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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Terrific Tuesday

It is a glorious day here at Casa De Noce.  The sun is out, the sky is blue, the humidity is lessening and I have been super productive today.

Hubby and I got up early this morning and went to Mass.  It was nice as I got to see our Grand Daughter there and got to meet her 'buddy'.  Each year the 6th through 8th graders 'sponsor' a child from grades 2nd down to Kindergarten.  The older student attends Mass with them each week and makes sure they understand how to behave and what is going on. They also help them learn their way around the school and introduce them to the staff and other students.  In general, they are like a big brother or sister.

Anyway.............I met the Grand's buddy and what a cutie.  She is in the 1st grade and has those cheeks you want to grab and squeeze and then cover them with kisses.  She is very petite too.  This is her first year at our school and my Grand is the one that normally helps new students to feel at home.  It was a match made in heaven.

After Mass, I headed off to Winco to pick up more Spelt flour along with Coconut Palm Sugar and a few other things we were in need of here in the larder.  I left there and flew home so I could get a loaf of bread going in the bread maker.  Now that I have found a flour and recipe that we both love.............it is wonderful to make my own bread and have the house smell like the loving home I have.




Can you smell that yeasty goodness?  This is not the best photo of it, but this is the only one I have.  It is getting cut and eaten for dinner tonight.  I have been having sandwiches on it each day and am loving the flavor of it. Spelt flour is NOT gluten free but.......................it is recommended for people that are sensitive to wheat but NOT for Celiac or gluten allergy people.  Hubby and I are not gluten intolerant, but the nutritionist wants us to eat more naturally and non GMO and try and get away from things like processed flour (even whole wheat).  I will say, when I eat this bread, I do not have that feeling of a rock sitting in my stomach.  I am full, but not miserable.  WOOHOO

As long as I was baking, I decided to make some more brownies (again with the spelt flour).


I had made a batch last week, but they seem to have disappeared.  These are so easy to make from scratch.  They are moist in the middle and very yummy.  Also, spelt flour is high in protein and fiber.  It really is much better for you than processed flour.  There is a learning curve to baking with it and I am still learning that curve.  Right now, I am printing out recipes that use spelt flour but am hoping to be able to take my old recipes and figure out how to do the conversion.

My house smells lovely........................I love the smell of home baked goodies.

I also managed to get a load of laundry done this morning while all that baking was going on.  As I finished up the baking, laundry and lunch, I was just settling in to do some knitting when my phone lit up..............................Doggies have a pedicure appointment in 15 minutes!  WHAAAAAAAAAAAAT??????   How did I forget about that?

Off I went to the vet to get the dogs toenails trimmed.  Lucky for me we only live about a 4 minute drive from the vet.  It takes longer to get them calmed down so I can put their leashes on them and get them to the car.  They love to go for rides and walks, so the leashes cause quite a reaction.

I arrived back home and put in a few rows on the log cabin blanket SQUARE 2!!!!  Yup, you heard that right.  I finished the first square on Monday evening.  I was so stoked.  I started on square 2 right away.  


There are live stitches on all sides of this square so there is waste yarn threaded through it until I put it all together.  The black will be the outside corners and the orange will make a lovely cross in the middle of the blanket.  Only 3 more squares to make.  I figure another 9 - 12 weeks and I should have the squares done and be ready to assemble it and border it.

As for reading............................I have almost finished another book on my Kindle.


It is a cute book even though it is pretty predictable.  I have really enjoyed reading it before bed as it does not tax my brain too much.  I only have 4% left of the book to read, so should finish it tonight.  The main female character loves to bake which is why I have really enjoyed reading this book.  I too love to be in the kitchen, whether I am baking or cooking.  I just enjoy making things for people to consume.  The satisfaction comes from watching people enjoying something I made with my hands.  Kind of like my knitting and crocheting.  Same feelings.

That gets everyone up to date.  I am going to go and work on a puzzle for a little while. Then back to knitting on square 2.

Until next time......................happy crafting!!!!!!!!!!!!


