Wednesday, February 27, 2013

A Blueberry Recipe

Gentle Friends I tore up the house last night looking for the recipe for the Blueberry Bars... and finally found it wedged behind the shredder and trash can.  It was almost like someone stuck it there as I have no idea how it crawled there on its own!!  Oh, well, I found it and that's what counts - I couldn't figure out where I found the recipe either, I surf way too many spots on the web - Blogs, Boards and Forums, oh my!!  But, it does retain the original posters name and I do want to thank her and give her the credit - so thank you very much Retha - these bars are just delicious and so easy!!

Blueberry Bars 
from Retha

1 C White Sugar
1 Teas Baking Powder
3 Cup AP Flour
1 C Shortening ( I used butter flavoured Crisco)
1 Egg
1/4 Teas salt
1 Pinch Cinnamon
I also added quite a bit of Nutmeg
4 Cups (2 Pints) Fresh Blueberries

1/2 C White Sugar
3 Teas Cornstarch


Preheat oven to 375 - grease a 9x13 pan

In a medium bowl, stir together 1 C sugar, 3 C of flour and the baking powder.  Mix in salt and spices.  Use a pastry cutter or fork to blend in the shortening and egg.

Dough will be crumbly.  Pat half the dough into the prepared pan.

In another bowl, stir together the 1/2 C sugar and cornstarch.  Gently mix in the blueberries.  Sprinkle this blueberry mixture over evenly over the crust.

Crumble the remaining dough over the berry layer.  

Bake in the preheated oven for about 45 minute, or until top is slightly brown.  I checked at about 30 minutes and it was done - 

Cool completely before cutting into squares.

Retha says that you can use frozen berries, I used fresh.  She also suggests that you can substitute raspberries - and that sounds delicious!!!

Thanks again to Retha and her super Berry Bars!!!!

There you go sports fans.  Thanks for stopping by do stop again!

Take care,

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A Little Cooking

Gentle Friends I wanted to finally post the recipe for Sugar Peanuts - it is so simple and quick ... and the nuts are so addictive, you'll be hard pressed to not eat them all up!!  You start off with raw peanuts, they have to be raw because you roast them in the oven to create the crunchy candy coating. 

 Here's a pretty basic recipe for making these nuts...

2 Cups of Raw, red skin peanuts
1 Cup of White sugar
1 Cup Water
1/4 Teas of Sea Salt

I've never made them with anything but the raw red skinned peanuts, but I would guess you could use any raw peanut.  The red skin will lend a pink colour to the finished nut.

You preheat your oven to about 350 or so... then you take a large skillet, iron or non-stick - and just dump all the ingredients in - turn the heat to medium high then stir, stir, stir....

You are basically just boiling off the water - when all the water is gone and just before this turns into a clump of grainy peanuts you take it off the heat and dump them into a deep roasting pan, separating the nuts out into a single layer.  Put this pan in your preheated oven and about every 10-15 minutes stir them around.  After the first 10 minutes they might stick a bit just scrape them up and shake that pan.  I usually cook them for about 45 minute or so - I like my nuts on the real brown side, but if you don't then about 30 minutes will do.  After the 30 minutes take them out of the oven and let them cool completely.  

These will keep for about a week, if they last that long, in a airtight container.

On Sunday I made a great Blueberry Bar Cookie, from a recipe I found on line somewhere...  Here is the finished product....

I thought I had the recipe with me, but it seems that I left it at home.  I'll post that tomorrow, they where sure tasty!!!!

That's about it for today sports fans, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!

Take care,

Monday, February 25, 2013

Meet Miss Elizabeth

Gentle Friends thank you so much for all you kind Comments and emails - As I predicted on Friday..... I spent the majority of the weekend just shuffling things about, cleaning things off and washing linens.  Since my mom was a very heavy smoker I had to wash down all the wood furniture - I used a solution of purified water and white vinegar, and it worked really well.  I hauled some stuff to Goodwill, shuffled some stuff into closets and basically our home is becoming a little less "piled" and a little more "put away!!"  The ongoing laundry and then the piles of ironing were a killer.  I probably did 10 loads of just linen.  Tablecloths, dinner napkins and monogrammed sheets.  My mom had so much of the stuff, and I found, when going through, she also had quite a bit from my Grand and GreatGrand mother, those embroidered initials give it away every time!!

