4.27.2009

The week ahead~~




Yes, this is a re-run picture...from the circle at University of Evansville. I just love this tree, and every time we have super high winds (and it's happened a few times in the past year), I hope that this tree is spared....so far, so good.

Tuesday marks the end of the semester for me at UE. Summer off, and then two more semesters until I have my Master's. My University of Alabama plans are definitely on hold...if I decide to pursue it, I'll have to cram math for the next several months and retake the GRE. I'm not sure what I'm going to do at this point...I'm just glad that classes are ending soon!





I was getting ready to list my Gail Wilson Early American Doll accessory kits on eBay yesterday, but when I looked at her website and refreshed my memory on the prices, I decided to hold off. I still really love the look of these pieces, and if I can get a friend's husband to build the display case to hold these items (the case is a free pattern on the website), I can actually see myself putting the things together. When I first saw the display in a little crafty shop in Ohio, I knew I had to have it. Gail offers the kits in a kit club, which makes them more affordable. Check out her website--- http://www.gailwilsondesigns.com/ ---and here is the link to the Early American Doll page. Lots of work, but it would be something a future grandchild (way, way in the future, please!!) would love.

Getting ready to head out the door for a WALK to work...it's finally nice enough to walk...not too hot, not raining, not too cold and miserable. Just right. Besides, the master cylinder on my car is ailing. That's why I live so close to where I work. Makes life simpler.

4.26.2009

A Sunday Trifecta a.k.a. ~~Recipe for Cherry Ginger Scones



I got the base for the scones I made the other day from this book --A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg (also known as Orangette). There are wonderful stories and recipes in this book and I highly recommend it.

I made a few changes, because I had lots of dried cherries and I wanted to use them. Here's the recipe, with my changes:

Cherry Ginger Scones

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons of cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes

3 tablespoon sugar

2 teaspoons grated lemon zest

1/4 cup finely chopped crystallized ginger

1/2 cup dried cherries, plumped in hot water and drained

1/2 cup heavy cream (or half-and-half)

1 large egg

Preheat the oven to 425F. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Using your hands, rub the butter into the flour mixture, squeezing and pinching until the mixture resembles a coarse meal and there are no large butter lumps left. Add the sugar, lemon zest, and crystallized ginger. Mix together. Pour the cream into a small bowl; add the egg to the cream and blend. Pour the wet ingredients into the flour mixture. Drain the cherries, add to the mix. Stir gently to just combine. Press the dough into a ball, working in excess flour. Pat into a circle about an inch thick. Cut into eight wedges. Place the wedges onto a baking sheet and brush the tops only with a little cream or half-and-half. Sprinkle with raw sugar (turbinado sugar) or pearl sugar. Bake for 15 minutes or until pale golden. Cool slightly, and serve warm with butter or mock Devonshire Cream.

Mock Devonshire Cream

Equal parts Sour Cream and Cool Whip blended together. Sounds nasty, tastes great!

Sunday Stuff

I must be feeling especially chatty today...no one home to talk to, so this is my second post of the day.

With proceeds from yesterday's sale, I purchased some annuals for my two iron flower boxes for the front porch. Small white Wave petunias, and coral tuberous begonias (ii?). I bought the boxes at the Ferdinand yard sale a few weeks ago...two iron boxes with a dragonfly on the front. I did't have any coco mat around to line them, so I cut a few layers of burlap, lined the bottom of the planter with a large zip-lock bag and filled it with soil. It seems to work.

I feel like I'm so late in planting things this year, but it's been such an odd Spring. I still need to work on a raised bed in the back courtyard. That little area has been so neglected. The first year I lived here, I put in a pond (in a whiskey barrell), and had a really pretty container garden. It's been downhill since then. I walked out there yesterday to get the umbrella from the basement and lamnia and other assorted weeds were nearly knee-deep. I pulled a garbage bag full of weeds so far today. Little by little. Sometimes I feel like I need "man-hands" around to help with some of this...especially when I'm in building-mode.

An update on the brioche...something went terribly wrong! The dough was so moist...I added a bit more flour, let it rise, and ended up plopping it in a bread pan instead of rolling (impossible to do) it into triangles and rolling them up. It baked into an inedible brick...truly my worst baking disaster. I ended up making cherry ginger scones (inspired by Vee's scone making) instead and they were delicious.

The drink of the day: Fresh lemonade with a splash of Limoncella. Yum.

YART Recap

Here we are, high above the city on Reitz Hill...overlooking the Ohio River and the Reitz Bowl.
The bungalows on this street are just charming...the only drawback are the steep front yards. The yards and streets soon filled up with vendors and patrons.

Sandy's paintings...she is a former co-worker at the library, and is the person who first told me about YART. Our tables were adjoining.

Sandy---selling her first painting to an obviously happy customer.




My "stuff"....I sold several pairs of earrings...the Gail Wilson Early American doll kits (2 years worth!) are now on their way to be eBayed. They.must.go.
Sandy's "stuff"...lots of pretty beads 'n things.
A customer enjoying the pretty spring day, amongst the dogwoods.

