December 30, 2003

Scarf #5 -Nakoda's SS

I've put needles to yarn and have knitting up a Secret Santa gift for my mom to give to my nephew, Nakoda. (It's after the holidays, so I'm okay letting the secret out.)

And then I get gushy about the craft. Damn me for being a girl!

Scarves really are the easiest thing to knit. And they're not just for beginners (although that's what I am). They can be complicated and exhausting, or use irksome novelty yarns. But the best and favored scarves seem to be the simplest. Ones that you can zip through in a few evenings and enjoy the feel of the yarn moving through your hands.

Whoa! That was kind of weird, talking about yarn like that. I think that's part of this crafting sickness - when you wax poetic about materials and grope the fabric and yarn bins at stores.


I used Lion Brand® Jiffy in True Red. This is a great, heavier weight yarn to use and it worked up nicely. A K3,P3 ribbing pattern. The color is superb and great for a 9 yr old boy. In the foto, the scarf is still on the needles and being worked on. I used two skeins (6 oz) for the scarf and matching hat. Of course, I shipped it off before remembering to take a pix of the finished set.

And from what I hear, Nakoda liked his gift. Even played [gulp] jump rope with the scarf.

I had a third skein of this yarn and made an adult hat on my knitting loom.

Posted by Nanc at 10:38 AM

Tortilla Soup and Your Soul

You'll want to trade your soul for this fine soup. So easy and so tasty. Don't worry about the length of the ingredients list, most of this stuff you should have on hand.

This soup made an excellent meal served with Chili-Cheese Black Bean Enchiladas .

Chicken-Tortilla Soup The Complete Cooking Light Cookbook 2003

  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 c. chopped onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 c. shredded cooked chicken breast (about 4 split breasts)
  • 1 c. frozen whole-kernel corn
  • 1/4 c. dry white wine
  • 1 Tbl. chopped, seeded jalapeno pepper *
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
  • 2 (14 oz.) cans fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 (14 oz.) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 (10 oz.) can condensed tomato soup, undiluted (better if low-fat, low-sodium)
  • tortilla chips
  • fat-free sour cream
  • 1 lime, cut into 8 wedges

* Wear latex gloves while deseeding jalapenos to avoid the stinging juices.

  1. Heat oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; saute 2 minutes.
  2. Stir in chcken and next 9 ingredients (corn through tomato soup); bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 1 hour.
  3. Ladle soup into bowls; top with tortilla chips and sour cream. Squeeze juice from one lime wedge into each bowl of soup before serving.

Yield: 8 servings (1 serving=1 cup soup).

Posted by Nanc at 10:26 AM

December 27, 2003

Sassy Turkey Sircles

Yes. I know 'circle' is misspelled. I was trying to be clever. But nothing should distract from the tasty goodness of these turkey rounds. Not even the lack of a good title.

These aren't holiday-turkey leftovers, they're made with ground turkey. But don't think of them like hamburger patties, either. This is better than either of those, ya' turkey.

Turkey Patties

  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 1/4 c. fine bread crumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 2 Tbl. minced onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 c. mushroom, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. minced, fresh ginger
  • 2 Tbl. soy sauce
  1. Blend all ingredients together in a bowl. Shape into four patties.
  2. Coat skillet with cooking spray. Cook patties over medium heat for five (5) minutes on each side.

Enjoy with some rice and a tasty vegetable, like steamed aspargas. I promise, you won't miss the bun.

Posted by Nanc at 09:55 PM

Holiday cookies

A bit belated, but here they are... the cookies I baked for Christmas.

None were very fancy or traditionally festive, but we're starting our own traditions. A favorite for both Matty and I, and a shared fav between us. Three recipes, all good.

Although none of these recipes are obvious Christmas cookies, they're favorites in our house and made for special occasions (like the holidays).

Bonez's treasured cookie is the Snickerdoodles his mom makes. And, oh yeah, they're very tasty. (Even for a non-chocolate cookie.)

My preferred cookie (and my mother's recipe) is Gingersnaps. The added bonus is that they're a bit Christmasy; like an easy gingerbread. I know that everyone has thier own opinion, but I believe that gingersnaps should be chewy and soft. And that, they are.

And finally, our combined cookie-of-choice is Peanut Blossoms. (Or Peanut Butter Kisses, as they've been known.) The yummy-yet-not-overpowering peanut butter cookie and the just-the-right-amount-of-chocolately-goodness candy center meld together for something special. Mmmmmm.

Now stop drooling and get out your measuring cups. Let's bake!

Posted by Nanc at 09:26 AM

December 25, 2003

Merry Christmas!

Note: The treecam has been transformed back into the fishcam. Thanks to everyone who stopped in today... Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas "y'all"!

Like last year, the fishcam is now temporarily the treecam. Drop in for a few minutes, it will be on for the next few days. Here are the links...they will open in a new window. (note: if you use the streaming video link, the video could take as long as 10 seconds to load in the beginning. Be patient *smiles*.

cross-browser, friendly, updates once-a-minute
streaming video

Note: The treecam has been transformed back into the fishcam. Thanks to everyone who stopped in today... Happy Holidays

Merry Christmas "y'all"!

Like last year, the fishcam is now temporarily the treecam. Drop in for a few minutes, it will be on for the next few days. Here are the links...they will open in a new window. (note: if you use the streaming video link, the video could take as long as 10 seconds to load in the beginning. Be patient *smiles*.

cross-browser, friendly, updates once-a-minute
streaming video

Posted by Matty at 05:13 AM

December 12, 2003


The fishcam is up and running...

After an extended tour of Europe, the fishcam is back, and better than ever. Okay, maybe the fishcam wasn't in Europe (really, the Balkan Islands), but it has been off for a really long time.

