Monday, August 28, 2017

Teatime, Tuppence and Thrifted Threads

Hi Dear Folk,

Today I took another Monday off work to go to the doctor, this time it turned out to be cellulitis on my leg, some what painful, so now I'm on antibiotics.

I am enjoying the rest of my day off.  With a pot of tea and cheesecake.  A motley assortment of china.

I found this outfit at the thrift, made by Denim and Co. brand new with tags on from QVC.  It's all cotton and easy to wear, since I didn't pay too much for it, I don't mind it being white. I like the embroidery around the bottom of the jacket, dress and on the cuffs. The blue matches up with my blue sandals from Aurora.  The blue leather bag I have had a long while, a charity shop find from the UK.  In fact I saw a Louis Vuitton bag quite newly released which is very similar in shape.  Almost looks like you could hold binoculars in it.  If you keep it long enough it will come back in fashion

Enjoying a cup of tea on the oak tree patio.

A friend who has been helping her mum to downsize things, knows that I love broaches and earrings gave me a beautiful gold and pearl set, leaf with a pearl.  I'm wearing them here, I just love it.  I think it's from the fifties, as that date is inscribed on the back.  I especially like the earrings, the way they dangle and move is free, if you know what I mean.

Mr. B. with a travel mug of coffee.

My dear Tuppence or Tuppy her nick name, is enjoying a snooze in a pile of leaves.  I was going to clean them up today, but since she likes it I'll leave it longer.  Isn't she camoflouged with her coloring?  She's seventeen years old now and deffinitely is showing her age, but insists on going outside a lot, as if she's making the most of the summer too.

Acorns are dropping although last year was a bumper acorn harvest, doesn't seem to be as many this year.  The hosta are dying off, and I think this shot looks so tinged with autumn.

My fig is doing well in the pot, in fact better than the one planted in the garden, which has to fight with the oak tree roots.

I'm trying to put together a little journal to take with me at the end of September.  The Boy and I are going on a road trip to Cape Ann, Massachusetts, north of Boston.  I think you could call it an island as you have to cross the bridges to get over to it.  I'm excited, just a four day weekend.  I've never spent time in that area of MA.  I want to eat a lobster and have a nice bowl of New England clam chowder.  Maybe a little kayaking.


Sunday, August 27, 2017

Dienners Restaurant Dining Amish

Hi Dear Folk,

Last Tuesday, Mr. B. and I popped up to the Amish Country it was a beautiful day and the drive up there is through very typical Pennsylvania farmland, rolling hills, corn silos, and washing strung out to dry.  We decided to eat lunch out at Dienner's Country Restaurant.  We had the typical buffet serving Amish food.

Mr.B. looking over the pies.

Mennonite girl at the counter.

Cream of broccoli soup and salad.  The Amish make a lot of pickled preserves, such as chow chow

Chow Chow Recipe
¼ Peck (2 Quarts) Green Beans
1 Large Head Cauliflower [Separated in Flowerets]
3 Cups Shelled Lima Beans
3 Cups Fresh Whole Kernel Corn
1 Quart Onions [Chopped]
5 Green Peppers [Chopped]
¼ Peck (2 Quarts) Green Tomatoes [Chopped]
3 Quarts Cider Vinegar
4 Cups Sugar
½ Cup Salt
2 Tablespoons Celery Seed
2 Tablespoons Yellow Mustard Seed
2 Tablespoons Dry Mustard
1 Tablespoon Turmeric
Cut the beans into ½ inch pieces. Cook green beans, cauliflowerets, lima beans, and corn separately in boiling water until just tender. Drain. Mix the onions, peppers, and tomatoes with the cooked vegetables in a large heavy kettle.  Bring the vinegar to boiling and stir in a mixture of the sugar, salt, celery seed, mustard seed, dry mustard, and turmeric. Pour vinegar mixture over vegetables; bring to boiling, and cook 20 to 25 minutes, or until thoroughly heated, stirring occasionally. Pour into sterilized jars and seal.

My lunch, finished off with coconut cream pie.

My dear dad visited the States only twice.  The first time he came over we took him up to the Amish country for a meal, my mum and dad very rarely ate out at a restaurant, but he declared it the best meal he had ever had.  I think it included chicken pot pie and several types of sausage, happy memories.

We usually take the same route up and we just GPS the last few miles, that was good. We are new to GPS not having cell phones, but Mr.B. has one in his car, so for the drive home we thought we would use it.  My goodness that thing took us all over jabip, I think we crossed Route 30 five times, the route I would have taken from that area, under over and across.  I could have done much better.

Phoenixville is a town we pass through, it used to be an old Steel town as many were in this part of Pennsylvania, these industries are long gone and the jobs that went with them.  Phoenixville has faired better than many of these old towns, being quite close to Valley Forge Park, and on the edge of much more affluent areas, that have become very expensive to buy a property, so people have moved out to this area buying properties.  The main street has a vibrant restaurant scene and several brew pubs.  I like the mural on this building, there are several throughout town depicting it's industrial history.

Many a year ago Mr. B. and I would quite often go to the old movie theatre here on a Friday night.  It has an old pipe organ, very nice indeed, The Colonial Theatre.  We really should think of going to one of their organ concerts.


