Thursday, June 30, 2016

Just a Few Garden Pictures and a Blue Apron Meal

Hi there everyone...hope you had a wonderful day. One more hour and it will be JULY 1st!!! Are you ready for a new month? I still have not accomplished all that I wanted to in June....but, there is still 2 months yet to go, to get those projects done. By then, fall will be upon us, hopefully I can still enjoy the summer.
So I took a few pictures tonight of my black eyed Susan's in the front yard. They sure are prolific aren't they?
In this picture, you can see the plant next to the black eyed Susan's....it's a hissop bush. JP likes to dry the leaves (actually I dry the leaves) and make tea. The front of the house has lemon-mint growing, which has over taken the front yard. Tonight I made some mint tea....boiled the leaves and added some stevia...not a bad tea. I think I will make some mint jelly this summer...but I need to find a good recipe.
Along side the house are some more black eyed Susan's, Lillie's, star Clementius and purple Clementius, those purple flowers, I am not sure what they are.....they come back every year. They look awful when growing, almost like weeds, then they bloom these cute little purple bells....they dry up and then I pull them out....but they seem to come back every year.....hard to get rid of them.
So hey you guys, this meal was really delicious!! "Spicy Hoisin Turkey Meatballs with sautéed zucchini and brown rice" I just finished the last of it tonight. I need to make this again.

It was a pretty easy meal to make. Make the rice, quarter the zucchini, mince the garlic and ginger, slice the scallions. Add breadcrumbs, hoisin sauce and sambal oelek (spice) to the meat and make into balls. Cook the balls till browned and transfer to a dish and keep warm. Add the zucchini to the fond and cook to browned. Add the meatballs, remaining hoisin sauce and 1/2 cup water to the pan. Cook till the sauce thickens and the meatballs are thoroughly coated and cooked through. Place rice in a bowl, top with the meat and zucchini and top with scallion and sesame seeds. Yep, I would make this again.

Well, time to close this last post of the month....maybe July I will be more active. Showing you some of the things I have been making besides cards. Have a great day and keep looking up....better days are coming. Cheers ~ Louise

Monday, June 27, 2016

Nothing Special....Just Occupying and Living Life

Hi there everyone...hope you are having a wonderful day. Can you believe it? June is almost over....how fast life goes! Wasn't it just May a few days ago???? I guess that is why we must live each day to the fullest and get the most we can out of a 24 hour day. I don't do very good at that though, because there are days when I just don't feel like doing anything!! But then there are those days that I get lots done and amaze myself with all the energy accumulated. Who can figure???

So last night I worked on this card for my grand-nephew. He likes trucks....I think it turned out neat, it is a "one-of-a-kind" kind of card....I am sure he will like it. He likes to fish too....so maybe next years card will have fish on it....I shall have to hunt and shop for "fish stamps" for the next year. His Birthday is this Friday, so hopefully it will get to its destination on time.
Blue Apron meals.....I really love these meals and so enjoy the "taste sensation" of each meal. I guess I will continue to do this, but only once a month....so you won't see these meals as often. I am getting quite the library of recipes and there are some that I have repeated, just because I enjoyed the meal so much.
The above recipe is called, "Black Garlic-Shoyu Ramen with Green Beans and Shiitake Mushrooms" This was so good and I actually have some left overs in the frige for JP's dinner tonight. The broth was rich and flavorful, using black garlic along with Ponzu Sauce and Soy Glaze, Furikake and ginger made this very tasty. Not sure if I want to make this again, as it will be hard to find all the ingredients. Maybe the Oriental store. The Ramen noodles were fresh along with the beans, mushrooms and egg.....yep, if I would make this again, guess I will have to experiment. I gave this recipe 5 stars!!!
We really enjoyed the above recipe, "Seared Steak & Spiced Potato with Sauteed Sugar Snap Peas & Tarragon-Labneh Sauce". I did add some steak to this meal and if I had, had extra potatoes in the house, I would have made extra of those too. The steak was left at room temperature, salted and peppered and seared in the fry pan. The potatoes were roasting in the oven with oil, salt, pepper and the Baharat Spice blend. (man that was a good spice). The beans were fried in the fond from the steak and seasoned with salt and pepper. The white sauce was made with labneh, garlic paste, vinegar and half the tarragon leaves. It had sort of a  horseradish taste and was very good with the steak. This was another 5 star recipe.
This is my basil growing in the front....guess it is time to do something with it....soon!!!
This is my little water fountain on the front porch.....the Flamingos are new to this space.....I am most definitely a Flamingo fan.....just bought another stamp with a flamingo....(lol)
Here are a few more pictures from the garden walk I went on last Saturday. These two pictures were at the same house. The top picture is the front of the house. Wish I could get the front of my house to look like this.
This was the side of the house. There was a big tree here and had to be cut down....the stump was left, so the owners turned it into a dwarf house....pretty cute huh???
In these two pictures are cards I made at Betty's house 2 weeks ago, thought I would add these to the mix today. I have been working on cards and making some gold frames (like the card below) to add flowers to. Maybe in the next few days I will finally put some cards together using my gold frames. I saw a card made with the frames and fell in love with the technique. This card is kinda like the card I saw on the Internet.
So there you have it....I think I shall bring this post to a close. I have some things to do out in the yard and also walk Kylie around the block. Tonight is the Bachelorette....I missed last week, so for sure I want to watch tonight.

