Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Monday, September 29, 2014
Fall decorating is therapy as Mother Earth tucks in for a long winter sleep.
Oh how I love autumnal color.
The rich russet, yellow, and gold of the season compliments muted moss green and woodsy brown punctuating the iconic change of seasons. At our high altitude (7000 ft. above sea level) the autumn is fleeting, just a week and maybe two, of gold tinged leaves before the wind blows them asunder obliging winter's threatening arrival. How sad the bare trees of autumn make me feel.
Above is an image I captured last week in the Bridger National Forest where the quakin' aspen trees intermingle with the lodgepole and ponderosa pines. Fall comes early in these mountains and this view shall be blanketed in snow before the next full moon. For now the forest prepares for rest, for winter's long sleep. What better way to nod off than painted in spectacular color, a triumph of a season well lived.
I have freshened my traditional autumnal decor this year with festive felt buntings in rich colors of warm wool. The raffia wreath on the summer deck door is strung with two pennant swags and tied with lavender and natural raffia. This is the first year I've used lavender in my autumnal color palette and I think it a fresh and complimentary addition. Above, the 4-inch embroidery hoops are stretched with mustard color wool felt, tied with lavender raffia and trimmed with wool pennants. They shall be hung from burlap ribbons adorning the antique hutch in the dining room.
And so the autumnal decorating has begun!
Thursday, September 25, 2014
Monday, September 22, 2014
Friday, September 19, 2014
I can remember my grandmother Rhoda standing over a kettle of apples all day stirring and cooking, stirring and cooking to make her traditional applesauce. I bet she'd be dancing on the peels if she found out about this modern day shortcut to a very good put-up applesauce. The brown sugar adds a hint of caramel flavor to the sauce which I prefer over granulated sugar which tastes a bit flat.
Added bonus, I'm working from home today so I'll get to enjoy the delectable autumnal aroma of baked apples and cinnamon! Happy Friday Everyone!!!
Slow Cooker Caramel Applesauce8 pounds tart apples, peeled and chopped (not to small of a chop)
1-2 lemons, juiced
1 1/2-cup golden brown sugar
1/2-cup corn syrup
1 4-inch cinnamon stick
1/2 teaspoon non-iodized salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
Chop apples and place in crock of slow cooker. Toss with lemon juice as you go to acidulate the fruit to keep it from turning dark. Fill crock completely, the apples will shrink. Top with brown sugar, corn syrup, cinnamon stick, salt, cloves, and allspice. Cover and set on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours. Stir occasionally, but not too often. Maybe once or twice during cooking. Process in a boiling water bath following current recommendations from Ball Blue Book 1997 by Alltrista Corporation.
Thursday, September 18, 2014
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
"Martha Washington geraniums (Pelargonium domesticum) produce large, showy blooms in shades of pink, white, purple, red and yellow early in spring. Of all types of geraniums, Martha Washington is the most difficult to grow, and often won't bloom after the first spectacular display, especially if summer nighttime temperatures exceed 60 degrees Fahrenheit. For this reason, they work best as an indoor plant. Native to South Africa, they are also known as "lady geranium" or "regal geranium."
Read more: How to Care for Martha Washington Geraniums | Garden Guides
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
SVG Design ID: 44808
Marji's Tutorial: Butterfly Shadow Box
Friday, September 12, 2014
Find and Apple Orchard Near You
To learn more about apples go to All About Apples. There you will find a national orchard listing with many links to orchards in your area that host festivals and pick your own events.
United States Orchards Directory
Thursday, September 11, 2014
A couple of years ago I became interested in felt crafts and launched my study of that medium. I like working with fibers and there are multitudes of fine felt projects on Pinterest and other craft idea websites. I found the idea for this Thank You card made in paper and felt (get it?) the clever word-image play would be splendid in felt. Thanks for looking, I think you're sublime!
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
- Step 1: Cut the stalk end off the ear of corn, about an inch above the lowest kernels.
- Step 2: Remove the first layer of leaves from the ear of corn, leave the silk in tack. Place in microwave oven. My oven fit 3 ears perfectly when criss-crossed. Cook on high 2 minutes for the first ear and 1 minute for each additional ear. Four minutes on high for three ears worked perfectly in my microwave, but experiment with your oven.
