Friday, September 14, 2012

Baked Oatmeal

Welcome to my latest obsession - Baked Oatmeal!!

I have been looking for recipes that I can make and freeze for grab-and-go meals ~~~ or at least fast-to-prepare meals.  I found a baked oatmeal recipe and gave it a go.

Whenever I try a recipe, I start with the exact recipe and then I tweak it later.  This recipe is done in a 9x13 baking dish, but you can easily cut the amounts in half and bake in an 8x8 dish.  Try the big one - you can always slice it and freeze the pieces and warm them up later.  Here's my version of Baked Oatmeal.  I made some changes from the original (added vanilla, removed some of the sugar, etc.)

Whisk the following together
2 eggs
1/2 C applesauce (I used one without high fructose corn syrup)
1/2 C granulated sugar
1 TBL vanilla
1 C milk

Mix in the following:
3 C quick cooking oats
1 tsp salt
1 TBL baking powder

Fold in:
2 C fruit (can be fresh or frozen)

Spread in baking dish (sprayed with no-stick spray)
Sprinkle on top:  2 TBL brown sugar and cinnamon (a couple tsp)
Bake 30 minutes in 350* oven

Enjoy in a bowl with milk, cream or yogurt.

Remaining oatmeal can be cut and wrapped and frozen for future quick breakfasts.
The batter is like brownies - but no oil and if you want it gluten-free, get gluten-free oatmeal.

Yum!  Hope you like it and hope you like making lots of variations!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Here's a Hug of Encouragement

I got the nicest card from a friend in the mail.
You all know how I love a good card in the mail and this one totally hit home

Here's a Hug of Encouragement

When you need encouragement, remember these things:
You are stronger than you realize.
Life's inevitable adversities call forth our courage.
You have a lot of wisdom inside you.
God's plan will unfold with perfect timing.
The voice of your soul will lead the way.
A hug from my heart is only a phone call away.

I've had a long week and I can say that Mitzi is doing pretty well.  If you didn't know about the struggles she had this past weekend, you'd never know my youngest dog has anything wrong with her.  She's as happy-go-lucky as ever!  She's a sweet thing with lots of love in her heart -- that must be why her little heart is so overworked.

I love the charm attached to the card.  
I'll be adding that to my necklace.

Mitzi - my baby girl with the bad ticker.  

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Pear Honey

Pear Honey - it really isn't honey.
It is more of a preserves or a jam.
It is my Grandma Rosie's recipe and has been made every year for as long as I can remember.  After Mom passed away, I started making it and sending to friends and family for Christmas.

I even remember that my mother made it in 2001 on September 10 and when I gave a jar to a friend; he remarked ... "this Pear Honey is innocent" --- it was made the day before 9/11.

It also ushers in fall for me.  Mom usually made it around Labor Day or a week or so later - so even though it is 102* today in Vegas, I had a very fall-like afternoon in my kitchen making my beloved Pear Honey (and enjoying the air conditioning!!)

And now that the jars are filled, I can sit and watch the first Broncos game of the season!

Grandma Rosie's Pear Honey ©

8 cups ground up pears (very ripe)
1 large can crushed pineapple
5 cups granulated sugar

Mix all together in a turkey roaster.  Bake at 350* for at least 2 hours (stir every 20 minutes or so) -- it needs to thicken and become "golden" in color.  Immediately scoop (I use a one-cup pyrex measuring cup) into scalding hot jars - a super hot dishwasher and using the "heated drying" cycle will make them plenty scalding - take the jars out of the dishwasher towards the end of the drying cycle.  Turn the jars upside down after you screw on the bands and then flip upright when they've cooled off.  Makes about 5 pints.

This year, I used two flats of pears at Costco, let them fully ripen on the counter, 2 cans of pineapple and 10 cups of sugar.  Doubling the recipe also meant I had to double the time to cook the elixir -- it took over 4 hours for the jam to get the color I wanted.  I do believe this is my best batch ever!!  Yield this year: 9 pints (18 half pint jars)

Monday, August 20, 2012

The Earth Without Art.....

Don't you love this graphic?
It is one of the new magazine advertisements for Stampin Up! 
Super Fun and I just love the fonts and colors!
Kate's Stampin Up page

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Tissue Holder using Designer Fabric

Here's a simple project to make - and you only have to be able to sew a straight line!
I started with coordinating fabrics from Stampin' Up! and cut a couple squares and rectangles, pinned them together and did a quick sew-around, flipped the whole project right side out and voila!  A little fabric pouch that you can fit a pack of tissue in.  Perfect for your purse, backpack or glove box in the car!

