Sunday, January 31, 2010

Pretty good day!

Didn't do much today. Relaxed more than anything. Had to bring my parents to the airport. They are visiting my uncle in Las Vegas. Working on some bunnies and that's about it. Didn't even cook today. We had leftover stew from a luncheon we had yesterday and that was fine by me!!! Even my sentences haven't taken a whole lot of effort :)

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Valentine Giveaway

One lucky reader will win these adorable bowl fillers (Annie calls them "tucks") and just in time for Valentine's Day!

They are made from a toile fabric and a coordinating striped fabric. A little bouquet of sweet annie and red pip berries, tied with a bow of cheesecloth adorn the front. Rusty safety pin pinned to the backside so you can hang these on your prim tree. Or tuck them in a bowl filled with greenery. And they smell SO yummy! They will be drawing the winner this Friday.
Stop over to The Primitive Peddler and sign up today!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Something to consider!

Do not save your loving speeches for your friends till they are dead; Do not write them on their tombstones, Speak them rather now instead. ~Anonymous

Thursday, January 28, 2010

It's all about perspective!

Sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces up, snow is exhilarating;
There is no such thing as bad weather, just different kinds of good weather.

~John Ruskin
Let's enjoy today!!!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


...was a busy day like any other ~ cleaning, baking, cooking. The highlight of this day was having two ladies here for our Bible Study. We are studying the Excellent Wife by Martha Peace. I've taught this class many times over the years. This time, another lady with whom God allowed me to be involved in her coming to Christ as her Savior, is teaching the study. Because I've worked through this study enough times, I've begun to make observations:

  • There is the excitement of starting a Bible Study and getting to know different women who are experiencing various situations and circumstances.
  • Invariably over a couple of weeks, ladies begin to trust one another and open up with each other, sharing some very personal details of their past and present situations.
  • As the study progresses, I have seen frustration over the fact that change needs to take place and the attitude is generally "Why do I have to change, why shouldn't he..."
  • About midway through, there is a sense of "uh, oh", I never really saw this in myself and I really do need to incorporate into my life what I'm learning here.
  • By the end of the course, there is not one of us who will say that we are an "Excellent Wife", but everyone has dramatically changed in greater ways than they would have ever known. THE KEY: Allowing God's Holy Spirit to lead, guide and direct in our lives through His Holy Word.
I'm very thankful for how God has used this study in my life and in the lives of others. Not one of us is perfect, but each one of us loves the Lord and desires to bring honor and glory to His precious Name.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Boy am I sore!

There's a new WII fit "game" called "Walk It Out". You don't realize how out of shape you really are until you start trying to get into shape. Does that make sense? What I like about it is you can work out with more than one person at the same time. You can even play without the Balance Board. Not what I would call fun per se but certainly keeps you "Walking It Out".

Monday, January 25, 2010

How I started my day...

At 6:00 am this morning, rain was pelting my house, wind was whipping and driving the rain. Then I heard...

drip, drip, drip, drip, drip, drip

and I thought "that doesn't sound quite right". Well, low and behold the ceiling that meets right in my doorway of my dining room and front room was leaking. I don't recommend starting your day (or ending it for that matter) like this. I called my husband at work ~ did I really think he was going to rush right home? What could or would he do with the rain and wind the way it was? He knew exactly where the problem was and on the phone told me to get some plastic, open up our 2nd floor upstairs window and try to get the plastic out the window and on the roof, then close the window down on the plastic. At this point, I think I had more rain on me than on the floor. Luckily, the rain (or really the wind driving the rain) slowed down and is now stopped. My ceiling is no longer dripping. We now have to do some repairs :(


This was how I ended my day ...

My wonderful grandchildren are the light of my life. They brighten my day no matter how dark and dreary. Kids are kind of like that aren't they? I think we can learn a lot from them.

