Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Patchwork of Days

~Taking time to mend a favourite dress~

How delightful to wake up to cooler mornings...indeed even the sun has begun to set sooner, all signs of a new season that I welcome wholeheartedly!
~ Throughout our cottage schooling years, I'm certainly grateful that my Mother took delight in the wonder and beauty of books...encouraging us to explore our various interests. We visited the town library *quite* often..ah, the memories!!
~In the kitchen baking Sticky Caramel Rolls: *1 cup milk (warm) *1 pkg. of yeast * 1/4 cup sugar * 1/4 cup melted butter *1 tsp. salt *1.5 cups of flour.

In a large mixing bowl, combine dough ingredients. Add 2 eggs & 2 cups of flour...mix by hand and begin to knead until smooth. In an oiled bowl, insert the dough and let rise until doubled (about 1 hr). Punch down the risen dough, divide in half and let it rest a few minutes.
~Mix 2/3 cup sugar with 3 tsp ground cinnamon--set aside. In a small bowl, have 1/4 cup softened butter set aside as well. Take half the dough, shape into a rough rectangle, about 9x13 in. Brush with half of the butter, and sprinkle with half the cinnamon sugar. Roll and cut into 12 pieces, then repeat the process with the second half of the dough ;)
~Caramel sauce: 2/3 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup butter, 2TBsp table syrup. Instead of corn syrup, I used Log Cabin table syrup--a great alternative and adds a lovely maple taste as well.
In my cast-iron pan, I poured half the brown sugar mixture in the bottom of the skillet...Place the rolls, side down into the caramel. Space them evenly, eight on the outside, four in the middle.
Repeat with the second part of the dough in a seperate cast iron pan (or cake pan). Cover both with a damp towel and let rise in a warm area for 1 hour. Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven for 15 mins or until golden brown...
~Cool ten minutes and then turn upside down onto a plate so that the glaze is on top ;) These sticky caramel rolls turned out great, I'll be making them again soon. Enjoy!!
On the side porch, I found my brother practicing weaving together vines he'd found in the woods.
Since then, he's woven quite a few wreaths-- It's a creative project to try :)
Early one morning, we traveled down to the coast to have breakfast on the beach. As we left our home, the dark sky was still illuminated by the stars. Hours later, we arrived--just in time to watch the sun rise.
As the seagulls soared above us, we began to set up our picnic--I had prepared homemade pancakes and syrup, and we brought an assortment of fruit. It was a lovely breakfast. The morning dawn was a beautiful sight across the sea...In the distance we watched as the ships came into port and as the pelicans flew gracefully above the waves.
~ It's nice to be able to take such a spontanious trip down to the coast, just to experience the morning hours. My parents have always shared with us the delights of appreciating the simple things in life-- so even when we go on road trips, our destinations usually involve some aspect of nature, state parks or museums! And we so enjoy it.
~ My mother and sister walking along the shore...
~As we prepared to leave, my brother convinced me to take one last trip out into deeper waters--and I'm glad I did! We collected a nice amount of sea shells :) Soon enough, tourists began to arrive as we were packing up our picnic. The sun was now high in the sky, and we took one last look before we headed home.
~It's fun to go through old catalogs, cutting out images that inspire and spark new ideas!
~ "Next year, I'm going to build a proper cold frame, mark my words, just like the one I saw in The Tale of Benjamin Bunny. Now that was a fine piece of craftmanship, with stout brick sides." --Tasha Tudor
~ As I was weeding the Peanut patch, I must admit I had to laugh--why is it that in the garden we're always accompanied by our curious pets...this one in particular having quite the crooked tail, I must say!
~ My father and brother working on the front its finished!
~I take delight in the simplicity of cottage living. The fewness of its objects keep us focused on the beauty of everyday, down to earth things--I do believe there's a satisfaction that comes with leading a quiet life.
~On a sunny afternoon, my mother begins to tidy our old storage shed..
~ This summer, my dear sister graduated from cottage-schooling! One evening, we celebrated together by candle-light on the front porch. My mother presented the certificate, as we all shared stories, thoughts and marveled at how quickly the years have flown by!
~ As I walked through the yard, I turned around to find out I was being followed ;)
~Here's a simple recipe I revised last week..I thought y'all may enjoy it.

