Sunday, October 14, 2007

I made BBQ sauce!

DH and I have been making jam together as long as we have been married. Last year my mom and I made chutney. But I've never done barbeque sauce. I have a recipe book that is very good for making Christmas gifts from. It has the sauce recipe I used, plus a sweet and sour sauce, dry mixes, etc. The recipe make enough to fill 3 small jam jars ( the 1 cup size ) plus some extra. I put the extra in the fridge for us to use. The other 3 jars I will likely give away.

For about an hour's worth of work it was pretty easy. The sauce itself was a no-brainer. Our long-time not-so-secret way of sterilizing jars has been the dishwasher. DH's sis told me her secret is to also put the red hot jars straight out of the dishwasher into pre-heated 200F oven. Make sure the screw on lids are clean. Put the seals into into a metal or glass bowl and pour boiling hot water over them. Set out a towel, fish the jars out of the oven with a mitt onto the towel, fill with hot sauce ( jam, whatever ), use tongs to take the sterilized seals out of the bowl and place on top of jar. Screw on lid just until it's tight. Leave the jars on the towel for a few hours to cool. As they do, the lids "pop" and make a lovely seal. Easier than processing in a water bath!

Friday, October 12, 2007

My works in progress

The following list is all of my current WIPs. Several have recent photos here and in my Facebook cross stitch album. Just thought I would share. Right now I'm putting a few stitches in the angel.


Angel of the Sea CCX 4hrs 10min
Autumn Queen CXX
Stroke of Midnight LXXXV 1hr 35min
Above the Clouds LXX
Alaska LX 1hr 50min
Winter Queen L
Summer Queen XXV 4hrs 5min
Spring Queen 3 hrs

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Broccoli and cheese soup

I have just put tonight's dinner in the crock pot. It's 2 pm Pacific Time. My daughter is in figure skating and she is on the ice every Tuesday from 5:15 to 6:15, so skating night dinner is often crock pot or casserole something. For anyone interested, here is the recipe.

-3 cans of Campbell's soup - 1 cheese, 1 broc and cheese, 1 cream of broc
-2 soup cans of milk
-1 cup grated cheddar
-2 heads of fresh broc that I popped in the microwave for 4 minutes first. You could use a package of the frozen stuff instead
-2 heaped tablespoons of Epicure Selections French Onion Dip Mix, because I am too lazy to chop and fry onion
-a sprinkle of marjoram
-a sprinkle of pepper
-a sprinkle of garlic powder

The whole works goes in the crock pot for 4 hours on low. I have actually started mine on high. At 3:00 I will stir it and turn it down. By the time we get home at 6:30 it will be perfect. I bought a calabrese loaf to go with it.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Stroke of Midnight

After working for a while on the queen I felt the need for a little bit of Teresa time. So I dragged out "Stroke of Midnight" by Teresa Wenzlter. The woman is the blend queen for sure. Her designs can be tricky to stitch but they are a lot of fun. I always have to train my brain to pay extra attention when I work on this one.
The right side of the design is where I concentrated my efforts this time. The smaller arch windows are done and so is the top part of the cut-off window at extreme right. I also did a bit of the marble between the 2 smaller arches. 86 hours of work so far. About 1/5 done if I am lucky.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Autumn queen update.

I already uploaded this to my Facebook cross stitch album, but I though I should do an update here too. This photo is with 120 hours finished. For this period of time that I worked on her I mostly did the lower right area of the brown brocade on the overskirt. I think in Elizabethan times it was called a kirtle. I also tackled some of the Wisper at the bottom swirly bit of her cloak, near her left elbow. Wisper is such a pain in the ass though that I didn't get much done.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

20th reunion

On Sat. night T and I were at our 20th high school reunion in the city where we grew up. Nana and Papa baby-sat and we stayed in the hotel where the party was. This photo is me ( in black dress ) and T and 2 of our old classmates who were also on the softball team with me that my Dad coached when we were all in Grade 3, 4 and 5.
It was kind of weird to see everyone. Some people we had seen 10 years ago at the previous reunion. That was before we moved away and before our kids were born though. For one night I felt a bit like I was in school and not someone's mother. But then we all got out photos of our kids! Thankfully I have been in touch with a few people recently via Facebook, so I could recognize people easier.

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