Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Wordless Wednesday--Thanksgiving Traditions...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

So I'm Sewing...Kinda.

Who is on pinterest?  I am!  I love it.  Its a place where you can easily loose several good hours.  Once I got really into it, I found this tutorial on how to make a hobo bag.  Actually I think the person who made it calls it a boho bag.  Who's right?  I'm not sure.  Id like to think me, however she is the one who can actually make the bag. 

This story begins before I became a pinterest fanatic.  Mister, the peanut and I went to the local and super famous pumpkin festival in Half Moon Bay a few weeks before Halloween.  They had A LOT of craft booths.  One woman had these cross-body(hobo) bags.  They were all Tye-dye.  Bleh.  Now while I am working on my crunchiness, I'm not ready to go that far into the hippie realm.  Not to mention they were being sold for something like $40.00.

When we got home I googled the bags.  I had to use nearly a billion different search terms to get what I wanted.  But I found it!  The only problem?  I hated all the patterns.

Epiphany.  I can make one.  Duh!  Because I'm sooo good at sewing.

I'm not good at sewing.  When I was 20, I make a pink terry cloth kangaroo halloween costume with my grandma.  Upon recent reflection, I think my grandma made the whole thing as I watched.  Sewing is hard.  Much harder than I thought it would be.

Any-who, back to pinterest, and the point of this post.  The hobo boho purse tutorial.  I'm very excited. I can do this. I'm going to make 500 of these purses, and sell them on Etsy.  Then I will be a real WAHM.

Here we are almost a month later, and I'm not done with the first one.  I took a crazy long time looking at fabric with my mom.  From now on she will be referred to as "The Bubbie".  I already have the material to make hobo boho bag #2.

The Bubbie used to sew a long time ago, but not any more.  However she is very crafty.  She has been making wreaths like crazy this month, but that's another post.  The Bubbie helped me uderstand the sewing terms in the tutorial.  She went with me and the peanut to Kinko's to enlarge the pattern.  She held my hand as I held the scissors to make the first fabric cut.  Scary! We started pinning it together.  Less scary.  I think she may have run off with the peanut at this point.

The Bubbie doesn't have a sewing machine.  Now we go to my grandma's house.  She does have a sewing machine.  I start sewing the bag up there on a Sunday.  I'm very jazzed about this.  Grandma says I can take the machine home!

I did a little bit the night I brought the sewing machine home.  Then NOTHING gets done for approximately 3 weeks.       

BUT, I've been working on it for the past two nights.  Hard.  Really. Hard. 

You might think that it's complete now.  After all, I'm writing a whole post about it. 
I'm not done.  I'd like to think I'll be done soon.  But I might not be finished for several weeks.  That's just the way it goes sometimes.  I think my Etsy dreams are on hold.  For now.

Do you ever take way longer than you think you ought to, to finish a project?
Tell me about it.
I'd love to know I'm not alone... 

Monday, November 21, 2011

Moving on...

Times are hard for lots of people right now, and we are no exception.  Before Mister and I became pregnant and got married things in a financial sense were a lot better.  We were big party people when we met each other, and now we look back on those times and wonder how we ever got forward several years down the road and we are struggling to pay rent and feed ourselves each month.  This is no way for anyone to live.

So we are making a HUGE change for our little family.  We are breaking the lease on our 2 bedroom apartment, and moving in with my paternal grandparents.  Now, I should say I have lived with them before.  Twice actually, and I have been quoted to say that "I would have lived with them until I married except for the fact that they live on a dirt road 20 minutes from everything." When I was in my much earlier 20's living so far away was difficult.  I mean, come on, no cell reception?!  Now it sounds heavenly.

My grandparents are in their early 80's, but I think they are like very few of their peers.  They are both so active.  My grandma is out and about 6 days a week.  Volunteering, lunch with friends, picking up my cousin from school, visiting us at work, and the list goes on.  My grandpa stays at home most of the time, BUT has about a million projects he is working on.  One of those projects is to finish an apartment in their basement. We will move into the apartment when its all finished.  Mister and I, but mostly Mister go up to their house and work on various projects every week to get us closer to moving up there.

Until its all finished we will be living in their spare bedroom.  All three of us.  Obviously, there will be some challenges...

