Monday, January 31, 2011

31 Days

I did it I have blogged everyday the month of January!  This is big for me because this is the second year of my blog and only the first time I have posted every day of the month.  Celebrate!  So if you have not and would like to post that often you can join others at this site for February's round.



I am not promising to keep up the posting everyday but I think I will be posting more than I was before.

I received a package in the mail today from a give-away that I won over at Flea Market Style .  They have been having countdown giveaways for the new issue of Flea Market Style.  I won this door stop that hubs quickly had me put in front of his office door.  I was thinking his den but he said he would like it in his office.  I thought this looked like a manly dog unlike my Scottie bookends and figures I like to collect for myself.  If you like to go junking and do some fun things with your finds this magazine is a must for you.

It has been a Monday all the way around and I am tired so it is going to be TV and some crocheting this evening.  Have a great evening yourselves.  Blessings!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Busy Weekend

Our weekend has been busy so far.  I went to watch my five year old grandson sing the American Anthem before the basketball game last night.  Thought I would show you a short clip of it.  These things are so important to the children, and they so appreciate it when you go to see their performances.
video
Our two oldest grandsons are spending the weekend with us.  Today while they were out snowmobiling and sliding with grandpa I met my friends for a all year quilt shop hop.  You visit one shop once 8 out of 12 months and they give you a free quilt square pattern and 20% off anything you buy during your visit.  The shop we went to this month gave out this pin cushion kit as a gift.
I usually buy quilt patterns, fabric for crafting or for quilts but this shop had a lot of cute kits with pattern and fabrics so I picked up a couple.
 Hubs had the grandsons pretty worn out by time I got back home so they have been kicking back and doing a little Lego building.
 Tomorrow I will be making a pancake breakfast and there will be some more playing in the snow, but for the rest of this evening we will be kicking our feet up, watching a movie and having popcorn.  I hope you are all having an eventful weekend also.  Blessings!

Friday, January 28, 2011

A Wonderful Place to Visit

I have been following Lori over at a Bee in My Bonnet for quite a while now.  She is a wonderful quilt artist and has some great patterns for you!  And right now she is celebrating her new blog look by giving away 3 of her patterns.  She has a wonderful vintage look over at Bee in My Bonnet along with some really fun vintage music to listen to.  So take a trip over for a visit and pick out your favorite patterns. 


My favorites are Quilters World, Cottage Garden, Grandmas Kitchen and Eat Cake.  Yes I know that is 4 not 3 but I just could not decide on the 3rd one. 

Picking up our two oldest grandsons this evening and going to a quilt shop with my sewing buds tomorrow.  Have a busy weekend coming up but I will try and check back in each day.  I have been trying to post everyday for a month and I have only 3 more to go.  I think I can, I think I can....Blessings!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

P is for Patterns

Went to the city today to spend time with my granddaughters.   I leave from work every other Thursday and do a little shopping until my daughter gets home from work and picking the girls up from daycare.  Today I stopped at Target, one of my favorite shops where I like to pick up some house hold items and browse.  Then I stopped at a couple of fabric shops and picked up a couple of patterns that have been on my list.
Love these patterns.  The dolls are made with fleece, another has the cutest sewing apron and yet another with mom and daughter aprons.  I can think off quite a few people to make gifts for from these patterns.  Hope you all had a wonderful day.  Tomorrow is Friday!!!!!  Blessings!
Jenny Matlock

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wednesday

No pictures today.  I am just going to tell you a little about my day. 
After work today I had an appointment for the last injections I could have for pain in my back and hip area for a few weeks.  This pain I have been living with for about 5 years and it had really started missing with my life the last couple of years.  I have not been able to exercise properly and it was becoming hard to remember the last time I slept through a complete night.  I was starting to get really tired and it has been a lot of the reason projects get started and not finished around here.  I always think of something new I really want to do and then I lose all my motivation after starting.
So I finally got scrappy with the doctor I had been going to (guess what, will not be going back to her either) and finally was sent for an MRI and from there on to a pain specialist.  Each time I go, I need to have a driver because they give you a sedative before the injections.  My driver up to today has been my lovely mom in law but she was not available today.  So my oldest daughter drove up from the city just to take me to my appointment.  That is a good hour and a half round trip and then from here to the doctor and back to our house another hour in the car.  While we were out she helped me drop off the trunk full to Goodwill from the closet clean out and after my appointment we went to Applebees for dinner, my treat of coarse.  They have some awesome options on their menu with Weight Watchers points so it was not hard to make a choice.  Then we watched American Idol together before she made her trip back home.
I am now suppose to go back to physical therapy since they cannot give me any more injections at this time.  So far the injections have only helped for a week or two at a time.  There is another option they could do next with at least a 7 month painless ending, but of course our insurance does not pay for that procedure.   In a few weeks I will be going back to the specialist office to let them know how this last treatment went and discuss where to go from here. 
I had a wonderful time with my oldest daughter because we do not spend time together one on one very often anymore.  So despite the reason for her help, it was a blessing for me.  Blessing to all of you also!
Did you miss the pictures?  

