Thursday, February 28, 2008

Quotes of the Day

"One of the most dangerous forms of human error is forgetting what one is trying to achieve." - Paul Nitze

"God wisely designed the human body so that we can neither pat our own backs nor kick ourselves too easily." - Unknown

"Remember, happiness doesn't depend upon who you are or what you have; it depends solely on what you think." - Dale Carnegie

"Learn to be silent. Let your quiet mind listen and absorb. - Pythagoras

Monday, February 25, 2008

Bake Sale Basket Ball Cookies

We had a weekend full of youth basketball games. The Season is almost over. It has been so much fun to watch. I made these basketball cookies for the concession stand.

A Thrifty Find: Brass Fish for the Pond

I am very anxious for spring. I am thinking ahead and will be placing this big heavy brass gold fish near the pond edge. I think it would be cool to turn him into a fountain.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Baking: Tea Bread

Jasmine tea, spices, almonds, and fruit peels and juices give this quick bread and unusual flavor and a delightful fragrance.

1/4 cup (4 Tablespoons) butter
3/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1 egg
1 teaspoon each grated lemon and lime peel
1 Tablespoon grated orange peel
3 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon each cinnamon and ginger
1 teaspoon each baking powder and soda
3/4 cup tangerine and orange juice
1/2 cup steeped jasmine tea
1/2 cups coarsely chopped blanched almonds

Cream butter and brown sugar; beat in egg and grated peels. Sift flour, measure, then sift again with salt, cinnamon, ginger, baking powder, and soda. Add dry ingredients to the creamed mixture alternately with the tangerine or orange juice and tea. Stir in the almonds. Spoon into greased 9x5 inch loaf pan. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 50 minutes,or until lightly browned and a toothpick when inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a rack; cut in thin slices. Makes 1 loaf.

Backyard visitors

Seven hungry deer have been visiting our backyard lately. I enjoy seeing them now but in the near future when plants and shrubs start showing signs of life I will probably let the dogs out to scare them away.

Making: Seed Starting Mix

I found this recipe for Seed-Starting Mix on the You Grow Girl website. I might try this to start some seeds if I can easily find everything for a good price.

"These are the ratios I prefer. If you don’t need a huge batch you can use this as a basis for choosing a store-bought seed-starting mix. Always read the label and look for an ingredients list. Most popular brands have chemical fertilizers added that are unnecessary and will defeat the purpose of growing organically.

To be clear, seeds do not require any fertilizers until they produce their first set of “true leaves”. In basic terms this means the second set of leaves you will see. The first leaves that appear are called “seed leaves” and feed the seedling until the first “true leaves” appear."

* 1 part peat or coir (Coir is a sustainable peat substitute made from coconut husks. Peat is mined from marshland, destroying natural habitats. When you can, use coir.)
* 1 part perlite (popped volcanic ash that creates good drainage.)
* 1 part vermiculite (water absorbing material made from the mineral mica)

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Snowy Day Cookies


1/2 c. butter
1/2 c. milk
4 tbsp. cocoa
2 c. sugar
1/2 c. peanut butter
3 c. quick oats

Microwave butter, milk, cocoa and sugar in large bowl on high for 3 minutes. Stir, microwave for 2 more minutes. Remove from heat. Add peanut butter, stir until melted. Add oats and stir. Drop by spoonfuls onto cookie sheet covered with waxed paper. Refrigerate until cool. Makes 24 large cookies. This one is easy enough for kids to do.

Seed List

Like the musician, the painter, the poet, and the rest, the true lover of flowers is born, not made. And he is born to happiness in this vale of tears, to a certain amount of the purest joy that earth can give her children, joy that is tranquil, innocent, uplifting, unfailing. Given a little patch of ground, with time to take care of it, with tools to work it and seeds to plant in it, he has all he needs.
-- Celia Thaxter (1835-1894)

Dreaming of Warmer days ahead- Here is a look at all the plants grown from seed last year. This "never ending" winter weather gave me time to get my seed order placed - Every year It gets a little bigger since I have trouble deciding what to get.

SAGE Salvia officinalis
THYME Thymus vulgaris
Giant Hyacinthbean
Yellow Datura Horn of Plenty
Purple Datura Horn of Plenty
Ipomoea hederacea IVY-LEAF MORNING-GLORY
Ipomoea nil HATSU ARASHI Ipomoea purpurea BLACK MORNING-GLORY
Tropaeolum majus MAHOGANY GLEAM
Cheiranthus cheiri WALLFLOWER FAIR LADY
Consolida ambigua DEEP BLUE LARKSPUR
Coreopsis tinctoria PLAINS COREOPSIS
Dianthus caryophyllus ‘EARLY DWARF VIENNA’
Nicotiana alata ‘LIME GREEN’
Nicotiana suaveolens SWEET-SCENTED TOBACCO
Petunia x hybrida GARDEN PETUNIA
Scabiosa atropurpurea SWEET SCABIOUS
Tropaeolum majus ALASKA NASTURTIUM
Salvia scabiosifolia SCABIOUS LEAVED SAGE
Tanacetum niveum SNOW TANSY
Campanula medium CANTERBURY BELLS
Campanula americana TALL BELLFLOWER
Lupinus polyphyllus BRICK RED RUSSELL LUPINS
Abelmoschus manihot SUNSET HIBISCUS
Abelmoschus sp. SILK FLOWER
Corydalis sempervirens ROCK HARLEQUIN
Convolvulus tricolor ROYAL ENSIGN
Cosmos bipinnatus COSMOS DAZZLER
Dimorphotheca sinuata WINTER CAPE MARIGOLD
Impatiens glandulifera HARDY ANNUAL IMPATIENS
Alcea rosea nana DWARF HOLLYHOCK
Petunia hybrida TALL WHITE PETUNIA
Swiss Chard: Rhubarb
Glacier Tomato
Sioux Tomato
Aunt Ginny's Purple Tomato
Pineapple Tomato
Ida Gold Tomato
Benary's Giant Red Zinnia
Canary Bird Zinnia
Royal Purple Zinnia
Daffodil zinnia
double parsley
italian flat leaf parsley
orange king zinnia
sweet genovese basil

Monday, February 04, 2008

In February

Rich meanings of the prophet-Spring adorn,
Unseen, this colourless sky of folded showers,
And folded winds; no blossom in the bowers;
A poet's face asleep in this grey morn.
Now in the midst of the old world forlorn
A mystic child is set in these still hours.
I keep this time, even before the flowers,
Sacred to all the young and the unborn.

To all the miles and miles of unsprung wheat,
And to the Spring waiting beyond the portal,
And to the future of my own young art,
And, among all these things, to you, my sweet,
My friend, to your calm face and the immortal
Child tarrying all your life-time in your heart.

Alice Meynell

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