Saturday, April 19, 2014

New Items in my Kathyinozarks Soap on Etsy and a Little Giveaway---the winner

And the winner is----Deb the Gardener---congrats Deb

Yesterday I was busy all day making new items for my Etsy shop.

Today I finished them up and made the violet leaf lip balm which I was anxious to try. I have never made anything yet by infusing an herb in an oil and then using it. I loved this. 
   I posted on Facebook here that I would love to share one of my 2 ounce tins with you. If you are on facebook and would like a chance either like or share my link.  You can also comment here that you would be interested and I will add your name to the draw. I will be drawing tomorrow evening.

The three dark green tins are full, the fourth one was only partially full-I will share one of the full tins.

Newly listed in my shop today:
                         Butterfly soap with baby buttermilk glycerin soap and chamomile-neorli essential oils

Natural clear glycerin with dried calendula flower petals, this would be an awesome spa soap or to relax with a bath tea added to your bath water.

Natural goat milk glycerin soap with pink himalayan sea salt-this is a gorgeous bar of soap-

Whipped chamomile butter with lavender-this is just fabulous-I saved out a large jar for me

I also listed a new batch of whipped shea butter-which is really really nice.

  I think any of these items would make lovely mother's day gifts or to just spoil yourself with.

  We finally are having fabulous weather, rain on monday-I need to dig up some garden soil and start planting some seeds-hopefully no more freezes. I did get my broccoli and brussel sprouts planted yesterday evening-our friend that grew them from seed brought them over-they are wonderful!

Happy Easter and Passover to all my friends

Friday, April 18, 2014

Recipe for Wild Violet Jam

  Yesterday morning I decided to go out in our fields and see if I could gather a cup of fresh wild violet petals, and also some leaves.

   The freeze we had the other day took their toll on the flowers, but I was able to gather a cup. Every spring I like to make something different with the wild violets. They are here for just a short time and I really love them. The flowers and leaves are very nutritious and also look beautiful in a fresh spring or Easter Sunday salad.

  I read online several recipes to make the violet jam-I am not into jelly. I also make my jams with the least amount of sweetening as possible and to achieve a set I use Ball's no sugar/low sugar pectin. I also read that lemon juice will turn the violet mixture more pink, and lime would not. 

   I liked the recipe using honey-but the honey did change the color to a darkish pink, I think if I would have used splenda or a little organic sugar to taste it may have stayed more lavender. I may try another batch using the sugar. My recipe made 4   1/4 pint jars-a perfect size for this-and there was none left over to taste-accept the spoon and pan-lol It tasted heavenly though. This is the recipe I found that I liked the best

  I am thinking about making us Belgian waffles over the weekend and will try a jar of my violet jam with those.

Wild Violet Jam

1 to 1 1/2 cups wild violet petals-pick only in an area where there are no chemicals and not near highways

1 cup water

juice of one lemon or one lime-I used 4 little packages of dehydrated pure lime juice

1/2 cup honey-light is best but what I had on hand was dark

1 1/2 tablespoons Ball's no sugar/ low sugar pectin 

Blend the violets, 1/2 cup water, and juice in a processor
Heat 1/2 cup of water with honey or sweetening to warm-then add the violet mixture, sprinkle in the pectin so it won't lump. and bring to a boil. The mixture must boil for at least a minute to allow it to set.

This will make 1 pint total, so can use once set-just keep in the frig. Or you can freeze, or I prefer to can. If canning use water bath canner and time for 10 minutes. They need to completely cool-by morning the jam will be set.

I also collected a few violet leaves to make a nourishing lip balm-I will be following the recipe posted at the Nerdy Farm Wife   

So today's project will be to make this lip balm and to also make calendula soap with dried calendula petals. Sorry I don't have a camera at the moment for photos-but I got a notice it will arrive today-yeah

afternoon update: I decided to make a day of it and make new items for my soap shop. The calendula soap with petals is beautiful, I also made goat milk soap with pink himalayan salts, whipped chamomile with lavender butter, and up next is whipped shea butter moisturizer-a customer favorite. my violet leaves are soaking well in warm water-I used jojoba oil with the leaves-I will make the balm later today or tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Windy Wednesday & Long "Doings"

Cool and windy today, but warmer than it has been for the last few days. Hoping no more hard freezes for this spring. Looks like I saved my clematis buds-I always enjoy their pretty flowers in the spring. I hadn't realized when I bought these two plants when we first moved here that there are clematis that bloom all summer and then there are some that only bloom one time in early spring. I have the plants that only bloom once in the spring.

I am pretty much in my new computer now. I have lost all of my favorites in google chrome which I was not happy with-I thought they would transfer over to the windows 7 but they did not-so I am slowly finding the sites that I need all the time. I am really loving my new email with outlook express-works so much nicer than the old one on xp

My printer is hooked up now, so I am in business that way-especially for shipping labels, but sigh my 10 year old hp digital camera is not supported on windows 7. I so dislike having to buy something like this new when the one I have works just fine-it really does, and back 10 years ago we paid lots of money for it.-wow! has it really been 10 years already lol So we found one at tiger direct with a coupon discount and should work out well-I know cameras now have many more pixels in them too. I will probably get it by saturday or monday. I need the camera to share photos here and mostly to sell online.

I also put in adblock plus that several of you suggested and thank you-all the ads are gone on facebook now-I feel so much better now not being bombarded with ads. Living so rural and with nature and the wildlife I really do not have to put up with ads except while watching tv. Once you are away from towns or cities, a big city especially, on a daily basis you realize you don't need or want all that outside stuff that tries to sell you things or influence you insome way. Better for my mental health for sure.

When I first learned how to make the hexagons I really thought if I liked the process I would make a quilt using the civil war reproduction fabrics I already have. I had won a jelly roll (which is 2 1/2" strips wide) that will be perfect for cutting out these hexagons, it is one of Barbara Brackman's civil war fabric lines.
    I had pretty much decided on a possible pattern to use, but after reading a blog post from my friend Karen at Faeries and Fibers new quilt along project-I am thinking this will be perfect for what I want to do-and I will have a teacher along the way. How awesome is that?  
     Karen will also be teaching about choosing fabrics by values-which I have not paid much attention to before. I needed a value finder so I found a nice one at an art supply site online. 
     I have always had a good sense of picking out fabric for color combinations, but I think color values is important too-especially for this hexagon quilt.
       I have never been one to use a color wheel though, because I never wanted to be influenced by color in that way-if that makes sense-too limiting for me.
     So I am excited about making this new quilt. I need to check my stash and see what I have available for the background or "hexagon paths" I am going to choose the 3 paths she designed instead of just the one path.

   I also went into my fabric stash yesterday to see if I have any other pieces I wish to sell. I had purchased two gorgeous fabric pieces in soft blues that at the time was going to be the basis for the Kansas Troubles block-but looking at this again I don't want to make that-too many little triangles that I do not enjoy making-as they have to be sewn perfect to look right.
     Since I still love the fabric I dug out some quilt books to look for a simpler pattern, and I found the perfect one-I just need to find a few other fabrics to go with it-so I will probably want to start this while I am making the hexagon quilt. One is hand work and the other is with the sewing machine.

  Of course I need to finish my handmade journal so it will be ready to use, finish my hexagon coasters, and weave-and garden-and get the house spring cleaned and what ever else I get into-oh and I am constantly remembering my crazy quilt wool purse too-which I need to get started on.  I think I have plenty to keep my mind occupied-lol

Monday, April 14, 2014

Freeze Warning and Snow Flurries In the Ozarks

Good morning Monday, The worse of the storms missed us over the weekend but we did get lots of much needed rain. However the cold front is here and will drop to a hard freeze tonight-low 20s-a shock to the system for sure after a week of 70s and 80s and lots of pretty blooms. I will be covering up allot of little veggie plants that are now sprouting. My two clematis plants are also budding out so those need to get covered too.

I did bring up enough firewood to run the woodstoves for a couple of days-hope this is the last of the cold for the season.

I am getting set up in my new computer! Everything is not in yet-but enough to get to my mail and the internet. I did lose all of my saved passwords and favorites from google chrome which is upsetting-last time I went into a different computer they were saved for me. Perhaps its because I am on windows 7 now and not xp. Some of my lost favorite list will be hard to get to again-I did make a copy of my address list in my mail though-so that's good.

I took a break from working on my handmade journal to sewing up hexagons to make a set of 4 more mug rug coasters. These will be pretty; mostly made with some batik fabrics.

I also went out in the woods saturday to find my patch of bloodroot. I missed it last spring and was determined to get some this year for dyeing wool. The color is an orange to a orange red-sounds pretty. For best results I have read that the best time to harvest the roots is in early spring when the flowers are up-the flowers were almost gone when I spotted them, so next year I need to go out a couple weeks earlier. I am drying the roots and stems now and then this summer will make dye from them. Fun!

I am off to make a surprise bar of soap for my winner Monique-Have an awsome Monday!

Oh and let me know if this post is hard to read or not-getting set up in the new computer has changed all of my fonts-they were too large at first-thinking too small now? let me know

Saturday, April 12, 2014

And The Winner Is

Good morning Saturday,
    Woke up and realized another week has gone by-a gorgeous one at that-sunshine and in the 70's and 80's. We have another couple of days coming though with frost but that's another day.
    I have been working outdoors most every day this week and have gotten allot accomplished with the clean up and working in my garden.
   Those of you on facebook I have set up a gardening album 2014. I will be posting photos here too.
   I know you are waiting to find out who our winner is----Monique at A Half Baked Notion  who makes gorgeous things. Congratulations!!

   Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

I'm Linking Up With Let's Bee Social This Week & Handmade Soap Giveaway

  Good morning all, I try to link up at least once a month and then visit and see what everyone has been making and doing. 
    To visit the linky party or to participate; find the link for Let's Bee Social button in my right hand column.

  Here in the Ozarks we are finally getting some spring weather, so lots of rain, some t storms, and warmer weather-finally! LOL My daffodils are all up and I redid my raised beds and big pots by mixing in some lime and compost this year-so that is already to go and plant. We also purchased two huge scoops of compost from a friend here-wonderful stuff!-so I have been adding this into my little garden space too. and this morning I heard my first whipporwill of the season-so spring has arrived for sure-although I did hear about more frost next week.

   We also enjoyed out Wisconsin friends that came down for a long weekend visit-warmer weather for them to enjoy-plus we were able to cook out on the grill-cool!

   I am making a handmade journal from handmade papers that I purchased from a paper maker on etsy. I also am reusing some of the pages I tore out of an old book to make pages with and also making pockets. I wrote a post here that shows my first couple of pages, since then I have added two more pages. This will be my journal for keeping samples and information from my hand dye projects. I have never played with this art medium before-but I love it!

      I also started weaving again-one of my passions. I am making a long shawl that I will hand sew the two ends to make sleaves.


  Last weekend my neighbor friend and I spent the day at a quilt market event in Stover, Mo Being so rural where we live-this is allot of fun for us and is always packed with customers and sometimes good buys. The blog post about my day is here

  I don't remember if I mentioned it or not on my last link up, but I enjoyed making my hexagon mug rug so much, that I have cut out enough hexies to make 4 more to make a set of these.

  I also have joined facebook-a biggy for me since I never really cared for the format before and didn't like the security either, or all those ads that bombard your page there. 
      However I decided to try this again; to connect with old blog friends that had gotten scattered after the Multiply blog site went down. I also thought I would try again to promote my etsy shops to find more customers. 
    So right now I have a giveaway going for my Kathyinozarks Soap shop on Etsy. To sign up and read about the chances to win-go here

      I did also get the quilt finished that I was making and mailed it off to my brother a couple weeks ago. Photos here

  After reading this post to check for spelling-I guess I have been busy since I last linked up lol

  So glad you stopped by to visit

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Surprise Giveaway

Happy Saturday-the sun is shining bright today-hopefully it will warm up some too by the afternoon.

I decided we needed a little giveaway-I will mail off an item from my Kathyinozarks Soaps on Etsy. (I will contact the winner to see what they would like) I also want to get my Facebook page found-so decided a little giveaway may help out, plus I love giveaways-don't you-LOL

1. Comment here for one chance.
2. Like my Kathyinozarks Soaps on Facebook 
3. Share this post on Facebook for third chance

Come back and let me know about the extra chances

Drawing next Saturday morning April 12th

Friday, April 4, 2014

Fun Day with My Neighbor Friend

Brrrr  Really cold all day today.
    The storms left us last nite with no damage, and we did get lots of much needed rain along with a little bit of hail  The cold day didn't deter my neighbor friend and I though, from enjoying the day craft shopping-lol

    We went to a quilt event called The Gathering-which is held at a community center in Stover, Mo every April. There are two floors of quilt stores that have booths and sell their wares. I did not even look at fabric this year and my neighbor friend also decided not to buy fabric but she did come away with a fat quarter of a lovely yellow green for her applique work. 
    I decided to purchase another Bohn chalk pencil that works really well for marking the quilt design onto a quilt top. I have one already that I had bought here last year, but decided a second one would be nicer-one with white chalk and one with a dark color chalk-easier to mark the quilt now with both colors. This vendor has a fair price for these plus where we live we can't buy locally.
     I also bought a very large spool of vintage thread on a wooden spool. It is very very thick and strong thread. I own a small spool of black that was in my Grandma's sewing stash that was used for sewing buttons on thick wool coats or sweaters. Will also be nice to use for sewing the binding onto a hand hooked rug, or if I should braid wool strips into a rug-would use this thread for sewing together. That was an odd purchase but something nice to have around and it was a pretty dark burgundy color.
   I rarely purchase quilt patterns-especially new ones because I think the prices for these are just out of line, the kits even more so. I did decide to buy one today though for wool applique that I just fell in love with. The store owners were so helpful and friendly, so I didn't mind purchasing it so much. I love sheep and I love wool projects-so perfect!
   I found it online here  I should have wool on hand that I can use for the sheep.

