Summer Foraging Recipe: Elderberry-Blueberry Jam with Chia Seeds

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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…

Flip Dolls & Other Toys That Zip, Stack, Hide, Grab & Go
{Book Review & #Giveaway}


You're going to "flip" for this book!

A stuffed toy can be a child's boon companion and greatest treasure. And often, a  stuffed toy hand-made by a loved one endures long after commercial toys have fallen out of favor. Flip Dolls are one such toy that goes beyond mere cuddliness to the realm of interactive, fascinating, and even magical.  Perhaps it's because, as a child, I was captivated by my friend's doll that flipped from Little Red Riding Hood to the Big Bad Wolf (a gift from her Nana).  It "may" have ended up in my backpack for a few minutes until my conscience caught up with me.  Just sayin'.


So, it was with childlike glee that I greeted the arrival of Flip Dolls & Other Toys That Zip, Stack, Hide, Grab & Go by Laura Wilson (Lark Crafts, August 2013, ISBN 978-1-4547-0248-1).  Wilson's playful spirit is evident in this clever, inventive and charming book of interactive plush toys.  One can't help but smile at the whimsical, fun, and quirky cast of characters that make up the 144 pages.  

Clockwise from top left: (1) Smiling Crocodile: His mouth opens with a zipper. Too cute! (2) Winged Horse: The wings on the Pegaus pivot on buttons.  (3) This flip-doll goes from regular kid to Super Kid in a snap. What an inspiring toy to customize for a child!  (4) Peekaboo Turtle:  Make a few extra shells and your sweet little turtle can be re-dressed to suit the occasion!
The book features a "Getting Started" section, loaded with valuable tips, as well as step-by-step instructions that accompany each project.  The straightforward instructions and illustrations give novice sewers like myself the confidence to dive right in.  All of the patterns you need for the projects are included in the back of the book.


Here are a few of my favorite projects:

A plush robot with an I-spy window?  I'll take two please!
 
My brother and I used to rock out on guitars we made from paper grocery bags. These plush ukeleles with plucky strings are a major improvement.

I never imagined that  Lie Detector could be so darn cute, but this one is.  It would certainly take the edge off of being held captive by a teddy bear police force.

A bearded lady flip doll?  Tee hee! P.T. Barnum would be ecstatic!
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So, what are the girls and I going to make first? Here's a teaser:

We're all big Aquabats fans here.  So, we're going to do the Superhero Flip Doll with MC Bat Commander on the outside, and the Aquabat mascot on the flip side!  Can't wait to share!  Stay tuned!

GIVEAWAY!
My friends at Lark Crafts are giving one lucky Rook No. 17 reader their very own copy of Flip Dolls & Other Toys That Zip, Stack, Hide, Grab & Go !  Enter below, and good luck!


a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Disclosure:  I received a complimentary review copy of the book from Lark Crafts.
I was not compensated for my review and all opinions are 100% my own.



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