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Joyously Living Life





Updated: 2017-09-19T17:34:01.629-04:00

 



Vignettes From My Garden

2014-08-14T23:35:36.423-04:00

Been living here for a few years now and the garden and patio are finally looking full and lush.  I am so happy with the way my plants are filling in.  I try to do mostly perennials so I don't have to do too much planting each Spring.  This is the gate from the patio to the pool.OK, my pots are annuals.  The sweet potato plants went crazy.  Can the potatoes from these plants be eaten?  I can see them pushing out of the ground.  Anyone know?  Another pot to the left of the gate.Continuing to the left of the gate is this lovely huge bush.  I cannot remember it's name but it begins with an "L".  It gets small clusters of lavender flowers all over it and the bees love it too.  It blooms late and it is just now setting buds.  Time to trim that Monarda (bee balm). Continuing to the left are 2 steps from the patio to the back lawn, just behind this pot.  Tuber Roses in the pot should bloom soon.Steps to the left again from the patio to the garage. This is a favorite Forget-Me-Not.Such pretty leaves. Behind you if you are looking at the Forget-Me-Not are the stairs to the sunroom.  My pot of herbs that I have been clipping all Summer.Sweet Miss Kitty is sleeping on her "Petting Chair".  She can be on the other side of the patio and if she wants to be petted she will race to this chair so that you know what is on her mind.  So funny.  All of our kitty's are strays that have now become a part of the family.This is my Fairy Garden.  Love the angel and the glitter balls, as I call them.  You can buy them on QVC.  They come in a set of 3.  I have 3 colors, green, blue and silver.  Each ball is battery operated and has a timer.  Mine go on at dusk and off 5 hours later and for those 5 hours they glitter and sparkle.So pretty. This is the Wisteria that I planted last year.  It has made strong gains this year.Up and up to the deck to the sunroom and up the railing to above the windows.  The plan is to run the vine across the top of the windows to shade them during the summer.This is my Handsome man.  He likes to sleep on the steps.  It is cool there and he gets lots of attention each time someone passes him on the steps.This is the covering on the patio shading it from the late afternoon sun so that we can have dinner here each night.  The cold winter was hard on my boxwood.  There are 5 growing in the raised planter on the patio.  I am trying to save them but I may have to dig them out.  These 2 look almost dead.This clematis is still booming.  It is planted in the center of the 5 boxwood and  is running up the light string that runs around the structure on the patio.I love this outdoor rug.  Do you have one outside?  It feels good on my bare feet.The canvas top can be pulled down toward the setting sun creating a cool space for meals.I was experimenting with my camera and attempted to get pictures last night of my glitter balls.  Here are two different shots.  I really need more practice. I am working on the front lawn doing some landscaping and I will be sharing pictures later.Thanks for stopping by,~ ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ ~ Please stop over at my new blog;www.JoyouslyVibrantLife.com  I am linking up with these gals:(Links to come) My Romantic Home French Country Cottage[...]



I Would Like You To Meet My Neighbors

2014-05-12T14:47:57.308-04:00

  She is so sweet.  She and her friends live just down the street in the buttercup pasture. This is my hard working neighbor plowing the fields for planting. This is tobacco planted in the field.  Lots of tobacco is grown in Lancaster County.  Many buggy's are driven here instead of cars.  The Amish and the Mennonite. The Mennonite drive black carriages and the Amish drive gray carriages. They do not call them buggy's (we do, the English)Got to get the lingo right.They call them carriages, so says my Amish friend. The children who cannot fit in the carriage ride their bike behind.The whole family gets to their destination one way or another. This is George.  He is all around the neighborhood in his green wagon. Children walking to school by our house each morning. One of many horses living near by. Enjoy your Spring, wherever you are.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~[...]



Christmas Tutorial: How I Wrap My Tree In Ribbons

2015-11-16T09:42:06.218-05:00

Hello Friends~ ~ ~I know it's a bit late for this year.  Most of you have your tree up for this season.I wanted to share with you how I wrap my Christmas tree in ribbon.I really love the look it creates.  I start with a sheer ribbon that has been cut in different length pieces. The way I came up with this technique is that many years ago I was recycling ribbon that had already been cut into pieces when I decided to wrap my tree with it.This is how I put the first piece on the tree.It is a short piece maybe 2 feet long.I use the shortest pieces at the top.I didn't start at the top because I always fill the top of the tree with silver stars and snowy branches.  You can start at the tippy top if you like.About 3-4 inches from the end secure the ribbon with a wire to the selected branch.I like the ends to poke out here and there. As you are twisting the ribbon and working it into the tree put a piece of wire around the ribbon to gather it and twist the wire around just the perfect branch.   You will know it when you get to it.When the tree is filled you won't notice the wires.See, don't just wrap the tree but twist the ribbon and sort of fit it into the branches so that it doesn't just sit on the ends of the branches.Be sure to work at a downward angle.I would probably just lift this piece as it is laying and drape it over the branches and wire it to secure.Work the ribbon behind a few of the branches continuing to twist it and wire it to get the look you want.  It's best not to unwind more ribbon than you can manage. . . . . But sometimes as I am fastening a wire this happens.Then I re-roll the end shorter so that I can manage it better.Ahh, much better.Love that little twist in this ribbon. Just keep going and wrapping,  Round and round. I don't usually begin another piece at the end of the last piece.  Looks much better with all the other trims on the tree but this is how mine looked with just the ribbon on it and a couple of swirly, glittery things on it.  Here she is all decked out for the holidays.First time I have ever had a red and white tree.I kind of like it.The colors last year were all silver and white, pretty too. If you have a moment I would appreciate it if you stopped by my New ebay shop.I am so excited to finally get it up and running.  I am just beginning so please stop by often to see what I have for you.  It is: PLEASANT VALLEY ANTIQUES This link above will take you to my shop blog.Please follow me.  Thanks for stopping by I appreciate each one of you. More of my Christmas House Tour to follow. ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ I am linking with these gals.  Stop over and see them too. My Romantic Home Between Naps On The Porch French Country Cottage Beth's Tips and Tutorials  [...]



Run. . . .Don't Walk To This China Sale !

2013-10-17T12:53:07.307-04:00

If you have a Lenox China Outlet Store near you and you love their Butlers Pantry pattern as much as I do.  Git over there right now girls. Yesterday while stopping at the outlet stores I spied a big white tent in the Lenox outlet parking lot.Now in my mind a tent means Huge savings and I was not disappointed.  I wasn't shopping for china but I have been drooling over this pattern for years.The tent held great little accent pieces but inside the store was the sale of a lifetime.All the irregulars were on sale and on top of that another 25% off.  I got 10 dinner plates and 10 Trattoria Accent plates for a bit more then the price of 2 (yes that's right 2) Full Price dinner plates!I was thunder struck.  I would have bought more but I got the last ones in the dinner plates.  Now there are many other plates in this pattern that coordinate to make a lovely table.  Some have embossed fruit on the borders and some a flower pattern, some are sweet little dots.  Wish they would have had more of the tiny dots.  I would have got them too.I got what I wanted and am doing a happy dance in the dining room.  Just wanted to let you all know and share the Joy.As a side note I decorated the plate with Zucchini bread I made from a Betty Crocker recipe that we love.The little piggy butter dish is from Pottery Barn.She looks nice with the Butlers Pantry china and the little cream bottle I got antiquing last weekend.Oh, Did I tell you we have a new kitten?  Can you tell by this picture?  She is into everything.  Loves to play with the silk flowers.  Her name is Jasmine because she is pretty as a flower.I found her wandering around the back yard near the woods a few months ago.  She was so tiny she fit in the palm of my one hand.  She is growing so quickly and bringing Joy to our lives.  Love kittens.Thanks for stopping by and be sure to let me know if you get to the china sale.Make it a great day!~ ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ ~[...]



Great Lighted Pumpkin Decor

2013-10-09T18:34:04.767-04:00

Seems that many of you already have your Autumn Décor finished.  I love seeing what you have done.Last week it was in the 80's here and I was loving itThis week the temp is in the 70's.  A bit cooler but still not Fall to me.  My little Halloween witch was calling so I unpacked her and got busy. Then these came in the mail.  Oh Joy!  My lighted wax pumpkins I ordered from QVC.Do you Q?  I love staying home and doing my shopping at QVC.  They have such unique items.(They are not paying me for this I am just sharing them because I love them) The pumpkins came in a set of 4.  I'll share the item # so you can easily find them if you like them too.  (#H200893)  These are called the Toile set.  There were two other designs but this one is sweet.  What do you think? I mixed them up with other décor I had from years ago. Some silk leaves, Indian corn and little white pumpkins I got at the roadside stand and a few brown books to add height.  Each pumpkin has two AA batteries and a timer.  Each night they come on automatically at the same time and stay lit for 4 hours. Our house is a Bi-level and the railing usually installed by the contractor in the entrance way steps was replaced by a half wall that I just love to decorate for all the seasons.  It is in the living room and is also seen in the foyer.It is almost like decorating a mantle. . .long and narrow.  I kept it simple because we have a new little kitten.  If you  have a kitten you know what I am talking about.  Everything is fair game as a toy!Anyone know what I have to do to make my picture size larger?  I can't seem to locate where to change it.   Thanks for stopping by for a visit.  I love reading your comments.Make it a Great day.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~[...]



How Many China Cabinets? Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Tutorial

2013-06-19T18:38:51.653-04:00

 How many do you have?This was my first.  There is a matching buffet across the room.Got more dishes?  You know what that's like, right?Need another cabinet.Love the curve across the front of this one.This is the one I am working on right now.Pink inside!Annie Sloans Old White and Scandanavian Pink mixed with old white inside.This is my newest love!  What a treasure.Love the chicken wire on the side doors.Also nice that it comes in two pieces.Makes it much easier to move.OK, Back to the one I am working on right now.Notice the difference in the color on the top and the bottomThis is a better shot.  The piece has already been waxed with ASCP Clear wax and left to dry, then buffed.   On the left I applied ASCP Dark wax lightly, with a brush and rubbed it off quickly.  On the right I have not used the dark wax yet.  The way I do it the wax just darkens the paint slightly.  Some gals use lots of wax and get an even darker finish.  All I want to do is darken it slightly.You can see here that I mixed probably 1/3 cup of Clear wax with 1/2 tsp. of dark wax to get this color.  I never use the dark wax without mixing it first with clear.  It is just too dark for my taste.I ever so slightly dip my waxing brush in in the dark mix.  Just a tiny bit on the tip of the brush.  Then I sort of dry brush it with the grain across the surface of the piece.With a clean rag I wipe the dark wax off.In the crevices on the right you can see bits of the dark wax.This foot has not been waxed yet but above it has.This is just the technique I use to get the finish I want for my pieces.Here she is all finished.  She will sit for 24 hours then I will buff her and fill her with dishes!She is sitting on the big wall in the sunroom.  This room is becoming an extension of my kitchen.Wait till you see what I do with this room.This is another pic of the top with the dark wax and the bottom still to do.I remember before I started using Annie Sloan Chalk Paint I was scared to start for fear of messing up a piece of furniture.  After a bit you get fearless, so don't delay, jump right in you will love the results.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~Party Links Romantic HomeBetween Naps On The Porch Stone GableSavvy Southern StyleShare The Love WednesdayFeathered Nest FridayShades Of Amber[...]