Saturday, August 26, 2017

Summertime And The Living Is Easy

Hi Dear Folk,

Summertime and the living is easy, at least it is today, because it is cool, blue skies and sun, a perfect summer day.  Enjoying the moment.  This morning I got up early, and threaded elastic in my green Indian skirt.  Let me go back a bit, in the spring I bought two check Indian skirts at the thrift, one in orange and one in green, both of which although new,  still needed a good wash and must have been old stock, because the elastic waist had gone.  It was not just a matter of replacing the elastic, because the elastic had been sown into the waistband, so I had to unpick the old elastic out, stitched back the waistband and then threaded in new elastic.  I however only got to thread the orange one and have worn that all summer, but never got to threading the green one, now that is done I wore it today.  They are all cotton very full skirts and lined in cotton so just right for hot summer days.

When you wash these in cold water, you are meant to dry them in a rung out position and they are to be worn creased, which is fine with me because I am not into ironing.

This month I've watched two movies which are both true stories A United Kingdom, and The Zookeeper's Wife.  I read The Zookeepers Wife a while ago, here is the review I wrote at the time.  If you get a chance to watch these films you might enjoy them.

Paperback books are easy to carry in my messenger bag which I take to work, I was able to pick four more up at the library, which I buy for a quarter.  I'm looking forward to reading The Eighty Dollar Champion, another true story.  The documentary is on Netflix and such a feel good story, not unlike Sea Biscuit.  About Snowman who became a champion jumper, after being bought at the Amish Horse auctions in Lancaster County, PA.  He was loaded on the truck ready to be shipped to the knackers yard and was saved at the last minute, bought for eighty dollars.

This is the alpaca cardi that shrunk.  I have been able to cut four hat crown panels out of it, will do a contrasting band.  I have to keep everything that is pure wool in plastic bags, I've had too much anguish over moth holes, not to do so.

This is a shrug that I have almost finished crocheting, but I think will be a lot heavier than I thought.  I wanted to wear it with summer dresses, but our air conditioning in the USA is so frigid, in many public places, that maybe it will not be too heavy.  The yarn was on clearance, kind of a ribbon yarn with a satin and velvet type finish.

Are you familiar with Folkwear Patterns?  You might like to read their history and see the patterns they offer, they are such fun to look at and acquire.  I first ran across these patterns in the late seventies and have always liked them.  In fact I bought the Kimono pattern back in the eighties and made that as a wedding shower gift for a friend.  Making the kimono, then stitching, pulling the threads, indigo blue dying, pulling all the stitching out, which leaves a pattern.  A lot of work but very rewarding.

I ran across this an Afghani Nomad dress made up see here, and thought how nice it looked.  I actually bought my pattern off eBay after realizing I could have bought it straight from Folkwear Patterns, I thought they were out of business, but are not.  I like Posie Gets Cozy's version especially her fabric combination.

My August garden, must enjoy it as Autumn is in the air, leaves are turning and you can see the slight slide down towards Autumn.

Prairie Bonnet, what a lovely name.  I planted this several years ago and thought it had died off, but this year it came back and I am so happy.

This little garden under my kitchen window is so dry near the wall, that I decided to intersperse it with brickwork, and add pots, rather than just seeing dry dirt.

Rob will never be a potter, here is one of his pieces, the blue jug.  You can fill it with water up to the bottom of the spout, then it all leaks.  I love the blue, looks very Provence and country to me.

I could not get these calla lilies to stand up, so put tomato frames around them.  Now they're doing pretty well.

My beautiful hibiscus, almost looks on fire in the centre.  My bougainvillea is blooming at long last.


Thursday, August 24, 2017


Hi Dear Folk,

I don't know where summer has gone and have not even dipped my toes in the sea this year.  Several weeks ago I had a terrible cold, which totally seems wrong to be that ill in the summer.  If I'm going to be ill it should be in winter when I can eat chicken soup and be in bed with my quilt pulled up or sit by the log fire.  I'm better now though.

Last Saturday I went over to the Hecklerfest held at the Heckler House.  Just a small local festival.  The house is not that old about 1860, it looks older actually, but I guess that was a simple country style in Pennsylvania that lasted for a while.

I liked this picture of the two older gentlemen just sitting there under the tree with their hats on watching the world before them.  It was a lovely summer day, just right, blue skies and sun filtering through the trees.

Kitchen garden.

This was a pot of chicken noodle soup, although probably more suited to an autumn day.  Did get my chicken soup though, if not rather late.

Hand churned butter to sample.

Rag rug making.

Some views inside the Heckler House.

"Sleep tight" is an expression that we say, but it originates from this type of rope strung bed, a mattress would be placed on top.  To have a comfortable night's sleep you would have to keep the ropes strung tightly so as not to sag, hence forth the saying "sleep tight."

Cigar making.

Old style base ball attire.

Dough trough from Wisconsin, circa 1790 I think.  That would hold a lot of dough.

Old gourds to house the martins that keep away the mosquitoes.

Inside the barn.

Rides for the children.

They had a little book sale in one of the rooms and I picked up a very nice book about Frank Lloyd Wright and the houses he designed, just one dollar, I'm looking forward to reading that.  I read a biography about him, he was quite a character.

A nice morning was spent here, topped off with a Peach Milk Shake from Chic filet, which they only sell in the summertime, and I've become just a little addicted to them on a hot summer day, why not!

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