Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Greetings & Salutations

What movie?  Who knows?  It was one of my favorite books to read to my children!  The movie was a favorite too!
I have been busy!  I am getting my energy back more and more every day.  Feels good to be productive again. 
I think I will start with cooking.  I cooked a turkey breast one day last week, and we had two nights of delicious hot turkey sandwiches with mashed potatoes and gravy.  A few sandwiches for lunch.  And then with what was left, I made a turkey pot pie.  So easy....I just use the ready made dough, and a frozen bag (or 2 in my case) of veggies, 1-2 baked potatoes, and either a couple of packets of gravy mix, or box gravy.  (Trader Joes makes a really good boxed gravy)  I usually make this using a deep dish pie plate, but I couldn't find the one I wanted to use to save my life, so I used a 9x13, which I wound up liking so much better for this.  Cuts out much easier!!  So line the bottom of dish with one of the packets of dough.  Let it get to room temp before rolling to size.
 I put the turkey, mixed veggies, cut up potato ( I will usually cook two russets in the microwave, but since I had left over mashed potatoes still, I only cooked one, and then used the rest of the mashed), one finely diced onion, salt and pepper to taste.
I cooked the gravy on stove top, and then added to the bowl.
 Mix well, and pour into your dish.  Roll out second dough to top dish. 
It is much harder to flute the edges when using an oblong dish, but flute a little bit, and cut some steam vents into dough. I like to brush the top of mine with egg white to give the crust a nice sheen.  I cracked an egg into a dish, then took an empty water bottle, squeezed to depress air out of bottle, then hold directly over egg yolk.
Then release bottle to suck up just the yolk.  Works like a charm every time.  No broken yolks either.
I bake it at about 425 for 45 minutes, or until top crust is golden brown.

Let it sit for a few minutes while the pie settles a little bit.  Delicious and so easy!
I took the remaining carcass of the turkey and made 4 quarts of broth. 
I left an inch or so at the top, and screwed lids on lightly, then put into freezer.  Once set up, I tightened the lids. This can be used in any recipe calling for chicken broth.  Oh, be sure to strain it into your jars, to remove any small bits. 
So about 3 dinners, a few cold sandwiches, and all of that broth, yielded from one 5 pound turkey breast.  By the way, I like the Jennie O frozen turkey breast in a bag.  So easy to cook, no mess, and a winner every time!  I buy mine at Walmart.
I also made a big batch of granola.  Greg eats this nearly every day.  I love mine on yogurt.
This big jar was a thrift store find.  I love that is has a rubber seal for freshness.  And the size is perfect for granola.  The jar is sitting atop a 12 inch quilt block from Farm Girl Vintage that I wasn't going to use, so instead of tossing it, I used it as a machine quilting opportunity to practice.  I quilted the heck out of it, and did some practice with writing words as well.
Now let's sew.  I had purchased this set of patterns for 12 months of seasonal wall hanging quilts, probably 10 years ago.  I made the first three for the season we were in, and then never made another one.  Every year I say I am going to finish them, and never have.  This is the year.  So with only a few days left in January, I made this wall hanging.
In my haste to finish it and get it hung, I inadvertently left off the snowflakes that go above and below the word January.  Oopsie.  I did an all over loops and swirls to machine quilt it using my Singer One.  Since I was in a big hurry, I did not do any button hole stitching on the applique pieces, like I had done on all of the others.  It looks just fine to me with out, considering this only hangs for a few weeks a year, I just didn't do it. 
I also cheated on the tabs with which the wall hanging is hung  to the foundation quilt. On the foundation quilt, there are three large buttons.  Each wall hanging has fabric tabs sewn to the quilt to attach it to the buttons.  Hence the name of the pattern, "Button Ups"  However, I had an idea that would work and allow for a quicker finish.  I sewed three black elastic hair ties to the back of the quilt where the tabs would go, and this worked perfectly.
This is the foundation quilt that each one of the monthly wall hangings get buttoned up to.
The center panel I did in a cream flannel.  The outer borders are a simple series of rectangles.  I have mine hung from a quilt rack/shelf in the family room.  However when I moved my furniture recently, the new configuration partially blocks the view of the quilts. 
Moving this shelf will probably be in my future since we love the sofa being on that wall. 
In this room, I also have a large quilt on the wall that I did several years ago.  It is a Cheri Payne (Saffiote) pattern.  I cut this quilt out 12 years ago, just before my Dad got sick.  During this time, I lost my Dad.  I also lost my  quilting mojo for a couple of years, and couldn't even touch it.  Then, one day, I just decided it had to be finished.  I am so glad I did.

I love the sunflower border with it's meandering vines all the way around the quilt. 
The other day I set out to give my sewing room a good cleaning, and put away the fabrics I had been using during my Christmas sewing.  This led to a complete overhaul of everything!  I wound up doing a reorganization of my fabric using the KonMari method.  Everything is folded and stood up so that each piece can be easily identified without pulling anything out of the pile!

