Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Herb Thursdays

The redbud tree is not really an herb, but it is edible and medicinal. These are gorgeous trees and will be blooming in my woods real soon, usually near the dogwoods. So, I thought I would share some information about the eastern redbud tree.

A very nice article here about the redbud http://www.gpnc.org/redbud.htm

I found this delicious looking recipe

Redbud-Sage Muffins - These are SO good! Keep in mind, I grind my own wheat (hard red)....vs using store bought flour. We will be making them again tomorrow! Cant wait for the seed pods to come on the trees as I have a recip for those as well: Oriental Chicken Salad, calls for snow pea pods.

2 cups redbuds (yes, off the redbud trees that will be in bloom later this month. Make sure you only harvest them off of trees that are not exposed to ANY threat of chemical landscaping poisons...we live on a very primative 15 acres and my redbud trees are in the center of a dense woods)
2 tablespoons minced fresh sage leaves
� cup sugar (I used honey)
Minced zest of 1 lemon (2 to 3 teaspoons)
1 � cups unbleached or all-purpose flour (I used freshly milled hard red wheat; will use the same nextime, but will sift 1/2 of bran out)
2 teaspoons baking powder
� teaspoon baking soda
� teaspoon salt
1 large egg
(1 T of cornstarch will work if your out of eggs)
3/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice


Topping

1 tablespoon sugar
� teaspoon ground cinnamon


Preheat oven to 375�
In bowl #1, combine redbuds, sage, sugar, zest. Let sit 30 minutes.
In bowl #2 Sift flour, powder, baking soda, salt large bowl.
In bowl #3 Combine egg, yogurt, milk, oil, lemon juice.

Pour #1 into #2 and toss.
Add #3, stirring just dry ingredients are moistened. Do not over mix.
Fill your muffin tins 3/4 full.
Combine sugar cinnamon the topping sprinkle some each muffin (totally not needed if your using whole wheat flour).
Bake for 25 minutes, or until tops spring back when lightly touched.
Remove form muffin pan and cool on a wire rack.

recipe found here http://familycow.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=bread&action=display&thread=10056

and this information was in my newsletter from All About Thyme

The redbud trees (Cercis canadensis) are in bloom this week around the margins of our little woodland here in in Texas, their purple flowers like a cloud of color, brightening the darker oaks and elms around them. Green leaves will replace the flowers in another week or two, and by the end of summer the tree will be hung with purple-brown fruits, pods four inches long, flat and leathery. These lovely trees are worth growing for their stunning beauty, at a time of year when most other trees are still thinking about putting out their first leaves. But loveliness is only one of the many virtues of this little North American native.

The Medicinal Redbud
Dried and powdered, the inner bark of the redbud was an important medicine. Indian healers used it to staunch bleeding, ease skin irritations and poison ivy rash, and treat sores and tumors. Bark tea was drunk to treat diarrhea and dysentery and used (like quinine) to reduce malarial fevers and ease joint and muscle pain and headaches. The flowers were steeped as a tea and drunk to prevent scurvy, treat kidney and bladder infections, and ease urinary ailments.

The Edible Redbud
The buds can be pickled: Cover with a pickling brine of 1 quart cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt, 6 cloves, 1 2" cinnamon stick, and � teaspoon each allspice and celery seed; ready in about 2 weeks. Toss the flowers in salads to add color and a sprightly tartness. Saut� the buds, flowers, and tender young pods for 10 minutes in butter and serve as a vegetable. Native Americans roasted the pods in ashes before eating the seeds.

The Pliable Redbud
The supple young sprouts, peeled and stripped, can be used in the construction of baskets. Some tribes used the white inner bark or the red outer bark as decorative elements in very sophisticated work. The bark was also used as cordage and coarse twine, and the roots were used in sewing animal skins.

Redbud and Dogwood, Bernheim forest. Kentucky, USA

photo from here

A little information about the redbud from Missouri conservation

and from here

Eastern redbud starts flowering when it is 4 to 6

years old. The flowers bloom in early spring before leafout.

Flowers are often found on the trunk.

The bark of eastern redbud is brownish black and

scaly. On older trees, the orangish inner bark can often be

seen. Bark becomes fissured as the tree ages.

Folk healers used the bark of eastern redbud to treat

diarrhea and leukemia. Native Americans used the wood

of a similar species,

C. occidentalis, the western redbud, to

make bows.

Redbud has been called the Judas tree because Judas

Iscariot, after betraying Christ, was said to have hanged

himself on Cercis siliquastrum, a close relative of eastern

redbud that grows in Europe and western Asia. The blooms

of the tree, originally white, were said to have turned pink

with shame or blood.

In Mexico, the flowers of redbud are fried and

eaten. John Lawson wrote of redbud flowers being used in

salads in his History of North Carolina, published in 1708.

Redbud is the state tree of Oklahoma.

How to Make Your Own Dish Soap

I have changed over to more natural dish soaps, they cost a little more, and I am always doing dishes it seems, and just going thru alot of it.

I got to thinking-so why can't I just make my own? I am sure that is what the pioneers did in the 1800s.

So my search brought up some easy recipes-so this will be my next cost savings venture

How to Make Dish Soap (3 recipes)

When you have sensitive skin, washing dishes is a task to dread. Commercial dish soap causes irritations, rashes and break outs that are painful for days. Make homemade dish soap to avoid any rashes and you won't mind scrubbing dinner dishes quite as much.

Difficulty: Moderately Easy
Instructions

    Use Soap Flakes

  1. Step 1

    Mix 1 gallon of warm water and soap flakes in a large pot.

  2. Step 2

    Dissolve the soap flakes in the water on the stove set to low heat. Continually stir the mix while it is heating.

  3. Step 3

    Stir in the glycerin and take the mix off the stove.

  4. Step 4

    Cool the mix and then add 1/2 cup of lemon juice or white vinegar.

  5. Step 5

    Mix in 2 to 5 of drops of your favorite essential oil.

  6. Step 6

    Pour the mixture into a bottle and shake well.

    Use a Bar of Soap

  7. Step 1

    Use a razor to shave an old bar of soap into pieces. Let the shavings fall into a bucket or small bowl.

  8. Step 2

    Pour 2 to 3 cups of hot water over the soap. Allow it to soak for at least 3 hours, or until the soap has softened.

  9. Step 3

    Mash the soap and stir the pieces together until they are smooth. Add more hot water if necessary to soften the mix.

  10. Step 4

    Pour the mixture into a bottle and shake it up.

    Use Castile Soap

  11. Step 1

    Mix a 1/2 cup of warm water with the liquid castile soap. Castile soap is made from vegetable oil and is better for sensitive skin. Purchase castile soap at department stores such as Wal-mart or Target.

  12. Step 2

    Add a pleasant scent to the soap with 2 to 5 drops of an essential oil.

  13. Step 3

    Mix the soap until it combines.

  14. Step 4

    Pour the solution into a bottle.

  15. Step 5

    Shake up the mixture before you use the soap.















from here http://www.ehow.com/how_2052886_make-dish-soap.html

My favorite castile soap is Dr. Bonners http://www.drbronner.com/DBMS/LS.htm I always keep lavender around, I may just try that first for my recipe, and I also like the simple idea of just using soap-the one I use to make my laundry soap would work well-I think I would melt it down in really hot water first.

Robins Egg Easter Basket Cupcakes-Too cute

Picture of Robin's Egg Easter Basket Cupcake Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 vanilla cupcake, recipe follows
  • Basic Glaze Icing, tinted light blue
  • Green coconut grass
  • 3 large (about 3/4 to 1-inch) pastel malted milk eggs

Directions

Dip cupcake top into the icing; let excess to drip back into bowl. Place cupcake on a rack over paper towels to catch any drips. Top with a small mound coconut grass. Place malted milk eggs on top.

Vanilla Cupcake:

  • 2 2/3 cups sugar
  • 1 cup (2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/3 cups cake flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two 12-cup cupcake tins with paper liners. (To avoid cupcakes sticking if they overflow slightly, lightly spray the tops of the pans.) Put tins on a baking sheet. Set aside.

Process sugar and butter in a food processor until very creamy, scraping sides as needed, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the eggs and yolks, one at a time, pulsing after each addition. Add the milk, water, and vanilla and process to blend.

Whisk both flours, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Add the dry ingredients, in 3 batches to the wet, pulsing, and then scraping batter off the sides of the processor as needed after each addition. Process until the batter is very smooth and pourable like pancake batter, about 2 minutes.

Evenly pour the batter into the prepared cups, filling them 3/4 of the way full. Bake until the cakes are just firm and spring back when gently pressed, and the tops are golden, 18 to 25 minutes. Cool slightly in tin, and turn out of tin when cool enough to handle. Cool cupcakes completely on a rack before frosting.

Yield: 24 cupcakes

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Inactive Prep Time: 30 minutes

Ease of preparation: easy

Basic Glaze Icing:

  • 3 (1 pound boxes) confectioners' sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 5 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • Food coloring, as desired (see suggested colors below)

Put the sugar in an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. With the mixer on the lowest speed, slowly add the water, the corn syrup and vanilla extract. When the sugar is sufficiently moistened (it won't fly out of the mixer), raise the speed to high, and beat for 2 minutes until completely smooth and glossy.

Divide and color, as desired. Store at room temperature, covered with plastic wrap directly on the surface of the icing, to prevent forming a skin.

For cupcakes: Dip the surface of the cupcake into the icing, allowing excess to drip into bowl. Clean any excess from the sides. Alternately, use a knife or a spreader to apply. Whisk as needed to keep icing glossy and smooth while using.

For Light Blue Icing: Combine 2 to 3 drops of blue food coloring to 1 cup of Basic Glaze Icing.

For Deep Yellow Icing: Combine 4 to 5 drops of yellow food coloring to 1 cup of Basic Glaze Icing.

For Purple Icing: Combine 4 drops of red and 5 drops of blue food coloring to 1 cup of Basic Glaze Icing.

