Tuesday, May 26, 2009

An Invitation...and some good reading...

I'd like to invite you to join a unique and fun forum on the internet geared towards self sustainability, back yard homesteading, crafts, sewing, and more at:


We'd be delighted to have you join us.

If you have not yet had a chance to read an issue of "Small Town Living" magazine we'd like to invite you to stop by the magazine website and check it out at:

A new issue of the magazine is currently in the works, and will be added to the website soon.

If you are not on our notification list of when a new issue gets posted to the site, and would like to be on the list...simply email us at gardengoose at gmail dot com
I recently found some awesome books I'd like to tell you about too.

First up is a book called "The BackYard Homestead"
I highly recommend this one!

You can find all of these books at Amazon.com

This book covers everything from how to plan out a garden, crop rotation, and so very much more, even a small section on bee keeping!
The next book is definitely a "must have" as well.

This one is called "Make -A-Mix" and has recipes for all sorts of mixes that you can create in bulk and wind up saving so much money.

Recipes for such things as pancake mix, brownie mix, basic cake mixes, and lots more.
And last, but not least a book titled "Smith & Hawken: Gardener's Community Cookbook"

Oh my gracious sakes alive....if ever there was a cookbook for the gardener this one is it.

Recipes galore from all over the country using vegetables.
Definitely a good one to have in the cookbook collection.
Well..I hope you all are having a great week, and do stop by and visit with me again.

(oh, and please don't forget to let me know you stopped by, please do leave a sweet comment. I always enjoy knowing who has stopped by to visit)

~The Garden Goose~

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ahh the smells of French Cuisine are stirring...

Through my house once more the smells of a delightful French dish... a potato gratin using sliced red potatoes, goat cheese, olives, and tomatoes ,and onion, and spices wafts through the house.

French music plays on the speakers from my husband's computer.

Ahhh..this is bliss!

The potato gratin will be completed in about 40 minutes in the oven. Then we will most definitely enjoy serious "comfort food".
Some of you asked what the names of the books were that my husband had read(you'll see the cover image above of the first book of the series)...I need to read them as well now, especially since I am finding myself partaking of French cooking as of late.
The thing about French cooking that I have noticed so far... from what I can tell anyhow in the 2 dishes we have enjoyed in the last 2 weeks...is that the process is "slow and steady". It definitely allows you to take the time to enjoy the whole process of creating the meal.It is not one of those "flash in a pan/made from a can" types of approaches...oh no.!..there is a definite "getting to know your food" approach to things.
Actually how I think it should be..more of a "slow food" approach, incorporating various spices,herbs, and fresh,hearty ingredients.
So...all of that to say this...have you tried stepping outside of your "comfort zone" and tried to prepare something different for dinner? If not..why not give it a try this week.
Take a journey to another country...at least through your taste buds, and with music...find music online that is from the area you choose, and look online also for recipes from that particular country.
If you cannot afford to travel by plane to another country..then bring that country to you through the cuisine and music.
Have fun and enjoy!
~The Garden Goose~

Sunday, May 17, 2009

I think I am in Love...with French Cuisine...

So...my husband recently has read a few books on a family that moved to Provence, France to fix up a farm house aand live there.

The books follow their adventures through fixing up a very old farm house, to discovering the French country side and learning about the people and culture of the area..,

So my husband decided that he'd try cooking some French dishes.

The first dish we tried last week, was a French Potato Gratin using roma tomatoes, goat cheese, black olives and onion..oh my goodness! A hearty meal in and of itself! The flavors melded so very well together.

Then this evening still wanting a taste of French cuisine, my husband and daughter headed off to the store to gather the ingredients for a French Stew..oh my gracious sakes alive! I think I could get used to this...

My daughter prepared this dish while I roasted garlic and red potatoes that had been tossed in a little olive oil, and then we topped slices of oven toasted french bread with the roasted garlic spread onto the bread. The stew was then served over the roasted potatoes.

The stew was made using a red wine, bacon, and some spices and left to simmer for 2 hours.

My husband has said that the stew is now our "secret" potluck/special gathering recipe ..ha.

I was going to share it here but he was like.." nope..you can't..that's going to be our secret Family recipe now"...haha.

But suffice it to say that for a while this evening I could picture myself in some little farm house in the French countryside as I savored every delightful bite of what has now become a "secret" family recipe.

~The Garden Goose~

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Some Things I have Collected/Tucked Back For Our New Home

I have collected/saved back items for our new home for quite a little while now..and they have never been displayed in my current home. I am excited about the fun things I have collected over time, and that will hopefully soon have the opportunity to "shine", and be a definite part of my home decorating at a new place.

Anyhow I wanted to share with you all some of the things that I will be decorating with at a new home.These are items that are packed away awaiting our move to a new home.

this is a 1940's hooked pillow cover that I found.This will most likely be displayed on my aqua colored leather sofa along with some brightly colored red and yellow rose printed pillows. Lots of work went into creating that pillow top. I love things like this that someone took the time to create.
These carnival bowling pins came from Nova Scotia. They are quite old and "shabby" looking, but so cheery. They will be displayed in a retro style dining area that features vintage circus items.
I can't ever seem to pass up large vintage dog statues like this one that measures 8 1/2 inches tall. Actually I once owned a Collie and that dog was so very smart... so when I found this statue I knew it would be added to my collection of vintage dog figurines. This will be displayed along with a vintage copy of the book "Bob, Son of Battle" that I have.
And part of my 1940's, 1950's chickens that will be displayed in my retro styled kitchen. The kitchen will have plenty of red, white accents With walls painted a jadeite green color. Definite 1950's feel to the kitchen.
Some other fun kitchen decor to give you an idea of how it will be decorated Bloomer potholders from the 1940's.

