Saturday, August 10, 2013

August Happenings

Here we are, mid August.  The wee ones have returned to school.  Our two oldest grandchildren are in first grade this year, and our youngest is in Transitional Kindergarten.  The first week went very well.  Everyone was excited to be in school with their friends, and new teachers.  And thankfully, it is way cooler than our normal August weather usually is!  Crazy really, that it feels almost like the end of September, with chilly mornings and nights, rather than our usual triple digit August!  I am sure it will come.  But for now, we are sure enjoying this weather!
My garden is winding down.  I continue to bring in tomatoes every day.  So I have been making sauce.   LOTS of sauce.  I have done it different ways, but roasting the tomatoes has been the favorite.  I have seen several ways to do this.  I pretty much followed my friend Priscilla's way.   I cut the tomatoes into halves, and quarters for the big ones, and add some of my fresh zucchini, chopped roughly, a rough chopped onion, several cloves of garlic chopped, a drizzle of olive oil, fresh sea salt and cracked pepper, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar.  Then drop lots of fresh basil over the top.  Roast in the oven for 45 minutes, at 425.
I love the beautiful color variations in the heirloom tomatoes.  Rainbows of color!
Just out of the oven.
I let it cool a bit, and then lifted the veggies out of the tray with a large slotted spoon, and put it into my food processor, a little at a time.  Pulsing, for a couple of times, just to break up veggies, but keeping it thick.  Of course if you like a thinner sauce, you can pulse longer, and, also add back some of the liquid that cooked off of the veggies.
Taste it at this point to adjust seasoning, and add more if needed.  I added a little more salt to it, and then popped it into the fridge.  Today I will pour it into jars, and freeze some for later.  Last week, I made a baked rigatoni using this sauce.  I browned a pound of lean sirloin, and some sweet Italian sausage, and made a meat sauce.  It was killer good!!!
I finished making my pillow.  I had purchased some worsted weight yarn in a color I liked, to add to my other flowers, but I didn't like the weight or size, and decided to just use this yarn for a flower granny square pillow.
Oh my goodness...now I have to go get another skein of this color and make another pillow.  I LOVE the way this turned out!!
For all of my friends who knit and crochet.....this was my first attempt at joining squares.  I made big boo boos!  I messed up when aligning the squares, and now I have some of the flowers showing the right sides, and some the wrong sides.  Then, I didn't know whether to have the ridged side as the outside, or the smooth side.  Ultimately, I continued to join the sides, with the ridged sides showing.  I didn't have a pillow form, so I used a down pillow that I had.  It is on a dark background fabric, and it just so happens that I loved the contrast, so I will go ahead and make a matching one now, and use the other pillow to have them the same.
I couldn't leave well enough alone, and decided it needed a little something else.  So I made a loopy flower and attached it to the middle.
Now, I love it!
Now I am working on making the squares around the flowers made with the sport weight yarn.
I have a chalkboard in my kitchen, that put messages on.  I changed it the other day.  I drew a Rooster using a rainbow pack of chalk.
I think he looks a tad mean.  Which is exactly what my perception of Roosters are!!   I wish I could draw, and paint.  That is something I always wanted to do.  But I am not an artist.
I found these three books the other day while poking around in some of my favorite haunts.  I love these vintage childrens books.  I used to buy them for my kids all the time.
My favorites, are the ones that are illustrated by Eloise Wilkin.  Her drawings are so charming.
It is no secret how much I love birds.  I guess it shouldn't surprise you that I pick up feathers all the time.
Greg drove up to the lake early this morning to meet up with my little brother to fish.  I think I will drive up tomorrow with my Mom and spend the day.
Before I go, I wanted to mention that my friend Dawn, from Creative Cain Cabin who many of you know, has moved her blog over to Wordpress. She did all of the design work herself!  But she says that many are having trouble finding her.  So if you follow Dawn, and lost her for a while....go see her again and say hi.  And if you don't know Dawn, go pay her a visit.  She has a great blog!!
Have a nice weekend!
XO  Kris

31 comments:

Patty from Lemon Lane said...

