Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Cinnamon Apple Spice and Lemonade mix

Yes, I use my coffee maker to also make tea. I'm not someone who likes a lot of gadgets that do only one thing. I'm a minimalist.
Celestial Seasonings is one of my favorite tea brands.  I'm known to add a little lemon and sugar or honey to my cuppa. I'm not a fan of the British way of just drinking it "naked".

But! when I tasted the rich strong flavor of the Cinnamon Apple Spice, I didn't need to add anything. The spice is robust leaving a memory on the tongue.  That's when I got the idea to add instant lemonade to it.  This concoction is tasty hot or cold.
Hot or cold it's flavorsome.

That's it ***

Sweet Potato Soup mix from ALDI

(6 pictures)

ALDI is a discount supermarket that came to this area a few years back.  There are ALDIs in other areas of the country too. I really like their produce. It’s less expensive than in other stores and still fresh. It’s been said that it’s organic by some. I'm unsure as to whether that is true or not.  If so that may the reason it spoils so quickly.
Not everything at ALDI is great, but then there are other stores I shop and they’re not perfect either.
If you want to shave a few bucks off of the grocery bill you might want to try them.

Being a fan of sweet potatoes, I decided to try their Sweet Potato soup mix.

I halved, baked, and scooped out the flesh as instructed.
Pouring the mix and water into a sauce pan
Ladling the warm mixture into a blender to puree.
The pureed soup. Very smooth.

I didn't like the soup. I tried adding a little salt, but that didn't make it any better.  It tasted like baby food.  The soup ended up here 



Wednesday, November 1, 2017


The Spiralizer (12 photos) 

I found this manual one on the clearance table at Walmart for $3.50. There are countless recipes on line for using zoodles. Zoodles are zucchini noodles. Zoodles are supposedly the answer to guilt free pasta.The zoodles are used in place of pasta.

The Zoodles come out by the blade in a very thin strand. But, portions that don't shred come out of the hole you see on the back.

You place a zucchini inside the cupped area and turn it, whereupon  the blade will shred it and release your zoodles. The picked area is used to screw onto the base to press and shred the last bit of whatever vegetable you're shredding.

Fresh zucchini to make zoodles

 Here is the inside of the bowl of zoodles.  The picked top that is supposed to push the last bit of vegetable to be shredded through the spiralizer doesn't do its job.  Unless you have arms of steel and want to use a lot of elbow grease, it doesn't work. I don't have those last two things.
As you can see it only clogs the  pick and you end up with these cone shaped vegetables.  The rotini shaped piece is what comes through the hole as you're shredding. Not to worry. I will be cooking these pieces too. After all, I did have to pay for them.

Cooking  I prepared the dish as was directed in the recipe. None of the recipes I instructed cooking the zoodles the way you would regular pasta. As thin and soft as they were, I didn't need to cook them.

 I added cooked ground turkey as my meat of choice, mixed in spaghetti sauce, sauteed onions and other seasonings.  I didn't take into account that the zucchini would be rendering additional moisture along with the spaghetti sauce. That's when I decided to place the mixture in a casserole dish and bake it instead.
I made sure I put enough mozzarella cheese on it before putting it in the oven.
Here is the finished result. It tasted great but was still a little too soupy for me. I put it back in the oven about 30 more minutes so it could firm up a bit.
And if you're wondering what I did to those zucchini cones, I put some olive oil and seasonings on them, wrapped them in foil and baked them along with the casserole. 
My Take on the Spiralizer:
  • If you have arthritis or trouble gripping and turning, a manual one wouldn't be the best choice. 
  • I couldn't spiralize my entire vegetable because the top which pushes it down got clogged . Lacking Herculean strength, I couldn't press it closed.
  • I think the thinly shredded zoodles would be great in a salad. 
Lastly, when it comes to zoodles, it still isn't pasta. No amount of imagination could get me to think I was eating spaghetti during this experiment. It tasted more like a vegetable side dish.

That's it 


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Scarecrow Boy Has Lost His Head

 I got so excited with this project that I forgot about taking pictures for each step. There are only 4 pictures.
After mulching my flower bed with pine straw, I had an extra bale left over. What to do? Use it as fall decor. 

CLOTHING-  I went to the Thrift Store and bought a pair of jeans, shirt and tie that would fit a small child. The cost was about $2.?? for the 3 pieces.
I tied  the legs off with string so that the stuffing of plastic bags would stay in place.

BODY- I  used an empty Tide detergent bottle for his front and back. Nice and sturdy. To keep the clothes in place I used  safety pins. Not shown is the burlap oval I put on top where his head should be.

ARMS-This burlap was stenciled by me to resemble a burlap coffee bag. It was left over from a project that didn't  pan out but, being the recycler that I am, I saved it in case I could use it elsewhere. The burlap was hot glued into tubes, then stuffed with plastic bags and the wire. Wire was placed inside the arms to bend them  as desired.

Here he is finished.  I had raffia left over from scarecrow girl which I glued inside his burlap tattooed arms and at the end of his legs. Other than the Tide bottle, everything is stuffed with plastic bags. The flowers and berries were also left over from scarecrow girl. The plastic pumpkin I've had for years. I cut out felt facial expressions and hot glued them onto the pumpkin.  I kept him sitting up by tying a wire coat hanger to his shirt and the straw. The foam pumpkin stays in place with nails I placed inside the underside of the pumpkin then pressed into the straw. 

That's  it

Monday, September 25, 2017

Falling for fall

                                                                               (If you just want to see the pictures scroll down)

I enjoy fall. The changing of the leaves, the crisp weather.  Deciding to decorate my front door, I needed some inspiration.  I consulted Pinterest, YouTube, and Google.
I decided on a scarecrow decoration  similar to the one  I viewed at Jody’s Craft Room 

$Dollar Tree items included:
Cream colored straw hat (I painted it light brown)
Light orange raffia
Fall colored flowers and berries
Wire edged ribbon

Other Items I already had on hand
A pair of old black & white clip on earrings with backs removed.
Small orange pom pom balls
Paper flowers with pearl center.
Orange and beige earrings
Acrylic paint and brush
Hot glue and glue gun
Newspaper, plastic bag, heavy string (for stuffing and hanging)

 The hat was an ecru color but I choose to give it a wash with brown acrylic paint for more of a fall look. Though it looks like straw, 60% of its fiber is paper. So, it should not get extremely wet or you'll have paper pulp.

Items used for facial features

Hot glued the raffia for hair

I added earrings but, they don't show up on the finished product.

I admit I had problems making the bow.

The back of the hat with a stuffing of newspaper inside a plastic bag to add weight. A string to hang it on the door hook.
The finished product on the door at night.

Close up

I later went back and cut the hair shorter.  Have a wonderful fall.