Thursday, December 13, 2012

Snowy Star Cookies

Last weekend, we got our first big snowfall.  More than a dusting, so much that my  daughter's cookie exchange had to be canceled and rescheduled. 

Darn, I had just begun to roll out the first batch of a sour cream sugar cookie recipe adapted from Baker Bettie.  I had added twice the amount of sour cream to this batch, and amended with a little more more flour, a little more sugar.

My choice of cookie cutters is limited, since I don't often make rolled cookies.  But one star, and one circle yielded more than a couple of shapes.
make sure to flour those cookie cutters well to release the chilled dough!

The best part, was the lemon icing as follows:
1 cup powdered sugar
2 T softened, unsalted butter
juice of one lemon (the grated zest was added to the dough)

As usual, I had not done a diligent ingredient check, and found that I had no liquid food coloring but was able to produce a few drops of blue frosting gel, thanks to another Betty.
Half of dough went to the freezer, the baked cookies were enjoyed by the snowbound.

 a lovely little limoges leaf plate made a nice serving tray

this vintage biscuit tin is part of a collection going to a new home in Ohio

Saturday, November 24, 2012


Pumpkin pie for breakfast... turkey on a white roll with a ton of mayo...
It just tastes better on day two or day three.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Requiem for Arthur Frost

This sweet boy came to live with us last year... his story is here.  And sadly we had to let him go.  We have to face that his life was cut short by the abandon and free reign that we allow our cats.  It wasn't a predator, coyote or owl.  Could it have been poison, or an errant shot?  Or was his irregular heart rhythm a factor? 

As much as his humans miss him, Motto Guzzi is lost.
 I've not had two cats live together before, and these two after an introductory period of a week become inseparable companions.  Moto outweighed Arthur by several pounds.  They would typically put a strangle hold on each other before getting comfortable.  Arthur's playful nature, fearless tree climbing and superior mousing ability kept our tabby engaged and more fit.

Shortly after this picture was taken, my mother encouraged him to go to the fields for another, and he complied.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


I simply love white pumpkins.

This photo was taken originally for a product shot of the vintage Sioux Steel parts bins that are in shop.  I was losing daylight and had discarded it as it was too dark.  But, I took another look today, re-cropped and blew it up four hundred percent and love the painterly quality.  Look at that bittersweet and pumpkin vine! 

Must go get candy for the trick and treaters...happy halloween!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Tomato Overload

In July, I sincerely thought that this year's garden would be unsurpassed...then came August and the drought and my Purple Cherokees, Stripey's and German Greens all but dried up.
So... I've loaded the shop with some delicious tomato reds:

Monday, September 24, 2012

Fall Clean Up

It's been over a week since the fabulous Junk Bonanza.  Martha and team rocked the show, so we were told.  For a detailed story head on over to opendoorstudio.

My fall clean up includes getting those orphans that didn't sell back in the shop.
here's a few:

I'm off to Tractor Supply for some yard clean up products, and a lawn tractor mount sprayer.
This summer's drought and several years of lawn neglect have left a lot of damage.
I have relied on the good graces of my neighbor John last fall, but I am going to invest 250.00 in my own sprayer to get the job done.  

Or I could get goats.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Junk Bonanza, Building the Booth, Building our Team

Thom working on the bare bones of the structure that supports the 10x20 space
Niki strikes a pose
Linnea is arranging the hardware
Nickey from Etsy admin taking our group portrait
fashion sense
a happy shopper puts her feet up, that orange ottoman SOLD
Niki working the checkout area
Thom ditches the flip flops for more practical footwear
Day three is dawning, and I need to get my Bonanza on...look for more photos soon!

Friday, September 7, 2012

Get Ready, Get Set, Get Junk!

In one week, the three day Junk Bonanza at Canterbury Downs will commence!
My vintage team mates from the VintageEtsySocietyStreetTeam are arriving early next week for a day of strategy and set up before the fun/havoc begins on Thursday... early bird times are available.

This is a juried show, and I am thrilled that our team and my shop was chosen to represent the vintage face of Etsy for this event.  Our booth will be stocked with colorful, mid century modern finds.  

We'll replenish each night so that the space will evolve.  I have no worries that we will run out of stock.  I've seen previews and the list is astounding!

skirt hangers as inspiration board
I have dozens of original catalog pages from the 1929 Sear&Roebuck catalog for sale...great deco fashion and home decor

danish modern teak and stainless serving pieces

Look for the theBestVintage team and Etsy booth space 315 and 316
If you cannot be in Shakopee next week, visit our online shops, search theBestVintage.
Many of us are offering a storewide coupon during Junk Bonanaza,
see each shop for details!

Monday, August 13, 2012

top of the mountain

They survived Glacier National with blisters and no incidents with bears. 
As mom and godmother, I am relieved that the seven days that they were in the park and out of touch are over.  And I can't help but wonder if I had asked more of my twenty-seven year old self, how would it have shaped my constitution... my path.

Caroline, Brian and Ryan...the exhilaration of your climb is written all over this photo.

Monday, July 16, 2012

95 and sunny!

Today, while the thermometer approaches 100 degrees Ione turns 95!
We celebrated, at her request, with a small family gathering last Saturday.  
She was in great form and spirits. 


Speaking of spirits, this crowd not only digs Blue Moon Belgian Wheat but some of the bubbly.  The Moscato d'Asti went quite nicely as a dessert toast.
champagne flutes available at ionesAttic

The story on the "birthday cake"
Sue Heairet kindly shared the recipe for her fabulous 12 egg white angle food cake, the likes of which do not compare to bakery or box cakes.
 The texture is unbelievably fine and smooth, like white velvet.
(check back to see if I get rights to share the recipe here)

 Vanilla and almond extract flavor the egg whites and I had great success whipping the meringue.

Fold in the flour/powdered sugar mixture by quarter cups

This relic of an old, square tube pan should work great

 30 minutes in a 375 degree oven yields a cracked and golden top

Once the cake comes out of the oven, I quickly invert the tube pan on a bottle.  
Well, maybe not so quickly.
The beer bottle I retrieved and washed from the recycling bin, is too narrow a fit. 
I scramble for an alternative and end up rigging a turkey baster end up in the bottle and safely prop it all so that I can attend to other details.

I heard the crash from my garden.
One of the best parts of my day was my reaction to the spilled cake...
uncharacteristically, I laughed and got down the trifle bowl.  

I don't think this was a mere pan malfunction and poor choice of support.  
Being the casual baker that I am, twelve extra large egg whites does not necessarily 
one and one half cups of egg whites make.  The texture of the cake was a little too dense and too wet.  Once the whipped cream met the cake you could barely tell cream from cake.
But it was still beautiful and devoured by the six of us.

blow 'em out, Ione.

oh, and that old tube pan is being redirected for something like this: