Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Chicken Mutiny

I got my scrappy batik top finished today.  It won't get quilted for a while and I may add more to it as I would like it to be full size.
The fabrics are Island Batik and most of them are from the Blue Moon collection.
An odd weather day here.  The temperatures are warmer than normal but it doesn't feel like it because there is a cool wind.
There was a chicken mutiny today.  The old and newer flocks are separated into different sections of the coop. Each have their own feeding and water dishes and roosting areas.  Occasionally, one will decide the other area looks better than its own and will try to sneak past but most were content to be where they were.  Today, all the newer ones decided to push their way enmasse to the other side.  I propped the connecting door open and let them have their own way.  There will probably be a bit of squabbling but they are all pretty much the same size so there shouldn't b e any mayhem.  I hope.

Friday, November 24, 2017

Gluten Free Cookies

Baking is part of the preparations for Christmas.  It is a lot of work but enjoyable to see the containers of cookies, pies and cake pile up in the pantry or freezer.  It can, however, be a challenge for those with dietary restrictions.  What do you make for the person who is lactate or gluten intolerant or a diabetic?
I discovered a few years ago that I couldn't properly digest gluten?  It was an accidental discovery but have felt much better since it was eliminated from my diet.  Since then, I have amassed quite a few recipes that I either found or adjusted.
I discovered that in many recipes, you can successfully substitute chick pea (garbanzo beans) for regular flour.  I sometimes use gluten free flour but it is expensive and doesn't work any better than the chickpea.

Some recipes don't need either and here is one that I was given.  I added a few of my own touches but they aren't necessary .  The ingredients include oat flour.  I buy gluten free oats and process them into a flour.
For the oat cakes, you will need,
2 eggs
1/4 c honey or 1/2 c brown sugar
 tsp . cinnamon
1/2 tsp baking powder (my version)
2 c. oat flour (original recipe called for 1/2 c. oat flour and 1 1/2 c. oatmeal)
 Combine all ingredients except oat flour.  Gradually add flour, mixing after each addition until consistency is that of a cookie dough.
 Cook for 18 min. at 325.

Here is my addition:  I add a couple of good sized tbsp. of molasses before the oat flour.  It gives the oat cakes a nice chewy texture.  Make aprox. 18 cookies.

Thank you to Kim James for the original recipe.

Let me know if you try this and what you think.


Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Togetherness is Fun

Just a quick note tonight as I am getting ready to go out.
I have started my Christmas preparations.  I am earlier than usual this year but, as I have said before, November is when I feel most in the spirit of the season.  Hubby and I got the tote in that holds our trees and I will get the smaller ones up this weekend.
After the outdoors chores were done, I had a lovely few hours listening to carols on my CD player and quilting. I almost have my scrappy bargello top finished.  It is both colourful and very scrappy.  Tomorrow I am getting together with a friend at her house to make stocking stuffer sized gifts.  It is always fun to do this sort of thing with someone.
Years ago, I used to go to a ladies house and we would make pickles together.  There is something about sharing a task that makes it a lot more fun.
Have a great evening.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Great News

The sunrise this morning was spectacular.  The first three photos were taken facing west and the last was looking south.  the sun always seem to reflect around three sides whether is coming up or going down.

We had good news today.  Roger went for his appointment with the surgeon today and was told he didn't need to come back.  The ankle is healed.  The should follow suite by the middle of December.
Tomorrow, we will hunt up the Christmas decorations and get them in the house.  I have some Christmas baking to get started as well.  Busy time of year but always blessed.
If you are looking for some ideas for Christmas gifts, check out Connie's blog.  She gives links to a number of sites that have free patterns.  Tell her I sent you. http://www.conniekresin.com/2017/11/25-free-christmas-quilt-patterns.html

Thursday, November 16, 2017

A Sneak Preview.

Here is a sneak preview of my scrappy bargello.  I still have one set of rows to cut and then I can start sewing them all together.  I will be marking the reverse of each one with the row number.  Doing this means it will be easier to sew them in the proper order.  The lower half of each row is a bit tricky so I will be spending a bit of time getting it organized.

