5 Patriotic Desserts

Memorial day is the weekend which officially kicks off the Summer.
But it is also a somber day where we remember those who have fought to protect our freedoms.
Many of us will be having special meals and events today so I have assembled some Patriotic Desserts that caught my eye.
If you don't have the chance to make them this weekend save them for the 4th of July!



I found this gorgeous checkerboard cake with an awesome tutorial on The Cooking Channel.
Making a checkerboard cake is simpler than it appears:)

Wouldn't it be so cute served on this cake plate that is simply edged in red...




                                                                   Dot & Bo





I thought that this Betty Crocker recipe was so nifty because the recipe calls for pureed blueberries to help achieve the blue layers.

Who would have thought that you can stay healthy while eating cake??
Smiles...

Although I did see on FB that eating chocolate cake for breakfast is good for you....hmmm,
sign me up for this diet!




I love the simplicity of this idea, I am sure we have all created something similiar.

However, Ordinary Day   just reminds how easy and pretty a cupcake can be.

For a charming presentation with a little country farmhouse flair just place them on a tin

cake plate stand, I like the touch of aqua accents on this one.





                                                                      Dot & Bo



Memorial Day Fact~

Waterloo New York is the first city credited with closing their shops on May 5th, 1866 so the citizens of the town could decorate the graves of their fallen soldiers.





I adore this combination of M & M's and cupcakes.
This is one of those go to desserts when pressed for time.
This can easily be whipped together with a few supplies purchased at the market and you would be in business. No mess, no fuss and no worries.  
Hungry Happenings  is a girl after my own heart:)





Happiness Homemade turns out a cutie of a dessert using Oreo cookies and Wilton candy 

melts, I just bet this could be a cooking  project with some youngsters if you 

had the notion:)


Memorial Day Fact~

In 1971 Memorial day became a Federal Holiday, a day set aside so that 
Veterans and civilians could gather to commemorate those who gave their lives and those that still serve.

Wishing you all a safe and Happy Memorial Day weekend.

XO

Please Join Me~

Life and LindaAn Extraordinary Day



(This post contains affiliate links, all opinions expressed are my own)
Image Map

Wandering Wednesday~Caring for Linen

I guess I did not realize how many linen napkins and tablecloths I had until I began to 

unpack them, wash them and iron them.

Hmmm, seems as though they have multiplied while I was asleep.

Are there such things as linen gremlins??

linen, ironing, washing, fabric


So as the ironing pile grew and grew, so did my curiosity about the nature of linen.

You see, I grew up during the transition period from all natural fibers like cotton, linen and 

wool to the synthetic generation of memory fabrics that required little to no ironing,

also known as permanent press.

As a youngster my Mother would iron weekly, and I remember the clean, clean smell of 

fresh washed fabric pressed against the iron, while the little blue radio on the kitchen 

counter belted out Frank Sinatra.

fabric, drying, washing, linen

I was never much of an ironing gal, even in college.

Then came marriage, home making, having babies and raising them, along with PTA, girl 

scouts Sunday School...

Back then it seemed like dragging out the old ironing board and iron took so much time, 

so often times I tossed the clothes back in the dryer just to get a few wrinkles out.

(shhhh...I am speaking in a whisper)

(Although I was big on bleach and did keep everything super white.)


Flax, natural, fiber, linen, wover

A little History on Linen

Linen is woven from flax, a plant which grows 12 to 40 inches in height.

Flax is referred to in the Bible and the Pharaohs had their clothes made from linen.

Linen might just be the oldest natural fiber.

Just click on Linen History for more information.



washing, soap, water, temperature, drying


Caring For Linen


Washing

When washing your linen it is better to wash by hand or machine wash and actually 

each and every time that you wash linen, it becomes more absorbent and even softer.

Use the gentle washing cycle with mild soaps in a lukewarm to cold water.






(Tip~pre-test your fabric first)

I had some very badly stained linen napkins that were my Grandmother's, I had washed 

them numerous times and still the stains would not come out.

Since I could not use them anyway, I felt that I might as well bleach them.

I soaked them in the sink in a bleach solution of 3 tablespoons bleach to one gallon of water.

I completely submerged and soaked them about 5-10 minutes.

Then finished them up by machine washing them in warm water using detergent and 1/2 

cup bleach.

They came out looking wonderful! 


Drying

Linen can be put in the dryer on the cool cycle and it is best to remove when it is still slightly 

damp.

If you have a clothes line you can hang outside or even lie flat to dry.

Ironing 

It is much easier to iron linen while it is still damp, using a medium-hot iron.
If the linen is dry, use a steam-iron.

White linen can be ironed on both sides.

Colored linen is best ironed on the wrong side only.

Storing

Store linens in a cool dry place and avoid cedar chests, plastic bags and boxes.



wash, iron, dry, stains, bleach, soaking, water



Thank you for joining me today, wondering if you have any household tips to share?


xo





Image Map

Garden Party #2


Good Gardening Morning! I
It is our second garden party of the season and today I am sharing my real working
vegetable garden and a few flower beds with you all.
I spend several hours a day in my gardens, weeding, watering, trimming, fertilizing, disease control, bug control and sometimes eating some sweet peas too!

First up I wanted to share these darling bright eyed sunflowers they have grown tall and sturdy from seeds.
I decided to try a different variety this year, these sunflowers are intended to be used in
floral arrangements.
They grow about 3 feet tall and have medium size blooms.


This is my first year to grow Tomatillo Plants, I have two of them,  you can see the tiny fruit forming now.
I will be making some wonderful salsa with them in just a short time.


Every garden really should have some Nasturtiums, they are edible too.
They are super easy to grow and add such vibrant color, next to them you will see some
carrots.
Great for kiddos to grow too as they are so hardy and grow quickly.



In the garden now are the garden peas to the right, center row beet greens, to the left
tomato and pepper plants.
Beyond that are the pole beans, corn, watermelon, squash and lavender.



This week will be having some beet greens.
I still can't decide if we will have them in a salad or steamed.



I scored big this last week on this Fiddle Leaf Fig.
You do know that these house plants are thee plant to have, right?
I stumbled upon mine at our local Home Depot, they had only 6 of them, so I grabbed this one as fast as I could.



Our roses are really taking off and I will tell you why I think they are.
I scatter about a half cup of Bone Meal around the plant, work it in and then water it in.
Bone Meal is a super food - a phosphate that roses really need.








We moved into our new home a week or so before Christmas, this past year.
We had these four hydrangeas put in as part of our landscape, no sooner than they went in, we got a frost that wasn't predicted and every one of the leaves froze and fell off.
I thought for certain that these hydrangeas were a goner, but low and behold they came back to life and look at them now.





I found this little terracotta hen pot at a fantastic organic store in Mesquite Texas.
It is such a hassle to drive to this store, but it has the coolest things and also my favorite organic garden concoctions.



We have been enjoying peas and strawberries from the garden.
The pole beans are looking good and so is the corn, I suppose that is what will be up next.


Thank you for joining me today!
Jemma

Tips On Magnolia Market at The Silos

We made it to Magnolia Market at the Silos while Amanda, Preston and the children were here.
We woke that morning to fabulous clear skies, good spirits and the anticipation of what we would find.
We are fortunate to live in such a centralized part of Texas.
Austin, San Antonio, Houston, and Waco are all within a reasonable driving distance.
Waco especially and that is where the famous Magnolia Market is.
Just 1 1/2 hours driving distance from home.


I have some thoughts from that day which I have been wanting to share with you all.
I like Waco and Magnolia Market!
Both Waco and Magnolia are filled with Historical and Old Fashioned goodness.
Waco has lots of trees and some cool places to grab a bite to eat.
Magnolia Market is a wonderful and nifty place to visit, they have really done a fabulous job of preserving the area.
I am partial to grain Silos anyhow, growing up on our farm in Idaho we naturally had Silos too.
I love old, preserved, and cherished Farm equipment and supplies.
Now that we have our couple of acres, we need to invest in some outdoor rustic goods.





Tip 1- When to Visit Magnolia Market

Best days to visit Magnolia Market Tuesday thru Thursday.
Worst day Saturday-everybody is out and about on that day.

Visit the Silos if you can during the week, we went on a Tuesday morning and there was easy parking and what I would call a normal amount of people for any regular shopping day during the week.




Tip 2- Strollers-Not so much

The inside of Magnolia Market is a tad bit tight with wee folks and especially if you have a stroller.
There were many Mom's with little ones that were shopping with strollers but we felt were an annoyance and fearful that we'd knock something over.
Good we had the Daddy of the little folks with us, he took them to the well thought out open play area where Wyatt could swing and kick a soccer ball.





Tip 3- Is it a Retail Store?

Magnolia is a Retail store and many of the items for sale are mass-market goods.
Some of the items in this photo are very pretty and they are made in China too.
However, many other items are designed by Joanna and made by a local artist.
The displays were amazing and we truly enjoyed every moment.






Tip - 4 Evolving Merchandise.

The market is host to wonderful Seasonal goods, as well as everyday living.
At this time the market merchandise is more or less home accent items and gift items.
When we visited it felt like Spring had infused every corner and that nature had burst open in the market. 
We enjoyed strolling through the market and it had a gloriously old time feel to it.





Tip 5- What is the price point?

I would say the items are affordable, but not cheap nor a "deal."
Silk flowers $9 and up, signature candle $26, magnolia wreath $95.
If you want to shop the market, but haven't made it this way here is the link-
Magnolia Market on line




Tip 6-Farmhouse Feel

Chip and Joanna have created a very warm, welcoming and detailed architectural space.
Be prepared to feel sort of cozy and down home.
Lots of silk flower displays which give you the feeling they were just picked from a large field just down the road.





If you go be sure to enjoy the variety of food trucks too.
Oh, and yes, there are even real Magnolia Trees with real blossoms at Magnolia Market!




Have a Lovely weekend everyone!
xo

Please join me~

Cozy Little House


Image Map

The 4 C's of Organizing an Art/ Craft Retreat

We are steadily making progress on our upcoming craft retreat which is just around the corner.

Tuesday June 7th will be here before we know it and I am thrilled to be part of this exciting event.

I really want everything to be beautiful and so special for the Ladies who will be 
gathering together at our home.

More than anything I want them to feel welcome!

So, a little while ago we looked at the journey of how Texas bloggers became a community plus Ten Tips on Organizing a Craft Retreat.




Today I thought we'd focus on what I believe to be 

four extremely important fundamentals for the success of any retreat that you are 

considering organizing and hosting.







1. Cohesion-Why it matters.




No matter the type of retreat you are organizing it is important to be cohesive in order to accomplish successful and strategic planning and implementing the retreat.

Working with your retreat team is an ideal opportunity to develop leadership roles, enhance communication, engage and encourage creativity, and facilitate new ideas.

When creative juices start flowing there is an incredible energy and anticipation.

I have enjoyed visiting with Judith on the phone, meeting Laura in person and getting a sneak peek at the pro-types for her crafts.

Discussing the retreat luncheon plans with Stacey, and having Kari Anne so graciously
share her Hoffman fabric line with us.


One of the great things about this team of ladies is that they are all so talented, capable and inspirational!
Thank you again to each one of you for your commitment in making this an exceptional
event!


2. Creating-Define the Focus of the Retreat & Create An Experience.





After defining the type of retreat that you want to host you will need to insure that all of the necessary supplies and equipment will be provided by the host, craft leaders or that the participants will bring some of them to complete the projects.

Hobbyists will most likely be content to work in a shared space, and will look forward to time spent socializing.
Providing an inspiring spot to create is just as important at the project!

Most art and craft retreats include a little getting back to nature atmosphere.
Adding some chairs and tables in surprising places and creating outdoor nooks lends itself to soothing and inspiring creativity.



3. Connecting-Retreats are events that participants hold in their hearts for a lifetime.


Since most everyone leads such busy lives it is essential to create an atmosphere where 
participants can connect with one another.

Bringing together a group of like-minded individuals and watching friendships blossom  is exciting and rewarding for everyone.

Many times retreats are often a life-changing experience for many people.

Retreats not only connect you with other people, they can help you re-connect with yourself and re-discover some of the talents that you might have forgotten that you even had.



4. Communicating-Retreat is not an end in itself.



No matter what the purpose of the retreat you are organizing or hosting is, it is not an end in itself.

The retreat is truly a stepping stone in forming a organization, a team, community or a group of like minded people to continue to have ongoing activities and communication.

If you are one of the leaders it is vital to the success of the retreat to communicate with one another as well as the participants.

There needs to be ongoing communication and clarity about the retreat goals, projects, and expectations.







We currently have 20 confirmed participants and have room for 3 more.

If you are a Texas blogger and would be interested in joining us please send me an email by Friday May 20th.

Registration closes on Friday at 5:00 p.m.

Cost for the retreat is $15.00 which includes materials for crafts, lunch and door prizes.
Fee is due upon arrival.

Retreat begins at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday June 7th.

Can't wait!

Wishing you all well.
XO


Please Join me~

Cedar Hill FarmhouseLove Of HomeLife and Linda

Duncan Donuts Coffee & Peas

So, I am sorting of writing this off the cuff so to speak, as my husband makes fresh Duncan Donuts Coffee and we just finished eating fresh peas from the garden.
Do you know that every time I write a post reminiscing of the past, share family values and reflect on life I lose several subscriptions.
Yep, it is true.



So, I am going to tell it like it is for me.
If it is not the same for you, please feel free to move on.
I love Jesus, my family, growing good things from the earth.
These are the things that bring me joy, comfort and strength.
I am proud of where I came from and I am embracing the journey of where I am being led.
Which is by faith.
I am a survivor of cancer, divorce and deaths of those that I loved more than life itself.
I believe in goodness, forgiveness, rainbows and heaven.





I feed wild bunny rabbits in my garden.
I feel the joy in gentle rain, crops and choirs singing Sunday hymns.
I believe that goodness lives in all of us, no matter how dark our days.



I know that God has a perfect plan for everyone, from the littlest to the oldest and
I am blessed by grace, forgiveness and His everlasting love.




My journey is far from perfect, but it is perfect for me.

I will write about the past as it serves a purpose for the future.





Family will always be a mixed muddle of beautiful complicated imperfections, but it will 

always be the essence of life and a blessing from my Holy Father.

Honestly, who could not feel humbled and blessed by the beauty of it all.




Share the bounty of the fields and savor the delicious flavors of the crops.






The journey of life can be long when we choose to go it alone, or it can be a journey of knowledge and peace when we walk hand in hand.
I have grown from the paths of darkness and I speak from the heart.
Let all of us shine and be the rainbow for someone in the gray clouds of the day.





I invite and welcome you to join me in my journey of light, faith and hope.
We will explore the good earth together, share the journey and hold on tight to 
the glory of goodness and the light.
However, if this is not for you, I thank you for the opportunity to connect and I wish you the very best that life has to offer.

Next up we will be exploring the joy of collecting and saving flowers.
See you on Wednesday.

With love, joy and peace on this day and for all the days that are to come.
xo