Thursday, September 20, 2018

Watercolor journal,tomatoes,inspiration,fall.










In case some of you are not on IG..I just want to recommend it again.
Lots to see..lots to love.

Products to learn about..
videos to watch..
all very interesting..
I was a member for a couple of yrs and never ever did anything..didn't even look until my daughters started showing me accounts..then I did start to participate.

And you don't even have to.

I found out about fertilizers and paints and Zutter Bind It Alls..  
Found flower producers that knocked my socks off..
Artists galore.
Just FYI if you feel like seeing more:)

My tomatoes were late this year because I use the garlic growing space..and got impatient so planted some here and there ..and in between..
However ..they thrived..and these are the varieties I grew..

Medium Red..a small red tomato..larger than cherry.
Dancing With Smurfs..a deep aubergine almost black cherry tomato with orange bottoms..you have to wait until the bottoms turn orange.
Sunrise Bumblebee..love the look:) And taste..
White Currant..the size of a currant..and sweet.

Not sure I would grow the white currant again because the plant is big enough w/ tiny pearls though ..so a space hoarder;)

The small beachy watercolor journal was made w/ the Zutter Bind It All..I do recommend this tool:)I was so fortunate to find a second ahnd almost new one.

I used St ~Armand paper for the cover and Strathmore Mixed Media for the inside pages.
 DS watercolors..except for Manganese Blue Hue  Daler-Rowney...bought in Provence last year.

Petit Gris Brush and a cheapo liner.

And my Whisky Painters case from Articulations,Toronto.

The watercolor was painted from inspiration from Lisa.
The idea of using the Bind It All from Teri.

That's what I mean re IG:)

Here's a pet peeve re IG..:)

On stories..which I do like..seeing and hearing the word OBSESSED.
Everyone is OBSESSED w/ something.
Come on.
Most overused word.LOL.

And I just love finding wee things in the garden upon closer inspection don't you? This little guy ..just sitting in a calendula blossom..a calendula blossom is no bigger than a quarter sometimes..like this one..look who was using it as a resting place.
I had time to water plants..clip stuff..come back w/ my camera and there he still was..still♥


Autumn..can you believe it?

Brambly Hedge Autum teacup set.

 Here's To Fall..

My son-in-law is the Elvis fan..but..this one..♥Me too.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

The Thing about September.















Is all about the golds..

You're still picking bouquets but none as varied as summer.. 

The one above..a summer one..all the pretty colors were blooming..Nikko Blue..Annabelles..Echinops..Phlox, Calendula..Russian Sage,Gooseneck..roses..some geraniums..
A quick visit around the gardens..and you have instant gratification:)
I like putting some bouquets in the porch..the ones an earwig scampered out of;)
I don't want those in our home:)

Just a trip down summer's memory lane bouquet wise~

Sept is..Calendula..and dahlias..and zinnias..rudbeckia and melancholia;)

all ahhhs♥

We've eaten our share of delicious corn..the pesto is made..numerous times.. 
soon the garlic will be planted.

Summer just flies by .

But at the end of August..I was making some delish shortbreads from this beautiful blog~

I never knew about this blog..before IG ..that's where I discovered the blog..through IG..

We have sooo many shortbread recipes..
I won't even link to all the ones I have shared..because you will fall asleep;)

I was making sweet cookies for the boys..and wanted something more grown-up..for us.
Shortbreads are my downfall;)

These are so light and good and not too sweet..
You could add more icing sugar while decreasing the cornstarch..but why?

If you need help translating..just ask..well worth making!!

All you need to know is..Soft Butter(beurre)..flour(farine)..icing sugar(sucre glace)..salt(sel), corn starch(maizena):)


Saturday, September 1, 2018

September~because August is over..Oh MY.


















Lee-Ann sent me these charming toppers:)  
I just keep using and using them♥










It's Oli's bday month..our littlest..

This little boy is golden..:) Like his hair..