I turned 10 pounds of beets into jars of beet pickle this morning.  I am not a big pickle eater although I do love olives.  Beets are the only other one that I eat.  I also got hubby out for a slow stroll through the bush.  He needs to get outside and he needs some mind clearing exercise.  A walk in the bush provides both.  He hasn't had any problems from the fall for which I am very grateful.
We had a light rain shower this morning which gradually turned to snow and then it got quite windy.  I was a bit concerned that we might lose our power but, fortunately, it didn't happen.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

A Day of Ups and Downs

Today was one of those odd ones which consist of a number of emotions and activities.  We had three medical appointments; one in the morning and two morning mid afternoon.  In the middle of those, we went to a Christmas dinner.  We had a lovely meal and even lovelier time singing Carols and  playing a silly game.  Laughter and fun was the whipped cream on our day.
I ran hubby home after and then zipped back for my doctor's appointment.  His was an hour later and I was going to go with him.  I expected him to be in the waiting room when I finished but he wasn't nor was his vehicle in the parking lot.  I had just taken out my phone  when he came in, his coat all dirty and mud on his pants.   He had fallen in the driveway!  He seemed to be alright but I was really worried that he had caused further injury to his back.
Once all the medical things were finished including a stop at the pharmacy plus one more to get the mail, I went home.  Hubby had already left so I didn't seem him again until I was indoors.  He was still alright but we decided we had had enough for the day and cancelled our evening meeting. Supper was a piece of toast and a mug of tea.
I have been thinking about the layout for the bargello and I think I have come up with an idea.  Now to see if it will work.  I will keep you posted.  No meetings and no need to leave the property tomorrow.  Yahoo.
If you need a little something to get you started thinking about Christmas, this photo was taken at Castledown Salvation Army in Edmonton.  These shepherds were part of the outside nativity.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Nothing Special which is Special

Happy Tuesday.  Nothing special about today except we are alive and well and that is special in itself.
I went to our church this morning and filled shoe boxes to be sent to those in need, cooked 10 lbs of beets to get them ready to be pickled and did some sewing. 
I have all the rows sewn together for my bargello quilt and now am getting ready to work out the layout.  This is always a fun time when the quilt starts to take on its personality.  I have been taking photos of the steps which I will share with you later. I have to do a 12.5 inch block to send to Island Batik (islandbatik.com) and am thinking of doing a mini version of the bargello.
One of our chickens died today.  I was giving them their evening feeding and collecting eggs when I saw it in a corner of the coop.  Hubby didn't see any marks on it so it much have been age related.
Tomorrow hubby has another doctor's appointment and I am hoping that he will get more relief from his back pain.  Next week is another appointment with the surgeon.  Fingers crossed that he will be given the go ahead to start resuming his chores.  He is getting pretty fed up with not being able to get out and do what needs to be done.
We have a Christmas dinner tomorrow at the Legion for the village Art and Crafts Club.  It will, I know, be a fun time. We are having a small, fun gift exchange, lots to eat  and donations brought for our food bank.  This is our first event for the Christmas season.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Lest We Forget

Tomorrow is, as  you know, Remembrance Day. Hubby and I will be going to the service in the village.  Our church always lays a wreath and, this year, one of our young men is going to be taking over the responsibility.  I think it is important that we do everything we can as adults to help the younger ones feel they are not only a part of the community where they live but that they are an important part.
This photo is of my parents.  It was taken just at the close of the war.  I am the baby.  Dad was with the 48th Highlanders but, because of his age, he wasn't part of the actual fighting.  He was one of the many who took over some of the jobs in England left vacant by the British soldiers.
My mother worked in a hostel (home) for evacuated children and I spent the first part of my life there after Dad returned to Canada.  It was just over a year before Mom and I immigrated to be with him.
One of my uncles (husband of my mother's youngest sister) was killed in the war and another uncle had a breakdown from which he never recovered.  He worked in the fire department and was responsible for removing bodies from the bombed buildings.  He was Mother's oldest sister's husband. I will be thinking of them tomorrow.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Thursday is the New Friday

I was just going to say that it is hard to believe this is only Friday when I realized it was actually Thursday.  I heard the days for a retiree described as 6 Saturdays and a Sunday and I can certainly identify with that. 
We have had quite a snowfall here this afternoon but I managed to get all the yard work done this morning.  I also made a pot of chili and a loaf of bread.  The latter was done in my bread maker and it didn't turn out although I followed the recipe exactly.  I also managed to finished sewing my strips for the bargello into pairs.
It is amazing how much more I can get done now that hubby is able to get around a bit more, drive the van and make meals.  He is feeling better with the new pain medication which means he is sleeping longer.  It was good hearing him singing this morning while getting breakfast.  Been a while since that happened.
I got all our hats and mittens ready to be worn as well as Heidi's winter clothing.  She also got a new set of booties this year so she is all ready for the season.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Roller Coaster Ride

