Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone!!!

I know I've been neglecting you blog, but once I get some new batteries for my camera I will have a big update for you

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Happy Holidays

Our Christmas tree has been up since Black Friday, but only today we bought a tree skirt. And I think it's a keeper
I didn't realize when I bought it that tree skirt actually meant cat bed LOL

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sunday Soup


A little late, but here's today's recipe

Smoky Portobello Soup

Ingredients
1/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
1/2 cup chopped sweet onions
8 medium portobello mushrooms
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1/4 cup white wine
8 cups chicken stock
1 1/4 cups white roux (1 stick of butter and 1/2 cup all-purpose flour; cook slowly over low heat)
1 quart heavy cream
Salt and pepper
Croutons, sour cream, and sliced chives, for garnish

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine 1/4 cup of olive oil and 3 drops of liquid smoke. Toss 4 of the Portobello mushrooms in oil mixture and roast them in the oven for approximately 45 minutes. Chop mushrooms into cubes. In a large pot, saute the onions in olive oil. Once onions are sauteed, add uncooked portobello mushrooms and garlic. After mushrooms and garlic are cooked add roasted mushrooms, white wine and chicken broth and allow to simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and place mixture in blender. Add roux to pot. Blend in heavy cream. Place mixture back in pot on stove and add roux. Let simmer for 20 minutes. Garnish with croutons, sour cream and sliced chives

Friday, November 27, 2009

Friday Features

Haven't done one of these in a while, and since it appears that at least for the moment I have access to this site from work...might as well put this time to good use.

today's theme is....things I've recently hearted

click on the images to take you to the items...









Happy Thanksgiving


I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving with lots of yummy food. And of course today is the best part! Yummy turkey sandwiches


Monday, November 23, 2009

Thinking about it....

I've been thinking about having another giveaway for the holidays, for a pair of the flower earrings.

Yes, I think I will....details to follow soon

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A little Productive

So while the hubbs was away I did manage to get something done... I made another tree


This one is made with some copper wire I had, and some green aventurine chips that I've had in my storage container forever. I like the bronze wire as the trunk of the tree. I think that with the copper wire gives the tree a very organic look.

Sunday Soup


Pea and Basil Soup

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 small onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds (about 4 1/2 cups) frozen peas
3/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
2 cups chicken broth, divided
2 cups cream
4 to 6 very thin slices fresh mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup diced roasted red bell peppers (jarred is fine)

Directions
Place a medium soup pot over medium heat. Add the olive oil, butter, onions, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook until the onions are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the peas and basil, and heat until the peas are thawed.

Place the pea mixture in a blender. Add 1 cup of the chicken broth and pulse until pureed, adding more broth, if necessary, to puree. Return the pureed mixture to the pot. Stir in the remaining chicken broth and cream. Return the pan to medium heat and cook until hot, but not boiling.

To serve, place the soup in bowls. Float a thin slice of fresh mozzarella cheese on top of each soup and sprinkle with the diced roasted red bell peppers. Serve immediately

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Lonely

My husband has gone away for the weekend :( He's at a civil war reenactment with his parents. I'd have gone with them....except I can't possibly think of anything more boring LOL. So it's just me and the cats this weekend. Whatever shall I do with my alone time?

Yeah, I miss him. Some people call us codependant, but we actually hate being apart. Except for now, the only time we're ever apart is when we're at work, but even then we drive in together

But at least I got to stretch out on the king sized bed!! (well around the cats)

Friday, November 20, 2009

The colors!

Ok, I think I'm totaly addicted to these flowers. I can't get enough of them! I love all the different colors they come in

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Cool Giveaway

Has anyone seen the awesome giveaway by The Dainty Squid? She's giving away some really cool pouches and other prizes. Check it out!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Historic Humpday

November 18

1923 - Astronaut Alan B. Shepard Jr., the first American in space, was born in East Derry, N.H.

