Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Winter Outside, Spring Inside

We woke up to the most snow we've had all winter today.It was a day to stay inside even the birds decided to stay in.



It may have been cold outside but it was warm  inside! Lua helped create the Ayyam-i-ha decorations, which make the house feel like spring!


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Orange Marmalade





I recently rediscovered a recipe for Orange Marmalade. I wrote it down many years ago while my neighbor Harry, who was 80 some years old, make his orange marmalade.

We talked over the fence almost everyday while attending to our vegetable gardens. It was my first real garden, although I helped my Mom in her garden occasionally while growing up in Minnesota. But this was in South Africa and I had a lot of questions. Gardening was Harry's passion, and he loved sharing his knowledge.

The oranges came right off his tree in the yard, sliced and then into the pot. His recipe takes 3 days to complete. Everyday he called me over to his simple home which really was a brick rectangle consisting of a bedroom bathroom and kitchen/ living room. It's was sparsely furnished with concrete floors, just stepping into the house felt like stepping back into a simpler time.

While he stirred the pot he explained the art of marmalade making. And when there was no more to be said on that subject he would tell me the story of his life. He served in the Rhodesian War , and although he spoke of his family, the war seemed to be the pertinent topic. I don't remember the details, though I'll never forget the animation in his face as he told me about his experiences. People love to tell their story when someone is listening and even the most simple of life is interesting when told to a friend.













It is a time I will not forget and which was repeat several months later while he taught me how to make Plum Jam!

My Marmalade came out great! Homayoon insist that I use a special orange from SA, as you can see from the picture they have no seeds and thinnish skin. Harry called it Rex Union Orange Marmalade. YUM!
 




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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Map Crazy

I love the soft mellow colors of maps. I know they are not put together as art, but often look like art. I found this book of maps at a thrift store and thought it would be great to use as a background to paint on. However I keep finding these origami projects on blogs, beautiful in their simplicity.....slowly the book is disappearing and I haven't yet taken the paint brush out.

This blog picture from annekata is what started my obsession. The gold balls are Ferrari Roche Chocolate wrappers, you can guess what I did as I folded paper.




The map garland I saw on another blog which I did not keep a record of and for the life of me I cannot find again.





the tutorial for this paper flower was sent to me, thanks Libby! It is a super easy one to start with, although none of the patterns here are hard. I did try to do an origami cat book mark which ended up in the trash after much frustration.
The oil in the background is from a photo I took while we were visiting my Mom amd Dad in South Africa, a cherished moment for me. The frame was made by Homayoon from recycled molding. He use to make and sell these  in our shop in Africa.
I think I am done now....we will see!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Love is in the Air


Like everyone else in America and possibly the world, I too got Valentine Fever. It was a sweet day, not just because of the chocolate and kisses, but because we had our 3 grand kids for the night, our newest Valentines!
I saw this picture a week ago and thought it would make a great Valentine. You can find it here. I made this one for my family and another for the grand kids , but forgot to take a picture of it.


 This is a great project for all those fabrics scrape. The hearts are hand sewed and stuffed.


 I love this necklace but never wear it so I thought it would be great for this project. It is made with beautiful glass beads that will look pretty when the sun shines through them!







Sunday, February 12, 2012

A Beginning

A couple years ago, as we rode our bikes down one of Minnesota's beautiful bike trails, I told my husband how I'd like to record our many biking adventures and the pictures we take  and compile it in a book. He said , "why not do a blog?" I said "can you put pictures on it?"(don't laugh) He laughed and said "yes".  Since then I've been thinking about starting  my blog but it wasn't until a few months ago I felt I had the time to actually do it .
Ok so now I needed to learn how to do a blog and what it really was, I figured the best way to learn was to visit blogs....lots of them. It totally blew me away. There is an entire blog world I didn't know about ....so much great stuff. It distracted me from starting my blog (soooo much to enjoy), that and the technical stuff . With the help and patience of my loved ones that surround me and the desire to share with others, as they have with me in the blogging world , I am now doing my first post!!


Last weekend my dear grandson left his doll with me hoping I'd sew a soccer uniform for it, (Charlie is a great soccer player!) I did it and had alot of fun doing it. We found a soccer uniform at Goodwill perfect for the job!

I positioned the shirt front over the team emblem.

Shirt & Shorts pieces cut out of the soccer uniform ready to sew. I managed to get the Nike emblem on the arm piece and great stripes for the shorts



How cute is this!!!I was so excited about how the soccer uniform came out I decided to do a karate out fit to match Charlie's Karate clothes.