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Monday, December 7, 2015

Elk for dinner, Turkey soup all Canned and Fruitcake soon to come! It's December!

 They find me.  Ok, so I actually sort of, well, look for them...slightly.  Anyhow, 37 sewing machines followed us home the other day.  Can I keep them?   NO.  That's not what I was going to say!  Here's the real story:  In a round about way, I found out that within a mere two hour drive there were sewing machines languishing in a barn.  Now, that might be okay if you live somewhere dry (are there such places??), but I live in wet western Washington and let me tell you, it is not dry.
We drove, we saw, we obtained.  None are show pieces.  About 4 are going to stay.  The others will be restored, if possible, and made available to once again, well, sew!  Some, sadly will become parts donors.

I shall not lack for something to do.
 Poor, poor things.  (Now I'm speaking of both my daughter and I AND the machines!)

The day we drove & collected them was a stormy, windy & rainy day.  Each machine had to be stuffed into a plastic bag, set on a cart that held 4 machines and then wheeled through the rain, wind & mud to my truck.......maybe 30 or 40 yards away.  Pure insanity.  Each one weighs about 30 to 40 pounds as well.

The couple who sold them to us were like as out of a fairy tale.  They fussed over us and seated us at their table to drink coffee, eat cake....They wanted to feed us sandwiches (and maybe keep us?) but the machines were calling and the drive was long.  By the time the truck was loaded, we were mud from head to toe.  Well, maybe from toe to knee.
 On a brighter note, THIS is my beautiful new collectible quality addition to my little museum.  It is a New England style hand crank.  Very small and very cute.
 This is what remains of our Thanksgiving Day turkey dinner.  I made broth from the carcass and then used the leftover turkey to can this convenient turkey soup. 

Now I have a cold and I think I'll open one up for my lunch as a remedy!
 During the bleak and dreary days of November there comes a season that riles up the menfolk.  It's called Elk hunting season!  

My dear husband was napping in his easy chair one morning.  I tapped him on the foot and suggested that he might want to leap from his chair, arm himself and bag us some meat!  He did just that and a nice cow elk now resides in my freezer!  Of course, it was a  long slow process getting there, but we'll just gloss over all that hard work and see the finished product....

 Dinner!  Nothing like elk tenderloin (think Filet Mignon...super lean).

I pan fried it with onions, peppers, a few sprigs of rosemary...freshly ground salt & pepper, dash of thyme.

Out of the oven we took our parmesan roasted asparagus spears and sweet potato (yam, actually) fries and VOILA, a delectable meal, fit for a king. 
 Here's my next December/Christmas season project....The fixings for homemade fruitcake.  I realize there are two camps on fruitcake - the lovers and the haters.  I actually like both store-bought AND homemade, but if you've never had homemade, you can't vote fruitcake out.  It's just not the same.  Kind of like the difference between homemade bread and store-bought.  Just not the same animal.  Anyhow, soon I shall begin the fruitcake process and then we will snack with thin slices alongside our steaming hot coffee!
 This is my comfy spot.  Oh, and my husband's, too.  As the years go by we seem to add to them.  Now he's got a pillow for his back and I've got one for my feet.  We each have a warm blanket, I've got my phone & laptop handy, pile of books & magazines, notepads & pens.  And, of course, the most important pieces......coasters for the coffee, of course!  At least we don't stack our barn boots handy nearby!
 With my sweet mother's passing, we had an extra room downstairs.  It is now my sewing machine collection!  Well, part of my collection.  In this room reside most of my treadles and handcranks.  I have others scattered about as furniture in the house and all my electric machines are upstairs in my sewing room, but the main people-powered ones are down in this room.
 Once in awhile, someone will ask me (usually in a stinky tone) just how many sewing machines I actually NEED.  I don't collect them out of need, but out of a sense of preserving them for future generations.  The current fads of recycling, reusing etc. are destroying many old machines and I just want to preserve this bit of history.  I'm an old soul at heart and these old gals have much of the long ago seeped into their wood & iron. 
 I'd love to know where they've been & see just a bit of the life that played out around them.

 The lower part of this one is a Wheeler & Wilson in a library cabinet.  The faux books and beveled glass mirror apparently made it a nicer piece for your home decorating with your sewing machine hidden nicely inside.

The drawer belongs to the Boye needle case, which both contain needles & shuttles in small wooden tubes and bobbins for long-bobbin machines.
 Well, Thanksgiving is past and Christmas is just ahead.  We had a quiet and enjoyable Thanksgiving Day with just the family here.  Other than me bursting into tears when we first sat down to dinner without my mama at the end of the table, we did pretty well.  One daughter fetched kleenex for me and for the other daughter who was kind enough to join me ;-)
My Christmas shopping is done and we're trying to slow things down.  I've actually worked on a couple of puzzles and we've watched a couple Christmas movies.

I've got several primitive orders to fill, so will be sewing this week for sure.  I've caught a cold, so am feeling a bit sorry for myself.  This cherry pie helped....but for some reason it didn't last long.  I did share, by the way.

That's it from the hilltop for today.  Be sure to count your blessings every day - each and every good thing is from God our Father, who is the same yesterday, today and forever!   I cling to the blessed hope & promise that I WILL see my mother again someday!  Don't wait til tomorrow to do that nice thing you've wanted to do, or say the loving words you know you should say.  Hug your mama & all those others that you love!  Merry Christmas to you all!


  1. Feel better soon!

    A person can buy fruitcake at a store? Huh. I guess that makes sense. Yours is the only one I've ever had, and it's delish. :)


    1. Coffee & fruitcake and soon as this cold is gone, yes?
      I knew I loved you!
      Mrs D

    2. Can you tell I have a cold? Should say 'Coffee & fruitcake AS soon as.......
      Off to take pills and, well, drink coffee :-)

  2. Lovely, interesting post, Hilly. I always enjoy peeking into your life on your mountain.