Friday, September 30, 2011

Sharing the view.....

A Friday view.........
I have a certified weakness for dishes. But the other day I rationalized, new life needs (?) new dishes. Here is the pattern I choose.

I found this garden plaque on clearance, and thought that maybe I should place it in the garden. Many times hope is mostly what I have!

Life in this house is surrounded by words. We are a talkative family in addition to the sayings that show up as decorations, some funny, some serious. I have shared many here, because they enrich me so, with a gentle reminder of what I hold near and dear or even need to be reminded of that day. This one is a needed reminder of self reflection, for my current busy state.....

and now........

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments.


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Garden Tuesday

The wind and rain edition,

The raspberries did not produce this year, too much early rain with no chance for the bees to do the magic. But today, the wind and rain, will finish these canes for the season.

On a more newsworthy front, there will be a second harvest of basil. Which will go straight to the freezer as pesto.

I have started collecting granite stockpots and kettles at tag sales. In various shades of blue. They will be grouped in the garden next year for herbs.

And how has your garden been? This has not been my best year, not by a long shot. I did have a few successes this year, I would say the brown bag mulch and rhubarb bed number three, were my top two successes. Next year can only be better!

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your visits and your wonderful comments!

this post is shared with:
garden tuesday @ sidewalk shoes
tuesday garden party @ an oregon cottage

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hearth and Soul #67

Hello everyone, once again it is time for the Hearth n Soul blog hop. Last week we had a special  announcement, Penny from  Penniless Parenting is joining as our newest co-host. Penny has frequently been featured in my links from the previous weeks hop. She is one sharp kitchen manager, and I am please to be a part of the Hearth and Soul team with Penny on board!

Please take a moment to stop by Penny's blog and leave a friendly message and welcome her aboard!




Thanks for joining us and sharing your ideas and recipes, philosophy and wonderful new discoveries. Food from your hearth, food for your soul. I continue to learn something new and wonderful each week. And I look forward to seeing what you have been cooking, creating and enjoying this week.

If you are new, please read the Hearth and Soul mission statement page which includes the rules for linking up.

If you have any questions, just drop me a line at MomsSundayCafe@gmail.com.

Now before we "go to the hop!" here are a few links that caught my eye from last week:

Apple Pie Dip with Cinnamon Sugar Tortilla Dippers


Homemade Rise Aid for the Dishwasher


Homemade Onion Soup Mix

Blue Cheese Fig and Walnut Flat  Bread

Berry Lemon Wonder Bars

I would like to take this moment to invite you to visit the linked post before your own, as well as the linked post after yours. It will be fun as well as interesting to visit the other links and say hello. 

And now on behalf of all the co-hosts,

April of The 21st Century Housewife,

Swathi of Zesty South Indian Kitchen,

Penny of Penniless Parenting  

Alea at Premeditated Leftovers,

and me

Melynda at Mom's Sunday Cafe welcome to the Hearth and Soul hop!




Friday, September 23, 2011

Sharing the view.........

A Friday view........

A birthday celebration is planned for this weekend, time to get out the birthday bag, Surprise!

Apple pie was requested. 

I am thinking that I won't find this written again this weekend! 

Here is wishing everyone a wonderful weekend, filled with family, fun and great times shared around the table.

Oops! Almost forgot, Happy Birthday Jim!

at his favorite place to be, along the water.

And how about your home, what are your plans? What ever they are, enjoy, enjoy and enjoy!

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your visits and your wonderful comments!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

What is going on here Wednesdays.......

We interrupt our normal posting schedule to make this brief announcement.............

A wedding is in the works. 
A simple family affair, and the best part? 
 I get to be the bride!

As always, thanks for stopping by.
I appreciate your visits and your wonderful comments!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Garden Tuesday, one sure thing.....

There were not many successes this gardening season. As I read different gardening posts, I realized it was not only me, but troubles small and large seemed to be almost everywhere. The rhubarb got most of the attention this year, I must say however, I was glad the rule of "3" worked. Because there is no way I could have come up with a fourth garden bed for those guys!

But in the little kitchen garden right outside my kitchen, there is one sure thing, the chives. They always come up, grow and then go to seed.Like a good friend they do their thing and I do mine, and we get along.

Thank you garden chives for being my "one sure thing" this year!

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your visit and your wonderful comments!

this post is shared with:
garden tuesday @ sidewalk shoes
tuesday garden party @ an oregon cottage

Easy Clean!

Have you ever had one of those days, where you walk into the kitchen to start a meal and the counters are cluttered? Not cluttered with dishes, cluttered with the remains of the day. Crumbs from getting out a few crackers for a snack, or sugar spilled from sweetening coffee or tea. "Cluttered" in the way a busy household kitchen becomes, as people use it. When that happens and if it has not already, it certainly will, have this simple cleaner ready to go and you will have a clean work area in a jiffy.


