Monday, November 30, 2009

2009 Blogger Ornament Exchange

This marks my second year to participate in an ornament exchange for bloggers hosted by PamperingBeki.

And this little ornament is on its way to a new home... the home of a Queen!

I hope she likes it!

A very Merry Christmas, a tad bit early, to the Queen of Re!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

New Crochet Project

Today I'm working on these....

And I'm thinking about working off all of the Thanksgiving food I've been eating since Thursday. So far my ideas of getting back to the gym are just distant thoughts, but I'm hoping that tomorrow I'll feel more motivated to burn some calories. Until then, there is pumpkin pie in the fridge that needs to be consumed. I must oblige the consumption. After all the pie is homemade. I might offend myself if I didn't eat the majority of it, right?

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wishing you a happy holiday!

Since we'll all most likely be busying cooking, baking, eating, celebrating and tipping a glass or two tomorrow I thought I would send you a Happy Thanksgiving message today. As you are enjoying your day of thanks, please know that I am so thankful to have you all as readers, visitors, commentators and contributors to Securityville.

You all have made such an impact on my life since August of 2008 when I first started my blogging adventure, and I wouldn't know what to do without out guys. (Ok, so I might be a lot more productive at home with my projects and chores if I didn't camp out in front of my computer, but I know I wouldn't be as blessed as I am now!) So, many thanks to you this Thanksgiving! And I hope you and yours have a wonderful holiday!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

My first finished quilt!

I have finally finished the quilt that I began back in April! What took me so long? I was intimidated by attaching the binding.

For my birthday, Hubby had given me the gift of a series of classes at our local JoAnn store. I picked out my fabrics, and through a series of four classes I would have a completed quilt. Right? Sort of...

The first hindrance was that I wasn't learning to machine quilt in this series of classes. It was a quilt class that required hand quilting. If you've ever hand quilted anything then you know that isn't exactly a speedy process. So I hand quilted, as free time permitted me to, from the beginning of May to July. Then the second hindrance came up. I couldn't hook back up with my instructor. She took a long time to return my calls, then would leave a message with one day she was available, I would try to call back on her cell phone but couldn't get her, then call the store to leave a message for her and tell her the ONE day she offered wouldn't work for me. It became a nuisance. I gave up on getting through to her. And figured I would turn to the internet for tutorials.

And I did look online. Over and over watching youtube videos and being a bit scared. And then I found a great, easy to follow tutorial from Dana over at Old Red Barn. I must tell you that I followed her directions and her pictures just as she shared them and it totally took the intimidation of attaching my binding away. I began working on this on Friday evening and by Saturday evening I had finished the hand stitching to the back.

Thank you, Dana!!! A nice and tidy little binding that I owe you some credit for. I appreciate your help sooooo much!

And I must give a bit of credit to my new machine. The Janome Memory Craft 6600 has an amazing dual fabric feed system, and a super wide walking foot, that helps feed the bulky layers of a quilt right through without puckering. I couldn't get over how easy it was to attach the binding to the front of the quilt! I'm even more in love with this machine now!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sweet Potato Tartlets

Here is a delicious recipe that I wanted to share... I originally copied it from Shape Magazine a few years ago, but I just found a recipe so similar at (click there to print the recipe) that I wonder if this is where Shape got it from... or vice versa, I guess. Anyway, these are healthy and not too hard to make. The only thing missing from the picture is the fresh cranberries on top...

According to Shape, two tartlets = 150 calories, 5 grams of fat, 24 grams of carbs, 2 grams of protien, 1 gram of fiber, and 58 milligrams of calcium. If you like the taste of pumpkin pie then you will love these little goodies. And they taste just like you're eating dessert, not a vegetable!

Ingredients: 1 large sweet potato (3/4 of a lb.); 9" refridgerated pie crust; 3/4 c evaporated skim milk; 2 medium egg whites; 1/4 c granulated sugar; 2 tblsp light brown sugar; 3/4 tsp ground cinnamon; 1/8 tsp ground nutmeg; 1/8 tsp ground cloves; 1/4 c chopped fresh cranberries

Prepare: Preheat oven to 425 degrees; peel, cut & boil the potato until fork tender; divide pie crust into 12 or 24 equal sized balls (depending on the size you want your tartlets to be), then press the balls into a muffin tin; Drain & mash potato; In blender add mashed potato, milk, egg whites, sugars, spices and puree all ingredients until they are well blended; Bake 10-20 minutes (depending on the size of your muffin tin), then cool on a wire rack. Garnish with the fresh chopped cranberries.

