Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Metalliferous, A Giveaway and Homemade Biscuits with Blueberry Basil Jam


In honor of all you wonderful people who have helped me reach (over) 700 likes on my
Little Owl Arts facebook fan page, I am doing a giveaway.
Head on over HERE to find out how to enter!


So far I have made raspberry jam and raspberry peach jam. YUM!!! I was supposed to have already made some variation of peach jam (I'm thinking lavender peach), but by the time I got to the peach seconds I was given they had been sitting in the fridge for a few days and were too far gone so I had to scrap that idea and wait another week until I could get more.
This morning I set out to make jam out of the bucket of blueberries I was given at the farmers market on monday. I decided I wanted to make blueberry basil jam with the globe basil that has gone bananas in the garden (one of the only things to have thrived through all the rain, not so great soil and only so-so location in terms on sun). As everything was bubbling away, I realized I had forgotten to eat breakfast
-don't do this, people! Breakfast is the most important meal of the day... Ok rant over-
so I decided to make some biscuits. I made some fantastic herby biscuits last night as part of the dessert I made to bring with us to dinner at my Mom's house last night and ended up leaving them all there. I made the ones this morning plain, but they were still pretty fantastic and super easy! Everything seemed to come together at the same time and I had fresh biscuits (that were almost more akin to scones) topped with the most amazing blueberry basil jam. I couldn't stop eating them!!!

...Fresh Herbed Biscuits...

2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2(ish) tsp. salt
2 T. butter
3(ish) T. organic sugar
1 cup plain yogurt
Herbs of choice, fresh or dried
(I added thyme, rosemary, basil and lavender from my garden and container gardens)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and herbs. Cut in or with your hands mix in the butter until mixture looks like coarse flour meal. Add in the sugar and then the yogurt and mix until fully combined. Drop scoops of the mix onto a baking sheet in the size biscuits you want and bake for about 12-15 minutes.

...Blueberry Basil Jam...

2 lbs. blueberries
(you can add other berries or fruits in if you like, I also made a batch with raspberry added to the mix)
2/3 cup brown sugar.
5 T. lemon
basil to your liking

You can keep this jam in the fridge if you are going to be eating it soon or you can can it if you like. I canned mine (minus the one I am devouring!).
Get the water bath going and start sterilizing your jars and lids.
Combine all ingredients listed in a sauce pan or pot that will comfortably fit everything. Try to mash as many berries as possible. Simmer until desired thickness, usually about 20-30 minutes.
Carefully pour into hot jars if you are sealing them in a water bath and continue with the canning process or if you want to just keep it in the fridge, let cool and scoop into cooled jars.

My suggestion is to also add some homemade butter or maple whipped cream on top.
But that's me.



I have been playing around a little bit with cochineal.
It gives beautiful, varying shades of purpley-pinks and vice-versa.
However, I am not sure how much I will use it, the baths I have made get considerably weaker after the first emersion. Have any of you out there used cochineal for dyeing? I would love to know about your experinces with it!

I am hoping to have this scarf posted in the shop later today.
Oh, and make sure to take a look at this scarf there, dyed with sumac!



Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Simple Pleasures

A beautiful afternoon with my favorite person (and dogs) this past weekend.
A nice walk around the reservoir,
puppies for a swim,
local farm food.

What did you do this weekend?

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Being Wild and Making Wild Medicine

We are getting to the best part of the season, I love the slow (sometimes not so slow) shift into fall.
There has been many good dog swims in the reservoir, I love seeing the wild happiness as my dogs swim and shake and then run around in all their glorious freedom!
Late summer is amazingly abundant and a great time of year for adventuring, gathering, swimming, medicine making, preserving/canning, harvesting...

I have a few spots I love to gather elderberries for syrup.
I try every year to get enough for at least one batch (quart mason jar full), but preferably enough to freeze the extras for medicine making in the dead of winter.

Sadly, some of the spots I would wild harvest either died off or were chopped down (insert gasp from my shock and horror!). But there are still a few places I covet!
I used to have elder bushes that grew right along the edge of the yard at a house I rented, but sadly I had to move away from there. Although, I tended to leave those berries for all the wild birds to make sure they were fed and healthy and I would go down the street to the bigger bushes to harvest.

No matter, I have found some this year!
And thank goodness for tall friends because all the big clusters of berries were way out of reach for me without a ladder! Many of the clusters were picked over from birds, or the berries had fallen off from being so ripe, but I got enough to make some syrup!
For my recipe see here or here, and if you are wildharvesting make sure you use the black elderberries!!!


Stay wild and free, my friends!

From Nature, With Love...

I have been experimenting with collected wild flowers, berries and some other things.
Trying to get a range of color, finally off my indigo kick (I get like that with things, obsessed with a color, texture, shape, whatever...)

So far I am happy.


In order of photos:

1. Staghorn sumac (first bath)

2. Cochineal... Not wild harvested around here, color from little bugs, actually. But I wanted to play and see, the color is nice, but not sure if I will continue with this as a dye other than playing around here and there.

3. Tansy (yellow) over-dyed with indigo to achieve the green.

4. Same as #3, but dipped the whole scarf.

5. From bottom to top: First 3 are staghorn sumac (1st, 2nd and 3rd dip in the same bath), tansy, tansy/indigo, cochineal (first dip), cochineal (second dip), last 2 cochineal/indigo.

6. Scraps from above scarves sitting atop a sumac scarf


Do you do any natural dyeing?
I would love to hear about it!


I am hoping to have a couple of the scarves in the shop by the end of the weekend.
So check HERE later!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

It's been a while...

I have been busy.
In the studio.
Creating new designs, new screens...

Here is a little glimpse of the newest Little Owl screen prints
(some of which are in the shop now)


(Birch are some of my favorite trees!!!)


I am missing you all!
What have you been up to?


Saturday, August 10, 2013


Everything I need.
Everything I want.
Is right here, right now.

I am totally happy.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Days Gone By, But Not Forgotten...

A little glimpse of moments from the last 2 weeks...
(Did you notice the rainbow in the first photo? Aw, heck yeah!!!)

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Moments from this mornings walk... I am thankful.

I am thankful.
Life has been busy.
I am thankful.
I have been given a moment to slow down.
I am thankful.
The days are long and beautiful.
I am thankful.
To be surrounded by those I love and wild spaces.

I am thankful.