24 November 2008

chicken stroganoff

A couple of weeks ago a friend organized a recipe swap... each person brought prepared main dish with the recipe. Then we got to sample all of the recipes. It was a lot of fun, and I got some new ideas for dinner. This was one of my favorites, and my family liked it too!

Chicken Stroganoff:

4 bacon strips
1 lb. chicken, cut up
1 med. onion
2 cloves garlic
1 pkg fresh mushrooms (the original recipe calls for 2 cans of mushrooms drained, but I detest canned mushrooms.)
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp paprika
pepper to taste
1 cup sour cream
2 T flour

In a skillet cook bacon until crisp. Remove to paper towels and drain some of the drippings, reserving 2 T, set bacon aside. When cool enough to touch, break up into small pieces. Cook the chicken, onion, garlic, and mushrooms until chicken is no longer pink. Add the broth, salt paprika, pepper and bacon back in. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Combine flour and sour cream until smooth; add to the skillet. Bring to boil, cook and stir for 1 minute or until thickened. Serve over egg noodles or rice, whichever is your family's preference.

I guess if you're not a mushroom fan, you could leave those out, but it just can't be as good as the original without those! Let me know if you make it, and what you think. Enjoy!

22 November 2008

hats off...

to babies!!! Every baby deserves a one-of-a-kind hand knit hat at least once in their life. A number of years ago my younger sister Michelle, (who is an amazing knitter), taught me how to knit baby hats. It was a late night of slowly figuring it all out, but so memorable. Anyway, thanks to Michelle's sharing of her talent, I've been making some hats to prepare for a plethora of births that are coming up from various ladies in our ward. So far only one of them will be a girl, the rest are all boys... here are the finished products.

Here's the one for the baby girl, obviously. Originally I wanted the whole thing to be the varigated pink yarn, but when I was almost finished with it, I realized that I probably wouldn't have enough to finish. Since I didn't want to scrap the whole thing, I decided to finish the top with the white yarn. Then to help it along, I added the flowers around the whole pink part of the hat. Turned out kind-a fun. The flowers were really fun to make actually, oh, they're crocheted. As I was crocheting the flowers I thought that they might be fun to add to the tops of presents or something. We'll see if this ever actually happens, but it's fun to imagine.

This one is for a new family that just moved in. She's due really soon, and this will be their 3rd boy. I don't know them as well, so I decided just to keep it simple and basic. Can't go too wrong with a standard tan/blue/white motif.

I thought this one turned out really well. This family are HUGE razorback fans. Both parents have graduated from the U of A, so I knew their baby's hat had to be red and white. I think they'll love it.

Last but not least... this is actually the first of the 4 hats posted that I made. It's also the only one that has already been gifted, and it is my very favorite! I want to make the same pattern in a little bigger size for Silas. I wish this were a better picture so that you could truly appreciate it's beauty. The basic color is an army green, then it has a bunch of colored stripes in it - yellow, orange, navy blue, tan, white. Anyway, I really love it... and although I don't know this family really very well either, I just knew that this would be the perfect hat for their baby. Some people are just like that.

I'm working on a few other fun knit or crochet items. I've really been into this stuff lately... it's tons o' fun. If you don't know how to knit or crochet, come on over, I'd love to share the small amount of knowledge that I have. Or, contact my sister Michelle, she'd love to share too!

18 November 2008

long time...

It's been too long since I've posted. Life goes by so quickly, and I often think of things I want to post, and then another day goes by and it hasn't happened. I need to do better. So the next few posts will be of stuff that's helping the days go by...

Some fun cards to thank Isaac and Sadie's friends for coming to our Book Swap birthday party for the pair. We really had a great time, and everyone went home with "new" books to start reading!

The insdie of the card... a small space, just right for writing a thank you!

12 July 2008

BTRSswap #2

The second of three swaps from the "Bend the Rules Sewing" book has just ended. I'm excited to share my wares...

This swap was placemats and napkins from the patterns/directions in the book. With each swap you're able to specify colors, patterns or fabrics that you like/dislike, but it's still a little nerve-racking, with a little excitement thrown in too, as you sew for someone you've never met. My partner specified that she liked geometric designs and that primary colors would look great in her kitchen, so I went with that, and this is what I came up with...

And the finished product...
And they're off to Florida. I think they turned out pretty cute. I hope she loves them. They were easy to make, although next time I'll make the napkins bigger, and probably more like the napkins that I received from Rebecka from Nebraska (the swapper who had me). Isn't it funny that we have the same name, wonder if they thought it would be fun to pair us up?

Mail call...
the anticipation is a killer...and here they are...
The napkins are double sided with a different but coordinating fabric on each side. Rebecka said that she actually patterned them after the napkins from her favorite restaurant. She said that at the restaurant, they do not have a napkin that matches, because they have two different fabrics for each napkin and none of the fabrics are the same. Sounds really fun, what a great idea! We really love the placemats and napkins and have used them countless times already.

As part of the swap we sent a favorite summer recipe. Rebecka sent a recipe for a corn casserole. I was planning on sharing it, but I have misplaced it somewhere... probably in my stack of recipes to try. Anyway, thanks so much Rebecka! We really love the placemats and napkins. You did a fabulous job! You can sew for me anytime!!!

rachel's apron...

It's been such a long time, so sorry. Now on to the goods...

I never did post about the other "mystery" project I was working on, so the time has come for the unveiling...

AN APRON!!! This cute reversable apron is for my youngest sister Rachel. She and her husband Paul just bought their first home, so I decided to make a little house warming gift for them. Rachel's favorite color is purple. She says she loves the apron, so it was a success!