He's got  Rod Stewart  like hair:)♥

One day I went to the yacht club pool to meet his mom..

Everyone was swimming and Oli came out of the water..

I was sitting in a chair with a beach towel draped on it..As he came out of the pool  I said :"Oh honey ..do you want your towel?:"No..I came out to kiss you".
I mean.♥
No one else comes out of a pool to kiss me except my Littles.


This is a photo his mom took..like the other 2 boys..and I made his bday card ..so now they all have one.

May I talk about art a bit more?

That little one above..all 4 of them actually when they came over..much younger..and THEIR moms..when they were little..
I used to buy those painting books ..that had paints in the pages..you just added a wet brush..dipped in the color and painted away..

When I spotted Viviva Colorsheets..
I was smitten..




The memories..the ease of having this super light pad with vibrant colors..well it was just love at first sight.

I won't apologize for loving art supplies.

I worked for almost 30 yrs..
It's a time in space for me to play now.

I am not into jewels..and fancy...name brands..and oohlala.

I am into gardening..baking..and art supplies♥

Look!  A grown up pad of wet your brush apply to the colors and you are on your way.




The colors are super vibrant.
They remind me of my QOR  High Chroma small watercolor set.

The packaging is so pretty..the ease of it all is a breeze♥
Portability plus..and just a swipe and you have COLOR.
Fits in a wallet!!

And VELLUM to protect each page..
I love vellum:)


16 colors in a wallet.

