Saturday, August 29, 2009

Look what just went into the oven!


Yummy, yum, yum. First, in any Italian recipe, I poured myself a nice cool glass of Merlot (I know you are supposed to drink that room temp but I just have to have one cube of ice in it). It just sets the mood for good Italian food.
I just finished making homemade lasagna and I haven't done that in a very long time because I usually get Stouffeurs as it's just so dang good. BUT, yesterday when shopping I had the inkling to make homemade lasagna. I didn't use ground beef, but ground Italian sausage (hot), and let the sauce cook in my black iron skillet for about 30 minutes with the cooked sausage before layering with the cooked noodles. Lots of cheese involved too!
In 45 minutes, I will see how it all turns out.
Saturday dinner for two is indeed a dinner for 20. I'm serious, I haven't yet to figure out how to make any recipe involving noodles or grains (like grits) for less than 5 people and there is just 2 of us. Lots of leftovers here I'm sure! And you know that lasagna is best the next day after the ingredients have gotten to know each other better in the frig.
Hope you are having a nice Saturday evening!
I hope to stitch later after cleaning all the sauce off the counters tonight!
Jennifer

Scissor Froggin' :0

Hey, take a peek over at Deb's blog, The Thread Gatherer and see what magnificent give-a-away she has going on!
She is celebrating her 1st Blog anniversary with a give-a-away which involves a Scissor Frog! And it's beautiful too! Has my favorite color, pink, in it. What a beauty!

Congratulations, Deb on your Blogversary!

Here is the link to her blog:

http://threadgatherer.blogspot.com/

This should never happen

I have been following this story since it came out. This should never happen. Seems like there were mishaps on several occasions. Please report to law enforcement any suspicions of child abuse. Any information you can given law enforcement when abductions occur is crucial. Go with the gut. If you have a gut feeling that something is wrong or weird, it probably is.

In this case with the abduction and who knows what else this child went through for 18 years, it's beyond any kind of sense. It's barberic, cruel, crazy.

Did you know that you can actually go online and locate a map to see where sex offenders live near you? Alot of people do not know this still. I'm telling you it's crucial, important information. You will be surprised if you think you are living in a "safe" area.

You can read the story here
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090829/ap_on_re_us/us_kidnapped_girl_found

This guy should have stayed in jail the first time. And that should have been the least of his punishment. Period. End of discussion.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Ended up with a different sewing machine.....maybe

Yesterday, I ended up getting a different machine than the Janome I posted earlier this past week. For basic sewing, and even some quilting I think this will be a good machine. It's definitely a lower end machine and less than the Janome but I have 30 days to try and take back if I choose. So, I will unbox this goody tomorrow and check it out. It has several of the same features I looked for in a good basic one so, we'll see..........

I didn't sleep too good last night, or you could say this morning and had to get up early so my energy is nearing zero right now. I think I will be able to sleep better tonight as I'm nodding here while I type.....LOL

I did see the prettiest sunset tonight and of all places, walking out of Walmart. Most of the day cloudy and a bit gloomy. Cooler too. The sun came out late in the day. Getting close to long sleeve weather now. I so wished I had my camera with me to take the sunset behind the mountain tonight but wouldn't you know I didn't have it with me.
Football games are starting and Fall is definitely right around the corner~~~~

Thinking about my Staycation next week

WOO HOO! My vacation starts in less than 2 hours. Or my staycation. But that' ok, cause I got alot of "around the house" things to do, day trip planning, movies maybe too.


So, what is a good movie out now? I haven't even looked in so long but that's a definite staycation plan. I think it's the movie popcorn I'm really missing! LOL I thought I was in heaven when I went to Boston 2 years ago to a conference and a movie theatre was in walking distance with "serve yourself pump butter" Yum!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

A Busy Thursday

Besides working today, I went shopping after work for a couple of things to send around the world. I found this box on the left handmade by a local and couldn't resist. It has inlaid wood pieces and I thought it was special. It's small and will hold some special tiny small items maybe and then I made a little bag with a heart button to go with it. I put lavender in it and it smells calming. I will send with the other items to Afghanistan. Brandon's birthday is Sept 18th so I'm trying to send early.


I got to this far on the sampler tonight, raised the roof and planted a tree!

And shopped at Walmart for some essentials that Brandon may like to get over in Afghanistan. There are several items I hope he gives to some children over in Afghanistan like crayons and pens and notepads. As I read daily, or almost 3 times daily the updated articles on Afghanistan I saw this statement today
A recent public Washington Post survey found that a majority of Americans say the war in Afghanistan is not worth fighting.Only 24 percent of those polled say more US troops should be sent, while nearly twice as many want to decrease the number of military forces in Afghanistan.


It's my hope that the country gets its mission together or get out. We have our children's lives at stake here......and that's all I'm going to say on this controversial issue.


I splurged and got a Country Sampler Fall edition magazine. I just love this seasonal magazine. I can look at it over and over and get plenty of ideas for prim decor.

