Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Fiberglass Finale

And where do old molds go until they are perhaps called into service again?

The mold yard of course. Fascinating. Lots of old friends put out to pasture here.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Fiber Optic

While at F.A.S.T. Corp. we saw a Chicago-bound fiberglss sculpture in its final stage of creation. Later, while dining out, we saw part of the big eyeball go down the street on a flatbed. Seeing a finished piece heading out to its new home is probably an everyday sight for the locals, but for us it was sort of like a celebrity sighting.

If you want to know the rest of the story, Good has posted on the making of Chicago's 30 foot eyeball.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Fantasy Fiberglass

NDL finally made it to the mecca of large fiberglass statues and it was truly a dream come true. F.A.S.T. Corp is a state, and even national, treasure. If you have ever whizzed by, or stopped to see a giant roadside attraction it very likely came from Sparta, Wisconsin.

Roadside Attractions.com has the scoop on this ultimate fiberglass novelty destination. Put it on your list.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Pink Turtlehead

A welcome bit of late season color in the garden - chelone lyonii, pink turtlehead, is far more beautiful than it's reptilian namesake, but the resemblance is uncanny.

NDL would like readers,in particular those of delicate sensibilities, to again benefit from NDL's experience by warning that googling "turtlehead" without "pink" will lead where you may not want to go. Especially while eating breakfast.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Squeeze This

Amazing talent.

A beautiful evening.

A porch. A gaggle of groupees.

An "and friends".

A shopping opportunity.

A wonderful time was had by all.

But really, it was all about the accordians.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Bee Busyness

There is a sweet new enterprise in the neighborhood.

West Hill Honey is creating quite a buzz over the picket fence. Neighbors watch with fascination the bee and human activity around the hive and are clamoring for the the beautiful, tasty, and cleverly packaged products made by local bees who are intimately acquainted with our gardens.

Satisfied customers say:

"You haven't had honey until you've experienced West Hill Honey. I am sure I can taste my prize verbena in there."

"West Hill Honey is as sweet as those little children who love riding their bikes through my garden. The little dears."
- Mr. C.R.B. Appleton

"Nothing else will do for my morning coffee klatch with the girls. West Hill Honey is simply lovely with toast, coffee, and a good old chinwag." - Mrs. B.Z. Body

Order soon. It's going fast.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Very Fishy

A few days after the fishermen returned from Valdez...

...four big boxes followed.

The contents filled the freezer. To the top.

The styrofoam cooler lids had desperate messages written on them.

What to do? Notify the authorities? Organize a mercy mission? Encourage the mayors to form a trade agreement? Ideas anyone?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Hometown Variety

It is nice to know that if a person needs to spend a no-bars or rainy day indoors at the lake or at home they can still go to the local variety store and find a wholesome unplugged project to do. Baby boomer parents are surely thrilled to go on a nostalgic shopping spree with their bored, nothing to do, little boomlets while they share memories of wonderful hours spent making potholders, painting-by-number, and doing puzzles. They can even gather their finds in a basket not only just like, but probably the very same one that they used when they were kids shopping with their moms.

Hey kids! Give it a try. These really are the best potholders and moms love them. Paint-by-number is back in style. And Dr. Dan is now giving way free bandaids.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Happy Home?

A recent purchase.

Made in Japan.

Never used.

Well at least the kids look happy. The lady seems to need a word bubble to explain the look of anxiety on her face (and why the sewing kit is unused) - "How am I going to teach them to sew when I can't even thread a needle? Now they'll know for sure I'm not really their mother."

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Brown-Eyed Susan

Rudbeckia triloba happily ran amok through the garden this year.

While looking for info on the plant, I found a cake. Apparently flower inspired desserts were all the rage in the 50's. The cherryful Pink Azalea Cake sounds pretty and delicious, but not very seasonable. Let's celebrate the end of summer with an orange and chocolate Brown-Eyed Susan Cake.

Brown-Eyed Susan Cake


2/3 cup soft shortening (1/2 butter For flavor)
1 1/2 cup sugar
3 eggs
2 1/2 cup sifted cake flour
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 cup milk
2 squares chocolate
1/8 tsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. milk
1 tsp. orange extract
1 1/2 tbsp. orange rind, finely grated
1/4 tsp. yellow food coloring


4 tbsp. sweet butter
3 tbsp. cream
3 cup sifted confectioners' sugar
1 tbsp. orange rind, finely grated
orange juice, just enough to make orange frosting easy to spread
2 Squares chocolate; melted
rich milk or cream, to make chocolate frosting glossy and easy to spread.


1. Grease and flour 2 - 9" layer pans.
2. Cream shortening, butter and sugar until fluffy.
3. Beat eggs in thoroughly.
4. Sift together: flour, baking powder, and salt.
5. Stir in alternately with 1 cup milk.
6. Divide batter into two parts.
7. Into 1 part, blend: chocolate, baking soda, and milk.
8. Blend into other part: orange extract, orange rind, and food coloring.
9. Drop the chocolate and orange batters alternately by spoonfuls into prepared pans.
10. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes or til tests done.


1. Heat sweet butter and cream in saucepan.
2. Stir in confectioner's sugar.
3. Divide frosting in half.
4. To smaller amount, add the orange rind, orange juice, just enough to make easy to spread.
5. To larger amount, add: chocolate - melted, rich milk or cream, just enough to make glossy and easy to spread.
6. Spread some of the chocolate frosting between layers and the orange frosting around sides scalloping the top edge.
7. Sprinkle grated orange rind and clusters of shaved chocolate over the top of the cake to give effect of a field of Brown-Eyed Susans.

Baking purists please stop reading now... here's an idea - a boxed yellow cake mix could speed up the process if a person wanted to give the B-ES cake concept a try with a smaller time commitment. Just sayin'.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

It's Nice to Share

At the cottage industrialist there is a very nice set of free downloads for all your canning-related paper needs. Guest blogger Paper Crave has created handsome, matching jar labels, recipe cards, gift tags, plus invitations for your canning party.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Winsome Wellies

Sometimes we fall for a great label. If we are lucky the the vintner's art is as good as the graphic art that grabbed our attention and helped sell the bottle.

This one was very NDLish and couldn't be passed up. The contents - also lovely.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Know-How Family

Brought to you by Arm & Hammer and Cow Brand baking soda and NDL. Enjoy.

Copyright 1952