February 22, 2010

Yard Fun

Close-up of my mint. I have three kinds, peppermint, spearmint and lemon mint. They've all grown next to each other so I can't tell which is which. All I know is I love it when it's fresh and new. See the pretty dew drops on the leaves? I pack a pitcher of my sun tea with the mint. Literally pack the pitcher full. That's how they do tea in New York. So I copy. Its very good. Maybe I will do a post about it later this summer when I start doing sun tea.

More herb garden pix. Thyme and Rosemary. I can't wait until these get big.
My hubby decided he wanted to dig up the yard to reseed. I decided it was a perfect opportunity to do my bonsai grass idea around the stepping stones. It took some convincing for my husband but after it was in, I made him a believer.
Here is a wider view. We only purchased two little flats of the ground cover, so we ran out. Technically, I wanted to do the outer-sides also. I'll either wait and take cuttings from what I have as it spreads or I will go out and get more to finish it in the next couple of weekends.
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February 21, 2010

Sunday Supper

Blame in on Pioneer Woman (PDub for short) she did it again. She made me cook.  On the menu: Meatloaf, Steamed Green Beans and Baked Potato. Super simple but great food. Here's my take on meatloaf.  Normally, I use oatmeal instead of breadcrumbs but when I saw how PDub used milk-soaked white bread for her meatloaf I had to try it.  I adapted my recipe by substituting 1/2 of the oatmeal I normally use w/2 slices of bread (she used white, I used wwheat because its what I had in stock).  I never thought of doing this and it looked moist... so I tried it.

Liz's Famous Meatloaf (secret ingredient revealed)

All amounts are approx. and to taste~
Click on any pix to enlarge for details

2lbs of lean ground beef (or more if you have an army to feed)
1 pkg of Lipton onion soup mix (secret ingredient)
1 big handful of fresh parsely chopped (pictured below is from my herb garden)
1/4 cup of parmesan cheese
1-2 eggs (I used one)
1 tsp fresh garlic
1/4 cup oatmeal or slices of bread (soaked in milk) I used 2 slices.
1-2 tbls worchestershire sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
1 small can tomato sauce (pour over top last 10 minutes)

Firstly a pix of my herb garden (right outside my kitchen window/door).  We are getting a jump on things.  That's how we roll in SoCal.  The parsley is the largest plant in the lower right hand corner of the pix. It's what I used in the meatloaf.  It's the oldest plant that's why its bigger then the rest.  It did really well over the winter (cough cough) with all the rain we've been having.  The smaller ones you see were just planted this week.  In the planter, fresh lavender.  We even have two tomato plants in already (back along the fence.  My mint is coming in nicely too (far left).

Cast of characters.  I have really little counter space that's why its all jammed into this tiny little corner with everything else (appliances etc).  What you see in the pix is about the extent of my working countertop space.  I get claustrophobic cooking in here at times.  I've gotten really efficient at conserving space too.  

See the bread crumbs? I thought they turned out so great. I soaked them in milk and then wrung the milk out and crumbled the bread slices into meatloaf mixture. The texture was perfect.

Ready for the oven. I thought the parsley was so pretty.  Wow did it smell good too (the parsley).  I never knew it smelled so strong.  I thought it was kind of neutral.  Not this stuff, it was FRESH.

During the last 10 minutes or so I pour tomato sauce over the top covering the entire loaf. No after pix.  No plate-up.  Just a few random pix of the process.  It turned out yummo!

Home cook extraordinaire Tip of the Week:  I spray the loaf tin with non-stick spray like Pam.  I also cover this with tin-foil until last ten minutes.  Tip alert!!! Spray the inside of the tin-foil with non-stick spray also. 

Happy Birthday to Me!

Well that was on February 9th.  I told you I had some catching up to do. I think I will schedule some daily blog posts. That way I can set them up and schedule them to publish later. Awesome.

It's a little grainy but I like it. These were the flowers I had on my desk at work.

Gwen Frostic

I can check off another item from my on-again/off-again list.  I had so much fun this weekend, I need at least two more days of it.  Here is an Easter Greetings card! OMGOMGOMG I got me some ART Therapy. Are you kidding me?

I found inspiration for this card from a couple of different places.  Firstly, from my new set of Gwen Frostic (Anthropologies holiday gifts) stamps that my friend Allison (Shadow's Castle Stamps) gave me for Christmas. I embossed the bunny image with a burgundyish embossing powder (I think he looks chocolatey this way). Secondly, I also found inspiration (sketch and colors) from the one the only famous Julie Her Royal Rubberness (see her Picky Purple post over at Paper Trufflez). She requests that we do not hotlink so I will leave that off.  She's pretty easy to find via any search engine.  Nothing like a CASE (copy and share w/everyone) and a new set of rubber to get the creative mojo going. Thank you Pr!ssy Pals for your wonderful ideas.  Re-purpose alert:  the swiss dot paper is a piece of packaging cardboard.  I thought it was such a pretty eggplant color I just had to re-use it.  I embossed it with a Cuttlebug embossing folder and then sanded it to get the white core to show through.  I used a mish mash of products SU paper, Michael's Ribbon , Sentiment stamp (Kitchen Sink), A Muse Paper (gingham flower), MS punch.  

Gwen Frostic Woodland Stamp Set
Close-up of Gwen Frostic Woodland Stamp Set.  Aren't they just the cutest?  My friend Allison has great taste.

February 12, 2010

Happy Heart Day!

I've got nuttin' for ya' so I might as well share a pretty vintage image...  I hope everyone is feeling the love this weekend.  It's one of my FAVORITE holidays.  Heart U.


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