Friday, August 31, 2012


Happy 4th anniversary TH. . .
four years in and still smiling!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Making Applesauce With Mom

My mom has made applesauce from the apples from our early mac trees pretty much every year for as long as I can remember.  This year I finally signed on to help so that I could learn how it is done.  This is a little photo journal of the process, so I'll always have a reference.
Wash all the apples in the sink. It's ok if they have some questionable spots to be removed later
Cut apples into chunks, removing any brown or wormy spots, stems, and any crevices that could trap dirt
Put the apple segments in a large pot over a diffuser so the bottom doesn't burn or brown.  Add enough water to help the apples stew.  Cook until very soft and mostly disintegrated. 
Pass through a food mill and pour milled apples back into the pot to be seasoned with sugar and cinnamon to taste
Spoon applesauce into sterilized jars and add a half teaspoon of powdered citric acid to prohibit botulism 
Place new lid on jar and add ring.  Tighten ring, and then loosen slightly to allow air to escape in the boiling water bath.  Simmer filled jars submerged in the boiling water bath for ten minutes and then remove carefully with jar tongs.  Place them on the counter and wait for the seal to form as the jars cool, then tighten down the ring all the way.
My parents are thinking about selling this house, and if they do it is traditions like this that will be the saddest to let go of.  I don't know if having all of these photos will make it harder or easier, but I know in the long run I'll be glad to have them, and hopefully Emmett will too.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Bird Blocks and the Picnic Music and Arts Festival

Here are the bird blocks I mentioned in my previous post.  (I just posted them, so click here to see them in the shop.) I'm really excited about the way they turned out, and now I have a whole slew of new ideas in the same vein.  I'm thinking of a farm animal blocks set, and a woodland creatures set, maybe an ocean dweller set.  Maybe a halloween themed set, and a Christmas set for holiday decorating. The sky is the limit!
And now I'm off to Portland for Picnic.  It is on Saturday from 11-6pm.  Click here for additional pertinent information.  I hope to see at least a couple of you there!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

New Fiddleheads Work for Portland

I am headed to another show this weekend, this time in Portland, Maine.  This is a one day show on Saturday the 25th called Picnic, which will have food vendors and music and crafts, in Lincoln Park from 11-6.  I am bringing Fiddleheads work and jewelry to this show, so I finally made the time to get back into the collage studio and make some new work.  I wanted  to make some ocean themed pieces, since the show is on the coast, and I've been trying to bring some additional movement and perspective into my collages, and ocean scenes seemed an easy way to start.  I'm really happy with the whale ones especially, and I'm working on some fun color block sea birds as well.  Those aren't quite finished yet, but here are a few whales:
The first two images are already available in the Fiddleheads Shop, and the third will be up later today, along with a bunch of other fall and ocean themed pieces.  And if you are in the Portland (Maine) area, or know anyone who is, please send them along to walk through the show!  It is free to enter, and there will be lots of beautiful handmade goodies to look at.  And what a great way to get a jumpstart on your holiday shopping with some artisan made work.  Think about how good you'd feel to get ahead of the game with some thoughtful handmade work packed up in your closet patiently waiting for the holiday insanity!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

A Good Sunday

Yesterday was pretty great.  We had a lovely leisurely brunch with family and friends (that we didn't have to cook, thanks Mom!), played some croquet, and put the kiddo down for a nap.  There was a crispness in the air that would have been a sad harbinger of fall if it wasn't so darn refreshing.  And it totally put me in the mood to spend the afternoon cooking.
Well, it's official.  We have the sourest blueberries known to man.  But they are pretty, right?  But the carrots, and the garlic: beautiful and tasty. Now the tomatoes, ugly as sin, but delicious none the less.  I made my first tomato sauce of the season from our San Marzano tomatoes, and it was so yummy.  And they truly weren't anything to look at, and they didn't even look quite as ripe as they could have been, but the flavor was surprisingly awesome.  I made Alice Waters' simple tomato sauce, from her book "The Art of Simple Food," a book that I can't recommend highly enough. And Mom and Dad came over to hang out on the patio with Emmett so I could cook in relative peace, with a nice view of familial cuteness out the window over the kitchen counter.  I later upgraded the simple sauce to her fried eggplant and ricotta salata sauce recipe, which I had to modify a bit, because good luck finding ricotta salata around here.  But it was still pretty darn good.  All in all, a very satisfying end of summer Sunday.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Summer Sunset

The League of NH Craftsmen Summer Fair is over, and I am home picking up the pieces of everything I dropped three weeks ago to get ready for the show.  It was a great and successful show, which is a great relief, and setting up and breaking down the booth was surprisingly painless and hassle-free.  This is the beautiful sunset that accompanied our trip home in a borrowed pickup truck full to the gills of show debris.  Thanks so much to all the friends and family who made it over to the show, and thanks so much to the many new customers I am so happy to have met!

Now I'm starting to feel the pressure of the end of summer.  Are you?  Winter is starting to hang out there in my peripheral vision like a big dead end.  So many warm weather activities still left undone!  How is it possible that the school year is beginning already?  Emmett will begin his first year of preschool in two weeks, and my teacher friends are all going back to work.  Sigh.  But fall is lovely too.  But I am determined to go swimming at least a few more times before the leaves turn!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Annual Craftsmen's Fair

Oh dear, I see that I haven't posted anything since croquet two weeks ago!  Bad blogger!  But here is what I've been up to, which has been consuming all of my time and then some.  I've been building this booth, and then standing in it all day selling jewelry at the League of New Hampshire Craftsmen Summer Fair, in Sunapee, New Hampshire.
Please excuse the not so great cell phone photos.  I need to get a wide angle lens for my camera so I can take shots of things like this (but way better)!
The fair has been really fantastic so far.  Business has been good, and I've met many great and lovely customers.  A nine day show is quite a marathon though.  I'm afraid I am going to be at loose ends once this finishes up on Sunday, I've spent so much time getting ready for this!  But I highly recommend a visit to the show if you are in the area.  It is quite impressive!  I'm too tired right now to eloquently tell you all of the ways that it is impressive, but go check it out, and come say hi while you are there!  I'm in Tent 8, booth #805.