Thursday, October 1, 2015

Tomato Jam??

I'm trying to use the last of our tomatoes.  They seem to be never ending!

I've already made and canned salsa,

BBQ sauce,

pasta sauce and crushed tomatoes.

I also have pasta sauce, pizza sauce and whole tomatoes in the freezer.

WHAT else can I do with tomatoes?

This morning I found a recipe for Tomato Jam.  Who knew?!

Probably everyone but me.  I decided to give it a try.

I cleaned and cut all the red tomatoes I could get my hands on

and threw them all in a big pot along with the other ingredients.

I brought the mixture to a boil and let it simmer for what seemed like hours.

I put the jam in jars and boiled them for the set time.

I ended up with eleven jars of jam.

I'm not sure if it's going to set up like it's supposed to, but I'll give it some more time and we'll see.  I sure don't want to start over.  If it doesn't set, I will just call it sauce.  It'll still tastes good!  It's like a sweet ketchup.  With a kick!

I used this RECIPE.

We still have a bunch of green tomatoes on the vines.  I'm thinking about doing something with those too.  Jam, salsa, relish, bread (?!).  Who knows!

For more of the letter "T" visit Jenny Matlock's Alphabe-Thursday.
Also linking up to Simple Saturdays Blog Hop.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015


We decided on a theme for our Halloween this year.


My girls and I (well, one of them) have been saving all kinds of things on Pinterest.  We have costume ideas (I've actually started mine already!), party food ideas and decoration ideas.  We're going to invite a few people over.  We'll eat, the kids can go trick-or-treating and the adults can pass out candy.

We've been buying decorations here and there, but I'd love to make as much as we can.  I don't want to spend a lot of money if we're going to do something different next year.

I had a couple blank canvases laying around so I decided to do something with one of them.

I printed this spider a couple weeks ago and had it sitting on my desk waiting to start this project.  It scared me every time I sat down!

I ripped up some newspaper and used gel medium to adhere it to the canvas.

  I painted over it with Gesso.

I left a little of the print showing.

I cut the spider out of black card stock.

I used the gel medium again to adhere the spider and the words "itsy bitsy spider".  I used my Faber Castill marker to create a shadow of sorts around the spider and the words.

Maybe I'll make another with my second canvas.

For more of the letter "S", visit Jenny Matlock's Alphabe-Thursday

Thursday, September 17, 2015


Back in July Mike and I celebrated our anniversary by taking a trip up North.  One day we took a ride on the Conway Scenic Railroad.

We rode in this 1898 Pullman Parlor Observation car.

We passed by Split Rock Pond.

We crossed the Saco River several times.

One afternoon I even talked Mike into letting me run over to catch a glimpse of Thomas and Percy.  I remember days when the only thing we would hear from our oldest son were about Thomas or Percy or their other train friends.

I was truly excited to catch a glimpse of these two engines!

Linking up to Jenny Matlock's Alphabe-Thursday

Thursday, September 10, 2015

a Quarter century

Last month Mike and I celebrated our anniversary.  25 years.  A Quarter Century!!  The two of us had taken an early celebration trip back in July (While the college kids were still home to stay with the other kids), so we decided we weren't going to do presents.  But I had to get him something!  

I was searching around online for keychains and found some made with coins.  Then it dawned on me! 

We've been married 25 years.  
A quarter century!
A quarter is 25 cents.  
A traditional 25th anniversary gift is silver.  
Quarters used to be made of silver.  
It was perfect!

I even found a quarter from 1990!  I told the girls that I should tell Mike I'd saved this from our wedding day.  Wouldn't that be romantic?  They said, "You can't lie, mom."  They were right, but could you just imagine how romantic that would have been??

Linking up to Jenny Matlock's Alphabe Thursday.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Owls and Pickles

In a race to figure out what to blog about for the letter O last week, I decided on Owl.  I even found a cute pattern for an owl hand warmer.  I gathered fabric and started making the owl.  And then.  I just.  Stopped.

It DOES look like an owl.  If I were able to start over, I would choose different colors for the eyes.

It does NOT yet function as a hand warmer.  I still need to fill it with rice.  When I am done I think I will go around the edge with pinking shears.

{Pattern found HERE}

On to the letter P.  We grew cucumbers this year and hoped we would have enough for pickles.  We ended up having to get some at the local farmer's market.  Not as good as home grown, but better than cucumbers from the grocery store that may have come from another country!

I used the Bread and Butter recipe from my Ball Canning book.

I love the look of jars lining my pantry shelves.  Knowing that I canned them myself makes it even better!

Linking up to Jenny Matlock's Alphabe Thursday.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

a New bag

I'd been wanting to make a new bag, but was having trouble deciding on something.  Then I remembered this old Burlap Pinto Bean Bag I bought at a thrift store a few years ago.  I had cleaned it up, cut it out and sewed a border around it, but it just sat in my stash...Until a couple weeks ago.

I decided I wanted a tall bag with a shoulder/cross body strap.  I wanted the top to flop over and I wanted a zippered pocket on the outside to keep some things (like keys or glasses) within easy reach.

This is what I came up with.  I used a drop cloth for the back, handles and inside lining.

{I kind of love the sombrero!}

{Wonder what people think when they see me walk by??}

{The button detail didn't turn out quite like I'd hoped, but I like it.}

{This is the flap that hangs over the back.  The zipper is underneath.}

{Here is the back side with the zippered pocket.  When I don't want the giant sombrero showing, I can flop the bag over the other way and this can be the side that shows.}

I'm on the look out now for some coffee bean bags.  

Linking up to Jenny Matlock's Alphabe-Thursday

Our Life in a Click:  Friday Favorites #121

Sunny Simple Life: Simple Saturdays Blog Hop

Funky Junk Interiors: an Upcycled Link Party

Monday, August 17, 2015

Making Memories

We had a bunch of Disney Sing Along videos that we watched all the time when the kids were little.  This wasn't one of my favorites then, but I thought about it the other day as the older two kids were getting ready to head back to college.

We've been trying to make memories this summer.  (One reason I haven't been here on the blog much!)

{Lego time}

{Mom and the girls at the beach for the sunrise.}

{Mike and I took a drive (and short hike) up North with our college daughter.}

{Mike and I got to see Thomas the Tank Engine while on a trip up North.  Our boys used to LOVE Thomas.}

{The younger kids are laughing at big brother.  His girlfriend said she'd give him $10 if he stood in the fountain!}

{We took a trip to the beach.}

{Two of the younger kids wanted to see if they could beat big brother in a race.}

{We had a lot of fun and we made a lot of memories, but this summer kind of went by in a blur!}

Linking up to Jenny Matlock's Alphabe-Thursday