Monday, January 30, 2012

Start your snowshoes...

Jenni at Rainy Day Gardener asked about some snow photos, so I took the camera and the dog and went snowshoeing on Sunday. Sorry no breathtaking scenery photos, just Ella and snow. Enjoy the walk.
The snow is deep.

The cabin looks so cozy as we leave.

Our orchard is tucked under a blanket of snow.  Just the tops of my little berry bushes showing.

As I said, these aren't beautiful panoriamic photos.  Just the woods aound our cabin.

Ella wants me to hurry up.  She has all this trail to break and I'm slowing her down.

Suddenly, Ella lost focus on our walk.  She had found a pinecone.  As you can tell from this photo, she LOVES her pinecones.
Time to head back.  I love tracks in the snow.
Home again, home again, jiggety jog.

Take off the snowshoes and let them drip dry.  Time for a cup of coffee on the porch.  Hope you enjoyed the walk.   

Now that is heaven.

Friday, January 27, 2012


I started out working on a quilt, but when my leftover scraps had potential for a rug.  I got a tad sidetracked.  They are a bit narrow for a rug, but I'm still happy with how it has started.   
Then I got distracted bottling my grape wine and using leftover service berries to make my first batch of service berry syrup.  I will be trying the syrup out this weekend on buckwheat pancakes.

The next thing I knew we had a bunch of snow and that means one thing.  Time to make ice cream!

World's Easiest Chocolate Ice Cream

3 cans of sweetened condensed milk
6 cups of whole milk
1 cup of cocoa mixed smooth in  1 cup of water (lumps are very bad)
Whisk together and put in the ice cream maker.  Let it do it's thing and eat like a king.

This is why I only get one quilt done every 3-4 years.  I'd better get back on track as gardening season is coming and all quilting will stop then.  Hope everyone else is keeping busy.  It is still snowing here.

Farmgirl Friday Blog Hop

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Cozy cabin quilts...

I have been reading quite a few quilting blogs lately. I try to do one quilt a winter. Though I'm afraid my table runner is all I have to show this winter.  I went back through my projects and just thought I'd show them.  The green and yellow quilt was the very first quilt I made on my own.  The quilt with the trees and tracks was on our bed for years until one material in it disintegrated.  I'm very upset about that.  One bad piece of material ruined the whole quilt.  The quilt behind me was made for my Mother and Father in-law.  All three quilts were hand quilted.

My friend and I used to go to a quilt camp once a year and this baby quilt was one of our projects.  It was an interesting project because you cut as you went.  I was glad to have that one over.

  This is my sister's wedding quilt. She wanted a duvet cover, so that is what she got.  I finished it the night before her wedding in the hotel room.  Not that I come down to the last minute on my projects. Not me, not ever:)  About 2 years later I got the duvet back and she asked that I make it into a quilt. By the time I was done I was a little tired of that quilt.  I hand quilted about half of it, then my darling husband got me a quilting sewing machine.  I think it took her two or three years to get it back.  The bummer is I looked everywhere for a photo of her getting the quilt and I don't have one.  Funny since she got that dang quilt twice.

Ok, after looking back at my photos I guess I wasn't making one quilt a winter. Maybe one quilt every 3 or 4 winters. Hum, didn't seem to take that long.   This quilt is on our bed.  The bed was made by my husband and I made the quilt we lay under.  That is very special to me.  
Now that you are all caught up on my past quilts, you can see my progress with this newest one.  I started cutting today.  I'm hoping to make a braided rug out of the leftover strands.  We will see how that goes.
The winter wind is whipping and it is staying pretty cold.  Maybe I can get this one done by next January.  We shall see.  Since it sounds like winter found the rest of the world, I hope you are all finding indoor projects to ease your cabin fever.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Get it done...

This weekend I got a lot done; I made bread and finished my table runner.  I made my Mom's overnight rolls, which doesn't happen overnight.  It takes me all day.  The house smelled like fresh bread for two days.  I wish I could share the smell and the sweet bread taste.

I'm happy with the table runner.  There is one thing I can't figure out.  I started this table runner a year ago.  I've done queen sized quilts in one year and yet it took me a year to finish this little thing.  I should have been able to finish the whole thing in one weekend.  I guess I'm a one sewing project a year person.  I am glad that I cannot make myself start a new project, until I finish the one I'm on.   I have to have closure.  

It was a productive three day weekend.  I hope everyone else got as much done as I did.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

A little magnetic project...

I'm going to try to be more organized with my blog.  I would like to do at least one project and one recipe per month.  My project for January was decorative magnets, so I can display all of the photo Christmas cards and other pictures I get throughout the year.  I also happened to see a creative magnetic project on my Martha Stewart craft of the day.  Needless to say my refrigerator is now a gallery of magnetic art. 
 The first project was a container magnet from the Martha Stewart craft of the day.  The link will be at the bottom of this post.  I was excited about this project, because I am always looking for a pen to write my grocery list.  It is simple.  Take a metal spice tin attach a magnet to the back and use it to store pens or other items I need handy.  I glued the magnet on, but probably didn't need to.  I know my sister is already contemplating my mother's outdated spice drawer:) 

The next project was adding to my collection of magnets.  This project can be as hard or as easy as you want to make it.  A few years ago I took those junky magnets a person accumulates and spruced them up using corregated cardboard, homemade paper, and scrapbooking do dads.  Here are the results.  All of the photos are my cute little nieces. 

It is amazing how quick magnets accumulate. I decided to use some leftover material for these magents.  I painted the magnets, because you could see writing through the material. Then I glued the material on. When it was dry I cut everything out. I was happy with the results. I thought about gluing buttons on, but decided that would have been too much.
I really liked the long strips for holding school pictures.  I was happy with both projects.  Now my pens are next to the grocery list and all of the wonderful photos of family and friends are displayed for the year.   

