August 31, 2020

My Weekend...

Brynwood Needleworks - Ellie's Birthday Party
We had such a lovely Sunday, celebrating my great-niece's 1st Birthday in the park.
Friends and family (of a socially acceptable size) gathered on a beautiful day.
This little Birthday Girl is my sister, Diana's great-granddaughter, so there were four generations represented. Great food (and CAKE!) was enjoyed by all, and this aunty loved every minute of it.

Brynwood Needleworks - Salsa!!
I managed to make a batch of salsa over the weekend, too. I decided not to go to the Farmer's Market on Saturday, because appointments today and tomorrow would mean that I couldn't get to them before Wednesday. I'll get to the mid-week Market, or drive up to the vendor's home turf to get what I need, if I don't want to wait until next weekend.

I'm caught up for now, so I won't have to worry about loose ends as we embark on a new week. Tag will be here tomorrow, so I'll be taking the day off. I'll be back on Wednesday to let you know how the week is shaping up.

Happy Monday!!


August 30, 2020

Sunday Scripture...

Brynwood Needleworks via GoVerse - Exodus 23:20


August 29, 2020

To Market, To Market...

Brynwood Needleworks - Canned Stewed Tomatoes
Grabbing my coffee to go this morning. Taggart and I are off to the Farmer's Market in Fond du Lac today. I'm going to get another bushel of tomatoes to do another 15 quarts of this gorgeous-ness. It's going to be a busy Saturday!
Wishing you a wonderful weekend!

August 28, 2020

Baking Day...

Brynwood Needleworks - He Rests When He Can
That puppy wears him out, so while she was taking a nap in her kennel, Tag wanted to catch a quick forty winks, too. He knows there's nothing for him in the kitchen when I'm baking bread, so he doesn't even bother. Well, not until it's baked anyway.

I cleaned the house from top to bottom first, dusting, vacuuming, putting things away that have a tendency to end up on a table or chair...that sort of thing. I no sooner rearranged and cleaned the living room that Tag didn't jump right into this chair.
Brynwood Needleworks - Farmhouse Sandwich Loaves Today
I didn't start this batch of bread until after 2 pm. It was so hot outside, that I really had to force myself, but Handsome reminded me that he needed bread for his lunch sandwiches, so I just dawdled until mid-afternoon.
These beautiful loaves came out of the oven around 8 pm, and this picture was taken right before I put them into bread bags.
I'm going to process the last 18 pounds from the bushel of tomatoes I got over the weekend. I'm going to turn them into salsa. I went downstairs to check my stock of canning lids, and sighed a sigh of relief that I'd actually bought enough at the end of the season to be able to can what I still want to put up this season...applesauce, more stewed tomatoes, and pears from Shelly and Andy's tree between our yards. You do know about the shortage of canning lids, don't you? They're nowhere to be found this season, because all the Covid gardeners are canning their bounty. If I plan to do anything once my lids are gone, I'll have to freeze, rather than can, but according to my calculations, I should be just fine this year.
I contacted Shelly yesterday to ask if I could have some of the pears from their tree, and she graciously said yes. Are you surprised that one of these loaves is going up to their house today? Sharing my baking with them is the least I can do.  

Well, I'm gonna run. Coffee, and then canning. At least I can enjoy a clean kitchen (and house) while I play. 

I've been thinking about all those in the path of Hurricane Laura. I hope you're safe and sound, and you're constantly in my prayers.

August 27, 2020

Because I Love You...

Brynwood Needleworks - Label By Lillalotta on Etsy

I'm so glad I ordered these labels from my friend, Anna Barrow and her Lillalotta shop on Etsy. She's done quite a few labels that I purchased and loved, but I think this one's my new favorite.

Brynwood Needleworks - Brynwood Baby Label

I commissioned these labels about ten years ago. I use them on my baby projects. I'd share the link with you, but alas, I can't remember who created them for me.

Brynwood Needleworks - Flannel Backing Fabric

They're both sewn to the back of this "Ellie" quilt. I've created it for my great-niece, Elizabeth. This is the nickname her parents gave her.

Brynwood Needleworks - Done and Done!

So I thought it would be cute to add a sweet pink elephant, and hand embroidery to the quilt I wanted to make as a gift for her first Birthday. The party is this weekend at a park on the other side of the lake from where we live.

