Friday, November 18, 2011

Just What I Needed...Not!

I had hoped to have a tablescape done for this post, but Wednesday night, I was picking up the pumpkins by the front door to bring them in the house, and threw my back out. Yay! Just what I needed.
It was a bit better today, and then, I wasn't thinking and bent over and hurt it again!
No, I didn't say any "Sunday School words", but I thought a few.  :) 

Needless to say, I didn't get to do much decorating, so here's a little something I worked on earlier in the week.

I dried orange slices for Thanksgiving and Christmas decorations.
I know this isn't a biggie project as far as creativity goes, but I love doing it.
The dried slices are so pretty. They almost look like stained glass if you hold them up to the light.

This is so easy. Just slice the oranges about a quarter or eighth inch thick. You can do this with lemons, limes or other citrus fruit, too.  
Blot the slices on paper towels for a few minutes.
Then, place them on a rack to dry naturally, in the oven, or in a food dehydrator, if you have one.
 I used the oven on the "keep warm" setting, which I guess is about 100 degrees.
You can let them air dry, if you like. Sometimes, I put the rack on top of the fridge. They dry nicely there, and are out of the way.
It takes a few days for them to completely dry.

The slices can be used in so many ways. One way I use them is to decorate bags of simmering potpourri that I give as little gifts for Thanksgiving or Christmas.

There are lots of recipes for simmering potpourri, but I just use cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, whole allspice, a few dried orange peel pieces and a fresh orange.
I put all this in a cellophane bag, tied it with a raffia bow, and added a dried orange slice and sprig of rosemary for decoration.

I used the orange slices another way, in a basket of pine cones and orange pomander, in my last post .
They look great on the Christmas tree if you do country decor.

One last photo is one my hubby took this morning.. he said, "It's Mother Nature doing her thing."

It's ice from the bird bath with leaves frozen in it. He thought it looked a bit like a plate or wreath decorated with leaves.
LOL, Hubby used a plate stand to hold it so he could photograph it.
 As you see, we had freezing temps last night, which was the reason I was bringing the pumpkins in, when I hurt my back.

Our son and his family will be here Sunday, and I hope my back is better by then...gotta be able to play with the grandkids.

Wishing everyone a warm and wonderful Thanksgiving with lots of turkey and dressing, and loved ones around you.


Priscilla said...

Sorry about your back. That can really take the fun out of your day!
I didn't know that oranges could be air dried.
Hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving.

Confessions of a Plate Addict said...

I am so sorry you hurt your back, Babs! And I have to say that I love this many great ideas for dried orange slices! Love the potpourri idea! And your hubby's ice plate photo is fabulous...really thinking outside the box! Happy weekend...and take it easy!...hugs...Debbie

Sarah said...

Babs, I'm sorry to hear you've hurt your back again. I do hope it's better soon. Love the ice plate. What a cool photo.

Debra@CommonGround said...

Get better quick, Babs! I imagine your house smells wonderful, with all those spices and citrus. I'll have to try your recipe for simmering, xo

Christina at I Gotta Create! said...

Babs, I'm sending you healing wishes so you can have loads of fun with the grandchildren. I love your hubby's ice plate / nature's wreath. It fits with why I became a follower... and I wanted to let you know I thanked you for inspiring me in a recent post:
Speedy healing -- I'm wishing you the very best!!

Pat said...

Sending you lots of healing thoughts!I did the same thing last weekend, helping my daughter move. Better in 2 days, hope yours repairs quickly too. Love that ice photo. Hmmm, hubby going to be blog competition?? I like your little bags, nice gift.

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

Oh, Babs your back has to get better. I have never dried fruit before so thanks for the tips. What a sweet gift to give out. Love that idea and think I may have to steal it.

Janette - The2Seasons said...

I am going to make these right now. I have some oranges that have been around a little longer than they should, but they are still okay. Plus, it will make the house smell so great while I am prepping for all of our incoming family. Have a wonderful holiday. First time visitor.

Liz@ HomeandGardeningWithLiz said...

Hope your back lets up quickly! I've done it before, it takes time!
Your dried oranges look great and your pot pourri gift bags are a wonderful idea!
I love that your husband joined in with his picture of the frozen bird bath piece with leaves! I agree it does look decorated!!

Ann@A Sentimental Life said...

Oh, I hope your back is better for Thanksgiving!
Your husband has a great eye, the ice is so pretty!
The orange slices are a great idea, my new oven has a setting just for drying fruit, may have to try that.

Alycia Nichols said...

Isn't it weird how this time of year our backs go out at the blink of an eye??!??!! I have disc problems, and I think the cold weather just makes my back more vulnerable. Drives me crazy! We have so much to do in a short period of time, and there's no time for crazy back problems!!! I am so sorry you threw yours out, and I hope that you're back in the pink in no time so you can wrestle around with the grandchildren! Your husband has definitely been pulled into the fold if he recognized how cool that ice would look and that it looked like a plate!!! We slowly drag the men on over to our side, don't we? Tee hee hee! I am putting citrus fruits on my shopping list so that I can get crackin' with drying them. THANK YOU for this tutorial! I have always bought these little items, but it will be SO much less expensive to make my own...and it won't take very long at all! Plus I would imagine the kitchen will smell good with all that cut fruit! Take care of yourself, my sweet, and have a great weekend!!!!

