Friday, October 31, 2008

Mother Goose and the Traveling Circus

Happy Halloween! Sorry to disappear for a while. I haven't had much time for the internet of late. Last week Jake's Dad came for a visit, and we saw this curiosity pictured above at the Shelburne Museum. It's part of a circus display of a hand carved and painted circus parade that wraps around a very long building and took twenty-five years to complete. It's amazing the things people decide to do with their time. You can see more of our Shelburne pictures over at Owlfoot.

We've also been doing exciting things like getting our Vermont drivers licenses and going to see a spaghetti western orchestra this past Tuesday.

Hopefully there will be some pumpkin carving going on this afternoon or I don't think we can really call it Halloween. I don't even have a costume this year... it's a pretty sad state of affairs. Hope everyone has some spooky plans for this evening. I'm going to go help Jake with a store display like I should be doing.

Friday, October 17, 2008

What's Cooking in the Wildwood House

Hello folks! These neato little kitties arrived today in a box... they're salt and pepper shakers. Miss kitty is reading "The Talon Cutter". I think they might find themselves as a cake topper on our wedding cake. I'm not sure if they'll crush the cake though.

And here's a shot of Mr. Jake swiftly making history of our dinner, sweet potato soup! This recipe is so simple and delicious that I have to share it with you. We make it for two people, but you could certainly adjust it for more.

The Wildwood's Sweet Potato Soup:
-2 large sweet potatoes
-2 garlic cloves
-1/8 to 1/4 vidalia onion (depending on how big the onion is)
-pinch of cinnamon
-pinch of coriander
-small amount of fresh basil (optional)
-fresh parsley (optional)
-salt and pepper to taste (optional)
-hot water... enough to cover the sweet potatoes

Combine all ingredients and cook until the sweet potatoes are tender (about a half hour). Put in a blender and voila! It should be thick but not too thick... if it comes out like mash potatoes, add some more water. The key is the sweet potatoes, garlic, coriander, and cinnamon... if you have to do without some of the other ingredients, it will be ok, I promise. Salt is totally optional... I only add it about half the time. You can also modify this recipe and add a squash instead of sweet potatoes, which we do when squash is in season. Yum! We add cheese and sometimes a little bit of sour cream on the side, but if you don't, it's totally vegan.

I've also been cooking up some needle felted designs. My mom got me a bunch of wool at the Harvest fair so I ordered the tools with the hopes of making some little animal/critter type things. But I figured I should play around with it first... The brown one is my first attempt... I was just playing around with shapes to see what I could do. I cut out circles from felted sweaters for the backgrounds. The cream one I think I might turn into an ornament or pin. I'm still getting the hang of it, but it's pretty fun and not as hard as I imagined. Working three dimensional might prove more difficult. The little brush thing in the picture is what you jab the needle into... you can also use styrofoam, but it just breaks down over time, so I figured I ought to get something I could keep using. I'm thinking it might be fun to figure out how to make some slippers out of shrunken sweaters and needle felt into them.

Anyone have any delicious soup recipes or projects they've been cooking up? We're always looking for more vegetarian soups to add to the weekly line up.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Giant Avocados

Hello, hello! I just had to share with you these giant avocados that arrived for us in the mail today from my Grandma (along with some other goodies) that Jake so artistically photographed with his new Camp Uke. Yes, I have to say I wasn't convinced these were avocados until a call confirmed it. Mr. Jake has been teaching me to play the banjo uke (a different uke not pictured here) in what little spare time we both have. It's really very rewarding after all these years of not being able to play a single instrument and now finally beginning to learn (the uke is a great beginner instrument for anyone looking for somewhere to start). I've also been painting, as I promised myself I need to do and will hopefully have more to show in that arena next week when I can scan things.

Anyways, anyone got any fun avocado recipes?

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Happy Spookin'

Happy witching season! There is certainly some sorcery in the air these days. The mountains are a wild explosion of color right now. I love it when the trees are a mixture of firey red and golden sun yellow.

I just got these silly Gocco printed cards up on etsy, of course inspired by our own "spooker" kitty, Mr. Terrapin.

And while I was really trying to be good about focusing only on art, my fabric tempted me into making this quilted scarf for myself... yes, like I really needed another scarf! Well, this one is quite magic, to be sure, so I had to give myself permission to make it. I have been doing some artwork too, so never fair... maybe what I really need is a bit of balance.

I still haven't taken it off since I finished this afternoon. Perhaps it will give me some magic drawing powers so I can make some great paintings to show you soon.