Our Furry (and feathered) Friends

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Birds in the Backyard Farm – Winter

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Lemon Marmalade


  • 6 lemons – Meyers are best (about 1.5 pounds total)
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1 t butter


Quarter the lemons and remove the seeds (reserve these) and slice very thinly. Combine the lemons with 4 cups of water. Place the seeds in a cheesecloth bag and add it to the lemons in a nonreactive bowl.   Let mixture stand, covered, on the counter overnight.

img_3914After about 24 hours, throw out the lemon seeds and add the butter and bring the mixture to a boil.  Lower the heat, and simmer, until it has reduced down to about 4 cups. Stir in the sugar and boil, stirring to prevent sticking and scorching, until the mixture passes the cold plate jam test.

Ladle hot marmalade into sterile jars, and steam can for 20 minutes.


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Snow Day Two (part 4)……

No melting today – clear and cold.

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….and the Crazy Weather Continues.

We had our fourth snow storm of the season, unimaginable in the Willamette Valley.  Some areas of the city had over 15 inches of snow.  Out here in the woods, we picked up about 4, which is just about the perfect amount.

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Crazy Weather and I Love It!

We are in the middle of our 4th weather event of the season.  The snow from New Year hasn’t finished melting and we had more snow today and freezing rain is predicted for tomorrow.  The odd thing about it is that any snow/ice event in the Willamette Valley is pretty rare – let alone 4 in one winter season.

This morning I drug DH out to the Eastmorland Golf Club to an After Christmas Sale of hand thrown pottery from one of my favorite artists – Debbie Dean.  We left early to get there and back home before the snow.  I found a wonderful bowl and a small platter with a sheep (on the right in the photo) and was pleased to meet the artist who told me the reason the items were seconds – the bowl  has glaze on one side that got a bit too warm and is rougher (like a salt glaze), the plate is just an older piece.


We got home after the snow started, built a fire, made a pot of soup and settled in for a storm, “The Storm of the Century” if you pay attention to the local news.  We did pick up another inch of snow, but the temperatures didn’t get as low as expected so our ice forecast for tomorrow isn’t as dire as they once thought.  We should have ice for a few hours and then plain rain should take over mid morning – if that’s true, school’s will be open and everything back to normal by Monday morning.  Meanwhile, I leave you with the last shot of our beautiful snow……


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Hygge House – Kitchen Island


Today’s micro-remodel was quick because I decided to just go after the kitchen island.  It tends to be the place where everyone sets things down when they come home and the catch-all is not making me feel hygge.  I cleared it off, rearranged the pieces that I really like and added an old oak stool for folks to sit a bit while I’m cooking.  Ahhh hygge.443321b8-cdac-4fa4-ad78-333e6ee67f69

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Hygge House – An Entry that Welcomes

img_0151Today’s Hygge Micro-remodel. Our entry was feeling like a dumping ground.  What does not show in the photo are baskets of craft supplies, a old sewing machine waiting to be sold/donated, and shoes that had never found their way home.

I cleared the clutter, added a couple of candles and a string of faerie lights, put out a basket for our woolen mittens and scarves and tried to get the cuckoo clock working properly (again). I changed out a table lamp for a floor lamp and removed some extra items that weren’t serving much of a purpose.  Now I feel happy when I pass through and I think our friends and family will find it welcoming and warm.


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Bakery Field trip #1 – Grand Central Bakery Sellwood

I couldn’t wait to get started on my Bakery Field trip Tour so we decided to begin on Saturday.  We were heading into the Sellwood neighborhood of SE Portland on a couple of errands.

After a few quick stops at The Pendleton Factory Outlet, American at Heart and The Portland Homestead Supply Company (Wheeeee!) we decided to pick up a loaf of  bread at The Grand Central Bakery.  We purchased the 2016-17 Chinook Coupon book so we used a coupon to get a free loaf of bread with our $10.00 purchase.


We used for a nice morning treat, Joe had a dunker and a latte and I tried the bread pudding with a cup of chai.  I’m not used to the busy bustle of the city so it was a bit crazy, but it was nice to sit with nothing more to do then have a chat about snow tires for the Honda, check our email, and take a gander through the newspaper.


The bread pudding was really nice, not too much spice or too much sugar, really delicious.  The chai was just beautiful, and great for about half the cup……I think I like mine just a little bit sweeter.  Joe had no problem finishing it off for me.

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Hygge House – Dresser and Vanity

Today I tackled two more areas in my Hygge mini-makeovers……

The Dresser in the bedroom was cluttered, busy and attracted too many random items that had no other home.  I just straightened up a little, added a few curly willow branches (outdoors in) and a nicely scented candle.



The Vanity in the Bathroom had become another messy place to throw everything that had no particular place to be.  Again, a good cleaning, some weeding of non-needed items and a couple of candles and it feels cozy and inviting again.  I really like the natural feel of the had-thrown pottery and the woven basket to bring in the hygge.


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