Gardening, Cooking and Decorating on the Prairie of Kansas

Welcome to Linderhof, our 1920's home on the prairie, where there's usually something in the oven, flowers in the garden for tabletops and herbs in the garden for cooking. Where, when company comes, the teapot is always on and there are cookies and cakes to share in the larder.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Down It Comes

January 1 we woke to this . . . 

A hundred year old tree in our front yard which crunched our porch roof

We knew that it probably wasn't the healthiest tree but we figured it wasn't quite
ready to be taken down . . .
Were we mistaken!

And although it is pricey to have a tree taken down,
it's cheaper than the deductible on your insurance!

In back, we had an old tulip tree
Over the years we lived here, we've lost a lot of limbs from the tree
It also had ivy growing up it
Which wasn't good for the tree either!

And we made a decision in January
the tulip tree must come down on our terms
before it came down on our house!

Mr. Miller of Miller's Tree Service came today
Down came part of the fence so he could get his lift close to the tree

And he sawed and sawed away

From tall tree to stubby tree

From stubby tree to just a small part of a tree

And as the guys cleaned limbs and stumps from the back garden,
Mr. Miller worked on the final stage of the tree.

And it is down!
Not all the way down for we wanted a stump left
For we had a purpose for a tree stump

We thought it would make a great fairy house!
(like the one in the picture)
And we're working on getting that done!
Won't the grands be thrilled when they visit and see a big fairy house in the 
back garden?

A big thanks to Mr. Miller for he is a pro.
Trying to cut down that tree in our back garden
Was like walking through a mine field.
There were garden beds, fence, hot tubs, BBQ pavilions, ponds
to worry about.
Plus all of the things that they did move out of the way.

The garden looks different.
It's definitely went from a shady garden to a sunny one.


Sunday, April 11, 2021

Spring Trees

The trees of Spring are so pretty.
Mother loved redbuds
But being careful with a dollar, she would never go out and buy one
No, we would stop and try to dig up a wild one.
After many attempts at digging one up and not succeeding
(they have roots down to China),
my brother and I finally bought her one as a Mother's Day gift

As because Mother loved redbuds, so do I.
In 1972, Jim and I, after all, moved to The Redbud City
Nevada, Missouri!

I love to look out on pretty things as I'm doing dishes so I like plants that I can see from the kitchen window.
I planted a redbud outside my kitchen window of our first house
but we moved before it grew very big

I didn't plant, but it grew, a redbud outside Linderhof's windows.
This from the upstairs window, directly over the kitchen one
It's grown and is a nice specimen.
Some years, I'll cut branches and bring inside.

On the south side of the house, we had a beautiful pink dogwood
Right outside the dining room window

But it was an old, pink dogwood, planted by Ruth I am sure.
By the time we came along it wasn't healthy and came down.
But when we first moved here in April, I loved to see the blooms outside the dining room window

We replaced it, but not in the same spot

It's till a little tree but today it is full of blooms.

I know you should not covet anything, but I do covet
my daughter's crab apple tree
It's an old tree

And a little mis-happen
because there was some street work done and she begged them not to cut the tree down
And they didn't!
But they did end up chopping off some of the branches on the left side.
It's a beautiful tree
And I did covet it.

Three years ago, we were up when the tree bloomed.
I was quite taken aback by it's beauty
And decided that there needed to be one at Linderhof.

I did my homework about pink blooming crab apples and what varieties there are
But I shouldn't have bothered.
Because by the time I got home, did my research and went out here to search
for a tree
there were few left

And this year, it is abloom!

It is the same variety as Sarah's.

The one tree that was left at Wal Mart that year!

It even leans right as does Sarah's tree.
That, believe me is not intentional,
but when you buy the only one left . . . 

And I can see it from the dining room window!

And it brings a smile to my face!

When you plant a tree, you're often planting it for those who come after you.
I'm sure that that is true of this tree.

And I hope they enjoy it as much as I.


Tuesday, April 6, 2021

The Spring Garden

My favorite garden is probably the Spring Garden
Winter is so brown here
We don't get much snow to cover the brownies
And the garden is really ugly in the winter
Because it's so BROWN!

But come April and the garden comes alive . . . 

Even the fairies have been tidying up their garden.
They planted lettuce and pansies and creeping thyme!

My favorite white daffodil -- Thalia
I simply adore their bloom!

Pansies hold a special place in my heart 
Especially appropriate since one name for them is heart's ease
These are a new variety
a perennial variety
They are cold hardy to -30
But I'm wondering if our hot and dry summers will do them in.
It's a $40 experiment and I hope it works!
They are absolutely adorable!

I love the little grape hyacinths
And I've just ordered 50 more to plant this fall . . .
And am pondering if I should make that 100!

Violas in purple
They, like pansies are high on my list of spring flowers
And I spend too much money on them considering
that they last only until June when I have to replace with summer annuals!

The tulips this year are amazing!
I think there are tulips there that I've not seen before!
These come back every year unlike most hybrid tulips that are great for one season, passable for the second and then they're gone.
I rarely plant tulips because they are pricey and I think of them as one season of bloom!
But not these guys -- they've been here since the first time I planted bulbs!

But, however, since I'm not a garden cataloguer, I don't know what kind they are to reorder and plant!

Tulips and daffodils in the bed by the fence.
I'm thinking that I will turn this space over to all bulbs!
That would be amazing!

With the flowers in the spring garden, garden flowers once again grace my tables.
And I so love to have garden flowers indoors
Especially after a cold winter like this years.


Wednesday, March 24, 2021

The Crystal LAMPS of Linderhof

My last post was the prisms --
Now here are the lamps, sconces and my lone chandelier

 The living room --
Astral lamp on the table by the wing chair
(A true treasure)
the 1940s scones over the fireplace that were put up to "colonialize" Linderhof
And the wonderful candleholders with hurricane shades on the mantle

The dining room
A pair of Argand lamps on the mantle
And Fostoria double candlesticks dripping with prisms on the dining room table

The breakfast room
A pair of pressed glass candlesticks on the breakfast room sideboard
Rarely lit, but can be used on the breakfast room table if we decide to eat by candlelight

The guest room
One of the "twins" (a pair of old lamps that I got for the dining room mantle)
After numerous tries, it really is the perfect lamp for this room

The front bedroom
Prisms galore!
From the lamp on the dresser, to the chandelier, to the scones over the fireplace to the small Astral lamp by the chair by the fireplace

And we can't forget the other "twin" of the lamp that's beside the bed in the guest room

And, of course, what dressing table wouldn't be without a pair of lamps
These have prisms and hurricane shades!

Wednesday, March 17, 2021

The Crystals of Linderhof

I love crystals
Especially when they're hanging from a pretty lamp or sconce or candlestick
I love the color, too, when the sun shines directly on them.

It's a rainy day on the prairie
A good day to polish crystals!
(With a new method which seems to be the best I've tried so far!)

My crystals . . . from room to room

An Astral lamp with long prisms in the living room

 The scones over the living room  fireplace -- not original to the house but a 1946 addition
when the house was "colonialized"

Hurricane candle holders on the living room mantle -- crystal themselves with long plain prisms
A souvenir of a trip to Wisconsin

One of a pair of argand lamps on the dining room fireplace
They're plain prisms but rather short ones!

One of a pair of Fostoria double candleholders
Usually they take pride of place on the dining room table

A simple pair of pressed glass candleholders on the sideboard in the breakfast room

I'm sure the type of lamp has a name but I don't know what it is
but the prisms are fairly long and fairly plain
One of a pair that got separated at birth -- this one resides in the guest room --
it's twin in the front bedroom

A lamp from Buffalo, New York (and it has a much longer story)
that sheds light on the chest in the front bedroom

The other twin

In the front bedroom for nighttime reading

A smaller astral lamp with cut glass prism on a little table (from friend Sally)
in the front bedroom by the reading chair

A set of sconces that match the ones in the living room -- above the front bedroom fireplace


Every girl needs some light shed on her dressing table.    These prisms are on the pair of lamps that light up the dressing table.

And the only chandelier that has prisms.    In the front bedroom.

Prism cleaning is no fun!
I've dried the drip stuff but found that it left little dirty drips at the ends of the prisms.
It's a pain to take off each prism, wash in a sudsy Dawn bath, rinse, dry and put back on
But that's really the best method.
Which is why prism washing is a once a year affair!

But then I bought some Dawn Power Wash
I love it for certain things.
Today, I got the brilliant idea that it might be a great prism cleaner.

IT IS!!!!

Spray the prism (on the lamp or sconce), wipe the Dawn off with a wet cloth and follow up with a dry one.
They are sparkling and would be even more so if there was sunlight shining in today!

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

One Chicken Equals Many Meals

I'm not into rotisserie chicken
It's much easier and cheaper to get a whole bird and roast it yourself!

And whole it's roasting the whole house smells wonderful!!!!

For Sunday Lunch this week, I bought a whole chicken
A nice plump bird, it was
And I roasted it -- I'm of the school of low and slow
It took about 3 hours and perhaps it's not roasting but rather baking
But I still call it a "roast chicken"!

And while it's baking, the whole house smells amazing!

SUNDAY Lunch was Roast Chicken
Served with potatoes, whole small onions and carrots roasted with the chicken

MONDAY Dinner was Chicken Pot Pie
A favorite of both Jim and I . . . . 
And the pot pie provided Tuesday and Wednesday Lunch!

TUESDAY Dinner was "Hen" Soup
The bones were simmered slowly along with Sunday's leftover vegetables and gravy
This broth was strained and any meat was put back in the broth
For dinner, I added potatoes, carrots and onion and simmer till all was tender.
I garnished with parsley
It made a great dinner last night
And will make a great Thursday lunch

WEDNESDAY Dinner will be curried chicken salad

The breast made into chicken salad with Thea addition of celery and nuts and mayonnaise and curry powder.     The breast will be just enough for dinner for two tonight!

Tomorrow lunch will be the last bowls of soup.

Not bad for a $6 investment!

Monday, March 1, 2021

St. David's Day

Today is March 1

in Wales
It's St. David's Day

David is the Patron Saint of Wales

The feast of Saint David, the patron saint of Wales, falls on 1 March

the date of Saint David's death in 589 AD

The feast has been regularly celebrated since the canonisation of David in the 12th Century by Pope Callixtus II

But, alas, is not's a public holiday in the UK!
And even though we're not Welsh, we like celebrating British holidays!
We have been to Wales, though . . . 


Snowdonia National Park
with it's breathtaking views

Caernarfon Castle
(Where the Prince of Wales is investured)

the town with the longest name in the UK -- and not even Jim
who is good with pronunciations can pronounce it --
I'm not sure the towns people can either!

(pronounced Betsy coed)
a favorite town on our visit

And one mustn't forget the sheep of Wales
More sheep than people, actually

And Daughter Sarah learned on this trip to Wales that
not all hamburger is ground beef!
And a great lasagna sheep do not make!
(you make sure that beef is in the description -- i.e. ground beef burger; beef sausage)

How do we celebrate St. David's Day at Linderhof?

With Welsh Cakes for tea

They're easy to stir up and cut out

You griddle then rather than bake them

And a plate makes a good tea nosh
These days tea time is either by myself (or myself and a book)
or husband Jim joins me for tea.

With fresh baked tea treats
Jim was in!

These are good little cakes, actually,
and should not be saved only for St. David's Day
which I tend to do.