I did sit down and get started on a new piece - Scarlet Letter's "Elizabeth Shepard 1820" - I have wanted to have a Quaker piece back in the WIP Basket for the longest time and now seemed just right.  I am also determined to try and stitch from my Stash a bit more, as I seem to have way too much of that - and I could start this piece right from the stash heap.  Let me show you the very tiny start...

Elizabeth Shepard 1820 - started 2/23/2013
LL 36ct Vintage Magnolia
Using my conversion of silk - The recommended DMC is 3803,934,3031 - I converted these to silk - Gloriana "Dried Pink Roses," Gloriana "Elizabethan Green" and Belle Soie "Briar Patch" 

That's about it for today sports fans.  Thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!

Take care,

Friday, February 22, 2013

I Got A Delivery from Florida....

Gentle Friends sorry to have been off the Blog for a couple of days.  I was almost sick - by that I mean I was still up a moving about but felt like hot crap on a stick!!!  I was a sneezing, dripping, watery eyed mess, lets just say "it wernt pretty!!"  I've not stitched a stitch since Monday, I did however decide on my next start, that's a little something at least.  I had to order some silk, so I will not be showing that until I actually begin it, but, I have my needle and linen ready to go!!

Yesterday I got my delivery of things from my Mom's, and it was, to say the least on the odd side.  Odd, to see me Mom's stuff unloaded at my house, odd, to unpack and remember were the things sat in her house - in Florida and Maryland... just odd all around.  It was the same way with my Granny's things when I got those, and still is when I start to think about the "stuff."  I guess that's why we "hoard" our family treasures - they are just things, but they are things that connect us to the past and to those that are gone.  Enough of that... here are some snaps...

This little Renaissance Revival side chair was bought new in 1876 and sat in the Parlour of the then just built Farrar-Martin House - 500 Trade Street, Tarboro NC  (it no longer stands)  In the early 1930's my great aunt Mary decided to redo and redecorate the very high style Victorian rooms...... so out went all the original furniture bought for the house when it was built in 1876, all to the trash heap - and in came loads of Colonial Revival stuff.  My grand mother Margie, Mary's sister, rescued this chair and took it home to Greenville NC.  When she passed in 1958, my Mom took it (not without a fight from Aunt Mary contending that it was "just a loan" and "really wasn't tossed out on the heap")  My mom was a tough old bird even then and so the chair went with her to Norfolk VA, then onto Oxford MS, then to Upper Marlboro MD... then to Ormond Beach now it sits at my house in San Francisco.

This ladies rocker is the mate to the gentleman's Morris chair (I also have that) that belonged to my Great Grandmother Davis - the set started off as a wedding preset in 1882 and went from upstate NY to Galesville Wisconsin in 1887 - then in about 1900 came south to Tarboro, NC, in 1947 when they broke up her house it went to Norfolk VA - to my Great Uncle Wilson's - then my Great Aunt Sue sent it to my Mom were it's path coincided with the little side chair, MD, FL, CA.

This is a painting my Mom bought about 1980 - it is by one of the Florida Highwaymen,Harold Newton - The Highwaymen are a school of painters that has become really famous.  I have always liked this painting as it reminds me of how the Tomoka River looks in the morning - and this type of scene is getting more and more rare and hard to find with all building going on in North Central Florida.

 After unpacking one of the dish packs - my dinning room table (also from my mom's, but originally from my Great Grandmother Warren's house) looks like a yard sale!!

There is lots more stuff, my second bedroom is piled high, so this weekend will be spent sifting through things and putting it all away, the best I can.

That's about it for today sports fans, thanks for stopping by - have a super weekend and do stop again!!

Take care,

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

First Finish of 2013... and a Little Nutty Weekend!!

Gentle Friends, for some reason I couldn't get onto Blogger yesterday so that I could leave a Post.  It was quite frustrating!!!

Over the weekend I finished up Miss Mary, so I finally can start something else without all the guilt of the WIP basket looming there next to my stitching chair!!!  So here's a snaperoo of this really super sampler...