Large Embossed Metal Box?

2013-02-01T17:35:50.020-05:00

 Hello Friends,I went antiquing with my friend Joy on Thursday and this is one of the treasures I came home with.  It's a large embossed box.  It is 20 X 13 X 16" deep.  It has a wonderful cottage on the top.  In the right hand corner it says "Ann Annaways Cottage.  Guess I'll have to do a little google research and see what I can find.The ends are just hammered metal.  Nothing fancy.It is very clean on the inside.  I wonder if it had a specific purpose or if it was just for decoration and storage.It has a little chain on one corner so the lid stays opened. The back.The front has an English street scene.  There is a pub on the left with a sign handing out front.Sweet!In my mind I am seeing it painted Annie Sloan Old White then rubbed with a little dark wax to bring out the pictures.  Then maybe a little rub of gold.  Any other suggestions?  I would love to hear your ideas.   What would you do with it?Thanks for stopping by~ ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ ~   I am linking to these parties this week: Romantic Home Between Naps On The Porch Funky Junk Interiors French Country Cottage My 1929 Charmer[...]



Sweet New / Old Crystal Chandy

2013-01-26T13:33:19.132-05:00

  A Dream Has Come True!Isn't she a Beauty?  I have been wanting an old crystal chandy for so many years.A few months ago I want to an auction and there she was. . .calling my name."Ahrisha. . .Do you see me hanging here in the corner?""Take me Home."  She whispered. That's a reflection of the Christmas tree in the mirror.  Yes, it's still up and I am lovin' it.There is a tiny little metal tag wired to the top labeled "SPAIN".Lots of bronze and crystals.  Just like I requested.I am considering replacing the candles with new creamy colored ones with the drippy wax running down the sides.  What would you do,  Keep it original or replace them? I hung her in a corner of the livingroom by the sofa for reading light.  I love to curl up here with a book. I am sharing at these wonderful blog friends.Stop by for a visit.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ Between Naps On The Porch My Romantic Home Share The LoveBe InspiredThe Thrifty GrooveFunky Junk Interiors[...]



Joyeux Noel

2013-01-05T10:22:47.440-05:00


Holiday Greetings to all my Wonderful Blog Friends~ ~ ~


I am in love with my flocked Silver and White tree.

 Wishing you Shining Days and Nights
Filled with the Peace and Joy


Of this Blessed Season.
 
 
May 2013 Be Your Best and Happiest Year Ever.
 

I am so looking forward to it.
 
See you all in the New Year.
~ ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ ~
Stop by these great blogs for a visit.
www.savvysouthernstyle.net

http://frenchcountrycottage.blogspot.com/
 



A SERVER AND ANNIE SLOAN CHALK PAINT

2012-11-06T07:57:11.814-05:00

Hello Friends~ ~ ~I found this great little server and it is perfect for the small space I have.  The above picture is the finished color after I painted it with ASCP in Scandavian Pink first then Cream and a mix of cream and olive to make a sage color over the pink.  I did a sort of stippling over the pink with the cream and sage. The finish after waxing looks amazing.  Here is a close up. I love how the pink pokes out here and there.  I was careful not to fill in all the spots with the stippled colors.  The finished color looks like leather or suede.The below picture is the beginning of the process.  Have you tried ASCP in Scandavian Pink yet.  I love the old world shade of pink that it is.         This pic above is the stippling that I did with the Cream and the Sage color that I mixed up.  It looks just awful till you first wax it with clear wax then with the dark wax to really blend the colors.  Then I wax it again with clear wax to further remove some of the dark wax.  I did not use the dark wax until I mixed it with a lot of the clear wax to tone the shade of brown that it is down to a lighter brown.  This technique works the best for me and makes it easier to remove most of the dark wax. After each waxing I let the wax dry overnight before I buffed it to a shine.  I'm not sure if you have to wait that long but it just worked for me.   Now scroll back up to the top picture to see the finished server again.  What a difference.  This technique is not for everyone but for just one piece here or there I love it.  I am off to the garage to finish painting my new/old bedroom suite.  Gotta love this ASCP !Sorry about the spacing of this post but I have yet to understand how to load my pictures.  If I attempt to move them around after loading I get big spaces.  I am at my wits end.  If you have suggestions I would love to hear them.Thanks for stopping by for a visit.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~I am linking to these Blog Party'shttp://shadesofamberinc.blogspot.com/www.betweennapsontheporch.netwww.carterscottage.nethttp://thededicatedhouse.blogspot.comhttp://www.jenniferrizzo.com/http://romantichome.blogspot.comhttp://modvintagelife.blogspot.com/ [...]



