The date is nearing for the Clinton Women’s Taster’s Tea and guess who needs to submit the recipes she is going to serve that evening and share in this years event cookbook? Now here’s a local food event that is worth putting on your holiday sweater and heading out into the gets-dark-early evening for. Festive décor, happy folks, tons of new recipes to taste and the perfect way to enter into a glorious holiday mood. (Monday, November 25, 5-7 p.m. at the Clinton, Minnesota Memorial Building, $6 per person)
Daughter, Gina, and I took a road trip to Door County, Wisconsin. Heaven(or surely kind of close)! One of our favorite stops was to buy locally grown cranberries. Pull off the road by the homemade sign, bag up what you want out of the beautiful wooden boxes full of freshly picked produce, smile back at the dear farmer who was thankful to have us stop, pay the $8 for a huge bag and try to control our excitement. . .that’s how it went. Oh the beauty of cranberries; both for their taste and rich red color.
My dear little granddaughter, Drew, was kind enough to share her latest kitchen creation. Perfect recipe and perfect timing, Drewsibell! I’m going to cook up my own cranberries, instead of use the canned, and serve it over chicken bites as an appetizer for the Taster’s Tea. What do you think of that?
A sweet keeper for Grandma’s ‘favorites’ recipe folder.
Loving my locally grown and beautiful berries!
Look at the amazing visitors in the cranberry bog as I bagged up my bounty!
Love at first sight!
Little Miss Drew
A big day of ‘finding joy in the creative journey’! I’ve accepted the challenge of creating new holiday greeting cards with as many recycled and old materials as I can possibly find. Paper is 100% recycled fiber, sparkly(washed)aluminum foil, thrift store finds of yarn, ribbon and even glitter! The pearl finish photo paper was rejected by a large print house but works fine printed up into bunnies, birds and winter scenes for the RedBarn card line!
Thinking thankful thoughts(and having pumpkin pie day dreams)to honor Thanksgiving while racing ahead to get things made for the Christmas season. Oh joy!
Someone, somewhere needs to know; I worked hard today! I’ll concede, no one needs to know. I’m stretching out my sat-too-long spine, looking at my pile of newly created holiday greeting cards(heavy on the recycled side) and feeling like I accomplished something in my creative biz! Maybe I need to toot my horn! Toot,toot!
Also having a little laugh. We creatives are able to design and manufacture on our dining room tables if we choose to. I did today. . .in my white, fuzzy, University of North Dakota bathrobe. Silence is good and then so is a break for listening to music or talk radio. This afternoon I found myself listening to a talk show host(not my dear radio personality friend, Julie) jabbering on about how she dislikes people who are already talking ‘Christmas’. From there she moved on to discussing her dislike of bloggers who literally share what they are eating for lunch. This one way chatter is starting to feel a little personal, Honey!! I’m in the club who likes to think about Christmas all year ’round and I enjoy seeing what other bloggers are serving up for lunch! In fact, MY homemade lunch today was worth talking about. Here, let me show you:)
Yellow tomato, potato, onion and red pepper. .all garden gifts from friend, Liz. Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme(go ahead and sing) from my little herb box in the backyard.
Me playing with my Sony! The bottle of Alamos, Red Blend? Came to the RedBarn by way of the wine-tasting dinner at Buffalo Ridge in Gary, South Dakota. Really, it started out in the high mountains of Argentina. It’s divine!
Saute vegetables in 2 teaspoons of olive oil for 10 minutes, add 1/4 cup of already cooked sausage, 2 fresh eggs, 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh herbs and cover until cooked through. Top with some ground pepper! Makes a generous, healthy ‘scramble’ . . .for anyone working on Christmas projects! Wink!
Just so I don’t get accused of making things too pretty, here’s the evidence! My rule-never use more than 10 pieces of cook/serve ware to make a dish. That way we can clean up in less than 2 minutes and get back to the fun, creative things in life! Cheers!
The word is vivid. We’re living the autumn days of visual feast, served up to each one of us, by the vivid foliage theatre playing live in our circle of life. Take your ticket and enjoy the show.
Each ordinary path becomes a lane of color.
A magical feel when we come upon a fence in the woods, don’t you think?
Vivid, the treasured colors of fall.
Splendid Maples with tones of gold and red
True confessions! I’ve said many times, “I’m not really a shopper.” Who am I trying to convince? I suppose it’s my broke-in-jeans country-girl side talking. . . .knowing there are important soulful thoughts to think, a bounty of natural materials to create new decor with, my beautiful and large family to love, cards to be written out and popped in the mail, friends to be cherished, called and met for lunch, exciting happenings on the art scene in my Big Stone Lake area. . . beautiful places to be visited and sweet country roads I have yet to turn onto. . . . calling my name.
So many more important things in my heart than shopping but. . . . .once in a while the desire pops up and must be fulfilled! It’s a delightful moment (when I finally do it) and you wouldn’t believe all of the wonderful things that one can shop for in a rural area. Don’t want to scare folks off so we can’t say it often; here goes, “Not even a single stop light in this whole county.”
