Tuesday, December 23, 2008


SO LITTLE TIME AND SO MANY THINGS TO DO!!!! However I can't forget to wish you all a Merry Christmas. I started blogging about a year ago and I am amazed at the number of people who have stepped forward to welcome me in this community. I wasn't sure if I'd have time to stop by again before the holiday so hope it's a good one for all.

Would you believe this is a snow bank.Sarah and I did a little last minute shopping and found this in the parking lot. I guess it's going to be a white Christmas after all. I know the snow looks a little yellow.

You should see the size of the dogs around here.............said the hobbit

Saturday, December 20, 2008

All kinds of weather

Well today was the big party. However before we could get started we had to do a bit of clean-up.Jiggsy took his trusty shovel and did the deed like a true gentleman.I stood on the porch with promises of hot chocolate cinnamon raisin toast with applesauce. It did the trick because I never had to pick up the shovel. More snow scheduled for tomorrow. I'd better stock up on supplies.

I did want to show you our lovely ice storm we all had to put up with lat week.Little house on the prairie had nothing on New Englanders last week. We were without power for 6 days and some people in our area have just completed day 9. We had very little snow with that storm.It was a freezing rain that happened so quickly that branches and whole trees just snapped off.
Of course there were magical moments too. When I saw this fall kale weighed down with ice. I was reminded of the sugarplum fairy from the Nutcracker. Don't you think it looks as though it's dancing?

This is normally the path to the bird feeders.As you see, it was scattered with branches.Doesn't look like a big deal but when they start to fall on power lines the problem is monstrous.
Some of my neighbors hunkered down with extra blankets and managed to stay in there homes through out the ordeal. Jiggsy and I were able to stay in the loft apartment where I work. We are truly grateful for having such good friends. All though we constantly returned home to make sure the pipes didn't freeze, with temps as low as 6 degrees staying home was not in the cards for us. But that's old news. I'm trying to catch up on things I should have posted about so I might be here there and everywhere for awhile. Hope you can follow my drift...............................said the hobbit

Friday, December 19, 2008

Family gathering

Well tomorrow should be a big day.My husbands' family has their annual Christmas party. Usually I am unable to attend but, this year things worked out for me to finally join in the fun. By Sunday I should have pictures of the family to show. All on their best behavior for certain. In the meantime I thought I'd show you a gift from Christmas past. This is the platter we use for Mr Tom turkey. It was made by our son Thom. All the little drawings are places we lived starting with my home in Candia,N.H. followed by Manchester,Metarie La. Scarborough Me. Neptune Beach FlaFarmingtonN.H. and finally Gonic. I thought it was a great idea and maybe someone out there would enjoy making such a platter for someone they know. Well it's off to bed now so much to do before the big parrrrtie. I believe I'm suppose to be at the farmers market for 9am.Already the day is getting a little too short Oh and I musn't forget to pick up a prezzie for the scotch exchange.
Times a wasting I'd better get some rest goodnight all........said the hobbit

Almost quit

Hi everyone I gave some serious thought to giving up this blog,but after 2 months of struggling with technology and a few crazy events in my life, I decided I really enjoyed the trip this past year and want to do it again. Sooo...I guess you're stuck with me for one more year. Today is just a short visit to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and remind everyone to pass out those smiles to everyone you meet. For some it will be the only gift they receive and if you are lucky enough to get one don't be afraid to share it with someone else. I'll keep it short today but I did want to introduce you to Izzy This is great grand child # 1 and we are happy to have her I think you'll be hearing more about her. There is also a grandson Aaron but,no picture today. I need to upload and the weather here has made power a little iffy.More on that later I have so much to tell you. For now Merry Christmas to all and it's great to be back.............said the hobbit

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


I guess it's about time I check in with my people.October has been such a full month. I meant to write this post shortly after I told you about the soups,but,I lost these pictures and I was bound and determined to find them on my own.

When I open my car door at work these beautiful flowers are there to greet me.No kidding,I was sitting behind my steering wheel when I took this picture. There is no way I can look at them and not have positivel thoughts about how my day will go. Not that it's always perfect but, it certainly is a good beginning.

When I need a break from cooking this is where I go for a breath of fresh air. It's just a few steps from the door but with it's ever changing shades of green I think I have been transported to some distant spa.If I sit there long enough you wouldn't believe how creative my mind can be.
All though you can't see it in the photo ,there is a corn stalk that has decided to grow just behind the bench. I watched it for most of the season and it now has 2 ears of corn growing. At first we denied it could be a corn stalk, then we were sure it wouldn't have any ears growing on it I guess you just can't be sure of anything these days. So like the little corn stalk we need to just keep doing what we know best and things will turn out as they should.

