Wednesday, December 30, 2009

You Annoy Me

My father-in-law is here visiting and asked me to make a card that says "you annoy me" so I crossed off the word don't and voila! I like this card and find it to be kind of fun. I used red microbeads for the gauge thinking that might be a fun way to add color to it.

The DP I used on this card will be available from SU on Jan. 5th. I love it. Usually I don't like the DP or just one side of it but this pack is awesome. I need to order more.

Stamps: Like-o-meter

CS: Pink Pirouette, Chocolate Chip, VV, Riding Hood Red, Sending Love DP

Ink: Chocolate Chip

Misc.: Ribbons, microbeads, CE

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Not a Stalker

I think this is kind of funny option on the like-o-meter. I went with a simple pocket card, which I don't typically do. Pretty simple card.

Stamps: Like-o-meter, I {Heart} Hearts

CS: WW, Pretty in Pink, Close to Cocoa

Ink: Close to Cocoa

Misc.: Felt Flowers, glue dots, brads, hardware, piercing tool

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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

I'd Marry You Again

I really like the idea of this stamp. My FIL is here visiting and has asked me to make several cards that say 'you annoy me'. We'll have to cross out the 'don't'. I offered to make him an "I'm over you' card for a friend of his I don't care for. He ignored that suggestion.

Stamps: Like-o-meter, Tiny Tags, I {Heart} Hearts

CS: USW, Real Red, Basic Black

Ink: Tuxedo Black, Real Red

Misc.: Heart Border Punch, Pearl Stickers, Dimensionals, Brad, Ribbon

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Good Thief

This was an interesting book for me. It held my attention within the first couple of pages of reading and I read through it rather quickly. I enjoyed the story but I can't say I would recommend reading it. What do you make of that?

Ren is a boy that is adopted from an orphanage and is missing a hand. Of course, he would like to know how his hand came to be missing and by the end of the book that mystery is solved. The man that adopted him earns a living a dubious ways. The characters in the book are typical of others, you know them well. The book is good to pass time with but falls short in other ways. Perhaps my expectations were too high from the reviews that I read but I believe they set you up for disappointment.

I can't say you will walk away with anything from the book other than an enjoyable read

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Smoked Chicken Salad

We had our story telling party last night and had a lot of fun. We had so much food because of the possibility of up to 70 people showing up. We ended up having just under 50. The smoked Chicken Salad and the lemon-spice swirl cookies were new recipes that I tried and they were a hit.

Smoked Chicken Salad

1 (3.5-4 lb.) rotisserie chicken
2 (15 oz.) cans black eyed peas, rinsed and drained
1 pint grape tomatoes, quartered
3/4C chopped chives
1/2C mayonnaise
1/2C sour cream
1/2t salt
1/2t pepper
1/2t liquid smoke
1 (7 oz.) pkg. miniature pita bread, cut in half
2C spring salad mix

Pull meat off of rotisserie chicken and put in work bowl of food processor. Pulse until meat is coarsely chopped, about 10 sec. In a large bowl, combine chicken, peas, tomatoes, and chives. Add mayonnaise, sour cream, salt, pepper and liquid smoke, stirring until well-combined. Line each pita half with a few leaves of salad mix and stuff with chicken salad. Yield: 40 pita halves.

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Thursday, December 10, 2009

Ribbon Ornament

I finally made time to visit a very dear friend of mine here. We had planned to get together for some time but I was busy unpacking, organizing, working on a cross-stitch, etc. We had a wonderful visit. Ten years ago when we lived here, she began crocheting snowflakes for her tree and to give to others in their Christmas card. When I visited, I noted her tree was full of snowflakes and these ornaments. I commented on them and one came off immediately and she showed me how it was done and gave me some scrap ribbon to make one myself.

Last night I sat and made my ornament from her scraps and it turned out pretty well for my first try. I don't know if I want to make more or not but they are pretty. Her ornament is so elegant looking. Mine uses some fabric since there wasn't enough ribbon but I think it turned out pretty well.

