Friday, September 12, 2014

It's Friday!!!

It's Friday!!! Here are some things to get your weekend off to a good start...
Yesterday, I gave you some fun freebies.  In case you missed them, here they are again:
Digi paper pack, downloaded HERE:

And a matching set of buttons, downloaded HERE:

Yesterday, I shared a very somber two-page scrapbook layout in my Make it Monumental post.  Today, I am showing you some FUN things you can do to celebrate our so sacred life!  I made a set of drink tags and recipes with these papers.  Here are some drink recipes and tags from our weekend block party.
The wine comes from the Village Vintner & Brewery, but there wasn't room on the page to say that.  My neighbors all know where I get my wine, so it wasn't necessary. :)
First up is Electric Lemonade:

That's the yummy recipe.  If you are not familiar with Passion XO Blue, it's a cognac and so smooth and sweet.
Here is what it looked like:

To fill this container, I made 3 batches with the recipe above.  You can see the little cards I made for my neighbors to take with them, mainly so they would stop bugging me for them. :)
And here is the tag that is on that container:

Next up, we have Pineapple Mojitos:

Here's an "action shot" of the Pineapple Mojitos in progress:

Doesn't that look yummy??  You can easily omit the rum for a fabulous smoothie, but why would you want to do that???
And here's the tag that went on the container:

And last up is the acclaimed Strawberry Basil Limeade:

This recipe says to serve immediately.  It does separate, so I always serve it in a Pampered Chef pitcher that has the mixer plunger.

That's why the tag says to "pump twice", because you do need to mix it.
And here it is in action:

Again, you can easily omit the wine and make a yummy smoothie with this, but again - WHY!?
A couple of my neighbors like a little extra punch in their drink, so I provided a bottle of KettleOne Citron with this tag attached:

That should get you started for the weekend!
Finally, Wednesday was nails day, but I decided to do something different this time and went back to my natural nails.

I'm going to try one of my jamberry wraps with footballs on one nail, I think, since there's a HUGE game in my area this weekend - the local Bears vs. my 49ers.  I feel I will be in the minority this weekend, although that red and gold nail polish is a big win already!
GO 9ERS!!!!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Make It Monumental

Today is September 11th, and 13 years ago today, our lives changed forever.  Today is also Thursday, which means a new WTUI challenge.  Today, I am hosting it, and I am challenging you to Make it Monumental by using stone, granite, marble, or another hardened surface in your project, just like the monuments and statues we erect for our heroes.
I made a two-page scrapbook layout for my recent visit to the Flight 93 Memorial in PA.  For the background of both pages, I used a Granite Paper that I made, and a matching set of Granite Buttons to give a little dimension to the page. I also used a couple items by ChrissyW - the templates, a string bow for the button, and a cross stitch.  It just didn't "feel right" to put too much "stuff" on the page, and I wrote more than I ever have on a page on these.
Here is Page 1:

You can click on the page to make it bigger if you would like to read the text.
And Page 2:

The upper-right two photos include the etched "September 11, 2001", which is hard to see in these photos unless you click in.
In the spirit of giving and helping your neighbor that today brought about, I have two freebies for you:
A set of papers that can be downloaded HERE and look like this:

And a set of matching buttons that can be found HERE and look like this:

If you are unfamiliar with digi scrapping, why not give these a try?  They're free after all.  Please enjoy the life that we have to the fullest today, as today is a reminder that you never know when your last memory will be made.  Appreciate the life you have and what our heroes have sacrificed to make that possible.  Check back tomorrow for some more things you can do with the paper pack above to celebrate life.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

I Made a Rug!

The project I'm showing today isn't all that glamorous, so I'll start with a gorgeous sunset that began our September:

The sun rays over the storm clouds are just amazing!
Ok, now for my necessary project... I made a new bathroom rug.  A few months ago, my poor Gandy boy was having upset stomach.  He threw up on my rug, which, of course, went right in the trash.  They don't make my bathroom rugs anymore, so to the crochet hook I went!  Here it is:

I used two different colors of Bernat Handicrafter - the main color is Chocolate Ombre, and the accents in the middle and border are Tiara Ombre.  It's a very simple pattern of rows of half double crochet and single crochet.  I used a J hook, but you could use a larger or smaller one, depending on how tight/loose you want the rug.
Here's the pattern:
Row 1: 41 Foundation Single Crochet (FSC), Chain (CH) 1, and turn
Rows 2 - 6: Half Double Crochet (HDC) across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 7 - 11: Single Crochet (SC) across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 12 - 21: HDC across, CH 1, turn (10 rows)
Rows 22 - 26: SC across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 27 - 31: HDC across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 32 - 36: change to accent color, HDC across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 37 - 39: switch back to main color, SC across, CH 1, turn (3 rows)
Rows 40 - 44: change to accent color, HDC across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 45 - 49: switch back to main color, HDC across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 50 - 54: SC across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 55 - 64: HDC across, CH 1, turn (10 rows)
Rows 65 - 69: SC across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 70 - 74: HDC across, CH 1, turn (5 rows)
Rows 75: SC across, CH 1
SC around the entire rug, with 3 SC in each corner, join with a Slip Stitch (SL ST), CH 1
The next round is a Half Double Crochet together (HDC2TOG) followed by a CH and 3 HDC in each corner, join with a SL ST, CH 1
The final round is a SC all the way around, again with 3 SC in each corner, joined with a SL ST, and you are DONE!
If you don't know how to do the half double crochet together stitch, check out this video:

This is the most clear video I've seen on this stitch and makes it super simple.  Doing this stitch around the border makes a cute little lace-looking eyelet thing.  If you're making a baby or "girlie" blanket, you can add a ribbon through these holes for extra cuteness.  Here's a close up of the border:

Have fun!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Nails Day!

