Saturday, January 23, 2010

In a Jam

Have you ever been like Old Mother Hubbard who went to the cupboard? I'm beginning to look more and more like her, too. Not only am I ransacking the cupboards, I'm growing ever more rotund. It's true what they say about those macaroni diets.

Yesterday as I was scrounging about in the fridge, I realized that a lot of excellent real estate was being taken up by jam. There were seven jars of jam...homemade jam...good stuff...not a lot of protein, but still, you know, good. And maybe even great if your mama made the jam the way my mama made this jam.

I remembered an old bar recipe that she used to mama, not Old Mother Hubbard. As I recalled, the bars were easy, quick, and tasty and they would take care of at least one jar of that rhubarb jam.

Well shoot! What do you suppose are the chances of my ever turning back into my former svelte self? Hahahaha, I crack myself up.

Oh! The recipe!

Jam Bars


* 1½ cups flour
* 1½ cups quick oatmeal
* smidge of salt
* 1 cup brown sugar
* 1 tsp baking powder
* ¾ cup butter
* 1 cup jam (I give you permission to cheat on this one way or the other)


* Mix together dry ingredients.
* Work butter in until the mixture is crumbly.
* Save a third of the crumb mixture for the topping and place the remainder in the bottom of a 13×9½×2 pan.
* Press in firmly.
* Spread jam evenly over the top.
* Sprinkle the top evenly with the remaining crumbs.
* Bake at 350° for 35 minutes.

Did your mama ever make this for you?

Mother Hubbard source

Friday, January 22, 2010

An Experiment With Pattern

That "quilt" mosaic on Wednesday sparked something. I've always been interested in pattern and design and have actually written about it before in a post titled Fractals.

Have you ever heard of a Sierpinski triangle? It is a formula that repeats over and over again in what some might initially consider randomness or chaos, but which ultimately turns out to be design. (Course you know what I think about design.) The triangles are fun *to make; children who reach a certain age love them; and they can be colored to create all sorts of delicious designs.

Well thought I, why not try it with photo mosaics in squares and see what happens. Now I don't know if this can be considered "Sierpinski" though it looks "Sierpinski-ish" enough to me.

(Any reason at all to feature the grands, both of whom have had a birthday since last they showed up here. Four and three — what delightful ages to be!)

A friend purchased a somewhat expensive computer program to help her design quilts. I think I might show her this and see what she thinks. She's going to say,"Muddy." That much I do know. ☺

*To make a Sierpinski triangle:

1. Draw a large triangle
2. Draw a triangle within the triangle where the points touch at the midpoints of each of the original's sides...that's three. ;>
3. Continue in this fashion for each newly created triangle.

Go ahead and try it; you know you want to!!

Happy Friday, Everyone...

Thursday, January 21, 2010

One of the Oldest Trees in New England...

went down Tuesday in Yarmouth, Maine. His name was Herbie, an American elm tree stricken with the deadly Dutch Elm disease over fifty years ago. For all that time, he has been tended by Frank Knight a most diligent, vigilant, tree warden who is now 101 years old.


Mr. Knight watched as the crew took Herbie down this past Tuesday morning. He said eloquently, "It's been a beautiful tree. I'm sorry to see it go. But nothing is forever. It's pretty near my turn. And it's just a fact of life that life is going to end. And that's for people, for trees, for everything. I thank the good Lord every day that we had him in his glory and beauty for so long."

You can read more *here.*

Why am I telling you about Herbie when the story has been so well documented elsewhere? Well, perhaps it is because anyone who has ever lived under the shadow of a mighty elm is interested in stories such as these.

Also, in recent weeks, I've been working on trees of another sort — family trees. I've traced John's family, both his mother's and father's families, back to the beginning of time. Yes, all the way back to Adam's grandfather.

As for mine, I have not been able to get any further back than the 1800s in Yarmouth, Maine. It makes me happy to think that some of my family knew Herbie in the early years. Herbie was 212 years old.

What (or who ☺) is the oldest tree in your corner?

Edited to Add on May 14, 2012: Mr. Knight passed away at the age of 103. I find myself wistfully hoping that there's a Herbie growing in Heaven. Source

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Winter Mosaic

Perhaps I should call it a Winter Quilt Mosaic since I used the photos more than once. I took fifty-seven photos. In the end, there were less than a dozen that I liked. Photography is not my calling, but I certainly do enjoy playing with it all the same.

We're looking forward to seeing some blue skies late this afternoon after three days of snow.

Edited to Add:

January 21, 2010

We've had to wait an extra day for the promise of blue skies...but they are blue...such a vivid blue that I had to share. And I love the pop of red in the STOP sign down the street.

Stay warm and cozy out there!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Treasures from Main Street

Main Street Memories is a blog where I spend a fair amount of time. Colleen writes with such wit and lightness that one can't help a grin or, more often, a guffaw. Recently, Colleen and her sisters lost a bright light in their lives...their only brother. This has left them feeling sad and a bit lost, though it has not diminished Colleen's spirit or zest for life. One just knows that things are hopping and happening wherever she is. You'll meet Mr. B and all the family and you'll be enriched for it.

Thanks, Colleen, for the sweet treasures. I love them! They usually live in my craft room where they serve as inspiration. You know that I went right out and bought washers the minute that I learned you were up to something with washers (can't you just imagine folks wondering if we need some dryers, too?) Now I see that I need more Scrabble tiles and some dominoes. And, I'm going to take just the right photo and use my "V" necklace for my profile picture one day soon as the sun comes out again.

Happy Tuesday, everyone, stay happy and toasty.

Edited to Add: January 31, 2010

I love this profile picture and will come back to it again someday, especially now that I have it tucked in this safe place.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Seven Facts

Ages ago...and I do mean ages, Margie at Margie's Crafts (aka Margie Loves Wool) tagged me with the Seven Facts Meme. I told her that I'd return to it one day and this is the day six months later.

So here goes...

1. I procrastinate. (Oh stop! ;> )

2. My hair hasn't been this long since I was in college and I loathe it. I seriously considered chopping it off myself, but am reconsidering now that I see what I did to my poor Nan's hair Sunday morning. Good thing her eyesight isn't what it once was. Suffice it to say that she complained of being cold all day.

3. Twenty Wishes by Debbie Macomber is my current read. I may not finish it.

4. Baked Tina's Upside Down Pineapple Cake this weekend sorta; didn't have the proper ingredients so substituted spice cake and pears.

5. Shoveling isn't my favorite thing so John does most of it. He's doing it now.

6. Found myself staring at my hands a few days ago. They looked older than I ever remember.

7. Love the Google art that commemorates a special day. It's the only way that I remembered that today is Martin Luther King Day.

Although I no longer tag anyone, please feel free to do this if you'd like and let me know so that I can read yours!

Come back tomorrow and I'll share a long overdue (September 8th overdue) thank you for a giveaway win from Colleen at Main Street Memories.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Waiting, Standing, Trusting

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. ~Ephesians 6:10–18

It's been another one of those weeks. A week when there has been much heartache in the world — a week when some of us simply haven't known what to do. What to do. What to do...

"If we are to be really reconstructed, it will be in a hard a time when you think all things are dried up, when you think there is no hope for you and you have passed up everything. That is the time that God makes the person... When the trial is severe; ... so hard that you cannot sleep and you do not know what to do; 'count it all joy.' You are in a good place when you do not know what to do; look to God for the answer." ~Smith Wigglesworth