Feb 21, 2011

Marvelous Monday Update 2/21/2011

Don'tcha just hate when you pull out a UFO that has been languishing around for YEARS only to find somehow... sometime... somewhere... a stain (or two, or three) has made it's way onto the the fabric? If you're like me, your jaw drops and anxiety sets in while thinking about whether the spot will come out. That's what happened to me back when I first pulled out TMQ to finish it. My friend, Mel, suggested I try the Tide-To-Go pen.

Let me tell you, it worked like a charm! I only used it on the spots where there was no stitching so I don't know if it'll fade the fibers or not, but it totally removed the small brown stains that had accumulated on my Treasured Memories Quilt Afghan from years of being stored in my stitching bag (it was even inside a plastic bag!). I paid like $7 for 3 pens. I don't really need 3, but that's all I could find at the time. Btw, they also work well when you spill salsa on the front of a white tshirt... just sayin!

Blossom Splendor... Ahem. Much to my chagrin, I ended up frogging a huge section of the stitching I showed last week. Two rows off makes a big difference! I re-stitched all of it and then a bit more. Here's what it now looks like:

Got Spring Fever? Jennifer at Feathers in the Next is hosting a giveaway to take away the winter blahs (blues?). Sarah at Craftymoo is also celebrating spring with a giveaway!

Peg of Lightening Fingers is celebrating her birthday by hosting a giveaway. Hop on over and wish her a happy birthday!

If you've had a rough time with life lately, take a look at this:

Click Here --> Life Is Like Coffee

Feb 14, 2011

Chicken Enchiladas

I received several comments last week asking about the recipe for the Enchiladas I made. So, here ya go:


4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 can chicken broth
1 onion, chopped
1/2 pint sour cream
1 tbsp. dried parsley
1 tbsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. salt (optional)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (4oz.) can chopped mild chilies
2 tbsp. chili powder
1 (10 oz.) can enchilada sauce
1 (15oz.) can tomato sauce
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
8 (10”) flour tortillas
1 (16oz) pkg. shredded Cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

In a sauce pan, poach chicken in chicken broth. Optional: Add seasonings of choice. Shred with two forks. Can be done ahead of time.

Saute onion and garlic with some olive oil. Add shredded chicken, sour cream, approximately 1 c. cheddar cheese, parsley, oregano, and ground black pepper. Heat until cheese melts. Stir in salt, 1 tbsp. chili powder, and green chilies.

Roll even amounts of the mixture in the tortillas. Optional: Spread 1 tbsp. salsa over the mixture before rolling tortillas. Arrange in a 9x13 inch baking dish.

In medium bowl, mix enchilada sauce, tomato sauce 1 tbsp. chili powder, garlic powder, and onion powder.

Cover tortillas with sauce mix and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake uncovered in the preheated oven 20 minutes. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

***The rolled torillas can be rolled up and then frozen to be made at a different time. Just add enchilada mix and cheese, and bake. These are also very good re-heated as leftovers.

Marvelous Monday Update 2/14/2011

A few weeks ago, I learned that Improvements put ornament trees on sale for half price. They come in three sizes and two colors - gold or black.

I decided to go for the 40" one in black so I could leave it up year round if I wanted. The best part? If you sign up for their catalog, you get 15% off your order :)

So for less than $13 including shipping, my ornament tree arrived... ready to be assembled. After untwisting what seemed like a zillion twist-ties that held the parts to a piece of cardboard, I was ready to check out the assembly instructions. I'm sure the men out there are thinking or verbalizing: "Instructions? Pfftt! Who needs instructions?!" Let me say I didn't get past Step One...

You ask, "Why?" The base pieces fit together nicely, but when I tried to put the bottom pole through the hole in the base, it wouldn't slide through! Apparently, some chinese man (or woman) was in a hurry and over-welded the legs to the circular bracket, and the resulting spillage made the hole a tiny bit too small for the rod.

Being it was 7pm, I went out on a limb and called the customer service number. *Gasp* A live person answered within 2 minutes! After I regained consciousness, I explained the issue. The lady was very empathetic, and concerned that I not poke an eye out trying to force the pole into the hole. Yes, she actually was concerned about me hurting myself, lol. After we chatted about the dangers of impaling metal into body parts, she told me they would send out another tree immediately and that I didn't have to return the one I had -- since they obviously couldn't re-sell it.

