I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Blizzard Fail

Ha ha ha This is pretty funny. I just had a feeling....

"Meteorologists Apologize for Miss''



snow day, sunset

I'm not complaining. Exactly. We didn't want to be stranded in the dark with no heat.
But still.
What about next time? Will we do like we did with Hurricanes Irene and Sandy? We evacuated for Irene---which was just a rainy night for us. So we stayed for H Sandy, only to witness the appalling unforgettable sight of huge waves crashing over the seawall, swamping our yards and cars. I hope I never see waves coming over the high dunes again! I couldn't sleep last night. I'm always afraid someday my old flimsy ocean facing windows will be blown in by high winds. It's not REAL scary, but maybe a little?
So what about the next ''blizzard''? Stay, go, shop, cook or ignore?

I'd guess we got 10-12 inches of snow which is drifting dramatically.

deck portholes, knee high?

So there is bare sand, bare grass, and fences under 6 feet of snow. The usual.

Anyway all is well and I got lots done for my  etsy Valentine projects.

Mo had fun!



gone to the beach....

Sunday, January 25, 2015


Hi guys! It's been a beautiful sunny Sunday here at the beach.

So---what the heck is THIS?!:

''Blizzard warnings have been posted from coastal New Jersey to Maine, including New York City.... If the storm comes as forecast, it would be enough to temporarily cripple the region. Expect gusts to 50 mph in the city, with brief gusts up to hurricane force on Eastern Long Island. Wow.'' [they said Wow, not me!]
''Coastal storm surge could reach four feet —that’s on top of 10- to 15-foot waves, which would be big enough to damage coastal properties. If you live on the waterfront, it’s probably best to treat this storm more like a close brush with a tropical storm or hurricane."

Uh oh. Well. Yikes. We don't like to hear the word ''hurricane'', do we.

I'm well stocked and friends are nearby for added support if needed. The Jeep could use a fill up but if it's really bad I won't be driving it anyway. It has 3/4 of a tank.

When I finish this post, I am going to make a shepherds pie, which could be eaten cold if need be and  earlier I baked oatmeal bars.

Usually when it snows I make oatmeal cookies, but I had this weird jar of chunks of dates leftover from Christmas. I have no clue what I thought I'd use these for, maybe to feed Mr Mockingbird, I don't remember. They were expensive so I decided to make oatmeal date bars instead of cookies. I can freeze them in individual portions to send with the kids for next weekend's skiing. Like power bars from Mom? Or of course we can eat them if we're snowed in and starving,lol.

Turns out date bars are kinda complicated. Sift the flour? I don't thinks so, I only sift flour for a fancy cake. And one recipe online that got 5 stars called for THREE sticks of butter plus 1/4 Cup of ''shortening'', whatever that means.I got out my old worn c. 1959 Fanny Farmer cookbook.

When I left home, to live alone at college [dorms seemed creepy], my mom gave me three cookbooks, plus a handwritten small book of cooking hints and favorite recipes. The three cookbooks were the Fanny Farmer [traditional stuff, like pickles, peach pie], James Beard [roasts, stews, excellent, easy goulash!] and Julia Child [the fancy stuff]. Of course I still have all these books and FF seemed the way to go. My mom found my copy in a used book stack at a flea, I'm sure. It's dated 1959!

But then apple pie and sugar cookies haven't changed much in the past 50 years, so it's fine.

I actually used an online recipe , because that cup of sugar stopped me cold. So I guess things have changed, at least a little?
You know me---wrong kind of oats, oh well. No brown sugar, Splenda instead.

I love oats and oatmeal, so I used lots!

Here's the butter crumbled in, like making pie dough. Huh.

I got this all put together and thought, What's gonna hold these bars together? Surely not that ONE Tablespoon of icewater?  Seems to me I made some power bars a few years ago, ended up with a mess of "granola" instead.

Took a loooong time to brown up. But looks pretty good?

Time for tea!

