Thursday, December 1, 2011

Happy Holidays! Merry Christmas!

In the spirit of simplicity, this will be my only blog post this month. If you'd like to read more about our Christmas this year, check out my Farmwife at Midlife blog where I've posted today about "Less is Always More" at the holidays. I'm deliberately not going to blog any more this month on any of my three blogs––even if I have to sit on my hands!––to save up time and room for a simple, relaxing holiday––and to spend more time with my family: how, may I ask, do we do that if we're always on the computer? Also, there is a link back to some Christmas cookie recipes on this blog and you can always search In the Pantry (see column at right) for more holiday and food-related blogs from Christmas Past. As this blog is now over six years old, there is plenty of fodder in that department.

Father Christmas visiting Stan Hywet Hall, c. 1940. 
[That's my grandmother on the right.]
If you are in the Akron, Ohio area this season you can visit this 
historic manor during the holidays and enjoy their decorated Tudor Revival-era 
rooms and beautifully lit grounds. Click here for more information.

Also, please remember that I still have copies of The Pantry–Its History and Modern Uses available for sale at my website. They make excellent gifts and I am happy to sign, and inscribe, copies and even ship them directly to anyone on your list. Hardbound, and filled with beautiful color photography, the book is an affordable addition to your home library. And still only $16.90, including shipping! Order today in time for the holidays ~

Blessings to you and your family this holiday season, and always,


My father, left, admiring the Yule Log in the Great Hall of Stan Hywet Hall, c. 1940.
PS For more great images of Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens––at Christmas and through the years (both archival and promotional)––check out this new blog by architectural historian Michael Henry Adams, a fellow Akronite who now resides New York City.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

At a Newsstand Near You! Yummy Kitchens-and pantries!

Just a note to say that if you are looking for some great ideas for your new or old kitchen, inspired by vintage and historic prototypes, Old House Journal and Old-House Interiors magazines have joined forces to produce a special issue, Kitchen Classics. It is available for a limited time at larger bookstores and/or certain magazine stands (and possibly via their website, although I'm not certain).

The editors were also kind to include two articles I had written several years back for Old-House Interiors on pantries and Hoosier cabinets. It is online here (although the layout in the magazine––with more photographs–-is much better!). The publication of the original pantry article was what inspired me to put together the book proposal for The Pantry.

This special issue is a keeper for any kitchen (and pantry) enthusiast for new-old design ideas, resources and wonderful photography. I'm going to tuck it away in my file marked "Future Farmhouse Kitchen." I can dream, can't I?

In the meantime, I've been promising photos of our new cottage pantry at the farm which is a great stand-in for the time being: we don't live in the cottage because it is too small for all of us, so, naturally, I have adopted it. [And it will one day be our 'doty house' for our older years.] It also has a great canning kitchen that has been in constant use these past two months. So, I will make those photos a priority as soon as I get organized post-canning!

Best wishes and have a lovely autumn season wherever you may be,


Monday, August 22, 2011

Canning Season

It is full-fledged canning season at the farm so come on over to my other blog Farmwife at Midlife and visit me in my cottage canning kitchen. There are gently cooling breezes down from the knob and we can enjoy the porch again after a long heat wave and drought-like conditions here in south-central Kentucky.

I promise there will be more regular updates here at In the Pantry with pantry-related posts throughout the autumn and winter months ahead.

In the meantime, I'm filling our pantries and freezers from now until the colder weather. Getting a woodstove installed–oh how I miss a woodstove!–and we will soon be piling up many cords of seasoned wood from our farm on our back porch. Here in the very hot and dry South we will welcome Fall sooner than we did in the Northeast. And Fall rains will be welcome as will the cozier and cooler days ahead. I used to mourn the summer's passing in late August–now I embrace it like an old friend or my favorite shawl.

And oh how I still love to fill a pantry, our many freezers, and a wood box. There is something immensely gratifying about seeing your jars of the summer harvest lined up in rows on the shelf. It is a visual record of a day's work, of self-sustenance and good nourishment, too. The idea of living out of our own food stores, with our own animals and eggs, local produce from farmers we know, and avoiding the store? Priceless.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Pantries I Saw on My Summer Vacation

An old Hoosier-esque cupboard in the shed at Green's Heritage Museum
 in Orient, Ohio. [I particularly like the vines growing around it.]
We took several trips to Ohio this summer and, of course, I brought my camera along. I'm always on the lookout for unusual spaces and pantry places along the way. What's fun about visiting Ohio is that even though I have spent much time there––as a child and adult––there is always something new to see or find. [For more about "What I Learned on My Summer Vacation," please see my Farmwife at Midlife blog.] We don't go far together now that we have a cattle farm and much responsibility here in Kentucky, so we do try to pack as much time as we can into our short trips.

The butler's pantry at the James A. Garfield Historic Site in Mentor, Ohio.

The interior of the small field worker's wagon at Green's Heritage Museum.
It was used by migrant workers from Kentucky who came up to Ohio each summer.
There is a small bedroom and an open area for cooking and living space––like a Gypsy caravan.
The cupboard and counter in the field worker's wagon.

A former tourist cabin.
The cupboard and kitchen area of the tiny tourist cabin
 at Green's Heritage Museum. What little girl, or grown woman,
would not want this as a playhouse of their  own?

Two views of the kitchen and pantry area that was in the old store at Green's Heritage Museum. 

A row of old oatmeal boxes in the old store.

A "Portable Pantry," made in Ohio in the latter part of the 19th century. I'd heard about them but had never seen one before. I found this in an antique shop in Berlin, Ohio (but did not buy it!).

A flower arranging volunteer in the room made for the same purpose at
Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens in Akron, Ohio. Above this space,
on the second story, is a commodious linen closet with cupboards and drawers.
Last but not least, my friend Linda spotted a copy of my book on the upper shelf
of the gift shop of Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens. I was glad to see it and they ordered more copies.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Nice Nod to Pantries ~ and THE PANTRY

© Catherine Seiberling Pond
The Pantry––Its History and Modern Uses was mentioned (and quoted) in an article called "Tips on Designing a Pantry" in the Winter 2009 issue of New Old Houses [through the wonders of the internet, I am only now discovering this article as it was just posted on line]. You will find to be an invaluble resource for all of your old house questions.

Thank you for the informative tribute to pantries, Jennifer Sperry!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day from my Pantry to Yours!


A World War II era Valentine that I could not resist on eBay! So I wanted to share with all of you, too.

Thanks for stopping by, as always, here in the pantry. I will continue to post on occasion here, with pantry-related tidbits, but you'll find me most of the time now at Farmwife at Midlife.

Happy Valentine's Day!


Saturday, January 1, 2011

Farmwife at Midlife

Dear Friends In the Pantry,

It's official! I have a new blog that I've been mulling over for the past few months and it's just been launched in 2011. Farmwife at Midlife better reflects my life as it has evolved over the past few years, and yet will continue what I've enjoyed so much here In the Pantry (as I hope you have, too). I promise that it will only enlarge upon everything here in a very different format. Sometimes we just need a change and this one, like so many in my life, just feels right.

But don't worry, I'm not leaving In the Pantry behind. In fact, you'd be hard pressed to get me out of it! I will just be focusing on my new blog, and other ventures from our farm, including more freelance writing, and hope you will join me there.

I will still blog here on occasion, but with quite specific pantry-related references [and Carolyn MacDonald, I haven't forgotten you!], links and other information as it pertains to pantries or my book. Of course, you can still purchase signed copies of The Pantry–Its History and Modern Uses [Gibbs Smith: 2007] from my website.

I wish you all good things in the year ahead!