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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Autumn Splendor



“Autumn...the year's last, loveliest smile.”
 
-William Cullen Bryant
 

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Moon-Shiners

The nights are drawing in fast, darkness falling around 7pm each evening.
I love to light candles on the porch, and sit and enjoy the cool night air.
My latest craft project has been the creation of these Mason Jar lights. You can purchase the lid-lights at most craft stores, or online, mine were left over from my granddaughter's wedding decorations.
 
The lids fit a regular Mason Jar opening, and charges the solar battery throughout the day.
The jars can be filled with glass beads or decorations, and when darkness falls they add charm and coziness to your outdoor space.
Hang them on fence posts or walkways if you need path-light ideas.
 
 




Monday, September 29, 2014

Autumn Sunset



 

...I see
the turning of a leaf
dancing in an autumn sun,
and brilliant shades of crimson
glowing when a day is done...

~Hazelmarie "Mattie" Elliott, "A Breath of Heaven"

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Summertime Blues

The temperatures fell into the fifties last night.
Sweater-grabbing crisp air, the likes of which has not been seen since early Spring.
Sweet.
 

 
The last of the Summer flowers are giving us one final show. The wild roses, fragrant and prolific.


The Morning Glories, taking over the fence.


The Clematis vine, giving once last smile

Friday, September 26, 2014

Watching



Oliver sits beside me in the old rocking chair when I'm idling away the hours on the computer.
I'm sure he wonders what the fascination is, especially since there are no treats; not even in sight.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Time For A Change

I've been thumbing through wallpaper patterns, in the hopes of re-wallpapering the guest bathroom.
Book upon book of gorgeous prints, a person could get lost in flipping through the pages.
I keep returning to a design by Waverly (one of my most favorite manufacturers), Emma's garden, a timeless and pretty design, with a traditional English flair.
What do you think ?

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Soup's On

When the leaves are beginning to change, and the temperatures start to fall, my thoughts turn to comfort food.
My favorite soup is homemade mushroom soup, earthy-goodness, silky smooth and comforting on cool Autumn nights.
Serve with a crusty loaf of French bread, light a candle or two and enjoy.




Cream of Mushroom Soup.

6Tbsp. butter
1 med. onion
3/4 lb. mushrooms
3 Tbsp. flour.
1 clove of garlic ( very finely chopped )
1 tbsp. fresh thyme chopped or 1 tsp. dried
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
dash of nutmeg
1 Knorr Swiss vegetable cube
3 cups of chicken broth
3/4 cup heavy cream
1 large bay leaf
fresh ground pepper to taste.
fresh parsley or chives for garnish

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Melt the butter and add the chopped onion and garlic. Cook until onion is transparent at medium.
Add mushrooms and continue to cook for about 5 min.
Add the flour and the vegetable cube and stir in. Immediately add the chicken broth and water, incorporating slowly.
Add bay leaf and pepper, cover and bring to a boil.
Add Worcestershire sauce , thyme and dash of nutmeg.
Turn heat down immediately and simmer for 5 minutes.
Remove bay leaf and add cream.
If desired, top with fresh croutons or crackers.
Garnish with parsley or chives.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Autumn Mist

Hello Autumn !
 
 
 
 
 I saw old Autumn in the misty morn
Stand shadowless like silence, listening
To silence, for no lonely bird would sing
Into his hollow ear from woods forlorn,
Nor lowly hedge nor solitary thorn;—
Shaking his languid locks all dewy bright
With tangled gossamer that fell by night,
Pearling his coronet of golden corn.
 
~Thomas Hood : Autumn (1798-1845)

Friday, September 19, 2014

Autumn Cottage

Autumn is fast approaching, and for the past few days we've already noticed a change in the weather.
Cool mist-filled mornings, and even cooler, crisp-laden nights.
The trees are beginning their changing of color, yellows, oranges and reds.
Pumpkins are now decorating porches and gardens.
The songbirds busily returning to their winter homes.

 
 
 
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.


To Autumn : John Keats 1795-1821

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

In The Bag

Somebody has been a very, busy little kitty today.
 
 
 

Monday, September 8, 2014

Summer's Waning


Summer days are noticeably shorter. There is a cooler rush to the evening air.
Down on  main street the shopkeepers are displaying their Autumn flowers, and the feel of changing seasons is afoot.
The Summer's Gold Lantana blooms heartily,  as if it knows that Summer's loveliest smile, is fleeting.

 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Summer Sweetness



It's hay baling time in Tennessee.
The sweet aroma of newly cut grasses float across gentle breezes.
Becoming fodder for the beasts on cold Winter days.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Monday, September 1, 2014

Autumn's Calling



"September days have the warmth of summer in their briefer hours,
But in their lengthening evenings a prophetic breath of autumn.
The cricket chirps in the noontide, making the most of what remains of his brief life.
The bumblebee is busy among the clover blossoms of the aftermath,
And their shrill and dreamy hum hold the outdoor world above the voices of the song birds,
Now silent or departed."-
 
~ September Days : Rowland E. Robinson, Vermont

 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Simple Days


 
"Don't let yourself get so busy that you miss those little but important extras in life ~
the beauty of a day...
the smile of a friend...
the serenity of a quiet moment alone.
For it is often life's smallest pleasures and gentlest joys that make the biggest and most lasting difference."

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

A Saintly View

Despite the heat of late August, the morning glories are happily blooming away.
Everything else in the garden has withered and surrendered, or so it seems.
I'm patiently waiting for the cooler, albeit shorter days of Autumn, to appear.
 
 
 
 
 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Summer's Gold



"Oh, the summer night
Has a smile of light
And she sits on a sapphire throne."

- Barry Cornwall

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Childhood Memories

Windsor Tea Kettle


Why is it that small things we remember growing up, seems to have such an influence on our taste, as adults ?

My grandma Ciss used a tea kettle on her stove to boil water.
It was a sturdy kettle made from chrome-plated copper, and built with a raised element at the bottom in order to conduct the heat more efficiently from her gas stove.
When the water was at boiling level, it whistled, to let you know it was ready.

It lasted a lifetime, or so it seemed to me.

As soon as I set up housekeeping, I always wished for one of those kettles.
I shopped specialty catalogues endlessly, until one day, I came across the very same kettle, in the Williams-Sonoma Kitchen Collection. "Imported from England" caught my eye.

My choice was the one made from solid copper, lined with tin, without the element, and more suitable for use with an electric stove top.
It was shipped with a lifetime warranty, and a lovely little keepsake card, telling how it was handcrafted, and the name of the original craftsman, whose talent it took to create it.

It gets used everyday, reminding me of all the times my grandma served pots of tea to family and friends alike.
The local "bobbies" (policemen), walking the neighborhood beat, were a staple around her kitchen table.

I can hear them now, shouting through the front door letterbox......."Put'the kettle on Ciss".

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Monday, August 18, 2014

And The Rains Came

Mother Nature sent rain today.
Buckets full, with the odd peeking of the sun in between, enticing you into the garden with the hope of getting those much needed chores done.
Just in time for the beginning of the annual County fair, it always seems so.
Three days of continuous rain, for which we are grateful, even if her timing is a bit off.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  
 



A break in the heat
away from the front
no thunder, no lightning,
just rain, warm rain
falling near dusk
falling on eager ground
steaming blacktop
hungry plants
thirsty
turning toward the clouds
cooling, soothing rain
splashing in sudden puddles
catching in open screens
that certain smell
of summer rain

~ Summer Rain : Raymond A Foss