The cat’s out of the bag . . . .I do like to shop. . .now and then. It’s double fun sharing our finds with each other, isn’t it?
Fall new- plant fix for Becky!(you’re not going to peck this one up Chickerooos) Totally in love with my new iron basket! ‘Vintage’ means you don’t have to iron the tablecloth you drop inside, right?
Beautiful Tammi, at the Ortonville Flower Shop, helped me do my shopping. When Tammi asked me if I wanted a bow on my new plant I said, “No thanks, but can you stick that “grow” sign in to remind the plant that it is supposed to last until at least the end of the month?” She did!
Whew! We made it through another successful Meander, 3-day art crawl event whose tour ’meanders’ for 60 miles along the beautiful Minnesota River Valley each first October weekend for the past 10 years. I had to wait a few days and settle back into my quiet country life before I could talk to you about it. If I tried writing about it on Sunday evening after the last visitor car had driven down the driveway and the last artist packed and scurried home. . .well, I would act like the starlet (minus the gown, hairdo and facelift); all choked up, blubbering away the names that needed to be said and people who should be thanked.
Fresh coffee coming right up! Thanks to everyone who visited at the RedBarn. If you couldn’t make it- don’t worry; plans have already started to take shape for next fall. Grapevines; clipped, strung on the barn. . . .dressed in her country-best for the Meander(I’m talkin’ about the RedBarn) Boots n’ jeans n’ warm socks for this ‘country chick’. A few hours west of us they had 48 ” of snow! No complaining about a bit of rain and temps in the 40′s.
It’s a ton of fun playing the supporting role of ‘lady who lives at the RedBarn’ during the Meander! Thank you, to all of you fabulous artists who made art, shoppers who really shopped this year, sponsors, volunteers, businesses who tagged on and added to the fun, families who worked behind the scenes and. . .just everyone who is part of the Meander ‘ village’ it takes to pull this off. I’m certain that many of you deserve an Oscar!
Ever had one of those bright, sunny days when you’re having so much fun with just yourself? Today’s my day! I keep peeking out the window only to make sure no one is driving down my little dirt road to spoil it.
Yesterday I had lunch with a friend. Put on my best jeans, met her at a real coffee shop in the real town nearby and jumped up on the high stool next to the cozy(high) table for two. Darn, she is good for what goes on inside my head! It’s a blessing to have a friend who picks up the phone and calls you for lunch. You both know you have a long list of things waiting to get done. . .and you meet for lunch anyway because it’s that important! During our friendly back and forth chatter I shared a little story about how the night before I had put my feet up on the coffee table(after one of those long intensely grueling country days I live), entered the world of ‘Cash Cab’ and made the dumb move to slide the screen on my smart phone. Rather than type back a reply to any of the FIVE requests facing me at 11:00 p.m. on my really ugly sofa, I decided to speak them out loud.
Message: Becky, would you like to meet us in the morning and talk on the radio?
Me: It’s so nice of you to ask. Let me think about that for a second(count to one-barely), NO!!!!!
Message: Becky, are you still willing to make 25 pounds of b-b que?
Me: Geez!! It’s a good thing you didn’t call and ask me that on a day like today. Did I really say ‘yes’ to that or did I nightmare it? Holy butchered Cow!
It gets worse so I’ll stop with the examples. My girlfriend lovingly teased me, “You don’t need me, you crack yourself up. A good reminder: Laugh a little more, poke some fun at the serious world around us and go ahead. . . .crack yourself up once in a while if you feel like it!
I’m working on a new ‘City Chicks’ greeting card for the RedBarn card shop. Poor girls have traveled afar from Minneapolis to attend The Meander Art Crawl, on the advice of Mayor R.T. Rybak, and now they are scared to enter the RedBarn for the cooking class. Suppose they took a look at the recipes and saw ‘hot wings’ on the menu? (wink)
Look who bought the little chair!!! Providence seeps into life . . .when you least expect it. “Life is not a problem to be solved, but a gift to be enjoyed.”
The auctioneer could be heard chattering in the distance. I was enjoying the merriment of the children’s tractor pull contest during the hot afternoon of the Cornfest activities when a bell went off in my head, “Ohhhh, they are selling the painted chairs over there in the park. I wonder if anyone will bid on the ones I painted (familiar self-doubt which we toss around from artist to artist ).”
At the edge of the auction crowd I bumped into the smiling faces of two expectant parents(and much adored friends); Billie and Brevik. These two lovable city slicker friends from Wayzata, Minnesota cherish their week-ends-at-the-cabin on Big Stone Lake just as much as I adore them. A moment of chatting, then Billie poked Brevik and reminded him to pay attention since the little chair she really wanted was soon coming up on the auction block.
You guessed it. . . .Billie and Brevik bought my little white-painted chair with the bugs on it!!! Glee, big-eyes, speechless. . . .thanks you two. . .more than words can say!!!