Monday, November 24, 2008

Happy Birthday T

My goal has been to try and sew a Christmas gift a day to try and get everything done by the time we travel for Christmas. This past weekend I finished all of the stuff for my in-laws. 3 gifts down 4 to go PLUS the stuff I'm making for my daughter (doll clothes for her new doll from Santa, and I'm thinking of making this art case tutorial - I think it'll be great for church).

In the meantime I made these dish towels for Tracy for her birthday. They were easy and fun to make. I just bought some white towels from Restoration Hardware, patched one and did applique on the other.
Happy Birthday Tracy! I can't wait until next year for your 30th birthday party (yes - she's already planning it).

Friday, November 21, 2008

Tiny Doughnuts

I am not sure why, but it seems that everything that is small is so much more desirable than its true to size counterpart. Especially when it comes to food. I think that is why I always tend to eat more of the snake size candy bars than I would if I where to eat a regular sized bar.  Anyhow I saw a picture of these delectable morsels and showed them to my children and then they where smitten they begged and begged until I final gave in and made them. I saw them first on the not Martha web site which has some really good ideas. (I think I will try the pies in a jar next) The doughnuts where fun.  We made a Cinnamon sugar, vanilla glazed and my personal favorite lemon poppy seed. This is perfect if you need a little something sweet or 5 of a little something sweet.  

Saturday, November 15, 2008

"mom, can you make me a dress?"

I hadn't realized it until the other day that Anna had grown out of all of her dresses. Since we go to church every Sunday I thought I'd better make her some dresses. Plus, one night in bed she asked me if I could make her a new dress for church and that it needed to be made with my pink/red apple fabric.

This dress I made from the new Sandi Henderson Claire pattern. This pattern is nice because it goes from size 6 months to size 8 - so great if you're wanting to make matching/coordinating outfits for all your girls. Plus, you get 3 different dresses and 1 shirt with this patterns, so worth the money. And like Tracy mentioned before, just trace your size with patternease (which you can get at Joanns for $1.99 plus a coupon). I would suggest doing this for your expensive patterns. If you paid $1 for the pattern at Joanns it's not worth your time. Anyway, back to the dress - it was super easy to make! Probably only took me an hour or so max. I omitted the apron though - I'm not sure how I feel about the aprons sewn into the dresses. Maybe I'll change my mind later.
Here's the one she asked for. I can't help but love this pattern. Plus, she can wear it year round and with leggings next year. Gotta love that with growing kids, right!?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Lentil Soup

  I love the desire fall bring to eat nothing but warm soup and crusty bread. Tonight I made a soup for dinner that was really satisfying.  the fact that my oldest daughter ate it, without complaining means that It will be going on the list of things to make again.  I found the recipe in a book I have had for a long time but haven't used much it was calling my name.  I am glad because this is the second thing I have made from it this week it is the Food Everyday Cookbook "Great Food Fast".

Lentil Soup

3 strips of Bacon chopped 
1 large Onion, chopped
3 medium Carrots, peeled, cut in to 1/4 half moons
2 Garlic cloves, minced 
3 TBS Tomato paste
1 1/2 cup Lentils
1/2 tsp dried Thyme
2 cans Chicken Broth
1 TBS red-wine Vinegar
Salt and Pepper to taste

1. In a dutch Oven or other pot with a tight lid, cook bacon over medium heat until brown and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of rendered fat.

2. Add the onion and carrots; cook until softened. Stir in the garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

3. Stir in tomatoes paste, add the lentils, thyme, broth and 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer. Cover; cook until lentils are tender, 30 to 45 minutes. If soup becomes to thick during cooking, add water as needed (I added over 2 cup more.)

4. Stir in vinegar, and adjust salt and pepper.    

Happy cooking!!


Saturday, November 8, 2008

i'm not a foodie, but. . .

Tracy is actually the "foodie" having gone to school studying culinary arts. She's a GREAT resource for my pre-grocery shopping escapades to ask questions like "What's Mango chutney?" or "What isle do you think prosciutto is on?" (pretending like I KNOW what prosciutto is) and "Is Parmigiano Reggiano cheese the same thing as Parmesean cheese?" Stuff like that.

Here's some links to some tasty looking recipes I'd like to try:

Mini Fall Galettes
: as if I REALLY need an excuse to try another version of pie.

Peanut butter bars: I'm wondering if these are the same ones that used to get served with school lunch. Remember those? Mmmmm. . .

Fried Scones: with honey butter. Yummm. . .

Breakfast Burritos
: these just sound good to me.

Chicken Enchiladas: had to at least throw in 1 dinner!

What I'm REALLY looking for are good crock pot recipes. Does anyone have any???

Thursday, November 6, 2008

tutorial: covered button ponytail holder

This tutorial is probably unnecessary because it's pretty simple. I figured out a newer faster way to do it than the way I had originally been doing it, so I thought I'd share. I bought thin ponytail holders and a covered button kit that has 1 1/2" buttons. Any size button will do though. Then you need a strong piece of string.

Wrap your string around the elastic and insert it through the back of the button shank loop thing. Pull
Then Knot
Follow the directions on the box to cover the button. On the bigger buttons you can put a layer of muslin in between the button and the cute fabric. I highly recommend doing this so that the metal doesn't shine through the fabric. (I tried doing this on the smaller buttons, but it doesn't seem to work - too thick.)These make great, inexpensive gifts (especially if you can use a coupon at Joanns or check on etsy. Beware: these are very addicting to make!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Daylight Savings Bag

 I love Daylight savings time, not so much in the spring but in the fall. I feel like someone has given me a gift on extra hour.  especial when I trick my kids and put them to bed an hour early : ) So what do I do with this extra hour?  So far watched a movie with my husband, worked out and sewed.  I tried out a new pattern I got from Sandi Henderson from Portabellopixie. This is the Market Bag and it is the first patten of hers I have tried. I really like her patterns not only is the tissue paper they are printed on a bit heavier, but the instructions are in a full color and in an easy to follow booklet.  Her patterns are a bit more pricey than your craft store brands but all of the dresses go up to size 8. So if you have two girls like I do. You can trace the pattern of the smaller size on pattern ease and cut out the bigger size.  It makes it a bit more economical that way..........but I saved the best part for last she allows people to sell items made from her patterns, unlike some of the other designers.  Happy Sewing.