I Decided to Eat Witchy Rose!

If you missed my post about Witchy Rose, you can read it right here!  If you don't want to take the time, let me just tell you that this Queen Victoria rose blooms when she wants to ... only when she wants to.  I planted it decades ago and it grew all over the trellis, but it never bloomed ... until my Aunt Evelyn died.  It bloomed the next year and I felt like my aunt made it bloom for me!  It didn't bloom for years ... until the year my daughter got married.  That year it gave us a dozen long stemmed beautiful roses.    I cut it down to the ground and had a porch built over it ... thought I'd never see her again and she found her way through the wooden slats .. and bloomed again!   

Anyway, I think the rose is haunted ... but in a good way!

This year, I decided I would eat her when two pretty roses bloomed! 

This stuff is good!  Yes, I know that everything is good on a Ritz Cracker ... but it is seriously a treat!  I'm sharing the recipe, but you should only use rose petals that have not been sprayed or treated, so make sure you know the roses you are turning into jelly.    I'm going to post this with a few parties this week, so make sure you visit ...

Witchy Rose Petal Jelly

2 cups rose petals 
3 cups of water

Juice of one lemon
5 cups sugar
1 pouch liquid pectin

Wash the rose petals before using them.  Bring 3 cups of water to a hard boil.  Drop in the rose petals; turn off the burner and put a lid on your pan.  Let the petals steep for 30 minutes.   After 30 minutes, remove the lid and use a strainer spoon to scoop all the petals out of the liquid.  Use your hand and squeeze the handful of petals so all the juice comes out of them. 

The liquid will be a pale color and as soon as you add the juice of one lemon, it will return to the color of the petals you used!  Just like magic!   Add the sugar and return the liquid to a rolling boil, stirring constantly.   When the liquid reaches a boil that you cannot stir down, add the liquid pectin.  The boiling will slow down a little, but continue stirring until it reaches a rolling boil again and continue to boil it for 1 minute.   Don’t guess, time it!

Turn off the burner;  let the boiling subside and pour the jelly into sterilized canning jars.  Process them in a hot water bath for 10 minutes to make certain that the lids seal.

Stephanie's Shower for Tyson Calan!

Today was my niece, Stephanie's baby shower ... for Tyson Calan who will be here in just a few weeks!  I am so proud of my Sister-in-law, Carol ... for all her planning and efforts in making this a beautiful event.  Lots of folks pitched in to take care of our big group of family and friends ... but our fearless leader,  Carol ... made this event perfect!

It all began with this cute invitation ... in the shape of a baby bottle!

Then Carol started finding things on Pinterest that she wanted to do!  She sent me a text message of a cute favor and I cranked up the Cricuit!  
Wait til you see the adorable favor!

Everything is adorable ... the ingredients for s'mores as a favor was such a cute idea!  Carol got those giant marshmallows and that made them even cuter ... 4 graham cracker squares, half a big chocolate bar and one of the giant marshmallows!  The chocolate kisses ... with the cute little "it's a boy" round sticker on the bottom were added to sprinkles 
down the middle of the tables.   ...and look at the sprinkles 
and the tiny baby bottles and binkies!

My brother helped Carol make the diaper cake in the center bottom of that collage.  He rolled the diapers ... but I doubt that he'll change any! 

Now for the cakes!   The cake was white and chocolate ... and the cupcakes were adorable!   There were lots of children and they loved the cupcakes!

Of course ... everything on the tables matched the theme!  The tiny sprinkles were so cute ... and the balloons were perfect!

We love to eat!  We had fresh vegetables and strawberries ... chicken salad in croissants ... lots of chips and dip ... and perfect blue punch that was topped with vanilla ice cream and pineapple sherbet!

I loved the fact that Grandma Carol chose 'footprints' as the theme for Tyson Calan's shower ... because he has already left his footprints on our hearts!   We are a family with generations of lots of girls ... so getting a baby boy is a pretty special thing!  My brother is already buying forts and toy soldiers ... and little cars ... He can't wait to play!

Good job Carol Ann!

Moss Roses for Joe!

 My husband loved Moss Roses.  His mother had a flower bed built around a big Maple tree in the back yard.  It was edged with bricks and the whole thing was filled with Moss Roses and Irises.    She could make anything grow, unlike me!  Joe always said she covered that flower bed with leaves every winter and the Moss Roses came up on their own each spring.   So, for the past 36 years, I've grown Moss Roses in beds and in pots ... and babied the stinkers to get them to bloom!  One of our dogs enjoyed eating the red and pink ones, so I learned to put them in pots on tables to keep Shiner from eating them!   This year, I think I've found a perfect spot for them ... and the perfect pot!   I'll keep you posted.  So far ... so good! 

