Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I listed this cute turkey in my Etsy shop recently! Check it out if you want one... or more. Unfortunately, these turkeys aren't stuffed with Stouffer's stuffing. ;) But, they are filled with lots of love!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Ta Da! I have finished my 3rd quilt! This is my finished quilt for Craft Hope Project #5. I will be sending it out tomorrow! I did a kind of "I Spy" quilt, but using bigger pieces of fabric. Wow, using big pieces sure made it faster! :) Can you tell I was feeling like adding some Fall colors in this quilt? I love the orange, yellow and brown fabrics! The "I Spy" animals are: cats, monkeys, frogs, fish, and horses. I had most of this fabric on hand since I am planning on making an "I Spy" quilt for my son... eventually! ;) This one will be helping to keep a homeless child warm this winter, as well as making my heart feel warm knowing that I am helping in this amazing cause! For more information on Craft Hope or to join in for the next project, click here.
Monday, November 9, 2009
I had a friend request a sock hippo, and although I've never made one before, I thought it should be relatively easy. So here he is! I will be making more like him soon, and selling them in my Etsy shop. What do you think? :)
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Here's the second quilt I've made... this one is for my other niece. I had planned on giving this to her for Christmas. But, when her invitation arrived in the mail with "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" theme, I thought this would be perfect to give to her for her birthday! :) I am so excited for her to open it! When I saw this fabric, I was SOOO excited to make a quilt out of it! It is toddler-sized, but she will be able to use it as a throw quilt later on. Here's the front:
...and the back:
I still have a lot to learn when it comes to quilting, but I think with each one I make, I am slowly improving. :)
Friday, October 30, 2009
Hi, everyone! I am hosting a giveaway on Krimsin's blog! Do you want to give this sweet little monkey a home? :) Check out Krimsin's giveaway blog here to enter for your chance to win! You can also check out her other giveaways while you're there! Good luck!
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Oh my goodness! For the second time, I feel so totally "called" to be a part of this amazing group! If you didn't see my last posts about Craft Hope, click here and here. Very quickly, Project 4 for Craft Hope was making sock monkeys for burn victim children... and you all know how I feel about sock monkeys (hint: look at my Etsy shop)! So now, if you've been following me, you know that I just completed my first quilt. Well, guess what Project 5 is...? Can you believe it is making quilts?! Perfect, right?! Anyways, if you are also a quilter (even a newbie like me), and have a little extra time and fabric, please join in this great cause! The quilts will be helping "Margaret's Hope Chest", which gives the quilts to homeless children. The quilts they are asking for are quilts using squares... Ha! My first quilt was all squares! If you would like to help out, click on the Craft Hope button above. They have all the information and they also have a couple of quilt patterns/instructions. The deadline is November 15th. I have dedicated myself to making one quilt, among trying to fit in my numerous other projects and keep my Etsy shop stocked, as well as trying not to neglect my child, etc, etc... ;) Busy, busy busy... I think I like being busy, though. :)
I will be posting pics of my quilt once it's finished. Gotta start planning it out! :) I'm thinking big squares would be easier and quicker...
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Here is our library book selection from the last week... actually we've had these for about 2 weeks, but just now posting... From top left to bottom right, we have All About Me: A Baby's Guide to Babies, Tumble Bumble by Felicia Bond, Tails Are Not for Pulling by Elizabeth Verdick, and This Little Chick by John Lawrence. My son loved all of these books! I figured he would like the All About Me book since it has pictures of real babies. He loves looking at real pictures! He also liked the cute pictures and rhyming story in Tumble Bumble. The pictures were also a hit in the other two books. This Little Chick was so cute because the chick went around to the other animals on the farm and started "speaking" like them (i.e., "moo-ing" like the cows). So, my son loved to make all the animal noises! I LOVE all the "Manners" books! My son has been a little rough on our very tolerant animals lately, so this was a good one for him to listen to. Luckily our Corgis don't have tails... but our cats do. Too bad there's not a "Don't Hit Your Pets" book. I guess that would fall under the Hands Are Not for Hitting book, huh? Oh, well... we are still trying to correct some of his behaviors as he is definitely in full "terrible twos" mode now. Mama needs patience... LOTS of it!
