Thursday, May 31, 2012

Meatless Dish: Pasta and Roasted Mushrooms

I had a dish at a pub once which was a pasta with cream sauce and portabella mushrooms.  It was so good, and I really liked that fact that it had no meat but the mushrooms were so hearty they made me feel like I was eating steak. 

Since then I have been looking for a recipe for something similiar so I could make it at home. I searched and no luck.  Then one day last month I saw a giveaway from Prudent Baby for a cookbook from The Pioneer Woman .  All you had to do was take a look around and post in the comments a dish that sounded yummy. And there it was:  a recipe that sounded like what I ate... and to top it off it had whiskey and white wine it.  What sounds better then that?

Pasta with Whisky, Wine, and Mushrooms
Pasta with Whiskey, Wine and Mushrooms by The Pioneer Womam

I forgot to take a picture of my attempt at it.. my presentation didn't look as good as the original, so it's probably best.  I halved the recipe and it was still plenty of food for two of us with leftovers.  I also don't know if I bought the right kind of cream.  I ended up buying half and half and it called for heavy cream.  I wasn't sure if heavy whipping cream was the same.  I usually don't cook with cream especially now since that I am trying to lower my cholesterol.  It didn't quite thicken as it was supposed to at first, so I added a bit more cream and some cornstarch.  One of those did the trick.  Next time I am going to try it with lowfat yogurt to attempt to make it low cholesterol.

Overall the dish was quite delicious.  The cream sauce was alright, but the part that was really good was the roasted mushrooms.  They were very flavorful, rich and full.  (I kept thinking about them later.. how yummy they were. It made me want to find lots more recipes with roasted mushrooms. )  Next time I would still half the recipe but keep the amount of mushrooms the same as the original so that every bite would have at least one heavenly mushroom in it. 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Card Series - Post 6: The Fun Stuff

I love to use different kinds of stickers.  I like to have at least one sticker that is the focus of the card.  I also love my bling...  I think it adds a nice extra touch.

Birthday - Male

Child Birthday



Birthday - Female
Hope you liked this week's cards.  Do you have a favorite card so far?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Fabric Dollhouse

My niece turned 2 this past February.  I had recently found pinterest and was excited by some of the projects I found.  I decided that this  Fabric Dollhouse would be the perfect gift for her birthday.  I scrounged up some scraps of fabric, and a few extra supplies and got to work.   I really thought the idea was just so cute.  It looked pretty easy too. 

Well, it didn't turn out to be as easy as I hoped it would be.  Mostly I think because I had to hand sew way more then I expected and I am not that great at it. 

It also turned out a little lumpy and kind of uneven.  If you can tell by the pictures the front roof is not even with the back roof. 

 As far as supplies goes, I used 5 buttons, child hairbands and plastic that you do cross stich on, some stuffing and of course, the fabric. 


I had more ideas of little details to do but by the end I was just happy to have it finished on time.  I would make another one, but I would have to make sure I had plenty of time to hand sew on all the cute details.  I would also make sure I had some sort of adhesive to keep the stuffing attached to the plastic.  The tutorial said to use duct tape, but I didn't have any so I skipped it, but I think it would have made things a lot easier to measure and keep it looking a lot cleaner and less lumpy.  I guess that's what I get for skipping out on a step.  Overall, though, I still think it came out pretty cute.  It's little and just right for travel!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Birthday presents

So I had a great birthday, can't believe I'm over 30 now!  We ended the day by going to this yummy pizza place for dinner.  They put fresh basil on all their pizzas - so delicious.  My pizza sauce was a cream and red wine reduction.  delish!  And to to top it off, I had an affogatto - which is gelato with an espresso shot poured over... like heaven in a spoon.  :)

I got some fun presents for my sewing.  My husband got me some rolly containers to store all my sewing stuff - my stuff had been slowly overtaking the kitchen.   It actually makes it easier to breathe now that it's more much easier to sew. 

My sister-in-law also got me this thread holder.  So cool- From 1983... I think that makes it vintage.  It holds 50 spools of thread.  It was cute too, my sis in law blinged it out.  :)  She also gave me some vintage bias tape - originally 15 cents.

I also have some fun crafty shopping trips to look forward to.  I can't wait!  Thanks to everyone who made my day wonderful.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Card Series - Post 5: The Basics

If you want to make your own cards, they sell packs of blank cards at craft stores. I have gotten mine from Michaels.  I usually buy two sizes: the standard card size and a thank you note size.  They are white and come with envelopes that fit.  The big ones come in packs of at least 50, - I'm not sure how many come in the smaller size.  At around ten dollars, that's a pretty good deal - way cheaper then buying a five dollar card at the grocery store. If you don't want just plain white, they also have other options,  colored and patterned, but I like the basic ones so I can customize them how I want.


