Saturday, April 30, 2011

May Day and Saying Thank You


Did you dance around a Maypole when you were a child?

I have fond memories of special May Day

celebrations when I was in first and second grade.

I didn't dance the Maypole or receive the

customary basket of flowers on my door today,

but I did recently receive this card of beautiful blooms.

A thoughtful thank you

note from The Cherry Chick.

The past week also brought an

abundance of treasured gifts to my doorstep.

Sent me a very special Easter gift.

You may recall that I shared a post here

of the hand painted eggs I have collected

through the years. In that post I gave a shout-out

to Priscilla and the incredible eggs

that she's hand painted over the years.

Look what she painted for me!

My very own pair of Breton figures.

But that's not all!

Priscilla also sent me a very special

egg painted with a Peter Rabbit figure.

Isn't this the sweetest, most adorable egg?

I've nestled it right in with a

few of my Peter Rabbit treasures.

A few short days later a Quimper tureen

filled with tulips was sitting on my door step.

A longtime friend and fellow Quimper collector

decided it needed to belong in my collection.

With a change of focus in her Quimper collection,

she generously sent it along to add

to a group of tureens here at HFTS.

That very day I opened a brown envelope to

find yet another surprise ~ the cutest "mug rug" ever.

Yep! My friend, Rett @ The Gazebo House

has been busy at the sewing machine again.

Those of you who know Rett have seen the

darling outfits she creates for Miss Caroline.

Recently it's friends around Blogville

who have benefited from Rett's amazing talent.

A "mug rug" in a darling Mary Engelbreit fabric,

quilted, and bound with red and white polka dots.

Rett couldn't bear to cut into the wonderful M. E. quote,

so she added another section to lengthen the "rug".

You might recall that my husband is "the chef".

Yes, I know. I'm spoiled to have a husband who does the cooking.

This is the reverse side.

The fabric is a collage

of Mary Engelbreit quotes.


Teapots and Cherries

Ain't Rett something?

As if all the above wasn't enough,

Friday's mail delivered this bouquet of springtime tulips.

Another sweet thank you note

Tucked inside was a dainty

linen hanky and a little tea treat.

Perfect timing to enjoy with my

precious Mary Engelbreit "mug rug".

A "rug" that holds both my mug and a teapot!

The community of friendship and

generosity in Blogville is truly incredible.

I thank each of these friends

"from the bottom of my heart",


I'm most thankful for each of YOU who visit HFTS,

who encourage and support through your comments,

and who continually offer your friendship

and inspiration through your blogs.

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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Still Cooking With Teeny


Have some cookies and let me tell you

about one of my favorite southern authors,

Michael Lee West.

"It started Monday, the first week in June, when I thought I'd gotten the dates wrong for my cake baking class. Numbers don't usually stick in my mind. This one did because it was my twenty-ninth birthday, and my fiancé, Bing Jackson, surprised me with the darlingest gifts --pastry bags, a fifty-three-piece Wilton Supreme Cake Decorating Set, and eight prepaid classes at the Vivenne Beaumont School of Cake Design." GONE WITH A HANDSOMER MAN

Have I mentioned that I'm a fan?

Yes, Michael Lee West has done it again.

Teeny Templeton is yet another lovable southern

belle who cooks her way through the pages of


Teeny arrived at HFTS on April 12,

and that girl has had me baking ever since.

I do believe the "chef" thinks he's lost his kitchen.

"What are you making?"
"How clever of you. Lavender,
to calm the stomach and the mind."

"I cut the warm shortbread into wedges . . .

and put it on a tray with the mugs."

"We settled in Uncle Elmer's library. It was a cozy room, with butternut paneling and cherry antiques. Uncle Elmer's porcelain bird collection was lined up on the mantel. Pink-and-green plaid curtains hung on the windows. Through the wavy bubbled glass, I saw the garden. I set the tray on the coffee table. Ava curled on the settee and reached for a shortbread wedge. I lifted a mug and sat down in a chair."