It was nails day!  I went patriotic in honor of the upcoming Patriot Day on September 11th. 

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Happy Mail!

I've been "off work" the past couple of days, so it's like Friday.  Today, we are hopefully headed to play tourist in the city.  August is my mom and mother in law's birthdays.  Here are the cards that were in their boxes:

I used some fun things and went a little wild with this one.  This is done with an old MFT Die-Namics First Class Friend and a stamp set that I believe is retired, but I still love it!  I threw in a Paper Smooches Happy Birthday for good measure.  I colored the stamps with Big Brush Pitt Pens.  I really like how they bled together a bit on the edges.  I used some Prima crystal chevrons.  My sketch is based on this week's MFT sketch (#191).
Have a great day!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Old School Christmas

Today it's my turn to host the WTUI Challenge.  I'm challenging you to use a chalkboard.  I keep seeing all these little chalkboards all over the place.  I was going to do THIS little number, but I took a mini step to get me there.

I used this FUN digital collection by Echo Park - Tis the Season with just a few little digital stitches and staples from ChrissyW.  It is mounted on black card stock that I inked the edges with Moonlight ink.  I found this old Authentique set of stickers for the "I believe in santa" sentiment in the bottom right corner.  Everything else on the page is digital.
I even decorated the inside!

That's a stamp from Hero Arts' set Chalkboard Greetings stamped in the same Moonlight ink.  I inked the edges and added a couple stickers from Studio Calicos' Chalkboard Access line.
I will use my White Big Brush Pitt Pen by Design Memory Craft to sign it.  One Christmas card done!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Turkey Burgers - Take 1

This weekend I decided to get adventurous and try to make my own turkey burgers.  How hard can it be?  Throw stuff in a bowl, smash, and grill, right?  Well... It was not as successful as I had hoped.  First of all, let me say the flavors were awesome; it was the execution of the actual burger that was the fail.


  • 1/2 ripe avocado smashed into a paste
  • 1 tsp green onions chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic minced (I use a garlic press)
  • 1-2 tsp fresh mint chopped
  • 1 Tbl Argyle Street Asian Blend seasoning (reserve enough to sprinkle the top of each burger)
  • 1/2 lb ground turkey
  • 1 tsp olive oil
Mix all the ingredients and form into patties.  Here is what it looked like:

Sounds and "looks" yummy, right?  The photo is purposely fuzzy because I think raw meat doesn't look very appetizing.
I'll say it again, it did have amazing flavor, but let me tell you how this went off the rails...
First of all, I put all of my ingredients in the bowl before I tried to mash my avocado.  My avocado was not ripe enough to smash, so it stayed all chunky.  So I tried to put everything in the food processor to make it mash.  Turns out, ground turkey and a food processor are incompatible.
I was able to take some of the chunks out of the mix and put it in the food processor to get it mixed in.  There still were chunks of avocado, which wasn't necessarily bad, but that wasn't going to help hold the mixture together.  I'm allergic to eggs, and that is usually the binder for turkey burgers, so I was improvising here (not well, though!).
Next, I completely forgot I had a burger press that would have greatly helped get these bad boys firmly packed.  I HIGHLY recommend using a burger press for these!
And finally, the mega fail: I threw this loosely-packed "thing" on the grill, just like it was a "normal" burger.  WRONG! FAIL! STUPID!  It made the biggest mess on the grill as it shed its parts.  Luckily, I had made two burgers, so what was left of both of them was enough for my lunch.  Here is what the grill looked like afterwards:

I will definitely make this recipe again, because, as I said, the flavor was awesome, but here is what I will change:

  • I will put all of my other ingredients in the food processor before adding it to the turkey.
  • I will USE the burger press.  We've only had it for two years now, and it's still in the packaging.
  • I will either cook it inside on the stove or put a pan on the grill to cook them.
  • I think I may add some shredded cheese to the mix, also, so it will hold it together even better.  I put provolone cheese (and pickles, of course) on top of my burger before I ate it, and it tasted really good.
  • I didn't put quite enough Argyle Street in mine, as I was expecting to put some extra on top while it was cooking.  Yeah, that SO didn't help, because that's all the parts I lost.  The ingredients above is what I plan on doing for the next batch, just keeping out a very little to sprinkle on top before putting it in the pan.
In any event, I had a good lunch and a learning exercise in what not to do with turkey burgers.


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