Monday, June 4, 2012

Monday Morning Staff Meeting

It seems like forever since we've had a meeting but let's give it a try.

First and foremost is the food, of course. We're going to be having those strawberry balsalmic cupcakes that my sister served for Sal's first birthday. I've made a batch myself and they are just delicious. Very addicting.


 Dig in. There's also plenty of coffee, tea, milk and orange juice.

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Speaking of baking, I've had a few extra minutes to surf around the blogosphere and found some wonderful cooking blogs. It's amazing to me how many blogs go undiscovered. I imagine that we could surf till the end of time and not view even a small portion of the blogs.

Here's a lovely one called Sprinkle Bakes. It's not possible to snag the photos to post here but trust me, you're going to want to click on the link and see her Chocolate Amaretto Crepe Cake.


What do you think? There's certainly lots of time involved but what a spectacular dessert to serve to friends.

Midwest Living magazine has a wonderful online presence, including lots of recipes. Here's their version of a German chocolate cupcake which is only one of over 30 cupcake recipes they published.

Credit: Midwest Living

Here's the link to the recipes:


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Thanks to all my wise readers for the information about dealing with poison ivy. I had to laugh at my own craziness in dousing my arms with nail polish remover. Mary was right in surmising that I'd gotten into some stinging nettle which produced the immediate itching but in fact, I'd also gotten into some poison ivy and I'm dealing with it still.

I'm also amazed at the number of dangerous thug animals that you deal with. Bears coming to dinner? Yikes, I'd be freaked out.

Last night I walked out the back door to retrieve something out of my car. As I walked past the garbage cans I heard a noise that definitely meant there was an animal moving around. Most likely it was a raccoon but I skedaddled along and felt a rush of adrenalin. No more late night wanderings outside for me.

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In my blog hopping I read about someone who got a pair of Miss L Fire shoes for her birthday. Sorry, I've forgotten who it was.

Check them out:


I'm drawn to the red Home Sweet Home shoes. Yes, I'd wear those. I also love the red open toed spectator pumps. Oh my! Do any of them appeal to your playful nature?

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At the beginning of my adventure selling my aprons and other items at one of the local farmer's markets my very good friend asked me, "So how much inventory do you need to do an entire season?"

Ahhhh, good question. I had no definite answer but I was pretty sure I'd stockpiled enough to get a good start and as I tracked the sales and how they might relate to the weather, etc. I'd get an idea of how many I'd need to keep up.

Success is a good problem to have and I'm happy to say that each week sales are getting better and better. The market starts out slow because the weather still isn't optimum and the fresh vegetables are not yet ready for harvest and sale. When they come into season things really pick up.

Actually my best week was the first, when it was foggy, drizzly and cool. Last weekend the weather was beautiful and sales were brisk. I got a little nervous because it was obvious to me that if there were throngs of customers I could quickly get into inventory problems. It's a learning curve for sure.

I've set myself a goal of how many aprons/wallets/key rings, etc. that I need to produce each week. Goals are a good thing, they keep you focused and force you to budget your time and prioritize. I'm actually getting more done around the homestead under these self-imposed time limits.

This sold:


This sold:


As did many others. Since my aprons are all one-of-a-kind I must make a habit of photographing each one so that I have a creative record that I can refer to. That ruffled flamenco apron was a learning experience. It was actually quite heavy and I will amend the design in the future.

If you're in the northern Illinois area, stop by and say hello. The market is located at Heritage Prairie Farm, just west of Geneva, Illinois. You can shop the market and then drive over to Third Street in Geneva for an awesome day of shopping and dining.

Have a great day everyone. Thanks for joining me for the Monday Morning Staff Meeting, actually held on Monday!



Jayne Honnold said...

Suzanne,I agree with you about all the bazillion blogs out there waiting to be visited. Yours is one I very happily found several years ago, and I always enjoy. Lately, I am enthralled by your Farmers' Marketing - I have a growing desire to attempt this, but am undecided about my inventory. I am a life-long seamstress, and would like to think I could make things that people would buy. I hope you have lots of success, and continue to blog about it! It gives me inspiration! I'd love to have you check out my blog sometime. Jayne's Quilting Room, if you have the opportunity.

Cheryl said...

If I'd been at your market, I would have grabbed that ruffly apron in a flash. Good luck with all your sales.

Vee said...

That apron with the ruffles is so doggone cute. I love all your aprons!

The shoes remind me of 1944 and I was not even there. =) Still, if they had my size and they were comfortable, I think they are cute.

The cake? I'm thinking you could bake a great one. I, on the other hand, will defer to you. You have dinner parties and everything so that would definitely be an impressive dessert.

Terri said...

MMMufffmm... that's "Great Post" with my mouth full of cup cake.

Stickhorsecowgirls said...

I would have never thought of balsamic vinegar in a cupcake, but I do love strawberries and balsamic vinegar! I've been known to sip it from a spoon! I would think it would have a tenderizing effect on the cake texture! I love visiting the good blogosphere, but I've found some great recipes on Pinterest too!

Leslie T said...

Those shoes are fabulous!
I wish that I was going to be in your neck of the woods this summer. I would drop by the farmers market for sure. You sew such beautiful things. I'm glad that people have discovered you and that sales are going well!

Lisa@The Cutting Edge of Ordinary said...

Those cupcakes look amazing!! Any chance you 'll share the recipe. I happen to be a food blogger and I'd love to make those!!

Mary Rex said...

The picture of that cupcake is mouthwatering! I still am hoping you will post a recipe for the one with the bacon!

Miss L Fire's website is very cute & inspiring...and yes, I would wear all of those shoes, if I could get my big wide step-sister feet into them. Love the stuff you share with us.

I'm happy to hear your venture is going well. Your aprons are darling, and BTW - I am still looking for a baby to stuff for ;)

Mary Rex said...

That last sentence should say BUY stuff for! Ha!