Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Carrot Cake, Macaroons, Yummy Potatoes, Steak and Pumpkin Pie

Hi there everyone. Hope you are enjoying the beautiful weather. Guess that will change by this weekend.....the snow is coming. I knew this was too good to be true!!! But the early spring sure did feel good, didn't it???

So I started this post the day before Valentine's.....here are a couple of recipes that caught my eye.
Carrot Cake for 2. I am not very good at making cakes for some reason. But, this cake was pretty good, the taste was there but it came out like the leaning tower of Pizza. Carrot cake and cream cheese frosting. JP ate most of it though....I have to watch my sugar intake.
In this picture you see the back side of the carrot cake and chocolate Macaroons. A simple recipe from the package, I just added the chocolate chips and cocoa.
Chocolate Macaroons. 2 2/3 cup coconut, 1/3 cup sugar, 3 Tablespoon flour, 2 egg whites, 1/8 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon almond extract. Mix together coconut, sugar, flour and salt. Then mix in egg, and almond extract until blended. Bake on a greased and floured cookie sheet, drop by teaspoonful for 20 minutes at 325 until edges are golden brown. Remove from cookie sheet to wire racks to cool. As I said, in this recipe I added maybe about 1/3 mini chocolate chips and 1 Tablespoon cocoa.
Baked Potatoes - this was delicious!! Oh gosh....I lost this recipe, and not sure where I found it. But I seem to remember the potatoes were peeled and diced. Onions and bacon mixed in, sprinkled with salt and pepper and olive oil. Baked at 350-400 till browned. If I ever run across this recipe, I will be sure to post it again.
Hardcore Carnivore Black Steaks. I leave my steaks on the counter till room temperature. Makes for a more tenderer steak. Fry 3-4 minutes on each side will make for a medium pink steak....yum!!
I made a few Pumpkin Pies. One for us and one for my friend Betty. I cooked down a pumpkin from Halloween, had it sitting in the kitchen. Baked the pumpkin in the oven, scooped out the meat and froze it in freezer bags. Time to make the pie, defrosted the meat, 2 cups on pumpkin, cup of milk, 1/2 cup sugar, 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, 1/2 teaspoon salt. Mix in a blender and pour into a shell and bake 400 degrees for 15 minutes turn down the oven to 350 for 45 - 50 minutes. Easy Peasy Pie.
Well, I shall close this post for today.....hope you enjoyed the recipes. Have a great night and keep looking up~~~better days are here again. Cheers ~ Louise

Friday, February 17, 2017

Pretty Valentine Flowers

Hi there everyone. I hope you had a lovely Valentine's Day. JP gave me $5.00 to spend on some flowers for myself. Whew, I thought, where in the world am I going to find some flowers for $5.00???? Everything I saw was $10, 20, 30 dollars. BUT!!! the day after Valentines I found these flowers at Pic n Save.
The check-out girl said, "they were $28.00 yesterday and today they are $5.00!!!" Yay....I got a good deal!!
I have put them in fresh water with an asprin and cut their stems down.
Hopefully they will last until the week-end...they sure are pretty.
I love the salmon colored roses and the hydrangea's were so pretty. I wish I had a bush....maybe this year.
The yellow roses are starting to weep a bit. I still think I got a good deal though. Maybe before they completely die, I will dry them by turning them upside down.
It's always nice to have some flowers in the house.....feels springy and summery in the middle of winter.

Although, it is starting to feel very much like Spring outside...tomorrow it's supposed to be in the 50's. It's time to sit on the front porch, maybe tomorrow...Kylie is looking for sunny places to sunbath. Next week, the temps will be in the 40's.....I like this kind of weather. Felt like I wanted to start raking the yard and bring out the lawn furniture.

Today I went shopping and actually wore my spring jacket. My winter coat seemed too warm. I saw a man wearing shorts already today....yep, spring is in the air.

I went to Betty's house Wednesday to make some cards....I will take pictures of them and put them up in my next post. We won't be meeting for the next few months....as she had knee surgery on her right knee and on March 6th will have surgery on her left knee. So she will be taking time off to heal.

