photo challenge : street life

village street, PeruHere’s my better late than never submission for the street life photo challenge. I knew I had some great photos to illustrate this theme, but I didn’t get a chance to scour my photos earlier. This shot was taken on a visit to the Cusco area in Peru. I was delighted to see everyone wearing traditional clothing – such a contrast with the way people dress in North America.

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Oh Yumm! Preserved Lemons!

I’ve meant to make preserved lemons for several months – as long as Meyer lemons have been at the grocery store. But when their season was coming to an end, I knew I had to get busy. Preserved lemons are super easy to prepare, so much so that I feel like an idiot for not getting them done sooner. Here are a few photos of my endeavour:

washed Meyer lemons cut Meyer lemons lemon prep mostly packed jar finished jars of lemons

There are numerous recipes for making preserved lemons, but they are all basically the same – lemons, salt, lemon juice. I decided to use this recipe from Epicurious for a couple of jars and I did one with no additional spices. You can use regular lemons, but Meyer lemons have a thinner skin and apparently most closely approximate the flavor of Moroccan lemons.

Preserved Lemons

5 lemons

¼ c. Kosher salt

additional freshly squeezed lemon juice


1 cinnamon stick

5 or 6 coriander seeds

3 or 4 black peppercorns

1 bay leaf

1. Quarter the lemons from the top to within 1/2 inch of the bottom, sprinkle salt on the exposed flesh, then reshape the fruit.

2. Place 1 tablespoon salt on the bottom of the mason jar. Pack in the lemons and push them down, adding more salt, and the optional spices between layers. Press the lemons down to release their juices and to make room for the remaining lemons. If the juice released from the squashed fruit does not cover them, add freshly squeezed lemon juice. Leave some air space before sealing the jar.

3. Let the lemons ripen in a warm place, shaking the jar each day to distribute the salt and juice. Let ripen for 30 days. To use, rinse the lemons, as needed, under running water, removing and discarding the pulp, if desired — and there is no need to refrigerate after opening. Preserved lemons will keep up to a year, and the pickling juice can be used two or three times over the course of a year.

Here’s a blog listing suggestions for using preserved lemons. I remember making a pound cake that used them as well and I’ll have to find that recipe to share.

In 30 days I’ll be trying a few new recipes. I hope you will too.


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weekly photo challenge : inside

This is too easy for two reasons! First reason – this was a photo challenge in July 2012 and I enjoyed it then. Second reason – I love an excuse to post cat photos, and when this challenge appeared yesterday, Kush was my obvious choice of subject. She (like many other cats) loves to hang out inside any container she possibly can, and she can make it look good!Kush in fabric basket Kush in African basket Kush in a box lid Kush in cat bed Kush in Rubbermaid Kush in a paper basketI thought I should include a photo of Felix as well – he is also a big fan of getting inside containers. As a solid black cat, he is not always easy to photograph, but he looks good in this laundry basket – lined with his very own placemat.Felix in a laundry basketHere are a few other posts I’ve done which include Kush “inside” photos – photo challenge: habit, suggestions for cat storage, photo challenge: inside and time for a little change. You can find other great postings for this week’s challenge here. They aren’t all cat photos!

I have been busy sewing on my next series of quilts, and sorting and organizing my fabric stash. It’s an ongoing process. I’ll try to share some of the studio work soon. I promise.

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weekly photo challenge : perspective

Time for a sewing break – time to hit the computer and get a post done! I decided on a couple of interpretations of this week’s theme. The first is my beloved High Level Bridge. I love the look of this bridge from almost any perspective. I love how different it looks in each of these photos.High Level Bridge bridge detail bridge detailThe next photos show a full view of a tile mosaic mural that I created on the side of our house, and then a different perspective of the same mosaic. I designed a couple of small mosaic pieces using mirror to hang on the fence. That way I can enjoy a bit of colour when looking out the kitchen window – especially important in the winter!tile mosaic mural mosaic mirror showing muralBe sure to check out other challenge entries here.

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