Saturday, May 30, 2009

happenings on the farm

This is part of the field that I can see when I'm working at the farm

You can just barely see the tractor turning over the soil.Rye had been planted as nourishment and now it was time to work it into the field. I love seeing that shade of green pop up before anything else has come to life.It almost seems disappointing to see the dark soil brought to the surface but it's a necessary thing.

Just where the green meets the brown soil I spotted someone standing and could not figure out what he would be doing out there.When I got back to the barn I was informed that 3 men from the Civil War society had asked for permission to follow the tractor in hopes of finding bullets or button artifacts from battles that they have documented as being on this property. They spent the better part of the afternoon following the tractors with metal detectors in hand. We kind of chuckled at their efforts.The Tuttles have been Quakers and the thought of them going to war was out of the question. However,it seems someone was out there doing battle because they located 3 bullets and as soon as they are authenticated one will be giving to the children as part of their heritage.I guess you just never know.

On to my brothers farm.Remember this sheep.I told you I was sure it had a name but, couldn't remember.Well would you believe that there are 2 just like this and they were called "the hobbits".My sister-in-law named them this because every time she let them out,they took off to the furthest meadow and out of sight.At the end of the day she would have to send the dog to fetch them back. After going to the edge of the field and saying "go get em"on more then one day,she soon realized that when she said this they would poke their heads up and start the walk home.One day she didn't send the dog but, called out "go get em".They came running home on their own,and,will be forever known as the "go get em" sisters. And that is the tale of my namesakes........................said the hobbit

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Tuesday night Stitch&Bitch

Well thank goodness stitch&bitch is still alive and well.The pace has been so busy ,busy around here that we need it to keep our sanity. When we started meeting almost two years ago, the main reason was that Donna wanted to learn to knit. We taught her the basic knit and purl stitches and she went to town on scarves. Two maybe three of them and she kept them four to five inches wide.Since then we have talked of moving on to a more difficult project.This is her perusing a knitting book,looking for the just right hat as her next project.In her defense I must say she has had a few interruptions. There have been surgeries ,storms,family celebrations not to mention the family cat that was determined to eat every ball of really good yarn she invested in.

Donna would like to do a hat because she has watched us knit on four and five needles while doing our socks and she feels she is ready for this.Here she is casting on her stitches on a pair of #four circular needles.This is another first for her.The pattern asked for 91 stitches which I thought sounded a little tight for circulars.Sooo while she was casting I checked the pattern and
discovered that it was written for 2 straight needles. Donna always says "that's ok honey we'll work around it".I explained there would no longer be a ws as she was now working rs only.She said I can remember that. Then asked "What is ws and rs.?"Once past that lesson we took a break for a well deserved scone with butter mmm.She left for home and told me she'd have progress to show next time we met. I love her,such a positive attitude.I think I'll put a pair of #four straight needles in my bag.Just in case she might need them.One should always be prepared to help a friend.

Here is Sharlene's latest sock.A few of the girls have been using the self designing yarns.I just love this color combination,it always amazes me to see how varied the patterns are.This pale pink ,off white and forest green is one of my favorites.

Sarah is getting ready for a move so she has taken up the jumbo needles and is making soft comfy scarves with all the leftover yarns that would not otherwise be used.Waste not want not.Way to go girls.................................said the hobbit.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Keep this in the fridge

With summer coming soon(I think)I like to find a few recipes that can be fixed ahead,last a few days and will be better for me that a hot fudge sundae.Broccoli Salad is one that fits the bill.
This is a staple at the barn and one I think you will enjoy.First bake1/2 a lb of bacon till crisp.While that's baking mix the dressing.
Use 1 cup of 1/2&1/2,1/2 cup of mayo,1/4 cup of superfine sugar and 1/8 cup of white vinegar.Let this sit while you chop 3 stalks of celery

and toss that into the dressing along with 1/2 cup thompson raisins (dark not golden)and the crumbled bacon.

Chop about 3 small heads of broccoli keeping the pieces just right to put in your mouth.You don't cook the broccoli so make sure not to use too much of the stem.Toss this together and let it marinate in the fridge for a few hours.I know this will hit the spot after those long workouts in the garden.If not ,there's always the hot fudge sundae................said the hobbit

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Have you had this?

