Amy Artisan

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Category: Family (page 3 of 16)

One Community: May 2014

Connecting with One Community to share unique perspectives on the same words. For May, the words are FIVE | MOTHER | RECIPE | REMEMBER

In the Artisan family, May has always been “Mom” month. In addition to celebrating our Mom through Mother’s Day, her birthday is later in the month. So each year we do our best to appropriately spoil her during the month for all that she does for us every day of the year.

When I saw the One Community words for this month, I had a slight lightbulb moment for capturing the majority of them. Now that spring is here and “good” strawberries are once again in the store it is the perfect time to make Mom’s Strawberry Pie. When I think of this recipe, it is Mom through and through. On Mother’s Day morning, I went through the steps to make a delicious pie that had me remembering Mom from afar.

Making the base

Making the base

REMEMBER…I’ve mentioned that Grandma’s house in California included fabulous gardens…in those gardens were the most delicious strawberries ever…strawberries always make us think of Grandma’s place (in fact, for Christmas my sister gave me a strawberry ‘bead’ for my memory bracelet to remember Grandma)

Assembled & ready to chill

Assembled & ready to chill

RECIPE…this recipe is simple in it’s preparation and stunning in it’s ruby presentation…among the things that Mom has taught throughout the years is that you can’t go wrong with simple, good food.

Ready to enjoy with homemade whipped cream

Ready to enjoy with homemade whipped cream

MOM…as with many Mom recipes, we use it as a guide versus a precise instruction…in making this yesterday, the pie didn’t setup nicely once I added the strawberries…in texting with Mom about it, she commented that as she also adds more berries than called for she has decided that we need to up the cornstarch in the base. So much of my approach to the kitchen is based on what I learned (& continue to learn) from her.

Here is our simple recipe…in FIVE easy steps:

  1. Crush 1 pint of strawberries.
  2. Combine them in a saucepan with 1 c. sugar, 4 T cornstarch and 2 T lemon juice. Stir constantly until thickened and clear.
  3. Cool the mixture.
  4. Slice another pint (or more) of strawberries and fold into the cooled mixture.
  5. Transfer to a graham cracker crust and chill until serving. (Excellent when served with whipped cream!)

It turns out that Mom made Strawberry Pie at home yesterday…while the best scenario would have been to be at home enjoying pie with her, it was almost like being with her to have us both enjoying Strawberry Pie across the miles…

What are some of your favorite Mom Recipe Remembrances?




Mom Teachings

Through the different link-ups that I’ve been participating in this year, I’ve been stumbling upon lots of “new to me” blogs. When I saw that Jana was planning to host a Little House book club at the Townhouse Pioneer, I thought it would be fun to join in and re-read some favorite childhood books. Each month, one book in the series will be read and discussed via blog. As I reread “Little House in the Big Woods” I was quickly reminded of why the series has always been a favorite of mine. There are a lot of different thoughts that come to mind as discussion points for the book; however, since we are in Mother’s Day week I’m going to focus on mother as teacher. Throughout the adventures and the mundane that Laura and Mary experienced in that little house, Ma was right there – teaching them every step of the way. Some things were survival skills like putting up food for the lean winter months: in the kitchen; others were life skills like knitting and sewing for clothing; some were life lessons about how to treat others.

Riding the carousel at Greenfield Village with Mom!

Riding the carousel at Greenfield Village with Mom!

That is a theme that runs through every mother/child relationship – I’m pretty sure I’ll never outgrow learning things from my Mom. For this week’s Ten on Tuesday, Carole asked us to share “10 Things Mom Taught Me” – so here is just a small & rather random sampling from the things I’ve learned from Artisan Mom…

  • Simple Hospitality – it doesn’t take much to provide an inviting environment to host friends and family in any situation
  • The best strawberry pie recipe – more on this later this week…
  • A love of reading
  • Meyer lemons really make any dish better
  • While I never picked up Mom’s great sewing skills, I picked up the basic mending basics from her
  • Doing housework is a perfect time to pray for those you love
  • A mug of hot tea can solve almost any problem
  • Puzzles are fun! Jig saw…words…or numbers…
  • You can find wonder in the smallest and simplest things – don’t get so caught up “in it all” that you miss these moments
  • No matter how bad a day seems…it’s really not that bad…tomorrow is a new adventure to be had!