Had my blood drawn today for the AC1....or is it A1C, I can never get that straight. Here's hoping I get some good numbers. Will find out in the next few days. Probably after I get the results, the Doctor will want to see me for my annual exam....ish!

Well, tomorrow I shall be working on my taxes...I have 2 weeks to get it all together and then take them in for the accountant to finish it off. Also in the next 2 weeks I have to get cards ready for our Hospice meeting March 3rd....I better get cracking. Who said Retirement was boring....I am not bored, have much too much to get done.

Time to close here, have to get a few miles in on my bike, don't know if it is doing any good....but I feel better after it. You all have a great weekend and keep looking up....better days are here again!!!
Cheers ~ Louise

Friday, February 10, 2017

SPRING Where Art Thou???

Hi there everyone! How has your week been? It's been nice here, a few days of cold and a few flurries. Next week it will be in the 30's and low 40's.......Spring, I am looking for you......perhaps it is right around the corner???? 
I have been thinking about what I want to plant when Spring comes....not sure I will go hog wild this year. Maybe just some tomato plants and flowers will do. I can't seem to get onions and zucchini growing, guess there is too much shade in my back yard and the dirt is too hard. Maybe I should try growing things in the front yard in full sun. Course the dirt is no better there either. Well, I still have a few months to ponder this situation.

I do so look forward to Spring and Summer and the beautiful flowers. Not sure where I got this picture, but this rose sure is pretty.
I know where these tulips come from....my front yard, it's a sure sign of spring when the tulips bloom.
Here's a colorful little Spring poem for you to read......
One of my pretty yellow roses in the front yard.
So tomorrow I shall be working on our taxes....I have been putting them off for a week now, for some reason I cannot get myself to tackle that job. But I know once I get to it, I will really get into it. I enjoy organizing, shuffling and filing papers, (must be a throw back from being a secretary or something.)

I went out today, to the Salvation Army to get some bread, mail the mortgage at the Post Office. Get some gas and coffee. Cookies and chocolate donut for JP's lunch. Oh and a corn dog. We shared that. That was the extent of my outing and I almost had enough. Gosh people are crazy drivers on Friday....they have gone wild!!! Payday and they want to get the weekend started......"get out of my way, you move too slow old lady." Gosh, if I didn't have to go to the store and run a few errands, I would be content to stay at home, I have become a home-body for sure!!!!

Well, time to close here before I bore you to death!!! You all take care and keep looking up cause better days are here again....if only the "left" would let it happen!!!! Cheers ~ Louise

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

February is Slipping by Fast!!!

Hi there everyone!!! February is slipping by fast....oh yes it is!!! Here it is....the 7th already. A truism, my mother always said to me, "don't wish your life away, Louise....it will come fast enough." I never knew what she meant by that, now I know. There is a scripture I like, it's on my facebook, "I was young, and now I am old yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging bread." Psalm 37:25

So today I want to tell you about this great and tasty seasoning. The following picture is from Hardcore, check out their site. There's one blog I like to visit just about every day and she has talked about this seasoning for months now. Biz,  is a diabetic AND a terrific cook. She also is on WW and has lost weight using the point system. I give her lots of credit, she is very well-rounded, exercise, diet and still manages to enjoy life to the fullest!!!

Doesn't this steak look d.e.l.i.c.i.o.u.s I can hardly wait to cook a good steak on the grill this summer.....there I go again, wishing my life away. So anyways, Biz has been talking about this seasoning and then she would put pictures up of the steaks....mmmmmm....I could almost taste the steak through the pictures.(she takes great pictures too.) Finally I gave in and bought the seasoning going straight to their site. I also left a comment to Biz on her blog and said.....OKAY....you sold me, I am going to buy this seasoning......so I did!!!