They make me feel young and that possibilities are endless.
~~~~~~~The boys  love that giant cookie..I shared it  with you.... Oli said at the time....: "Nana can you make a chocolate chip cookie cake?"Like bigger..thicker?


I was on a mission and there you have it..up above..

You can find the recipe here..

He was so happy..and he loved his card♥

Tomatoes..and zinnias and lots of golds everywhere..a sure sign the dog days of summer are already a thing of the past.
It was a hot and dry and humid summer..like the summers of my youth.

In August  for a combined party I made a few desserts..because we are 12 ..

I asked my 43 yr old daughter what dessert she would like..believe it or not she picked a childhood favorite..

..Butter Brickle~or here 
I make it in a 9x13..lovely for a crowd..make ahead..delish!
So many blogs have it..my first one was about 40 years ago at Holly's house:)
I made a non descript Italian sponge cake..didn't save the recipe..
And Fairy Cupcakes..


Always home made dressing for a green tossed salad..

And often Ina's Orzo and roasted vegetables..this is so good!A tried and true forever.

We had chicken brochettes,peppers and red onions....garlic bread..

a few appetizers..these..empanadas  with a few changes.. and this Salsa from Chris.. which both my girls loved..garlic bread..

I had fresh French radishes which I drizzled that basil vinaigrette on..it's my favorite..  It's not a salad dressing ..it is a fab flavor maker to so many things..lighter than a pesto..thicker than a vinaigrette.I have made 3 more jars since..the recipe is from What's Gaby Cooking.

and that was it:)

The night was lovely..
Another summer of birthdays..over.

Basil..this is my Love year for basil..never ending..always beautiful!
Things I have learned.

Pot bound is not good..woody..stunted..quick to go to seed.

I took mine out of the pots and planted where my garlic was..in a bed ..sunny..Success!

Keep pinching those flowers off..try and pinch where a stem joins a fork..look HERE.

A dry summer is actually better.Earwigs love dahlias and basil and zinnias..and  in a dry summer..you get way less.

Just my 2 cents:)

For my pesto..I eyeball it..I fill my Braun FP w/ the leaves..add a lot of my large White German fresh garlic cloves..salt..pepper..EVOO..sometimes pine nuts sometimes walnuts.
Parm cheese.
In some I added red pepper flakes.

I filled small containers and froze in 2 tbsps portions..but I also spread a few recipes on parchment in a pan..froze..and sliced like a pizza w/ a pizza wheel and froze like that 3 to a baggie.
Love that idea..where oh where did I find it?

That's August in a nutshell.


Like sands through the hourglass..So are  the Days of our Lives~(remember?)..




Putting herb bounty to use..oh those zinnias..I tell ya:)♥Not even my colors some of them;)
But I love them..so much.
How one little seed can become such a big plant w/ so many blooms..Unbelievable.
How some people can be so nice..

Grateful.
 





Thursday, August 23, 2018

Roses and muffins and painting and beetles:)












Always gleaning~
Recipes~
Ideas~

Always~

How else can one learn when at home..

I love getting recipes from blogs and IG..and Pinterest.

Thank God that old adage about not sharing recipes is a thing of the past.
Blogs and IG..and Pinterest ..all about sharing.
Ideas
Expertise
Talent
Knowledge.
Thank YOU!

I love when my roses second flush..
No chafers.
Yes the Japanese Beetles but there is no comparison between the two.
Rose chafers are chafer clouds that swarm all day long.
You cannot get rid of them.At all.
A JB..doesn't  swarm.
Neither are my Bffs.

The reason why..



Eating Henry Hudson.
They love tomato plants too.

Just saying.
Pick your enemies;)


I love seeds..zinnias and calendulas..etc etc..but heck you have to be patient.. and not all take..but when they do..They're  lovely.

I am enamoured w/ petunias again thanks to an Instagrammer that recoomended Jack's Petunia fertilizer:) I can't get it here..but found some in Plattsburgh.
It was Cindy..Luluinparis 17 that told me about it:)

Some of you may remember I won an original Vivian Swift watercolor..It's on my windowsill..since;)

I asked Vivian THIS year where she had bought her 4x4 frames..and she told me.And she offered to send me some if I could not find..
I hate imposing..so said..Oh no..and meant it..But that was super nice.

And..I  am like a relentless dog gnawing on the bottom of someone's jeans or a bone..when I get an idea in my head..

I looked here there and everywhere..even Hobby Lobby in Plattsburgh..Michaels..etc..
To no avail.

Lo and behold..

In a wonderful QC shop I frequent fervently..there they were..Have been playing w/ them..
and have been funny painting scenes from last year's trip..this scene..Oppède -Le-Vieux~
I think I have the painting bug..not in a serious manner but in a hobbyist's manner for certain;)
All of it..the whole shebang..
Paper ..paints..♥

If you want to bake something decadent..

Try these:)