Minimalism is something I have taken an interest in, and now is going to be the time to get really serious about putting the little bit I know into practice.  I think it will be good for us.  I'll be writing here about how the moving and resettling process goes.  I'm somewhat nervous about how our daughter (peanut) is going to take it.  Being 18 months old at the time of the move, I think she doesn't understand too much of what is happening.

Mister and I have many things to discuss about starting our lives up there.  We want to have a garden.  They have lots of room.  5 acres!  We are going to be working extremely hard to become completely debt free.  I want to start running.  We are talking about having another baby.  We want to get a dog.  I wan to take some online courses.  Starting with placenta encapsulation.  And most importantly for me, I'm hoping we can get to a place where I am not going to work everyday for someone else!

We are looking forward to the future, and the furture is now!
What does your future look like? 

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Soup and brownies.

A friend of mine was coming over for soup a few nights ago.  Its been something of a favorite past time with her.  It all started many years ago when we worked together and would bring each other food.  Lots of time, I brought soup.  The first time I ever mad soup was in my first apartment.  I was 20 years old and it was a 0 points weight watchers soup.  All veggies.  I fell in soup, err I mean love with making soup.  I've been making soups for close to 10 years now...

My Friend ending up not being able to come over, but I still made soup of course.  It was wonderful.
Pumpkin-Black Bean-Chipotle Soup.  I'd like to take a moment here to sing the praises of chipotle anything.  I just love the flavor.

This is the recipe I used:

I didn't read the directions well enough.  Oh well.  I coarsely pureed ALL the beans.  I used chipotle chile powder. Its expensive, but sooo good.  I didn't buy any cilantro, so I added a bit of coriander.  I know that coriander is the seeds and cilantro is the leaves, but the soup was so good.  I used only 1.5 chipotles in adobo.  Next time I'll used the full amont called for.  It wasn't too" pumpkiny".  So more of that next time as well.  I think I'll just give the tomatoes a little chop.  I like the texture and flavor of tomats a lot!  Mmhhmm.  Hope its one of those better the next day soups!

Then I made some brownies.  I really like the nestle recipe.   It can easily be found with a google search.  I didnt use any eggs in this recipe for the first time.  Insread I used ground flax seed in a ratio of 1T flax to 3T water.  You have to let it sit for a few minutes.  Its incredible how it works JUST like eggs!  The above mentioned ratio is for one "egg".  It works well in lentil loaf also.  More to come in another post about that. 
Anywho, back to brownies.  They tasted the same right out of the oven.  Once they were a day or two old they got a little nuttier.  I urge you to try replacing eggs in your recipes with the flax mix.  It was many benefits.  No Cholesterol.  More fiber.  Just to name a few. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Food...It's what's for dinner.

We like the chickpea cutlets from veganomicon around here.  I was reading somewhere how people are changing the spices and making minor tweaks to change the flavor.  I look at it as the cutlet can kind of be changed the way you can do chicken many ways.

So, I bought a bunch of broccoli on Saturday and didn't end up cooking it.  I had this recipe I wanted to try.
I didnt think there was enough "sauce" to reduce, so I added more soy, broth, and sesame oil.  Then I got creative.  I added a little mirin, and sriracha.  Sriracha is great.  My "new" sauce reduced wonderfully and the broccoli was super yummy. 

I figured since that was kind of an Asian flavor, maybe I could "asify" my cutlets. 
Here is the chickpea cutlet recipe from
I used sesame oil instead of EVOO, used 1/4 cup of mirin and 1/4 cup of veggie stock, grated ginger in place of the lemon, and did some space switching.  I used red pepper flakes, onion powder, eden organic's seaweed gomasio, and 1/8 t ground clovers.

I guess this is as good a place as any to let you know I dont measure ANYTHING.  Sometimes not even in baking! 

I did measure the cloves because I didn't want it to be overwhelming.  The flavors were pretty spot on, I think.  But, I don't think I used enough vital wheat gluten (remember I don't measure?).  The husband, from here on out to be referred to as "Mister" didn't like them.  I suspect the VWG was the reason.  I fried 1/2 and baked the other 1/2.  I think baking was better here.  It yielded a denser cutlet.

All in all I haven't been deviating from recipes for too long.  I think this was an overall success, and am excited to try my hand at it again.