Then I have started a small collection of hand mirrors, these will be mounted on the wall using small plate holders. This one is a double sided mirror, very old and quite heavy. With lovely details on the handle. I will create a wall display using about half a dozen various hand mirrors like this. I have 2 already..now to find 4 more unique ones to complete the plan.And..last but not least..I will be creating a very vintage style Nautical themed bathroom. This little sailor is a chalkware sailor from the 1930's. He is rather "shabby" looking but still has awesome appeal and so very cute I could not pass him up. He will be the main attraction in a vintage styled bathroom that will have nautical items dating back to the late 1800's and 1920's and 30's and 40's.
Thanks for stopping by!
Hope you enjoyed my little "show and tell"
~The Garden Goose~

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Great Victory Gardening Give Away!

Time for another Give Away folks!!!...

This time hop on over to http://www.thevictorygardener.blogspot.com/ for all of the details!

There is still time this year to plant your own Victory Garden!! ...

and trust me..if gardening and growing your own food is something you have been wanting to do...this give away is something you will NOT want to miss.

You will have a chance to win plenty of garden seeds...heirloom garden seeds at that..to have a rather large garden this year.(seeds courtesy of www.myvictorygarden.etsy.com)

So..what are you waiting for?

Hurry on over to http://www.thevictorygardener.blogspot.com/ and get your entry in the pot.
Contest ends May 16th.

~The Garden Goose~/a.k.a. ~The Victory Gardener~

And the Winners Are...(and more)

Hello !

I had my 4 yr. old draw names from folded up slips of paper and she drew the following names as the winners of the little books posted below..

Cathy Jean
Miss Nessa
Nannette M and daughters
Congratulations gals! (I will contact you via your blogs)
Well gracious... I feel like I am so rusty on this blogging thing again..as it seems like it has been a coon's age and then some... since I have posted here.
Yes, our home here in Florida is for sale, it has been on the market now for a little less than 2 weeks.

We are anxious to see it sell so that we can move closer to family.We will be moving to Ocala, FL.

We are hoping that this goal can be achieved before Christmas of this year.I'd really love this goal to be achieved by my birthday in September..if not a wee bit sooner. We shall see.
I have been dreaming,planning, and even gathering seeds for future gardens lately.

It is so fun to find new to me varieties of flowers and even vegetables.
I will be working on the next issue of "Small Town Living" (www.stliving.net)this week. I always enjoy the writing and planning involved with the magazine.I always learn so very much with each issue we create.As the articles that are written always involve research, research, and more research.
My children all recently have been going through a little head cold virus that has floated its way through the family..uggh. I always hate when they get things like that. But at least this one is short lived..only a couple of days worth of the yuckies, and the kids seem to be bouncing back rather well from it.
My oldest daughter baked a big batch of homemade French bread last night. Oh my gracious! She is the official bread baker in the family for sure...our house smelled so yummy last night..and yes the bread was/is awesome.
I have been doing a bit of looking on Amazon.com creating a bit of a "wish list" of books lately.
Looking at books related to self sustainability, organic gardening, and bee keeping, and yes, old fashioned cooking too.
I have been very interested in bees for quite a while now and would love to have a small hive of bees to raise.

I'm secretly hoping that the next home provides us with at least .50 of an acre of land so that I may be able to actually have a small hive or two of bees on the very far back corner of the property. Again..we shall see.
I'd be delighted with a little bit more land than .50 of an acre lot...but .50 of an acre would be nice though if we can't find a larger lot than that.
With a home on the market everything becomes a bit "on hold" when it comes to gardening plans that is for sure.
At least for me..because the plants that I am wanting to keep are mostly all in pots now awaiting the move, and I will not be creating a garden/tilling the earth here at this home since the lawn has been converted back over to a "citified"lawn now.

So, as a gardener ...I find myself simply gathering/collecting seeds and planning/dreaming....and yep...chomping at the bit and more than eager to have a new slate/new yard to have the chance to plan and plant new gardens again.
My entire house has been very much "de-personalized", and I must say..that it is a bit hard to have everything so "in limbo", and all of our pictures,household items, and other fun items that we normally have around(except for the bare basics) totally packed away.
So...wish us luck..as we already have our fingers, toes, and hair, and yep, even our eyes crossed..ha..that our home sells fast.As I for one would really like to get back to a bit more of "normal" in not just gardening, but in home decorating,and a regular home routine as well.
Wishing you all a lovely weekend, and for you moms out there may you have a lovely Mother's day!
~The Garden Goose~

Monday, May 4, 2009

Time For A Give Away!

It is time for a give away (times 3) here!

In celebration of Spring time, Mother's Day coming up soon..and well..simply "because".

I have 3 cute "little books" to give away in the next few days.

They are:

1.)"Little Book of Garlands and Festive Decorations" :by CL Books
Directions for...how to make a daisy and buttercup garland, a harvest garland with poppies, and more.
2.)Rick Rodgers: "Picnics and TailGate Parties"
Recipes for A picnic at the Beach, A tailgate party, Alfresco Supper in the Park and more.
3.)"Two Cats and the Woman They Own: by Patti Davis
how a woman's life was changed for the better by living with and learning from her feline companions.
Want to have a chance to win one of these books?

Simply leave a comment and a way to contact you/either a blog or an email address and your name will be added to the hat.(U.S. Residents ONLY please)
Drawing to be held Friday,May 8th
~ The Garden Goose~