Not knitting

Actually I’ve been knitting a little bit, a simple hat that might be for my grandfather, but I didn’t bring a camera so no pictures yet.  It is just my basic hat recipe made from RYC Cashcotton DK.  Last week I left for a nearly week long trip to visit my grandparents, whose health is ailing.  I thought I’d be home in time to not really interrupt my lackluster blogging but  I  ended up extending my visit by 5 extra days to help get their room ready for a hospital bed to make life a little easier (getting them to agree to the hospital bed however wasn’t so easy).  I was certain if I came home as scheduled I’d have sat at home feeling like I should have been helping my family.

Part of helping out involves removing and therefore clearing out a big old wooden desk that had been in their room for as long as I can remember (my grandparents moved into their house in the late 50’s or early 60’s). I found this recipe and thought my friend H would appreciate it. I’m sure it is from some crazy ewwww inducing cookbook but I just found a small scrap of paper almost the size of a 3×5 index card with this handwritten recipe:

Cream of Tomato Soup Salad

  • 1 can tomato soup
  • 2-3 oz cream cheese OR 8 oz cottage cheese
  • 1 small lemon jello
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, chopped
  • 1 cup onion, chopped

Dissolve jello in hot water. Bring soup to boil. Add gelatin and cream (or cottage) cheese. Chill till syrupy – Add chopped vegetables and mayo. Regfrigerate till set – 2 hours.

March 23, 2009. Tags: . Thoughts. 1 comment.

Shiny and new

I feel like I should have a nice recap of 2007 and all of my crafty accomplishments or perhaps muse about my 2008 resolutions.  I might eventually get around to rounding up all my crafts of 2007, honestly I still need to get them in flickr, and I suspect I forgot to take pictures of others.  As far as resolutions go, I'm not much of a resolutions person; I break them too often.  This year, a couple days ago I finally came up with a resolution I might be able to keep: eat more salads.  Growing up we almost always had a big green salad with our dinner (even if it was just leaf lettuce, carrot and onion) and somehow I've gotten out of that habit, here's to hope that I can re-establish it.

I bought these earrings on a vacation in 2005 and I wore them all the time, until the day I noticed that they were no longer shiny at which point they sat in my pile of "fix-it" jewelry.  Finally this summer while I was purchasing jewelry at an esty fair (yes, I am so lucky) I asked a jewelry vendor/maker the best way to clean sterling silver if it has pearls attached to it and she suggested silver polish cloth.  I finally remembered to ask for it at the fabric store and purchased a quarter-yard, it looks a lot like flannel and polished these earrings up very quickly.  It was such a difference I decided to try and get a photo, which on my screen looks half-way decent (lighting was not good that day) before I shined up the second earring.

Hopefully soon I will get my act in gear and start chronicling some of my recent knitting and sewing projects.

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January 15, 2008. Tags: , , . Thoughts. Leave a comment.

Baking

Two cookies down and two more to go, plus the peppermint bark I haven't started yet.  But really all I want to do is go to sleep.  Which means that even though I feel like I should make a fifth type of cookie I won't.  For whatever reason I didn't have my cookie baking mojo going this year (scratch that I didn't have any holiday mojo).  I kept browsing through my various Martha Stewart Cookie special issues (2001 & 2006) seeing new cookies I wanted to try.  But I mail most of these cookies to family, and they have opinions on what they like too, not to mention some of the fabulous looking cookies don't strike me as good choices to arrive via USPS.

To keep things interesting but stable I try to balance the favorites (Mexican Wedding Cakes aka Snowballs and Spritz) with new recipes.  Right now one of those "new" recipes, Lemon Scented Ginger Almond Crisps, is in the oven.  I've been wanting to try this recipe for several years now but kept finding myself short one ingredient; by sheer luck I had all of them on hand today.  I also made Spiced Biscotti from The New Best Recipe, it struck me as very similar to a lost recipe of mine.

Also, taking a cue from a few blogs I read around thanksgiving I started a christmas cookie and candy spreadsheet to track what I bake, the actual yields (I got 58 cookies instead of the stated 36 with my Mexican Wedding Cake Cookies recipe) and a second worksheet that has an ingredient break-down to aid pre-holiday grocery shopping in future years.  Hopefully this also means I won't loose another recipe if it becomes a recipient's favorite.

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December 18, 2007. Tags: , , . Thoughts. 2 comments.