Yield: 5 cups

Copyright 2009 Television Food Network, G.P. All rights reserved

This recipe comes from Food Network

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Italian Pasta Skillet recipe

I love quick meals like this, and when you change over to whole grain pastas, even the gluten free pastas-which are either rice or whole grains, add a little veggie, and watch the salts in the canned items-you come away with a great meal and more nutritious too

Ingredients
PAM� Original No-Stick Cooking Spray
1 pound Italian turkey sausage
1 can (14.5 oz each) Hunt's� Diced Tomatoes with Basil, Garlic and Oregano, undrained
1 can (8 oz each) Hunt's� Tomato Sauce-No Salt Added
1-1/4 cups hot water
8 ounces dry multigrain farfalle pasta, uncooked (8 oz = about 3-1/2 cups)
1 pkg (6 oz each) baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
Directions
  1. Spray large skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium heat. Add sausage, cook and crumble until no longer pink; drain.
  2. Stir in undrained tomatoes, tomato sauce, water and pasta. Bring to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 15 minutes or until pasta is tender, stirring occasionally. Add spinach; cook and stir until spinach wilts. Sprinkle with cheese


recipe from here

Monday, March 29, 2010

Chicken Tuesdays Making Chicken Taquitos

When I am out and about with my neighbor, and we decide to stop for lunch at our favorite Mexican restaurant; one of the items on the menu that I really love to order is chicken taquitos

From Food Network

No Can Beato This Taquito

Recipe courtesy Guy Fieri

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large red onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 2 jalapenos, diced and seeded
  • 2 medium red potatoes, diced into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into 1-inch strips
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 ounces your favorite tequila
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro leaves
  • 24 corn tortillas

Directions

Guacamole, recipe follows

Tomatillo Salsa, recipe follows

In medium saute pan over medium to high heat, add oil, onions, red bell peppers, jalapeno pepper, potatoes, garlic and chicken. Saute until chicken is cooked and vegetables are soft. Add the oregano and cumin and season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Deglaze with tequila and the lime juice and let simmer until liquid is almost evaporated.

Remove from heat. Shred the chicken with 2 forks and let cool. Stir in the cilantro.

Wrap tortillas in paper towels and microwave for 2 minutes to make tortillas pliable. Place about 4 tablespoons of chicken mixture on 1 tortilla, roll tightly and close with a toothpick.

In large cast iron skillet, heat 1/2-inch of canola oil to 350 degrees F.

Add rolls to hot oil, placing toothpick seam down. Cook for 2 minutes or until golden brown and turn to other side.

Remove and drain on paper towel. Remove toothpicks and serve with guacamole and salsa.

Guacamole:

3 ripe avocados, peeled and seeded

1 jalapeno, seeded, minced

1/4 cup diced red onion

1/4 cup diced tomato

1/2 bottle of your favorite beer

4 tablespoons sour cream

1 lime, juiced

Small handful cilantro leaves, about 1/4 cup

Salt and pepper

Place all ingredients in a blender and puree.

Tomatillo Salsa:

8 fresh tomatillos

Olive oil

1/2 cup diced red onion

1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons diced tomato

1/4 cup water

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 teaspoon chopped cilantro leaves

1 tablespoon white vinegar

2 tablespoons hot sauce

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons sour cream

Rub tomatillos with oil; grill until browned all over.

Place the tomatillos in a blender with remaining ingredients and puree. Season with salt and pepper. Top with sour cream and chopped tomatoes and serve.

Yield: about 3 cups

mmmmmm Good

Making up my Laundry Supplies This Morning

I thought I would repost my link again, for my new readers or if you missed the recipes. Kathyinozarks Laundry recipes

This will take you to my photo album to view the process, and also there you will find a link to my recipes. These are my standard recipes now, that I use all the time.

I make up a double batch of the liquid-jel laundry soap and it fills my tall 5 gallon pail to the top. This will last me 6 months. I also make up a batch of the dry laundry soap recipe and use this for really greasy clothes. I was able to buy a big bag of the fels napha bar soap and I use that for this recipe. If you have sensitive skin don't use for your detergent, I only use this for Larry's clothes when he works on heavy equipment.

I also really like the fabric softener recipe-it uses baking soda, vinegar, and water. I set up one bottle plain, and the other I put in a few drops of essential lavender oil.

My bleech recipe works the best if you can hang your clothes on the line in full sun-it uses lemon juice and hydrogen peroxide in the recipe.

I think in a couple hours we will be warmed up outside enough, so I can finally get my seed starting tray washed and rinse with bleech water, and get planted.

Later

Just joking-lol-however I did meet a lady at a weaving expo that still washed her clothes in a copper tub over a campfire in the summertime-and loved it.

My Rigby Wool Strips Cutting Machine-Too Much Fun-LOL

Larry put this together for me this morning. I had gotton the new cutter head in last week-a #8 that works out be the 1/4" strip. This is the rigby cutter that holds a single cutter and was at the bottom of a dollar garage sale box-everything there but the cutter-quite a find, since these machines run around $200.00 now.

I went ahead last week and order the next two cutter heads down-#7 and #6 so I will have a slight variety of widths. Those Larry will set up for me in my Moms rigby cutter which holds two cutters.

This little vintage school desk that I have it on, works out perfectly and I have a little bench that is the right height too. This little school desk was one my old high school had in all its class rooms, when my brother went to school there, they started selling these off and putting in more modern desks. He picked up one for me and one for him. I love this little desk.

Now this is just way too much fun this morning, cutting these little strips of wool-lol-especially knowing I paid around a dollar or little more per wool garment-washed and dried in hot temperatures, took apart and now I can cut them up. To buy new wool it runs around $25.00 a yard-so I can play and not worry about the cost-lol

The sun is out now, but still in the 30s til it warms up to the low 60s today.

I am off to make up my laundry soap, bleech, and fabric softener supplies.

Happy Monday-Enjoy your new week!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

My Greener Household Cleaning Discovery

Twenty Mule Team Borox http://www.20muleteamlaundry.com/about These past few days I am discovering that this has more uses for cleaning around the house than just as an ingredient in my Laundry Soap recipes.

I had decided beforehand that when I ran out of cleanser for scrubbing the porcelein tub and such I would look for a greener sollution. I have used baking soda for scrubbing before and works so so. I decided to try out borox-wow it works really well-like gets it clean like the cleansers do.

Well, today I am scrubbing up some more kitchen items that we uncovered in more boxes-these are in a corner in Larrys shop building. One of the items I found was my Grandmas old pan she used for frying chicken. Remember those? They are usually made of heavy aluminum with a nice high rounded lid, and this one has a steam vent too. Well it really needed a good scrubbing. I looked up online how to clean aluminum and they said to boil the pan in vinegar water for about 10 minues. Pour off the water and scrub. Sooo I did that and scrubbed with borox-wow-it's clean now-lol

Just had to share in case some of you all thought 20 mule team borox was only for the laundry too.

and for fun a little history on the 20 mule team http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twenty-mule_team

Twenty-mule team in Death Valley, California

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Lusterware

I think a couple pieces I have picked up recently are lusterware. Trying to find more information online about it, I found these links.

http://www.countryliving.com/antiques/appraisals/lusterware-teacup-0508 from here I learned it comes in different colors then just the gold I have.

I found this defination:

lusterware, kind of pottery with an overglaze finish containing copper and silver or other materials that give the effect of iridescence. The process may have been invented and was certainly first popularized by Islamic potters of the 9th cent. The most beautiful and brilliantly colored ware-pottery that was made between 836 and 883 for the Abbasid caliphs-has been found at Samarra. During the reign (10th-12th cent.) of the Fatimids in Egypt a high standard was maintained. Iranian and Egyptian potters continued to produce lusterware, while in Europe it was manufactured chiefly in Spain and then in Italy, where in the 15th cent. it was sometimes used to enhance majolica. In England the technique came into vogue in the 19th cent. and was utilized by Josiah Wedgwood and Josiah Spode.

and this one:

Pottery or porcelain having a metallic sheen produced when metallic oxides are added to the glaze.

Good definition here on ebay

My pieces are from Japan-and found this article http://www.harryrinker.com/col-949.html

I found a beautiful example here http://www.atticshoppe.com/porcelain/js2095.htm

I don't think the photos do these pieces justice-you can't see the luster or how gorgeous these are

I was glad to learn that the pieces from Japan I have picked up that are lusterware then, are from the 1920s- to the 1930s.

Fun---A couple really nice little finds today

Today we needed to go to town to pick up our Angel Food orders, the truck was running late so we went to the animal shelters resale shop to kill time.

We got there right as it opened and the parking lot was filled to capacity already. Now I know this place is always super busy but was surprised about it til we walked in. They were selling off an estate that someone donated to them.

I didn't have much money to spend, but I did pick up a few nice pieces. It was worth the visit just to view everything-old sewing and weaving items, lots and lots of the real pyrex bowls, pie plates, covered glass storage containers and more. Lots of beautiful vintage kitchen items.

What caught my eye though, was a rack of little dishes of all sorts. One right away caught my eye-I love the older pieces from Japan-and I turned it over and it was occupied Japan, so of course I got really excited. I also found a little cup that was also marked occupied Japan. They look very pretty together but are not a set. At .50 a piece I couldn't resist.

I also spotted a gorgeous piece with a bird in the middle and had that pretty orange they used to use-sorry I forgot the name for that.

Larry found a glass hummingbird feeder for $5.00, and a very nice tube bird feeder also for $5.00. Happy about those, cause the price for quality feeders haven't gotton so expensive this year. So he says ok we are out of here-no more money to spend-lol

Sea, I was thinking of you, when I walked around cause you would have picked up all kinds of gorgeous things for just a few dollars.

Really cold and very very wind too today, the sun is finally trying to come out, but we have rain returning later on.

Good Morning Saturday-Enjoy Your Weekend

Friday, March 26, 2010

Beautiful Day Today, and We Had so Much Fun Too

It did turn out to be a gorgoeus sunny day today. Warmed up to the high 50s. My neighbor and I left fairly early this morning to go to a quilt event in Stover, Mo. We hadn't had the opportunity yet to go to this and check it out til this year.

It is about an hour and a half drive to Stover, which is situated in another amish community. The quilting event-A Gatherin Place was located in their city park inside their community building.

