Sunday, November 28, 2010

Woohoo! 100 followers!!!

I appreciate my sweet followers so much. You have given me so much encouragement and inspiration since I started this blog last February, after receiving my Baby Bug for my birthday in December. My sweet hubby got me an Expression at midnight on Black Friday last week at Walmart. He stood in line for an hour, and grabbed the last of SIX that they had. I can hardly wait to get going on it, and I have started to design some things for the larger scale of the Expression. Thanks so much for your encouragement, my peeps!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Mmmmmm ... Autumn Cooking

I have wanted to share this recipe for a long while - just never got around to it. It was given to me by my sister-in-law, Jami. It is wonderful with pork.

Spicy Rice
6-8 Servings

Apple cider to replace water for cooking rice, amount according to rice package
3 c. cooked long grain rice, (I like Jasmine rice) according to package*
½ c. raisins, plumped in hot cider
1 T. butter
½ c. chopped celery
½ c. chopped onion
¼ t. ground allspice
½ t. cinnamon
Salt and pepper to taste
1½ T. brown sugar
1 tart apple, cored and chopped (I used a SweeTango apple - yum!)
½ c. toasted almonds

*Cook rice according to package directions, substituting cider for water
Plump raisins in warm water or warm cider to cover for 5 minutes; drain. 
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, melt butter and sauté celery and onion until onion is crisp-tender. Add spices and seasonings, brown sugar, cooked rice, and plumped raisins. Heat thoroughly. Stir in chopped apple and remove from heat. Cover and let stand 5 minutes. Sprinkle with toasted almonds. Great with pork.

In the Mood For...

Chicken and Dumplings
Serves 6
2-3 T. x-virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1½ qts. chicken stock or broth
1 lb. cooked chicken, in bite-sized pieces (rotisserie chicken in a hurry)
1 c. sliced carrots
1 c. celery, chopped, about 2 ribs
1 bay leaf
1 T. dried or 2 T. chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp. thyme
1 14-oz. can evaporated milk (fat free is fine)
Dumplings, recipe follows

In a large pot, heat some olive oil over medium heat and add onions and garlic. Sauté a few minutes, then add chicken stock, cooked chicken, bay leaf, and thyme. Bring to a boil. Add carrots and celery and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook until carrots and celery are tender, about 10-15 minutes. When carrots and celery are almost done, add parsley and evaporated milk. Increase heat to high, bring to a boil and add prepared dumplings by tablespoonfuls. Reduce heat to low, and cook uncovered for 10 minutes. Cover and continue cooking 10 minutes more (liquid should just be bubbling gently). Serve. Store leftovers by separating dumplings from the broth, so that they don't soak up all the liquid.


2 c. Bisquick
3/4 c. milk
freshly ground pepper to taste
Sage or parsley, if desired

Mix together with a fork just until dough comes together.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Sweetheart-Neckline Princess Dress Card

As a dressmaker, I had so much fun designing the cut file, and doing the embellishments for this card. I made it for my little granddaughter's birthday. She's a girly-girl who loves jewelry, and makeup, and pretty clothes, and is just becoming aware of princesses, so...
I covered the front of the card with pale blue Swiss dot paper. All the little dots are glittered, as is the neckline & hem, which is hard to photograph. The skirt is covered with blue tulle, with a ribbon waistband & rose & jeweled accents. You could do way more in the way of embellishment than I did, but this is for a young little girl. This would make a darling bridal shower invitation. So sweet!

The SVG file is available for $1.50 USD, and includes the card and a separate overlay for the front (and back if you cut it twice), to cut from decorative paper, as well as the materials list and instructions, and the scut2 file for the Cricut.  Please let me know which file it is you want. Upon notification from Paypal of funds received, I'll email you all pertinent files.

Thanks for your business! Laura


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