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Post-it Pretty’s

friend Kobi is opening a new boutique in McLoud.  She has everything from unique baby clothes and accessories, women’s clothes, teacher appreciation gifts, mums (I mean it is called, “Mum’s The Word”), greeting cards, and all things gifts and crafts.  She found these neat little post-it note folders and asked if I could decorate them for her.  Here’s how they looked before I dressed them up:The Before.

And here is how I finished them:

Don’t worry, there’s OSU for you Pokes too… Just trying to make ya sweat…

I also made some that would be appealing to local schools:

Go Panthers!

And the neighboring rival:

Go Redskins!

For the most part, I think these turned out really cute.  What do you think?  Would you buy one of these?  How much would you spend?

Basically, if you are around and want to visit her super sweet boutique, you should.  She’s so inspired to create school-spirit for our schools (the way it was when we were in school).  She has a true mission, and I hope you support her.

For good measure, here are a few more photo’s of gifts offered at Mums The Word:

These are the most adorable metal flowers.  I imagine hanging them on my back patio to add color and whimsy.  Everyone loves whimsy.  Oh… I am so naming my next pet “Whimsy”.  Why am I just thinking of this???

Anyway, where was I?  Oh yeah, how about a little Thunder-Bling:

And one more thing I want to show is one of the many tin buckets with personalized vinyl lettering, anything you want… and then made into a gift:

Kind of wishing my name was Chloe about now..  Or Whimsy.  Whatever…

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Social Butterflies

I started another blog with my partner in crime, and now in business; Melanie W.  You can find us at RIGHT HERE.  Yes, click there and you shall see!  We’re completely excited about two upcoming events that we have the privilege of coordinating.  More to come on those events, just keep coming back!

When It Rains, It Pours…

I guess I should have written, when pipes freeze, burst, and thaw out… then it pours… Here’s my story.

It all began with a small water leak.  Our entire water system is stationed in the garage.  Hot water heater, water softener, pump, drains, etc.  During the coldest part of our winter, the hot water tank decided to spring a very small, yet noticeable leak.  Since Matthew has been working eight days a week, I called on his dad, Tommy; and my dad too.  My dad has made it be known since I was teeny tiny that he doesn’t do plumbing, and after all the troubles I’ve had lately… I totally get it.

Tommy came over to help me (and by help me, I mean do 99% himself) take out the corroded tank and drive in the icy-snow to buy me a new shiny one.  Long story short, the new tank didn’t work, had to uninstall it, take it back and exchange it for a different one.  Problem solved.  And believe me, there is way more to that story.  It wears me out just thinking about it.

Then… the weather starts warming slightly.  I go into the garage to do some laundry, and I hear water gushing.  The outside water spout which is right outside the garage, in between the garage and the formal living room had burst.  Water was literally gushing out of the sheetrock.  Immediately I flipped the breaker to the well, and called my dad and Tommy.  As I waited for them to arrive, I went into the living room and noticed one of Maxwell’s sippy-cups turned on its side.  Went to pick it up, and thought, “dang.. that’s a lot of water for a tiny cup”.  Took another step and water splashed up on my ankle.  My mother walked in at this point and the two of us cleared that room of all the furniture and toys faster than we’ve ever moved before.  I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves..

Thank the sweet Lord above for such great family and friends!  Kyle and Tonie helped rip this nasty wet carpet out of my house!

Look at that shiny kitchen knife!

The look on Maxwell’s face is exactly how I was feeling.  😦

More help came!  John and Liz are two more amazing friends who knew I needed help!  And of course, Isaac was a help to John.

Maxwell was happy again.  And so was I.  🙂

I thanked John and Liz with a box of Banana-Cinnamon Cupcakes topped with a Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting.  I mean, what says thank you like a ton of sugar, butter, cream cheese, and more sugar?

Did I mention that I topped them with some pecans that I toasted in more butter, sugar, and cinnamon?  Yummy…..

So it goes without saying that I am so lucky to have such amazing family and friends.

Gumbo…. finally

For anyone who is a friend on facebook, I promised a Gumbo recipe weeks ago.  I have no excuse for my laziness.  At least no excuse I care to write about, or that you would even care to read.  Trust me.

I’ve never made gumbo before.  I’ve eaten it too many times to count though.  My first restaurant employment was at Pearl’s Oyster Bar (southside).  So you can believe that I’ve eaten my lion share of cajun dishes.  I think the thing I loved about the gumbo at Pearl’s was the dark roux that helped blend all the other flavors together.  The recipe I’m about to share is a much,much lighter roux… more like a creamy broth?  Although I prefer the Pearl’s version, this one really was fantastic, especially for how easy it is!

