The Blessed Hearth

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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

GIVEAWAY WINNER

The Blessed Hearth blog giveaway...


Good Morning..
I just wanted to thank everyone who entered the little giveaway..
There were a lot of entries and several new followers of the blog..
Thank you to each and every one..
And now we have a winner...
Terry picked this name this morning...

CHERYL....
from
Holcomb Happenings...
Congrats, dear.
Please email me your address to

Have a great day and God bless...

Monday, May 30, 2011

A story of old vintage dishes and Friends...

Greetings...
How are you girls today?
I thought I would share something a little different with you today.. I hope that is ok.

When I was a wee girl we were a very poor family as I have told you before..
My grandmother who lived in St. Martins (where our cottage is) had a wonderful old china cupboard.  I think I may have told you once about how I would oh so quietly creep into the old dining room and press my small tipped up nose again the cupboard pane and look.. just look.. except once but that is another story...grin..
I have loved old dishes ever since...
Anyway... here are a few shelves of some that I have here at home...
Hope you will like to see them... 

Don't you love dishes with old roses on them?
I also like to put other little things among my dishes.. old cards..

 Old bisque dolls...
This one belonged to my friend, Julia.. 


Anything with violets on them...


A favorite gift from Terry..
an old cocoa set..


I received this set and the cocoa set above from a sweet old antique dealer who used to live in Sackville before she passed on..
Her name was Julia and I loved her...

Another little collection that has not cost me very much just by picking them up here and there over the years..
Julia got me started on this...

Hand blown glasses Terry found at a yard sale in St. Martins..

Tea trolley filled with a flee market tea set..

And a breakfast set from my Great Aunt Emily..

An occupied Japan miniature tea set from Julia and milk pitchers from a friend..

As you can see Julia has really been a part of my love for antiques..
I met her many years ago when I was doing vintage Victorian crafts and I was trying to buy old buttons and lace and such..
 After we DISCOVERED her we would take a day and go visit Julia and her husband.  They were in their seventies and had 3 old barns full of antiques and books.. 
She was always so glad to see us.. especially Terry.. smile..
Then she would tell me just to putter through the 3 barns and to take my time.. She had a few things for Terry to mend..smile..When I was finished I was to take the stash into the kitchen..
Let me take a moment and tell you about her kitchen.. It was the most wonderful kitchen I have ever been in.. It was filled with cupboards lined with open shelves stacked high with old dishes, crocks full of butcher knives, cast iron and copper hanging from racks on the walls,  baskets suspended from the rafters,plants galore and two old wing back chairs pulled up to the wood stove..She had a long harvest table surrounded with antique chairs and a old rocker by the window..  It was a huge room with a high ceiling lined with beams..There was always a lovely smell of roasting meat and a tea kettle rattled on the stove..
 I could have moved in.. smile.. 
Anyway.. 
She would go through whatever I had carted in from the barn and give me a price. 
My.. how we would laugh as I would try to beat her down.. She would look at me over her glasses and try to explain that she had to make a few cents you know..lol...
She loved Terry more than me but I didn't mind.. smile..He would say.. "oh, Faye".. I would laugh and say that I had to make a living, too.. grin.. 
After our business was over and the tea was gone she would take me through the rest of her beautiful home full of one-of-a-kind antiques and tell me that she did not do this for everybody you know.. She was only about five feet tall but had a such a masculine type voice... She was such a contrast of personality... Seeming to be so gruff but yet so kind..So sweet... 
 I am thankful that God blessed us so much by knowing her.. She taught me so much..
Not just about antiques but about tomato casserole,hospitality, cactus, ivory buttons and so much more..
On days like today when Spring is in the air and the wind is blowing in the trees I wish I could bend my head down so I could go through that old barn door and see the chair where she had been sitting sorting her china and silver and stacking her hundreds of books..I could smell the lovely scent of antiquity and rub my hand along a piece of timelessness...
I would clear a place somewhere and begin piling my stash and wonder if Julia had the tea on yet.. wistful smile..
Oh well.. We were so blessed to have many such visits with her and her husband before she left us..
I will always treasure these dear precious pieces that came from her hands...
I think that friends are a rare and priceless gift from God.  Sometimes they are our age or younger or older but they always have a heart that is kindred to ours.  They teach, appreciate, share and give us so much back in return.  I want to be thankful to the Lord  for them and treasure them as something precious that I have in my keeping..
May God bless each one of you today..
My friends..

