Monday, May 28, 2012

Quilt Project

   The last couple of weeks has been very busy around here.
 In between moving and settling in I have been working on a commission quilt.
 I loved having an empty room big enough to lay out the quilt. 
 Recently I read on-line that painters tape worked well for taping a quilt to the floor.
It did work very well and pulled up off the floor with no trouble.
 This quilt is a queen size so I used almost every quilting pin I own.
 To help hold up the bulk of the quilt I set up my ironing board. It worked but wobbled a lot.
 Chenille was used for the sashing. It's very pretty and adds a lot of weight to the quilt. 
 The back is a striped fabric which I also used for the binding.
 I really love how the stripes worked for the binding.
And now it's finished and ready for a new home. Up next, some sewing for Elizabeth.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Smoked Brisket

I love smoked brisket and have wanted to learn how to make it for some time now.
 After reading online how others smoke their brisket I decided to give it a try. I began by rinsing the meat well and placing it in a foil pan fat side down and sprinkled it well with garlic powder, salt and black pepper.
 When the grill was ready I added some water to the bottom of the pan and placed it on the grill. This is how the meat looked after 2-hours.
 Here is how it looked after 4-hours.
 I was afraid the meat would dry out so after 4-hours I turned it over so the fat side was now up.
 After about 6-hours I took the meat off the grill and out of the pan and covered it with foil.
 When it was time to slice the meat it was moist and tender.
I was very impressed with the flavor too. In fact, the brisket was just as good as any restaurant only a lot cheaper!

Monday, May 21, 2012

Sewing From My Stash

Our recent move has opened up my eyes to the amount of stuff we have and will not ever use.
Fabric is a definite item I have too much of; so when I came across this fun scrap of tapestry fabric I decided to put it to good use instead of giving it away. 
 Originally I had planned to make sofa pillows but instead this fabric is now a dog pillow.
Rani is very pleased with  her new bed.

Friday, May 18, 2012

A Big Day

Jonathan's big day has now come and gone and I didn't even shed a tear; I was too busy smiling.
4 years of hitting the books and getting little sleep has now ended. 
I'm so proud of my Math Major who graduated Summa Cum Laude with Honors.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Baking in a Toaster Oven

I have had great success baking cakes, cookies, cobblers, biscuits.... in a toaster oven. The one item that    has always been a challenge was baking a loaf of bread.
My new toaster oven is taller than normal so I decided to see if it were possible to bake a loaf of bread without it burning or under cooking. I placed a sheet of foil on the top of the bread so if it rose too high the bread wouldn't stick and make a mess.
 It's a good thing I used the foil because the bread rose higher than expected and pushed up against the top of the oven.
 The bottom of the bread cooked perfectly.
 When I cut the bread in half I was very pleased to see it was completely cooked.
Now I'm set for baking all summer without heating up the house.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Quilt Club Block 4 of 12

I have been so busy the last few weeks that I completely forgot to sew up my April quilt block; thankgoodness I remembered before we meet this month.
 While at the quilt club last month I learned about a service project the sewing store was participating in. They were asking for volunteers to sew together small Christmas Stockings.
 All that was needed to complete a Christmas Stocking was to finish the edges and add some type of decoration.
I didn't have any Christmas fabric on  hand but I'm pretty pleased with how the Christmas Stockings turned out.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Rice Cooker

A bargain isn't a bargain if you don't use what you buy.
Several years ago I found a neat little stove top rice cooker at a garage sale for 1-dollar. Sadly I couldn't figure out how to use it.
Right before making the decision to get rid of the cooker I searched the Internet and found a man looking to buy a stove top cooker. I took time to send him an e-mail asking how the cooker was used and thankfully he shared with me the simple steps.
 The rice cooker works pretty much like a normal pot except the bottom pan holds water which makes steam for the top pan. Originally I thought the rice was to go in the top pan dry and the steam would cook it.
 After measuring my rice and water I cover and cook for 20 minutes.
 What a difference this cooker makes.
The rice comes out fluffy and moist and does not stick at the bottom. So glad I didn't get rid of my cooker as planned.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Creative Leftovers

Earlier this week I grilled pork steaks for dinner with all the fixings; corn on the cob, baked potatoes.... Yum, it was all so good.
 No matter how good a meal is sometimes you don't want to eat it a second time. So I decided to get creative with the leftovers.
 I took the leftover baked potatoes and sliced them, leaving the skin on. These were then fried in a skillet until brown on each side.
 Next I fried up some eggs, warmed up the leftover grilled pork steak and we had a meal fit for a king.
Just as we were sitting down to eat I remembered I had some biscuits leftover from breakfast which was the perfect addition to our meal. Yum, leftovers sure are tasty. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Kitchen Necessity

In my home a toaster oven is a necessity that is used daily; and we tend to wear them out quickly. Here in my newest toaster oven.
It's not just a toaster oven but a rotisserie as well.
 Purchased 2nd hand for 16-dollars.
The last time I needed a toaster oven I purchased it new and it lasted less than a year. So glad I found this one for such a great price. And, best of all, it works! We tested it with a batch of brownies and they baked up perfectly.

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