Monday, May 31, 2010

Strong Women - Tasha Tudor

Tasha Tudor (August 28, 1915-June 18, 2008) is one of America’s best-known and beloved illustrators. Her first little story, Pumpkin Moonshine, was published in 1938.

She illustrated nearly one hundred books, the last being the 2003 release, The Corgiville Christmas. She received many awards and honors, including Caldecott Honors for Mother Goose and 1 is One. Many of her books are printed in foreign languages and distributed around the world. She also created thousand of Christmas cards, Advent calendars, valentines, posters, and other works throughout her 70 year career.

Corgiville FairCorgiville Fair was published in 1971 and introduced everyone to the wonderful, idiosyncratic world of the Corgi dog. Tasha Tudor was devoted to Corgi and kept them for years having as many as 13 at one time.

Her Vermont home, though only 30 years old, feels as though it was built in the 1830's, her favorite time period. Seth Tudor, one of Tasha's four children, built her home using hand tools when Tasha moved to Vermont in the 1970's. Tasha Tudor lived among period antiques, using them in her daily life. She was quite adept at 'Heirloom Crafts', though she detested the term, including candle dipping, weaving, soap making, doll making and knitting. She lived without running water until her youngest child was five years old.

From a young age Tasha Tudor was interested in the home arts. She excelled in cooking, canning, cheese-making, ice cream making and many other home skills. As anyone who has eaten at Tasha Tudor's would know, her cooking skills were unsurpassed. She collected eggs from her chickens in the evenings, cooked and baked with fresh goats milk, and used only fresh or dried herbs from her garden. Tasha Tudor was renowned for her Afternoon Tea parties.

Once summer arrives, Tasha Tudor would always leave her art table to spend the season tending her large, beautiful garden which surrounds her home.

Visit Tasha Tudor and Family to see delightful pictures, stories, and receipts (recipes) from the family.  The above story was copied from this website.

Tasha Tudor was the second Strong Woman I was introduced to in the 1970's.  I was intrigued by her love of the garden and the "Heirloom Crafts".  She inspired me to learn to make hand dipped candles, can produce from the garden,dig in the dirt, and take afternoon tea.  I had the rare privilege of meeting her about 2 years before she died and saw just a touch of her beautiful home place in Vermont.  There are many fascinating stories about Tasha and her family, very much worth exploring.

Friday, May 28, 2010

The Temperature of Tea


For those of you that have read Delights of the Heart for awhile, you will know that I love drinking tea in the garden.  But did you know when you make tea there are different temperatures for different kinds of tea?
When the appropriate temperature is used, you will have the best of the best in flavor from that tea.  So go ahead, try it and see what you think.

Suggested temperatures and steeping times:
Black Tea:  210 degrees, boiling, steep 2-4 minutes
Oolong Tea:  180-195 degrees, just below boiling, steep 3-6 minutes
Green Tea: 160-180 degrees, steep for 2-4 minutes
White Tea: 150-160 degrees, steep for 2 minutes
Herbal Tea:  Boiling, steep 4-6 minutes

OK, I just had to put my picture here, as it was a challenge by Beth at be yourself - everyone else is taken.
I always like a challenge.  Of course, a teacup had to be in the picture too.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Yummy Scones

This morning as I enjoyed scones with Marmalady's Orange Triple Sec Marmalade and a lovely cup of oolong tea from France, I thought you might like my favorite scone recipe.

Cream Scones

Mix in Food Processor: 
4 cups flour
2/3 cup sugar
4 tsp. baking powder 
1 tsp. salt
6 oz. unsalted butter (cold, cubed)
Process until butter is petite pea size, set aside. 

In Mixer with paddle:
1 cup cream 
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1 cup dried fruit (optional - I don't usually add) 

Add butter-flour mixture to mixer.  Mix just until it forms a ball.  Pat it with your hands, don't use rolling pin.
Handle dough as little as possible.  Cut into either wedges or biscuit rounds.  Can egg wash top
 (I don't) and bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minute, until golden brown. 

