Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year 2016

It really does not seem possible to me that another new year is upon us already. Since my retirement end of 2003 the years have really just flown by-which has really surprised me.

I wish you all happiness and health with art and creativity

Click here for card

Friday, December 25, 2015

Friday, December 18, 2015

Good Morning

  Good morning friends

   I wanted to pop in and wish everyone a Merry Christmas and holiday season. Wow Christmas is almost here too.

   By now I have usually made lots of homemade cookies and candy to eat and to share but have not started. Actually it has been so warm here til just recently it feels more like spring then December. No complaints there at all, except all this unseasonal weather is aggravating my sinus' and allergies.

    Yesterday I did make an awesome gluten free banana bread with dark cocoa and currents added-yummy we all loved it!  Still very moist from the bananas and just a little bit of chocolate flavor. Also my newest go to baking spice is Penzey's cake spice which adds so much depth in flavor to all sorts of baked goods. I think the original spice blend was inspired by an English spice.



   So do you love to bake at Christmas time??
        I have always loved it, when I am working in my kitchen especially this time of year, it always brings back good family memories. 
     I have a vintage small trunk full of my collection of cookie cutters-many vintage, some newer. I will definately be making some cut outs. Last year I found a gluten free spritz cookie recipe that turned out so well-will be making that as well.  Of course some chocolate bark, my Grandma's recipes for peanut brittle and divinity. and can't forget my chocolate popcorn.  Good thing we have a few friends here that I can share most of these with. lol

     Last week I did get my newest usa made braided wool rug in-and fits perfectly under my small loom-so thrilled with this. It completes my living room space. Very soon I will get to working on this piece; threaded, woven off, and mailed to a friend.



  I do still have my handwoven wrap that I was hoping to find a home for. I just really lowered the price too, I want someone to enjoy this so it is not just sitting in my craft room. I have set the price way down from $175.00 to now $125.00 which will cover the cost of the yarns. Here is a link  Within the USA I will still include the free shipping, if anyone interested from overseas just message me. 




      I have to say we are enjoying our "instant" heat from our gas furnace. I was really feeling guilty at first using gas instead of our firewood-but I must say I am loving the fact that we have even heat in every room now-especially the bathroom-feels like heaven lol 

   I am so enjoying my kindle Voyage too. You know me my mind is usually back in the 1700s and 1800s lol and I ran into a book series by Dorothy Wiley  set in the late 1700s-about a family that went by wagon from established homes on the east coast to Kentucky. There listed as romantic historical novels but they are very tastefully written, and a real eye opener for me-what our ancestors went through on these journeys-I think there are 5 books in this series but each book can stand alone too. Highly recommend if you enjoy these type of novels.

       Enjoy the season everyone!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Good Morning Everyone & Hanukkah Donuts

   The sun is a shining here in the Ozarks with high 60s and 70s by friday-amazing for December-I am enjoying every minute of it-even though we have soooo much mud here.

   Today I finally finished going through boxes of files-some I couldn't get to before so those got organized, and my business files and desk drawers got a go over too-so that's a good feeling.
    Next up is going through the several boxes of cd's and dvd's and items that go into another cabinet-probably tomorrow for that one.
   I am waiting for another wool braided made in the USA rug that should arrive this week. I ordered a 4x4 size rug that should fit perfectly under my small loom--Once that is in place-soon I Will get the project threaded that is on there and get it woven off-my friend has been waiting over a year now for this scarf-and I am anxious to try some saori weaving after this piece.

   I did purchase the kindle Voyage and I love it so far. the 3G does work where I live for downloading the books which is what I needed to work. No wi fi here though so I can do everything else-purchase and review books online. It is the perfect weight too that my hands can handle now. I am also loving the light that adjusts to my surroundings and I love the page press instead of swiping the screen-which was another feature I wanted.
   I did just read though, which is actually a good thing, that ebooks are down in sales this year and "real" books are up in sales-so hoping that is a continued trend. Some of the more known authors are really expensive on kindle, cheaper to buy a used book which I find frustrating. I was able to catch a one day big sale on Sparks newest release See Me for my kindle-which was excellent reading.
    Where I live the kindle will be really nice for me, living so rural the library is too big a hassle and still small from what I have been used to. For informative books like spinning dyeing etc a hard cover book is the better option for me.

   I tried out some new recipes for Larry's Hanukkah dinner on Sunday. Everything turned out so well-for once my latkes were perfect, and I learned how to make a little jelly donut-gluten free-and I even had the cast iron pan for it.  That was fun. 
     We have owned this Griswold cast iron pan for many years and never knew for sure what it was for-now I do. We loved these and will definately make more. They "bake" on top of the stove-I figured out 3 minutes on one side-turn over and another 3 minutes and they were perfectly cooked inside. They have a custardy texture-really awesome little donuts.

Here is the recipe I found online




(photos will enlarge)

  I am off to make lunch soon and then help do some digging that Larry needs for his phone and computer line to the shop. Later.

   Enjoy the season and pass on some love and hugs.



    

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Good Morning Everyone

    Well have you all eaten so much that you are too stuffed-and shopped til you drop??  LOL

     We have been enjoying the pies I had made for breakfast and snacks now   I made an apple-raisin pie, pumpkin pie, and my Mom's recipe for blueberry-cranberry pie. Nice to have pie to share with friends too.
     I also finally got a gluten free pie crust to work-I am using Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 flour with my standard recipe but adding an egg to it-can't tell it's gluten free and easy to roll out and get it into the pan-finally success with that.

    I made my turkey different this year; decided to brine it. Have never done this before but I read a tutorial on it from one of my friend's blogs, and I also watched Farmhouse Rules on Food Network where she brined hers with hard cider. I used Angry Orchard's hard cider and added two bottles of water per one bottle of cider. The day it was cooking I was not so sure about it though, it just smelled not good. However, the turkey was very very moist and delicious with just a hint of the apple. The following day the meat was still very moist-so was pleased with the results.