I'm getting ready to sleep, trying to put all my worries aside until the next day.............
just one more day and I"m on vacation for a week, or actually until the day after Labor Day! No plans for travel, just a break for catching up on some things.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Progress on Blue House


Progress tonight on The Blue House Sampler by The Sampler Girl.

Elbows off the table?




Ren was so excited I cooked spaghetti tonight that he made all kinds of contorsions eating it. He looked like he was doing yoga poses. Those back feet just slide into the front by the time is through. He takes his "sketti" without Parmesian cheese. He does make a mess but hey, he's happy.............bless his bones LOL


New Recipe for Pecan Cookies


I tried a new recipe this afternoon and thought I would share as they are the best cookies and will melt in your mouth!
Pecan Sugar Cookies
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened ( may use unsalted but I use salted)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar or confectioners sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup of finely chopped pecan pieces
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt in a bowl and set aside.
In large mixing bowl cream butter, oil, egg, and vanilla extract using electric mixer. Gradually geat in flour mixture. Stir in pecan pieces.
Using about 1 teaspoon of dough, drop on cookie sheet. (I usually use baking paper on a sheet which prevents the bottom for browning too soon or burning). Space the cookies 2 inches apart.
Then take take a small 1/2 cup of granulated sugar and put to the side. Take a fork and press on top of cookie drops, each time dipping the fork in the sugar then press on top of cookie dough pieces.
Bake 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven and put on plate and hopefully you will have some leftover for your family after you eat half them hot!!!!!
Man, oh man, were these good. They really melt in your mouth. Reminds me of Pecan Sandies but a little softer and more buttery.
Makes about 36 little cookies.
Enjoy!

Our quiet little naptimes

Thomas remained still like this for at least 1 hour. I really was worried about him there for a while. But he stretched himself out and covered his eyes quite well. I got these pics through my window so a little blurred.

Ren is also napping. Thank Goodness.





The mountains make one lethargic. Thomas is still sunk into the dog cushion he acquired from our Labs. He won't give it back either. He doesn't mind that it's a 50 inch large dog cushion, he says its made for him. This afternoon I think fairy dust was sprinkled on all the animals today.

At 1pm this:


Ahhhhhh, at 2 pm, this:



At 3 pm, this:






And this little black line you see in the flower bed is Raven. She is also catatonic at 2:30pm.


3:30pm


This is making me sleepy now!

On my To do List


Good morning! In North Ga. today it's a sunny, slightly crisp (tad bit of Fall in the air, I just know it) kind of day. Thomas is glued to his front porch cushion which he adopted from the dogs.
We washed the cover of it Sunday and he literally has slept, glued to it since then. He has no fear of what might come up on the porch because he has 2 guard dogs in the front, the Labs.
He's telling me that he just loves freshly washed sheets!
Ren, well Ren, is presenting a bit of a dilemma and has gotten where he will only eat table food. I mean only eat. He used to eat some brands of dogfood, then it got to be, only with sauces from the frig. Now, it's nope, I'm hardheaded and I will stay that way attitude about dogfood. Reminds me of some people folk I know! LOL
So, I caved again this morning and gave him a bowl of shredded wheat while I ate my breakfast and coffee and he ate it up, back to sleep now in his cozy red blanket.
Today is my off day and I have a to-do list somewhere. That's what happens when you get older.
You lose your glasses, feel its hot all the time, write to-do lists, and then lose the to-do lists!
But I'm saved by my kitchen island. I always have to-do stuff on my kitchen island, the catch-all, the hot-spot, the whatever you want to call it but a place to eat.
I have some letter writing to do today as well, I mean the snail mail, the old fashioned way as I'm not really seeming to communicate through faster newer means like email.
I have on the kitchen island, Brandon's birthday present to mail as I know it takes 3 weeks to get to Afghanistan, that means today, the post office, today, Jennifer.
I also will mail out the chart pack for Peggy Lee.
Let's see, what else? Oh man, do I want to mess up my beautiful day with a load of laundry in there? Hmmm......maybe.
I'll have to say I"m lucky in some respects with laundry because the Body Guard does his own laundry, by choice, and some of the bathroom stuff, always has. I can't get him to admit to it but I think he likes doing laundry. Which would fit perfectly as I hate doing laundry. Such a balance don't you think? I don't know if it's the Dutch part of him or what but when we first got married he established that and I lovingly accepted that he likes to do his own laundry.
Another thing today is to finish cleaning out my stash that is all over the kitchen island, the sofa, the chair, and just about anywhere. We never have company but if we did they would have to rearrange sewing notions and such to sit down.
I would open the windows this morning but we have started with Ragweed season big time and our eyes are a bit scratchy so, not so good idea. Maybe with a little extra Zyrtec we can open them! LOL
Last night I almost finished the letters on The Blue House Sampler and hope to finish the squiggly blue lines tonight. I like the squiggly blue lines, there is a rhythm to the needle which is very calming.
I certainly hope you all have a great Tuesday!

