Thursday
Apr262018

crazy busy

I made myself a new nightgown.  It makes me laugh because it is too long but I am unwilling to hem it shorter because it is made of linen.  Every linen garment I have had has never stopped shrinking up, or in another words, the warp direction.  I know have to pick up my skirts when I wear this one.

I like this dusky plum linen so much, I ordered more.  This color has a grey tone to it and I enjoy it.  I ordered enough to make a couple dresses.  Or another nightgown.  Or.  I am at the or spot.  I spoke with a friend about this fabric and we both agree we are liking solids much more then we used to.  If a fabric is not a solid, the print is more subtle.  I sometimes feel like there is not enough hours in the day to create what I wish to create.  There is always tomorrow.  

Today has been crazy busy.  Part of it is home stuff.  Part of it is shop stuff, the making of ribbons.  Some of it is being contacted by people who wish me to go back to the oil industry.  Because some of them are people I genuinely enjoy, I have to at least consider.  I have no idea what any decision will be at this point but I have lunch outside the house in a few weeks. 

On top of all of this, I am coaching more.  Again, it is a situation where it is fun.  I do not stress about the coaching at all.  Most of the time, I coach adults.  They wish to be on the ice.  They are learning a new skill.  I try to make it fun but I also do not just let people "skate" by.  They have to have the skill to go forward.  

It is an interesting life.  

Tuesday
Apr242018

another year of MotoGP and camping

It was another year of MotoGP and camping.  I really liked the camping.  I have a tendency to car camp cozy and comfy.

The campground was pretty for three of the four days we were there.  The other day, it was wet.  But I see traces of wet in Houston as well.  More like deluges then wet.

But we sat on the first hill and watched all the motorbikes.  I also crocheted again.  I had a forever shawl with me and that worked for me.  There was some good racing.  I could have hoped more of my favorites finished better but I have a lot of racers that I like.  Some are just down right funny!

The food was cooked at the camp site was better then anything purchased out.  The last night there we had fish and seafood tacos.  So good!  I am going to have to do them in the city.

It was hard to leave.  It got nice again.  Cool nights.  Warm days but not too hot.  I could have just stayed.

Oh well.  Coaching tonight and I do enjoy that as well.

Tuesday
Apr172018

mulberry blackberry jam

I feel like there should be this long complicated post for this jam.  Because that is how much work went into making it.  Not the actual making but the foraging.  This is mulberry blackberry jam.

The bushes and trees in our neighborhood are still producing copious amounts of berries.  There are still so many green berries it is not funny!  Especially since I will be gone this weekend and wish to pick more soon.  The blackberries are eating my hands and forearms.  I am stiff from all the bending and squatting to pick the blackberries.  Reaching for the mulberries feels good.

I have been picking about 2 kilos of berries every time I go out.  I save off four cups for crisp and then make the rest into jam.  I add 1 kilo of sugar and cook until it is the consistency I wish.  The flavor is stupendous!  All the boyos have gotten some and I have seen them eat it straight from the jar.  

It is good.

It is different then the mountain jam because we have different berries but it is still ours.  Still foraged.  But people need realize forage does not mean no work.  It is work.  And then work to preserve it for later in the year.  It just does not take money for the berries themselves.  The sugar, jars, and lids.  Yes, that takes money.  But food is not going to waste which is a good thing.

More picking next week.  I get to go into a tent for the weekend starting Thursday!  I am excited.

Saturday
Apr142018

something simple

I was hanging laundry today and I realized everything on this line I have made.  That made me smile.  How simple is that?  I have the skills in my hands to make things.  I love my life.

It has been a good day but I am tired.  I did not sleep well so the words are not working very well.  Simple things like a lunch with friends and hanging laundry are the highlights of my day.  Not moving quickly this morning and sitting with a book instead of going for a walk.  Sometimes that is what life is all about.  

Today I am being grateful.  It is a good day.

Thursday
Apr122018

foraging for crisp

Monday some foraging went on.  The mulberries and blackberries are ripening.  There was more then enough within walking distance to forage 2 kilos worth.  The funny thing that this is along the long walk I take in the morning.  The only people I see picking berries out there are people from other countries.  More for us!  

The mulberries remind one person of the berries she ate in South America.  The other lady we speak to never tells us what she is doing with them but she picks about every day.  She did say she made jam.  It is just funny to me that there is all this food and no one is gathering it.  It tastes better then anything I have bought from the grocery store berry wise in years!

I used my recipe for apple crisp but replaced it with the berries.  I set about four berries aside for crisp.  They were sprinkled with four to five soup spoons of sugar because not all the berries that were picked were perfectly ripe.  Especially the mulberries.  I would be picking and would also need to hold my container under them so I could catch what was falling!  

I was going to link to my apple crisp recipe but I realized it is not here.  I guess I need to actually type it out!

mulberry blackberry crisp/crumble

Note:  To make this apple, I peel, core, and slice up two apples.  I usually use cinnamon and ginger in the crisp/crumble recipe.  You can also change the flour to gluten free types.  The consistency will be different and I find I usually use 2 cups of gluten free flours to 1 cup of wheat when I am measuring by volume.  I look at the texture to see if it is right.  I am going to try oat flour with this next time because one of the boyos is gluten free.

4 cups berries, cleaned

4 to 5 tablespoons sugar

1/2 cup butter

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 cup flour

1 teaspoon ginger

1 tablespoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

If an 8x8 inch square pan or something similar, put the 4 cups of cleaned berries. Sprinkle with four to five tablespoons of sugar.

In a small bowl, cream the brown sugar and butter together.  Mix in the flour.  The mixture should be very crumbly.  If you are using gluten free flours, make sure the topping is a coarse sand texture.  Mix in the ginger and vanilla.

Sprinkle over the berries.

Put in the preheated oven and bake for 45 minutes. 

It smelled so good.  I was asked if it could be eaten straight out of the oven.  My comment was only if you wished to burn your mouth!  A ten minute wait was had.  I truly suggest the ten minutes because I have burnt my mouth that many times.

This is the best picture of the crisp I had.  It was gone so fast!  I really need to go forage more berries today but I am waiting to bake bread.  I have two loaves of bread to bake and a pan of cinnamon rolls.  I also have six bagels.  The foraging should wait until after that.  

I also swept up some mulberries so I will see what they do to silk.  Life is interesting but I really like this foraging thing!