Saturday, October 13, 2007

Our Feathered Friends

This morning I was sitting in front of my laptop surfing the web approximately six in the morning sipping on my coffee, when the sun started to pick through the trees in the horizon , and I started to hear all the different birds just welcoming the day("Good Morning blue bird"..."Good Morning Cardinal"...). It was as if I had my own symphony Number 5 sung by birds (Mozart would be proud). They where singing their little hearts out!!! Then it hit me ...Like an avalanche coming down the mountain!!! Winter is around the corner and soon food will be scarce I needed to come up with a buffet of sorts Throughout the winter on the weekend(The weekend is a special time for us, it should also be for our feathered friends ). So every weekend as a fun family project we will replenish the buffet . I remembered that Mary Engelbreit's HOME companion mag. (LOVE THIS SITE!!)Had how to make our feathered friends some I am going threw all my past Fall/Winter issues and ...voila, I found it !!!(Back in 1997 Oct/Nov issue )

Rice cakes Medallions:
Start by slathering peanut butter on to rice cakes and then dip it into a bowl of millet-birds need the fats in the foods like peanut butter and coconut to keep their engines revved up on cold days. Next, pressed and dried papaya or pineapple, coconut, berries and more fruit. For a non-tropical treat, apples and grapes are popular. Children can arrange fruit in to funny faces. Cardinals might not care, but you will chalk up a chuckle when a flying fellow makes off with a raspberry nose. Here are some other ideas of what to put on the rice cake medallions. Peanut butter, millet, popcorn, green grapes, raspberries, dried papaya, apple, apricot, coconut, banana chips, blueberries, and peanuts.

Fruity garlands:

String your snackables with a blunt tapestry needle on to bird friendly raffia. Although, bananas sport their own natural holes, but most fruits will have to be stuck with a tooth pick. Mocking birds and Thrushes will be unable to resist this artful garland of banana chips and cranberries. Woodpeckers will go straight for a nuttier number with hole unsalted peanuts and multi grain cereals. A strand of popcorn and grapes may be added here too.

Seedy Motels and Pretzel Palaces:

Slap a fresh coat of peanut butter "Paint" (One cup peanut butter mixed with 10 oz. of suet) On a school/lunch carton, roll the walls in cracked-corn stucco, and stick some sunflower seed shingles on the roof. Punch a hole in the very top and string some raffia through it to hold it on a branch. For the highfalutin set, like the haughty Bobwhite, open a pretzel palace. Glue together two half gallon juice cartons, and cover them with peanut butter mortar and pretzel stick siding (preferably salt free), with Chex cereal as the roof. Add a raisin box chimney if you like.

That should do it!!! This should keep your feather friends very satisfied and coming day after day for the wonderful buffet you have provided and as a "Thank You!" they will give you front row seat to the most wonderful concert ever.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Autumn is here!! can you believe it?

Whether you are ready or not Autumn is here! This is the kick off of my favorite time of the year. I shoot into home maker/decorator mode.

It all begins with my husband and I going to the attic and looking for the orange and black bins (since, all Orange is Thanksgiving, and Green, is Christmas ). On the bottom of the stairs I have my boys waiting (as if it was Christmas morning and they are waitting to see what Santa has Brought them). Once the bins start to surface they go nuts (WWWWEEEEEEYYYYYY)! Then the bins open and It is lots of fun...We see things that we remember...We see things that I purchased on clearance (after Halloween) that I tottally forgot about it ...Boy this is so much fun!!! This marks the kick off of the decorating/cooking time of the year.

We begin with the outside, then we move to the inside, then the final touches...We use all of our senses...visually the house is totally orange , with Some black (lots of pumpkins I was even able to find some White ones (they will look great in my chocolate dinning room.). We have some Cd's with scary sounds and a Dracula soundtrack (This is classical music that was played in the movie Bram stokers "Dracula" ) . Finally I take off all my Bath and Body Works Wallflowers and change them from the Spring/Summer fragrance(tropical passion fruit) to my Autumn/Winter fragrance (the perfect autumn "Apple") . Cook some chocolate chip cookies with pecans from scratch ...Vavoom!!!! done the house has gone a full transformation from the light and airy Spring/Summer look to the cozy, warm, and lovely Autumn/Winter look.

Throughout my favorite months of the year (Oct, Nov, Dec) I will be sharing some of my home recipes, tips, and decorations , which I have picked up here and there throughout my years in the states(who knows I may even share some of the Greek recipes, and traditions). Join me in this seasonal journey.