Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Keeping busy

 I kept saying I really needed to get back to cross stitch and finish up a couple of projects.  Plus I had every intention of making a piece for the friend at work who created the sand art for me.
She and her Hubby are losing their Corgi to mouth cancer, of all things.  Its sad and terrible, and although we are co-workers who don't see each other often, she makes me laugh and is generally a brighter spot when I come into work in the afternoons.  Plus, I just need to keep my hands busy.
More on that later.
I plan on putting some script to this picture, then using my technique of mod podge-ing the cut ends so they don't fray, and mounting it with upholstery tacks on a wood plaque.  I like the ones that look like mini-pallets at Michael's.
Just a few more stitches to go and the doggie will be complete. I think she will like it!  I hope when she sees it over the years, it will make her smile, not cry.
I took my supply box to work, hoping we would have a bit of down time, but it's been busy.  So, I've been working on it here and there at the kitchen table.  Looking out at the sunny backyard, taking deep breaths, and staying as busy as I can...thinking about another girlie, bound by flood waters with a sick dog, who is far enough away that I can't be of much help to.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Mealplan Monday #157

Monday - Asian Lettuce Wraps, fresh fruit
Tuesday - Freezer meal:  Leftover Lasagna, salad
Wednesday - Quiche, skillet potatoes
Thursday - Meatball and Rice Skillet (frozen homemade meatballs from a batch I made a while back)
Friday - Ranch BBQ Chicken, leftover scalloped potatoes from the freezer, veggie
Saturday and Sunday - TBD, but we'll probably grill

Friday, August 25, 2017

5 thing Friday - graffiti art, lasagna, party, eclipse, sick day

 Bubbie has been at loose ends this summer - not enough hours scheduled at his job, no summer classes, no marching band or summer campouts.  I'm sure he's bored.
He's spent a lot of down time in his room when I cannot drag him out to go somewhere or to eat.  And one of the things he's been into is making these mini graffiti posters to hang on his wall.
They are very intricate and colorful.  Who knew he was such an artist?  He loved art in school, but band and scouts took up so much free time.  I asked him to make me one for my locker at work.  And he already decorated one of the Jenga blocks at Highlands.  I was thinking I could scan one or two and make them into cards or such.  Me likey.
I made a dish of lasagna using a recipe from one of the blogs I follow.  I used my homemade marinara, too.  It was delish, and made enough for me to put some aside for another meal.
Just look at all that cheese!
Mostly Dollar Tree stuff for a going away snacks party for a co-worker.  I have rediscovered DT mostly because of this blog.  The talavera tray I found at HEB and almost purged it on my last kitchen clean-out; I used it for dip and crackers.
I bought a $1 sandwich box and used it for dip.  Genius!
 The eclipse happened.
Around 1 p.m. we stepped out onto the patio to see the very strangely shaped shadows of leaves and double shadows of our hands.  That was about the extent of our "eclipse watching party".
Yesterday I took a sick day from work.  I felt generally terrible all over and had an episode of vertigo.  I wasn't sleepy, but I spent hours in bed, reading.  Around 5 p.m. I finally got up and showered and put clothes on.  Then I ordered catfish take-out for Hubby to pick up.  We are supposed to get lots of rain in the next few days due to the hurricane, so it looks like I will get even more reading time...I am making my way through the Outlander series and really enjoying it.  
On to the weekend!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Red Wing Dove and Hamilton

I took pitifully few pics of a recent weekend excursion.  Which I guess is OK since I am living in the moment, enjoying our summer!
 Hubby and I visited a cute winery just outside of Hamilton called Red Wing Dove.  {Right off the bat I loved that they had a metal building - we are looking to erect one large one at Highlands, and a few smaller ones to serve as guest cabins.}  We were the only ones there, and one of the owners was minding the tasting bar, so we got her full attention for the tasting.
One of the things I love most about these Texas wineries are the huge pieces of land they sit on, with the biggest skies!
Red Wing Dove had a nice open back patio with a water fountain quietly trickling.  It was very peaceful.
And the wine was very good!  The owner explained that they don't do "clubs" to artificially mark up their wines.  I can appreciate that philosophy, as I think that some wineries definitely inflate their prices on the wine to make yo think you are getting a deal by joining their club.  Don't get me wrong - the club activities are fun.  But we have learned a lot by now about what we like, wine-wise, and we are pretty choosy nowadays as to what wineries we want to join.
Big open patios with open views, peaceful and quiet.  Yes, please.  I'm sure we will go back!  They have lots of get togethers instead of one big shindig every three months like most wineries.  We bought some of their estate white, the Tinto de Texas, and some jalapeno-infused white wine called Peno Vino.
 Hamilton feels like the middle of nowhere.
 After the tasting we went to a meat market/BBQ place and had lunch.  Hubby loaded up on a rib plate, and I had the pork butt sammie.  We saw a group of people come in for packages of frozen chicken breasts wrapped in bacon - apparently a popular item as they cleaned out the freezer!  So when the owner brought more out, we snatched some up.
That evening at Highlands we grilled it up and served with a side of potato salad, also from the meat market.  Hidden in the basketweave of bacon was a perfectly seasoned chicken breast rubbed with pork rub. It was beyond good!  I'm already looking forward to our next visit to Hamilton!