That's one delicious dish! Feel free to link to your own recipes in the comments section if you would like to pass along one of your holiday favorites.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

8 Days until Thanksgiving?!?!?!

Can you believe that one week from tomorrow we'll be in the kitchen preparing for our big family meals? (Holy cow I must get ready for this!) Hubby and I already bought our turkey breast that we'll cook, but we haven't rounded up the ingredients yet for all of our side dishes and our desserts. Perhaps tonight I need to begin that grocery list...

You see, our Thanksgiving is a bit on the irregular side in my humble opinion. My mom won't be anywhere near us; my sister will be traveling somewhere with her fiance; my son goes with his dad because he has a huge family on that side with lots of cousins and four-wheelers and dirt bikes (which screams tons of fun 11-year old boy excitement); and Hubby and me prepare our own dinner to partake of AFTER we have dinner with his family.

I'm sure it sounds a bit on the strange side, but you see Hubby and I now know better than to bank on having left-overs when we go to his mom's to eat for Thanksgiving. It seems that the theme of "waste not" prevails over there. And what kind of Thanksgiving would it be if you couldn't munch on left-overs through the weekend? So, we'll roast our own turkey breast, we'll make our own gravy and cranberry sauce, we'll make some sweet potato tartlets (that taste just like little mini pumpkin pies) and a green bean casserole, and we haven't determined yet what else we'll concoct.

Of course we'll take something to contribute to his mom's dinner, too. Hubby has a really outstanding family recipe for stuffing, so we make two pans... one to take and one for us when we get home! And perhaps I'll take my famous apple pie....

What are you looking forward to preparing next week? Feel free to link back to your site in the comments section if you have a recipe to share. I'll post the Sweet Potato Tartlets recipe later this week in case you would like to give them a try.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Handmade Scarf

I've been trying to give more handmade gifts these days, and last week I gave one of my best friends this scarf for her birthday...

It's crocheted from Patons Silk Bamboo in coal, as well as Lion Brand Cashmere Blend in gray. The bamboo/silk combo is so soft... I highly recommend you try it out!

I was so worried she wouldn't REALLY like it, that I would get that "Oh, it's so.... nice!" kind of response that translates to "yuck... you made this for me?" But, that's not what happened at all. She seemed genuinely thrilled to get it, and the other girls at the table complimented her on it, too.

Thank goodness!

Now my confidence is up a bit so I can work on some Christmas gifts. I'll keep you posted on what transpires.

And, yes I did get to play with my sewing machine a little bit after picking it up on Saturday. I've played with some of the stitches and changing out a needle as well as winding the bobbin. But I haven't actually sewn anything yet. There is a quilt that I began in April that I just need to attach the binding to and I'll be done, so that is what I want to tackle first. I'm trying to work up the motiviation to give it a shot tonight after work. I'll let you know what happens...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Early Christmas

I can't stand it anymore, so please pardon me while I take a moment to brag.

This beautiful piece of equipment
(a Janome Memory Craft 6600)
will become mine on Saturday morning!

Compliments of mi Mamasita... an early Christmas present.

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Mom!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Happy Veterans Day!

Thank you so much to all of our soldiers for pursuing the careers that you have chosen, for fighting for freedom for all and not just a select few. Thank you for your trials, your hardships and the burdens that you carry for so many people every day. And thank you for putting up with how much the rest of us take you for granted.

We do remember you. We do thank you. And we do love you.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

November Block

Another block finished for the virtual quilting bee...

I had a blast making this one! Love the poodle fabric center... That little splash of black is one of my favorite parts.

Monday, November 9, 2009

I didn't get permission exactly, but....

I'm going to link to Hubby anyway. You may remember how I've mentioned that he's struggled with showing his face on his site, and he's never been fond of me posting pics of him on mine. Well, now he's gone and done it all by himself! So, I'm just going to help with advertising...

However, I will refrain from using his picture since I didn't request permission for that first. See, Hubbs... I do listen to you!

Be cool and grab a t-shirt while you're there!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Finally Friday?

Well, folks... it's here. Friday. Frankly, it snuck (that's not a real word, right?) up on me. Yesterday I was looking forward to its arrival, even thought it felt like it should already be there for me. And now I don't feel like its Friday at all.

I have so much to do today that does not include being at work. I need to make goodie bags for the cheerleaders for our last pep rally tonight. I need to take care of getting my mom's birthday package shipped. I need to make some crafts, one gift needs to be completed by Sunday so I can give it to a couple who is moving away. And there are lots more things that I just want to be working on.

