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New from the Nest, July 25

Good Morning from wet and soggy Wilmington, NC. I hate to complain, given the drought and heat suffered by so many of our friends. And I’m not complaining about the rain. But what I am complaining about is the thunder.

Now, don’t get me wrong. There is nothing this girl loves more than a good stormy day! Well, that used to be me. Now I get up each morning to check the forecast only to figure out when to start the thunder preparations for Flora and Peep, our much-loved pup and cat. I know we are not alone in this, seems many pups start getting nervous with thunder, smoke alarms, and the like as they age. But man, it is EXHAUSTING and time-consuming! This absolutely wonderful, sweet, almost perfect pup demands my full attention during the storms and for a good bit after until she calms down.

And while Peep is a relatively young girl, I believe she feeds off of Flora. So when Flora starts spiraling, Peep joins in. 😨

And the frustrating thing is that we haven’t found ‘the solution.’ Well, in truth, we do have a solution, but it isn’t a great one. The ONLY thing that calms our girls down is for them to go into the car that is parked in the garage. The car must be running, with the air conditioner on full blast and calming music playing loudly. Obviously, we open the garage door.

Over the past week, we have had thunderstorms every day, and it isn’t great for our cars to sit and run like that. But when all else fails, that’s where they go.

We have tried Prozac, Xanax, Trazadone, a thunder shirt, and CBD in various combinations. If you’ve found something that works, please do pass it on. We are desperate here!

new on the blog

I know that I promised a new knit and crochet pattern this week, but…I don’t have them ready yet. I will blame the thunder and the fact that after 3 months of waiting, the demolition on our master bathroom started last week too!

Bathroom with sink and mirror removed.

I’m truly 👌🏻 this close! I just need to finish writing up one and finish working on the second.

BUT, as a consolation, this Yogurt Plum Cake is a nice treat! It is easy to make and does double duty as a delightful breakfast treat or fancy dessert!

Sliced cake.

speaking of plums

  • Whether you are new to canner or an experienced canner, this easy and uncomplicated Plum Jam recipe is so very good. I’ve included a list of herbs and spices you could toss in if you wanted to get fancy, but it is seriously good just on its own. 🎁
  • And then this Golden Plum Jam! It was one of the first jams I made when I started canning, so it is easy. The cozy spices speak to fall and winter. Make some now for gifts over the holidays. 🎁
  • If these jams are calling you, but you’ve never canned jams or jellies before, then not only are these great recipes to start with, but I’ve got you covered. These recipes have step-by-step instructions, and I also published a Jam and Jelly making 101 post just for you!

recipes from the garden 🥒

If your garden is overflowing with produce (then I will try not to use my voodoo dolls on you because mine is most definitely not!😉), then you probably need some of these recipes (not that I know this summer 😥):

  • When your garden slows down but still has green tomatoes on the vine, you’ll need to make this Shrimp and Grits recipe!
  • This Jar-by-Jar Dill Pickle recipe is one of the all-time most popular recipes I’ve ever published. And for a good reason! Just mix up a jug of the brine, and you can pickle your cukes as they ripen instead of waiting for enough to put up at once.
  • This Savory Onion Jam always receives rave reviews and is a welcome hostess gift. This recipe is my attempt to replicate a savory onion jam I purchased from Williams-Sonoma…and I personally think I nailed it.🎁
  • As does this Smoky, Spicy Tomato Jam. It has a depth to it from melting the tomatoes slowly in dark brown sugar, a little tinge of smoke from the paprika, and a little earthy bite from the bits of toasted cumin.  🎁

Jam on cheese on cracker

exactly 5 months from today…

Yup, Christmas is 5 months from today. So, if you are thinking of making gifts this year, it’s not a bad idea to get started or at least have a plan and start collecting your supplies and materials. Here are some ideas:

I made this last year for Christmas gifts and I have had nothing but good comments. Just today I had a request from two of my coworkers to make them some more. My son also loved it and has greatly improved his stubborn callus on his thumb. My sister in law loves the lavender scent and looks forward to using it every night before going to bed. 


Not for nothing, if you are a crocheter or knitter, I saw this morning that LoveCrafts is having a huge sale right now for those of us who want to get started on our yarn projects for Christmas.

Well, I think I’ve given you enough to keep you busy until next week! Will you be making Christmas gifts this year for your friends and family? If so, please share what you will be making!

Have a great week!


Signature of Lynn

Thanks for making my day by SHARING!!

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  1. Hi Lynn re thunder storms and your pets we had a lovely wire haired fox terrier named Sean when thunder storms struck he was a basket case, we had a lovely walk-in closet in our bedroom we put his bed in there and it was dark, thunder was muffled, I would just push the door but not close it, he would stay and I often found him asleep when the storm was over.

    1. Hi Elizabeth,

      We ‘kinda’ tried that, but maybe we need to put a little more effort into it.

      Thanks for the suggestion.


  2. Stressed Pets:
    What about using a radio and the dryer (with dryer balls) and closing the animals in the dark (maybe a night light) laundry room?
    I enjoyed this weeks email!

    1. Hi ElVesta,

      That’s a brilliant idea! We could simulate the car sounds, without the car! I’m going to give it a try.

      Thanks so much!

      1. That’s a great idea ELVesta came up with, I hope it works.
        I also got a kick out of this weels email!
        I always enjoy the emails every week but you made me laugh how you disclosed your maybe not-so-great garden this year.
        Unfortunately, it happens.

        1. Oh Sara,

          You are too sweet! Our garden is nothing less than a HOT MESS right now! We’ve all but capitulated! 😥 Oh well, there’s always next year!

          Have a great day!

          Hugs, Lynn

  3. What about going to bed and putting them under the covers next to you? That sounds good to me without a storm!

    1. Oh Joy,

      I’ve tried that! She pants and shakes so much, making the bed shake, that I actually start feeling seasick! 🤢

  4. Lynn,
    I am planning to knit the Christmas pillow. Did you use the Lion Brand Thick and Quick weight yarn?


  5. Your yogurt plum cake looks delicious. Unfortunately I can’t find a link or recipe to go with the picture. Did it get left out or is my computer just messing things up? Thanks for all the recipes and ideas. I love reading your post every week.

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