31 December 2010

Not So Fabulous NYE

Sick.  As a dog.  That is what I have been all day.  What a way to ring in the new year.  Thankfully, I'm starting to feel a bit better... I've been upright for longer than 5 minutes and I don't feel like I'm gonna toss my cookies.  Fingers crossed.

It's a suitable end to 2010 and if this uptick in my feeling better continues, it will be an appropriate feeling for the start of 2011.  Out with old and in with the new - ewwww, bad pun.  Off to curl up in my big blue chair with my soft Pooh blanket and knit in the New Year.

Be safe everyone and I wish y'all a blessed 2011.

30 December 2010

Promises To Try

2 a.m.  Yep, that's the time that my body forgot to breathe properly and I woke up with hiccups.  2 a.m.  Joy.  What was I going to do with the time on my hands until I stopped?  I looked around and saw Hobbit's bunny hat sitting there so I sewed it's face on and updated here.  Okay, now what?  I decided to read.

I'm gonna be her when I grow up!
I was reading a letter I got from Aunt Paula regarding New Year Resolutions.  It spoke to me - no, literally.  I could her Paula saying exactly what was written (remember, it's after 2 a.m. people).  I decided that I didn't want to set myself up for failure either so this year, I was just going to promise to try to do things.  Should I succeeded at what I try, yippee!  The best part is - I can't fail because I just have to promise to try.  If the endeavor fails, it is still a success because I tried.  Oh  yeah, 2011 is going to be fabulous!

So here you go - my 2011 Promises To Try:

  1. Learn four new knitting techniques - that breaks down to one every three months.  I don't have to master them but I do have to get over my fear (Fair Isle scares the snot out of me but I SOOOOO want to do it) and just give it a shot.  Worst case scenario is that I fail.  Big deal, so I will simply try again.  End result, more confidence and beautiful items shares.
  2. Get more sleep.  I seem to have a horrible habit of waking around 2 a.m. (even without hiccups) and haunting the house until about 4 a.m. when I go back to bed.  I wake up for a variety of reasons but I need to learn to go back to sleep instead of putter around on things that I think need to be accomplished.
  3. Learn to save money.  Pokey and I both stink at this one.  I want to try and start a savings account for when we are really old.  I haven't worked out all the details but I'm thinking it will involve a sliding percentage scale - goodie.
  4. Get healthier.   I'm not talking about dropping a bazillion pounds and looking like a Lollipop Head girl.  I mean it more like a conscious effort to find healthier ways of cooking and healthier options for food.
  5. Get moving.  Let's face it, my hobbies are rather sedentary - knitting, writing, reading, movies, cookies... I mean cooking.  I know me and I know I won't do some exercise routine but I will move and play.  Even if it's just hopping on the Wii Fit and doing hula hoops, it's moving.
That's all I have and I think it's enough for one year.  My daddy always taught me to use K.I.S.S (keep it simple sweetpea) when coming up with plans and that is what I did.  Too many ideas get lost in the shuffle of life so instead of a million half-hearted ideas, I've got 5 really great ones that mean something to me. 

I promise to try to do all of these things and I'm looking forward to a year full of success!

29 December 2010

Ears To You! **Updated**

Ears To You - Done.
All it took was one viewing of "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" for me to be able to finish Hobbit's bunny hat.  She wants to go to the store after supper tonight to get button eyes and for me to sew on a face.  Personally, I like it plan the way it is but it is her hat so we'll see.

I'm thinking she may appreciate her hat but it's so hard to tell.  What do y'all think?

My little Hobbit..err, I mean Bunny
After supper the whole crew, Pokey included, went to JoAnn's in search of a face.  We got some googly eyes for the hat but then, somehow, the girls actually remembered their Christmas money and some light shopping actually ensued, much to Pokey's chagrin.

So here is Hobbit's hat, complete with her face...
That's better!

