Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Canning in the Rain, Just Canning in the Rain...

I am definitely not ready for fall, we haven't had enough sun yet here in Oregon. I'm going to have just accept that yes, it's a rainy day here in Oregon. Again. We live where it's beautiful, everything is green, can't keep up with mowing and weedeating, but, if it keeps raining I'm going to have to go to a tanning booth, close my eyes, and pretend I'm in the sun!
But, I always think God does give us what we need, whether we think we need it or not! So, today I'm going to use my day doing a LOT of indoor stuff. I've been canning apples, applesauce, greenbeans, stuff like that. My tomatoes aren't ready or my corn, and I haven't gotten any cucumbers yet to make pickles. BUT, I often need beans for soups, etc, and I hate not having beans already cooked to make soup quickly. In the store they're expensive too, so it's kidney beans in the canner today. That and pintos.
I had read somewhere several years ago, that when you're canning meat, and you don't have a full canner, you can take some dry beans, fill the jar with water, add some salt, and process them along with the canner of meat, to make use of the canner space. My daughter has done it, but I never did do it yet. But, last night I soaked beans overnight, and now I'm getting them into the cooker today.
That's one project, my sewing room is still needing more attention. I've been getting ready for school, we'll probably start mid-September. So, let it rain, I'm going to get productive anyway!
I'm going to share a "chili" recipe that a friend gave me. It's more of a soup, but our family loves the way the flavors meld together in this yummy soup.

Glenda's Chili
1-2 pounds ground beef
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
1 cup chopped onion
garlic (I use probably 2 tablespoons of the stuff in the jar)
2 teaspoons salt.
Brown the ground beef with the green pepper, onion, garlic and salt. Drain.

1 qt. crushed tomatoes
2 cups water
2 quarts kidney beans, with juice
3 hot dried chilis
1/2 teas. cumin
1 teas. dried red pepper
4 teaspoons chili powder
Bring to boil, then simmer, at least 1/2 hour, but the longer, the better.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

I've got to clean up my sewing room!

I've seen photos of other people's craft/sewing/studio rooms that you wonder how they find anything in there. Well.....lately, I'd say I could win an award for the messiest crafting room! I've still been able to find things, but, let's just say, I need to invest some time into it.
I've found a lot of neat treasures this summer, things I intend to list on Etsy or Ebay and just have not had time. I guess there's too much to do in the summer? Or maybe it's just the gathering season, and when fall comes, it's time to get onto the listing bandwagon. Whatever, I need to get that room cleaned out.
I've been working on some rug hooking projects, really wishing I had a teacher that had skin on so I could ask them tons of questions, but I've got some books, the internet, etc. I've got some neat inspiration at my friend's house. Her mother-in-law, I believe in the 40's, hooked some huge rugs that are so awesome it's unbelieveable. I've had the pleasure to visit her, and her rugs. I've been collecting wool at garage sales, goodwill, etc., felting it in the washer and drying it, getting it ready for the many tubs I seem to be growing, just so I can have an assortment of colors. Next, I'll want to learn to overdye the wool, I'm sure. Anyway, this wool is adding to my mess. But there is always a method to my madness, and it will get done!
I think I have disorganized genes! My mom is soooo picky about what is supposed to go where, I guess I must have OD'd on that particular habit. I try, but... it's hard. Especially in that room. Plus, I have a lot of interests, and they all take room.
Besides my sewing room, I've got things that I need to get ready for my next sale. I just need to push myself out to get it done. I've got painting to do, a new idea for our booth to work on, tags to get made, etc. I'm determined to not do my usual and wait till the last minute. Now, my bread business works good for the "last minute personality". The bread is as fresh as it can get!
I'm going to share some photos of some of the rugs my friend introduced me to. Her mother-in-law hooked these in the 40s. I'm sure you'll love them! Look at all the detail in these rugs. Some of these are over 9 ft. long!! What a lot of work!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Thanks Pammie!

Pammie, from Farmhouse Primitives just honored me with an "I Love Your Blog Award"

Thanks very much Pammie, that was very thoughtful! And now, my turn! I am nominating some of my primitive loving friends:

1.Simple Folk
2.Bird in Hand Primitives
3.The Gathering Room
4.Rock River Stitches
5.My Red Cape
6.Magpie Cottage
7.My Father's House
1. The winner can put the logo on her blog.