In this picture is my Hardcore jars in the seasoning cabinet....yes they have Hardcore red which is for pork and chicken and maybe even fish. The Hardcore black is for steaks and hamburgers. Jess Pryles, the maker of these seasonings sends recipes every now and then....shall have to try them for sure. So far, I have used Hardcore Black for steak and hamburgers oh and I did use the Red for chicken wings.....oh yum!!!
So here is the steak all covered with the Hardcore Black, I did let the steak sit out for about an hour (as per Biz)with the seasoning on it.....made for a very tender piece of meat......yes it did!!! I fried the steak in an oiled hot pan with some mushrooms and peppers....2-4 minutes on each side. The steak was on sale at Pic n Save, an $8 piece of meat for $4.50....affordable. I think I will do this again for Valentine's Day.
This is what the plate looked like all cooked up....yes I did enjoy this meal. Steak, mushrooms and peppers, cottage fries and sour cream and asparagus.....yep it was delicious!!! And NO, I did not make this for JP - this was for "Louise only" sometimes a girl just needs to "treat" herself.....hahahhahha. Had more steak the next day for breakfast....yep, steak and eggs and again, did not share. Maybe for Valentines I will make him his own steak....we'll see.
He did give me $5.00 to buy some flowers....have not invested yet....there is still time for that. I am not sure steak and flowers are an even trade....can't eat flowers!!!! Course there are no calories in flowers, but then not much in steak either. Maybe it's just a Win-win situation. We are both happy in the end!!!

Still have not taken a picture of me with make-up on and a new do with my eyes all healed. My niece has sent me some sample Roden and Fields eye cream, lip cream, face cream and mask.....I have tried it and really like it and have seen a difference...gosh that stuff is great, I just wish I had the $$$ to buy from her. Actually my two nieces are selling it....I do believe they will do really great in this field. Maybe one day when my ship comes in, I can invest in Roden and Fields....but I have a feeling my ship sank in the Bermuda Triangle never to rise again!!

Well, time to close here....nothing much is coming up till next week. I have a Doctor's appointment for my A1C....sure do hope it is controlled and better this time around.

Cards are in the making......working on Hospice cards again....next meeting is March 3rd. They keep me busy, otherwise I would be doing nothing but sitting on my thumbs. Looking forward to Spring coming, maybe this year I will have the motivation to get outside and do something. Last summer I had lots of ideas but no motivation to do it. Hope that phase is over and out!!!

You all take care and keep looking up~~~better days are here again!!!  Cheers ~ Louise

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Last Day of January.......

Hi there everyone......so yeah, it's the last day of January. Wow time flies, I always say that, don't I? I seem to be your broken record. Repeat, repeat, repeat!!!

I am happy to report that my eyes are looking much better as of today. No, no recent picture....maybe next post, if I think about it. There sure is a big difference and happy to say, I am glad I did this surgery. I was kind of hesitant at first and thought, do I really need this surgery, and almost wanted to cancel. But again, I am glad I did not. Here's hoping this is the last of surgery's for a LONG while for me at least.

So anyways....maybe after I fix my hair and put some make-up on....I will take a picture of the "new me!!"

For my last post of January, I thought posting some cards I made for Hospice would be good. I believe I said I would do this in my last post.

So below are some Valentine cards I made. The "heart" and "Love" are my new dies I bought from "Simon says Stamp." Here is their site, enjoy the journey. Very simple cards, the background is an embossed folder with hearts, then the die and Love are glued on the background and sequins added for a little glitz. A bow on the bottom card. I learned how to make a bow using my two fingers....wish I could show you.

The grey cards are a copy of a card I received last year (top left). The bottom and right are my rendition of that card I received. I just added the bows.
These two cards are a copy of a card I saw on the Internet. I kind of changed it up a bit putting my interpretation into it. Kind of like the way I cook....always changing the recipe before I even cook it. Or when the husband/father starts shaking the salt and pepper on the food without tasting it first.
Here are some St. Patrick Cards....I just used some stuff I had laying around in the St. Patrick box. Stickers, ribbon, the shamrock is actually a heart punch.....3 hearts = a shamrock....pretty neat huh?
Another design using the heart punch and shamrocks and Leprechaun. I did get some new dies from Stampin'up.....dragon flies....looking forward to putting some cards together with those dies. Next post.
So there you have it....the end of January and the beginning of February. What will transpire in February???? One thing I have to get done  this month is our taxes....so, I may not be blogging much in February cause I will be deep in organizing and putting together everything. Hopefully we will get the regular refund back that we usually do....that will help a lot.