Monday Marketplace

Willa Croft of The Old Cupboard Door is a follower of Christ, wife and mother. Her and her husband John have been married for 32 years. They have 2 children, Nick and Aly and 4 wonderful grandchildren. She loves prim crafting, especially painting prim. She owns her own pattern business, Aly's Room which was named after her daughter Aly. Willa and her husband live in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley in Northern Virgina.

Please take a minute to get to know Willa even better through her interview.

What is the name of your Etsy shop and why did you choose that name?

The Old Cupboard Door. I love looking in old cupboard doors; discovering what treasure might be hidden there. I love the beauty of vintage cupboard doors and the history they hold. Just today I opened the doors to an old Hoosier cabinet in a local antique shop to see what was there. There was nothing there but I could imagine all the goodies it once held. The sugar and flour with their modern labels of that era. Sweets for the children and maybe even the old can that held mad money for the lady of the house.

How long have you been on Etsy?

Since August 2009

What type of items do you offer?

I offer hand painted items painted on vintage pieces or wood cut outs.

How long have you been crafting?

Oh my goodness, it seems like forever. I have been painting in oils since 1979.
I’ve been involved in decorative painting since 1992.

Who or What inspires you?

I’m not sure what inspires me. Ideas pop into my head that I can’t wait to try. It may happen in the middle of the night or while I’m driving down the road. I’ve even taken my note pad out during church and written down ideas and sketched out pictures.

What is your favorite item in your shop and why?

I really like the “Sammy’s Letter” that I painted on a sewing machine box. It takes me back to my childhood and the “Night Before Christmas” story. The thought of even a mouse like Sammy writing Santa his letter with such a child like hope is so precious. It reminds me of the innocence and trust of a child.

Other places where you can be found (Ebay, webstore, blog)

I own my own pattern business called Aly’s Room at
I also have a blog, The Old Cupboard Door. I hope to see you at some of these places too.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Oh, my...

...I can't say enough about the Herb-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin. It was fabulous. Absolute beautiful presentation! Tender and tasty. I did serve it with Risotto which I love. Here's the recipe for that too:


1 hour /20 min prep
Serves 4 -6

1 medium yellow onion
4 tablespoons butter
5 cups chicken broth (canned or homemade)
2 cups arborio rice (available in many supermarkets or specialty food stores)
salt and pepper, to taste
3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese


  • Peel and finely chop the onion.
  • Melt the butter in a 4-to-5-quart saucepan over medium heat, stirring regularly.
  • Add the onion and cook, continuing to stir, until it turns soft and translucent. Turn the heat down if the onion starts to brown.
  • Meanwhile, pour the chicken broth into a separate saucepan, set over medium heat, and bring to a gentle simmer. Adjust the heat as needed to maintain this simmer the whole time you are preparing the risotto.
  • Once the onion is soft, add the rice and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for about 3 minutes. Adjust the heat as necessary-- if the rice is cooked at too high a heat, it will turn brown and take on an undesirable flavor.

  • Using a ladle, scoop up about 1/2 to 3/4 cup of broth.
  • Pour it in the pan with the rice, stirring constantly with a spoon.
  • After the first addition of broth, the rice mixture will look a bit soupy.
  • As the rice begins to cook, stir it constantly, making sure that you scrape along the bottom of the pan so that it does not stick.
  • You should see little bubbles popping up on the liquid from time to time. If it bubbles more vigorously than this, turn the heat down to medium-low.
  • When most of the liquid is absorbed into the rice and the rice begins to look a bit dry, add another ladle of broth to the pan and stir constantly, as before.

  • Continue to add the broth in 1/2-to-3/4-cup batches and stir the rice until you have used most of the broth (this will probably take about 20 minutes).
  • It is now time to test whether the risotto is cooked. Spoon up a grain of rice and bite into it-- it should be tender without being too mushy. If it is still crunchy and tastes a bit starchy, you will need to continue adding liquid and cooking further.
  • If it looks as if you will run out of chicken broth and your rice is still not cooked, don't be alarmed. Because of variations in individual stoves and cooking temperatures, you may need more liquid than called for in the recipe. Simply heat up another cup or 2 of chicken broth. If you run out of broth, use hot water.
  • When the rice is tender and the risotto has a creamy consistency, almost like thick oatmeal, it is done.