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Two More Lite Recipes

I picked up this magazine a couple of weeks ago to help me stick with my diet over the weekends. 
Hubs flipped through it and picked out this Smothered Steak.
PointsPlus if you are doing Weight Watchers, I'm not, is 11 per serving.  Calories 291.
Smothered Steak
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teas salt
1/4 teas freshly ground black pepper
4 (4 ounce) cubed steak pieces
3/4 cup fat-free, lower-sodium beef broth (I just got the low sodium)
2 teaspoons canola oil (I used Wildtree Grape-seed oil)
Cooking Spray
3/4 cup thinly vertically sliced onion (1 small onion)

1 Combine first 3 ingredients.  Dredge steak in flour mixture, shaking off excess.  Reserve excess flour mixture.  Combine reserved flour mixture and broth in a 1-cup glass measure, stirring with a small whisk; set aside.
2  Heat Oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Add steak to pan.  Cook 3 minutes on each side or until brown.  Remove from pan.
3 Coat pan with cooking spray.  Add onion to pan; saute 5 minutes or until tender.  Stir in broth mixture, scraping pan to loosen browned bits.  Return steak to pan.  Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 7 minutes or until gravy thickens and steak is tender.  Serve sauce over steak.  4 servings. 3 ounces steak 1/4 cup sauce each serving.

Since we had two of the grands this weekend  I decided to try this pudding.
 Triple Chocolate Pudding
Points Plus value 5  Calories 169 Serving size 1/2 cup  Makes 8 servings
1 (5 ounce) package chocolate cook and serve pudding mix
1 large egg yolk
4 cups 1 % low fat chocolate milk
1 ounce semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 teas vanilla extract
Frozen reduced calorie whipped topping, thawed (optional)  (Not really my thing)
Semisweet chocolate shavings (optional) (None of this either, it was for me and the grand kids)
1 Combine first 3 ingredients in a medium saucepan.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly with a whisk.  Boil 2 minutes, stirring constantly.  Remove from heat.  Add chopped chocolate and vanilla, stirring with a whisk until chocolate melts.  Cool 5 minutes.
2 Spoon 1/2 cup pudding into each of 8 individual serving bowls.  Serve warm , or cover surface of pudding with plastic wrap, and chill thoroughly.   Top each serving with whipped topping, if desired; sprinkle with chocolate shavings, if desired.
Place plastic wrap on the surface of the hot pudding to prevent a skin from forming during chilling.

It was yummy!  Have a great evening!  Blessings.

Monday, January 24, 2011

That Quilt Top Is Finished

How has your week started off?  I hope you have all had a good Monday.  We had a couple of grand children stay half of the weekend but most of the weekend I was watching movies on my little travel DVD player that hubs got me for Christmas.  Movies like this:
But while I was watching the movies, I finished the quilt top that I had worked on all week not picking up anything else that was calling me like my knitting or crocheting.  So here is the great reveal.
This is 100 x 100 for a King size bed.  I stood on a chair and lifted the camera up above my head and snapped pictures until I could get something that had most of the quilt in it.  The 1st picture standing back in the doorway looks longer than wide but it is square.  My middle daughter, who the quilt is for, will be coming up Saturday after next to go to the quilt shop and pick out how she would like it quilted.  When I get it back I am going to bind it myself with the same fabric that is in the first border.  The quilt shop will machine bind and I do not want the backing they use to wrap to the front.  I actually do not mind making binding and finishing it off that will only take me a couple of evenings.
Linking up to One Thing, One Week Challenge over at Amy's Creative Side.
Have a great evening and I hope you are all working on your UFO's!  Blessings!


Amy's Creative Side

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Sunday Praise

Still working on the finish of me and things around me.