So...
On that note, my dears I must go and try to accomplish some things on my list. 
Today is the last day to sign up for the little giveaway... I will let you all know the winner first thing in the morning.. ok?
Thanks for visiting and please leave a note.. smile..
God bless.. 


Saturday, May 28, 2011

Fiddleheads and Baby Lambs...

Good Evening everyone...
The other day when I posted some pics of the fiddle head pickles I made some of you commented that you would like to see what fiddle heads looked like.
I want to point out that these are not the ostrich fern.. They are poison... These are the fiddle head fern which is completely different..
In my email today a sweet reader who attends our church sent me these lovely pics of fiddle heads that grow by the river near
her farm.. She was so kind as to suggest that you girls might like to see them... Thanks, Jackie..
This is what they look like as they pop up through the earth.  They are only a few inches taller when you pick them.. Our son Trev picks about 50 pounds every Spring and freezes them as their 3 boys love them.. He washes them in the river many times in order to get rid of the brown paper like covering..
This is what they look like after they have grown up into the fern that they are.. smile..
Here is a close up of them...
They are delicious and taste something like broccoli or green beans or asparagus but much better in my opinion although I do love green beans almost as much.
I hope you enjoyed our little show and tell..  grin..
Jackie also sent me some pics of their first baby lambs....
Twins...

With their mama..
Jackie must have read that someday I would love to have 3 sheep... smile..
Perhaps someday... smile..
Two more days before the giveaway and no one can follow because Blogger or google or someone is absent. 
If you just email me at keepersofthehome@hotmail.com then I will add you to the list and you can follow later.. ok?
Thank you for dropping by... 
Anyway... hope you girls have a wonderful weekend.. I still have the flu believe it or not.. It sure lasts a long time although I do feel better.. I just can not eat yet and am weak.. Oh well.. it could be much worse.. Thank you for praying for me...
Tomorrow is the Lord's Day...
He is faithful... Thank you for your blessings, Lord.. 
Love to you all... 


Friday, May 27, 2011

Another no knead bread..... so easy and good...


Happy Friday to you all..

Just a very short posting about a delicious EASY no knead bread that I made today..

I have not been up to par the last few days and my poor husband has not had the greatest of meals so I thought perhaps I could manage something a little special for tonight.

Usually...
 Friday nite is date nite but I am still a wee bit under the weather so this is something a bit special...
We are having  pork tenderloin, roasted potatoes with Rosemary, broccoli and BREAD...smile.
.
This bread only took me a few minutes... honest...  

It makes 2 loaves, too...

Here is the recipe..

No knead Rosemary Bread..

2 1/2 tsp. instant yeast
2 c. warm water
1 T. sugar
2 tsp. salt
4 c. flour
2 tsp. chopped rosemary
olive oil..

Just put the water and sugar in your mixing bowl and stir well ..
Add the yeast and stir again..

Add two cups of flour and stir well.. Then add the other 2 cups of flour and salt and mix well with a wood spoon..
Cover with a damp tea towel and rise for an hour or until doubled..
Then with oiled hands divide dough into two parts or( make just one bread pan size) and form into buns ... 
Sprinkle top with sea salt and chopped rosemary.(opt)
Let rise a second time...
Bake in an 375 degree oven for 30 - 35 minutes 

Just to let you know that I usually turn this into just one loaf and put it in a good size sprayed bread pan or in a pie pan..
And leave out the rosemary and salt as hubby likes it plain..

You can substitute the flour with part wholewheat or 12 grain if desired.. 
Enjoy..