Note:  I place the unbaked scones on a cookie sheet and freeze them, then put in freezer bag to keep in freezer until ready to use.  Put them in the oven frozen and bake about 5 minutes longer.  They are great to have ready for that impromptu tea, whether for breakfast or if a friend stops by.


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

"Bad Boys"

This is my friend Bob.  I worked with him a few years ago.  We were on the same team.  We laughed alot.  I consider Bob a "bad boy"; though he says he is an angel.  For some reason I am attracted to "bad boys", I always have been.  I loved working with the "bad boys".  They were the creative ones.  We laughed, created, and worked hard.  We made spectacular products.
Now let me explain.  When I say a "bad boy", they really are not bad or naughty.  They just march to a different drummer.  They step outside the box.  They are creative and love to do crazy things.  They make me laugh.  I often told my husband that the reason he married me was because I laughed at his jokes.  My husband was considered a "bad boy" in college when I met him.  I think the reason I was attracted to my husband in the first place was he didn't always follow the rules.  I can remember him being asked to leave because he and his friends had pulled some pranks that were not accepted by the college.  It ended up being a good thing, as he found a college that understood him and was willing to work with him.  Why are there not more schools and employers that will work with these creative souls?  They have so much to offer.
What is it that attracts us to the guys that march or dance to a different drummer?  Or is it just me that thinks this way? I don't think so; though we haven't discussed this, I think my daughter likes the "bad boys" too.  By the way, Bob is a pretty terrific drummer too.  Thanks Bob, for letting me share your "bad boy" pictures, I love them.  Now I hope that was tea in that cup.  I just had to mention.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


Saturday I went in search of colours.
Britt-Arnhild at Britt-Arnhild's House in the Woods  was searching for colours in spring time
and it inspired me to go searching with my camera.
The Beaverton Farmer's Market seemed like a good place to search.
There are many farmer's markets around, but I had never visited this one.
I had the opportunity to meet another blogger, Cathy at Wives and Knives.
Cathy sells lovely nuts at the market.
How fun it is to connect with fellow bloggers face to face and also enjoy
the colours of the day.
The peonies particularly enchanted me,
but then aren't the bundles of asparagus just beautiful?
Do you have a farmer's market in your neighborhood?
I love having the opportunity to support our local growers.
What a treasure to find beautiful flowers and produce grown nearby and so fresh.
Enjoy exploring colours of spring time today.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Strong Women - Adelma Grenier Simmons

I couldn't find a good picture to share of my Strong Woman this week.
Here are Lemon Verbena above and Lavender below to represent a herbalist, Adelma Grenier Simmons.

Adelma Grenier Simmons (December 16, 1903 – December 3, 1997) was one of the leading herbal figures in America in the 20th century. A legend for her knowledge of herbal lore and history, she was also a prolific author and sparked an interest in herb gardening across the country. She owned and operated Caprilands Herb Farm in Coventry, Connecticut for over 55 years.  from Wikipedia

Caprilands Herb Farm was developed as a teaching center and business.
Mrs. Simmons was called "the first lady" of herbs by the International Herb Association.

from the NY Times:
An imposing figure given to wearing a cape, Mrs. Simmons lectured authoritatively but with a touch of humor. ''Silver rosemary is good for mind and memory, in case you have need of that,'' she once told a visiting group. ''It's also good in tea. If you don't like that, you can wash your hair with it. If that doesn't work, you can wash your dog's hair with it.''

Some of her books can still be found on

I was introduced to Adelma Simmons in the 1970's when I became fascinated with herbs.
Caprilands Herb Farm had a great catalogue of beautiful herbs, seeds, and herbal gifts.
I understand that Adelma Simmons was quite a character and I would have loved meeting her.
There were three women in the northeastern part of the US during that time that I was fascinated by.
They were creative and had a passion for their special interests.
The other two women I will share in the next few weeks.

