Life on a little urban homestead in the making, with ideas for self-sufficiency, food preservation, thrifting,
cookery, organic gardening, crafts, DIYing, vintage stuff, and more...

Sep 19, 2017

An Oh, Wow Recipe!


An Oh, Wow Recipe!
I got my Rachel Khoo email today and it had a great chat with the chef Olia Hercules (link above), and she has an amazing Village Breakfast Recipe! Simple and I must try this soon. I'm part Eastern European so it's up my alley. I just put her first cookbook  Mamushka- Recipes from Ukraine and Eastern Europe on hold at the public library. Enjoy!






Sep 18, 2017

My French Scandinavian Country Decor, Happy Rainy Week, Pesto, Pickled Eggs & Pear Pie



My French Scandinavian Country Decor-
Over the years some of my readers have complimented my home decor style. While it's not my focus on this blog, I thought I'd share some things. First I want to say that not EVERYTHING in my home falls into a specific category. Some people have a clear sense of what kind of decor they like. Some people evolve over time. As I got older I realized I like older things with a patina, simple designs and sturdiness. I love some painted furniture, but also love the look of real wood. While I like SOME of the painted furniture craze, I also think it's a shame some people are painting over some antiques or amazing wood. I'm not a fan of the DIY chipped paint craze either. Trends will come and go, but a gorgeous piece of furniture, or an old print, will just get better with time. I have really gravitated over the years to vintage, country decor. There are tons of articles online about what is French country, Swedish country, farm/prairie style, etc. I like the warm woods, rustic feel, colors and other natural elements. I love the clean, natural looks of Scandinavian country, but I don't live there, so I will never have all white interiors. That great when you have 24 hours of darkness for months! I enjoy our warm wall colors- soft yellow in the kitchen, "straw" in the living room/hallway. My bedrooms aren't as focused on decor, and my master bedroom paint job has been out on hold. Hoping for next spring. Here's a look at some of the more specific things many thrifted! The print at the top of the page is my antique framed printed called The Angelus by Millet. It was my Aunts and I always told her how much I loved it. Years later she gave it to me. It hangs in my living room over my couch. Here's some of the other things in my home, maybe you'll get some ideas? Here we go, starting in the kitchen/dining room, sorry I don't have sorted by room-

Thrifted print, love the motif and colors

Our 2 French country dining chairs, from a consignment shop, a "spider web" back, love them!

Big substantial legs of our French country thrifted table

Dining table, bird in the pot with the ivy, natural elements again, rag runner made from old saris

Homemade faux lavender wreath

Shelf with French elements- mirror, silver, Polish teapots, fun chicken!

Old vintage window I bought 15 years or so ago, $10.00, nice focal point, fit perfect over the desk

I made the lemon topiary, very French!

Also upcycled the sifter into a topiary, added some acorns for fall

Large armoire we bought also at the consignment shop, very solid wood

Flea market find, recycled barn wood bookcase, 

Thrifted small entertainment center, all wood, chalk painted side table

Grain sack style chair slipcovers, durable and washable!

Side table, fall items, chicken, old kerosene brooder heater and faux greenhouse

WW 1 era photo of my beloved Grandfather Alva, on top of Mt. Hood in Oregon. I swapped out the original photo and we had this print made to fit the frame, love it!

Hall corner, kids made ceramic bowl and house, Scandinavian candle holder

Closeup of thrifted Scandinavian garden montage

Candle holder

print reminds me of a French garden

Shelf in my bedroom, I had too much, cleaned it off , replaced with a simple vase

Clock in master bath

Shelf in master bath

Living room coffee table, consignment shop, solid with storage

Love the curved legs

My vintage enameled basin with fall goodies, bought it cheap years ago for camping, 
wasn't "vintage" then!

Put a vintage wool blanket on the couch for some fall color, cat included

More fall decor, simple

Kitchen counter, more French lemons

China cabinet, thrifted, I painted the inside, I think it's mahogany




Happy Rainy Week-
This weekend was great, cooler and sunny. I woke up today and it's raining! How wonderful and it's in the forecast all week. Between all the smoke from fires, the heat and dust we're all ready. Next weekend will be nice, cool and dry. I've been putting out fall decor and swapping some clothes/shoes. Nice to see the hot summer come to an end...



From the summer garden- fresh tomatoes, basil, Costco fresh Mozz, italian meats




Pesto, Pickled Eggs & Pear Tart-
The three P's! While these don't go together I decide to do one post. My Basil did great in one pot, not so much the other. No more ceramic pots in the intense heat. I bought lemons, garlic, Parmesan cheese, bulk pine nuts (much cheaper!), then I bought out my food processor and went to town. I made two quadruple batches. That gave me 6 nice jars, with some basil still left outside. I always use Rosie's Pesto Recipe It's great to rub on chicken and roast, on pizza, pasta, french bread.



I love pickled eggs once in a while. They keep well for months in the fridge. I have made spicy ones before, with jalapeno slices. I went for regular this time Easy Classic Pickled Eggs.  Be aware this recipe makes WAY too much brine. I threw at least 1/2 out. For 10 eggs (2 didn't peel well) in a one Qt. jar, it's too much. Hard boil, peel then pickle, easy! I bought some organic store eggs, since mine will NEVER peel! Now they're resting in the fridge for a few weeks...


Our wonderful organic pears have ripened inside and were amazing. They were just too many for the two of use, even with giving some away. I was done canning and so time to bake! I wanted  to try this a basic struesel topped pear pie, but I eliminated the bottom crust, no need for the fat! I also want the fruit to be the star! Thespruce.com had a quick recipe. I did use walnuts, since I them them on hand. Smells great!

Sep 15, 2017

First Real Autumn Weather!


First Autumn Weather!
Autumn is definitely in the air! Our first big cold front has moved in. We had a high of 63 today, with temps in the low 40's tonight. Last night I put an extra blanket on the bed, turned off the A/C and wore a heavy cardigan to work. The wind is blowing and gusty, with freeze warnings and WINTER STORM WARNINGS in the mountains! There's a chance we will get a little rain tonight, I hope. So hoping the smoke will dissipate more as well from the fires. Here's the forecast-



I'm ready to put up some fall decor this weekend! Has your autumn come yet? First autumn weather has arrived and I love it!


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