THE BLESSED HEARTH

THE BLESSED HEARTH

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Friday, September 12, 2014

Soup Junkies Tip and Recipe..

Happy Weekend everyone.. 
Just posting a little idea for you soup lovers.. 

I made these a couple of weeks ago in my shop to sell at the Art in the Park sale and they went over very well.. 
I have made them for years and love having them on hand all through the season when I make soup so often..

They are herb soup bags.. 
You gather your herbs together and put them in a cheesecloth and tie each one up with twine..

Then drop one or two in your soup during the last hour of simmering time.. 
I find one is enough for us.. 
I suppose it depends on how big your soup is , eh? 

The first pic above is from one of my sweet readers, Cheryl.. 
She made the Bacon Lentil Soup that I posted about and sent me a picture of her soup.. 
Looks great, eh? And of course, I love the bowl... 
I posted the recipe HERE.. on the Soup Debate...

You can mix and match the herbs to suit your soups.. 
Tomato beef would probably be better with oregano while chicken loves summer savory and such.. 

Anyway, here is the recipe.. 
To each piece of cheesecloth add a Tablespoon of Lovage, and 1 tsp. each of Rosemary, Savory and  Marjoram. Also, add 1 bay leaf.. 

In some you could put Oregano, Chives and Thyme.. I would always add Lovage if I had it as it has the lovely celery taste.. 

You can experiment with this and find the mixture you like the best.. 
Also, this is a wonderful gift for the cook on your Christmas list or gift pantry.. 

I used old mason jars that I had a added a piece of dried Lovage inside.. Then I made tags from old recipe cards and glued a bay leaf on with a glue stick.. 
The instructions are on the other side of the card which I tied on with twine... 
Just an idea.. smile.. 

Thank you to everyone who has been praying for my Vertigo as I am much better and back in our water bed.. Thank the Lord... 

Have a blessed weekend and thanks so much for your visits and kind words.. 
You guys are great.. 
God bless..

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

These September Daze.....


Hello friends... 
Hope you are enjoying your September... 
Such a lovely month of the year and here in the Eastern provinces of Canada we are being blessed with wonderful warm weather even though we have had near frosts.. 
I need to bring in my geraniums soon to keep through the Winter.. 
They do not require much care and provide such cozy warm color all season.. Then I just take them back out and put them on the deck next Summer.. 

The one nice thing about being home again are the few visits we make up to our old farm back in the Kent Hills of New Brunswick.. 


We are quite busy here at home and could not stay long .. Terry mowed the grass and I puttered about in the kitchen.. 

Brought up a sweet old runner and wood basket from my shop... 
I like it there on the harvest table.. 
The little piece of lace on the handle has a donkey on it.. 
Imagine.. 
I couldn't sell that.. grin.. 

A dear lady gave me a whole box of kale... 
The world's most popular vegetable at this time.. 
So full of nutrients.. 

I froze a bunch.... 

And tried some kale chips... 
They were good although dear hubby was not impressed... 
I will sneak it into Winter soups for sure.. 

After he was finished mowing we went for a little drive.. 
He said he thought it would be nice to see the windmills again.. 

It was a beautiful sunny day at the farm but just a few minutes away up high was a lot of fog.. 
Some of the windmills you could barely see... 
Amazing aren't they?  

Then....
I found out why we really went for a drive.. 
Past the windmills my dear husband owns a wee wood lot.. 

I detest going up there because it is way up a winding high hill with barely a road.. 
By the time we got up there and back down I had been calling on the Lord to please get us out of there in one piece... 
I tell you sometimes I think the man has lost a couple of marbles.. 
Then he proceeds to tell me he thinks that he and Dustin will go up and take down a few maples and bring them to the farm.. 

Trust in the Lord with all your strength will be my verse for that day... smile.. 

On the sunnier side of my daze... I mean days are peaches.. 
Lots of them...
Peeled and sliced and mixed with a bit of sugar and frozen for the Winter.. 