~Fried Salmon Cakes~
*14.75 oz can of wild Alaska Salmon, drained *
1/2 cup minced onion
*2 tsp ea. of spicy brown mustard & lemon juice *1
TBsp relish *1/2 tsp ea. of garlic powder & Old bay spice *1/4 cup ea. of cornmeal and flour *1.5 Tbsp parmesan cheese *1 egg
Gently mix all the ingredients together, and form into small patties, I made 14. Arrange the patties on a cookie sheet thats been lightly covered in cornmeal. Refrigerate for atleast 15 mins. In a well oiled pan, cook the cakes until nicely browned on both sides. Serves 4-6. Ah, These turned out so so flavorful!!
~ As September slips into October, the days are getting shorter... Nevertheless, 'tis more of an excuse to bring out the candles and enjoy quiet evenings in the parlour.

Autumn has arrived, indeed.


Cyndi Lewis said...

Another beautiful post. Thank you! I can't wait to try out the salmon cakes.

Patricia said...

Just wanted to say how much I enjoy reading your blog. I love the "ole fashion simplicity" of your postings. Have you ever considered hand quilting ? I love it....

Bonnie said...

I've missed your posts, and after a trying morning (at only 8:40!) already, it was a quick bit of refreshment for me to read your newest post! Blessings Mia!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to your sister Mia...thank you for sharing your days :) Lovely.


Amanda said...

Simply lovely post. I only wish you posted more often. :) I get all excited when I see your name in my google reader. :)

Can't wait to try the Salmon cakes. :)

Stephanie Ann said...

All the photos are beautiful and the recipes look delicious! Congratulations to your sister!

Sue said...

Beautiful beautiful photos. I love your posts!

Loriana said...

I love reading your post :) You always have the most beautiful pictures, I loved the part about going to the beach for breakfast. I grew up near the beach and I took my breakfast over to share with the sunrise quite often. Sadly I'm now living in a big city and I haven't been able to see the sunrise in almost 2 months now. Thanks for sharing, it made me smile.

Anonymous said...

Always love your posts...

Krafty Girl said...

Fantastic post! I love your pic. Maybe we will have those salmon cakes for supper. They look yummy!
God Bless,

kpaints said...

Congratulations on your sister's graduation.

Thanks for sharing your trip to the sea...lovely photos!

I am copying that Salmon pattie recipe...looks delish!

LadyLydia said...

Your photographs are wonderful and I particularly like the stack of books with the doily and flowers on them. I appreciate what you do to restore Victorian culture, which is just more family life and creativity, invention, and love of the home!

Plum said...

Those sticky buns look absolutely delicious!

jeana said...

Can't wait to make those Sticky Buns for my boys and my husband! I'm pretty new to your blog and just LOVE it!

Michelle-ozark crafter said...

What a delightful post! And what a treasured gift to be learning such wonderful things. God bless and huggles.

Christi said...

Porch looks great! Congrats to your sister on her accomplishment. When are you guys coming over again? Email me!

Hugs to all of you.

Fanny said...

I'm so interested in that recipe for caramel rolls... it seems very similar to a traditional Swedish recipe for kanelbullar - "cinnamon buns". I wonder if your american version actually comes from Sweden or Scandinavia originally?
For us swedes, the american versions often seems a bit too sweet... ours have cardamom in the actual dough as well are without glaze/caramel. Just the other day I read an american article talking about the wonderful "swedish cinnamon buns", but I'm sad to say they got it quite wrong. :( The recipe described made flaky, crisp buns similar to croissants... which is just all wrong. If you are curious about traditional Swedish cinnamon buns, check out this blog!

It's not my own, I just found it on the net since it explains everything in English. (My own website is!)

Mikailah said...

Wow... it looks like you have been busy! :) I love the pictures. And the outing to the beach looks like a wonderful time. Thank you for sharing!

In Christ,

reginascottage said...

hello mia
wonderful post!!!! thanks for sharing all the delicious recipes.lovely pics from a wonderful life.
have a lovely time,

Leslie said...

Thank you for posting! What a feast for the eyes! Everything is beautiful as usual.

Joy @ Artful Homemaking said...

What a lovely post, Mia! I love your artful photographs!


elizabeyta said...

Thank you so much for sharing. I have missed your posts. I have also missed autumn where I am living and this was just delightful to share.

Amy Jo said...


I love your blog, and I don't know how your family has managed such a wonderfuly simple life. I try very hard to make ours that way. It just seems that life gets in the way... How do you balance outside activities and the home? It seems if we have just a few activities, the next thing I know it feels as if home suffers. You all seem so balanced. And it is beautiful.

Blessings to you,

Amy Jo

Ann at eightacresofeden said...

Another lovely post. I so enjoy your blog and the appreciation you show for beautiful simplicity. I want my own children to have that same attitude. Your brother has woven those vines so well. I have tried this but can never get a perfect circle! I smiled at the picture of your cat. Our cat also has a crooked tail, we think she may have become tangled somewhere as her tail used to be straight. She also follows us around whenever we go into the garden to work. Thank you for sharing your recipes. I will be making those salmon cakes for dinner tonight as I have all the ingredients on hand. Oh and I love how you described your home education as 'cottage' schooling!