   This event is about an hour's drive from where we live, so on the way home we stopped by our two favorite resale shops. We each had a box to drop off and sell and of course we had to shop too-lol
    I came away with another big pile of silk ties-for my silk on silk dye projects-most all were 80% or 50% off so little money in these. I also found a really pretty silk blouse with lots of lace that I will over dye and sell in my fiber shop-as eco clothing.

    Today was our first of the year's day adventures since late fall-so was nice to get out for the day.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Started My Handmade Journal Last Nite

    The weather here is unsettled so the humidity is high-and you know when it is just "erie" outdoors?  That's what it was like last nite, but much worse right now early in the morning.
    The severe weather and rain missed us last nite-the next round is to come around 4 this afternoon and through the nite. Storms to be out of here on Friday mornng. Which is good-as hubby is off to Oklahoma and I am off to the "Gathering" a quilt vendor event-always fun.

   So, I went to bed early cause I was really tired, but an hour later could not sleep-so just decided to get up and work on my journal. I have never done this before and wanted to see how it was going to work hand sewing in the handmade papers.
    I had purchased from two different paper makers. I decided to work with the papers that I had more of, were allot thinner in thickness and they also were a little short lengthwise. I decided to hand sew another short piece to the top of the each piece, and then to the bottom of the next page-and so on. Adds more texture and interest and makes my page size better for this book.
   I am using the tutorial that Shroo had posted a couple weeks ago. For an easy binding-I am using the book's binding-but one was to tear out the pages leaving around 2" which I ended up tearing a little shorter. We were to make a "sandwich" of 4 of these torn pages and put the paper in the middle-then hand sew how we wanted to. Adding lots of embroidery and ribbon, thread embellishments along the way.
   It took a bit to get comfortable holding the book and the paper and sewing it down-but it went in nice. I asked the paper makers to sign one of their papers-and this seller remembered to do so. I decided to also add in her business card so it is with the journal. 
   Of the three books I bought at the library sale I chose to work with the butterflies first.
   Shroo had also painted the torn pages-so I grabbed some pens I had that had "paint" in them (made in Japan)
   (The photos will enlarge)


Out the bay window update: Yesterday the 3 turkey hens were here early and ate the cracked corn for over an hour-in the early evening they came back again for more corn-this time beating the deer so they got first choice-lol  Since they are returning more regularly now, we are hoping they bring the babies back so we can enjoy them growing up again.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Shopping for a New Water Bath Canner

I have spent hours on the net for off and on the last few months searching out and reading about water bath canner options.

All of my canning life (45 years at least-but helped out Mom when young) I have always used the granite canners. They are still for the most part made in the USA too. My problem with these is I do allot of canning some years-and I am lucky if I get 5 years use with them. They rust out little holes on the bottom, and the racks are horrible-they always rust and make a mess in the water.

So I have been checking out the more pricey stainless steel water bath canners. I also wanted the rack to be stainless too so no rust. These run around $77.00 to $100.00 plus. I t would be worth it for me if it lasted the rest of my life.

I thought I had chosen one for sure this morning-So I began seriously reading the reviews on different ones and at different sites too. The Ball Elite is gorgeous-but all the reviews said the chrome plated rack rusted and right away, this canner is also made in China. I also read on several sites that it came dented-so must not be very thick stainless.
    I was also really looking at another one by Victorio I think it was-found a sale on that one too-but reading the reviews-the lid was not a tight seal-and several reviews said the water just boiled out all over the place. When I first read this-figured it was from a new canner but no down the list of reviews many said even turning the heat down-still boiled out onto the floor and all over the stove.  This one did have a stainless steel rack. So bummer don't need to spend all this extra money to have problems with either of these.

  Back to amazon I went and looked for the granite canners that also offered free shipping if spending over the $35.00 there. I also found a new style canning rack made with stainless and can be stacked as well inside the canner-so that's on my wish list.

  I ended up spending $21.00 for the canner and around $16.00 for America's Test Kitchens new book on gluten free baking. Looking inside the book this looks so informative and all the reviews said the pastries and breads were excellent. Also most of the book delves into the science and chemistry of gluten free baking.
    So for $37.00 and free shipping I have a new granite canner coming and a new gluten free cookbook-good deal-lol


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