No. We don't live near the lake, but if you look at a map of Wisconsin, you'll see the large lake in the southeast quadrant. That's Lake Winnebago. We live about ten miles east of the eastern shore of the lake, while Ellie's parents and grandparents live on the other side of the lake on the western side. Many Wisconsinites navigate the state referencing Lake Winnebago.

Anyway, I digress...This is for my great niece. It's done. I'm going to toss it through the washer and dryer so it's nice and soft. (I want her to be able to cuddle it from the second she gets it.) Then, I'll wrap it up so I can give it to her.

Bring on the party hats. I'm ready now!

August 26, 2020

Quilt Embroidery Finished...

Brynwood Needleworks - Ellie Quilt Embroidery Detail

Yes. I was called for jury duty yesterday. If you have read my blog long enough to know a few things about me, one thing should be apparent by now. I do not like to sit idly. Ever.

We were informed in our service package that we would be leaving our belongings in an unsecure room if we were selected to a case, so I left my phone, any project, book, or anything that I could use to amuse myself while waiting. I arrived at 8 am on a cloudy, rainy day, but the precip was light, so I didn't even grab my umbrella.

We were welcomed and told that the clerk was going back upstairs (in the courthouse), to pull a random list of those who would be called for the initial "voir dire" (pronounced vwaa deer) - a Latin term for the preliminary examination of a juror or witness. That was a 8 am. We all then cooled our heels for a mind-numbing two and a half hours before the judge appeared in our room.

He explained that, faced with an imminent jury trial, the plaintiff caved and made a deal with the court. We were excused with the thanks. The best news is that I haven't received another letter for service before the end of this month, so I am now exempt from service for four years! So, with a smile on my face, I followed the other people outside.

It was still sprinkling lightly, and our designated parking lot was more than a city block away. As this line of people followed the sidewalk along the river behind the city/county building, we were about halfway on our trek when the sky opened up and it absolutely poured. There was no way to go except forward.

By the time I got to my car, I was soaked to the skin. My shoes were waterlogged, and my hair was dripping in my face and down my neck. On a positive note, I earned a whole $30 for my attendance for the morning. sigh

Brynwood Needleworks - Ready To Layer And Quilt
When I got home, I went upstairs, changed my clothes and dried my hair. Then, I pulled the color I wanted from my Anchor™ floss assortments, and stitched my great-niece's name (actually Elizabeth's nickname) onto her Birthday quilt top.
Now that I've finished the embroideries, I'll layer and quilt today. I should be sewing on the binding before dinnertime. Ahhhh, to be back to busy hands. Happy me!

August 25, 2020

Tuesdays With Tag - What A Little Suck-Up...

Brynwood Needleworks - Say "Cheese".

 Hi, Everybody!

Mom got called for jury duty today, so I'm flyin' solo. As long as I'm on my own, without my "editor" lookin' over my shoulder, I can give it to you straight today. I can tell you the truth (as I see it) about a certain, diminutive version of The Black Dog. She's exhaustin'!
Brynwood Needleworks - Posturin' Puppy

Doesn't matter what time of day...Dad lets her out of her kennel, gives her her ball while the rest of us try to relax, and this nonsense gets started! Harassin' and obnoxous-in' non-freakin'-stop! 

First, Boo gets to chewin' on this thing, and when Mini Boo tries to take it back, her mama growls and sets her back on her heels. Most kids would get the hint, but not this little terrorist. Nope. She goes right in for the prize. Failin' in capturin' the target, she starts slinkin' and slidin' in to find an openin'.

Brynwood Needleworks - A Teachin' Moment

Once she gets her needle-sharp choppers on it, she tries to stand for the advantage. That only works until her mom decides whether or not to give it up, or continue a teachin' moment. She always reminds her little gnat who's in charge, after all (like here).
Brynwood Needleworks - Look What I've Got!

Sometimes, she lets Carly-Butt "win". Once that happens, of course herself brings it back to brag about her victory. Yeah. For now, Tiny Tot. For now.
Brynwood Needleworks - Yep. She's A Suck-up.
Of course, she often frustrates Dad with the volume level durin' these wrestlin' matches, so he'll tells her to knock it off. Bein' a puppy who wants what she wants when she wants it, she'll soon be right back at it, but...

She always stops long enough to remind Dad how stinkin' cute she is. Mom taught her "High Five" to get Milk Bone treats. We all line up in the kitchen, sit, and wait our turn to High Five for our treat. Smart puppy learned that one lightnin' fast. Soooo. She runs over, plops her furry hinder down on the rug, and offers up her right paddle to Dad. He laughs. All is forgiven, and there she goes again.