The pattern is called "Emmeline Apron", you can take a gander at it here. It was a lot of fun to make, easy, and just SO cute. It's flattering for all body types too, so that's a plus. Now I just need to make one for myself.

16 June 2008

5 unimportant things about me...

About a week ago Kris tagged me. Here's the rules: link back to the person who tagged you, post these rules on your blog, share five unimportant things about yourself and tag three people at the end of your entry. Here we go!

1. If I'm washing dishes by hand, ie. without a machine, I prefer to be the one washing the dishes. No drying and putting away for me. I think it's because everyone knows the person who's washing is really the one in charge. In charge of how quickly the process goes, in charge of how clean the dishes get, in charge of the conversation, you get the picture. And, they're also the first one done!

2. I love musicals! I like watching them, but I really like learning all the words to the songs, and occasionally getting into the dance that goes with the song, (there's so much more meaning and feeling when you do this.) I used pause the VCR at just the right spot, and then put a tape recorder up close to the tv, press play on both at the same time, just to record the songs. Then I'd listen to them over and over to learn all the words. I still wish that life were like a musical and that at just the right moment we'd all break into song, with coordinating dance steps of course.

3. We have no tv. I mean we own a tv, but we don't pay for cable, and can't pick up any stations... so we get a lot more done. And, if there's a show we're really into, we watch it on the internet the next night. Isn't the web amazing!

4. When I was young, my younger brother Arlo and I would sneak into the food storage room sit on the rolled up sleeping bags and eat packets of dry jello. When we would hear someone coming downstairs, we'd hurry and shut off the light, thinking that no one would know what we were up to. Of course my mom knew, I'm sure the dry powdered jello all over the floor, and on the sleeping bags was a dead give-away.

5. I own 3 sewing machines. I love to sew! I can't imagine parting with any of them. One day I want to have a little sewing class with my children and a few of their friends.

I'm going to tag Deb, Candice and Lynette. Have fun and let me know when you post!

14 June 2008

happy birthday/mother's day deb!!!

So here's the first of the "mystery" pictures... napkins for Deb for her birthday and Mother's Day. I know, embarrassing how long it took us to get these off to her, seeing how her birthday was in April - but better late...

Along with the napkins, we also sent some cool black chargers to match the other two black chargers that she bought for herself when she and Darwin were here visiting last fall. Kind-a fun.

Wouldn't they look cute arranged in a nice glass or something? Pretty fancy!

I think they turned quite nicely. I had never made my own bias tape before, it was fun, and I can see so many possibilities with other projects... why have I never tried this before? We have no idea.

Anyway, HappyBirthday/Mother's Day Deb! Sorry it took so long!

29 May 2008

sneak peek...

I've been working on a few gifts for people, and since they haven't been mailed yet, I can't post the full picture, but here's a taste of what's been keeping me busy...
More to come...

14 May 2008


In my blog wanderings I've stumbled across many a post about Japanese Craft Books. I want one, or twenty, if you must know the truth. They have beautiful pictures, and although they are written completly in Japanese, it seems as if the illustrations are enough... enough to produce something lovely. So, here's the book I'm hunting for at the moment...

... and when I say hunting, I really mean it. I have emailed every Japanese bookstore I can find on the Internet asking them if they have it, or could get it. It's out of print, that's the problem. The other problem is that I did find it one place, but it's in Japan and for whatever reason they won't ship it to the US. Man! Why must it be so complicated? And so... I continue to hunt.

we love our teachers!!!

Last week was teacher appreciation week at school, so we sent a little something to each of the kids teachers. Cute little zippered bags.

And of course we had to put something yummy inside... chocolate-chocolate chip cookies, and snickerdoodles with toffee chips and chocolate chips, mmm!

The finished product. Didn't they turn out cute!

We do love our teachers!

BTRS swap

This post should probably have come before the one of me receiving my bag from the swap, but oh well. Here's the bag that I sent to my swap partner...

She commented on her blog that the colors and especially the stripes in the pleats reminded her of Good n' Plenty candy - I hadn't thought of that, but she's right! There's the pocket.

I used Timetex in the bottom for good support, but used the flannel for the inner support like the patter suggested. To make it again, I would use canvas or flusible fleece, something a little more stiff, to provide more shape to the bag - it's such a large one. it was a fun pattern to make though. Can't wait for our next swap!

09 May 2008


I got a package today...

Don't you just love getting mail, especially when in the package form?! Lets see, who is this from?

This is the part where I totally started freaking out, jumping up and down, screaming like a banshee.
Before even opening the box I knew what was inside. You see, I frequently read her blog, and a few days ago she had posted pictures of the bag she had finished for the BTRSswap. I knew that whoever got that bag was so lucky, but also realized with all the ladies that entered the swap, my chances were slim to none for getting THAT bag... but a girl can dream! Anyway, seeing this return address label, I knew that I had won, and won big! But enough rambling, I'll let you see for yourself...

Isn't this exciting!

And there she is, in all glory... which is fitting by the way since her name is Gloria. Be sure to notice the cute key fob attached to the key ring. It's all so lovely!

As part of the swap we were supposed to send one of our favorite summertime desert recipes. So she sent me a recipe for Cheesecake Supreme, with a note that this is the absolute best recipe for cheesecake that she's ever had. Can't wait to try it. I'll post the recipe after I've given it a whirl. So, this recipe couldn't be more perfect either, I LOVE cheesecake!!!

Thanks for all of this Kris... you're my new best friend!