To use on Vanilla Cake and Whipped Cream or on some Ice Cream Sundaes or perhaps a Fruit Salad... 
They will taste of Summer.. smile.. 

I imagine I am boring you stiff with all of my preserving and pickling stories but that is what I do this month and I love it... 

I am not complaining so perhaps I am bragging... grin... 
Please forgive me.. 
Here we have another almost 30 pounds of baby cucumbers made into Garlic Dill, Sandwich Dill and Nine Day Sweet Pickles.. 
The tea towel is covering some that are fermenting.. 
They are very healthy for you, you know.. 

Oh and I was blessed to find some more Queen Anne's Lace and made another batch of jelly as I sold it all at the Park sale.. 

I have made a sweet new friend on Blogger.. 
Her name is Michelle and she lives in England.. 
And you girls know how I love anything UK.. 
Well, she gave me a recipe for their type of beet pickles.. 
Over there they call it beetroot and of course we Canadians call them just beets but it is the same veggie.. 
Anyway, I have made a bottle Michelle... 
Thanks for the recipe... smile.. 
Try to go over and give her a wee visit as I am sure you will love her... 
Just click on her name above...

Now... 
I would like to share a poem that I found on the web that I thought was marvelous as it mentions another thing I love.. 
Mason Jars.. ..
Hope you will like it, too.. 

PICKLED

She gathered walnuts in June
on hot, clear days, when the nuts
were tender enough to pierce with a safety pin.
She soaked them in salt water
and baked them in the sun
until they turned black, wiped them dry,
and filled canning jars with vinegar, brown sugar,
cloves, peppercorns, and cassia buds.
She sealed the jars, carried them down
to the cellar, her knees nearly buckling
beneath the weight of walnuts,
then climbed the stairs back to the kitchen
and made sweet pickled pears
cooked in boiling water, soaked
in vinegar and sugar, cloves and cinnamon.
She pickled nasturtium seeds,
packed them in empty perfume bottles,
drenched them in vinegar —
little capers that impressed her friends
when she sprinkled them on chicken.
She pickled everything —
autumn leaves, peony blossoms,
hair pins, playbills, extra buttons,
letters from her mother —
all of these things preserved,
lined up in clear jars
on warped cellar shelves.
She loved the way the peaches glowed
when she pulled the chain
swinging beneath the light bulb,
loved the neat rows of specimens,
like screws at the hardware store.
On snowy afternoons in late December,
she cut out calendar squares
of days she wanted to save,
dropped them like wishes in a
wide-lipped Mason jar,
drowned them in vinegar,
sealed them in the sweet brine
of remembrance.
by..Cindy Hunter Morgan... 
Thank you, dear hearts for you visit and your comments, of course.. 
Praying that you have the peace of the Lord in your days.. 
xo


Friday, September 5, 2014

Home Again... Home Again.. Jigedy Jig.....


Good Evening my dears.. 
Here it is Friday already.. This week just flew by.. 
Last weekend was very busy but fun, too.. 

My little shop was opened for the very last weekend.. 
It is hard to believe that the Summer is past and the shop is finally closed and finished.. 
The pic above is a sweet customer that I met at the shop several years ago.. 
Just one of the dear people who I now call friend.. 
She lived in Toronto when we met but loved St. Martins so much that she bought a home and moved down to the East coast permanently.. 
I loved when she would come in.. 
She was always so full of cheer even though she struggles with MS.. 
Here she is going through an old mason jar of jewels..smile.. 
She will continue to visit me at the cottage next Summer, though even if the shop is no more, I'm sure.. 

Then on Sunday we once again attended the Art in the Park event.. 
We placed everything on a table...


There were customers there for an hour or two before the music began.. 


It was a wonderful band singing gospel and country.. 
I was surprised that we knew the sweet girl on the piano.. 
We have know her since she was a little girl.. smile.. 

