Friday, September 30, 2011

Burlap Photo Board

Hi everyone, I'm back and felling a little better.  I hope all of you are doing well.  I did get one of my many projects completed, but, I really don't know where I am going to put it.  I may use it to display pictures of my daycare (for parents to see in my entry), or, my den to display random family pictures.  I may even use it to display Christmas cards.  Anyway, here it is -- it was very easy to do.

Remember the picture frames?  The smaller one with apples is what I used.
(I am almost finished with the larger frame -- it is so cool)

I painted and distressed the frame to match my other picture frames for the den here.

I stashed the glass in the garage and used the back piece.  I just strayed it with tacky spray (I seriously love this stuff) and attached the burlap right to it.

I trimmed the edges with scissors, and,

put it back together -- ta da....

Then, I picked up some small screw eyes and tiny clothes pins from Walmart.  They were very easy to screw in the side of picture frame.

Once the eyes were in, I just threaded twine through them in a zig zag.  I'm not quite sure I like the zig zag, but, for now, I think it is kinda cheeky.

Of course, I made rosettes with the scraps.

Should I add a rosette to the frame?  Maybe burlap?

Happy crafting.

Monday, September 26, 2011

My New Favorite Thing

This past Friday, I went to one of my favorite thrift stores and found this for only $2.00.

I am a Food Network junkie, and, Sandra Lee uses this all the time in her Money Saving Meals.  I know my favorite store, Walmart, has it, but,  I just didn't want to pay $20.00 for it.  What if I didn't like it.

You just cut your onion and peel it.  Place it on the blades and press down.

Wow, I couldn't believe how easy it was and how nice the pieces come out.  I am not gonna lie, I hate to chop onions.  Almost as much as I hate doing dishes -- ha ha.  If  you have $20.00 to spend, this would be a great thing.  Even better, if you see one at a garage sale or thrift store -- definitely pick one up.

Happy Chopping.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Steak Pizzaiola

Hi everyone, wow, this weekend went fast.  I spent all day Saturday at the football field and today, church and cleaning house.  This is the only Sunday without softball tournaments for another 4 weeks.  Anyway, I did manage to make a great dinner.  Chuck roast (or steak) was on sale, so, I went to Bashes and got a couple.  One for dinner tonight and one for the freezer.  This is such a great recipe for the men in your life.  It is a meat sauce with noodles.  This recipe is from Lucinda Scala Quinn's book Mad Hungry.

This is what you need:

2 1/2 lbs bone-in chuck steak (I used roast)
1 tsp. course salt
black pepper
olive oil
3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp. dried oregano
1tsp. dried thyme
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1 Tbl. tomato paste
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes, with juice

Pre-heat oven to 325

Put oil in a large oven proof skillet (I love cast iron) and heat to med. high heat.  Cut your meat into pieces.

When the oil is hot, add pieces of chuck and brown on both sides . 

I did have to do it in batches.   

When browned, take the meat out and place on a plate.  Turn off the heat and add garlic, oregano, thyme and tomato paste.  Stir well and add the crushed tomatoes.

Put all the meat back into the pan and any juices left in the plate.  Cover with tin foil and place in the oven for two hours.  After two hours, take off the tin foil and continue to cook for an additional 30 min.

Take all the bones out, then, with two forks shred the meat and remove all fat (I shred on a plate).  Put the shredded meat back into the sauce and stir.

Put your meat sauce on top of cooked pasta (I like Penni) and stir together.

While I was shredding the meat, my two youngest chef's made a salad -- yum.

I know it is a process, but, you have to make this.  It is soo good.


Friday, September 23, 2011

Halloween Lantern

This is one of the crafts I have been working on. My entry way shelf is coming along pretty good.

I got the rats at the Dollar Store (of course).

I bought this lantern at the thrift store for $2.00.  I painted it black and decorated it with stickers and cheese cloth.

I really like the eerie effect

and the bow.

Happy Haunting.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

My Counter Chalk Board

I put up a new chalkboard.  This one sits at the end of my kitchen counter.  The kids can draw and keep busy while I am on the phone, with a parent, or just making lunch.  I can also write a quite note to let my parents know what is going on that day.  Below, I just let them know that we are working on the letter A this week.

Remember this cork board?  Well I took the cork off of an old cork board.  I didn't want to throw it out because it was a nice frame. 

So, I just cut a  piece of  foam board to fit inside of my frame and painted it with chalkboard paint.  I also brushed some barn red onto the corkboard frame.

I cut the foam board (from the dollar store) so that it would fit snug enough not to have to glue it.  I can recreate something else when I get tired of the chalkboard.  Oh, I just used command strips to hold it to the counter.  I had the command strips and the paint, so, I just spent $1.00.
The kids love it.  This is what it looks like today.

Love chalkboard paint.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Navajo Tacos

Last week was my Matt's birthday.  I still call him and his sister my babies, and, he just turned 14.  Jean turns 13 in March.  Anyway, for my kids birthday, they get to pick what we have for dinner.  This was Matthew's choice.  My mom used to make these all the time.  I make them just like she did, but, I do cheat with the flat bread.  Here it is.

I cook dried beans.  I just do a short soak (bring to a boil and cover let sit for one hour and rinse).  Start with cold water to cover and simmer until done.  Some beans take longer than others, so, just test them after 30 min. and check about every 30 min. until done.  I then brown a pound or more of lean ground beef and onion (1 small) and add to the beans.  I also put in a can of stewed tomatoes (large or small can, depends on your taste).

Let that simmer for a min. or so and then add salt, pepper and cumin.  You can also add red pepper flakes to make it spicy or a can of chopped green chili.  Let that simmer for about 30 min.

Now for the fry bread.  I like Rhodes Texas rolls.  I just let them thaw and put them into a cake pan.  I put mine in a warm oven to rise a little.  Then take a roll and pull it and flatten it as big as you like.

I put about 1/4 inch of canola (or vegetable) oil in a frying pan and let get hot.  You can tell if it is sizzling after dropping a small piece of bread dough in.  When hot, drop the bread disks in.  They cook very fast, only about 1 min. and turn over for about another min (or less).

I drain my bread on paper towels.

Get all your sides together, just like taco's.

Build a taco.  Flat bread, beans, cheese lettuce, onion (we like green onion), sour cream if you have it, and salsa.  Oh, if you have any flat bread left over, you can warm it up, and put honey on it.  Sooo Good!!
My mom used to make these about every two months or so.  My aunt would drive 4 hours one way just to eat.  She would turn right around and head back home with the leftovers - ha ha.

Happy Taco making.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Have a Great Weekend

I have another fun filled weekend of Softball, Football and Cheer, oh my.  I probably won't have much computer time, so here is a little teaser.  I am putting together my entryway shelf for Halloween and this a little of what I have done.

If you like the apothecary jars, go over to Design/DNA and take a look at all of their Halloween goodies.  I hope everyone has a great weekend.