What you’ll need:

  • 1 pound Andouille Sausage (unless that’s too spicy for you… then I suggest an Italian Sausage in it’s casing.)
  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves – cubed (season with salt, pepper, garlic powder)
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 medium sweet red pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (I prefer the white onion in this gumbo, bolder flavor)
  • 3 celery ribs, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (I use a full teaspoon… but I like the heat it gives.)
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning  (You could substitute any of these spices for something else.  I think Tony’s Creole would be awesome!)
  • 3 (14.5 ounce) cans chicken broth
  • 2/3 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 pound uncooked medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 cups frozen sliced okra (It’s hard to find pre-sliced frozen okra that isn’t battered.  So I bought the frozen whole okra, let them thaw slightly and chopped it myself.)

Directions

  1. In a Dutch oven, brown sausage and chicken in oil. Remove with a slotted spoon and keep warm. 
  2. In the drippings, saute red pepper, onion and celery until tender. 
  3. While these are cooking slice the sausage into bite size slices.  Stir in the seasonings; cook for 5 minutes. 
  4. Stir in the broth, rice and sausage mixture; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes or until rice is tender.
  5. Stir in tomatoes, shrimp and okra; cook for 10 minutes or until shrimp turn pink, stirring occasionally.
  6. SIDE NOTE!!!!!!   I didn’t like cooking the rice in the gumbo.  I would recommend cooking it in a different pot and adding it as you serve it.  ALSO…. make garlic bread to go with it.  YUM-YUM!

Looks like you could reach out and take that shrimp!  Go ahead… make some!

New Shoes…

by Paolo Nutini…  I’ve never heard of this guy, or the song.  But luckily for me, the lyrics are posted.  So I used the few lyrics to go with the photo I was thinking about… Here it is:

I’m kind of digging the song.  Maybe you should check it out.  Try itunes, or even Scrapping The Music.  If you’re into this kind of thing, submit an entry.  You may win some s.b. supplies.

And to my recipe fans (if in fact, there are any out there), I promise to post something yummy and amazing soon!

I’ll let you know if I win!

🙂

 

Scrapping The Music

I am a fan.  Go here:  Scrapping The Music.  I mean, if you like to “scrapbook”.  My pal, Melanie, the one who really turned me on to the fine art of scrapbooking told me about this site (among others).  They have weekly contests with selected songs as the muse.  I love the concept.  In fact, the scrapbook I created for my sister-in-law, Amber, was driven by songs and/or lyrics.

Here’s my first entry to “Scrapping The Music“.  The song choice was “Stand By Me”.

I’ll post my future pages, just in case anyone is interested.

🙂

Oh!  And I must give a ‘shout out’ to Misti.  She’s the genius behind the camera.  These photo’s were taken in September, 2009.

Asian (Caucasian) Beef-Pot-Pies

I’ve been researching ground beef recipes lately.  We have a cow processed every year to stock our freezer.  It’s better quality, less expensive in the long run, and organic.  The deal is, there is SOOOO much ground beef (very lean), and there are so many burgers, taco’s, spaghetti, etc. that a girl can prepare.  So I stumbled upon an Asian Lettuce Wrap recipe that looked great.  I revamped it a bit, twisted it to a little more American style (so people like my Dad, kids, etc. may try it).   Here’s what I came up with:

Ingredients

  • Puff Pastry Shells
  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
  • 2-3 tablespoons soy sauce (depending on how much you love that salty goodness)
  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce (Matthew asked… “Poison Sauce???  WTH?”, “no dear, it’s HOISIN”)
  • 3 teaspoons minced pickled ginger
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • Asian chile pepper sauce (optional… yet I totally recommend it.  I used about 2 tablespoons.. I could have added more)
  • 1 (5 ounce) can water chestnuts, drained and finely chopped
  • 1 bunch green onions, chopped all the way up to the greens
  • 2 teaspoons Asian (dark) sesame oil

Directions

  1. Slice and dice your onions, ginger, and garlic ahead of time.  Also, measure out all the sauces into little ramekins.  This makes it easy to start throwing these ingredients in once it’s time.
  2. In a medium skillet over high heat, brown the ground beef, stirring often and reducing the heat to medium, if necessary. Drain, and set aside to cool. Cook the onion in the same pan, stirring frequently. Add the garlic, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, ginger, vinegar, and chile pepper sauce to the onions, and stir. Stir in chopped water chestnuts, green onions, sesame oil, and cooked beef; continue cooking until the onions just begin to wilt, about 2 minutes.
  3. Cook the pastry shells as instructed. Make sure you brush the tops with an egg wash before cooking, it gives them a nice crisp.
  4. Once the shells have cooled slightly, use a butter knife to get the tops off, fill each shell with the delicious filling, and enjoy!  They’re even better the next day.

These are the puff pastry’s (in case there is any confusion).

Yum.  These are so good.  I can’t lie, while I was uploading this photo I got up, warmed up an A.C.B.P.P., burned my tongue… and now I’m sad because my taste buds are scorched.  (((sigh)))

I will also suggest sprinkling some cayenne pepper in the mixture.  I love heat in my food.  So if you do too, go for it.

Let me know what you think when you try this recipe!