One package of Stampin' Up! Designer Fabric - it comes with 3 distinct, but coordinating fabrics (I used Floral District #126893)
Coordinating thread (I used white - super simple)
Tissue pack
Cardboard and/or quilt batting to make your pattern

Pattern Instructions:
Make pattern pieces from cardboard/card stock/quilt batting -- a 4"x4" square and a 4"x5 3/4" rectangle

Cut Two 4" squares from one of the fabric prints (I probably should have ironed these....but once you sew, it doesn't really matter)

Cut Three 4"x5 3/4" rectangles from the fabrics
Fold both 4"x4" squares and two of the rectangle prints in half and lay the final rectangle right side UP (this will be the back of the holder)
Keeping the folded edges towards the center (nice finished edge!!), lay the folded pieces on top of the backing as pictures.  You'll have to tuck the last one under the first one (see how I lifted #1 up, so the last piece could tuck under?)
---Here I laid down the purple folded rectangle, then the green folded square
 ---Then I laid down the white daisy folded rectangle
 -----and finally the last green folded square - but I lifted the purple, so the green would overlap.
Next, pin all the pieces in place  (almost done.....)
Sew around the edges (1/4" seam allowance) with a straight stitch and then give it another round of sewing using a zig zag stitch
Turn the whole shebang inside out (right side out) and insert your handy tissue pack.  You might need to use your bone folder to poke out the corners.
Embellish or decorate if you'd like, and if the creases in the fabric still bother you, run a quick iron over it - but hey, it is for my purse.... it is going to get creased in there!!
Interested in learning more about Stampin' Up!  or the fun fabrics and paper arts items they have available?  Check out the link to my store

Thursday, August 9, 2012

August? Really? It is August??

I know, I know, there isn't much excuse for me dropping off the face of the earth in the middle of my picture of the day challenge back in JUNE!!  Yikes.  My bad.
Let's just say that little bits of life got in the way, but I feel like I'm back on track.
And hey - no scorpions have been sited at the house - so that is a good thing!!!
I have been very busy in the craft room - so here is a card I made today that I am sharing with the world-o-blogs.
It is made with Stampin Up stuff - interested in learning more about Stampin Up?  leave me a comment or visit my Demonstrator Web Site at the main Stampin Up site (Kate's Stampin Up Site).  There are all sorts of goodies to keep you busy!!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

June 18 - Something We Don't Know About You

I really really like watermelon, but I really really dislike anything watermelon flavored (taffy, drinks, etc.)
Just keep it real.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

June 17 - In The Bag

It is my friend RuBen's birthday.
Here's his birthday prezzie.
Hmmmm... Wonder what's in the bag?

Happy Father's Day

A very Happy Father's Day to my dad!  Here he is in front of "1072" - what a great house!  Our family made it an amazing home and I am so thankful for the memories of all the holidays, vacations, regular ole days and on and on.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

June 16 - Out and About

Even though I was out and about at 6:30 am this morning (taking a friend to the airport), I just couldn't do a picture of the airport.  So instead, I have included a lovely pic of the backside of my Honda CR-V.  I recently added the stickers (me and two little doggies!!) --- aren't they cute???

June 15 - Yellow

The theme for the picture of the day on June 15 was "Yellow", and one thing you should know, if you don't already, is that I have a bit of a fondness for fun "yard art".
This particular piece was a birthday present last summer from my sister.  It is from "Cactus Joe's", here in Las Vegas.  Cactus Joe's is a funny little place out in the desert, on the outskirts of town, and it is full of pottery, yard art, colored glass rocks, and of course....cactus.  Any trip to Sin City should include a trip to Cactus Joe's.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

June 14 - Time

Hmmmm - what to photograph that represents "time" in my life today.  I could take yet another picture of the inside of my office at the theatre, because I face a really big clock - but I posted TWO pictures of the same office (and the same view) last week - and this girl has got to break out of her shell!!
Instead, I kept with the tour of family pieces that are in my house. This mantle clock was my grandparent's (on my mom's side). We've always referred to it as "Grandpa's clock".

June 13 - Art

Oh dear, I missed a day.
Well, let me remedy that.
Art is many things - and all of it needs to create emotion or feeling within the viewer.
This is a picture of Sydney, Australia.  I bought it on my first day in Sydney, while on a high-school exchange program.  What better place to visit on your first day in Sydney, than The Opera House.  My host family took me to the harbor and we saw the Opera House.  This pen and ink drawing was rolled up in a basket in the gift shop.  The memories of that day are still pretty strong, lo these many years later......
It was marked $30 AUD and that was sure a lot of money in 1981.  (My exchange was during the summer before my senior year of high school).  I bought this piece of art for my parents and it hung above their fireplace for years.
Mom gifted it to me when I bought my first place and I've had it with me ever since.
I lurv it.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

June 12 - From A Low Angle

My mother's antique sewing cabinet.

