Monday, April 30, 2012


Friday evening, I went to an antique show with my Sis-in-Law. It was a fun show... small, but with so much to see, it took us a couple of hours of browsing before we made it to the last booth. We came home with a few treasures each, and managed to make it onto a local news show.
Jen can be spotted at 1:03, leaning over a table looking through a tray of typewriter keys; she's the one with long hair and a grey sweater.

Then, at 1:39, I leave my spot a little further down the table, to walk over and show her something. About halfway there, I realize that the news camera is pointing in my direction, and get a sheepish grin on my face.

At 2:19, my feet, legs, and the bottom of my bag are featured as backdrop to a Little Toidy, then pan up... there's the back of my head.

A moment of fame for the farmgirl!

Speaking of moments of fame... check out the new listings in my friend Nora's etsy shop. A Mama/Daughter/Dolly modeling adventure for the Twist girls! Nora does beautiful work... immaculate sewing technique and perfect seams... way better than I could ever do on my machine, let me tell you. She has just ventured out into the world of selling online, with a selection of aprons, pillowcases, and project bags. If you are in the market for any of the above, I highly recommend her work! She is in the process of making a custom apron for me, based on a favorite apron in my pantry, but with some sampler-themed fabrics. I can hardly wait to show it to you!

And finally... I give you a moment of cozy-ness... just me, wool socks, slippers, coffee, and a toasty fire in my new woodstove.
If only I didn't have a mile-long to-do list today. I'd sit right there all. day. long.

Friday, April 27, 2012


"Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer. Go some distance away because then the work appears smaller and more of it can be taken in at a glance and a lack of harmony and proportion is more readily seen."

Quote attributed to Leonardo da Vinci.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Just Clouds

One magical half hour spent all alone on my upper deck. Just me, my camera, and clouds

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Gone Fishin'

If you ever drop by on a warm Sunday afternoon and no one comes when you holler, its probably because we've gone fishin'.
Just past the kennel and a few gnarly trees, over a strand of barbed wire and along an old logging road you'll find our special spot.
Not owned by us, but with permission from the neighbor, we love to sit beside this old pond dug out decades ago, in the midst of forest.
Native Rainbow Trout has naturalized, and we're sure that there are some big old Grandaddy specimens out lurking in the deep water.
What kid (or grownup for that matter) doesn't dream of having just such a fishing hole within walking distance of their house?
We dream of one day being able to annex this little parcel onto our own property. Maybe... someday...
For now we're happy to have permission.
The Kindergartener has been coming here with his Daddy for a few years now, but for Little Miss, this was the first trip.
So it was appropriate that the first catch of the day by Mr. Pro was a stick.
Followed closely by a really scary fish caught by none other than the Novice.
The little guy had barely gone back into the water when the Pader Familias caught a dandy.
And the Boy caught a couple of littles.
I even got to cast a few lines before it was time to head back home.
Just a hop, skip and a jump back to cast iron, sizzling butter, and pan-fried dinner.
Mmm... Hm.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Celebrating 40

There was warm sunshine and family.
And lemonade.
And there was Paella...
I didn't take many photos of the relaxing and playing... I didn't get any photos of the adventure down to the Beaver dam.
I was too busy having fun making a ginormous pan of yummy food.
The view from my station was lovely though.
And I was happy knowing that my Farmboy was in his element, enjoying himself greatly, and that he was about to be fed the birthday meal of his wishes.
Isn't it pretty?
The Paella certainly shut the conversation down for awhile... Its serious business you know, this eating of good food.

How I made the Paella this time (compare to last time):

Put 14 cups of chicken broth and a large pinch of saffron in a stock pot on the stovetop in the kitchen over medium-high heat.
Heated paella pan over coals on the grill.

Browned 3 pounds of chicken tenders in olive oil.
Added 8 cups of chopped veggies (2 each yellow onion, green pepper, red pepper).
Cooked until softened.
Added 32 ounce can of diced tomatoes with juice.
Seasoned with salt and pepper.
Added 3 cups of brown rice.
Stirred and cooked for a few minutes until the rice was becoming transparent.
Added the piping-hot chicken broth and saffron mixture.
Let the whole concoction sit and simmer until the liquid had nearly been absorbed (about an hour), checking the bottom every so often to be sure it wasn't burning.
Near the end of cook time, I added 8 pre-grilled sliced Isernio's Chicken Italian Sausages.

It was very close to perfect this time... the sausage was a great addition, and the seasoning was just right. Farmboy still thinks that there is something missing, so there may be a little more tweaking next time. We'll see... everyone else thought it was just right.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Much Better

Saturday morning dawned bright, clear, and warm. Perfect chimney-overhaul weather, if you ask me.
A giant shop vac was installed in the house, drowning out my bluegrass and the bird song wafting in through the windows. But did I mind? Not one bit.
Our chimney guy's assistant is from Tonga. The South Pacific was strong and lovely in his voice. I was straining my ears to listen every time he spoke.
Bricks flew for awhile, as our old flat-top was removed so the new liner could go in.
And then... our Brother-in-Law arrived just in time to help wheel the new stove into the house.
Four strong backs to lift, one nimble soul to get the dolly out of the way... grunt... heave...
We had to pull our giant braided rug out of the room to make it easier to roll the stove in.
Now I have to get the rug vacuumed front and back (it is currently rolled up on the back deck), and figure out how to evict the moths that were living in a section under the couch before the rains come back tomorrow. Wish me luck!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Can't Wait

The last time we had a woodstove fire to warm the house was on March 2nd. Since then, it has been a constant battle to keep this house warm without the kind of natural heat that we are accustomed to. Electric heat just doesn't do the trick, especially when one is reminded every time the furnace kicks on, that one is now paying through the teeth for the privelege of a little comfort.

Not to mention the fact that for the last 6 weeks we have been staring at this:
On cold rainy days like today, its all I can do to keep myself from counting down the seconds until Saturday.
Because thats the day our chimney guy comes out to fix the damage and install this:
The most beautiful 500 pounds of steel and iron I have ever seen.

I should probably mention that we're celebrating Farmboy's 40th birthday on Saturday too.
Skeet shooting, Paella, Apple Pie, and Ice Cream.
Because that's how he rolls.