   My floor is down and I am very thrilled. The installers were very professional and knew what they were doing-unlike the first person that came out. I did not need to level the floor at all, so it was done in one day. Also they moved the furniture from one side to the next instead of having to empty the room-it just went so smooth. The first person that came out did not order enough caulk so we needed to go to Lowes to buy more. Still working on hubby to get that finished so I can set up my desk area. I am about ready to do this myself but I am really terrible with caulk so am trying to be patient.
     We also had a trouble area between the dining room and the living room and the installers fixed that-it just needs a good caulking now on the edges. I am not going to worry about a threshold piece there since the height is still quite different between the two rooms.
   In all my reading I had not read that Pergo laminate flooring can not have any water on it at all-so I am deciding no shoes on this floor, and no more food or drink in my living room either-except my coffee cup on my desk. I went with a rustic look-Pergo laminate has many choices now-and I am very happy with this look-highlights the stone wall and my ranch oak furniture pieces really look nice too.(photos will enlarge)





       I found rugs at LL Bean online-the one in front of the woodstove area is a real wool hearth rug-very thick. I also bought a usa wool handmade braided rug that I thought would just fit under my loom-but I had forgotten about the oval being smaller on the ends-sigh-doesn't fit, so am hoping this will work by my desk-if not I will use it under the coffee table. Larry has a couple wood pieces; a filing cabinet and another piece that I am hoping to use behind my desk-that will also get my computer workings off the top of my desk except for the monitor, speakers, and keyboard which will give me more room when doing bookwork. 

   I did find someone to reuphoster my couch and recliner, (can't remember if I mentioned that here). My Mom had these vintage pieces redone about 30 years ago so they really need it. He has time to do it mid January. I am much happier keeping this solid oak furniture then turning it into something I don't care for from China. I looked at allot of companies and just nothing appeals to me.

   One fun thing was to put back all the electronics on the big projection tv-good thing I took photos and labeled all the cords-otherwise I would still be without a tv lol Just in time to watch the Green Bay Packers and Chicago game-which I mostly wanted to see Brett Favre's number 4 being retired and posted in the stadium. It was so special too that Bart Starr was able to attend.

   I think this will be a lazy day today-cold and gloomy outdoors, which by the way I am loving our gas furnace heat-a warm bathroom is the best part. I am so glad I was able to afford to do this-as hubby's fall a few months back has been really bad on him.

  I also wanted to share a book I learned about on the PBS NewsHour last night Reclaiming Conversation  They were interviewing the author about her book and her studies-and wow everything she was saying I can see first hand. This is about the effect of the digital age on our lives.
   When we retired in 2003 there were no smart phones as of yet, and we moved very rural in the woods so now wi fi and these fancy phones don't work well and we didn't need cell phones any more with our lifestyle-especially these smart phones. But when I observe our friends when they come down, and a couple of hubby's employees I can see how many are so glued to their phones they have lost their communication skills, and even their etiquette too. Very sad-a real eye opener of what is happening. Just wanted to share this.

Enjoy the rest of your long weekend.

   

Monday, November 23, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving Week to all my American friends

  This week will  be a busy one for many of us.  Although it is just the two of us-I will be busy too-my new floor install starts tomorrow and will be finished by end of Wednesday-It has been stressing me out and getting me excited at the same time.
    This year I am going to brine a turkey for the first time ever-not sure yet if I want to serve us a whole turkey or just the turkey breast. I am going to use hard cider (angry orchard) for the brine. Of course I will be making us a pie, and other home made dishes.

   In this busy week I want to take time to be thankful and I am very thankful. This has been a rough year and actually seems like a long year too-but I have much to reflect on and to be thankful for.

   Happy Thanksgiving

Click here for your lovely Thanksgiving card

Saturday, November 21, 2015

It's Cold, Very Windy, and Snowing this Morning-It's a Hot Cocoa Morning

Looks like a winter wonderland this morning-the snow won't last long or get much deeper-but it sure is beautiful. Click photos to enlarge






I love hot cocoa on these kind of mornings, and I just happened to have a little of my own mix left over from last year.


Kathy's Healthier Version of Cocoa Mix

1 cup dry milk-like Carnation or from the health food store
3/4 cup sweetening-to keep the sugars down-I use half Splenda and half coconut sugar
1/2 cup cocoa-I use Hershey's special dark, or a very dark cocoa-your choice.

Stir to blend than store in an air tight container-I usually double or triple this recipe to last the whole season.

To serve: I fill up a large mug with almond milk-or any milk of choice or water-and stir in 3 tablespoons of the mix I pop in the microwave til warm-whisk again-and then heat til hot-then top with mini  marshmallows.

I started making my own mix after really reading what is in those store bought mixes-the no sugar ones are usually very high in salt and fat, and the sugar ones are high in fat and sugar-with this mix you can use the sweetening and type of cocoa of your choice. To make dairy free, just mix up the cocoa and sweetening and add to your non dairy milk

Thursday, November 19, 2015

It's Been Awhile

  Good morning friends-so much has happened in the world since I last posted-our world is changing before our eyes and too fast for me.

  I won't get into politics, we all have our own views that never seem to waiver, but I am reaching out with love to all terrorists victims and the rest of us not to panic-but to do what we can to spread peace in the little worlds we live in.
   And not debating anything here but I do want to share, if you are not aware, that there is a bill being introduced this week that is saying the Feds must assure that any incoming refugee is safe and not a terrorists this bill is written more clearly and gives more accountability to those in the Federal agencies letting refugees into our country. I do not see anything wrong with that-the American people need to be protected from more terrorists entering our country. This bill just wants us to do a better job of the process-of course we all know that President O will veto this but I am hoping members of Congress understand the importance of this extra precaution and over ride his veto. 


