Thursday, September 18, 2014

Inspired by the DSP

 I ma so in love with this All is Calm Designer Series Paper and its combo of colors.  I was in a bind last week trying to come up with a make and take idea for my workshop and I knew I wanted to show the boxmaker and with the two in mind this is what came out. 
The box is made from Lost Lagoon cut 8x8 to make this box shape.  I then cut a Smoky Slate 1 1/4 inches with a strip of 1" DSP on top to make the belly band.  The Beautiful bunch flower is stamped with Lost Lagoon twice and punched out and
once with Smoky Slate to make the center of the flower and punched out with 7/8 inch scallop circle.  Punch Pear Pizazz once with the same punch and cut into 2 leaf pieces to make the leaves.  add a little jewel to make it pop and layer it all with dimensionals.  Stamp Merry Everything tag also in Lost Lagoon- don't you love matching tag punch for these too?  - punch a little hole for the bermuda bay baker's twine - I tied it around the flower and let the ends hang .  Everything is attached to the belly band so it can be taken off without affecting the box. 
You can make a bunch of these and have it at ready for when you need a special little box.  I did not glue the sides of the box and is storing it flat for just that occasion when I need a box.  How easy is that? and I tell it it is much more prettier in person.  I think I will make some more for some other occasions.....

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Seasonally Scattered make and take

My easy make and take for this month is Seasonally Scattered thanks.  Cherry Cobbler base card with Mossy Meadow stamped with same color with Woodgrain background.  Ink the stamp thanks with Crushed Curry then used daubers to add Tangelo Twist, Cajun Craze, Cherry Cobbler and then the Mossy Meadow.  Die cut the words with Apothecary accents framelit.   Added the Champgne Glimmer paper punched with heart border punch to add a little sparkle.  I had it on the bottom across and my friend Lin added it to the side which I liked better so here it is!  It was one of the easiest of the make and takes this month and still very pretty.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Tips from my Garden and Thai Coconut Soup.

I have been wanting a garden since I don't know how long and with our backyard renovation I thought I would finally have it  and was promised the side garden out of view for it. But my DH - and rightly so- thought the air conditioning unit and the pool equipment and the water heater needed to go back there too out of sight- so my long beautiful garden became a 4x 12 feet, but hey it's still 48 sq feet I did not have before!  I planted heirloom and sun gold and sweet 100 tomatoes, zucchini, an eggplant and serrano chili peper, basil , carrots and we've been getting out a bounty.  With all the compost I used the tomatoes got over 8 feet tall.  Now the season is almost over and I get to have the last of my harvest for one of my favorite comfort food- Thai Coconut Soup. 

The recipe comes from Sunset magazine and it was a revised version for the American cooks but the flavors are spot on and easy peasy one pot recipe.

Thai Coconut soup.     serves 4.     Takes about 10 minutes to make.

1 can coconut milk (14 oz)
1 can low sodium chicken broth
6 quarter size ginger pieces
1 stalk lemon grass cut into 1" pieces
1 tablespoon each of fish sauce and lime juice (more or less)
1 teaspoon each sugar and Thai chili paste (more or less- depending on your hotness factor)

then add mushroom- any or all kinds, veggies- eggplant, zucchini works well, the original recipe calls for chicken but I like mussels (you can find cleaned and flash frozen  ones ins Asian markets) or shrimp too. Bring it all together and simmer until veggies are tender

I've added potatoes if you like that, noodle and even poured the soup over rice and let it soak like porridge.  You can garnish with basil and cilantro if you like.

I put lot of different veggies and it is delicious.  If you like Thai flavors and want an easy soup to make the ingredients are not too difficult to find.  In California we can find all of these things in a regular grocery store so we are very blessed.

I bought Lemon grass at the  grocery store- it always comes in a bundle with 4-5 and I only needed one- so I got ones that had a little more root stock (if possible) and stuck it in a pot of dirt earlier this year and watered it regularly with fertilizer and now I have multiple baby stalks that are coming out on the side and I just cut one at the base when I need it.

I also bought Thai basil when it was just a little starter pot from Home Depot and now I have a big plant that I clip when I need a little of that too.  I just planted a ginger root and hope to have a ginger plant next year some time!

I keep cans of coconut milk and chicken broth on hand and freeze ginger roots after peeling and cutting into coin size pieces wrapped in plastic a few pieces at a time and put them in freezer bags so ready to use any time.


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Lily of the Valley Sympathy Cards

One of my partner's daughter passed away - she was about my age and it really impacted him.  I cannot imagine what it must be like to lose a child.  I wanted to make a card for him and his daughter's family so this is what I made.

The sentiment is from Brighter Tomorrow (Stampin' Up retired) and from PTI. The Lily of the Valley die is from Memorybox and the curlycue on the ends are from Cuttlebug.

Base card is Blackberry bliss with a layer of Pear
 Pizazz.  The whisper white layer was embossed with the tulip embossing folder for the tall card on the top and bottom.  The sentiment was stamped with Blackberry bliss.  The stems and leaves were diecut using Pear Pizazz cardstock.  The Twinkle bell flowers were diecut from whisper white and I used the dauber to add a touch of Pear pizazz around the edges.

On the long card  I added a knot of whisper white 5/8" organza ribbon to the base to anchor the flower.

This is a detail of the flowers on the long version of the card. 
I hope they find it comforting.