July 4th. Picnic

2013-06-26T08:23:29.315-04:00

Hello Friends~ ~ ~I was looking for a creative way to set up my picnic table.Instead of a centerpiece I did an arrangement at one end of the table.First I covered the table with a French Provencial cloth. I placed the napkins in an old crock.You can purchase great big colorful napkins at Ikea. The silver in blue ball jars. . . The glasses in my Pottery Barn carrier. . . and the white dinner plates stacked all at one end of the tableunder the old oak tree.Everyone helped themselves from the bounty and found a place to sit under the wonderful oak tree.The shaded coolness was appreciated by all.Hope you are enjoying your holiday week.TIP:  A centerpiece doesn't have to be in the center of the table.Think outside the box and have fun!I am linking to these great parties:My Romantic HomeTablescape ThursdayStone GableThe Style SistersThe Dedicated HouseHappy 4th. Of July Week~ ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ ~[...]



A Little Of This And That

2012-06-13T15:34:41.100-04:00

Hello Friends~ ~ ~Sharing some of the fun things I have seen and been doing this Spring.How do you like this Beetle?  Isn't she a Gem?Saw her for sale on the way home from the beach.She is PINK so she has to be a girl, right?There was a red one too.I can't stand it how  cute they are.I love my silver Beetle but this is amazing.Think I'm A little to old to be seen driving it but it sure does pull at my heartstrings.While at Ocean City, MD I found this candy shop on the boardwalk.Their candy is hand made and I purchased a pound of dark chocolate caramelsWith sea salt on top! I highly recommend this candy.Last fall Mom and I took clippings (slips) from our gernaniums.  They were first put into water till they grew roots.  Then we potted them into tin cans, just like Grandma used to do, and grew them on the window sills all winter.They are now planted in the garden and doing well.Pictures to follow.This is a close up of Moms pride and Joy.  A lamp she got right after she and Daddy got married many years ago.  Actually there were two matching lamps but Daddy broke one of them many years ago but he blamed it forever on the cat.  So funny.  Daddy was quite a character.  Miss him very much and honor him this Fathers Day.Wishing all of you a lovely Fathers Day.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~[...]



She's Gone . . .

2012-02-22T08:58:19.879-05:00

(image) I have some sad news. Our Dear little Caramel is gone. . .over the Rainbow Bridge. She was hit by a car last week. She died immediately. Small Blessing. The incident was witnessed by a neighbor who stopped to assist. The woman who hit her was devistated are we.

(image) She was born here and was with us for 7 short months. I cannot believe she is gone. She had the sweetest spirit and will be missed for as long as I live.

Her brother Licorice misses her so much. They were a tag team and were always together. He seems quiet and a little lost.

(image) In the bag together. . .playing.


(image) I am so grateful to have Licorice.


(image) We know that we take a chance by letting them be inside and outside kittens. They were born outside and are not happy being inside all the time. They slept on the bed at night. . .together but now there is only one. She is so missed.

Thanks for listening. I thought you would like to know.

~ ~Ahrisha~ ~



Do You Think I'm A Little Late?. . .

2011-12-30T20:25:38.054-05:00

I just put the tree up! Got The flocked tree I have always wanted. It is slim so it will fit nicely in the livingroom. The little tree we had this year will go in the entrance way at the top of the steps next year.Found some beautiful glass ornaments at KMart. If you are interested in silvery gray ones, yes gray glass ornaments rush over to KMart now. They were stunning but do not match my house so I got the wine colored ones. Finally got it put together and the lights lit so it will stay up for a few days. See all the snow on the floor. Better get busy cleaning up.A few pictures of what I have been doing this month. This is a little of what I have been doing for the last month. What a armful of JOY! Remember I said that the kittens will be staying outside. Well that didn't last long.I named them after my favorite candy Licorice and Caramel.Wrapping gifts. Citrus Marmalade.I got the recipe from Kathy at A Delightsome Life. I used Kamquats and oranges from our trip to Florida earlier in the month.Baked my favorite cookies Russian Tea Balls. Baked cut out Sand Tarts from a recipe I have been using for many years. Cute cutters, don't you agree? The one in the front was my Grand Mothers. Got a great new cookie sheet. It is very heavy and does not bend in the oven heat. It has a big lip all the way around to keep it strong and I forgot to put the pic of the wrapper in the post. Does anyone know how to add a photo and work it into the post just where you want it, after the fact? I cannot move my pictures around once they are downloaded to the post. Is this normal?I can't Click and Drag in my blog posts. Used to be able to but no more. If you know how Please let me know. I store my cutters in this basket on the dining room floor. They are just to pretty to store away.More kitten photos. These two have been so much fun and a comfort as I lost my Beloved Black cat Spirit in November. He was my best fur friend for over 11 years and it was so difficult to let him go. Look at that smile! Yes I do believe it is a smile.A last little photo of Licorice who will not be outdone by his sister Caramel.Wishing You An Amazing 2012!~ ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ ~Linking up to these wonderful ladies.Foodie FridayMy Romantic Home[...]



Christmas Home Tour 2011

2011-12-20T09:27:48.026-05:00

~ ~ ~and singing I have been doing my friends. I do love this time of year and decorating my home for the holidays. I have Christmas Caroles playing all day. I just love using Pandora.I covered these letters from Michael's with Mod Podge, hymnal pages and hung them over the archway between the dining room and living room. How do you like them? This is my small china cabniet in the entranceway landing. I just love a cozy home when it's cold outside. The top of the tree.Gotta love glitter and stars!~ ~ ~and more stars.It is just a tiny 4 foot tree but I love the sparkle and shine. Do you remember Department 56? These angels are about 30 years old and I still love them and put them out every year. They were a gift from my Mother. The tree sits on a tiny antique table in a corner of the living room.The picture beside the china is one of my favorites. A boy and girl sitting on a swing. She has her hands in a fur muff. Wouldn't that be fun instead of gloves?I think I used 6 garlands for the archway doubling them up for a lush look. Then I poked extra stems of greens in here and there too.Behind the curtins are the French doors to the sunroom.I have linked up to these Christmas Parties:I'll Be Home For Christmas PartyBetween Naps On The PorchThanks for stopping by for a visit. I wish that all your Dreams come true this holiday season.May you have Peace, Joy and Abundance of Happiness.Love to all of you,~ ~Ahrisha~ ~[...]