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Christmas Punch

There is something about red and this color of blue that no matter what, I'm drawn to it. Usually when I see it, it has something to do with a retro look and usually in the kitchen. When I saw this card I fell in love with it. I didn't plan on making more than a couple because it seemed like it would be rather tedious to cut the snowflakes. Once I got the set out and realized the name of the set, I knew I would be doing any cutting, just punching. I'm not sure what took me so long to make the connection but imagine if I didn't. Since it was so easy, I ended up making a dozen.

Stamps: Christmas Punch, Best Yet

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Sunday, November 15, 2009

Christmas Cards

I just started working on Christmas cards this week. The first real stamping I've done since the move. Crazy that it has taken this long but I've been spending most of my time cross-stitching a gift for my mother. I'm so close to being done with it and I think I've put in over 200 hours on it. It is amazing how long it takes to do. I'm trying to finish it this week so I can get it framed to give to her on Thanksgiving.

I CASE on this card. Someone shared it from a swap they were in and I really liked it. Albeit it isn't the traditional Christmas colors but it has a sort of elegant look about it. The ornament is done with the Vintage Ornament Stencil that SU has available now.

Stamps: Medallion, Holiday Best

Ink: Chocolate Chip, More Mustard

CS: More Mustard, Chocolate Chip, Very Vanilla

Misc.: Vintage Brads, dimensionals, vintage ornaments stencil, ribbon

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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Pasta with Chicken and Squash

I've had this recipe for a long time but I never made it because I knew the kids wouldn't be thrilled with the zucchini and summer squash. I've been making a couple of dishes each week that are new to us, trying to get some new dishes in the mix that everyone likes. I loved this dish, probably more than everyone else. Of the 4 kids, the 11 yr. old didn't like the flavor and picked at it. The other three kids (13, 9 & 9) had seconds. Smiley from

While it got top ratings with 5 out of 6, I'm still sharing it because it is delicious. The noodles are covered in a creamy cheese sauce with julienned squash and chicken.

Pasta with Chicken and Squash

1 pkg. (16 oz.) spiral pasta
2C whipping cream
1T butter or margarine
2C (8 oz.) shredded Mexican cheese blend or cheddar cheese
1 small onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
5T olive or vegetable oil, divided
2 med. zucchini, julienned
2 med yellow summer squash, julienned
1-1/4t salt, divided
1/8t pepper
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, julienned
1/4t each dried basil, marjoram and savory
1/4t dried rosemary, crushed
1/8t rubbed sage

Cook pasta according to directions. Meanwhile, heat cream and butter in a saucepan until butter melts. Add cheese; cook and stir until melted. Rinse and drain pasta; add to cheese mixture. Cover and keep warm. In a skillet over medium heat, saute onion and garlic in 3T oil until onion is tender. Add squash; cook until tender. Add 1t of salt and pepper; remove and keep warm. Add remaining oil to skillet; cook chicken with herbs and remaining salt until juices run clear. Place pasta on a serving platter; top with chicken and squash.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

I loved this book for a couple of reasons: 1) You could read a few pages at a time if that was all the time you had and pick it up again later and 2) the characters/plot were well-formed. The book is comprised of letters between a writer and her editor, friend, strangers (who later become friends). I enjoyed the witty comments of Juliet and in some ways, several of the characters made me think of Can't Wait to get to Heaven.

The story takes place in London in the beginning and then Juliet, the writer, ends up going to Guernsey after receiving letters from the people there relating stories of how the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie society formed, experiences they had under the German occupation during WWII, etc. These stories intrigue her enough and she begins to form relationships with them that she decides to go there and focus her next book on it.

I found it to be a delightful read. I commented to one of my girls that I had never read a book that was comprised of letters before. I was corrected as she remind me that I have read Dear Mrs. La Rue: Letters From Obedience School. How could I forget? As far as children's books go, I have to admit I favor Click Clack Moo, Cows That Type.