Monday, August 21, 2017

Mealplan Monday #156

Monday - Spicey Sloppy Joes and chips
Tuesday - Brown Sugar Plum Chicken in crockpot, mashed potatoes, green beans or broccoli
Wednesday - Beef Fajita Salads
Thursday - Cheesy Canellini Beans with bacon and spinach, corn muffins
Friday - Indian Chicken in crockpot, jasmine rice, sauteed squash
Saturday - Hubby grills
Sunday - TBA

Friday, August 18, 2017

Updated basket liners

I have these baskets sitting on the counter that hold all the vitamins and meds that Hubby and I  take on a regular basis - it looks like a lot, but it's not all that impressive, trust me. It's just that the bottles are big for those gummie vitamins.  And there might be a bottle or two in there almost empty.  Anyhoo...
The liners were starting to show their age.  When I did my recent kitchen spruce up and washed them, they pretty much fell apart.  I have less time nowadays to craft than I ever did, but I knew I could remedy this.
I really love this colorful stripe.  Its from IKEA many years ago, and I love the colors.  But sadly, I couldn't repair those torn seams.
So I bought some pretty red damask patterned fabric and whipped up another couple liners, using the old ones as a pattern.  Not hard.
I would love to have more cabinet space to put these in, but having them here is a reminder of sorts, so here they live, next to the coffee pot.  A quick little sewing project, for sure, and a cheerful update.
Now, on to the weekend!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Morning at Highlands

Last Saturday we spent the night at Highlands, after a whirlwind day in Hamilton , visiting a cute winery and eating great BBQ.  Hubby slept in, but I made a pot of coffee and settled myself in a chair to see what might wander past our hill.
This was my vantage point just outside of the barn.
Sure enough, after a few minutes something very quietly came into view.
And paused, looking around.  So I sat still.
Then a friend of his/hers appeared - maybe a mated pair?  Gray foxes!  And they couldn't care less that I was snapping phone pics.
Because they were nosing around the woodpile for small rodents or bugs, I guess.
I wish Scout had been here with his awesome camera and telephoto lens.  At one point they noticed me, but didn't run.  Just kept milling around the area, getting closer.
Until one of them sat over by the swing.  A pretty good size fox, I'd say.  Not one bit worried about me.
Hubby was annoyed he missed it.  But I think our foxes have a den on the fence line behind the barn, so I'm sure they'll make another appearance.  After he poured his coffee, we went on a morning walk.
Making our plans...
I spy the pergola, and a tiny bit of the barn.
Time to go cook a bit of breakfast..
...cause the day is well underway!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Mealplan Monday #155

Monday - Make your own sammie
Tuesday - Cheater Lasagna, veggie
Wednesday - Buttermilk Fried Chicken Salads
Thursday - Heat and Eat Roast Beef Bowls (leftover roast beef in gravy, masheds, green beans)
Friday - (freezer) Chicken Tacos with pico de gallo, guacamole, cheese, sour cream
Saturday and Sunday - One of these nights will feature Pork Loin Chops with Mushroom Au Gratin Potatoes

Friday, August 11, 2017

5 thing Friday - things I am loving

I have a sort of new-to-me co-worker who likes to create, and she does some beautiful painted canvases.  Here is the one she made for me when I told her I wanted one with a beachy sort of vibe:
For now, it hangs here in the boy bathroom.  But I may put it on the opposite wall so I can center it properly.  And I want to take those clings off the mirror and frame it out.  And maybe add a glass vase of shells and such.  Super simple.
She used beach sand from Port Aransas to give it texture.
I have a love/hate thing going with IKEA.  I love their breakfast - for $2 you cannot go wrong.  Seriously, $2.  Including coffee.
And I have serious designs on obtaining this rug. I think it would be perfect in the den!  But I think the ones they have left are IT so I have to decide pretty soon before they all get snapped up.
Mostly I go to IKEA for kitchen and simple household items - chief among them napkins.
Four months ago, one of fav wineries bottled their plum wine.  We loved it and acquired two bottles of it - one at a random visit, the other at a pick-up.  We were advised to let it age til late summer, so I stored them in a cool place on their side and waited.  When I opened them up, guess what I had?  Fizzy vinegar.  The winery credited us for the bottles and we will maybe pick up two more in a couple of weeks.  Customer service is everything.
We are stealing this idea from a coffee shop in downtown Austin.  A glass garage door for our Someday House at Highlands.  Maybe leading into a great room. (also I like the industrial vibe here)
Can I just say how I love going and doing with Hubby on the weekends?  It's like we are newly married young adults again with no kids and a full two days to do whatever we want.  I'm sure I will always treasure our time as parents of young children, but being parents of adults has its merits...


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