    This coming weekend looks like our very first hard freeze-amazing really this late into November that we have green grass and nothing left in the veggie garden that is frozen.
     Deer camp went well which is mostly good eats and enjoying our friends that come down from Illinois and Wisconsin. No deer taken as it was just too hot to process the meat-so most went out into the woods just to enjoy it and watch lots of deer running around lol We were in the 70s and high 60s f.
    Next week the installers will come to lay my pergo flooring, one day to empty the room and level the floor and the next day to lay the floor and put everything back in place.
    I have been on the hunt to find a good furniture upholsterer. My vintage solid oak furniture needs new fabric and new cushions. The local furniture store referred me to another business and he came out yesterday to look at my furniture. He is booked up til mid January so he will be back then to pick up my furniture. I am so excited about this, I just don't care for the cheap but high priced (for what it is) furniture being sold today. These pieces have been in my family since I was old enough to remember them and about 30 years ago or so Mom had re upholsered them as well. I need to drop by his shop and choose fabric-how fun.
       Last week our gas heat was hooked up. what a blessing this is. We have not had a furnace in this home since '98 only fire wood for heat. I do miss the warmth of the woodstoves allot-but having a warm bathroom finally-is such a treat. I may break down and buy a load of firewood so we can supplement when it gets really cold like in the 20s. that will seem strange with acres of wood here lol  no fun getting older that is for sure.

   With all the hard work I have done on my living room I am anxious for the floor to be installed and back to more normal, and to be able to get back to my crafts. I miss working with my creativity so much.

  Enjoy your day-and pass on a smile or a hug to that somebody that needs one

Monday, November 2, 2015

Welcome in November and Congratulations to the KC Royals

   I haven't been this caught up with a sports team since I was glued to every game with Brett Favre playing for the Green Bay Packers

  And like I have written before I have never cared for baseball until about 3 years ago when I caught a game of the Royals. Sometimes you can just tell when a team is very special-the team is a family, they have heart, and their desire to win keeps them at the top of their game. I soooo enjoyed the games-just an amazing team to watch. Congratulations Kansas City Royals on your World Series Championship.

  This week will be more like a mid October week than November with temperatures climbing to the mid 70s for most of this week. I am hoping to get my veggie garden cleaned up and a few other areas with weeds pulled. 
   I got myself so stressed out after the Lowes guy came for the measurements-he was very late and I got the feeling he was working on padding my bill with leveling of my concrete floor-felt like I would be leaving myself open to a huge bill tacked on to the install--Lowes is suppose to call me today sometime so hope to learn more.
    With deer camp coming fast on the 14th  I just decided to get the living room in place enough for guests, start cleaning house, and plan food, and not worry about my floor right now--I am really close though to taking this flooring back for a refund and doing something else-like just paint it and put down nice throw rugs. For now I am working on staying calm about this and not make any hasty decisions just yet lol.

  On a happier note I harvested my sweet potato crop and wow I am so pleased, got many really nice sized potatos and a good amount as well when I was bringing them indoors to cure it felt like at least 30-40 pounds. I have another bag laid out similiar to this one, and another one with the smaller potatoes-and we both love sweet potatoes too. 
      I have learned through the years-they need to "cure" til they are dry and no longer damp-so I will be turning these and putting dry bags underneath from time to time too. Then I will wrap each potato seperately in newspaper and lay them in a cardboard box-they will stay good this way for 2 years or longer-my utility room seems to be a good spot in the house for them.




Have a good week!




Friday, October 30, 2015

Good Morning Brrrrr it is quite chilly in the house this morning

  Good morning all, I haven't posted in a bit so a little catch up
   I absolutely can not complain about the weather this month as it has been perfect. A couple days ago we did get a little much needed rain -first in about 2 months now. Still no killing frost here, but this  morning had to be in the low 30s as the house is quite chilly with no heat.
    I am reluctant to start using wood yet as we only have one rack left and Most of next week brings us back to those perfect 70s and low 40s and 50s at night so perfect for us right now-as we wait for the furnace to get hooked up.

   Hubby is pretty much moved into his new shop space. Just a few more things to get moved in. Plumbing still needs to get finished for the bathroom. I still serve everyone lunch at noon-but it is really nice now not to have everyone in the house during the day. 
     Soon I will be able to clean hubby's room in the house-it was just sooo packed that no way to clean in there really. There is a huge vintage trunk in that room with all of our leather coats, vests, etc that I will finally be able to get to-excited about that for sure-and in one corner we have these very awesome cabinets-floor to ceiling with loads of drawers-that have my clay molds for large cookie baking-so excited about that too and just in time for holiday baking. And hubby will finally have his room back so he can work on his own personal things. I think he will really enjoy that again.

   For my living room project the walls are now all painted. I do love the color, but had spent allot of money on glaze and paint for the leaves-that just did not work out-so painted over it.The idea was for the leaves to stand out when you walked in the room-but since the leaves were the only textured areas on the wall it looked like blobs of color instead of the leaves. That was disappointing for me for sure.  Afterwards, someone suggested that I could have colored the plaster mud for the leaves and applied that after the walls were painted-not sure how that would have turned out--but when you are in the room near a wall one can still enjoy the leaves-so it's a subtle detail. The biggest plus for me is that this room is finally more "normal", clean and freshly painted, and no more huge water stains up on the ceiling-loving that.

  I took a couple photos-there is so much light in this room that it is difficult to capture the color which is a lovely brown tone-- photos will enlarge







  As to my Pergo flooring, the more I tried to find the right information for installing online it got more confusing for me as the information was different. I also don't know how to make the cuts needed around the room, don't know how to install that piece that goes on between floors-so with a little push from our friend that visited last week I decided to call Lowes for installation. I also discovered that for the baseboards around the room I can buy the matching Pergo.  The installers will be here late today for the measurements of the room-they said they do that cause some people don't purchase enough materials. I lose another week after I purchase the trims too-would be nice if they could install the floor just in time for deer camp. 
     I have a few very heavy pieces of furniture in this room-of course that costs more money for them to move, I need to find out if the room needs to be emptied or if they can install half the room and then move that furniture over on top of it. Otherwise I need to figure out where to put some of these pieces-I know I always over think these things lol but I want to be prepared.

