July 31, 2012

Meet Lady Winifred

We welcomed Lady Winifred into our home a couple weeks ago. She is now 11 weeks old and as feisty as ever. We decided to get a her when our neighbors Corgi had a litter. How could we resist? My parents and my sister  both have Corgies and they are huge fans of the breed and so we thought we'd give it a go! We currently have one dog but he has really bad back legs and hips and also has a problem with excitable urinary disfunction. Translation: He pees on himself when you talk to him, while he's laying down etc... So there's always a mess to clean up. He doesn't care much for playing with the kids, and it's tough for him to take walks. He's more of a one person dog and that person is myself or my husband. Update: I took Wini in for her first vet visit today and they were telling me about acupuncture for our older dog as a possible treatment for his issues. I'm going to look into it further. If it keeps him from making daily messes it's worth a shot.

We really wanted a dog that the kids could play with, that we could toss a ball to and the dog would willingly play fetch. We wanted a pup that would be an extension of our family. Like our first dog, Lullaby! She was a wonderful, feisty Cairn Terrier. She went everywhere with us, was our little protector and loved us fiercely.

Right now Wini is showing signs of having similar personality traits to our first family pet. That makes me happy! Stay tuned for more posts featuring Lady Winifred.

Thanks for visiting!

July 30, 2012

Raspberry Pie Pops

In honor of the Olympic ceremonies I decided to make raspberry pie pops. The sweet alternative to a big slice of pie. These little treats on a stick would make a great 4th of July centerpiece that kidlets would love. (I know the holiday has passed but you can file this away for next years 4th of July if you'd like.)

Simple to make:
I made a Pate Brisee. Then used a star cookie cutter and some homemade, raspberry freezer jam for the filling. If you try these for yourself make sure to roll the pate brisee as thinly as possible without compromising the dough. Only add a little filling because you want to be able to seal the edges neatly without the jam leaking out. The object is to get a nice balance of filling to dough. To sweeten things up a bit you could add a milk wash and a sprinkle of sugar to the dough before putting them in the oven. These cookie sticks worked perfectly. I pressed them down into the bottom star, then added filling followed by the top star. Using a fork I pressed all the edges to seal them up.

You can see the wee one couldn't resist. I did make her wait a bit so I could get this picture. Shortly after, her brother snitched one too! My oldest really liked the alternative to a piece of pie. All kids like little novelties.

Sticking with a red, white and blue theme I cut some cotton string and tied it around each pop. Adding a piece of foam inside a little tin bucket and then filling it with shredded craft paper made the cutest little display for these edible stars. Because I made two pate brisee and had some additional blueberries on hand I made a pie. Blue pie, red pie pops!

This is where we went to pick our raspberries.
It's no secret that myself and my family are crazy about pick-your-own farms. We've done blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, peaches, apples and most recently found a farm that has raspberries. Let me tell you when I found out there was a farm not to far from us that grew raspberries I got so excited!!! Raspberries are my absolute favorite, favorite berry!!! I grew up picking wild raspberries on our family farm every summer. The wild variety are typically smaller and it definitely took a lot longer to pick a bucket full but when we were done picking for the day we knew there was a pie in our future. My mom would make those pies and I've carried on that tradition. The difference being that we have to locate pick-your-own farms. Not much grows in suburbia and we don't have a big enough yard to plant our own.

There's something so homey about a beautiful, handmade pie sitting on the counter cooling. I've tried several different recipes and have found some favorites. I've also found a few more recipes worth trying if you're a fan of this tart red berry. Raspberry-Sour Cream Crumb Cake anyone?

Would you like a slice?

I also made a batch of raspberry freezer jam with our harvest from the farm. I ended up freezing the remaining berries. I figure I'll use them around Thanksgiving and Christmas.

The farm has lots of other pick-your-own berries. They also had goats that we took a minute to observe. I couldn't resist sharing this beautiful picture of my precious children along this wooden fence. I just wish there wasn't a plastic water bottle in the shot. I was going to edit it out but then realized her hand would look odd not holding something. So I left the bottle.
The littles were tired after picking. You know what that means? Piggy-back rides! Probably not one of big sissies favorite things but she was willing.

Thanks for visiting!

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