I hear the heat is coming our way next week. Drats! Enjoy your trip up the hill. Patty

Barbara F. said...

The sauce recipe sounds delish. A great way to amp up the good tomato taste. I love feathers, too, and wish I could get some turkey feathers for fall decor. ;-) xo

Dawn said...

Your sauce looks yummy. I have been canning crushed tomatoes here. Our temps are in the low 70's here. Strange weather this year. Love your granny square pillow. Granny squares are so fun to make. They can be an addiction. Thanks for pointing people to my blog:).

Pammy Sue said...

There you are! That tomato sauce looks and sounds delicious. Would love to have had some of that meat sauce you made for spaghetti. I just LOVE spaghetti any way you top it. I wish we were having some of that cooler weather. It's been triple digits here for days and days. I think it's supposed to break next Wednesday supposedly. Can't wait for cooler fall weather! I love the rooster you drew. Looks like you have some drawing or painting talent to me! Great job on the pillow! Glad you could find something to make from your worsted squares. Those others are going to be a bee-U-tee-ful blanket! I'm sick of thread...time to get out that new Catania cotton yarn I bought. It's like a DK weight or maybe even less. Blah, blah, blah...I'm rambling! See ya, chickie.

Home Meadows said...

Hi Kris, looks like you've been busy. Your pillow turned out great, I like the persimmon color against the white. I'm envious of your fresh veggie sauce (hopefully next year); it looks delicious. We have had a strange summer weather wise here in OH also. Enjoy the rest of your weekend. Heather

NanaNor's said...

Hi Kris, We are having really weird weather too-first last Saturday, we came home right after a severe hail storm that wrecked havoc on my landscaping, damaged our roof, broke a window etc etc. The last couple of days have felt like fall-cool mornings and evenings. We are actually going out in an hour, with my oldest daughter & her gang, to use their new Skidoos. I just hope it is warm enough. Love your tomato sauce-pausing the recipe onto my youngest who has tomatoes coming in bushels. Hope you have fun at the lake.
Hugs, Noreen

Jann Olson said...

Hi Kris, the sauce looks great. Hoping that I have plenty of tomatoes to can. We are completely out of salsa and we love it. I will be pinning what you and Priscilla do in case I have enough to do more than just salsa. Your pillow turned out so cute and I love your rooster! Still quite hot here, but the last two mornings had a touch of Fall feel to me.
hugs,
Jann

Kelli said...

You sauce looks wonderful and I love your pillow!!
My kids go back to school on Monday. I am not ready for the early mornings or homework.

Pam said...

Hi Kris - I love your pillow and the flower in the middle is perfect. I think you already can draw - you did a good job drawing that rooster. It is still very hot here - boo!
Have a good weekend.

Gloria Baker said...

look really delicious like all yours plates!!

Grayseasailor said...

My sister and I are headed out tomorrow morning to start driving to Nebraska to visit her oldest daughter's family on their farm, but I wanted to check in with you before we leave, Kris :). To me you are very artistic ! I love the rooster you drew, the beautiful food you prepared, your pretty arrangement of feathers, the colorful pillow you made, and the interesting post you composed and illustrated with your wonderful photos. I love the illustrations in the children's books you featured, too. I'm glad your Grands are making a happy transition into school, and I'm glad your weather is more comfortable than usual for this time of year. We had a rumble of thunder and a bit of rain today! Hope you are having a good time at the lake!!!
Gracie xx

Nana Go-Go said...