  One thing always leads to another expense it seems-our huge projection tv is  about 13 years old now and is starting to lose color, I was noticing the change but didn't realize how bad til hubby watched a show with me last night-he usually is up working in the middle of the night through supper time so he hits the sack early and watches a tv in the bedroom. So now to research tvs online-so confusing, and is it better to catch sales end of November or buy in January when newer tvs are out??
  It will also may be difficult for me to get used to these new tvs as for the last 30 years we have watched a 60" projection tv  oh well

   On to baseball, as I wrote this time last year I have never watched baseball games hardly ever especially not on tv-but about 3 years ago I started watching the Kansas City Royals-and I love this team-I love their personalities, that they fight for the win always-really fight for it-and most all the players chew gum not chewing tobacco lol   So it has been sooooo much fun for me watching these championship games-I sure hope they bring in the win.
   Of course I wanted a sweatshirt or a fleece blanket to wear while watching the games-but the online prices for me at this stage of my life were just too expensive-$50.00 on up plus shipping sorry I can't do that anymore. So I went on Ebay and searched out handmade bracelets-and I found a seller making team inspired jewelry at very affordable prices and free shipping-so happy with my purchase-I ended up buying one for the KC Royals and one for the Green Bay Packers both less expensive than one sweatshirt-and fun to wear as well. She also let me choose all the charms that I wanted and she made the KC Royals charm for me-so am very pleased-if interested here is her page on Facebook-she is also on Ebay




Now that I have written a book I better close this post-lol Happy Halloween everyone

Sunday, October 18, 2015

After Much "Sticktoitness" (is that a word lol) The Ceiling is Finished

I finished finally around 3 pm yesterday. I took a photo of the last corner and then the completion. The photos don't show the color well but I do really love it. It went on darker then when dried it is a very very soft beige type color. I don't like white so am happy with my choice for this. 

Our friend will be here this afternoon to visit and bow hunt so I was able to get the living room put together enough so we can use it but I can still get at the walls to paint those. I decided to buy a paint and glaze to highlight the leaves. I ended up not needing to purchase 2 gallons for the ceiling-the kilnz sealed it so well that it was good on the final paint. I had purchased the 2 gallons at different times-so I poured them together to make sure the color would be the same-I have a little left that didn't fit back into the gallon can so I may work up that into a glaze too for the leaves. The extra gallon will work great for the long hallway that needs to be done.
    The walls will be the fun part for me, and I may start on a wall today once I get some things cleaned up in the house. The dining room was a mess too with stuff from the living room but was able to move things around so we can walk around better.
   My body is screaming a bit today so I may just wait to paint til tomorrow.

  We have been so blessed with gorgeous perfect weather for our projects-no need to run wood stoves still, and hubby does not need to run an electric heater yet in his building. His building got the final paint finished on friday, yesterday some things got moved down, and a work bench built--Progress for him as well. 
    He is finally healing from his horrible fall, he just now started getting feeling in his hand again. Still wearing the splint for the broken finger-which the break ended up being close to the knuckle-he still can not do the fine work of repairing scopes yet though.

Photos will enlarge just click on them





I have been watching the championship games with the Kc Royals-so much fun to watch them, and the Green Bay Packers are playing so well that they have been running their games here so far--so loving that. 

We had a little cold spell come through here but still no frost and it will be warming up now again every day for the coming week-thank you thank you Mother Nature for this

Happy Sunday to all of you.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Disclaimer

  I just got a message from one of my blog friends that was also following my Kathyinozarks Fiber and Soap Seller Blog-telling me she  got this wierd message for porn sent from Midnight Hot Fashion TV Photos but they were also using my Kathyinozarks seller's blog name.

If you should get an email from google similiar this is NOT me-as do to no activity on that blog I deleted it over 6 months ago and would never send out emails like that.

Does anyone know how to contact google blogger about this?? thanks

Friday, October 9, 2015

Stopping by to Say Hello

Hello friends.

I am still working on my living room redo and hubby is still working on his new work space

Thankfully we are having a warm October so far-The company we had hired a couple months back to finish installing our gas furnace has not been out yet-they are swamped with a big job now-I told him we have no firewood this year so we need this done by November at the very latest. Nice I don't need to start a fire yet in the wood stoves (we have one rack of wood left from last year) and hubby doesn't need to plug in an electric heater yet in his building.

He needs a little more sanding done and then will be ready to paint-I told him I would help with that when he is ready. I like to put a coat of kilnz on first to seal up all the drywall and then paint. He also needs to finish installing the bathroom.

For me-I have finished stenciling the one side of the room and am now painting the kilnz. I have those walls painted-and the ceiling painted in that corner-moved the big tv back to the wall along with a cabinet-and will paint as much as I can on the ceiling today before I need to move the chairs, couch, and this time my heavy oak desk with computer to the middle of the room-so I can get to the ceiling in that area and stencil two small walls-the ones next to the bay window.  Once that area is all stenciled and painted I can then start to paint for real-and I am on a short deadline now. Instead of end of October I have til the 18th before a friend comes down to bow hunt. I told him if I don't get finished he will just have to set up his cot in the dining room lol  he doesn't care though. Oh and our friend Mr L loves my leaves-he checks on them every day lol

We have both been working long days-I would start earlier but have to wait for the best light to paint now as I am painting white on white.  So I feel like I am missing my favorite time of year to natural dye-but will be so happy once everything is completed in the living room. I am for sure waiting to install the flooring after deer camp and after hubby is set up in his new business space. I am no carpenter so need him to make the cuts for me.

So what have you all been up to???  Sorry I haven't been around to visit  much in my spare time or breaks- I have been reading ebooks on my computer instead.


Friday, October 2, 2015

Finished the Texturing and Tried a Few Leaf Stencils on Walls




Click photos to enlarge for better viewing

I took the first photo early this morning right after I finished that last area-that was still wet. The next two photos are my leaf stencils used with this same joint mud-using to cover up some bad spots in walls I  am going to place them randomly around the walls as well

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Checking In

Good morning to all my friends and readers and Welcome in October-one of my most favorite months of the year.

     I have busy busy helping hubby do some things he can't do with his broken finger and super swollen hand, and working on my ceiling-still. This was much harder for me than I anticipated especially with constantly moving heavy furniture around-but I can see the end of the texturing soon.
    It will need a coat of Kilnz paint first and then the paint-and next on to the walls which are in worse shape than I realized so will be using my leaf stencils to hide the worse areas. That also involves removing all the socket covers-I bought new ones, and removing all the base trim-and purchasing new trim. I also will need new door trim for that oak door which leads to my creative room. I am thinking of looking at Pergo's trim to see how expensive it is so will match the floors.
    I was hoping to get my floor in after the walls but we have deer camp here mid November so don't know if I can get it done by then-will see how the time goes



(photo will enlarge just click on it)

I am so far behind on everything else-garden clean up etc, and no natural dyeing-sigh-I am working on not getting distracted from this living room renovation. Although it pains me see the goldenrod blooming and not dyeing with it and my indigo is ready as well-sigh.

