Tuesday
Aug102010

spoiling ourselves strangely

We took a camping trip a few weeks ago.  We have a travel trailer and the mattress never pleased our backs.  So we having been looking for a new mattress.  While, camping we did some shopping and walked into a high end mattress and linens store (organic mattresses).  They had the rocking chair I have been looking at forever and I actually got to sit in it.  I like it as much as I thought I would.  Soft for my arthritis ridden body.  Just cradled me.

But back to the bed.  We did not see a mattress we liked.  But we liked the linens.  The sheets and pillowcases were linen and so soft.  Soft in our life is paramount.  The price was a bit prohibitive though.  $150 for one standard pillowcase.  

We went fabric shopping instead.

 

We touched many bolts of linen at the fabric store.  There were some very soft ones and then we narrowed it down to four.  I had Russell pick the color.

I bought two yards.  I took those two yards and cut it into two one yard lengths.  I cut ten inches off the width and french seamed the long edge and one short edge.  On the other short edge, I put a six inch hem in.

 

We have two linen pillowcases.

I made the bed with clean sheets when I put the pillowcases on the pillows.  I pulled out the sheets I had made.  I made them out of ninety inch cotton muslin and embroidered the top sheet's top edge in orange and brown and am amazed how well they match without trying.  These are my favorite sheets in the house.

I think linen sheets, more linen pillowcases, and more embroidered sheets are in our future at some point.   

Monday
Aug092010

Russell's new power bars or better known as fig bars

I tried the fig bar recipe from: Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar.  I put the link to worldcat.org below.  I am a huge fan of the library system and this will tell you where the nearest library to you has the book.  It also tells you where you can buy it if you like.

http://www.worldcat.org/title/vegan-cookies-invade-your-cookie-jar-100-dairy-free-recipes-for-everyones-favorite-treats/oclc/225875003&referer=brief_results

This was my first pass at this recipe.  Which means I sort of followed the recipe.  I think it needs some tweaking.  Russell and friends do not.  I am going to tweak and when I am happy with it, the recipe will be here.  Also, the gluten free version since I had that request.  Welcome to my life.  At least I get called a goddess often.......

Friday
Aug062010

getting ready for winter

Russell and I have started getting ready for the winter gardening season.  I know it is August and the heat index is above 100 but if we do not get started now the plants will not have a chance.

We have started digging and cleaning out beds.  I have seeds ordered for the winter vegetables we eat:  broccoli, kale, swiss chard, brussels sprouts, spinach, cabbage, and lettuce.  And we have a few things that made it through the summer heat.

Our eggplants are blooming.  I have to admit that I would grow eggplant just for the flowers.  But the eggplant from our garden has never been bitter.  They are so lovely.

 

We have four different types of peppers growing.  They all have flowers and peppers.  I have been receiving peppers from a friend at work whose garden is ahead of mine.  I may have to return the favor soon!  We only have six plants!

I planted winter squashes last spring and they fruited then.  Some of the plants made it through the summer and we have more fruit developing.  

I believe the fruit we have currently is pumpkins but I cannot be sure until they look like those in the picture.  These are part of what the vines produced this spring.

Thursday
Aug052010

ginger (syrup) soda

We do not drink commercial soda.  We do not drink bubbly drinks.  But when I may ginger syrup and add soda water, we drink ginger soda.  Makes me smile, settles tummies, and takes inflammation down.  We also do other fruit syrups the same way but ginger is our favorite.

Ginger Syrup

1 cup sugar

1 cup water

a piece of ginger the size of your fist, peeled and sliced.

(yes, there is more ginger here then called for in the recipe but I was tripling it)  In a pot, the sugar, water, and ginger go.

 

Bring to a boil and then simmer for 15 minutes.  Turn the heat off and let sit at least a half an hour.  I sometimes let this sit for a very long time.  Even overnight.  It can get very spice but we like it.  Spicy and sweet at the same time.

Then I strain it into a jar.  

In a glass, I put ice and about a inch of syrup and then fill the rest with soda water.  It is lovely.  If you want it stronger or weaker it is all up to you.

Wednesday
Aug042010

sorbet

We like having sweets after dinner.  I actually really like ice cream but my tummy does not agree with my taste buds all the time.  It gets back to that egg thing and maybe even a little bit of lactose sensitivity.  I have ended up making sorbets.

Why do I make sorbets?  Because I make better then you can by and they are cheaper for the organic bit.  Just ask Russell about the flavor!

Fruit Sorbet

1 10 ounce frozen berries, any kind

1 cup water

1 cup sugar

Put the sugar and the water in a pan.  Bring to a boil and let boil one minute.

Put the fruit and syrup in a blender.  And blend for a couple of minutes.  I really mean a couple of minutes.  It will help.  I then pour the berry syrup mixture into a large pyrex and put it in the freezer.  

Two or three hours later, I pull it out and stir it.  I break up all the frozen bit and make it smooth.  I then put it in the freezer again.

Two to three hours after that, I pull out the sorbet and mix it up again.  I break it all up.  It then goes into the freezer until it is solid and we eat it.  

I did not get a picture of that.  We ate this pyrex in three sittings, twice without bowls.  This is better then ANYTHING you can buy out.  Russell said, "Oh, yeah!"

Now I think I am going to try some of the New York Times recipes.  They ran ice cream recipes without egg but a tablespoon or two of alcohol to keep it soft.  Do not be surprised if those with my alterations come this way.  Yummy in the tummy!