Lavender Shortbread
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup white granulated sugar
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1/2 cup cornstarch or rice flour
1 cup all-purpose white flour *
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons fresh lavender flowers,
finely chopped or 2 T dried lavender

Cream butter and sugars. Add flours a few tablespoons at a time and salt. Mix until crumbly. (You can mix by hand or put the ingredients into a food processor.) If dough is too thick, add 1 to 2 teaspoons cream. Add lavender. Chill mixture for an hour. Pat into a shortbread mold, or gently roll and cut dough with a cookie cutter. You can also shape the dough into a circle. If you aren't using a mold, place dough on an ungreased baking sheet. Prick the surface with a fork. Bake 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool; cut into bars.
Yield: 2 dozen cookies
Preheat oven
to 325 degrees.

(* I doubled the amount of flour)

If you enjoy humor, spunky characters,
and pages

laced with culinary delights
pick up a copy of


Or any of the works of Michael Lee West.

Michael Lee West is the author of six novels.








Click here to view a previous review of


Linked To

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Ann Estelle's Easter

The Easter Rabbit stopped by to visit Ann Estelle . . .

And her baby sister, Lilah.

He left a big basket of colored eggs, a

chocolate bunny, jelly beans, and yellow peeps.

Ann Estelle and Lilah Paper Dolls
HOME COMPANION, April/May 2000, 2003

What did you find in your Easter basket?


Friday, April 22, 2011

Bunny Crossing

Each spring bunnies begin 

to hop about here at HFTS.


welcomes them with open arms.

Have you noticed that burlap is

all the rage around Blogville these days?

I spread a length of burlap across the dining room

buffet, filled a vase with spring flowers, and . . .

before long, bunnies had settled in.

It all started with this guy

causally sitting beneath the flowers.

Sisal hopped into my life a few months ago.

He was a birthday gift from a friend.

Did you notice he likes to dress in Courtly Checks?

Come a little closer, 

and I'll introduce you.

Wallace is an rather old rabbit.

They say the average lifespan of a rabbit kept indoors

is 9-12 years, but he's been around a lot longer than that.

Basil has lived here for many years too.

Remember the winter of the

Government Shutdown in 1995-1996?

The "chef" and I had planned to vacation in DC over the holidays, but with little to see and do in Washington that week, we scurried out of town over to nearby Annapolis. I happened upon the work of local folk artist Natalie Silitch. Basil and the cute Mother Bunny and baby hopped right in my bag and flew back to Texas that winter. If you are interested in the work Natalie is doing now, you can visit her web site here.

Brambles is just a mere 2 " tall.

Cecil is a long ago needlepoint project.

He's still trying to learn to tie a pretty bow.

Homer is the new guy on the block.

He's filled his tummy with jelly beans,

but he's always ready to share with friends.

Sweet, shy Honey is the work 

of artist Nicol Sayre, 2006.

With so many bunnies hopping about, I quickly fixed

a bed of burlap on a large tray to corral the others.

Harvey is a tall good looking

guy capable of transporting huge baskets.

His sister Lulu is dainty and likes to

carry her eggs in a pack on her back.

Kipper is a dapper gentlemen

by ESC Trading Co. in 2002.

Rain or shine, he'll always

greet you with a fresh bouquet.

Priscilla, the work of Dee Foust,

is a fancy girl who likes glitter and shine.

Muffy likes to hop about the garden

filling her basket with colorful blooms.

Nibbler is from 

the House of Hatten.

Jessie and Jake 

are a serious pair.

Nutmeg frequently entertains

the group with her stick puppet.

She was born in the studio of artist Debbee Thibault.

You can visit Debbee's site here.

You'll find Oscar riding his

three wheeler out on the sun porch.

While Oliver is galloping about

the daisies on his pet rooster.

Fluffy is snuggled in among the

eggs on the living room mantel.

Morning Glory and Twitter

are hiding nearby among the flowers.

Morning Glory 

has the sweetest little face!

And we can't forget 

the Bluette Sisters.

A bit of Bunny Advice before you hop off.

Don't put all your eggs in one basket

Everyone needs a friend who is all ears

Everyone is entitled to a bad hare day

Let happy thoughts multiply like rabbits

Author Unknown

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