Monday, January 12, 2009

" The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life."
~Robert Louis Stevenson

Well, we are home in Arkansas now. I admit that besides an awesomely productive school planning meeting, and my friend Laura's mama shower, I have been living a bit hermit like. It seems like during the months of November and December we were constantly on the go. I have really been enjoying the peace and slow pace of the last week. I feel like I am recharging. I have been doing lots of of my life goals.

Today Violet and I made banana muffins and sunshine smoothies for breakfast. I used a recipe out of the cookbook my mama gifted Liz and I for Christmas this year. It is such a treasure. She spent a few months compiling recipes she has collected from all of the women in our family.

The whole first section is made up of short biographies starting with my great-grandmothers. A lot of the stories I had never heard before. It was such a thoughtful and touching gift.

Mama made sure to include copies of any handwritten recipes that she had. She recalls watching Grandmother, copying recipes onto pages in the phone book, while chatting on the phone. This particular recipe came from one of these very pages. The muffins turned out really good. I think that it is my new favorite banana bread recipe. I did modify it a bit to fit the ingredients that we had on hand.

Grandmother's modified Banana Bread/ Muffins

1/4 c oil
1/4 c applesauce
3/4 c brown sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 c mashed bananas
2 TBSP buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
1 c wheat flour
1 c white flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Mix oil, applesauce, and sugar in large bowl. Add eggs one at a time. Mix well. Add buttermilk, banana, and vanilla.

In a separate bowl mix flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Fold dry ingredients into the wet. Pour into muffin tin or loaf pan. Bake at 350 until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.

I used this

Mexican vanilla that I picked up while we were in Texas. It has such a rich flavor. I love it!!

The smoothies were also yummy. I snuck some carrot puree into them unnoticed:

Sunshine Smoothies

3 cups orange juice
2 bananas (they work great if you freeze them first, but this is optional)
1/4 c carrot puree

Blend until smooth starting with a few pulses. Pour and enjoy!

I also made a golden seal decoction to ward off any winter colds that might come our way.

I simmered whole golden seal root in water for about 15 minutes. Let it sit overnight. Then simmered again for about 3 minutes. I poured it up into a jar and stored it in the fridge. I find that if I take it when I feel symptoms of illness it nips it in the bud.

All in all it has been a very peaceful and productive few days. AHHHHH!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

"In the cookies of life, sisters are the chocolate chips. "
~Author Unknown

My sister and I had a shopping extravaganza all day Saturday. It was a blast.

We started the day at the Benbrook Antique Mall. I found a few cute things, and as luck would have it they were all on sale. Wahoo. As the lady rang up my purchases, I felt like I was on the Price Is Right. In the shopping bag went...a cute blue casserole dish that looked like it came out of Little Red Riding Hoods cottage...a deer vase... a vintage pink hat for Violets tea parties (shh I am going to save it for her birthday) ice cream scoop...a vintage apron, and a couple of vintage cards.

cute mushroom apron

I love this little deer vase.

I have been collecting Vintage Christmas cards.

Then it was on to Barnes and Noble, where we picked up some ice coffees, and went straight to the craft book section. We then luxuriously perused the books for a couple of hours. We emerged a bit foggy from craft book over stimulation with our selections. On the way to the check-out counter we grabbed a copy of the new Spin off magazine.

After the bookstore we headed to Office Depot where I purchased a printer/scanner combo. I love it, love it, love it. I can't wait to get home and try it out!

Later that evening, I worked on Liz's quilt.

On the home front...
Kudos go to Kalin, for watching Violet, cleaning, washing and folding our laundry, and making dinner!!! He whipped up a chicken pot pie that was to die for!! Yumo!!!

Saturday, January 3, 2009


Oh what a lovely crafty day!!

Mimi cleverly arranged a sewing bee over at Liz's cozy cottage, minus the wee one. Kalin (my other half), Jeff (Liz's other half), and Grand Daddy (Mimi's other half), all took Violet to see The Tale of Despareaux at the Movie Tavern.

Liz and I started the day by making a break-neck trip to the Cabbage Rose, and Jo-Ann's to pick up some last minute supplies.
We met at the rendezvous point (Liz's cottage) at noon and ate a light lunch. Liz made her curry chicken salad. Mama brought fruit salad.

With that under our belt we set up our crafting centers. This consisted of two sergers, three sewing machines, a cutting area, and an ironing area. There was no shortage of equiptment here. :) We all whipped out our projects and got to work.

Mama worked on making cute market bags.

Liz worked on some making and embellishing throw pillows for her back bedroom.

I worked on Liz's lap quilt.

Later for a little boost I made frozen chocolate lollipops. Liz coined the name in honor of Anna Maria Horners beautiful fabric line.

We had a blast. It was so wonderful to be together. We decided that it must become a tradition.

Thursday, January 1, 2009


"...and now let us welcome the New Year, full of things that have never been."
~Rainer Maria Rilke


I hope that everyone is having an enjoyable holiday filled with good company, fun, and merriment. We are visiting family in Fort Worth.

This is my favorite time of year to visit because everyone is usually on vacation and we can really take time to slow down and enjoy each others company.

That time is precious, in a world that seems to pass us by at an extraordinarily accelerated pace. Sometimes I feel like everything is moving so fast around me that I just want to make everything stop so that I can catch up and revel in these precious moments.

I look forward to this year as an exciting one. I see a our house progressing and are confident that we will be dwelling in it sometime this year. Wahoo!! I feel this is a year filled with change. With this change, the opportunity to better ourselves, continue my life goal of organization, begin the journey of home schooling Violet, continue the devlopement of our communtiy school, plant seeds of energy into growing my buisness, watch as our country evolves and hopefully begins healing itself, and the other myriad of things awiating us. The possibilities are endless!!!