- Step 3: Immediately remove the ears from the microwave with a clean cotton towel, they are very hot. Holding the ear in one hand grasp the corn leaves and tassel and shake the ear loose. A little wiggling and it will release from the leaves and tassel.
- Step 4: Done! A perfectly clean ear of corn that is blanched and ready to enjoy, no further cooking is necessary!
Tuesday, September 9, 2014
Garlic JellyThis may sound strange at first but when used in small amounts to moisten and season lean protein this jelly packs a powerful flavor punch. The slightly sweet garlicky condiment is good whisked into soups, gravies and sauces. One batch makes three half pints which store well refrigerated. Don't be afraid of the sugar in this recipe because it is enjoyed in such small quantities with protein that your blood sugar will not be adversely affected. In addition, enjoying a slightly sweet flavor with lean protein tends to increase the length of time we experience satiation.
3 cups white wine vinegar
1/2 cup garlic, peeled and chopped
6 cups sugar
2 cups water
6 ounces liquid pectin
In a 2 1/2 quart saucepan, simmer the vinegar and garlic for about 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and cool slightly. Pour the liquid into a clean 1-quart glass jar. Cover the jar and let stand at room temperature for 24 - 48 hours. Strain the vinegar and garlic through a wire strainer into a 6-quart kettle. Discard garlic. Measure 2 cups of liquid. Add more uncooked white wine vinegar, if necessary, to equal two cups. Add the sugar and water to the vinegar, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Bring to a full rolling boil over high heat. Stir in the liquid pectin and return the mixture to a boil for exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly. Skim off any foam with a metal spoon.
Pour the jelly into hot, clean jars, leaving 1/4 inch of headspace. Cap and seal. Process in a boiling-water-bath canner for 10 minutes.
Monday, September 8, 2014
Saturday, September 6, 2014
Thursday, September 4, 2014
I think I'm hooked on making shadow box collages. This is my latest creation for autumnal display in the kitchen. KeepHer loves her catnaps best when she finds that perfect spot of sunshine, and here she is with her own little calico rug. The foil cardstock adds opulent elegance and lends the rich feel of autumn. I browsed my Silhouette library and the online store to get a general idea of the cuts and layout and scribbled a rough draft. From there I let it evolve as I made the cuts and played with the paper. The swirl in the upper box is the cut from the cat's body - it was a lucky scrap that fit just right in the upper section. I still need to perfect my skill in making the box itself and look forward to the practice.
Happy Autumn Everyone!
I highly recommend Lori Whitlock's files and website tutorials. She is a talented designer and an inspired instructor. This is the description on the SVG file for the 3D three-spot shadow box in the Silhouette Online Store:
File ID#30613: 11.3x5.8 shadow box 3 equal openings by Lori Whitlock
"Are you ready for a simply adorable 3D project?? With this file you can create a 3D shadow box. This project will take 3.5 sheets of 12x12 cardstock and the final shadow box measures 11.3x5.8. This project CAN be scaled down to fit 8.5x11 cardstock. Embellish the shadow box as desired. Look for more of Lori's 3d Shadow Boxes in her portfolio. You will want to watch one of Lori's Shadow Box Tutorial that you can find at www.loriwhitlock.com (click on her YouTube channel). Enjoy!"
- Black cardstock 12x12-inch
- Colored cardstock from the scrap file
- Foil Cardstock by DCWV 6x6 Stack
- Martha Stewart All Purpose Glue
- Wool yarn in calico
- Silhouette Cameo Electronic Cutting Machine Silhouette Cameo Starter Kit Bundle
- Silhouette Cameo cutting mat, blade, scraper, pick-up tool, and spatula
- bone folder
SVG Files purchased from the Silhouette Online Store:
- Life is Good: Design ID#45061 by Sophie Gallo
- Sleeping Cat: Design ID#64503 by Rivka Wilkins
- Love the Fall: Design ID#49550 by Echo Park
- Sunshine: Design ID#18853 by Echo Park
- 3D Apples: A Snapdragon Snippet Design
- Miscellaneous cuts including leaves, 3D flowers, butterflies
Happy Throwback Thursday Little Buddy!
Monday, September 1, 2014
This year I used fun cuts made on the Silhouette Cameo Electronic Cutting Machine to make tags and date circles for the Dilly Beans. I think they are fun for our home, but also make ready a simple holiday gift for those last minute opportunities to show someone you cherish and appreciate them.