We need to get JP some new glasses and pay a few bills.....so what else is new???? Well, you all take care and enjoy the new month. Keep looking up cause better days are here again!!!!
Cheers ~ Louise

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Blepharoplasty Surgery Before and After

Hi there everyone.....guess I have been "Missing in Action" again.....BUT I do have an excuse!!! Had surgery on my eyelids to lift them up a bit and get rid of those ugly yellow patches on my lids. The Doctor said they were cholesterol patches. NOOOOO...I did not like them at all. Can't understand why the cholesterol decided to take up residence above my eyes. Look how old and tired my eyes look.....uge! This picture was taken maybe a couple of days before the surgery.
This picture was taken a day or so after the surgery....doesn't look too bad here but the discoloration and black and blue spread down and around my eyes. This picture actually looks good. Doctor put 3 stitches in my eye lids and taped up the rest. The tape falls off after a couple of days. I used a lot of warm water compresses a couple of times a day....that felt so good. Doctor said, "no cold compresses." There was just a bit of pain as the numbness was wearing off, took a Tylenol and that made me sleep most of the afternoon. No pain after that.
So in the picture below....it was taken today. I had an appointment with the Doctor and he took the stitches out. He said most of the discoloration will be gone in a week or so. See my beautiful eyelids??? (That's what he said, my eyes were beautiful) Can you see the difference? One thing I have noticed is that my eyes did not water so much since the surgery. Doctor said that is because the sagging eyelids were not letting enough tears flow which caused eye dryness. I guess that is a miracle.....I would tear constantly, people probably thought I was crying all the time.

I told the Doctor I looked like a Mack Truck hit me.....he laughed and said, "and that Mack Truck's name was Dr. Neilitz!!!" Hahahah...he has quite the humor.
Since my cataract surgery last year, I now have 20-20 vision looking far away.....but up close I have to wear readers for now. Doctor asked me if I want glasses, but I said for now I will wear the readers cause I kinda like not having to wear glasses all the time. We will see....maybe at my next appointment in November I will have changed my tune. Cheaper to buy readers then new glasses.

Been doing a lot of nothing this past week or so. Making cards has just been on my schedule. Tomorrow is our Hospice meeting, so hopefully I can get a few more cards made tonight. Valentine cards are pretty much done, but need to make a few simple St. Patrick cards yet tonight. I will take some pictures and show you what I have been up to.

Well, it is going on 5:00 and it's still pretty light out. So I think Kylie and I will go take a walk.....she will like that. Finally the days are getting longer....Daylight savings begins March 12th. So yay.. we have something to look forward to. Oh and doesn't the Ground Hog come out on Feb. 1st or 2nd.....I don't know, it always seems we still have 6 more weeks of winter whether he sees his shadow or not.....superstition is all.

You all have a great evening and keep looking up BETTER DAYS ARE HERE!!!!!
Cheers ~ Louise

Sunday, January 15, 2017

A Card Making Kinda Weekend

Hi there everyone. Hope you are having a good and productive weekend. Saturday I went to Betty's for a card making session....the next 4 cards are from Betty's. The last 2 cards are from today's Stampin'up Camp at Kathy's. Lots of great ideas for future use.

As I look at my calendar....I am wondering why I have not posted anything since the 6th....nothing much has been going on....just living life I guess. Keeping house, cooking, making cards, shopping here and there, sleeping.....is this retirement? I have no idea. JP started a new job this past week...same company...different building, instead of 3 buildings, he does one building....hopefully it won't be so much wear and tare on him or our car. We shall see.

Wednesday I have a appointment with the eye doctor. He is going to do a procedure called Blepharoplasty (surgery to lift the eyelids) I have been told it will only take 20 minutes for both eyes and is a very easy surgery. I have confidence in Dr. Neilitz, so I shouldn't worry. He will also be able to remove the yellow patches over my eyes....so maybe I will look like a new spring chicken. NOW if I can just drop some weight in the next few months....I'd be a happy camper.
So following are the cards we made at Betty's. She is going to have knee surgery on the 25th and then the other knee March 8th. So she will be out of commission for a couple of months. I told her I would bake her a pumpkin pie.....can't forget the Kool Whip!!!!

