Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Townhouse Homestead Tuesday

Wow that was a fast week. To say time flies when you're having fun is not totally the truth. Let's say time flies when your busy. To start from the townhouse this week I've gone back to seriously baking and cooking. Doing what I can to eat better, but still enjoy food and life. I've gone back to baking my own bread. I've tried a lot of new recipes floating around on the Internet, but I'm going back to my good old Betty Crocker recipes I got as a teenager in the sixties. I just like the result, taste and I like the kneading. I know it's easy to let the machine do it, but when you've spent so much time doing something a certain way it's hard to let go.

I like home made bread better for French toast. I can slice it to the thickness I want and when soaking in the egg mixture it holds up better. Doesn't that look yummy? It certainly was.

I also make this ahead and keep it in the refrigerator so my daughter can take it to work for breakfast. I never did this when the kids were younger, but now it works great for her. 

Another task this week was cleaning the recipe files and papers. Over the years I've accumulated so many books, papers and clippings that I could never find what I needed when I needed it. I got a good start, but there is more to do.

This is some of the before. Can't believe I let it get so out of control, but...

look how neat the after is. I found recipes I thought were lost and would never find again and I can now just go to the right spot and get it. I put printed recipes in plastic sleeves to preserve them and can just pull them out of the notebook and wipe clean if they get messy. 

From the sewing and craft room this week I used a few scraps to make a candle cozy for 4th of July decorating. I don't do a lot of decorating any more so I'm keeping it simple with a holiday candle.

Sewing projects listed on the store have already started selling. There were pillows and napkins.

The pink napkins have sold, but the green napkins can be found here:

Well I guess that's why the week flew by. I harvested parsley and basil from the garden this week and dried it for my soup mixes. I also took some clippings of my peppermint plant to start a new one and it's already rooting. Everything is growing nicely. It's small and mostly herbs, but it's my bit of earth. 
Thank you for stopping by and I hope everyone has a wonderful week.

Linking to: We Call It Junkin

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Townhouse Homestead Tuesday

My gardening this week has been light. Basically I'm just keeping up with my herbs and sweet potatoes that are growing so well. The work this week has been rebuilding the front flower bed. I rescued my Iris rhizomes from whatever was eating them and split them to replant and try again. 

We all know that bent over feeling I'm sure. I was so disappointed that I didn't get flowers from my dwarf Iris' this year that I decided to be bold and plant some in a pot inside. Since they only grow to be about ten inches tall I didn't think I had to much to lose by trying. 

The Lilly plant is finally giving off a multitude of beautiful flowers. Maturity is such a wonderful thing. My flea market watering can is working harder than it has in three years and oh my how the spearmint is growing. It's contained in a hanging pot and is sending off runners but it's not quite enough yet for jelly. Won't be long and I have everything I need for when it is. 

After the grounds keeper cut back the bush I repositioned my pitch fork bird house behind the Lilly and it looks so inviting by the door. I don't know if the Iris' will grow again this year, but they are in and if they make it, it will be a bright garden next Spring. I'm still waiting for them to remove part of a bush before I can work on the other side of the front garden, but this too shall come. That's what's happening at the Townhouse this week. Thank you for stopping by and have a wonderful week.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Findings from a rummage sale.

We hooked up last weekend with my sister-in-law for an early morning breakfast and a church rummage sale. It was the last day and the deal was fill a bag for $4. Just plastic grocery bags but we filled four of them with some keeper items and store inventory items. After the rummage sale we headed down the road to a brand new Good Will store.

We found a lot of small vintage nick knacks along with a heart shaped baking pan, green Pyrex bowl (found at a new to the city Good Will), a wall hanging basket, a summer hot pink straw purse and what would a summer day be without a joke and riddle book. A very vintage joke and riddle book.

The crochet items I just saw and put in the bag. It wasn't until I got home and looked over our treasures that I realized they were hand crochet collars. Orange seemed to be the theme of this rummage. We found a vintage orange napkin holder, an orange cast iron frying pan, an address file full of address cards and alphabet cards and my favorite was a set of vintage playing cards with a blueberry print.

Those bunnies are just so cute. They are Josef Originals. The coffee cup tree and mugs we found at the Good Will store along with the set of J.R. Tolkien books and the "NEW" coffee bean grinder that I got to grind my dried herbs from the garden. The aqua dish has two small chips, but my daughter loved it and is keeping it. 

Getting back to orange, and yes we got this in a bag, was this practically new fondue pot and lazy susan. We've seen parts from these before but never a complete set. It's for sale here: https://www.etsy.com/listing/192527722/on-sale-retro-bright-orange-lazy-susan?

