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April 2011
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June 2011

May 2011

Mending Fairy and A Book Worm

Auber vikfest 2011 10

Okay once in a while I just have to do a braggy mommy post (even though it adds nothing to your life ;-)    

Poulsbo had it's Viking Fest parade a week ago and the girls were in it with the library. Auberne` was the book mending fairy because she mends so many of their books.

Chloe vikfest 2011 1 

Chloe was part of the book worm. Aren't they adorable???

Boo worm 202 

I have to say the library ladies did a fantastic job on making the book worm.

Book worm 303 

Chloe said it was fun but a bit hard to coordinate everyone walking together.

Vikfest collage 

Of course my girls had to bling and alter their library tees. Thank you for letting me share. It is memories like these that hold a family together xoxo

ps. Can you see my veggie garden in the back. I am going to fill the wheel barrel with basil, when it gets warmer!!

Folded Fabric Book

Folded books 

I wanted to share another writing project we did. I have to say I love these folded fabric books!! They were really simple and easy to do. The hardest part is writing on fabric. These were a project out of The Elemental Journal by Tammy Kushnir. I have mention this book before, when we made bark books.

Folded book 505 

I really think the sky is the limit with this. You could write a letter to someone, a poem your child has written, paint a nature painting, embroidery, etc.

Folded book 404 

In keeping things simple (I think in makes crafting with others, it is nicer when it is easy) I just tore 'paper' from muslin. I did not sew the edges. I figured others could do that if they wanted to. Cut fabric for the cover and hand stitched the two together along the top. Fold up the center piece and then fold the cover closed.

Folded book 303 

We found chalk pastels work lovely on the fabric, so do gel pens. If you make a mistake (as Chloe did above), you can cut out a piece of fabric, paint the word on the fabric and stitch it over the misspelled word. That is what we plan to do. Thank you Tammy for this amazing idea xoxo

Easy Crockpot Side Dishes

Columbine 2 

     In trying to make the most of what I have, I am wanting to use my crockpot more. I sort of have a love/hate relationship with it. I do love the ease of the crockpot but find everything I cook in it has the same texture. Stews do not have the crisp edges and deep, rich sauces like when I braise them in the oven, I find chicken can be gummy, plus so many recipes depend on canned soups and such. Still it is a useful tool, so I have been pressing forward and experimenting. I start thinking more than just a main course, there is dessert, breakfast, I have written about make chicken broth, also side dishes, etc.

     Two side dishes I have found that work really well is roasted baby potatoes and polenta. They are simple recipes, rely on pantry, are cheap.I actually perfect this method of coking polenta, to the stovetop method. It makes the creamiest (not mushy) polenta. If your family is not use to eatting polenta, try adding some good, grated cheese at the end. I add a cup or so    :- 0       It gives it flavor and richness. It is sort of like the brown rice thing, the more you eat it, the more use to get to the flavor and the less you need to bling it up xoxox

Crockpot Polenta

6 cups broth or water

2 cups polenta

2 tsp salt

½ stick of butter cup into cubes

Coat the inside liner of your crockpot with a non-stick cooking spray or oil. Add all ingredients and stir. Cover and cook on high 1 ½ -2 hours, until polenta is smooth and creamy. 

You can add cheese or fresh herbs at this point if you like. I love chopped rosemary and smoked provolone!!


Crockpot Roasted Baby Potatoes

About 20 or so small potatoes, enough to cover the bottom. I love fingerlings for this.

½ cup olive oil

1 TBL salt, or to your taste

1 tsp pepper, or to your taste

5 garlic cloves finely chopped or sliced

(you can also add some chopped fresh herbs)


Pour all ingredients in a crockpot and stir. Turn crockpot high. Cook four hours, stirring each hour, until potatoes are soft and crisp on the outside!!


Jam Ice Cream

Jam ice cream 101 
I have been meaning to post for months that I predict the new trend is going to be ice cream. Just like cup-cakes there will be tea shirts, fun ways to bling up, pretty containers, ice cream carriers (Which if I was rich I would be creating a fun carrier for a pint of homemade ice cream), pillows, who knows what else. Out with cup-cakes in with ice cream! Well we will see if I am right???

I was lucky enough to win a gift certificate at Once Upon a Plate, Mari (thank you dear friend xoxo) from Wayfair. I decided to get a new ice cream maker. One that makes 2 quarts of ice cream, since I am making it all the time. I LOVE my new machine and have a ton of ice cream ideas.

