Tiny bouquets made up of flowers from the garden.
"Things" that resemble other "things", like seed pods that look like pointy-hatted gnomes...
...and this emerging fennel umbel that resembles an acrobat, twisting backward to grasp a pole. Do you see it?
Also love...flowers grown from seed.
Color...lots of color.
When a plan comes together...like a walkway bordered by feathery cosmos that are just starting to open up.
Yard sales steals...like this handmade miniature covered bridge I found for $5.00.
I love doll-free dollhouses and the tiny wooden furniture inside. One day I will indulge that love, but for now I'll stick to this miniature covered bridge, which may become a trailing shade plant holder, or a bird feeder...or maybe just something to sit on a shelf and admire. It's got both puppy and kitty seals of approval.
Another $5.00 steal...this was the price for three vintage wooden dough bowls found at Goodwill recently. Not $5 each...a total of $5 for all three bowls.
They were in pretty rough condition. Lots of scratches.
Because my arms are usually aching from the gym, I slowly sanded them down over time.
Then I used mineral oil to bring out the natural beauty of the wood.
It's a beauty, isn't it? I found other, nearly identical vintage wooden dough bowls online ranging in price from $35 - $250 - per bowl.
In the midst of so many good deals, I've been feeling a bit guilty for paying full price for some items that I don't even use...like my tart pans.
I decided to make mini fruit tarts this past week, to assuage my guilt...and because they're so tasty. I don't use a set recipe for these...it all depends upon what you like.
I mixed up my preferred recipe for pie dough (Smitten Kitchen's all-butter pie dough) and placed the dough in the refrigerator to chill. I preheated the oven to 350, greased my tart pans, and placed them on a cookie sheet in case of mid-cooking spillage.
Once my dough was chilled (to be honest, I only chill mine for 15 - 30 minutes), I rolled it out on a floured surface and used a tart tin to cut out the pie bottoms.
Of course, this only makes enough dough to cover the bottom of your tins.
I took leftover dough, sliced it with a pizza cutter, and made sides for each tart.
An alternative is to just cut a larger circle of dough that covers bottom and sides all at once. That's the easiest way...I just wasn't thinking when I was making these! But this method worked just fine and didn't take much more time.
This is just a miniature version of my favorite three-berry pie. I measured about 3/4 cup sugar and mixed in 2 tablespoons of corn starch. I stirred this mixture into 3 cups of frozen fruit, and spooned it into my tart containers.
Since I just threw these together, I didn't pay much attention to time...I just baked these until the crusts were golden...around 20 minutes, I think!
The tarts are a bit runny when they come out of the oven...
...but they firm up as they cool.
These can be whipped up in no time and it's a perfect summer snack. Great for picnics! Each tart is equivalent to a half piece of pie, so it's a small, guilt-free indulgence.