You all have a great evening and keep looking up....better days are coming. Cheers ~ Louise

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

No...Haven't Been On Vacation....But

Hi there everyone. As my title says....No, Haven't been on vacation....But.........
I sure wish I could take off to someplace nice and sunny, with lots of water around me.....these two pictures look mighty fine to me.
So what have I been doing since my last post on June 11th???
Visiting my neighbors garden to see  how her garden is growing....these are some of her lovely Clementius
Making cards at Betty's. Plus making cards in my basement.....keeping very busy there.
Cooking.....ah yes......cooking with Blue Apron and whatever I may come up with on the days without Blue Apron.
Celebrating Father's Day with this cute and yummy little Chocolate cake from Festival Foods.....when in doubt....buy a cake!!!
Going through storms that eventually pass. This limb came crashing down on my pond garden and hit the cloths line....no damage though.
This past weekend I went on a Garden Walk, put on by the Master Gardeners. This garden was in Neenah....every plant is grown in water and some never touch soil till it is planted outside. Those blue tanks hold Tipila fish....their waste is converted to fertilizer for plants and the plants filter water that returns to the fish....Now that is what I call the circle of life!!!

I bought some Heirloom tomatoes from them and were they ever delicious. I have plans of going back there a couple more times this summer, as they have duck and chicken eggs for sale. JP has been wanting duck eggs. When we had our 20 acres, I raised chickens and ducks and we got quite a few eggs. Two chicken eggs = 1 duck egg and JP always got a duck egg and bacon for breakfast. He misses those eggs. So now we found them in Neenah and he is a happy man!!!
This was a cute little wheel barrel on a walk.....the gardener is just now working up this section of his yard and for added eye appeal, he added this wheel barrel. I have an old wheel barrel in my yard too....it's growing cucumbers and a drawer of radishes, onions and swiss chard. I shall have to take a picture soon. I have been re purposing my drawers, repainting, putting knobs on, filling with dirt and planting stuff. (pictures to follow)
This same man's garden, square foot and rotating garden. I really like this concept as there is no deep bending and everything is up off the ground. I will show you more pictures at a later date. I took over 30 pictures on the 4 places I walked through and then I missed 2 of the places.
At this garden the lady had over 1000+ hostas' in her back yard....it's her hobby for sure.....it sure was a lovely garden though and each hostas was marked as to what it's name was. This is her wheel barrel.
Another view of her yard. More pictures to follow in future posts.
This stepping stone was in her garden.....I just had to take a picture. One of my plans this summer is to make my own stepping stones.....I have the cement, forms and some broken pottery and cracked marbles and such. So I am ready for the great experiment. If I make an abundance of stepping stones, I might try selling them.....who knows?
A few signs in the gardens....."Happiness is a butterfly in my garden"
"There is no set Path....follow your heart.
I have a few other things up my sleeve that I want to make....but that may be down the road a bit. I think by the time I do everything I want.....Fall will be here and I still have not gotten all my ceramic figures out yet.....yikes, times a wasting!!!!