There were two floors of booths set up of Quilting stores, Rug hooking stores, Watkins, Stained Glass, a Scissor sharpener and more. These were all stores that are located anywhere from an hour to a couple hours away from us, so was a nice way to visit what they all had in one place. They even had lunch there and wine tasting too.

The one rug hooking store was excellent!! I love anything wool, and being these were all done in the primative style-1/4" wool strips and blocks of colors in the patterns opposed to what I grew up seeing my Mom make-less than 1/8" strips of wool where she was "painting" scenes, flowers, fruits, fall leaves in wool--I was so enjoying seeing everything offered here-and getting lots of ideas for projects and patterns.

We also found a really good deal on fat quarters-especially batiks which usually sell in the range of $2.75 each we were able to choose from a huge selection at $1.25 each-so of course that was a great find. We stopped at another store's booth that still had a few .50 fat quarters left.

There was also a booth selling all hand dyes-I told Sandy ya know I believe my hand dyes are much nicer than those-giggling, and I am selling mine on etsy much cheaper as well.

We shopped til we dropped about 3 hours-before we headed home and a stop for lunch.

We will definately do this again-as I believe this is an annual event.

A beautiful fun day.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Herb Thursdays Lavender Pillows

I miss our old Herb Thursdays sometimes so thought I would do a post this week on lavender

I have posted before http://kathyinozarks.multiply.com/tag/lavender Lavender is one of my most favorite herbs.

Lavender Pillows I found a nice how to here http://lavenderbeefarm.com/howtomakeapillow.shtml

Just follow these simple directions for making a magnificent lavender stuffed pillow.

What you need:
(2) 16" Squares of fabric (velvet, cotton, brocade, linen, you choose)
(2) 16" Squares of batting (polyester is fluffier, cotton is more natural)
Our 1 Pound Bag of
Dried Lavender Buds
Thread and Needle, or Sewing Machine

If you are a beginning seamstress, let's make sure we understand the difference between the right side and the wrong side of fabric. The right side is the patterned side, the wrong side is the back. At the end of this project, the right sides of your fabric will be showing. When it comes to batting, neither side is right or wrong.

Our instructions will make a small, fragrant pillow. You can certainly make a larger one if you choose. Also, if you are good at quilting or embroidering, you can embellish the fabric you intend to use for your pillow in a way that makes it special to you. Your first step is to baste one piece of batting to the wrong side of one piece of fabric. "Basting" means taking large, easy stitches, just to hold the two pieces in place. Go all the way around the squares at about half an inch inward from the fabric edge as shown. Repeat the process with your other square of fabric and square of batting.

Next, lay your two squares together with the RIGHT sides of the fabric facing each other. This means that the batting is on the outside of your pillow "sandwich". Now, sew all the way around the square 5/8" inward from the edge. HOWEVER, leave an opening about 4" wide on one side of the square, as shown. You need to leave this opening in order to stuff your pillow. You can sew by hand or use your sewing machine. If sewing by hand, try to make your stitches as small and even as possible. Don't leave gaps or wear and tear will cause the stuffing to fall out. Once your pillow sandwich is complete, you've reached the a-ha moment of the project.

This is the exciting part! Turn your sandwich right side-out. That's right, it looks like a pillow! All that remains is to pour or stuff the dried lavender buds into the pillow opening. The more you use, the fatter your pillow will be. For a heavier lavender pillow, some people mix equal parts flax seed with lavender. Others like to use a combination of lavender and chamomile for a different scent. When you have your pillow stuffed to your satisfaction, your last step is to sew up the opening. To do this, simply turn the raw seam edges back into the hole so that nothing is hanging out and hand stitch along the seam. Use small, even stitches across the seam to make it strong.

Dried Lavender Buds Making your own throw pillows decreases the cost and increases the fun! Your pillow can be as homey as you like, made from vintage calico feed sacking or as sumptuous as you like with a plum velvet back and a tapestry front. You may even be lucky enough to find a lavender-themed fabric at your local fabric supply store. You can embellish your completed lavender pillow with a ribbon bow, charms, ruffles, or cording. Just remember, it's what's on the inside that counts, and we guarantee your pillow satisfaction when you use our natural, dried lavender buds.

I also found this neat video with alot of how to information, I liked her method of curing the lavender.

http://insightfulnana.com/fun-times/crafts/making-lavender-sachet-gifts this link will take you to her site for printable instructions of this video, and if you sign in she will send you free tags to print out

These pillows can also be used to help with a sinus headache

and information here too for using lavender for your headaches http://www.ehow.com/how_2119612_use-lavender-treat-headaches.html

http://www.lavenderbeefarm.com/headache.shtml

and here too http://www.mothernature.com/Library/bookshelf/Books/15/15.cfm

Strawberry Shortcake from Whole Foods Market-I want one of these too-lol

Strawberry Shortcakes with Maple Syrup and Frozen Yogurt

Although these luscious shortcakes are delicious topped with strawberries, you can use all manner of other fruits, too. Blueberries, raspberries, peaches and plums are particularly tasty substitutes.

Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 quarts strawberries, hulled and sliced
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 pints vanilla frozen yogurt

Method

Preheat oven to 450�F. Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. Add buttermilk, oil and vanilla and mix with a fork until just combined. Drop heaping tablespoons of dough onto lightly oiled baking sheets to form 12 shortcakes. Bake until light golden brown and cooked through, 12 to 14 minutes.