"Easy Clean" Spray Cleaner
adapted from:  source not remembered, but thanked!

1 16 oz empty spray bottle
water
2 T white vinegar
3 drops of liquid dish washing soap

Fill bottle with water almost to the top, add vinegar and liquid soap. Top with spray assembly, secure tightly. Turn bottle over about 10 times to mix the vinegar and liquid soap with the water without creating suds.

To use, spray your "cluttered" surface evenly with cleaner.

Wipe with a dampened cloth.

Done.

Now we can get cooking!

As always thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your visits and your wonderful comments!

This post is shared with:
hearth and soul hop #66 right here at MomsSundayCafe!
gallery of favorites @ 21 century housewife

Monday, September 19, 2011

Hearth and Soul Hop #66

Hello everyone, once again it is time for the Hearth n Soul blog hop. This week we have a special  announcement, Penny from  Penniless Parenting is joining as our newest co-host. Penny has frequently been featured in my links from last weeks hop. She is one sharp kitchen manager, and I am please to be a part of the Hearth and Soul team with Penny on board!

Penny, from Penniless Parenting.com blogs about how to live an enjoyable life on a very tight budget. Penny tries her best to live and blog about eating a real foods diet, green living, homeschooling, DIY, making things from scratch (including many things you never would have thought you could make at home), and frugal living tips, from basic all the way to extreme frugal strategies. She shares many recipes, with her specialty being low cost gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian and vegan healthy meals. Even if you have no food restrictions, don't worry; these recipes will likely work for you as well, as they are delicious and very frugal, without using any specialty ingredients. 


Please take a moment to stop by Penny's blog and leave a friendly message and welcome her aboard!




Thanks for joining us and sharing your ideas and recipes, philosophy and wonderful new discoveries. Food from your hearth, food for your soul. I continue to learn something new and wonderful each week. And I look forward to seeing what you have been cooking, creating and enjoying this week.

If you are new, please read the Hearth and Soul mission statement page which includes the rules for linking up.

If you have any questions, just drop me a line at MomsSundayCafe@gmail.com.

Now before we "go to the hop!" here are a few links that caught my eye from last week:

Baked Kale Chips

Chickpea Pizza

Ginger Mustard Chicken

Fig Cookies

Chocolate Elderberry and Rose Hip Ice Cream

I want to take this moment to invite you to visit the linked post before your own, as well as the linked post after yours. It should be fun as well as interesting to visit the other links and say hello. 

And now on behalf of all the co-hosts,

April of The 21st Century Housewife,

Swathi of Zesty South Indian Kitchen,

Penny of Penniless Parenting  

Alea at Premeditated Leftovers,

and me

Melynda at Mom's Sunday Cafe welcome to the Hearth and Soul hop!


Friday, September 16, 2011

Sharing the view......

A Friday view.....

I will be searching for serenity this weekend. This have been a very busy time, at work, at home and personally.

But it will be the sands where I travel to. Finally, it is time to go to the beach. We will walk on the sand, eat clam chowder, sip some wine. And make plans, happy plans, fun plans, permanent plans.

 Jeans, a wind parka and a book. That's it I'm packed.

I usually don't like to be told what to do, but this request, I will follow!

And how about you? What plans do you have for the weekend?

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your visits and your wonderful comments!




Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Garden Tuesday, natural dried blueberries


How to grow natural dried blueberries, in 15 easy steps:

step one, plant blueberry bushes

step two, wait for spring and new growth

step three, water, mulch, hope

step four, observe small flower buds opening

step five, see little berries form when flowers fall away

step six, water, weed, hope

step seven, see berries grow, begin to turn purple-ish blue

step eight, water, weed, mulch, hope

step nine, pick the first ripe berry

step ten, check berries daily, pick only ripe berries

step eleven, water, ignore weeds, intend on making more paper mulch

step twelve, get busy at work

step thirteen, have a severe change in the weather

step fourteen, forget to water

step fifteen, harvest naturally dried blueberries

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by!
I appreciate your visits and your wonderful comments

this post is shared with:
garden tuesday ! sidewalk shoes
tuesday garden party @ an oregon cottage

Monday, September 12, 2011

Hearth and Soul Hop #65

Hello everyone, once again it is time for the Hearth n Soul blog hop.


Thanks for joining us and sharing your ideas and recipes, philosophy and wonderful new discoveries. I continue to learn each week and I look forward to seeing what you have been up to, creating and enjoying this week. If you are new, please read the Hearth and Soul mission statement page which includes the rules for linking up.

If you have any questions, just drop me a line at MomsSundayCafe@gmail.com.

