Thursday, July 28, 2011


I seem to have a little kitchen theme going these days.  The food boxes from my CSA have inspired me to rediscover my kitchen.  While making my strawberry jam I started to recall those hot summer days sitting at the picnic table with my Grandma Macdonald hulling berries.  Those are some of my fondest memories.  She would always wear a pink apron that was passed down to me and was lovingly worn until....well, it wore out.  Since making an apron for my mom for Christmas, my love of aprons has been renewed and I have wanted to restock my kitchen with beautiful aprons.  My jam making spree and thoughts of grandma kicked me into action.  On Monday I pulled out my machine and voila, the first apron to grace my kitchen in our Nova Scotia home.  Expect to see more in the next few weeks.

And....It's Reversible!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Creating in the Kitchen

I have been feeling rather productive lately.  VERY productive, in fact!!  One thing that our family has done this year to try to spread the grocery budget a little further is that we have signed up to a CSA (Community Shared Agriculture).  I do not enjoy going to the big box grocery stores; I find it rather stressful.  First stress...the prices; second stress...too many choices.  I miss our local grocer who knew who you were and had all the necessities.  It was amazing what they could fit into those little grocery stores.  I miss the hardwood floors and the fresh produce in the bins outside.  I miss the grocer standing on the sidewalk sweeping and giving us each a free piece of fruit when mom would take us to the store.  I miss really knowing WHERE my food is coming from!  This takes me back to the CSA.  I recently read about it in a magazine from the states and started wondering if anything like that existed in Nova Scotia.  Flash forward about 2 hrs when I go to pick my daughter up from music and there, in the parking lot, is a van with something written on it about a local CSA.  I jotted down what I could still see of the farms name and started searching.  Flash forward a month and we are LOVING our weekly deliveries from Taproot Farms and Noggins (  I just have to drive down the road and pick it up from the nursery at the end of our road....good bye giant box store and flavourless produce....hello fresh from the farm (and I know where the farm is and the name of the owners).  I love that I now get produce that I would never have thought to buy before and that it is making me want to cook again!!  Here are some of the things that I have been up to lately...

Fresh Strawberry Rhubarb Jam

Homemade Zucchini Bread

The beginning of Carrot Cake with multicolour carrots.

At first I thought there was no way we could afford it however, it is reassuring to know that in a few weeks all of my veg and fruit produce will be paid for, for the year (52 weeks).  We are saving money on less frequent trips to the grocery store and spontaneous buying AND we are supporting local agriculture.  In terms of our grocery budget....probably the smartest thing we have ever done.  Next year, we may add on their meat share.

ps I should also mention that I have another crockpot of koolaid dying on my counter with wool from the valley.
I love shopping local!

Later this same day.....

The fleece out of the crockpot and drying.  Looking forward to spinning some of it tomorrow!

Friday, July 15, 2011


I love strawberries and it is strawberry season in the maritimes.  So good; so sweet; so many berries!  I have busy making jam and freezing berries.  If I had been thinking, I should have dried some too.  Maybe I can get some more!
I have joined this 30 day Challenge...I need to do something creative everyday for 30 days.  Since the girls are home for the summer, they are going to take part with me.  Our theme today....Strawberries!  I have been told that making jam IS creative.  The girls have their ideas; they just need to do it!  It involved a trip to Gaspereau Valley Fibres AND Avonport Discount Fabrics.  To be 100% honest, I wasn't too sure about what I would find there.  Let's just say that it has been added to my list of favourite places to go in Nova Scotia.  It was the first time that I have entered a quilt shop in over a year and dare I say, I felt a tear form when I saw all the fabric AND the prices!!  I had to buy some fabric...fabric and thread make me is for my strawberry theme so I could justify the purchase (and it made me happy).  I bought a little extra so maybe I might make two and give one away. 

My friend emailed me to let me know that Quilt Canada 2012 is in Halifax next year.  I am pumped.  I will be heading back to Avonport for sure (and any of my friends from Ontario that will be heading to Quilt Canada next definitely need to schedule a stop in Avonport.  You won't be disappointed!)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Day Out Stampin'

Spent the day with my friend Kathy from Two Stamping Sisters.  We both needed a little time out from our children and our children needed a time out from us.  While the kids played, we made cards and had a fun day together.  I love the cards that Kathy and, her sister, Karen make.  I have been extremely bad at getting out to club so Kathy sat me down to show me what they did this month.  Super cute!!!

I am loving the mini pizza box filled with cards!  Love it!
Thanks for a fun day Kathy!
Hope everyone had a wonderful day.
(PS...keep an eye on Kathy's blog...I overheard some mutterings about a future give away...Do it Kathy!)