I get to eat out alot in May.Aside from having Mother's Day,celebrated by 4 children,it's also my birthday so I get to do it all over again.This was a breakfast that I recently had.It appears that they saute sweet peppers,shredded potato,maybe jalepeno .It did taste a little spicy.This looked like it had been put in a small spring form pan.maybe a 4 inch. An indentation was made in the potatoes and filled with cut-up lobster ,this was topped with a just cooked egg and covered with hollandaise sauce.

Garnish on the side was a skewer with fresh fruit and wheat toast. It was fantastic and I can't wait to try this at home.However it seems that everyone who knows me wants to take me out for a bite and I don't know when I'll get back to my kitchen.
One of my birthday prezzies was this brooch made for me by Sarah I think I'm the chicken and she's the chick.It looks like we are up up and away in our beautiful balloon.........said the hobbit

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Friends"gotta love 'em"

I have the best group of friends. They are creative, hard-working thoughtful people.Everyone of them has a list a mile long of things that need to be done so getting together has to be a planned event. All enjoy doing for others and some of us shy away from having others do unto us.

Receiving is a difficult thing for me.I am always quite shocked when people say"here ,I got this for you".Well that happened several times last week.First there was coffee beans from my friend Jeanne. As some of you might remember I cut the budget a little short a few months ago and found myself short of coffee for 3 days till Sarah came to my rescue with enough ground beans to make it to the next shopping day. This exercise in economy is also teaching me to waste not want not as they say.Last month when making my trip to a local outlet, I discovered they had NO regular coffee beans,but ,a 1lb tin of decaf with a hint of cinnamon was available for a mire $4 a lb. What a deal !! Hubby doesn't drink coffee so $4 for the month was some kind of savings.Once upon a time I would stop at Dunkin Donut twice a day for my coffee.I've come a long way baby.Yeah, well this was over the edge. Let me tell you Decaf with cinnamon is no substitute for a regular coffee drinker.I swore I would use up the whole lb.and I did.You will never see me make that mistake again.Aside from the fact that flavored coffees are not for me.I soon discovered that not having your caffeine fix will give you one massive headache.Thank goodness my friend heard of my plight and GAVE me an emergency 1lb of coffee which should get me back on track.

Then my good friend Lucy from the Barn ,surprised me with this years first batch of asparagus.Isn't it gorgeous!!I love this veggie,if it were available I would eat it every day. I think I'll use this as the final word on that pesky chicken. I've got a great casserole recipe that will suit these stalks just right. If they were a little thinner I would eat them sauteed with a little garlic and butter,but, they're just a little on the thicker side.

And then there's my good friend Cloe. She lives at my place of work and while I was sitting on the porch enjoying a bit a sunshine she decided to join us with a friendly bit of cuddling. She's the friendly one.The other cat is Hobbs,very needy,always checking to make sure you know he is around. Is that a male thing?Hmm?Oh that reminds me.Aprils total for grocery expenses.I purchased a total of $141.24 or $4.70 a day. Year to date:$428.19 This was my biggest month so far.Warmer weather seems to make us eat more.............said the Hobbit

Sunday, May 10, 2009

A little more of

Here we are back in the big city.I'm trying to catch up to all that has happened these past few weeks and it really has been quite the whirlwind.Everyday I have 3 or 4 things I want to tell you however there just doesn't seem to be enough time.As I mentioned before we stayed at the Hyatt next door to Grand Central Station.If you like to shop,you could spend the day at the station and not see everything there. I chose one shop to explore completely and will save the rest for future trips. I obviously plan on going to the city for at least another 100 times or so.
This trip I chose Pylones This is an adorable shop with things just a little quirky.You know we all have those friends who appreciate a purchased gift with it's own special panache.One of my gardening friends will surely like these trimming clippers and I doubt if they will ever misplace them when they lay them down in the grass.They kind of reminded me of the movie Beetlejuice.
Then I spotted this roly -poly sugar dispenser.Some of his squares are clear so you can see the sugar .His head is the cap and the spout is his crown.I couldn't resist.I'm sure he'll make a great gift for someone.Hmm let's see who will it be? The Hobbit is sworn to secrecy.Although a really good eclair can make her spill all.Don't tell her you heard it from me.After going through all the goodies I had to go to Sullivan street in the village. There I went to my favorite shop ,Purl Soho.