Which leads me to the fields. This too can be seen from my work area. Out in the distance you see the workers preparing for next year.There are blueberry bushes and raspberry branches that need to be trimmed and cleaned in order to promote a healthy crop next year. So I guess I must take my prompting from the land,not worry about this years failed projects or shortcomings and try to be better prepared for next year.
I hope it doesn't take so long to get back I seem to be on a learning curve with the computer and I'm too stubborn to ask for help.
By the way the soups are doing well and hopefully I'll be able to give an update soon. On a sadder note my mothers sister died 6 months to the day of my mother's passing. They were not two peas in a pod,but, both loved their neighbor and would do anything to help someone in need. I'm sure God has a special place for both of them. Well I must be off, as I post this I'm crossing my fingers and hope I can find my way back.......................................said the hobbit

Friday, October 3, 2008

new Beginnings

Well, my little friend Champignon and I have something to tell you. We have decided to start a business of our own. I know many of you will say this is a bad time to get into such a venture ,but, hear me out. As many of you know I have been cooking at Tuttle's Red Barn for the past ten years. No I am not leaving!!!However when fall comes around I always long to cook
nice,warm comforting soups. I beg and plead but, with so many chores around the barn and preparations for the holidays there's just too many things already on the to-do list. No time for soup-making! Until now.......
So it is with encouragement from my friend Lucy Tuttle, that I venture out to cook the soups on my own.
The plan is to make three different soups on Wednesday of each week and to deliver them into my peoples home or office by Thursday. Of course I plan on using local meats and vegetables and my homemade broths will be sodium free. Nothing but the best for my people!
My first 3 soup are *turkey noodle
*cream of tomato
*Italian wedding soup
At the cost of $9 a quart they'll have warmth and comfort in a nice little bucket. That's right the Hobbit found a cute little qt. bucket with a handle and all.
Well I guess there's nothing more to say if you need me you know my e-mail. Just in case Some of my local people are reading this it's doverptchef at yahoo dot com Well that's all for now just one more thing to do................................said the Hobbit

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Last few days

Well here are the last tomatoes that I will be canning this year.After a crazy hectic pace I have finally reach the end of the line. It's hard to believe that summer is over but, being the eternal optimist I now look forward to Indian Summer. I don't know if this happens in all parts of the country ,but, here in N.E. just about the time you put all your summer clothes away we get a week of very warm weather. Well high 70's low 80's which for us really seems like a heat wave. I hope it comes this year as we are still prepping to install our pellet stove.

These tomatoes have been turned into a soup-base as I have had an opportunity to start a soup business. I have just enough customers to help me put a few dollars aside to have a chicken coop of my own. I found the cutest chicken coop.

Of course it's in the U.K. but, with the help of a local carpenter I hope to have it in the spring.
I didn't have a chance to plant any flowers this year but, a little birdie left this for me. It was a pleasant surprise when I looked out my window.Now that the canning is done I have to get down to business with the Christmas list. We usually trade tree decorations so I better get to it........said the hobbit

Friday, September 26, 2008

Flying through September

Just popped in to say hi to all my friends and let you know I'm still busy in the kitchen. Cook, cook, can, can, seems to be the order of the month. I did want to introduce you to my brother.This is the bagpiper,he's the one to the left of the flags.(I think) Every time I tried to post this picture ,it seemed to vanish into blog-land.I believe this could be considered hazardous duty.We don't get to see each other too often so if you read this Paul I really got a kick out of this
This weekend is the beginning of the baby shower brigade so I must be off to knit a few supplies for the cherubs. I'll be thinking of you all and hope to get back soon......said the hobbit

Friday, September 19, 2008

End of Summer

Seems hard to believe that summer is at an end. I've been busy canning and knitting. All my canning was done with extra produce from the field so it was not a major financial investment ,but,oh my God the time. I loved every minute of it if only there were more hours in the day. I have yet to find a day that wasn't too short. I thought when I canceled my direct tv I would have all the time in the world.It just made me more aware of the many projects I had put aside.I would have liked to fill all my shelves however I'll have to be satisfied with this harvest at the time .I was able to make salsa,basil tomato sauce ,mushroom tomato sauce stewed tomatoes,bread&butter pickles,peaches,strawberry rhubarb jam.spiced blueberry jam and a vinegar of blueberries basil and lemon zest. My goal is to stay out of the supermarkets for the month of Feb. Of course as you all know I have 16 chickens,2 turkeys 14lb ham and about 60 lbs of beef in the freezer along with lots of corn and squash puree. I'm hoping to get to the bread making as soon as we freeze the last of the fruits and corn. Apple picking is already here ,but ,I think I might have to do that in the middle of the night.