I am so glad I am feeling better this summer and not sick, like I was last summer with my hernia problems....2015 was a tuff year for me with dental, eye surgery and the hernia surgery plus being sick and throwing up so much. Yeah, this is definitely a better year.

Well, time to close here before I bore you to death. Have a great day and keep looking up.....better days are coming.
Cheers ~ Louise



Saturday, June 11, 2016

A Few Cards for Hospice and a Mini Misti

Hi there everyone...how was your day today. It was a little bit warm today...weatherman said it would be in the 90's....uge, too warm for me. We did not start working in the yard till about 5:00. Actually that is my usual time when JP is working....my energy level does not raise till about then and I can get loads done in those few hours before it gets dark and the mosquito's start biting.

Well, this past week I was working on cards for the Hospice meeting yesterday. The cards below were cards made for 4th of July. I made 22 cards for this event. I may use the same design for Veterans day cards in October. These were fun to make.....and a few ladies asked how I made them using the embossing folder and strips of red, white, and blue papers.
So in this picture is the Mini Misti that I won....it sure has come in handy and so much fun to use. I saw a tutorial on YouTube where they showed "10 ways to use the Misti". I shall have to write them down, as Betty wants me to do a short "show and tell" about the misti at her house at next card meeting.
In this picture of the 6 flowers and the one above, I used the Misti. It's a layered technique, the stamp has 3 layers, using different colors for each layer and then the stem and saying are stamped also.
This is a quick card I made....ran the pink and yellow paper through the crimper, then punched a butterfly....negative and positive....with a Happy Birthday and Thank You for the saying. This could be my "go to" card when I need a fast card to make.
These are my scenic picture cards.....I made a bunch of these cards up, different scenes for Birthday and Thinking of you.
Just one of these cards in the collection....I did make two, but held back on one because I want one for a sample to make some more.
My stained glass sail boat stamp. There are so many ways to color this....reminds me of the Adult coloring books....makes for a nice card, and I added a "thanks" die cut.
So, there you have it....just some cards I made for Hospice. We have a two month vacation from Hospice and back together again in September. Then we have to have Veterans and Halloween cards made. I am not much of a Halloween fan....so there will be very few in my collection....maybe mostly Fall cards for this girl.

Time to close, I want to go downstairs where it is cool and make some cards. So talk to you later and have a great weekend. Keep looking up, cause better days are coming.
Cheers ~ Louise

Saturday, June 4, 2016

A Busy Saturday...

Hi there everyone. Well, it WAS a very busy Saturday....whew and I even took a nap!!!

Up at 8:00am to take Kylie to the Groomer by 8:30. Then over to Festival Foods to buy a chicken for today's dinner. Home and put the chicken in the crock pot. My only seasoning was BBQ sauce.

Had breakfast, then off to the Library for a workshop put on by the Master Gardeners "gardening in pots and other types of containers." I really learned lots of new things. (now I have to put my learning into action.) There was a demo, also with the chance to win the potted plant. The lady put succulent plants in an old lunch box....it was cute when finished. I am not into succulent plants so I really did not desire to win.....and....I didn't which was fine with me.

After the workshop, I went to visit Misty the cat, I am watching. Doloris told me to make a cup of tea while visiting.....so I did. Cleaned Misty's litter, gave her fresh water and cat food, then sat and talked to her. I think she misses Doloris cause she was not too interested in what I had to say.

Home again and waiting for the groomer to call and the mailman to bring my new Mini Misti to me. Neither happened, so I took a nap!!! Then about 1:30 the groomer called to come pick Kylie up.
When I got home with Kylie.....I checked the mail and "WAH-LA" there was my Mini Misti....yay!!!! Can hardly wait to play with it.

Pulled a few weeds and the neighbor brought over some dirt that they needed to get rid of and I said I could use to fill some places that were low....so that is a good thing.