Every single bin is folded the same way.  A big job, but so much easier to see what you have at a glance.  In the wicker chest, it is all sorted by color too.
In my fabric sorting, I discovered this Valentine Panel that I had purchased a few years ago.  I can't even remember the designer.  I decided to back it and go ahead and machine quilt this too.  If you follow me on Insta Gram, you know I had nothing but trouble with the machine quilting of this for some reason.  My thread kept breaking, over and over.  SO many stops and starts on this.  It is hurky jerky, and I hated it.  I wasn't even sure if I would bind it.  But I am not one to leave things unfinished, so I put a solid red binding on it to frame it, and then hung it on the my green door in the kitchen.
I don't usually label a small wall hanging or table topper.  So on those, I will stitch my name and date.  This is in the bottom right on this one.  It too looks awful.  So when my kids toss all of my things at the Goodwill one day, someone will know that Kris made this in 2016!
I have the February Button Up all cut out, and partially appliqued.  Hopefully I will get to display that one for the whole LEAP month!
Over the weekend we did a lot of picking in the grove.

It is so nice to be drinking fresh squeezed orange juice again.  Nothing like it!  Hopefully those avocados will be ripe to make a large batch of guacamole for Super Bowl.
I was at Target the other day and found this darling little red cake plate for 5 dollars.  I looked at the price, and said this can't be?  But it was!
 I collect mice.  The little mouse is an Annalee doll.  Mommy, it is yours!!!  I found it when I made a new lid for the crochet Christmas house.  It was inside!!!   Can I have it?  The picture is a wee bit blurry, but the doll is holding a heart and on her little gingham apron it says Be Mine.  I have our butter bell jar on the plate, along with a small aqua dish.  The red cow creamer is a Pioneer Woman piece.  The little quilted mat is a Lori Holt block from Farm Girl Vintage that I made.  I have an aqua ceramic egg dish there on the counter as well.  I love red and aqua together! 
Well, that's about it from here in my neck of the woods.  I am going to go have lunch with my Mommy today.  A little shopping afterwards maybe. 
I leave you with this sentiment.  It is on a cotton flour sack tea towel that I bought at Walmart.
Until next time,
XO Kris


Kelli said...

I always enjoy your recipes. I have been craving comfort food lately...must be due to all the cold and rainy weather we are having in Northern California.
I have a question for you...do you keep your butter out on the counter? I want to get a cute butter dish to keep out but my husband says butter need to be kept in the fridge.

Nana Go-Go said...

Well,you've certainly got your groove back! Lovely to see it all, Kris and that is one stupendous pie! I shall try that at the weekend. I usually brush my pastry with milk, has the same effect as egg yolk. Lovely to 'see' you again.X

Dogwood Lane Rambles said...

Thanks for the turkey inspiration I have some sliced breast frozen that I can use with my successful!! bread machine loaf. Thanks to you for your encouragement and advice about using bread flour. I'm on a kick myself to finish old project no matter what so I feel your struggle.

Hollie said...

Love all of your creations!!!! I love anything that's quilted!!

Bethany said...

I love that Valentine panel!!!!! You have so much fabric! I've been trying to use what I have, so I can have an excuse to buy more, haha.

From the Kitchen said...

I am so envious of those bowls of citrus and avocados!! I, too, love that Valentine panel!! So nice to have you back in the blogosphere!!


Jill said...

Love all your hand made items and that dish of turkey pot pie looks delicious! That fruit is definitely a blessing to have and excellent job organizing your materials, looks great! Still organizing here... long process since we are going through every single box from the move! Have a great night.


Angela said...

Charlotte 's Web of course!

Jeanna said...

You have been super productive. I love how you made that turkey breast go a long way. I love chicken pot pie so I'm sure I would love the turkey one too. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

My sewing room is in desperate need of organizing but I am about to turn my son's room into a home office/sewing room so no need to straighten the current one, I say.

Teresa Kasner said...

I'm so glad you're back to blogging! You inspire me with all the things that you do and the way you decorate for the seasons and all. I also like decorating for the different holidays and I get ideas from you. And that big turkey pot pie.. YUM! We were latchkey kids and had those little frozen pot pies for dinner soooo many evenings. I kind of raised my younger sister while mom was at work. After she left my dad and took us away to a new town. bleh. But I still love pot pie and yours looks amazing. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

NanaNor's said...

Hi Kris, wow girl,you've been up to a lot and it sounds like you've been sick too? I hope it was a short lived bug! Your produce looks so incredible, that is one thing I miss about Ca. Love your quilts. Ok so I'm admiring your fabric squares-but what about when you have a yard plus of fabric and don't want to cut it?
Sending big hugs your

Betsy said...

