Monday, January 10, 2011

Possum Trot goes to Show & Tell

Possum Trot is a rather shy lion. He is especially timid around dogs. He had his nose bit off once, but a new embroidered one was stitched on by his mistress* the moment the doggie slobber dried.

He adores long conversations with small children, with the help of a good-natured grown-up, of course.
He has a Very Important Outing tomorrow. He is going to Show & Tell with his boy at day school. Three-year-olds love puppets. He should be a big hit.

(Nap mat and pillow inspired by this Etsy seller.)

*When I was a little girl, my mother made Possum Trot a wonderfully real toy to me. He is only on loan to my own children.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Simple Goodness ~~ Saturday Muffins

During the week, very little cooking happens at breakfast time in this house. We 'fix' something. Cold cereal with milk and fruit. Granola and yogurt. Hot porridges with bananas or frozen berries in winter. But Saturdays are different. Saturdays mean homemade-this-very-morning muffins with butter and jam and coffee and juice. These muffins are hearty and substantial, and leave you feeling ready to tackle the fall yard clean-up. They are nourishing without tasting 'healthy', and truly muffin-y, but not at all like the overly sugared cake bombs found in most bakeries. Most importantly, these always feel doable, even when I've taken my time finding my way to the kitchen. It's become a little tradition we look forward to every week.

Saturday Muffins

Makes 18 muffins. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

dry ingredients: whisk together
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup unbleached white flour
1 cup stone ground corn meal
1 1/2 T. baking powder
3/4 t. baking soda
3/4 t. salt

wet ingredients: whisk in second bowl
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups plain or vanilla yogurt, kefir, or buttermilk
1 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 1/2 t. vanilla

Stir together wet and dry ingredients just until moist. Do not over mix. This should not be a smooth batter. Fold in 2 cups fresh or frozen berries or cherries (coarsely chopped if larger than blueberries) gently. Divide into paper-lined muffin tins. Bake until toothpick comes out clean, about 18 minutes.

These muffins hold up well and are also good for taking to a brunch or church coffee hour.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Gingerbread Home Converted to Railway Station

After his nap time yesterday, the construction supervisor announced plans for the addition of a railway and tunnel, to be constructed of marshmallows. This plan was met with enthusiasm by the design team, and the project was completed on schedule. Your reporter has been assured that the large bear wandering about the area is the newly appointed, Friendly and Helpful Stationmaster.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Gingerbread Home Construction and Planning Commission Meeting Minutes

The Gingerbread Home Construction and Planning Commission met today at 12:30. The construction supervisor made sure the edges of the roofing were clear of adhesive debris.

While the Design Committee negotiated the details of home ornamentation.

Final plans included a railway stop, and have been approved by the master builder. The projected completion time of the project is before dinner tonight. Travelers passing through the kitchen should expect delays due to excessive cuteness and should use extreme caution, as the walkways may be littered with mini-jawbreakers and gumdrops.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Rosy Cozy Apron Dress

A simple, rosy apron dress for my rosy-cheeked, rose bespeckled, Truffle-y girl. This is made up in a lush flannel from the Japanese pattern book, Basics for Girls. The tie pockets were added from a discontinued McCall's pattern my mother made up for the girls as an adorable Easter dress several years ago.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Simple Pleasures ~~ Making Music

I declared all of Thanksgiving week a holiday... one of the many perks of being a homeschool headmistress, and this is what happened --

The girls spent the entire morning immersed in their music. The Truffle practiced her lesson songs, then she and the Wonderbug played together and worked on figuring out a new tune, Aiken Drum, for a while. An hour and a half later, when their fingers began getting sore, they came in and began building their own 'practice' instruments from paper and cardboard, including a rather impressive violin complete with bow and chin rest. The Truffle announced that she can 'practice' on this one in the car, by thinking her songs and 'playing' them with her fingers. Given what our dear Music Cognition Professor friend told us the other night, she may just be right about that.

Simple Pleasures ~~ Fall Days

Every other year, our three 65 year old pecan trees give us bushels of beautiful, brown nuts. We will be gathering them until April or May...

And our neighbor's ancient (as yet unidentified) tree sends pretty postcards by way of the wind.

Some days it is so easy to be thankful.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!