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Week 7 Year 7


 

Helllloooo my lovelies.  How nice to be here at my computer, typing a wrap up of my week.  I really look forward to Sundays and updating my blog.  My most fun though, is reading other peoples blogs and getting ideas from them.  You will see this happened this week as you read further on.

Let's see what I have done this week.

First up:


This baby blanket was completed by Grammie.  (My daughter in law's mother)  My Grand Daughter started this right after I taught her how to knit.  It has been languishing on her needles for about 3 years.  Grammie felt bad and said she would finish it.  I told her if she finished the body, I would crochet a cut little border on it.


Just a simple little shell stitch to finish it off and get it sent over to Hannah's House for a new baby.  I rewarded Grammie's work by giving her the Addi circular wooden needles I had bought for the Grand.  Grand has informed me she is no longer interested in knitting or crocheting.  This did not upset me as I was the same way when I was 12.  I am sure, some day she will pick it back up again, as we all did.  When she does, she will remember her grandmothers who taught her the art of fiber crafting.

Of course, I am working on this:


I have 8 more rows to do on this square and it will be completed.  I should have it done by Tuesday which will mean it takes 3 weeks of monogamous knitting to complete one square.

Just so you can kind of get an idea of the size of this square:


It is almost 24 inches square!  By the time I border it, the thing will be a good 48 to 50 inches square.  A nice sized throw to put on while watching TV.  This is the perfect project to watch TV with.  I do not even look at it other then to start a row.  I used to really dislike garter stitch, but now that I figured out I can watch TV or carry on a conversation while doing it................I am beginning to love it.  It is also nice in the fact, I can lay it down half way through a row and come back a bit later and not worry about where I am.

My hubby is helping to keep track of my progress too.  Each day he will say "that's still square one, right?"  Or he will ask me "how many more rows total before that square is done?"  Makes me kind of feel good that he is interested in this project.  I think one of the reasons is................he watched me as I frogged the squares out and knew how much it hurt hurt me to realize Daughter and I had totally messed up. I love my hubby!

Those are my only two items I have to show you.  Everything else is in hibernation until this blanket is done. Next week, I will have one finished and one being worked on.

I don't want you to think that I do nothing all day other than knit or crochet.  OH NO!  I have been keeping up with the laundry and house work too.  If you remember I have been into organizing and decluttering my house.  I really got into the organizing part this past week.  I attacked my freezer.  I hated trying to find anything in there.  Hubby thought the answer to keeping it all nice and neat was to put everything in plastic grocery bags and put it in the freezer.  Let me tell you....................those bags are slippery little boogers when frozen and they slide and the food falls out of them and it is a big mess.  I finally could not stand it any longer and I set out to organize my freezer and keep it that way for the foreseeable future.


This also keeps us from over buying foods when we have plenty of everything already. Once I got this completed, I knew exactly what we needed.........chicken thighs!  Now we can look at the grocery ads each week and find out what is on sale that we are lacking. Super easy.  I got the baskets from The Container Store (I love that place).  The labeling is just colored index cards that I attached using a hole punch and twist ties and my label maker. (Thanks Grammie for the idea)  Super easy to do.

I have also been trying super hard to make gluten free bread.  I have made 3 loaves that could have been used for door stops.  The flour we were using was a bean flour and the taste was also something we were not happy with.  We saw the nutritionist again this past week and informed her of our issues.  She suggested trying spelt flour.  While this is not totally gluten free, it is darn near.  Neither of us have a gluten allergy nor do we have celiac, therefore it is OK for us to use.  We stopped at Winco and picked up some of said flour as well as a few other non GMO and organic products and some fresh made almond butter (yum).  I came home and went onto the computer to find Spelt flour breads to make in the bread machine.  I found a honey spelt bread that sounded wonderful................Saturday morning I was reading through the recipe and BAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THERE IT WAS.  The reason I was having major issues with my bread in the machine.  YEAST!!!!!!!!!!!!  If you don't bake breads, then you probably do not realize there are several types of yeast.  I had been using Active dry yeast.  I needed to be using BREAD MACHINE YEAST.  Totally different kind of action in that yeast.  I ran to WalMart right away and picked up the proper yeast as well as agave nectar (to replace the honey).  I started the bread as soon as I came home and POOF!  Perfect bread.  Extremely yummy too.......................sorry no photo as we have eaten quite a bit of it.  But next time I make a loaf, I promise to post a photo.  Next on the list to make is Spelt brownies.................I think I will be having some fun in the kitchen now.