James 1:4  Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Friday Night Sew-In Part 2

Finally:
Both boys ready for bed with gramps reading a bedtime book.  We did not have them in bed until around 8:30 and by time I got myself situated I did not start sewing until 9 P.M.  I did get the first border sewn on but for some reason, maybe because I was tired, I did not remember to take a picture.  I also started piecing the second border.
 Hopefully I will finish that border today and maybe the quilt top by tomorrow afternoon.  Boys are still visiting and not going home until a little later this afternoon.  Still no finish to show you today but soon friends, soon.  I did forget to let those who are encouraging me on my weight loss that I was down another 1 1/2 pounds this week.  Have a wonderful weekend!  Blessings!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday Night Sew-In Part 1

Its Friday and I have everything set up and ready to sew.  I have one side border that I stitched up last night ready to be sewn on and expected to get this stack of strips sewn together for the other side.
But as I mentioned last night we have little people visiting us tonight and I need to help hubs entertain them until bedtime.

Finally one is ready for bed it will not be long now.  Littlest brother number 4 is acting pretty silly and tired also.  Well I'm crossing my fingers that he is getting tired, I think I will try and get a little sewing done while he is watching Toy Story 3.
Check back in tomorrow, hoping I have something close to finished for show and tell.  And if you would like to see what everyone else is sewing check the party out.


Have a good night!  Blessings!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Getting Ready for a Sew In

I am participating in the Friday Night Sew In this week so I had Hubs bring up my machine from my cold work room so I could set myself up in the warmer part of the house. 
I am sure I could get this project done tomorrow evening but I am going to pick up my youngest grandsons when I get out of work tomorrow which puts a new spin on things.  I was expecting them to spend Saturday night but my middle daughter called this afternoon and asked that I switch the nights because they have something to do on Friday but not Saturday.  Whats a grandma to do?  Well say yes of course!  So I am jump starting my sewing this evening so after the boys hit the sheets tomorrow night I will still be able to finish things up.
I need to get back at it soon though, so have a wonderful evening!  Blessings!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

O is for Orpington

I have three Buff Orpington hens in the hen house.  They are a pretty gold color and mostly friendly, one more then the other two.  They are also a broody type of hen and when I go out to collect eggs I usually find at least one of them setting on a clutch of eggs. It takes a lot to scoot them off so I can grab the eggs.  Sometimes we can hear them squawking at us all the way back to the house. They look like very fat chickens but their feathers are loose making them appear to be heavier.
These pictures were taken from the outside of the hen house.  Hubs built a small door that opens up on all four boxes so we can just collect from the outside. 
Joining up with the gang over at Jenny Matlock's Alphabe-Thursday.
Jenny Matlock
Have a great evening!  Blessings!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Some Snow and a Recipe

Hi all!  It seems the weather has started to act like it is truly Michigan that we live in.  It has been a strange winter to be sure watching the snow fly in the southern states and not get much here.  We have two ponds and we need the snow so they are up and overflowing next spring.  We actually water our garden from one, if it goes dry we are going to have to either move the garden from the back acres (I would not mind) or get the well re-dug (we have a second well on the back acres) new tip or something so our gas pump will pump the water out.  Do I love snow, not really but it sure helps make everything green around here.
Our drive, did not get picture before hubs plowed.
Where our back yard changes to the woods.
Such a cute little tree, we have a lot of these on our property.
The hen house where the ladies are staying warm.
 Want to share another recipe from my Light Cooking cook book.  This has been our favorite by far.
Hubs plate was prettier than mine because I had to hack my fillet up and take a real portion.
 Baja Fish and Rice Bake

3/4 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 clove garlic, minced
3 tablespoons vegetable oil  (I use grape seed oils from Wildtree, I have a friend that sells these natural foods.)
1/2 cup uncooked rice
3 1/2 cups (two 14 1/2 ounce cans) Contadina Stewed Tomatoes, cut up, with juice (I used 1 quart of my home canned tomatoes)
1 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper (I used 1/4 we like some hot in our food)
1 pound fish fillets (any firm white fish) 
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley (I did not use)
Lemon slices (optional and I did not use these either)

