1.14.2021

A Winter Project takes flight!


Maybe you have a list of things you would like to do but do not seem to make time for

That is certainly true here! One project was to do more drawing - which lead me to purchase a new sketch book  - and a set of drawing pens. There are few things as wonderful as a beautiful, blank page and a new drawing instrument. It can also be a bit intimadating but this was The Time to dive right in.

 

This is the first design submitted to Society6!

12.21.2020

Three Wisemen - Note card

Three Wisemen 

Never can find a card that expresses your thoughts? Too many words? Not enough words? Wrong sentiment? Write your own message on this blank note card!

Designed by S. Brown. 
 
Blank note self-mailer
Printed on 65 lb. Card stock
Includes 5 clear, self-stick, mailing seals
Packet of five -  $6

Free postage within the Unites States

 


... when Autumn leaves start to fall ...

...when Autumn leaves start to fall...

Autumn Leaves Blank Note Card

... when Autumn leaves start to fall ...

Never can find a card that expresses your thoughts? Too many words? Not enough words? Wrong sentiment? Write your own message on this blank note card!

Printed on premium, glossy paper, folded to 5.5" x 4".
Pkg. 5 cards, 5 white envelopes.

$17.00


Grace & Her Knitting - Note card

Grace & Her Knitting

 

Photo of a doll created for the Annual Annisquam Arts & Crafts Show by S. Brown celebrating Grace Murray's years of knitting. 

 
Blank note self-mailer 
Printed on 65 lb. Card stock 
Includes 5 clear, self-stick, mailing seals 
Packet of five - $6 
Free postage within the Unites States

 

Lane's Cove Breakwater - Note cards


 

Lane's Cove Breakwater 

Gloucester, Massachusetts

From a watercolor painting by S. Brown. 
Original in a private collection.
 
Blank note self-mailer
Printed on 65 lb. Card stock
Includes 5 clear, self-stick, mailing seals
Packet of five -  $6
Free postage within the Unites States

11.11.2020

The last hours of Indian Summer

 

 
Once the growing season slows there are many tasks to complete before the cold weather sets in. We had a frost so it is officially Indian Summer. Today the task was to prepare for new fencing in the "Back Forty". The center of that garden has a cluster of raspberry bushes with horseradish around the edges. Annual rye grass has been planted to help improve the soil.

11.09.2020

New Project




Time to start a new knitting project.
 

The trees are shedding their leaves. There is a bit of a nip in the air.

This beautiful yarn labeled The Wool Shop, 100% Pure Shetland Wool, Made in Scotland has been waiting in a chest filled with yarn. Today was the day to release it from its confines and start using it to create a garment. Next comes the issue. There is no pattern associated with this particular yarn. What might be made from it? Stay tuned!

Have a questions? Send it to: AnnisquamHerbFarm@gmail.com

11.04.2020

I Love My Plant Nanny's!


A plant saver this year!
 

This was a very dry summer. Keeping up with the watering took vigilance. The Plant Nanny's were a great help.

For several years I have added to my collection of the Plant Nanny which now number twelve. I used them in my Bay laurel which is in a large pot and comes in the house in the winter, in the thyme which is in a shallow, terracotta pot and lives in the greenhouse during the winter and right in the ground around the zinnias, chard and sunflowers.

Watering is so easy using the plant Nanny. If the water level in the wine bottle has gone down quickly than additional water may be needed. Refilling the wine bottles in a five gallon bucket is a breeze. 

You can add Neptune's Harvest Fish & Seaweed Fertilizer 2-3-1 (Gallon). In the winter I add a little in the bottles for the Bay laurel which keeps the aphids at bay. It is available on Amazon but might be more reasonable at your local garden center or hardware store.

I had noticed some were not working as well as in past years. At the end of the growing season I put all of them in a bucket of water to start the cleaning process. After a good soak most of the soil dropped out with a good shake. What remained came out easily with a bit of prodding with an ice pick. A final scrub with a toothbrush did the trick. A few will be used in the house. The rest are ready for Spring!

Plant Nanny 4 Count Wine & Plastic Bottle Stake Set Plant Nanny's are available on Amazon


10.17.2020

The kitchen smells wonderful as the bread is baking!

Creating bread is an ancient activity. The following article reports the finding of 14,000 year old bread remains!

14,000-Year-Old Piece Of Bread Rewrites The History Of Baking And Farming
July 24, 2018  by Lina Zeldovich
https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2018/07/24/631583427/14-000-year-old-piece-of-bread-rewrites-the-history-of-baking-and-farming

If early man could make bread we should be able to do it easily with all the equipment and facilities we have at our disposal.

