Showing posts from October, 2010

Summer Foraging Recipe: Elderberry-Blueberry Jam with Chia Seeds

In the woodland valleys of Central California, Elderflower trees have been in bloom all spring with their prolific, lacy white blossoms.  I've enjoyed making Elderflower syrup, candied elderflowers and sweet Elderflower Tempura.  A few days ago, I noticed that some of the trees are starting to bear fruit -- diminutive, tart little berries, deep purplish-blue growing in heavy clusters.  

Inspired by a love of biscuits and jam, foraging, and adapted from a recipe from Simply Beyond Herbs, I whipped up a simple and delicious jam made from the foraged Elderberries, fresh blueberries and using chia seeds for a perfect jammy consistency.

Enjoy and Happy Foraging!
PrintWith ImageWithout Image Elderberry-Blueberry Chia JamYield: One half-pint jarAuthor: Jenn Erickson Prep time: 10 MCook time: 10 MTotal time: 20 M An easy and delicious sweet-tart jam to make from foraged Elderberries. Ingredients:1 1/2 cups elderberries, rinsedPinch of salt1 cup blueberries, rinsed2 Tablespoons Chia Seeds1/2 Tabl…

The Annual Creative Captions Contest with Free Vintage Clipart

D: Drusilla Duck was one mean Mother Ducker!
Last October I shared these sweet images from my set of vintage alphabet blocks and asked readers to create witty captions for them for a chance to win a prize.  I was completely bowled over by the creativity, cleverness, and wickedly funny contributions that were shared!  
I'm in great need of some comic relief these days, and with the hustle and hubbub of the holidays nearly upon us, I think we could all use a lighthearted chuckle.  So, I'm pleased to announce that the contest is back for another go-round.  
Rules?  Not too many rules really.  Just keep it clean.  Innuendo is fine (even encouraged), but let's swear off  swear words, eh?  You can enter as many captions as you'd like.  Contest closes at midnight PST on Wednesday, November 3.    I left last year's entries up to help get your gears turning.  Enjoy and have FUN!
Rook No. 17 Creative Captions Contest 2010 Calling on the witty, the clever, the irreverent & sil…

The Witch, The Devil and Miss Dottie ~ Memoirs of a Trick-or-Treater Scared Silly

When you were a child, was there one house in your neighborhood where the people there put a little something extra into the trick-or-treat experience?  Maybe it was some extra spooky decorations (back in the day before you could purchase movie quality Halloween props at your local big box store).  Perhaps it was a simple mask or some creepy organ music cranked up from a cassette deck?  This post is dedicated to the purveyors of TRICKS (as well as treats) from my childhood, for whom there will always be a special place in my heart...

It is often said that things appear much larger through the eyes of a child.  I'm sure this was the case with my first Halloween memory.  I was five years old, trick-or-treating in our neighborhood in Culver City, CA.  There was one house that all the children spoke about with trepidation -- "The Witch's House".  I have no memory of what this house may have looked like by day.  It must have gone through some sort of magical transformation…


I must admit, I'm just two pigtails shy of being as giddy as a schoolgirl -- Today my very first, official guest post is being hosted!  Yippidee-doo-dah!  

So set down those bonbons; put "Real Housewives" on pause (tee hee), and pay a visit to Bekah at Reflections...on Living Creatively.


You'll get the lowdown on how to make your own custom ABC blocks and can download some free vintage scrap sheets as well!

While you're there, be sure to leave Bekah a comment to let her know you dropped by, and check out some of her "Best of" page.  If you're an avid reader, you won't want to miss her "Bookshelf".


I've been a tremendous fan of Edgar Allan Poe ever since I read The Cask of Amontillado in a high school English class.  I went on to devour many of his short stories, poems, and knew my husband was "the one" when he took me to a stage adaptation of The Telltale Heart for our first date.  So, I thought it only fitting that one of my Halloween crafts this year pay homage to the master of the macabre.
To make your own dark-winged harbinger, follow the easy instructions below:
1 papier mache skull (I purchased mine from Michael's for $1.99) Book pages from Edgar Allan Poe's The Raven (free download below) Matte Mod Podge DecoArt Americana Staining Antiquing Medium (found at most craft stores) DecoArt Americana Acrylic Paint in "Cocoa" 1 faux black bird (I found mine at the Dollar Tree) Fine black glitter 27" off white crepe paper streamer (cut into 3 9" lengths) Black thread, needle Paper mask (download below) paint brushes, paper towels, hot glue…

Easy Felt Trick or Treat Bucket -- Guest Post from ModistaModesta

Please join me in welcoming Sonia of ModistaModesta as a guest blogger here at Rook No. 17.   Sonia taught herself to sew at the age of 11, which she soon followed with quilting, cross-stitch, embroidery, stamping, scrap booking, and beading. That's one crafty bird!  She works for, a company that produces software for textile artists.  This talented mom has a degree in Fashion Design and currently has some of her original PDF sewing patterns available for sale online (click HERE). 
Today, Sonia has generously offered to share her  FREE tutorial (and pattern) for making a felt Halloween Bucket! --------------------------------------------

Hi I'm Sonia from ModistaModesta and I'm very glad to be here as a guest of Jenn's. I hope you enjoy the following tutorial:
After spending hours hunting down or sewing the perfect halloween outfit, you don't want to accessories it with a big orange plasitc pumpkin do you? You don't need to be an expert sewer to make…