Monday, September 1, 2014

Pinterest recipes: lemon tart with rosemary crust

Theirs, of course, looks prettier than mine did. But it was really good and it's almost gone. And so easy to make!

I used whole wheat pastry flour, not spelt; nor did I notice the rosemary; that's either because I used dried rosemary and only one teaspoon, or because the lemon flavor was so strong it over powered it. And it is very strong, so if you don't love lemon, don't bother with it. In fact, there was an aftertaste which I am wondering might go away if I used just slightly less lemon juice next time, but I don't know. And I think it would be fine with a graham cracker crust, too. But really, what could be easier than whisking together a cup of plain Greek yogurt with a half cup of sugar, two eggs (one at a time, of course), a half cup of lemon juice and a teaspoon of lemon zest? Put it in your pie shell and bake it. That is all! I tell you, this is a keeper.

Dolly listens to Sinatra

(and then my brother said, You've been playing that cd all summer!  Well, yes - the cats and I aren't tired of it. But I changed it - Diana Krall, Love Scenes. We must have jazz in summer!)

Saturday, August 30, 2014

"artists of the everyday"

"Women are artists of the everyday... the woman who works with her hands only is a laborer; the woman who works with her hands and her head is a craftswoman; the woman who works with her hands, her head and her heart is an artist."

                                               -  from Simple Abundance, by Sarah Ban Breathnach

Friday, August 29, 2014

knitting in August

I never want to knit in July or August - I don't enjoy touching yarn with my sweaty hands. But this year August is hardly recognizable! And a small project (color block hand warmers) isn't so bad while sitting in front of a fan.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

just add water

I saw this vase at Salvation Army at least twenty years ago; it's graceful shape caught my eye. The glass is very thick, though, and it has an obvious seam along either side. 

It took me a little while to figure out it must be a Good Seasons cruet. (For those who don't know, Good Seasons is a brand of salad dressing which comes with a packet of seasonings and glass cruet; you add the oil and vinegar.)

It also took me a little while to notice that when water is added, the "vase" is transformed and looks so beautiful.

Especially with roses.

how lovely

Oh, how lovely everything was! Gossamer clouds of pale gold floated over the Hill of the Mist. The wind had fallen asleep among the silver birches. The tall firs among them quivered with some kind of dark laughter. The fields were all around her like great gracious arms. The popples, as Judy called them, were whispering around the granary. The world was just a big, smiling greenness, with a vast, alluring blueness seawards. There was a clear, pale, silvery sky over her and everything in the garden seemed to have burst into bloom overnight. Judy's big clump of bleeding-heart by the kitchen door was hung with ruby jewels. The country was sprinkled with white houses in the sunrise. A stealthy kitten crept through the orchard. 

                                  -  L.M. Montgomery,   Pat of Silver Bush

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

warm, breezy and relaxing

In an August which has been amazingly comfortable, we've come back to hot and humid summer for a few days.  And Eileen and Nancy came over.

We had the cheesy olive bread, tuna rye wraps, refrigerator pickles, peach sweet tea and chocolate frozen yogurt*. Under a shady tree we sat and lunched the whole afternoon. And after a morning with no air stirring, an accomodating breeze kept things pleasant almost the whole time. Ahhh, this is what summer is for!

*(I used Rose's recipe here, with a few alterations.)

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

the secret lives of lawn chairs

To continue our thought from this morning,

surely these vintage webbed chairs have secrets. Don't they look like they're just waiting for you to turn your back?

the secret lives of furniture

"Pat had a firm belief that if you could only open the door of any shut room quickly enough you could catch all the furniture in strange situations. ... But then you never could. Some sound always warned them and they were back in their places as demure as you please."

                             - L.M. Montgomery,  Pat of Silver Bush


Monday, August 25, 2014

our dear girl

Thankful that the vet came up with a medication which seems to agree with our Dolly. Her swollen paw is all better and her allergies may even improve for a little while.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

cucumber vines in the window

The window over the kitchen sink, because I didn't get around to planting them outside. Yet.

I still may.

Friday, August 15, 2014

together again

Today we celebrate the assumption of the Virgin Mary into Heaven, reuniting her with her dear Jesus.

( by Joachim Patinir)

"Blessed are you, O God, in the Virgin Mary. Through her, your Son came into the world. Through him, she entered into the new world of your glory."

Monday, August 11, 2014

a good view

from atop the refrigerator, and a perfect spot for lounging.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

"blessed be your kneading bowl"

"When you hearken to the voice of the Lord, your God, all these blessings will come upon you and overwhelm you:

  May you be blessed in the city, and blessed in the country!

  Blessed be the fruit of your womb, the produce of your soil and the offspring of your livestock,  the issue of your herds and the young of your flocks!

  Blessed be your grain bin and your kneading bowl!

  May you be blessed in your coming in, and blessed in your going out!"

                                          Deuteronomy 28: 2-6

Saturday, August 9, 2014

little flowers

When I got the strawberry plants and strawberry pot, I got the idea to sprinkle some seeds on top from an old seed packet called "Cottage Garden".  So now I have a little bloom, but I don't know what it is.  I hope more flowers will come along.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

it pays to talk

Well, she talked about how good it felt to give them away, so I hinted. And she brought some to work today.

So pretty!  A lovely treat.