Add salt and pepper to the risotto, about 1/4 teaspoon at a time, until it seems well seasoned to you.


Add the grated Parmesan cheese and stir well.

Serve the risotto immediately in warm bowls and have extra grated Parmesan on hand.

Sunday Supper

This is what I'm trying today. Sounds delish!

Herb-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin
1½ hours
25 min prep
Serves 6

2 tablespoons dijon-style mustard
18 ounces pork tenderloins
1 1/2 cups shredded spinach leaves
1/2 cup assorted snipped fresh herb (such as sage, thyme, rosemary, and/or basil)
3 tablespoons Italian breadcrumbs
1 egg white, slightly beaten
2 teaspoons olive oil or cooking oil
fresh coarse ground black pepper
snipped fresh chives (optional)

1 recipe Mustard Sauce
1/3 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 teaspoons dijon-style mustard
1 teaspoon honey

Trim any fat from meat. Using a sharp knife, make a lengthwise cut down the center of roast, cutting to, but not through, the other side. Spread the meat flat.

Place tenderloin between 2 sheets of plastic wrap and pound meat lightly with the flat side of a meat mallet to about a 13x8-inch rectangle.

  • Spread mustard evenly over tenderloin.
  • Stir together spinach, herbs, bread crumbs, and egg white in a medium bowl.
  • Spoon evenly over pork.
  • Roll tenderloin up jelly-roll style, beginning at narrow end.
  • Tie meat with string, first at center, then at 1-inch intervals.
  • Place meat on rack in a shallow roasting pan.
  • Brush oil over meat.
  • Sprinkle with pepper.
Roast, uncovered, in a 375 degree F oven for 50 to 60 minutes or until meat is tender and slightly pink (160 degrees F) and juices run clear. Transfer to a warm platter. Remove strings; keep warm while preparing sauce.

Mustard Sauce: In small saucepan combine sour cream, mayonnaise, Dijon style mustard, and honey. Cook over low heat for 2 to 3 minutes or just until heated through. Do not boil. Serve immediately with pork slices.

To serve, cut tenderloin into 12 slices.

Spoon Mustard Sauce over each serving.

Sprinkle with chives if desired.

I think I'll serve it with Risotto on the side.

Saturday, January 23, 2010


The Primitive Peddler Cafe is always open and is A Gathering Place for Artisans Who Create Today's Look of Days Gone By.

We are a group of professional artisans who share a love for the crafts of days gone by. We are committed to promoting our wares and to bringing potential buyers a variety of hand-crafted gift and decor ideas, Artisan Features, and various Giveaways.

This community was created in order to bring together artisans who enjoy discussing and sharinng various aspects of their crafting business, and who are dedicated to increasing sales and have a strong desire to support and encourage fellow artisans through blog features, giveaway promotions, gift guides, and treasuries, as well as maintaining a sense of humor through it all.We are a group of professional artisans who share a love for the crafts of days gone by. We are committed to promoting our wares and to bringing potential buyers a variety of hand-crafted gift and decor ideas, Artisan Features, and various Giveaways.

Friday, January 22, 2010


Don't we all love them!!! Coming very soon is another amazing Spring Celebration Giveaway from the Old Farmhouse Gathering. This one will be a handwoven Easter Basket filled with wonderful items from the Old Farmhouse Group! Stop on by today and sign up early ~ the winner will be chosen on March 1st. Photos will be coming soon.

Here's a little preview of one item that will be included in the basket giveaway! Okay, okay - I know I have a hard time keeping a secret! I'm working on it :)
(For more info on this Extreme Prim Black Bunny,

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Looking forward to... today! Well, not really, but since I have to go anyway I may as well have a good attitude about it. You never know who needs to see a smiling face or hear a word of kindness! Working in a collections department at a local bank is extremely stressful, not just for the employees but also for those we need to contact. It's very sad for some people who are struggling and are so far over their heads they are totally overwhelmed. It's our job to try to help them with their accounts and see if we can stop the downward spiral financially. Sure does keep you humble hearing some of the hardship stories and what put some people where they are. Truth be told, I would rather be home working on a few of my projects that I have started.

