Sunday, April 18, 2010

Quilters Safari is on the horizon

Quilters Safari is coming up April 23-May 1, 2010!! The fab shop hop is put on by JanniLou Creations, a quilt shop in Philomath, Oregon. The shops range from Canyonville (exit 99 on I-5) to Salem. Liz and I will hopefully be participating this weekend while Josh is in Eastern Oregon shooting sage rats. I'll keep you updated on what we find in each shop.

Monday, April 12, 2010

The begining of the end....of the pile!!!

When we moved to our home in 2007, three years ago, none of the homes in the subdivision behind us had been completed and there was a huge pile of dirt where a home now sits. When they started moving the dirt to build on those lots, we had the back hoe operator dump a large amount of dirt on our backyard - we had seen how the water sat in our neighbor's yard and wanted to raise our yard level to make sure we didn't get a lake during the rainy season.
When Josh's Granny passed, Liz and Nancy asked Josh to get an old family tractor running again. The tractor was moved up from McKinnleyville to our backyard and sat there for two years. Molly enjoyed it - it was a great perch!
Liz recently purchased a small tractor that has a front scoop and rear blade that actually runs reliably!!! Liz and Rick brought the new tractor down to our house and took the older one up to Beaverton. Sunday, Josh worked in the backyard and 3 hours later the pile was gone!
The first scoop was fun to see happen, he was having a great time and was really excited to get it taken care of.
You can kind of see his happy face when he dropped his first bucket of dirt. Silly boy.

With the first half of the pile spread out, the middle of the pile really signalled that we were getting it done! Three years and we were finally getting the dirt dealt with.
He was almost done and we were both pretty excited.
Now, the entire backyard is one mud pit! YAY!!! As sad as it sounds, we are really glad to have the mud pit.
Next month it is on to concrete work and putting in the patio, dog pad and walkway along side the south side of the house.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Sue's Back!

Well, she has slowed down enough to do another giveaway. Sue and Wayne (her DH) are family friends and have an online quilt shop, While Liz, Nancy and Diane have all had influences on my interest in quilting, Sue really made it accessible simply because she let me sit at her booth and was available for questions.
I started this blog for several reasons, but Sue's blog has shown me what I can do with it. Thanks Sue!
Here is a photo of the first quilt I ever finished that Sue had a huge hand in....I sat in front of a sample of this quilt during the Santiam Scrappers Quilt Guild Quilt Show. Sue has the pattern, "Celebration" by Marilyn Foreman for Quilt Moments ( By the end of the show, I had to have it so I could make it for my mom. She cried when she got it in the mail. Hee hee. Love you Mom.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Easter dinner - the food

Wow. That was fun. We had a pretty low key day - waffles and sausage from brekkers, snacks, snacks and more snacks, then prime rib, scalloped potatoes and green bean casserole for dinner and funfetti cake for dessert. The prime ribs was done by Josh and he did an awesome job as usual. Here is a photo of the Prime (rib) Guy doing his thing, packing the marinated prime rib in a kosher salt crust.
This is a photo of what the thing looks like after it has been cooked to a temp of 140 degrees.
What the yummyness inside looks like when the crust has been cracked.
The Prime Rib after it has been freed from the salt crust. When we cook it this way there really aren't any juices so if we want any we have to make something like au jus for it. We usually don't need anything like that since it stays so juicy in the crust. Every time we have this it turns out awesome! The link to this recipe is in the post prior to this one.
I tried out a family recipe from Josh's great-aunt Margurite via his Aunt Joyce O'Leary. It turned out pretty good if I do say so myself. The recipe is not a precise one, but I found it pretty easy to follow. I got to use my birthday present, really use it - the Machine has a history in our family and when Josh got me one for my birthday, I vowed to keep the legend going in our home. I used it to slice the potatoes and the onions and it worked like a dream. After you put a layer of potatoes in the bottom of the pan, you put a layer of crushed Ritz crackers on top of that. I just rolled the tube of crackers around until it was completely crushed, opened one end and viola! out came Ritz crumbs in a neatly contained package.
After adding the layer of crushed crackers, layer ham slices that are cut into bite-sized pieces, then sliced onions, and then top that with a layer of cream of mushroom soup. I added a little bit of the milk that I use at the end of the recipe to thin it out just a tad - otherwise it would be too thick and clumpy. Repeat the layers until you fill the pan. It isn't pretty and I only got two layers in the pan, but it doesn't have to be pretty to be good.

After you finish the layers, fill the pan 2/3 of the way full with milk (I used whole milk, but use what you want). Cover and bake it for 2 hours at 350 degrees. I put a pan under the dish just in case things boiled over. After two hours, take out, uncover, top with cheese, then return to oven and bake 30 minutes at 400 degrees. Now it looks prettier.

After it is done baking and getting gooey, serve it up. The ham slices make it look a little interesting but oh does it taste good!
And the last recipe, but certainly not the least is the tzatziki that I made to snack on during the day. This takes a little ahead of time prep but it is worth it. To start off with, take a tub of plain whole fat yogurt and pour it into a cheesecloth-lined strainer that is sitting in a bowl. Cover the yogurt with the cheesecloth, squeeze gently and put in the fridge - the bowl will catch the fluids. Check every could of hours and drain the strained liquid so the yogurt doesn't sit in it. You can do this for a few hours or overnight--it is up to you.
After your yogurt is strained, put it into a bowl and toss the cheesecloth.
Peel and shred two cucumbers.
Place the shredded cucumber in three to four layers of paper towel and twist the top closed. Gently squeeze out the most liquid you can - it may take a couple of minutes. Set to the side.
Peel as many garlic cloves as you want. This picture has a lot - we all like garlic but there is such a thing as too much garlic!
Use a garlic press and press all the garlic into the strained yogurt mixture.
Add the pressed shredded cucumber and mix the three ingredients well. Cover a refridgerate 2-24 hours before serving. Serve with crusty bread, veggies and crackers.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Mom's coming! YAY!!

Mom will be here this time tomorrow and she is staying until Wednesday. Should be fun, I've been missing her and Memorial Day is such a long way off. We are going to have Easter Dinner on Sunday: Prime Rib in a herbed salt crust ( which is Josh's specialty, scallopped potatoes (if it is good I will post a photo and the recipe), green bean salad and snackies! I am going to make TzaTziki, a greek dish I could never get enough of in Athens.

Dog People

Dog people are mean.