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Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas Afghan After Nearly Seven Years

All 63 afghan squares for the Barbara Walker Learn To Knit Afghan Book afghan were completed by October of this year.  Several weeks ago I started sewing them together.  For the first row (nine squares) I used the Mattress Stitch.  It looked really good.  It took a LONG time to complete one strip.  Shortly after starting the second strip (of seven) I realized I was unlikely to get the afghan put together before Christmas, which was my plan.  In fact, this has been going to be a Christmas present for Dear One every year since I started it when we began work on the addition to the log cabin.  The addition actually became the addition to the house when we tore down the log cabin and put a new house on the foundation to match the addition.

So -  I started doing a whip stitch to connect the squares of the blanket.  As of yesterday I still had two tall piles of squares ready to stitch.  When I went to bed last night it looked like I was not going to complete the afghan again this year for Christmas as only two strips had been sewn together.  Before falling off to sleep I mentioned to Heavenly Father that if I woke up in the night I would get up and work on the sewing project.  At 1:37 AM I awoke.  I got up for relief then went back to bed.  Having been in bed fifteen minutes (and not falling instantly back to sleep) I looked at the clock: 2:00 AM.  OK.  When Heavenly Father answers a prayer it seemed like I ought to accept His goodness and comply so out I crawled, put on a shirt, and went upstairs.

At 6:30 AM I came downstairs after having completed listening to one of  Janet Evanovich novels (The Heist), AND after completely sewing together the squares. ONE SMALL PROBLEM!!!!  Four squares are missing.  I KNOW I finished knitting them in October.  Where are they?

Once again I went into search mode.  I have emptied and reorganized five bags and two boxes of knitting projects and yarn.  I have looked behind the couch upstairs.  I have looked in the workroom where they were stored for quite a while.  As I was writing, it crossed my mind that they may have fallen behind the tall bookcase that Betty and Peter gave me to help me with my organization plan last summer.  I had made a lovely stack of squares and placed them out of the way on the stop shelf but then moved them to show them off to someone a few months ago.  Just goes to show that bragging is a very bad idea.

Now I will go look behind the bookcase.  Which will be a rather large problem but I really want to finish the afghan for THIS Christmas. I have so many other projects that are started that need to go into finish mode in the new year, and maybe even the end of this year....One project I just discovered again while in hunt mode this morning was the Plus-Sign Quilt I started when the Relief Society began working on it, probably five years ago.  There is some possibility that I can whip that into shape within a week or two.

After checking behind the bookcase in the workroom I have to dash out to pick up the remaining ingredients I need for Christmas dinner; to return a Redbox movie(Mission Impossible version whatever...); and to visit our friends in the nursing home with some cute little stockings full of Hugs and Kisses.

No four squares.  Well, some time they will turn up.

Friday, December 18, 2015

A Kitchen Disaster

Some days are like this one.  So busy.  Too many things to do.  So much on the mind.  Running here. Running there. Trying to get everything done at this hectic time of year.  Just goes to show!

A friend was going out of town for several weeks so I stopped in to say hello and goodbye and safe travels.  So wonderful to see her and visit for a while. Off to several stores for some supplies and tools to use in making Christmas gifts.  One thing I rarely do is stop for fast food.  Today I did.  I think it rotted my brain as well as swelled my waist.

When I returned home Christmas cards were ready to stamp then get to the post office before the cut-off time.  A couple more stops at local stores then home again.  I was so tired I did not make supper for Dear One.  Instead I took a tiny nap in the rocking chair.

When I awoke I was alone in the living room so I made up some nice-ish fried potatoes for him to snack on then decided I really had to get the elderly apples into a pot for applesauce before there was nothing left but compost.  After putting the apples on to cook I immediately took the peels and other debris (orange peels and pepperoncini stems along with a couple of egg shells that were waiting in a bowl) out to the compost pile, feeling very virtuous that the apple chankings, at least, were not staying around in the kitchen for any time at all.

Returning to the house I went to the computer to prepare the pamphlet for the memorial service for a friend then printed a copy to see if it looked ok.  While I was upstairs I was drawn to the pile of afghan squares for the Barbara Walker Learn To Knit Afghan I have been working on for more than six years and which I had started sewing together a couple of weeks ago. 

Sitting down on the couch beside Dear One who was watching one of his favorite Netflix programs I realized that I had sewn together several squares which were not the same size so I took them apart.  I then rearranged the squares so all similar sizes were together. Now it was time to start sewing the seams.  I was nearly through the second strip when I remembered the applesauce.  It had been about an hour by that time.  At my request Dear One rushed downstairs to see what disaster awaited since he could get there faster than I.

