Sunday, December 27, 2009

Man Cave

Out with the old an in with the blue!

Busy making a man cave for my favorite man!  The first coat of navy is on the walls tomorrow it'll get a second coat and then we'll paint the ceiling a lovely gold color - all mistints I've picked up along the way.  The floor will be covered with carpet remnant we've been saving for this room (9x10 feet-ish) and I'll make drapes for the windows.  This 'used' to be the guest bedroom.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Fall Garden 2009

The hosta's and peonies I transplanted this spring survived and are turning lovely colors.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Haircut

I bought a vintage Oster barber set at a local shop this week, for a whopping ten dollars.  Sooooo tonight I gave John a much needed haircut, no easy task I might add.  Above is the box and some of the accessories most of which I have no what idea any of them are for~!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Swine Flu Update

Well I'm recovering, finally, from the swine man swamp flu!  I still have a cough hanging on.  The canning came to a near screaching halt, John took 4 days off from work but the reality is 1. I'm more organized than he is, which isn't saying much btw, and 2. there was way more that needed canning than one person could do alone!  He did get a dozen or so pints of pear butter put up and a dozen or so quarts of tomatoes canned.  I'm feeling better but not by much, a simple drive across town  and back still wears me out and I need a nap just to recover from the experience.  To make matters worse I have a show coming up this weekend and I"m no where near being ready for the event.  More later from the kitchen!!!

Monday, September 07, 2009

Blog Posts

I've been having some issues with posting for the past month. I just discovered an update, that I checked, and I'm hoping this will resolve the problem.

Cranberry Pear Sauce

Cranberry Pear Sauce.

Pears are a luxury for me as they are just priced out of my pay scale ;-) So when one of the neighbors said YES come on over and pick our trees... Cranberry Pear Sauce happens!

I typically make Cranberry Apple Sauce - known to us a saucey or sassy apples. The taste with pears is FAR superior to that of apples so if you have a glut of pears try this one side dish for a treat.

The sauce is still cooking down all told I'll have maybe 12 quarts when it's done cooking.

4 gallons cooking pears cored and stemmed (peel if that's what you like we leave the peels on for the fiber)
5 pounds frozen cranberries
5 cups sugar
1quart water
Put everything into your 5 gallon stainless steel OR enamel stock pot and cook down. NOTE we don't blend the sauce as we like it chunky OTHERWISE using your stick blender blend the sauce until it's smooth.
Process BWB quarts are 25 minutes pints 20 minutes for 1000 feet or less.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Glenn Beck and Tomorrow is Pay Day!!!

Making my list and checking it twice and any corp that has pulled it's ads from Glenn Beck will NOT get my dollars tomorrow - which is payday! For those of you who believe in FREEDOM of SPEECH, whether you agree with Glenn or not I ask that you do the same thing!

To make this canning related I will be picking up canning supplies tomorrow and won't be buying from three local stores due to their support of the ad bans.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Garden Fresh!

Roma tomato from my garden, John and I shared it for dinner it was wonderful!

Saturday, August 01, 2009


Wow it's been awhile since I've posted so to update

We've eaten two tomatoes out of our garden, they were very tasty and we are eagerly awaiting the arrival of more ripe tomatoes hopefully in the next week or so. First up on the list of canned tomato goods is salsa, it's been years since I've canned any because well it's been years since I've had any "real" tomatoes to speak of!!! We'll also make up and can our own spagetti sauce, pizza sauce, and if there are enough tomatoes ketchup and bbq sauce. I have plans, at the end of the season , to can green tomato slices for my fried green tomato cravings over the winter months.

I've been picking green beans, planted Top Crop, and cucumbers like crazy. So far we've put up 31 pints of green beans and have eaten several pickings of beans - they are best fresh what can I say!

The cucumbers, I planted a pickler varitety, are coming on strong, this year I plan to make lots of lime pickles as these were a hit here this past winter and I'm hoping to try my hand at my first ever batch of dill pickle relish!

I found out why my potatoes were size of peas, not enough water, turns out they need a half inch a week or so, soooooooo I've upped my watering routine. Turns out this is why ALL of my root crops are doing poorly, lack of water. I have some really pretty green tops though ;-)

John replanted Rhutabegas and Beets tonight there's still plenty of growing time in our season for the year yet. While he was weeding the garden he found two volunteer tomato plants, one looks to be a Rutgers the other some sort of cherry tomato. Barring any rain I'll plant Kale tomorrow and maybe some more chard and lettuce., in fact I think it's early enough to replant cucumbers and maybe even a zucchini plant or two.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Pulled Pork and Tree Trimming

Today's garden update: tied up 2/3's of the tomatoes before I got so hot I had to quit. I have baby roma's they are the size of golf balls.