We saw one lone hummingbird at the feeders last week so they are all gone now-off to their next home-I miss them already-but I have replaced the nectar feeders with lots of seed feeders.

For my breaks instead of blogging and facebook I have been reading on my computer kindle. Just finished the two box sets of Morna's Legacy by Bethany Claire. These are Scottish romance stories with time travel-have really enjoyed the series and anxious now for her next book in the series.The time period is from the 1600s and traveling to the present-fun idea as I would love to go back to the 1700s or 1800s 
     I have decided to purchase either the paperwhite or voyage kindle-waiting for cyber monday in hopes of sales.


  Hope this finds you all well, happy and in good spirits

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Gluten Free Apple Crisp Recipe

  It's time for apple baking and everything pumpkin soon too.
   The other day I browsed on Pinterest for recipe ideas for an apple crisp gluten free. I have not perfected a good gluten free pie crust as of yet so I do enjoy other versions of baked fall fruits.
    I pinned one recipe that I used as a guide and then changed up allot of things-less sugars and added gluten free oat flakes and raisins. Here is my recipe

Kathy's Apple Crisp

4- 6 apples peeled and sliced thinly
1/4 cup raisins or dried cranberries
1/2 cup splenda or organic sugar-or more to taste
1/4 cup (twice) coconut sugar-or more to taste
1 teaspoon apple pie spice or cinnamon
3/4 cup brown rice flour
3/4 cup gluten free oat flakes
1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
6 tablespoons butter-or coconut oil
I used a deep dish glass pie pan-grease with a little butter
combine the apples, raisins, apple pie spice, splenda, coconut sugar and place in pie pan
In a bowl combine the gluten free oat flakes, brown rice flour, xanthan gum, 1/4 cup coconut sugar and add the melted butter-mix til all moistened with the butter- sprinkle over apples
bake 45 minutes or til apples are tender I did cover with foil for about half the baking time.
serve warm add a little greek yogurt on top
enjoy


We enjoyed this warm out of the oven last night and for breakfast this morning.  When I make this again I will use more apples to fill the pan up and probably double the other ingredients.

Feel free to share your favorite fall apple recipe.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

It's Just Been One of Those Weeks

  We all go through them-those weeks that are on the stressful side but our closest friends here helped out.

  It started out with last week Saturday, hubby and Mr L decided to go trout fishing at Bennett Springs-and really early in the morning-so they would get to the park just barely daylight-better to get their favorite fishing spot that way.  On the little path down to the river hubby tripped on some rocks that were now sticking out and fell down-hard. He fell face down so between his eyes-upper nose caught the brunt of another rock-his face, especially both eyes are black. He also broke his finger on right hand. 
   Of course this did not deter him from fishing, he got up after about 5 minutes evaluating what might be broke and headed to the river. and the fish were biting for once. Some how he managed to catch his limit of 4 fish with his broken fishing pole-amazing--that day he wasn't up to going to the er, decided to go in the next morning early if he thought his hand was broke.
    We didn't care for the er doctor at all as he did not spend any time with us and did not explain anything at all either. He peeked in the room saw hubby's face and says we are doing a cat scan-hubby says no-I came in for xrays on my hand to see what is broken.  So after 3 hours refusing blood tests, and refusing the cat scan, and waiting for someone to read the x rays in Springfield, Mo-we finally got out of there-one of his fingers is broken  but from the cast they put on him we are thinking more like the knuckle area is broke-we will know more when we see an orthopedic md next week.
   With all this going on-we were in the process of digging a very long trench from the pole to the little building for hubby's studio space to get new electric service in. Rain is always a concern so this had to be done by thursday for inspection and friday morning to get the electric work in.
   Long story short--we have heavy equipment here, but we thought this different machine would be better to rent-faster and not as wide a ditch--in the end-lots of money spent on a poorly maintained machine had to go back and use our own trencher instead. I went online and found a yellow page service for this rental company and gave them a bad review and put it on facebook too. The machine was not safe to use and had no sharp teeth to cut the ground with-and they do not issue refunds-and they are the only rental service closeby-not good.
    With the help of one of hubby's techs and Mr L the trench got dug, inspection passed, electric in, trench covered about 5 hours before the rains came,  Larry couldn't run the machine with a broken hand so big thanks to the two friends-I made sloppy joes, fresh cabbage slaw, and apple-cranberry pie on digging day.
    Also big thanks to one of my Missouri online friends for making hubby a big jar of healing comfrey salve-for healing.

Aren't friends wonderful?  We would not have gotten this electric in without their help. The building still has soooo much work to do and hubby is getting himself very depressed since he can't work on scopes or his building. To hopefully cheer him up I bought a small bag of jumbo raw shrimp from Aldi's this morning-I will make a shrimp boil tonight with steamed fresh veggies.

With so much happening this week, and with me going in to get the mail, pick up one of our workers and take her back, and making lunches for everyone-I haven't had allot of time to concentrate on my ceiling-hope to get lots more done tomorrow. 
     This morning I picked up my pergo floor-wow those boxes are heavy-I carried in 15 boxes,  I had to send one box back and order a new one since the corner was all smashed in. The main person was trying to talk me into taking the bad box and I said no. I asked one of the guys that was loading it all in my suv what he thought-he looked at it-and said yes all smashed send it back. Was glad he backed me up.

Here are a few photos of the week-minus a photo of hubby-too scarey. all photos will enlarge just click on them












Saturday, September 12, 2015

More Progress--Updated Photo

I decided this morning to take a break from the living room and paint in the kitchen. I wanted to see if I did good choosing the color to match in with my hand dyed curtains, barnwood trim, stainless panels and our cobalt color lighting.

I am very pleased with this color. What do you think? This was a heritage color by Valspar click to enlarge photos




I did get half of the season textured now, so am up to moving furniture again and doing the rest of it.

