Friday, December 30, 2011

Wooo Hooo Scrabble online that doesn't freeze

I have recently discovered Words with Friends on Facebook... it's wonderful! I was playing scrabble online for a while but it keeps freezing up, or closing down... it's really annoying... THIS on the other hand only has you deal with a brief ad at the end of each turn (unless you upgrade, of course) and it's fairly easy to use. Altho... I did accidentally throw away a bunch of my letters once. I was confused as to whether we were picking the ones to Keep or the ones to Throw Away... OUCH. Anyway, its easy to get to, and oh ya... FUN!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Foods to NEVER Eat

List 4: Foods to Never Eat / Foods to Avoid at All Times

  • Soda
  • Processed meals
  • Canned soups
  • “Diet” anything

These are foods you should cut out completely. Brown found that when he drank diet soda or ate processed foods, he would crave and eat sweet and processed things more often, contributing to his weight gain. And artificial sweeteners may be to blame. Studies have shown that artificial sweeteners can be addictive and put taste receptors into overdrive, causing the body to release more insulin – a hormone instrumental in storing body fat. So, instead, he stopped incorporating these foods into his diet altogether.

Eating Healthier - List 3

List 3: Foods to Eat Once a Week

  • Red meat
  • White starch
  • Desserts
  • Alcohol

These are foods you should only indulge in every once in a while. With alcohol, for instance, Brown’s motto is, “If you’re going to have one drink a week, make it count.” So choose a drink or dessert you really enjoy and savor it, rather than going for something that you might drink more of, but not like as much.

Eating Healthier - List 2

List 2: Foods to Eat Three Times a Week

  • Yogurt
  • Cauliflower
  • Broccoli
  • Sweet potato
  • Avocado
  • Oily fish
  • Tofu

These foods are healthy for you in moderation. For example, sardines are high in protein, and omega-3 fatty acids, which are very good for your heart; plus, the tiny bones contain calcium. Additionally, tofu makes a great low-calorie meat substitute that actually has more protein per calorie than ground beef. Brown frequently uses tofu in pasta sauces, tacos and stir-fry dishes. Cauliflower and broccoli are cruciferous vegetables that have been praised for their cancer-fighting properties, like antioxidants that help rid your body of toxins that might damage cells.

Eating Healthier - List 1

I found this through a link on Dr Oz's website, it was a link to an article on 5 food categories to make sure to eat if you are trying to lose weight, or even just eat healthy. Alton Brown lost and maintained 50 lbs by using this rule.

List 1: Foods to Eat Daily
  • Dark leafy greens
  • Nuts
  • Carrots
  • Green tea
  • Whole grains
  • Fruits

These foods should be a part of your daily diet. Whole grains, like oats, are rich in fiber so they fill you up and keep you satiated for longer. Also, soluble fiber keeps your cholesterol levels in check and lowers your risk of heart disease. And fruits, especially purple ones like blueberries, blackberries and Concord grapes are rich in antioxidants and resveratrol, known to promote longevity. To get these foods in every day, Brown freezes the berries into pre-portioned packets and either uses them in smoothies or just eats them as is. Additionally, nuts are a good source of protein and you can fit them in easily every day by eating a handful about 15 minutes before a big meal to help curb overeating.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Princess top

I started sewing a small top for one of my grand-daughters tonite. I didn't have a pattern, just another top for the other grand-daughter to trace from. I was lacking a stretchy fabric, since most of my stash is either cotton, flannel, fleece or corduroy... none of that stretches very well, so I'm feeling like I'm shooting blind as to whether it'll fit or not.

I traced the outline of the top onto the wrong side of the fabric - a Pink Princess flannel - leaving about 1/2" for seam allowance. Sewed up the sides & the top shoulder seams and hemmed the neckline. Not bad for a 20 min top... still need to hem the armholes. . ., and I might need to add some trim...

And then there is the matching headband....

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

While I'm driving I can think of 3 or 4 items I want to blog about. By the time I get home... they have flown out of my head! Why is that?!