Have a great day! May God bless you!!!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Thank you!

Thank you for all the wonderful comments made regarding the quilt I finished and posted yesterday. What a source of encouragement everyone is! I really do appreciate each and every one of you! Thank you!!!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Remember yesterday...

...when I said that I can't wait to show you what I've been working on? Well, I also said back in September that I was hoping to have this project finished. I am always blown away by how fast time truly does fly (especially when you're having fun, right?).

Well, I've worked my sewing machine and my fingers to the bone to finally complete this project so that I could show you today. Here it is --

For a complete description and pricing, please stop by THE FARMER'S ATTIC and click on "New Arrivals".

Rabbit Hollow Prims

For today's Old Farmhouse Gathering Monday Marketplace, I am featuring RABBIT HOLLOW PRIMS. Take a minute to stop by and say hi and check out her fabulous assortment of dolls, patterns and OOAK creations.

What is the name of your Etsy shop and why did you choose that name?
Rabbit Hollow Prims because my mom had the name for her shop when it was open and wanted to carry on the name.

How long have you been on Etsy?
About 2 years

What type of items do you offer?
primitive dolls. vintage patterns, fabrics and turkey calls

How long have you been crafting?
17 years

Who or What inspires you?
All the other doll artists out there.

What is your favorite item in your shop and why?
I couldn't pick just one but I love Halloween the most.

Other places where you can be found (Ebay, webstore, blog)

Sunday, January 17, 2010

A Giveaway and Donation to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund

Not only is Kim at Notes from the Homestead giving away this wonderful selection of items for Valentine's Day BUT for everyone who enters, she will donate $1 to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief fund for Haiti. Please take a minute to sign up for her giveaway and help others in the process. Just click on the link to visit her page and sign up today at Notes from the Homestead.

Can't wait... show you what I've been working on! Maybe tomorrow :)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

My heart goes Pitter Patter

Be still my heart!!! Don't miss out on the opportunity to check out a new Etsy Treasury. Click on Etsy to view some great products by terrific artisans of the Old Farmhouse Gathering.

While you're at it, check this one out too!!! Entitled Primitive Love. Click here for even more items by the artisans of Old Farmhouse Gathering.

Friday, January 15, 2010

How about a little coffee and...

Blueberry Muffins:

1 cup (240 ml) plain yogurt (regular or low fat)
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup (60 ml) canola or corn oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups (260 grams) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups (100 grams) fresh or frozen blueberries

*Note: If using frozen blueberries, do not thaw before adding them to the batter.

Blueberry Muffins: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Position rack in center of oven. Butter or line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.

In a large measuring cup or bowl whisk together the yogurt, lightly beaten egg, oil, and vanilla extract.

In another large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Remove 1 tablespoon of the dry ingredients and toss it with the blueberries. With a rubber spatula fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir only until the ingredients are combined. Gently stir in the blueberries. Do not over mix the batter or tough muffins will result.

Evenly fill the muffin cups with the batter, using two spoons or an ice cream scoop. Place in the oven and bake for about 15 - 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for about 5 minutes before removing from pan.

Makes 12 muffins.

Sher, Gail. From a Baker's Kitchen. Aris Books. Berkeley: 1984.

Read more:

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

2010 Block of the Month

Beginning January, 2010 and ending December, 2010 Angie's Bits and Pieces is offering a Quilt Block of the Month for her pattern entitled Simple Thymes. New blocks will be posted the first of each month and will be available for the entire month.