Well Kris, you certainly seem to have your mojo back! Your turkey pot pie is very similar to mine. I make my own cream sauce instead of a gravy mix though. Love all of your quilts and I'm so, so, so jealous of your fresh produce. Especially the oranges and avocados. Yum. I've been reading everywhere online recently about the Konmari method of simplifying and folding. When I feel better I'm going to try to make some inroads on cleaning too.
Blessings always,

Billie Jo said...

Charlotte's Web is a favorite of mine!
I enjoyed visiting here with you this evening...
And I am quite envious of all that amazing fruit!!! : )

Lil Raggedy Angie said...

O that pot pie looks so delicious , and I love that you wasted nothing of your turkey . But I gotta say , I am MOST impressed with your egg separating trick , I would have never thought of that ! I adore your handiwork , and those new red/white treasures are to die for! I wouldn't know how to act if I could just walk out my door and pick all that gorgeous fresh fruit , truly a Blessing indeed ! Wishing you a beautiful week ~ hugs Angela

Linda said...

Hi Honey...
So glad you are feeling better....
You certainly are a busy bee...
Love all your stuff...
Have a great week....hi to Mom!
Linda :o)

Deb~in~Denver said...

You certainly have your energy back! Love that red & white quilt with the sunflowers! It's gorgeous!! Everything you do is darling!
Your fruit looks so good, bet it tastes amazing! I am trying to get things organized around here, I think it's going to take forever!
Oh, I love Charlotte's Web, too! One of my favorites!

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

I am always in awe of your creativity and productivity...you are inspiring! Glad to hear you are starting to feel better!

Kerri said...

I love reading your posts....they're always filled with such happiness and your positive outlook on life always shines through. Your snowman quilt is so cute...you make sewing seem so easy- which I know first hand it is NOT!
And, every time I see your abundance of goodies from your garden, it makes me want to move to Southern California!

*thanks for your kind comment on my blog...I try and share mostly the good stuff...if you know what I mean! ;)

podso said...

Your turkey pie sounds and looks delicious. That's great how many meals you've gotten from the turkey breast. You could probably teach some young mothers a few things! Love seeing all the colors of your quilting fabric!

Debbie said...

Wow you've certainly been busy, but then you always are, lol. I just recently had a real craving for chicken pot pie, which since I have to be gluten free it is not something I can eat anymore. But I found a gluten free recipe which was really pretty good. You make it with gluten free Bisquick. I have a feeling yours was MUCH better, lol. Great way to organize your fabric. If you saw the way I had mine you'd laugh and laugh. I NEED to get a better system. I certainly envy you all those yummy looking avocado's. Hope your day's a good one!

Mereknits said...

Kris you have been so busy you are making my head spin. I can't believe all you have got done and you are still recovering from your illness.
Love, love, love everything.

Lynne said...

Turkey pot pie sounds delicious. The egg yolk trick is something I need to try -never heard of it! I have the Farm Girl Vintage book too, but haven't made anything out of it yet. Maybe I need to fold all my fabric up first like you did so I can see what I have in the drawers first.
Have a great day today!

MommaGott said...

I just love reading your posts...a little thrifting, a little cooking, and some crafting! I wanted to let you know I bookmark so many of your recipes, and use them in my rotation frequently. Today I am using your recipe for pork roast in the crock pot with the apples/onions/brown gravy/apple cider vinegar. The whole house smells great, I will let you know how my family likes it. Thanks again for taking the time to take such detailed pictures when you are cooking!

Gracie Saylor said...

From the Charlotte's Web title to Make Today Lovely, I enjoyed this post! I feel like we had a great visit, Kris :) The turkey pie looks yummy and pretty as a rectangle. I had forgotten the egg separating trick. Thanks for the reminder. Also thanks for the process instructions for freezing broth. We have broken freezer jars, but perhaps because we did not tighten the lids the way you did. Your material organization is beautiful and efficient. No matter how dissatisfied you are with some of your quilting projects, I admire them all!!! I'm glad you are feeling better... consuming the fresh citrus and avocados should help. I have been enjoying the fresh produce shipped to our grocery stores. My friend Paula in San Jose gave me a white milk cow pitcher that I love, and I like seeing how you are arranging and using the dishes you have found. Until next time xxxxxxx :)

helen lorraine said...

i've been following your blog for some time now; you are a very creative lady!
often i make a chicken recipe you shared some time ago and it's become a favorite around here.
thanks! ~helen~

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

You have been busy, Kris! Your turkey pie looks so delicious. I belong to a community club that has a pot luck every month, so I'm saving your recipe to amke it for that occasion. I like your chicken broth idea. I often make my own vegetable broth from veggie scraps that I freeze and save until I have enough to boil up and strain. I sue the veggie broth for soups and stews and when I make fresh beans.