Spring Flowers

Spring Flowers

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Snowy Days




It's been snowing a lot around here this week. The big snowflakes and still air last night gave us a winter wonderland to view this morning!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Monday, November 12, 2012

For the Love of Tie Dye!

We got some more 100 percent cotton, white T-shirts, ordered the professional fiber reactive fabric dye, donned the rubber gloves and made another attempt at tie dyeing.
 
twisting the fabric into the desired pattern

adding the rubber bands to hold the design in place

ready to dye

applying the dye

dyed shirts placed in plastic bags while the dye works it's magic!
 
And here are some of the results:

 
Using the permanent, professional fiber reactive dyes gave us rich, vibrant color! The color and patterns will last the lifetime of the shirt through many washings without fading.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!



Being a good person is like being a pumpkin. God lifts you up, takes you in and washes all the dirt off of you. He opens you up, touches you deep inside, and scoops out all of the yucky stuff - seeds of doubt, hate, greed, etc. Then He carves you a bright new smiling face and puts His light inside of you to shine for all the world to see.

This was passed on to me by another pumpkin.

Now, it's your turn to pass this on to a pumpkin of your choice!

Wishing you all a safe and Happy Halloween!



Sunday, October 21, 2012

Indian Summer

Summer is lingering for a few more days this week!


Indian Summer by Henry Van Dyke


A soft veil dims the tender skies,

And half conceals from pensive eyes

The bronzing tokens of the fall;

A calmness broods upon the hills,

And summer's parting dream distills

A charm of silence over all.

The stacks of corn, in brown array,

Stand waiting through the placid day,

Like tattered wigwams on the plain;

The tribes that find a shelter there

Are phantom peoples, forms of air,

And ghosts of vanished joy and pain.

At evening when the crimson crest

Of sunset passes down the West,

I hear the whispering host returning;

On far-off fields, by elm and oak,

I see the lights, I smell the smoke,--

The Camp-fires of the Past are burning.

Monday, October 15, 2012

First Attempt at Tie Dye

I loved tie dye when I was younger and it seems to be popular again. Several young friends have been talking about tie dyeing and have gotten my husband interested, especially in the chemical aspect of the dyeing process. He purchased packets of dye at the craft store and a couple of 100% cotton T shirts at Walmart. Then watched several how-to videos on Utube and made his first attempt at tie dyeing.


Here are the results.
The first photo is of the tiger stripe pattern shirts and the second photo shows the classic galaxy or spiral design.

I love them both! Now he's ready to experiment with professional, permanent dyes. And he even has requests for more tie dye shirts from family and friends. I'll post more photos soon!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

New Zip Pouches

Here's a quick look at what I've been sewing lately.

I've combined pieces of felted sweater wool with woven wool from some repurposed men's wool jackets to make a new version of my small zip pouches.
They're just the perfect size to hold a little cash or cards, keys and phone.
Or use one to safeguard small items in a larger bag.


They are available now in the shop!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Autumn Begins

It's time for apple picking and pumpkins, Indian corn and changing leaves. . . have a wonderful weekend!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Baby Birds

A little chipping sparrow built a nest in one of our hibiscus trees beside the pool.

A perfect little nest with three blue eggs.


 
Here's the hibiscus tree. It's actually more of a potted plant than a tree.
 

 
The little ones have hatched and Mom spends most of the day flying to and fro to gather food for them. They all seem to be doing well and before we knew it, they will all have flown the nest!
 
 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Feeding Time!

video

Watch a short video clip of the koi in our new koi pond.
Be sure to turn on your speakers!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Monday, July 2, 2012

Fresh Basil Pesto

This spring, we planted four big pots of basil to use in our restaurant, Randelli's Gourmet Pizza. It's so much easier to grow it ourselves rather than having to order it from the produce distributor. But it seems the more we harvest it, the more it grows! What to do? Make some fresh basil pesto!
Here is a simple and delicious recipe. I ususally use Parmesan cheese, but you might want to try it with Romano or Pecorino cheese which have a stronger flavor. Most basil pesto recipes call for pine nuts but it's also good with walnuts.


Ingredients

2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts or walnuts
2 cloves minced garlic
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

1. Combine the basil in with the pine nuts, pulse a few times in a food processor. (If you are using walnuts instead of pine nuts and they are not already chopped, pulse them a few times first, before adding the basil.) Add the garlic, pulse a few times more.



2. Slowly add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula. Add the grated cheese and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.


Serve with your favorite pasta or spread over toasted baguette slices.

Yield: Makes 1 cup.





