To Amuse and Delight

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Is it spring yet?

Finally something is poking up through the frozen ground. It's skunk cabbage. For me skunk cabbage does not evoke spring tea parties and bunnies. But, that's all we have far. 
My daughters think it's spring though. When the temperature reached a sunny 56 degrees they shed their coats and had a jolly time.
I walked around collecting acorn caps clutching a delicious (very dark) hot chocolate in my gloved hand. Spring? No, I don't think so.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Hello Chickadee!

We were walking through a park eating popcorn. There were a bunch of chickadees fluttering around us, my husband suggested that we hold some corn in our hands for the chickadees. He said they would land on us to eat it and they did! These little feet felt so light and cold.
They landed on all of us and kept coming back for more until all of the popcorn was gone. They are very brave for such little birds. Maybe they are just very greedy!
We get quite a few chickadees at our bird feeder at home too. We have a certain couple that my girls have named Timothy and Nellie. They make up extensive stories about them. While watching them at the feeder one morning (and telling the tales), my daughter sketched them. Later that day she took her drawing upstairs and returned with a felt chickadee. He has little glass bead eyes and a soft yellow tinged belly. He sat on our kitchen windowsill for months. Other crafty things the girls made joined him there. It got a bit cluttered looking, so I had the idea to string them all up. They are not piled up, falling on the floor, or ignored. Instead they now bring life to an otherwise empty corner.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Sock Bun

When I first saw the sock bun on The Freckled Fox I must confess I was more than skeptical. My hair is heavy and it's long. I use hair pins and hair sticks to keep it up. But, half way through the day my head hurts and I end up lowering the bun down to my neck. 
What did I have to lose? My husband has way too many socks anyway! I took one and followed the sock bun tutorial. As I said, I was skeptical...10 seconds and it stays up? We'll see about that!

Well, it stays up and it feels great. What's better than a sock bun? Two sock buns of course!

Friday, March 7, 2014

making potions

My 10 yo will often ask if she can "make potions", which means mixing food colorings up in water. Then she puts them in bottles and saves them. She sometimes refers to them as medicine. When she asks to do her "sciences" that means mixing up any and everything she can find in the kitchen and yard. She crushes it up in mortar and pestle first. Sometimes her "sciences" will mean taking any of those random found items and seeing how each one burns. All of these things will mean me cleaning up afterwards, but for the hours she spends experimenting, it's worth it.
Yesterday her big sister joined in the potion making and suggested they take pictures. They take pictures of everything they do. Hmm, I wonder where they get that from! ha ha

While they were busy mixing I took the opportunity to make a couple of salad dressings. I made the little one's favorite carrot ginger and the big one's garlic balsamic. While I was bustling around the small one said "You are making potions too!" I told her that was true. Cooking is like making potions and medicines. You can mix up things that can heal people or things that can hurt them. 
After all of our potions were cleared away and salads eaten I asked her if she might be up for mixing up one more thing, lemon curd. Her eyes bulged out. I took that as a "yes". I watched over her shoulder as she whisked up a small batch of curd. Once in a while I don't mind a not so healthy potion.

Monday, March 3, 2014

lid recycle tip

Did you know that mayonnaise jar lids fit these size canning jars perfectly? I use Trader Joes, but I think all big brands and stores brands use the same lids for mayo and they're usually blue.