Saturday, July 14, 2012

Rain makes the flowers grow..........again

We had a little rain and it perked things right up!  The gerber daisy is blooming again and below my dessert rose bloomed for the first time.............
 I got some more yarn in the mail but this isn't for knitting or's baker's twine and it comes in pretty colors for wrapping presents or all  kinds of craft projects.  I've wanted some for awhile and there was some on sale at Pick Your Plum   If you sign up for their email notices they will send you what's the craft bargain of the day.  They only have 1 item a day but it's at a low price.  They don't do it on the weekends just weekdays. 
I also got my new yarn wound into hand....I can't wait to get something on the needles and start knitting............ 
 I got all the peaches washed...all 59 of them....they're ready to process into peach pie filling and peach jam if I have enough for both.  In fact, I can hear them calling my name as I type this!  
I hope you all had a great Saturday!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Things are arriving in the mail....................

First there was this..............

 Then there was this..............

 And then there was THIS!!!!!!

Ramping up for my YOP's (year of projects) for Ravelry and to increase my knitting skills this year.  BTW Ravelry's YOP runs from July 2012 to June 2013 if you're wondering.  I have no stash to speak of so this has been an investment!  These yarns are specifically for some dish towels although I think they are more like dish cloths but only time will tell!  Now, I have to go wind them all into balls but they are SO pretty.  They are cotton from Blue Sky Alpacas.  Wish me luck! 
They also included information about a monthly giveaway contest so if you're interested just go to Fabulous Yarn     I also ordered yarn from Jimmy Beans Wool, Lion Brand and Fabulous on the 9th and they were the first one to arrive.  There is certain selection criteria that I am using to judge the yarn shops I order from and they are 1) speed 2) selection 3) price and 4) customer service.   I'll let you know how it turns out. So far Fabulous has won in the speed category! LOL!
Hope you had a very LUCKY  Friday the 13th!  

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Something I've been wanting to try for awhile now..........

 I got all these tension rods at a garage sale awhile ago for $2.00 each.  I use these all the time.  I am not one to "install" curtain hardware and I use unusual things for curtains such as dresser scarves, feedsacks, tea towels etc.  Tension rods allow me the flexibility to hang just about anything just where I want it.  These happen to be 18 -28 " wide which is a very usable size.

I saw something somewhere where they used these types of tension rods to divide spaces in the cupboard for storing big flat items like cookies sheets and wire racks etc.  So I cleared and cleaned my jumbled mess of trays and tried it!  They fit, it took 5 minutes including wiping out the cupboard before I placed the rods inside and VOILA!  I can't believe how simple this was and such a no-brainer!  All the years that I have struggled getting cookie sheets out from underneath other big clunky trays and dishes.  I think it might have been Martha's organizing tip of the day one time.  This is the only way to go for storing these types of items! 

I made another batch of dog biscuits.  I need to get on top of this so I don't have to resort to the store variety.  I'm thinking I could make the dough and freeze it so I have it available.  I also put another rack in my oven so I can bake 2 trays at a time.  
 I hope you had a great Thursday and are enjoying good weather where ever you are!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Nothing very "blog worthy" lately...........except maybe this!

I've been doing the mundane stuff around here.  You know, laundry, bills, cleaning.  It certainly isn't picture worthy or blog worthy for sure!  But yesterday, as I was coming home from the local grocery store I spotted a sign.  At first I thought it was just a garage sale or a church supper sign but when I looked closer it said "FARMER'S  MARKET" at the Presbyterian Church parking lot 8:00 a.m. Wednesday morning!  I almost drove off the road!  I have been wishing, hoping, dreaming of a farmer's market here in our own town for years!
I would even travel sometimes to other towns to go to theirs but when gas prices went up it just wasn't worth my while.
So guess where I went first thing this morning?  You betcha!  I was worried too because I have been to some small town farmer's markets only to come home and find stickers on the produce indicating they had bought it at a local store and were reselling at a higher price!  I was praying that would not be the case here and it wasn't!
There was even an Amish family there selling produce and backed goods and homemade jams and jellies!  I thought I'd died and gone to heaven!  You can bet the Amish do not spray pesticides nor do they use preservatives or preprocessed foods unless they processed it themselves.  I knew I could trust them!
In fact, I got to talking with them about the Amish up in Kalona, Iowa and they said they had relatives there.
I didn't know we had Amish around here but I am so happy!   They are such wonderfully kind and honest people and they make the best neighbors ever!  So,'s what I got!

  I bought some of their homemade cinnamon raisin bread which I already sliced up and put away in the frig.
Some yellow wax beans which you never see in the store........
A beautiful eggplant and the best looking zucchini ever!

