Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I canned tomato yesterday. That isn't a typo. Tomato. One jar---the entire yield of our garden. Brought a kettle of water to boil to plunge the tomatoes in and then peeled them and stuffed them in a jar. One jar. Brought another kettle to boil and processed one jar for 45 mins. When we were finished, we went out and yanked the tomato plants out of the garden.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

I think we've had enough pics of Dan for awhile, so we will go on to something cuter. Piglets at Pond Hill Farm in Harbor Springs Michigan. The sign in their pen said "We welcome your table scraps to eat. We will eat anything---except Pork"

Thursday, August 26, 2010

We are not the only ones who appreciate the beauty of upper Michrigan. Ernest Heminway's family would spend their summers on Walloon Lake from Chicago. Later, as a young man, he would stay in Petoskey. Some of his early novels detail this area and lots of books have been written about him in the area. We celebrated his love for the area by sitting in his seat at the City Park Grill! Second seat from the end. The restaurant doesn't mention this but does give a nod to the author with a picture of him near the seat. It was documented by Papa Hemingway himself that this was his seat!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Let me tell you a secret about us. Dan and I are just a little bit corny. As in, when we are driving down the road and he sees Hay in the field or on a truck he yells "HEY" and I immediately spring to attention and say What". I fall for it everytime. So when we were at Pond Hill Farm this last week, I had to take a picture of Dan and the Hay. Couldn't resist. "HAY---what do you think?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Well summer is inching away. There is a chill in the air, the burning bushes are starting to turn and pumpkins are appearing on porches. I am ready for a change in the season too. It was a strange, hot and dry summer. We have given up on the garden and shopping at the Farmer's Market instead---which may be our plan for next summer too. Less mainanance and more time for fun.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Sigh! Back to work tomorrow after being off for 11 days(counting the weekends). What a great getaway we had. And I think my favorite part was the day trip we took to Sault St. Marie in the UP area of Michigan. It was just so peaceful, quiet and gorgeous. Here are some pictures of the locks. In a nutshell, the Soo is situated between Lake Superior and Lake Huron and until they built the lock system in 1853, cargo ships had to be unloaded and carried around the large rapids on the St Mary's River because Lake Superior is 21 feet higher than Lake Huron. So we watched the Lake Freighters enter the locks and, depending in what direction they were headed, the water filled up and either raised the ship or lowered the ship and sent them on their way. All in a matter of 20 minutes using 19th century technology of water gates and tunnels. Or as the sailor on the tour boat we took told us "just like draining your bathtub with water going down the drain".

Saturday, August 21, 2010

This is my downfall. I have been going through our vacation pictures and too much of this has made for some pictures that I don't like!! But mmmm--it is Gelato from American Spoon. One medium cup will hold 3 different flavors. And silly me ALWAYS has almost the same order each time----chocolate, fresh ginger and coconut. Or sometimes I substitute pistachio for the coconut. But always chocolate. Always. And always eaten outside in the little park at the side of the store. And I did notice they will overnite a package anywhere in the continental U.S. I am not that desperate------yet.

Thursday, August 19, 2010


We were Great Lakes sailors today! We visited Sault St Marie Michigan in the UP and took a boat tour through the locks. Lake Superior is 21 ft higher than Lake Huron and until they built the original locks in 1853, cargo had to be unloaded and ships portaged around the falls. I love the UP--life is just pure and good there!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


We went in search of a sunset and came upon a gathering storm instead! It was a beauty and we didn't mind getting wet to witness this! This was on the shores of Lake Michigan in Good Hart Michigan. Good Hart! Don't you just love that name!

Sunday, August 15, 2010


On vacation-on the water and on the bicycle! No computer and no stress! Life is good here in Upper Michigan!

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Friday, August 13, 2010

It's summer in NW Ohio and this is the most beautiful sight around here now. Unfortunately, peak corn season usually coincides with the week we head out of town. So we enjoyed while we could---ate some and canned some relish. I don't think it gets any more perfect than fresh bi-color corn just picked and popped into a kettle for a very short simmering bath.

Monday, August 9, 2010

We are baking!! I have been making these for about a year now. They are simple, without unnecessary ingredients, healthy----and cheap!! And very much appreciated by the dog of the house. One batch gets us through a month and I know Magglio isn't eating scary ingredients from China. I know I posted this recipe before but it is worth repeating. And don't let the yeast scare you-----no kneading required.

Dog Biscuits

2 tsp yeast

1/2 cup lukewarm water.

2 Tbl dry parsely

1 and 1/2 cups chicken broth

3 Tbl honey

1 egg

5-6 cups whole wheat flour.

Whisk yeast into flour. Stir in parsely, broth, honey and egg. With electric mixer, add flour.

Cut with cookie cutter and bake 350 for 30 mins. When all batches are baked, turn off oven and let biscuits sit in oven overnite to harden.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Apparently I am not the only one who is enjoying the pot of parsely.And not just one---but a whole community of caterpillars. They are pretty well camoflauged because I didn't notice them right away----and then I saw just one and went for the camera. But then there was another one---and another one--and another one. I am just glad I noticed them before I picked any parsely to bring in the house---I think I would have freaked out!!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

This just doesnt' seem right------the LOVE stamp on bills. I don't love these bills and I don't love sending them. But hopefully it will bring a smile to the face of the people recieving them. Or is that all automated now too?

Monday, August 2, 2010

I have been scouring the Internet looking for vegetable canning recipes and have come to an important conclusion. There are a LOT of recipes out there that may not be safe as far as methods for preservation. Some veggies can be processed in a hot water bath and others require a pressure cooker. Honestly, for vegetables and fruits, you cannot go wrong with the Ball Blue Book---which is celebrating it's 100th year! Tried and true!! But there is something I do use the Internet for. Check out these labels that I downloaded for free from this site! http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/acProject?project=vintagehandcraftedproductlabels&extcat=labelscovers&lc=en&cc=us&dlc=en