Honestly. What. A. Suck. Up!
Well played, Carlita. Well Played.
Even I have to offer up some props!
I'll see you again in seven. 'til then...
"Just Do It...but not on the rug."

August 24, 2020

Baby Quilt...

Brynwood Needleworks - Ellie Quilt
I completed the quilt top yesterday for the little lady who'll receive it next weekend. Her nickname is hand embroidered now, too. I'll be doing the layering and quilting this week and will show it to you again when it's finished. 

Sunday, Handsome and I took a short drive to pick up a bushel of canning tomatoes for only $20! That means today, I'll be canning those gems. You can count on photos. 

After five, I'll be calling the jury duty phone line to find out whether or not I'm working at the courthouse tomorrow. Fingers crossed I can continue working on the quilt instead. I'll know by 5:30 tonight. Either way, Tag will be back tomorrow to cover for me. We've got some really cute pictures to share. Here's to a good week for all of us.


August 23, 2020

Sunday Scripture...

Brynwood Needleworks via Web - John14:8

August 22, 2020

I'll Do This For Dad...

Brynwood Needleworks - Hickory Hill Farm Sunset
Today is Dad's Celebration of Life. 

His children, family and friends will gather at 11 am today to share stories and memories of my father. He requested that I deliver his eulogy. (Is that what you call it at a Celebration of Life? I don't know.) 

This won't be an easy day. Losing his presence in my life is still raw. Standing in front of the attendees will be difficult, especially as I try to maintain my own composure speaking about the man I've known and loved since I first drew my first breath.
It won't be easy, but life doesn't guarantee easy. I'll hold my head up, put one foot in front of the other, and deliver the words I've written about my memories of his life. When I'm finished, I'll listen to others and smile as they share their memories of him, too. 
You always taught me that I can do anything I set my mind to, Dad. Now, I'll do this most difficult thing today for you. I'll try not to cry, but I'm not making any promises. If the tears come, I'll let them flow. 
I miss you, Dad. I'll look for you in every sunset, and every beautiful gift from Mother Nature. I know that's where you always felt the freest. I know that's where I'll find you. I know that's where you'll be. Until we're together again...Love Never Dies.


August 21, 2020

Making Flannel Blocks...

Brynwood Needleworks - Flannel Quilt Block Components
I accomplished two things yesterday...

Making block sets for the baby quilt on my agenda, and...
Brynwood Needleworks - Farmhouse French Bread
baking bread for Handsome. One for the bread box, and one for the freezer.

That's all I managed to get done, but I'm happy with my results and quilt progress. I'll work on the quilt again today.


August 20, 2020

Farmhouse Flowers...

Brynwood Needleworks- Farmhouse Flowers
Yesterday was a perfect day to walk about the farm and take a few photos near my favorite props...the wood shed, and our old farm wagon (parked behind the woodshed).  

Brynwood Needleworks- Farmhouse Flowers

I love capturing images of the "volunteer" flowers around our yard. I haven't been able to remove the "weeds" from the garden around the front porch, some of which will grow into flowers like these. I won't remove them all, because I think they actually belong in all our landscaping. I'll plant some, and God can plant some. Seems only right to me.

Brynwood Needleworks- Farmhouse Flowers
Especially, when His plantings are so much more random and glorious than mine. I'll get to the weeding later. For now, I'll just enjoy and continue to add this to the list of our many farmhouse blessings.


August 19, 2020

Trying Something New...

Brynwood Needleworks - Queen Anne's Lace On Linen
With the fabric I've been using for my strawberries reaching its end, I need to find something new for my ground fabric. I chose to try the obvious linen as a possibility. While, I frequently choose linen for my needlework projects, I'm not sold on this option yet.

I'm going to complete this one, and then try a few other options. To make the comparison, I'm going to stitch the same flowers (Queen Anne's Lace) on each of the options I audition. I think I'll then photograph all the options and ask you for your opinion! 

I'll keep stitching, finish this one, and then I'll post more pictures when I have another ground fabric to try out. I may even have a drawing to give away one of them! More on this project later...


August 18, 2020

Tuesdays With Tag - Goin' Swimmin'...

Brynwood Needleworks - Bella and Tag

Hi, Everybody!