Anyways, we also "rented" some movies at the library too... for the hubby and me. :) Gotta love FREE stuff! I hope you all take advantage of your local libraries! They are so great!
Monday, October 12, 2009
For more information on Muffin Tin Mondays, or to join in the fun, click on the button above or visit Michelle's blog at Her Cup Overfloweth.
Well, I didn't really have any "Kebab" type food, so I just used what I had available. And, instead of using skewers, I used toothpicks. I made this for my son's dinner last night (Sunday). From top left to bottom right I have cheese and meatball kebabs, pizza bite kebabs, sweet potato and broccoli kebabs, and of course, banana kebabs. I am sure you already know which one my son enjoyed the most... Bananas! He touched all of the foods to his mouth, then would spit out the ones he didn't like... *sigh*! I'm hoping maybe some of the nutrients from the meat, cheese, and veggies got into his system just from that small time of being in his mouth... even just a tiny bit! Oh well, I tried! :)
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Hey, everyone! Just a little note to say I am starting back in the bloggy world! Yaaay! I have A TON of comments to catch up on, so bear with me. I will get back to all of you! After a week of migraines, my husband got sick, then proceeded to give me his illness! Ugh! We both had the flu shot in early September, but haven't had the H1N1 shot yet. We went to the doc to make sure there were no pigs around here... Luckily, I tested negative for all types of flu, and strep. So, even though I felt flu-ish with a fever, apparently it was just a bad cold (or some strain of flu unknown to doctors... Hmmm...). Weird! Anyways, we are all better, and I am very happy that my son didn't get what we had! That would have been triple-y bad!
So, I will be posting tomorrow starting back on my Muffin Tin Mondays! :) Have a great week!
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Sorry, everyone. I will have to take a break from computer time for a while. Going on Day 7 of my migraine, and I need to figure out a way to get rid of it. Computer isn't helping. Hopefully I will be back in the blog world soon. In the meantime, check out my Etsy shop if you are looking for some fun gifts for little ones. :) Take care!
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Here are the blankets I made for Greyson's Gift. For more information, or to help out with Greyson's Gift, please click here.
I made 2 tiny crochet blankets in white and yellow.
I also made 2 tiny flannel blankets in this cute argyle flannel fabric I found. These were both really easy to make with my handy-dandy sewing machine. I made one with just two coordinating fabrics, and the other a small "quilt" with a square pattern on front and a coordinating fabric backing.
Here are the reverse sides of the flannel blankets.
I am so glad I could help with this, even just a tiny bit. If you know how to sew or crochet blankets, please stop by the Greyson's Gift blog and help out with this project. It is such a great thing they are doing!
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Doing some catching up... yesterday was "Migraine Monday" instead of my normal "Muffin Tin Monday". In fact, it should have been "Migraine 3-Day Weekend", but that doesn't sound as catchy. Again, I apologize for the lack of blog posts and follow up comments. I am not spending as much time on the computer since I don't want my migraine to return. But I did want to share this little tidbit with you... So, since I'm pretty sure my sister doesn't check out my blog very often, I thought it would be pretty safe to show this to all my bloggy friends. I recently finished my first quilt!
I started this quilt in July and took my time completing it. It is for my niece for Christmas. Her bedroom is decorated in pink and green colors. Most of the pinks and some of the yellows I used were scrap fabric my mom gave me from her stash. I got some extra yellows, pinks and greens to add to it. I figured the squares would be the easiest pattern for a starter quilt.
I did a simple backing. I made it bigger than the quilt top, then folded it over, pinned it, and sewed it to the top. Although it took some time, it was much easier than I thought it would be... and much faster than crocheting a blanket.
I sewed a letter "E" for her name on the middle square.
And I added a little tag. :)
What do you think?