I also ordered my pergo flooring yesterday morning so am getting excited about that. I order 4 beveled sides and distressed oak-not dark and not too light. I think it will go perfect with the rock wall and woodstove in this room, and my parent's vintage ranch oak furniture.


Update:   I just finished the second wall which picks up by the window and sink area and on around to my big 10 burner Wolf commercial stove.   This color darkened the area quite a bit but I love it so much better. Putting the shelves up will break this up too.



I need to let this dry and then go over it again with another coat or at least touch up. I always paint a coat of kilnz first but these new paints say the primer is now in the paint, but this wall was picking up white from the walls so some of it is streaked a bit. Definately looks so much cleaner and fresh now. 

Under the stainless panels is a one unit L shape stainless steel counter that includes two sinks-I love this for ease of cleanliness. It sits on a frame work so underneath I need shelves-I will take everything out of there and paint the wall behind-and see if I can find someone to help me with shelves-perhaps Mr L can help me with that.  I won't know what to do with storage spaces-finally.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

A Little More Progress




I ended up taking Sunday and Monday off to rest my neck-which didn't really help all that much, so I am just doing about 45 minutes at a time, take a break and do some more through out the day
      One of our friends stopped by yesterday morning and I could tell from his mannerism that he so hated what I was doing. He didn't like it at all. He hadn't said anything so I said you know to do this right the whole ceiling needs to come down and done over-but at our age especially hubby's we are not able to do that anymore so since I like textures on my walls anyways I am doing this to hopefully cover up the bad patched areas. He rolls his eyes and says "good luck with that"
     Wow that did make me feel bad at first-but then you know what? I like it, this is my living room I am doing all the hard work and I think once it's painted it will look awesome. So there lol

  I am loving the cooler weather and we did get a little rain yesterday too-still humid today though with a little more rain coming in-by this coming weekend we will have fall temps for sure-if it knocks down the humidity I am all for it.

   Since I put all my crafts away til I get these house projects completed I have been reading again. I have books I am reading on my kindle app on my computer-and I am reading the Twilight books-this is my 5th read this year and I am on the last book again now. There is something about this author that when I read these books it is like watching a favorite movie-and I am not referring to the Twilight movies-as these books are soooo much better. I never get bored I am still captivated and can't put these books down. and after a couple months-I am ready to read them all over again-anyone else have this experience with books you just have to read again??

  From my friend's blog at Lavender Dreams she shared a link to Senior Adventures  blog where on Wednesday's she has a link up for anyone wanting to write-a poem, a short story etc that was influenced by a photo-I think this is a wonderful way to be creative, I may join in soon. This is called Wednesday's Wit and Wisdom.

   Are any of you familiar with the company Nuts.com ?  I ran into them while browsing Amazon for holiday baking ingredients-especially for fruitcakes. Last year I couldn't believe it but no local stores even Wal mart carried the glazed fruits I needed especially the pineapple. I always make Larry and his father homemade fruitcakes-I use a very old traditional English recipe that is a dark cake-mostly fruits and nuts and just enough cake to hold it all together.  So this year I decided to find the ingredients early so I can make this in October like I used to always do.  This company has fabulous nuts, glazed and dried fruits, all kinds of raisins, candies, some gluten free and sugar free items too. I was very very happy with my purchases. The raisins are gourmet-very large and plump-I can see a fabulous raisin pie being made for the guys soon. lol 

  Well I am off for a second cup of decaf coffee with a little whipped cream on top and back to the ceiling.

   Enjoy your day!!


Update this afternoon:
    While working on the ceiling I had a brain storm lol I am working on thinking positive here not thinking of what we can't do anymore.  This room  (living room) still has no floor just the concrete-ugh I had a large throw rug in the middle but since I am doing all this work anyways why not get a real floor-finally???
    We had purchased some beautiful wood at the amish sawmill that we have been curing and I wanted to peg it too-but that is all too much for us right now-especially for hubby-it all needs to be finished or what ever one does to make flooring out of it.
    Soooo I got to thinking about a quality pergo floor-as much as I don't like fake stuff -this is something I can do myself-and there are lots of choices-looking at oak since my furniture is vintage ranch oak and we put in oak doors too.  I called Lowe's to see if they ever have sales on pergo and they are having a sale this month 10% off  so I am seriously thinking about this now. I need to see the paint on the walls first for my final color choice.  

what do you all think? Is this as easy for a novice to install as I am reading??

Monday, September 7, 2015

Happy Labor Day

 Happy Labor Day to all my USA readers.

Are you taking the day off or are you laboring??

Hubby always works never takes time off for himself-ever it seems, I am going to make his favorite meal today BBQ ribs with some veggie sides.  Still super hot and humid here so don't know if I want to brave the outdoors and grill or make them in the oven.  

I took yesterday off from the ceiling-slow progress as this is really getting to my neck already, but I went into town and bought another gallon of ceiling paint just to be sure I had enough, and moved out some heavy furniture from the wall.  I also bought new covers for the sockets. 
     I think I will attempt to do at least a little today-if I don't stay with it this will not get finished in a timely manner. What I am trying to cover up on the ceiling is going so so-but I will like it better and this room will be cleaner-so that'a a main point.

I also picked up a gallon of semi gloss to paint the wall in the kitchen where the cabinets are suppose to be. Larry designed this area as a custom-he was planning on making them for me-so when I looked into buying some nothing fits in this space right-I do not want to hire the work done for custom cabinets (just sounds like too much money to put out at this stage in my life now)-so I have decided to paint this wall-actually two walls as it wraps around up to my big Wolf stove-and will find where the studs are and then just buy some nice brackets and put wood shelving up. We bought lovely white hickory lumber to make cabinets with from the Amish sawmill so I am just going to do that-I need easy right now and useable. I chose a blue paint that hopefully will go with the colbalt accents I have and should go nicely with the stainless.

  Of course hubby is shaking is head at me-he doesn't know about the paint I got for the kitchen yet lol- and wondering why not work on the bathroom-the problem with that is we only have one bathroom-I can't get him to finish the rocked shower so we can use that while the tub is out-so I can finish the rocks-and on it goes lol  I will tackle that this winter for sure. ( I can just see my long time readers and friends rolling their eyes at this-as you have heard this before lol) new readers in my search tool look for rock shower for lots of posts and photos



   What are your food plans for this Labor Day??-enjoy your day whatever you plan and here is a little history on the day

Friday, September 4, 2015

Do You Have an EReader?? Do You Love It??