Now before we "go to the hop!" here are a few links that caught my eye from last week:

Flour-less Chocolate Walnut Cookies

Orange and Herb roasted chicken

Zucchini and Pea Soup

Garden Vegetable Marinara

Chocolate Fudge Sauce

And now, on behalf of all the hosts, welcome to the hop!

Alea at Premeditated Leftovers

April of 21st Century Housewife

Swathi at Zesty South Indian Kitchen

and me, 

Melynda at Mom's Sunday Cafe

I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to visit the post in front of yours and then the post after yours. It will be fun to visit the other bloggers!

So, what are you sharing this week?



Friday, September 9, 2011

Sharing the view.....

A Friday view.....

A happy weekend is ahead! Family, special friends and dessert. Let's make something chocolate, chocolate always fills the bill.

Is there any thought more true than this?

Monday holidays are always enjoyed, but there is such a price to pay in that same week! I always look forward to the weekend after, to set things right once again with schedule and getting back into the usual rhythm.

And you? How is the view from your home?

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

this post is shared with:
gallery of favorites @ premeditated leftovers


Thursday, September 8, 2011

Chocolate Mint Zucchini Bread, Recipe rewind, because some things are too good to miss

Recipe rewind, because in the beginning there is a blogger who has no readers. She still posts great food in hopes that the readers will come..........you can also view it here in the archives, Wednesday August 11, 2010.



I had hoped to get this post out earlier, but after picking berries I thought I should snip off the Dusty Miller flowers. It had flowered so beautifully this year, and with so many blossoms it had fallen over with it's own weight!

As usual, I must have been deep in thought (serious or otherwise!) while I snipped because I mistook one of my own fingers for a stem and took a "snip" out of the end of it - ouch! One compression bandage and a few hours later it is fine. Tender, but fine. So lets make some zucchini bread already.

I found these beautiful zucchini while out blueberry picking at a local organic farm. I knew right away I wanted to make something special with them and decided to make up a special chocolate and zucchini bread that was just a bit different than most. Only 3 zucchini went into this loaf, but I definitely have plans for the rest.


Chocolate Mint Walnut almost sounds like a candy bar, doesn't it? I have noticed a lot of different recipes, for zucchini bread. I have also noticed that these new and exciting offerings are really a loaf style cake. A loaf cake serves up easy, is usually complete on it's own and can be packed easy in a lunch. Sounds great to me, and just in time, isn't school going to start some time soon?

Chocolate Mint Zucchini Bread
recipe by the seat of my pants!
oven 350 degrees

2 c flour
1/2 c dry unsweetened baking cocoa
2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1/4 t baking soda

2 eggs
1 c sugar
1 t vanilla
1/3 c oil 
3/4 c yogurt or buttermilk

2 medium zucchini shredded - about 1 1/2 cups
1/4 c chiffonade mint

1 - 2 c chopped walnuts, use what pleases your family

1/3 - 1/2 c chocolate chips to garnish top of loaf before baking - if desired


Combine dry ingredients in a medium size bowl, use a large spoon or whisk to combine and mix in the dry cocoa completely.


In a large bowl, beat eggs, add remaining ingredients through yogurt, beat well to combine.


Stir dry ingredients into wet along with the zucchini and mint. Fold in chopped walnuts.


Sprinkle with the chocolate chips, if using and bake 45-55 minutes or until done in your oven.

Time to clean up while the loaf is baking. But the good smell coming from the oven is worth it!

Enjoy! As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

This post is shared with:
full plate thursday @ miz helen's country cottage


Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Wednesday's Words

Some days it is like this...

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your comments!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Garden Tuesday, Basil harvest

Last week I got some great advice on getting more from the basil plant. So this week, I did the following:

Harvest.

Chose a vase to store it in, which was too small.

Found this brown fuzzy guy, when I transferred to.....

this large kitchen bowl, filled with water.

Tonight I will wash, dry and make pesto with this lovely basil. My kitchen smells so good right now! I am hoping I can get a second harvest before the cold weather arrives. Pesto in the freezer is a good thing!

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

This post is shared with:
garden tuesday @ sidewalk shoes
tuesday garden party @ an oregon cottae

Fruit Salad Freeze

For camping I made a fruit salad. When we are going to be gone a few days camping, to prevent waste, I will use up the fresh items in the kitchen. We had quite a large selection of fresh fruit, and truthfully a lot of it could have been put into the refrigerator and been just fine, but a large fruit salad works well when coming together for a shared meal. It also offers a quick solution for real food when the little ones are hungry.

I also had some sour cream on hand and decided to dress the fruit with a sweetened sour cream topping, and top it off with fresh ground cinnamon. To make the fruit salad fun, I threw in a handful of mini marshmallows, they also work well to soak up a lot of juice that forms.

