Tuesday, February 19, 2013

What time is it?

I bet I say those words more than "pick up after yourself". LOL I was always wondering what time it was when I got ready in the morning, so I decided it was time to do something about it. I bought this cute little clock from World Market. It actually is magnetic and will stick to any metal surface, but  who has metal in their house besides the refrigerator. Anyway, I thought wouldn't it be cute hanging near my bathroom sink. However the clock alone on the wall would be to small for the space I wanted to hang it. That lead me to this idea. Hobby Lobby has the prettiest knobs and you can often find them on sale for 50% off. A piece of oak cut with my #1 Christmas gift (the table saw), some stain, polyurethane, drill a hole, mount clock on knob, screw it in and glue it into an antique frame. I love how it turned out! I hope you do too!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Can Apple Pie Filling

 Wow, time really flies! I have been meaning to blog about apple pie filling since last October. So finally here it is. :)

I am lucky enough to have a good source of delicious apples. Every fall I try to can apple pie filling. It makes it so easy to make an apple pie or cobbler on the spur of the moment. Just pull the jar out of the pantry and place it in your pie shell and bake. Here's my recipe and how-to for you to do the same.

Apple Pie Filling
Makes 6-7 quart jars
Ingredients: 10 cups water, 4 1/2 cups sugar, 1 cup cornstarch, 3 tbs lemon juice, 1 tsp salt, 3 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp nutmeg, 1/8 tsp ginger & 6-7 quarts peeled, cored & sliced apples. The bottom picture shows the apples I used. From left to right they are Gala, Braeburn & Jonagold, a little different selection this year. I usually use Granny Smith but these were just as yummy.

Dip the apples in a little lemon juice to keep them from turning brown and set aside. 
What else you'll need: 6-7 quart jars with lids and rings, a large stock pot, canning funnel optional (but makes it a lot easier), water bath canner, canning jar tongs.


Blend dry ingredients in a large stock pot. Add water. Bring to a boil over medium heat until thick. Stirring frequently. Add lemon juice. Pack apples in quart jars and pour filling over to fill jar leaving 1/2 inch head space. Place  jars in water bath canner. Make sure the water is at a boil already and that it is at least 1 inch over the top of the quart jars. Boil jars for 20 minutes. Remove jars from canner and let cool for 24 hours before moving them to a cool dark storage area. Enjoy!
If you'd like my super easy apple cobbler recipe, leave me a comment and I'll see if I can get it posted. Thanks for checking in on me. And remember an apple a day keeps the doctor away.


Happy Valentine's Day!

February 14th is often a cold bleak day, weather wise, where I live. But yesterday I wanted to show my love to the birds in my yard. I bought a birdhouse that will attract North American Bluebirds. These lovely little creatures would certainly brighten up anyones day.

I have an 8 foot 4X4 post in my garden area that we attatched strings to grow pole beans. Well I am only 5'2" so reaching those beans up high requires a ladder. I moved the eye hooks lower to be more accessable for bean picking. And the frugal person I am, I wanted the upper part of the pole to be put to good use. This made the ideal spot for my new birdhouse.
According to package instructions the bird house should be mounted 5-6 feet from the ground. Not around shrubs or tree line. The opening should face away from prevailing winds. So the birds would be happy facing east. Just clean it out once a year in early spring!

And of course we can't let the birds go hungry, so earlier this winter I hung a bird feeder in the tree. I have a difficult time deciding where to put the bird feeders. I don't like the seed to fall into my flower beds as that tends to grow into unwanted items. So finding a spot the lawn mower can take care of is best. And high enough the dogs won't bother it. This one feeds the little wrens and smaller birds.

 I have another that I need to get a shepherds hook for. It will feed the blue jays, cardinals and bigger birds. I don't know alot about bird watching. I just know it makes me happy to watch them and listen to the music they sing! I hope you are having a happy day too! Thanks for checking in on me. Linda


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