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Decor Elements

The unpacking is mostly done with some things still needing to find a home. My stamp area is a mess. I still have a few boxes to unpack there. I've started decorating some and making it feel more like home. I bought some Decor Elements, which aren't recommended for textured walls, but they seem to be OK. Perhaps it depends on how textured they are. I love the tree (Thoughts & Prayers) and have my kids pictures underneath. "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams" seems quite appropriate when you think of your kids.

I thought I'd be done by now but I'm still plugging away. Hopefully by the end of the month everything will be done and I can get back to things that I find to be fun.

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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Cobb Salad w/ Chili-Lime Dressing

I love this salad because everyone in our family will eat it and likes it. I must admit that I scale back on the avocado if it is just us because it is not a favorite in the salad but in small doses, they will eat it.

I've found as we've lived around the country that cobb salads are different every where. There are some basic parts that are standard (i.e., chicken, tomato, bacon & avocado) and the rest is up to the chef.


10 oz. Romaine lettuce
1 can kidney beans, rinsed
1C shredded cheese (I use Monterey/Colby mix)
1C chopped tomatoes
1/2 lb. chicken, cooked and cubed
1 avocado, peeled and cubed
1/2C chopped red onion
1/3C bacon, crumbled or chopped


1 (4 oz.) can chopped green chilies, undrained
2/3C sour cream
1/4C cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped
2T lime juice
1/2t pepper
1/3t hot sauce
1/4t salt

For salad, place lettuce in serving bowl. Make columns with remaining ingredients.

For dressing, place ingredients in food processor; blend. Chill until serving.

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

Sweet & Sour Meatballs

I'm still unpacking after a week of having our things delivered. I've decided I must have a couple of kitchen boxes in the garage because I still don't have my knives (and other items) and I've unpacked all of my kitchen boxes. I don't want to work on the boxes in the garage until I'm done in the house with everything in its place.

I've been all about easy meals for a while and this is no exception. I used to make the meatballs for this recipe and then life got busy and I bought frozen meatballs. I haven't made them again just because of the convenience.

Sweet & Sour Meatballs

1 can (20 oz.) pineapple chunks
1/3C water
3T vinegar
1T soy sauce
1/2C brown sugar
3T cornstarch
1 batch (30) meatballs
1 lg. green pepper, cut into 1" pieces
Hot rice

Drain pineapple, reserving juice. Add water to juice to measure 1C; pour into a large skillet. Add water, vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar and cornstarch; stir until smooth. Cook over medium heat until thick, stirring constantly. Add pineapple, meatballs and green pepper. Simmer, uncovered for 20 minutes or until heated through. Serve over rice.

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Friday, July 24, 2009

Christmas Card Swap

At the end of June I shared the card I made for the Christmas card swap. I managed to snap pictures of the cards before they were packed up a couple of weeks ago. Now that we have moved across the country and are house hunting, I have some time to get them posted here. I have to say, we saw a beautiful home yesterday and it has a built in stamping area but no pool. We are looking at a house with a pool today and another home, then our decision will be made.

Here are the cards from the swap.

by Susan Hackney

by Jamie Schnirch, ??

by Terri Tank, Norma Chiaramonte

by Brokenburr

by Kay Fulton, Catie Palmer

by Alice Leal, Deb Waterhouse

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Sunday, July 19, 2009

Florida CHA.... Does that mean SWIMSUIT?!?!?

This was a Cosmo Cricket blog entry that I thought was hilarious.

Blog Post

If you are going to the Craft and Hobby Association trade show in Florida. Or, if you are just having fun by the side of a pool or on a beach this summer, you will most likely enjoy this post!

Eric, Lindsay and myself will be staying in a condo in Florida for the show. There is a pool. Those four words are scarier to me than almost any others! Yes ladies..... we are talking SWIMSUITS!