UPDATE
... 
This bread has become so popular that I wanted to let you know here on the post of the many things you can do with this dough.. 
You can make rolls, pizza dough(my husband loves it but it is quite bread like), use different flours, make french bread and so on.. 
Just wanted to let you know.. fh

Hope you like the recipe..
. Let me know how you make out with it...

Also.. do not forget the giveaway for next week..

Thanks for dropping by and have a wonderful weekend...

God bless one and all...


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Those Organic Fiddleheads..

Good Evening my dears...
Have you ever heard the saying "Stop the world and let me off"?  smile... Yesterday I had to go for an eye exam and to make a long story short I came straight home and have been soooo sick ever since.  I guess it must have been a 24 hour thing as I feel a lot better in the last bit... I had some tomato soup and a cracker and Terry brought me home a bottle of ginger ale.. Bless his heart..
Anyway.. that is why I have not answered some of your emails.. Later though.
Before I left for the doctors yesterday I did get my fiddlehead pickles made...

I made 11 1/2 bottles..
I am sorry but the recipe is a secret although there are lots on the web... This recipe is dilled...
Terry ate most of the 1/2 bottle.. smile..
Fiddleheads are a wonderful organic food that is growing along streams and rivers here in New Brunswick and many other parts of the world..
If you don't want to pick them yourself they sell them in farmers markets or grocers although they are much cheaper from someone selling from their car or at the farmers market...
You have to be sure you know what to pick as some ferns are poisonous...


Also... a little hint I discovered last summer. 
If you buy a container of these wipes they will clean your jam and pickle jars up perfectly..
I know when I make jam or mustard pickles it is hard to get them perfectly clean without a lot of soap and water but these wipe them off perfectly every time...

Ok... girls that is all for this evening..
Hopefully, I will be feeling better next time and do a better job... smile.. 
Thanks for dropping by and leaving your sweet comments..
I love to hear from you and your emails, also..
Welcome to all the new followers of the Blessed Hearth..
You are all appreciated and don't forget the giveaway...
Only a few more days left..

Remember.... God is good...
Love and Prayers to you all...

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Vintage lace and linens.....

Good Morning sweet ladies...
Such a blessing to be able to chat with you all. 
 I thought I would do only a short posting this morning as I have violet salves and fiddlehead pickles to make and there are kitchen duties to do with my 31 day project... smile...
I thought I would talk about linens and lace today... 
You can find them mostly at yard sales and auctions and thrift stores. 
The secret to having a collection of linens is to actually use them. We almost always use cloth napkins and I love the kitchen tea towels ... 
We also use  the old pillowcases on the beds especially at the cottage.  This saves by buying a lot less paper products such as napkins and towels... You just throw them in the washer and fold them and put them away.. I do not iron... smile..  
If a piece is beyond being mended then one can use it either on making homemade dolls, decorative cloths or bags or cushions..
Here is a cushion that I made with an old doilie..
I also posted before about turning an old tablecloth into tea towels..

Here at home there is a lace cupboard as I like to call it in our front hall..
It stores my collection of old lace and linens  although I do sell them in my wee shop .. 
I thought you might like to see the stash....smile..










We need to remember the work that went into these wonderful works of art, too.. Many hours of hand work..
Anyway, girls here is a simple frugal way to recycle and save..
Here is a LINK for ways to care for them...

Thank you so much for visiting.. Welcome to all the new followers of the blog.. Don't forget about the giveaway... 
I hope you can comment today.. I delight in hearing from you although blogger or google did not work well yesterday... sigh.. 

Whatever!!
May God richly bless you all today.. 
Hugs.. 

Monday, May 23, 2011

Weekend Activities and a Fish Cake Recipe..

Hello everyone...
Hope you all have had a good weekend.. I thought I would share some pics with you of some of our weekend doings.  We were very busy but had a wonderful time..
Friday night we attended a lovely outdoor birthday party for one of our dear friends.  It was so much fun and nice to see everyone. 
Then on Saturday Terry and I went for a long country drive...
Such beautiful scenery...
You could literally see for miles.
A friend of ours has bought a camp up in the hills and we tried to find it.
Yikes... the road was just an old logging road and very steep..
My poor wee car... smile.. 
They were cutting the wood here and it was like it was on the edge of the world.
I jumped out to take a picture while Terry went to turn around the car.  This camera did not even begin to do the scene justice but I guess you can get an idea ....
Then Sunday was spent at church in the morning and then in the evening a friend and I went to St. John to our district Youth Convention..
It was amazing..  Around 2500 people and most of them were our youth..
What a blessing to see our grandsons enjoying the presence of the Lord in such an awesome way..
It was very late by the time I arrived back home..
I am really getting too old for such late hours.. grin..
Thank goodness we could sleep in a bit this morning. When we got up it was to pack up the car AGAIN and head to the cottage for the day...
Terry hooked up the water and I worked at the shop.. Cleaning and dusting, doing the windows and sorting stuff...
Tidying up the herb beds and planting some new ones....My Spanish lavenders did not survive the winter... sigh...
The English lavender is doing great though...
I decided to take a short break for a cup of blackberry tea..
All the way down to the cottage I kept looking in the ditches and fields for some more violets.  The salve I made last week is lovely and I know it will sell.  I could not see any but Terry said he saw some last week in a field near where he was working.. It was another half hour away, though and I kept hoping I would see some.
Then just as we left St. Martins on our way home I thought I saw a patch of purple.  Terry had to turn the car around but sure enough there was a huge patch of violets..
Thank you, Lord.. Isn't God good?  It was just a little thing but still it meant a lot to me to find them...
The Lord just does little things like that for us all the time, doesn't He?  I just love that about Him... He is just so faithful even in the wee things..
And then look at these beautiful things..

Aren't they simply gorgeous..
I love how this pic turned out..
We picked a big bag of them and I plan on doing them tomorrow...
I am just toooooo tired tonight...smile..
We finally arrived home and I made us some fishcakes.. Do you like them?  We don't have them very often but they are one of Terry's favorites.. I have been really trying to fit a lot more fish into our diet...
Here is the recipe sort of... Sorry, it is one of those pinch of ones... smile..
Easy to do, though and I know our kids even use to like them...
Fish Cakes..
As many potatoes as you think you need for your family..
Peel and cut up and put in a pot.
Add 1 large onion, peeled and chopped.
Cover with water and add some salt and boil until tender.
Towards the end add some white fish fillets and cook until tender..
Drain well and add a can of drained crab fish.
Mash with your masher and add a piece of butter, salt and pepper and a beaten egg.
Stir well and add some dill or parsley..
I always add some lemon seasoning or you can squeeze some lemon if you like.. 
In a heated frying pan add some butter and fry until brown on both sides.
We like to have tartar sauce with these...
And a green salad of course..

Well, that is all for tonight dear ladies..
This is a very busy week for me ... I have fiddlehead pickles, violet salve, rhubarb ginger spread and dandelion jelly to make..
Wheww... I need to get to bed..smile...
Good night all...





Saturday, May 21, 2011

Some Creative Motivation...