Today... Hopefully... No... Definitely

Right now, it's just "Ear" to you - must finish second on today.
I have been noodling with Ears To You since I came up with the pattern back on December 7th.  Have I finished it, nope, not yet.  Every time I sit down to knit, something comes up.  Buddy Dog needs to go outside and kill the grass.  Kids need attention.  Laundry needs flipped and folded and put up.  Food needs to be cooked.  Body needs sleep.  It's a vicious and never-ending carousel of excuses.  Well, no more I say, no more!

Today I am going to finish Hobbit's bunny ear hat if it kills me - dramatic?  Yes.  Necessary?  Yes.  I can be a bit of a procrastiknitter at times and I am working on that for the new year.

Wish me luck - I'm off to finish Ears To You... no seriously, I am.

28 December 2010

Just Like Mama Made

I love having turkey.  Well, not really but I love having turkey leftovers.  Leftover turkey sandwiches with cranberry sauce.  Leftover turkey and rice.  Leftover turkey and mash with veg.  All of those are fabulous but the be-all-end-all leftover dish for turkey is my Mama's Turkey Corn Soup.

Yummy yummy goodness
To have it simmering on the stove all day long fills the house with such delicious aromas, not to mention memories, like coming in from playing out in the snow all day and being greeted by a warm bowl of Turkey Corn Soup that would melt off the chill by enveloping you in such a warm hug of yummy yummy goodness.

I made some of this the other day and I thought that it would be rather sweet of me, if I do say so myself, to share this family recipe with you.  I am willing to bet that it becomes a hit in your house too.  So here we go ~

You will need to begin with 64 ounces of stock.  This can be accomplished one of two ways:  homemade or store bought.  I have done both and to be honest, I can't really tell that much of a difference between the two so it truly is a matter of choice.

Once you have your stock you can throw in a can of corn, add some celery seed for flavor, garlic salt and pepper to taste and let it simmer on the stove on lowish heat.  I usually start this soup to simmer around 9 a.m. most days so when it gets to be noon I will add the chopped up turkey meat.  This should be roughly a pound of meat.  Let that simmer and infuse with all the fabulous flavors of the stock.

Now this next part is also a matter of preference.  I do it completely differently than my mother and sometimes I even do it differently just because my husband likes it that way so I'll outline all the varieties and you can choose what works best for you.  I take about 1/4 package of angel hair pasta and break it into thirds.  My mother uses those teeny tiny "No Yokes" soup noodles.  My husband likes those fatter soup noodles.  Any of these varieties works well - but if it's me, I'm going short and skinny noodles.  Generally the noodles need to cook on medium heat for about ten minutes, the fat ones take a bit longer.

There you have it, my Mama's Turkey Corn Soup.  I am notorious for plainer foods so feel free to tweak it by adding actual chopped celery and carrots because they will add some unbelievable flavor layers to this soup.

I hope y'all enjoy it as much as my family and I do.


Holy cannoli!  I never knew the importance of font before last night.  Before all of my late night reading, all I cared about was whether or not I could read it and if it was pretty.  Apparently there are a bazillion different aspects to take into account that I never even would have dreamed existed.

Did you know that fonts can affect your mood?  Yep, it's true.  A font that has sharper edges is more likely to make a person agitated.  Did you know that fonts can dictate what kind of traffic you get to your site?  Yep, another true story.  Those same sharper edged fonts can bring nastier people your way... guess it's tying back to the whole agitation thing.

Now that we have a better handle on the font situation, did you know that there is even more information regarding color - oh yeah, it's true.  I am happy to announce that the color choice - my favorite color in the universe, pink - is spot on.  Pink, according to Crystal-Cure.com, means "caring, tenderness, self-worth and love, acceptance".  Well thank goodness for that, right?

So now that I have spent several hours researching the meanings behind fonts and colors, I have narrowed down my logo font to a few different options which Pokey is going to help me narrow down later on tonight.  I put up the one that I am leaning towards now (cutely named "Will and Grace").  I think it has the right amount of rounded and sharpness coupled with my pink... yeah, I'm feeling a bit calmer already.

