About this Blog: Bread making recipes, knit and crochet projects, wood working, gardening, digital imaging, travel, cruise ships, Labrador Retrievers, and more....

About the Header Image: Idlebrook Wendy Darling Evensen, the baby of our family.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Whole Wheat Cheddar and Onion Loaves

Good morning,

Today's bread is Whole Wheat with Cheddar and Onion. 

The onion flavor is enhanced because the onions were caramelized in butter before being added to the other ingredients. 

This one smells and tastes fabulous!

Retirement is so good!


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Current Project: Babyghan

Good morning,

Lavender and green are the colors of the day for a new "babyghan".  I took this picture shortly before I finished it.

It will be paired with a matching crocheted doll and be available in the shop soon.

What are you making today?


UPDATE!  This baby blanket and matching doll have been finished and the set is now available in the shop.  Click the image to see more: 


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Banana Bread!

Good morning,

The bread of the day is Banana Bread.

I consulted Betty Crocker's very old cookbook that I inherited from my Mom for this one.

I've added 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg to Betty's recipe. 



Monday, June 19, 2017

Puppy Pedicures

Good morning,

Our pups line up to get their pedicures from Catherine.
This is Wendy having her nails done while Penny waits in line for her turn.
Total trust.
Look carefully on the right side of the image above and you can see Erik is waiting his turn, too. 

So sweet!


Sunday, June 18, 2017

Happy Father's Day and Lily Pads

Good morning,

 Happy Father's Day to all the great Dads out there especially My Honey who is a fantastic Dad and Grandpa.  Today our son and grandson will be here to celebrate.  It's raining so our picnic will be inside.   

I sure do miss my dad, too.  He would be 113 years old this year. I think of him every day and of all the love he had for us.

It's a stay-at-home family day.  The water lilies are flourishing this year in our fish pond. I took that picture a few days ago when the sun was shining and the water lilies were growing faster than the weeds. 

Stay tuned for blossoms!


Saturday, June 17, 2017

Today's Bread

Good morning,

Here's the bread of the day.  This batch is whole wheat with cottage cheese.  I have quite a few of my bread recipes here on my blog.  Click on the image above to see my bread recipes.
I've been asked about the wall tile design in our kitchen.  When we remodeled our kitchen a few years ago we selected the fruit basket theme.  These are hand made tiles from a company in Indiana. We're so glad we made the decision to include this artwork.

All the best,

Friday, June 16, 2017

Catherine's Chicken Tortilla

Good morning,

Catherine made white chicken chili recently that worked very well to make chicken tortillas. 

It's good to have a daughter who likes to cook!

I'm not a fan of Mexican food, but this was good.


Thursday, June 15, 2017

Patio Project

Good morning,

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous in Cincinnati this Spring.  We spend a great deal of time on our patio enjoying the weather, the birds, and the garden.

I take different projects along depending where I am and what we're doing.  The patio seems to be where I make hats this Spring.  :)  The one in the image is to restock the shop for one just sold and delivered in Arizona.

Retirement is good!


Click here to see the finished hat.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Feels So Good!

Wendy:  Oh, yes, Daddy, that's the spot!  Just keep scratching right there!

Monday, June 12, 2017


Good morning,

These peaches are growing in our front yard.  We also have squirrels in our front yard and those squirrels will pull off one peach after another, take one bite, then throw them on the ground.

My Dad and Mom always had peach and apple trees on their property.  Dad would spray them every Spring and we would have so much fruit we hardly had time to eat it, make pies with it, and can it.  Of course, we gave plenty of it away, too.

Perhaps it's time for me to figure a way to guard these peaches from the squirrels so we can enjoy some of them. :)


Sunday, June 11, 2017

A Garden for the Birds

Good morning,

We still haven't rented out our bird house which is quite a surprise considering how many birds we have on our property.  We're wondering if it has to do with three dogs outside so much of the time.  We have numerous nests of birds on our property, but no one has moved into the bird house yet.  That's OK, it'll happen.

We have, as we have had for quite some time, an unusually high number of Cardinal couples nesting on our property as well as Robins, Doves, and smaller birds. 

The orange Trumpet Vine has taken over our very large tree in the middle of our back yard.  It grows more than sixty feet up the tree and has dropped so many seeds that it has baby vines all over our garden.  The Trumpet Vine attracts Humming Birds so we have plenty of those, too.

We just love sitting on our patio watching and listening to all of the beautiful birds.  What a blessing.


Saturday, June 10, 2017

Mint Julip? Mojito? Mint Tea?

Good morning,

We have a half barrel of mint growing on our patio so have enough to make whatever we'd like to have.  It smells just wonderful and also keeps some bugs away from bothering us while we're outside.
I like it with iced tea or lemonade.  Refreshing!


Friday, June 9, 2017

Parking Lot Pet Peeve

Good morning,

My car is on the left;  someone else's car is on the right. 

Do you ever take pictures of cars that park so close they will have difficulty opening their door without hitting your car?  I not only took this picture, I took a picture showing both of our license tags.