The Last Peaches and Flowers of Summer

2011-09-15T20:32:43.881-04:00

Don't you just love peaches?These are a variety called Loring and are asking to be a pie. I had a few sweet cherries in a bowl so I added them to the mix. Everything in the shell and the butter at the ready to dot on the top.Like I said before, my pies look very homemade but that doesn't stop me from making them. I cut a few leaves from the scraps to decorate the top. In honor of the falling leaves that will soon litter the ground here. Already the trees are beginning to turn yellow and orange. Seems a little early, doesn't it? Be sure to bake your pies on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper. They sure do make a mess. Why is it that everytime I begin a project around here help finds it's way to me. Do you see the ears? That's my helper. Actually he eats my flower arrangements so I have to be careful what I bring into the house. This sweet little pitcher is a recent flea market find. The flowers are a fall blooming clematis that is just full of flowers this year. Tiny little white ones and I added a few red geraniums. Red and white makes my heart sing. How about you? What colors do it for you? The new kittens have been named~ ~ ~Caramel and Licorice. Can you guess which is which? Licorice says, I really really love my sister but this flower pot is getting smaller and smaller. I don't think we can do this for much longer. Can you believe I found both of them in this 8" round pot. Must be like being in the womb. Caramel needed a good stretch after her nap. Caramel and Licorice are my two favorite candies and these little guys are so sweet! The winner of the Girard's Salad Dressing Giveaway is Mary from Very Merry Vintage Style. Mary Hosts the blog party called Share The Love every Wednesday. If you haven't been to visit her yet you may want to take a minute and see all the wonderful links this week.Please stop by and visit these wonderful blog parties too.Show and Tell - My Romantic HomeFoodie Friday - Designs By GollumThrifty Things Friday - Thrifty GrooveVintage Inspiration Friday - Debras Vintage DesignsThanks to all of you for stopping by. I love it when you leave a comment, you make my day. Make it a wonderful weekend.~ ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ ~[...]



Pie Dough and Opera?

2011-09-05T09:31:25.609-04:00

Hello Friends~ ~ ~I think the two go perfectly together. I love making pie dough, how about you? I put on some opera music and get out my canister of flour. It's therapeutic for me rubbing all that butter into a humble bowl of flour and ending up with light, flaky pie dough. If you haven't used Pandora you may want to check it out. All the music you like, that's it, period! I love them. I searched for opera and was given a few choices. I chose romantic opera and boom they play one after the other. Try it you'll love it! Ok, so you are set with your flour and your music. I use Martha's recipe for Pate Brisee for my pies and I think it's the best. The shortening makes the crust flaky and the butter gives it flavor. ~ ~Pate Brisee~ ~ 5 cups flour 2 tsp. salt 2 tsp. sugar 1 cup crisco shortening 2 sticks butter, chilled and cut into small pieces 3/4-1 cup ice waterPut dry ingredients in a big bowl and stir to blend. Add the shortening and pieces of butter and rub the shortening and butter into the flour with your finger tips till it looks like the picture below. . .but Don't stop here. . . Keep rubbing till it looks like the next picture. Smaller, finer pieces. Imagine the music playing and the feel of the butter between your fingers. Don't you feel the stress leaving your body already? Now add the ice water maybe half of it and continue rubbing and mixing. Add more water as needed. Yesterday I used the whole 1 cup of water but that depends on the flour and the weather. Be sure to get all the dry flour from the bottom of the bowl mixed in. Dump the mix onto your counter and form it into a rough ball, then a big log like this. Don't get all nuts about mixing it together perfectly. A little ragged is OK. See? This recipe makes 2 double crust pies. Cut your log into 4 equal pieces and flatted them into a big disk. The bigger the easier it is to roll the dough. Wrap each piece into it's own piece of plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or overnight. Sorry but no pictures of the rolling procedure. it's difficult to take pictures when your hands are so messy. Here is my finished pie. It's a Pennsylvania Dutch Corn Pie for last nights main course and it was delish. I made 2 of them. My pies always look so homemade because I'm not to good at making a pretty edge and for this that's OK. Sometimes I cut out little leaves of dough for the edge to make it look nice. Look at that flaky crust. You can do it too. We serve our Corn Pie with a thick white sauce over it. My Mom always just heated milk with butter for her sauce. My corn pie recipe was posted some time ago and the link for it is here if you want to try it. Be sure to check out my current GIVEAWAY. I think you will like it. I just had to show you the two newest members of the family. Looks like Ying and Yang doesn't it? The orange one is female and the dark one is male. No names yet, any ideas? Their Momma showed up here a few months ago with her brother. I guess someone dropped them off. Turns out she was pregnant and these two little ones are the result. We are thrilled and will be keeping all 4. How can you not love these bundles of fluff? I am linking to these wonderful gals this week: Foodie Friday Share The Love Wednesday Whats On The Menu Wednesday Show and Tell Friday House in the Roses Make It A Wonderful Day ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ [...]