2. Link the person you received your award from.

3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.

4. Put links of those blogs on yours.

5. Leave a message on the blogs of those you’ve nominated.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Ever since Sunday....

Again, this hectic summer life, but how much fun! Summer always seems like a scramble to get in everything that doesn't happen in the winter. You're frantically putting up fruits and vegies, getting ready for a beef to go into the freezer, anticipating the corn ripening. Then there's the wonderful sales to go to, the thrill of the hunt. And of course, all the fun family outings that can happen only in summer.
This Sunday we finally made it to the Sunday Market in Astoria. We went after church, knowing we'd be having a full day in Astoria, then coming back to our "Summer Sunday" at church, which is always a great time of fun, fellowship, singing, etc. The Sunday Market was a great time, this being our first time to get there this summer. I've been thinking of doing the market for a couple years, with my Finnish Cardamom Bread and Marionberry Coffee Cakes, I know it would be well worth it. My greatest compliment is when someone tells me my cardamom bread is better than the Astoria bakery, but that's bragging. I have my Finnish Friend Kertuu to thank for the bread, so I'll share the compliments. She's always amazed at how much of that bread I sell.
Anyway, the Market was a great time. Great food. I had something I'm not positive what it was. The Mexican man was very soft spoken and I asked him a couple times to repeat himself, but as far as I can tell I had a "nachatamale????" It was a wonderful, huge tamale, with I believe chicken and pork, rice, potatoes, Mexican olives, tomatoes, peppers, RAISINS???? It had a LOT of stuff in it, and it was good. Seth, one of my 9 y0 twins, stayed normal and had some wonderful chowder. His twin, Ethan, had his first oysters (well, he beat me to that first LOL), Chantel had....Kangaroo???? Oh, yuck, I couldn't believe it. Randy had oysters and wild boar bacon. Well, they have a little more common stuff there, too, but....
We sat in the food area on picnic benches and listened to some great live music from "The Brownsmead Flats", had some great laughs over a few of their folk songs.
There were some great things for sale at the market, and I wished we'd gotten there even earlier. On the way home, ok who's kidding, we went around Astoria to a couple garage sales, and even over to Warrenton, which was not the direction of home. I didn't find much, EXCEPT this little vintage garbage can (the lady called it a garbage can, I'm wondering if it had been a diaper pail???) just had to come home with me. ONE DOLLAR!!!???? Yep, what a deal. I just love the green color. The inside of the lid is rusty, but I think I'll leave it. There is a bucket that lifts out to empty it, although it has a crack in it's plastic side, but will still be great as a trash can.

Waiting for me at home, were a pile of green beans fresh picked the night before out of my garden, and some boxes of apples that I still had to work with. But, now the beans are in their jars, the apples went into applesauce and apple pie filling, and I'm stalling with getting everything put back in order, which I'll do as soon as I get done blogging.
Great blessed life, great family fun, great bountiful harvest...thank you Lord!
Apple Pie Filling:
Peel 10 cups of apples, sliced, and mix with 7 cups of sugar (I used maybe 4), and 1/2 cup lemon juice. Mix well, then let sit, covered, all night. The juice goes to the bottom of the bowl. In the morning, pack the apples tightly into quart jars, heat the syrup remaining in the bowl and pour over the apples to 3/4 inch headspace. Process for 25 minutes in water bath canner, or 10 minutes at 5 pounds in pressure canner.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

How Beautiful It Is

Here in Oregon!! It is gorgeous here all year, but I've been loving these warm/hot days. You get your work done in the morning and at night, and you enjoy the sun during the middle of the day! Tonight we had one of our wonderful red sunsets. Chantel and I were out in the garden picking greenbeans (got lots this time) and the sun was going down, we were hurrying our hearts out. I looked up and commented, "I thought those sunflowers were supposed to be taller than the corn?" But then, as I looked between the tassles of corn, through to the little yellow sunflower peeking at me, the sunset was behind it, and was it a wonderful photo.
Chantel ran in to get the camera, but for some reason, every time we took a picture, it said "disk error", so don't know what happened there. I'll try again with another sunset, hopefully.