27 December 2010

I Get It Now Mama, I Do...

When I was a little girl, I couldn't wait for Christmas.  The decorations and tree all held magic.  The world transformed at Christmas time and it was wonderful.... which is why I never understood why my mama would want to take down all the magical things as soon as the calendar page turned to December 26th. 

We put our decorations up on Thanksgiving weekend.  As soon as Santa arrives at noon on the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, it's Christmas in our house.  We can't wait and everyone is involved in the decorating and merriment.  Inside, outside and if you hold still long enough, even you would get covered in something red and green.

This year it hit me though, as soon as the presents were opened and the calm started to settle on the house - I wanted it all put up.  I wanted things back to normal.  I honestly felt completely out of sorts on December 26th to have holiday trappings all over the place.  Without thinking, I began to gather them up and place them on the dining room table - a process I watched my mother do my entire childhood.  Today, I took down the tree and put all the items in the garage.  The outside still has lights but that is Pokey's domain and he's taking them down on his day off - he promised.

Now, my house is back in order and I can breathe again.  Life seems to have found it's center and is no longer spinning out of control.  Order has been restored and it feels great. 

It seems that I have grown into a shirt that I received as a teenager.  It said "Mirror, Mirror on the wall... I'm like my mother after all". 

Apparently I am, and I'm okay with that.

Too Much?

Is the image behind the banner logo too much?

26 December 2010

Issues... ugh

I have been noodling with this site for weeks.  It's almost as bad as having to go clothes shopping because you hate everything in your closet.  You go to your favorite boutique and grab a few items that look fabulous on the rack but once you put them on and look in the 3-way mirror, you become the most indecisive and difficult to please individual to ever walk the planet.

I really don't want much - just something crisp.  Something clean.  Something easy on the eyes.  Something that won't detract from photos or alter the color perception.  I want all of these things and I don't want it boring.  I apparently want the impossible.

I look at all the lovely ladies' sites and they pop.  They leave a mark as to who they are and it gives a great presentation of them.  One lovely lady is cozy, another is precise and yet another is a hot mess but not so much so that you run screaming naked down the street waiting for a member of your family to claim you.  Their sites represent them perfectly - is it too much to want the same?

I want my site to reflect me.  Yes, I know my words and photos do that but I want the site to make you feel like you just snuggled into my sofa, cup of coffee on the table, knitting in hand and ready to chat away the day.  Perhaps I over think it...  Perhaps I ask too much...  Perhaps I just need to back away from the computer and go knit for a bit.

I think I'll choose the later for right now and beg your forgiveness as my caterpillar of a site works at becoming a butterfly.

Sunday Snaps

Christmas Eve supper was by candlelight

25 December 2010

I'm A Nerd

I admit it.  I embrace it.  I'm a nerd.

Brings tears to your eyes too, huh
This morning, I was brought to tears by cookware.  My sweet Pokey surprised me with a set of Paula Deen cookware and I sat there blubbering like a big ol' girl.  Well, I am a big ol' girl but that isn't the point.  Hobbit didn't understand why someone would cry if they're happy and Peanut didn't understand why someone would cry over pots and pans.  Pokey understood.  He knew he'd 'done good' too.

To take it one step further - I used my new tripod and basket to stage a photo shoot for my new cookware!  Yeah, I know.  I told you, I'm a nerd.

This is some sexy cookware - thank you Paula Deen!

Even the bottom is cool.

Happy Christmas

24 December 2010

I Should Be Knitting... I Should

but I'm not.  Instead, today I have taken more pictures (shocking, I know), baked and looked up some new buttons (check out my Twitter and Ravelry ones.. snazzy, huh).  I promise, I will get up and go park myself on the sofa to finish the last ear and a half of Ears To You for Hobbit...

