Welcome to the CRAFT-y Corner of my Web!
A place for my Workings, my Weavings ...
oh, and my more mundane crafts as well.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Herbalism: Rosehip Syrup final

After letting the cooked hip and water brew steep overnight, I got back to making the syrup.

First I gathered up everything I would need ... the steeped hips,
1Kg of honey from my local honey store, containers to pour the
completed syrup into (incl the currently full honey jar), ceramic pot,
bamboo spoon, and reusable cloth mesh jelly strainer. 

Using the mesh strainer bag, I poured the contents of the two thermos
containers and the two mason jars into the ceramic bowl.

The beauty of the cloth bag is that it allows me to really squeeze
all the juice I can get out of the cooked mass.

Heat to simmering ...
The bag works so well, much better than the cheesecloth I used to use.
No sediment left behind ... which is important as the seed of the rosehips are
known to irritate the bum on exit. (politest was I could think of phrasing that :p )

Stir in the honey and then keep on a low heat to reduce down
to 1/2 it's volume.

Finished syrup cooling in it's jars ....
I'm kind of pleased that I gauged the amount so well.
Two Bears and most of a hive .. so the yield was 1.75L of yummy syrup.
Whoo ... and we're done.
Now to get some pancake batter ^_^
Or mabey just a spoon ^_~

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Herbalism: Phaze 1

Today I began work on the rosehip syrup ...

Preparing the hips ...
cut them in half and put them into the ceramic pot.

Once all the hips are cut,
I strained the water they'd been soaking in and added it too.
Simmer on low heat until it boils.

This has got to be the best part ... can you see all of that steam?
It makes the whole house smell of roses ^_^ 

Once the brew has started boiling,
you remove it from heat and pour it into the containers.
I filled both the double glass walled thermos type I had and still had some fluid left
over so I filled the two mason jars you can see.
The thermos containers will stay on the counter overnight so their
contents can steep. The mason Jars will go into the fridge until they are ready for use.
The adventure continues tomorrow.

Oooohhh ... my house smells so good right now.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Herbalism: Rosehip Syrup

Time to work with Airmid a bit ...

It's that time of year again ... the season of colds and flus is bearing down on us. And, being home in BC, I have the opportunity to get back to one of the things I have missed greatly.

Rosehips are a wonderful source of vitamin C (more vitamin C in 1 large rosehip than in 3 navel oranges) and is both soothing to the throat and a tonic for the kidneys.

When we were on the return trip from Merritt, I stopped by a prolific patch of wild and dog rosebushes that I found when I was living up on the acreage there. Being that they are off the beaten track and yet still readily accessible with a little walking, they are plentiful and I can harvest a nice amount  of hips and not have to worry about causing a shortage for reseeding and/or local wildlife. The few locals don't seem to appreciate what they have there and so no one has complained when they drive by and see me picking furiously ... indeed, I got a few knowing nods and approving smiles from the older First Nations ladies and amused waves from the rest of the folk who happen by.

A couple of years ago, I made an apple and rosehip jam that went over extremely well with the family (with the upside of keeping them healthy through the sick season). This year, I thought I'd try something different and make a rosehip and honey syrup.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Crafty Thoughts: Forging New Directions

I'm positively amazed how, in only three months, I've had this explosion in crafting creativity ... not only the wanting to leading to doing but also the sudden appearance of a hitherto unknown ability to look at a picture of a given craft and be able, within a couple of moments of manipulating the image in my head, to reproduce said activity.

Not at all certain where this ability has come from particularly since, in the case of the chainmail activity, I can distinctly recall while working at Stream back in 2002 that one of my co-workers who did chainmail for the local SCA tried several times to show me how to make the weave (basic European 4 in 1). I was fascinated with what she was doing but just could not, no matter how many times she demonstrated it to me, grasp the mechanics of what I was supposed to be doing.

I am very grateful for the ease with which I seem to be picking up whatever metal based craft I am trying at this point. It is helping a great deal in allowing me to be doing something, occupying my mind and hands, to keep me from fretting about the estate situation and/or Kara's post-operative recovery.

Something new happened shortly after I completed the Wire Writing activity ... being that the wire name I made  was, essentially, a practice exercise with no real purpose beyond seeing if I could do it ...

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Wire Writing: Giving it a try

So, I'm trying yet something else new ... writing with wire.

In this case, specifically, Kara's name in 20 gauge copper (cause it's cheap and plentiful so screwing up doesn't hurt as much as some of my costlier wires would).

First try

I am good with how it turned out ... the heart didn't turn out right.
But hey ... that's ok.
It's a first try ^_^