All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my angel mother.” – Abraham Lincoln

What has your Mom taught you? 


April showers…seem to be very prevalent this month…the month is closing today with rains of biblical proportion, to quote the radio announcer on the drive home – it sure seems like it has been a pretty wet month. Although, there was that one weekend of early summertime that yielded some much needed patio time. So what was I into throughout the month?

Reading…quite a bit, as I shared in my twitterature link-up and continue to work through more books. On the nightstand right now, a childhood throw back “Little House in the Big Woods” as I join in a blog-based book club (post coming)

Watching…Sabrina (one of my faves); The Great Gatsby; Heat; enjoying the new Fargo series on FX; the whole family thoroughly enjoyed seeing “God’s Not Dead” while I was home in the ‘Ville.

Listening…I finally downloaded Pink Martini’s new album with The Von Trapps (indeed, from “that” family). As with all Pink Martini albums, it’s a winner! And how can you not help but smile when listening to great arrangements of “Lonely Goatherd” & “Edelweiss” sung by the Von Trapps. It has been way to long since I’ve seen Pink Martini in concert – hopefully one of these days their tour schedule and my schedule will align again.

Crafting…recording the Brewers baseball season in stitches (& contemplating how to use this approach for some other sporting fun); needing to finish up on the baby knit since the baby has arrived

Painting with an Amy Artisan Twist

Painting with an Amy Artisan Twist

Painting…a work team outing to Painting With a Twist was to paint a beach scene with a palm tree & beach chairs – I just wasn’t feeling the palm tree & chairs…so, I googled “Door County Beach Sand Dunes” on my phone, found a couple of pictures for inspiration & instead turned my canvas into an interpretation of my preferred beaches. Thanks to my friend Melissa for being another renegade beach dune painter – we were both very happy with our outcomes.

"Go To" Recipes

“Go To” Recipes

Cooking…Spring Simplicity = Roasting shrimp & asparagus and pairing with homemade citrus curry aioli; Baked oatmeal for breakfast (raspberries in the mix brighten it up for spring!)

Sipping…it’s time to keep a pitcher of iced tea in the fridge all the time again; while I enjoy iced coffee year round it’s time to order more of one of my warmer weather favorites: Blueberry Cobbler from Door County Coffee & Tea Co.

Warm Weather Fireplace Screen

Warm Weather Fireplace Screen

Greening…now that the fireplace is not in use, I’ve picked up a fun plant to provide a bit of color in front if it.

Styling…a long overdue haircut has really brought out the curly in my hair that is now the longest it has been since high school…My 20% off everything at Ulta coupon was a catalyst for a spring makeup refresh – the Pur Minerals CC cream is perfect coverage, a bright new lipstick, a makeup palette inspired by Capri…

Easter Sunday Family Selfie

Easter Sunday Family Selfie

Traveling & Celebrating, Part I…it was great to be home in the ‘Ville for Easter with the family – I’ll never be too old to enjoy wearing an Easter orchid corsage from Dad!

Will's First Communion

Will’s First Communion

Traveling & Celebrating, Part II…a favorite kid’s first communion was the perfect opportunity for a long weekend in Marinette! When he woke up on Sunday morning, his first words to me were “You can call me First Communion Boy today, Miss Amy!” So many fun moments with my WI family during my days back with them – cheering on a cousin as she hit a home run in her final college softball game on a very chilly Saturday afternoon and having some roadtrip fun on our way there & back; lunch at my fave Marinette restaurant where the owner greeted me with “Good to see you again, Amy”; watching the Brewers on TV; prepping all the food for the family party after church; general silliness among us all…and so much more… We are all counting the weeks till they head my way for some summer vacation fun…

Looking Ahead…planning what patio gardening I will do this summer…summer vacation planning…adding to the never ending “to read” list…

Linking up with Leigh Kramer for the monthly “What I’m Into” round-up. What are you into these days?

P.S. A bit late to the game…I’m finally claiming my blog through Bloglovin – so pardon the extra code…Follow my blog with Bloglovin

On Flights & Family Time

As another year winds down, inevitably it has us looking back on the year & determining highlights. For me, a highlight of 2013 was the fact that I wasn’t constantly on the road with work travel. In fact, I only had 4 weeks of work travel this year. With 26 flight segments taken in 2013, only 1 trip was for work. That means that the others were for fun times with family. So where did those flights take me? Here, a few highlight pics from fun times in Georgia, Wisconsin & Texas…
May - A surprise trip home to cheer Rebecca in her first super-sprint triathlon.

