Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Purely Pinspirational!

Apple Butter

This week I have been stuck at home.  I have a new dog as I'm sure you all know by now.  She likes to chew things.  When I'm around she chews on legal toys, but when I'm out of the house, even in the yard for more than a few minutes, she panics and finds socks, shoes, whatever she can find, and chews & chews.  So I have been trying to get things done and keep myself sane with the being stuck bit of it.  I will be crate training her soon, but I have to wait until pay day for that.  So in the mean time I've been trying new recipes and cleaning nooks and crannies that I didn't even know exist. 

The recipe I tried yesterday was this one found at this link on my Pinterest board, Crock Pot:

The link will take you to the blog: Changing My Destiny.  Which is a great blog for recipes and much more.  Please take the time to check her blog out after you are done making your version of this great Apple Butter Recipe.

This recipe for apple butter is made in the crock pot.  My crock pot is new to me and I've been very focused on recipes that I can make in it.  Hubby's favorite apples are Granny Smith, so I used those.  It is a little tart from the apple butter I enjoyed as a kid, which I'm sure was store bought.  When you make things yourself they taste so heavenly.  The outcome of this 15 hour crock pot recipe is surely that; heavenly.  Enjoy!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Garden Monday

& Flash Pic Friday

Our normal Garden Monday and the belated Flash Pic Friday are all wrapped into one.  Hubby & I took some time off this weekend and spent a lot of time in our yard and hiking together.  I've acquired quite a few photos to share over the past few days and didn't want to miss sharing them with you.  The pictures are mostly from the adventures we've been having with our dog.  We took her hiking a few times this weekend.

Our new dog Gypsy was quite a ball of energy bounding through bushes and running bunny trails.  We'll have to teach her to be a bit more sneaky and also mindful of where we are. She is so busy and fast that she's out of range without realizing we are near her anymore.  Despite the training she'll need, I am quite excited that she will make a good prey hunter.  We can definitely see the hound in her as she runs, nose to the ground, through tunnels in the brush to find what she's smelling.

The view at the top of the hill was a calming rest stop for our over active hound.  However, it didn't last very long before she was off, chasing yet another critter trail.

The rain brought with it a delicate covering of drops on all of our spring flowers.  These tiny little plants were more a ground covering than anything and would have been hard to spot if not glistening in the sun from the rain drops.

Small yellow polka dots covered the ground on the south slope of the hill behind our house.  The polka dots dappled across the slope were these tiny four petaled flowers.      

Ferns growing in dark places, vines of delicate white flowers twining through the underbrush, polka dots of yellow and purple, bounding dog and flushed out quail made up the better part of two hikes.  There is such beauty in our natural landscape and it is always so breathtaking.  I hope you will join us on our next adventure and thank you for joining us on this one.  One way to make it easier to keep track of what is happening here at Firetail Design is to follow this page through the link on the right side of the page for google+.  Please share this with your friends so they too can enjoy the adventures, craft tutorials, recipes, projects, photos and more.  Thank you, <3 K10

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Purely Pinspirational!

Pin Boards

My newest board on pinterest is my "Craft Show Display" board.  I have been mulling over the idea of showcasing my wares for a few years now.  The problem is my hubby and I make enough money doing our own thing that it isn't too wise to divert my attentions to make a few dollars here and there.  But I do want to share my wares with the world of folks who enjoy things being handmade.

So I was yet again contemplating storing up handmade goods in preparation to find a venue and put together a booth for an event.  While thinking about it, I came up with some thoughts that I hadn't thought of before.  Maybe I could do some selling on Etsy.  Maybe I could go into business with my Mom who is also very craft oriented.  Both of these ideas would make selling be as easy as sitting in front of my computer, which is what I do most of the day anyway.  Perfect!

So I went looking and searching for cute ideas for displaying and photographing things I've/we've made.  I've put them into the Craft Show Display board for safe keeping and quick reference.  Here are a few ideas that I found for your viewing pleasure.  A small glimpse into my mind and thoughts on these ideas. 

As for what will actually come about, that is in the hands of God.  We shall see and I will most definitely share when the time comes. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

Garden Monday

So for my lunch yesterday, I cooked up some fresh eggs, and celery, with some mushrooms I already had.  Then I put it on top of a bed of arugula from my garden.  My very first harvest of the lovely greens.  They were so nice and tangy sweet.  With warm egg & veges on top, this salad was the perfect meal to hit my hunger spot and boy is it satisfying eating from my own garden.

Also, yesterday, I planted my brussel sprout and chard sprouts with my puppy Gypsy's help.  She was all over me the whole time.  "What are you doing mom"?  "Can I help"?  She is so cute. 

Anyway, I hope you all are busy planting and growing your own veges.  It is ever so rewarding.

Have a great Monday and a great week.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Flash Friday

Happy Valentine's Day!

Welcome to the very first edition of Flash Friday, where the photos I've taken throughout the week are enhanced in Instagram and then my favorites are shared with you here.  For this first edition, I'll share my day with you. 