About 5:00 the crock pot signaled that it was done cooking my chicken. So I cooked up some French fries, beans and corn on the cob. We sat down to eat a yummy dinner.

At 7:00pm the hockey game started between the Sharks and Penguins in San Jose.....they are still playing, the game is in overtime and score is 2-2!
So this is a yummy meal I made Friday night with Blue Apron. "Spinach Pesto Gnocchi with sautéed Asparagus & Brown Butter" Yep, I would make it again. If you are interested in this recipe, leave a comment I can direct you to the recipe. In the below picture I added steak to this meal....oh my goodness, a perfect combination.
I found this card on the Internet....and in the process of making some cards like it for Hospice....will show you what I came up with in the next few days. But for now, I need to play with my Mini Misty.
As soon as this hockey game is over, we are taking a ride to visit Misty the cat and see how her litter, food and water is.. She seems to be pretty thirsty and her bowl was empty at this mornings visit. We will make one more visit tomorrow  after church. Doloris will be home about 3 or 4, hopefully she will come home to a clean litter and a happy cat.

Well, time to close here....hockey game is still in progress...OH A GOAL!!! YAY....THE SHARKS WON!!! 3-2 (I still wish the Blackhawks were the ones playing!)

Have a great day and keep looking up....better days are coming!!!
Cheers ~ Louise

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

The First Day of June......

Hi there everyone....wow!!! First day of June! Where did January - May go to???? What does it mean when time flies by so fast? Is it because we live at such a fast pace??? When we lived in the Chicago area, we left to live in Ladysmith, WI for a slower paced life. Yeah, we left the "rat race" to slow down a bit. We were so impressed by the way the farmers just took time to talk, work, eat, it sure was a slower pace.

Then we moved to Appleton and worked at the Salvation Army....and life seemed to speed up a bit and now......here we are back in the "rat race" again. Even in retirement, the days go by fast....so much to do and accomplish......so little time!!!
Last night I made a Blue Apron meal.....man, this was delicious. "Beef Tartines with Zucchini au Pistou"  Yep, I would make this again and again and you know what?? It tasted better the next day too!!
2 ozs of spinach was cooked down till wilted, Cooled down then chopped up (I think it would be better to chop the spinach before it is cooked down though), 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese and the juice of 2 lemon wedges were added and enough olive oil to create rough paste; season with salt and pepper to taste.

In the same pan, heat olive oil and add the cut up zucchini till lightly browned and slightly softened. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add half the pistou and toss to coat and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Add oil to pan and add the bread slices, cook 2-3 minutes per side till brown and crispy. When the bread is cooled, carefully rub the sides of the bread with the clove of garlic. Transfer the garlic toasts to a sheet pan.

Cook the sliced beef in olive oil adding salt and pepper to taste. When browned and cooked through, remove from heat. Divide the cooked beef between the garlic toasts, evenly top with Fontina cheese and chopped capers. Bake 3-4 minutes until the cheese has melted. Remove from the oven and divide the baked tartines and dressed zucchini between 2 plates. Top the tartines with the remaining pistou. Serve with the remaining lemon wedges on the side....Enjoy!!!

I hope you could follow my instructions for the yummy meal....but if not, here is where to go for this recipe.

Well, the hockey game is over and the Pittsburgh Penguin's beat the San Jose Sharks 2-1. Now they go back to San Jose....maybe the Sharks will win in their own backyard. Then it will be tied 2-2!!!
The Sharks have never won a Stanley Cup in the 25 years they have been playing. So I am rooting for them. Of Course I was hoping the Chicago Black Hawks would have won....but maybe next year!!

Time to close, I need to get downstairs and make some cards for Hospice. Have a great day and keep looking up....better days are coming. Cheers ~ Louise

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

The Last Day of May and....

Hi there everyone....how was you Memorial Day Weekend.....my goodness, we plan ahead for the big day and then....POOH....it's gone.

I had a nice day...worked outside, pulling weeds and planting some tomato, pepper and cabbage plants and a few old seeds...if I don't see growth, I will replant.