So in a week or so, I should have myself a new ornament tree... hopefully welded correctly. This was the first time I've ever ordered from this company. Talk about great customer service!


Card and floss from
the CSE Birthday Floss Club

I've been a follower of Jenna's blog (Tale of a Shooting Star) for years. She's been on a finishing frenzy since the beginning of the year. You should see her stuff... Beautiful! When I saw that she stitched and finished Lorri Birmingham's Crystal Pink Pincushion, I asked if she would be willing to trade the chart. She was down with that, and said she'd send me a chart. Then I could decide how much it was worth for the trade. When I received it, there was a note that she saw it had been my birthday recently and that I could consider it a birthday gift. :) She even sent the beads with it! Thank you so much, Jenna.

My latest progress on Blossom Splendor. I can see the middle section shaping up!

Readers who have been my fans for any length of time are sure to know that I LOVE the handmade cards fellow stitchers have sent to me. I saw a version of this card on a website and I just had to try making one.

I didn't think it turned out too bad seeing as this is only the second card I've ever made, not counting the ones made in grade-school art class. :)

Happy Valentine's Day

Top 10 Health Benefits of Kissing...

• Those who kiss their partner goodbye each morning live five years longer than those who don’t.

• Kissing is great for self-esteem. It makes you feel appreciated and helps your state of mind.

• Kissing burns calories! 2-3 calories a minute and can double your metabolic rate. Research claims that three passionate kisses a day (at least 20 seconds each) will cause you to lose an entire pound. Time to start that kissing diet!

• Kissing is a known stress reliever. Passionate kissing relieves tension, reduces negative energy and produces a sense of well being, lowering your cortisol ‘stress’ hormone.

• Kissing uses 30 facial muscles and helps keep the facial muscles tight, preventing baggy cheeks. The tension in the muscles caused by a passionate kiss helps smooth the skin and increases circulation.

• Kissing is good for the heart, as it creates an adrenaline which causes your heart to pump more blood around your body. Frequent kissing has scientifically been proven to stabilize cardiovascular activity, decrease blood pressure and cholesterol.

• Those who kiss frequently are less likely to suffer from stomach, bladder, and blood infections.

• During a kiss, natural antibiotics are secreted in the saliva. Also, saliva contains a type of anesthetic that helps relieve pain.

• Kissing reduces anxiety and stops the ‘noise’ in your mind. It increases the levels of oxytocin, an extremely calming hormone that produces a feeling of peace.

• The endorphins produces by kissing are 200 times more powerful than morphine.

Kissing has been documented in medical studies and offers amazing advantages for a long and healthy life. So what are you waiting for? Kiss It Up!! :)

Feb 7, 2011

Marvelous Monday Update 2/7/2011

For the first time EVER, my company sent us home early on Tuesday before the storm got extremely bad... and gave us the day off on Wed with pay! The snow fell and the wind howled. By the storm's end, my area received 14" of snow which isn't too bad but combine it with 40-50mph winds and drifts of 4-6+ feet occur. I considered myself lucky in that I only had 4ft drifting.

With the help of "Push" and "Little Blow", I managed to chop my way through and get the snow moved to the front and backyards.

I did take a 20 minute break to have a snowball fight with the neighbor kids. The look on the teenage boy's face was priceless after he realized I threw a snowball at him while he was trying to shovel snow. He got me back, though. Next thing I know, all three kids were throwing snow, lol. Good times! :)

By the time I was done clearing the driveway, I had pulled a muscle in my upper back and sprained my wrist. The lower half of my body was realllllyyy cold, as was my face. My entired body was sore. I knew if I went in the house, I'd never make it back outside to finish, so I persevered.

A bit of Humor:

Over the weekend, I made the BEST chicken enchiladas. It was a new recipe I found, and definitely a keeper. Of course, I changed the recipe a bit :)

There have been a few comments about how I stitch while talking on the phone. Easy peasy... headset! I bought this Plantronics one as a Christmas/birthday present to myself.

It actually works pretty good. I can walk to practically every room in my house without having to take my phone with me.

Toward the end of my snow day, I finally started to feel better so I did a little bit of stitching on Blossom Splendor. I finished one page (of eight)! and started on the second page. Here's what she looks like now: