I bought these cute little canning jars a while ago, and thought I’d hang on to them until Christmas and maybe give out homemade pesto in them. They actually have tops that match the design and will seal under pressure or a hot bath. BUT, yesterday Elle picked all the basil — she thinks it’s spinach — so there wasn’t much of it, and I made a small batch just so it won’t go to waste but it’s not enough to give out because the plants weren’t very big. (Pesto = basil, garlic, olive oil, pine nuts, easy peezy.) So I’ve been drying some herbs early this year, and put them into the jars instead. I’m glad I started early, because I still need to dry another batch just to fill the jars! Look at that miniscule amount of thyme. That was about 3 cups of fresh, which turns out to be mostly stems because there’s about 1 tablespoon of leaves there. Do they sell it with the stems in the store bought dried bottles? Because it would have to be expensive, pulling the leaves off by hand and removing the stems. I have one more jar, and that one will probably get rosemary, which is growing really slowly so far this year.

Do they still sell these fancy jars? Imagine trying to get those lids to match again!

At the park

I’ve been meaning to take my camera to the park for a while to capture this graffiti on the kids’ toys. Just quoting this for you…you would lose some of the impact.

I’d like to find this kid just so I could say, “Kid, that ship has already sailed for you.”

Next up, I’d like to find this other kid and say, “This is graffiti your GRANDPARENTS thought was cool!” Geez, don’t kids today have any new ideas? I can’t be certain of course, but I’ve a pretty good idea this was not inscribed with a nod towards irony.


Last up, at least SOME people have actual fun at the park!

a completed set

Remember I bought the egg dish, but needed salt and pepper shakers? I found some. Although really, who puts salt and pepper on deviled eggs? Does anyone serve just plain hard boiled eggs? I really wanted round milkglass shakers, but these will do fine for now. At a quarter apiece, it was hard to say no. The little birdies will either be garden art, or find a place in my eventual display of dishes.

I’ve put buying these tins on hold because how many tins do you really need? but this one has that neat lid and a bright design and it was also only a quarter. So what the heck. It’s about 8 inches across, so fairly large.

garden cat

I bought this pretty cat to use as garden art. It’s either chalkware or pottery, I can’t tell which. It’s the size of a small cat. Did I say I like to buy all the animal sculptures like this I can find to use out in the garden? I guess it gives the plants a little extra interest, and maybe hunting for them is sort of like an extra treasure.
white cat

Speaking of cats, this little guy was left behind at Goodwill, so being a sucker he/she came home with me. He/she might still make it down to the humane society, but for now he/she is fitting in fine. I bought flea medicine and wormer, so I guess the decision is half made. Elle LOVES how energetically the kitty will follow a toy, so she thinks he/she’s terrific. I was sort of thinking that when current kitty passes away we’d be done with litter boxes for a lifetime, but I guess it’s not so bad to add on an additional 15 years.
no name cat

He/she has no name yet, and if it hadn’t been our 105-degree day, I probably would have just left him/her in the parking lot. The poor thing was just trying to get into the store, where it was cool, and the employees just kept booting it back out. It was just too hot to leave it there on the blacktop with no home/water/food.

thrifted patterns and aprons

I haven’t found any aprons lately, so these are nice additions. The first one is just so bright and cheery, and close inspection of the little rounds show regency scenes. From the ’50s is my guess, based on pink and black. The second one has happy daisies, and I’d guess early ’70s. Not so sure, though when else would pink green and orange be used like this?

And more dress patterns! I will of course have to do a close inspection before buying fabric, just to make sure all the pieces are present! I’m not so sure about making the first two, but that last one would make a beautiful party dress! I’m just glad I can make all these up ahead of time and give them to Elle when she fits. I’d better start planning on paying for that serger pretty soon, I’m so tired of raveling seams.

more embroidered pillowcases

This poppy pillowcase was a quick finish, so far it is my favorite design.

Now I’m ready to get a blue pen and start designing some of my own borders. I’ve been keeping an eye open for blank pillowcases while thrifting, but of course the hem on pre-made pillowcases is too wide. So I’m still figuring that out.

While I’m mulling that over, and looking for blank pillowcases that will work, I still have other half finished and unfinished designs to work on. This next one is mostly finished and I can probably finish it in a day except for that hem. Can someone tell me what I’m expected to DO with that hem? My guess is that crocheted lace gets attached to those little holes (I wish I could crochet!), and then the raw edge gets rolled into a very small hem next to the loops. Does anyone know what really should happen?
pillowcase question

Around my garden

I noticed that even though I didn’t plant any yellow tulips last year, most of my tulips this year came up yellow. And I’m pretty certain I also did not plant any yellow lillies, only tiger striped and red ones, and yet here they are, yellow. Is there something in the soil, or lack thereof, that is influincing my flowers?


Here’s a pretty something from my wildflower mix. Most of the flowers grew up to be too tall and too leggy for my taste, not a nice mix of sedate flowers at all. Probably a good mix if you have a vacant lot your want to beautify, but really not good for much else.


My Mr. Lincoln rose is terrific–a very straight long stem (at least sixteen inches) and wonderful fragrance. A perfect cutting rose.

I’ve noticed several people coming to my blog while searching for info on the twisty baby locust tree, so this is a PSA. When buying a tree at your nursery, ask if your area is hit by the locust beetle before you actually buy.

When I lived in CA I always bought the hyacinth bushes because they sold them at the nursery, and they’re so pretty. And every year they died. So finally one day I was listening the gardening radio program hosted by a nursery shop owner, and he explained that he stocked the hyacinth because people wanted to buy them, but that they would die in the winter because it was too cold. Well, oh. If I’d known it was going to die, I wouldn’t have WANTED to buy it.

Maybe it’s the same thing with the locust tree–but really, why stock it if there is a local blight going on???? I wouldn’t WANT to buy it if I knew it was going to die. So just because the nursery stocks something doesn’t mean it’s a good choice. You’d think it would be reasonable to assume otherwise, but nope.

Terrific day playing

My gosh, Elle had so much fun playing at Melissa’s house she didn’t want to leave! Wah wah wah! I mean, if I had one of these cars to drive around in too, I probably wouldn’t have wanted to leave, either!

Me, I took a ton of terrific photos–horses, goats, and a Lab! The horses and goats were perfect, hanging out in groups instead of singly, just like I always hope to snap! I’m going to have some great paintings coming up in the next few weeks!