We trimmed our trees out front tonight, lots of dead branches, esp. on the redbud and on the red oak tree. I knew the redbud was dyeing, I'd give it two more years tops before we have to take it down, but I was horrified to discover our 10 year old red oak, which is now a magnificent 30 feet in height, has heart rot!!! I'll call the arborist on Monday but there's not a whole lot they can do for the tree I love this tree I get wonderful shade on my house in the summer, esp. my studio, so it's not so hot and I don't have to run the air so often.

Dinner for tomorrow is in the crock pot roasting away it's a boston butt roast, I'll season it before I go to bed tonight and we will have pulled pork tomorrow.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Garden Update

Well as many of you know, who live in the midwest, it has done nothing but rain here. Today the mosoon showers have held off for the most part. I was able to get into the tomato portion of the garden - yeah - I pulled off the suckers and threaded the branches through the cattle panel holes. Many of the plants have blossoms, I am hoping for a good tomato harvest this year as I'd really love to put up some salsa. More later with pictures.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Potato Leek Soup

Tonights Dinner Menu
Potato Leek Soup
(the extra will be canned up in quart jars)
Ciabatta Bread

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Tonights Dinner Menu

Tonights Dinner Menu

Beef Hot Dogs
Baked Beans

Tomatoes and Rain

Well it's raining again... John came home at lunch and we tied up the tomatoes using a semi transparent nylon tomato tape. It's really easy to work with and I can see using this for rouge squash plants, cucumbers, etc. as well.


Aphids - they are everywhere and they are devouring everything!!! I guess it's time to pull out the big poisons - Sevin - and kill everything off! I truly hate to do this but we have them so bad that they are actually eating the leaves on our oak trees!!! I've never seen an aphid on an oak tree before but I guess anything IS possible.

My grape vine is all but dead and I'm trying to keep a 150 year old english rose root stock alive!

Monday, June 08, 2009

Todays Activities

*5 quarts and 13 pints of pork loin in the pressure canner.
*Wash the outsides of 11 quarts of beef chili, label them, and find shelf space to store them on (ok that one may take a miracle). 11 in 121 seal rate not bad.
*Chinese for dinner, made by moi' of course!
*Rescue my wind beaten tomato plants, convince them they want to grow on the trellis' instead using tomato tape to reinforce that idea!
*Celebrate because I sold two art quilts today!!!

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Garden Update

My potato patch before round three of mulching - we mulched it just before it started pouring!

Greens patch: Lettuce, chard, beets, turnips, radishes, carrots, and parsnips.

The hail and tornados missed us! I'm so very grateful for this!!! At present I have no way to protect my tomatoes. John has an idea and we will set it up sometime this week.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Pork Loin

Pork Loin was on sale, and for a really good price, last week at Hy-Vee! We bought some cut it into thick slices, vacuum sealed it with our food saver and put it in the freezer for future dinners.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009


Purging Update

Gone 5 bags of clothing - donated to Salvation Army! I'm hoping to have 5 more bags filled and donated by the end of the week. Feels pretty good!!! Hoping to have a huge yard sale at the end of the month and didn't want to mess with clothing in the sale.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Garden Update

Well we are almost done with the garden fencing, one little bit left to be done tomorrow night - the kolrabi box at the base of our cherry tree. The green beans are popping up after the heavy rain we had last night. My lettuce looks like it'll be ready to pick in a week, can't wait!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Cabbage Update

We planted out cabbages finally, well most of them anyway, after it's done raining tomorrow we will plant the rest of them on the west side of the driveway.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Friday, May 29, 2009

Garden Update

The potato patch has been mulched, I beat the rain this time. One of the upsides to checking the potatoes was I found something was munching on the leaves so tomorrow it's off to the gardening store for some organic bug stuff to kill off the buggies. Otherwise hubby is threatening to use Sevin on everything and that is the last resort around here.

Friday Blog Give Away

For those of you who follow over here I am hosting a Give Away tonight, after 9PM Central Time over at my other blog!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Potato Patch

They need to be mulched again! They've grown about 18 inches since last Saturday. The plants are dry but the much they are in is wet, I'm wondering if it's ok to go ahead and mulch them (I'm using hay) or wait another day???

What is it???

Click on the photo to see the bugs better~!

Some thing is eating my grapes and my roses, on the roses there's little whitish looking critters that I think will have to be dealth with tomorrow the question is what are the critters?

May 28th Garden Update

Tomatoes times three rows, and to the far right green beans.

Cabbages and Hepatica that still needs to go into the ground!

Today's Dinner Menu

Today's Menu
Macaroni and Cheese with
Tuna and Peas
Mustard Greens
Cranberry Sauce (home made of course)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Tonights Dinner Menu

Tonights Menu
Seasoned Pork Roast with onions and carrots
Mashed potatoes
Roast juice thickened with potato starch
Cranberry Sauce - homemade of course!
Mustard Greens

Friday, May 22, 2009

Kitchen Sink Bottom

Here's the details from the bottom side of my new to me vintage kitchen sink! Ok dh keeps saying "it is new it's never been installed" Yup he's right!