Cook and stir onion, celery and garlic in hot oil in large skillet over medium heat until vegetables are tender.  Add rice; cook and stir about 5 minutes or until rice browns slightly.  Add tomatoes with juice, lemon pepper, salt and ground red pepper.  Place fish fillets on bottom of 12X7 1/2X2-inch baking dish.  Spoon rice mixture over fish.  Cover with foil; bake in preheated 400 degree oven for 45 to 50 minutes or until rice is tender and fish flakes with fork.  Allow to stand 5 minutes before serving (or as long as it take you to take a picture for your blog post) giggle.  Sprinkle with parsley.  Garnish with lemon slices, if desired.  Makes 6 servings Calories 241 

Enjoy!  Blessings!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Cutting Fabric

Today I have cut the fabric I need to put the last border on the quilt I have been trying to finish up.
There are 90 strips cut in hopes of finishing this quilt top on Friday while I participate in Handmade by Heidi's Friday Night Sew In.  If you want to sew along with all of us go to http://handmadebyheidi.blogspot.com/2011/01/january-friday-night-sew-in-signups.html  and sign up to play along.  Hope to see you there!  Blessings!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sunday Praise

Since my word this year is finish, I decided to look up all the references I could find in my study Bible.  Thought I would share some over the next few weeks.

Acts 20:24
However, I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me the task of testifying to the gospel of God's grace.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Saturday Doings

The day started off slow.  Had coffee with hubs, talked on the phone with my best friend and then with one of my daughters both conversations were very enjoyable.  Then I had to do the dreaded job of grocery shopping.  Since I am buying more produce I had to drive further to shop because the produce at our local small town grocery has been going bad rather quickly. 

I do have one finish to share.  A couple of winters ago I participated in a mystery crochet along that was being held on an Internet group.  I ended up with a caplet that I was going to send to hubs grandmother that was in a nursing home at the time.  She passed away before I got it sent to her so it has been stuffed in the closet that I just cleaned out this week.  I washed it and added a button to it, now I just need to find a home for it.
I also pressed all the fabric I plan on using on the next border around THE quilt.  I am using what I have left from the butterfly appliques and I bought some fat quarters to add more golden yellows to it.  I'll be measuring and cutting tomorrow.

 I have another recipe to share with you from the Light Cooking cook book.  Hubs made burgers for us this evening.  Beef for him and a turkey burger for me.  I made this light potato salad made with nonfat yogurt.  It really was good and hubs liked it also.
My plate with one of those new skinny buns.
Hubs plate, probably two servings here!
 Chilled Potatoes in Creamy Herb Sauce
4 red new potatoes, unpeeled and scrubbed
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 1/2 cups Dannon plain nonfat or lowfat yogurt
2 tablespoons snipped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons sliced green onion
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves, crushed
1/4 teaspoon salt
dash white pepper
In a medium saucepan bring small amount of water to a boil.  Add potatoes; cook, covered, 25 to 30 minutes or until tender.  Drain and cool.  Slice and place in a large bowl.  Toss with peas and bell pepper.  Add yogurt, parsley green onion, basil, salt and white pepper.  Toss gently to coat. Cover; chill until ready to serve. 8 servings  100 calories 0 g Fat
I took what looked like 1/8 of the recipe because the recipe was for 8.  It really was a lot for 100 calories. 
So far this cookbook is batting 100.

Hard to believe the day is pretty much over.  Going to sit and crochet a while.  Good night all!  Blessings!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Something on the Needles

Since I am a beginner knitter I decided I should get something back on the needles so I improve and do not feel like I am learning all over months from now.  I had to take the yarn and needles to my daughters home yesterday and get casting on lessons again.  This is the same shawl pattern I used to make for my best friends birthday present. This one will either be a birthday or Mothers day gift if I do not get it done on time for the birthday.  I was able to get the border done this evening but it is really something I want to be able to pick up and work on in the mornings while I am having my coffee and watching the news before going to work.   I have found that I can use the long needles easier than the circular ones and I can actually knit quicker.

Last week was my first week of the diet and I started out at 154.4 and weighed in at 152.4 on Friday.  Today I got back on the scale and my weight was 150 pounds even.  I lost a little over 2 more pounds this week and that gives me the encouragement I need to continue.  If I loose 2 pounds a week I certainly can meet my weight goal by April 1st.  I hope you will not get tired of hearing about the weight loss but it helps if I am telling someone besides hubs how it is going and hopefully you all will help me stay accountable. 