Somebody else thinks so, too.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Monday, July 28, 2014

a not so plain dress

I made a very simple a-line, short-sleeved, pull-over-the-head dress which could have been rather dull,

except for the ruffled net trim which is just the thing for it.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

salt of the earth

"...salt flavors and preserves. G.K. Chesterton offers a lovely thought on our role as salt:  Salt seasons and preserves beef, not because it is like beef; but because it is very unlike it. Christ did not tell his apostles that they were only the excellent people, or the only excellent people, but that they were the exceptional people; the permanently incongruous and incompatible people; and the text about the salt of the earth is really as sharp and shrewd and tart as the taste of salt."

                                 James C. Howell,   Servants, Misfits and Martyrs

Friday, July 25, 2014

gone, but not forgotten

At Agway they had so many plants on sale as gardening season was moving along, and I couldn't resist buying a few strawberry plants. And a pot to put them in. What I didn't expect was a few blooms, and the possibility of a strawberry or two.  How exciting!

I was pretty sure that today was the day this little fellow would be ready to pick. Apparently, I was correct. Because, when I went out today to water, that little fellow was gone. Disappeared, without a trace.

ahhh.   I hope whoever it was, well - I hope they really enjoyed it.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Pinterest recipes: banana-peanut butter "ice cream"

This was pretty darn good.

I've got it in my "recipes to try" board - only three ingredients: bananas, peanut butter and cocoa. Basically, you take four very ripe bananas, slice them and put 'em in the freezer for two hours. Then they go into your food processor - sorry, but the blender is not powerful enough, according to the originators. Whiz it till it's entirely pureed, then add two tablespoons of peanut butter and a spoonful or so of cocoa powder and whiz again. Eat as is, or freeze for a bit. No dairy, so that will be good news for some.

I'm not a big banana lover - I may eat a whole banana twice a year, at most!  I prefer my fruit to have some juice in it, and bananas are awfully sweet. But my brother always has some around, and it just so happened that there were four overripe ones he wasn't going to eat!  Well, I had to try the recipe.

Now, the surprise - it doesn't make very much. Those bananas puree up into a fraction of their former selves.  Would you eat four bananas in one sitting? Not I. (aside from the time in my twenties when I ate two Banana Royals at Friendly's, but that was a long time ago) Well, I can tell
you that it was easy to finish off this whole dessert by myself. Oh, dear. That's a lot of sugar, I think. But I've got eight bananas on the shopping list, because I want my brother to try it. Try it yourself!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

an early start

'It is the essence of adventure to see the break of a new day... What may it not be ushering in?'

                   -     L. M. Montgomery,  Jane of Lantern Hill

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

a night walk in summer

"The cool evening air was heavy with dew when they started. The winds were folded among the shadowy glens. The spice ferns were fragrant in the corners of the upland pastures. It was so calm and still you could hear all kinds of far-away sounds... She heard the distant bark of a fox...the sound of tiny feet in the fern...she saw the pale glimmer of night moths and took friendly counsel with the stars. Almost they sang, as if one star called to another in infinite harmony."

                                               L.M. Montgomery, Jane of Lantern Hill

Monday, July 21, 2014

Pinterest recipes: oven-roasted corn

I didn't take a picture, but I had some corn yesterday and thought I'd try this for a change. It was a great disappointment. The corn was starchy, and the kernels didn't have the juiciness you get from boiling. I won't do that again, although wrapping them in foil may bring a better result from the oven.

On another note, I found out the handsome cat's name. It's Yogi.

I think I like him because he looks kind of like a Norwegian Forest cat, which breed I just love.

Saturday, July 19, 2014


Psalm 37

Do not fret because of the wicked;
do not envy those who do evil:
for they wither quickly like grass
and fade like the green of the fields.

If you trust in the Lord and do good,
then you will live in the land and be secure.
If you find your delight in the Lord,
he will grant your heart's desire.

Be still before the Lord and wait in patience;
do not fret at the man who prospers;
a man who makes evil plots
to bring down the needy and the poor.

Calm your anger and forget your rage;
do not fret, it only leads to evil.
For those who do evil shall perish;
the patient shall inherit the land.

The parable of the weeds and the wheat captures the tangled ambiguities of the human heart. The word translated as "weeds" actually refers specifically to darnel, also called "false wheat". 
Darnel, poisonous to human beings, is easily mistaken for true wheat until the ear, the fruit, appears. Jesus counsels patience; the true will be sorted from the false when the time comes, even within our own souls.

                                         -  from Magnificat, July 2014

"By their fruits you will know them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? Just so every good tree bears good fruit, and a rotten tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a rotten tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. So by their fruits you will know them."

                                                -  Matthew 7:16-20

Friday, July 18, 2014

snake plant blossom

When I was watering the plants at the library this morning, I found a "blossom" on the snake plant.
After more than twenty years, this is only the second time. I had no idea they bloomed at all!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Pinterest recipes: Cheese, Olive and Buttermilk Herb Bread

I have a Pinterest board which is just appealing photos of food - it may be my favorite. But I thought I could try some of these rather than just enjoy their appearance. So I decided to make the Cheese, Olive and Buttermilk Herb Bread, recipe here.

So delicious! Theirs, of course, looks better than mine. (That's why I collect these pictures, isn't it?) It's very moist, even with just two and a half tablespoons of olive oil - almost like a savory cottage pudding. Do try it!

Sunday, July 13, 2014


Some of the hollyhocks actually peep in my brother's window -

some look the other way.