my favorite place...on the farm...honeysuckle in the air...the summer sun starting to set...serenity

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

a quiet day

Monday, April 27, 2009

The Art of Bread Making

I watched this DVD by the West ladies (Jasmine, Cece, Vicki, Hannah) this weekend and ended up making some really good whole wheat bread and cinnamon rolls. I have made whole wheat bread before, but it didn't turn out as good as it did this time. I was kind of nervous while I was stirring up the dough because it was very runny and I had to keep adding lots of flour. Anyhow it turned out great and I am going to use their recipe from now on.
They also show how to make corn bread, pizza dough, pizza sticks, cinnamon rolls, hamburger buns and meal in a loaf. I rented it from netflix.

Friday, April 24, 2009


I am definitely looking forward to this weekend! Although I have two art projects to work before next Thursday on so I'm not sure how I feel about that. Last night at figure class we had this older male model with long red hair to his waist and bangs. He was definitely interesting!

This weekend it is going to be in the high 80s so I'll be outside planting all my new rose bushes somewhere. And nailing some wood on the chicken coop so the racoons can't get through. Also fixing the sheep fence so they don't get out again. I was having quite a time getting them back where they belonged the other night. I guess no animal is that easy to take care of!

We are having a lot of visitors in only two weeks (eek) so that means more Spring cleaning and menu planning. The spare bedroom needs to be cleared and beds added. I'm not sure how this is all going to work but when you do a few things here and there it is much easier than trying to tackle a huge mess.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Twilight Garden

I promise this post doesn't have anything to do with vampires but rather which flowers to put in a twilight/moonlight garden. The object of such a garden is flowers that reflect light and add fragrance to the air.
Gardenias, jasmine, and honeysuckle all have white flowers that smell divine. Also - Nicotiana, moonflower and angel's trumpet for night blooming. Then I want to add lamb's ear, variegated hostas, maybe lavender and thyme.
The cabana pictured above is from the Delano hotel in Southbeach. This would be a wonderful addition to any moonlight garden, a cozy spot to relax. You could get a similar effect with one of those gazebos that come with curtains I always see for sale. Or, drag out a mattress (be sure to put it on a base of some sort) and cover it with fluffy white linens. At night the Delano has lots of recliners that are laid flat so they look like beds all around the pool. Then add some lanterns with candles.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

lavender fields forever

I would love to plant an acre of just lavender. We have some lavender planted near the front porch on the farm and it smells heavenly during the summer time. Sometimes a few flowers get broken off of the plant and then crushed from everyone walking by and it releases a perfume into the air.

photo credit
photo credit

Monday, April 20, 2009

Iceberg rose

This afternoon I was out in the pouring rain scouting some roses for my garden. One of them I bought was this white iceberg rose. It was the only white rose in the whole lot so I thought I better get it while I had the chance.

Also, I found a lovely rose gardening website:

pictures from &

Sunday, April 19, 2009


The weather was perfect this weekend (70s) so I worked in the yard both days. We burned a lot of weeds, brush, and branches while getting the gardening area cleared out and roto-tilled. The only thing missing was marshmallows.

I am eager to get the vegetables planted but the last frost warning is in the middle of May. Until then I guess the kitchen will be the holding area for all of the plants. In the meantime I bought a climbing rose ("Blaze") to be trained to climb up the rose arbor. I think I need another one to go on the other side! "New Dawn" is another pretty soft pink rose that I'll be looking for this week.

Friday, April 17, 2009

child factory workers from the 1800's

If kids say they have nothing to do they can read these diaries / stories of children that worked in factories all day long during the 1800s. (Although I don't know if they are authentic, they are still pretty depressing), I know these conditions still exist in other parts of the world.

Dear Diary,Today I got up at 5.15am.

For breakfast I had a piece of left over bread from yesterday. I already feel tired because I got back late, and now I'm up early. I got to work at 5.45am. I wish I had some nice clothes to wear because my clothes are ripped and dirty. By the time I got to work I was in trouble because I was five minutes late.