In a large bowl, toss berries with maple syrup. Halve warm shortcakes and arrange on plates. Spoon a generous dollop of frozen yogurt onto the bottom of each shortcak. Scatter with strawberries, arrange shortcake tops over strawberries and serve.

To make gluten free-use and all purpose gluten free baking mix-check ingredients if everything is in there-omit the baking powder and baking soda

Spring Salad from Whole Foods Market-I want one


Spinach and Strawberry Salad
This baby spinach salad is dressed in a homemade raspberry vinaigrette and tossed with fresh strawberries, almonds and creamy goat cheese. What could be more easy and delightful?

Ingredients

1/2 shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons raspberry vinegar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 pound baby spinach
1 cup strawberries, thinly sliced
1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted
2 ounces fresh goat cheese, crumbled

Method

In a large bowl, whisk together shallot and vinegar. While whisking constantly, drizzle in oil to make a vinaigrette. Add spinach, strawberries, almonds and goat cheese and gently toss to combine. Serve immediately

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Beautiful Day Here

Wow!! It's gorgeous weather outside.

I needed to go to town, so I called and got my hair trimmed too-sooooo needed to do that-it was just looking awful. lol I keep it long, and try to keep on top of bad ends being trimmed off-but with this winter-just didn't want to go into town to do it.

I also love the way they straighten my hair afterwards, I just love the look and feel of it. So I asked her about buying one of those straighteners, she gave me some suggestions-and I checked out wal mart. Acutally I don't think I have another store choice in town for this, and I was dissappointed cause it was $50.00 and made in china as was every single one they had there. So I decided to look online later. Anyone know of a brand made in the usa that is good and not over $50.00??

The sun was out, but by noon time, I could shed my coat, as I put the groceries in the truck. So for today spring is back, and then we get lots more rain coming in and cooler daytime tempuratures too, however night time in the 40s so that will keep the house a little warmer.

I needed to find a couple glass covered containers for Larry-he is setting up his room and a little business again. He wants to get back into scope repair. I also wanted a glass covered container to make juices in or sun teas. I have a vintage one but doesn't have a top anymore. After turning over the bottoms to find where made-I was sooo happy to find what I needed made in the usa. So I was thrilled-cause I try very hard not to buy China made whenever possible. and this is even harder to find at wal marts

I also needed a second watering can for my container gardening, and I really didn't think I could find something not made in China-but I did-a big plastic one made in Canada-so I was quite pleased with my shopping.

I am off to help Larry in his shop, and enjoy this beautiful day--Later

Chicken Tuesdays--Just a link today

Last night I was thinking, I need to tie in the healthcare fiasco with chicken tuesday-but my mind was too burnt out to think of how to do it.

This morning I read our hostess post for today-and she did it for me-thanks Mamabear.

Today just a link to a great site on everything backyard chickens, lots of how tos and recipes as well http://www.backyardchickens.com/

Sunday, March 21, 2010

A little Quilting Today

This is far from my best hand quilting, but I was able to get this first flower completed and a few leaves-remember those leaves from the baby quilt? I really like that pattern-so these leaves will be going in the sashings, along with those flowers at the corners.

I need to get some thimbles that fit-all of mine are too big and while I made do with no thimble on the smaller quilts-this really needs one or I won't have any fingers left-lol-I think this is doable-I really wanted this one hand quilted, I took a whole bag of batting layers out of this quilt, and re basted, but I can see now, I gotta remember that this stuff needs to be even thinner-and then it will quilt up easier.

I decided on shrimp stir fry tonight with brown rice-later

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Art Sunday with Nemo Daffodils

Daffodil - Barbara Aliaga

by Barbara Aliaga more artists here

I liked this one too

Bowl with Daffodils by Van Gogh here

Shakespeare Daffodil painting by Tamara Stoneburner here

and I love photography of daffodils too

In the wild Peeking Through Take the Orange Line

all found here

Art and Life Daffodil Root Sculpture

found here

My finds at the County Garage Sale

This morning we were off to the opening of this years garage sales-the county garage sale at the civic center. This can be a place for great finds, especially things for our crafts, or it can be a total bust.

This year not so good, but I did pick up some nice stamps, a little wire basket, little stamped metal pieces used for embossing, and vintage buttons for a quarter that I really liked. We also went to the library's book sale.

This turned out to be a wonderful surprise-I asked Sandy to look for the author Tasha Tudor-she illustrated childrens books, she has a couple cookbooks and a craft book. It was no more than a couple minutes later Sandy says, what was her name again??-and she found one, titled All for Love. A very very well used book-but I fell in love with it-this book has poems, songs, recipes, and crafts all well illustrated thru out. This made my day, I also picked up a children's poem book cause I loved the illustrations too; titled Marigold Garden by Kate Greenaway.

It was a very cold and rainy day like predicted, but I was able to find some nice little treasures, and always a good day-- to spend with my friend down the highway a bit.

What made today more special was the company of her little 2 1/2 year old granddaughter-a very delightful day-despite the cold rain.

