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Archive for May, 2009

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Brooks GTS Running Shoes

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SKECHERS Bikers It Girl Shoes – black with rhinestones

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Aladdin Travel Mug – I like it, because it can be microwaved.

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Remember that chocolate cake I made the other day?  The one where I stacked two (single-layer) slices on top of each other to make a bigger slice?  Keep in mind that it was a new recipe, and it wasn’t from a healthy foods cookbook.  It used a lot of sugar.

After sitting down to eat my slice of cake, I soon found out that this tasty cake was actually too sweet for me to eat a large amount.  I knew if I did, I would be facing extreme sugar overload.  Wow.

Here’s a picture of how much of that slice was left:

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I’ve been attempting to convince myself to eat more fruits and veggies.  Here is a snack I had today:

  • Yellow bell pepper slices
  • Baby carrots
  • Cucumber slices
  • Cheese slices
  • Fat free ranch dressing

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I made a chocolate cake from scratch.  It hadn’t made a cake (especially from scratch) in so long, I had to go to the store just for a package of powdered sugar.  I used recipes from the Dining on a Dime cookbook.  Since they were new recipes (for me), I cut the cake and icing recipes in half. I filled a round cake pan, and when serving it, put two slices on top of each other.

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I finally got around to propping up my tomato plant and a green bean plant.  They’d been flopping over and the tomato plant had been shadowing another bean plant.  As temporary stakes, I used broken sticks.

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In the picture above, you can see a few romaine lettuce plants, green beans, tomatoes, squash, and marigolds.  Below is a picture of the cucumber plant that beat the odds and finally grew for me.

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Future Eats

I expect to eat green beans and additional tomatoes from my garden very soon.  I’ll probably pick these in the next few days.

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My First Tomato!

I picked the first ripe tomato from my garden today.  It had a sweet taste and was very nice with salt and pepper.

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May 10 Garden

I spent most of the morning in my garden and loved it.  I’ve recently pulled up my potatoes, and we’ve used them in two meals so far.  I had planted five plants, and most of the potatoes were small (new potato size).  I pulled up the plants, because they were starting to turn yellow, so we figured they were done.  The potatoes were so tasty!

I’ve also gotten two squash so far, and about 1-2 times a week, we get a few strawberries.  Next year’s garden will probably be much bigger!

Today, I planted more green bean, carrot, and cucumber seeds.  One of my cucumber plants has yellow flowers, which is a good sign.  I’ve had a hard time getting them to keep growing past a few days.  One of my green bean plants has several baby green beans on it, and the tomato plant has several decent-size green tomatoes on it.

I weeded, trimmed unwanted new growth on bushes, planted shade and sun annual flowers (48), and mulched all of my flower beds.  I can’t wait until the new flowers really take off.  I love to see flowers in bloom everywhere.

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The Completed Blouse

Remember that blouse I was cutting out a few posts back?  Here it is.  I’ve used this pattern several times, both for short and long-sleeved blouses.  It’s great with jersey-knits and silky fabrics.  It’s Simplicity 3887.

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This is a chicken-fajita pizza.  I like it much better than pepperoni or sausage.

I used Pillsbury refrigerated pizza dough, although if I have time, I make homemade dough.

After putting the dough in the oven for about four minutes, I spread on marinara sauce, and then sprinkle on mozzarella and cheddar cheese.  On my side of the pizza, I add onions and basil.  If I have mushrooms, I add them to the entire pizza.  I heat up pre-cooked, frozen chicken fajita meat from the grocery store, break it into small pieces, and then sprinkle it on top.  Another round in the oven cooks the pizza.  Yum!

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Breakfast, Tea, and Scones

I’ve recently taken to having “tea.”  After lining a tray with a cloth napkin, I fill up my one-liter teapot with herbal chamomile tea, wrap it in a tea cozy, set out a cup and saucer, and find something to snack on with my tea.  By the way, the beautiful flowers below are from my lovely husband!

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Lately, I’ve been eating an egg with toast for breakfast.  For those of you that can’t stand having your eggs go all over your frying pan, take a look at the picture above.  Use a cup to put a hole in a slice of bread.  Put some Smart Balance butter in a frying pan.  Stick the bread in the pan, beat an egg in a small bowl, and pour it inside the slice of bread.  When the underside is done, carefully and quickly flip it to the other side.  You can also throw in onions, cheese, mushrooms, green onions, ham, etc.

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Lovely, lovely scones, how I love thee!  I made a Bisquick raisin scones recipe that I found online.  It even had a cinnamon glaze.  They were fantastic, fluffy, soft, and delicious!  They reminded me of real Scottish scones (of course, nothing can compare to real Scottish scones).  These were so much better than the hard, crumbly ones you often find at bakeries.

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I had my tea with a scone, jam, Smart Balance butter, and an apple.

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Sewing Patterns

Ever wondered how much stuff you need to cut out and prep pattern pieces?  Recently, I made two ankle skirts and a blouse.  I planned to cut out the pieces, mark the hem lines, and then press the hem lines before assembling the pattern pieces.  It’s much easier to iron hem lines on flat pieces of fabric instead of circular shirt hems, waistbands, and sleeves.

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From left to right I have a kneeling pad (I use if for gardening, too), fabric, a quilting ruler, scissors, a tracer wheel, pattern pieces, tracing paper, and pins.

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These are my pattern pieces for the straight skirt.  I lay them out next to each other, so it’s easier to get a strait hem and waistline.  I cut across the bottom, top and down one side (the side on the far left is on a fold).  Then, I cut down the middle.

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I’ve cut out the pieces and now I’m marking the waist and hem lines.  I put tracing paper in between the layers (I have wrong sides together when I cut out fabric).  I put my ruler at the appropriate distance from the edge, and then use my tracing wheel to mark the hem line.  This is the line I’ll fold on when ironing the hem (before I sew).

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This was the blouse I was making.  It was a bit trickier to cut out, because you had folds on the left and right sides.  Can you see the selvages (edges) meeting up in the middle?  After cutting these pieces, I had to refold the fabric another way and cut out additional pieces.  The neckline required three of each pattern piece – two of the regular fabric and one of fusible interfacing.  With this pattern, I had to mark each pattern piece as front or back.  Otherwise, down the road, it would be very hard to tell which was which.

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