Kitchen Sink!!!!

Let the kitchen remodel begin! We picked up a 40 year old sink today that had never been installed, what are the odds of that happening??? The sink is 20 x 42 inches with 9 inch deep bowls. I can fit my largest canner inside a bowl - I've waited years for this to happen. Anyway porcelain on cast iron, for a total cost of $75!!! Btw it's an American Standard Sink - see other post with pictures of sink bottom etc.
As soon as I find the windows for the new sink wall, we can gut the kitchen, do the wall repairs (we're replacing a door that is no longer used) etc., I will have a brand new to me kitchen! Everything, well except for the structural elements, has been salvaged, re-purposed or is vintage.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Peony Hosta Garden Update

Tomorrow we will mulch this garden with recycled pine bark maybe the fence will get put

in sometime soon as well!

Garden Update

Front potato patch which now has chicken wire around to keep the hay and potatoes confined.

Lettuce, radishes, beets, carrots, parsnips (I hope), and turnips planted using the square foot method.

One lone potato plant in the big garden.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Viola Sororia

Chopped violet leaves

I'm supposed to steep a half pound of violet blossoms, well I had about a cups worth, if that as it's kinda late in the season here for blossoms.

Below I'm steeping a half quarts worth of fresh tender heart shaped leaves that have been chopped.
I'm learning how to make tinctures, extracts, syrups and the like, I'm a rank novice beginner when it comes to herbals though I'm good at plant id. On today's docet Violet Blossom Syrup (ok there are not nearly enough blossoms in my neighborhood but I digress) and Violet Leaf Tincture.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Hail Protection

Impromptu hail protection devices for my tomatoes! This was taken last week right before the hail came through. I always knew Johns wood pile would come in handy for something one day just never figured it would be for hail protection.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Bad Stove!

My stove died tonight!!! And since we cannot find the serial number on it, it's over 50 years old, we cannot get it fixed! So now I'll start searching freecycle to see what I can come up with since I don't have the funds to purchase anything right now. I needed to go on a diet anyway, this is really going to put a crimp in my canning season!

Thursday, April 30, 2009


My Rhubarb is up! These are the new stands I started last spring after some one stole my other Rhubarb patch from my back lawn - no kidding!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Mark 8:38

Mark 8:38 KJV

Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.

Today's Plantings

Well today John and I managed to get the peas planted, he tilled the garden a third time. While he worked on that I planted radishes and lettuce in the cold frame. Later I hand dug the leek garden 8 x 8 foot area lets just say I'm really tired now!

Tomorrow I'll replant my garlic, dug it up so I could thin it out, plant leeks and onion seeds, I may pick up some onion sets as well to plant. I have yet to decide where I will put my strawberry plants - three varieties, Ozark, Sequioa and some ever bearing whose name I'm not able to remember.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Adventures in Gardening

Soooooo today after consulting my plant compatibilty list I find out that my potatoes are in the wrong location!!! So up they come out of the ground and into a new bed that John tilled up for me, he also built a frame to go around said bed. I now have a 9 foot by 4 foot potato bed. He's such a sweet heart.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Potatoes Planted

Forgot to mention that I planted potatoes today, two varities actually Kennebacs and Blue's. The blue potatoes my neighbor Carol gave me,s hould be fun to see what I end up with this summer. I have about 7 pounds of Kennebacs left to plant, they need more eye growing time before they can go into the ground.

Bye Bye Back Yard

We moved the clothes line poles today and tilled up the area they were inhabiting, it is now garden! Several weeks ago we removed the walkway pavers and the clothesline with lush green lawn will go there instead. In another week I'll be able to remove the remainder of my Hosta's, which will go live in the front yard with the Peonies, and the walkway will go there, and actually be straight making my husband one very happy person!

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Art Website Update

I've been working on updating my website it still needs a LOT of work but it'll get there, eventually check it out

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Potato Boxes

The potato boxes are in, if this bad weather skips us - Lord Willing - I'll plant potatoes this coming week!

Seedling Progress

Strawberries that are ready to go into the ground but we are supposed to have a blizzard tonight, wish John wasn't otherwise occupied or I'd be putting up the hoop houses right now, instead of sitting here blogging!!! The wind is blowing here around 30-35 mph constant and has been most of the day.

Purple Cabbages in sorry need of being transplanted into the 2.5 inch pots.

Looking pretty good, running out of places to put flats of veggies!!! A hoop garden is in my future, maybe two weeks???

Tomatoes (right) and Green Cabbages (left)