Wednesday, October 30, 2013

It's Time to "Trick or Treat"

 We now have 5 great lucky is that?  They are sooo cute, bright, funny, happy, amazing, and each one has a distinct personality  which makes each family gathering extremely entertaining.  I find myself just sitting and watching the fun.  No need for television, or sports....we have our own "show!"  Two of the boys will be turning two soon, so I decided to make each one a "Trick or Treat" pumpkin to use to gather their "loot."  I made the older two boys their  pumpkins a few yeas ago and since they seemed to like them, I decided to make a couple more for the younger boys, Henry and Hudson.

 I bought a couple of false pumpkins from Michael's, and my husband cut off  the tops and lightly sanded the edges.  I added handles, then ....
the fun part...I chose a ghost to paint for Hudson.  Hudson cracks me up...he's funny, doesn't seem to be shy, and always has a smile on his face.  We live a couple of hours away from him; wish we could see more of he and his brother.
Now, sweet Henry.  He is the first of his generation on my side of the family.  He lives four hours away and I haven't seen him in a long time....but I will seem him in 3 days for his birthday party...Yea!!
 Yep, Frankenstein!  My niece told me that Henry insisted that "Good Old Frank"  had to sit at the dinner table with him the day that he arrived in the mail.  I love to hear the boy's reactions to gifts we send. 
I hope Hudson and Henry enjoy "Trick or Treating" with their new "Pumpkins!"  


Thursday, October 10, 2013


I love surprises! Just look at the beautiful surprise that I received this week from my daughter...a Halloween table runner.  I just love it, the colors, the design, the surprise!!

It seems that I have always sewn, but my daughter became interested in sewing this past year. She asked for a sewing machine for Christmas, and we got her a basic machine.  I showed her how to thread the machine and she taught herself the rest.  She is really enjoying quilting and has already made a full sized quilt, plus quite a few lap quilts...amazing!

 We had so much fun this past summer shopping for she has her own "stash!"

Lucky me, a beautiful table runner...what a nice surprise!

 On a completely different note....we live in the city, but have always had a few deer travel in our yard.  We love watching them, but they do tend to eat everything in sight.  But, this summer, surprise!  Look what this Mama deer brought us.....

 2 Baby Fawns!!

 They are soooo cute.  They have basically lived in our yard all summer, and now into the fall.  They wander during the day, but come "home" at night to sleep in our little orchard.

 We would see the Mama...

 And then the babies.....
We hadn't seen the Mama in a long time, then saw a dead deer at the side of the road not too far from our house.  We think it might have been her.  Then we didn't see the babies as often and were worried about them.  No, we haven't named them, haven't fed them, and haven't tried to make them into pets.  We think it's best if they keep their natural instincts, continue to be wary of people, and learn to find their own food.

Yep, they have really grown...teenagers!  And, yes, they still sleep almost every night in our little orchard.  We usually see them first thing in the morning.  They stretch, yawn, and look for breakfast.  They wander during the day, or I should say forage, and some nights they don't come home, typical teenagers.  They stick together, which I hope helps them stay safe.  Winter is coming and it might be tough for them...we hope they do alright! 

        I hope that you are having a great week, with a few surprises coming your way!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Harvest Time

It's my favorite time of year...autumn!  I love the cooler temp, the changing colors, and especially the abundance of produce at the farmer's market.  Here in Michigan, fall is a time for football, raking leaves (ugh!), and for me, canning!   My G'ma and G'pa had a small farm with six children, and she canned most of their food for the winter.....hundreds of quarts of fruits, vegetables, meats, soups, etc.  She had vats for meat, pickle vats, and the sturdier vegetables in a fruit cellar.  Well, compared to her, I can very little.  But, this year, my son had his own garden, and wanted to do learn how to can .   It was fun to do it together.
 My favorite Farmer's Market is in Royal Oak, Michigan.  It's a bit of a drive for us, but not too far from my son's home.  I have a  hard time limiting my purchases because the produce is amazing!
 Michigan has a great apple crop this year, kind of makes up for last year!
 The market has fresh produce, vegetables, fruits, mushrooms, eggs, flowers galore, name it!
 Green Bean anyone?

 Sweet Corn
 Brussel of my daughter's favorites


 Cauliflower and Broccoli
 The market is in an older building, like a big garage, but it feels "barn like".  It is on the dark side, and smells soooo good!  I have been coming here since I was a little girl.  Lots of nice memories.

 I always try to buy something that I've never's good to experiment!

 We planned to can ("put up" as my G'ma would say) Salsa, and Bread and Butter pickles.  We bought a half bushel of Roma's all they had. 
 As, I galore!

 Dahlia's, which I love!
 We bought 10 quarts of small cucumbers for our pickles..  Then we went out for breakfast and then home to can.
 Apricot jam..which I made before the weekend.

 Bread and Butter pickles (my half)...we tried Mrs. Wages seasoning pack and they turned out really delicious.  It took half the time with my son and I canning together. 
 Salsa...My son and I both ended up getting another 1/2 bushel of Roma's...more quarts were needed for the year!
Bread and Butter pickles (my half) from my aunt's recipe, really delicious and soooo pretty!

I still have a few more things to can and freeze.....  There's nothing like a pantry lined with home canned fruits and vegetables...and a good feeling of accomplishment.  Fresh, healthy food, no added preservatives, ready for winter to arrive.  Mmmm

Hope you're having a good week....take time to walk in the leaves!