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OPEN for Business

December 8th, 2017

After a few weeks of taking photos, making products, and getting things organized, my shop ‘Seeds & Sundries’ is finally OPEN!!! I spent yesterday working all-day-long getting things photographed, sewn, stamped, organized, and entered. My dining room table is showing the effects.

But, all the hard work has paid off, Seeds & Sundries is OPEN. Head on over and check it out. Your purchases support this blog and keep it ad-free. You’ll find all kind of things there: double gauze scarves, hand stamped note cards, my favorite garden marker & plant tags, lip balm, and so much more.

Check back often, I have lots of ideas for new products I’d love to make and add, but it will take me a while to get those planned and done.

Any products you’d like to see in the shop?

More Fun with Indigo

December 7th, 2017

When I was back in Ohio for Thanksgiving, I taught my nieces & nephew (my sister was there too) how to make shibori. They had a blast, made some lovely things, and we only ended up with one accidental blue hand (two were dyed on purpose).

We used this this indigo dying kit, that a friend gave me for my birthday. If you’re looking to give this a go, I highly recommend this kit. We dyed so many items and the vat was still doing well. In fact, it’s still in my dad’s basement because they wanted to take more stuff to dye. Since the kit is less than $10, it’s a very inexpensive day of fun.

I took the opportunity to dye a few flour sack towels to sell in my little web store I’m opening later this week.

It was such a fun project, doing creative things is one of my favorite hobbies. It’s also so much fun to share that love with my nieces. Hopefully, they’ll keep wearing the shirts they made and perhaps even dye a few more things in the future.

Quote of the Day: Ruth Reichl

December 5th, 2017

“Alice would have snickered derisively at the notion, but she was the first person I ever met who understood the power of cooking. She was a great cook, but she cooked more for herself than for other people, not because she was hungry, but because she was comforted by the rituals of the kitchen. It occurred to her that others might feel differently, and I was grown before I realized that not every six-year-old would consider it a treat to spend entire afternoons in the kitchen.” 

-Ruth Reichl in Tender at the Bone

Recently, I read this book at LOVED it. My childhood was filled with all sorts of delicious and exotic food. Since I grew up in South America, I was able to taste all manner of strange and wonderful things: plantain, fresh coconut right off the tree, yucca, guanabana, and so much more. Thankfully, pickiness was not in my blood, I loved food–all food.

Naturally, since I loved eating and food, cooking became an passion early in life. When I was Jr High and High School, I did the majority of the cooking for my family.

For me, cooking in a creative outlet and it’s comforting. Spending a day in the kitchen making good meals is very enjoyable, and relaxing. I always joke that cooking is my spiritual gift.

Do you enjoy cooking? Do you enjoy eating? What’s your favorite exotic food?

Fresh Peppers in December

December 4th, 2017

If you remember, I told you about the ‘Pizza my Heart’ pepper that I grew in a container by the front door this summer. When cold weather threatened, I decided to move it indoors for the winter (more on that here). I hasn’t set any fruit, but the small fruits that were on it have grown and ripened.
indoor peppers
Yesterday, I harvested a nice batch of peppers to cook up with onions for breakfast. I’ll keep watching the plant, monitoring any blooms and fruit. It is under a grow light in the warmest part of the house.
indoor peppers
There are other edible things growing indoors during the winter, most are potted perennials herbs. Greens and cilantro are two other things I start from see and grow under lights, I haven’t gotten around to starting any of those yet. Hopefully this week I’ll get arugula, lettuce, and cilantro seeded and growing for harvest around the new year.

What are you growing indoors for the table?

Friday Favorite: Tree Time

December 1st, 2017

I love having a Christmas tree in the house during December. We typically cut a little pine from our property, it’s never a beautifully pruned tree, but it has quirks, big empty spaces, and lots of character.

Our tree is always cut the first weekend of December, after we have arrived home from our yearly trip to Ohio to celebrate the holidays with family.

I’ll drape it with a few strands of white lights and some etched glass bulbs. Simple, and it doesn’t take forever to set up and take down. This year, I’d like to make some pine garland to hang around the front door. There’s no outlet, or I’d decorate it with white lights as well.

One thing I do miss about our Ohio house is the yards of pine garland and white lights adorning the outside of the house during the winter.

Luckily, I can string lights in the old apple tree, those are actually left on all year long. White lights really help brighten up these dark winter nights, they are probably one of my all time favorite things.

When do you set up your Christmas tree? Or do you decorate in other ways?

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.