We grilled out, (shucks no pictures) yummy prime rib hamburgers and red potatoes with a Caesar salad on the side. Then we ate on the front porch. Something we have not done in a long time for some reason. Yeah, I think I know the reason, I was sick all last summer and did not feel like grilling and eating on the porch. That could have been the reason.

Well, being this is the last day of May....I have 9 days till Hospice meeting. I have not even started to make cards yet.....but I think the following cards will be samples of what I will be making.

I found this card yesterday on the internet and thought it would make a great 4th of July card and even a Veterans Day card in October.
The butterfly card below looks like a fun card to make. Just punch a bunch of circles and 2 hearts for wings.

I made this card for Father's day, some birthday cards for men would be good with this design. It's kinda fun to do and very relaxing as it sort of reminds me of adult coloring.
As soon as I receive my Mini Misti in the mail....I am going to make this card. The flower comes in 4 different stamps...so using the misti will help with stamping this stamp.
Today JP and I had our teeth cleaned. We are good till September and another visit. Tomorrow the car gets an oil change. Friday through Sunday I will be sitting for Misty the cat.
I will go to her house, feed her, talk to her, pet her and clean her litter. She seems to enjoy my visits plus I even get paid to watch her. A Bonus!!!!

Saturday, Kylie goes to the groomer at 8:30am and then there is a demo at the Library put on by the Master Gardeners at 10am to 11:30 in how to do container gardening. They will put a planter together and then there will be a drawing for the planter. I feel "lucky" since I just won a Mini Misti.....lol!

Well time to close this post....hope you have a great evening and keep looking up....better days are coming. Cheers ~ Louise

Sunday, May 29, 2016

My Memorial Weekend Project.....And a Blessing to Those That Served

This being Memorial Day, I would like to THANK YOU to you all that served this country that we might still be FREE. You gave your life, just as Jesus gave his, that we might be saved from our sins and live in freedom. Thank You, Thank You! For all you have done!! As this song goes, "Thank you Lord for saving my soul, thank you Lord for making me whole, thank you Lord for giving to me, thy great salvation, a gift to me."

Hi there everyone. How is your Memorial Day Weekend going??? As you can see, I am posting this on Sunday (late) evening. We were quite busy Saturday, my project was my neighbors side of their house. Her weeds were growing very well and as they have been up north, I asked her if I could pull her weeds and plant some extra tomato and pepper plants we received from the Appleton Master Gardeners. Her answer was yes.
So in these two pictures you can see all those weeds...pretty easy to pull, there was a fern and a small hostas planted along this side of her house. On the other side of the door are a few more hostas....I will work around them.
In the picture below is the finished project on this side of the door. I threw in some zucchini seeds, 2 tomato plants and 2 pepper plants and 4 cabbage plants. Along with some radish seeds. I will also throw some Swiss Chard seeds and onions too.
The ground was really pliable and easy to work with. I sure do hope these plants grow. They will get lots of hot afternoon sun during the day, so that will help in growth. Another plus will be when I walk out my back door I will see these plants growing rather then weeds. My side of the driveway will be flowers but they only get the morning sun.
Here's another shot of the side of her house.
Tomorrow I will have this part to work on.....maybe just pull the weeds and get some more tomato plants.....I have fallen in love with sliced tomato sandwiches.....and I want to can some this year too. So we can't have too many tomatoes!!!

Today I suffered from being outside all day yesterday and I got bit up pretty bad by the mosquitos or whatever they were. I did not feel a thing till last night when they started itching. I tried sprays, Absorbine Jr. (which felt cooling) everything. Finally a friend at church said try some Benadryl, so when we got home, I took a pill....and in half an hour I was out like a light...tonight I ran HOT water on my arms and legs. Helps for a little while then the itch starts up again.

So, as much as I would like to do some more weeding I am so fearful of the mosquitos getting me, I shall have to carry a bug candle around with me or something to repel them. OR not work so late into the evening.

I am looking forward to receiving my Mini Misti this week sometime....so I really need to get some more things planted before the Misti comes because I shall lock myself in the basement and will be playing with making cards with my Misti!!!! It's the little things that make me happy!!!

Well, time to close, you all have a great day and keep on looking up....better days are coming. Cheers ~ Louise

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