Sunday, June 24, 2012

Weekend in the Garden

We are really enjoying the new koi pond and the water plants in it are thriving. The water lillies continue to bloom every day and the lotus are putting on quite a show!

 

The huge pink lotus buds and blossoms tower above the tall, round, upright leaves.


Each new bloom last for about three days before the petals fall off.

The gorgeous flowers are pink when they first open, then fade to a pale pink, almost white, when the petals are ready to fall.

Once the petals fall off, the center seed pod continues to grow!

I hope to be able to harvest and save the center seed pods, dry them and use them in dried flower arrangements.

Friday, June 15, 2012

New Randelli's Gourmet Pizza Website

When we first opened our pizza restaurant several years ago, we hired a designer to help us create a website. We were happy with the results and the cost of the original design. But still, we had to wait for somene else to make any changes or additions to the site. I kept thinking it would be nice to able to do it myself without contacting another person and waiting to see any changes.

Well now our old website for our restaurant has been down for a couple of weeks. It's been frustrating and we haven't been able to get answers as to what the problem was. Our customers like to be able to see our menu online and a lot of new customers find us by doing a Google search for independent pizzerias in our area. It's an important part of our business and I'd been wanting to have more control of our website, being able to add photos, list specials, update the menu, etc. So, I took the plunge and created a new website myself!
I'm still working on the final details and links, but the most important items have been included. I used Intuit to create the site. You can choose from a wide variety of templates and make as many changes and adjustments as you need to. It's very user friendly and there's a quick tutorial and a good Help section to get you started.
Check out the new Randelli's Gourmet Pizza website and let me know what you think. Any comments or suggestions are welcome!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Celebrate Earth Day!

Plant a tree, some flowers or just enjoy the beautiful outdoors!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Rock Collecting - Koi Pond Part 2

We want to use rocks to line the edge of the new koi pond we're building.
Being the DIY kind of people that we are, instead of just purchasing rocks by weight from a garden center, we decided to go on a rock collecting expedition.






 
It's  a beautiful early Spring day. We're lucky enough to live close to a large creek and it hasn't rained in a while so the creek bed is dry. We put the wheel barrow in the back of the truck, I grabbed my camera and we headed over to the creek.
Did I mention how heavy these rocks are?
But they were free for the taking and we collected plenty for our project.
Now we just have to unload them and get them around to the backyard.
 

Monday, April 16, 2012

Fresh Harvest

Growing asparagus requires patience, but our long standing asparagus bed is particularly prolific this year! After such a warm winter, the spears emerged from the ground earlier than usual and we will be able to enjoy the tender crisp vegetables for several months.


It's wonderful sauted or stir-fried, steamed and covered with a pat of butter, or my favorite - drizzled with olive oil, salt and pepper and grilled with your favorite steak or fish.


Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

Have a blessed Easter and enjoy a beautiful Spring Day full of Hope and Renewal!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Saturday Morning Field Trip

All winter, my husband has been working on his plans to install a koi pond in our backyard patio area. He has measured and calculated gallons of water. He's done a lot of online research, made lists of possible plants to include and sketches of the the pond to be.

Now we already have two small garden ponds full of water lillies and goldfish, but we want a larger, deeper pond just for koi. So for a little inspiration, this morning we took a drive to visit a water garden center - Aquatic Design and Supplies in Monrovia, Indiana.


Some of the beautiful koi in the large display pond.


This is a small, shallow pond with a pretty moss covered waterfall. It's smaller size would make it perfect for most backyards.



It was fun to watch the colorful koi as they followed us as we walked around the edge of the pond.



Such a beautiful variety of colors and patterns. I like the orange guy with the whiskers!


This is the large display pond at the garden center.
You can see the big waterfall at the far side.

 
Another view across the large pond. Such a pretty natural setting with the mature trees in the background and the smaller plantings closer to the pond edge.

This was great inspiration for our upcoming koi pond project in our own backyard!
I'll be sure to share our progress with you here.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Welcome Spring!

It's been so warm so early this Spring, flowering bulbs are blooming and trees are flowering several weeks earlier than usual. Even though it was a very mild winter here in Central Indiana, spring is a welcome sight!

My husband and I will be enjoying a few hours tomorrow, Saturday March 24, at a favorite garden center, Avon Gardens. As Randelli's Gourmet Pizza, we will be passing out pizza samples from 12 noon to 2 pm. to celebrate their Spring Opening.

We're hoping for dry weather and lots of potential new customers to try our pizza!

If you happen to be in Avon, Indiana tomorrow, please stop by! Otherwise I hope you get to enjoy a beautiful spring Saturday.