Thursday, June 21, 2018

Happenings~ And a Y. Ottolenghi delicious recipe.




I find bouquets joyful~




















Above Schmincke  watercolors,Strathmore Mixed Media Paper.


Above painted from a lesson in a book I bought in Provence..Peindre La Provence a l"Aquarelle.
Wanted to show you this eraser..battery operated..and it's so nice.I follow a very talented Brazilian  watercolorist living in Mtl on IG
She was using one on one of her stories.
I am hooked.
She paints Montreal beautifully.





Had to leave you w/ a prettier pic..my reblooms are still going strong..all at once ..so when they are done..I will get another..because now I need to see one all the time..



Lots and lots in the gardens..

Summer is now upon us..and the roses are starting..I have included a very tame pic of rose chafers..this is when they arrive..about 20 minutes later they are grouped en masse devouring the flower.I can't show you because quite frankly it's gross..And I do kill them.I wear a rubber glove and squish fingers full.Read up on them..they are useless..destructive..have no predator and make gardeners wonders why they garden for those 3 weeks.

My yellow rose of Texas on the front fence..was eaten alive..before I could even take pics like I usually do.

This past weekend was time to gather the garlic scapes..chopped and frozen ..waiting to enhance many meals:)

Poppies..orange and peach..Love the peach ones:)
Feverfew..still some irises.
Beach roses..
Clematis are starting..

I make small bouquets..they last a few days and I feel happier looking at bouquets than not.

Made a few paintings..different papers..paints..

Did I tell you? I had no idea Giuliana was so talented..she drew an eye of  a horse for her art project at school and it's unbelievable.It was put on show.
She starts college in Aug..Interior design.
She has great taste..  make-up..all that artsy stuff:) I love.

I picked up some yarn..;)  You know how long our winters are..
will make another Orla Kiely type blanket..great price..instead of $5.00..  2!!I went in for nothing really and bought all that..had it in my arms..quite a sight;)
That's half of it..picture the other half;)

I do Teacupthursdayk with Linda..and this week ,I picked my Summer cup..Brambly Hedge...see that piece of cake in the back?
It's delish.
Yotam Ottolenghi..fom his book Sweet.I booked it out twice.:)
It's my fave book of his.
Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Cake.
I made half..in a square springform pan.Small  . 6 1/2 inches by 6 1/2 inches.
Perfeto.You have to try it once:)And then you will just make it again:)
Something about it..♥
I did not need paper sticking up..and had more crumble..even halved.
It's a keeper.

Funny story about the Camembert clocheS..
I recently bought this Camembert cloche on VS..it reminded me of a home we stayed at in St-Rémy de Provence.
It was very very reasonable..$4.00

I Googled them when I came home..and realized that the white opalescent floral dish I already had..was in fact a Camembert cloche:)
I never knew..I thought a pretty butter dish.
So now we have 2.
A fancy feminine one..
and a more rustic one..
That's ok:)

I think we will use the Provence/rustic on for my daughter's birthday in August~ 43!!

Mentioned the battery operated eraser above..the idea came from here.Have a nice weekend..it is a long one here~







And I LOVED her dress and hat.

P.S. As if I had not talked enough..just read a great piece of news..Carol..Paris Breakfasts..go see..this is her artwork..in the Paris Metro!! 



Photo courtesy of Carol's blog where I borrowed it to show you :)This is THE salon for champagne and French pastries.



Look:):)AMAZING.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Iris and peonies and cookies and pens~



Bouquet of pens..quick tutorial at end~









The prettiest of times in the gardens..and then the ROSECHAFERS arrive and massacre everything ..I kid you not..Google them.
I can't do a thing about them.
I live in a pesticide free community..but then again..pesticides don't work..
so I will be filling my sprayer w/ soap and water ..and running around ..I have to go out and squish them 4 times a day..I should be on guard all day.As soon as you kill them..more fly on..they decimate..roses..irises..peonies..hollyhocks...etc..DECIMATE.

Gardening gardening gardening..lying flat on my back on a hard floor at night watching TV.
I have to love gardening to torture myself this way.

I did bake..made choco cut out cookies..really good..hold an imprint..not sweet..
You can find the recipe here..the cookies soften up the next day..

The ganache recipe..was found here..I bought a swirl mold on EBAY..you have to freeze it..hard ..then pop off and apply on the cookie:)
Jacques gives this duo a French Pastry shop rating:)

I apologize for some of my pics being square..I thought they should be on IG..I don't think it's true;)

IG I love it..a lot..but having dinner with my family and Heather:)..we talked about smoke and mirrors..and IG..
and then I read a great quote ..Bill Murray...

