Sunday, 31 August 2008

It helps to have a good book to read...

I know this book has been touted on other blogs as recommended reading and I know I'm a little late in joining in, but I want to add my voice to everyone else in asking you to read it.

I have known about this title for some time, but never seemed to remember to put it on hold at the library for some reason (which is so unlike me...). It may sound crazy, but I believe that books choose you (the same as when you need a teacher, then they will appear...). Anyways, yesterday turned out to be the day that this book chose me. It was the first time since our move that I've set foot in a library (and I can't begin to tell you how happy I am to be a library card bearing citizen in our new city. Now I'm starting to feel more like I live here instead of being a serial visitor. Would you believe I have been having serious library with drawl agony for the past couple of weeks?)

Back to the book. I have hardly put it down since checking it out because so much of what the author writes is resonating with me. The appearance of the book in my life at this point is of perfect timing. The author writes of her travels over a year to three different countries as she searches for inner answers to her life. Elizabeth writes in a voice that is insightful, entertaining and very poignant. I am also at a point in my life where I'm questioning my life. Moving away from my friends and the city where I lived 17 of my 18 years of marriage, has moved the earth beneath my feet. My familiar surroundings have been stripped away. It is exciting and scary all at the same time. Which has me relating to the words in Eat, Pray, Love and the author's spiritual journey. I am finding inspiration and comfort in this book. Maybe you will too. Excuse me now, I have to get back to reading it.

Saturday, 30 August 2008

More funny tomatoes

E calls these schnoz tomatoes. He thinks they are hilarious and so do I.

They managed to escape being thrown into scalding water to be made into stewed tomatoes due to their cuteness. Wily little things. I especially love that guy on the left, he looks like he has a bad cold.

ABBA...all four discs

To me this is 4 discs worth of sing-along entertainment while I preserve more stewed tomatoes.
To E it is "4 discs...of torture!!" (those are his words)

W ordered this from the library as a sort of joke. I think he thought he would listen to loudly and this would bug me. Poor kid, little did he know that I would confiscate it and keep it all to be played loudly in it's entirety(or as long as these tomatoes take). ;-) Talk about a plan backfiring on him.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

Just a tomato?

I showed the boys this tomato that I picked this morning. W immediately began singing this tune. Aaaargh!! We only just got it out of our heads from when we heard it last time. E chimed in for the Ron Weasley part. ;-) At any rate, I think he might have a point. This tomato is rather Snape-ish. Speaking of which is any one else as sad as I am that the next movie has been postponed? I keep hoping it is just some ploy/hype to get people revved up about it and that it really will still come out in November but things are not looking good. Sigh.

Monday, 25 August 2008

Tomato Zucchini tart...sort of

Life in the garden is good at this time of year. We have been eating from the garden at every meal - peaches or blueberries with our breakfasts, tomatoes and salads at lunch and, of course, zucchini, tomatoes and beans at dinner.We also continue to enjoy the different flowers as they come into bloom. E made this flower arrangement for a neighbour to cheer her up. We have so much Rudbeckia right now and are really loving how long it blooms for and its different colours.And the Phlox...I am loving the Phlox.

I picked up Simply in Season from the library again because I remembered (from this post) that last year I had made a very yummy tomato/zucchini tart from it. So W made the crust and I started to put together this dinner.See how delicious it looks? Now, ask me how it looked once I remembered that I had to transfer it onto a baking sheet...and that the dough was getting very damp from the tomato juice and that was making it stick to the board...and that those tomatoes and zucchini that I had loaded it down with were heavy and making the dough stretch...and that I am not a patient person...especially when it is already 6pm and I am hungry.

**Note to self - next time roll out the dough, put it on the baking sheet and THEN add the toppings.

I think W ended up calling it a tomato, zucchini scramble instead of tart but it still tasted good and we ended our meal with E's chocolate peaches so it was all good.

Friday, 22 August 2008

Favourite cherry pie

A few years ago I found a recipe for plum pie in this Canadian Living cookbook, what I liked about it was the slight taste of walnuts mixed with the flavour of plums all encased in a bit of custard filling. It became one of my favourite pie recipes (I posted about it here last year) and I looked forward to plum season each year. I also filled my freezer with plums so that I could make it more often if I wanted. The other day as I was pitting cherries I thought that cherries might work just as well in the recipe. I tried it and it was delicious.
This recipe is so good that I could easily eat the whole pie one sitting...easily...and still want more, the problem is that so could the other three people I live with.

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Shades of green

After finishing my first quilt, I excitedly jumped head first into my next quilt. Within a week, I had completed the quilt top. I am now at the quilting part and quite pleased with my progress. (Yes, I am totally hooked on quilting now.) I would love to share pictures but it's for a gift (go 'Quilt Girl') and I can't risk the small chance that the receiver might see it here and that would completely blow the surprise... But I do plan to post pictures after giving the gift.

In the meantime, I will share a small rainbow of fabrics with green in them:

They will be chopped up and a quilt will be created from them. I plan to venture away from my usual big squares. A little bit. Maybe.

