My day started at the City Market in North Tonawanda. A little chilly - everyone's cheeks looked as rosy as the apples that were on offer. And speaking of apples, I bought some Northern Spy apples at a different farmer's market a year ago and they made an unbelievable pie. I remember wanting to taste a Northern Spy since I read the name in a book a long time ago. After I tasted them, I looked for them without any luck. This morning I asked a farmer and he was kind enough to point to the stall of another farmer who was selling Red Spy apples. A chat with the farmer was enlightening. Northern Spy apples, according to her (and she should know) come on a 30-foot tall tree which only yields every other year. Red Spys were developed in Cornell. They are a dwarf tree which bears fruit each year. She said not too many farmers grow them, so I felt like I had really scored. Tomorrow is pie day around here.
I also bought spuds and some squash called "sweet Potato". I had my camera, and as I was snapping a shot of Brussel sprout stalks, the farmer in that booth called out, "Hey! This is what you want a picture of!" And this is the vegetable she was talking about:
It is a Romanesco cauliflower! Have you ever seen such a beautiful thing !???!?!!!!?!?!?!? It is a mathmatical wonder of fractuals and Fibonacci progression. And you can eat it! Naturally I bought one. It will be featured for dinner tomorrow night. Here is a shot of apple alley.
I then made my way to a sale which was described in the classified as "a farmhouse filled with 75 years' accumulation of stuff". Well, "accumulating" evidently did not leave time for general cleaning because the place was d-i-r-t-y ! I was #264 on the sign in sheet, so who knows what was there before I was allowed entrance, but I did find:
Vintage hankies - never used, very, very old embroidery transfer sheets and a set of paper dolls. A little research revealed that the Trudy and Tina paper dolls were from 1967. The child who owned these paper dolls had phenomenal fine motor skills. They are cut out with extreme precision. The outfits are just darling. The other purchase which I made was something which always interests me - vintage craft magazines.
In my opinion, old magazines like this are the closest thing to time travel. These date from 1957 - 1963 and are mostly Christmas issues. I actually squealed when I saw the Betsy McCall paper doll in the December 1961 McCall's magazine!
It was lunchtime, so I drove to Lewiston for the annual Presbyterian Harvest Festival. I picked up my mother who has attended for several years. The ladies that host it have it down to a science. Every single year they serve a cashew chicken luncheon which was nicely presented and very tasty. There were tables with craft items and Christmas decorations. There was a plant table there for good measure. I bought a very healthy-looking aloe plant and a tailor's block and teflon cloth touted as "a traveling ironing pad". I thought I might cut it up and use it to line pot holders.
My final stop on my penny-pinching shopping spree was a thrift shop. I bought myself some ice skates (ice skates for a cheapskate, hahahahah!). I was happy to find a pair for my ginormous feet. My husband and I attend college hockey games and they have a free skate before the matches. I was considering buying some new ones, but this pair looks as though they were just barely used, so I got them. Chance favors the prepared mind!
I also bought some sweaters to make more Betz White mittens. The top one is an L.L.Bean men's XL which felted so nicely. It ended up in a size which fits me, so I'm thinking I might not chop it up. It is soft and thick - might be a nice dog-walking sweater. The other two are cashmere. Cashmere, does not really felt - only fulls slightly. I think the deep red one was donated because of a screwy design. Even before it made a trip through the washer and dryer the neck opening was so small I could just barely get my wrist in it. The tan cashmere is pretty moth-eaten, but it will be swell to line mittens with. One thing I've learned is that a sweater can look intact when you toss it in the wash and come out with dozens of obvious moth holes by the end of the cycle.
I'm hoping to spend some time home tomorrow to clean this humble abode.