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.

Thursday, February 25, 2021

There is a Difference . . .

Between soup and bouillon

And what you serve them in!

Back in the day, dinner parties would often start with a cup of bouillon

What is bouillon?    How does it differ from soup?

Bouillon is a savory liquid made of water in which bones, meat or vegetables have been simmered.
It could be beef -- it could be chicken 
But for dinner parties beef was the bouillon of choice.

But you couldn't just serve bouillon in a soup bowl --

No, you had to have a special dish for it

A bouillon cup!

Two handled because you could pick it up by the handles and drink it

It is the same size and shape as a cup

The only difference being that it has a handle on both sides.

But then there is that other two handled cup that comes with china


It's a cream soup bowl
No hostess would think of serving cream soups in a bouillon cup
nor bouillon in a cream soup bowl

As you can see, it's bigger and wider than a regular cup
It holds much more soup
But then a small cup of bouillon would probably satisfy you
While you would like a little more cream soup 

And they each came with their own spoon
A spoon for cream soup on the left and a bouillon spoon on the right
(it's a wee spoon compared to the soup spoon)

I love to compare the sizes

I am sure sone china comes with both a bouillon cup and a cream soup bowl
But neither of mine did -- it was one or the other!

For those interested -- the pattern on the left is Aynsley Pembroke while the pattern on the right is Noritake Duluth

There is nothing like a bowl of cream soup
to start a luncheon or dinner!

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Ash Wednesday and The Easter Egg Tree

We're very traditional at Linderhof . . . 
Especially during Advent and Lent
Things are written in stone!

Like the pre-lenten
(Shrove Tuesday)
breakfast pancakes

 I'm not sure I could cope if I didn't eat pancakes for breakfast 
on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday.
This year they were blueberry!

And today,
Ash Wednesday
is the day we put up our Easter egg tree

Some years I get branches and bring them inside
But not this one for we've got around 8 inches of snow outside.
I have a stash of silk forsythia blossoms tucked away
for Ash Wednesdays like this one.

We've had an Easter egg tree in the dining room since 1992

That was the year that we took a trip to Germany
During Lent
We, of course, stayed in B and B's
And loved the charming custom of branches hung with painted eggs.

We thought they must be dear
And we finally inquired of one of our hostesses
"Where", we asked "can we find some of those charming eggs".
(thinking that perhaps some luxurious store might have them or the hostess herself made them)
was the reply!

So our very first stop that day was at the first Woolworth's we saw.
There they were
lovely hand painted real chicken eggs
complete with string or ribbon to hang them from the branches.

We bought a dozen!
And they arrived home all in one piece!

It's been almost 30 years and we still have that original dozen.
And no more.
For these are special eggs.
our German eggs

So we never bought any more bobbles and bits to hang from
our Easter egg tree and although I've been gifted some things to hang from the tree, we've refrained --
we like only our Woolworth eggs hanging from the branches!

A beautiful butterfly

A bunny

I must admit that we've had an accident or two
But they've hung on
And we've kept them 
And continue to use them

A whole and a crack

This one got dropped
But it's okay for we hang it towards the back

Another bunny

And a duck

Because the trees in Germany were in the dining room, 

ours is too!

It's almost always been on the end of the sideboard

(one year I put it in the middle of the table -- that was not a good idea!

It's not an easy thing to move)

It's a constant reminder

that we are in the Lenten season

as well as a wonderful trip to Germany

all those many years ago.

Thursday, February 11, 2021

New Tea Ware

I have tea ware.
I have scads of tea ware

Mostly blue and white

And between the tea sets and the cups and saucers that go with my dinnerware
I can probably pour cups of tea for a small army and have some leftover.

But then I  saw Wedgwood Bianca

(And I'm not sure why I saw Wedgwood Bianca),
how it happened to come on my radar, but
I said
"that's pretty but I need no more tea cups and saucers"!

So even though I trolled E-bay and Replacements,
that was all I was doing -- just trolling!
Being very conservative and definitely being a
"I'm not buying any more china" person

And then I received this in the mail!

Look what is on the cover!
Wedgwood Bianca
The lovely teapot

"Wow", I thought, it's even prettier than on the internet!

And then I thought . . . if it's on the cover, more people like me,
who covet it will end up buying it and if I don't buy it now,
there won't be any to buy . . . at least for a while!

