Thursday, September 29, 2016

Books I have chosen for the latest Spin...

Ah, it is time to have another Classics Spin!   The rules are that I need to pick 20 books from my Classics Club list that I still need to read. I have a few books on my list that I had previously started reading but than never finished as of yet, so I will list those first with an asterisk, then any others I want to read.

1. Heart of Darkness and Selected Stories by Joseph Conrad*
2. Walden and Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau*
3. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain*
4. Little Dorritt by Charles Dickens*
5. Poor Folk and other stories by Fyodor Dostoyevsky*
6. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte*
7. The Death of Ivan Ilych and other stories by Leo Tolstoy*
8. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy*
9. Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen*
10. Germinal by Emile Zola*
11.  Little Women by Louisa May Alcott*
12. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
13. The Oregon Trail by Francis Parkman, Jr.
14. The Letters of the Rozmberk Sisters
15. The Prince and the Pauper by Mark Twain
16. The Pioneers by James Fenimore Cooper
17. Larkrise to Candleford by Flora Thompson
18. The Memoirs of Gluckel of Hameln
19. Rights of Man by Thomas Paine
20. The Kilvert's Diary

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Sweet Potatoe Harvest

Yesterday finally made 90 days since I had planted some potato slips I had purchased. I had never grown them before and put them in 3 containers. The harvest wasn't great but at least I did get some. I think perhaps I put too many plants in each container, as they had two or three per each.

I definitely don't have to worry about us being sick of sweet potatoes by time the winter is over, lol.

Friday, September 23, 2016

First Knitting Projects

I completed watching the SlowTV knitting series on Netflix and have since completed two knitting projects. I knitted along while watching the series.  The first project I completed was a washcloth.

The second item I made was a dishcloth, I like them a little bigger than probably normal, enough so it is slightly bigger than my hand.

My most recent project I have started on is a scarf for my husband's upcoming birthday. I have been knitting so far for about two weeks and think I am making good progress. This stitch, the garter stitch, is the most basic of all the different types of stitches. After I make the scarf I plan on learning the purl stitch, and gradually add more as I feel that I accomplished the previous one.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Fritatta Dinner's

Last week and this week I made two different versions of fritatta for dinner. This is a very easy dinner to use leftover items, healthy and cheap to make. The first time I used green bell pepper, eggs, salt and pepper, onion, and various cheeses such as parmesan, reggiano and mozzarella.

 The meal I made this week had eggs, red peppers, green peppers, salt and pepper, and smoked provolone.

Friday, September 16, 2016

Slow TV gave me the Knitting Bug!

I love scenic views and once I had heard about Slow TV coming to Netflix, I thought it would be right up my alley. Which it was in that I really enjoyed watching the scenery of the trains. I did notice that they had a knitting episode, although apparently there are supposed to be more episodes which Netflix doesn't show. The episode starts a knitting marathon that takes place in Norway. Some things I found interesting such as the history of knitting, some of the interviews when they visited homes or shops of knitters,the process of shearing the sheep, knitting lessons (although I didn't get to watch all of them), and seeing what people were making. A part I didn't really care for was when they knitted items to cover a motorcylce, which I guess would then be Knitting Art. Since was a live event, and no scripts there are quite a few times were the narrator was trying to come up with something else to say. A few issues I have with Netflix, is that all of the Slow TV programs are only available right now through streaming, secondly they condensed some of the episodes and didn't include interactions that happened such as the train ride, and third they were originally supposed to add all of the knitting episodes on one time and are just now slowly adding the second one. Sorry for my ramblings, but this made me interestedin trying to learn how to knit, I had never previously tried. At the time a knitting class came on sale at Craftsy which I signed up for. I have learned there are several different ways to knit and different terms as well. I forgot to mention that the show is in Norwegian so you will need to change your tv to subtitles, if you don't know the language. I am just starting to watch the second episode and they are showing spinning, which I have always thought looked interesting but hard to do.

This was my first attempt, as you can tell I had some holes in it, but later on realized my mistake and how to correct it. I just continued using this piece and practicing until I used all of the yarn, I will eventually undo all of this and make some nice dishclothes (this is cotton I am using). Less than a week later here is my new dishcloth project, no holes and the sides are even. I love how the multcolored yarn gives it a unique look. This is only the knitting stitch, and I think I have it down, and will then learn the next stitch which is purling (used mostly for sweaters and socks).  