Now that camping is over, we have a little under half of that salad left. It has "watered" a bit, but the sum of the parts are much better than the food looks now, so now what? Frozen Fruit Freeze, this is a first time try, but it is a good way to present food differently and frozen fruit in sour cream sounds like a good frozen treat to me!

Encore Fruit Salad Freeze
by the seat of my pants!

4-6 c left over fruit salad
honey, agave or sugar if needed to sweeten the finished product (frozen fruit will need a bit of "sweet")


Puree,


Transfer to ice cream maker, process according to directions.


Then remove to a container and freeze for storage.

And if you only have a bit of fruit salad left, it makes a great "smoothie"!



Recipe rating:  Hmmmm. (thought this would be better)

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

This post will be shared with:
hearth n soul hop 64 @ moms sunday cafe

Monday, September 5, 2011

Hearth and Soul Hop #64

Hello and once again it is time for the Hearth n Soul blog hop.


Thanks for joining us and sharing your ideas and recipes, philosophy and wonderful new discoveries. I continue to learn each week and I look forward to seeing what you have been up to, creating and enjoying this week. If you are new, please read the Hearth and Soul mission statement page which includes the rules for linking up.

If you have any questions, just drop me a line at MomsSundayCafe@gmail.com.

Now before we "go to the hop!" here are a few links that caught my eye from last week:

Homemade Fish Sauce @ Penniless Parenting

Fresh Black Eyed Peas @ Miz Helen's Country Cottage

Baked BBQ Onion rings @ Debbi Does Dinner Healthy


Yogurt Fruit Pie @ the Local Cook

Mustard Greens Noodle Stirfry @ Teczcape


And now, on behalf of all the hosts, welcome to the hop!

Alea at Premeditated Leftovers

April of 21st Century Housewife

Swathi at Zesty South Indian Kitchen

and me, 

Melynda at Mom's Sunday Cafe

So come on, what are you sharing this week?



Sunday, September 4, 2011

Oranges for children


Welcome to Cookbook Sunday!

Hello, once again it is time for Cookbook Sunday, where you can share the great foods that you have been making for your family and friends. Remember, you may use a cookbook, a cooking magazine or even a cooking app, downloaded to your phone! Just name the source and share with us right here!

I could not resist this special recipe. This is from much more than a cookbook. This book could also have been titled " How I worked very hard and cooked up a great life, full of wonder and memories."

I found this jewel of a book, out thrifting one day. I was drawn to it immediately, and wanted to own it and the lessons of life woven into each chapter. One could assert that these lessons if you will were actually disguised within the chapters. After each chapter story, arranged through the years, there are recipes to match the adventure.

This recipe touched my heart.


Oranges for Children
adapted from:
From Chapter Fourteen, set in the year 2002

Step 1:

Buy a bag of oranges.

Step 2:

Give them to children, that don't have oranges.




I will also be sharing Zucchini Bread, and you,

What are you sharing with Cookbook Sunday?





Saturday, September 3, 2011

Weekend Cat Blogging, the camping trip

As we were packing the gear, look who show up! Dressed and ready to go..........


When I explained that there were no king sized beds to hide under when there was a noise, or it got dark or he wanted a nap. Well lets just say, we left without him.

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

This post is shared with:
weekend cat blogging @ sidewalk shoes

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Zuchinni Bread

Officially summer is gone, done, over. School has begun and life is returning to a scheduled normal. Many sighs of relief can be heard all over town. I remember those days, but I have to ask myself this question. Where did summer go, and how did it pass me by?

It seems like just yesterday summer had began. And now it is over. I have an empty list of summer activities. I did not grill, go to the beach or even cook much these past couple of months. Whew, it's over though, huh? I do have a couple of zucchini on the dining room table. Not from my garden, but they are home grown. They are zucchini bread zucchini, so lets get started.


Zucchini Bread
from:  The Old Farmer's Almanac, Best Home Baking
makes 2 loaves


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare 2 8X4 in loaf pans, set aside. Grate 1 medium large zucchini.

3 eggs
2 c sugar
1 c oil
1 T vanilla

Beat until combined.

3 c flour
1 t salt
1 t baking soda
1/4 t baking powder
1 T cinnamon

Sift/whisk together until combined.


2 c shredded zucchini

Stir zucchini into the egg/sugar mixture. Stir in flour mixture until smooth. Divide evenly into the loaf pans. Bake 45 minutes. Let cool in pans 10 minutes, turn out and let cool completely. Let rest overnight before cutting for best texture.


makes 2 loves

This will be my entry for Cookbook Sundays, link opens September 4th!

Recipe rating:  It's Ok. (tasty but not special)

As always, thanks for taking a moment to stop by.
I appreciate your time and your wonderful comments!

This post is also shared with:
garden variety wednesday @ ms enPlace
gallery of favorites ! premeditated leftovers