Cooking and crochet....my two favourite things!I bought some toms the other day to make sauce with so your recipe has come just in time. I love your cushion cover, especially with the flower in the middle.Perfect. When I make mistakes, I call them 'design features' - less hassle than undoing everything.
My adorable grandchild starts school soon. I'm bereft about it. I always think that once they're in the system, they change so much. If I had my way, I'd keep her here swaddled in a cocoon of cotton wool forever!!Sad, isn't it?!!! Have a great week, Kris. x

Mereknits said...

I would be happy to give you some of our heat, it is just horrible here. That sauce looks so yummy as your pillows are perfect! No one will notice a flower that is right side or wrong side. My oldest left to go back to Ohio yesterday, my youngest starts school in a week.
Hugs to you and have fun at the lake,
Meredith

Patty Antle said...

I think the chalk rooster looks pretty darn good! And I love your pillow. It turned out great. And, oh, the sauce. I can only imagine how delicious it must taste!

corners of my life said...

I have always loved Eloise Wilkin. She had her art studio near here and her book "The Visit" is from a house just down the street from us. It is one of our favorites.

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

My favorite children's book illustrator is Eloise Wilkins and I would have also snapped up those books, Kris!

Your roasted tomato/vegetable sauce looks delicious! I have been buying multicolored peppers lately that have been on sale here very cheap and I am cutting them up, steaming them, and then freezing them in bags to use in the winter when prices go up!

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

You are such a creative person, Kris...and you ARE an artist! I love Eloise Wilkin, too...and collected a set of three of each of her books to give to my children for the grandchildren. Her illustrations are so lovely to me...

Sarah said...

Mmmm that sauce looks amazing!!! My tomatoes are still green on the vine. I have a ton and if they ever turn we'll be making sauce and I'm going to follow your recipe. So far all we've had were fried green tomatoes. Your rooster drawing is so cute! I love it! And the extra touch to the pillow was perfect.

Linda said...

Hope you got to the Lake...
Thanks for your email..:o)
Your sauce looks simply delicious!
Enjoy the rest of your week!!

Cheers!
Linda :o)

priscilla said...

Glad you made the roasted sauce Kris ! We all love it ! I will be making more today :)
Love your pillow ..so cute !
Have a great day !

Karen L. Bates said...

You are a fantastic artist!!! I love the Rooster! You have a beautiful bounty from your veggie garden! That sauce looks so good, I could eat it now.

Cute pillow, you are so creative.

Elaine @ Sunny Simple Life said...

Oh yum. You do know how to cook girl. Love the pillows and I am pinning your chalk rooster.

Debbie said...

I am still trying to catch up on my blog reading..funny how quick you can get behind. First, your right...this weather has just been awesome. Wouldn't you love to think we'd escape August's usual heat nightmare? But I am with you, bet it is still coming. And then I LOVE the crocheted pillow cover...soo cute! And finally, I think your rooster is really good. I honestly cannot draw a thing, haha. The sauce looks wonderful too!

Pam said...

The sauce looks wonderful! I also love the pillow, especially with the loopy flower added to the center. Nice looking rooster.

Linda said...

The sauce looks great! I love zucchini and tomatoes together. You can draw a lot better than me...your rooster is wonderful! Its getting hot...I had loved the cooler weather...have an awesome day!!

Astri said...

What a great recipe for this tomato time of year!

You flowers are wonderful and that pillow is so fun! I love the added loopy touch...loopy is good. ;-)

pembrokeshire lass said...

Oh, the colours are just lovely and I could almost taste he sauce....it looked so scrummy! Strange that your kids have gone back to school. Ours have a couple of weeks yet. The cockerel looks lovely! Joan

Home and Garden said...

hello
your sauce looks good. i love your pillow.
have a nice restweek,
regina

kathy b said...

i think you are artistic. I LOVE your rooster, mean and all!

Debbiedoos said...

OK I love love the chalked roo, and the pillow is magnificent. Busy doings here too Kris. My boys go back to school next week:(

Hanne said...

You say you wished you could draw, come on Kris, Im pretty sure you can. Look at the rooster you drew I love him :)The books are so cute