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Roasted Red Bell Pepper Chicken

I decided to make a recipe using roasted red bell peppers with chicken. I was originally going to just make it a sauce, but then decided to shred the chicken and mix the sauce together. Here is the ingredients I used;

Almost 2 lbs. of boneless, skinless Chicken Breast
1 Jar 15-17 oz. of Roasted Red Bell Peppers IN WATER
2 Red Bell Peppers, chopped
Dried Oregano
Dried Basil
Kosher Salt and Pepper

I cut up the chicken breast into smaller pieces and put it in the slow cooker. I added salt and pepper with a little water, cooked on high approximately 4-7 hours (check on it until it is done, depends on your slow cooker). I never stack the chicken on top of each other. I took out the roasted red bell peppers from the jar, and put it into a food processer. Then add the 2 red bell peppers, garlic, salt, pepper, basil and oregano. Process until a sauce is made to the consistancy of your liking, gradually add more garlic or seasoning per your taste. Shred the chicken and mix it with the sauce. I made this in advance of dinner and then put it in the fridge, later I warmed it on a skillet. This definately brought out a wonderful smell and might have even enhanced the flavor. Obviously, you don't have to cook the chicken in a slow cooker, but I used it since it was so hot out and I made it the night before we had this dinner. It was very good and I plan on making this again.

Do you have some good chicken recipes?

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

My First Candle....

I had been wanting to make my own candle, but never tried it before. I finally took the plunge and made my own soy wax candle. I learned a few things that I will adjust in the future.These were the supplies I used.

I put the soy wax flakes in the big pyrex measuring cup and then made it into a double boiler. I think I used to big of a pot and to much water, it was hard to get the measuring cup out once the wax had melted. Next time I think I will try a smaller pot and less water. I went ahead and got some premade candle wicks, but either I had gotten the wax too hot or this brand isn't very good, as the first wick melted when I poured the wax. The second wick didn't do that, but I have had a few issues with it. I used the lilac scent and put in several drops, but I think next time I will add more, as it does take awhile for the lighted candle to have a scent. When the candle isn't lit it does have a nice smell to it.

This is just after I had poured the wax into the candle jar.

This is the result 24 hours later. Have you ever made your own candles before? I will have to make more later on, once I have perfected on how to make them, I plan on giving them as gifts and maybe even try and sell some. Later on in the future I might attempt beeswax candles.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The Bookshelves Won.....

tbysreadathon  I wasn't feeling good the weekend of this readathon, although I did read about 60 pages of Classified as Murdery by Miranda James. I am not sure after I read this book if I will read another in this series. The author takes quite awhile to get into the story, and repeats quite a bit of information that is in other books, which I guess is good if you haven't previously read a book in the series. 

Friday, September 2, 2016

Take Back Your Shelves Readathon Sign Up

I saw this readathon called Take Back Your Shelves that is going to take place for this weekend. For some reason I thought this started tomorrow but it is from Sep. 2-5th. I decided to join since I have quite a few books on my to read list. I don't plan on probably being able to read all of these, but I should be able to read all of the smaller ones.I am going to try and see if Mr. Crafts4others will join me in this readathon. I know of course that Mr. Meows will join me as he normally lays by the chair I read in.

Vegetarian Dinner

This past weekend we made a healthy vegetarian meal. Mediterranean Quinoa Salad (from the Daniel Plan Cookbook), and it was pretty good. I did leave out a few items that I either do not like myself or didn't have on hand. The salad has Quinoa, cucumber, garbanzo beans (chickpeas), basil, oregano, lemon juice, olive oil, and we used imported provolone and red bell pepper instead of yellow. My husband added olives and tomatoes to his per the recipe. The rest of our dinner consisted of corn, red onion, green beans, red bell pepper with a little bit of butter, salt and pepper. The last item was the pickled carrots that we had previously purchased. We liked all of it, except for next time I think I will add more cucumber and herbs to the Mediterranean Quinoa Salad.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Multi-Tasking While Making Sauce....

It doesn't take a whole lot to make the pasta sauce, as it needs stirred about every half hour or so, but I wanted to have something else to do in the meantime. I had some fabric that a fellow quilter had given me, so I decided to use the dinning room table to cut the fabric. This will be used in the Grandmother's Flower Garden that I am making. How do you multi-task?