Just as he started down the stairs I finally smelled the applesauce.  What a disaster!  The apples were black as soot and burned an inch and a half up the side of the pan.  There is almost no chance that we will be able to save the pot which we received for a wedding gift nearly forty-three years ago.

Often I can feel philosophical about things that happen.  This time I guess I need that feeling again.  Let me think:  I guess I can say that it is bearable because it is one less pot to take care of. And no leftover applesauce to have to store...

And, no, I am not going to share a photograph of the pot. It is bad enough to share the story.  Showing a picture would put me over the edge.

Just yesterday I was speaking with another dear friend about possible memory loss.  Maybe I spoke too quick...

Monday, November 2, 2015

If I Were To Become A Knitter Again...

When I was five or six years old my mother's Swiss college roommate came to visit in our home for a while.  During that time she taught my brother and I how to knit.  This was great to learn but soon after she moved on my mother's heavy responsibilities as a farm wife made it almost impossible to keep up the knitting finger training so I did not knit again until I was in 4-H.  As an early teenager I learned to crochet then picked up knitting again....making a purple and white striped stocking cap with a tassel which hat was nearly 30 inches long.

Fast forward to young married life.  I picked up needles again and made, first project, assisted by an elderly mother/daughter pair at our church, a pair of worsted weight orange cabled "stockings" as Catherine and Florence called them. I do think Dear One wore them once, or maybe twice.  Sizing was off.  Color was off.  He was a kind man even back then and did not turn up his nose at my ill-advised efforts.

Over the years I have gotten excited about blankets, about sweaters, especially cabled or Fair Isle, about socks, about Magic Loop, about Two Socks on Two Circs, about KnitPicks.com, about Ravelry.com, about spinning, about weaving, about skirting fleeces, about natural dyeing, about hand carding fiber.  So many things.  Each time I became excited about something new, if I had the means, I purchased the equipment.

At this time I have many many knitting needles in so many sizes.  So many crochet hooks.  A loom (gift from my dear aunt who recently deceased).  Two spinning wheels, one a gift from a dear knitting friend who died several years ago but with whom I spent years knitting every Thursday afternoon, and the other wheel that my husband saw at a yard sale and encouraged me to investigate.

Now to the point of this message. Looking back over my fiberly goodness life, and my over-"stuffed" needle satchels,  if I had it to do over again, I would buy one 16-inch and one 24-inch circular needle in matching sizes most likely in bamboo or wood until I was very sure of the knitting process then would get the same in slippery metal needles, and only as they were called for in a particular pattern. I do NOT NEED fifty or more needle sets.  Almost never do I need longer than 24-inch needles.  If I did I would probably purchase a second 24-inch needle and put rubber bands on one end of each set and use them for very long needles.

This would have saved me hundreds of dollars over my lifetime and helped me become organized sooner.  Currently the design for a circular storage container has been going through my brain.  If it comes to fruition, I will post a picture and instructions.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Barbara Walker Learn to Knit Afghan Book block 51

Tonight I finished Block 51 which is called "Faggoting and Fancy Rib".  I cast on 32 stitches for it.  It came out pretty well considering I did not go back and repair every error!

Faggoting and Fancy Rib Block 51

One thing I learned as I was working on this square: row markers are critically important to a good result.  You will notice the row markers along the right edge.  This pattern had an 8-row repeat.  Even this small number of rows in the repeat was too much for me to memorize so I placed a row marker on the first stitch of each right side row.  When each pattern repeat is completed I move up the last row marker.  In this block with 8 rows there are four markers in the repeat.  When I start row 2 of the next pattern repeat I remove the marker from Row 8 and attach it to Row 2 of the new pattern repeat. In this way I am able to keep better track of where I am.

Another thing I learned/used was to count the stitches on the needle as I am preparing to knit each right side row.  If the number is off, this is the time to make corrections!  Take my word for it.  It is worth spending those few seconds.  It can make a world of difference in the work involved in completing the square.

This block has not yet been blocked as you can see.  Also, the blotchy look is from the tiny focussed light over the kitchen counter in our motel room glaring on one spot on the block.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Barbara Walker Learn To Knit Afghan Book, square 48 Vine Leaf

This is the last block in the "increases and decreases" section of the book. I am beginning to think I will actually get this afghan project finished! Less than fifteen more to go...