Starbucks was the Bold brew door.
Sorry Nancy!
The winner of the gift certificate is:

Friday, May 21, 2010

Bold is Brewing

Bold has been brewing in my mind lately.
What does it mean to be bold?
This shop thinks what they serve is bold.
I enjoy a bold cup of Chai Latte here.
What tea would be bold?
Or do you think a cup of tea can be bold?
Do you know what shop advertises a bold cup of?
Guess what shop this is and I will send a gift
certificate for a cup of Chai Latte or any other bold drink.
There will be one winner chosen from the winning answers
and announced Monday morning.
Hint: This shop is probably in your community too.
What is it's name?
Now go out and do something BOLD today.

Thursday, May 20, 2010


Catherine of Dispatches from the Deise tagged me last week.
She asked me to list 5 things I am grateful for; so here it goes.

1. Family and Friends:  For those people that surround me and offer love and acceptance.
2. Peace:  For the times of solitude and meditation.  I only desire that this peace could be universally accepted around the world.
3. Joey: For giving love unconditionally and making me laugh daily.
4. Outdoors:  For the beauty of each season, from the flowers of springtime to the winter sunshine against new falling snow.
5. Abundance: All that is provided each day from food on my plate to a warm cozy bed to sleep in at night. Overflowing with gifts to share with others.

The picture is from the Chinese Gardens in Portland, Oregon.
I felt the sepia tone gave a more peaceful moment to share with each of you.
Picture yourself sitting there under the gazebo for a moment of quietness.
I am suppose to pass this on, but I am passing it to each of you that might like the share.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Breathe in Springtime

Springtime has arrived.
Stop and breathe deeply.
Breathe the beauty of the day.
Take time to walk.
Enjoy the out of doors.
My day will be outdoors today,
breathing and soaking the wonder of the day.
There will be time for reflection and JOY.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Portland Northeast Bike Parkways


One thing I can say about Portland, Oregon is that they support biking.
Three years ago they started having Bike Parkway Days in different neighborhoods.
Last Sunday it was in my neighborhood.
They close the streets and have over two hundred volunteers to monitor the traffic flow.
Sundays Bike Day connected four parks and at each park they have organizations, food and drink booths, music, and events for the children.  There were walkers, bikers, and skaters all enjoying the slightly rainy day.
It was very festive and I loved getting my bike out for awhile and participating.
I did notice how out of shape I was.  I really must get the bike out more often.
Even though the traffic makes me a little nervous, I know now I could travel some of the quiet neighborhood streets.   It was good to learn something about myself through participating and that was a very good thing.

Note:  The largest picture shows me on my pink bicycle.  Behind me is a main street I drive down almost daily.  Down the middle is an arboretum of trees and quite beautiful.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Strong Women - Anne Morrow Lindbergh

  Anne Morrow Lindbergh (1906-2001), Picture taken from

Anne Morrow Lindbergh was known for being the wife of Charles A. Lindbergh Jr,
but she was also a writer, aviator, and mother of 6 children.
She often co-piloted next to her husband and was the first licensed woman glider pilot in the United States.
She had to be strong under sometimes extremely difficult times, especially when her first son, Charles A. III, was kidnapped and murdered in 1932.
Her book, Gift from the Sea, was given to me many years ago and has been read several times.
If you haven't read it, it is a must read.
It is a story of learning and relearning the painful lesson that "woman must come of age by herself-she must find her true center alone."

Friday, May 14, 2010

Tea Brick

This is what a tea brick looks like.

Sometimes I use it for a coaster or trivet when serving tea.
So far I haven't wanted to break it up and drink it.
I think it is too pretty.
Yes, it is tea compressed into a brick form. posted The Legacy of the Tea Brick.  You can visit that sight to read the whole article, but here is an exerpt, Enjoy!

