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August 2012

Happy Tasha Tudor day!!

A ana edit 2

Happy Tasha Tudor day my friends!!

     Welcome to the 4th year celebrating Tasha Tudor, her life and her work. I am thrilled that each year TT day seems to grow. More and more people who are inspired by Tasha, stop and think of her on her birthday. It is funny as time goes on, I find Tasha inspires me more and more. She has also opened up a whole world of friends to me, some who I have actually met!!! Kindred spirits who I never would have met if it were not for Tasha. I find that Tasha lovers are not cookie cutter, shawl wearing, corgi owner, gardeners but unique individuals. Some may love gardening, some may love corgis, some may own a shawl but I think the thread that runs through all of us is the love and appreciation of, a simple life made by ones own hands. This is what I think Tasha's legacy is and why she is still so relevant to many people!!!

     As I mentioned I have made some dear friends because of Tasha. When we (by the way, we call ourselves Tashette's. That is thanks to one of the ladie's husband. Thank you Jim!) get together boy do we have fun. Laughter abounds, and creativity too. We like to share what we have been up to and create something together. Using our hands and talents bonds us.

     This libation was created with Tasha in mind and hopefully something the Tashette's will love!! Now, I have it on good authority that Tasha was a teetotaler but I would like to think she would enjoy my A is for Annabelle Apricot Aperitif, or at lest enjoy it without the homemade apricot liquor ;-) This aperitif symbolizes Tasha to me because it has three important elements:

1, Tea. I cannot have tea without thinking of Tasha. So I wanted my creation to be tea based.

2, Handmade. The alcohol for this drink is homemade apricot brandy. It is simple to make and would make a wonderful Christmas gift.

3, Garden. I wanted to include an herb because Tasha's garden meant so much to her. I have always loved her topiary bay tree. I have a bay tree myself and am slowly training it to look like Tasha's . Making a bay simple syrup to sweeten this apertif is a perfect touch.

So I lift a glass with my Tasha friends. Here is to Tasha!! Thank you for your inspiring, independent spirit!! Also please stop by Tasha's family blog and say hello xox


Choe aaa


A is for Annabelle Apricot Aperitif

1 chilled cup of tea, although this can be made hot. Any tea will do. I happen to have a black apricot tea blend from Eastern Shores I love.

homemade apricot liqueur *

bay simple syrup **

I like this tea served over ice. As far as amounts, it is up to your liking. Add some simple syrup and liquer to the tea, taste and adjust. Enjoy!!!!


* Homemade apricot liquer

4 cups of brady

1/2 cup of dried apricots, cut into forths

1/4 sugar, I am making this slighly sweet becuase the aperitif is already sweet but if you want it sweeter just add more sugar.

Put all ingreadnts in a blender and blend for 30 seconds or so. Just to chop up the apricots but it does NOT have to be finely chopped. Pour ingrednds in a glass jars and set in a dark cuboard. Shake well once a week. Should be ready in about three months. But give a taste now and then, when you like it strain out the apricots (save them for muffins or tea cake) and store liquid in a dark, cool place.


** Bay simple syrup

1 cup sugar

1 cup water

3 fresh bay leaves (if you can please do use freash bay leaves, it is so much better but you can use dried bay leaves also)

Put all ingredients in a sauce pan and bring to a simmer for 5 minutes. Pull off heat, cover and let sit 30 minutes. Pull out leaves, pour syrup in container and keep in fridge. Should keep for a month.


T shawl

PS. I have to share this wonderful Tasha shawl Lynda had made with this lovely UK yarn. Her friend Claudia Flores knitted for her. Just beauitful ladies, thank you for sharing with us. I am sure you will treasure your shawl always Lynda!!

TLynda shawl


Peach Melba Dinner Salad

  Pech m salad

We are finally have summer weather, yeah!! Today is going to be close to 90 and this is rare for us. Almost nobody has air conditioning (except my mother, who I can escape to if it gets really bad. Mother's rock!!), so it is light, easy meals we are craving. I wanted to make some dinner salads but was not feeling inspired. I decided to ask FB friends for ideas and boy did everyone come through with lots of yummy salad ideas. This salad it bits and pieces of ideas my FB friends shared. Thank you all by the way!!

I knew I had to share this salad when my family came moaning to me how good it was and told me I need to make it again. Actually what they always say is never make this again, which is code for this is insanely good. I did not put amounts because I think how big of a salad you would make and what you like (maybe you would rather have more tangy green apple or more sweet peaches. I use one apple and two peaches by the way). It is all about your palate and what you like xox


Peach Melba Dinner Salad

I have no amounts listed because I think it depends on the size salad you are making and what you like.



chicken breast cubed, grilled or poached

candied pecans

green granny smith apple, cubed

peaches, cubed

raspberry/lime vinaigrette *

Toss and enjoy.