Catching up

Two weeks ago at this time I was just beginning to get panicky about the state of my house since my family was due to arrive in the middle of the week.  I was also Ikea-izing my house.  I finally made it to Ikea for some bookcases.  We bought one basic, short Billy bookcase for the upstairs hallway.  That hallway is freakishly wide and so a thin bookcase works quite well there.  It also helps anchor a large framed photo that we finally hung on the wall.  We also bought a Traby unit to use as a buffet-type piece in the dining room.  Now some pretty servings bowls that did not fit in my cabinets and most of my cookbook collection are stored in that bookcase-like piece.

A nifty thing about Ikea: you can take your basic used alkaline batteries and compact florescent bulbs to Ikea for recycling.  They have some bins near the exit to collect those items.  This thrilled me because I knew you were not supposed to dispose either thing in the trash, but didn't know where to get rid of them (did I really have to hang onto such things for the annual county hazardous waste collection, that always ends up being scheduled on the Saturday that I am out of town?).  I know this doesn't help everyone as not everyone has reasonable access to an Ikea…

This morning we made very delicious blueberry pancakes.  I had a favorite pancake recipe, it is on page 426 of The Good Housekeeping Illustrated Cookbook (my book is the  Reader's Digest edition, copyright 1980).  I didn't even have to look the page number up, and barely need to look at the recipe.  I learned to cook using this cookbook and fantasized over the picture index as a kid.  But this recipe might just be replaced by the Light and Fluffy Pancakes from The New Best Recipe.

  This is the second time I've made TNBR's pancakes (with buttermilk).  And they are so so good, exactly as the title says, they are light and fluffy.  Today we added blueberries to the recipe (and they instruct to drop the blueberries onto the pancakes once you drop the batter onto the pan, not to stir them into the batter where they color it blue and all drop to the bottom–we actually did that before TNBR though).  To be fair to the TGHIC, I have never tried their buttermilk waffles pancake recipe on page 427 and it is very similar to TNBR's recipe.

I also mixed up a batch of Mexican Cocoa in a Jar this morning.  While I'm sure the layered look makes a better presentation, this wasn't a gift (and is currently stored in a covered pyrex bowl) so I didn't bother with the layers and went directly the to "dump in a bowl and stir" part of the directions.  FWIW, 1 1/2 discs of Ibarra makes about 3/4 cup chopped Ibarra.  Overall I'm happier with this cocoa than most of the 'add hot water' mixes I've bought in a store lately, but if you make this variation do no try to drink the last tablespoon in the mug since it is gritty.  I really wonder if the Ibarra is necessary at all and plan on mixing up a smaller batch with just powdered milk, cocoa powder, sugar, salt and cinnamon.  If anyone sees powdered milk that isn't "nonfat" please let me know.

Finally, I've been plugging away at the Dream Baby Granny Square Blanket and now have 17 squares finished (the goal is 48 squares).  My knitting projects are plagued by the "must sit down and concentrate on it" disease so I haven't made any progress there.  But I did start another pair of Fetching because I needed a car project.

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August 19, 2007. Tags: , , , . Thoughts. Leave a comment.

Why is the good stuff always expensive?

I just got to taste my first Dry Soda (lemongrass).  Yum.

On my birthday I ran across a few remaining bottles of Dry Soda at an international grocery store.  I first read about dry soda a few years ago on Not Martha and was intrigued.  I was even in Seattle a while ago and forgot to purchase a bottle or four (well I did stop by a grocery store that sold 4-packs of one single flavor).  Since each bottle cost 2.19 I only picked up the two flavors that appealed to me most (lemongrass and lavender).

Back to the lemongrass soda.  I was a little worried that it would end up reminding me of some sort of lemon-lime soda.  It didn't, I mean it was sort of there but not really and the flavor was definitely different, subtle but present.  I also think the bubbles were different, they felt smaller.  A 12 oz has 50 calories (opposed to 140 for traditional soda) and 14 grams of sugar (opposed to 39 for 7-up).  It is sweetened with cane sugar.  It has beautiful packaging.

I put off trying this soda for almost 2 weeks, now I want to hop in the car and make the 30 minute drive to the store where I found them and buy more.  Not that I would, but I want to.  Luckily I have a lavender soda waiting for me in the fridge as soon as I figure out the right time to drink a lavender flavored soda.  Maybe I should go make some citrus-basil cupcakes to go with my lavender soda.

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April 24, 2007. Tags: , . Thoughts. Leave a comment.

promises schomises

I suck sometimes.

I got distracted.  Room rearranging, picture hanging, curtain making, project finishing, and where did I put that camera cord?  Not to mention a couch calling cold.

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March 18, 2007. Tags: . Thoughts. Leave a comment.