  I have been researching Amazon's kindle paperwhite and voyager ereaders. This would be quite a gift for myself if I decide to purchase one-I will wait for cyber Monday and the holidays for hopefully a price break.

  I have the free kindle app on my computer which I have enjoyed but when reading a large novel it is quite uncomfortable after a few hours sitting at the desk computer. So I really thought I would enjoy an ereader. Our local library is pretty good for the most part but in bad weather I don't care to go up and back to town for the library books, and they don't always have the books I want to read-it is a rural library. We can check them out for just 2 weeks.

  I really do enjoy the feel of and reading a "real" book but with arthritis issues holding up a week when I am laying down is having issues in my wrists.

  I also started looking up authors that I enjoy and even after 5 years of the published date, the kindle prices seem high on many of the books, especially when I can usually buy a used book on amazon for one penny and the $3.99 shipping so $4.00 is cheaper than many of the kindle prices for the same book.

  So those of you that have an ereader-do you love it? happy you spent the money for one? I would need to purchase a 3G for it to work in my rural setting too, and I don't travel so don't need it for that either. another question do any of you think the $9.99 a month for unlimited reading on many of the books is worth it? I am not seeing allot of well know authors included in that.

  Thanks for your input.

Is it Really Labor Day Weekend Already?? & Ceiling Work & Bath Recipe

  In some ways this seemed like a long Spring and then a long Summer, but as Autumn approaches-well I just can't wait. Hoping it's a lovely season and not an abundance of rain like our other seasons this year.
   However when I think of the year as a whole I say-can it really be Labor Day weekend already? Us here in the States celebrate Labor Day this coming Monday as our last official cook out day and enjoying outdoor activities to end our summers. Also to celebrate us too the labor force. 
  Here in my area of Missouri we are back to extremes in humidity again with upper 90s as actual temperatures (F) but with Autumn approaching we are getting down to the upper 60s instead of those upper 70s at dawn which is nice.

   Well enough about the weather, I seem to write about that too much I know-any plans for your holiday weekend???

   I had been keeping up with walking til yesterday when I began to tackle the living room ceiling.  My goal right now is to get 4000 steps in a day or close to it. The last walk I took even though I sprayed my clothes I still came home with too many bug bites from head to toe, and the humidity was too much for me. Our home is long so I had been meeting my steps walking in the house too. My new pedometer is to arrive tomorrow-Saturday-so no more counting in my head lol

   Yesterday I decided since it is too hot for me to work outdoors this week and through the weekend and Monday I would tackle the ceiling-This project of the living room would go much faster if it weren't for all the heavy furniture placed around the room. We did move the dining room table back enough to get my weaving loom in the dining room-and for all the rest being heavily covered with lots of plastic I can work around all that for now. It will need to get emptied in some cases and moved out from the walls when I paint those walls.
   This ceiling had gotten water damage when we first bought the property do to a leak in the roof-so hubby put a new roof in right away. He put up fresh drywall in the bad areas at the time planning on redoing the whole ceiling-well that is just not going to happen now. So I was working on a simple texture to help cover the bad patches yesterday. Hopefully when it is all done and painted it won't look so bad-at least it will make me feel better.
    My craft room walk way is now filled up with things from the living room so I couldn't get to the area of where I keep tools for textures-but I did find a plastic piece I had kept so that is what I am using. click to enlarge photos




These projects are always harder and take longer in our senior years-but I am determined to tackle the house projects like this in the coming months.

This week I was browsing Pinterest for bubble bath recipes-most were pretty similiar using ingredients of Dr Bonner's liquid castile soap, baby shampoo, glycerin, essential oils, salts, and oils like sweet almond oil, and one included egg whites for lots and lots of bubbles.
    I decided to make up a recipe using several ideas. I decided not to add the egg whites cause I made a big container of it and didn't want to worry about spoilage.
    My recipe is more of a luxurious soak that was sooo good for my skin instead of lots of bubbles.(I do miss the bubbles though lol   Here is my recipe.

    I purchased a made in the USA Rubbermaid product that was designed to make cold drinks in and keep in the frig. I didn't want glass in the bath area and decided this would hold allot, easy to pour, and safe to use. I think it was about 2 quarts-and this recipe though I didn't figure out the math fit just perfect. (I doubled this recipe)

                   Kathy's Soaking Bath

1/2 cup quality baby shampoo (I used Shea Moisture baby head to toe shampoo that I found at Vitamin Shoppe)

1 cup Dr. Bonner's liquid castile soap (I used Dr. Bonner's hemp baby shampoo I found on Vitamin Shoppe)

2 3/4 cups water

1 ounce coconut glycerin (found on Vitamin Shoppe-I wanted a natural glycerin and this is what they had-it's wonderful)

2 tablespoons sweet almond oil (this I actually found at our Wal Mart along with their essential oils-a nice surprise)

20 drops lavender essential oil-or any essential oil you prefer

I lightly mixed this together so not to get suds.

When I put it under the faucet in my bath it did make some nice suds but they did not last-but what remained was a luxurious bath that I could feel replenishing my dry skin-it was wonderful. My skin is still smooth this morning.

Next time when I double this recipe I may not double both the glycerin and the almond oil-I would choose one or the other to double-as there was allot of good ingredients in this brand of baby shampoo that also was good for the skin. There was also a little slickness left in the bath afterwards that needs to be wiped out.

As for our hummingbirds-I would say a good number have left on their long migration journey. I no longer need to fill the feeders first thing in the morning-but I do re fill them early afternoon, and some days I also fill just before dark. We are up to 235 pounds of sugar now-if I need more I will open up a 10 pound bag instead of a 25 pound bag. We also no longer have the 40 or more little hummers at the feeders at one time now. As their numbers lessen I will start taking down the feeders to clean up and pack away, and just keep two feeders full. We may see a few hummers til mid september. I am thinking this super hot string of days is keeping them here a little longer.