Then, we went to the back "yard" to see how the boys were coming along with their work. They were using the tractor to move the hay to it's storage barn, getting done just in time before it was dark. The boys love to ride in the bucket.

Chantel and her cat Jakie had to get in the sunset, too! And I love the sunset from our patio under the maple tree, excuse the mess, we've been "living" here!

Another Giveaway!!

Linda at Behind My Red Door is also having a great fall giveaway!! Be sure to go sign up!!

Great Blogger Giveaways!

There are some great fall giveaways going on NOW!! Check them out! Country Pleasures is having a great one!!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

My Daughter's Buttons

Kristin sent me some photos this morning of a project she's been working on. She's got a ton of vintage buttons she's getting ready to sell, either in her Etsy shop, PrimnProperBaby, or at shows we will be doing, or possibly at a quilt shop. They are just so cute, I had to brag! I think it's much cuter than a string of buttons.

Monday, August 11, 2008

I'm Dreamin' of a Vintage Christmas....Just like the Ones I used to know

Cuz, yes, I grew up in the vintage years, possibly the antique years! And no, it's not too soon, I'm afraid.
After Kristin and I folded up our shop (The Old Quincy Schoolhouse) where we had tons of fun playing and decorating and visiting....but not enough time for kids, for home, for's been nice having more time to myself, to scrounge for great stuff, to play with kids, and grandkids, to garden (my flower beds are still trying to catch up from the neglect), and all that homekeeping in the country brings (like endless weedeating b/c we live where it's green)..I still miss it. We have done a few shows so that helps, and we get to see other prim n proper people, and vintage & cottage-ey people, though.
But, I got a brainstorm again, and hopefully there will be time to do this and do a good job of it. We have this little country church, right near our home, just the cutest little country church, although it is in need of paint, a new roof, and other maintainance. Well, my idea is to have a "Vintage Winter Faire" in it, possibly in November. I'm thinking even in the evening, b/c I'd just love to see that place lit up for Christmas. I took a picture of it the other night after our Bible study, to see how it looks at night with just lights on inside. It was almost dark, and I thought it looked pretty.
Well, I'd like to do a mini version of what we did in the schoolhouse, have it last a couple weekends in a row. I'm trying to decide exactly when would be the best time, before all the bazaars and shows start in November, or later. I want to be able to decorate for Christmas, (if we do it during the Christmas season), but I don't know that I want to label it "Christmas", more like "Winter". I don't know, I have to dream some more!
But I can picture it, move a lot of the pews out, put booth type spaces, but sell all at one place, like a total shopping experience. Not exactly sure, but you can see why it's not to early to think of a Vintage Christmas.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Garage Sale-ing with Randy

I love going garage sale-ing with Randy, he pays LOL! Actually, we went another city-wide sale, I started getting antsy thinking, I'm tired of looking at resin figurines, when we finally hit a couple good ones that made it worthwhile! He got a pair of his & hers Schwinn bikes that I'm selling for him, to support his book-buying habit, most likely. I found a quilt top, a cute little Christmasy looking leprechaun lamp, a vintage silver Christmas tree, and 3 gazebos (for shows). I think this weekend Randy was the winner!

Applesauce~Some of my first canning this season!

