|Robin's nest atop our front awning|
On a more positive note, the protective tulle I've put around my gooseberry plant has mostly helped keep the critters out though I discovered a small hole in this netting the other day when I saw a chipmunk fleeing with full cheeks. I picked as many gooseberries as I could and found that they were very close to being ripe. I'll be sure I prepare them to somehow balance the sourness via a natural sweetener. Today I picked the first blackberry from our front yard bushes, which are loaded with fruit and backed by my complete confidence that the critters won't have any interest in them. The golden raspberries are also coming along nicely. As I predicted in late spring, it will be a good fruit year (minus the cherry thievery) at the homestead.
In my opinion, this is one of the few good uses for corn syrup besides making homemade bubbles. I found the jar/lid for 45-cents at American Science and Surplus where they have them in all shapes and sizes. The glitter and metallic confetti I picked up nearly for free at a rummage. This project cost close to nothing, but provides "hours" of fun--even my husband was enthralled by the final product.
Jar with lid (we used a plastic jar since V's just 3, but you could use a glass jar for older kids)
Light corn syrup
Glitter, metallic confetti, aluminum foil
Optional: plastic space alien or other far out objects (we used a button that looked similar to a UFO)
Markers and stickers to decorate the outside of the jar, is you wish
Super glue (especially for little ones who may be handling the jar and curious to open it)
Using warm water and soap, clean and remove any labels from your jar then dry it. Fill jar 2/3 with corn syrup. Add a few tablespoons of glitter and metallic confetti. If you do not have glitter and confetti, cut the aluminum foil into tiny bits. Roll the bits into balls to create planets. If you have a plastic alien or any other spacey objects, add it to the jar. Fill the jar to the top with water. Put some super glue around the lid then screw it on tight! Shake up the jar for a magical meteor shower!
Yesterday also allowed me some time to work on a sewing project or two. I'm trying to make both Vera and myself a couple of summer outfits before our family vacation to SC at the end of this month. I had this thrifted scarf in my fabric stash for the longest time and finally decided to turn it into a very cool (for HOT weather) top for her. I worked with the fabric's striped border to make the straps and the "band" around the shirt's top.
|I fell in love with the bold colors of this thrifted scarf|
|How fun are these hot air balloons!|
|Sun top, formally a scarf|
|My first basket. Very therapeutic!|
Cherry and Wild Black Raspberry Revel Bars--Gluten-Free
Makes at least 1 dozen
These could certainly be eaten by themselves, but I went a bit overboard in providing the dessert at a potluck on July 3rd. Served them with home-canned Brandied Peaches and Sassy Cow Creamery's Pear Ginger and Salted Caramel ice cream flavors available at our local natural foods co-op.
1 c. butter, softened, divided (I used half butter, half coconut oil)
2 1/2 c. packed brown sugar, divided
1/2 t. baking soda
1 t. baking powder
1/2 t. xanthan gum
1/4 t. salt
4 eggs, divided
1 1/2 t. vanilla, divided
2 1/2 c. all-purpose gluten-free flour, divided
1 1/2 c. rolled oats
6 oz. semi-sweet mini gluten-free chocolate chips (I prefer Enjoy Life brand)
2 c. combination of fresh sweet cherries, pitted and raspberries
|Adding chocolate almost isn't necessary, but certainly welcome!|
Preheat oven to 350F. Line 13x9x2-inch baking pan with foil or parchment; set aside. In mixing bowl, beat 1/2 c. butter on medium to high 30 seconds. Add 1 c. brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, xanthan gum, salt. Beat until combined, occasionally scraping bowl. Beat in 1 egg and 1/2 t. vanilla. Beat or stir in 1 1/4 c. flour. Stir in oats; set aside.
For filling, in saucepan stir remaining 1 1/2 c. brown sugar and 1/2 c. butter over medium heat until combined; cool slightly. Stir in remaining 3 eggs and 1 t. vanilla; lightly beat with wooden spoon. Stir in remaining 1 1/4 c. flour and the chocolate chips.