"Social media is training us to compare our lives instead of appreciating everything  we are..no wonder why everyone is always so depressed"

He's got a point.
I don't post my decimated flowers..the rose chafers..the recipes that don't work..my fashion wardrobe malfunctions ..facial features that change ..moods etc..

I only post what's good.

Just so you know;)

And I am never going to talk politics:(:(:(:(:( Such sad times.


And never journalism and the lack of ethics...ok just one thing..did the world need to see a photo of Kate Spade leaving her home after her passing..:( NOOOOOOO.Shame on you.


Back to the gardens..I have several types of peonies..some grown from infanthood from a local peony grower..I mean..just above a seed..almost 10 yrs ago..maybe 6 plants and 5 bloomed this yr..Singles..need no support all pale yellows.

I have pinks and corals and frillies and singles and doubles and triples..my daughter has white..and red..her whites are the most beautiful in the world..:) I took one when we left after dinner.
Everything pale is a rose chafer magnet..so I won't add more tempation for the vultures.

In one of my photos.. last post..w/ the seed packet a particular peony was in the photo..that peony is faux..fake..artificial.

I like finding big blooms and making pens out of them:)

100 yrs ago for one of my daughter's wedding showers..flower pens were part of the take home gifts..
faux was not as pretty back then.. now they are..

that first photo is crockery  w/ faux flower pens..and one real flower:) The white peony is the one in the vase further down...the only real one.

These pens are a cinch to make..

A flower..dollar stores have beauties.

Wire cutters..or scissors you don't care about.
A  Bic pen..you can get 15 in a pack at the dollar store.
And florists' tape.

I am sure you know how already.
I cut the stem..to the length I want..ap the length of the pen..
I add a few of the leaves to the top and start winding the tape..all the way down..tightly..
You can add a few drops of white glue at the top to secure leaves even more..
C'est tout.
I love them:)
The bigger the flower the prettier the pen.




I find they look pretty on a gift package or gift bag:)

Little girls would love this craft..because this big girl does.And maybe some little boys..mine..no..lol..

It feels summery writing with one.Special:)

Have a lovely weekend~




Thursday, June 7, 2018

Delicious June~I have way too much to say..save for a rainy day;)








'Tis the season!



Whatever you do..if you love nutmeg and a great muffin..make these.♥



This sweet adorable boy turned 11 yesterday♥


The above..watercolors from a photo his mom took that I loved..Prima  Marketing Decadent Pies watercolors..  added some Payne's Grey..forget which make..painted on a  Strathmore Watercolor Card.I like the decadent pies for skin so much..always have..the 4th color on top doesn't moisten well for me and I never use white..so..that's my honest review.
Love them:)

Footnote ..nothing ..nothing..is under $20.00 here..lol..in art supplies..I have bought my sets while visiting the US..I have 3 I think..like them all..



Awww..June/Juin..

le mois de Marie..is May..

but the prettiest month is perhaps June here.(It was ..lol until 3 days ago..)

From Spring to Winter's edge..you will not find a prettier place;)

Kidding..so many places have their oomph♥

But for us..that's THE time frame;)..here.

June w/ the first Irises..and Catmint..and some Peonies..

Rhubarb..and Chives and Parsley..Mint and Thyme..Miss Kim Lilacs..

Bridal Wreath Spirea,annuals..settling in.. some not..seeds sprouting..

Some rotting..;( Some drying out:( Some not showing up:(

But so much color compared to winter and so much popping joy in the gardens..

" Take this cloak off us and set us free"...said my gardens.

On IG I do teacup Thrsdays w/ Linda @ http://linda-keaveney.blogspot.com/

Just showing a teacup or two from  our homes..some from moms..aunts..tag sales..brocantes..Varage Sale..Kijjijji  ..
Some w/ loads of sentimental value..others just because we like them.
I wish I would have collected Brambly Hedge in the 80's..
Love everything:)

This wedding cup is one of my faves..

It's 44 yrs this year so I bought myself this gift on Varage Sale.
Last year we were at The Cape..meeting Susan Branch..



this year we are home.So..the lobster rolls are local..i.e..my kitchen..
I loved it..the Cape..always have always will..but it takes 8 hours to get there and once you're on the Cape..even early June..well the traffic..it's pretty bad.
It was all so worth it but staying home this year..

C'est la vie..la vraie vie.

Susan is in England now..I bet you are all following her..she's having the time of her life w/ Joe..