I have a list a mile long of things I need to work on this weekend.  I hope to get some fabric cut for the next border on the quilt, some crocheting done and maybe tackle cleaning out another closet or cupboard.  I know the weekend will not be long enough.  I wish you all a great weekend!  Blessings!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Cooking Light

Cooking Light is somewhat of a challenge for me.  I have not done it often over the years and my dear hubs does not need to eat light food.  Tall and slim that would be a good description of the man.  He can eat anything and quite a bit of it.  The man could eat pizza every day and be very happy.  I like to cook and bake so dieting is so not easy for me.  This week I have gotten a bit weary of salads and light Progresso soups so I got out this huge cookbook that hubs bought as a gift for me years ago.  Humm, was that a hint?  Sure took me a long time to take it if it was.  Here is the book.  Do not know if it is still in print or not.

And this is what I picked to try this week along with the recipe.
No-Fuss Tuna Quiche
1 unbaked 9 inch deep dish pastry shell
1 1/2 cups low-fat milk
3 extra large eggs (from our hen house of coarse)
1/3 cup chopped green onions
1 tablespoon chopped drained pimiento (I forgot to pick them up at the store)
1 teaspoon dried basil leaves, crushed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 can (6 1/8 ounces) Tuna, drained and flaked
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded low-fat Cheddar cheese
8 spears (4 inches each) broccoli

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Bake pastry shell for 5 minutes;  remove to rack to cool.  Reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees F.  For filling, in large bowl whisk together milk and eggs.  Stir in onions, pimiento, basil and salt.  Fold in tuna and cheese.  Pour into prebaked pastry shell.  Bake at 325 degree F. for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a saucepan steam broccoli spears over simmering water for 5 minutes.  Drain:  set aside.  After 30 minutes baking time, arrange broccoli spears, spoke-fashion, over quiche.  Bake 25 to 35 minutes more or until a knife inserted 2 inches from center comes out clean.  Let stand for 5 minutes.  Cut into 8 wedges, centering a broccoli spear in each wedge.
8 servings
226 Calories
10 g Fat

Tomorrow is weight in day for me.  I'll let you know how I did this week when I post tomorrow.  Good night friends!  Blessings!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

New

Hi friends.  The New Year always brings with it the need for change.  For me it is about getting more organized and cleaning out the old to make room for the new.  I am hoping for a lot of change this year.  As I have mentioned in a previous post I am trying to lose 20 pounds by the first of April.  I know we all make the resolution to lose weight every year but this year I have picked a number and a date and I am planning to be true to myself this year.  I've also listed that my word for the year is finish.  I plan on finishing a ton of projects that I have started and that have needed finished for a long time.  And today I started the clean up and clean out, with our coat closet.  This is a closet that I throw things in that we are not using any longer but think someone else may want or need them.
 I really pulled a lot out and moved it all to the back door and decided I would take a picture to show you how much you can throw in one closet in three years and just forget about.  That is how long we have lived here.  It has all been moved to the car, books are going to a library sale, the bags of cloths and the rest to Goodwill.  Out with the old in with the newNew hopes, new friends, new ideas, new outlook on life, the list goes on.
Linking up with:     
Jenny Matlock

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Work in Progress and More to Come

When I got home from work today I was just not in the mood to think about the quilt dilemma.  Read about that here.  I have decided what to do but it means sitting down and doing the math, for me that takes some time.  So I sat at my computer and brought up Netflix, watched a movie and worked on this afghan.  This one is a gift for one of my Grandsons birthday in April.  Trying not to start anything new unless it is a gift.   Trying.
While I was crocheting hubs brought in the mail.  The yarn I ordered to make Barbie cloths for my grand daughters came.  These are going to be gifts for next Christmas.  I even bought a Rubbermaid box to keep the cloths together as I finish them.
 Can you believe the size of the box they packed this in?  This is all I ordered, there was nothing else in it.  Do you think this is their way of collecting more postage or do they only keep one size box in supply?  Seemed very silly to me.  There are some stencils in there also.  I have a couple of old projects that I have had sitting around for a while.  I was planning on doing some decorative painting on them (yes I can do that and have) but it takes time and I have overwhelmed myself with all these things sitting around waiting to be done.  So I ordered some stencils.  Lets just say I should have read the size on the description because at least one is way too large. 
Today I was visiting The Bee Lady and she is linking up with The Clip Cafe's work in progress link up and asked us to join her.  I should have taken pictures of more of my WIP but there is always next week.
Have a great evening!  Blessings!


http://theclipcafeblog.blogspot.com/2011/01/my-wonderful-wip.html