Canada Garden: 12/10

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Gray Day

It was gray and misty today and WaRM!  Tomorrow even warmer--59 degrees predicted for New Year's Eve,  then cold again for New Year's Day.  In the meantime, my plan  for the after-Christmas let-down and these gray days is to keep the house filled with flowers!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Wednesday Flowers

Our little house was full of  people we love this Christmas season.  It sure is quiet around here now.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Glorious Mess

Thanks to one of my flower shop friends (Trigs Floral & Home)  for posting this quote on their facebook wall this morning:  
"One of the most glorious messes in the world is the mess created in the living room on Christmas Day.  Don't clean it up too quickly.--Andy Rooney". 
Judson & Rachel, Betsy & Kyle
We are thankful thankful for the mess
in our living room this morning :)

Warren & V, Mark's parents

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


It was GrEaT having Isaac home for a few days!  We miss him, but we're glad he's happy.  Can't wait to visit him in Colorado.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Biscotti for Santa

Giada from the Food Network shared this recipe.  We made them while mama and PJ were here, with a few little changes,  and they turned out really good!

2 cups flour and 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder:  mix together in a bowl (Why do they always say to use another bowl?  I just use the measuring cup.)
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
1 tsp lemon zest
(and I added a little almond flavoring too)
1/4 tsp salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup pistachios, coarsely chopped
2/3 cup dried cranberries (I didn't have enough cranberries the first time, so I added some dried blueberries.  PJ says she's going to use cherries)
12 oz good quality white chocolate (The chocolate was a mess.  Almond bark worked/tasted much better.)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
Mix together the sugar, butter, lemon zest, almond flavoring, salt.  Beat in the eggs one at a time.  Add flour mixture and beat just til blended.  Stir in the nuts & berries.

Form the dough into a 13 inch long, 3 inch wide log on the baking sheet.  Bake til light golden, about 40 minutes.  Cool for 30 minutes.

Using a sharp serrated knife, cut the log on a diagonal into 1/2 to 3/4 inch slices.  Arrange slices on the baking sheet, and bake til pale golden, about 15 minutes.  I turned mine and baked a few more minutes on the other side.

Melt the chocolate (good luck)  or almond bark as directed.  Giada says to dip one end of the biscotti  and shake off any excess.  I dipped just the bottom side.  Mark likes them plain.  Let cool and store in airtight container for up to 4 days.  She says you can freeze for up to 3 weeks.  I'm going to try that. 

Okay, hope Santa likes biscotti & coffee!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Life Changes. . . but Love is Forever

Sitting on Santa's Lap--1960?
Mama and PJ and Jeff's visit was such a nice surprise for Christmas!  When mama saw this collage sitting on the bookshelf, she said "who made this?"  Made me laugh, cause she made it for me in 1974.  Thirty-six years ago!  
Tommy and I were just married and it was my first Christmas away from mama and the kids.  I was so homesick for them and she sent me a box of Christmas ornaments for the tree and this collage.  I have treasured it all these years.  
Back then, we didn't have the money to go to Wal-Mart and buy a bunch of decorations.  I'm glad we didn't, because I wouldn't have this one.  

The sequined wreath is a little pin that mama used to make to give away.  We always had one on our coats.

The saying "Life Changes Season to Season, Year to Year, but Love is Forever" is from a Christmas card that Tommy gave me.  So ironic and so true.  He was with me for only a few years, but he changed my life.

And the bottom picture is of all us kids, on the back steps of the house on highway 60, all dressed up on our way to church.

Okay, what's your favorite Christmas decoration?  

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Peonies in December

Aren't these miraculous?  Six gorgeous stems and every one of them opened perfectly.  All the way from South America.  Thank you floral industry :)

Friday, December 10, 2010


It's been a great Friday night, sitting around visiting with my mom and PJ and Jeff :)

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

My Friend Grace

Those of you who have been reading here all these years may have heard me mention my friend Grace.  She was the inspiration for this blog and when she asked me to help her with her wedding flowers, she inspired me to go to flower school too.    We don't get together very often, but it's always so nice to see her and catch up.  Recently she visited The Farm for the first time, and guess what?  She loves The Farm too!  Well, that's really not such a surprise.  Most everybody who visits falls in love with it too.  Here's Grace's take on The Farm over on her  blog Grace Uncensored.  Thanks Grace!

Monday, December 06, 2010

Walking Stick

Yesterday  while I was going through my daily blog tour, I found this new (to me) blog called From The Soil, by a gardener in Champaign.  Great garden inspiration from a neighbor just a hundred miles or so to the east of this garden.  Gardening is taking a back seat to Christmas decorating right now, but I am already feeling a case of spring fever coming on. . .

Mark helped me put lights on this shrub back when we had a weekend of near-70 degree temps.  We're missing that weather now!  Lori gave me this walking stick a few years ago and I love it.  During the summer,  the leaves are nothing special and totally cover the interesting lines. But it's a star during the winter months, especially when it's covered with snow.
I woke up with a crappy cold this morning.   Mark, my own personal weatherman, tells me it might get down to ZeRo tonight.  This early?  That's not right!?!  But we're hoping for warmer temps this weekend, cause my mom & my sis are coming!  Yay!  Okay, going to make some hot lemonade now.  Gotta get well  so we can enjoy our visit. . .

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Under the Tree

Doesn't Betsy look cute in her ponytail?  
Can't wait to see her under our tree :)

Wednesday, December 01, 2010