I've tried not to neglect my knitting and this is my latest creation.It's a baby rattle about 5 inches long that has one of those little ball with bell cat toys in the mushroom top.We have lots of babies coming up this year. Hopefully I can get the 101 knitting projects done in time for all of these babies. Aside from family I have agreed to knit for several other clients and I hope I haven't taken on too much. What am I saying I ALWAYS TAKE ON TOO MUCH!!Oh well I love a good challenge..............said the Hobbit

Friday, September 5, 2008

What do you mean it's September

Yikes I can't believe summer is over!!!!!!!Does that mean the holidays are right around the corner?????Are you ready,naw neither am I .There were so many things I wanted to show you that happened this summer and the time just got away from me. Soooooo I m taking you on a little trip in time[don't worry not too far] to show you some of the things I neglected to tell you
I was doing.These little acorns are crocheted using but a single stitch. Aren't they adorable! You can use them to hold small prezzies. I think they make the perfect container for a ball of yarn and a quick pattern for someone who is just starting to knit or crochet.
The yarn that I tucked in there was a find from the sheep and wool festival.It's hand dyed bamboo and I can't wait to get more. The colors are so vibrant. They say it's a fiber that breathes I plan on giving it the test when I knit up a few pair of socks. I guess I'll have to finish up tomorrow as I must be off to pick up the rest of my chicken order. I learnt alot this year about purchasing my locally grown chickens. 1]They are much larger then the supermarket variety and 2]my family cannot consume 24 chickens over the summer months. What was I thinking???? Lesson learnt and thank God for freezers.Now lets see if I can squeeze another 12 in.................................said the Hobbit

Friday, August 29, 2008

It isn't summer till you have your lobsta

One of the blessings of being a New Englander is feasting on fresh lobster. It just isn't summer unless you partake in this ritual. Lucky for us we have a wonderful place called Chauncey Creek Lobster Pier at Kittery Point in Me. It's a short ride from our home and we try to get there at least once a year. Although it might be hard to find it has managed to survive since 1948. One it's most endearing assets is a BYOW policy.
For those of you not familiar with this term it means bring your own whatever if we don't carry it you can bring it in. Therefore many families come in with coolers filled with beer & wine or mixed drinks .Little Johnnies favorite mac& cheese ,salads fois gras whatever they don't have on there menu. The menu consist of lobster corn 2 chowders great Malpeque oysters and cherrystone clams from Prince Edward Island and pie. Needless to say that leaves the door open for lots of bring your own. There is no ocean view as the pier sits on a very quiet part of the tidal river .The thick spruce trees block out any connection with the outside world and one can just sit back and enjoy for as long as you wish. I had my fun at Chauncey this year.A nice quiet evening with just me and the hubby and with a bit of sadness I bid them adieu till our paths cross again next year.........said the hobbit

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Here I am

I guess you must be thinking that I decided to abandon all of you ,but,no it's just been crazy busy around here this month. Last April my hubby volunteered me to do the centerpieces for his 50th class reunion. I of course had plenty of time to think about what I wanted to do so I had it narrowed down to about 20 ideas when the youngest asked if I had seen Sister Diane's
latest post.It seems she had attended a class that dressed people in different attire sort of paper doll fashion.
That seemed like a fun thing to do , so out came the scissors and paper and ribbon and I proceeded to dress them as though they were going to the prom.

Eight of the students had passed away so I did the girls in white and placed wings on the back .Everything was connected with brads so the arms could be moved.They held hands around a megaphone with school letters on it. I have to say it went over pretty well. Everyone took themselves home at the end of the evening.

Of course Jiggy was the cutest of them all. As my friend Betty would say "You gotta love em".Well I must be off lots to do .Canning right now and I'm having a ball....................said the hobbit

Friday, August 8, 2008

Yup, It's me again

Can you believe I made it back so soon? Today was a day off and that's exactly what I did. I got up late, made coffee,did the must do activities[shower,dishes,get dress]and took off to spend a few hours with the youngest The sun was shining,I stopped to pick-up coffee snacks and headed to her house. My phone rang and she informed me it was raining to beat the band just 20 min away. Nay no way said I it's beautiful here. Well the closer I got the darker it got. I was about 2 miles from her home when it was raining so hard I couldn't see the on coming traffic,except for those kind enough to have their lights on. When I reached her driveway I ran all of 10 feet to her door and was dripping wet. We took our time having our apple strudel snack and hoped the rain would let up before we did some second-hand shopping.Finally we were in Portsmouth and ready to see some of the newer shops that have opened this year. We meet almost every week however shopping trips have been few and far between. She was hoping to show me a new gallery but they were setting up for an evening show so we didn't get in.The town of Portsmouth is of course a port. When we got in town something major was coming into the harbor and the bridge was up for about 30 min. or better. We chose this time to visit our friend Ellen. It takes us about 20 min just to decide what marvelous treat we want. Ellen wasn't in,she was in the kitchen creating something yummy. We decided on 4 pieces of chocolate,2 sea salt chocolate covered caramels and 2 marshmallow chocolate covered caramels. We hopped into the car ate our treats and waited for the bridge to come down. The bridge crosses over into Maine where I wanted to show her a new thrift shop that I had been hoping to stop into,but, never seemed have the time .Although we both came out with goodies I got the best deal. She came running to me to show me this cute little apron in MY favorite colors. Of course I claimed it as mine after all I am the Mama. It's just the cutest gingham check with very simple white cross-stitching and I love it. Lucky me aprons are often worn at the barn so I can show this one off. We'll I must be going Today I get to have lunch with Renoir,she just purchased a new vehicle and I have yet to see it. Sooo off to eat sushi and have fun............................. said the Hobbit

