Sunday, January 26, 2014

Seed Catalogs

This is a new pattern I found and stitched. Cute kitties. I haven't posted much this month as we've just been fairly lazy and haven't done much. Just the usual home stuff, laundry, etc. Not any work to speak of either. The entire household has been fighting the flu and colds also. Lots of coughing going on here.
Our weather has been typical but very dry. January and February are usually wet months but not this year so far. No rain and none in the forecast. We've had a high ridge of pressure that is keeping all the wet stuff away which is unusual. Its hung over Southern California since October. Our days are in the 60 to almost 80 range most days and cool nights in the high 30s.
We bought some seeds and will soon be putting in beets, and beans. Its so fun looking through the seed catalogs!
A new seed catalog for us is Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds..
Their catalog is fantastic with lots of good information about non-GMO seeds. All their seeds are tested for purity and are certified to be non-GMO. You can also find them on Facebook!!!

                                                           Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Apple Pie

I decided that I'd better do something with the bag of Granny Smith apples we bought at the store so yesterday,  when the house was quiet, I got busy making a pie. I grabbed the first pie crust recipe out of my file, one I hadn't used in quite a long time and now I wonder why as it seems to be the best out of all of them. The recipe makes enough for 5 double crust pies so now I have several packages in the freezer for future baking. The dough isn't too short, doesn't break easily and you roll it up on your rolling pin to put it into the dish, like you see on TV.

Best Ever Pie Crust

     4 c. flour
     1 T. sugar
     1 t. baking powder
     1 t. salt

Cut in 1 3/4 c. lard or 2 c. Crisco (I used Crisco)
Then mix together and add the following-
1/2 c. cold water
1 T. vinegar
1 egg, beaten
Mix well. I divided it into four large rounds of dough. Used one and saved the rest in the freezer, patted into rounds in ziplock bags. It says it makes 5 double crusts but I like to have a little extra so made it into 4 instead.

The filling  I used is just the normal sliced peeled apples, cut in even slices, 1 cup sugar (in our case about the same in Splenda) 1T. cinnamon and a shaking of nutmeg, 1 T. flour, all mixed thoroughly, heaped into the lower crust, dotted with  butter and then the top crust layered on. Pie making seems to becoming a lost art which is a shame as a homemade pie is rather easy to do and tastes so much better than anything you can buy.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Monday Monday

Sorry I didn't post for a few days, right after the tumble I took which I described earlier, I started getting a cough which turned in to the flu. Yes, I had gotten a flu shot about 6 weeks ago also but there are so many types of flu going around. I was down for a few days, with fever and chills, bouts of coughing, etc. Most of those symptoms are gone today and my energy is coming  back, thankfully.
I went to the laundromat and did our wash but will take it easy today just to make sure the wicked little bug doesn't come back. It will be nice to have clean clothes again.
While I was down, I spent some time stitching on a new card pattern which I think turned out really cute...what do you think?

I shared it with a friend who snapped it up right away so I'll have to stitch a second one. I think they'd be really cute as a anniversary  or engagement card. Or for anyone who likes owls. With these set backs, I haven't listed any cards in my shop yet but will as things improve.
That's about it for today, going to make myself a cup of  hot tea while our clothes dry and maybe do some stitching. Taking it easy as I can.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

An Accomplished Teacher and Garden News

This amazing young boy has great talent. He has no musicians in his family but learned from piano lessons only.

Our dear friend, Victor Pieffer is a retired concert pianist. He and his wife of many years are retired now but he is giving piano lessons to a select few in his home. We've known them since we were teenagers and he wrote a special song for our wedding some 40 years ago. I know him as a gentleman with alot of patience. They are the parents of two boys and have several grandchildren.
Their one son is an accomplished professional musician with his own band.
No,Victor wasn't the teacher of this little boy as this was filmed in London, England. But if you live in our area, I highly recommend Victor if you're interested in learning to play or your child or grandchildren would like to learn. Here is the link for his website, Piano Lessons in Murrieta and Temecula . The website has an example of Victors music.

I wish everyone a great 2014, the last year has been tough for many including us but hopefully the new year will be better.
Yesterday, we got some chicken manure and feed our raised beds, getting them ready for the spring..Hoping this year will be a good one for our tomato plants.
There are several crops growing in a couple of the beds right now.

                                                                    Leaf lettuce

and  onions, I've pulled up a few of them to use in recipes but they're not very large yet.

The onions get covered at night as there is a squash plant hiding among them. Its growing slowly but the nigh cold is hard on it so I don't know if we'll get any squash. We put the fencing around them as otherwise the dogs jump into the beds to dig. 
Our weather? It gets down in the high 30s at night and in the 70s during the day.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Saturday Cards

  I took a break from posting during the holidays. We had some sickness in the house, colds and now something like the flu. Although Alan and I got flu shots, the rest of the crew didn't so they're fighting the bug. Poor baby Jayden has had a fever and a runny nose. Its hard when the babies get sick, isn't it?
This last week, we were rekeying a condo, I walked out the front door, and missed one step, fell into a bush and then the sidewalk. Nothing broken but I've been stiff and sore ever since. I'm feeling somewhat better today, but my left ankle is tender yet. I always credit my dear mother for insisting I drink my milk when I was a child as my bones are still very strong.

The above card is one of several I've been working on...this one comes with a matching bookmark.

                         I hope everyone had a good Christmas season!. Ours was a simple one this year.