May – A surprise trip home to cheer Rebecca in her first super-sprint triathlon.

June - Artisan Family Great Lakes Getaway. We enjoyed a week around Lake Michigan - first at Mackinac Island and then in Door County, WI

June – Artisan Family Great Lakes Getaway. We enjoyed a week around Lake Michigan – first at Mackinac Island and then in Door County, WI

July - In Marinette to celebrate kid birthdays and take in a Brewers game!

July – In Marinette to celebrate kid birthdays and take in a Brewers game!

August - Rebecca & I go back to Mercer to see a thrilling win as Mercer returns to football for the 1st time since 1941.

August – Rebecca & I go back to Mercer to see a thrilling win as Mercer returns to football for the 1st time since 1941.

October - Fall fun in Marinette, including the pumpkin patch and haunted hayrid

October – Fall fun in Marinette, including the pumpkin patch and haunted hayride

October - Trick or treating with the girlies in Texas.

October – Trick or treating with the girlies in Texas.

December - A quick trip home to the 'Ville to enjoy a Family Christma

December – A quick trip home to the ‘Ville to enjoy a Family Christmas

As the 2014 calendars are being opened, I’m already making plans for trips  & adventures with these dear ones!

On Holidays & Home

As 2010 comes to an end, I look back and see that most of the year was spent away from home. My Christmas photo card shows that while I may not have been home that much I enjoyed many “home” moments during the year.

While up north this month, I managed to do a lot of Christmas prep work. Many evenings in the hotel were filled with simple gift knitting for some dear kids in my life. One evening I made the paper chain from holiday papers and “O Holy Night” lyrics to loop on the mantel. On one Friday afternoon trek home, I stopped at exit 107 to once again pick up a beautiful wreath from a Boy Scout stand to provide fresh greens for the house. The UPS Store up there was very handy for getting packages mailed. Holiday décor and Christmas gifts were found at some of the local stores.

For the 2nd year in a row, I didn’t put up a Christmas tree at home because of my WI work assignment. Needless to say, I definitely look forward to having a tree at my home next Christmas! The mantel and fireplace glow with white lights as a back drop for the fresh wreath, the paper chain and nativities. My collection of nativities is on the mantel including the newest addition that I picked up in Door County in August. The top of the entertainment center is a forest of Christmas trees. In the dining room, my Charlie Brown Christmas tree. The Sunday before Christmas I hosted my 5th annual Holiday Tea for several girlfriends – over plates of tea treats & cups of holiday tea we all escaped the hustle and bustle of the holiday prep to celebrate friendship. The Monday before Christmas I finished up my Christmas cards while enjoying the glow of the decorations in my living room  – it has been a couple years since I had the cards done before Christmas. This afternoon I hosted a friend for lunch and knitting in the midst of the holiday light glow. Tomorrow, the decorations will come down as I watch the Rose Parade.

I’m thankful that the flights to and from Georgia were non events – the highlight of the travel was on my flight down to ATL…the frequent flier in seat 1C gave up his seat for an Army Captain in a middle seat in the back of the plane. At home in the ‘Ville, I think we had the most perfect Christmas tree ever – it took us till Christmas Eve morning to finish decorating it; however, even just with the lights on it was gorgeous to gaze at. On Christmas Eve we enjoyed our family tradition of a movie in the afternoon and “It’s a Wonderful Life” in the evening. On Christmas morning, holiday coffee and Mom’s orange rolls provided sustenance for tackling the mound of presents. Rebecca once again hosted the family for a lovely Christmas dinner – at the end of the evening we looked out to see the car covered in snow & big, fluffy snowflakes falling – it was the first White Christmas in Atlanta in more than 130 years. Other decorations of the time at home included catching up with high school friends – including some that I haven’t seen since graduation – it is nice to be better connected with these friends once again.

Looking back on the month that was, once again I’m reminded that holiday and home can be found in the simplest things – traditions and new things equally contribute to the happiness. As I look ahead to the new year, I look forward to more moments of holiday and home – both near and far.

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