Thursday, August 7, 2008

As the world turns part deux

Well here I am again slowly but surely getting back to a less frazzled state. When last we spoke Jigg's [my hubby] was getting the results on his biopsy. The news was not the best,but, not as serious as he had imagined. Yes it was positive for cancer,such a heart-stopping word,but, with such early detection it would be a problem in 10 to 12 years. At his age they suggested he take a wait and see approach with yearly check-ups. Surgery and radiation are options that he can consider but are not a priority with such a low reading. After a week of going thru many articles and meetings he has decided to wait at least a year before making any decisions. So for now we are taking it one day at a time and trying not to let it affect the positive things that are going on in our lives. Onward and upward as they say.
Last Tuesday turned out to be international night at Stitch and Bitch. Stephanie is from France and Anita from Great Britain. Stephanie[in orange]lives in our town and is here on a green card, her husband who is originally from the Andes is a citizen. She joins us on a regular basis and we love to listen to her stories of getting by in this strange world that we live in. They have 2 children Matisse who is 8 and Jeanne she just turned 2. Stephanie is currently looking for a job that would allow her time with Jeanne and is looking into pre-schools that would be interested in someone that can speak 3 yes 3 languages. She has finally gotten up the courage to make appointments and schedule interviews. We are very proud of her.
Anita was visiting a cousin who is a member of our group and was being taken on a world wind tour of New England. She was telling us about Cape Cod and her dining on lobster,always a favorite here in the summertime. We also wanted to hear about her corner of the world but, time seemed to run out before we could ask all our questions. Hopefully now that we have made her acquaintance we will have more opportunity to really talk. We obviously didn't get much stitching done but I must say it was a great visit.
I've been canning and the closet is starting to fill up. So far I've made 2 jams, strawberry fig and Blueberry both got a thumbs-up from the family. Also in the cupboard is smoky salsa and a basil tomato sauce. I'm hoping to have enough in stock to stay out of the grocery store for the month of February. The freezer is also chock full.It seems I overestimated our need for meat. I've got lots of beef, a 14lb ham 20 chickens and 2 turkeys One will be showing up in November. My 4 children will be there for me to make sure none goes to waste.
On the energy side my husband and I have purchased a pellet stove to help with the high cost of heating oil. It's currently sitting in our garage waiting to be installed. Our nephew is a mason and has set up an appointment to install by September 10.We also canceled our TV service to save on our expenses. We thought this would be traumatic but, it's been a month and we are not at a lost for things to do as of yet. Well I could go on and on but, as usual I have so many things that must be done today so bye for now .............................said the hobbit

Friday, July 18, 2008

As the world turns

Here we are back at the food show. See those numbers on the ceiling? Every number represents about 100 vendors just dying for you to try their product.This year a third floor was added for natural and organic foods. We normally do it in 2 days but we had to return on the third morning to finish up. I tasted more sodas ,teas, flavored waters, energy drinks,natural and organic than I care to remember. We are partial to the cheeses, olive oils and olives themselves. I think of a good olive oil as I would a fine wine.When you taste one you like it goes to your head ,honest.This years favorite was Ariston. Their oil and balsamic vinegar are to die for. After walking up and down these aisle we were exhausted and couldn't wait to get back to our rooms for a quick nap before going to supper. Can you believe after nibbling for 9 to 10 hours we still managed to eat.
Waiting in my room was my buddy Champignon,yes, he was able to make the trip. He managed to jumped into the suitcase at the last minute. He too found the big city exhausting and crawled into bed for a little siesta himself.
Well back to reality,yesterday Jiggs and I went to the urologist but as it turns out that was really an appointment to get an appointment. Monday he is scheduled for a biopsy and then the results will be in 5-7 days. Being a positive person I am only thinking good thoughts and hope that you are sending them my way too. I know these post are on the short side but,it's already 12:30 and I must get up by 6 so see you tomorrow .........said the hobbit

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Did you miss me???

I'm finally getting to the point that things are feeling closer to the norm. It's been a hectic 3 weeks and I'm trying to fit this blogging thing in but, the veggies just can't be put on hold while I play with my computer. Lots has been happening with the family and I've got all my people needing my undivided attention at this moment. This afternoon I'm going to a urologist with my husband. He has had some fluctuation in his numbers since his last physical and they would like to have a closer look. I'm going for moral support. My "Jiggsy" always functions better if I'm by his side,he's such a sweety. I, on the other hand, do best when left alone.
These are the bright lights of N.Y. city. On our arrival we ate at one of my favorite places "Balthazars" We had walk about 30 blocks when I stopped to take this picture. Our hotel Le Parker Meridien was an additional 37 blocks away. The temperature was hot and steamy and with so much going on around us who, would want to sit in a stuffy old cab. Well I hate to end so abruptly but my day is chock full of must dos. I promise to be back tonight for a second post. Ayah, I missed you guys a little too..........................said the hobbit

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Going to the big city,to process

