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Brighton Wool and Honey Co.

Fresh from the Farm

Month

November 2015

Where to Find us this Holiday Season

Brighton Wool & Honey Co. is on the move this holiday season. We will be out and about all over the greater Cleveland/Akron area and we hope to see you.

We are true believers in the Shop Small, Shop Local movement. When you shop with small, local merchants, more of your money stays in your community, supporting the parks, libraries and other things that make your hometown a wonderful place to life. Not to mention the fact that small businesses offer some of the most creative and unique gifts around!

COUNTRYSIDE FARMERS’ MARKET AT OLD TRAIL SCHOOL

9 a.m. – noon
December 5, 12 & 19

CLEVELAND BAZAAR AT WINTERFEST

Saturday, November 28th
10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
5th Street Arcade, Cleveland

HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE AT THAT’LL DO FARM

Sunday, November 29th
Noon – 5 p.m.
34634 State Route 303, Grafton
Saturday, December 5th
10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
At the Grog Shop & Above Mongolian BBQ in Coventry

December 11 – 13

Details coming soon

Cleveland Bazaar at 78th Street Studios

Saturday, December 12th
10 a.m. – 9 p.m.
Sunday, December 13th
10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
78th Street Studios in Gordon Square, Cleveland

LAST MINUTE MARKET

Saturday, December 19  10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

The Galleria at Erieview

1301 East 9th Street, Cleveland

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Gluten-Free Honey Desserts for Thanksgiving Everyone will Love

Let me say, right out of the shoot, that I am pro-gluten. Given a choice, I would consume it by the ton. Pizza. French bread. Toll House cookies. Pie. Stuffing. Red Velvet cake. And that glorious thing of beauty, the well designed hamburger bun.

The problem is gluten is not pro me. We are not the friends I thought we were. Gluten was cruel to me, so a few years ago, we had to part ways. It was not an easy break up, but for the most part, it has been amicable. Oh sure, there are days when I miss my old friend so much that I need to pay a brief visit. But I soon realized that we can never really be together again. I had to find move on. I had to find new friends.

Thanksgiving, however, is a full gluten event. From the gravy, thickened with flour, to the numerous pies and cakes, gluten plays a major role at the Thanksgiving table.

Thanks to the wonderful world of Pinterest, I have found many gluten-free options for Thanksgiving desserts. And since we happen to have a few dozen hives of bees producing the best honey around, I looked for gluten-free desserts staring honey.

Brighton+Wool+Bottled+Honey

This is my favorite: Healthy Pumpkin Pie.. It is sugar free, dairy free and gluten free. With that much “free”, you’d think it would also be free of taste. But I’m here to tell you otherwise. It is delicious. How could it not be when it’s filled with pecans, almond milk, pumpkin and honey.

Or how about Baked Pears with Walnuts and Honey..Pears, honey, cinnamon, walnuts. That’s it. Four ingredients that will have you wondering what the heck gluten even is.

Prefer your dessert in more of a candy form? Give this Pecan Pie Brittle a try.

I bet if you put these desserts on the table, not a single soul will ask you where the gluten is.

If you’re a Pinterest fan like I am, be sure to follow Brighton Wool & Honey Co. for lots of great ideas on cooking with honey, knitting, gardening and general farm life.

Rake+scarecrow

How Art Batts are Made

Art batts are wonderful things. If you’re a spinner, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Non-spinners, welcome to the wonderful world of fiber.

This, my friends, is an art batt.

turquoise-orange-art-batt

It is a mix of fibers and textures carded together and prepared for a spinner, who will sit down at a wheel or with a drop spindle and create beautiful, one-of-a-kind skeins of yarn.

I know, I know. You were thinking an art batt was a flying mammal with a proclivity to paint with watercolors or draw. But no. Not even close. It is the joy of hand spinners everywhere. And some felters too. We never want to leave out those felters.

Art batts start out with a variety of fibers.

Merino-roving

I started with some hand-dyed Merino wool. The color combination inspiration came from an unlikely source: the October cover of Better Homes & Gardens magazine.

Better-Homes-and-Gardens-Cover

Maggie saw the cover and fell in love with the oranges, blues and whites. She thought those colors, combined, would make a gorgeous yarn . And I have to say she is right.

So off to the drum carder I went. I happen to love my Strauch drum carder with my entire being.

Strauch-Drum-Carder

Isn’t she beautiful! There is something very therapeutic about loading fiber onto the deck, cranking away and seeing what comes out on the other side. If you have any worries or anything you need to work out, a few hours at the drum carder will clear your head and have you back on the right path. Not to mention you’ll have numerous art batts to show for your therapy.

So to the dyed Merino wool, I added a bit of silky bamboo. This will add a bit of shine and luster to the yarn when its spun up.

shiny-orange-fiber

But because a little shine and glitz is never enough, I threw in some iridescent Angelina fiber in a deep copper color for a bit of glamour.

Fiber-Bling

Then it was just a matter of layering and continuing to combine.

Fiber-on-the-Drum-Carder

As the fibers roll through the carding drums, they become lined up and ready for spinning. The spinner then has the choice of where to pull the fiber from the art batt. Want a few yards of blue yarn followed by white and then orange? Then that’s how you pull out the fiber for spinning.

turquoise-orange-art-batt

Or you could just spin it from left to right, giving you a mixed color yarn with a random pattern.

Spinning yarn from an art batt truly allows the spinner to become the designer of their own yarn.

Now its back to the drum carder for me. I’m going to go look at lots of other magazine covers for color combination inspiration. What are some of your favorite color combos? Let me know. It might make for a great art batt.

Lavender Scented Laundry Soap

You know how they say the right right tool makes the job easier? I always sort of knew it was true. I believed it in theory. And then we discovered how to make our own Lavender laundry soap and I became a true believer!

laundry soap
Lavender-Laundry-Soap

If I were a poet, I would write entire poems about this soap. And long ones. Not just haiku.

We make it ourselves out of simple old-fashioned ingredients. Things your grandmother would have used. Like Baking Soda. And Borax. And Fels-Naptha Soap. Things that actually clean and whiten your clothes without a bunch of added stuff that does nothing but add chemicals to your wash water.

But don’t let its pretty, delicate face fool you. This is a workhorse detergent. We use it for all of our really dirty farm grime. It gets out tractor grease and unmentionable things from the pasture. Yet you can use it for your sheets and most delicate of washables. We even use it on baby clothes.

Spilled-laundry-soap

You may not hear angels singing when you use it, but I do.

One little scoop does your whole load. Really. You don’t need to pour the entire jar in to get clean clothes. One scoop. If you feel better doing it, make it a heaping scoop. But you don’t need to. Sometimes old habits of using tons of soap die hard. We understand that. But seriously, you don’t need more than the scoop.

And yes, you can use it in HE washing machines.

Want to be really popular? Give it as a gift. Your friends will shower you with thanks. It may even inspire you to write a poem or two.

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