Hello... Hope you are all having a lovely Saturday.. It is pouring rain here in our part of the world..
It is so beautiful and green out there, though and warm..
I am very thankful for our blessings...
Just thought I would post a LINK here for you girls. 
It is a book that I downloaded on my computer for only $4.95 ..
It looks wonderful.. If you are my type (whatever that is ) then this is your type of motivation.  Let's see... I love lists and ideas.  I don't like to do something unless I do it right.  Otherwise I will probably leave it.. You know the kind.. Messy house lots of times with a bunch of creative stuff going on...sigh..
The book has a spirtual outlook and has a Martha and Mary chore at the end of each chapter..
I think it will motivate me with it's simplicity...
I will share a little tale here with you... smile.. 
We had just moved into our first house in the country many years ago..  I was very homesick for the city and my old way of life.. We had lots of friends but for some reason I was lonesome...
I started selling something from door to door and happened to go to this particular house... The lady of the home welcomed me in.
When I went in she offered me a cup of tea and a piece of fresh homemade bread she had just made.  Her two year old (now a chef) was playing with pots and pans on the floor... The ironing board was up and soup was simmering on the stove.. She was making a craft on the table and she had lovely cats and plants.. I felt so at home and knew I had found a kindred spirt...
It was a visit that has blessed my life.  We still remain true friends to this day. 
I guess I am just saying that we are not all wonderful housekeepers.. I am not talking about homemakers... Making a home and cleaning a house are two different things.. I tell myself whenever I get caught in a mess that it is ok... It's just my nature to be CREATIVE... smile...
The thing is that I long and strive to be more organized and have a cleaner home.. Soooooo.... this book has really inspired me..
I know that many girls have it all together... My daughter does it all.. I don't where she came from  ...lol...(Neither does she... smile)
Anyway... I need all the help I can get ....
This certainly will not interest all of you but a few perhaps..
I have only scanned the book so will be trying to get more perspective on it over the weekend..
I thought I should share it with you all on this rainy Saturday morning... Is it sunny where are?

I hope to start this little regime for 31 days starting on Monday and will keep you posted..
Hope you are having a blessed weekend..
Our Scottish Heather (that is what my Mom calls it)
Love and Prayers..
Faye

Friday, May 20, 2011

Samosas Anyone?


Happy Weekend to one and all...
Today I am just giving a very short posting...
I hope to be finished before Terry and our youngest son gets back from their excursion..
My Mom and Step-Dad were over this morning for a wee visit. 
She brought me an order that I had placed with her... smile.
My mother is the best pastry maker in Atlantic Canada.. grin.. Wouldn't she like to hear me say that?
She used to do that as her job many years ago.. I used to watch her and she could make a pie a minute.  A restaurant had canned fillings but still!!
Anyway... Dustin (the baby) of the family loves samosas... And I detest making pastry so when Mom and Dustin arrived at the same time I decided I would surprise him and Terry with a bit of baking. 
The last time I made them (with my own dough) Dustin was scared his father was going to eat them all and he would have none left to take home with him.. lol...

I think you can see the flakiness of the dough even in the pic... eh?
Well, you roll it out and cut squares...
Meanwhile the filling is cooking on the stove.. It does not take long and then you cool it...

Doesn't look that great to me...
Anyway... you are to cut the dough in 9 inch squares and make triangles.. Right? 
Well... I stuck them together anyway... I hope the poor cutting job doesn't affect the taste... smile..


There is also a dip made out yogurt but they just eat them this way..
Personally, I will save my calories for something like pasta... (just kidding)... I am trying to cut back ...
See how green New Brunswick is getting?
There they go... I expect they will try to give me a crown when they come back...lol...


SAMOSAS..
1/4 cup yellow onion
1/4 pound ground turkey
1/4 cup peas frozen
1/4 cup baked potato peeled and diced very small
1/2 cup Indian Korma sauce.. VH
2 x 9 inch pie crust pastry
Preheat oven 400 degrees.
Fry up turkey and when almost done add onion.. then potatoes and peas. Heat up on low and then add Korma Sauce..
Let cool
Roll out pastry into a square and cut into 9 inch squares...
Add 1 T. filling and fold into a triangle.  Seal edges..
Place on cookie tray..
Bake in oven for 10-12 minutes and then cool

Sauce..
1 1/2 cups Korma Sauce
1/2 cup yogurt
1/4 cup mint chopped
1 small green chili...
Mix well and serve cold with samosas
Enjoy...

Thank you lovely ladies for the visit hurried though it was... smile.
Thanks too to all who have signed up for the giveaway..
We are invited to a wonderful party tonight so I hope the guys get back soon.. I hid a few of the samosas in the microwave to take tonight ...
LOL..
Hope they don't find them..
Love to you all..

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