1928 - The first successful sound-synchronized animated cartoon, Walt Disney's "Steamboat Willie" starring Mickey Mouse, premiered in New York.

2003 - The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled 4-3 that the state constitution guarantees gay couples the right to marry.

Monday, November 16, 2009

YAY!

One of my woven crosses was recently featured in a treasury!



This same coss also got accepted at craftgawker. I made six other attempts to get in there and the cross was the first one to get accepted. YAY!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Yeah, I'm a geek

Hubbs and I went to two small conventions in October, and got some cool autographs to add to our collection. I think our binder is pretty much full now. We're going to have to start on a second one. Here are the latest additions (bonus points to anyone who can recognize them)








These autographs our friend got for us from the big Star Trek convention in Vegas. As you can see our Voyager cast photo is almost complete. This year we were able to add Roxann Dawson and Jeri Ryan to it, two very elusive autographs. The only one missing is Robert Beltran.
I love this picture. Once we have the money for it, we want to replicate this for the costume contest.

Sunday Soup


Quick and Spicy Tomato Soup

Ingredients
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (26-ounce) jar marinara sauce (recommended: San Marzano brand)
2 (14-ounce) cans chicken broth
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup pastina pasta (or any small pasta)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions
Warm the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the carrots, onion, and garlic and saute until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the jar of marinara sauce, chicken broth, cannellini beans, red pepper flakes, pasta, salt and pepper. Simmer for 10 minutes. Ladle into bowls and serve.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Historic Humpday

A big one today....

November 11, 1918
World War I ends

At the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, the Great War ends. At 5 a.m. that morning, Germany, bereft of manpower and supplies and faced with imminent invasion, signed an armistice agreement with the Allies in a railroad car outside CompiƩgne, France. The First World War left nine million soldiers dead and 21 million wounded, with Germany, Russia, Austria-Hungary, France, and Great Britain each losing nearly a million or more lives. In addition, at least five million civilians died from disease, starvation, or exposure

also today...
1889 - Washington became the 42nd state.
1972 - The U.S. Army turned over its base at Long Binh to the South Vietnamese army, symbolizing the end of direct U.S. military involvement in the Vietnam War.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Tutorial Tuesday

I missed last Tuesday's tutorial. Still trying to get into the swing of things with these weekly features.

Today's tutorial is one I found of this really cute little wire butterfly. The tutorial can be found here. It's a great tutorial, lots of pictures and easy to follow explanations. Can't wait to make one myself!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

I can't help it

I just have to share the cuteness. We have a blanket folded up on the armchair, and that seems to be their favorite cuddle spot now.

Don't they look like they just got caught doing something very naughty hahaha

There's also a video of them being all cudly on my flickr account here

Sunday Soup

Today's recipe is:


Onion Soup with Fontina and Thyme

Ingredients
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 large Vidalia onions, sliced
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
4 cups beef broth
4 slices ciabatta bread, cubed
4 ounces sliced fontina cheese
Special equipment: 4 (1 1/2-cup) ovenproof ramekins


Directions
In a medium, heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender, about 10 minutes. Add the thyme and broth. Simmer, uncovered, until the onions are soft, about 15 minutes.

Divide the soup between the 4 ovenproof ramekins. Divide the cubed bread among the ramekins. Top each with slices of fontina cheese. Place under the broiler, until the cheese is golden and bubbly, about 4 minutes. Serve immediately.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Busy Busy Busy

I've been working hard to increase the inventory in my shope. I'm hoping that with the extra efforts I've been putting into advertising, and with extra items in my shop I can really start making sales. It would be really great, especialy with the holidays coming up. Here's a few of the new things in the shop, and more will be added later today











Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Historic Humpday

Today in History there are a couple of interesting things...NOVEMBER 4

1842 - Abraham Lincoln married Mary Todd in Springfield, Ill

1922 - The entrance to King Tutankhamen's tomb was discovered in Egypt.