Vine Leaf Panel, block 48

This block has obviously not been blocked.  There is a 26-stitch center panel with nine-stitch stocking stitch on either side.  It was a rather fun block to knit but I really wish I had some simple "knit stitches font" software to use to build a chart.  Charted designs are easier to knit than holding the book to my chest and picking it up every row to make sure I remember what to do when...

This would be a great panel for the back of a sweater.  Of course,  re-working the vine to wind wider would make it better for the back of that projected sweater.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Funny Little Boy

As part of yesterday's shopping extravaganza with three-year-old B we went to a big box store for some Soft Soap that was on sale.  It came in two large bottles that were held together with a heavy plastic key.  We were doing really well, whipping through the store but made a stop for a sample of a protein bar.  He wanted the sample so I stopped to pick it up.  In the meantime he had been working over the Soft Soap unbeknownst to me.  Just as I accepted the protein bite he said, "Grammie!" in a rather distressed voice. I looked over to see that one of the Soft Soap bottles had tipped over into his lap with the cover off.  It spread all over he pants and was dripping onto the floor.  Big mess.  We stopped the continued messing of the store but he was ready to leave at the point.

Fast forward to this morning.  There were several things we did not get done yesterday due in part to the Soft Soap incident so I told him we were going out today.  He told me in no uncertain terms that he wanted to stay home today, so I let it go for a while.  When I finished my other projects I told him we were heading out, and we did.  Several stops later we stopped at a chain grocery store.  As I put him in the shopping cart he said, "We are not going to have another Soft Soap incident, are we?"  I almost could not keep my laughter inside...He is such a doll and really was so distressed about "the Soft Soap incident".

It turns out that, contrary to popular opinion, at least three-year-old opinion, a nap is a good thing to have.  Today was a case in point.  No nap today and about 30 minutes before Dad arrived home the stuff hit the fan.  Everything that could distress a little guy, did distress him.  Fortunately I had supper in the oven so as soon as Dad walked in they just had to set the table and eat.  I will be interested to see how it turned out.  "Breakfast Omelet Muffins",  Perri's mild Italian sausages, and scalloped potatoes.    I brought some potatoes and omelet muffins home for Dear One.  He thought the potatoes had too much sauce and so far has not eaten the muffins....

Arriving home shortly after 5 PM we unloaded the car from the shopping and child-entertainment-options, I grabbed a sweater and my Hanover Rec Department Trail Challenge map booklet and we headed to the Fall Festival where we could enter our completed trail challenge in a drawing for prizes.  There were not a lot of names on the list of completers but I do not know how many prizes there are, but one can always hope.

Friday, October 2, 2015

The Adventure Begins....

A and E have gone to Denmark for two weeks for E to visit with his grandfather and A to meet her new sister.  Grammie is spending the days with 3-year-old B and with C and L when they arrive home from school.  That is the plan.  Sometimes we may all go to Grandpa's house for supper. Sometimes Dad may just have to make supper when he gets home from work.

Day One was quite a long one.  Grammie had a meeting on campus but before going to the meeting she wanted to visit a friend to borrow an owl punch, got to the feed store to enter a jar of sweet pepper relish, and fill the car's tank with gasoline.  The friend was already gone at that early hour.  The feed store had not opened yet even though it after the posted opening hour.  The gasoline station came through for us.  We then did the feed store and arrived early for the meeting to get B set up with headphones and iPad.  He was excellent during the long meeting.

We then went to the yarn store for Grammie to sign up for a knitting class to make a "Wonderful Wallaby",  a pattern she had previously purchased but could not find so she acquired a new one, plus a new set of 16" size 6 needles, the class fee, and the yarn for the sweater sized for B.  He chose his own color: blue. I chose some white to do some patterning in the design.

After that we went to Joann's Fabrics and Crafts for some paper for paper-crafting, to KMart for medicine, to BJ's for coupon sales, and finally made a stop for fast food..."vanilla ice cream in a cup with a spoon please".  He thought we should go up to the airport to eat, which we did.  There were three other stops scheduled but Grammie had had enough.  It turns out B had also had enough.  We were about one and a half miles from home when he fell sound asleep, sooooooo.....When we got home Grammie got out her knitting and started the ribbing on the Wonderful Wallaby to be ready for the open class in two days.

When C and L returned from school we had some homework time then headed to Grandpa's house for games and supper.  Grammie made some Sixty Minute Rolls to go with some delicious vegetable soup along with some roasted cauliflower and roasted beets.  L announced that she does not like beets. Grammie said she did not like beets, either, but they were supposedly good for us so she ate three pieces. L did not.