OK, here is the part where I tell you about reading other people's blogs.  I read all of the blogs in our YOP group each week and I also follow most of the bloggers from that group by using Bloglovin. That way, when they blog throughout the week I read those posts too. Well, one of my dearest blogging buddies (Sandra AKA Sam) posted about some Christmas ornaments she wanted to purchase and make.  She was unable to find them locally and I suggested she look on Amazon to see if they had them.  Now, I don't know if she did that yet or not but.................I looked.  Yup, there were the ornaments.


Bucilla BUC86674 Felt Kits 6 Orns Ugly Sweaters

Ugly Christmas sweater ornaments.  I love them.  It is a running joke in our family to always have at least one ugly Christmas sweater.  So what do I do?  I order them right away.  They will be delivered by the end of this month.  I am going to make them and give each of the Grands one of them for their tree.  

But wait...............................there's more........................


I found these on Amazon also.  I had to have them too.  They will also be made and sent to each of the Grands for Christmas.  I figured I would do one set for this year and one for next year.  I feel bad though.................I have 7 grands and there are only 6 ornaments.  Sounds bad huh.................well, there is one grand that we have lost all contact with in the past 2 years.  It is a long story and not something I really care to share.  Let's just say...........we love him and when he is ready to be back in our arms, they are ready and waiting for him.

So that is what I have done this week.  Today, we are being treated to a baseball game.  Doesn't sound like much of a treat until you find out we are going to be seating in one of their suites!  All you can eat food and soft drinks and water too.  There will be 19 of us and we all know each other from church.  What a fun time we will have.

Next week is crazy busy and I will be posting all about it throughout the week.  If you want to read about it, just sign up to follow me by email.  The sign up is on the top right portion of my blog.  Or use Bloglovin like I do.  So easy and new blog posts pop up there as they are published.

Until next time..............................Happy Crafting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Oops

Another mid-week update and I am sad to say, I have not completed hardly anything I wanted to get done this past week.  It is amazing how I can write down everything I need/want to accomplish in a day and then there is a phone call that completely throws my plans out the window.  Yup, that is exactly what happened this week.  I got a call on Tuesday, asking me to pick up Grammie and the Grand to take them shopping for school uniform shorts.  Seems the Grand did not try them on like she was asked and therefore, none of them fit her, save 1 pair.  Off to VF outlet we went only to find out, their's did not fit her at all.  We then headed off to Target.................SUCCESS!  We also found 2 pair of jean shorts she can wear to school on jean day.  The jean shorts need to be fingertip length for school.  If you have not been looking at girls shorts, let me tell you.....................they have an inseam of MAYBE 2 inches!  Neither my son or daughter in law allow her to dress in shorts like that.  Hence the reason I normally go and buy her jeans at the thrift store and cut them off and hem them.  Anyway, she is not all set for school.  I even got her new socks yesterday since her others are too small.  Kids..............they think, if it is in their drawer/closet it fits!

Speaking of thrift stores.  I showed you pictures of the flooding I had in our backyard.  Well, that is nothing compared to our GoodWill that is just 1/4 mile away from our house.  Their roof collapsed!  So they are closed for a while for repairs.  Or I hope they are going to repair it.  All the other thrift stores in my area have closed!  Although, we did get a new Ross open close to us, so that helps a bit.  Our neighborhood has really changed over the past 30 years.  It has been interesting to watch it too.  When we moved in, it was very much a family area.  Then after our kids hit high school, it was more middle aged empty nesters.  It is now either retired folks like us, or families with young children.  Not much in between.  I love our neighborhood, though.  We had thought about moving, but I so enjoy the area and the people I could not even think about starting over again somewhere else in the city.