1924 - Nellie T. Ross of Wyoming was elected the nation's first woman governor.

1991 - Former President Ronald Reagan opened his library in Simi Valley, Calif.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Sunday Soup

This is one of my favorite things about when it starts to get cold...SOUP!!! I love soup, any kind really. And this time of year means one of my favorite kinds of soup, butternut squash soup. Here's one of my favorite recipes



Ingredients
3 to 3 1/2 pounds butternut squash, approximately 2, seeded and quartered
Unsalted butter, melted, for brushing
1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus 1 teaspoon
1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper, plus 1/2 teaspoon
3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg


Directions
Heat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Place the quartered squash onto a half sheet pan, brush the flesh of the squash with a little butter and season with 1 tablespoon of the salt and 1 teaspoon of the white pepper. Place in the oven and roast for 30 to 35 minutes or until the flesh is soft and tender.

Scoop the flesh from the skin into a 6-quart pot. Add the broth, honey and ginger. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer, approximately 7 to 8 minutes. Using a stick blender, puree the mixture until smooth*. Stir in the heavy cream and return to a low simmer. Season with the remaining salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

*When blending hot liquids: Remove liquid from the heat and allow to cool for at least 5 minutes. Transfer liquid to a blender or food processor and fill it no more than halfway. If using a blender, release one corner of the lid. This prevents the vacuum effect that creates heat explosions. Place a towel over the top of the machine, pulse a few times then process on high speed until smooth.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Brace yourself for cute

I took today off from work because we were out very late last night at a Halloween event. So today has been a day of going to A.C. Moore, buying groceries, making earrings, and having a heart attack from over cuteness.

Since we got the kitten, she has been a terror to Peanut....like any younger sibling. Once in a while they play together, but mostly their interaction consists of Kara hiding behind things and pouncing on Peanut, Peanut hissing at Kara, Kara trying to bite Peanut's tail and legs, and Peanut hissing at Kara.

So imagine my surprise when I'm working on my Etsy shop, adding a few pairs of earrings when I hear a kitty yawn and turn to find this on the chair behind me

Of course I had to tiptoe away to grab the camera and snap a thousand photos hehehe. They've been laying like this for a while now.

Friday Favorites

Since tomorrow is Halloween I guess it's only appropriate that today's featured items reflect the holiday.


Dracula 5x7 fine art print by THE LEGENDARY TIGER HERO


Gothic cuffs by estylissimo

Love Bite--- vampire bite illusion necklace by GiraffeNeckKnits

Moveable Vampire Fangs by JL67

Hope everyone has a happy and safe Halloween!!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Historic Humpday

This is the first of some new features I have planned to spruce up this blog. On Wednesdays I plan to have a Today in History feature...hence, Historic Humpday

Today in History

October 28, 1965
Gateway Arch completed

On this day in 1965, construction is completed on the Gateway Arch, a spectacular 630-foot-high parabola of stainless steel marking the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial on the waterfront of St. Louis, Missouri.
The Gateway Arch, designed by Finnish-born, American-educated architect Eero Saarinen, was erected to commemorate President Thomas Jefferson's Louisiana Purchase of 1803 and to celebrate St. Louis' central role in the rapid westward expansion that followed. As the market and supply point for fur traders and explorers--including the famous Meriwether Lewis and William Clark--the town of St. Louis grew exponentially after the War of 1812, when great numbers of people began to travel by wagon train to seek their fortunes west of the Mississippi River.
In 1947-48, Saarinen won a nationwide competition to design a monument honoring the spirit of the western pioneers. In a sad twist of fate, the architect died of a brain tumor in 1961 and did not live to see the construction of his now-famous arch, which began in February 1963. Completed in October 1965, the Gateway Arch cost less than $15 million to build. With foundations sunk 60 feet into the ground, its frame of stressed stainless steel is built to withstand both earthquakes and high winds. An internal tram system takes visitors to the top, where on a clear day they can see up to 30 miles across the winding Mississippi and to the Great Plains to the west.
In addition to the Gateway Arch, the Jefferson Expansion Memorial includes the Museum of Westward Expansion and the Old Courthouse of St. Louis, where two of the famous Dred Scott slavery cases were heard in the 1860s. Today, some 4 million people visit the park each year to wander its nearly 100 acres, soak up some history and take in the breathtaking views from Saarinen's gleaming arch.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Let's do the Time Warp again!