They actually have 2 shops .One is for fabric and the other is for yarns.They are 2 doors apart but, on the same street.When I first knew I would be in the city I had hoped to attend a class with Betz White the author of Sewing Green.Due to Hubby being a little slow with the details of our trip I was unable to register.While perusing the fabrics I lamenting my misfortune and told the salesclerk how sorry I was to have missed out on meeting her.You guessed it, I was telling my tale of woe to none other then the author herself.We had a good laugh about it and I soon discovered that she will be in N.H. for a class this summer.All is well in my world.I couldn't resist purchasing a few yards of fabric.Red and white is my favorite so that will be for me and the children's print will make something special for Isabella ,who is 6 months old. I hope to get something done up for those summer strolls on the beach. Well that will have to do for today. It was Mothers Day and I hope you all had a great one. I know I did.I have 4 children and every one of them called or saw me today.What more could I ask for............said the Hobbit

CHAPTERIII cluck,cluckThe chicken's back

Ok That pesky little (7lb) chicken is still in the works
However this time I only used about 1 1/2 cups of chicken meat. I make enough pizza dough for about 4 large pizzas and then put whatever is in the fridge as a topping.This pizza has bone sucking barbecue sauce ,honest, that's the name of it.Sprinkle the meat along with some caramelized onions and sauteed mushrooms.

Then I covered it with a mix of sharp cheddar and mozzarella .The pie is always cooked on a stone in a pre-heated 400 degree oven.

Here it is on the cutting board looking mighty tasty. Have you heard enough about the chicken?I'm afaid not ...........................said the hobbit

Friday, May 1, 2009

My kind of town

Before I forget where I went or what I did I thought I'd better tell you about our weekend in N. seems nearly impossible to sit at the computer long enough to put my thoughts down.We stayed at the Hyatt by Grand Central Station.The accommodations were great I had this little office type area to do my own thing while my husband attended a meeting.

Of course I don't have a laptop so I had to take notes on things of interest.Notes have been misplaces or they are with my husbands notes on dental prostheses. However I think I can wing it.Our first stop was Baltazar's.This is a great little restaurant on Spring St. in SoHo.What I enjoy most about them is they are so friendly and helpful. We were a bit early for our reservation so we sat at the bar and had an aperitif.

Along side that was a tray of cheese and crackers ,a bowl of olives and a rack of hard boiled eggs.I dug right into those olives they were marinated in oil and herbs and I just can't resist them

My husband favored the sharp cheddar cheese. I had never seen eggs offered before so I left them where they looked best.What if they were not hard boiled at all.Wouldn't I look silly smashing it on the bar. I'm a little bit country you know?

We sat at our table right on time and the first course for me was a salad with goat cheese smothered in caramelized onions.Sorry I was really hungry and ate the cheese and onions then remembered I should have taken a picture.Hubby ordered his favorite beet salad with goat cheese.He was pretty quick with the fork,so no pics there either.

I usually eat here on a Saturday. The special has always been braised short ribs. They are melt in your mouth,however this time it was Friday night and the special was bouillabaisse.I have learnt that if a really good restaurant offers a special it's usually the best of the evening.So I had it and it was great. It had lobster shrimp,cams and white fish not to forget the crab. Jiggy (the hubby) doesn't order anything he doesn't understand. Bouillabaisse is not something he can visualize so he went with the steak au poivre.He speaks french so he was ok with that.We of course had a fine wine and many laughs.We are both so busy lately we hardly have time to say hello. It seems we have to drive 5 hours in order to get some time alone.Obviously the staff noticed what a great time we were having because when it came time for dessert we were informed it was on the house. MMM profiteroles filled with french vanilla ice cream and ladled with hot chocolate sauce.Sooooo good.Then we hopped into a cab and headed back to our hotel to gear up for the next day.I need to take a few pictures of my purchases but,am waiting for better lighting. You'll have to be patient with me...................said the hobbit