An early memory to making and cooking bread was at summer at camp. We took a pre-made biscuit mix. Added water and stirred together. Molded the mixture around a green stick. Cooked it over an open fire until done. Once it was off the stick, we put jam in the hole. Pretty basic and possibly messy.

I grew up in the era of Wonder Bread Builds Bodies 12 Ways. A sandwich created during breakfast with mayonnaise, lettuce and tomato was pretty soggy by lunch time.
https://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/125104/wonder-bread-still-says-it-builds-healthy-bodies.html

We had homemade bread once in a while. The kitchen took on a special character when the aroma rose from the oven. It was traditional to cut off an end as soon as the bread came out of the oven and slather it with butter as a special treat.


Years past... After I was married I started to bake bread, experimenting with different ingredient. My go to book was and is A World of Bread by Dolores Casella, published in 1966. As you can see, it has been well used, this page has been edited several times! I just looked it up online. Amazon has a paperback copy of the 1977 version for $987.25! There are other sites that carry used books to search for the book, if you are interested in adding it to your collection.

Now back to how easy it really is to create your own bread. You may have received a recipe form a friend or relative that says a pinch of this, a dash of that. Well this recipe goes even further down the road of estimating the measurements.

Cornmeal and Molasses Bread

  • Add 2 T regular granulated yeast to a large bowl.
  • Add 5 C room temperature water
  • Pour in some Black Strap molasses
  • Add the corn meal
  • Add a few cups of sized all purpose white flour
  • Mix together
  • Let stand until the mixture as risen a bit
  • Add more flour until the mixture is sift enough to knead without sticking to the fingers
  • Knead until the dough feels smooth
  • Let rise until double in size
  • Kneed adding more flour if required to be able to work the dough
  • Preheat oven to 325 - 350 degrees
  • Grease four bread pans with butter
  • Divide dough and put into pans
  • Let rise until double in size
  • Bake 20 - 25 minutes
  • You know when it is close to being done by the aroma emanating from the oven
  • To test for doneness, remove one loaf from a pan
  • Tap the bottom
  • When done it should sound hollow
  • Let cool on a baking rack
  • Store in ziplock bags
  • Freezes well


Now if that sounds to loosey-goosey for you there are lots of recipes online and in traditional cookbooks to try. Do not be held back by the lack of a particular ingredient. If you do not have yeast, try making a starter! Leave out the cornmeal. Use sugar instead of molasses. Create your own recipe!

Baking your own bread and sharing it with family and friends is a simple and rewarding pleasure. It can brighten any day.

10.12.2020

When can you create an Echinacea Tincture?

Echineaca

The answer - Summer, fall and spring! 

It is October and Fall is here. The Echinacea is nearly dormant.

This morning I had an out of state request for Echinacea Tincture. Not wishing to be unlawful and ship alcohol over state lines, I dug the roots, picked seed heads and a few leaves that were still filled with the plant's energy.

The roots were cleaned and spread out to dry. The seeds pulled out of the seed heads using needle-nosed pliers. The leaves were checked for dirt. Once the roots are dry the package will be put in the mail with the following instructions on making a tincture.

Instructions:
Chop the roots and the leaves into small pieces and place in a jar that has a tightly fitting top, for example, a preserving jar. Add the seeds. Pour 100 proof vodka (50% alcohol) to cover plus an additional two inches above the plant material. Label the jar with a list of the contents and the date. Put an end date as well. Place on the counter where you will see it daily. Give the jar a good shake every day for four to six weeks. When the time is up strain the liquid into a glass jar - dark blue or brown are best. Store in a dark, cool place.

For the rest of the year...
 
Early in the Spring, before the plants start growing you could harvest roots. Chop the roots into small pieces and place in a jar that has a tightly fitting top, for example, a preserving jar. Pour 100 proof vodka (50% alcohol) to cover plus an additional two inches above the plant material. Label the jar with a list of the contents and the date. Once the plants are growing collect leaves and buds and add to your jar, adjusting the level of the vodka and the date. In the Summer add blossoms and leaves repeat the same process. Place on the counter where you will see it daily. Give the jar a good shake every day for four to six weeks. When the time is up strain the liquid into a glass jar - dark blue or brown are best. Store in a dark, cool place.

Sign in to Learning Herbs (https://learningherbs.com/remedies-recipes/strep-throat-remedy/) for how to use your tincture plus lots more free information for the whole family.

Rosemary Gladstar has posted a video on making your own tincture. It is a great way to start your herbal journey.
https://youtu.be/__AfuXwS36I