Tuesday, June 28, 2011

New Appearances

Many blessings have been counted these last few days. I'm assuming that in exchange for the yard work put out with great fervor, I've given a gerber daisy to plant along side of the day lilies.
This afternoon, a gorgeous blue hydrangea plant was bought on sale for me to put in my garden. This is another thing I've always longed to have blooming on our property. Personally, I think they are just as romantic as roses. Maybe next year I'll be able to plant some of the rambling lovelities instead of those boring hybrids.
While I was out doing my daily watering, I couldn't help but peek in to see that the five little eggs have hatched within the last few hours. At first I only saw one egg, but then a day or two later there were five that made their presentation. That mama bird will be busy!
Oh yes, and then the lilacs. No, not in bloom, but rather making its appearance in the shop. :)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Saturday's Treasures

A garden-park bench. Something that I've dreamed to have and prayed to find for many, many years. Today that dream came true.

Much to my great gratification or satisfaction, which ever you prefer, I kept asking members of my family to guess how much it was. One particular person threw out the amount of $100. Oy! I can't remember I last saw that amount of money! :) If I were to ask all of you ladies to guess, we might be here all day, so I'll tell you:

This morning I was out doing errands and when I was finished and heading home, a road was closed and I had to take m.a.n.y. odd twists and turns just to get back onto the main road. One of the turns was into a neighborhood where shortly after making a right, I saw this park bench sitting close to the sidewalk with a man standing in front, taping a remnant cardboard piece to it with the letters F-R-E-E.

My heart lept, and my car seemed to automatically gear toward the curb. I hopped out and inquired after the older gentleman, "Is this really free?" Indeed it was, much to my great ecstasy. Yes, there are a couple screws missing, and it probably needs a good coat of paint, but overall it is just lovely.

And it seems to have adapted itself quite nicely among the daisies, pansies, forget-me-nots, evening primroses, and delphiniums. No more indoor reading for me! :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Summer Evening Studies

What better way is there to spend a cool summer evening than in reading and journaling?

["Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." Psalms 119:105]

Something to Keep

Many times a week I search for Laura Ashley fabric. The winsome, old fashioned, and sweet prints are often just my tastes, and the fabric is always high quality. Several days ago I found this piece of yardage on etsy for a good price, and it arrived with today's mail.
As all of my other Laura Ashley fabrics, this one will be made into an apron of sorts. But unlike every single one I've sewn before, this one will not make its appearance into the shop. I like it to much to part with it. ;)
If you're sadly disappointed, perhaps if I hint of three *adorable* fabrics that include peonies, lilacs, and butterflies - you'll know to watch for items in the shop early next week!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Cracker Barrel Biscuits

It is very rare that we ever go out to eat at Cracker Barrel, but the atmosphere and food is usually quite delightful. A few of my favorite things they serve are their cornbread muffins and biscuits. Quite awhile ago I got a craving for them, and with a bit of google searching, I found a mock recipe for their biscuits. ::happiness::

I love this recipe since it is super easy to make, takes very little time to have piping hot biscuits out of the oven and ready to serve, and the ingredients are ones that aren't hard to track down. Who knows, maybe you have them hiding out in your kitchen cupboards!

Mock Cracker Barrel Biscuits

2 1/4 c. bisquick
2/3 c. buttermilk
1 tsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. melted butter
extra melted butter

Mix first three ingredients, and then add butter to make a soft manageable dough. Turn over to a floured counter top and knead a few times while flattening dough to about 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick. Cut with biscuit cutter and place in 8 x 8 cake pans. Brush tops with extra melted butter.

Bake @ 450 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until golden. Makes 12.

(If you have a large family like we do, you'll want to make a couple batches of these! They also freeze well.)

Ways to eat them:
-Drizzle honey on top (my favorite!)
-Split open and fill with fresh butter
-Make a sausage gravy to pour over, and you have "biscuits 'n gravy"
-Serve with a favorite soup

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Gifts for a Bridal Shower

Over the weekend I attended a friend's bridal shower at her home. I honestly never looked at her wedding registry's (didn't have money to buy anything, quite honestly!) but looked rather in my sewing room stashes to see what I could pull together for her home.
Drawing inspiration from this hip bag, and knowing that these are her favorite colors, I used some tan corduroy, a blue green stripe cotton, and some cording to make a pillow. Oh yes, and the assortment of buttons to decorate a corner.
She has faced alot of health issues over the last year or so, and while she continues to prepare for her August wedding through her physical suffering, I knew that the devotional book, "The Tender Words of God" would minister to her heart. A cream tatted bookmark was included too.
All packaged up in brown paper tied up with string with some wildflower seeds to share.
The bridal shower was a lovely event with a house full of friends, guests, and gifts. The table was spread with many delights.
A fruit tower a friend made for the bride-to-be.
'Tis the season for budding relationships, engagements, and weddings around here, and I'm loving it!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Summer Tropical Smoothie

One of my all-time favorite drinks in the summer is a homemade smoothie. Yes, even more than the coffee-raspberry frapps at Starbucks.
One of the places that I work at is now carrying organic fruits and vegetables over the weekend, and so while my family is on vacation, I stocked the fridge, freezer, and counters with such good things for one's body.

One of the treats that I picked up were mango's being sold for 3 for $1. I bought a bunch to cut up and freeze for smoothies, which I added in the recipe below.
--roughly 1/4 to 1/3 cup orange juice (I didn't measure)
--1 small organic banana
--1 frozen 6oz. carton of coconut yogurt (Liberte' brand)
--1 frozen organic mango, chopped
Blend juice and banana until creamy. Add yogurt and blend until smooth. Add mango and blend until there are no more chunks. This will be deliciously thick.
Pour into a vintage ice cream or soda glass, a strawberry to perch on the side and to eat later, and a fun colored straw if you're going for color. I prefer my fruit smoothies thick, so I eat mine right away with a spoon. :)

Monday, June 06, 2011

Pictorial View of a Tea Party

Originally my plans were to have a tea party out on the lawn near the gardens, but with temperatures rising in the 90s, I knew we ladies and the chocolate would melt. The a large majority of the guest list were unable to come or never responded, so that meant we could have it in our dining room, much to every one's delight! It made for a more intimate setting with dear people.
Pansy's and a few books greeted guests at the door:
The decorated room...
...with lots of teas to choose from!
Treats of chocolate sticks, chocolate marshmellow cakes, cucumber sandwiches, and scones were served.
Of course there had to be fresh mock Clotted Cream!
with homemade cherry jam,
and fresh organic blackberries to perch on top!
We also had clotted cream & butter biscuits,
and peach iced tea if we wanted something cold to drink.
Alas, there are no pictures of the tea party in action. We were to busy stuffing ourselves with these delightful treats and teas! :)