Monthly Archives: August 2009

Knock! Knock! Knock! Are the Borrowers In?

While perusing the Internet for some information on Granny Square patterns one thing led to another as it inevitably does and I found a new site, it is called Red Shoes. The woman who writes this Blog has a store in Ann Arbor, Mi. I have always been aware of what an artsy town it is, but somehow I missed this: Fairy Doors.

A number of stores in the town are participating in an Urban Fairy Project, in which they have created doors for the Fairies to enter their premises. I know, I know, I have a real thing for gnomes and this is something that falls in line with that. I would be crazy enough to have something like this near my front door. I love the whimsical appeal of it, and the imaginative ideas it sparks in the children who see it (big and little children). To have your very own Borrowers’ entrance.

I am sure the Borrowers in my house would appreciate that, there are some things I wouldn’t mind having back if they are done with them, because I have been on the hunt all summer for one item in particular, I can’t find it anywhere! My only conclusion is that they are using it at the moment, maybe they won’t need it anymore when the weather gets cooler?

I am attaching the article that featured her “door” and a website that includes the maps and locations of other fairy doors.

http://www.metromodemedia.com/features/ArtBiz08.aspx

http://www.urban-fairies.com/

I love that once you are inside her door continues right through the wall and into the store, what imagination!

(All pictures featured were “borrowed” from the urban-fairies website)

Did You Hear the Good News?

Have you heard? Mary Engelbreit has started her Blog. She promised us to stay tuned in 2009 since the cancellation of her magazine that she would still stay in touch with her readers and she has!

I find this so exciting as I have really missed pouring over the pages of her Home Companion magazine. There was nothing better than making a cup of tea, lighting a candle, curling up under a quilt and flipping through the pages. I would go to it again and again, always seeing something new! I hope that one day she will be able to put it to publication again.

In the meantime however, she is sharing this wonderful Blog with us, filled with projects and hints and tips. I can’t wait to try my hand at the “Cozy Night-Light” project, you could do one for each holiday, so you always had something new. I love that idea, as we decorate for every holiday in this house!

This will definitely be a Blog I will more than enjoy reading and seeing develop!

Click on the Night-Light to go to this cute project.

(Both images used were taken from the Mary Engelbreit site)

The Playground

As I was walking to yoga, I passed the playground on the common. The wind carried over the little voices of the children playing with their parents and as I got closer I saw some children playing together on the merry-go-round. One little girl stood by the side, saying, “Ticket, please!”, to all the “passengers” wanting to ride.

It made me smile to myself. It doesn’t matter where you are from, some things never seem to change, this is the same pretending game I played when I was little and my parents played when they were little and so on.

To watch these little people, laughing with the fading rosy sun on their faces and the breeze waving their hair around and playing this game of pretend that so many have played before and so many will play in the future made me think that through all the craziness of life and things going on in the world, there is always a constant flow of happiness, of where the simple things are what matter most. Sometimes, you just have to look a little harder to find it.

(The picture used above was taken from a posting on the “Meet Me at Mikes” blog in March 2008)

Indian Summer

I love this painting by Andrew Wyeth. What a talented man he was! His work is at times almost a photographic snapshot of time. It makes me think of Indian Summer, when the days are still warm but the nights are cool. I imagine his muse sitting on her stool with a slight chill from the breeze, but still a warm back from the sun pouring forth. The first taste of fall flits over the windowsill in the form of a crispy leaf.

My Nana, first used the term Indian Summer to me to describe this time of year. When I was little I associated it directly with Native Americans and dreamed of the seasons changing because the Indians living in their cozy teepees willed it to be so, what an imagination I had! Indian Summer is upon us here in England, the sunlight is just beginning to change, you notice a difference in the quality of light almost at times a purer light. There is also a difference in the sounds outside.

I love this time of year as it means that fall is coming and bringing with it, crispy fragrant apples and warm orangey pumpkins, witches hats and turkeys. But, this time of year also makes me sad to see the Summer end and another school year begin. I enjoy my time with my family too much and when school begins the schedules change, the relaxed atmosphere gets a little more hectic and the pace of life never seems to slow down and then I find myself longing for Summer once more…

Scrumpious Shortcakes for Weekend Guests!

My in-laws came to visit us this weekend and after a day walking around the gorgeous Cliveden Estate, we headed back to our house for a cozy chicken potpie with mashed potatoes for dinner. It was a perfect meal for such a cold dreary day, but even so it is still Summer and I was determined to have something summery for dessert.

I have made them Southern Shortcakes in the past and they have really enjoyed them. This time however, I decided I would try something different since I had some eggs that needed to be used. So, i discovered this recipe on Betty Crocker’s website. I am fortunate to get some American items at the grocery store here for those moments of homesickness and Bisquick is one of them.

I made this dessert for the weekend, but with slight variations. I made two round cakes and after cooling them, I roughly iced the middle and top and let it chill in the fridge. I made a huge bowl of ripe strawberries with orange zest, and a sprinkling of sugar and another bowl filled with juicy peaches, lemon zest and a hint of sugar, they didn’t need much, the “gorgeous ladies” from France.

Everyone thoroughly enjoyed it, my mother-in-law even asked for seconds and had a piece before they headed home on Sunday! Even though the recipe states that it can be iced and stored for up to 6 hours, it lasted just fine in the fridge for longer than that. Thank goodness there was some left over, it was a delicious Sunday morning breakfast with a cup of tea! Since, it was deemed such a success and the strawberries are juicier than ever, I have made another one to take to a friend’s house for dessert tonight. I have included the recipe below, so I hope you enjoy!