I also got to talking to one of the women about bread making and I was telling them about my "rustic no-knead" that I make ahead of time and store in the frig.   They were very interested and I wanted to buy a peach pie and ran out of money.  I went to the bank and then home to get the recipe to take to them.  By the time I got back all the pies were gone! Boo Hoo! I wanted a peach pie that they had there.   But I was glad they had so many customers as they will only come back if their items sell.  They were very appreciative of the recipe and I then went ahead and bought a whole slew of peaches so I can make my own pie and jam too!
  Aren't they just gorgeous?  I'm a happy camper or should I say shopper!  I had best get busy now before it all spoils!  I hope you had a great Wednesday and cheers for fresh, homegrown, pesticide free food!  It can be done!

Monday, July 9, 2012

Off on a tangent again..............

Well....the girls got their treats this morning and although I don't have a picture (they snarfed them down too fast!) they did like them...a lot!

My neighbor came over today and brought me a thank you card with a lovely note inside thanking me for watering their plants and bringing in the mail.  

They also brought me a jar of homemade Gooseberry jam from Rogers, Arkansas.  I was just talking with one of my blogging friends as she had blogged about gooseberries.  I love gooseberries and had them on my little farm so this is very much appreciated! 
They also brought me a $50.00 Walmart gift card which I will be returning!  I couldn't believe they did that!  But it certainly warmed my heart but I cannot accept it.  It's just part of being a good neighbor and that's what I will tell them when I return it.  The jam and card I'll keep!  YUMMY!

I spent a good portion of the day shopping for yarns and supplies online to work on my Ravelry YOP's (year of projects) and I found out I am supposed to post my progress on Sundays on my blog but obviously....I didn't!  I'll be ready next week though.  I went to order something by phone and lo and behold I had no phone service!  I had to go out and check the box outside and hook up a land line to it to determine whether it was the inside wiring or the outside.  It was the phone companies line so at least I'm off the hook financially.  I entered a trouble ticket over the internet and they said they will get to it within 1 day.  I guess I should have a cell phone after all!  
I hope everyone was more productive than I was today!

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Blueberry dog biscuits for my awesome Nitty and Annie............

Remember all those flours and things I received  from Bob's Red Mill?  Well, before I started "bakin' the biscuits",  I had to find containers for all of it.  Above and below is the flax meal and it looks sort of like brown Splenda.   I'll include the recipe at the end.
  It's extremely good for you and you can sprinkle it on yogurt, cereal,  in your smoothies..just about anything really.  It's full of fiber, lignans (whatever those are?) and omega 3 fats.  I'll be trying it on my yogurt tomorrow but meanwhile it's going in the dog biscuits.   Then there's quinoa flour.....

And oat flour..............

 And 1 egg and some olive oil.
We can't forget the blueberries!

Add 1 cup of water and mix it all up and if it wasn't for the blueberries it would look like cement and it is a heavy, sticky dough.

I placed wax paper on my rolling surface and then some of the dough and put plastic wrap over the top and rolled it with my rolling pin until it was about 1/4 " thick.  I use a small cookie cutter because my girls get frequent treats so the smaller the better.  It's not a meal just a reward but they're such great dogs that they get them often!
I dipped the cutter into some of the oat flour and even still I had to push them out of the cutter at times.
Here's a tray of them ready to go in the oven.  They go in for 30 minutes at 350 degrees F but then when the 30 minutes is done you leave the oven door closed and leave them in there overnight to dry out.
They're still in the oven so I won't have a picture until tomorrow morning of the finished product nor will I have the opinions of the official taste testers.....Nitty and Annie...........
Here they loyal companions who are a bit disgusted with me now as I guess I forgot to tell them that they wouldn't be ready until tomorrow.  Whoops!  Nitty won't even look at me...

and Annie well.... that's a dirty look if I ever saw one..........and a dirty floor too!   Why don't I see the dirt when I'm taking the picture?  Maybe I need to go around my whole house and take pictures so I can see what's REALLY there....on second thought, maybe not.
This recipe is from Martha Stewart's employee's Mother who bakes these for her dogs.  

Blueberry Dog Biscuits   Yield: 30 large
1 1/2 C oat flour
2 1/2 C quinoa flour
3/4 C flax meal
1/2 cup frozen unsweetened blueberries
1/4 C olive oil
1 large egg
1 C water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and line your cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Mix all ingredients together until fully incorporated.  Take some of the dough and sandwich between 2 pieces of plastic wrap (although I used wax paper on the bottom).  Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to 1/4 " thickness and cut into shapes.  Place an inch apart on cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes.  After the 30 minutes, turn off the oven and leave the biscuits in the oven overnight.  The next morning, store them in an airtight container and they will last for 2 weeks or until all eaten up!   
Hope you had a fantastic weekend and a wonderful week ahead!  
P.S.  We got some rain!  Not nearly enough but we'll take it!  Thank you all for your concern and the rain dances!