A GIVEAWAY and a Roadside Stand Dinner

2011-08-29T13:23:12.755-04:00

Have you ever made what I call a Roadside Stand Dinner? No meat just vegetables from my local Roadside Stand. I have been doing that a lot this summer. Right now there are so many wonderful tomatoes to choose from. I am so proud to announce that the fine folks at Girard's Salad Dressings have asked me to be one of their Epicurean Experts. I love to cook and have been doing so since I could stand on a chair at the kitchen counter. I am honored and want to share with you all the goodies they sent me in preparation for more and more great meals and recipes from my kitchen. Look at this load of goodies. I was so thrilled. The apron and the bamboo utensils are awesome. There were a few new recipe cards included too. The best were the 4 bottles of Girard's new dressings for me to try. The wonderful folks at Girard's have generously agreed to give away a set of their 4 new dressings to one of my readers! I am so happy to be able to share with you their tasty dressings. Would you like to win? The winner will get 4 of Girard's new salad dressings. All you have to do to enter the drawing is to Follow My Blog and leave a comment and tell me. If you are already a follower just let me know in your comment. This is a recipe that we love and it's loaded with lots of fresh juicy tomatoes. No set measure for this one just add a little or a lot of what you like. TOMATO AND BREAD SALAD Use any kind of crusty bread that you like and cube it into about 3/4 inch chunks. Toss it in a big bowl, I used my huge yellowware bowl, with olive oil that has a few cloves of garlic minced into it. I used about 1/2 cup of olive oil and 6 garlic cloves. I had lots of bread! I toss it with my hands then spread it on a cookie sheet and toast it in the oven. Be sure to stir the cubes often till browned all over. I use my broiler. While my bread is browning I chop a few tomatoes into the same big bowl I used to mix the bread and olive oil. Then I slice some onion on top. I like to use vadalia and red onion. Add Basil to your taste. I used 3 different varieties. I adore this bowl. I have had it so long I can't remember where I got it. Then toss it all together. You can also add grated cheese if you like. I tossed mine with Girard's Olde Venice Italian Dressing. It was amazing! Looks wonderful doesn't it? So yummy and good for you. We had a friend stop over unexpectedly around dinner time so we asked him to join us. He couldn't get over raving about this simple salad. "Best he has ever had" He said. For many years I made my own salad dressings but with a dressing the quality of Girard's at hand no need to mix it up myself anymore. Each of these varieties has less sodium than before and the White Balsamic Vinaigrette and the Greek Feta Vinaigrette varieties contain no high fructose corn syrup if that is important to you. I am linking to: FOODIE FRIDAY at Designs By Gollum REDSDAY at Sue Loves Cherries SHARE THE LOVE WEDNESDAY WHAT'S ON THE MENU WEDNESDAY Good Luck to all of you who enter the GIVEAWAY! Chat with you again soon. ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ [...]



Feeling Sentimental

2011-08-03T08:54:55.500-04:00

~ ~~Hello Friends~ ~ ~Picked a few white grape leaf hydrangea this morningand put them in this ruby vase. So pretty! Love red and white.Wanting to share with you a few pieces of cut glassthat belonged to my Great Grandmother.I put a few things out on the dining room table for you to see.I recently hung the glittery Paris signon the chandy. Sort of like it there, for now. The stems are from the local Goodwill but they are sothin and delicate and old. I just love them.Sad that there were only three.The four desert plates are my new lovegreen transferware. The pattern is Lyndon.I'm having a little trouble finding pieces to match.If you see any around in your travelsPlease let me know!Is lace a sickness? Gotta have it.This little cut glass compote was my GG Mothers.I love the feel of the cut glass,the roughness of the edges.Do you love cut glass too?This small dish was hers too.The light just sparkles through it.I am finding it difficult to get good pictures of thisglass. Does anyone have any hints to share?Ahhh, the spoons!They are so pretty and they belonged to myFathers Mother.The other pieces were my Mom's family.I only have 6 spoons and that wasprobably all the silver she had.Given to me by my Aunt Mary.She was a poor woman who immigrated from the Ukraine with her 3 children. I never knew her as she died before I was born. I often think of her and the strength she must have had to come across the ocean on a ship with 3 children early in the 1900's. I don't know the whole story and never will as all concerned are now gone.These little lovelies were a recent purchase.French Milk Glass.The French Painted their milk glass.I love the fleur de leis on this one.Most times almost all the paint is rubbed off.These are nice examples.Still some paint left.As I snapped this shot I thought. . .I wonder if I could capture the smoke from the candleif I blew it out?Have a wonderful week My Friends.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~This week I am linking to these fine ladies:Tabletop Tuesday2nd. Time Around TuesdayShow Off Your Cottage MondayShare The Love WednesdayRedsdayCenterpiece WednesdayMy Romantic HomeVintage Inspiration FridayThrifty Things FridayFavorite Things[...]



My Favorite Local Faire

2011-05-14T11:26:12.013-04:00

Hello Friends~ ~ ~Quaint and beautiful little house. Actually it is an 1800's tavern. It is a part of the Landis Valley Museum. If you ever get to Lancaster County, PA. be sure to visit the museum. What it is is a small village built in the 1800's by John Landis and his family. These two pictures are of the tavern. This building is just behind the tavern. Beautiful stonework. The Pennsylvania Germans are an industrious bunch, of which I am a descendant. Every Spring they host an Herb Faire during Mothers Day Weekend. It is my favorite faire to visit. For many years it was the only place locally to purchase heirloom vegetable plants. They really do taste better than the newer varieties. Try them if you haven't.This Celsiana rose is one of the oldest varieties known. I was told it's first recorded appearance was in the 1500's. Three years ago I purchased this rose and it is now four feet tall with some canes growing to 8 feet and into it's neighbor a Crepe Myrtle. The fragrance is amazing.The vendor selling these old roses is dependably at the faire every year as so many others are.This is so much fun. It is the kitchen in the tavern. All day they demonstrate cooking.How would you like to cook in this kitchen?Making Bread.How about this state of the art 1800 toaster?I didn't notice the electric cord till I got home and looked at the pictures.The fire for the oven is out back.Honey, would you run outside and put another log in the fireso I can bake the bread.The homes in this village are beautiful. Notice the man making and selling brooms by the fence.Most of the homes are opened for viewing.The building above is the General Store. It is stocked with antiques of the era.Each home has a knowledgeable host inside to tell you the story of the home.These next few shots are of the home of John and Elizabeth Landis founders of the village. The brick beauty above is the Landis home. Lovely fireplace in the parlor.The kitchen, love the colors.One side of the home is a combo of brick and stone.Looking down the street toward the faire. Beautiful old shutters. We had so much fun and I did purchase the Graham Thomas rose that I was searching for. What joy!Hope you enjoyed the tour.I am linking to these fun parties this week:Foodie FridayVintage Thingie ThursdayShow off Your Cottage MondayShare The Love WednesdayTime Travel ThursdayVintage Inspiration FridayA Few of my Favorite ThingsA Return To LovelinessSee you again soon.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~ [...]



Can You Solve This Riddle?

2011-05-04T10:10:24.783-04:00

When is a rose not a Rose butA Gourmet Delight? Give up?When It is A Julia Child.That is the name of this delicious little rose.Of course with my love of food and cookingI had to buy it! I went to the local greenhouse to purchase a Graham Thomas Rose. After seeing all the beautiful pictures in Blogland I was smitten. Alas, no Graham Thomas. GT is also a yellow rose and yellow roses are my favorites. Then I spied this beauty and when I saw the name, well, you know how it is. This picture is the metamorphosis, the fresh young bud and the tattered old flower.This is what the tag on the rose had to say about her. All roses are female ~ ~ Right?Butter Gold - Floribunda 2006Just before our wonderful American icon left us, she selected this exceptional rose to bear her name. Julia loved the even butter color and the licorice candy fragrance. Yet it wasn't just the old-fashioned blooms that inspired the recipe. The perfectly rounded habit, super glossy leaves and great disease resistance finished off the dish. An awesome AARS award winner-a right and proper honor for a dear friend.Isn't that lovely? I adore roses that show their centers. Many of the tea roses do not when they open. I love the contrast between the silken petals and the wirey stamens in the center.The rose is only about 4" across but I love the shabby ruffled look of it.How about you. Do you prefer a perfect rose to a shabby one?Since we are talking roses, here is a hint for you when cutting a rose or trimming your rose bushes. When you cut a stem look to see which side of the stem the next 5 leaf, not 3 leaf stem is. Always make a cut just above a 5 leaf stem. Now, since the new branch will form opposite the 5 leaf stem, will it be growing in the direction you would like to see it grow. If you want it to grow inward to fill out the bush, great. Maybe you want it to grow outward to even out and fill out that side of the bush. Not rocket science but a good tip.Hope you enjoy this flavor of Lancaster County.One of our many covered bridges.I am linking up to these partys this week.Please visit them for more great posts.Metamorphosis MondayShow Off Your Cottage MondayShare The Love WednesdayHave a Delightful week!~ ~Ahrisha~ ~[...]



Recycled Water Hose Wreath

2013-03-11T10:56:21.902-04:00

Hello Friends~ ~ ~ Last week I posted a picture of a water hose wreath I made for my garage door. My neighbor saw it and went crazy and asked me to make one for her. This is the wreath I made for her and pictures of the steps as I was in construction mode. I know many of you are really great at arranging flowers and making wreaths but for those of you who could use a little help here you go. First of all I would like to introduce my assistant Mr. Handsome. He is always around when there is a craft project in the works. It would go faster without his help but I just love his sweet face so much. . .what can I say? I didn't have the color flowers I wanted on hand so I needed to make a trip to the Dollar Tree. They have the best buys around for silk flowers. Above is what I bought and I didn't use all of them. I got $6.00 worth! The ribbon was from last weeks wreath. First step: Wrap your hose into a big circle the size you desire. I like the end to show so I work it to the top right of the wreath and wire it together at the top. Leave enough wire to form a loop for hanging. Cut the remaining hose off with a sharp knife. This is two bunches of flowers that I bent so that they would curve around the hose. Don't cut them apart just tuck each end into the flowers of the other. I wanted these purple stems on the bottom peaking out at the ends. I used one bunch and bent 3 stems to the left and 3 to the right. Place the hydrangea on top and use a few purple stems cut from the second bunch on top and wire the whole thing together. I like to wire all the flowers together and then attach them to the hose or wreath. Later in the season if the flowers get shabby and I want to change them I can just cut the wire, remove them and add another bunch. Simple and I often do this. The ribbon. Of course you can use any ribbon you like and wired is probably the nicest looking but I just wanted a floppy casual looking bow. The green ribbon is for the bottom of the bow and the lavender will be the top. Cut a piece about 12" long from the top ribbon. Form it into a loop for the center of the bow. Run a piece of wire about 10" long through to the center of the wire and twist a couple of times. Leave long ends of the wire to attach this center piece to the rest of the bow. Take the rest of the top ribbon and just loop it back and forth till you have a little bow of sorts. Place your center on top and pinch the center of the bow together while twisting the wires tight. Leave the ends to attach the bottom part of the bow. I just looped the bottom ribbon back and forth till I had the size to fit my bunch of flowers. Then layered the top bow on and wired the whole thing together. It's best to pull your wires as tight as you can so that the ribbon stays and the more it's pinched in the center the better it looks. OK friends, here is where your design style comes into play. Check out the wreath above and below. Compare them and you will notice that the top wreath needed a little adjustment. See how the flowers all just stick out left and right. Style it up a bit by bending the stems and bending just the flower ends so that they face the front. See how I bent some of the hydrangea closer to the bow and faced them forward. Much nicer. Don't be afraid to bend them around. If it is too full for your taste you can even cut a few flowers out. If you check out my last post this wreath is much fuller than the last one. Make it to suit your taste. Hope my neighbor likes it. I'm off to deliver it to h[...]



Spring Brings New Life

2011-04-11T10:34:26.726-04:00

(image) And Me back to the blog.

Sorry to have deserted you.

I am back and looking forward to new passions in my life.

How about you?

(image) Do you like my new wreath?

Does it look familiar?

Look closely~ ~Then grab an old garden hose

and make one yourself.

This one is hanging on the garage door.

(image) Isn't this a great old basket?

It's very old and belonged to a friend of mine.


I hope you will leave a comment and

stop back soon to share in the new Springtime events.


It's good to be back. Even though I was not

posting I was visiting all of you to

keep up with your blogs.


I'm linking with Transformation Thursday at



Show and Tell Friday at



Favorite Things at



Show Off Your Cottage


Share The Love Wednesday


Met. Monday @ Between Naps On The Porch


Happy Spring!


~ ~Ahrisha~ ~




Over The Moon~ ~ About A Dish

2010-12-13T10:19:39.579-05:00

Greetings Friends~ ~ ~You are the only ones I can share this with. I know that you will understand because you have probably been there. I opened the box and my heart skipped a beat when I saw this.Have you ever purchased from www.csn.com ? A few days ago I saw this covered casserole on their site and I had to have it. Last night I baked my corn casserole in it and it was delish. Having an attractive lid is a real plus. I can keep it warm at the table and not have to deal with foil.I adore this dish because it's not white but a creamy white shade with brown antiquing around the bow on top. So sweet.The casserole didn't last long. I like this as a side dish or a light meal with a salad and bread as we had it last night. It's simple to make and while it's baking you can whip a salad together.This sweet bow of a handle just makes the dish perfect.Go to www.csn.com and search for Pamela Gladding Ivoryround baker with lid. It's on sale right now! Cheesy Corn Spoon Bread 4 oz. Butter8 oz. cream cheeseMicrowave in bowl to melt slightly 1 minuteAdd remaining ingredents and mix well 1- 15oz. can corn drained1-15 oz. can Creamed Corn3 eggs 1 med. onion, minced6-8 oz. pepperjack cheese grated or chopped small12 oz. Pepperage Farms corn bread stuffing1/4 C chopped parsley Pour into well buttered casserole Bake 375* ABOUT 45 MIN.till center is firmServe in this lovely dish.I also purchased these sweet little ramekins.I can see my creme brulee in these.These are from www.csn.com also. Bon Jour Stoneware 4 piece set in chocolate.Thanks for stopping by for a visit.I've been having 'puter problems so I was not able to post.Thanks for hanging in there.Love to all of you~ ~Ahrisha~ ~[...]



Yummy Pumpkin Pie From Scratch

2010-11-25T19:13:53.407-05:00

Have you ever made a pumpkin pie from scratch?I recommend Martha's recipe.The only change I make is using4 cups of fresh pumpkininstead of 3 cups.I just process the pumpkin then addeverything else slowly to the processor.Pour into shells, bake.It looks involved but really if your just looking at the custard part its so simple and My Oh My, is it delicious!Print it out and read it through, you will see. I have been experimenting with different pumpkin's.These 3 are from my neighbor George.He is my source for all things that grow.The 2 on the left are the two I have alreadymade pies with and I recommend both types.The white one will made a pie, maybe next week.We have been eating lots of pumpkin pies andeveryone is lovin' it!I just cut them in half, scoop out the seeds, put on cookie sheets and bake at 350* till fork tender.Time depends on the size.I think a pumpkin is just the prettiest color.I saved seed for next year just in case I feel the need to grow a few myself.This is the Cinderella Pumpkin.Here are the resulting pies.Instead of a rolled crust I love to useStauffer's Ginger Snaps for the crust.Be warned, the taste is Divine but,the crust may be soggy the nextday so you will have to eat it all the day it's baked.I crush them in the food processor mix with melted butter and sugar and press into the dish.Bake 10 minutes then cool before filling.Stauffer's is a local bakery and I love their cookies.They are widely available in these parts.These Ginger Snaps have a real Zing!They sort of bite your tongue back.You can also have them shipped from their website.Yesterday I took a walk around the yard and clipped greens for a centerpiece. Poked in a few artificial mums, some dried leaves. . .done.Another project.I love this simple polish.It's a can full of wadding with the polish already applied.A woman's work is not done yet. . .This is what awaits me tonight while I watch Dancing with the Stars. I am linking this week to Marty @ Table Top TuesdayMichael Lee West for Foodie FridayWishing you all a Blessed Thanksgiving.I am Thankful for each one of you.~ ~Ahrisha~ ~[...]