Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day

May we always remember freedom is not and has never been free.
To all who have served and are currently serving this country I thank you.
the little bird

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Rehydrating and Recouping

This was not the weekend I had planned.  I had a list of things I wanted to accomplish...  all great plans.

There is a stomach bug going around and unfortunately I caught it.  But today I am rejoining the land of the living.  I've watched a movie and am reclining on the sofa instead of being in flat in bed.

Today I have been well enough to feel like I should be doing something - but not well enough to actually get up and do it.  The last two days I could have cared less. 

My dear husband has held down the fort.  And today he made a beef broth vegetable soup.  After two days of eating nothing a little cup of soup was perfect.

Hope you are well and the stomach bug does NOT visit your house.
the little bird

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Rhubarb Season

This is rhubarb season.  Are you a rhubarb fan?  If so now is the cheapest time of year to buy it or if you grow your own now's the time to start putting it by...

Chopped and frozen is great for pies, crisp or kuchen.
Sauce is good for rhubarb bars, spooned over biscuits for shortcake or just in a dish for dessert.
Strawberry rhubarb jam is wonderful and stretches your strawberry crop.

Happy spring!
the little bird

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Some Fun Summer Movies

If you too like some fun clean movies here are a few worth the time.

Kit Kittredge: An American Girl

Felicity An American Girl  (this is the full movie)

Anne of Green Gables

All Creatures Great and Small



The Sandlot


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Master Food Preserver

Do you enjoy the art and science of food preservation? Would you like to develop expertise in food preservation? Consider becoming a Master Food Preserver.

What is it?
Master Food Preservers are trained and certified in food safety and preservation. They volunteer to staff the food preservation hotline, conduct workshops and demonstrations, and provide information at fairs, festivals, farmers markets and health fairs. They are knowledgeable, skilled and have practical advice for stretching your food dollars.

If you would like to find out if your state offers this opportunity to become a Master Food Preserver, contact your local Extension Office (usually listed in local government pages of the phone book under Cooperative Extension Service, Ag Extension Office and/or 4-H Office). You could also contact someone at the state university to either ask your questions or let them know of your interest.

Some great resources for home canning:

Follow the rules - don't changes the recipes. It's just not worth the risk.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Dress Form Review and Invisible Zipper

I told you I would give a review on my dress form. I think it's WONDERFUL!!

It is so nice to be able to put the piece I am working on the form to baste together so it fits me.

I am working on the grey wool skirt and the darts on the pattern are not deep enough - thus the skirt would be slouchy. I hand basted the darts to my shape and then sewed them in with the machine.

So I am very pleased with my Singer dress form.

Here is a short video on putting in an invisible zipper. This is a great tutorial and I thought I would share it on...

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Solar Eclipse

On Sunday, May 20th, the Moon will pass in front of the sun, transforming sunbeams across the Pacific side of Earth into fat crescents and thin rings of light. Remember to get your special viewing glasses and hope you enjoy the eclipse.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Dance Recital

Tonight was our eldest granddaughters dance recital.  We had a wonderful time watching all the girls from 3 yrs. to early 20's preforming.  There was jazz, hip hop, interpretive dance and beautiful ballet.  All of the costumes were darling and the ballet dresses were beautiful. 

lovely photos are public domain

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day

Mom, Mama, Mother, Ma, whatever you call her there is no one else that holds that honored and esteemed position.

I love you mom.
Happy Mother's Day

Saturday, May 12, 2012

It's Here

My dress form arrived today. I am going to love it I'm sure. I think my first project will be a skirt. I have a nice piece of grey wool that I think would look nice in an A-line skirt. The skirt in this video is straight but the lining and steps are the same. This gal does a beautiful job.


What's on the inside??

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Powdered Milk

Tootsie Rolls

1 c honey
1 t vanilla
½ c cocoa
1 c non-instant powdered milk

Cook honey to 255 degrees (hard ball). Do not overcook. Remove from heat. Add vanilla. Mix cocoa and powdered milk well and stir into honey. Pull like taffy until gloss is gone. Roll into rolls.

Lime Slush
2 cups water
3 cups sugar Boil together to dissolve.
Add 2 packages of lime Jell-o and the juice of three lemons (I'd try some Real Lemon concentrate)

Now chill. Add 8 cups water and enough powdered milk for your brand and beat. Freeze three hours; beat again. Freeze solid. Serve scraped off with 7-up. If you add in extra powdered milk, makes a richer product. Kids just love this! Super over the summer.


Lime Sherbet
4 ¼ cups sugar
1½ cups lime juice
3 tablespoons grated lime peel
7½ cups milk
½ cup buttermilk
1 drop green food coloring

In a bowl, combine sugar, lime juice, lemon juice and lime peel until well blended. Gradually stir in milk, buttermilk and food coloring if desired; mix well. Pour into the cylinder of an ice cream freezer and freeze according to manufacturer's directions. Remove from the freezer 10 minutes before serving.

