Monday, December 12, 2011

Signal Return Letterpress Workshop

AIGA Detroit arranged a great workshop this past weekend at Signal Return. It is  a nonprofit studio dedicated to advancing the art of letterpress printing. The shop plans to offer an ongoing schedule of  workshops, present exhibits and offer items for sale.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Season's Change

Yesterday was a telecommute day because of the snow and rain this area experienced. The drive home Tuesday evening while slow and intense, had its moments of beauty as the snow swirled wildly. The real reward was waking up to a frosted wonderland. The first sticking snow of the season. A lunchtime walk along country roads was a delight.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Detail-French Songbook

Some details from the back of an old French songbook. I found this when cleaning out a closet at my mom's. She had it saved at the bottom of a stack of towels. I love the style and the old four color printing. The bottom detail shows how the background was made. It looks like a jumping off point for personal explorations.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

French Lesson

From a Heath's Petit Larousse Illustre, 1924

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Yesterday's Walk

Yesterday the air was cool and crisp. The sun came out after the midday sleet. It was a perfect afternoon for a woodland walk.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The End

Last weekend the weather was glorious. It was also the weekend to put our 10'x10' garden to bed for the winter. Even though the wheelbarrow was full of exhausted plants. we took home a large bag of end of the season spinach, lettuce, dill and carrots.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Salt of the Earth

WW Cinnamon Raisin bread from Salt of the Earth Bakery and Restaurant is a most delicious treat.I had grand plans for it, luscious overnight custardy French Toast in thick slices. The loaf was so good that we just ate it toasted with fresh butter. We had it for breakfast and desert for lunch and desert for dinner. You get the idea, it was just irresistible. Overnight FrenchToast  or Custard French Toast come closest to how my mom made french toast.

Josephine's recipe 

3 eggs, beaten yellow and frothy
1 tsp. sugar for each egg used
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 c. milk 
4 slices sweet or sour dough French bread, 1 inch thick
2-3 tbsp. butter
It is important to let the bread soak up all of the mixture. If the bread seems to be dry in the middle add another egg and a 1/4c milk and sugar. Once the bread is fully saturated carefully transport to a heated skillet with melted butter. Adjust the heat so that the bread toasts but doesn't burn. Serve with more butter and dust with powdered sugar to finish. The best weekend breakfast, lunch or dinner depending on your mood.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Nature's Pace Organic

New to the Clarkston market this year is Nature's Pace Organics an organic farm owned and operated by Katie and Jacob. Their delightful blog charts the enthusiasm and commitment they bring to whole living. For great variety and wonderful quality produce their booth is always worth a visit. The head of lettuce was the centerpiece of a very tasty recent summer salad.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

She Liked Them

It was a garden plant that was always there in the background. A bunch of Gaillardias blooming profusely from July into August were always part of the little garden at the family cottage. They were part of impromptu bouquets made for the big round oak table that dominated one end of the central room.One of the best things about Gaillardias is their long season,often blooming for months. They are tough, hardy plants, returning for decades, increasing each year requiring little water or special soil. Gaillardias are a wonderful native wildflower, sometimes known as Indian Blanket or Firewheel. I like the firewheel name. They blaze away all summer.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Red and Ready

After anticipation comes inundation. This year I cut back, way back. I only planted one brandywine, one beefsteak, and an heirloom of some sort. Even so they are now producing loads of lucious red ripe tomatoes.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Beautiful graceful heads of dill were ripening in the garden several weeks ago. The soft feathery greens long gone but enjoyed earlier this summer in a variety of dishes. I let two volunteer dill plants grow in our plot and was rewarded with all of these seed heads. What to do with dill seeds, Onion Dill bread at looks like a great choice. I plan to try it this weekend when we have family home for the holiday. The other recipe that looks like a winner is the potato and yogurt dish with dill seed.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Braids and Bunches

If you have ever done French Braids the same technique applies to onions. We planted purple onions this year all along the edge of our 10'x10' plot. After harvesting and drying it was fun to make these beautiful braids.

Saturday, August 27, 2011



The honey from the community garden bee's was pressed recently. A marvelous gift from the hive. The honey is very light and sweet. Fresh market bread toasted with a drizzle of honey will be tomorrow's breakfast.

Friday, August 26, 2011


Sometimes nature seems in a rush and other times it is sooo slow. Anticipation makes that moment of ripeness all the more intense.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Saturday Pleasures-- Rose Mary's Garden


Rose Mary is one of my favorite vendors at the Clarkston Farm Market. I love the variety and fabulous color combinations.

Dividing Plants

Siberian iris are slimmer more refined than Dutch iris, like ballet dancers on point. These came from my grandparents yard to our yard where I grew up. Then they were divided and moved with my parents to a townhouse downtown. They were divided again when they moved to a suburban apartment. Another division occurred when mom bought a condo in a small neighboring town. Now I have divided them again and they are in my perennial border. This June I'll take a clump to the plant trade.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Illustration Friday--Influence

All the influences that we exert on each other.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Eat More Kale

Raw kale lightly coated with olive oil
Right out of the oven Crisp and Delicious!

Eat More Kale is a command that I recently spotted on a circular car bumper sticker. Well I wasn't so sure I wanted to eat kale at all, let alone more. My gardening, farming son has been singing its praises to my very unreceptive ears. I always thought of kale as an interesting but certainly inedible garnish. Its other purpose I thought was to make interesting garden borders or accents. And that was it. On my son's last visit home he brought two gorgeous bunches of  kale grown at Eaters Guild Farm. It was time to confront my prejudices. He had mentioned something about making kale chips and that they were delicious. Since he claimed it was a simple recipe, easy and quick, I thought why not. A hasty internet search returned results from, Smitten Kitchen, and Epicurious to name a few. The basic preparation method is the same and each offers a special twist. A video how-to is even available on YouTube  I used the version for my first try. The resulting kale chips were fantastic. Crunchy, crispy and very flavorful, I plan to EAT MORE KALE.

Eaters Guild Farm is a Michigan supplier to Whole Foods. Everything you ever wanted to know about kale is available here. Whole Foods has an amazing section of kale recipes. Eaters Guild Farm has a CSA membership available and they sell at the Holland Farm Market and the South Haven Market. Get some kale.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Afternoon of the Fauns

A curse to some but a virtue to us is how quite a Prius is. Rounding a sharp turn into our community garden property we surprised these youngsters.
This faun was the more adventurous of the two.
Coming closer to check us out.
Keeping us in sight.
Then boredom on their part. We were enchanted.

Friday, June 10, 2011


Saturday I went out to the community garden to see how everything I had planted was doing. One of the other gardeners pointed out in hushed tones a nesting robin in the sifting box. Three babies are tucked in the nest out of view. Each time I visit the garden there is some quiet wonder to appreciate.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Illustration Friday--Duet

An alphabet duet from long ago or not so very. Best friends sharing some fun.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Illustration Friday--Chicken

Which came first--the chicken or the eggplant?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Last year I received a lovely poster sized twelve month calendar from my daughter for Christmas. I love it and can't part with it. Papersource, the company that published the calendar had some ideas for how to use the patterned sheets after the month was over. I decided to make little blank journals that would fit nicely in a pocket, backpack, or purse.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Illustration Friday--Resolution

My resolution for this year. The tools and brushes are ready on the table. Looking forward for the year to unfold.