Today I was sitting at Culver's and listening to a group of ladies talking about how rude people are these days when standing in a line and talking on a cell phone. I don't know where these ladies work, but they apparently wait on people who stand in a line. One lady said a girl got up to the front of the line and the lady said to her, "Can I help you".... "Miss, Can I help you?".... "Miss... " and finally the girl says to her, "JUST a minute, I'm ON the phone!" and then into her phone she says "I can't believe how rude this lady is being to me, I'll have to call you back".

The pathetic part in this is the girl. She is the one being rude, and doesn't even see it! I think all check out lines, bank lines, and any other lines, should have a sign to the effect of... If you need to be on your phone, please step out of line. Others are waiting.

I can't believe the people these days and what they consider (or don't consider) rude. What happened to Common Courtesy?! Think about it people! Please.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Time to GET UP!!

I woke this morning (at 5:15am) to the sounds of a scratching noise. I thought it was my cat doing her "I'm done with potty, lets cover it up" dance in her litter box... but it seemed too loud for that. Hmmm thinking I needed to investigate I crawled out of my nice warm bed. Tippy-toed into the dining room, then the living room to find no cat in the litter box, but instead my dachshund was between the love seat and wall digging for what she is sure is a mouse in the house.

I've been told that dachshunds were bred to go down into badger burrows and haul them out. Someone needs to tell her that a mouse is NOT a badger! LOL - While I did not take a video of this event (I was busy turning the love seat UPSIDE down for her to get under it) I did google and find this video that strongly resembles the determination displayed when they are Sure they are on the trail... it's funny but also annoying at the same time. She doesn't look vicious, does she!?

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Snow Peaks

I made these wonderful new treats called Snow Peaks. They don't exactly qualify as cookies... but they are wonderful. I saw a How To on the Food Network website, so I tried it. The recipe was created by Tyler Florence and after all, I followed his footsteps and adopted his cheesecake recipe, which was wonderful, so why not try this one also!

Again, I was thrilled by his recipe. Here is a picture of the results and the recipe follows. ... But be warned, they ARE addictive! Wow!.... and you will need to set aside not only the one HOUR baking time but then cooling time and time to dip their bottoms!

Have fun!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

What to make....

I had a booth at a vendor show today. It was sparsely attended and quite boring actually. During that time, I looked at other booths and the items they were selling. The ones that appealed to me were the hand crafted items. Oddly enough some of them were amazingly similar to things I have made in the past, and yet I am sitting at my table... selling plastics. Reputable plastic, but still... plastic!

One of these days, I would like to have a booth selling items I have made. I guess I just need to decide WHICH items to make and take.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Snow in Autumn

It snowed yesterday.... the slow, gentle type of snow floating down nicely, begging you to catch it on your tongue! ... it melted before it touched the ground so we have no accumulation. I love that kind of snow. The air was filled with large flat flakes, everywhere you looked! but not a speck on the ground... just wanted to record when it first snowed this year. Contrary to some beliefs, it's NOT winter yet... it's still Autumn.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Time for Pies!

Well this year I decided to make 2 pies. I know... there are only the two of us at home this year. But I LIKE Pumpkin pie, it's like a tradition, a part of Thanksgiving, that I am not willing to give up.... EVEN tho.... I know my hubby doesn't like it. Sooooo I asked what his favorite pie would be and he said "Chocolate".

Hmmm OK... I have never made a chocolate pie so I asked him to look up a recipe so I could see if I had all the ingredients. Cocoa - check, eggs - check, butter - check, sugar - check, vanilla & milk... when I had milk but I didnt think it'd be that creamy with skim milk so I picked up some 2% milk. I figure, let's go all out, it's Thanksgiving! LOL... actually I looked in the store for a quart or 1/2 gallon of whole milk but no deal, and I didn't see the need to buy a gallon! So I got a half gallon of 2%.

Making it didn't take anything at all! It was an easy recipe, and went together fast.It's cooling now. So now it's time to get started on the Pumpkin pie!