I love to make use out of things that go to waste. I'm not talking trash to treasure, here really, I'm talking about fruit that hangs on trees and bushes and falls on the ground and wastes. I went to a baby shower recently, we're in the country you know? Well, I walked through the backyard to get to the entry door, and I ended up, like always, getting twigs stuck in my hair, etc., tomboy that I seem to be. You know, my sister always went everywhere and never got dirty. Me??? I attracted messes and forgot things, like...underwear???? I only did that twice that I know of, but the time I did it in 2nd grade, when I had to wear a dress, was pretty traumatic. I remember distinctly scooting around in my desk, because the seat swiveled, you know what I mean?? Well, as I scooted, I thought, "Oh gosh, I forgot my underwear". What's a girl to do??? Well, I went up and told the teacher, and she says, "What do you want me to do??" I said, "I've got to talk to my sister!" So I rush down to the next room, to the 4th grade class, interrupt the class and ask for my sister. I tell her, "Sister, (yes, that's what I called her), Sister, I say, I forgot my underwear!" Well, you know what my big sister did for me?? She told the teacher she had to go to the locker room, she took off her underwear for me to wear, and she wore her gym shorts under her dress! Can you believe it??
Well, I got side tracked, I was under the apple tree, getting twigs in my hair, but amazed at all the apples on the tree. So, I asked my friend what her MIL does with all those apples, and she says they get fed to the cows! So, this year, my daughter and I got them! We didn't even begin to pick enough to notice, but I did get 42 quarts of applesauce out of them! Oh, yum, nice and tart, I added a very little bit of brown sugar and some cinnamon, and got them down unbelieveably quick! Did you ever use one of these saucer things? I can't remember right off what brand mine is, but it is a wonderful tool! I sauces apples, tomatoes, berries, etc. All I did with the apples, was cook them in a little water to steam them soft, after I washed them , left them whole, and put them through the machine. My 9 yo son enjoyed helping crank the handle, and we got done very quickly, compared to peeling and coring, etc. The sauce comes out the grate, and the peel, stem, core, etc, come out the chute at the end! They sell for I believe $30-$60, but I was fortunate enough to buy one for $5. at a garage sale!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

It's nice & hot outside, why am I in the house???

Yikes, I started an avalanche!! OK, I really needed to till some more in the garden, and the kids really needed to get the wood stacked that dad cut last night. But, since it was getting hotter out by the time we were done with regular daily stuff, I had the bright idea that we would attack those bedrooms. OOOOHHHH, what a mess! Randy said he was going to go through a bunch of the boys' (I have 9 yo twin boys) treasures. I mean, they have that shriveled rattlesnake skin as a decoration on their wall, yep, all boy. One of my boys is like my oldest son, he loves to take apart anything he can get his hands on. So, he has.....switches and wires from my dryer we were getting rid of.....and screws he found that he'd thought he'd need (actually all my "boys" are like this, since daddy is a carpenter). He is saving all this stuff, because he is planning to build a spaceship with it. It's a good thing we live in the country, people would really wonder about us ! They have those kinds of lego sets with a million pieces, mixed with other stuff, I don't know, I've lost track. My twins love to draw and create stuff.....especially the one that doesn't have all the wires, switches, and other treasures. He has tons of "creations". OK, I have a hard time throwing those out, but you have to draw a line somewhere. I did let him help me draw the line.
I just don't know where they get it LOL. What packrats!! I always use the excuse with myself, that a lot of it is and "investment" :-) But Randy, now he is a collector at heart. It doesn't matter if it is 1st Edition Henty books from England (been there, done that), or Disney toys he wants to get for Chantel, he has this thing about complete sets. I don't. It doesn't bother me if I don't have a whole set of anything. Which saves him a ton of money. I mean, I can find one plate, and cherish it, I don't have to have the whole entire set.
Well, I'm pretty tired of looking at my boys' bedroom about now, although we have most of it done. I have a stack of books, some are tempting me to put on Etsy, b/c I know they are something altered artists use, but....I'll wait and see what he says. They may be from a collection, like the Heloise something or others art work in the little Golden books, however I love those, too!
Well, we're now taking a break, and we're going swimming!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Clatskanie Bluegrass & Quilt Show Fun!!

