Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Aren’t YOU tired of cooking?

It’s been Master Iron Top Chef in Hell’s Kitchen around here for the past week- what about you? I did make an Almond Poppy Seed bread, although in a tube pan, for stitching tomorrow night, though. Baking is a great way to warm up my freezing house!

In stitch-y news: a finish!

La-De-Da Tis Red

‘’Tis Red” by La-D-Da, JCS 2010 ornament issue. WDW “Envy” on antique white looks-like-28 ct. even weave.

Onwards to my December ornament!

Chicken goes back to the vet on Friday for suture removal; I know she’ll be traumatized by the ride in the pet carrier, but hopefully she won’t have to wear the radar cone anymore!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Snow Business….

Lot’s of it!

2010 blizzard 1

This is this morning, after shoveling twice yesterday, and again this morning (no work! Yay!) Another gray & dismal shot of the snow-covered trees:

2010 blizzard 2

We ended up with about a foot. It came down dry & powdery, then we had some rain mixing in to make it wet & heavy. This morning was also wet & heavy, turning dry & powdery- the old “If you don’t like it, wait a minute…” maxim.

I made out like a bandit with presents:

look at these:

xmas2010haul The kids got me ALL of the charts I had posted about in November! Em even asked the sellers to NOT show their return addresses as anything stitchy since I retrieve the mail! How clever! Plus they got me a 500 GB external hard drive so I can back up my stuff, PLUS a new pair of work boots PLUS a bunch of new ornaments PLUS a book about Secretariat PLUS a bunch of chocolates & coffee & other little goodies! My mom sent a package of pecans and a check (THANKS Mom!)

The kids gave Chicken a Snuggie (LOL) and a new coat and several toys that she loves (she’s much better, acting more like her happy self every day):

xmas chick4xmas chick6

Notice her shaved butt. I tried sticking bows around her satellite dish, but they kept falling off.

We had a fun day. I made cinnamon rolls for breakfast (me), churros for Emily, eggs & sausage for Adam. They went out to visit Emily’s cousin from my “out”-laws while I went down to visit Bob.

When we were all back home, we had braised short ribs, from the Short Rib lasagna recipe I posted a while back, plus PW Creamy mashed potatoes, and broccoli. YUM!

I hope you all had a very nice holiday; thanks for visiting with me and leaving your nice comments- I do appreciate them!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!


Thursday, December 23, 2010

Well, I hope they improve the fabric department…

Jo-Anns Fabric has agreed to an acquisition. Story here.

In other news, I’ve been dealing with Chicken issues. She came home from the vet Saturday evening. Her hernia was repaired, although the surgeon said she had never seen the “deviation” (my choice of word for lack of better description that won’t gross out my last two readers) Chickie unexpectedly had. The surgery went well, I was told, the doctor had to rearrange some things that she never had to before.

So poor puppy finally seems to be on the mend- her plumbing seemed to work correctly, at will, this morning, and her appetite is finally returning. One more week before I can take her for suture (and satellite dish) removal. Hopefully, at the same time, she can be given unlimited access to the house so I won’t have to lock the cats in the basement for the day- no stairs for Chicken for the time being.

Tomorrow is  day off; I’ll be finishing my baking, and probably braising my short ribs for Christmas dinner. My presents are all wrapped (??!!) early for a change and I just have to get Bob’s son some beer and a few stocking stuffers, and I’m done. You  know, Christmas gets a lot less stressful the less money you (have to) spend. Less running around, less thinking, less wrapping, less trash. I may even find some time to stitch!

Happy Christmas Eve eve!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Frosty Gets Caught…


Friday, December 17, 2010

Funniest Blog Post EVER! (not mine…)

The daughter & D.B both work at a horse/dog product catalog retailer. She is now in the office doing accounting and administrative assisting, making use of all that expensive college education, having moved up from the shipping department in the warehouse. D.B. is a one-man whirling dervish in the warehouse. He single-handedly keeps the whole operation from imploding by keeping all the dog and horse crap organized on their pallet racks, picking orders for delivery, and fending off jealous attacks on his integrity from some dimwit bitch who’s afraid he’s going to take her job -and good reason too- she spends all day on Facebook, but since she lets her supervisor have “his way” with her,  she (for now) has job security.

Anyway, lots of canine & equine emails/jokes/references/blogs/stories/rumors/gossip get passed around in the office. And this gem sifted its way to the top of the pile on my daughter’s desk. And since we share the same bitter, sarcastic and twisted sense of humor, she had the good sense (all the expensive college education don’tcha know!) to forward it to me.

I was laughing so hard last night, I had to wait until this morning to pass it along to all of you. If you have dogs, or have EVER had a dog, you must read this. And note the cartoons- the expressions on the dogs’ faces are priceless!

From my new favorite blog, Hyperbole and a Half .

Thursday, December 16, 2010

November AND December ornaments!

I went to check out a stitching store in Walpole last weekend called Hoops & Needles. During my browsing I saw this tiny stitched cube, 1 inch square, made from a kit they sold. Of course, being a woman of a very little brain, I don’t have the slightest recollection of who made the kit- it was in one of those flat plastic boxes, a little bigger than a credit card. I do remember it was called “100 Pins”.

So, I went temporarily insane, and made my own versions, one in DMC Variations Red/Cranberry and Blue/Indigo.