I promise...

alright, fine. 

I'm going.

The Knitted Christmas Tree

Happy Christmas Eve

We have a tradition in our house - the Christmas Pickle.  We put it up on Christmas Eve and the child who finds it gets a present.  Peanut found it this year, much to Hobbit's chagrin.  Then we followed up with our other tradition - one present on Christmas Eve.  This is normally done just before we leave the house to go look at lights but since it wasn't a toy this year, we did it early.
Hobbit and Peanut, respectively - and respectfully

Now if I could just find out where my little elves have wandered off to, we can start making the cookies for Santa!

23 December 2010

Peanut's Senior Photo Shoot

Here are a few of the 218 (yes, I took 218) shots from our photo shoot today.  There are a few we really like so we'll probably get the list narrowed down and set off to print after the holidays.  The best part, besides having a fabulous afternoon with my eldest, is that instead of spending $400 on photos that were alright - we'll be spending $30 on photos that we love.  Enjoy.

The Mama Card

You know you've used - I just did.  Peanut is not a big fan of having  her picture taken but I am a big fan of taking pictures - can you see the issue here?  Well, not only have I played the Mama Card, I used a bit of Mama Guilt as well.

Peanut leaves for college on August 27th.  I know this.  I have the days counted down.  I cry when I think about it.  I know the exact mileage from our front door to her dorm (1639 if you are curious).  Peanut is my baby, my first born.  Soon she will start her own life so a mom has to do what a mom has to do.
Peanut - the elusive teenager

I explained this situation to her and how one day, she's going to miss my tormenting her.  Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but one day - oh yes, one day she will miss it.  So, in order for me to stock pile time for when she has abandoned me for loftier aspirations and cooler people, I requested a photo shoot today... well, not so much requested as informed.

Pokey is taking Hobbit with him as he goes Christmas shopping so I'm making Peanut go with me so I can take her picture to my heart's content - yeah, it's going to take hours I'm sure.  I will surprise her with lunch of her choosing (I'm guessing we'll end up at Taco Bell) but this morning is going to be all for me.

The Mama Card - don't leave home without it.

22 December 2010

Essence of Me

Experiment 1215.1 ~ Epic Fail

On my birthday I noticed a few things and I was curious if it was just me being pathetic or if my perception truly was a reality, so I did what any other normal red blooded woman would do ~ I ran an experiment.

My family has this condition where they come into a house and items just fall off their bodies.  I'm not sure what causes it or how to cure it, but I do know it exists and I've seen it in action.  No matter where we have lived, my family finds a location and then POOF - items fall off and they can't seem to be able to touch them ever again.  I am immune to this condition apparently because it's never happened to me.  I come in the house and my keys go on the hook by the door, my pocketbook goes on the hook by the door... things just go back where they belong with me.

In this house, it seems as though the item grabbing force field exists at my kitchen counter and pass through area.  I have suggested that they avoid this area at all costs because of the catastrophic damage they inflict.  This was met with denial and slight insult that I would say such a thing.  That is how Experiment 1215.1 came to be - I would not pick up after them for one week.  At the end of the week, we'll see if my kitchen area stays in the order of how I left it or if the beautiful members of my household explode all over it.... oh they exploded - and then some!

I like my kitchen tidy because I love to bake and cook.  If it's clean and put up, I can find it for the next time I need it (if you listen real close, you might be able to hear my mama cheer right now).  I haven't baked the first Christmas cookie because I couldn't find my counter due to my family's infliction.  The part that really has me concerned is that it apparently effects their sight and cognitive reasoning skills because they don't see it or understand why it bothers me so much.

I have photographed this experiment's end results so that you can feel my pain... and then I photographed what happens when I put things back in order so you can understand how truly terrible this disease is - I'm seriously thinking of contacting Jerry Lewis to see if we can join his telethon next year.