I had fresh blueberries so did not use frozen raspberries..but just imagine w/ the raspberries too:)
Moist to the max.
You can find the recipe ..right here..Baked By An Introvert~
Keeper.

I am making pesto ..pesto..pesto..pesto..because of that basil..already jars of basil vinaigrette and containers of pesto..all because of those plants..that pic was taken after I had stripped cupfuls for a second batch of pesto to freeze on Monday..
It is stunning this year.That's where my garlic was:)
In closing..

wish we could all have the nature of a soon to be 9 year old..



So all 4 of our Littles play football..
Football to me..is..hard.
I hate watching them get hurt..
I have no interest in the sport when one of ours is not on the field..
The sport makes me covet   a superzoom.
I only had brothers..they were into it:(
And it on TV.

So back to the boys..
Max and Noah are on a WINNING team..it was 44-0 this weekend.
I see the championships in their future..  kids 10-11  ..

Oli..who was on the Provincial championship team last yr..is 8..soon soon 9..but had to stay in this younger team..
Poor Littles..Oli is the star I must say.In that team..and I feel funny even saying that..it's like bumping into someone and you ask how their kids are..and you hear..oh he's a doctor!  And my other one has an amazing job..head of finance..

No one ever says..they are happy.Why.
Is it the accomplishments that count?

Or being happy and kind..ok smart helps etc..but let go of the accomplishments..always someone better prettier wiser.


That scoreboard? Oli did the 6 points..this after having almost scored a TD but a Little on his team did something wrong..that Oli didn't see running full throttle w/ the ball..and a red flag was dropped..who knew Oli would have to try again after having just run the field in excruciating heat w/ a 500 lb uniform and helmet on?

But he did..started all over..and scored a TD..the child knows football like an adult..even his "bros" say he is good..

This child doesn't whoop it up.. you know..like when athletes do well and swing their fists or hands in the I am Proud and great way.. be he ever so humble.
I asked Jacques if he knew any golfers that were that humble..

He said:"It's Oli's age.."he doesn't know pride or show offship.

All I can say is God bless Oli..hope he never changes.

To see someone do so well and not show off.
Is so so lovely.

There are a few things I like about this sport..like watching parents be nice encouraging parents and not the bullies we see on TV lol..  I love seeing brothers congratulating each other.
I love seeing children active.Problem solving..thinking..camaraderie..
I also like the respectful way they act..w/ coaches etc.

One parent..I loved this..after the game...the coach..coaches..talk to their teams..the boys are hot..gather in a circle for post pep talk..a few boys started taking their equipment tops off..and one dad looked and his son and said:"  ... Don't take it off"..It meant" respect the coaches and the end of the game and the talk"..3 minutes  more wearing it will not make a difference.
I liked that.

I find being disrespectful..about anything..  quite disrespectful:)


I can be very set in my old fashioned ways..
Like manners and thank you notes..and opening doors..and giving up seats..

And punctuality;)


Next year?

More ZINNIAS♥

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Les Bleus~:)











A gorgeous cup shaped fridge/freezer container w/ lid..a gift from one of my daughters filled w/ blueberries picked by none other;)

So many recipes.. what to make quickly one morning before hitting the garden path?

Why these of course..proven winners;) A recipe from my other daughter..:)I made 8 instead of 12.

From the great year 2009.Geesh almost 10 yrs ago.
A wonderful year.

Instagram had a Granny Square Day..I picked the one above..


No secret..I have the blues..in a garden..:)

Having les bleus..in French means you are down in the dumps..

Having des bleuets.. in French means having blueberries.

I prefer the latter;)

Always.



Friday, August 10, 2018

I sometimes buy love w/ cookies♥









I think this is the hottest..most humid summer I have ever known..
even..including the summers of my youth.

It's a great summer.
Not for gardeners..
not for hair that fuzzes and frizzes..
not for the sleep deprived..

And not hot tea lately..Ice tea..
I love this Tea Forté set..because it's pretty and clear and Tea Forté pyramids have leaves..
Because I bought it on Varage Sale for a small fee.
Because the seller was nice..


Re that heat.. the Littles..never complain! They do day camp and football in all that gear ..and NEVER complain.

I think they are so lucky and so adorable.

Yes I miss our Littles when they were Little..and I kissed them not stop and stared into their beautiful little faces with love and adoration.
I could snuggle and rock them..

But I have to tell you..They are pretty amazing..older.

I love that they are happy to see us.