HPIM2922.jpg picture by kathyinozarks

Friday, March 19, 2010

My Day Today-a Few Photos

Once it started to warm up mid-day-then it really warmed up alot. Full sunshine, along with a cool wind.

We have talked about our garden space a bit this winter, and Larry has been collecting the neighbors old barb wire so he can put me up a fence-mostly to keep the deer out. They are just impossible, and although I don't mind sharing my garden with the neighborhood critters-they don't share-they eat and destroy everything. lol-and I have alot of wildlife here-what finally did it for me was the amardilos digging up my sweet potatoes, and the turtles eating my grapes and strawberries.

I had pretty much given up on this spot in 2008 and last year I did nothing to it-was just too aggravating for me. The soil is horrible here-I have put alot of organic matter in, and manure, but just not enough yet. So we will work on it again this year. I pulled the tall spent weeds around my blueberries-which got really set back from the ice storms, and late spring freezes here, but they still look alive.

Larry then roto tilled around two areas for a fire break, and we burnt threw those areas. We need to move our shallots (came from Larry's grandfather that he brought back from Israel) or I am going to lose them this year if I don't move them. A couple years back the birds planted the wild blackberries and they have just taken over where I planted the shallots. That is another project to get rid of also-those wild blackberries in my garden. I am going to have to break down and use some roundup to get things in control again-I so much do not want to use that stuff-but just impossible here otherwise.

I spotted the wild missouri roses greening up, and a batch of daffodils (from my grandmothers garden) blooming today. I am hoping the weekend cold snap does not hurt the unopened blooms.

And I did have tea, and Autumn joined us (napping) After we burnt the garden Larry sat down at the picnic table too, and I said how about some tea-oh that would be nice. So I made another pot and brought out another cup. Nice---

It's Friday-A Gorgeous Day Today is Promised

HPIM0516.jpg flower pounding spring 2-08 picture by kathyinozarks

As spring approaches, one of my new found loves here in Missouri-is flower pounding.

The upcoming blooming of violets, spring wildflowers, more greenery, and the baby red oak leaves-welcomes me to gather them up, with some muslin, my hammer and broken marble cutting board or large flat rock-and set up by the pond and pound away. These make wonderful little gifts-postcards, little sachet pillows and more. Usually sometime in April and early May is the best time here.

Above is a photo of one of my earliest pieces.

It promises to be a gorgeous sunny day-especially this afternoon when it will warm up to the low 70s. However this is just a teaser-cause tomorrow the highs are in the 40s as it lowers to cold and up to 2" of snow by Sunday morn.-Now is that anyway for Mother Nature to welcome in Spring??

But for today-perhaps a little tea party

tea-and-biscuits.jpg picture by kathyinozarks

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Sharing a Nicer Way to Ship Packages

I seem to ship out alot of packages, either mailing out books and stuff I have sold, or sending out little packages to friends- and I always add delivery confirmation on most of them too

Well, Larry is going thru his stuff now and he is on a list where he is selling and trading. So, I have a postal scale and I always now compare regular priority mail in my box or the usps box, to their new flat rate boxes. Now the flat rate boxes end up being a good buy if you are mailing something heavy and a few states over from where you are mailing from. So I weigh and check the price on both ways.

Books only can go the cheapest by mediamail but I usually add the .80 delivery confirmation on top of the mailing price. theses costs can add up.

Last week I mailed out alot of stuff, this week I decided to check out what the print and pay label online was all about on their site-usps

What a savings-they give you up to 14% off the price right away and they add delivery confirmation for free-I love it!! I could have saved so much money in the last few weeks. You just print it off on your computer, pay with a credit card-I wish they had a paypal choice or out of my checking account-but this works.

You don't even need a sticky label-just tape all the edges down good.

wanted to share in case you haven't checked this out yet-wonderful!! here is the link https://sss-web.usps.com/cns/landing.do also, in case you are not aware, you can order any of their boxes online too for free.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

My Gluten Free Irish Soda Bread Results

I am quite happy with the results, only thing I would do different is not use the quinoa flour as it imparts it's own flavor-would have been too strong if I would have used more than I did.

It is moist and really a nice bread. I am not a bread eater-as breads used to always make me sick before I knew about the gluten problem, and now I usually just don't eat bread. So this is a nice little treat for me.

Here is my changes to Karinas recipe-link http://karinaskitchen.blogspot.com/2009/03/gluten-free-irish-soda-bread-recipe.html

Gluten Gree Irish Soda Bread-Kathy's version

dry ingredients:

1 1/2 cup Bobs Red Mill GF Pizza Mix

1/4 cup quinoa flour-next time I will use millet flour

1/4 cup sorgham flour

2 tablespoons orangic or raw sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

for the wet ingredients:

3/4 cup non sweetened soy milk-or any milk you would like, with 1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 large egg

5 tablespoons light olive oil

1 tablespoon agave nectar

stir ins:

1 teaspoon slivered dried apricot

1 cup yellow raisins-softened in hot water for about 15 minutes-drained

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Lightly grease an 8" round cake pan and dust with gf flour-I used cornmeal

Whisk the dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.

