Saturday, August 31, 2013

Photos From My Week

The first of our mums to bloom. I just loved the color. It has been fun to watch the blossoming of  different flowers in the gardens around the house. Each month I am surprised by another beautiful, colorful flower that the previous owner of our home planted.

Adam has begun to stack our firewood in the garage . It gives us a nice cozy feeling to prepare for the winter ahead.

Laundry I hung out on my line in the side yard by the old garage. Unfortunately the old garage is rather dilapidated, but Adam is planning to tear it down come spring.

I enjoy hanging my laundry outside, it always smells wonderful, like fresh air.

This week I finished reading "Exit Betty" by Grace Livingston Hill. Isn't that a great dust jacket? I thought it looked very dramatic and exciting. "Exit Betty" was quite exciting, I found it hard to put down!

 Wednesday of this week my mom, sisters and I visited one of our favorite little Mennonite fabric shops. While there I purchased these three new fabrics. I thought they would make some lovely aprons for my Etsy shop.

A BLT I made for Adam on homemade sour dough bread. I have had so much fun experimenting with sour dough bread. I will probably post more about it in the future. I made my own starter, and I must say it was a lot easier than I had expected.

And to end this post a photo of the little scrubbie man I purchased Wednesday while fabric shopping. He is waiting in my cupboard until I encounter a truly hard to scrub pan. But until then I have to chuckle each time I open my cupboard and see his smiling face. : )

"The earth is the LORD'S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein." Psalm 24:1

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

New Avonlea Inspired Items

This past week I have been busy finishing up some items that put me in mind of "Anne of Green Gables", and the other wonderful Lucy Maud Montgomery books. Lucy Maud Montgomery had a special way of describing people, homes and scenes in her stories. So many times when I think back on one her books I feel that I can almost imagine having been there; the braided rugs on the floor, the large open fire place to read by, a cat curl up on the cushioned seat of a rocking chair,the smell of apples in the orchard or roses in the early summer.

So here is my attempt at adding some "Avonlea charm" to every day life. : )

My mom was so kind as to help me photograph my new tapestry knitting bag . She also inspired me to sew this bag. Years ago mom sewed several knitting bags for knitting shops. The design of this bag is one that my mom and sister Hannah designed.

I named this apron "Diana's Ruffled Apron" as the fabric and design made me think of an apron Diana Barry would have worn in the movie "Anne of Green Gables".

This is one of my favorite apron patterns! It is the Edwardian apron pattern from Sense and Sensibility. I was also really please with the sage green calico with pink roses I found.

A lovely oval pickle dish! I found this in my travels to estate sales and barn sales. I thought it was so pretty I could not resist purchasing it, but then discovered it did not really go with my blue and white themed kitchen.

And last but not least a copy of Tennyson's poems! For those days when you want to walk through the woods reading "The Lady of Shallot". : )

Saturday, August 24, 2013

The Lost Art of Letter Writing

In today's society of e-mail, text and the like, writing letters really has become a lost art. Recently I read a devotional by Dr. David Jeremiah from his book "Discovery" that I really enjoyed and thought I would share it!

"Paul.... to all who are in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints." Romans 1:1, 7

It's no accident that God chose the written form of epistles or letters to convey the teachings of the Christen life to the earliest believers. Paul, Peter, John, Jude and others wrote personal letters to churches and individuals, and this body of correspondence makes up the richest source of our understanding of the Christian way and walk. Paul could have compiled volumes of sermons or books of systematic teachings. But instead the LORD lead him to use the medium of letter writing to leave a lasting legacy for all of Christian history. Letters are personal, readable, informal, enduring, and quotable.

Though our correspondence isn't inspired in the scriptural sense, don't underestimate the power of the written note. It's easy to pat someone on the back and say, "Good job." We need to fequently do that. But there is great value in taking the time to write encouraging words. They are durable and distance-proof.

Rediscover the lost art of letter writing.

Letter writing, in its ideal form, is really nothing else but indirect conversation. C.H. Charles


May you have a blessed weekend!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Song and Sewing

Thought I would share this lovely song. It was a favorite during my growing up years. I have been enjoying the music of Annie Herring today as I work on sewing some new items for Lilacs in Spring. Hope you are all having a lovely day!

" And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." Romans 8:28

Friday, August 9, 2013

Blueberries and Raspberries

Last week mom, Hannah and I visited our favorite blueberry farm! I must admit that blueberries are my favorite berry and one of my most favorite foods. Each summer I look forward to the time we spend picking blueberries. The farm we visit is so lovely and there are just fields of blueberries everywhere! The blueberries are generally very large.

                           Mom and Hannah picking blueberries. Also sampling a few as they go. : )

          Here I am picking berries too. I think that the blueberries are especially delicious this year!

                                                                     A beautiful blueberry field.

The view across from where we were picking. The weather was simply perfect that day! The sky was so blue and pretty. It was wonderful.

 My blueberries ready to be sorted and frozen. It is truly a blessing to see the bags of blueberries in my freezer. I know this winter it will be a real delight to bake a pie from these berries, like a taste of summer!

The farm we visited also had red raspberries available for picking. We picked a couple quarts for me, and I was able to make a batch of red raspberry jam. I made mine using the inversion method as I do not own a canner yet. I was really pleased that all my jars sealed, since I have found this method a little less reliable than processing the jars in the canner.

 But at the end I made sure I saved out enough berries to bake a pie, plus some extra just to enjoy on their own.

I thought that the blueberries and raspberries made for a great combination. My sister Rachel shared this quick and easy pie crust recipe with me. Over the years I had always made the classic Crisco pie crust recipe, but this recipe is very tasty and easy to make. It does not lend itself well to rolling with a rolling pin, so I do find making a top crust a bit of a challenge, but a crumb topping is great when you are in hurry. Also,  I like to make my crust with sunflower oil so in the long run this crust is healthier than the Crisco recipe.

How have you been enjoying this delightful season of berries? Have you made any jams or pies?

Thursday, August 8, 2013

My Wedding Gown

 To design my wedding gown I used three patterns and combined the elements of each design that I liked. I used McCall's 4713 for the skirt. I liked the train and fullness. For the bodice I used Simplicity 9829 but used the sweetheart neckline from Simplicity2174.

In this photo you can see the bustle. I made a European bustle which ties up under the skirt through a series of carefully placed rings. Pinning the bustle was a little tricky. I had only ever pinned a bustle while a gown was being fitted on to the wearer of the gown, in this case I had to pin the bustle while my dress form was wearing the gown. It took a little while for me to adjust the height of the dress form just right. : ) Nonetheless I was pleased with the outcome.

Here is a close up of the sash front which I hand embroidered and beaded with tiny pearls.

And the back of the sash closed with ribbon flowers I made from organdy ribbon and satin ribbon. It was difficult to capture the details since it is white-on-white. : )

Since I was quite young I had always dreamed of sewing my wedding gown. It was a fun experience I will never forget!