Friday, May 28, 2010

Country Summers Manners and Peaches

Do you remember the ad jingle "way back when" for one of the big automobile dealers that starts out with "Baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and....."?  I have inserted SWEET TEA at the end of that jingle. Here in the south good manners, a clean handkerchief and sweet tea are for every day living, not just for company and Sundays.
Never ever tell some they're ignorant or stupid or dumb or lacking in intelligence (or all of these)! Not good etiquette .. just glance up, with eyes that are dappled with question, then simply state, "Well bless yo' heart" .. with voice full of concern. That goes with what Mama taught me early on, "Be pretty if you can, witty if you must, but, be pleasant if it kills you" (author unknown).
I digress ...
Sweet tea is as southern as it comes. Sometime ago when I lived in the Land of Enchantment, my young grand daughter came for a visit.  We went out for a meal and she ordered Sweet Tea. The not-so-kind waitress informed her, "We have tea and we have sugar and you can make  your own."  Bless that waitresses little ole heart!!!
I have some simple add-to's for Sweet Tea that will make even the Southern-est Southerner come calling.
My all time fave is Peach Tea. You'll find my delicious recipe for that at the CAT FOOD page.
I never met a peach that I didn't like.
If YOU have a favorite go-to or add-to for serving Sweet Tea, send it to me. I just might add it to CAT FOOD.
Have a happy Country summer, no matter where you are.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Country Capers and Brides and Babies ♥

What a couple of very busy weeks! I've missed our visits. However, you'll find no complaints from this barn cat!
Come on in and join me for some iced tea.  Another time you WILL be introduced to my very delicious Peach Tea; tastes like peaches fresh-picked from the orchard.
A new grand daughter made her debut on May 11th and she's no slacker! 9 pounds, five and a half ounces with a beautiful full head of dark hair. You've already seen the her blankets.
A few days later, a bridal shower was held for my oldest grand daughter; wedding is in June. This country gramma put together a large white basket of treasures which she loved.  
Just grab a nice large basket, some appropriate ribbon (wired wide ribbon for the handle and narrow for the packages) and your gifts. The size of the gifts will determine the size of the basket. I did spray paint this one white for the bride, but any color or natural is also nice. Baskets make such wonderful gift holders and aren't tossed out. If you give napkins or other linens, you could use these to wrap the smaller gifts. I used gold paper exclusively.
Some of the things included were two purchased mugs and cookies.
The fun began when I painted and sponged stamped a Tea For Two tin for her teas; Aunt Cat's Russian Spiced Tea Mix, Aunt June's Hot Cocoa Mix and English Breakfast Tea Bags; I mixed up the first two and labeled them in plastic zipper bags. See the tin at CAT LITTER page.
Next came a stack of eight little coasters, black and white with tiny stars.
Then, one of my favorite sewing projects, two paper-pieced mug rugs.These are large enough for any mug. 
You can see pictures of the coaster and mug rugs at CAT FUR to MAKE KITTEN BRITCHES page.
Paper piecing can be challenging; it is best described as backward sewing; reminds me of Ginger Rogers dancing in high heels BACKWARD.
Paper piecing is somewhat difficult, does require good concentration, but to me is very rewarding. It truly strokes your creative edge and allows for repetitive accuracy.
Should the seamstress desire to create several squares for a larger piece such as a table runner or wall hanging, paper pieced items will come together very nicely.
Until next time, keep your capers in the Country and be happy.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Fun Country Frustration

Fun Country Frustration.  No this is not an oxymoron! This is a fun way to rend your frustrations in a "politically correct" manner (I have it on good authority that these little dollies reap a LOT of attention in an office atmosphere). Dammit Dollies! ! !
This is fun project that involves a plethora of interests and a solution or two for the everyday life of occasional aggravation.
Before I continue, let me give credit where credit is due; you'll find the link at the end of this article.
I found these delightful dollies at that web site, embellished on her ideas and made a dozen for the GFs.  I drew my own pattern, but she has one you can use; or draw your own.
I also made "fabric gift bags" to hold the dollies and appliqued hearts on each (remember the heart stamped napkins a week or two ago?  Same heart pattern). 
You'll find 'my' dollies and the fabric gift bags at the page CAT FUR to KITTEN BRITCHES, along with the little poem. Don't get offended .. these little Dammit Dollies are intended for fun. In fact, the original "delightful dozen" that I made have evolved into several more. One of my GF's wanted one for her mother for Mother's Day, so I  whipped it up right quick and handed it to her in time for Mother's Day.
Check out the page CAT FUR to KITTEN BRITCHES to see the dollies and the appliqued gift bags.  You'll also find the poem that goes with the dollies on the same page.
Have fun, make a Dammit Dollie and get on with your life.  Lose the anxiety and enjoy the day!  CARPE DIEM ! !           © 2010 Cat Brennan