"Let's be cheerful"! We have no more right to steal the brightness out of the day for our own family than we have to steal the purse of a stranger. Let us be as careful that our homes are furnished with pleasant & happy thoughts as we are that the rugs are the right color and texture & the furniture comfortable and beautiful"! Laura Ingalls Wilder

Thursday, March 31, 2011

When the cat's away...

I have a plan for today.  The girls leave at noon for a house sitting job.
But first they'll do a little learning.
Hubby will come home for lunch.  He'll do a little eating.  He'll head back to work by 1:00

a little playing

Then when they're all gone, I'll do a little of this!

I was inspired by the era depicted here on Tuesday.  I picked up this finished quilt top at my friends yard sale last summer.  She is an amazing woman who after raising 5 kids decided to go on a short term mission trip to Africa.  On that trip she saw so many children living on the streets.  She came home having 'established' an orphans home! This was not a plan, nor was it part of the mission she was on.  She now resides there permanently and recently sent a young girl home to Oregon ~ her first adoption.  Anyway, I digress...

So I paid $6.00 for the quilt top and after a bit of digging came up with this red vintage fabric for the backing for just $2.00!  When finished I will have paid $8.00 for this pristine little quilt...not bad in my book!

I have these great vintage glass buttons... There are 9 patchwork squares.  
No way ~ exactly 9 buttons?  
Must be providence.

maybe like this ~ only centered   : )

I'm thinking this would make a wonderful summer tablecloth for our backyard summer meals.  We'll see how brave I am after the assembly.

I'll be sure and share the finished product.  I wish I could invite you over for B.B.Q.  Then again, maybe we should wait until the snow melts!  : )

I am joining Natural Suburbia's Creative Friday

Blessings,  Debbie

yust yolkin'

You wanna know something that just flaps my waddles?  It's spring again and I still don't have a place for the chickens to roost.  No more walking on eggshells for me.  If my men don't shake a tail feather, eggs 'round here will be scarce as hen's teeth!  Apparently it's time for me to put up a squawk.  I've spent two years brooding over the thing like a Banty on a June bug, now it's time to raise my hackle feathers.


The rooster may rule the roost, but the hen rules the rooster!


Yust yolkin' sweetie...I'm sure you've hatched a plan for a coop.  And I'm looking forward to seeing you strut your stuff!

Blessings,  Debbie

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

knit and thrift

Time To Rise
by Robert Louis Stevenson

A birdie with a yellow bill
Hopped upon the window sill,
Cocked his shining eye and said:
"Aint you 'shamed, you sleepy-head?"

Joining Ginnys' yarn along.
The knit:  I'm still working on Pickles plain vest.  My concern over having enough yarn to finish the job seems to be unfounded ~ so far, so good!  I'm still keeping my fingers crossed.

The read:  I wanted to share my latest thrifting treasure; Robert Louis Stevenson's A child's Garden of Verses illustrated by Hilda Boswell.  We already own the volume illustrated by Tasha Tudor (of whom I am a tremendous fan) but these illustrations are sooo sweet!  Absolutely frame-worthy if only I had the nerve to ruin a book.  Not happenin'!

Blessings,  Debbie

the butterflies.....flew

Yesterday I said that we were off and running.  I said that we needed a membership card to get in.  I gave a weak hint with the whole bee thing.  Now I'm just gonna say true, true, false.  True, off we ran picking up grandma on the way just as I said.  True, I renewed my membership just like I've done every year since my 24 year old was 10.  But, somehow my weak hint became no hint at all once we arrived and realized that the whole reason we were going was.........gone!

Ever since my olders were youngers and my youngers were babies my husband and I have budgeted a family membership to the High Desert Museum into our homeschooling budget.

We hadn't been since fall and it was time to renew our membership.  There is an ever-changing exhibit hall that was featuring a live butterfly garden.  We had intended to go for months and according to the calendar we had only 3 days left.  It was leaving March 30th.  

On Mondays the girls have art class, Tuesdays they babysit, Wednesdays Erin has sewing, and Thursday?  Well, Thursday the exhibit was leaving.  So we decided to cancel babies and head to the museum.

We charged the camera battery, packed a snack (we'd be grabbing lunch in Bend), stopped for gas, picked up grandma and headed the 50 miles to the museum.  After filling out the appropriate form and writing the check we moseyed over to the exhibit hall.  Before getting there we had to stop and say "hey" to the bobcat who was looking a bit sleepy, but was awake.



Next we had to visit with the lynx who was wide awake and putting on a nice show.

We finally made it to our destination and what do you think we saw?  Nothing!   I quickly hoofed it back to the front desk to inquire about their obvious mistake.  I tried to reason with the nice woman at the counter. "My calendar said March 30th".  Don't ask me what I thought she was going to do about it...