Experiment 1215.1 - Counters after 1 week

Experiment 1215.1 - Alternate view of counters after 1 week

Experiment 1215.1 - It started to ooze through onto the pass through

Experiment 1215.1 - Returned to proper state

Experiment 1215.1 - Returned to proper state

Experiment 1215.1 - Even the ooze is gone from the pass through

Experiment 1215.1 - The view from my desk doesn't irk me any more!
Next, I'm going to try and figure out why I am the only one who knows how to wipe down a counter... think I could get government funding for this research?

21 December 2010

Sweet Friends

Sweets from my sweet friend
I have known LoriJean for years.  She was actually my boss at one point in time - a strange and brief hiatus from Walt Disney lead me to her.  From the get go, LoriJean has been the older sister I always wanted.  She is full of love, warmth and wisdom.  Always there to lend an ear or a shoulder.  Just a great girlfriend and I pray that everyone has their own LoriJean in their life.

Last Saturday, LoriJean apparently made 580 cookies and I made a comment that I wanted some - today, I got some!  She sent me a tin of cookies via UPS so now I have a bit of LoriJean with me for the holidays.  Life is now perfect.

New "Business" Venture

A friend of mine needed a name and logo banner for her new photography business.  I went and borrowed one of my favorite photos of her daughter and created this for her.  The logo shows up better when it's full sized so go ahead and click it to see.

Reflections Photography banner, created by moi
If you're up in her neck of the woods, check her out for some great portrait work.

I was thinking that perhaps I could get a new business venture going now.  Photography, logos, banners and such for small businesses.  I'll have to get a portfolio started and create a website but that's a cake walk really... the hard part has already been taken care of ~ the name!

Stitch In Time Productions... so works for me, don't you think?

20 December 2010

Fall Found Florida... Just in Time for Christmas!

I got some looks snapping this but the end result was worth it

It's a Christmas wish come true for me

No idea what these berries are but the tree is full of them

Someone has a mighty green thumb - and it sure isn't me

Peanut's treasures from the walk to wait for Hobbit's bus

Element of Surprise

I've got so much to do before Christmas that one chore has gotten away from me... should do it soon or we'll be the talk of the town, that's for sure!  While shaking my head at the mountain of laundry, I noticed that my shy, quiet, reserved teenager has the wildest socks known to man and it made me giggle.  I thought of Superman and his super suit below his clothes - these were her super socks as it were. 

Yeah, I need more coffee... lol.
It's a bird, it's a plane... it's Super Peanut!

19 December 2010

Turkey Leftovers Face-Lift

I had a HUGE turkey for Thanksgiving - we still have 2 pounds left over in the freezer and Christmas is this Saturday!  So I pulled a pound out and decided that I was going to figure something out that was different than just reheated on a plate with mash.  Here's the little face lift I came up with:

Face-lifts never looked so good!
1 lb cooked turkey
1 can golden sweet corn
16 oz of turkey gravy (I had some frozen from Thanksgiving but you could use a sawmill gravy, just make it a bit runny)
1 pkg of Rotini noodles

Reheat turkey in gravy at a 350 oven for twenty minutes.  While turkey is heating, prepare noodles per instructions and heat corn through.  Drain noodles, remove turkey in gravy from the oven and toss all items together.  I mixed the corn with a nob of butter, salt and pepper. Then I put the noodles on top, mixed it up and placed the turkey with gravy last to mix. It seems to infuse the flavors better this way.  Either way, I hope you enjoy.  I made some biscuits and had a little salad on the side.  It's all up to you.  Just something different to do that I thought others might like as well.

What Do You Think

I can't decide on a new banner that I created for the blog.  I have made several and I'm just not a very good judge at the moment so I would like some input and feedback please.  Let me know which one you like best and why (no pressure, you can if you feel moved to do so really).  Here are the ones I have thus far:
Header Option 1.0
Header Option 1.1

Header Option 2.0

Header Option 2.1

Header Option 3.0
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...