I already steamed the cut up pumpkin, disgarded the seeds, and mashed the pumpkin meat. Now onto the recipe...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tupperware Day

It's a Tupperware day! I have orders to bag up and deliver, YAY!!! I love when people get their new Tupperware and look in the bag like it's Christmas! It's so rewarding to know they love their purchases! It's fun to see them getting in the party mood with all the great items we have for entertaining!

I also love the compliments I get on my car as I pull up to houses. I have nicknamed it the "Tuppermobile", it seems to fit! What do you think?

Monday, November 21, 2011

Out for a drive . . .

We went out for a drive yesterday to see the leaves on the trees.... we got about 5 miles down the road when I said, "Um.. .I think we're too late. They are all gone." LOL Joke was on us, but it was a nice drive. We pulled over at one point and looked across the river, and watched the seagulls. Then a woman pulled up in her car with a 1/2 bag full of torn bread. She got out of her car and started tossing handfuls and the seagulls acted like they had been waiting for her. TONS of them flocked around and made real fast work of that bread! 5 min flat (if that) and it was cleared out.

Thursday, November 17, 2011


Chewie is my long time Lhasa Apso. But he's getting older and losing alot of weight. Why do they do that? When my cat got older, she did the same thing... it's sad to see bones sticking out of skin with no meat between them. So he stopped eating the dog food I bought him as if on a food strike. I thought maybe he lost interest in eating, but it seems he just lost interest in that particular food. Today I got out some leftovers of chicken and some white rice... blended them together and cut the chicken up as small as the rice, and he devoured it! That was great to see... then he dived into his water bowl... YAY! I only wish we could get some meat back on his bones.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Crossing the Line?

Is it just me, or do you think people are 'stretching' the stopping point at stoplights? As I learned it, way back in Driver's Ed, those fat white lines that are painted at intersections are the lines you are supposed to stop BEHIND. Has this changed? Well, I have seen several times cars that roll a bit past the line, but these 2 cars ahead of me, took the cake! The light is red... and they are stopped PAST the line! What the.... ???(^&%

Monday, November 07, 2011

Sure Glad I Got Up Early

I'm SO glad I got up early today; I couldn't sleep and at 5am I decided if I got up now, I could put the coffee pot on, and throw my quilt-in-progress out over the (for once) clear dining room table and start the next step towards finishing it. I'd really like it done before Thanksgiving.

So I went out to the kitchen and started making coffee. As I was filling the pot and getting my Tupperware coffee canister out from the cupboard, I glanced at the stove. ICK! There is still splattered grease on the back panel. And as I look around, I see cauliflower still sitting in the small collander (it was draining last nite). A few items on the counter also not put away... hmmm those dishwashers need to be fired! Ahh but then who would 'get' to do it...right, the Cook! (me)

You see in our house, we'd adopted the rule that she who cooks does not clean up. Now don't get me wrong, I do clean as I go, as much as I can. I wiped the counters 3 times in preparation of dinner last nite and my darling step-son (half-jokingly) informed me that I COULD have wiped it 4 times, then he wouldn't have to wipe it. "Nahhh wouldn't want to deprive you of that one wipe kiddo!" So As my husband washes, the kiddo is supposed to put things away off the counter and wipe it down (A lot gets missed) as he's waiting for items to dry. I also heard dad tell him to clean the stove while he's waiting but, he dawdles along and manages to forget it, knowing it won't get caught until sometime later - like morning.

So as I'm wiping the back of the stove, I see that the grates and burner tray area also need cleaning. Off come the grates and put in the sink. Run the hot water and add dishsoap... and they can soak in there while I clean the top part of the stove. Of course that leads to the front area where the knobs are. Oh My... when was that done last? ok.. off come the knobs, and HEY I might as well get a stool... Ahh now I can reach better and not break my back. This also puts me in clear view of the oven front door. Not sure what some of those streaks are and since it's a black hi-gloss and glass stove and oven, I can see it all clearly when I'm up close. So I wipe down the oven door, and work on down to the lower oven - the handle and the door... my what a nice shiny stove we have now. You see it's only 2 years old, so it SHOULD be shiny! That's what I keep telling them...

Of course, as I'm wiping a few crumbs from the oven door off, and they spill onto the floor, I'm just about to feel bad for getting them on the floor when I notice.... Hmm "someone" didn't do the floors yesterday. Oh, yes... let me mention: in our house, they don't LIKE the idea of "Saturday chores" they want to do that on Sunday. Right. There are a few problems I have with this... Whatif I want to invite friends over for games on Saturday night? [I REALLY would like to do that] What if step-son goes to see mom for the weekend? Whatif... whatif... well it doesn't seem to matter. Even though I asked that we put it back to Saturday after a trial run of doing it on Sundays... they disagree and want to do it on Sundays. ~ Guess what guys?! It's NOT Working.

OK so as I look at the floor and realize I have company coming at 9:00 this morning, I decide there is only one choice. Do it myself. Great. Out comes the broom and mop. Swept the kitchen floor and if I hadn't known better (and i do) I would have thought it was 2 weeks worth of dirt & dust. My Goodness! Then, after sweeping the kitchen, I remembered the other area dear hubby is supposed to sweep - the front hall; the very thing new company will see first when they arrive. Yup... off I go to sweep there. Yuk! Midway thru sweeping dear hubby trapezes through on the way to his morning shower. It's then that I realize, I need MUFFINS! (No, looking at him didn't remind me of it, there is no link there... LOL) I had a blueberry muffin mix I wanted to get whipped up for my company. Get out the Bowl, Milk, Spoon and Mix... dump in bowl, ok ... stir. Oops preheat oven! While I'm waiting for the oven to warm up I'll finish sweeping that front hall. Hubby emerges clean from his shower just as I'm scooping up the dirt & dust into the dustpan from kitchen and front hall. (Did I mention I started coffee an hour ago? Yes, I haven't had a drop of it yet)

Floors swept, I get muffins into the paper cups and ready for the oven, and along comes Hubby for his goodbye kiss. "Why'd you get up so early, honey" he asks. "Well, I couldn't sleep and just got up, but it seems it's a good thing I did. I have company coming today and someone didn't do his floors yesterday~" No reply.

As he leaves for the day, I retrieve the rug for the front hall, which I had taken outside to shake and air out; Then, begin mopping the front hall, and then the kitchen. Before finishing the kitchen, I realize I have not had any of that precious coffee I made an Hour & a half ago! So I poured it and took it out to the living room. There, it can sit and cool, and wait for me. I go and finish the kitchen floor, wipe the kitchen counter from my muffin mixing, and wash out the bowl, measuring cup and spoon I used. Set the timer. While I'm finishing these steps is when it hits me... I've had a workout this morning, I can feel it on the back of my neck and along my hairline, perspiration (and frustration). The Sunday chores idea is Just Not Working.

Another task hubby is responsible for... is folding towels and washcloths when they come out of the dryer. I suppose it's my fault for leaving them in the dryer last night, but now I have to fit in time to fold and put those away as well. ~~Ding.. the muffins are done and step-son is up and wanting breakfast. Passing him in the kitchen I say, "I hope there is cereal". "There is." he informs me. Good. Because next on the list are the bathroom chores that HE didn't do last night after returning from mom's.

Ahhh, I finally got a sip of that coffee while writing this blog.
Well.... Break time is over, off to get those bathrooms done!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Shop Hoppin

Saturday was 'Shop Hop' day with Sandy ... it was fun. If you aren't familiar with a Shop Hop, here's how it works: This year there are 14 quilt shops participating, and you go to as many as you can, shop around, find new things, and collect goodies... and get your card stamped... etc... to get in a drawing.. Oh, also this year, each store give you a printed copy of a particular "STEP" in the directions of putting a quilt together. If you go to all 14 stores, you get all the steps... otherwise... well, you get the idea. It's also kind of fun to see what the stores decide to hand out as their 'goodies'... or Not! Sometimes they can be kind of chintzy, and other times they really put some thought into it and give you something you can actually use! Thank you to those stores :-)

The event runs for 2 weekends in a row; we made it to 7 stores... and we'll see if we can finish (or not) next weekend..