Last night, or I guess early today, we went to a midnight show of Rocky Horror. I love this version of it because it wasn't just people acting in front of a movie screen, it was like a real play. So much fun! Hubbs and I have joined a gym together and are starting to watch our diet more carefuly. My goal is to loose enough weight so that when we go next year I'll feel comfortable wearing one of those skimpy french maid outfits hehe

Friday, October 16, 2009

Lots of new things

The mailman came today with lots of goodies. Keep an eye on the shop for lots of new pretties soon. Here's a small example of SOME of the things I'm working on right now.




Also, in honor of one of my favorite holidays ever, I'm having a special promotion in my shop. FREE TAROT READING with any purchase. I've been reading Tarot cards for many years and have several decks which I've blogged about before, here: http://lifeandjewelry.blogspot.com/2009/02/another-passion.html
I've also gotten involved with another side project in hopes to earn a little extra money. I've become a mystery shopper. It's so much fun! I've only just started so I'm not getting the high paying jobs yet, but it's still fun to do. This weekend I'm going on two shops, one of which is to see a movie! All the money that I make from these shops is going into my new cell phone fund. A few months ago hubbs and I both renewed our contracts and got awesome new cell phones. But I for the first time in my life, I lost it. Fortunately I stil had an older phone that I'm now using but it's starting to wear out. So hopefully soon I'll have enough to get a new phone..I'm hoping to get enough money to get an env touch!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

VAMPIRES


This might be an unusual post for a blog like this, but this is one of my passions in life.....


This past weekend we bought this beautiful book. I'm such a huge fan of vampires. And trust me this was years before all the Twilight hype. Though I read Twilight when it first came out, long before all the hype for it. I actually like the books....ALL of them (The Host is very good too). There is one aspect to those books that I'm not a huge fan of, but that's just part of their vampire "rules" their mythology. That is, that there is no negative consequences to being a vampire. Being a vampire in that universe means that you don't have to eat from humans, you're beautiful, strong, smart, rich, and don't even have to avoid sunlight. So why NOT be a vampire. I think I prefer my vampires with a little danger to them.


My favorite part about reading about vampires is learning about their mythology in each universe, their "rules" who can or can't go to sunlight, who can or can't touch a cross, and how they came into being etc. I have a bookcase in our spar bedroom that is just devoted to my vampire collection.


I'm also a huge fan of Buffy and Angel, we have the dvds and are waching Angel now. I love the mythology presented in those shows. A vampire is a demon, not something you want to be, something that is evil

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Some new items

I know I've been slacking with the blog lately. But I've been working on new items. One series of items aren't quite ready, but hopefuly soon....glass tile pendants with beautiful vintage images.

I love making these trees. I love that I can make them following the exact same steps using the same lengths of wire, but no two will ever be the same. This one is a winter tree that has lost it's leaves


And some new items that haven't gotten to the shop yet, just finished them today


This one just came to me...I was in the middle of another project and the larger alexandrite beads caught my eye. I had to put down what I was working on and whip up this pendant right away. It's chunky and heavey, but soft and feminine at the same time



These beautiful vintage beads just arrived today. I've had this idea in my head for a while now. I think it's missing some green leaves though





This was just pure fun. Remember shrinky dinks? I bought some shrink plastic sheets and drew these drips by hand and colored them in with red magic marker. So much fun, even my husband got a kick out of it.