"Mary Ann Hutton 1801 - Christmas Sampler"
36ct Days Gone By - my conversion to Belle Soie

I am not sure why but for some reason it looks all green on my monitor, trust me it is not on a green ground, but a lovely mottled tan.  As you can see I decided to stitch my initials and date instead of going full repro - since I deviated so far from repro-ville I figured why not.  I stitched that number  "3" a couple of times and am still not too happy with it, I may go back and re-do it again.  This was a super piece to work on, now I am thinking of what my next SL piece will be, there are so many I have already in my stash the decision will take a little while, but I think I know what I want to start.

Over the weekend I really didn't do too much.  A really good Friend of mine in North Carolina sent us some raw red peanuts, you just can not get them out here in the far west...

 he knows one of our favorite things is candied or sugar peanuts...  so I got out the old skillet

 and made a big ole batch of them.  It is a wonder how the miracle of sugar, water and the peanut can make such a delicious treat!!!

They are easy to make and so good!!!!!

That's about it for today sports fans.  Thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!

Take care,

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

A Couple of Weekend Things..

Gentle Friends thanks so much for all your kind comments and emails about Miss Mary Hutton.  Although it is now down to the repetitive border bits - she is still lots of fun to stitch.

Over the weekend we got back to our routine of Thrifting and visited a couple of shops.  I am very selective as to what I will but now after the "great sifting" pf my mother's home... and now with all the things I wanted en route to SF in the next week or so....  There was just so many family things I just couldn't let go of - my sister has a load coming to her, but even with all the stuff we are having shipped, there was a ton of stuff left....  so I question everything that catches my eye!!  I did bring home one thing....

This BBC series called "Lillie" - 1978 - starring Francesca Annis.  Is all about the life of Lillie Langtry.   I found these super DVD's for $6 for the set - now how could I pass on them!!  They run about $50 on Amazon.

We also stopped at a watch shop - Klotz Watches and Clocks - let me back track a bit - while in Florida my watch...

... (its an "Oscar" watch from Tiffany) battery went kaput!  Typical I thought, but it happens, so when I got back to SF I trotted myself down to Tiffany's on Union Square, where I had gone to have the battery replaced and the watch band replaced in the past.  I also thought I could stand a new watch band while I was at it.....  now this usually runs about $100 for the band and battery and can be done in about an hour or so or at the most over night - I was told this time that the band price had jumped to $400 and that it would take 2+ weeks to have the watch battery replaced!  I told the gal at customer service that I thought that was just moronic.  This started my search for another watch place ....  Klotz Watches and Clocks came into the picture and Mr Klotz replaced my battery for $15 and all's well with my watch - and when my band really does need a change I'll be right back at Klotz's to have him change it out!

I also wanted to go to a real watch repair/shop so they could give me some info on some watches I found at my mom's....

 from l to r - a Mr Peanut watch from the 70's, a Mickey Mouse watch also from the 70's, a gold pocket watch that belonged to my GG grandmother c 1880, a great Ollendorf (newish crappy band) c. 1940, and an older Bulova c. 1950.  I left a pocket watch of my Grandfathers there so they could repair the second hand.  I'll  post a snap of that next week after I pick it up. They couldn't have been nicer or more accommodating - I would highly recommend them for any and all watch and clock repairs!!

That's about it for today sports fans.  Thanks again for stopping by do stop again!

Take care,

Monday, February 11, 2013

A Quick Stitchity Update.....

Gentle Friends, I didn't want a Monday to pass without a Post of some sort...  so I will show a quick snaperoo of Miss Mary Hutton....

I finished up the grass and the triple line of dirt, so the ground is done.  The border is really all that's left and I will try and wrap that up this week.

Thanks for stopping by - do stop again!!

Take care,

Friday, February 8, 2013

Two Fun Films

Gentle Readers, lets wrap the week !!!  Not very much going on around here.  Our car "issues" were fixed, I guess money does buy happiness!!  I think we'll hold on to the old clunky thing for a few more months - and start looking to replace it towards the end of Summer.   At 16 years old I think its time to get a newer model!!

I thought today I would mention a couple of films I have seen recently that are really entertaining...