Dad came for supper and stayed a little while talking with Uncle R then rounded up the gang, picked some jalapeno peppers, and headed home.

Adventures all day long.  Grammie will sleep well tonight...

Monday, April 20, 2015

Yes, Kale Salad!

Kale is one of my favorite foods.  It has lots of nutritious substances in it.  It is relatively inexpensive.  It is available during much of the year.  I hope it is easy to grow since I want to get some in the ground soon...remembering to think about companion planting when making the garden plan.

In the past I have always eaten cooked kale.  Sauteed with a little olive oil and garlic, what is not to love?  I mean,  garlic and olive oil and almost anything else is fabulous.  Often diced onions are thrown in with the garlic.

WELL, I have learned something new:  kale salad.  The salad can be anything but this is what I have made twice this past week.

Kale Salad

One bunch fresh kale, washed well and stripped from the ribs...this will nearly fill a 3-quart bowl
1 cup store-bought potato salad
1 sweet onion, finely diced
3 Tablespoons smokey horseradish sauce  (because I had it and it was use it or toss it)

That is it:  just four ingredients.  You could add whatever you want to it. I used the potato salad and horseradish sauce as the "dressing" on the salad but you could use anything you wanted to dress it.


Massage the kale for three minutes.  Yep, massage it.  With very clean hands, you are going to eat this after all, gently massage the kale until it is reduced by about one-third.  Set a timer for 3 minutes.  That is probably long enough, though up to 5 minutes would be okay. 

When the kale has been massaged,  add the other ingredients and mix well.  Eat immediately or put in a wide-mouth canning jar, or other glass container in the refrigerator.  It should keep for three days or so.  If you can avoid eating it all instantly.

Even Dear One said it didn't make him want to throw up.  High praise indeed.

Friday, March 27, 2015


Not so long ago a young woman at our church was expecting a baby.  There was going to be a baby shower for which I wanted to provide a gift.  I have come to love the darling "onesies" that so many little babies sport these days. 

Because I have the use of a Cricut Expression machine and because I heard it was possible to cut fabric designs with this machine, I decided to give it a try. I found a very pink baby onesie, washed it in good shape, then went to work on a design.

A cupcake was one of the designs on the Wild Card cartridge so I cut out several different sized cupcakes from paper to see how they would look on the onesie.  I settled on a 2-inch cupcake.

The next thing was to try to cut out fabric.  In order to cut out fabric, the fabric needs to be very stiff.  To accomplish this feat, I made several false starts, i.e. failures.  Finally I came up with a system that worked.

Wash a piece of 100% cotton fabric and iron it smooth. Spray starch on the front of the fabric and iron it on.  Repeat two more times.  Next apply Steam a Seam2 or Ultra Bond and Hold to the wrong side of the fabric to be cut.  Leave the backing paper on the fabric and apply the fabric/Steam a Seam piece to the Cricut cutting mat and press down very well so there is contact with every bit of the paper backing.  Increase the pressure on the Cricut to max and the cutting depth to 5 or 6. Set the speed of the cut to about 3.  Cut the starched fabric/glue/paper sandwich.

Remove from the cutting mat then remove the backing paper from the fabric.  Place the design (cupcake) onto the onesie and iron on according to the directions on the Steam a Seam package.

You now have a cute little decorated onesie. 

Since I liked  the idea of "babycakes", I used Cricut Craft Room software to make the Babycakes label.  Fun.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Cards again

Recently I went to a Stamp Camp or some such thing.  A very nice Stampin Up demonstrator showed seven women how to make three cards.  There was a fifteen dollar fee involved plus two hours of time on a Monday evening.  I really enjoyed it.

Here are the cards I made:

It was a fun time and I got some good ideas, plus had the opportunity to try out the Big Shot some more with dies...maybe framelit dies?  Of course I did see a great deal of stuff I now need...!  I think I better not go to very many more of these occasions...

Friday, March 20, 2015

Another Card

With the Cricut Expression machine M gave me, I have been having a great deal of fun.

Cricut has some software called Cricut Craft Room.  This software allows you to do many things while connecting your computer to your Cricut machine.  Having seen a cute card somewhere with a penguin on it, I thought I might try a Br-r-r-day card.