4.24.2009

Today's To-Do's~~~~~

Photo: Italyculture.com

Busy, busy, busy....lots of things to do today. This week I came across a recipe for Italian Brioche...I have the dough "working" in the bread machine right now. Eight (or so) hours in the fridge, a lot of messing around with the dough, and lots of little croissant-type buttery rolls will appear. I'll be sure to post a photo of my own when these come out of the oven. If they are as tasty as they look in the cookbook, I'll post the recipe too.
Other To-D0's:
  • Bundle up quilt/craft magazines and books for YART
  • Pack up table cloth (old quilt), folding chair, big canvas umbrella (and stand)
  • Grocery and wineshop --we had Bellini's at Bunco last night, and they would be a delightful drink for after the sale tomorrow.
  • Trip to the little cake decorating supply shop for cellophane wrappers for homemade soap.
  • Make a batch of Merlot Rosemary Jelly and a batch of Camomile Jelly (also for YART)--we'll call it food arts...
  • If there's time...go to the basement and pull out the white coffeepot lamp!

4.23.2009

Another project for the To Do list...

Photo: Country Living
Years ago, my daughter said that if something didn't move, I'd make a lamp out of it. Canning jars (filled with beach glass, thread spools, etc.), unusual vessels, old jugs...they all got electrified. My favorite lamp transformation was a white porcelain four part coffee pot. I can't remember how I came to own it, but the the little knob on the lid of the piece had been broken off. I drilled and drilled, trying to break through the lid and finally had to hand it over to my dad to complete. I know I still have the lamp--packed away in the basement, no doubt, but when I came across this picture in Country Living it made me think about my lamp.
I have a collection of unusable teapots...hairline cracks or assorted other boo boos...so I think I'm going to try and cobble a new lamp together for the sun porch. Hope my drill skills have improved!

4.22.2009

YART-West



Have you heard about YART? I don't know where it all started, but this coming Saturday there will be YART-West in Evansville. Yard + Art = YART...a yardsale for art. The only stipulation is that everything must be priced at $10.00 or less; supplies, finished products, jewelry, prints, fine craft...this should be fun. I'll have a vendor space...offering jewelry, supplies, and hundreds of quilting and craft magazines. The weather is supposed to be wonderful...can't wait!

4.19.2009

Packrat Payoff...

Every once in a while, my packrat tendencies pay off...

I think this little bar or refreshment set up would be great on my sunporch...a little oasis after working in the garden...
I like the look of this letter/bill holder too...not so much on the beautiful desk (as pictured in Country Living), but maybe on my enamel-topped "farm table".
When I saw these rakeheads featured in Country Living this month, I knew I had the spare parts in the basement...a little sanding, a little spray paint, and my 'junk' will be repurposed.
I've used old shovel heads as garden markers....one needs to be repainted, but when the herbs are planted in the barrel, I'll be sure to take a picture of my garden markers. Rustic junk...gotta love it.

4.12.2009

Easter Sunday...

Photo by Teresa
A Plum Tree branch from the "original" Plumwater Cottage in Newburgh...I really miss that little cottage! The house was demolished about six months after we moved out...not because it was in bad shape, but because it was built on a prime lot with a wonderful view of the Ohio River...and someone wanted to build a new house there. Seven years later, the lot still sits empty, except for the plum tree I planted. A neighbor (and former library coworker) brought this branch in for me.



Photo: Cabbages and Roses website

I love this photo...wish it were mine, and wish it were here...so full of springtime charm.

4.05.2009

More Sunday things...

Uh oh...I feel a very spontaneous Sunday unfolding; one of those jump out of the chair and do something kind of days. I just unwrapped the crown pin I bought yesterday...the little lady wrapped it in a kleenex--no bag--and I put it in my wallet. Kind of dangerous, since I'm always throwing tissues away. Glad I remembered where it was.
Here's just a small planting in the glass jars. I want to add a bit of moss, but first I think I'll see how this plant does. What else can I get into today?

Daffodil Redux

Once again, my friend Carol and I went to the city-wide yardsale in Ferdinand, and then on to Daffodil Days in Huntingburg Indiana.

Armed with $20.00 and a roll of quarters, we hit the sales...

I spent 60 cents on two metal trays (ten cents for one, fifty for the other), cute little unused baby shoes, the white pair in a cute little presentation box--fifty cents a pair, two glass apothocary jars, fifty cents each, a beaded box, 25 cents, a heavy I-don't-know-what-it's-made-of hinged box for ten cents, "pearl" necklace - 25 cents, and a bag of thread for 25 cents--purchased mainly for the ecru tatting thread.



The boxes will be for my growing jewelry business, and the containers will house small plants...mini-terrariums (later today).



The shoes...pin cushion, ala Dawn at the Feathered Nest.
I love collecting trays... there are so many uses for them. On the practical side, I purchased two window screens, the expandable type---haven't seen those for ages, and I need one for a kitchen window that opens to the sunporch. I also purchased a wooden shelf with wrought iron brackets. Out comes the spray paint!
Daffodil Days in Huntingburg was abuzz with people...it was an exceptionally beautiful day and it was nice seeing people out and about. My only purchase in Huntingburg (which I just remembered) was a "pearl" crown pin. Kinda cute and very inexpensive.
I hate the thought of dragging more stuff home, especially since I seriously need to declutter and simplify, but I just couldn't pass up the bargains.