One the my latest creation that was a big hit, is jam ice cream. It started because I was craving raspberries ice cream but did not have raspberries. I did however have raspberry jam. The ice cream was splendid and easy, a favorite combination of mine. I will say you need a soft jam or jelly. Feel free to make this with any milk or non-milk combo, just make sure you have 3 cups. I think it is a brilliant way to use up leftover jam!! I am off to make mango lassi ice cream (made with homemade kifer) and maybe some cafe borgia ice cream!!!

Jam ice cream 202 

Jam Ice Cream

1 1/2 cups half and half

and 1 1/2 cups of heavy cream (or the amount of liquid your ice cream maker calls for)

1/3 cup soft jam, I used raspberry

pinch of salt

2 TBL. vodka or liquor that goes with your flavor (this is optional and to keep the ice cream from being rock hard)

Whisk all together, pour in ice cream machine and run 30 minutes. Transfer to a container and set in freezer, to finishes firming up.

Serve a scoop with a bit more jam drizzled on top!!

Bark Book

Wood book 202 

Good day, the girls and I are still playing with ways to express our thoughts and feelings through art. I had written about painting on muslin, well another book I purchased was The Elemental Journal by Tammy Kushnir. I was attracted to this book because she breaks down each chapter into different elements; wood, paper, plastic, fabric and metal. I like the idea of using elements outside or in our recycling bin, to create with. Our books are not exactly like Tammy's but she inspired us.

Wood book 404 

We found bark leftover from splitting wood last summer. Let it dry (It took almost two weeks to dry) and drilled three holes, on the side of each piece. Using thin copper wire, we wired the books together. Chloe choose to make her book stay open. It has a special message in the glass vile, only she knows.

Wood book 303 

My book has a simple line from a poem I wrote. An old, worn spoon I found on the beach and some pink glass beads, are wired into the spine.

Wood book collage

Auberne` made the most elaborate book (click on picture to enlarge). A fairy field guide, with fairy wings and pixy dust filled bottle. We really found The Elemental Journal inspiring and have several more projects we want to do. Well done Tammy and thank you for the inspiration xoxo 

A Mother's Day Plea

Spring garden 00 


I have not posted my Mother’s day plea post for a few years, so I am going to repost it. I feel very strongly about this (which is why I keep reposting). I have a plan myself. I was supposed to have Mother’s day this week but hubby had a family emergency and was out of town. So I am shooting for next week. I will make sure I have some good berries in the fridge and remind my daughters, they need to cook something :- ) I am hoping to walk on the beach and not clean all weekend. So what is your plan?? xoxo



I try not to give sermons on this blog (even though I do it all the time in real life) but I want to write a Mother's day plea. I am hoping this does not apply to any of you ladies but I know too many who do not get the pampering they need on Mother's day. It is usually because they do not ask for it; they do not plan for it. You know if you have a dream, it does not happen without some work. Since most hubbies cannot read our minds (well I know mine can't) we have to ask for what we want. We have to know what we want; we have to make it a priority!

I will probably not be having my Mother’s day this weekend. It will be pushed off until next weekend (I take a whole weekend by the way, not just Sunday !!) We do not have the money. Not that I need a lot but we do not have any money till pay-day. I could just suck it up and say "oh ... it is no problem" but that really would not be true. I would rather wait and do it right. If I have to wait a month I will.

I do it not just to be pampered (although I really like that part) but I do for my girls. When they grow up and (hopefully) are mothers, I do NOT want them to suck it up. I want them to feel honored, I want them to feel loved, I want them to get a break. How I live says much more to my girls, then what I say.

So I have a dream, I have a plan. Before Mother's day I will make sure the fridge has something yummy in it for me, I will have a stack of mags for me to read in bed, I will have let hubby know what I would like (Which will probably be a picnic somewhere and go look at a few antique stores).

So why am I telling you all this? If you always put yourself on the back burner on Mother's day, please not do it this year. For your sake, for you hubbies sake, for your children's sake. Have a dream, make a plan, and ask for what you need. If you need to wait a couple of weeks, please do. Do not let things get in the way of your Mother's day, work around them!!

Spring Garden

Spring garden 202 

Lots of work happening in the garden lately. Veggies planted

Spring garden 505 

New shed built (now what color to paint it???)
Spring garden 404 

Flowers planted

Spring garden 110 

Pond to be cleaned out

Spring garden 606 

Old fallen apple tree needs to be dealt with

Spring garden 909 
Still plenty to do xoxox