I can' t believe it's already time for the Fancy Food Show. Sarah gave me this lovely print and I think it explains me to a T. I am forever in the process of. I always thought I would be done but, somewhere around 40 ish I realized we are all in the process, so now I'm happy with that . So this week I'm switching gears and putting on my N.Y. city hat to taste marvelous goodies in hopes of bring back just what my people need to comfort them thru these times. Of course we always allow a little time for us to process the big city . Included in this trip is always a visit to N.Y. city bakeries and restaurants and yarn shop and Takashemaya one of my all time favorite places to go. I went there for 3 years and savoured every inch of the store{mostly gardening treasures} before the owner asked "Have you seen the other 5 floors" Can you believe that? 3 years loving a place and not even seeing 20% of it. Well you can bet this country bumpkin got right on that elevator and checked out the rest. Every floor is totally different but the connecting thread is quality. The children's department has all unique gifts and books that will be treasured for a life time. I have 2 baby prezzies needed for this year so I finally get to shop this department. So I must rush off ...............so many things to do ............I'll never be ready but I'm in the process..........................said the hobbit

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Successful stiching w/moderate bitching

Isn't this cute. As most of you know, Tuesday night is stitch & bitch. We started getting together last fall because one of the girls wanted to knit and we thought it would be fun to get together at a local coffee shop. Everyone lives in a different direction so this worked out great. This is Michelle. She is a produce manager at work, she gave up knitting about 5 years ago when she decided to de-clutter her home. Then we came along and talked her into coming to our soiree and this is what she produced. Just like riding a bike it all came back to her. This is heading for California were her new nephew is living. I bet they're going to love it. As you can see this pattern is a little fancy but, that's how Michelle likes it. Nothing plain Jane about her. The only problem she had was the zipper, you see, it didn't call for one. She had never sewn one in and she bought one that was better suited for a skirt rather than a jacket[2 pieces]. Not a problem, she got herself organized, checked our her instructions and got it done. We just think it's the cutest thing and I am so proud of her. GREAT JOB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It seems almost impossible to believe but I have been tagged. Someone out there in another part of the world wants to know a little more about me. So here I go.
I was recently tagged by Sheila , another blogger in the U.K. she would like me to answer the following questions: 1]What were you doing 10 years ago ?
Ten years ago I was working as a dental technician with my husband in his lab. It was an field I have always been involved in but, not my passion as it is with my hubby. Within a short area of my workplace was the farm I currently work at. I am a people person and my husband encouraged me to" go for it " as they say. In my spare time I was an active member on the board of a ballet company in Portsmouth N.H.
2]places you have lived?
I guess the most interesting to people is probable New Orleans. Mu husband was sent there to train their staff in dental technology and we lived there a little over a year. Coming from N.H. it was quite a change. I can't think of anything the 2 states have in common other than being in the same country. We had 3 children at the time and they took in everything they could. It was a great year for all of us. Everyday was an adventure.
3]Five things on your to-do list for today. 1] get this tag done 2]pay my bills 3]work on the Christmas list 4] do some ironing,my favorite,really!!5]go work at the barn 12-6:30 today It's a simple life,not much excitement here.
4]What is your favorite snack?
I assume your not talking about anything good for you? When I hear snack food I immediately envision Cheesy Poufs the one with the Tiger on the bag and the words Family size at the top. My family knows when these are in the house THEY ARE MINE and you need permission to have a few thank you very much.
5]What would you do if you were a billionaire. Probable pass it on. Money is the root of all evil or so I have noticed I never had much more than I needed and I'm one happy person I would not want to mess with that................................said the hobbit

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Summer Reading

Just getting started on these books New and Old.Hope to finish by August. That is if I can figure out how to squeeze out a few more hours in the day. Just 2 would be great. I'm not trying to be ridiculous. Am I? Amy Sedaris I like you is pretty funny and informative.It's about entertaining and being more relaxed then "Martha" would have us think is possible. Amy has lots of ideas about using what you have in the house already to get a theme going.It's all very tongue in cheek,and give me the occasional chuckle as I can sometimes take things to seriously. Country Wisdom is for the person who whats to sustain themselves with no outside help. There isn't anything you need that is not in that book. Build an outhouse? Oh ya they can tell you how to do that. Good info if you want to leave the real world for awhile. Sweet miniatures by Flo Braker, my new obsession. Maybe it's because I think I should be downsizing. I'm not sure but,I can't wait to get my teeth into this one. Four season Harvest tell you how to grow your produce despite the fact that you live in a tundra for 6 out of 12 months. Could be useful if transportation take a bigger bite out of my grocery bill. Good Housekeeping circa 1932 I read this just because. No other reason than I have to reassure myself that we are going to survive whatever comes next. As you can see Champignon is still on my blog.He's sort of my conscience.Right now he's busy talking on my new phone. The girls at Stitch and Bitch thought I needed to get with the real world so on my birthday they got together and bought me this phone. Champignon loves it and sends a big thank you to all the girls. I'm hoping to have a chance to try it out if he ever gets off. I think he met someone online I'll ask him when he hangs up. Brings back memories of when the kids were home.

