Saturday, June 7, 2014

A Dream Home In The Making

About a month ago, my son in law was coming home from work.  I'm not quite clear how this happened so fast, but he had learned that there was an old farmhouse for sale about half way between work and their present home.  He took a little detour and drove by.  Before we knew it my daughter called and said they found a house they wanted us to look at.  I think they had already decided to buy it.  When we met them to look, we recognized the place.  Our other daughter had almost bought this home more than ten years ago.  This new house has been empty for two years, and it needs a lot of work.  It has tons of charm.

Dining room with tin ceiling.

Open unpainted staircase

A giant sized pole barn for all my son in laws hobbies.
To make this long story shorter, they made an offer and two weeks ago they closed the deal.  Then the work began.  They are an amazing energetic young couple and in a short amount of time they have a great start on fixing this house.  Fortunately for them they have a lot of friends who are helping and of course the family.  We aren't as young as we used to be, but we are doing our best.   My husband has a remarkable amount of patience fixing drywall and getting rooms ready for paint.  So far they have
finished painting both boy's bedrooms.  They have finished the dining and living rooms.

Dining room painted.

There is still a lot to do.  The carpet for the bedrooms and new kitchen cabinets have been ordered.  There was wallpaper in the kitchen and the master bedroom.  That has been removed, and those rooms will be painted soon.

This kitchen will be gutted and all the cabinets and flooring will be replaced.

Master bath needs some tile.

The previous owners really liked pink.  Most of the rooms have shades of it.

The yard has many huge trees, flower gardens, fruit trees and nice stone work.  Hours have been spent so far pulling weeds.  The previous owners had horses so all the fencing has been removed plus they have already planted a garden.  It will be a wonderful home once the projects are completed.  Then hopefully their present home will sell fast, and they will be able to have many wonderful years in this home.

Friday, June 6, 2014

The Late Spring Flowers In The Garden

There hasn't been a lot of things going on the last couple of days on the home front, so I thought I would show you around the yard.  It is so nice to be able to see the yard come to life.  Our winter was so cold that I was sure everything would be killed off.  A few things didn't come back like one Endless Summer hydrangea and the boxwood bushes, but most didn't suffer at all.  Here are a few blooming right now.

Yellow Iris

The irises are in full bloom in different areas of the garden.

Viola's that reseeded themselves from last year.

The wiegela bush is almost in full bloom

The blackberry bushes are in bloom.

A Pink and a White Poppy

The regular lilacs are finished blooming but these rather odoriferous ones are just starting.

There are flocks, dianthus, solomon seal and many other blossoms right now.  I'm sure I missed a few.  The early spring flowers are finished and in a week or so these late spring flowers will be done.  We will have the summer flowers taking over the garden then.  There is always something to look forward to.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Snapping Turtles

The snapping turtles are on the move again.  They are in the road and on the yard looking for a place to lay eggs.  I have written about them before so I won't repeat myself.   I took these photos today so I am sharing them.

Snapping turtle laying eggs in the yard.

This old girl has algae or moss growing on her back. 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Gluten Free Strawberry Pie

I can't believe it is after nine o'clock pm, and I haven't posted my Tuesday recipe yet.  My days are getting the best of me.  I don't know where the time goes.  I mentioned last week that I want to learn how to make gluten free food because some family members can not eat gluten.  I saw this recipe and it sounded very good and easy to make.  I make strawberry pie often in the summer, but this one is wheat free.

Strawberry Pie

For the crust:

1 1/2 cups unsalted almonds
1 cup rolled oats
1/3 cup honey
1 egg
2 T softened butter
pinch salt
1 tsp vanilla

In a food processor, add the almonds and oats and pulse until ground.  Add in the remaining ingredients and pulse until everything is combined.  You should have a soft dough.  Butter a pie dish.   Put the dough into the pie dish and, using your wet fingers, press the dough into the pan, up the sides, etc., until it is evenly distributed in the dish.  Take a fork and prick the bottom and sides and make a decorative edge if you like.  Don’t press the edge too thin with the fork or it will be easier to scorch.

Bake the pastry in a 325 degree F oven for about 15-20 minutes, until golden brown.   Remove from oven and allow to cool.

For the filling:

2  cups of sliced strawberries
1/3 cup honey
3 T cornstarch
1 tsp vanilla
pinch salt
1 T butter

In a blender or food processor, puree the berries.  Remove about a half a cup to a small dish and add the cornstarch.  Pour the puree into a medium saucepan, blend in the cornstarch mixture and honey and place over med-low heat. Stir the mixture until it has thickened and begun to boil.  Add in the pinch of salt, vanilla, and butter.  Stir to melt the butter and combine and remove from heat.

Once the filling is cool, mix 2 more cups of sliced strawberries into the filling and spread the filling into the cooled crust.

In an earlier blog I showed how to easily take the caps off of the strawberries.

I also have a little trick for slicing the berries.  After the caps are off the strawberries, I place them one at a time onto an egg slicer.  It slices the berry either lengthwise or widthwise into perfect slices.

One of my favorite strawberry deserts is one I blogged about last year.  This recipe could easily substitute the crust from this recipe.

Monday, June 2, 2014

The Little White Tail Deer We Call "Limpy"

Although not as dangerous as hunting season, this is a very dangerous time of year for the white tail deer in our area.  It is the time of year when the female deer sends their yearlings off into the world to take care of themselves.  The females have to prepare to give birth and raise the new fawn or in some cases fawns.  We see a lot of twin deer in the summer, sometimes we even see triplets.  The deer aren't paying attention and so it is a bad time of year for deer/car crashes.  It was almost a year ago that I hit a deer.

I have written about our resident deer we call Limpy.  She was either injured at some point in her life, or she was born with a defect to her right hind leg.  All winter she would show up.  We put out just enough corn to help but not enough to have the deer totally depend on us.  Limpy would either tag along with other deer or just show up alone.  We worried about her all winter because she wasn't as agile as the rest.  Somehow she made it through the brutal cold temperatures.  This is a short video of her from last winter.

On the last few trail camera pictures she appears to be pregnant.  We will be watching carefully for a baby.

This is Limpy about 4 days ago.

This view you can see the belly but most of all you can see her malformed leg.

Last night she appeared quite a bit thinner.  If the baby survived it is probably tucked back in the trees.