By Hook Or Cook

I promised myself that before days turn into months, I would make an effort to post now and again.

Therefore, here is an account of the past few day.

The doily (unblocked) is finished.

I was so glad to see an end to this doily.  More than a few times, I wanted to put it aside and forget about it.  I was getting bored and couldn’t find a purpose as to why I was crocheting another one of these.  The pattern is called ‘Swirl’ from the  Leisure Arts Round Doilies leaflet.

red doily

On Saturday, I made french bread,

french bread

cooked my chili con carne,

chili and french bread

and with the leftover almond paste (from the bear claws I made last week), I baked almond biscotti.

biscotti

Moving on…

We haven’t seen the sun in a few of days.  It is so dreary outside.  Which in turn, makes me feel dreary. There are a few things I want to do around the house, but I fear that I will create the ‘snowball effect’.  So, in turn, I do nothing.

What is it that I want to do?

One has to have something to look forward to.

What is that something?  

If everyday is just another day waiting, then one has wasted life.

Waiting for a life is not living life, but merely existing.

Do you merely exist?

It Just Makes Me Happy

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Using Puff Pastry

I guess one could say that I have been in a bake mode lately. Today, I baked ‘easy’ Almond Bear Claws.

Bear Claws Almond

I used Pepperidge Farm Puffed Pastry (I already had on hand), and almond paste mixed with confectioner’s sugar and an egg white.

almond bear claws

I still have some almond paste leftover.

Hmm!  I am thinking Almond Biscotti with the remaining paste. 

Last week, I had 2 large granny smith apples, a pear, and a sheet of puff pastry (again, I had on hand). No one was eating the fruit.  So, I put together an apple filling for turnovers.

pie filling1a

You couldn’t taste the pear, but it added a little sweetness and it provided a little more filling.

apple turnovers

A sprinkling with some sanding sugar before baking and…

apple turnovers

…Tada!

Delicious turnovers.

And, to give credit where credit is due (thank you, Tom).

For supper this evening, Tom (hubby) fried potatoes & kielbasa with green peppers and onions; all sprinkled with crumbled bacon.

keilbas & potatoes

It was delicious!

Not much crocheting going on. I only did 3 more rounds on that doily I have been working on. It should have been done by now.  Maybe tomorrow I will finally finish it once and for all.

Maybe!

folk-angel-siggy

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Keeping Busy

Last night and today I drew flags/banners using some backgrounds I found around the web.  I made a few of them, using different patterns, and adding little push tacks to the ends.  I have no idea how I am going to use them.  But, they were fun to make and design and it keeps me busy.

flag-banner

The patterns on the flag above, and at the end, are from the talented Shery K Designs.  She has some beautiful patterns over at her site.  A big thanks go to those who share their talent, with others.

Instead of making flags/banners, I should have crocheted more on the doily I had started a few days ago. Truth be told, I am having a hard time seeing the stitches. I think it is because of the color. Red isn’t an easy color to pick up with a camera, I imagine it is just as hard on the eyes-or not.

red doily

Because my sister had mentioned that she ate pickled beets the other day,  I had to have some pickled beets.

Me too, me too!

Yesterday, I made a jar and added hard boiled eggs like my father used to do when we were kids. They are good as a snack or for lunch.

As you can see, I like lots of ground black pepper.  

pickled beets and eggs

It hasn’t been a very exciting couple of day.  At least, they haven’t been filled with stress. For that, I am grateful.

flag-banner-smIt Just Makes Me Happy

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A Beachy Mood

As of late, I have been in a “beachy” mood.  Born and raised on the New Hampshire seacoast, I have always had a fondness for a New England style beach cottage.

One of my, far-fetched, dreams would be to live near the beach in a vintage style beach cottage. However, there are other day when I would like to live in a rustic farmhouse, a Tuscan Villa, a Log cabin by a lake…I just can’t seem to make up my mind.

Caught in the winter doldrums, where everything seems bleak and colorless, I surfed online for color and inspiration from beach decor and beach cottages.

I made a color palette by picking out certain colors from each photo.

Whether designing…

beach-cottagebeach-cottage-color-palette

(Decorating with yellow from Better Homes & Garden.)

…or redecorating a room…

beach chairsbeach-chairs-color-palette

(Photo found at (archived photoThe Enchanted Home.)

Who wouldn’t love to sit in these Adirondack chairs and just take in the ocean view?

…crocheting an afghan…

cottage-stylecottage-style-color-palette

(Decorating with yellow from Better Homes & Garden.)

…sewing a quilt…

orange splashorange-splash-color-palette

(Orange Splash from HGTV-Colorful Coastal Designs.)

…or anything you may create, a color palette would be most useful in finding just the right color combinations.

liz siggy

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Mosaic 2014 Crochet

To kick-off the new year, I updated my header/banner by adding a few more graphics that I had drawn, years back, using my old psp7 program.  I am hoping that the difference will inspire me to blog more often.

I put pictures of the crochet items that I had crocheted throughout the year into a mosaic. I noted that I had crocheted many small items throughout the year. However, it is inspiring to see the things that I did accomplish.