First up is "Brave" - 2012 - from Pixar Animation Studios, this computer generated animated film was good to really good throughout!!  Good story and good visuals.

Although I have read some not so good reviews, I enjoyed just about every minute of it - and would totally recommend it!!  I loved the witch, I usually like the odd characters, and the witch is lots of fun!!  At 93 minutes it is not long, so give it a try.

The other film is "Hotel Transylvania" - 2012 - from Sony Pictures Animation - another computer generated animated feature, that was also a fun flick.  Fun story and an interesting take on famous monsters from film and literature.

Both films suffer from computer animation, and are not nearly as good as a classicly animated film, but these are the times, CGI is less expensive to produce than hand drawn.  Aside from that defect, I enjoyed them both and would encourage you to give them a look.

That's about it for today sports fans, thanks for stopping by, do stop again.  Have a super weekend!!

Take care,

Thursday, February 7, 2013

A Little Stash - and - Happy 201st Birthday!!!

Gentle Friends, thanks so much for you kind comments and emails - they are such a wonderful "pick me up" this morning!!

I thought I would show the little goodies of stash I received while away....

"A Little Stash" - from l to r... Praiseworthy Stitches, "Santa's Midnight Ride," BBD Loose Feathers Fourth Pattern- 2012, "The Gift is Small," BBD "Violet's Blue," CCN Santa's Village #3 "North Pole Post Office" and LHN Little Sheep Virtue No. 1 "Hope."  

Now, did I need any more stash, nope, did I want more, yep!!  Will I get to stitching these... hopefully at some point.  I love the border of the PS piece, and I always (or nearly always) love BBD Designs, so I had to have these two.  I will probably collect up the Santa's Village pieces before starting stitching and the Little Sheep Virtues are just too cute to pass on....  and I think I might already have a piece of mystery linen in my clutches that would fit this project, so I may start this series sooner than later.

I stitched some on Miss Mary last night, just some fill stitching in the grass area, not enough to show.

I also wanted to mention that today would have is the celebration of one of my favorite writers Birthdays

Charles Dickens - February 7, 1812 - June 9, 1870

You can click HERE to read all about him on Wikipedia.  I have always enjoyed his books and although he is not every ones cup of tea, I think he is one of the greatest writers to ever put pen to paper.

That's about it for today sports fans, thanks again for stopping by, do stop again!!

Take care,

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

It Was a Busy Week

Gentle Friends I am back in SF with all the fog and cold I like....  Florida's weather while we were there was in the 80's and bright and sunny!! 

Going through my Mom's house with my sister was a major undertaking, but we got everything done, we opened and sifted through box after box after box of stuff.  The first 4 nights, after going through boxes and closets we spent going through boxes of pictures.  My Dad was an avid photographer - and our lives were heavily "documented."  I am sure that some of those boxes of photo's haven't been opened in decades, but we needed to see everything - it was kind of fun seeing things and remeebreding past events in Mississippi and Maryland - we each took away a couple of boxes of snaps!! 

 I had an appraiser out to go over things Monday morning, and hired him to run the Estate sale in the very near future.  Monday afternoon the realtor visited and we put the house on the market and by Tuesday we had folks looking at the house... and everyday since then there have been appointments to see it.

- Then on Tuesday I had the Allied Moving guy go over all the stuff to be moved.  Thursday, the movers came and packed up and wrapped up everything to be shipped ----

----that stuff is expected to arrive the end of next week in our homes. Friday morning was spent replacing the title to my mom's car and the afternoon was spent with her tax person getting that stuff ready to be gone over.  it seemed that every day was filled with something to take care of!!

Needless to say it was a busy, busy week of just dealing with everything.  Thank goodness my sister was there, and the two of us got through everything.  There was no way around it - and one person couldn't have done it in such a short amount of time.

I haven't touched a needle since the 25th, so there's nothing on that front to see.  In Florida I was so whipped by the end of the day, I was just numb, and since I've been back I've not had the inclination.   But, I am sure that will change soon.  I got a package from 123 Stitch while I was away and it was full of goodies!!  

That's about it for today sports fans - I really need to get back into the swing of things and just "get on with it!!"  Thanks for stopping by and for your kind comments and emails!  Do stop again!

Take care,