Monday, August 24, 2009

A Happy Dance at the Mail today

Here's a few pics of my Blog to Book. I saw this possibility months ago at the Cutest Blog on the Block website. Of course, if you publish your blog to a book, it cannot be sold, just for personal keeping.

I ordered one copy and for the past year, I reached 300 pages and didn't realize it would be so big. I call it Volume One. Got this in the mail today. I was very, very impressed with the quality of the paper. Its a softback book but the paper is thick and shiny! You actually pick out the design on the book for the front picture and a background color, write an introduction/preface page, and then it downloads into this book format. Great way to keepsake your blog and pictures of stitching progress.


I took a few pics of it.


This is the front---

Here's the preface I wrote (has to be less than 300 words)

Here's the bottom of the back
Puts it in chapters for you........



Here is the back of the book (mid-top)



A few sample pages


I'm telling you that the quality of the pictures are very clear.



If you are interested, here is the link to the site to turn your blog into a book! You can choose different things about it, include or disregard dates, comments, etc. just make it personal.
You can also order just a pdf of the book for an extra cost.
My feet are so tired tonight. Back to settling in and stitching on The Blue House Sampler while I watch CNN and Nancy Grace show.
Till next time.......

Sunday, August 23, 2009

New Start~~~a sewing area and a new sampler



Well, here is my progress on The Blue House Sampler design by the Sampler Girl. I set a goal to finish this green today but got side tracked on unloading my closet sewing nook to expand in a basement area by the laundry room. I need more elbow room. The thread winders I got from The Gift of Stitching. I really like them because you can pencil in the names and then erase, use later for another kit.




So, adding my other colors here~~ Crescent Colors


And then, I got brave and snapped the beginnings of putting my sewing area together in the partially finished basement. Please disregard the background boxes of "stuff". One thing hubbie and I have in common is this one thing~~~~~~we are both pack rats. I digress any further.


Here is my work table. Only 1 chair on the left but I have 4 more the same. When I bring the sewing machine from upstairs, then I will work somewhere around this table as we clear more "stuff".




We have not painted the walls and floor but this is going to be this Fall. Nothing fancy, just a good sealer on the floor and walls. Here is my cabinet I got at the auction I went to several weeks ago. There are some areas of buckling and scratches but overall for 25.00 I thought I got a good place to put my fabrics and in the bottom store matting boards, pillow forms, etc.



I just put this out for you to see my other finding that day. I have a weakness for old rocking chairs. Needs a bit of cleaning yet and then I'm visualizing a small table and lamp next to it for stitching. One day.


This table is neat. Its old, yep, but actually is wood throughout, folds up if needed and gives me a good working area. (When all the other clutter is gone). I may re-cover those chairs ( the one on the left is example) but then again I may leave them this way. Either way for 7.50 each, I thought they were good deals !
So, I'm dreaming, I'm hoping, that one day we will have some kind of order to the basement.......There is actually a double window behind this "stuff" that will be moved for more room around the table and you can see a lake and the mountains. I kinda drew out on a piece of paper how I wanted individual areas and the sewing area will be right by the laundry area for sure. As I slowly make progress, I will update.
Hope your Sunday was restful!

Early Morning Awakenings

Mornings like this are rare for me on days off. I'm not usually awake and alert without coffee at 6am but this morning, I'm awake. Looks like it's starting out to be a dreary, cloudy day outside and Raven has only moaned like a cow once on the front porch this morning.

Speaking of Raven and Ruby, did you know they are sisters and born on a cattle ranch? They were adopted by us at 4 months of age, the last two of the litter. One was Ying and one was Yang. My hubbie thought that was fitting for us as we are also Ying and Yang.
Maybe this is why Raven, moans and groans like a cow at times. She is remembering her younger days.

Bodyguard and I are opposites, like night and day. He likes it warm, I like it cold. He likes creamy peanut butter, I like crunchy peanut butter. I like pink, he likes green. When he is tired, I'm usually wired and vice versa. He likes soft cookies, I like crunchy cookies. He likes the history channel and I go to sleep with the history channel. What is this in nature to attract our opposite? That's a thought worth pondering on another day........oh, my, I'm starting to sound like Scarlett. Another day? yes, tomorrow is another day.........

Speaking of Scarlett and Gone with the Wind, my favorite part is when Melanie is about to birth the baby and Scarlett is responsible. She depends on Prissy who told her previously that she knew everything about birthing babies.

Then, when it comes time for her to really help, Prissy screams, "I don't know nuffin bot birfin' no babies, Miss Scarlett, OH, Miss Scarlett!" Then you see one of the many slaps given by none other than Miss Scarlett.


Now, Scarlett, did have some persistence and some personality, didn't she?
Ah, but Rhett, she says, "Rhett, you devil, you varmit" and then slaps him too. I'm definitely not condoning slapping people but there is a little to say about Scarlett's assertiveness! LOL


I've since percked my coffee, add a little hazelnut flavor creamer and flopped down to read. I'm even thinking about stitching in a few and if so, remember this date, because I've never stitched this early in the morning.
Fiddle-de-dee!

Gadget

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