* Raspberry/ Lime Vinaigrette

1/2 cup raspberries. If using frozen, give them time to defrost

1/3 cup oil, I like a good olive oil

zest of a lime

juice of half a lime

3 TBL honey

1 garlic clove, finely minced

salt and pepper to taste


Put all ingredients in a large bowl, mash and mix together. Taste and adjust to you liking. Your are looking for a vinaigrette with a nice balance between sweet and tang from lemon.



Wren's Day at the Beach

The sea august 2011 004 copy

This is a little Wren piece I wrote last month and almost did not share it. As you can see in the piece I am feel stressed and so, Wren is stressed too :-) I decided to share it becuase maybe one of you is feeling like Wren and maybe this piece will speak to you.

PS these beautiful images are from Ozma of odds. I am sure if Wren had seen this beach carrier I am sure she would have made one herself!!

The sea, flower gatherer 012 copy


    Wren scrunches her toes in the sand, trying to push her cares away. She closes her eyes, tilting her head back as the breeze runs across her bare shoulders. All she can hear is the pounding of the ocean waves. The sound rises and rises, then carries all of life’s worries away into the sea. For life this past spring has had its challenges. Two baby calves died unexpectedly. This is a part of dairy life but is still sad. Lily’s heart was especially broken. She had stayed up all night caring for those babies, putting all her love into them. It is hard when love is not enough to save someone or something.

    Spring also has brought flooding rains. Rain is good but not when it floods out fields and gardens. The vegetable garden had to be replanted three times. With the cold, gray weather everything is tiny and struggling to grow. Wren is trying not to let visions of a bare root cellar next winter panic her.

    Métier Adornments is doing well with lots of custom orders for items like lace encrusted scarves and knitted mini clutches. But it seems lately every customer’s wants changes with the breeze. One day pale pink, then next day after lace has been dyed, no, a deep rose would be better. Mary about gave up when Mrs. Crampton called to ask if she could redo the length of the selves on the knitted jacket, even though they had discussed the length five times.

    Lily has hit a bump in her math and spelling. These are areas she has always struggled with but lately it seems like she has forgotten all she has learned since September. Mary is panicking that Lily seems to not be keeping up. Wren feels Lily is on the verge of a growth spurt and sometimes one seems to go backwards before jumping forward. Mary is trying to trust the learning process and Wren but “this homeschooling” is still so new to her.

    Wren keeps checking off her list of worries over and over in her head. Why does it seems like little stress come all at once and then rolls themselves into one big stress? Each of these problems in themselves would not overwhelm her but put all together and Wren is ready to call defeat.

    This is why Wren is standing on the beach wiggling her toes in the sand. Both Devlin and she need a break from life. So Devlin whisked them both off to the sea. He walks up from the ocean’s edge with a perfect silver dollar. “Here, I found this for you. They say the star shape represents the Star of Bethlehem. A reminder that God watches over us, like He did for His son.”

    Wren thought of what it must have been like for Mary, being nine months pregnant riding on a mule every day. The worry, the stress and pain she must have endured? To be away from her family, the fear of going into labor any minute with only Joseph for help! All Wren would have wanted if she was Mary was to be in her own bed, surrounded by the comfort of her own home with the people who loved her. What faith and courage it must have taken Mary! It puts ones every day struggles in perspective.

    Wren looks up into Devlin’s dark eyes, a place she gets so lost in. She is not alone, just like Mary was not alone. Wren has Devlin, like Mary had Joseph. They both have God who will give them the strength when they need it. Who will also give them the respite when they need it? Yes, today is a time of rest, a time to letting go of have-to’s. A day for setting aside troubles. She grabs Devlin’s hand. “Let’s go enjoy the peach pie I made with pistachio crust my love.”

Things I Love

  Napk ban

Vintage Napkin Banner

Little Paris Kitchen videos, thank you Jewles for turning me onto them.


Printable Jam Labels

    "With seven children and a home to take care of, Margaret wondered how her Mother could be so happy living a life that seemed all drudgery. As Margaret has new experiences, she comes to realize that “her mother was not only the truest, the finest, the most generous woman she had ever known, but the happiest as well”

A book to read is Mother by Kathleen Norris. Here is an audio version. This book makes me cry. I plan on the girls and I listening to it durning our tea time this fall.


My favorite food lately is blue cheese cole slaw, espically served in a BBQ sunday!!


Lastly this beautiful pincusion that arrived in the mail last week. A birthday present from Jody. I love it and I love you dear friend xox