I always feel hungry because Mom doesn't have enough for all of us, and we're always starving.
Sometimes we have to steal food because we are really hungry.

I do not like the overseer because he sits there, while we are working really hard.

I got in trouble at work because I lost my shoe and I made one from their material. My friend, Lucy, got in trouble today because she didn't wash. The punishment was 6 whips on her back, one after the other - it was so painful because Lucy cried for the next hour, and I don't blame her! I could not watch because the sounds were horrible. I can't even believe the sight.

I met a boy called Kyle, he was nice and I really liked him, but along came a boy even nicer and taller than Kyle, called Adrian. We are now still together ten years later and I am going to get married to him next week and spend the rest of my life with him, and I don't want to remember the times at work.

My name is Rajdeep Singh, and I am 13 years old. I was born in the year 1889. I have spent the last 10 years working in a factory called Metal Ltd. I have 7 brothers and 2 sisters. In my factory we make metal.

I do not like the overseer. His job is to watch us when we do anything wrong. I got in trouble because I fell asleep during my work.

My friend, John Baker, got in trouble today because he was 10 minutes late. The punishment was really awful, it was not getting paid for one whole week. It was so painful because families today are suffering for just one shilling, I could not watch because his face was falling into tears. I hope I do not get beaten by my parents if anything like that happens.

I had a break at 10:00. To eat, I had soup and half a piece of bread. My friend, Jimmy Bains, had nothing to eat because he had done no work whatsoever. I could hardly walk after that horrible meal.

My friend, Chris Deal, started to cry because he couldn't work any longer. I was very upset at work because my friend got hurt. This is what happened... it all started off like a normal day, but the overseer saw something unusual, it was my friend whistling. Suddenly, he faced a fine.

My friend, John Blacksmith, got injured today. This is what happened. A large, heavy piece of metal fell on his foot. Even I got injured at work today, but had a lucky escape as someone switched the machine off.

My friend Tom Cooks is an orphan, she had a very bad day because it was the day her parents died. The worst thing today was my incident with one of the machines.

We left work at 6:00. I ran all the way home today just to get some sleep. I like going home, but the thing is, it's too crammed as twenty odd people live in one house (and its a 4 bedroom house.) I only have a mother, because my Dad died a few days ago.

I am still really hungry because I only eat one meal a day. When I got home I had to do more jobs, like sewing for my mother. I look forward to supper because its better than I get at work. My mother looked at my bruises and got upset because she knew she cant say anything as I will lose my job. I am not looking forward to another day at work. I dread getting up again tomorrow.

My Name is Ivor, and I am ten years old.I was born in the year 1801. I have spent the last 2 years working in a factory called Woolies. I have five brothers and two sisters. In my factory we make wool. This is an extract from my diary.

Today, I got up at 6:00am and had a piece of bread and a glass of water for breakfast. I already feel really tired because I get up at six every day. I got into work at half past six. I was early because I ran it, but its hard to run because of the punishment from my boss on my legs.

I wish I had some nice clothes to wear, because I've wore these clothes for about a year now, so it's getting a bit smelly and they are a bit too small.

Well, when I got to work, I got in trouble because my boss found out I stole some wool to make some clothes, but I have to give it back and he punished me again, and I didn't get paid, but he fined me for being smelly and dirty, so all together, I was fined about five shillings so I have to work hard now so I can earn it again.

At dinner I go out and sometimes I steal food because I have no money to pay for it, but I wish I didn't have to steal.We have only half an hour for dinner which I think is not enough.I hate the overseer. his job is to check if we are working hard enough, and if we aren't, we get the sack.

Evidence Given Before the Sadler Committee[Parliamentary Papers, 1831-1832, vol. XV. pp. 44, 95-97, 115, 195, 197, 339, 341-342.]

Mr. Matthew Crabtree, called in; and Examined.