Made Ricardo's rhubarb cake for the umpteenth time..here it is..used Tonka as the spice instead of vanilla and cinnamon..Every French from France pastry show uses Tonka..the bean..and grates it.
I finally ordered some from France..just getting a packet..letter etc from France..always a treat!:)

And ohmygosh the cake is was and will always be good..but Marie's nutmeg muffins? I CANNOTRESIST.
I sprinkled a touch of sugar on top after baking..

As in ParisBreakfast 's Letters from Paris:)♥








I am going to try and find a way to display them :) More prettily than I have them;)
They are little treasures.
I think a book should be made by Carol:)
I am sure many of you do too.




Snail mail came  twice♥I am hoping to add pink hollyhocks to my blacks..I read ..and I am sure I did this years ago..that sprouting hollyhocks..works great in paper towel..Fingers crossed♥

I wish you all a nice weekend..

I read this so many times this week and have always loved it..

So let's all do it.

Be kind..many you meet are fighting a hard battle~

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Almost June~

















He's so photogenic:)




It was like they had planned to have matching clothes:)




Lots of gardening..some tea..some cups..some of my fave blooms..the Forget-Me-Nots,the lilacs,bleeding hearts and LOTV..all the pretty Spring blooms..Jack In The Pulpits..so many..it's feast or famine here.

Had a fun little outing..
Noah.his mom and I went to Alexandria..home of the Priest's Mill..

We had a nice lunch at The Quirky Carrot.. the staff was friendly and polite and welcoming.
I had a couscous salad..M and N had soup and sandwich combo..they loved the Sweetpotato split pea soup..desserts were brought home..





And right across the street is the mill where Eric Covington has set up shop..glassblowing.Sat was damp..wet murky when we  headed out..it set the tone for my pics:)

My daughter had thought Noah would enjoy glassblowing..through AirBNB she booked a class for Noah and she.I came along and took pics..Class is about 1hr +..individually.

She was right..Noah's interest did not waiver one iota.

Noah was so into it..and even into watching his mom's private class.
Staff could not be nicer..Staecy was so sweet ..she is an artist ,makes her own paints..gardens..and glassblows.

Gab (Gabriel) could not have been more patient and interesting and professional.He studies glassblowing in Mtl..must be advanced because he is already a glassblower:)

It is so hot in a glassblowing place..lol!!

I love the stone walls..all the equipment..the window..the glass items were beautiful and art is available too.

During the week..I made Marie's KManis..I love Asian inspired dishes..even though what I eat is not pure Asian..it's the Americanized/Canadianized type..I knew I would love this sauce..
Go see Marie for her recipe:)

I also made a DELICIOUS salad..




Recipe came from my daughter ..source is RecipeTins' Crunchy Asian Chicken Salad~
Above..a photo w/out the dressing..I did water my dressing down a bit mine was too thick.
I could eat this salad once a week.
So good!!
Used rotisserie chicken;)

If you are in need a of a good Blackberry Muffin recipe ..ths could be it..



I used greek yogurt because I was out of sour cream..and sprinkled a touch of cinnamon sugar on top.I made half the recipe and got 6 good sized delish muffins.

You can find the recipe here.


Garden Journal

So lots of blue mauve and pink as I wrote above
The peonies are in buds
A few Irises have bloomed
In the morning..I go see the girls..Caramelle..and Bcassine..only Bécassine lays these days..fresh water..food etc..and garden while J is on the treadmill..
I come in and have a Keurig..and indulge in half a muffin ..lol above..so good!!
I often bake earlier in the AM..in my pj's.I like that.
I bought alfalfa pellets at the Co-Op where I buy my chicken feed.
I used to put the pellets around my roses and clematis and have not in years.
Fresh bag..have done many of the roses..almost all the clematis.
I am excited to see that 3 hollyhocks I transplanted against the front fence..have taken..and no rust like at the back so far.These are the black ones..if they do well I'll add my fave pinks and such.
I like ..no ..love.. hollyhocks.
I ripped out some Weigela..(no wonder my back barks)..the leaves come out too late.
I have one summer per year.Let it be alive.
I read I should never plant tomatoes before the Lilacs bloom..lesson learned.
Using my petunia food:)
Some Miracle Grow
Garlic is perfect again this year.God Bless Garlic.
Perennial spinach ..up..here and there ..I just pull what I don't want..I had pulled so much last year.
I guess that's it:)
Some days are diamonds some days are dust in a garden.
Some days I am overjoyed with my garden and think How can I be so lucky to have this pretty garden(s) :) Other days I think..Who am I kidding:(? 

First few days in flip flops:)





Have a lovely weekend.