Here is the Martha Stewart link:$BFON

Saturday, January 7, 2012

that dang dog...

She looks soooooo innocent...

She looks soooooo sweet...

Then you realize the little bugger took the middle of your favorite chair the second you got up.

 That dang dog.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A great beginning to the new year...

What makes the new year so good already?  Well, first I got to go sledding and the camera worked, so Kelly got a photo for the nieces.  They have no snow.   I just wanted to remind them how much fun Aunt Bonnie is.  Ahh... I was young again for about 10 seconds.

The next good thing for the new year was my husband was able to get outside and piddle around on his tractor.  He has had a broken ankle and crutches since before Thanksgiving, it was positive progress.  I don't know if it helped his ankle, but was good for his cabin fever.

The other good start to the new year was I was finally able to pick up the Christmas presents from my parents.  The presents were too big to mail, mom sent them back to the hills with some of my relatives that recently moved to Spearfish.  I had a great visit with Bob and Phyllis.  The visit was an enjoyable way to spend the afternoon. 

Then of course there was the excitement of presents.  The crate is perfect for holding my wine bottles.  I especially like how it is labeled, because I had a batch of wine once that was not fully fermented when I bottled it.  Those corks were popping right and left. 

The final present was my favorite.  In fact I've added to my new year's resolution.  I am not going to lose 10 pounds, I am going to gain 10 pounds.  How am I going to do that?  By eating lots and lots of  HOMEMADE ICE CREAM.  Yahoooooo.
I'm sorry.  Did I mention that I was also using my 4-H hot fudge sauce on the homemade ice cream.  Maybe I should shoot for an additional 20 pounds.

Every time I tell somebody I got a homemade ice cream maker for Christmas I get the same answer.  "I have such good memories of homemade ice cream."  Mom and Grandma both shared some great memories of Grandma's sisters all getting together, bringing their husbands and children, and their ice cream makers and all enjoying ice cream.  I have grand memories of Mom's homemade ice cream in the summer and at my sister's wedding. I'm going to share my Aunt Pauline's recipe.  I highly recommend it. 
Aunt Pauline's Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream
6 eggs
3/4 c. sugar
1/4 t. salt
2 c. whole milk
Heat in a saucepan until it thickens and coats a metal spoon with a thin film or 160 degrees.  Put in the freezer immediately.   Keep in freezer for several hours.  Mix in
1 c. sugar
a scant 1/4 c. vanilla
1 pint of cream
1 pint of half and half
enough whole milk to the mark on the ice cream maker.  Sorry on my Mom's side they like to keep the directions a bit vague.  After that follow the instructions on the ice cream maker.  If you haven't ever used one before know that it is about a day long project.  Also follow my Mom's advice and have the maker on when you add snow, otherwise it will stick. 

I can't wait to add to the great memories of family, friends, and home made ice cream.   In closing, I just want to share the ending of the pirate hat project.

Monday, January 2, 2012

I get by with a little help from my friends...

When I started blogging my goal was to just get my stories and photos out there.  I've spent years jounaling and loved the idea of putting pictures with my words.  But in life things evolve, now my goal has changed.  Now I love to sit down with a cup of cocoa after a long day at work and stroll through the lives of others.  I get inspiration from so many other people.  When Jenni from Rainy Day Gardener bequeathed me with the liebster blog award, I was elated because it gives me a chance to tout the blogs look forward to reading.  I apologize that my links don't seem to work.  I've spent two days trying.  To link to the blogs look on my side bar. 

The Liebster is awarded to spotlight up and coming bloggers who currently have less than 200 followers.
Now I'm going to keep the love going and follow the guidelines below, feature some of my favorite blogs.

1. Thank the giver and link back to the blogger who gave it to you.
2. Reveal your top 5 picks and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.
3. Copy and paste the award on your blog.
4. Have faith that your followers will spread the love to other bloggers.
5. And most of all - have fun!

First, thank you to Jenni at Rainy Day Gardener:  I never know what I will find in her blog and her posts always get me thinking.  She had a tough year, but didn't dwell on the negative, instead her posts were full of hope and positive accomplishments.  This is the kind of person that makes my life better.  I appreciate the award and always look forward to reading about your adventures.

Buttons Thoughts:  I love love love her stories and photos.  When I get to her blog I settle in and look forward to hearing a good story every time.  Her photos also capture how she sees the world around her.  Once in a while she puts out there a thoughtful question that really makes me do some serious pondering.

All About Pie:  I love the posts where I see Bonnie's children through her eyes.  She has a great sense of humor and such a positive attitude.  She brings a variety of things to the table.  One of my favorite posts was when she asked us to help her with her Christmas painting.  I was like a little kid waiting to see whose idea she chose and how it would look.

Happily Married to the Cows:  Alicia is an excellent teacher.  I have learned so much from her posts about farm life.  Although I grew up on  a farm/ranch, she has taught me a lesson or two.  I really enjoyed her posts on the slate barn roof and going to the Amish Christmas program.

Kimberly's Cup:  I enjoy seeing how Kimberly's new adventure in Idaho is going.  She rises to the challenges presented with gusto.  Her posts on the addition of a milk cow brought back memories of Mom sitting with old Bossy.  She has really put forth the effort to make life changes and I admire that.

Sophia's Tragard:  I look forward to Sophia's photos.  She has such a good eye.  She brings out the beauty of everyday items.  She is a true artist and constantly amazes me with her creativity. I enjoy learning about Sweden through her pictures.

Thank you all for making my day a little brighter. Ella danced in honor of the awards.

Ok maybe she's after a pinecone, but I'm sure she would be happy to know you won.