Steeping loose leaf tea in water has not always been the dominant method of tea preparation.  Prior to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) in ancient China, the tea brick, compressed tea made of  ground or whole tea leaves pressed into a block form using a mold, was one of the most popular forms of tea produced and consumed.  People also commonly used tea bricks as currency.  Today, the legacy of tea bricks lives on – you can find a variety of compressed black teas, green teas, pu-erh teas and more.
The tea brick developed originally to help preserve tea and facilitate trade.  Generally, production involved drying tea leaves, grinding them into a powdered form, compressing into brick forms and then curing or aging.  The shape and size of the form varied depending upon the region, and often included text or pictures.  Sometimes dried whole leaves were used and binding agents like flour used to create a dense brick.  Durability and a smaller physical footprint than loose tea leaves became important as people used the bricks for currency and trade.
While other forms of preparation existed, at the time one of the more common methods included boiling the tea.  A piece of the brick was broken off and added to boiling water.  Another method was to roast the tea first over a fire before boiling.  Roasting added flavor and may have been used to sanitize the tea from any impurities collected during its travels.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


Yellow is my favorite color.
My choice was made when I was a little girl.
It was because everyone said they didn't like yellow,
it made them look sick to wear it.
I felt sorry for yellow.
It is a happy color.
Though some cannot wear it, it can be enjoyed in the flowers.
Take Joy!
Enjoy yellow flowers today.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

What would you do?

What would you attempt if you knew you could not fail?
This question was asked not to long ago by Relyn of come sit by my fire.
Could you hang by your toes or even want to?
What are your heart longings?
This is a question I have struggled with.

My list is:
sky dive
ocean surf
travel to exotic places
speak in front of people
write a book
photograph people
sing and dance

Some things on my list are more scary than some.
Putting myself out there in front of people, being bold and confident; that scares me the most of all.
What would you do if you knew you could not fail?

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

You've Got a Friend

My birthday was in March, but what I wanted as a gift were tickets to this concert.
Friday night I had the pleasure of enjoying the music of James Taylor and Carole King's - Troubadour Reunion Concert.
I had fun taking pictures too and thought this one turned out pretty good.
It was so fun to watch them as they shared song after song and know they
have a special friendship.

You've Got a Friend

When your down and troubled
And you need a helping hand
And nothing, whoa nothing is going right.
Close your eyes and think of me
And soon I will be there
To brighten up even your darkest nights.
You just call out my name,
And you know where ever I am
I'll come running, oh yeah baby
To see you again.
Winter, spring , summer, or fall,
All you have to do is call
And I'll be there, yeah, yeah, yeah.
You've got a friend.
If the sky above you
Should turn dark and full of clouds
And that old north wind should begin to blow
Keep your head together and call my name out loud
And soon I will be knocking upon your door.
You just call out my name and you know where ever I am
I'll come running to see you again.
Winter, Spring, summer or fall
All you got to do is call
And I'll be there, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Hey, ain't it good to know that you've got a friend?
People can be so cold.
They'll hurt you and desert you.
Well they'll take your soul if you let them.
Oh yeah, but don't you let them.
You just call out my name and you know wherever I am
I'll come running to see you again.
Oh babe, don't you know that,
Winter Spring summer or fall,
Hey now, all you've got to do is call.
Lord, I'll be there, yes I will.
You've got a friend.
You've got a friend.
Ain't it good to know you've got a friend.
Ain't it good to know you've got a friend.
You've got a friend.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Strong Women - Maya Angelou

The first time I noticed Maya Angelou is when she read her poem, On the Pulse of Morning, at President Bill Clinton's inauguration on January 20, 1993.  Since that time I have read several of her books and been struck by the fact that eventhough she had a rough early life, she was strong and rose above all the hurts and struggles.  She was a singer-dancer in New York City.  Her compassion and commitment lead her to respond to the fiery times by becoming the northern coordinator of Martin Luther King's history making quest.  Later, she became a professor at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

I definitely recommend getting to know Maya Angelou through her books and you will be touched by her strength.