And so I did
From E-Bay
8 cups and saucers!

Don't you love the old fashioned ness of the deep saucers?

It's prettier in real life than it was on the computer!

I wonder how much Bianca was sold

because Tea Time Magazine put it on the cover?

And featured it in a story!

I still covet that tea pot
But it is pricey
And I don't need another teapot
But then, I didn't need another set of tea ware either!

It looks right at home in the cupboard 
with my antique pink luster cups and saucers.
They are a similar shape and both sets have those deep saucers!

Keeping them company in that cabinet

is my Brown Betty!

How good would that Bianca teapot look in that spot?

Thursday, February 4, 2021

It's Christmas for Your Birthday When You're Born in January

The year our daughter was born,
Hallmark introduced a "Baby's First Christmas" ornament
It was in the Penney's catalog and I ordered it
It was really my first introduction to Hallmark ornaments

 It cost $2.50 and hung on our trees from Christmas Day 1976
until she graduated from college and had a home of her own in 1998.
And today, it still hangs on her tree.

That first ornament started the tradition of a yearly Christmas present  Christmas ornament.
Hallmark ones for probably the first 15 years or so
And then we branched out into other ornaments.
We also give silver bells --
engraved Reed and Barton silver bells to commemorate happenings
such as her wedding and the birth of each of her daughters --
The front engraved Christmas and the year
And the back engraved simply
with her wedding date
or the full name of each of her daughters

In 2017, when her oldest was 4, I came up with the idea of a
"hand" ornament
There were all kinds of clever things to do with children's handprints, fingerprints and footprints on Pinterest -- with paint
But I thought it would be fun to trace the hand, needlepoint the hand in a clever way, and turn the needlepoint into a Christmas ornament.    Plus, I would have each girl print their name
which I would also needlepoint

With Lucy and Piper's assistance, I made that idea into a reality . . . 

Their hand's turned into Santas

Lucy -- she's 4 and she's got her name a bit turned around!

Piper's only two and doesn't print, so Nana wrote her name


It's a Christmas Tree

Piper's is three and can print her name
Notice the extras on the E!d

Lucy is five and she's got her l and u in the right place!

Each girl picked five buttons from my button box and I
found a star button from the top.


Four year old Piper

Five year old Lucy

Their hands were getting too big -- the ornaments were large and this year

they would have been the size of a salad plate, so I decided to go with thumbs!



One ornament -- front side only

Index fingers

Lucy who's seven on the left

Piper who's five on the right

The ornaments aren't given on Christmas but rather, they're traced on Christmas, the girls write their names (and in 2020, it's Piper's printed 2020 that's on the ornament (which is why 2020 is in purple)

Then, those weeks after Christmas I start stitching

For our daughter's birthday is in January

And it's a traditional birthday gift for her

Her last year's Christmas ornament

I'm mad at myself that I didn't think of it in 2013, when Lucy was born

Sarah and I are both sentimentalists,

nothing like special ornaments on the Christmas tree

And these are very special indeed.

Monday, February 1, 2021

And the Tree Comes Tumbling Down


One nice thing about living in and old house
It's trees!
Mr. Sechler who built Linderhof in 1920
planted two trees out front

On the left (you just see the leaves)
is an Elm
On the right is a Hackberry


They grew into big and beautiful trees

Giving us nice shade in summer
And lots of leaves to rake up in fall!

And then when we thought 2020 had left . . . 

Jim and I both hear a crack and a swoosh at 5 a.m.
on January 1

The hackberry came down
On the house!
It split in two!

Big branches on the side of the house
(for it was a tall tree)

And even bigger branches across the drive

Seeing the tree down in the drive
we thought, perhaps, 2020 hadn't left yet!

But never fear, Miller's Tree Service came to our rescue

They cleaned up the branches littering the north drive

Then they started taking down the half a tree that was left

All the way down!

And left a big stump because they had another job.

They came back and got the rest of the stump.    This spring they'll grind out what's left

It certainly looks different than it did . . . looks more like the 1924 picture.      We'll plant a tree in it's place -- not for us but for those who own Linderhof after us.    I'm thinking a pretty maple.    For neither the elm nor the hackberry were pretty trees.

Eerily, the above picture in black and white bears a striking resemblence to the first picture in this post . . . What's new is old again!