Sold quite a bit of my Pumpkin Spice Potpourri and a few  wax smellies to go in with it.. 
Two ladies wanted the last jar of Rose Powder and decided they would divide it.. smile.. 


But mostly it was pickles.. 
I laughed when several people said they were glad that the pickle lady was back.. grin..
I did a tomato apple chutney which was cooked in my slow cooker and a Sunshine Relish which was cooked in the oven.. 
I will definitely do them again next year, I think..
There were many booths of many different crafts and such.. 

Then on Monday we moved back home..   

It took us all day to pack and drive here and unload everything into the front hall.. 
Oh my... 
It was so good to be home again, though.. 
Even with all the work it takes to do it all.. 
The Sea is wonderful but the place I want to be in September is right here at home.. 

Please say a wee word of prayer for me as I am still struggling with Vertigo.. 
I know it could be worse but being dizzy is not fun.. 
The sad thing about it all is that I look so forward to sleeping once again in our water bed and guess what?.. 
It made me so sick I had to move to the spare room.. 
Isn't that a shame?  smile.. 
This old hippie wantabe is pretty upset but this too shall pass.. 

Anyway.. 
Yesterday, a friend and I made a trip up the St. John River Road to visit some vegetable stands... 

And today I did up some Amish Schnippled Bean Salad for Winter.. 


You French cut the beans and make a brine for them.. 
Store them in your cold room and in the Winter you take them out and drain them.. 
Place them in a bowl and add a bit of sour cream and a speck of sugar.. 
Our oldest son Trevor used to love this when he was a boy at home.. 
Another way is to add some chopped onion, seasonings and a bit of oil .. 

My sister-in-law gave me my mother-in-law's canner, too this week.. 
I am thrilled with it and am hoping to do a few baskets of peaches tomorrow.. 
I just love this time of year with all of it's busyness, don't you? 

Some ladies were saying that at my age they wouldn't be bothered but I can't imagine not doing this.. 
My mama is 80 and almost everyday she is mixing up a batch of chow or mustard pickles or jam or something.. 
I pray the Lord will bless me with the same kind of ambition when I am her age.. grin.. 

Well, dear ladies that wraps it up for tonight.. 
I am trying to get to visit your blogs and finally catch up.. 
Just a bit more patience, please..  

Sending you love and prayers.. 



Friday, August 29, 2014

Time to go....


Hello everyone.. 
Hope all is well in your part of the world.. 
For the first part of my post I would like to wish our sweet daughter, Shonda a very happy birthday.. 
Seems like only yesterday she was six months old and I was out sheltering her in my coat and walking in the rain.. smile.. 

Time has flown but how blessed we have been to call her our little girl...
We are thankful to God for her and her sweet family.. 

And... 
Tomorrow is Shonda's birthday but also the final day of the little House of Henry being opened.. 
I really am not sad to be closing but will miss meeting all of you sweet people... 

It has been fun but I am looking forward to enjoying my Summers down here by the Bay of Fundy without worrying about being at the shop.. 
All good things must come to an end.. smile.. 

We have been busy doing pickles, pickles, pickles.. 

Mustards..
Sweet Garlic Dills..
Tomato and Apple Chutney... 

Just to mention a few... 

Also, we change homes on Monday.. 

We leave our cottage and it's old kitchen and two floors and go back home.. 

To once again being all on one floor and some more modern appliances.. 
I must say I look forward to my dishwasher and more then one bathroom.. smile.. 
One thing I miss when we move home is the Bay... 

So love seeing this at the end of our street and opening the door and smelling the salt water.. 
I really enjoyed my stay here this Summer more then usual because I was not taken up with the shop.. 
Looking forward already to next Summer and freedom to putter away down here.. 

But home beckons us.. 
Usually, this time of year I can't get back home fast enough but it is a bit bittersweet this time.. 

I must go through my house and get it fresh and clean as it has been empty now for 3 months.. 

