Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Knitting, cooking and kitchen...

I just finished Jayda's new ballet bag.  I made a little bag for my niece for Christmas and decided that since it was so cute and easy, I'd make a larger version for my Jayda to stuff her ballet shoes and clothes into.  I used much larger needles (size 13 instead of 9) and made everything just a bit bigger to accommodate all her stuff.  I love the way the garter stitch stretches, and the bag can be worn as a backpack with both straps or over one shoulder.
It would make a great grocery/produce bag as well.  

Another project we've been working on is the kitchen.  It had light maple cupboards and I was wanting something a bit more cheery so we went white.  Since I lived in my in-laws basement with white cabinets, I have missed them.  They look great, easy to clean and brighten up the room.  The project isn't quite finished: I am saving my pennies for pendant lights over the island, a new cheery backsplash (I'm thinking sea-glass or something), and this week we are putting bead board around the island and painting it a cheery (once again) light turqoisey blue (similar to the mirror I painted but a bit lighter).  I'm so excited to get my house exactly how I want it one room at a time.  Eventually when the other white appliances break, we will replace everything with stainless steel to match the microwave we just put in.

Busy Day Recipe:

Tuesday is our busy day as a family.  Aside from the usual, already busy day, we add Jayda's ballet and Olivia's gymnastics- both taking place at the same time, in different places.  So it's a bit of a race to get them where they need to go and then I pick one up and Petter picks up the other and we meet up at home for dinner before Petter has scouts, and I later have yoga.  With that kind of an evening, it doesn't leave a lot of time for the making of dinner, so it's the day I usually throw some stuff in a crockpot and let it do it's magic.  I absolutely love inventing new recipes- if I could live out one of my dreams, it would be to make up and test recipes- since I really don't have time for that, I just try things out on my family.  Yesterdays meal was one of the best and I will definitely be making it again, and again, and again.  I'm calling it "Chicken Tortilla Soup". In the summer my mom and I froze salsa in ziploc bags and it worked out great- so that's the salsa I used, it's got lots of cilantro and is way yummy.  If you don't have frozen salsa (I know it's kinda weird) you could just use a bottle of your favorite or whip up some fresh.
Here's the recipe:

5 frozen chicken breasts
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 quart (or so) frozen salsa
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup quinoa

In the morning, put chicken, soup, quinoa and salsa in the crock pot on high. Let it cook all day and when ready for dinner, add the beans till heated.
Serve with tortilla chips, cheese and whatever other fixings you like.

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