited to expand it to the my new outdoor beds.  I also read The $64 Tomato.  I found it quite funny.  Probably because the truth hurts:)
 Everything is pretty quiet around here.  The roses are all tucked in.  We haven't had a lot of snow.  It has been quite cold.  I wandered around and took some photos of the first snowfall of 2013.

 Ella is enjoying fun in the snow.  She tears around in the drifts.  More than anything she loves to ride in the truck when we plow.
 Kelly and Ella were able to get the property cleaned up a bit and burned some piles.  Our goal is to plant a Christmas tree in that spot next year.


All in all a great peaceful and productive weekend.  I hope everyone enjoyed it as well.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Something old is new again...

Ok, maybe this stuff wasn't that old.  The log slabs on the top and bottom were leftover from making the stairs when we built our cabin ten years ago.  The tongue-in-groove is left over from when we finished the basement about five years ago.  The antler handle was a shed found by Ella last spring.   My husband put it all those leftovers together and created a wonderful cabinet.
My husband is very talented when it comes to woodworking.  It fills me with joy that he continues to make things for our cabin.   


I am a lucky woman.


Saturday, January 12, 2013

Company from up north...

In December, I was happy to get a visit from our neighbor's up North.  It was the Gray-Crowned Rosy-Finch. 
Once a year, for the past 4 years, we have been visited by a flock during the winter months.  This is the earliest and the fewest we have had.  The most we had was about 50 in February in 2009.

"These birds are common and widespread in Alaska and northwestern Canada. Locally common on alpine tundra. They have been known to migrate as far as the Great Plains during the winter months."

"Like all Rosy-Finches, during nesting season these birds develop a gular pouch in the upper throat with an opening to the floor of the mouth, which helps them carry large amounts of seeds to their young.  They live in flocks and loose colonies all year." Smithsonian Handbook Birds of North America 2001

My company has long since gone, but I enjoyed the few days they visited.  I do have a feeling the chickadees and redpolls are happy to have their feeder back. 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Caramel Apple Pie Pizza...

This Caramel Apple Pie Pizza recipe is perfect for potlucks. If you are like me and freeze lots of apple pie filling, it is also a very fast and easy dessert.
First, make a pizza crust.  I use my Mom's tried and true pizza crust recipe.  Then I boil my frozen apple pie filling for five minutes, until the apples are soft.   Spread the pie filling on the crust and bake at 425 degrees for 20-25 minutes.  When it has cooled pour a caramel sauce over the top.

Mom's Pizza Crust
1 pkg yeast 1 c. warm water
1 t. sugar 1 t. salt
1 T. olive oil 2 1/2 c. flour
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Dissolve yeast in warm water. Stir in ingredients, mix until doughy, and allow to rest 5 minutes. Roll out.  For more uses of this crust recipe please see the following posts:
Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook (New in 1955ish)
Apple Pie Filling
5-7 tart apples
3/4 c. sugar
2 T. flour
dash of salt
1 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. nutmeg
There it is.  Fast and easy.  As good as apple pie, only faster.  Hope it helps you out in a pinch.  Enjoy.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

How goes the greenhouse?

After two years, I cannot say the greenhouse is an experiment anymore.  I'm getting the hang of it.  I have learned that planting lettuce and spinach in the fall and moving my herbs there to overwinter are positive practices.
I'm excited at how well the lettuce, spinach, parsley, and sage are doing. I even added some lavender seedlings based of the Rainy Day Gardener post on starting plants from cuttings.
As soon as it warms up this spring the lettuce will go crazy!  Last year we were eating salads in early April.
I love my Haas watering can.  I have used it quite a bit this year.  It comes in especially handy in the winter when I wander out occasionally to water inside.  I don't know if you are supposed to, but it sure hasn't hurt anything. 
Parsley is one of my favorite herbs.  I've had these plants for two years now that there is somewhere to overwinter them.  I put them on the deck in the summer so fresh parsley is handy.  Then in the fall I cut them short and plop them in the dirt inside.
The greenhouse has been a fun endeavor.  I especially like that even in the middle of winter I can wander in to smell fresh soil and even do a little gardening.  My husband enjoys the fact that in March and April when I am itching to garden, I have somewhere to go and putter around.  It certainly expanded my gardening season.  Thanks again Kelly.