The "Happy Bird-Day" card was fun to make....we colored in the flowers and birdie with copic markers. The birdie is from the Tim Holtz Crazy Bird Set. Betty stamped the bird on cork then it was cut with the Crazy Bird die. I still want to get that die set for this set of birds....otherwise "fussy cutting" will have to do for now.
"Peek-a-boo bear"....he is colored in with copic markers. The background is punched out and run through the cuttlebug. Flowers are placed where flowers are embossed on the card. Wonder if I should have moved the background over a bit more...
This "Heart" card was easy and fun. Betty drew a heart and we stamped around the heart with little stamps, added embellishments of gems and butterflies. I already made one card like it....need to make some more for Hospice.
I like this card very much....the black cat looking out the window at a cardinal. Do you like my pink background??? I brought some material with me so I could take pictures of each card after we made them....Betty has better lighting at her tables, so the pictures turned out better then usual.
These next two cards were made at Kathy's Stampin'Up camp. (I took these pictures at my dinning room table....light was okay, but not as good as at Betty's) So the above card was the Dancing Girl....sure did like this set and was seriously thinking of buying it. The girl is colored in with watercolor pencils. Who knows maybe in a couple of months I buy her.
This was a lovely card, just simple pairings of paper and the dragon flies are a die.....I bought this set...just thought it would make a great card for Hospice. The picture does not do the card justice.

So there you have it.....it's always fun to make cards, very relaxing and good therapy for the soul. Hope you have a great week and watch Trumps Inauguration, it should be exciting to watch. Keep looking up cause better days are coming!!!!
Cheers ~ Louise

Friday, January 6, 2017

Just Busy...Making Cards, Food and Saying Bye-bye 2 Christmas

 Hi there everyone....well, here we go into January and tomorrow is the 7th already. Where did this week go??? They say time flies when we are having a good time......I guess I must be having a good time, for a 70 year old.
Thought I would show you a few more cards I made with this "stained glass" die cut. I sure do like this die. I have actually made a few more cards like this, one in orange and one in grey. Both are pretty nice. They are actually relaxing to make, sort of like adult coloring. I will take pictures of both after I make another grey "Thanks".

Went to the neighbors on Tuesday, to show her how to make some cards and she liked the grey "stained glass" so much, she asked if she could have it. She wants to frame it. So I gave it to her. Along with a few ideas for making her own cards. It was a fun morning.

The cards below were some of my first cards made with the die and new alcohol ink pens.
In this next picture is a meal from Blue Apron. "Steaks and Green Peppercorn Sauce with kale and Roasted Potatoes" This was a yummy meal, very easy and down to earth kinda cooking. The steak was tender and seasoned just right....I used half the peppercorns, so it was not spicy. The potatoes were sliced, oiled, salted and peppered then roasted till browned. Kale was cooked with minced garlic. Yep, very good meal. 5 stars!!! 
I don't know if I told you about these cookies....gosh, were they good, I could not stop eating them. Made with 5 eggs, 2 sticks of soft butter, 1 cup to 1-1/2 cup sugar, mix together. Add 2 cups flour, 1 teasp. almond extract and some crushed almonds. Mix till the consistency of sticky pancake mix or heavy pudding. Pour on cookie sheet (use parchment paper). Bake 350 degrees till the outside of cookie is browned like in the picture. I timed it about 20 minutes. Such a good Cookie.....will make these again, soon. Oh and top the cookie with one raisin before baking. Oh, they are called "Mama's Cookies"
Next picture are the cards I was showing my neighbor how to make. She has to make 30 thank you cards and wanted to use this technique. All it is, is distress inks dabbed on card stock, using any color you desire, then dabbed with water to make the water spots.....I really like this technique....quick and easy.
I found this card on the Internet....thought it would be an easy card to make for Hospice meeting which is coming up in 3 weeks. Need to have lots of Valentine cards made, so I better get cracking. One of the ladies that comes to the meeting had heart surgery in November. She died of complications a week ago. She will be missed.
Well, time to close here....I have been slowly taking down my Christmas things. It is hard to say good-bye. Just have my Village and little Christmas tree up. I usually keep the tree up till after Valentines Day. Changing lights and bulbs from blues to red and putting hearts on the tree. Yeah....it is hard to say bye-bye to my Christmas tree and village. So....maybe one more month of lights.