Fortunately, when I came out of the store, the car on the right was gone and the side of my car was still OK.  Another car, a red one, had parked in that spot on the right.  That red car had parked properly in the center of the space.



Thursday, June 8, 2017

Road Trip Knitting

Good morning,

Whenever we take a road trip I take along some knitting.  This time I started a new basket weave sweater with a new color yarn.  Wow, I love the way this color works up!

This is the progress I made in two hours between Cincinnati and Louisville.   On the way home I doubled the amount completed.  This is fun!

The sweater will be fit a 34-36-38 inch chest and will be available in the shop when finished. Let me know if you'd like one in a different size. 

All the best,


Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Comfort Food

Good morning,

Meatloaf.  Yes, definitely comfort food around here!

Our daughter requested I make this dinner and we all enjoyed it:  Mom's meatloaf, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, lettuce and tomatoes (I took the picture before I added the cottage cheese on top of the lettuce and tomatoes). 



Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Fungus Among Us

Good morning,

There's a fungus among us.  We get some pretty fungi growing on an old tree trunk on our property.

It's amazing what a variety of changes within a short period of time can be found in a small area, isn't it!


Monday, June 5, 2017

Is Someone at the Gate?

Good morning,

There was a noise in the driveway around the corner from the patio where we were with the pups the other day. All three of them stood in a row at attention listening to see if they could hear or see someone coming into the back yard.

This time there was no one at the gate.  The sound was probably a squirrel in the driveway.

I love the way they react in unison. Don't mess with our security team!


Sunday, June 4, 2017

More Indoor Blooms

Good morning,

I am loving my indoor garden.  I haven't added anything new to it, I'm just working with all the plants that have accumulated here over the past few years.  We don't have a lot of space to offer sunshine to our indoor plants, but I have plans to improve on that situation.

While traveling ten weeks away, then ten weeks at home, the plants suffered.  I would work on them when I was home, then they were pretty much on their own while I was gone.  They were watered once in awhile, but I'm sure no one else talked to them and groomed them daily.  ;)  Of course, I didn't expect anyone else to put the time into them.  I was happy they were alive when I got home.
It has been seven months since we came home full time and the plants are quite happy about it.  That basket of plants was what we sent to Catherine when she was hospitalized in January, 2015.  The plants in it are not only still alive, they are thriving. 

What are you growing in your garden?


Saturday, June 3, 2017

Erik Update - The Final Week

Good morning,

Erik is improving every day after his knee surgery five weeks ago.  He's still on leash walks only, but we are now taking him a little further than just the back yard.
We're getting to the front yard now where he can stop to sniff the flowers.  :)

Erik is such a good boy.  He has handled all of this so very well. 

We look forward to when Erik can run and play again.  He'll have an x ray within the week to confirm the bone is properly healed and Erik can return to his normal activities.  I'm sure he'll be happy about that, too!

Thanks for all of your good wishes for Erik.


Friday, June 2, 2017

Needlework Update - June, 2017

Good morning,

Happy June!  New, Bright, and Beautiful in the shop this month is this Pink Cables and Lace Sweater.  It's perfect for year round to wear wherever it is chilly.  This sweater is also available in other colors and sizes.  You can order a sweater to be made just for you.  Click the image for more information. 
This Tuxedo Wine or Sparkling Water Bottle Cover pairs beautifully with Bottle Dress and Hat Sets.  These make beautiful table decorations for weddings or any other formal occasion.
These Find It Keep It Baskets have a loop to hang on your door knob or sit on your table.  Keep small items handy including your keys and cell phone.
These baskets can also sit on your table.  Click here to see the colors available.  If you don't see the color you want, we'll be happy to make baskets for you in your favorite colors.
We've restocked Toilet Tissue Toppers this month, too.  Click here to see the the many colors we have available to ship today.
And, finally for this month, we've added more cloche hats.
 These also make beautiful chemo caps.  An extensive variety of colors and sizes is available here.

That's it for this month.  More items are added to the shop every day so stop by and take a look.

Thank you so very much for your encouragement!  Let us know if we can make something for you.

We now return to our regularly scheduled blogging.  ;)

All the very best,

Original and Traditional Hand Crafted Designs

Thursday, June 1, 2017

More Cicadas!

Good morning,

The Cicadas continue to hatch and invade our yard. 
When Catherine and I had the pups outside there was a new, noisy batch of cicadas hatching.  I took the image above, then went back for a second shot to try to get one in better focus,...
... but I was photo bombed by our three year old Lab, Wendy.  Wendy finds these critters quite tasty.  I didn't get my second image of this one because it went too quickly into Wendy's tummy. 

If you are interested, do a google search for Cicada Recipes.  It seems some humans like them, too.  I'll still pass.
It was interesting to find the cicadas in various states of emerging from their shells.
 Notice the red eyes.  This cicada is morphing quickly into an adult.
 And, here comes another.

Mother nature's critters are fascinating.