Mosaic of 2014 Crochet

1. Valentine Dishcloth or Potholder, 2. Potholders/Dish Cloths, 3. Heart Dish Cloths, 4. Child’s Poncho, 5. Floral Banner, 6. Little Trinket Boxes, 7. Vintage Pot Holder, 8. Dishcloth and Mandelas, 9. Potholder, 10. Small Crochet Owl, 11. Owl, 12. Pincushion, 13. Brooch, 14. Rose Brooch, 15. Crochet Vintage Pot Holders, 16. Tapestry Crochet Change Purse, 17. Tapestry Crochet, 18. Heart Mat, 19. Floral Motif Mat, 20. Floral Motif Mat, 21. Heart, 22. Japanese Floral Mat, 23. Dishclothes, 24. Dish Cloths, 25. Shawlette/Scarf

It had three months since I last picked up a crochet hook.  Today, I started crocheting a doily.  It’s not like I need any more doilies, it is just that I kind of missed crocheting.  My intentions were to finish an afghan that I had started, but I quickly got bored with that and put it back into the crochet ‘dead hole’.

I hope 2015 will be a much better year for all of us.

Thank you for visiting!

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Thoughtful

It has been a month and a half since I have posted.  I don’t know where I read it, but I read that a blogger should write each day whether they want to or not.  I don’t know about everyday, but I do think that it should be more than once every 45 days.

So here goes with what promises to be a most boring account of my day.

mouse

This afternoon, while drinking my cup of tea, I thought about Beatrix Potter.

Go figure!

I then thought about a story she wrote called, “THE TALE OF MRS. TITTLEMOUSE”.

Then I thought-

Like Mrs. Tittlemouse, I used to be a very tidy mouse. Everyday I would go around the house cleaning and tidying. I enjoyed dotting on the little touches that made the house our cozy home.

Alone with my thoughts and my hot cup of tea, I started to think that I am no longer as tidy as Mrs. Tittlemouse.

mrs t

She fetched soft soap, and flannel, and a new scrubbing brush from the storeroom. But she was too tired to do any more. First she fell asleep in her chair, and then she went to bed.

“Will it ever be tidy again?” said poor Mrs. Tittlemouse.

Yes, there are days that I gather my cleaning supplies.  However,  I am just too tired to do any more than gather the supplies.

So, I fall asleep in my chair.

But, unlike Mrs. Tittlemouse-
mrs t1

Next morning she got up very early and began a spring cleaning which lasted a fortnight.

She swept, and scrubbed, and dusted; and she rubbed up the furniture with beeswax, and polished her little tin spoons.

I half-heartedly go through the “domestic” motions.

Will it ever be tidy again?”

I am guessing it has to do with my age and with my outlook on life.

Of course, it could just be that I would rather be drinking a cup of tea while letting my mind wander back to happier times.

liz-teacup

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Thanksgiving Free Crochet Patterns

I found some cute crochet projects for Thanksgiving I would like to share. To make it visually easier to see in one place, I made them into a mosaic.

thanksgiving1

1.  Autumn Harvest
2.  Maple Leaf Banner
3.  Thanksgiving Gourds
4.  Gobble Coaster
5.  Napkin Rings
6.  Crazy Cute Autumn Acorns
7.  Indian Corn
8.  Acorn Apron
9.  Give Thanks!
10. Leaves
11. Giant Crochet Leaves Pattern
12. Pumpkins

I  like to surf the net for a little crochet and crafting inspiration. I hope these designs, from so talented designer, gives you some inspiration.

As always, if you make an item, please give credit to each designer.

liz-turkey

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Guilt-Free Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Recently, my daughter shipped to me coconut flour, PB2 powdered peanut butter, and a package of Bob’s Red Mill coconut flakes.  I love coconut in any form.

Searching online to use these ingredients for recipes with low-calories, low-carbs and low-fat, I found a Banana Oatmeal Cookie that looked promising.   

I changed the original recipe by using less oatmeal and raisins, adding coconut flakes, almond extract and a little more cinnamon, and used coconut milk instead of almond milk. All of these ingredients I already had on hand.

guilt-free banana oatmeal cookie

Guilt-Free Banana Oatmeal Cookies

Yield:  30 cookies (2 cookie per serving).

3 mashed ripe bananas
⅓ cup unsweetened apple sauce
1 ¾  cups old-fashioned oatmeal
¼ cup coconut flakes
¼  cup coconut milk
¼  cup raisins
1 teaspoon vanilla
1  teaspoon almond extract
½  teaspoon baking powder
¼  teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • Preheat oven to 350°  F.
  • Into a mixing bowl, mash the (peeled) bananas. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix all together.
  • Drop mixture by tablespoon onto a greased cookie sheet or line it with parchment paper.  Flatten with the back of a spoon.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes or until brown
  • Let cool at least 15 minutes before eating

By my calculations, each cookie has 36 calories, 7.5 g. carbohydrates, <0.5 g fat, <0.5 sat fat, 3.9 g. sugar.

For breakfast, I ate three of these cookies along with a glass of Silk Coconutmilk.

Guilt-free banana oatmeal cookie

Delicious!

hallo_siggy

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