I also started a cute one for my other niece, and now that I know how to make a quilt, I am thinking of making a bunch more!
Saturday, September 26, 2009
In case you hadn't noticed, I've been in a blog funk over the last few days. I've been having some health problems and I've been a little down and haven't felt like doing much of anything. Sorry, everyone.
But, nothing a trip to the farmer's market can't fix!
Here's my entry for the September Farmer's Market Challenge. For more information on the Farmer's Market Challenge, or to join in, visit Judy's blog at The Road to Here.
We went to a different farmer's market near our house on Tuesday. A nice little indoor one in Mesa, AZ. It was nice to go inside-- out of the heat! :) Notice the sign? "Chilies roasted daily!" Mmmm...
Here are some beautiful Hatch Green Chiles. I wanted to take some home, roast them, then stick them on a hamburger with some bacon and cheese. Hubby didn't feel like grilling in this heat. Maybe next time.
Look how ginormous these yams are! They must be the "real" type of yams... not just sweet potatoes!
Even the squashes were huge! My local supermarket has acorn squashes that are much smaller than these!
Here begins my usual search for delicious goodies... We found these Golden Caramel Corn Nuggets. They taste like caramel popcorn, but without the kernels getting stuck in your teeth. Think "cheese puffs" with caramel instead of cheese.
My favorite sections... jams, jellies, preserves, and butters.... Mmmm!
Not only are these jams and jellies cute... they're delicious! :)
Our yummy loot. Yep, we by-passed the produce and just got sweets! ;) Caramel corn nuggets, blueberry jam, jalapeno pepper jelly, and apple butter. Mmmm! The blueberry jam is to die for! Spread some cheesecake-flavored cream cheese on a graham cracker, top with blueberry jam... tastes just like a blueberry cheesecake! My new indulgence!
Monday, September 21, 2009
For more information on Muffin Tin Mondays, or to join in, click on the button above.
This week's theme was Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, from the children's book by Judi Barrett, and now there's a movie coming out in its honor. The movie looks really fun, but I just don't think my son could sit through a whole movie yet, so we'll probably wait until it comes out on DVD. I do remember the book, though. It was fun flipping through the pages to find ideas for this meal, and also reminiscing about the first time I read the book... I think one of my teachers read it to the class. It was fun and exciting when I was a kid, and now that I'm a mama, it is fun to be able to read books like this to my son. I am so glad he loves to read! So, if you haven't read the book in a while (or ever... gasp!), go read it for yourself or to your kids. It's really a cute, imaginative story, and makes for a great food theme! You could probably have an entire party based on this book! I'll just explain what my foods are from the book. Pretty much anything was fair game, since all different types of food were pouring from the sky. From top left to bottom right... I have mashed potato clouds with peas, bananas (this was my "I don't have anything else to put in this tin" tin), a cup of milk (since it would rain juice or milk from the sky), meatballs... gotta have 'em, spaghetti, and broccoli. I don't know if anyone else noticed this about the book, but why is it when the "storm" comes, all the foods that are good for you end up being the "bad guys"? Why do broccoli and brussels sprouts always get such a bad rap? I think they are both delicious if cooked the right way! Anyways, that's my 2 cents. This was another fun muffin tin meal to make for my son, but he only ate the bananas, meatballs, and spaghetti... and, of course he drank his milk. I guess 4 out of 6 is progress... :) Enjoy!