The horrific shooting that took place yesterday at Ft. Hood in Killeen, Texas is haunting me. Another disgruntled person taking out innocent bystanders. So many thoughts racing through my brain since hearing about this yesterday afternoon... Mainly that I'm part of the team who terminated a man at work who I feel is very unstable and could do the same to our company or to one or more of us who works for the company. I just want to go home and be with Hubby who works from home and fiercely protects our humble abode.

But I know I can't duck down and hide in fear. Why haven't I gotten my own CHL yet? I could walk to my car in the work parking lot with the confidence of one of Charlie's Angels if only I was packin'. Right?

Time to pull my head out of the clouds and get back to business. I wish you all the best today as you prepare for your weekend adventures. Feel free to distract me with your comments about the exciting things you have planned. Once again, this Inquiring Mind would LOVE to know!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Tonight's Gonna Be a Good Night!

Have you listened to that song from the Black Eyed Peas yet? Love it! It gets stuck in my head all the time and makes me want to snap & jiggle. Or smile and giggle. Something along those lines!

But, that's not what I really wanted to write about today. Tonight is truly going to be a good night and I'm really looking forward to it. I'm going to a pot-luck dinner hosted by one of the ladies in my sewing guild at church. I had asked if we could have a holiday party since we won't be meeting again until January, plus we have one of our members moving away next week, so this will be a good opportunity to send her off in style.

The leader of our guild, who will be retiring from her leadership role this year, is someone that I absolutely love being around. Her name is Betty. She is a very talented traditional quilter and a great director of our small group. She knows how to teach us new things and get us back on track when we try to veer off course. And she's got a slight edge to her, like maybe she has a short fuse with some of our members, so some of the things that come out of her mouth just crack me up. I'm looking forward to sitting back with her tonight as we sip our glasses of wine and see what the conversation stirs up.

The dish I'm bringing is something I renamed a Green Chile Quiche. It was originally called a Corn Cheese Pie, but that sounds completely hick and bumpkin so the need for a new name was blatant in my opinion. I'll post the recipe for you guys tomorrow in case you are interested in giving it a try. And, of course I'm bringing a bottle of wine.

I can't wait to dig in to everything tonight!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Christmas Re-Decor

My excitement for the month of October dwindled quickly with all the rain we had. The lack of sunshine and the speed with which the month flew by took the air out of my sails.

But, alas! November is here and major holiday preparations are underway!

Hubby and I decided to take a leap and redecorate our Christmas tree. I guess you literally redecorate it every year when you have to put up and take down ornaments, but what we mean is that we are ditching some ornaments and getting some new ones.

You see, we inherited the majority of our Christmas decorations from my mother when she moved to Las Vegas. She started over with a Hubby of her own and new tree. We gladly took her leftovers as we didn't have much to call our own at the time. But, her style was definitely not our own. Her's had a froofy, granny-ish quality, and we are quite... well... not that at all. The colors are predominantly maroon and gold, which is pretty but not as bright as what we are going for. I'm a little partial to some of the ornaments, and we aren't getting rid of all of them, but for the most part an overhaul is underway.

So, this is what inspired us over the weekend when we made a pit stop at Pier 1 Imports to spend a gift card from last Christmas. We are going with bright green, bright red and white for the most part.

We picked up a few of the white reindeer in the bottom pic, some of the jolly red ones, and some other ornaments in this color scheme that aren't shown here. You get the idea... Bright, jolly fun is just around the corner!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Flowers, Stitches and One Scary Movie

I have a lot to catch you guys up on! Let me go back to the beginning of October, when my anniversary was here. I never showed you the gorgeous flowers that were waiting for me when I got home from work that day. Hubby always picks the most beautiful arrangements for me... I loved these so much! And the whole house smelled great for days!

Here is a picture of the October Block I stitched for the virtual quilting bee I'm part of. I finally finished it and have it ready for tomorrow's mail so it can go to it's owner.

And the big finale...

Last night we went to see Paranormal Activity for our big Halloween outing. O-M-G. Scared the pants off me. Almost. It is truly freaky. The ending was a bit unrealistic, but the rest of the movie had me jumping in my seat, grasping my mouth and not wanting to go home after it was over. I slept right up against Hubby all night long practically, scared to be near the edge of my bed. I'm still haunted by that flick... even in broad daylight!

Do you have any spooky things to share from Halloween?