Overnight Pancakes
Put the following in a mixing bowl the night before you want to make them:
1½ c Whole Wheat Flour
1 egg
¼ c Honey
1 c Milk
3 T oil

Allow to sit for at least seven hours. We usually do this at night before bed and let sit until morning at room temperature. When you are ready to cook the pancakes, stir in 3 teaspoons baking powder, and stir the mixture down if the batter rises. Fry in the pan, enjoy.

Danish Rice Pudding Recipe by Marian Durtschi
This recipe has been in the family for at least a hundred years. It's easy to fix, doesn't take many ingredients, and tastes really good hot or cold.

2 quarts milk (can use reconstituted powdered milk)
1 cup sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup white rice (maybe 1¼ depending on the type of rice)
4-5 eggs (or equivalent powdered eggs)
1 tablespoon vanilla

Mix milk, sugar, rice and salt and heat to almost a boil. Let simmer 45 minutes or until the rice is soft. Beat eggs. Take rice off the heat and quickly stir in the eggs. If it doesn't immediately thicken up, reheat until it does thicken. This should happen before it boils. Pour it all into a bowl, then add vanilla. Let sit for 20 minutes. Serve hot or cold.

The above recipes are from,
Becky Morris, Preparedness Specialist

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

A real compliment

We have been eating out of our food storage and freezer for the last little bit. We made the decision to not spend $$ on groceries and put that money in savings to 'recoup' after taxes. So I have been baking and cooking from scratch for the last couple of months. Tonight my dear husband said, "It takes a wise woman to have all this food put by for us to eat. In the future I won't ask if you really need all that." What a wonderful compliment. It is a grand thing to receive such high praise.

taco soup

a can of this and a can of that

I really like taco soup.  It is tasty, quick and a crowd pleaser.
My quick recipe is:
a quart jar of tomatoes (home canned being the very best)
a can of kidney beans, juice and all
a can of black beans, juice and all
a can of corn, juice and all
a can of canned meat with broth (beef, pork, chicken, whatever your family likes)
garlic, onion, celery
chili powder, salt, pepper, cilantro
allow to simmer to blend the flavors
top with:
grated cheese
chopped chives
sour cream

serve with some flour or corn tortillas and you have an easy, healthy, and tasty meal.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Lutterloh Vest

This is the vest I made from the Lutterloh pattern they emailed for free.  They sent a vest, shirt, and shorts pattern.  I have the shirt cut out but haven't had time to sew it together yet.  At this point I am VERY impressed with this pattern system.  If you have sewn much lately you know how very expensive patterns have become.  This has 280 patterns to make up.  I wouldn't make them all because they wouldn't all be flattering to my figure but there are many that I would use.

Today is the Very First Day of the Rest of My Life

This is the beginning of a new day.
I have been given this day to use as I will.
I can waste it...or use it for good,
but what I do today is important,
because I am exchanging a day of my life for it!

When tomorrow comes,
this day will be gone forever,
leaving in its place something
that I have traded for it.

I want it to be gain, and not loss;
good and not evil;
success and not failure;
in order that I shall not regret
this price that I have paid for it.

I will try just for today,
for you never fail
until you stop trying.
Author Unknown

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Granny to Glam

Very creative!! I wouldn't have thought of this but what a great way to update an old outdated dress.

Dress Form

New toy...
I  ordered this today.  :-)  I am really excited I think this will make darting and contouring so much easier.  I will do a review when it arrives. 

con·tour    [kon-toor] noun 1. the outline of a figure or body; the edge or line that defines or bounds a shape or object. Their also is: Haute couture (French for "high sewing" or "high dressmaking" or "high fashion"; refers to the creation of exclusive custom-fitted clothing. Haute couture is made to order for a specific customer, and it is usually made from high-quality, expensive fabric and sewn with extreme attention to detail and finished by the most experienced and capable seamstresses, often using time-consuming, hand-executed techniques. "Couture" means dressmaking, sewing, or needlework and is also used as a common abbreviation of haute couture and refers to the same thing in spirit. "Haute" means elegant or high. A haute couture garment is made specifically for the wearer’s measurements and body stance. Info from here.

Friday, May 4, 2012

many free sewing patterns

Numerous free sewing patterns (instructions and pdf patterns) available for download.

If you would like to try the Lutterloh Pattern System you can sign up for three free patterns. 
I did and they emailed me the pdf files.  I made and cut out the vest pattern this morning.  I don't know how it works but it does!!  Very cool. 
The patterns they sent were for a vest, shirt, and shorts.  I want to try the shirt and shorts before purchasing but so far this seems like an amazing system!!  Happy sewing.
the little bird

This is the 'short version' of the Lutterloh system video. 

I love the fact that this gal has a real figure.  :-)   So many times models are sticks with fabric draped over...


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