Thursday, March 28, 2013

A Happy Easter!!!

Gentle Friends, I had every intention of showing an update of Elizabeth and some polished brass, but my camera is sitting on the dinning room table so I am snap-less!  However I did not want to pass up a chance to send you some Happy Easter Greetings!!!

I'll be off tomorrow for a long three day weekend and back bright and early Monday morning, thanks for stopping by, do stop again!!!

Take care,

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Making Rugelach

Gentle Friends thanks for all the kind comments and emails about Elizabeth, still lovin' her and the dark green silk!!

I wanted to talk a bit about making rugelach.  I started off as i always do with a wild hair of an idea, I had been thinking about making this cookie for the longest time.  it is one of my favorites, but I was totally intimidated for some reason about getting it in gear and just baking up some. 

  - egg washed and sprinkled with raw sugar waiting for baking...... - 

 I have no idea why I was so reticent, but I was.  So I did a search on the ever wondrous Internet and come across a recipe on a Blog called The Crepes of Wrath.  This Blog is a great one for some super recipes and fun reading, and Sydney has easy to follow instructions and some great pictures of the steps to follow.  I did learn some things as I went along, that I will put into play the next time I make some - and there will be a next time.  I think the biggest changes I made were, when I made the strawberry filling I used a immersion blender to make it very smooth, I also chopped up the apricot jam very fine with the walnuts.  Another important point... I would also roll out the dough much thinner so that they would be less plump and more crescent like.

  - cooling on wire racks, they are just yummy warm from the oven!! -

I think these cookies would lend themselves to almost any kind of filling - even a savory one.... like a nice Gorgonzola/date.... or just a really strong cheddar.  Since the dough is not sweet I think they can go either way.

I would totally encourage you to make these - I made the dough on Saturday and let it sit in the refrigerator over night,  I also made the strawberry filling on Staurday -   On Sunday it was just a matter of rolling out the dough and baking -

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

Take care,

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

A Quick Elizabeth Update...

Gentle Friends I got a snaperoo of Elizabeth last night - and the progress I am making....

This second medallion seems to be stitching up a bit quicker than the one below, go figure.

I spent the majority of the evening cleaning brass, specifically a really old brass trash can that belonged to my grandfather and sat in his little library, and was another piece I had sent out here from my mom's.  I have never seen it not completely dull with tarnish, but I am determined to get it cleaned up.  I will show a before and after snap once I have it done.  For all the time I put into rubbing and polishing off decades of tarnish I am only about a 1/4 of the way to the finish

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

Take care,

Monday, March 25, 2013

Thrifting and Baking

Gentle Friends the weekend was just lovely here by the Bay.  Great weather - bright and sunny with a brisk little breeze and just a touch of fog in the evenings!!  Perfect in my opinion and what keeps me here.... or one of the reasons I stay!!

With only two little days it seems that I got quite a bit done - on Saturday we did our usual early morning grocery shopping, starting off with a cup of coffee and scones at Starbucks.  Then it was on to the Thrift Shops and Estate Sales..... I knew I had an appointment with an art restorer in the afternoon so I had to be brisk with my thrifting.  

Even with a short amount of time I found a few treasures....

From the back..... I found this great little platter at an Estate Sale, by Johnson Brothers in the "Vintage" pattern I just love those big leaves, sitting on the platter is a great little sterling tea diffuser, after I've had a go at it with the silver polish, it started of coal black!!  The two books are from a set of three done in 1940 and have some super illustrations, and the little contemporary St Nicholas Icon was only a couple of dollars and I just had to have him.

I made it to the art conservators with my painting, it is one from the group of paintings I got from my mom's Estate, it was in desperate need of a good cleaning - I'll show you some before and after snaps once I get it back in a month or so.   he did some test spots and the clean spots were like night and day difference.

Late in the day I made some pastry for some rugelach - these are one of my top 10 favorite cookies.  I have only ever bought them and never tried to make them.  Well, home made are a 1000 times better than anything I have ever bought.  I made two kinds, strawberry and apricot/walnut.  Here's a snap...

I'll talk a little more about them tomorrow and show an update on Elizabeth - it's a busy Monday morning here so I'll sign off for today.  Thanks for stopping by - do stop again!!!!

Take care,

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Progress on Elizabeth

Gentle Friends I said I was going to show a picture of Elizabeth and show I will.....


.... it is very difficult to get a picture of the colour of the silk and the linen - and - not have it look so dark.  As you can see I am working my way back up - and although I usually cross each stitch as i go along - especially when using over-dyed silk - this "Elizabethan Green" Gloriana has such little variation that it is easier to just single stitch and then go back - the Belle Soie "Briar Patch" has a bit more variation so the brown i am crossing each as I go along.  I do love the quirky uneven stitching that she did and am following it along without "fixing" or making things more "even."