So, after listening to much complaining about my thighs and current swimsuit options, Lindsay sent me the following email.

WARNING: Go to the bathroom first, especially if you've had four kids like me. I laughed so hard I nearly had an accident and had to run frantically, making it in the nick of time, whilst in the middle of reading this!

When I was a child in the 1950s the bathing suit for the mature figure was boned, trussed and reinforced, not so much sewn as engineered. They were built to hold back and uplift and they did a good job. Today's stretch fabrics are designed for the prepubescent girl with a figure carved from a potato chip.

The mature woman has a choice-she can either go up front to the maternity department and try on a floral suit with a skirt, coming away looking like a hippopotamus who escaped from Disney's Fantasia or she can wander around every run of the mill department store trying to make a sensible choice from what amounts to a designer range of florescent rubber bands.

What choice did I have? I wandered around, made my sensible choice and entered the chamber of horrors known as the fitting room.

The first thing I noticed was the extraordinary tensile strength of the stretch material. The Lycra used in bathing costumes was developed, I believe, by NASA to launch small rockets from a slingshot, which give the added bonus that if you manage to actually lever yourself into one, you are protected from shark attacks as any shark taking a swipe at your passing midriff would immediately suffer whiplash. I fought my way into the bathing suit, but as I twanged the shoulder strap in place, I gasped in horror - my boobs had disappeared!

Eventually, I found one boob cowering under my left armpit. It took a while to find the other. At last I located it flattened beside my seventh rib..

The problem is that modern bathing suits have no bra cups... The mature woman is meant to wear her boobs spread across her chest like a speed bump. I realigned my speed bump and lurched toward the mirror to take a full view assessment.

The bathing suit fit all right, but unfortunately it only fit those bits of me willing to stay inside it. The rest of me oozed out rebelliously from top, bottom, and sides. I looked like a lump of play dough wearing undersized cling wrap.

As I tried to work out where all those extra bits had come from, the prepubescent sales girl popped her head through the curtain, 'Oh, there you are,' she said, admiring the bathing suit.

I replied that I wasn't so sure and asked what else she had to show me.

I tried on a cream crinkled one that made me look like a

lump of masking tape , and a floral two piece which gave the appearance of an oversized napkin in a serving ring.

I struggled into a pair of leopard skin bathers with ragged frills and came out looking like Tarzan's Jane, pregnant with triplets and having a rough day.

I tried on a black number with a midriff and looked like a jellyfish in mourning.

I tried on a bright pink pair with such a high cut leg I thought I would have to wax my eyebrows to wear them.

Finally, I found a suit that fit...a two-piece affair with a shorts style bottom and a loose blouse-type top. It was cheap, comfortable, and bulge-friendly, so I bought it. My ridiculous search had a successful outcome, I figured.

When I got home, I found a label which read -- Material might become transparent in water.'

So, if you happen to be on the beach or near any other body of water this year and I'm there too .. I'll be the one in cut off jeans and a t-shirt!

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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Crazy for Cupcakes

I made this card for the participants of the glitter & bling swap. The color of the picture is a little off but when I lighten it, the coloring on the cupcakes is too washed out. The razzleberry and suede are not quite that dark.

Stamps: Crazy for Cupcakes
CS: Confetti White, Melon Mambo, Rich Razzleberry, Soft Suede
Ink: Soft Suede, Rich Razzleberry
Misc.: Melon Mambo ribbon, rhinestone brads, crystal effects, dazzling diamonds

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Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Glitter and Bling Swap

These are the cards I received from the glitter & bling swap. It is funny how similar two of the cards are but they are both beautiful. In person you can see the shiny glazed sparkle on the Crushed Curry cards. I'm loving the new In Colors.

Diane Clark-Sutton, Jane Hignite

Loni Holt, Sue-Lynn Bock

Virginia Haverick, Wendy Leftrick

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