Behind My Red Door

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Is it Wednesday September 17th already?

I can't believe it's the middle of September already. It always seems like this time in autumn always sneaks up on me - especially after waiting all summer for it. I just wish I could slow down the passing of time during fall and really soak up every cool day and crisp night, the sights and sounds and smells and tastes of fall. It's been fun reading so many posts about fall and other blogger's favorite things. I was thinking we need a 100 favorite things we love about fall instead of 10. 10 is just not enough for the fabulous wonderful season!

I don't have any exciting craft projects to show you for Whatcha Working on Wednesday even though it's been busy Behind My Red Door. I have some patterns for things I want to start, including some cute towel bands that Wendy over at Snippets of a Quilter was kind enough to share with me. I really enjoy scrolling back in her blog to see all her wonderful quilts and stitched designs and all the wonderful fabric creations she shares - you know - eye candy!!

I have an idea sketched for a Christmas ornie for an auction. My prim friends over at the Primitive and Rustic Forum are holding two to help a gal in need - but I can't share that just yet!
Yesterday I made the first homemade soup of the season. DH and I love soup and I make it often in cool weather. Often I just make it up from things I have around in the freezer and pantry. Often is is STOUP - a soup as thick as stew. That was the case last night when I made Chicken Corn Chowder. Last week I bought one of those prepared chickens from the grocery store for one of our meals. Now that it is just the two us, it's enough for at least two meals. I used the bones to make chicken broth and froze that and the leftover chicken. Yesterday while I worked outside, I put the broth, the chicken, a can of corn, a can of cream corn and two small potatoes peeled and diced into my slow cooker. Just before serving, I added some instant potato flakes (I keep them in the pantry just to thicken soups) and I made a paste with with corn flour and and thickened it the chowder. The only other ingredient was fresh cracked black pepper. I served it with crackers and some slices of tomato fresh from the garden stand. It was so good. Perfect for a cool late summer day. Yes, we are all talking fall, but technically it is still summer - but not for long!

The most exciting thing I have been working on since we last met was preparing for and being interviewed by the writer assigned to work on my article for Country Sampler. The article is scheduled for the Febraury / March issue but that is subject to change.

When we got home from Angela's Dad's birthday party on Sunday, there was an email from Leslie Mann waiting for me. After chatting back and forth, she sent me a list of questions to answer and told me briefly what to expect and we set up a time for her to call on Monday for the interview. Some of the questions frankly had me puzzled - like 'do I have a vanity license plate?' and "what is my decorating theme song?". Leslie is new to Country Sampler and wasn't familiar with all the terms I used like 'firkin' and 'treenware', and I find it easier to decorate my home than to explain how and why I do what I do, so I will be very eager to see the article when it comes out in the spring. She has her work cut out for her!


Another one of my favorite things about fall is all the winter squash that is ready for harvest. DH stopped at a great farm stand not far from his office and brought these beauties home for us. They are HUGE! He peeled and cut up one last night so tonight it will be on the dinner menu along with baked apples and pork chops - to me, squash, apples and pork scream 'fall meal'. I am hoping to find a good butternut squash lasagna recipe with a white sauce instead of red sauce to make with one of the others. If anyone has a tried and true recipe, please let me know!
We had one of those tomatoes with our chowder last night. What a treat!

Kathy finally received her second swap box (it had to go to New Brunswick, Canada) so now I can share what I received in the swap I did with her and Karen, from My Yellow Farmhouse that I mentioned
here. I feel like I made out like a bandit being on the receiving end of a swap with these two kind, talented and very generous gals.
This is my stash from Kathy. The pumpkin on the black wool pillow is not as bright as it shows. It's a wonderful dark pumpkin color. It has a new home in my living room and it fits perfectly in there. Kathy hand knit the dish cloth and I love the soft cotton feel to the yarn. I am becoming a fan of dish clothes! The little bittersweet pillow was the perfect little touch on my bathroom shelf. I had been wishing I had made one of my pillows smaller and then this arrived. It is like she read my mind! I had included the exact same candle in Kathy and Karen's boxes but didn't buy one for myself so I was thrilled to get one as well. And look at the cute handmade card she included!

And this is my stash from Karen. She knows Kathy and I have a hard time finding wool and she gave us the most wonderful pieces! I can't wait to use them. She even included a cute pattern for sunflower table mat. I love sunflowers so I can't wait to make it for next summer. And I am so excited to own one her wonderful little quilts with an appliqued wool pumpkin. Karen does such a great job of mixing quilts with wool doesn't she? It looks great in our bedroom! And I have always admired the braided mats she uses in her home and now I have one. It fits perfectly on the black bench I use in front of my day bed here in my office. It's like they designed it with the colors of my home in mind.

Thank you Kathy and Karen! This was really a lot of fun and I am so blessed to have some of your talented handmade creations in my home!

And I need to send out a thank you to Deanie of Deanie's Space. She honored my blog the Smile Award that I previously received. Thanks so much Deanie! Stop over and see her gorgeous porch!! That's the kind of front porch I dream about.

One of the sweet gals I met when I first posted my pictures on Webshots many months ago, is Karen, known over there are PrimKarlee. Karen and I hit it off and enjoy chatting about our lives and family and love of prims. Back in March, she sent me one of her hand poured soy candles for my birthday. Anyone that knows me knows I have a terrible times with scents. Even if I love the scent, it can make my face burn, or give me a headache or if it is really bad, make me wheeze. It has made it difficult at times to use candles or those girly things from the bath shops and sometimes when I leave a store, my face is on fire from whatever candles or potpourri they have on display. That said, Karen's candles do not bother me at all! I have the scent Amish Harvest and it is a wonderful spicy scent. I recently ordered two more because I love them so much and I can actually burn them. With my recent order, Karen included a tart melt in Caramel Cinnamon Latte and it smells good enough to eat. I have it sitting on my desk and it is wonderful. And now YOU can purchase her wonderful candle at her new ETSY Simply Soy Candles by PrimKarlee. I highly suggest you go on over and check out what she has to offer.


I am feeling really blessed to live where I live this week after seeing the devastation Ike left in it's path. My heart goes out to everyone affected. I cannot imagine loosing my home like that, not to mention the total disruption of all aspects of their lives. I still have our friend Mary from Gettysburg Homestead on my mind. I try to imagine what she is seeing and doing and facing each day, I can't even fathom a guess. I pray she and all the other first responders are OK.

I know I keep saying this, but I have met the nicest people online and blogging. I am blown away by the number of auctions, fundraisers and other ways my Internet friends are helping others in need. It is truly heartwarming and humbling. I have always felt people are intrinsically good and I see it over and over again on the Internet. Even with the tight economy, and our increasingly hectic lives, there is always some way we can reach out to others in need. It can be as simple as writing some uplifting words in a comment on a blog or in card or a simple hand written note, or maybe providing a meal or helping with errands or child care, to something as big as organizing a fundraising auction through EBay. Sometimes you might think you are just one person and you can't make much of a difference, but you really can. Reach out and touch someone in need this week! You'll be glad you did - I promise!

Until next time - hugs, Linda