Showing posts from February, 2015

Whole Wheat Oatmeal Raisin Bread Recipe

Way back in 1968, our little 4 room school house grew so big that we needed to move the 7th and 8th grade classes to the church basement.   We we privileged to have an amazing teacher that felt we needed to raise money for the school and at the same time, grow proficient in baking bread.  With those two goals in mind, she had us bake bread to sell.  Thus began my love of baking bread.  There have been few weeks in these 47 years of bread baking, when my hands have not kneaded bread dough !  No matter how many new recipes I try, I come back to two.  One is this Whole Wheat Oatmeal Raisin bread that I came up with many years ago.  Its a combination of two recipes we used way back in that church basement kitchen.  And the other, is a delightfully simple Amish White Bread recipe that is delicious and yet so very simple. 
I know lots of folks love their bread machines, but not me.  Don't own one and don't want one.   I like how it keeps my hands strong and I long ago adopted the hab…

Tracks In The Snow

A bit of afternoon exploring in the snow led me to several tracks in the snow...ducks, rabbits, squirrels and human.   What a fun wintry day I have had.   Now, its time to sit by the fire, next to my beloved, sip hot chamomile tea and enjoy the quiet of the evening

Hot Chocolate, Marshmallows, Knitting and Dutch Apple Pancakes

Sitting by the window, watching the snow fall once again, made me wonder about our decision to plant the garden a couple of weeks ago, but then I remind myself that we planted only the seeds we know can handle this type of late winter weather.  The stove feels good and my feet, clothed only in woolen socks, are toasty warm as they rest on the brick hearth as my knitting needles fly and the candle in the window flickers.  I don't need the candle for light, but just for its simple beauty on this cold wintry day.  How glad I will be to hear that all my children and grandchildren are snuggled in their homes.  One more to be retrieved from school and then all will be safe from the slick roads.   We have watched more than one tow truck pass by the house with a smashed car on it.  
Emery is busy putting up a shelf in the kitchen for me to store some of my canned goods on while I knit and will later get a bit of sewing done.   I passed by the spring fabric sitting by my machine that I purc…

Winter Beauty

Winter is the king of showmen,
Turning tree stumps into snowmen
And houses into birthday cakes
And spreading sugar over lakes.
Smooth and clean and frosty white,
The world looks good enough to bite.
That’s the season to be young,
Catching snowflakes on your tongue.
Snow is snowy when it’s snowing,
I’m sorry it’s slushy when it’s going.
~Ogden Nash

Tasha Tudor On Snow

Quotes by Tasha Tudor

Thoughts On Being A Home Body

Great white flakes of snow are falling once again, slowing falling from Heaven with an unspeakable grace.  Each flake seems to have its own definite purpose, passing other flakes or momentarily suspended, as if to wait its turn to land.  I just saw one flake that was at least an inch in diameter !   When the wind decides to blow, the flakes just take a sideways approach to their landing.  Since I am a "home body"  I have the joy in just standing by the window for as long as I want, just watching these miraculous crystals fall from heaven.  Yes, I know that snow can be problematic, I grew up in New England and have family there so I know all about what happens when snow falls in excess, but for me, right now, its just pure beauty falling from the gray sky.   Mornings like this drive me to seek poetry, not the deep minded stuff, that you have to try to dissect line by line in hope to get a glimpse of what the poet meant when he penned his words, but the poetry of simple folks …

Snow is softly falling

This morning huge snowflakes feel softly as we started our day.  Snow in this part of Texas is always a big deal, we only get one or two snowfalls a year and last year we had no snow in our area.  The birds were flocking to the feeders by the window.  Hungry from trying to stay warm.   I got the fire going in the stove and then hurried outside to soak in the wonder of the snow.  The air felt and smelled like so many of my childhood memories of winter in Massachusetts.  I love that hushed silence that arrives with snow.  It feels like a holy moment.  I whispered a prayer of gratitude for all that is good in my life, including the joy of this snowfall. My boots creating that crunching sound in the snow.  Edgar, our resident crow, hopping from tree to tree, following me, looking puzzled with my interest in the snow.  Finally he "caw cawed" right at me and went to his feeder for breakfast.   The duck, let out of their house, run out and just as fast, run back into their house.  …

Snow On The Way

Last week I finished a Barn Bonnet to go with my red shawl that I made recently.  With the warm temperatures we were having, I assumed this barn bonnet would be put in the cedar chest until next years winter, but low and behold, winter has returned and how thankful I am for this warm wool bonnet !  Tomorrow we are due for a snow storm, anything over 1/2 inch in this part of Texas is paralyzing !  I have made several of these Barn Bonnets but when someone tells me they love it, or wish they had one, I seem to just take it off my head and give it to them, but this one I plan on keeping since it matches my Tasha Tudor shawl I made. 
Other posts about Barn Bonnets can be found at   2007 Barn Bonnet and 2011 Barn Bonnet

Wooden Spoons etc

Our friend that makes the wonderful wooden spoons has a Facebook Page where you can see what he has for sale  GLS Woodworking   please visit his page and check out the wonderful items he makes

Ice Storm

The ice pellets came in the dark of the night, tiny ping pong balls hitting the metal roof of the porch, and covering the ground in white, like snow, but just ice.  The morning arrived with frigid temperatures and the sound of car wheels spinning out at the corner of our road.  How thankful I am that we had no place we had to go.  Chores done with care and loads of wood hauled into the house, that would provide us with cozy warmth for the day.   The bird feeders have been a hub of activity.  Hungry birds needing food to keep warm.  Many of them arriving with ice on their tails.  The garden covered with a white blanket, "poor mans fertilizer" as it is often said of these late winter storms. Lets hope it is.  Warm winter tights, flannel skirt, wool knee socks and my new barn bonnet kept me warm while outside doing chores, my long wool shawl wrapped around my shoulders keeping me wrapped in comfort. I looked like someone from a century ago.  Perhaps that's where my thoughts…

Beautiful Craftsmanship

A friend of ours stopped by our house for a visit yesterday and brought some of his wooden spoons and knives that he has been making.  They are unbelievably beautiful and the craftsmanship is superb.   Gary was raised Amish and you can tell by the care and detail in his work.  Each piece is truly a work of art.  The spoons are made of mesquite, black walnut (our neighbors tree) and maple.  The mesquite knives are able to cut steak !  I tried them.  These spoons,spatulas etc are sanded so fine, you find yourself just touching them.   He sells them for a mere $15 a utensil.  If anyone is interested in purchasing some, let me know in the comment section and I will get you in contact with him.   They are spoons to last a life time.  As you may have noticed, I think they are well worth the investment.

See Saw Weather

Today is spring, but tomorrow will be ice and snow !