Welcome Home


Thinking of You - Friend

See you next week for more cards!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Sewing for Fiji: Ollie's Dollies and No Sew Blankets

So it was my birthday last week, along with my first mother's day - so fun!  I'll do another post more about that, but I wanted to share what I did on my birthday.  My church goes to Fiji every summer as a mission trip.  The women wanted to make something to send with them on this years trip.  So they decided to make some items to give to the kids.    It was really awesome to participate and be able to also use my newly found skill.  Usually you spend your birthday thinking about yourself, but it was really nice to be able to spend my day doing something for others. 

They had one group putting together no sew blankets. 

The other group put together dolls for the children. 

It was so great to get together with other women, be child free for a little bit, have lunch that I didn't have to make and do something for others.  I couldn't have asked for a better birthday!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Peasant Dress and Diaper Cover

My sister-in-law is having a little baby girl at the end of may.  I was trying to come up with something I could give her new little one.  I usually make bibs, but from talking to her, I got the impression that she wouldn't really use infant bibs.  The one thing you learn from having a baby is that every baby is very different, so some things that may have been useful for one person may not be useful for another.  I searched around and came up with this.  I'm totally happy with it and every baby has to wear clothes.  :)

The dress is from a free pattern and tutorial by Sew Much Ado.   
Check it out!   Infant Peasant Dress
It was really pretty easy.  I made a few mistakes here and there, but was able to remedy them quickly - that's what happens when you don't read the directions carefully.  I only had 1/2 inch elastic instead of thre required 1/4 inch elastic.  That made it a little more difficult because I didn't want to make the dress too small by making too big of a casing.  I also lengthened it a bit because my in-laws are really tall people and I wanted to make sure it would fit for more then a day.   But when all was said and done, it came out so cute!

I decided I wanted a diaper cover to go with it.  I searched around and found another free pattern and tutorial from MADE.   It was just the right size to go with the dress.  She has several sizes which is nice so that I can try making another one for my little girl.  You can find it here: Diaper Cover .   It was pretty easy too, though, she says that it's hard to make it flat and smooth so don't worry about it.  She was totally right - there were definately places where it puckered or bunched up but once you put the elastic in, you can't even tell!

With some free patterns and a little bit of time, I wound up with such a cute gift that I was pretty proud of.  I recommend giving them a try!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Acrylic Painting - Bread, wine and cheese

Bread, wine and cheese used to be a regular meal at our house.  Easy, romantic, relaxing and yummy.  Unfortunately, with pregnancy, the birth of a baby, and trying to cut down on my cholesterol, we haven't had it in a long time.  Sad... :(
But when we were eating it regularly, it inspired a painting for my kitchen.  This one took a little more time, mostly waiting for parts to dry before painting the next step.  Also, didn't have some of the colors, so had to mix them - the browns and the orange and the grey, I had to mix them myself.  I'm actually rather proud of the way they turned out. 
I also originally tried to make clear wine glasses... um.. kind of difficult... so I changed them to blue glass which is fine because I absolutely love blue glass.  It's not the best lighting but it gives you the idea. 

Bread, Wine and Cheese

Who needs to buy art when you can make it yourself?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Card series - post 4: The Sticky Stuff

Sorry for the lack of posts, it's been a busy week.  I didn't want to forget this week's card post though. 
So here it is.... For adhesive, I have found that just a regular old craft stick will do.  I have tried other glues but sometimes you can see the glue lines through the paper. So for sturdy, smooth and invisible... just use a plain old craft stick you would  find at Michael's... but not a kids glue stick.

Welcome Girl Baby


Thinking of You

Birthday - Husband

Happy Birthday

Hope you enjoyed this weeks post. Stay tuned for the next round of cards!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Homemade liquid hand soap

The first thing that I ever pinned on Pinterest was this recipe for Homemade Liquid Hand Soap from The Farmer's Nest .  I actually saw one of my friends post on facebook how she had tried it out and so then I checked out her pin.  I thought it would be a fun use of the soap I always take home when I stay in a hotel.  Fancy hand soap can get kind of pricey, so why not?

All you need is an 8 oz bar of soap, glycerin, and water.  Well also a really BIG pot, something to mix it with, a grater and some containers to store it in.

The only trouble I had was finding the glycerin... I went to my local grocery story,... they had glycerin suppositories (NOT what you want), and apparently my local Walgreens stopped carrying it.  I ended up borrowing some from my mother-in-law... but next time I will try Michaels or Joann's.  Maybe I'll have better luck there. 