Anonymous said...

Another stunning post, as usual!

Miss Mia, have you ever thought of self-publishing a book of your exquisite photography, perhaps with a few simple captions and a recipe thrown in here and there? I would prize such an acquisition (especially in a hard-cover format), and I am sure others would as well. I suppose we can dream...

-a quiet fan-

Anonymous said...

Loved your photos, the spontaneousness of your family go and see different things, what a wonderful life you all have! Just one question though, where did your mother get the certificate for your sister's cottage homeschooling graduation? 'til you blog again, God Bless!

Anonymous said...

read part of your blog for the first time tonight.
Very nice!
enjoyed it,
Sherry in Maine

Esther said...

Do you like awards, Mia? I really hope you do, because I have one for you on my blog!

A Quiet and Simple Life said...

Another beautiful post - as always!
Congratulations to your sister!
Mia, thank you for sharing your peaceful days and lovely photos.
Your blog is a great blessing to us who aspire to live gently before the Lord.
God bless you and your family..Trish

The Scarlet Thread said...

Beautiful post!! I look forward to trying the recipes you shared. : )


Pamela said...

What a delightful blog. I've enjoyed your post. The salmon recipe is one I'm eager to try.

I love to see young women enjoying homemaking.


Anonymous said...

Hi. I`m a spanish girl and i love your blog¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡ i havent words to explain how much i like it.
Im sad because i see the photos of your Sticky Caramel Rolls and it seems so delicius... but i dont understeand enough the recipe so i will try to make it, more or less.
I hope you understand my poor english.


ZipZip said...

What a lovely way to live and to think about life.

Very best,


Megan Marie said...

Your caramel rolls look wonderful! What beautiful photography~you have a lovely blog!


Mrs B said...

It's always such a joy to visit you and your family :)

Civil Folks said...

Mia, so good to 'catch up'. Hope you all are well. We are doing pretty good.

Hope to see you all before too long. Richland Church Homecoming is Sunday,...200 years old!

Your family is always welcome to just drop by andytime you are in town. Would love to see you and 'gabb' awhile.

Anonymous said...

I ABSOLUTELY love your blog. I click in everyday to see if you have posted. I'd love to see more post! Please post more often! You are an inspiration to live the simple, meek, life. Your photography is beautiful. I love the photos of the cottage and garden. Blessings to you!

Stacie, A Firefighter's Wife said...

Beautiful pictures as always. I love a glimpse of your life. It always looks so simple and peaceful.

Tulip said...

I love the pictures you post! Do you take most of them?

Elaine @ Sunny Simple Life said...

I am so glad I found your blog again. I had lost track of it and found it again. So lovely. I am all for simple living and enjoy many of the same simple pleasures you do.

Julian said...

How good to read this post mia!I have missed them very much!How have yoy been?First of all,confrats to your sister on her graduating!I know you and your family are proud of her! Your pictures are beautiful!What a time to be refreshed and blessed with Gods creation! Tis a gift to be simple and free from the material cares of this life. You are truly blessed,and I hope that it remains forever so for you. Keep up the great work. Blessings, christina

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to your sister. Another stunning blog post!! Thanks Mia for sharing your precious family's life with us here on your blog.


Olivia said...

So lovely Mia!

I always look forward to my "visits" to your beautiful cottage!
Thank you for sharing snapshots of your life with us!
In Him,

Anonymous said...

Lovely post and pictures!

Linda said...

Thankyou once again for an enjoyable post Mia. My cat also follows me around the garden and curls up wherever I'm working...he keeps me company. I can't wait to try the salmon cakes.God Bless you and your family :)

softearthart said...

A wonderful post, cheers from New Zealand, Marie

Jessica said...

Can we see the full version of that green ( Maybe?) dress? Or where you got the pattern? Is it Vintage?

Linda said...

I'm also fascinated that you can grow peanuts in your garden !! wow, I think it doesn't get hot enough here in New Zealand for them to grow here. God's blessings to you Mia >3

Patty said...

Hi Mia,

I have spent the past several days reading through your blog and have enjoyed it very much.

Focusing on preparing for your life calling is a good idea. When I first married, 28-years ago, I thought I knew how to cook because I knew how to bake a cake and scramble eggs; was I ever wrong!

Over the years I have learned much and I am still learning. Being a wife, mother and homemaker is hard work but very rewarding. Learning life skills such as cooking, cleaning, gardening, sewing...will benefit you greatly all throughout your life.

Your blog is so well done; lots of pictures make what you talk about come to life. I have you saved in my favorites and look forward to reading more about you and your family.