I have been creating a small quilting stash by hitting the remnants bin in our local fabric store. I usually find a couple of good ones and they are always on a buy one get one free sale, so I've been managing to get 1-2 metres of fabrics for 2 -3 dollars. There is always an interesting blend of colours and fabrics in the basket (which is the first place I head for in the store). I can only imagine how much fabric I would have if I worked there - yikes!

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Sometimes when you move..

you uncover treasures such as a magazine from long ago, featuring your first crush.

I was 7 when I decided I would marry Elvis when I grew up.
I was heartbroken to learn that he had died and shocked when I found out that he was much older than I thought. Why, he was even older than my dad! The Elvis from the movies I watched on Sat. afternoons appeared to be about 20 years old to me (but hey, what does a 7 year know?).
He seemed like the perfect man to marry. Elvis was handsome and talented. Who wouldn't want a man that could sing like him? sigh...

(Heather, this photo of Elvis in black leather is especially for you as I know you share a love of Elvis!)
Hopefully, this peek at the photos in the collector's magazine will help Samantha get past thinking of Elvis as the guy who always wore sequined jumpsuits!
Every year on the anniversary of his death, my sister and I would be allowed to stay up late to watch Elvis movies on t.v. This year, I think I'll just pop one of his movies into the dvd player to watch after I repack this old magazine away for safe keeping.

Friday, 15 August 2008


I found these goodies a little while ago.The table clothes pictured above and below are from a garage sale up at the lake. I love the autumn colours on this one and can just picture it on our harvest table with a bowl of acorns and some fall leaves.These are from a little thrift store (Amanda's secret thrift store - ssshhh). I'm not actually sure if they are meant to be napkins or handkerchiefs. I keep looking at their pristine whiteness and trying to decide which is worse - using them to wipe noses or having them wipe sauce-covered mouths and fingers. Hmmmm.I just can't resist this sort of thing. OK, I don't even try to resist because they are just so pretty, and for $1.50 for all of them why would I resist??

Now...if only I could find a vintage white linen shirt for my hubby. :-)

Saturday, 9 August 2008

WSS aka White Shirt Syndrome

I contracted WSS quite some time ago. I'm afraid it is a rather serious affliction...a chronic disease, in fact and I have a baaaad case of it. I'm not sure when I first became aware that I was exhibiting symptoms of WSS...was it while watching Mr. Darcy during Pride and Prejudice? Perhaps my case started from watching Colonel Brandon in Sense and Sensibility?
Was it because of Mr. Knightley in Emma?
Or was it long before that and this...ahem, illness had been incubating for a long time? I really can't remember but I do know that the symptoms seem to get more pronounced as I get older.

Recently I realized that I really do have a severe and chronic case of WSS...and I don't believe that there is anything I can do to heal it. (Poor me!) There I was, innocently watching Persuasion when I realized that the symptoms were coming on quite strongly. Indeed each time Captain Wentworth was on screen I had heart palpitations, weak knees, felt somewhat feverish and experienced strange fluttering feelings in my stomach and a rather drooly mouth. What's a woman to do when suffering from such a malady? Well, I find that I am able to bear this suffering quite easily now.
But...I do recommend a rather simple homeopathic treatment if you feel you too suffer from WSS. As we know like heals like in homeopathy so I suggest regular small doses of white shirts (weekly!! and preferably with a group of good friends and fellow WSS sufferers), that way you will develop a good tolerance to them and not be unduly affected. My goal is to able to view a white shirt each week without being overcome by any WS symptoms - a lofty goal indeed.

I don't believe that I've seen Rupert Penry-Jones (Wentworth) in any films before but I must say the man can certainly wear a white shirt well...and he does a rather nice "smouldering look" too.

I highly recommend checking out this film. It is, erm...extremely entertaining. (And yes, our library does have it. Bless them and their educational movies!)

Thursday, 7 August 2008

Wherefore art thou zucchini??

I'll admit this latest garden setback has me wondering just how green my thumb really is.  As we enter August, I have yet to see a zucchini from my plants.

I heard talk of what big producers zucchini can be, so I searched and stocked up on a variety of delicious sounding zucchini using recipes.  And still I wait.  I see them in the stores, overflowing off the shelves.  So I check my plants and see the flowers but no zucchinis yet.  I read Animal, Vegetable, Miracle (a most wonderful book by the way) and she writes about people in her small town locking their doors so others don't fill their kitchens with zucchini, or about coming back to her car after shopping and finding a bag of zucchini hanging from the mirror.  And I think how lucky she is.

I did find this today.  
A tiny, little cucumber.  I have big plans for this cucumber (which would be my first of the year).

You may notice in the first picture that a strawberry plant in growing into the alloted zucchini space.  They seem to think the garden belongs to them, and I wonder if this is part of the problem for the zucchini.  I had thought they were a tougher breed of plant then this, and would never let themselves be pushed out of the garden by measly strawberry plants.  So next year, I will have to decide - remove some strawberry plants or find another spot for my zucchini.  Next year I will need more zucchini recipes for the abundant crop I shall have.  Next year...