Well, it was too hectic for me to get pictures of our local festivities- the Clatskanie Bluegrass Festival and Annual Quilt Show that was this weekend, (got them from clatscom) but what a good time! I didn't drag everything Kristin and I had to the Quilt Show crafter's fair, (Kristin wasn't going to be there, and I knew I'd be tired!), but, I did quickly sell out of everything I baked, YES!!! I could have sold more, but sometimes it's hard to tell how much will sell, how busy it will be, etc.
Between the estate sales, the Library book sale, the Bluegrass, and the Quilt Show, it was a pretty full weekend in Clatskanie. For such a small town, we sure do have a lot of events, it seems to me!
Tomorrow, we've got to get up early and get the outside stuff done in a hurry. It's supposed to be hot, which I love, and we won't want to work hard in the heat. The kids will be stacking firewood & I'll be weeding and tilling the garden. Then we can all swim the rest of the day, and drink raspberry lemonade.
I got really attached to the strawberry and raspberry lemonade they had at Burgerville, so we've been making our own, probably a lot less sugar anyway, and it is sooooo good! I need to call a friend who is letting me have some of her apples are her huge old tree, and see when they'll be ready, and that will be sooooo good. I love fresh apples. I love real apples! The ones in the store are usually tasteless. I love a crispy, sweet-tart apple, and I'm looking forward to canning applesauce, pie filling, and making apple cider. Cider usually calls for a party, you know, the guys have to crank the press, although every year they talk about how easy it would be to put a motor on it LOL, so it serves them right to have to crank the handle!
I've been looking for a crispy dill pickle recipe. My dill pickles are great tasting, but just not as crunch as the ones from the store. A friend told me about something called "Pickle Crisp", and I'm wanting to see what is actually in it, and if I want to can my pickles with it. It seems like canning comes on like a flood, you have to hurry and get it in jars, but it looks so gorgeous when it's done! It seems to me like you look at it on the shelf, at least I do, and think, "It's canned work", you know what I mean, like the work is bottled up in that jar, it keeps, you remember it, all the labor of love, right there in the jar, sealed. Jar after jar after jar of beautiful work, stuff God gave us to keep sustain us through that cold weather. OK, I'm wandering, it's after midnight, and I've got to get up early. I'm so glad Randy makes the coffee!!!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Less than a hour left in the day.....Can I get more done??

Gosh, it's been a busy day! I got up EARLYer than usual this morning to go to an estate sale. I actually went to two this week, and did I find some neat stuff. The sale today was IMO overpriced, but I did find some neat smalls that I really liked, that evidentally they didn't put much stock in, good for ME! The sale this morning was actually in a garage, we get there early, they take numbers, then let probably 20 people into a garage with 4 rows of tables to go through! I dislike it when they put an ebay printout letting you know how much you'd have to pay through ebay, so they're charging that. The least they could do is put more than one printout showing that not every one of those things sales for that price.
But oh well, I did find some cute stuff! I found two different sets of vintage rubber stamps, letters, which I liked. Also, in the stamp box were a few sets of Olive Oyle and Popeye stamps and Tear???? I hadn't heard of him, and Whimpy. Those were kind of neat. I found a bunch of S&H Greenstamps, and stampbooks, plus some silver dollar grocery store ones. Some vintage aprongs, I'll have to hurry and put the scarecrow apron on my Etsy right away for fall. Found a bunch of playing cards, a 1950s Christmas ornament, great for my collection, and you never have enough cheese boxes, right?? An old pink clipboard I thought was cute. I loved these little pink birds that go on Birthday cakes!
The other estate sale I got stuff from was even better! 5!!! sets of Fisher Prices play family sets from the 60s and 70s, really nice ones, 3 with their boxes! They took care of the toys, too! Mixed in with the pieces of people and accesories was a surprise of some really neat Tootsie Toys that I was more than happy to find. A cute little FP Tip Toe Turtle, in good condition, still has the box! A FP Circus set, although I'll need to replace the clowns and a few other pieces. I found a tin Farm Barn which was kinda cool. I found a few vintage games, and even a bike! The Coca Cola tray was kind neat. One of those weeks that makes you love a good sale! I've never had a weakness for shopping in the malls too much, but garage sales and estate sales and stuff like that, yep, I love.

When I got home, I got started with baking my bread for the Quilt Show Bazaar tomorrow during the Bluegrass Festival here in Clatskanie. I got 32 loaves of Finnish cardamom bread baked and a huge pan of marionberry coffeecakes. Am I tired, yes. Am I fatigued?, yes! Do I fall right to sleep when I'm fatigued? NO! But I'm getting there and by midnight I'm going to be in that bed, getting some sleep before I have to get up and go do that show. It will be fun seeing all the quilts around town and in the park where I'll be, and the bluegrass I'll get to go relax and enjoy afterwards. Well, better "git".