I feel a little deflated now that 34 is over. It was a great year though just like for some reason I suspected it would be. To celebrate the medium 3 5 (I wont say big as I do not think 35 is very old), I am going to sew my little pink heart out, then we go for yummy East Indian food at the New Asian Village - then maybe watch a movie or two.
Here is what I am sewing:
Its another baby quilt for my friend, this one will go to her cousin whom had a baby boy. I have to haul butt and get it done as the baby was born 4 months or so ago. I have no idea how long a baby sleeps in a crib, but I don't want to get them the quilt too late. My friend wanted another traditional style, using only blue and brown. Although her mother spoke with the recipient of the quilt and she advised she likes Winnie the Pooh, so I think I will applique a ginormous Pooh on the top. I think the applique will look great over the blocks.
I just got back from another quilting retreat out at Seba Beach. I did not get as much done as I had hoped, but I did manage a table runner top, some stippling on my big quilt and a another applique block from the Bird quilt along. Tiffany and I are only two months in if anyone would like to join us - leave me a comment and I will send you the PDF for the blocks. You can also check out and if you like join our Flickr group - Applique Bird Experience.
Here is the table runner:
Close up of the runner.
Please check my post tomorrow as I am going to upload a fantastic video of my friend Judy showing how to make a clicker bag.
Have you guys seen / joined the site Craftsy? I think I found it via a Facebook ad and I am so glad I did. I am currently enrolled in two online classes and I love all the ideas and patterns they have on there. Here are my classes:
Amy Gibson who teaches the BOM is super cute and bubbly, she is fun to watch / learn from. Carol Ann Waugh is amazing - I mean AMAZING, I have filled more sketch book pages in the last week thanks to this class then I did over the last 8 months. I have so many ideas from watching just the first couple of lessons, the wheels are spinning! Are any of you taking these classes? If you are interested in thinking outside of the quilt block, I would recommend the Stitch and Slash class. If you want to stay in the quilt block, then check out Amy's BOM class, she shows fun quilt blocks every month and Amy's class is free. FREE!!
Another really cool think about Craftsy is you can upload your own patterns for sale on this site. They really support independent designers and crafters.
It is also free to join Craftsy - if you check it out, let me know what you think!
Supper has been another success thanks to AllRecipes.com Tonight I made Parsley Spinach Chicken Stew.
Here are the ingredients for your convenience and my notes / recipe changes are noted below. For the link to the recipe on the site, please click here.
1 cup chopped fresh parsley
8 ounces spinach, rinsed and chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 potato, cubed
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
6 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 cup water
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
In a medium size frying pan, heat 4 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the parsley and spinach and fry until wilted. Set aside.
Heat the other 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large pot. Add the onion and saute, stirring occasionally, until tender. Add the chicken breasts and brown both sides of each breast. Add the salt, turmeric, fried parsley/spinach, water and tomato paste. Bring all to a boil and let boil for 10 minutes.
Add the cubed potatoes. Cover and let cook over low heat for 1 to 2 hours. Add the lemon juice, bring to a boil and let boil for 10 more minutes. Serve with steamed rice if desired.
Amount Per Serving Calories: 311 | Total Fat: 17.7g | Cholesterol: 55mg
I swapped out the potato for a jicama (picture below - it is another root vegetable that I use as a potato replacement as potatoes hurt my tummy tum). I opted to use less oil and steam the parsley and spinach on top of the mixture just after I stirred in the jicama. The jicama must have soaked up the excess water as some people commented that this was a soap and mine was definitely a stew. I used the entire little can of tomato paste, added the lemon juice after 30 min of cooking rather then the end. I added 3 cloves of garlic and one bay leaf. Hmm what else - Oh, I did not add that much salt, just a tiny pinch as it called for it - but that seamed like a little excessive, especially if I was using a real potato, but that is just me.
The first sound out of Mr. Hunters mouth was Mmmm and he cleaned his plate so I would say this was a winner!
If you make this, let me know what you think - I served it on white rice and I thought it was as my husband stated, Mmmmm.
OH, did anyone else go to the store today and load up on discount Easter candy like I did?
Here is the next recipe I made for teaching myself to cook. It is called Cilantro Chicken and Rice - found on the AllRecipe.com site. You can see the original post by clicking here.
Here are the ingredients for your convenience:
1/4 cup olive oil
8 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 medium onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups chicken broth
1 (10 ounce) package yellow rice
1 (28 ounce) can stewed tomatoes
1 (15 ounce) can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chile peppers, drained
3/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Dredge chicken in flour to coat. Place chicken in the skillet, and cook just until browned on all sides; set aside.
Stir onion, bell pepper, and garlic into the skillet. Cook 5 minutes, until tender. Pour in chicken broth. Mix in the yellow rice, stewed tomatoes, pinto beans, black beans, corn, diced green chile peppers, and cilantro. Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper. Bring to a boil. Return chicken to skillet. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 30 minutes, until rice is tender and chicken juices run clear.
Amount Per Serving Calories: 440 | Total Fat: 10.5g | Cholesterol: 61mg
I love how AllRecipe gives you the calorie, fat and Cholesterol breakdown. Not that I watch - but still, it is nice to know.