My face lights up when I see them..I feel it..I look at them all..and admire their perfect..different features..their thank God healthy bodies and loving..funny individual personalities.

No one makes me laugh like they do.

No one tells me my baking doesn't even need a a question..like..:"Do you like this?"

Everything I make according to my little politicians..is delicious.

They tell me my skin is soft..when in fact I am turning into a lizard.

I marvel at the gifts these Littles have been to us.

Which brings me to the GIANT COOKIE..lol.. see above..
A hit.

You can find the recipe here.I have made 2 others,this has been the best.

I put it on a pizza plate and Lucas cut it w/ a pizza cutter.

Oli asked if he could have one for his birthday..and when was the day we were taking him out for lunch and shopping?

:)♥
We had just brought Lucas..for that day..his 13th..
Oli is the last..

Max told us there were 305 days ap until his next birthday..That's Max:)
And Oli can't wait.

Noah..knows exactly what he wants..LEGO forever..the other 3..it takes longer..clothes and shoes and sport things are often considered..and reconsidered.
Lucas gave me a fashion show at Marshall's.
I beamed.


High beam.


Ok..make that Giant cookie..love is the reward;)


Summer Snow..(Paul Farges ) clematis IS the most vigorous longest blooming clematis.Mine is in full sun all day.
Have a home to cover? LOL..This is the one:)

My Japanese anemones are in bloom..

we've had thunderstorms to paint in..

new gardening aquaintances that have brought joy to me..

and did I mention those Littles?:)

We have a multi birthday celebration here..this w/e..

Fingers crossed for sunshine.:)

Have a lovely one!

And look what's on Netflix!

The Guernsey


Tonight!:)Will watch:)




Friday, August 3, 2018

The deed is done♥




I kept my old tag..So I have been growing it since 2015:)







This past weekend..I prepped the garlic..for planting..saving and eating.
I love doing this..
It is so rewarding.
You start the dance in October,by planting each clove individually.
You let it hibernate all winter.
Come Spring..it is the FIRST thing that pops up.
You watch it grow and grow..w/ no bugs..no pests..nothing..
In July you gather beautiful scapes and chop and freeze what you do not use immediately.
And then..you harvest the garlic..digging it up gently and hanging it to dry.
The very end of July..it's almost August..or is August..you cut the dried stems and beards..and save and enjoy.
I hope I can do this forever..because only fresh garlic tastes like garlic..buy it at markets ..and enjoy..or grow..Nothing compares.

That potting shed is dear to me.
Every home we lived in..Jacques built a little house..
this one is the first that was just for us and gardening..his part at the back..mine at the front..the front you see.
It's as cute as a button outside..inside..strictly for functionality.
And I love that.
It's stuffed by end of fall..you can't walk in..but during THE season..I do so much in there.

Anyway..all to say I love it.

The feed sacks are from Derek..from Gardenbuddies..some of you may remember..Actually Derek and Marlene♥
Both gone.
They were gifts to me.

Derek and Marlene.

This past month created havoc in the gardens..from drought to sopping wet.
Some perennials seem lost forever.
Next year will tell the tale.

Others seems fine.

I am still doing teacupthursdaysk on IG..and I made Chris' yogurt cake w/out the lemon..because Jacques..asked for plain white moist cake..for all the fruits of the season and crème fraiche.
Done.
Read the comments..often you have to make the bottom the top.
Not only here..LOTS of recipes a dome forms..Flip..the bottom becomes the top.
I have made and frozen an Italian Sponge Cake for an upcoming birthday..same:)

Painting? I did paint quite a bit..made color dot cards..tried different papers..next time I will NOTE the papers..

The only one I KNEW after the fact was Yupo.

And I am recommending that last set of fan watercolors if you can get it at a good price.

I bought it at Amazon Canada for $25.00  for travel it's a treat..not much of a mixing palette but you can use the long back..
A waterbrush comes with..and much cheaper in the US..maybe $18?
On Instagram some sell them for $60.00..
Nope..don't do it..
Under $20.00 is ideal..but I can only buy in Canada.
No big deal:) Happy to.

I cranked up my ancient Acer..and found pics...that little girl to the right..perhaps 3-4 yrs ago..at a waterfront resto out w/Max for his bday:)

The colors are not bad..for 42 colors..on the spot w/ a waterbrush♥
And let's be honest..it's soooo cute.
My small addiction continues..I am now coveting Mijellos:)♥

I leave you with this adorable scene..



This is Donna's pond   Donna's photo....look at the boat♥
You can't miss it..I need a boat in mine now ;)
For some reason..I find it adds a touch of Monet♥
Especially w/ her lily pads.
It  also reminded me of my dad's "chaloupe"..
It just takes an idea to turn something very pretty into something more magical.
This its it.

Have a great weekend..
I talk way too much here..;)