We were all quite disappointed but it didn't take us long to get over it.  It doesn't matter how many times we've been there, we always love it.  And we quickly got into our groove.  I'll just let the pictures speak for themselves.

everyday there is a live birds of prey talk

14 year old screech owl

falcon~all of the animals housed at the museum are rescues
that would not be able to survive in the wild

throughout the day you stumble on interactive presentations~
this one was about the large cats

barbed wire sculpture~the museum is rich with local art

early 1900s lumber mill that was reassembled on the museum grounds

on scheduled days volunteers come and work it~ it's wonderful to watch
and there are several hands-on activities

in the summertime there is a wild horse control round up and several of the
horses are brought to the museum to live, then auctioned off in the fall.

ermine?  weasel?  pine martin?  badger?  wolverine?  mink?   

"I'm the local school teacher and I've been waiting ever so long for the stage.
I just happen to have all of my things with me.  What is you name"?

So, if you're ever in Central Oregon just give me a heads up.  We'll be happy to meet you at the museum and we can give you the grand tour.  Just don't ask me to be in charge of the schedule...

* Oh and by the way ~  the bee hint?  Well, it was as close as I could come 'on the fly' to a butterfly. ;)

bye, bye!

Blessings,  Debbie

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

off and running

Busy morning.  Gotta run....

We'll pick up my mom on the way out of town (cuz grammies make everything more fun).  We're going to the big city today.  Well, big to us.

This is a very weak hint.

I'll need my membership card to get in... No , It's not Costco!  Although sometimes that can be fun. :)  I'll share tomorrow...

Blessings,  Debbie

Sunday, March 27, 2011

pasta from scratch

Awhile back I said I would come back and tell you how to make your own pasta.  I said that it is easy to do and you don't need a machine, which is true.  But, I ask you - if you had a machine wouldn't you want to use it?

So it is with me.  I needed pasta and although I knew that the next time I made it I was going to take pictures to share, I wanted to play with my machine.

There. You get a little peek at my character (or lack thereof).  I wanted to play more than I wanted to do what needed to be done.  Sorry.

I measured my flour by weight.  I give you the recipe using cups.

Pasta from scratch:

2 cups flour (I used my typical 1/2 white, 1/2 whole wheat)
3 eggs
1 tsp salt (optional)
approx. 2 tsp oil

Make a well in your flour/salt and add eggs.  Using your fingers begin working the egg into the flour.  Add oil as needed to make a stiff dough.  Turn onto a floured surface and knead for about 8 minutes.  (I set a timer just because when it comes to kneading, 8 minutes is longer than you would guess).  Resting your hands for a moment is o.k.!  Let the dough rest for a few minutes when finished. 

The process is the same by hand as it is with the machine.  The only difference is that you roll with a rolling pin and cut with a pasta cutting tool if you have one, or a knife if you don't.  For years it was just me, the rolling pin, and the knife.  We did splendidly.

six or seven times
Next, re-flour your surface and roll dough thin.  Let it rest a moment.  Fold dough in half and roll thin.  Let rest.  Do this 6 or 7 times.  Your final roll should make your pasta about 1/8" thick.  If it's thicker you have wonderful rustic noodles.  If it's thin you have elegant noodles.  I'm a rustic kind of gal which makes life so much simpler.


Hang pasta sheet over a dowel (I use the cleaned back of a chair).  Allow to dry for awhile.  I have often skipped this step and had great results.  You just have to be more careful about how you cut it~  

~If your pasta is relatively dry you will now roll it loosely, and cut into thin strips.
~If it is not dry I just use a sharp pizza cutter and leave the sheet flat, cutting into long strips.


That's it!  I just leave my pasta in little piles until I'm ready to cook it.  You could go ahead and hang it back up to dry more until you're ready for it.  Or, (if you need them now) just go ahead and cook without drying. To cook, just add to boiling, salted water and cook for about 4 minutes. 


* I know this sounds time consuming but it really is simple.  I am convinced that the reason we think simple things are difficult is our attitude.  Begin this thinking that there is nothing to it and you will be surprised that it is true.  Also, you have all of this wonderful down time as you let the dough rest and dry.  Use these snippets of time to put things away and rinse your dishes.  Fill the sink with hot soapy water.  I am a soapbox preacher when it comes to the sermon; Clean As You Go!

Blessings,  Debbie

Saturday, March 26, 2011

tax time

'render unto caesar that which is ceasers' 

"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."

"No one can serve two masters.  Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.  You cannot serve both God and Money."

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear.  Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?  Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"

"And why do you worry about clothes?  See how the lilies of the field grow.  They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these.  If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?  So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?'  or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What will we wear?'  For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."

"Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone  Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?  If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!"

I lift up my eyes to the hills~
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

Blessings,  Debbie

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