Yes, the ''crust'' crumbled a lot, but they are toasty and oat-y and pretty good. If the power stays on tomorrow, I think I'll make real oatmeal cookies. And I have all the makings for pumpkin-brown rice doggy treats [lol, poor Mo.Yuck.].
 I'll let you know how things go?
Snow day project? Start a doggy quilt for Mo?

Back home in the Midwest, we always had our snow day specials: grilled cheese and tomato soup! Hot chocolate and maybe popcorn?  Daytime TV!

How about you? Any snow day favorites or traditions?  And what about this blizzard? How are things by you? Stay safe and warm....



gone to the beach!

Update: so far---light snow.

The shepherds pie...not really, I guess? More of a pot pie. The Pillsbury rolled up fridge crusts are sooooo yummy.

False Shepherds Pie---recipe is simple: sautee ground meat [beef tastes best if you must eat this cold due to power failure, keeps more safely] with a minced large onion and some garlic Cubed parboiled/ micro'ed potatoes. Mixed veg to taste. Lots of pepper and seasoning.  1/2 jar of gravy and a little wine. Put in 2 crust pie shell, egg wash top. Bake 375* for 35-40 minutes.

This is comfort, emergency day food. It's filling but not elegant or I suppose ''healthy'', though you can make with more root veg and no meat if desired.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Little Projects

Hello there! I love January. I get so much done.

I love the long quiet days and cozy nights. This week, with no moon, the night sky has been spectacular, Orion overhead, the big stars and planets blazing like diamonds in the black sky. I usually have scented candles burning, like these.here  I must have Peach Bellini for next summer, and Tiki Beach.
Mel recommends Fresh Apple and Firewood, too, from Henhouse Candles , they are also on my list.

snow fog and early sunset tinting the beach palest pink
The quiet is such  a change after the chaos and frantic fun of the holidays. My family traditionally all leave right after Christmas for a long week of skiing, and the sudden silence is such a change. I always plan some fun small easily finished but enticing projects for that time. A new venture wards of the melancholy of ''gone too soon...." in early January.

This year I had two things to work on.
This is the table runner I planned for the two dishtowels I got at Christmas Tree Shop in December.


 I love the birds, so happy and fat, with their pompom collars.

Pretty colors: tomato and sage-y blue-green.

India print backing.

One of my current frugality efforts is making a No Cut Flowers rule, unless I need them for photo props. 10.oo a week equals 500.oo bucks a year---and right now Mo just eats them anyway. But I had to have some tulips last week.

And I finished The Twelve Days of Christmas tiny quilt. [Temecula Quilt Company free pattern]

I like my candy cane stripe binding.

Quilting and washing / shrinkage improved it a lot, I think. It looks more cohesive.



Next on my list is to hand quilt my Peace and Plenty [Cascadia] doll quilt. And I have my eye on this wonderful quilt by Jan Patek. I ordered the book but it hasn't showed up yet. I think her website response is quite slow? I am wanting another warm flannel quilt for my bed for winter. My Porch quilt is cozy but too brown. I want to do the new quilt in black flannel [plaids, checks, mottled on black, with a more pastel palette] with touches of wool mixed in with the cotton.
Black is possibly a mistake since pugs shed a lot. I sold my black ground Amish quilt while I had my other pug. He was a good boy and slept on the bed. So far Mr Pissy aka Mo is banned and I have a shower curtain on the bed to discourage visits and deposits.

Here's the Pokeberry Quilt  :
The pokeberries are what ''make'' it. They 'd be wool on my version. The wreath needs work and I don't think I can face another eagle. And that horse has to go. Maybe a black kitty?

Beautiful day, so I'm off to the beach. Yesterday Mo locked himself in the bathroom while I was out beachcombing. I was frantic when he was nowhere to be found when I got home. Having a puppy sure changes one's life, doesn't it? Before Mo I'd have taken my knitting out to the beach, found a sheltered sunny dune, and I'd have sat there quietly knitting for awhile. Like meditating....

who, me? Not me!

Those days are G O N E.

[yes, he's worth it, but still...]



gone to the beach.......