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

Take care,

Monday, March 18, 2013

We Have a Winner and Some "Peep's"

Gentle Friends, I had the Hag Claw and the Who Hounds draw a name from the BoD (Bowl of Destiny) yesterday.  

I used a stoneware Butter crock I found at my mom's for the bowl....  and out of the BoD ............

............ out came Maggee's name!!  I have sent off an email for shipping info - Thank you all for entering.  I am thinking up another Drawing soon so stay tuned.

Over the weekend we went shopping, and bought some new shoes and picked up some Easter treats to send off to the nieces and nephews.  Of course I picked up some treats for us - and here's a snap..

In my Easter bowl - that I have out each year - I filled with gummy AND sour rabbits - I forgot who made these...  might be a Wonka treat - but, boy are they good - I do love gummy and sour!!  I also found these Peep's in the piles of Peeps available.  Now, I know that they are not to every one's taste, but I love a good Peep!

I also love that they these are 60th Anniversary Peep's - I pulled out a little dessert plate that looks like spring to me - and sets off these sparkly marshmallow birds.  They have a hint of a vanilla taste to them, and the colorful sprinkles and just that, sparkly colour, no flavour.  But, they are fun and do say Happy Easter!!!

There you go - the weekend, I also worked a little on Elizabeth, and will post a snap in the morning.  Thanks for stopping by, do stop again!

Take care,

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Miss Elizabeth and a Flick

Gentle Friends thanks so much for stopping by - I wanted to show my very slow movement on Elizabeth - She is coming along nicely and I am really enjoying the silks.  Here's a snap - 

It's hard to see the differences in the two darker colours, the green and the brown as they are so similar in tone, but the little pops of rose are really nice.  This is the beginning of the lower left corner and once I finish up the lower left motif I'll work back up and get to some of the letters.

Last night the flick` from Netfilx was "Skyfall" - 2012 - the 23rd James Bond film....  

... and here's the "Official Full Music Video" - and really super song that won Adele the Oscar for Best Song!!

I was a fun film, but I totally enjoy the James Bond films... some more than others but as a group they are all pretty good!!   If you like James Bond then you are sure to like this film.

That's about it for today sports fans - remember only one more day to get you name into the BoD for the St Patrick's Day Drawing.....

Take care,

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Computer Melt Down....

Gentle friends I had every intention of posting today - I had my camera, with some snaps of Elizabeth - but got to work and no screen image, no connectivity - no nuthin'!!  We are back up now, but super busy and just not enough time to download and post...... and I'll post again in the morning.

Take care,

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Long Time No Post

Gentle Friends, when I last posted I mentioned I was going to share some family pieces of needlework I have...  and although I had every intention of posting right away - it seems that one thing or another just kept me from it... forgetting my camera , then may battery was all wonky, I have just every excuse out there, but never mind, today I have the snaps, and now I am going to share.....

This large piece is one from a set of three motto's, from kits, my mom stitched in the late 70's.  She really enjoyed working on printed linen.  I find that type of stitching a bit on the messy side, and prefer the even stitches of counted cross stitch.  I think it was the primitive, or more homespun look that my mom liked about this stitching.

This is another piece my mom did, she got this kit in Old Sturbridge Village when we were the on a family vacation.  I remember this vacation so well, and so not only do I have those vacation memories but this super piece.  I also remember when my mom had it framed...  the framer couldn't make the church "not" look wonky and keep the lettering straight, so they opted to keep the church straight.

My little vignette here includes a small piece of needlepoint my mom did, in the 70's.  She preferred to do needlepoint when we went on vacation, and I remember ongoing WIP's that only got attention during the summer when in the car going somewhere - we three kids squawking in the back and mom and dad in the front - dad driving and mom stitching away on something. 

Same vignette, different piece...  this piece was stitched by my maternal grand mother in the 1930's.  I don't know much else about it - I really like the soft faded colours that it has taken on over the years.

This quilt was made by maternal great grandmother in about 1897 or so - it has yellowed and is not in the best condition - with lots of fraying.  The Wahumpa hound jumped up and off in the flick of this picture - I think he was just checking out something "new"....Here's a close up of some quilting that my grand mother at the age on 10 or so did on this piece..

 It's a little man with a cane - all the other baskets have just three plain leaves in this spot, except this one.  I wonder how I would clean this quilt or have it preserved????  any suggestions from the Blog World???

  This footstool/slipper box has a piece of needlepoint on the lid that my great Aunt Mary did for my great grandfather - he kept his slippers inside.  It has seen better days, and at some point I will take it off so that it doesn't deteriorate any more and stitch something else for the top.
That's a tour of some of my family's needlework.  For my part I am slowly stitching away on Elizabeth Shepard - I'll have a snaperoo tomorrow of the  progress.

Don't forget about the "St Patrick's Drawing" - you have until Friday afternoon to sign up.

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

Take care,

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Getting Some Needlework Back

Gentle Friends thanks so much for your enthusiasm and super comments for my little St. Patrick's Gift-a-Way.  I do love the drawings and giftings in the Blog world they are such fun - and the hunt for Belleek in my weekend travels is totally fun!!

Breaking up my mom's house and dispersing her things is odd as I have said before.  I am still unpacking stuff and trying to find new homes for the things I had shipped out her to me - some of the things I just was not going to toss into the Estate Sale or Salvation Army pile - things that especially were not going was the needlework things I made or that my mom, grandmother and great grandmother made. 

Today I wanted to show the three cross stitch things I kept from all the pieces I gave my mom. 

This I made specifically for her - since she was such a super gardener and really liked angels I thought this was totally appropriate.

This is one I stitched many years ago, and never had framed, then my mom said something about dolls and country themed stuff, and so this seemed to fit in, and I had it framed up and she hung this in the breakfast room were it fit nicely.  It was stitched so long ago (notice the year 1986) that I was still stitching on Aida cloth.

 and this piece I worked on while I was visiting one time - and she really liked it, and sort of nagged a bit about it...  I surprised her with it as a Christmas present.  It was also a fun piece to stitch!!

I post some other needlework things tomorrow that I rescued and have now become the custodian of for my lifetime.

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

Take care,

Monday, March 4, 2013

A St. Patricks Drawing

Gentle Friends the weekend was probably the most normal one I've Have in a few weeks - we went out thrifting... nothing to buy, and I certainly don't need a thing!! - went to dinner with Friends on Friday and Saturday nights - I love it when someone else cooks and cleans!!   - and - even got a little stitching in here and there!!  However, I also had a frog or two yesterday from the little stitching, so I didn't get as much in as I took out, but thems the breaks sometimes.

A few months back I found a really sweet piece of Belleek porcelain - and thought then it would make a super Gift-a-Way in March.  I also picked up a copy of "The Quiet Man" directed by John Ford and starring John Wayne and Maureen O'Hara - one of my favorite films - and a great treat to see around St Patrick's Day.  My St Patrick's Gift-a-Way is totally Irish - a great film and a shamrock covered jug!!

The piece of Belleek is  a small jug shape with a 2nd green mark indicating it was made between 1955 and 1965 (but I could be wrong about the dating of the mark those green marks all kinda look the same to me)

Now, anyone from anywhere can enter this Gift-a-Way, so long as I can get in contact with you at the end and you can receive mail - easy peasy.  Just leave your entry in the Comments on this Post Only and that's about all you have to do!!  Since St Patrick's falls on a Sunday, I'll have the "Hag Claw" and "Who Hounds" do the drawing on the 17th and announce the Winner on Monday, 3/18.  You have two weeks to get your name into the drawing as I will close it out on Friday afternoon, 3/15.

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

Take care,

Friday, March 1, 2013

A New Candle

Gentle Friends thanks so much for you kind words about the blueberry bar recipe - it is a great one for all the berries that will be coming into the markets - soon!!

The other day on the way home we stopped off in the Castro - at the Walgreen's to pick up a prescription.  Since most of the parking close to Castro and 18th Streets is metered - and we didn't have any change with us or in the car, we had to park quite a walk away.  Which really sounds worse than it was, the day was nice and walking is good.  Now, where this is all leading is that we walked up Castro and past a newish shop that I had never stopped in before - but since we were on the hoof, so to speak, we stopped in and found a super shop.  It's call ZGO - Candles and Home Fragrance.  It is a beautiful shop filled with all sorts of things, but they specialize in "luxury" candles and some super French soaps.  I am a sucker for hand made soap and just love a good French soap, one of my favorites is Pre de Provence - they are big bars of great soap, and my favorite of all they make is, White Gardenia - so of course I picked a bar up.  While there we perused the candles and were introduced to a brand I had never heard of - Cire Trudon - one of the oldest french candle makers, circa 1643.  They are displayed on a long table and each candle is kept under it's on individual bell jar - you lift to smell the candle - this keeps the lovely odours for overwhelming you.  So we stood around smelling candles - some where just over the top and super and others not so good, but that is a personal preference.  In the end we opted for the candle called "Ernesto" - it fills the room when lit with fragrance!!

There is our candle lit and in front of my engraving of the Chestnut Grove at Versailles - it do love the French and French things!!

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

Take care,

Memorial Day

  "Our obligations to our country never cease but with our lives."   John Adams