One of her poems from Phenomenal Women

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I'm telling lies.
I say,
It's in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them,
They say they still can't see.
I say,
It's in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Now you understand
Just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It's in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
The palm of my hand,
The need for my care.
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Happy Birthday

Posted by Picasa
Today is my Aunt Arlene's 90th birthday.
Tea has been prepared for her birthday
and set under an apple tree in the orchard, the orchard she and her husband once farmed.
Today we will serve a nice green tea along with apple bread, a recipe another aunt developed.
We will carry it out into the orchard in my grandpa's (my aunt's father) lunch pail.
There will be fresh pressed apple juice in grandpa's thermos and tea served in
a lovely Franciscanware teapot.
Won't you join us for this very special celebration.
What else can we bring to this very special party?
Happy Birthday to my Aunt Arlene!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Gardener's Dream


The first weekend in May each year finds me at the Canby, Oregon fairgrounds.
It is a gardeners dream, full of plants for the garden.
There is everything you can imagine such as tomato starts and lavender, but there are the surprises too.
Cute bird houses and planter ideas are there.
I always stop by one tent that has plants to attract butterflies and hummingbirds.
Plants have come home now and will soon find a new home in my garden.
Now if it would just stop raining, so I can go into the garden and make room for new plants.
I just know the hummingbirds and butterflies are waiting.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Love in the Sand

Posted by Picasa
Love written in the sand
will soon wash away
Some loves are here to stay
and some loves are for a day

Sending you much love always

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Mac Attack


My favorite Golden Book as a child was the Bunny Book.
It had the colors of the rainbow in it and the story was so precious.
I am playing with the Mac(Attack)Tweets today and thought of this book and the rainbow.
I would design a macaron in colors of the rainbow.  When I see them lined up in the sweet shops they look like rainbows to me.  Don't they remind you of a rainbow?

Monday, May 3, 2010

Strong Women - Joan of Arc

Joan of Arc in Paris, France
One life is all we have and we live it as we believe in living it. But to sacrifice what you are and to live without belief, that is a fate more terrible than dying.  by Joan of Arc

Joan of Arc in Portland, Oregon

Joan of Arc is one of the most remarkable people to ever live and her name is easily recognized by virtually everyone in the world today. Joan's life and history are also the best documented of anyone that has ever lived outside of modern times however most people are not aware of all that this simple young woman from a small town in eastern France accomplished in her life and death. Joan saved her people and united all of France by winning several important battles at Orleans and Patay in what is now known as the Hundred Years War. Joan completely reversed the course of this war and kept France from becoming a colony of the English. Greatly celebrated by her own people she was hated by the English who ultimately captured her and rigged a trial under the auspices of the Church to justify burning her at the stake (at age 19). Twenty-five years later the illegality of her trial was revealed in another trial held by the Church that completely exonerated her and declared her a martyr. In 1920 Joan became an official Saint of the same Church that had once called her a heretic and executed her by burning her at the stake. She remains one of the most beloved figures in all of history.
from Wikipedia:
Joan of Arc was not a feminist, yet often wore men's clothing. She operated within a religious tradition that believed an exceptional person from any level of society might receive a divine calling.
Doctrinally speaking, she was safe to disguise herself as a page during a journey through enemy territory and she was safe to wear armor during battle. The Chronique de la Pucelle states that it deterred molestation while she was camped in the field. Clergy who testified at her rehabilitation trial affirmed that she continued to wear male clothing in prison to deter molestation and rape.Preservation of chastity was another justifiable reason for crossdressing: her apparel would have slowed an assailant, and men would be less likely to think of her as a sex object in any case
She referred the court to the Poitiers inquiry when questioned on the matter during her condemnation trial. The Poitiers record no longer survives but circumstances indicate the Poitiers clerics approved her practice. In other words, she had a mission to do a man's work so it was fitting that she dress the part.She also kept her hair cut short through her military campaigns and while in prison. Her supporters, such as the theologian Jean Gerson, defended her hairstyle, as did Inquisitor Brehal during the Rehabilitation trial.
Joan of Arc's religious visions have interested many people. The consensus among scholars is that her faith was sincere.

Another woman that lived with Passion.