Friday, September 4, 2015

Fursdon House - New "Shop"

Well, I've done it now! I've officially opened up a booth to sell antiques, vintage items, and my handmade items (i.e., my tea cozies, fabric hearts, etc.)!!  It's at the new Hartlex Antiques and Interiors on University Drive. Here's their web site; it's really lovely and it's HUGE!!!

And here's my booth:

There are two showrooms at the new location.  One is for the finer, "high end" antiques and the other is called The Open Market, which is where I'm located.  I've spent the past several evenings making tags, working on an inventory list, cleaning, etc.  Then early this morning, my sweet husband and sweet son-in-law (bless them both!!) moved all the large pieces in and I brought in the "smalls".  Then I spent the next several hours putting everything in place.  After fine tuning it all............Voila!! 

I've ALWAYS wanted a shop of my own, and now that I'm planning on retiring at the end of January 2016 (God willing), I decided to take the plunge and see if this is something I want to pursue.  This is in addition to the on-line shop I already have, located here:

I realize I'm probably insane, taking this on now while I'm still employed full time, but I decided it's "now or never".  At any rate, I don't think I'll be bored any time soon!! 

Keep me in your prayers!!  I'm certainly going to need them!!

May God Bless! Jan

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Sad day? Bake a cake!! And make it CHOCOLATE!!! From scratch!!! Not from a box!!!

     Well, that pretty much sums up what I'm feeling today.  My oldest girl child  is returning to Afghanistan today and I was feeling a little low.  So....what to do?  You guessed it!  I pulled out my all-time-favorite chocolate cake recipe, which by the way was given to me by said child's Godmother, Virginia Lavender, who got the recipe from her Aunt Mary back in the 1920's or so!  And it is D.E.L.I.C.i.O.U.S.!!!  Not too sweet, and very moist.  As a matter of fact, it isn't even served with frosting!  It's baked in a Bundt pan, then all you do is sprinkle Confectioner's Sugar liberally over the top when it's cool to the touch!  Okay, okay.....stop twisting my arm! Here's the recipe:

Aunt Mary's Old New England Recipe for Chocolate Cake
3/4 cup Crisco shortening, softened (plus enough to grease the pan)
1 3/4 cup granulated sugar
3 squares of melted baking chocolate (I use Baker's brand)
4 eggs, brought to room temperature, then beaten (Poor eggs!)
1 3/4 cup cake flour (I use Swan's Down)
3/4 cup of 2% milk ('s better if you use whole milk, and out of this world if you use heavy whipping cream, so choose your poison!)
3/4 teaspoon of baking soda
Pinch of salt (Sorry, I don't know what the official equivalent of a "pinch" is so you'll just have to "pinch" some! I crack myself up!)
Confectioner's sugar (Some people call this powdered sugar.)
Directions:  Grease a Bundt pan liberally. Do NOT rely on cooking spray! Trust me on this! I speak from experience!  Then liberally flour the pan and set aside.
Cream the soft shortening with the sugar, then add the melted chocolate and the poor beaten eggs.  Set this aside.
In a large mug, add baking soda and salt to the milk and stir.
Add the milk mixture and the sifted cake flour alternately to the other ingredients, stirring well after each addition.  I usually do this in about three turns.
Pour the mixture into the Bundt pan, evenly spreading it around.  Pop it into an oven that's been pre-heated to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and cook for approximately 40 minutes.
The cake is done when a narrow knife inserted in the center comes out clean. I have a cake tester thingy that I use for this; it looks like an 8 inch long thick needle with a handle on the end.  It works great and.....better yet, it was cheap!!  But.....back in the day, they used broom straws (hopefully cleaned!) so use whatever you normally use.
After it's done, remove the cake from the oven and immediately invert it upside down onto a large serving plate.  When it's completely cool, sift confectioner's (powdered) sugar liberally over the entire top!
Sit down with a nice, hot cup of tea or......a tall ice cold glass of milk!  And E.N.J.O.Y.!!!!!
Here is a photo of said cake, AFTER it was attacked by a pack of starving buzzards!! 
Here's wishing you all a lovely Monday!
May God bless! Jan