Yesterday and the day before ran together and turned into one big Valentine's Day.  We started the 13th off with heart shaped donuts and hot chocolate, which are Hubby's favorite breakfast foods.

For dinner I cooked beef stew in the crock pot.  I've made the recipe twice now since Christmas when I got the crock pot from my Mom.  But, for this evenings beef stew, instead of regular old carrots, I carved them into hearts. 

You can find the tutorial here


Hubby isn't much of a photo person so I usually have to think & act quickly if I am to succeed in capturing him.  This set was one photo that I took and split in Instagram.  The lighting came out great and I love the sun flare on mine. 
I'd finished the dog house for our newest family member. So we were ready to start the search for our new friend.  We went to the local animal shelter and we found her.  The most beautiful and gentle creature I've ever met.  We named her Gypsy. 

She is already taking to her new life, home and routine.  We couldn't be happier about how well she is fitting in here.  She is so mild tempered, quiet and loving.  She just radiates with intelligence and we are excited to see how she grows, learns & plays.  

Finally for the planned part of the day as Gypsy was sort of impromptu. Thom for me got the lovely vase you see pictured above.  I love selecting flowers from the garden that are in bloom to use in decorating our home.  So as you see, these flowers are from our yard and they go very well with the vase.  I am making a penny key chain, which I am working on turning into a tutorial.  So I wasn't able to get it finished before this holiday.  So I made nice prints of my favorite photos of Hubby and I.  This went over very well with him and I'll be hanging some of them in the house over the next few months.

Thanks for joining me.  Hope you too had a great Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Purely Pinspirational!


We are planning to get a dog, maybe two, soon.  In preparation for the newest addition to our family, I decided to check out pinterest for inspiration on what I'd like the dog's house to look like.  So this is what I found.

Then I drew out what I wanted to create so that I'd have a visual aid while working on building the dog house.

After drawing out my ideas I went in hunt of materials.  We recently took a patio apart that a friend for my mother in law's place.  She can't have it in the front of her house anymore, so we took it down.  We kept the wood as most of it was in great condition.  So I decided to use that, some paving blocks we already have, and some plywood.  I had to get plywood, brackets and screws from the hardware store, but it didn't cost too much money. 

I started with the foundation of paving blocks and a square frame for the bottom. 

Then I started to assemble the walls, cutting my boards to fit the sizes of the walls and screwing them into place.
 This is the finished product and ready for some sweet doggy dreams.  It is different than my ideas drawing.  The roof isn't slanted and I don't have the built in dog bowl shelf.  I decided to make the roof flat and the way my base went together didn't allow for a solid floor to extend out for the bowl shelf.  But I do like how the floor came together with my changes and the finished product looks great.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Purely Pinspirational!

ABC Letters

Welcome back friends for another edition of Purely Pinspirational!  My once weekly Pinterest inspiration to reality posting.  What have I been up to this week you may be asking yourself?  Well, my nephew's birthday is coming up and I'd like to send him something to play with.  I'm not much of a consumer toy buyer.  I like to make unique gifts that I can put my love into. 

He's turning 4 and starting to develop his language skills.  So when I saw this pin about making refrigerator magnet letters with left over material scraps, I couldn't help but fall in love with this idea. 

But to make it more versatile, I'm not going to make them magnetic.  This way they can be played with anywhere.  An alphabet set is what I've been working on, so I'll share with you my progress.

Step 1.  I started by printing out letter stencils by going into one of my programs that I use for sign work.  You can use word and type out the alphabet and make the font really big until it's the size you'd like.  Mine are roughly 3" tall.  Then print them out and cut them out.  This is a little time consuming but I believe it will be worth it in the end.

 Step 2. Pick out your scraps, then pin your letters to the scrap pieces.  Make sure that you have apposing faces on letters that go one way.  You will need two sides for each letter.  

 Step 3.  I've decided to cut the batting  after cutting out my letters but I think it would have been much wiser to cut them along with step 2. 

Step 4.  Put your cut out batting between the wrong sides of your letter faces and pin in place.

Step 5.  Sew around all edges with your desired seam allowance.  Trim threads and batting that may be sticking out.  Voila!  Finished letter.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Garden Monday

Spring is coming! Spring is coming!

Punxsutawney Phil, the famous groundhog that decides whether spring is early, on-time, or late has made his verdict.  He did not see his shadow.  What does this mean?  Spring is EARLY!  Which means that we will have warmer days upon us and that we can plant a little earlier for summer crops.  

This is one of my favorite times of year in the garden because it's when my flowers come out to bloom that have been hiding all the rest of the year.  This image above is of a plant that hides, a bulb, underground all year except for a couple months in spring.  We all but forget that it is there until it starts to put up it's green leaves.  This year it happened to be where we chose to put our newest footpath.  It is such a pretty blossom that I believe I will have to find it a new home after it is finished gracing us with its beauty.  That way I can continue to enjoy it in the years to come.

Well, I hope you too are enjoying this season and I'd love to see your blooms! is where you can send them and I'll post them for everyone to see.