On the farm we are picking our first berries. Picture is a little fuzzy but, I was so excited my hands were shaking. Berries are my favorite. We'll be eating them as is for awhile but I'm hoping to find an appropriate recipe in Flo Brakers' book. Or maybe someone out there has a recipe to offer.
Tomorrow is Fathers Day and it's going to be a busy one so I think I'd better get a little rest. Lots going on.Boys are golfing with Dad, Sarah has her students giving a year end performance. This is her final with this dance school.She is moving on to do more creative work elsewhere but, is finding it hard to say goodbye to her students. So mum will be there for support. Diner has to be cooked and I get an e-mail that my local chickens are ready to be picked up at 11am. Looks like that's on my list of things to do. Well that's it for now Happy Fathers Day to everyone out there, hope it's filled with lots of hugs and warm moments..........................said the hobbit

Sunday, June 8, 2008

It's 90 degrees I think I need a break

Well,it's hard to believe but, 2 days ago hubby was sitting on the couch wrapped in a woolen blanket watching his beloved Red Soxs'.Today the temperature is closer to the 90+ mark and he is still sitting on the couch but shall I say in much lighter attire. I myself prefer the cellar where it's about 30 degrees cooler. Of course my computer is on the 2nd floor of our home and no we do not have air-conditioning. It hardly seems worth it with such fluctuating temp.

Oh, have you figured out what that picture is all about ? No it's not an elephant about to suck up that plant. These are our greenhouse tomatoes. They are not exposed to the elements so therefore we must play bee by gently blowing them with air in order to pollinate the flowers so that they become tomatoes. It amuses us to.

Seeing as how it's too warm to do anything I went on a computer vacation today. I sometimes read Cowboys and custard. She recently went to Midhurst in West Sussex. Through her blog, dated Sunday June 1, I was introduced to the Walled Garden At the Cowdray Castle Ruins. I don't know that I'll ever visit but her genuine love of the area has made me place it on my"could happen" list. Part of the tour included a visit to an art studio. You must take a look. Just follow the prompts to small works .I would love to see some of these sculptures in our gardens.Maybe I should work on that. Well it's getting pretty warm up here so I think I need to go down to the cellar and cool off ...........................said the hobbit

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Rhubarb time

Hi everyone. I hope you're all out there helping your local farmer with his produce. This is the rhubarb patch. We've been harvesting for about 2 weeks now so everyone should be looking for a new and interesting recipe. I know strawberry rhubarb pie is probable the favorite but it really is great in bread or muffins and besides it's not strawberry seasons here yet so let me know what you're doing with yours. I had a customer call at the barn the other day. He had decided to make his version of rhubarb crisp. He baked the fruit put crisp topping on and baked it some more.It seemed he was left with a very watery mess.What could be the problem he asked. Well it could be the exclusion of sugar or flour. Just a thought. First time cooks,oh how I love reliving those early mistakes and passing on my mothers' advice "oh honey, just put it on ice cream and it will

be just fine. Worked for me. So here I am ready to try a new recipe.It came from an older book, a little vague on size of pan and temp needed but, I gave it a shot anyway.


1 1/2 cups brown sugar [lightly packed] or not

2/3 cup vegetable oil

1 egg

1 teas salt

1 cup buttermilk yum

2 cups diced rhubarb

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

1 1/4 cup white flour

1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour

1/4 cup wheat germ

1 teas. baking powder

In large bowl combine oil and sugar,add egg salt and buttermilk, mix thoroughly. Stir in the rhubarb. In a second bowl mix nuts, flours, wheat germ and baking powder. Add dry to wet.

Stir till just moist and spoon into a 9x5 bake at 350 40-50 minutes or till tester comes out clean. I use spaghetti as a tester.

It was pretty tasty if I do say so myself. Hope you are all enjoying the summer although it has not officially started in N.E. But, that never stops us................said the hobbit

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Has anyone got an extra hour I could borrow????

Things are a little busy here. Everyday I tell myself I need to sit down and write a few lines but, all I can do is drag my you know what to bed and start all over in the morning. Since Mom died I've had a few additional things to take care of. Nothing major just time consuming, and needing a call or letter. One of these was a letter telling her this was her second notice and she had to reply immediately. To what I didn't know.So I called because it was concerning her insurance. It seems they needed a verbal description of the fall that landed her in the hospital. Was it an accident??Did someone cause the fall??? When I told them she had passed away they said they would accept my interpretation of the accident. I was 50 miles away but,that didn't make any difference to them they just needed to close this file. Seems strange they didn't even ask for proof of who I was??

Anyway as you see it's gardening time. No that's not me I'm the one taking the picture silly. I was impressed at how gently they were raking the soil. The naked area had radishes there,they had been picked and the soil was being prepared for another planting.The lettuce on the right hand side had another week before it would be harvested. That would be yesterday. I told you I was it need of extra hours.