When I made this, I halved the chicken, cut it into cubes and skipped the dredging in flour. I as well halved the rice, beans, corn and did not add any salt. For the can diced chilis - I could not find this so I bought 5 chili peppers. I lastly, only added a pinch of Cayenne pepper rather then the 1/4 tsp.
The meal was delicious - but it was spicy! I am really glad I cut back on the Cayenne pepper and that I only put in 5 chilis. Mr Hunter had two servings so I know it was good (yeah me!). I had to serve it with bread and milk. Honestly, I did not need the bread myself - but if you do not like spicy/ hot food, skip the chilis and cayenne for this one and I think you would still have a very nice meal.
For the left overs, I added the left over beans and corn that I had not added (I was going to make chili for tomorrow, but there is so much of this left over - no need). That should take out the extra heat that I find can result of spicy food eaten the next day.
Any idea as to why things get hotter in the fridge overnight? Is it just that all the ingredients soak up the spice so you do not get the relief?
Mr Hunter removed the old sign on the house with the house numbers as you can not read it from the street and the numbers were added on the archway in big wood numbers. Low and behold, on the back of this old sign is an even older sign - it's the original owners of this house!!
Neat huh?!? I think we will make our own Mr and Mrs Hunter sign when we are working on the exterior of the house. I think the name signs are nice. What are your thoughts? Good idea? Bad idea? Have any of you had an experience with having your last name posted on the house that was good, or bad? Cheers, Carolyn
I know Facetime has been out there for some time - but Mr Hunter and I have been slow to discover it - but discover it we did. A couple of nights ago we spent then evening laughing and enjoying great conversation with Mr Hunters Mom and then his Sister. It was so great to talk to them this way. Normally Mr Hunter would call them and I would eavesdrop to hear what is new - but with Facetime, I can sit next to him and we can all talk, and see each other. It is brilliant!
So, if you have an Apple product that supports Facetime, I highly recommend it! You can even Facetime with me! OK, well that may be pretty boring for you, but I would be giddy! Just think of how you could use this with your quilting friends, you can give them a tour of your sewing room - like Mr. Hunter did for his sister to comment on my fabric stash.. .. .. you can never have too much fabric! ha ha ha We were able to tour the whole house for them, so cool! What is your experience with Facetime? Have you used it? Do you like/Love/Hate it? Want to quilty nerd out with me and show me your recent project or new fabric purchase? Cheers, Carolyn
More little treasures in the wall, well, hornets nests - but they are empty, and really neat inside.
Check out these little treasures:
I love how delicate these little nests are, and the neat honeycomb structure inside is so intricate - like natures lace.
I hope you enjoyed my little pictures, let me know what you think of them.
Mr Hunter has been using the same pants for renos for 3 years now, maybe closer to 4. I had patched them previously, but these pants are literally disintegrating so serious action had to be taken to make these pants last the reno. So I quilted them!
I didn't add any batting - maybe if the reno isn't done by winter I can add a layer. I did however add a layer of twill and then just meandered all over to give the fabric some strength back. Do you think they will last? Cheers, Carolyn
I have a confession - I am a terrible cook! For the most part, my meals suck, I cannot wing a meal. Now that we have a beautiful kitchen, its about time I learned to cook. I can however follow a recipe - my hope is that if I follow/ learn enough recipes - I can then "wing" some meals that will not taste awful.
OK, This recipe is from AllRecipes.com, you can find the original by clicking here.
I added some ingredients and I have some notes for next time - and there will be a next time!
4 cloves garlic, peeled
1 (1 inch) piece fresh ginger root
1 fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 pound medium shrimp - peeled and deveined
2 tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 cup coconut milk
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup green onion, chopped
1 cup pre-cooked asparagus (from yesterdays post - I had too much for the salad)
1/2 cup snow peas - cut in half
Combine the garlic, ginger, jalapeno, salt and turmeric in the container of a food processor or blender. Process to a smooth paste. Set aside.
Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion, and cook until translucent, stirring frequently. Mix in the spice paste, and cook for a few minutes to release the oils.
Add shrimp, and cook for a few minutes until pink, then add the tomatoes **(I added the green onion at this time) and coconut milk. Cover, and simmer for about 5 minutes, then remove the lid and simmer an additional 5 minutes to thicken the sauce. Stir in the fresh basil during the last minute of cooking. **(The asparagus and snow peas were put in at the same time as the basil.)
Amount Per Serving Calories: 289 | Total Fat: 20.1g | Cholesterol: 173mg
Notes for next time: I did not find that this recipe had any heat - I served it on coconut rice - which was delicious, but when I make this again, I need to try doubling the first ingredients to get more flavor other then coconut. I did not get the paste that the recipe creator describes in step one, but it didn't matter, still cooked up great. I also did not get the thickening as described in step three, but again, with the rice - didn't really matter, still was great.
Anyone else have a recipe like this? Got any tips for me?
***I took the left overs for this to work today - and it was gross. The snow peas were too soft and the flavor was overwhelming. I ended up eating just enough to not be hungry and tossed the rest (terrible I know, but I just could not stomach it). So sad. =( Note to self - no snow peas!!!