Posts Tagged ‘cooking’

I can remember bringing you home 30 odd years ago, you were bright and shiny with a red exterior and a clear plastic lid.  The lid broke ages ago and your paint peeled into non-existence, but your aluminum usefulness persevered.  I could always count on even heating and easy clean-up.  Then your edges began to crack where they had been bent back and forth too many times.  The kids made rude jokes everytime I pulled you out of the cupboard, but I just couldn’t replace you.

Old friend

Old friend

 Until now…

Shiny New Pan

Shiny New Pan

 Sorry, but yesterday this bright and shiny, heavy, professional grade aluminum pan caught my eye and the price was right so I couldn’t resist. 

I’ve mentioned before that each month I work on a panel challenge for a different person.  It’s all supposed to be hush hush.  Which makes it hard for blogging, when you spend time working on something that you can’t post about.  This month I’m breaking the rules and posting a picture, not that anyone can tell anything from it.  This is a peek at this month’s project.

Panel challenge - June

Panel challenge - June


I’ve also made another Dear Jane block, TB-2.  This block was pieced using the foundation method.

Dear Jane block T-2

Dear Jane block TB-2


I wasn’t happy with the way the scarf , I mentioned in last post, was knitting up, so I’ve switched to another scarf pattern.  Now I’m using the North Star scarf pattern from the book Arctic Lace and knitting with parchment color Peruvian Baby Silk.  It is turning out really well, although I need to order a few more balls of the yarn.

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First off I want to thank everyone that has commented or sent a message about my blog.  It’s nice to know that someone out there is actually reading what I ramble on about.

I stretched the preparation out over 3 days and ended yesterday with rollling and steaming 3½ dozen tamales.  A few hours after dividing the tamales into packages of 6 and loading the freezer, I realized that I didn’t document the momentous occasion by taking a picture.  So just picture in your mind, beautiful, perfectly rolled tamales, NOT.

OK, I don’t know what my problem is but it seems that I can’t follow easy to understand instructions.  The knitting project has been frogged again.  Luckily this time it was just a few rows.  I still can’t figure out how I ended up with 2 buttonholes on one side and 1 buttonhole on the other side.  It would certainly make it difficult to button up the front.

We’ve pretty much finished all of the Christmas shopping, now comes the part I’m not particularly fond of.  Wrapping.  I did manage to wrap a few presents the other night while watching Kung Fu Panda.  Of course I cheated, and two of them were stuffed in gift bags with tissue paper.  Now that’s my kind of wrapping.  Someone did try to help me with the decorating.

Toby helping with the garland

And he also does a great impersonation of a Christmas present.

Toby's impersonation of a Christmas present
Toby’s impersonation of a Christmas present

Actually this pose is quite unusual, because he generally runs by and swats the doll’s face or bites her foot. 

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There has been actual stitching done around here the past couple of days.  Managed to do a couple of seams, a ship and a turtle.

Seam detail

The above seam is staggered running stitches woven with contrasting thread and the addition of X stitches.

Ship and seam detail

Decided that every ocean needs a ship made of herringbone and cretan stitches.  The seam detail at the top is a new addition.  I’m trying to keep the contrast down between the seams and the background since they aren’t meant to be the main focus of this piece.

We were watching the sharks version of “Mythbusters” the other night and they kept seeing sea turtles, so I decided this piece needed a turtle also.  I tried stitching the shell but wasn’t satisfied with any of the results and the fabric was beginning to look a little worse for wear from all of the unsewing.  Frustrated, I leaned back in my chair and looked up at the shelves above my table and spied the container marked leather.  Surely in that collection of bits and scraps there was a piece that would work for a turtle shell.  I found a large piece of olive green leather that I had purchased cheap, due to it being slightly damaged, and a turtle shell was born.


Had a 40% off coupon for the bookstore burning a hole in my pocket, so yesterday I ventured out to shop on the Saturday before school starts.  I know, crazy, but I had a coupon.  First was Sears to check out some bedding they had advertised.  Didn’t find anything I liked, but they were also having a summer clearance sale.  All of the marked down clearance items were an additional 40% off.  Lucky me managed to snag two tops and two pairs of pants, suitable for lounging/pajamas, and spent less than $20.

Next stop, the bookstore.  I picked up the latest Vogue Knitting because of these mittens and then snagged their last copy of “Stitch” which is one of my favorite embroidery/needlework magazines.  Being a British magazine it is often hard to come by around here and can’t afford $70 for a one year subscription.  Okay, I still have this coupon in my hands and it can’t be used for magazines, so I’m on the hunt for a book to buy.  Don’t want to use it on something I may or may not end up liking and only read once.  Then I remembered Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.  Been reading rave reviews on recipe sites and blogs, I love bread, there’s no kneading required, what more could I ask for?  Plan to mix up a batch of brioche today then will bake it tomorrow while I can jalapenos.  Yes, we are being overrun with peppers of the hot persuasion.  Tomorrow I will put the peppers, some onions and carrots in jars, cover with hot pickling vinegar, process in a hot water bath and have more than enough jalapenos to last through the winter.  That is, if I can keep them all from being given away.

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At least the last 2 days have just been short showers and not torrential downpours.  The backyard has dried enough that it may be possible to mow later this afternoon.

On Sunday I got the smaller flowerbed in the front yard weeded, then laid down weed barrier and a layer of mulch.  Now it makes the larger bed look really bad.  Hopefully it will soon be dry enough for me to work on it too.  My Impatiens and Caladiums in pots on the front porch are doing really well with all this wet, cooler weather.  Just hope they stay looking nice when the hot, dry Oklahoma summer finally arrives.  I started some Viola seeds really early in the spring and they just didn’t seem to want to grow.  In the past couple of days they have really taken off and started blooming.  I’m going to try and take some pictures of the yard later today.  I’m not promising, because I have to start prepping for tomorrow’s big cookout.

We’ve invited family and friends over for a 4th of July cookout tomorrow.  So yesterday, while we were at the commissary, I bought a mosquito repellant lantern for the yard.  We have a lot of mosquitos this year with all the rain.  In fact the mosquitos are so bad, that we have squadrons of dragonflies patrolling the neighborhood.  I’ve never seen so many dragonflies all at once, and they are huge, almost the size of small birds.

I’m headed to the kitchen to make Spinach dip and Rosemary Asiago Foccacia.  At the commissary, they’ve put in an “Antipasto” bar.  You can buy different types of olives, marinated peppers and artichokes, etc…  I bought some of the mixed olives and some marinated veggie mix.  The mix has whole garlic cloves in it, that are so delicious, creamy and sweet.  Wish I knew how they were prepared.

Have a great Independence Day!

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