Doing all the Fall things that we do.. 
Like visiting this old place.. 

In the Fall we go here for a day or so a week and enjoy the beautiful Fall weather way back in the country.. 
I know this is confusing for the new followers of the blog.. smile.. 
The old farm is our getaway in the Fall and Spring and then we spend the Summer here at the cottage.. 

We are not a couple who likes to take trips but putter around here and there in our old places.. 
Nothing fancy but enjoyable for us.. 

Home is where your heart is and one place our hearts belong is at this little country church... 


Although, we enjoyed our Summer our hearts are glad to return to our own church and the precious families who attend there.. 
God has blessed us with being able to attend church with our daughter in the Summer and then our sons for the rest of the year.. 

Well, my dears that is all for now.. 
We move home on Monday and the Internet won't be plugged in again until Thursday so we may not connect again until then.. 

Thanks so much for visiting and I look forward to hopefully slowing down a bit and checking up on you all more faithfully.. 

Love your comments and may God bless you ... 
xo

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A little drive to Duck Pond Road...







Hello my dears.. 
Just a few pics of a beautiful part of our Bay of Fundy.. 
Kind of a hidden treasure that we dearly love to visit each Summer before we go home.. 

Heading to bed... 
Nightie night.. 
xo

Monday, August 25, 2014

A little Summer ramble and roll...




Hello there.. 
Hope everyone is fine and doing well...

Summer is having her last fling here in the Maritimes of Canada and what a beautiful day we had today... 
Just perfect weather.. 
Not too hot or cool but Fall is certainly on it's way.. 

I love the Spring but find the Fall has a very creative influence on me.. I just want to be making and doing.. smile.. 

Here in St. Martins the village built benches for folks to sit on during the Summer and on each side is an edible garden.. 
They are lovely and across the street from our cottage is the one with Nasturtium flowers, herbs, tomatoes, blueberries, kale, beans and peas and such.. 
You are invited to pick a veggie, herb or whatever as long as you leave some for others.. 
I picked 10 blossoms and made a vinegar.. 
I make several different kinds each Fall to carry me through the Winter for salads and greens and such.. 
Nasturtium Vinegar tastes kind of peppery and is delicious.. 
Very easy to make as you just place them in a jar and cover with white vinegar for a couple of weeks.. 
Strain through a cheesecloth and use.. 
It turns a most beautiful orange shade in a couple of days.. 

Anyway... 
I am getting ready to close my shop.. 
This weekend will probably wrap it up and I am happy about that..
We still had stuff in the barn from when I first started out and took a huge load over today.. 
Tomorrow I hope to go over and sort through all the boxes and place it about and price it.. 
Everything is almost all 50 percent off and has been moving along very well.. 

I have been pickling a bit and today I finished up my Pumpkin Flavors Potpourri... 

It is very pretty and smells nice and spicy.. 

I have also been trying to enjoy my last days by the Sea.. 
I miss the Bay of Fundy so much when we go home,, 
It is a part of me even though I do look forward to going home and getting things back to normal.. 

It has been a wonderful Summer with our grandsons visiting quite a bit and other lovely company.. 

Last night I woke up very dizzy and did not have a good rest at all.. 
This morning I just sat on the stoop in my flannel pj's and housecoat and slept in the breeze.. 
So lovely... 

On Sunday we had a nice day with our daughter as it was likely the last Sunday we will attend church with her and her family this Summer.. 
We spent the afternoon at her house and had a wonderful dinner.. 
Then sat outside and watched the sailboats on the river.. 

And then back to another wonderful service.. 

Our four older grandsons head to Montreal this weekend for a missions trip.. 
I pray God will bless and protect them.. 
School starts next week.. 

Oh my... where has the Summer gone?  smile.. 

Well, dear hearts this has been nothing but a ramble and roll and once again I am falling short.. 

Take care and if you are in the area on the weekend drop by the House of Henry... 

God bless.. 




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