Thursday, December 19, 2013

Homemade suet feeders

Come on in. I just love this time of year...I baked several dozen cookies today and the house smells divine. I made some gingerbread coffee to go with the cookies and of course there is hot chocolate.

I have finished up the suet bird feeders and already given a few away. So let me show you.
Here is one ready to go.
Here are the minis, from the Bundt pan. These are the cutest and would make a great kid gift.

 So let me explain what I did. I bought the suet in the grocery store. and slowly rendered it down. I found about 1 lb. of suet made a cup and half of liquid. I put cheesecloth over the top of the measuring cup to strain out the bits of stuff.

 Then I used about four cups of bird seed mixed with one cup of un salted peanuts and one cup of dried cranberries. Then I poured in the cooled liquid suet.

 Then I firmly patted the mix into my Bundt pan. I did put some fresh cranberries in the mold first to make it look pretty. Then you put them in the refrigerator or freezer overnight to harden well. I used my porch because it was cold enough and had more space. Now these are great for the cold weather, You don't put them out on a warm day because they will melt. The fat is good for those New England winter birds.
I got one as a gift last year and it was so pretty and the birds just loved it. It did not last but a couple days.
So to sum it all up you will need.
Bundt pans
measuring cup
4 C birdseed
1 C unsalted peanuts
1C dried cranberries
some fresh cranberries
1 lb. suet
Have a blast, but don't forget the fat can be messy, so have some paper towels handy.


Friday, December 13, 2013

Anything Special?

Christmas is fast approaching....funny how it comes at the same time every year, but still seems to sneak up on me. Anyway my question is do you make or do anything special for Christmas? I have certain cookies that I only make at Christmas time. I will be starting those this afternoon. This morning I did something new and there will be a post on it as soon as they are finished. I went to the market and bought suet from the meat department.....ok I bought to much :( I have spent hours rendering it down. More on that later.

I got some more bits and pieces of decorating done. It is supposed to be bitterly cold, as it is today, and snowy this weekend. So I will wrap, decorate and bake. What will you be doing this weekend? Anything special?

 This is new this year. I saw it on Talk of the House blog and loved hers. So I stole her idea of the crèche drawn on the chalkboard~ Don't you just love it? Kelly has great ideas.

Hope you all have a wonderful, productive weekend! Let me know what you will be doing.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Some Christmas decorating

Come on in~ it is starting to look a bit like Christmas here.

Love my new Arnett Santa. I have a old cutlery tray and some tin graters along with fresh greens and red berries on my kitchen counter. He is there to greet you when you first come in.

I really do love him.....

 Just starting to get this room together. I need to get wrapping too.Time is flying by.

The dining room which is open to the kitchen, kind of a informal thing. The fire is roaring keeping it toasty on this cold day. Want a cup of hot chocolate?  Maybe a gingerbread cookie.
 My big old kitty sits in the window watching the birds.
 We have a fire going in here too. That is why the cat loves being in here.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

~Some tweaking~

As November is starting to pass my thoughts go to Thanksgiving. How many shall we have? What do I need? Should I try something new? What about desserts?
Then I start changing some things and rearranging a bit. I was thinking how much my dining room has changed in the last few years. So I have put a few new pictures of the dining room and living room up.

 I took my cute shelve and painted it black until I find one I like better for there. I noticed it so much more after the wallpaper was gone.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


When you come to the walkway to my home this is my little nod to fall. The nights are just getting nippy and I hope to see more color this week. My windows are in on the porch and I love how October feels, smells and looks.

Now my old faux pumpkin was looking a bit worse for the wear. I wasn't going to take her out this year, but when I stood at the kitchen window the old stonewall looked so naked. I didn't want to buy another pumpkin at this late date and I liked where all the others were, sooooo out she came and the light bulb went off. The sun had faded her. A bit like what the sun does to my hair. Why not color her. People paint pumpkins all over blog land.

Good for another year!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Going Natural

Fall in New England is a beautiful thing. It starts slowly, some touches of yellow, some cooler nights. Then we start the hustle to move plants in doors, close up the pool. Pack up cushions and anything that might freeze in the pool house over winter. There is a touch of sadness over the end of summer. My gardens are going by and will need lots of clean up. Cannas need to be dug and brought in.

Then I tackle my bins of Harvest and Halloween decorations. I feel less is more these days. The Grands are getting older so I don't need the stuff I did just for them. I find I love the natural decorations so much more. So instead of fake twigs of colored leaves this year I cut my grasses and Hydrangeas, some Sedums and some Artemisia.  This is the result, my little potting shed got a decorative touch on the door and my wooden box in the kitchen received the same treatment.

We see some touches of color here, but it will be a couple of weeks before the yellow and orange of the maples shine and the blaze of red from the oaks drench the yard in their color. So I will make some more Pumpkin Bread to have while I sip my apple cider and enjoy each day because while Autumn is a wonderful time of means.....dang, sniffle, whimper...that darn snow is on its way. My least favorite season.


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Fall Mantel

I have a hard time decorating this mantel. The brick is from floor to ceiling and it sits in the corner of my dining room with a door on either side.  I seem to lack for new ideas.

I went out on Sunday while hubby was watching the Patriots win and cut some bittersweet. I love bittersweet, but it is a highly invasive plant, so I only use it inside and then I burn it when I am done. I do love it so. It simply says fall to me.

Then I put a bit of bittersweet in the living room as a small nod to Fall.