It holds a million and one memories of my family and the homes I grew up in.

I feel blessed that it is in my house.

Monday, June 11, 2012

June 11 - Door

I had a fabulous idea of taking pictures of my dogs going in or out the dog door. Needless to say, that was easier said than done.

I even tried to stage the pic - which was pathetic.
These dogs of mine are fast!!

In the end, after much "placing the dogs back outside", we got a sort of "keeper" - and I know they were done - so we wrapped the photo shoot and moved to the couch.  I wonder if there is a Pic Of The Day with the theme "couch"??

Sunday, June 10, 2012

June 10 - Best Bit of Your Weekend

Today was lovely.
Tonight was dinner with friends and then watching the Tony's but before all of that???
A dirty martini.
It's true... Best bit of my weekend was the following martini.
Happy Tony's viewing everyone ....

Saturday, June 9, 2012

June 9 - Your View Today

The funny thing is.... Today's picture is practically the same as yesterday's.
This is my view in my office.
The door is closed because the show is happening about 15 feet on the other side of the door.

Friday, June 8, 2012

June 8 - Six o'clock

Crud. I missed 6 pm.
I was asleep for 6 am so I thought I'd shoot for my "view" at 6 pm.
It was just after 6 when I shot this picture. I'm sitting at my desk in the theatre.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

June 7 - Drink

Here I am, in the 11th hour and I haven't posted my photo of the day yet....
Today's theme? Drink. It wasn't specific as to noun or verb so I went with noun.
Milk at bedtime = a good thing

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

June 6 - Hat

I was at a bit of a loss for a picture of a hat today. I wanted to be all creative and fabulous but the day got away from me and my sisters and I were in the final stretch of the slide project.
So in the waning hours of the day, I bring you "hat".
A single black baseball hat that hangs on my coat closet door.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

June 5 - Sign

When you live in Las Vegas, you pretty much have to go to the Las Vegas sign and take pictures!!
With my sisters here visiting, we went down to the sign and took some pictures!
It has been fairly windy for the last few days - but it was super fun!
Today's photo theme for the "picture of the day" challenge is "Sign"
This was a total slam dunk for picture choice!

Monday, June 4, 2012

June 4 - Close Up

More slides taken care of today.
Here are the ones we didn't keep - and my photo post for today's topic ... "Close Up"

Sunday, June 3, 2012

June 3 - On Your Plate

What a day it has been. My two sisters are visiting and we are going through all of the family slides and readying them for digital processing.
We started with over 10,500 slides.
We are pretty much chained to the kitchen table here at "the ranch" and are going through carousel after carousel of slides. Meals have been pulled together quickly and eaten in and around the plethora of slides and lists.
Tonight we cleaned off the table and had quite a lovely dinner.
I snapped a pic as the plates were going on the table - so here is what was on our plate --- before we actually ate.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

June 2 - Empty

Today's photo topic is "empty".
I've got two dogs and one visiting (my sister is here with her pup) and it appears they've all been very busy in the doggy toy basket.

Friday, June 1, 2012

June 1 - Morning

And so it begins.....
Maybe you saw my May 31 post about the June "photo a day" challenge.
It suggested a different "photo topic" for each day during June.

Well, I'm happy to post my June 1 photo:
I was up this morning at about 5:30 am.  This is a shot through my neighbor's almond tree of the rising sun.  Pretty, right?  It almost looks like I live in a lush, tropical place - but alas, it is Vegas after all, and we'll be at 105 today and probably only about 15% humidity.

See you on the 2nd!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Art With Friends

A good friend, and amazing Las Vegas artist, is now showing his works in a local non-profit art gallery.
Dinosaur & Roses
Here are some of his supplies and colors he creates with:

I stopped by his studio to visit and he was busy painting a few canvases - we turned up the music, shared some laughs and then I timed him doing a couple different paintings.  The timing of the paintings was more of a fun challenge - but the finished product was still full of love and life.
It was awesome to watch him at work and see a blank canvas literally reshaped into color and life.

This one I called "Colorado"

Here he is reminding me that the painting was completed in 5 minutes!

 And then there was "Sunflower"

I asked him if he would paint "Wind" and he began (and finished) the following:

How fabulous is that??

Visit RuBen at "Studio One" at Dinosaur & Roses and support local artists and small businesses!

More paintings in a few days - I even have a video of a painting - from blank canvas to finished piece that I'll be sharing....