Saturday, August 30, 2008

I am so easily distracted.....

Life has been a little bittersweet lately. Laurie and her Mr. B had a mutual parting of ways, and the Big Green Closet Formerly Known as Laurie's Room, is now Laurie's Room again. Though we are sad about the circumstances, and we miss her Mr. B and Bella, we are enjoying having her with us for as long as she likes, while she gets her feet under her again and decides what her next steps will be.

One huge positive next step:

She posed for a "First Day of School" picture for me this week. She is only six credits away from an associate degree.... Whoo hooo! She's taking a tough world history class with her friend Jenny.

Another bittersweet happening.... Our "adopted-son" Patrick's parents (our former pastor and his wife) traveled back here from their new home in Alabama, to visit friends, and visit Patrick, and baptize new great granddaughters (twins!).

Here Pastor PJ is talking to another member and I caught him from behind.... it was SO good to see him again.

Here is Patrick and Pastor and Nelda.

And here is Patrick and Tijae and son Cage....

Tijae is daughter Karen's BFF (it's becoming a very small world!) and her son Cage is the most awesome young man I've ever met. My hat is off to her. She is a fantastic mom, and her efforts with her son have sure paid off - he is an outgoing, polite, happy, engaging, curious and extremely smart little boy! He really likes Patrick too - so he has great taste!! :)

Here's a picture of the twins and their parents. I didn't get a really good picture, but I think those babies would have looked beautiful no matter what!

Watching Pastor in his old position at the front of the church, hearing his voice as he baptized his great granddaughters and then blessed us, it took me back about ten years to when my kids were teens and life was (unbeknownst to me at the time) much, much easier! I felt so many emotions that day; wistful for days gone by, gratitude for how well my daughters are doing and for their presence in my home, sadness that this may have been the last time I would see Pastor PJ..... who knows where the next year or two will take us.... if the housing market ever turns, we still want to get out of here and find some land and settle down to a simpler, quieter lifestyle. So we may not be here the next time he visits. :(

I keep getting side tracked. And blogging has been way off the radar screen recently. Mr. B has complained that "all he sees are those vegetables" from the last post when he checks my blog.

I refrained from reminding him that at least I blog a few times a month, unlike a certain Curmudgeon, who had me set him up a blog a year ago so that he could blog from a political standpoint, throughout the current election. Ahem.....

Not one entry yet..... Silly Curmudgeon!

Speaking of vegetables (and fruits).... my cantelopes stopped growing at a rather petite size and then ripened. And tasted GREAT. Karen loved them!

Anyway, as you will see below, I've been pretty aimlessly flitting from activity to activity.... but I actually have accomplished a few things.

Three more blocks for my Saturday Sampler are done, including month #6, and two of the three extra squares originally included in the sampler.... I will take pictures later when I get all 16 blocks done. I have to make four blocks on my own (as I did not want to do a center medallion, and just wanted a king sized with four blocks where the medallion was). So I am thinking about making a few blocks from last year's Saturday Sampler for those four.... the finished blocks are the same size, so I will just have to see if last year's patterns lend themselves to the style of this year's blocks....

Michael sat down with some of my cooking magazines last week and started marking some recipes he "wanted to try". He even offered to do the cooking, and I would certainly be thrilled if he wanted to do that (and clean the kitchen afterwards, teehee!)....but I decided to try one recipe he found for something along the lines of "Cheeseburger Bundles". That was not the name, but I don't want to get in trouble for publishing a recipe on the blog that is from a paid subscription. I majorly tweaked the recipe anyway, so here's what they look like, and my recipe is below the pix. (He declared the recipe to be a "keeper", so I'll make them again in a month or so...

Cheeseburger Bundles

1 package active dry yeast (I used about a tablespoon from a bulk package)
1/3 cup warm water
1/3 cup warm milk
1/8 cup sugar
2 tablespoons butter (softened)
1 egg
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 to 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

I tossed all the ingredients above into my bread machine, ran it through mix and first rise, and then took the dough out and rolled it into a big rectangle. I used a pizza cutter to "rotary cut" the dough into 12 squares.

While the dough was in process, in the breadmaker, I made the following "filling".

1/2 pound sliced bacon, crumbled
3/4 pound ground beef
1 small onion, diced
salt, pepper
1/2 pound Velveeta cheese, chunked

I browned the beef and onions, microwaved the bacon and then crumbled it into the beef/onion mix. Then I put the Velveeta cheese chunks in the beef/onion/bacon mix and put a lid on the pan and turned off the heat. Five minutes later, I added salt, pepper, and stirred the whole thing and that was that.

I then put about a fourth to a third of a cup of that mix into each square, and then pulled the sides up and pinched them together. (I'm a lousy pincher, as most of them came undone!) They were baked at 400 for about 10 minutes. I brushed them with melted butter before and after baking. Karen liked them too, but I'm thinking next time, I will make about half of them with just vegetables and cheese inside. That might appeal to The Daughters more, since they really are mostly vegetarian.

The dogs were running low on treats, so I made some more dog biscuits... I used a new recipe, and for a little over a dollar's worth of ingredients, I got all of these! (Recipe link below) These were a huge hit and even more popular than my usual recipe.

I found this recipe here. If you look closely (click to enlarge), you will see that a few of the treats are cut in the shape of fire hydrants. I have a traditional bone shaped cookie cutter also. But about five minutes into the cutting process, I thought - no way! The dogs don't care if they are cute! Out came the pizza cutter and once again, I rotary-cut my dough!

Yes, everything comes back to quilting for me....

However, recently I've tried something a bit new to me.... making cards! I'm having a ball, because there is "pretty stuff" involved. I am dealing with scissors, glue, paper, glitter, and coloring.....which I love, because... well, you know....I am FIVE.... (at heart). Here are some I worked on last night.

And this morning, I sat down to work, then got up and went for coffee, then noticed the remaining unfinished cabinet doors sitting on the hearth, and then contemplated the fact that it was a three day weekend. I decided to end the Great Kitchen Kabinet Adventure of 2008.....TODAY. I finished all six doors and the two drawers and the island base. It is over!

Yay. Then I lined the shelves and drawers with ladybug vinyl coated wallpaper. Just because I can!! No one will know it's there but me....

(click to see the ladybug cuteness!)

And I like it!



Karene said...

Love the cards and the drawer lining too !!! You are so creative, my friend !

Love ya

Jackie said...

You have so much great stuff going on! The cabinets look great, and the cards are so professional! They are beautiful! Big bear hug to Laurie for getting going on that tough class! Good luck - we know you can do it!