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

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year 2017

Hi there everyone...HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! YAY.....another new beginning. Well, so far, things are pretty much the same.....no changes. But anyways, I had a good evening. Spent it with my cards. Ending the year with making cards and beginning the year with making cards.....hope there is a profit this year...that would be nice. I might make this my last year with Etsy....didn't get very many sales in 2016, course I was not promoting it that much. Everything is for a season.....I think I have been on Etsy 9 years....maybe it is time to close down the store....I don't know...just thinking.
Friday night I made this Blue Apron meal.....this was really good!!! "Cod en Papillot with Freekeh and Spinach" "En Papillote" means "In Parchment" So yeah, the fish was baked in parchment paper. I do believe I will do this more often. This is what I like about Blue Apron.....learning something new and using it in my regular cooking.

The freekeh was cooked like rice. The spinach cooked down with garlic and the water drained from it. Parchment is laid out, freekeh laid to the side of the paper, then topped with spinach, then the cod that has been salted and peppered. The paper is folded to close into an envelope. Baked 10-12 minutes or until the packets are lightly browned and puffed up. A herb sauce of cream, parsley and lemon zest and 1/4 of the minced garlic and juice of 2 lemon wedges is poured over the fish, spinach and freekeh. I also made some oven fries which JP loves, served with sour cream and chives. Definitely a 5 star meal.
Following are the cards that I was working on last night. I got this new die cut "Stained Glass" from Spellbinders. I really like this die. The "Thanks" die cut not sure where I got it. But here I used all my purple colors, then ran the die cut through the cuttlebug with purple sparkle paper. And Wa-la, a pretty card. Then I thought....why not carry this through to.....
The red colors on a pink card. Then how about........
Green colors on a white card. I also have a card in blues....maybe the next one will be in oranges and today my thought was greys.....Yep, the ideas are endless!!
Today, New Years Day.....I made another Blue Apron meal....a really good one. "Steaks and Green Peppercorn Sauce with Kale and Roasted Potato" Yep....another 5 star. I will tell you about it in my next post along with a picture. For dessert we had cheese cake with cherries on top.....I am full.

Thought I would start my diet today.....nope, not today. Well, I did lose 5 pounds in December. Hopefully I can lose another 5 pounds this month.

Time to close here.....Packers are playing the Detroit Lions....oh, oh Detroit just scored...it's tied at 7-7 now.

You all have a great night and I wish for you to have a great NEW YEAR with good health and prosperity and only good things happen for you. Keep looking up ~ better days are coming.
Cheers ~ Louise

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Christmas Day

Hi there everyone. Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas Day. Our day was quiet....just the three of us. 

For dinner, I made oven fries, steak, salad and cauliflower. Yummy. I forgot to pull out the cheese cake in the freezer...maybe I will save that for New Years Day.

I was going to insert a video here showing our Christmas day...but it did not work...maybe some other time.


I bought this cross for JP at Hobby Lobby. It caught my eye. JP is always quoting this when he is having his arm pains.  "The Battle is not yours but God's"  2 Chron. 20:15
JP's new slippers. $15.00 on clearance at Shopko. They should hold him over for a couple of months. He usually starts wearing them as regular shoes to work, cause his feet hurt, lots of corns. He is now wearing a size 15....geez those are big feet!!!
Here you see Kylie begging at the table....hoping to get a piece of steak or cauliflower, no potato's hard to digest. She has not been feeling good these last couple of weeks. As I write this post though....she had one of her good days...I hope she starts feeling better soon.
Well, it is getting late and JP will be home from work in about 5 minutes. I have soup made, pizza and salad. Hope you enjoyed the video....it's sort of silly but it's us. Keep looking up....better days are coming. Cheers ~ Louise

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