Thursday, January 21, 2016

Learning to Crochet

I found this super cute hat via Facebook and asked a friend at work if she could teach me how to crochet. She said I would need a lot practice & patience before I would be able to make the hat. I agreed, but in my mind, I was hoping to have the hat done in a week. I did have a back up plan: I emailed my sister Brenda the pattern and she made the hat in a day & a half. I should receive it Saturday! ☺

Anyways, here are the results from last week's lessons (we meet M/W/F). Monday was a challenge. I got the chain down, but was talking so much, I forgot to count. Wednesday same deal. I told myself that if I wasn't better by Friday, I was quitting.
Friday came and I learned my lesson:count my stitches & listen to the others talk (talking = skipping stitches).
Progress for sure! By tomorrow, this will be a new scarf for Remy. Next week I learn a new stitch. If I get that down, I should be ready to start my hat!

Saturday, January 9, 2016

New Year, New Word

For the past two years, I have chosen a word to focus on instead of a New Year's resolution. I had the same word for 2014 & 2015: gratitude. 

This year I chose the word simplicity.  I am trying to pare down lots of things in my life.  I plan to focus on less wine = more water, less Facebook = more time to learn how to crochet, less sugary treats = more healthy snack options, less passive-aggressive = more blunt/direct.

I found this graphic on Pinterest. It's from 2014, but you get the idea.
via BlogLovin'

Have you chosen your word yet?

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Make This!!!

 This lentil salad is absolutely fantastic! Make it today!
Warm French Lentil Salad with Bacon & Herbs via The Kitchn
Makes 4 3/4-cup servings

1 cup green or French lentils *I used Pardina lentils from Palouse Brand
2 cups low-sodium or homemade chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
4 ounces bacon (about 4 thick-cut slices), cut into small pieces *I cooked mine until it was super crunchy
2 large shallots, cut in half and thinly sliced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 large sprigs rosemary, leaves stripped and minced *I left this out as we didn't have any
3 large leaves sage, minced *I left this out as we only had dried
2 tablespoons capers, roughly chopped
1/2 cup Italian parsley leaves, roughly chopped
For the dressing:
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoons Dijon mustard *I used Grey Poupon
1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Wash and rinse the lentils. Put in a small saucepan and cover with the chicken broth. Bring to a boil then lower to a simmer and cook until just tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Add extra water while cooking if the liquid gets low. Drain the lentils and return them to the pot. Stir in the salt.

Meanwhile, while the lentils are cooking, cook the bacon in a heavy pan over medium heat until crispy. Drain most of the fat out of the pan, then add the shallots, garlic, rosemary, and sage, and cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the garlic is fragrant and the shallots are tender but not soft. Remove from the heat.

Whisk the olive oil, mustard, and balsamic vinegar together until thick. Toss with the warm, drained lentils, then stir in the bacon and shallot mixture. Stir in the chopped capers and parsley. Taste and season with additional salt, if needed, and a generous quantity of black pepper.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year!!

Welcome 2016!!

We had a most delicious New Year's Eve!

Lobster & king crab legs....

Shrimp & smoked salmon....

& flank steak!

Happy New Year cinnamon roll hug with loved ones!♥