Saturday, July 30, 2011

Hamburger Cookies

Recently I needed to take some refreshments to church to serve after an event. I came upon this recipe for Hamburger Cookies in a Country Woman magazine and thought they would be fun to try. My ten-year-old granddaughter helped me -- in fact, she did a lot of the work.

Vanilla wafers are brushed lightly with corn syrup -- we used an artist-type paintbrush -- and then sprinkled with a few sesame seeds to resemble the bun tops.

Peppermint patties make the burgers.

We used yellow frosting to make the "cheese" (or "mustard" if preferred).

To resemble ketchup, I used melted red candy melts instead of red frosting to get a brighter red.

The chef:

The finished cookies:

These were so cute and got lots of favorable comments at the refreshment table!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

A simple embroidery project for fall

No, I am not rushing the season by thinking ahead to fall. I'm finishing up a UFO (un-finished object) from last fall. While visiting our daughter out west last year, we visited a charming shop called The Two Olde Crows.
(Photo from The Two Olde Crows)
There were many sweet and simple framed embroideries here and there on the walls, shelves, etc. Many of these had fall themes and I found myself thinking how easy it would be to make some myself.

Later, at home, I happened upon an easy fall design on the DMC site. At the time, I printed out the design, tea-dyed some muslin, transferred the design to it, and bought a frame at the dollar store.

Last week I came upon both the frame and the design again and decided that I needed to finish up this project, that it would come to completion in only a few hours. And I was right. It took only a little while to do the embroidery -- all simple back stitch -- and just a few minutes to frame it.

I'm quite pleased with the way it turned out -- and even though the pumpkin design is out of season, the sentiment of thankfulness is always timely!

"Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ."
~ Ephesians 5:20

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

First garden veggies

Today we enjoyed the first harvest from this year's vegetable garden with supper. I made a smoked sausage and potato salad, a favorite easy recipe, for supper and served our garden Swiss chard on the side. Delicious! There is nothing like those first tastes from the garden every year. The lettuce is about ready to pick, too, and our tomato plants have little tomatoes on them!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

July flora and fauna

Here's some of what's blooming in July:

Orange daylilies in the wildflower garden:

A closeup of one of these gorgeous lilies:

Yellow primroses in the wildflower garden:

Blue bead lily at the edge of the yard:

Which looked like this a couple of months ago!

A red toadstool, somewhat the worse for wear, but with such a fairy-tale look I just had to share it. Love that pretty edge.

Another view of the red toadstool:

A gorgeous moth that entered my kitchen. Anyone know what it is?

Another view of the moth. Aren't those metallic spots simply amazing?

Last but not least, a tree frog Mr. T found in the freshly cleaned swimming pool!

God's Creation has such beauty and such infinite variety!

Saturday, July 09, 2011

My summer hutch, 2011

Every summer I like to display some of my many strawberry-themed items on the dining room hutch. I also like to have seashore-themed items on at least one shelf of my hutch. I've had a busy week and asked my 10-year-old granddaughter to take the following pictures.

Here is the bottom shelf. There is family heirloom ironstone ware, a set of strawberry votive holders (with honeydew candles), a lovely strawberry pitcher, a covered strawberry candle holder, and a summer-themed tag and fun ATC crafted by my friend J. Oh, and a little Kitchen Fresh vintage cookbook.

Here is the middle shelf. It features a pretty oversized teacup, a crocheted green strawberry, a McCoy strawberry teapot and salt & pepper set, a jam pot and a pretty card featuring a strawberry teapot.

And the next to top shelf. It has shells, painted sand dollars, a cake dome filled with sea glass and shells with an "Oceanside" tag, a pretty card, an ocean-themed candle lamp, and a 1970 ferry schedule for PEI.
The very top shelf stayed the same with a Proverbs 31 sampler and 2 "tea for one" teapot sets in summery flowery motifs.

And that is a peek at my summer hutch!

A fun craft for kids

Last week my granddaughters (8 and 10) were here and looking for a project to do. We adapted this pattern for a Patriotic Candle Jar quite a bit -- in fact, the cutting/gluing technique was probably the only thing that we really used. The girls each made one, using all manner of red, white and blue fabric.

Here is one:

And here is the other:

And here's how they look on my summer tablecloth:

Fun and festive!

Monday, July 04, 2011

Happy Fourth of July!

I hope that each of you Americans reading this will have a glorious Fourth of July celebrating the birthday of our beloved country! Whether you celebrate with family, friends, or church family, whether you are here on US soil or elsewhere, whether you're enjoying a picnic, a parade, or fireworks, I hope that each of you will take a moment sometime throughout the day to thank God for the land He has blessed us to be able to live in. Our country has many serious problems and flaws, but it is still a wonderful place to live and has many blessings which we often take for granted. Yesterday as we sang "America the Beautiful" in church and came to these words:

"America! America!
God mend thine every flaw.
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!"

I found myself being reminded that truly, God is the only One who can mend our flaws -- but we have to want that to happen and we need to beseech God that it will happen. I was thinking, too, how so many of our citizens are so confused concerning the balance between liberty and self-control. Our land offers us many freedoms, yet we take them for granted and many times do not see the need to exercise self-control or self-restraint in any area of life. We want what we want, when we want it, and then when we meet the inevitable consequences of our lack of self-control, we expect our government to take care of us.

Let's take time today to beseech God to help us "mend our flaws" as a nation, and to thank Him for the privilege of living in this land.

We have no special plans for the day other than getting some outdoor tasks done around home and possibly spending some time with extended family. But we started celebrating early!

On Thursday my granddaughters baked patriotic cookies using a Stars & Stripes Funfetti ® cake mix, and we frosted them with white frosting and red, white and blue sprinkles.

And we enjoyed strawberry shortcake for dessert on Saturday night, complete with star-shaped shortcakes and real whipped cream! (Five of my grandchildren, my daughter and I had gone strawberry picking on Friday.)

Then on Sunday we enjoyed a church picnic after the morning service. I took along Baked Beans,
a Red, White & Blue Pasta Salad,
(Photo by Taste of Home)
a strawberry pie
(Photo by Taste of Home)
and a Red, White and Blue Berry Pie. Mmmm-mm!
(Photo by Taste of Home)
Sunday night, Mr. T and I had a little campfire with our granddaughters and enjoyed sparklers and toasted marshmallows.

So whatever we do today, we have already had lots of celebratory fun.

Happy Fourth of July, everyone!