Whisk the wet ingredients together in a seperate bowl

Make a well in the center of the dry and slowly pour the wet into this mixture, gently mixing as you go with a rubber spatula. If you need a little more wet-add milk in by the tablespoons.

Dough should be like a sticky biscuit batter, add the raisins and apricot slivers. Stir just briefly to incorporate in the mix.

Scrape the dough into your prepared pan-in the middle. Wet your hands with cold water to flatten and smooth the dough into a round loaf.

Using a sharp knife slice a criss cross into the dough. I then sprinkled a little organic sugar on top and then a little mineral salt on top too.

Bake for about 30 minutes until the center test done, loaf is golden and crusty, and sounds hollow on the bottom when thumped.

let cool on wire rack.

this bread will freeze well

Vintage Quilt Top and Rug Cutters

Remember a few weeks ago I picked up this pretty quilt top at the resale shop? and for just $6.50-such a deal. I loved the fact too that it was all hand pieced. Things like this I just have a passion for rescuing and finishing.

I have been thinking of picking up a wool batting-it is suppose to be much easier on my shoulder for handquilting. I love the properties of wool, but the price is not too bad but haven't jumped right in and picked up one yet. However, last night I remembered that I had a piece of wool batting, that came with that bale of organic cotton Sandy and I bought. So I just dug that out, it is white, I had it labled for a crib quilt, but I am discovering that it is folded in half-so I just may be able to squeeze this out for the batting. that would be awesome cause I could try out the wool and not have alot of money added to this project.

Now to go thru my stash of muslins, I am thinking this needs to have a white backing since the neutrals used are white, and I usually only buy unbleached-so will check that out, and see if I already have material I can use. Sooo I need to call my neighbor friend up and see if I can borrow her carpeted living room floor again soon-lol

On another note, I had sent in those rug cutters to be sharpened, and yesterday late I got a call. He says these cutters are really really old aren't they? I say yes they are, my Mom bought this back in the late 50s or early 60s. So he explains to me, there is nothing left to be sharpened-lol. He was so nice about explaining everything to me, I decided I really want to do this, so I bought two new cutter heads-and he is sooo much cheaper than I have seen anywhere else online. He is the manufacuturer, and he is selling them to me at his suggested retail price. So happy about that.

I went thru some of my wool stash, and found some pieces that will look nice in that star pattern I have already. My Mom used the finest cutters availble-less than 1/8" wide strips, so I asked him what sizes are used for the primitives-which are closer to 1/4" wide-so that is what I have coming.

Another dreary day today-but they say the sun is returning thursday and friday before another cold wave over the weekend.


Note-having trouble with the photo feature can view quilt here

Monday, March 15, 2010

Chicken Tuesdays Spring Chicken??

Outback Alice's Spring Chicken Recipe

Honey Mustard Marinade:

1/2 cup Grey Poupon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup honey
1 1/2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

Chicken:

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 cups sliced mushrooms (10-12 mushrooms)
2 tablespoons butter
salt and pepper
paprika
8 slices bacon, cooked
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh parsley

Using an electric mixer, combine mustard, honey, 1 1/2 teaspoons oil and lemon juice in small bowl. Whip mixture for about 30 seconds. Pour about 2/3 of marinade over the chicken breasts and marinate them (covered) in the refrigerator, for about 2 hours. Chill remaining marinade until later.

After the chicken has marinated, preheat oven to 375�F and heat up an ovenproof frying pan (large enough to hold all four breasts) with 1 teaspoon of oil over medium heat. If you don't have an ovenproof skillet, transfer the chicken to a baking dish for the baking. Sear chicken in pan for 3-4 minutes per side or until golden brown.

Remove the pan from heat, but keep the chicken in the pan. As the chicken is cooking, saute the sliced mushrooms in butter in a small frying pan. Brush each seared chicken breast with a little of the reserved honey mustard marinade (not the portion the chicken marinated in), being sure to save a little extra to serve as a side. Season chicken with salt, pepper, and a dash of paprika.

Stack two pieces of cooked bacon, crosswise, on each chicken breast. Spoon the sauteed mushrooms on the bacon, being sure to coat each breast evenly. Spread 1/4 cup Monterey Jack cheese onto each breast, followed by 1/4 cup of Cheddar.

Bake the pan of chicken for 7-10 minutes or until the cheese is thoroughly melted and starting to bubble. Sprinkle each chicken breast with teaspoon parsley before serving. Place extra marinade in small bowl to serve on the side.

Spring Chicken Salad from Food Network

Picture of Spring Chicken Salad Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound small red-skinned potatoes, halved
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 romaine hearts, torn
  • 1 rotisserie chicken, skin removed and meat shredded
  • (about 2 cups)
  • 1 Kirby cucumber, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded and sliced
  • 4 radishes, cut into wedges
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced

Directions

Place the potatoes in a small pot and cover with water. Season with salt, cover and boil until fork-tender, about 6 minutes. Drain and cool.

Meanwhile, pulse the chives, tarragon, vinegar, yogurt, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste in a food processor. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil and pulse to make a thick dressing.

Toss the romaine, potatoes, chicken, cucumber, radishes and bell pepper with the dressing in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

Photograph by Antonis Achilleos

Note--all photos and recipes found on the web

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails