Life on a little urban homestead in the making, with ideas for self-sufficiency, food preservation, thrifting,
cookery, organic gardening, crafts, DIYing, vintage stuff, and more...

Jul 30, 2015

Thrifting Again, Garden Colors and More, Corn Relish, Dating Your Vintage Ball Jars

$4.00!
Thrifting Again- 
I've had the blahs the last week, sorry for not getting to this sooner! My daughter asked me the other night how I find so many great thrifting things? I told her in the summer, while I'm off, I have a lot more time to look. This week I found: 2 like-new high end blouses for work, a really like-new great lamp for my bedroom and a wire hanging candle holder. So I did find some more great things this week-

love the interior of the lamp shade

and the cork shade

$3.00, now I just need 3 led candles, then into the bedroom

I just re-did last month's summery bed pillow shams, from Crate and Barrel, but only $1.50 thrifted. I turned them into removable summer couch pillow covers. I had wanted a grain sack striped type fabric and these were perfect. Finished them tonite, and stayed with the original ties. Just shortened, hemmed and re-attached ties. Easy peasy! Just wash if needed and take off come winter...





old ones covered for summer

kind of goes with the grain sack chair covers!

Our mini lavender hummingbird plant

Garden Colors and More-
We've been so lucky to have had some rain and cooler weather in the last month, including a deluge! It gave the flowers and veggies a need respite from the early heat. Everything is growing great now! Now we're headed back to the 100-ish :(  Here's a little tour!









Agastaches, hummingbirds LOVE them!

monster Russian sage, bees loving it!!!





Another Agastache

Volunteer sunflowers



Pears getting bigger

apples changing colors!

Dave just finished the chicken shade area fence last night! All recycled...

Loving the new garden fence and gate :)  Looks more finished...

Coop's looking good!

Dave reused a old coop vent for a mini gate!

More yard art I've added, mostly thrifted or free. I had WAY too much bare fence-

vintage washboard I found, $3.00

Misc. stuff on the fence

rusty vintage grater, $2.00



my daughter's old college welding project for her art degree, rusty!

re-installed my welcome sign, that's it for now :)




Corn Relish-
I made some of this last week and we love it! Great as a side dish on a hot night with some leftover chicken, etc. Keeps for several weeks. Here's the recipe I created based on several I saw.

Chilled and hanging out with my fermented pickles :)

5 cans corn (I used low sodium) and the juice, or fresh or frozen
1 each chopped- red bell pepper and green bell pepper
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 cup white sugar
1 teas. celery seed
1 teas. mustard seed
1 teas. Turmeric
1 large diced red onion
2 cups apple cider vinegar

Put everything into a large pot, still well, bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer for 1 hour. Transfer to jars and refrdigerate. This recipe made 4 Qt. jars. Some recipes add cucumber, hot peppers, or tomato. I like this as is, but I may make a jalapeno spicy version next time.



Dating Your Vintage Ball Jars-
I stumbled onto the charts here and was able to date a few of my jars to the late 1800's and early 1900's. How cool is that! Makes me wonder who used them and for what? Some wonderful pickles, fruit, moonshine? Who knows! There are a lot of resources out there if you want to do more digging. There was even gold and purple ones! I just the love the aqua color of my Ball jars...


Jul 18, 2015

The Road Trip That Almost Wasn't, New Recycled Garden Fence & Decor, More Thrifting! Fermented Pickles

Little Payette Lake

The Road Trip That Almost Wasn't-
This last week Dave was off on vacation so we made plans to go to McCall for 2 days. Soak up some sun, the lakes and green. Our prep went well, we left rested Wed. morning about 9 a.m. I drove out of town, light traffic, clear, easy going. About 40 miles or so out of town, on the 4 lane interstate, doing about 80 (the speed limit), Dave and I both noticed simultaneously the cars ahead had their brake lights on, and then that they were STOPPED. As I started locking up my brakes I saw a horse very calmly crossing the interstate median thru the cars. Then I saw the other 3 horses! Oh my, I'm thinking, as I'm looking ahead- "will I hit the car ahead of me, should I go right into that lane, where's the most room, or onto the median where I will probably roll the car???" Hmmm... what to do? I just kept the brakes locked and didn't hit anyone! I also didn't pee my pants :) I called the state police and they were already on the way. A big fine for the owners I bet, and all the troopers to come out. Very scary...

The rest of the trip was great! I even hit my favorite animal shelter thrift store Mcpaws Thrift Store, twice! We went up to the top of Brundage Mountain on the chair lift, so fun! Hiked around for an hour or more on the top, about 7,000 feet. Gorgeous views. We also went to little Payette Lake, more remote, and much quieter. Fun trip, and all we could afford with a lot of home improvement lately. Here;s some random photos, mostly Dave;s as I forgot my camera!

top of Brundage Mountain looking down

wild flowers

old observation fire cabin, circa 1914

top of Brundage Mountain looking down onto McCall and Payette Lake

fire tower

the ride up





I loved this tree :) Moss growing on the dead wood

More wildflowers


New Recycled Garden Fence & Decor-
When we tore down the shed Dave saved all the lumber. Later he decided to use it to replace our old garden/chicken run fencing with the recycled lumber. The gate was falling apart and the ugly posts were just, ugly! So yesterday and today Dave built a new fence and added the thrifted gate. It looks so much better! Before pictures-

Old fencing- hog panels, chicken wires and garden posts, empty back fencing :(

old gate, falling apart and posts rotting

1st section done! Wood frame, chicken wire, no hog panels
  
All done! Just need to tweak a few things and tidy up...

New gate, $10.00 Lowe's, a special order return, a very heavy duty privacy screen modified

Some thrifted, recycled yard art added to the fence. It was a LOT of bare fencing from my living room! 


More Thrifting!
I found some fun things right before, and during our road trip. The above is- a .99 cent Ikea frame still in plastic, a $1.50 creamer set, 2 grain sack-style shams that I will modify for our couch pillow, and a French style plant stand. Dave cut some new scrap wood for the bottom of the pot stand, I'll paint the done! Got a nice blue ceramic pot, and a wonderful Patagonia messenger bag (off to eBay) for $4.00! Later I discovered inside there was the cute blue and yellow Vera Bradley wristlet bag. Didn't see that when I bought it! I think someone forgot to check the pockets! Double score...

2 pillow shams, $1.50, to recover my couch pillows for the summer, cute!

Only $4.00, what a steal!

I saw this at Goodwill, not for me, but I bet a quilter would love it!

my recent thrifted tabletop conservatory now has an African violet and some seashells


Fermented Pickles-
I made some fermented pickles today and I love them! Great for your stomach and so much FASTER to make! Ferment for 10 days then into the fridge. No heat, no vinegar, no canning. Simple and delish! Here's the recipe I use-

Clean jar and lids, pickling cukes, dill to taste (or not), 1-3 TBL salt (I use canning), 3-4 cups water. Dissolve the salt in warm water, let cool, pack cukes, add herbs. I also add some pickling spice and garlic. Let sit at room temp for 7-10 days. Burp the jars as needed. If scummy remove and reseal. There's lots of free recipes here- Culturesforhealth 
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