Thursday, April 17, 2014

Easter Centerpiece

I am always wishing I had a beautiful (and easy) centerpiece for dinners and family get-togethers. This pretty centerpiece would be very easy to throw together in just a bit by buying a few things from a local box hardware store, or if you have some pretty plants you can "throw together," that would make it even better.

This arrangement has some ferns, a violet, and some violas along with bulb greenery. The best thing to do is just to arrange them in a basket.

One very wise plant specialist said that for all arrangements, you need a filler, a spiller, and a thriller. Just keep that in mind and you can throw together plants and then use them in the landscape or garden. After all, it is spring and time to think about putting out plants--but first, just use them as a centerpiece.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A new kitchen tool

Recently, I began looking for bun pans. I needed them to make gluten-free buns, because my grandson would almost never eat his gluten-free bun from the grocery store. It was not too surprising since they were usually a bit hard and were not a moist and tender as regular buns. Another motivating factor is that they were almost always three times the price of regular buns.

I finally realized that muffin rings would make great buns so I purchased two sets of four for approximately $12. And, I LOVE them!

After my dough is ready, I pour it into greased rings, then let them rise and bake them.

My grandson really likes them. It's the best kitchen tool I have found in quite a while.

Now if someone would just tell me how to get a reasonably priced hot dog bun pan, I would really appreciate it!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Spring Gardening: Late or on time?

We have had such a busy weekend! But thankfully, we began to plant our spring garden. Though it doesn't look like much yet, it is coming along.

The past few years we have planted earlier and earlier, but this year, things are different. Spring has been very slow in getting here. It has been getting a little warmer every week, but I must admit it has been an unusual year.

I am hoping there will be no more frosts though we may get some more cool weather this week. Even so, we planted some tomatoes, peppers, beans, and cucumbers. We also planted bok choy, kale, beets, carrots.

The green patch in the middle of the garden are strawberries that really were getting overgrown and needed some TLC, since there are ants there already and had some weeds, until this weekend. Thankfully, there are already some small green strawberries that look quite good, despite the weather.

It just goes to show that you can't depend on the weather every year to do the same thing. For the past few years, we have been more concerned about the rain (and sometimes drought). It will probably be different every few years all over, not just here in planting zone 7b.

The rain should be coming today and we should have pretty good weather, especially for the traditional planting day, Good Friday, coming up this weekend.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Our story in our local newspaper

Our story about dealing with gluten allergies is in our local paper today. They did a great job telling our story, about our struggle to come up with gluten-free recipes everyone would like.

Our book is on sale at and we are very proud of it. It is on sale now for $14.30 for the print version and $9.99 for the Kindle version. Check out the article on the Newnan Times-Herald and the book on Amazon. Incidentally, they are giving away a free copy!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Peeps and jellybeans

Last week I attended a luncheon given by the veteran Master Gardeners in our county for the new class of trainees. It was a celebration of making it through the class and passing all the exams. 

The veterans sure did make us feel welcome, not only because of all the good food they served us, but the decorations were really lovely.

One thing I wanted to show off was this beautiful arrangement with peeps, jelly beans and bright yellow tulips. This was so pretty. I could not have imagined the table without it and I think I may just have to borrow the idea for my table for Easter. I just had to snap a photo to share.

It looks like a larger jar with an inside vase that holds the flowers and jelly beans and peeps all around on the inside area. I just really loved it and appreciated the person who made this section of the table so pretty. Great job! And thanks for the great idea!!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Gluten-free cookbook

Looking for a great new gluten free cookbook that will allow you to have your favorite comfort foods? Our cookbook is available now in print as well as on Kindle. Check it out on! Click on the picture below.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Wild Violets

I've often wondered why some plants are weeds and some are considered perfect plants for potting or a garden. I can understand why some weeds aren't beloved because they show up like unwelcomed guests, and you can't get rid of them. 

Those plants can be ragged and ugly and may even cause you to sneeze. Not wild violets. I must admit that I really love them even though they are considered an invasive weed.

I was trying to identify another plant and I really thought it was this pretty violet with heart shaped leaves and purple flowers. Wild violets are lacy with nice purple flowers on stems that rise up from the frilly leaves.

I was trying to remember where I had seen them and a couple days ago I went in search of the violets I had seen about a year ago in a ditch.

When I got to the ditch, I almost didn't see them for the grass. I looked more closely and was so happy to see that not only were they there, but were prettier than ever.

So I dug around in my car till I found a plastic fork and I dug some violets that are wild and invasive, but just may make a very nice plant for my yard since they obviously come back, year after year.

For me, they are not an invasive weed, but a flower that is perfect for me. Next time I will go to the ditch with a shovel and I will definitely not plant them around my nice lawn grass.