We found a Liz Claiborne skirt and some lace curtain valences. These will be up cycled into something new. There were clothes galore and after poking through we found a Super Mario t-shirt and an owl shirt that will become pillows. My daughter said the orange coffee cup just fit well in her hand so she added it to her kitchen and we found a set of seven vintage jelly jars. I'm so tempted to use them for all the wonderful jams and jellies I've been making. 
This is what the treasure hunters found this past week. Thank you for stopping by and have a wonderful weekend.

linking to: We Call It Junkin

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Townhouse Homestead Tuesday

I just came in from watering my (BIG!) garden. It's looking good and is growing so well. It's all herbs and sweet potatoes, but it's mine. This past week just flew by for me. Probably because I have too much to do and never enough time. We all know how that goes. I had some catching up to do also because my daughter and I took off for a four day weekend in Vermont over the holiday. The day after we got back my herbs went in and that was two weeks ago today. 
This is what went down this week.

This is a batch of Jalapeno pepper jelly. I have been buying it at quite a price and decided that I would make it this year. I've already given the grounds keeper a jar because he came and started helping me clean the front garden by cutting back a bush. Some time this summer I will be making roasted pineapple and habenero pepper jelly/relish. 

For those who know me I love my goodies. I will not deny that I have a sweet tooth, but I do realize that I don't need to eat it all at once. I baked carrot cake in jars to put on the shelf for those hot summer days when baking is not likely to happen. My recipe makes so much so I put up ten jars and still had a good size cake for the week. 

I harvested a good bunch of flat leaf parsley. It's on it's way to drying and over the weekend I found a new coffee grinder at a thrift store, that I now have to grind my herbs after they've dried. 

I am so happy with the success of my basil. I harvested a large bunch and it is also on it's way to drying. These are just a couple of the herbs I use in my soup mixes. My kitchen is smelling so wonderful this week.

Last but not least I started a pint of chive vinegar. I cut the flowers before I moved my chive plant from the front garden to the back garden. It was so large I divided it into three and if I like this chive vinegar I will hopefully have more flowers through the summer. If not I will have my chive butter for those baked potatoes through the winter. 
That's what went down this week at the Townhouse Homestead and I am having so much fun doing what I can in a small space. Anything can be done and I am so grateful to farmers for providing the fruits and vegetable I can't grow at this time. Thank you for stopping by. Have a great week everyone.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Townhouse Homestead Tuesday

With Memorial day over it was time to think about putting some plants outside, but I've been watching a few that were in the ground doing their thing while I was waiting. These include lavender, garlic and chives. I am not allowed to plant vegetables, but that's okay too. A ways down the road lives a friend who is sharing in exchange for making sure her garden is watered while she's away. We also have some great farm markets. So far all is good and today it is raining. I think so far I'm okay with the townhouse rules because they've seen my garden and have not said anything. Of course my garden is mostly in pots which they say are acceptable. 

Here's how it looks so far. Under the deck I replanted a Hosta I split it into three plants last fall. It was not doing well because it was overwhelmed by a shrub. My grandson crawled under the deck and followed my instructions on planting them and he did so well. It is now three and just one is the size of the original plant I divided. In the hanging baskets I have sage, basil and rosemary. In the ground I have two lavender plants on the left, garlic and in the corner is a rosebush that was so neglected by the former tenant that it was in need of love. I cut it back and it is thriving and within a week or two will have beautiful pink roses. I have a chive plant in my front garden that I will be moving this week to the back. It is getting smothered by an older lavender plant.

In the long pot on the deck I have planted dill and parsley. I have already used the dill on broiled Salmon and had some parsley leaves that need drying to make flakes for my recipes. I noticed yesterday new shoots coming up on the dill and my sweet potatoes are growing well so maybe we'll have a few in the fall.

I purchased peppermint and put it in a large pot. I have peppermint tea regularly and thought it would be great to have some to use at will. I am rooting ginger. I hope it does something, but if it doesn't I will keep trying.

Instead of flowers this year I hung a pot of spearmint. I've already used it for spearmint sun tea and am planning some mint jelly soon.

The front garden needs cleaning and some plants can go to the back. That bush is always taking over my plants, but it is property of the townhouse so I can't take it out. The squirrels are eating my Iris and just this week I've noticed a snake. I suppose that means it's a garden. I made the bird house from a kit I found at a thrift store and fastened it to an old pitch fork.

Two weeks ago I made these pickled peppered eggs and they are awesome. I thought they'd be hotter than they are, but there is just enough heat to give them a bite, but not enough to burn the tongue. Try them you may like them. Here's the recipe I found on Pinterest. http://pharmacist.hubpages.com/hub/spicypickledeggs
So that's how my garden is growing. I hope to harvest plenty to use in my fall canning and so far it looks like I will. I sure would love a larger spot to garden, and I have had it in the past, but for now this is how we're doing it in the townhouse. Thanks for stopping by and I hope everyone is enjoying a wonderful week.