Prim Kitchen

You don't want to miss out on the great items for your Prim Kitchen that are now listed on Etsy. Click on the link,, to see some fabulous items listed by talented artisans in the Etsy group Old Farmhouse Gathering.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

One Simple Country Girl... having her first giveaway. She is giving away a beautiful creamy white afghan, three red ticking heart-shaped bowl fillers and some Candleberry Tarts in Friendship Tea scent. WOW! Thanks, Donna! Make sure you stop by One Simple Country Girl and sign up today!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Pioneer Loft is featured on Monday's Marketplace!

Today's featured Artisan is Pioneer Loft located in Wooster, Ohio. They offer quality handmade items and fun painted vintage items that are primarily primitive or cottage in style. Since they offer a retail location on their farm, local pick up is always possible for any purchase you make from them.

Take a minute to hear more about this fun, featured business.

What is the name of your Etsy shop and why did you choose that name?
Pioneer Loft is my name. It's a name I came up with for my business years ago. We have a small farm and there is a plaque on the house that says "PIONEER HOUSE", since the house was built so long ago (1860). We have a barn, and I always had a liking of lofts in barns, so I put the two words together from that. (Plus I hope to have a store in our barn & loft one day!)

How long have you been on Etsy?
Since August of 2009

What type of items do you offer?
Mostly primitives, but some cottage items, too. I sew, stencil, and tole paint and my hubby makes small furniture with a prim finish. I love to make dolls the most, but do a lot of things from old quilts like tablerunners, candle mats, pillows, check book covers, ornaments & more.

 How long have you been crafting?
I started sewing in 7th grade (that would be 1968) and made most all my clothes for years. When I stayed home after having my daughter in 1982, I did stitching crafts, but I didn't sell anything I made until later in the 80's. I also took quilting classes in 1987, but have only made quilts for personal use.

Who or What inspires you?
God. (Also seeing other great handmade prims!)

What is your favorite item in your shop and why?
Dolls & bears. I just love to create charater & life out of fabric.

Other places where you can be found (Ebay, webstore, blog)
We have a website at and a blog at I sell on ebay infrequently, but my user name is thepioneerloft there.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Creative Times Magazine

The January/February 2010 issue of Creative Times Magazine is ready for download.

Creative Times features a variety of crafting styles such as sewing, doll making, knitting, scrapbook, altered art, painting, primitive art , rug hooking, stitchery and more. Not only do they work hard to bring you inspiration in each issue but they have put together a wonderful interactive web site where you can participate in their polls, take a craft class, submit your craft tutorials, free patterns and more through their new submission system.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Just what I need on a cold night...

Drinking chocolate is steeped in history. Columbus is credited with being the first to discover chocolate. When he arrived in the New World (what we now think was either Mexico or Nicaraguan) in 1502 he found the Aztecs drinking a chocolate beverage made with cocoa beans from the tropical tree Theobroma which translates to "Food of the Gods". Although the Spaniards found the beverage too bitter tasting for their palates they were amazed to see the Aztec's emperor, Montezuma, consuming up to 50 cups a day. The Aztecs made the beverage by first roasting and then grinding the cocoa beans to a paste, and then adding the paste to water, along with chili peppers and vanilla. Columbus did take cocoa beans back to Spain but they were not well received. It wasn't until Hernando Cortez brought more of the cocoa beans back to Spain from his trip to the New World (sometime around 1520) that the Spaniards found a way to process the beans to make them more palatable. They did this by adding sugar and spices (vanilla, cinnamon, cloves, hazelnuts, almonds, orange flower water) to the chocolate paste. Once the paste was allowed to solidify it was added to water or milk. This drink immediately became popular with the Spaniards and eventually the beverage spread throughout Europe and eventually to North America.
Hot Chocolate Recipe:
Makes 2 - 8 ounce (240 ml) servings.
2 cups (480 ml) milk
3 ounces (90 grams) semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 ounce (30 grams) milk chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon granulated white sugar, or to taste (optional)

Whipped Cream:

1/2 cup (120 ml) cold heavy whipping cream
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 tablespoon (15 grams) granulated white sugar

Grated chocolate or cocoa powder

Hot Chocolate: Place the milk, semisweet chocolate, milk chocolate, and sugar (if using), in a saucepan over medium heat and whisk periodically until the mixture just reaches the boiling point. Remove from heat and if more foam is desired, use a wire whisk or hand held immersion blender to whip the hot chocolate.