Curtains In My Tree said...

Oh honey those cinnamon rolls looks so good

what a delightful blog to read so calm like
i like all your pictures you have on your side bar also

i'm ready for another wondeful post from you

The BUTT'RY and BOOK'RY said...

Ooooooo What a BEAUTIFUL visit I have had!!
I am now yearning for the taste of boiled peanuts that I haven't had for years and years!! (something Northern folk have never discovered)!
Mia the images on this post are wonderful and have touched my inner heart ;-) You and your family are so very DEAR!!!
Many many Blessings and lots of Love, Linnie

Anonymous said...

Where did you get your hat?

Susan B said...

Once again, your post was a delight to read! I always enjoy the photos you share, and reading about the lovely life your family lives. Thank you so much for sharing it. :)

Helena said...

A lovely blog. I wanted to tell you that grapevines are soaked to make the pliable to make wreaths. That may help your brother and not be so hard on the hands. I like the studies of a simple quiet life.Keep up the good work.

janice15 said...

Your such a pleasure and an inspiring young woman. I'm very glad to have found you and your blog. I can't wait to try your recipes. I believe I'm blessed and you are surely blessed with such inspirational parents and family. I would gladly trade my life for yours... thank you for sharing such wonderful lovely things and photos..I so enjoy to come visit you. with love Janice

Angela said...

Mia. I haven't visited in an age. And your Patchwork Days was not only beautiful but just what I needed to read on a wet Columbus day. I should be working on 'work' stuff but now I am totally inspired to get out the sewing and get cracking. Since I shifted back into the classroom at my school leaving administrative work behind, I have learned to breath again and feel my creative wings stretch and help me take flight. People like you who are free in spirit and body are an inspiration to those of us still caught up in the whorl wind of 'social expectations' and structures that gain us nothing more. Thanks for reminding us through your lifestyle to live life, enjoy its beauty and the God given creative talents we have been given. Bless you and your family.

Owner of Homeschool Faith and Family Life Website said...

Oh how happy I am to have had time this evening to stop by and visit your lovely blog and family:) I can imagine how wonderful your beach-side breakfast was...we have not been able to go to the shore for several years now and we miss it so.
Thank you for sharing a glimpse of your trip there with me today!

Anonymous said...

hey mia!
that's so cool about the beach! Macy was telling me that :) i'm enlisting your help! you see, i'm designing my room true vintange 1930's and i need someone to help scout for items that are really bargained priced! like a 1930's iron bed, hat rack, rug, quilt, roll-top desk, typewriter (pref. working), radio (doesn't have to work) and a phonograph (working) and several usable 1930's phonograph records. It would be such a huge help! i'm also looking for homey little knicknacks like gloves, hats, dresses, aprons, baby shoes, etc. from that time period! it would be so appricieated if you could help me look!-Oriana

Missy said...

Greetings Mia,
I am ever so glad I stumbled across your blog today. It is very wonderfully written and those pictures that make it come to life. It's so nice to see a young woman so much like what I desire my own young women to become. I look forward to backreading post, and waiting for new ones.

Far Above Rubies said...

Such peace. I enjoy your stories. Thank you for sharing.

Cindy Brannon said...

Sister Mia ~ I tried your Salmon Cakes last week. They were wonderful. Bro B and I both enjoyed them.
May God continue to bless your sweet family.

Sister Cindy Brannon

Kennesa said...

Dearest Mia,
I love this post! Of course, I've never read one of your posts that I didn't love!
Blessings and Lots of Love,
Your Sis in Christ,

Cindyann said...

Just found your blog and am looking forward to reading all you publish... you tug my soul.

I'm a Mother and now Grandmother who has lived and loved a life of simple gifts; husband, homemaking, children, grandchildren.

Thank you for your artful blog. It reveals the priceless value of traditional womanly pursuits.

May God richly bless you as you journey forward through your life.

Amy said...

We moved from Houston to Seabrook. It is next to Galveston Bay. Our apartment is on the water. We love it here. I love the pelicans, seabirds, and the smell of the salty air. It is very agreeable. There is a boat marina behind us. I love to watch the boats come and go.

Have a wonderful night.

Anonymous said...

I enjoy your blog so much. I saw the sticky buns recipe some time back and made a mental note to try them. Today I was in the mood to bake and made them. They/you are amazing! My family and guests loved them. This recipe is a keeper! Thank you for so generously sharing. Diane

Joy Tilton said...

Lovely, just lovely... the music, the pictures and the text feed my heart! Adding you to my sidebar right now.. come for a visit to our little piece of heaven on Granny Mountain in Arkansas!
Joy C.