During the down time, there has been a fair amount of changes in the setup of the network, and the fish now have their own, dedicated fish server

Enough writing, on with the links... choose your poison
cross-browser, friendly, updates once-a-minute
IE only, streaming video

hours of operation: generally 8:30 am to 6 pm texan time.

Posted by Matty at 04:28 PM

December 05, 2003

Pink Eyelash Scarf

This is the year of fluffy and foofoo girlie scarves. Bright splashes of color and the oh-so-many variations of eyelash and novelty yarns! It's really quite exciting, you see.

So I had to do my part. The scarf isn't so bright or foofoo-ey, but it does have the bright pink eyelash yarn going for it and it's definitely girlie.

I really, really liked how this scarf turned out. It's oh so soft and cuddly. And the pink "eyelashes" tickle like kitten whiskers. tee hee

I used Trendsetter Yarns® Blossom in color #107 (chocolately brown w/ small bits of brightly colored "feathers"). I don't know what they did to make this yarn, but it's just luscious! (73%polyamide and 27% viscose, for what it's worth.)

I knitted a strand of Plymouth Yarn® Colorlash in #215 (fushia pink) along with the Blossom. It's a simple garter stitch (knit every row), with approx. 20 sts cast on. Both yarns were surprisingly easy to work with.

Originally, I was making the scarf for my niece, Julia. Once completed, I didn't think that she'd enjoy the brown so much. It was a sophisticated, yet girlie-girl scarf - who'd enjoy this?

Happy Birthday, Lindsay! The scarf went to my sil and Julia's mom. The rumor mills tell me that Julia's been wearing it too, so I've got to get on track and knit up another foofoo, girlie scarf.

I have another skien of the Trendsetter® Blossom that I'm saving for me, but I don't know what I to do with it. Hmmm.

Posted by Nanc at 05:11 PM

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Temperatures are dropping; lights are twinkling; malls are overcrowding. Yup, it must be the holidays!

Just like the Jones', we've put up our tree and hung (most of) our lights. Sure, I still need to get a wreath (eBay) and there's a bit more decorating to be done, but I'm feeling that crushing pressure of deadlines, purchases and family that can only mean one thing: Merry friggin' Christmas!

Okay, so my attitude isn't really that bad. I like Christmas just fine. (It's no Halloween, but what can ya' do?)

Luckily, I have a sweet and loving husband (yes, he'll see this) that keeps me in the spirit and keeps me happy.

Here's an early wish for all of you that you might find a bit of this happiness and joy. Merry Christmas, indeed.

Posted by Nanc at 12:04 PM

December 04, 2003

Warm Belly - Yum

Tonight I made a delicious soup from the Thansgiving turkey bones. (Yes, our friends were glad to have someone take it from their house - they weren't gonna use it.)

This isn't the traditional turkey noodle soup, but a luscious and tasty curried broth with couscous, spinach and onions. Sounds good, right? :-P Click on the 'read more' for the recipe, or read on knowing that our bellies are happy tonight.

Curried Couscous, Spinach, and Roasted Tomato Soup from November 2003 Cooking Light

  • 4 plum tomatoes, each cut into 8 wedges
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. butter
  • 1 c. finely chopped onion
  • 1/2 c. uncooked, toasted Israeli couscous
  • 1 1/2 tsp. curry powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 4 1/2 c. Rich Turkey Stock *
  • 1 (6-oz) pkg fresh baby spinach
  1. Preheat oven to 450°.
  2. Combine tomato wedges and oil on a baking sheet lined with foil, tossing well to coat. Bake at 450° for 15 minutes or until tender and lightly browned.
  3. Melt butter in a large saucepan (I used my wok) over medium-high heat. Add onion, and saute 3 minutes. Add couscous, curry, salt, and galic; saute for 3 minutes. Add tomato wedges and stock, and bring to a boil.
  4. Reduce heat, and simmer 7 minutes or until couscous is almost tender. Stir in spinach and cook 2 minutes or just until spinach wilts.

Yield: 4 servings (1 1/2 c./serving)

* I want to try this recipe with a good vegetable stock for my vegan friends.

Posted by Nanc at 07:30 PM

True Blonde

Or my search for a tasty blonde brownie.

This wasn't quite it, but still yummy and good. These had more of a cookie, crumbly texture instead of moist brownie goodness. Still, I'll make them again as a treat.

Blonde Brownies by NestleŽ Toll House

  • 2 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 3/4 c. firmly packed brown sugar
  • 3/4 c. butter, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 (12-oz) pkg. butterscotch morsels (or semi-sweet chocolate chips)
  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Grease a 15x10" jelly roll pan.
  2. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a small bowl. Beat sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl until creamy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Gradually beat in flour mixture, stirring only until mixed. Stir in morsels.
  3. Spread into prepared pan. Bake for 18-25 minutes, or until top is golden brown. (Do NOT overcook - will be like bricks.) Cool in pan on wire rack.
Posted by Nanc at 01:38 PM

December 02, 2003

Super Stripeded Scarf

For his 6th birthday, I knitted up a striped hat for my nephew Liam.

I realized that a matching scarf would be great, but didn't have the time to do this before his birthday. So this is his belated birthday scarf.

This ultra-stripeded scarf was both easy (knit stitch all the way) and troublesome (so many darn ends to tie in!). It was definitely worth it for Liam, and he claims to like the hat and scarf and wears them.

Note that the hat is this picture is not Liam's hat. The first had I made was way too small for a kid's head. I'm not even certain it would work for a baby. It's really just a demo piece now.

Posted by Nanc at 02:15 PM