It turned out pretty well, though it does have a slightly weird consistency... kind all stays together, which helps when you're trying to pour it into containers with small openings.  I would maybe recommend a funnel.  The other thing I noticed is that the water sinks to the bottom when you store it but just shake it up before you refill your pump containers and you should be good.  It makes a LOT of soap, so pick a scent you like and have fun!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Sleep Sack - Zipper FAIL

I attempted to make a sleep sack awhile back.  I looked at our sleep sack and thought - 3 pieces, that can't be that hard.  ha!   The sleep sack itself wasn't that hard.  The zipper on the other hand beat me.  I had never done a zipper before...  I watched some videos, read a few tutorials... looked easy. was easy. ..however... once I sewed it on, I tried unzipping it and then I found out what I did wrong.  The end that I wanted to come apart didn't... can't really put a child into something that can't open.

 Lesson that I learned:   ALWAYS try using your zipper BEFORE sewing!  Also pay attention to what KIND of zipper you buy.. they are not all alike.

Well, it wouldn't have been that bad, use the seam ripper and redo it.  However, I had made the project out of an old t-shirt that way if I messed up nothing would be lost... however... such an old t-shirt that the material ripped when I tried to undo it. When I tried sewing the zipper on the part that wasn't ripped, it was all crooked and totally not functional.  So I have to start over with new material... I'll post when I actually complete the project right.

Good news is... I got to practice my applique and learned what NOT to do when sewing a zipper. 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Card Series - Post 3: The Sayings

As my card making has evolved, I have found that my favorite stickers for phrases and sayings is by K & Company .    It is a product called Card Quotables .   They used to have a whole bunch of different sticker packs, but then Michael's stopped carrying them, and now online they only sell their  'All Occasions' and 'All Occasions 2'.  They used to have 'Birthday', 'Girlfriends' and a whole bunch more - so sad.  I will continue to order these online until they either stop making them or until I find something better.  The reason I like them is that they are clear, so I can put them on top of different colored paper, it mixes things up, and it makes it easier to coordinate with the rest of the card.  They also don't really look like stickers, so I feel like it gives my card a little bit more of a professional look. 



Child Birthday

Thinking of You - Love

Thinking of You - Sympathy
Hope you enjoyed this week's card post!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Flowers in the Sunshine Dress

After sewing the tunic for my daughter, and refreshing my memory on my sewing skills,  I thought I would try my hand at making a dress without a pattern.  I look at a lot of clothing and think "I could make that!".  I think sometime I might be right and others, ... well, it just might be more difficult then I think.  

My mother-in-law made my husband and I a quilt which had a fabric in it that looked just right for a little summer dress.  I went over to see if she had any of it leftover, and I was in luck - she did! 

I had an idea in my head, just a basic sundress with a sash.   I wanted to add piping, and I wanted the yellow fabric to be on the back also.  Part of the reason for this was that I was trying to make the dress larger because I only had a limited amount of the blue fabric. 

I first traced around a twelve month dress she already had to get the basic shape and size.  Then I cut out the pattern the way I wanted for the front and back pieces.  Next I cut out my fabric and my lining for the bodice. 

I sewed the pieces together at the shoulders , then sandwiched in the piping, though I like to sew on my piping to one piece to hold it secure before I sew the layers together.  I sewed it all together, leaving a place to turn it inside out.

I then made strips of cloth that would be topstiched to the bodice. 

The front piece I decided I wanted to be a little different so I made three horizontal pleats.

I then made my sash pieces, pinned everything together, the sash pieces sandwiched in between.

  I sewed the sides together and had a very structured top piece.  I forgot to take a picture of that step :(   I actually had to redo it because when I tried it on my little girl, I had made the back pieces overlap too much and it was really hard to get on and off.  Here is a picture of it after I attached the skirt.  Just pretend that the skirt part isn't there yet. 

Then I used a rectangle for the skirt- which I actually pieced together because of the limited amount of fabric I had - I made the rectangle into a tube, gathered and attached it by topstiching again.   This was kind of a difficult step.  It was a lot of layers and being gathered, it was hard to tell if it was even. I topstiched it on the top of the yellow piece and the bottom of the yellow piece so it would be secure. 

I then did my button holes and sewed on the buttons.  I don't know what happened here, but it didn't come out quite straight.  I guess that's what happens when you just eyeball instead of measure.  Lesson learned.

The last step was hemming and I was done!   I think it came out rather well, however, I did learn a lot, and there were maybe ways I would have done things slightly different to make it easier, but overall I'm pretty proud of it. 

Now the one flaw is that I think it's more of a 2T or maybe bigger.  I was so paranoid about making it and then it being too small that I made my pattern a little extra big and then when I was cutting it, I even cut a centimeter or two bigger then the pattern.  I also made it longer because I figured I could always make it shorter but not longer... it ended up being really long.  Oh well, at least it will fit her for a while.  :)

Here is her eyeing me when I first put it on her... but then I get a nice smile, so it can't be that bad.

Here is a picture of the back of the dress as she's trying to crawl away from me.  It's kind of hard to get a good picture of a ten month old.  There are so many fun things to explore. 

I think she's happy with it, what do you think? 

Bring on summer!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...