Richard Cottrell said...

I loves the dried lemons. I am doing some, I bought some years ago and had kinda forgotten the look. I am doing a house for Christmas next week for a dear friend and I think a few dried oranges and lemons would be just the trick. I might need to do the oven, what would you say, 200 degree for a few hours????Love and best Thanksgiving wishes from my blog to yours. Richard from My Old Historic House.

Kelly said...

Oh I am just so sorry to hear that you hurt your back. Next time leave it to hubby to lift those heavy pumpkins! ha! I love the idea of drying orange slices like that. I've never done that. I'm so impressed by the sweet gift you made of the simmering potpourri too. What a lovely gift to give at Thanksgiving! Your packaging makes it even more special. I'm painting the beadboard in my family room and hallway this weekend, so hopefully I won't hurt MY back in the process! Take care of your back this weekend and get well soon.

Marigene said...

Hope your back is feeling better. Now I have to do some orange and lemon slices...
Love the photo of the ice platter!

Pattie @ Olla-Podrida said...

Sorry about your back, but obviously it hasn't stopped your creativity. I haven't dried orange slices in years. I used to have a food hydrator -- this was back in college when I tried to make my own tea (NOT a good idea) and ended up giving it away. I love the scent of citrus around the holidays, so you've inspired me to dry citrus and make my own potpourri. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, Babs. Oh,and I'm now following you by email, so I won't miss another post. Sometimes I get busy, and, well, you know...

Sewconsult said...

Hope you are back in top shape before the grandchildren arrive. Having chronic back issues, I feel for you. I would suggest a steroid shot, but I doubt you want to take time to do that on Monday.
Tell hubby that his plate is beautiful. Too bad it won't become an antique!
Beckie in Brentwood, TN

On Crooked Creek said...

Prayers coming your way for healing in your back, dear friend!
Love the idea of lemons, limes and oranges drying in the house...must smell divine! Take good care of yourself and do enjoy those kids and grands!
P.S. Your husband did a great job photographing the frozen ice from the birdbath!

Blondie's Journal said...

I hope your back is feeling better by now. I have a bad back that acts up periodically so I think I know how bad you feel.

Thanks for the instructions on the oranges and the potpourri, I've always wanted to make it. And I'd love to hang some of the dried oranges on my tree!

That slice of ice really looks like a glass plate, very pretty with the leaves! You had me fooled!

Have fun with your grandchildren but watch that back!


ℳartina @ Northern Nesting said...

I'm so sorry to here about your back Babs, feel better and have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family! Martina

PS- love the ice sculpture!

Jane@Cottage at the Crossroads said...

Hope your back is better by now! Loved this post because I've seen dried oranges but I've never done them myself. You are right! They would look great on a tree. Your packages of potpourri are a great gift idea. I had some of that potpourri going all day long here. Makes the house smell fabulous.

Debbie said...

I'm sorry about your back! Take it easy so that you'll be 100% soon.

I love that idea of dried citrus. I've never done it, but I am very interested in doing it this year.

Cindy @ Dwellings-The Heart of Your Home said...

Sure hope you get to feeling better! What a clever hubby you have there, such a beautiful shot!!! I've never dried citrus...may have to give this a try. :)

Chatty Crone said...

Hope your back is feeling better. Those oranges looked so alive and warming. Have a great Thanksgiving. sandie

Rettabug said...

I'm soooo sorry to hear you've thrown your back out, Babs! You made me laugh with your "Sunday School words" comment.
I hope it eases up quickly for you. Rest, intermittent ice applications & maybe some muscle relaxant meds will help.

Thanks for sharing your pretty dried citrus. I've never tried doing that! They ARE beautiful & I would love to make some.

I hope you are up to enjoying a lovely Thanksgiving!

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

Those orange slices are so pretty! I'm so sorry you hurt your back. I hurt mine a couple of weeks ago lifting my grandson. Not a fun thing! Hope you feel better soon and I wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Savannah Granny said...

I am soooooo late. I hope your back is better and that you are enjoying the grands.
Love the orange slices. Happy Thanksgiving

Sue said...

Hi Babs.....I love drying orage slices....I usually do it every year and use them the same as you....on packages...and on the tree...
I can't believe you had frost up your's been very nice down here....a bit of rain tonight but we cranked up the pool heater and are planning on going in it tomorrow.....Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family....Sue.

Alison @ The Polohouse said...

Be careful Babs!
I throw my back out about once a year and it is NO fun! Had to crawl to the powder room for two days last January and slept on the sofa bc I couldn't make it upstairs for a week.....ouch.
Nothing worse than back pain!

Hope you did lots of resting today and that you enjoyed your Thanksgiving.

AntiqueChase said...

Love those oranges!!! and the bird bath ice is precious!

LindyLouMac said...

Oh whoops so sorry to read about your back, despite this not being the post you planned I loved it, thankyou. Take Care Babs.

Unknown said...

Hope you are doing better!Love your post! Snowing here tonight! Saw your ice plate,loved it! Thanks for sharing,Joann