Sunday, September 20, 2009
I made these for my son the other day! Yes... it is still popsicle weather here, although 102 is much cooler than 115! When you have fresh fruit on hand, popsicles are very easy to make and are still a healthy choice for a cool treat! We all loved these. They were the perfect amount of sweetness without any added sugars. Enjoy! :)
1 peach, peeled, pitted and sliced
1/2 cup pineapple, cubed
1 banana, sliced
1/4 cup orange juice
Place all ingredients in a food processor and puree until smooth and liquid. Pour into popsicle molds or ice cube trays with popsicle sticks. Freeze for at least 4 hours or overnight. Serve and enjoy! :)
Oh... I also wanted to show off my new bag I won from Gabrielle's giveaway:
Isn't it super cute?! I love the yellow! It reminds me of sunflowers (my favorite)! :) Gabrielle makes lots of different bags. This one is a reusable grocery bag. I think it is so pretty! Almost too pretty to use as a grocery bag! I am planning on using it to tote around things in my house up and down the stairs. Check out Gabrielle's site if you are interested in purchasing some of these lovely bags! :)
Friday, September 18, 2009
I guess I'm having a "food" week... I've been posting mostly recipes this week! :) This dinner was inspired by a half-dozen tomatoes that I didn't know what to do with. My father-in-law is always bringing us food when he comes to visit us, and most of the time he brings too much! It is very sweet of him, I know. But, this week I had six tomatoes, and no idea what to do with them... as they were continuing to ripen on my counter. There wasn't quite enough tomatoes for a soup, plus I didn't have tomato paste. So, I searched online and found a delicious recipe from Ina Garten from Food Network. Mmmm... roasted tomatoes. My hubby was a little annoyed that the roasting was a little "smoky" from the oil, etc. But, they tasted so good, so I think he forgave me. ;) I was actually thinking of making a chicken cacciatore, but most of the recipes I found called for a big can of tomatoes, and that just wasn't going to work for me... So, after I borrowed Ina's roasted tomato recipe, I did my own thing with them. The tomatoes are so good just by themselves. Roasting them with the oil, balsamic vinegar and garlic really gives them a whole new flavor, and they were delicious mixed with the chicken and pasta. This meal is actually two recipes, combined later. You can serve the chicken and tomatoes over pasta or rice, or just eat them plain! Ina's recipe called for 12 tomatoes, but since I just had 6, I halved the recipe. Enjoy!
Serves 2 to 3
6 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise, cores and seeds removed
2 tbsp good olive oil
3/4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp sugar
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 450 F.
Arrange the tomatoes on a sheet pan, cut sides up, in a single layer. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle the garlic, sugar, salt, and pepper over the tomatoes. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, until the tomatoes are concentrated and beginning to caramelize. Serve warm or at room temperature.
*Note: I didn't roast my tomatoes all the way, since I knew I was going to be cooking them further along with the chicken. But, they were still delicious!
My Easy Chicken Recipe with the addition of Ina's tomatoes:
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 tbsp olive oil
1/4 tsp dried Italian seasoning
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp low-sodium chicken broth
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat oil in non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper on both sides. Cook chicken in skillet for 3 to 4 minutes per side. Place chicken on a separate plate. Return skillet to heat, add garlic and cook for 1 minute, or until slightly browned. In the meantime, cut chicken and roasted tomatoes into big chunks or cubes. Return chicken to skillet, cooking until no longer pink. Add broth, Italian seasoning, and tomatoes, and cook another 1 to 2 minutes or until all flavors are combined.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
So, I made some Chicken Salad for my son a while back, and I wanted to do something different this time. I got some ideas online, but ended up doing my own thing. I think it tasted better than my first recipe. My son enjoyed it too! Things I like about this recipe: I really like using the mini pitas because they're the perfect size for his little hands! I like that when the chicken salad is put with some kind of bread, pasta, or grain, it makes a complete, well-rounded meal. You have grain, protein, veggies, and fruit in this recipe! I also like that it is relatively easy to make since you put most of the ingredients in the food processor. If you are used to a chunkier chicken salad, you don't have to use the food processor. You can just chop up your ingredients to the size you prefer, or only pulse a couple of times using the food processor. :)
Ooh! I almost forgot... I also mixed some of this salad with some pasta and my son loved it that way too!