Pour the hot chocolate into two cups and garnish with a dollop of whipped cream and a dusting of cocoa powder or grated chocolate, if desired.

Whipped Cream: In your mixing bowl, place the whipping cream, vanilla extract, and sugar and stir to combine. If you have time, cover and chill the bowl and wire whisk in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes. When chilled, beat the mixture until stiff peaks form. The whipped cream will keep in the refrigerator for a day or two.

Note: To make hot or iced mocha simply replace 1/2 cup (120 ml) milk with your favorite brewed coffee. Proceed with the recipe and if you want it iced, let the mixture cool and then pour over ice cubes. Garnish with whipped cream and grated chocolate.

Note: Leftovers can be covered and stored in the refrigerator for a couple of days. Reheat.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Giveaways Galore!

This has to be the cutest! Willa at The Old Cupboard Door is giving away a cute Ginger Girl. Make sure you pop over and sign up. Drawing will be held January 23rd!

For all you Annie & Andy fans, here's a giveaway that's sure to put a smile on your face! The winner will be announced January 28th, so you want to get over to Willowtree Treasures before it's too late!

Be My Valentine Giveaway!!! What beautiful handwork Kimberly does. She is generously giving away this gorgeous Hearts Lace Doily. The winner will be announced on February 2nd! I'm sure you'll receive this in time for Valentine's Day. Stop over at Irish Rose Creations and sign up today.

In this giveaway, 2 baskets will be given away that  have an assortment of tarts, soaps and room sprays and included a small kraft journal in each. The Olde Country Cupboard and enter to win.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Great New Giveaway!

You don't want to miss this giveaway! Stop over and visit White Sheep Primitives and enter her giveaway. Final date to enter is January 16th.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Monday's Market Place

Amy Harrington of Irish Corkies Primitives is the featured Artisan of Monday's Market Place with the Old Farmhouse Gathering. They feature primitive signs for all occasions and have a new line of Shelf Sitter Blocks. They are more than happy to do custom requests!

Take a minute to read through our interview with Amy:

What is the name of your Etsy shop and why did you choose that name?

I named my shoppe Irish Corkies Primitives for my yellow lab Corkie, her full name is Bailey’s Irish Cork.

How long have you been on Etsy?
I have been on Etsy since 2006, but really started selling there about a year ago.

What type of items do you offer?
I offer hand-crafted primitive signs, primitive shelf-sitter blocks, and peg racks. I hope to expand into more furniture items in the future.

How long have you been crafting?
I have been crafting for the past 10 years or so but have really focused on my primitive signs for the past 6 years.

Who or What inspires you?
I love the olde look and feel of times gone by and I just love how prim signs and decorating can make your home feel like it is from the 1800’s with a few modern throw ins.

What is your favorite item in your shop and why?
My favorite item in my shop is the Thomas Jefferson quote sign…I made one for my husband and it is proudly displayed on our Americana wall in our great room.

Other places where you can be found (Ebay, webstore, blog)

Wow, Amy is one busy lady! Here's a small sampling of some of the items Amy has in her Etsy shop:

Sunday, January 3, 2010

"Just pick somethin' " Giveaway

Ruffles And Stuff is having a giveaway. The winner will be announced on Wednesday, January 6th. The lucky winner of this giveaway has their choice of any one thing that their little heart desires from her Etsy shop regardless of the price!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

There's a winner...

Irish Rose Creations announced their winner of the beautiful Romantic Heirloom Afghan. Congratulations to Kris of Painted Kreations!

Friday, January 1, 2010

My heart goes pitter patter...

Check out these great items featured at Etsy While you're there please take a moment to click on each item and post a comment!

Save BIG in 2010!

THE FARMER'S ATTIC is now open!!! New for 2010, shipping is a low $4.95!!! Order as many items as you want, shipping will never be more than $4.95.