Have you ever been employed in a factory? — Yes.

At what age did you first go to work in one? — Eight.

How long did you continue in that occupation? — Four years.

Will you state the hours of labour at the period when you first went to the factory, in ordinary times? — From 6 in the morning to 8 at night.

Fourteen hours? — Yes.

During those long hours of labour could you be punctual; how did you awake? — I seldom did awake spontaneously; I was most generally awoke or lifted out of bed, sometimes asleep, by my parents.

Were you always in time? — No.

What was the consequence if you had been too late? — I was most commonly beaten.

Severely? — Very severely, I thought.

In those mills is chastisement towards the latter part of the day going on perpetually? — Perpetually.

So that you can hardly be in a mill without hearing constant crying? — Never an hour, I believe

Thursday, April 16, 2009

growing plants on your roof

This is a cool blog I stumbled upon a long time ago while looking up info about earth boxes / garden patch boxes. They grow a lot of plants on their Chicago roof.

Check it out here:

Saturday, April 11, 2009

English Day Gown

This is a lovely 18th Century English day gown (1740's - 1780's) that I found here
on etsy.
I especially like the indigo color.
These pictures remind me of when we would take trips to Williamsburg and see the re-enactors in ancient garb.

Friday, April 10, 2009

bermuda bags

My purse right now is a white eyelet bermuda bag like the one from etsy pictured above. I bought a white and pink eyelet one at Old Navy last year for only $5 each, what a steal! I've always liked the Lilly bags but they have been too pricey for me.

The cool thing about this purse is that it is interchangeable, just add a new cover and it's a whole new purse. Below is a picture of a some Lilly bags.

If you like to sew you can make your own bags. I'd like to get my own fabric printed from www. and make a bag but first I have to think up a design.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

tax time

I was doing my taxes online and for a brief moment it looked like I was going to get close to $1,000 back from my state return. Then I started putting in the info into the state return and all of a sudden I owed $15. Back in January I was doing my federal return and thought I would owe several hundred dollars so I set it aside til now. Anyhow I wasn't expecting to get a tax refund back so I am back to where I started.


I've been inspired to play the violin again after only playing a handful of times in the past twelve years. (I was in orchestra in my youth). Guess I will have to practice everyday now for the next 10 years to make up for it! I can't wait to get off work and try out The Red Violin Caprices by John Corigliano.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

indonesian bedroom

I love this open-air bedroom located in Indonesia. I've started to like the idea of a round bed as well. I usually sleep diagonal because I am too tall...actually I think I could fit on a California King, ha ha.


Friday, April 3, 2009

goat milk soap & lotion

This soap smells so good! Even though orchids don't have a scent, I guess they had to pick a flower for advertising. And they also sell lotion.

I got my 12 megapixel camera so that mean I will be able to post more pictures on my blog. Of what, I am not sure. It has been raining here all week so the grass is bright green. Must be time to get the garden started! I bought some more heirloom seeds from etsy so those need to get planted.

My poor tomatoes have been neglected and it looks like half of them croaked. What I need is my own greenhouse so they will get all the sun and warmth they need and I'll have plenty of room for all of our plumeria trees.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Be Thou My Vision (free sheet music download)

I found a free sheet music download for this lovely hymn from Jennifer Haines' website. ( She is a solo pianist who arranges and composes piano music. Unforntunately I am at work now so I will have to listen to her stuff when I get home. Thanks Jennifer for offering this free download of your arrangement!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Happy Anniversary Grandma and Grandpa

Sixty three years ago on April Fool's Day my grandparents on my mom's side got married. Grandma says her brother thought it was a joke so he didn't show up for the wedding! They still enjoy each other's company after all these years and have a hundred acre farm where they tend cattle, make hay, fix fence, and a lot of other farm-related chores. (Even though Grandma has a bad hip so she hobbles around and Grandpa hobbles along beside her). They just love the farm. When I'm 86 hopefully I'll be spry enough to have a farm just like them.


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