When I go to town I have been enjoying wearing my new bracelets-I really love them-they make me happy.


Happy Friday everyone



Monday, August 31, 2015

Summer's Hot and Humidity is Back and Book Reviews

  I thought I would get my walk in this morning, but after about several minutes decided it was just too hot along with the high humidity already. I got in 500 steps and will jump on my nordic trak ski machine and see how many steps I can get in this week. It is to be super hot all week-sigh, I am really ready for fall temperatures, fall food, fall natural dyeing, everything fall lol
    I should get my new pedometer by week's end-so then I can include all the steps in the house too.

   I purchased a beautiful handmade necklace from my friend over the weekend. The link will take you to her post describing what she made. I love it-and just had to have it. Thanks Jackie. I love handmade items when they inspire me, or when I just totally fall in love.

   This was one of those mornings where I had a whole list of business's I had to call to straighten out things; strange to me that so many all at once but I got it done so no more stressing over it. Over the weekend they were heavy on my mind and couldn't do anything about it til today-Monday.

   A couple weeks ago I checked out three books by the author Jennifer Chiaverini who is known for her Elm Creek Quilts novel series. I have read all the books in her series except for one and she has another book due out end of this year. I hadn't had the chance to read her The Union Quilters based on the civil war era. So was happy that was in the library. Her books are family oriented and I have always enjoyed all the books in this series.
      I have also been wanting to read her newer books that were based on historical events but still classified as fiction so was happy that our little library had these. Mrs. Grant and Madame Jule I read first and I really loved it. 
   Her historical fiction Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker I didn't care for so much. I enjoyed the first part of this book as she described the personalities of Mrs. Lincoln well but then it seemed to me the rest was just a chronological course of events that she rewrote from other sources. One of the credits was the memoirs of Elizabeth Keckley in her book Behind the scenes 1868. She was the dressmaker in the book. I went on amazon and was able to download a free kindle version which I would rather read. Keckley was born a slave but was able to purchase her freedom and then become a well know dressmaker. I also ran into a couple repeats from the Mrs Grant book-so since I read these two books one right after the other is perhaps why I didn't care for the Mrs. Lincoln book as much.
    I believe there are still a couple more of her historical fictions that I will check into.

     Since it's too hot outside I will be catching up on domestic stuff today. Perhaps later this afternoon I will attempt those gluten free waffle cones again

Enjoy your Monday  How is the weather where you are??

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Still Walking and Oak Galls & Update on Plant ID

  Although still sore and stiff this  morning, I can report no painful charlie horses-thanks again to my friend that reminded me about taking magnesium and potassium and to wear good shoes too-in my last post.

  We have chances of rain this weekend so I wanted to make sure I got my walk in and I ended up going right back out to collect oak galls-so got my 4000 plus steps in already.

   The oak galls have always fascinated me, but I have as yet to use them. I could never find specific information on how to use these as a mordant-when to collect, how much weight oak galls to weight of fibers. These are especially used as the mordant-fixative when natural dyeing cottons. In the past these were also used to make ink and to dye leathers.
   During my first walk I spotted several small oak trees full of these, so when I got back to the house, I gathered up a bag and went out to collect some. I definately need lots more but this is a start.
    I went on pinterest and there are loads of pins about oak galls so I will do some reading, I also have Liles book so hoping he has written about these too. I am thinking I may use in my natural printing projects.
   If any of you have worked the oak galls in your dyeing I would love to know more.



  Yesterday afternoon I went out in the garden to see what there was. I gathered up some nice cucumbers and sweet peppers so thinking of making a sweet pickle relish today. I also gathered some beans-finally-enough for a couple meals. I did have a few sweet dumpling squash growing but those squash bugs have found them and are devouring the plants as I speak. the sweet potato vines look good so will see in another month or so if they grew any potatoes.

   I am off to make me some breakfast and get going on the making and canning of relish
   Have an awesome weekend!

Update: after looking at my photo yesterday again, and looking at them again on my walk this morning it popped in my mind that the leaves look like thistle, but I did not see anything sharp on the stems. So I knew my plant expert Mr L would know-and as soon as he saw the photo-he said well that's a type of thistle that grows in the woods not usually  near buildings. I said I couldn't find the thistles-oh they are there he says on the leaves themselves-so I will check on that tomorrow. He says the tips of the leaves are very sharp. The top little purple part of the plant is the flower-but it does not blow around in the wind later as does the thistle we are used to that the goldfinches eat.


So of course I asked him about the oak oaks too. In the spring when they are green-with gloves on for sure-inside is the thick black ink that the native americans used, and used on their leathers. Now in the fall when they are brown and dry and the bug is gone, is when you use these for a natural dye and/or a mordant-or the fixative on cotton especially

Friday, August 28, 2015

Photos of my Walk This Morning

  In the middle of the night I woke up with extreme painful charlie horses in my legs-the worse I have ever had-scarey in fact. So this morning I was not so sure I wanted to walk again, perhaps skip a day? but no I decided to take the same path I took yesterday afternoon-so I wouldn't need to count the steps- and I grabbed the camera too.
   Once I got into the walk I could see why my legs had an extra work out-the terrain is much rougher this year do to all the rain and we have been logging some of our woods too. It needed to be thinned out and if you don't cut once in awhile we end up with a not very healthy stand of oaks. Especially since we have lived here we have had a couple very very hot fires go through and that devastating ice storm several years back now has hurt allot of the trees.

   I did find a very pretty wild turkey feather and somehow I lost it on the way back home, I think I will retrace my steps later to see if I can find it.
     These photos are in the order I took them-the first little froggy was a surprise-do click to enlarge them

   



goldenrod is beginning to bloom




  
 Do any of you  know what this one above is? I also saw this very tall like 6'





the path goes straight down holler to a running creek-I used to walk this to look for rocks for my bathroom project-don't think I could do that anymore-carry heavy rocks back up









above is an oak gall-used in natural dyeing for the tannin mordant (fixative) have not tried this yet-wasn't sure when to collect these before the bug is inside or after it leaves-anyone know??





this was a puddle full of little tad poles



pokeberries beginning to ripen but I see the critters are eating them too



Sun rising through the trees-almost back to the house

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