With the Craft Room software I was able to nudge the letters in the greeting together which made a darling card, if I do say so myself.  Since it was several weeks ago, I have forgotten who received it, but...this is what it looked like:

I do rather think it is a cute card!  I am thinking of making more of them!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Oven Fried Potatoes

In our house a favorite treats is fried potatoes.  These can be hashed brown potatoes.  They can be French-fried potatoes.  They can be diced potatoes.  They can be thinly slice potatoes.  Any potato, bathed in grease of some kind, and brought to a golden brown, is just what is wanted on a pretty regular basis.  We never don't have potatoes lying around waiting to be turned into a densely calorie bit of tasty heaven.  Sad, but true.

Well...recently I was watching an episode of America's Test Kitchen where they were making oven fried potatoes.  This seemed like a likely possibility so I got started really soon after watching.

This is what I did:

1. Scrub several pounds of russet potatoes then cut into 1/2 inch slices.  Yes, this does see like they are too thick, but trust me, they are perfect.

2. Place a large rimmed pan in the oven at 450 degrees F. to preheat.

3.  Put the potatoes in a big pot and cover with water by only a little.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and let simmer until potatoes are nearly, but not quite,  cooked.  This will take about 5-6 minutes.

4.  Drain potatoes and return to pot. Drizzle 2 Tablespoons of vegetable oil and 1 teaspoon of kosher salt over the potatoes and gently stir to cover potatoes with the oil and salt.  When done, drizzle 2 MORE Tablespoons vegetable oil and 1 MORE teaspoon of salt over potatoes and again gently fold them to get the potatoes coated with the oil and salt.  By this time there will seem to be some sort of smeary stuff on the outside of the potatoes.  This is the starch, which is your friend here.

5.  Carefully removed heated pan from the oven, add 1 Tablespoon of vegetable oil to the pan and dump on the potatoes and form a single layer .  Return pan to oven and bake for 10 minutes then turn pan around in the oven.  Bake another 10 minutes, until bottoms of potatoes are nicely browned.  Remove pan from oven and carefully turn over each potato slice so the other side can become brown.  Return to oven and let bake another 10-15 minutes.

They are delicious.  They disappear really quickly!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Cabbage Soup Project

Recently I acquired two big beautiful cabbages.  This happened at the same time that I wanted to "clean out" our freezer.  Since I had several containers of frozen vegetables, it seemed like the right thing to do.

Below is the recipe I used as a starting point.

Original recipe


  1. Place all in large stock pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Simmer for 1 hour.
  3. Refrigerate all leftovers.

What I actually did:

1 head cabbage, chopped
Onions, sliced (since they were little onions, I don't know how many but it was probably 1 1/2 to 2 pounds
Broccoli florets-three or four heads cut up
Zucchini--three medium, sliced and quartered
Celery--half a bunch...would have used more if I had had more
Red bell peppers--2,  chopped
Green bell peppers--2, chopped
Garlic-1/3 cup cloves, chopped
Carrots-one cup, sliced---would have used more if I had had them
3 quarts water
2 quarts vegetable juice
4 beef bouillon cubes
1 packet Lipton's French onion soup mix
Chop or slice all vegetables. Place in extremely large pot and cover with the water.  Bring to a boil then add onion soup mix and bouillon and stir well.  Reduce heat to simmer and cover pot.  Let cook until all vegetables are soft.  Add vegetable juice, which will bring the soup closer to a temperature that you can eat  a big bowl right away.

The original intention of this soup was to give you a tasty, low calorie soup that you could eat freely.  It is so good that you might want to eat several bowls a day.  You won't need to eat much else, though I do like a slice of whole wheat toast to dip in, but I don't recommend that if you are on a restricted diet for some reason. 

Friday, February 27, 2015

G Card Interior

After cutting the front cat at 3 1/2 inches tall, I thought I would make a smaller cat for the inside of the card.  I cut this one at 1 1/2 inches.  That is REALLY small, but still very cute.

While cutting the tall cat, I had an incident with one of the images.  Just because that cat lost some of his body parts was not a good reason to toss him in the trash. I think he looks perfectly fine edging out of the picture.  He may be off to stick his nose into the birthday cake which is probably sitting on the counter at this very moment...

This interior is a little busy and mismatched, but it is just a card. It can be tossed out after looking at it a moment. 

Having said that, I thoroughly enjoyed planning and making this card.  This is going to our first adult grandchild, a girl we totally adore.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Card Front for G

I love that Cricut!  I have been thinking about a card for G, who will be eighteen years old really soon.  I saw a video on YouTube where the demonstrator made a cat card.  Well!  G and her family have several cats of different colors and sizes so I thought: cats is it!

Here is the front of the card:

Next time: the interior, but don't hold your breath....