This is one of the things I've been doing. It's a veggie platter and I've taken those new radishes and cut them into little mice. Aren't they cute? Farmer Will took one look at them and said you are one crazy lady.I think that meant he liked it . He was laughing at the time so that was good enough for me. Well gotta go for now.Next time I'll tell you about my birthday[2 weeks ago] I am sooo behind.............said the hobbit

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Finding Cambridge

At last I'm back. It's been such a hectic week, with no end in sight. I thought it best to just forge ahead and post the best I could ,so, If I seem to be rambling, give me a break will ya. When I last spoke to you we were leaving Massart. Betty was in a state of shock and needed some familiar sights. She thought a walk thru Cambridge would soothe her soul. We were willing to go anywhere just point us in the right direction. So Betty called husband Bob and told him where we were. After getting off the phone she informed us of his directions. Find a bridge and cross it, you should be able to find Cambridge from there. So off we went to find a bridge. This is not as easy as it sounds. There are many bridges in Boston. Hard as this may be to believe it worked out perfectly, althought Betty often told me to get in the left lane and then after recognizing some shop or intersection whe'd have me make a right turn. But, lo and behold we found Cambridge and that was easy compared to finding a place to park. We rode around about 20 min making circles into residential areas, checking out lovely homes till finally we found a parking lot behind Barnes & Noble. I was so excited that when I got to the gate I pushed the button for my ticket and a gentleman asked "can I help you" I informed him I wanted to park my car and he informed me I was pushing the emergency call button would I please try the green button.Oops!! Car finally parked we put our walking shoes on and hit the pavement .

We managed to find a great little bakery with biscotti like I never had before,some contained blueberries and ginger and I just could not pass them up. I wish I had written down the name but, being new to this blogging thing it's a detail I forget .Oh well I guess I'm a work in progress. We finally hit paydirt for Betty when we spotted a shop called Papersource
Being a scrapbooker she was in heaven. The place was filled with ideas for memory books which Betty is a wiz at. I am at a total lost in this field. My mind just goes blank and I can't think of a thing to do.

Betty had me take a picture of this memory book to give me something visual to work with. I don't think it's going to help .I can't remember for the life of me what it was about. So off we went to find food and a restroom. I don't think peeing is allowed in Cambridge. We tried 2 restaurants before we found one that had a public restroom,however,that one had no seating available so after doing what we had to do off we went to the first restaurant. Soon we were back at our vehicle ready to go home when I spotted a small sign that read parking for customers only have ticket validated in mall. Oh oh here we go again. I went into the mall spoke with a security guard who found my adventures quite amusing and informed me our parking ticket would be $1

I gave it to him in quarters and made my escape. Soon we were back in N.H. having been gone a total of 12 hours bringing our first adventure to a close.Next stop Portland or maybe the South end open market. Of course that's in Boston.Dare we try again ............said the hobbit

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Massart What a trip

Look at that we had a parking space just waiting for us. Hard to believe but,we spent the day in Boston and a grand total of a $1 was spent on parking. The big blue van took us to the city for a day of shopping and R&R. This is the first trip we took as a group and I think everyone had a different idea of what we would be seeing.

Once safely parked we took the long way around to the fair and walked thru a little park where we ran into this Canadian goose. He wanted nothing to do with us, despite my attempts to speak french and English to him, he refused to give us directions. We saw a young man putting up fliers and thankfully he sent us on the right path. And then the fun began. My friend Betty had more of an Art Show in mind. She sort of got a glazed look about her and took a good 20 min to get herself on track as to where she was and just what was she doing here!!!!!! I was totally oblivious to her shock and awe look and didn't even realize it happened till 2 days later, but, true to form, Betty was mingling with the young folk and having a great time. Once I observed her in conversation with a young women who was patiently explaining to her why the music she was listening to was referred to as indie, Betty thought it was from India. There was no eye rolling at this comment just a gentle laugh and an explanation of the origin of the term. I have to say the people we met were just great.That being said I do understand how someone could be a little overwhelmed. The set-up was like a giant yard sale,the room needed a little more flow but,somehow we managed to forge ahead and find several items to purchase.

Rich Simone of Providence R.I. was one of the first artist I met. His table was filled with t-shirts ,stickers,pins and his theme is bunnies. I was able to learn a little more about when I returned home. There really is a bunny that he cares for and inspires his work. Yvonne Pope
had some adorable baby onesies that I purchased for future gift giving. I couldn't pass her up ,after all my mothers name is Yvonne and it was a must that I purchase a little something here. I have more to tell however I must get going to my other life I'll come back tomorrow and tell you how we found Cambridge..........................said the Hobbit