The sky sure looks as though we are going to get snow soon.  I am pretty much ready  I got my snow tires on today, the last of the potatoes from the garden (or at least the ones I could find) water hose put away and a lot of the other odds and ends that have to be done this time of year.
I had made a list of things to be done which I kept on the kitchen table.  Crossing off items that had been done felt good but them I had to add a few others.  That is life, isn't it/
We had good news following our Heidi's surgery.  I had the tumour sent for a biopsy and the vet called to say that it was benign.  Wonderful news.  He also said that she would get others but that there was a less than 10% chance that further ones would be anything other than benign as well.
The weather yesterday was lovely for driving to Orillia (hour and a half) where I met my sister.  We had lunch together and caught up on all the news that had taken place since I last saw her 6 months ago.  The drive home wasn't quite as good as kept going through patches of slushy rain.  I had to stop on the way to get a few groceries and when I got back to the car, the battery was dead.  Poor hubby had to drive from home and give me a boost.  He put in a new battery this morning.  Fortunately, the one from the tractor fit.  Sometime life is like a roller coaster isn't it?  Fortunately, the ups are more frequent that the downs.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Sale Items Ready

I spent the majority of my day finishing up articles for tomorrows craft sale.  I have a couple of baby quilts, a runner and place mat set, and some other quilted items.  I like to include a few smaller things as well and, this year, I made some fun things for our furry family members.
Fido will love having a special scarf to show that he loves Christmas.  I have made a number of these in different fabrics and sizes.  New this year are my collar covers.  There are pink ones for the ladies that have two tiers of lace and for the more macho dog, the cover is made of camouflage fabric adorned with buckskin fringe.
The other items in the photo are key fobs.  They sold well last year.  Fasten one end to your bags handle and clip your keys onto the other.  No more searching amongst the flotsam in the bottom of your purse.
It is supposed to rain tomorrow so that might be good for the sale as people won't be as likely to travel or work outside.  Wish us luck.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

A Piece of Crap

I got to Huntsville today and completed my shopping.  I guess I will have to be thinking about getting started on Christmas gifts as well  We don't have a lot of people to buy for-mainly our grandchildren, each other and the little ones that are part of exchanges, for neighbours etc.
I have most of the latter done, have no idea what I am going to give hubby and have lots of time to do the grands as they go away for Christmas and don't open their gifts until New Year's.
One of the extra's that we enjoy every year is choosing something from a special catalog.  It shows photos of various farm animals and other items and services that help an individual or group in a developing country.  Each item has a price and a bit of a information on how it would make life easier for the recipient.  I would love to be able to donate the money for a sewing machine but that is out of our income level.
We get quite a kick out of some of the donatable items such as "A Piece of Crap"-manure.  We could send a lot of them for free from our chickens.
Tomorrow, I have to finish the preparations for the craft sale.  Once that is over, I can start getting ready for a visit with one of my sisters who is in Canada visiting her son and his family.
Our little Heidi continues to get better.  She had her last pain pill this morning and is starting to bounce around like her old self.  Will try and keep her quiet for another day or so to make sure she doesn't do herself any harm
Don't forget we put our clocks back this Saturday evening.  An extra hours sleep is always welcome.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Two Hour Quilt

We all had a good sleep last night so today I was able to get some work done.  I made cookies, brought in wood and did the usual housework things.  I have just finished a baby quilt for the sale.  From start to finish, I don't think it took 2 hours to make and that includes 20 minutes to get it on the frame and quilted.  If you are interested in knowing how I made it, send me a comment.
It isn't fancy.  Just a panel with pieced backing and poly batting.  I quilted it in a lose meander.  Cheap and cheerful as a friend says.  It will however, still make a lovely gift for a new baby and last for many years.
Tomorrow I will do the shopping that I was going to do today.   I have some pillow forms to cover and a few small items to finish and I will be ready for the sale.

This photo was taken 3 years ago today.  Hubby is heading down the driveway to test out his tractor.  We had a total of about 1 inch of snow fall between yesterday and today-much less than in 2014. It is always fun looking back and seeing what happened a few years previously.
Our little dog is doing really well.  Other than missing hair where she was shaved and a bandaged tummy, you wouldn't know she had undergone an operation.