Pink & Yellow for Saturday!

I haven't posted with Pink Saturday for some time, but I almost always look to see what the rest of you folks are doing!  Thought I'd better make an appearance of my own!

I always enjoy planning suppertime tablescapes around whatever is in bloom in the yard.  Right now, my Sweet Berry bushes are bursting with the blooms that smell and look like old fashioned Honeysuckle ... and a little bunch of that is perfect in the middle of the table on the back deck!    
I added a little pink ... since this is for Pink Saturday!

 I use this pink dinnerware frequently on the back deck.  It is sturdy, but that really doesn't matter to me ... As you see, I've used my Cape Cod Depression Glass with it ... If you know this pattern,
though, you'll notice that the water glass isn't actually Cape Cod.
It is a really good match, however!

The flatware is a Cambridge pattern ... Bamboo ... and it also finds
 its way to the decks.  This pattern has a high gloss
and sets a pretty formal table, too.

Hope you enjoyed this post.  Stay awhile and visit my home page.  I have a few other new posts that might entertain you.   You might want to meet Witchy Rose!

I'll be sharing this with several blog parties this week, so make sure you check them out.  I make new friends all the time ... blogging!

Lemon Chicken on the Back Deck!

I love having dinner on the deck ... back or front ... I don't care as long as I'm outside!   Today, Miss Phoebe brought her parents over for dinner and we ate this week's cooking column!   Lemon Herb Grilled Chicken, French Potato Salad, grilled Rainbow Chard and a fantastic Strawberry Pineapple Pie.   

This dinnerware is a new version of Old World Temptations from QVC.  The Mother's Day fairy brought me some and I quickly matched it with my red blown glass stems, red Cambridge flatware and these colorful place mats and napkins from Pier 1.  

The cute bird napkin ring came from Pier 1, too!    I'll be sharing this post with a few blog parties this week.  

Make sure you check out ...

A Princess in the Tree!

Yes, that is a princess in the tree ... in her heels!
We had a teal blue Mother's Day on my daughter's back deck.  Phoebe helped set this pretty table and made the centerpiece!   She was so proud that she cut the flowers from the bush in the back yard.

Nicole's dinnerware is QVC Temptations, a new recently unveiled!  The yellow stems are probably 20 years old ... she took them from my stash!  The dip on the corner of the table is Cajun Catfish Dip and will be in my next cookbook ... which I am entitling, "My Brother's Catfish"!   Brother drops barrel nets in the Big Muddy River in Southern Illinois and recently caught an 80-pound Blue Catfish ... so I'm preparing about 40 catfish recipes this summer to put in the book!   It doesn't take much to entertain us!

Strawberry Banana Coffee Cake

I've been making my own yogurt and I am really enjoying baking and cooking with it.   It enhances the flavor of so many things.  This is a stack of miniature coffee cakes, made with the yogurt ... ripe bananas and crushed over-ripe strawberries.   I work really hard at not letting anything go to waste in my kitchen ... so when the berries started getting soft, I quickly stirred them into this good, good recipe!   I used a combination of cashews and pecans in the topping for these cakes.  I keep a little grinder jar 'at the ready' all the time and toss the ends of portions of nuts in it, so it almost always has a combination!  The cashews were left over from making cashew chicken a couple weeks ago!

You can tell in this picture that these little cakes were moist.  I love them that way and I've found that this recipe  can easily be microwaved to reheat it, so don't hesitate to freeze it in the portion size that you like ... one or two pieces at a time.  You can pop it right out of the freezer and microwave it for less than a minute and have warm, moist ... flavorful coffee cake to get your morning started the right way!

Banana Strawberry Coffee Cake

3 ripe bananas
1 ½ cups chopped strawberries
1 cup Greek yogurt
½ cup butter, softened
1 ¼ cups sugar
1 teaspoon rum extract
2 ¼ cups flour
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda

1 cup chopped nuts
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon

In a big mixing bowl, whip the bananas, strawberries, yogurt, butter, sugar and extract until creamy.  Add the flour, baking powder and baking soda and continue to whip until thick and smooth.    Pour the batter into a prepared 13 x 9 inch baking pan.  Combine the topping ingredients and sprinkle on top of the batter.   Bake at 350 degrees for 25 – 30 minutes until the top is browned and the center springs back when you touch it with your finger.  

Let cool for 20 minutes before serving.  

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