Friday, May 2, 2008

the pantry

OK !!!! This is the closet remake that took me 3 months to accomplish. There will be no designer kudos however it is exactly what I set out to do and I love it. The colors are hard to see but, I have pumpkin on the shelves and champagne yellow on the walls. Who names these colors anyway? When I first planned this project it was fall soooo I had pumpkin on the brain champagne yellow was on the same color chart and that was fine I still have work to do outside the closet and hopefully that will move a bit faster. I know some of you out there were beginning to doubt my efforts so as they say "a picture is worth a thousand words". Tomorrow will be a full day at the barn, not that I mind, however I can't wait till Sunday. Four of the Stitch & Bitch girls will be going to Boston for what I'm calling
all about me day . We'll be starting early in the morning and just have a glorious time. We talk about doing this all the time but, something always gets in the way. This week Sarah posted about a date with herself and we all commented on what a smart thing that was . It didn't take much prompting after that .The wheels were in motion, road/craft trip was in the making. So Sunday evening I hope to tell you all about it. I best be going lots of coins to roll up and turn in for dollars. I don't plan on coming back empty-handed..............said the hobbit

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Friends are healers

I want to thank everyone for their heartfelt wishes during my families recent loss. I was blessed with many warm letters and messages from new found friends on the blog and it was truly appreciated. I know that they are the people that will help me find my place in the new order of life. That being said my next post will move on to a lighter subject as we must all accept and move forward................said the hobbit

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Closing up

The week has finally come to an end. Mom's sevices were just as she had planned them, and, everything went as well as possible. After the graveside prayers everyone was invited to a luncheon. For a women of 91 I think the number of people who came was quite large .We had about 60 people come to the lunch. Most had stories of visiting our farm and fond memories of my mother. All made me promise to keep in touch. I truly want to do this but, I hope it is not all up to me to keep the circle going. It's not my best quality. Have any of you had this responsibility put upon you? I think I need some time to work on that.
Big brother and I invited everyone at the luncheon to come by the apartment and take anything they would like as a reminder of our mum. Some people could not bring themselves to do this. Some were grateful for the offer. Mum had given us everything that was precious to our family history long before so, we were happy to let everything else go to someone else. Mom lived in elderly housing so before we went home we left a key with a neighbor and told her mum would be glad if she and the others would take what they wanted or needed. Big brother and I went back today to clean up. There was nothing to do.Five of the ladies got together and clean everthing,removed old clothing, cleaned the fridge threw out all those lille things that memeres tend to save. It was wonderful all we had to do was have a nice lunch together. Big brother his wife and daughter and I had a great visit and then went on our way. The little memeres had done all the work.Well, I guess I'll sign off for now, tomorrow is the first day of the rest of my life and I need to be ready.....................said the Hobbit

Monday, April 21, 2008

I remember mama

Recently I had the opportunity to introduce you to Mom. Our friendship was long in the making. For many years I thought we just weren't on the same wave lenght. Neither one of us would ever admit that the other one might be right,or so it seemed,It's all a little foggy and totally unimportant right now.

She was born Jan. 8th 1917 in Manchester,N.H. She was the oldest of 10 children 8 lived to adulthood. By the time she was 13 the Depression came along and cut her education short.

She went to work in a factory to help the family survive the difficult task of having food on the table and a roof over their heads. My mother was proud to be able to help and never felt cheated out of furthering her education. The phrase "there are people out there worst off than you" was often heard in our home. Of course we thought the same as she made every effort to make our life a memorable one. That attitude definitely set the pace for our family. Her life had more sorrows and heartache than I can list yet she saw it all in a brighter light. It was all part of Gods plan and she trusted Him completely. Just do your best everyday,love your neighbor and He would take care of the rest. Only in the last 4 years did she scold Him because she felt she had done everything expected of her and He seemed to not notice that she was ready for her final reward. I now know what He was up to. He was giving me time to see her in a different light and learn to love her as a true friend and mother.

The journey is now at an end,the plan complete. She past away April 21,2008 at 3 am. She is at peace and I will miss her dearly. I thank God for the opportunity to discover that I am my mothers daughter and so proud of it.................................said the Hobbit

Saturday, April 19, 2008

signs of spring

I didn't intend to post this picture today but, I seem to have lost the photo of the very large Tom turkey that was strutting thru my neighborhood. I swear he was there . My son added a new program for my photos and although I can see them I haven't been able to transfer them to my blog. It seems that Hobbit needs another lesson in blogging from her mentor.
This is another view of my workplace. I heard a familiar sound while cooking the other day. Most people might think it was someone with engine problems but, we all recognize it as the tractor turning over the fields to get ready for the years planting. Things are changing so quickly that I can't even post in time with it.This photo was taken less than a week ago.Soon it will be sprouting little corn rows. I'll try to keep you in touch with the farm as it prepares to put forth its bounty. Just a bit over the hill and out of sight the strawberry patches are being weeded. We can hardly wait for these to be ready.When you bite into them they are a bright red thru and thru and the juice stains your lips with its rich color. I recall hearing about young girls using this as their first lipstick. Do you think that's why kisses are referred to as sweet?
Tomorrow I'm off to see mom. It should be a great day. Managed to finish the pantry that was on my list of things to do in Feb. I can't be accused of being an over achiever . Maybe tomorrow I'll be able to show you. I've thought of a few more embellishments for the pantry but they will have to come later . Right now I have to get the garden ready and keep up with Mom. Maybe the turkey will find his own way to the blog.We'll keep our fingers cross....said the hobbit