Monday, February 23, 2015


The weather was bad when we had originally planned to have the Chocolate Dipping and Valentine Card Making activity.  In preparation for the activity I had used the Cricut and cut out many different hearts in colors and size differences.  It was really fun.  One of the best parts was the card stock after the hearts were cut out!  I am sure they will make wonderful stencils.
Below are two of the cards sisters made.  I think they are great!

A simply pile of different hearts with a circular sentiment item. 

 This card, with hearts all the same size, is also very attractive.  I loved this one, too.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Bokeh, Three!

Here are the most vibrantly colored paintings.

The top one is my favorite of the nine I made this go around, but it is easy to love it because I love alizarin crimson!  Such a great color.

Eventually these will be made into cards to give away, or to put into a fund-raising auction for the youth at church.  I don't know if I will be able to part with the top one....

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Bokeh, Two!

Here is another batch of the bokeh paintings I made.

These blue and green paintings really pleased me.  There is more I could do with them, but I stopped there.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Painting Fun: Bokeh pictures

Recently I watched a YouTube video which introduced "bokeh" painting to me. Sadly I have watched too many videos since then and don't know whose it was.   I had never heard of it but I immediately loved it.

 If I understand correctly, (which I hope, because this is how I did it) using watercolor paints you wet the 140-lb paper all over then drop blots of several colors all over it in random patterns to fill the whole card.  

Once the painting is dry, using a white pigment ink pad, you daub ink onto increasingly smaller stencils of the same image.  Since I had been cutting out hearts of multiple sizes for a Relief Society activity, I used the hearts.

These are what I came up with:

This is the yellow/blue/green group.  Eventually I am going to make them into note cards but right now I am just trying out background colors.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Homemade General Tso's Sauce

Because there is a vegetarian in the house, and because I am not a full time vegetarian, sometimes I crave a little meat.  That is what I tell myself. My way of "fixing" the problem is that every few months I will take a book and go to a Chinese buffet and eat too much food.

Recently I had a near-fainting episode and thought my blood sugar was too low.  In order to stave off something worse, I went to the buffet.  After picking through several serving dishes to load my plate with broccoli and a few bits of meat, plus a bowl with dumplings and dipping sauce, I had a nice time munching and listening to Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover since I had by a fluke brought my headphones with me in my purse.

Dave Ramsey really caught my attention. I wish I had read that book much earlier in life, but there is so much we can still use even at this period in life.  This is a financial makeover book as well as a weight loss book, if you are listening.

So, eating all that broccoli and the little bits of meat was lovely, except for the too-full felling afterwards.  As I sat there, I realized that it was the sauces that appeal to me.  I had previously learned to make the dumpling dipping sauce into which I dip steamed broccoli at home.  I figured I needed to find a General Tso's sauce recipe.  Which I did.  Actually several sauces which I sort of mish-mashed together then fine tuned to my taste.

PACC Version General Tso's Sauce

1 15-ounce can vegetable broth (I think chicken broth would be better)
3 Tablespoons soy sauce
3 Tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 Tablespoons rice vinegar
1 Tablespoon sesame oil
1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
2 teaspoons minced garlic (this time I used pre-minced from a jar.  Freshly minced would be better.)
1 teaspoon Sambal Oeleck
1/2 teaspoon dried red chili pepper flakes

2 Tablespoons cornstarch mixed into 3 Tablespoons water

Combine everything except the cornstarch and water in a 2 quart saucepan.  Bring to a boil.  Mix the cornstarch with hot water until it is smooth then stir into the sauce and cook until slightly thickened.  This tastes pretty good. 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

First Real Greeting Card Effort

There was a baby shower this week. I could not knit so I tried making some note cards.  They were very fun to make.

Here is a short video to see how they turned out.  You can even see the homemade stick'em on the envelope flaps!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Envelopes to Order!

So, it is such a nice thing when you put a video up on YouTube and someone asks you to make some envelopes having actually WATCHED that video!

This morning as soon as I crawled out of bed I decided that it was the first day of a new year so I would be productive immediately.  I made 25 envelopes for the friend who watched the video and said she could use them.

Here is a picture of them:

25 envelopes using the Envelope Punch Board and some paper from Joann Fabrics and Crafts which I will name shortly..

So far I have been having fun with the envelope punch board. I think I am going to try to make a box for the envelopes using the board.  There are LOTS of videos by clever people on YouTube.

If you want to look at that newest video--a first effort with the new camera just to see if it could be done so I left in all the bloopers and other warts---here is the place to click.