Bella and I are tag-team (no pun intended) bloggin' today. Our little lady is now a swimmer, and we want to tell you all about it. I know I'm lookin' frowzy, but I was still wet from our outin'. You're gonna love this.

***Mom has videos, but due to technical difficulties, she couldn't get them uploaded to edit them for you. She'll keep workin' on the issue and try to add the videos later.

Brynwood Needleworks - Fetchin' Bella

Dad and Mom found a place for us to swim over the weekend. We went to Wolf Lake, just north of the farmhouse. Unfortunately, we dogs aren't allowed on the beach. I know. Crazy, right? It's not like we were gonna vandalize the sand and water.

We went around the lake to the boat landin' to check it out. Turns out it was gonna work just fine, so Dad said we should let Bella get wet first. She was so excited, she almost wet her fur! Dad tossed her dummy, and next thing, there was a big splash and Bella was on her way. 

This was like a warm-up, compared to the hundred yard retrieves she's used to, but she didn't complain. She'll do anythin' to fetch.

Brynwood Needleworks - Bella, Divin' Off The Pier

Dad also threw a dummy off the end of the dock, so Bella could catch a little "big air", and bring the retrieve back to Dad. It was awesome!

Brynwood Needleworks - Carly's Playin' In The Water

The main reason we went to the lake was to get The Kid wet, so she was next out of the truck. She wasn't sure what to think, but she had fun puddlin' around in the shallows. Mom threw a few dummies for Bella so Carly could watch. She was very interested and enthused!

Brynwood Needleworks - Let Me At It, Dad!

Dad started with a few short retrieves (within five feet or so) and by the third toss, she was pullin' at the long lead to get to the dummy. She's on a long check cord. It works like a long arm, to help Carly should she get in distress, or to make sure she comes back after she picks up the dummy.

Brynwood Needleworks - Captain, We Have A Swimmin' Puppy

She would have done this about fifty more times, and I have to admit, she's a quick study, and settled into an easy dog paddle in no time at all.

I got to swim, too, but Mom was throwin' my dummies, so she couldn't photograph at the same time. You'll just have to settle for the picture of me with Boo at the start of this post. I'm still comfortably damp in that one.

Dad and Mom have decided this is a very great place to get all of us in to get wet, and a perfect place for Carly puppy to get in more swimmin' time. We'll definitely be back there again this week!
 I'll see you again in seven. 'til then...
"Just Do It...but not on the rug."

August 17, 2020

Tomatoes and Strawberries...

Brynwood Needleworks - Tomato Ketchup
Remember the bowls of beautiful tomatoes I shared recently? Campari, plum, cherry, and larger slicing tomatoes, that were either gifts from Shelly, my little brother, Christian, or from our few tomato plants.

I quartered or halved all of them (depending on size), and popped them in the slow cooker before Handsome and I went back to Christian's in Waupaca, WI on Saturday. When we got home, the house smelled of bright, cooked tomatoes, ready to be further prepared for ketchup.

I put everything through my mother-in-law's vintage chinois, straining out the skins and seeds. I put them into a large pot, adding the ingredients called for on the package of Mrs. Wage's Ketchup mix. (Added ingredients were: white vinegar, sugar, a 6 oz. can of tomato paste, and the package of Mrs. Wage's Ketchup mix.)

After bottling up the ketchup, all the bottles went into my large water bath canner for 45 minutes, and, after a 15 minute wait to avoid siphoning, onto my butcher block to cool. They're all labeled and put away in the pantry now, and will be ready when needed.

My review of the Ketchup mix is that it was sweeter than we're used to in ketchup, even after I added more vinegar and Worcestershire sauce after the initial tasting to cut the sweetness. However, I think it will be perfect when I use it as the base for my homemade barbeque sauce later. I will say, it is pretty, too, isn't it?

Brynwood Needleworks - Woolen Strawberry Pincushion
I also had an order for one of my woolen strawberry pincushions, so I did the assembly and embroidery for this one. I still can't sit on my sewing chair, so the machine will be moved to a countertop later today. I have orders waiting, and I can't wait any longer.
Frustration isn't usually a word in my vocabulary, but these days I'm frustrated because I'm in pain. I need to push through it, and get back to work. Standing will help. I'm gonna suck it up, and get back to what I love.

August 16, 2020

Sunday Scripture...

Brynwood Needleworks via Internet - Isaiah 41:10