Cube 1

And here they are with a quarter for scale:

Cube 3

The “100 Pins” cube was stiffer; I think it had some card stock lining the inside faces rather than polyfil. The clerk said something about it being hollow. Since I was flying by the seat of my pants, I used polyfil and made ornaments out of them. I used 36 ct. antique white linen, 2 over 2, and I poached snowflakes from various charts in my stash. It’s sewn together like a biscornu. It took between 4 and 5 hours to make each one. I’m pretty happy with the results!

I still have my "’Tis Red to complete, and I had picked out a beaded snowflake design from the 2007 or’08 JCS ornament issue for December, so I may end up with 14 ornaments this year!

Our Stitch & Bitch group is having our Christmas party tomorrow night at Mamma Mia’s, an Italian restaurant in the next  town over. Chicken goes for surgery Friday morning. And they’re forecasting  snow for Sunday. Chickie can’t be in the car with the wipers on; that ride home will be fun!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Wonderful Wednesday Wrecipes

My favorite cookie blog, Cookie Madness, did a Loft House cookie-clone test. I’m not sure she ever came up with a perfect copy, but she came close. In one of her comments, someone mentioned this recipe from the back of the Jiffy Baking mix box. It’s been years since I bought Jiffy or Bisquick, but I wanted to try this recipe!These were really close to the real Loft House, and so yummy tasting, I never even frosted them! Try to let them get a touch of color (don’t under bake!)  because they got softer in the cookie jar day by day.

Jiffy Sugar Cookies

  • 2 cups JIFFY Baking mix
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 5 TBSP shortening
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment, or lightly grease.
  2. Add baking mix & sugar in medium mixing bowl. Add shortening and using a pastry mixer-tool or two knives, cut shortening into dry ingredients until mixture is the size of small peas.
  3. Add remaining ingredients, and stir with wooden spoon until combined.
  4. Drop dough by rounded tablespoon onto baking sheet; allow 2” between mounds.
  5. Bake 8-10 minutes and lightly golden brown. Cool 5 minutes on pan, then remove to cooling rack to cool completely.
  6. Frost if desired.
  7. Makes about 30 cookies.


Bake until they’re a little more brown than this.

Saturday, December 11, 2010


My friend Jane from stitching passed this along. We don't have snow yet here in southern New England, although it was pretty cold this past week- 20's to very low 30's. The Dingle peninsula is north of the area my mom & I stayed during our visit 3 + years ago.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Wicked Wednesday Wrecipes…

I came across this a couple of weeks ago, and it caught my eye because it’s one of my favorite breakfast treats, and it says “Easy”.

It came out good- I’d definitely make it again. It was very sweet, I’d add a pinch of salt to the filling next time. I also had less than the required 8 oz. of cream cheese, so I adjusted the amount of sugar to compensate. The amount of filling I ended up with was more than sufficient. Also, it definitely needs to be eaten at cool room temperature- it was too much “too much” to be eaten warm. I would say it’s even better the next day.


Easy Cheese Danish

Danish Ingredients:

  • 5 or 6 oz. softened cream cheese (less than 8 oz. package)
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 can (8 oz. tube) refrigerated crescent rolls

Icing Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 or 3 TBSP cream
  • ¼ tsp almond extract
  • optional 3 TBSP sliced almonds for decoration


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment.
  2. Combine cream cheese, sugar, vanilla & salt in a small bowl. Set aside.
  3. Open crescent roll dough and unroll, leaving rectangles intact. Lay out the crescent roll rectangles out side by side, long sides touching. Dough should be almost the entire length of a half sheet pan.
  4. Press edges together, and push perforations together to seal any holes.
  5. Carefully spread the filling down the center of the dough to be about 2-3” wide.
  6. Cut ½” diagonal strips up each side of the dough. Fold the ½” strips up over the filling, alternating sides over each other and pressing down lightly to seal. It should look like a braided pattern. Fold the end pieces as neatly as possible.
  7. Bake for 20-30 minutes or until filling is set and dough is golden in color.
  8. Cool before removing from baking sheet to a serving platter.
  9. In a small bowl, mix icing ingredients, use only 2 TBSP cream to start, adding more as necessary for desired consistency. Spoon icing into a small zip top baggie, close, and snip 1/8” off one corner. Pipe in a drizzle over cake. You could sprinkle some sliced almonds over the top for decoration.

easy cheese danish

It definitely tastes like crescent dough, but I honestly thought it improved a lot by the next day, but it was  EASY! It would be a great quick take along to a small brunch party.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

And she stitched!

More on ‘Tis Red:

LDD Tis Red 2

“Elf” is on USA network! Right now! Buddy! “Cotton-headed ninny muggins!”

Friday, December 3, 2010


Under a new category label of “WTF!”:

wtf tree

Available from your local BJ’s Wholesale for only $214.99.

Yes, it’s an upside down tree. Pre-lit of course. From the description:

This prelit, upside-down holiday tree is a great way to add holiday cheer to a home. The classic green decoration comes with a sturdy metal base to keep your tree immobile as it seems to defy gravity.
Product Features:

  • Tree appears to defy gravity as it stands upside down
  • Comes prelit with 1,283 lights for quick setup
  • UL-550 clear lights make for a dazzling lights display
  • Top of the tree has a diameter of 60"
  • (Model TR2133)

    Is that THE Most.Stupidest.Thing you’ve ever seen???