Anyway, back to my grand plans of cleaning out and discarding many things that are cluttering up our Arizona room.  It was going to be a surprise for my hubby when he came home.  We still need to paint walls and lay the flooring the room, but there is no way we can do that with all the stuff that has accumulated back there for the past few years.  A lot of it is stuff from my mom's place that I saved because I thought she might want some of it.  Nope, she has not asked for one thing I saved for her.  She has asked for many things that are long gone though......go figure.

I still have a few hours before hubby arrives home, but today is when I wanted to surprise him and have all household chores completed so he could just relax for the next week.  I will say, I have managed to tackle a few of those chores each day so there isn't that much left to complete.  It is hard when you have a 4 bedroom, 3 bath 2500 square foot home, to do it all alone.  My arthritis has not been playing well either, which makes it even a bit more cumbersome.  BUT...................I will and I can do this!

Grammie is leaving today.  Our grand is very sad that she has to go too.  The good news is....Grammie will be back the first of December and will be spending 3 months here.  I told the Grand, we need to plan some outings for the 3 of us to do.  I am hoping that will give her a focus on the future and not on the present.  Finger crossed on that one.

While Grammie was here she completed a blanket that Grand Daughter had started about 3 years ago and was not having much luck with.  I got it last night and I added a crochet border to it.  I will have photos of it this weekend in my YOP update.  It will be heading to Hannah's House, along with another blanket Grammie had completed and brought down with her.

I  have been working on the Log Cabin square...............still.  I have changed colors and am now into the turquoise.  My hope, is to have this square completed in the next 2 weeks.  If that happens, then I know it takes 3 weeks to complete one square.  That means, I will need 9 weeks to complete the other 3 and then I need to assemble it and do a border.  So I am looking at about 12 weeks or 3 months to complete this blanket. Looks like it is going to be given as a Christmas gift and not a Birthday gift.  Good thing I was not planning on doing a homemade Christmas this year!

Today, I am going to make another loaf of gluten free bread in my bread machine.  Since hubby is coming home today, I thought it would be nice for him to have some fresh bread as a welcome home gift.  Hopefully, this one will turn out a bit more lofty than the last one.  Kneading time is being cut down considerably this time and that should help.  At least the flavor is good.  I also have 3 very ripe bananas and will probably make banana bread today or tomorrow too.  I am also making that gluten free and it is quite yummy.

I just finished watering all our plants in our front yard.  We have desert landscaping but..........our flowering bushes still need a bit more water than what the good Lord gives us. We have artificial grass in our back yard, so no watering needed there.  Neither hubby or I are big on yard work, so our yard is perfect for us.

I received a phone call from my mom yesterday.  Her brother is turning 100 this month and wanted a card to send to him.  I was going to buy a card for him and decided to make one instead.  I have the Hallmark Studio on my PC and love it.  I went searching and sure enough, they had a lot of 100 year old birthday cards!  Mission accomplished!

The other phone call that happened yesterday................I contacted my friend, Bev's, husband to see how her Doctor's appointment went yesterday.  The tumors in her brain are growing and the Doctor gave orders to place her on Hospice.  I knew it was coming, but I was not quite as prepared for the news as I thought I would be.  I talked to her husband for about 20 minutes and he seemed to be more accepting than I thought he might be.  I had told my husband, last Christmas, I did not think we would have her for another Christmas.  I am hoping we will have 1 more with her, but things are not looking hopeful at this point.  I will call her husband again tonight and see what the Hospice nurse told him.  He did tell me the Doctor thought it would be a good idea if she was placed in the Hospice in house unit right away.  I don't know if that is to give him some respite or if the Doctor thinks she is that close to death.  Either way, I will visit her where ever she is.  She is not talking at this point and she no longer can use her legs.  The blessing is.................she is not in any pain.  We are praying, the lesions on the brain are blocking her pain center and therefore she will not suffer.

Laundry is done, bread making ingredients sitting out to get to room temperature, watering done, birthday card done, dogs fed, kitchen cleaned and polished, and I am ready to tackle the cleaning of the rest of the house.

Until next time..................happy crafting!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!