Sunday, July 29, 2012

Card of the Week

Here is my card this week.

Sorry about the horrible photo, but I finished this in the evening and the lighting was awful.

I mad this card and sent it off to my friend Kathy's mom.  Her 80th birthday is tomorrow and they have arranged for friends and family to send her 80 birthday cards.  I think it is a really sweet idea and a good way to recognize and celebrate her life.

I used last week's CPS sketch for my inspiration.  Here was their sketch:

I'm not sure if I can still post this as they already have this week's image up, but I'll give it a try.

Happy carding.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Book Recommendation: Unbroken

I just finished reading Laura Hillenbrand's Unbroken last night and I am moved beyond words.  It was a truly remarkable book.

Unbroken is the story of Louie Zamperini.  Louie was throughout his life a juvenile delinquent, a high school track star and an Olympic runner during the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, but is is what he endures during WWII that makes Louie special.  Louie is first and foremost...a survivor.  He manages to survive a horrific plane crash, a stranding at sea and years of abuse in Japanese POW camps.  It seems unthinkable that any one person could overcome such terrors.

Louie's story is compelling, but what hit me so directly was that although his particular story was unique, there were also so many other men who endured similar horrors durning the War and yet most came quietly home to become our dads.

I picked up this book because I loved Laura's other book Seabiscuit.  She is such a wonderful writer who manages to engage her reader so completely.  I am not typically a big fan of non-fiction as I like to be swept away when I'm reading.   Laura's gift is that she can take what might appear to be a dry or difficult subject and turn them into a can't put it down, sweeping story.

She is also a meticulous researcher.  Knowing this gives her work great credibility.  My favorite quote in her "Acknowledgement " section was from Louie himself.  "When I want to know what happened to me in Japan, I call Laura." That says a lot.

Please read and if you are local friend or family, I'll gladly loan you my copy.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Welcome Logan Alexander

Caity and Rick welcomed their 2nd child yesterday morning with the birth of Logan Alexander.  He's a big boy, weighing in at 8 pounds and 11 ounces with a full head of dark hair, which surprised us all.

Look at all that hair!! To a family with mostly bald babies, this is amazing.

Well done to Mom and Dad.  He's just perfect.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Card of the Week & More

I have a wedding shower to go to tomorrow which means it's time to make a card.  I used this week's CPS sketch as my inspiration.

And here is my version:

Shower cards always are a bit of challenge as I've just never found any stamps sentiments aimed at wedding showers.  Other than the cliche umbrella...what is there?  (Feel free to let me know if you are aware of a "shower" stamp set.)

I've also been busy cooking.  I made this Tortilla Pie the other evening:

(Sorry about the lousy photo, but it was getting late and the lighting was not the best.)

This was absolutely delicious and not a morsel was leftover.  Mikey had 3 pieces with a request to make this one again.

I got the recipe from Mary over at One Perfect Bite.  Please visit her blog and get the recipe.  Only thing I did differently is that I added a can black beans (rinsed).  To me...Mexican food isn't Mexican food without black beans.

I also made a batch of pesto.  I used some to marinate chicken breasts and I froze the extra pesto in a cupcake tin.  I now have individually frozen pesto spheres in the freezer. was a little challenging to get out of the tin.  I just used a small sharp knife to cut around the disc and then a fork to loosen and pry it out.

This is the pesto prior to freezing:

All and all, a good week for the old creative juices.

Have a great week-end.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

July Garden Update

Despite the overwhelming heat we've had recently (which fortunately broke on Sunday), my container garden is growing into a small forest of deep green.  I was able to harvest (and eat) the first of the grape tomatoes yesterday with more on the way.

The garden started here:

It now looks like this:

I have my first strawberry peeping out.  Now I just have to keep Joey away from it.  Turns out the dog loves strawberries and tomatoes. (Turns out he loves anything that I drop while cooking...except garlic and onion.  He sniffs and walks away from those two.)

And here's my first yellow pear tomato getting ready to be picked.

And an early girl, just about right.

And this is my summer project.  I've had this table for years and it's slowly turned pinkish from years in the sun.  This year it needed to be sanded, cleaned and re-painted before I was going to let it out on the deck.  It's taken a few weeks, but I finally got it done.  I then went up to Pottery Barn and found the perfect umbrella (on sale...yeah).  I'm so happy with how it turned out. And along with my deck rugs from Lowe's, I now feel like I have another room on my tiny little house.

Off to make something with leftover pork tenderloin.  Maybe I'll do that hash again.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

A Very Family 4th

We ended up having a very special family 4th of July.  This was in part due to the storms that passed through town on July 3rd, leaving Kristen and Jay's house and my house...without power.  In the scorching heat, we all ended up at Cait and Rick's house for the holiday.

We started in the morning with Grandpa Bob's very special pancakes and then I made fish kabobs and ribs for dinner.  I'd also bought a small blow-up pool for the boys and this was a big hit.

And Baby "B" had a great day too.

I have to admit that the pool was enjoyed by more than just the kids.  It was amazing how good it felt to put my feet in that cold pool.  Ahhhhh!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Hash Heaven

Oh, my goodness...oh, my goodness.  (Who said this?)

If this didn't convince you to go out and buy the July/August edition of Food Network magazine, please let this.

Skillet Hash and Eggs

This was so delicious, I can't even tell you.  It's made from sausage, onion, potatoes and eggs.  Although the recipe calls for kielbasa, I was able to use up two kinds of sausage that I had in the fridge.  One was a bratwurst, the other was a chicken sausage with sun dried tomatoes.  The recipe also called for caraway seed, which I didn't have, so I just left it out.

When you get to the egg portion, the yolk just makes the whole thing so creamy and yummy.  This is definitely make again good.  ( need to make this.)

Mikey is downstairs "napping" (he was out until 5am last night).  If he doesn't wake up soon his portion might just be gone.

Update:  Here is the link for the full recipe.