Makes about 2 cups
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast
1 apple, peeled and cored
1/2 cup celery
1 carrot, shredded
1-1/2 tbsp mayo
1/4 tsp poultry seasoning*
1/8 tsp freshly grated nutmeg*
1/8 tsp garlic powder*
1/8 tsp onion powder*
1 tbsp orange juice (lemon juice would be good here too)
Salt and pepper to taste
Cook chicken breast as desired. I put mine in a steamer basket over a pot of boiling water and I sprinkled it with the dried spices. Once chicken is cooked, let it cool, then chop it. Also chop apple and celery. Add all ingredients to a food processor and pulse until you achieve your desired consistency. Cool salad in the fridge until ready to serve. You can also serve this warm. You can serve this as a sandwich, in pitas, as a wrap, or mixed with pasta or rice.
*Note about spices: You can use any spices you like, or none at all and it will still taste good. I don't really measure my spices when I add them, so the measurements listed are approximate. I usually just do a sprinkle or a pinch here and there, until I think it tastes good. ;)
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Well, this recipe is not mine, but I wish it was! These corn muffins turned out delicious! I took them to a potluck and got a few compliments on them, so I thought they were blog-worthy. :) I have to say "Thank You!" to my friend who took this pic! I totally forgot to take a picture of my food! Anyways, I love that these corn muffins are the perfect amount of sweetness, with pieces of corn mixed in. My husband is a corn fanatic, so he wanted to gobble all of these up right away... I had to limit him to 2 muffins since we were taking them to a party (where he ate even more of them!). These would go great with some yummy barbeque or a hot bowl of chili! I changed up the recipe just a little bit... anytime I see a baking recipe that calls for flour, I substitute half of the all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour to make things a little healthier. :) I found this recipe online... it's from Dorie Greenspan's book, Baking from My Home to Yours:
Makes 12 muffins, or 48 mini-muffins
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal, preferably stone-ground
6 tbsp granulated sugar
2-1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg (optional)
1 cup buttermilk
3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted and cooled
3 tbsp corn oil (I used canola)
1 large egg
1 large egg yolk
1 cup corn kernels (add up to 1/3 cup more if you like), fresh, frozen, or canned (drained and patted dry)
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 F. Butter or spray a 12-cup muffin tin, or line with paper cups.
In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients and set aside. In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, melted butter, oil, egg and yolk together until well blended. Pour the liquid ingredients over the dry ingredients. With a whisk or rubber spatula, gently but quickly stir to blend. The batter will be lumpy. Stir in the corn kernels. Divide the batter evenly among the muffin cups.
Bake for 15 to 18 minutes (or 12 minutes for mini-muffins), or until the tops are golden and a thin knife inserted into the center of the muffins comes out clean. Transfer the muffin tin to a rack and cool for 5 minutes. Remove muffins from the tin, and serve hot, or cool completely to serve later. :) Enjoy!
Sunday, September 13, 2009
For more information on Muffin Tin Monday, click on the button above.
So, Michelle from Her Cup Overfloweth told us ahead of time that just because the theme is apples, doesn't mean every tin has to only contain apples... be creative! Ummm... sorry, no. My son LOVES fruit and anything else sweet (naturally or unnaturally), so when I found out the theme was apples, I thought, "My son will finally eat his entire Muffin Tin Meal!" And, he almost did! I served him this meal on Sunday morning... what a great way to start the day! Sweet, sweeter and sweetest! I really only have one thing that is not apple related, but it could be... I'll explain later. So, from top left to bottom right, we have: Banana muffin (not apple related)... but, if I had used applesauce instead of eggs in my recipe, then it could have been apple related. ;) Next, Apple Jacks. I haven't had these in forever! I guess I forgot how sweet they are... 1st ingredient: sugar. Hmmm... Moving on. Caramel for dipping. Apples and cinnamon oatmeal (semi-healthy), Applesauce (I snuck in some butternut squash), and Apple slices. My son has recently discovered dipping, and it's a big problem... he usually only eats the dip. He eventually ended up dipping everything (yes, even the oatmeal and applesauce) into the caramel until he was a sticky mess. But, I think he got a little bit of goodness mixed in with the sweetness.
Fun as usual! :)
Can't wait for next week's theme!