It was the best part of my weekend... oh, and driving home, a coyote ran out of the center of the interstate and darted across the road... RIGHT in front of us... Sandy slamming her brakes to miss... She did a great job of avoiding it (thank you Sandy)

All in all... it was a F-u-n T-i-m-e!

Scattered Tacos

Tonight we had a version of 'walking tacos' for dinner... but we didn't walk! lol We started with Scoops on a plate, added the taco seasoned ground beef, shredded cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, and taco sauce... Yummmm

Also helped that I make my own recipe of Taco Seasoning... no more mixes, since we couldn't agree on one we all liked, I just Googled and experimented til I got one we all like... and I know ALL the ingredients in it... nothing I can't pronounce! Want the recipe...? OK.. here it is!

Taco Seasoning

1 tablespoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon black pepper

Mix all together in a small bowl and store in a Tupperware Spice container. (if you don't have one, contact me and I can order one for you!) You can also order them on my Tupperware website!

Friday, October 07, 2011

Dog Food...Gonna make my own!

I am so tired of trying various dog foods to find one my Chewie can eat!!! Arrrghh! Now he has blood in his urine again... Im wondering if it's the Ocean Fish in this new one??

So.. Im thinking of just making ground up food for him. I want to be sure he gets all the nutrients he needs and to leave out the junk he doesn't need, like sodium, sugar, etc... Any hints or tips on things like that to leave out or be sure to put in?

All comments welcome!

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Little Yummy Bites of Goodness!

I made CREPES today! From scratch! Yummm Ohhh Yummmm! WOW... Who would have ever thought it was that easy!!?Why on earth do people buy Crepe Mix? Let me tell you the recipe I used. I got it from Giada de Laurentiis yesterday when I saw her making them on TV. Yes, she does have a habit of making things look easy... but this WAS easy!

Put in blender:
4 eggs
1 cup milk (skim is fine)
1/2 cup flour
1 Tablespoon sugar
1/8 tsp salt

Hit BLEND for about 30 seconds. As long as it looks well blended and creamy it's good to go!

Heat small 8" frying pan (or a crepe pan if you have one). Keep it on LOW and put in about 1/2 Tablespoon of butter. Wait for it to look frothy and foamy (not brown!) and gently pour in 1/4 cup of batter. (Use the measuring cup so you don't put too much, or else you'll have an eggy pancake). Swirl the pan a bit to get it as large as the pan allows. Let cook about 45 seconds - 1 minute. You should see bubbles, or when you lift with a silicone spatula, it lifts easy and flip. Cook on other side 30-45 seconds. Get parchment paper ready to lay it on and I layer a sheet in between each crepe to allow them to cool. (They are easier to handle when slightly cooled).

That's it, my friend, you have crepes. NOW what to do with them?

Ahhhh well today I did several things with them! 1st I made a jam filling. Take any preserves and warm them, maybe add a SMALL dash of vanilla. Instant filling! or...
- Slice a banana and lay slices in a row
- Slice strawberries, put on top of bananas
- Add a couple small dollops of... whipped cream, vanilla yogurt, pudding, ricotta cheese
Fold over, add a dollop for garnish! .... and ENJOY!

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Clean Sink

Do you have any idea just how good a clean sink makes you feel about your kitchen? Or even in general! I guess I knew before, but had forgotten. Recently, maybe a couple months ago now, I began slowly following the Fly Lady technique of getting my house under control. She starts you out with Baby Steps - exactly what I needed! Starting a whole new routine of anything just doesn't work! It needs to be eased in... slowly....

So step 1 is to shine your sink. Now she doesn't just have you wipe it down, she means really CLEAN it. Fill it with hot water and bleach and clean all the tiny crevices around the edges and taps, etc. Once you do this, you will be amazed at how easy it is to keep it clean. Maybe it's because you have a renewed sense of Wanting to. ;-)