Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year's Eve!

I have had a rather nice day today. I woke up at the crack of dawn to get in line at the DMV to change the last name on my drivers licence since I am married, and have been for the last 2 months. Figured it was about time. Yep, I am now a Lucas. You know...there is a semi identity crisis that comes along with changing your name but I got over it pretty quickly!

Then, when I got back home after the hustle and bustle of the DMV, I made a crack at vegan baking! I wanted to make something for a friend that is Vegan. Since I eat meat, I know not a whole lot about Vegan baking, but I do know that the Spiral Diner is pretty fantastic! 

I found a great recipe for cookies over at Veg Fort Worth. This is a great recipe. The cookies turned out fantastic! You would never know they were Vegan. You know, this girl over at Veg Fort Worth just may turn me Vegan! You must try this recipe. I did not have vegan white choc so I just used semi sweet chocolate chips. 

Cheers and Happy New Year! 

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Blog Hop Wednesday And Crock Potting!

Crock pots are awesome. Just toss everything in the night before, store in the fridge, plug in when you wake up the next morning, come home to a fantastic smelling house!

I just kind of made this little crock pot dinner up. I have not been to the store in a week or so but thought that I might have enough to make something tasty. So here is what I did.

I chopped a bell pepper and an onion and sauteed for about 5 -10 minutes on a low to medium heat.

I added the onions an peppers in the crock with a can of rotel, a can of strained black beans, and a can of corn (well actually I used creamed corn that I drained because I did not have regular corn). Then I added a teaspoon and a half of cumin and a teaspoon of oregano.

 Mixed it all together and added some chicken breasts.

Cranked that sucker on and it got to cooking!

Then after it was done I took 2 forks and shredded the chicken. 

Cooked it for about 30 more minutes and then we had shredded chicken tacos!

Cheers and Happy Blog Hop Wednesday!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Day After Christmas

There is something about the day after Christmas. I typically always feel refreshed and very crafty! So, I decided to make a roast in the crock pot and spin some yarn!

The roast turned out very nice. I love how the aroma of the roast slowly cooking in the crock pot fills the house. I put in beef broth, red wine, fresh cut rosemary, thyme, and sage.

 Then, while my roast was roasting, I worked on spinning some yarn.  I spun this for a friend.  Her mother died a few months ago. I cannot imagine loosing my mother, especially so close to the holidays. So, I hope this yarn will give her the opportunity on focusing on doing something fun for herself! 

I had so much fun spinning it and I love the way it turned out!


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

It is hard to believe that yet again, Christmas is here. It has been a nice day for me so far. Santa has been awfully nice too!  And, it is actually cold here in Texas! Thank goodness! Jeff and I got up this morning, checked out our stockings (which is my favorite Christmas thing to do), exchanged gifts and then went over to my parents house for brunch.  

At the parents house we started things off with a bit of Christmas Sangria! 

It was good!  My mom made a simple syrup that had a bit of a nutty spice to it which made it a fantastic winter sangria.  I juiced some oranges for the sangria and then Jeff mixed it all together.

My Mom always sets such a nice table for us when we come over, especially on Christmas. Jeff and my Dad started a nice cozy fire in the fire place. I love the smell of a fire place! I especially love the smell of pinon wood. :-) 

On the menu we had: Mexican Brunch Casserole.  Now, this is a tradition in my family. We have this casserole every Christmas and it is so yummy! I look forward to it every year!  We also had something new, Baked Pear Vanilla French Toast with Mama's Pecan Maple Syrup.  Oh man, food coma.

After brunch we settled into the den to watch National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.  We laughed hysterically through the whole movie! It is a great one.  This movie is definitely on my list of Christmas movies to watch over and over and over!

After the movie we exchanged gifts. Every year my mom puts together a little "care package" full of a random assortment of wonderful things.  In my care package this year was:

This cute little knitted head wrap.

Some Fiestaware salt and pepper shakers.

A pomegranate foaming bath power which I can't wait to use!

And, these cute vintage salt and pepper shakers.

My aunt also gave us some of my Grandmother's vintage linen napkins and had an "L" embroidered on them. That is the first letter of my new last name!  So very thoughtful I can't wait to have a dinner party and use them!

Yet another very Merry Christmas.

Cheers Everyone! 

Thursday, December 23, 2010

A Little Bit of Christmas Preparation

These last few days are fun for me. Even though every year I say I am going to have everything done so I don't have to scramble...I kinda like the scrambling but in moderation.  Today I got off work early.  I did a bit of last minute shopping and then made my annual Christmas marshmallows for my family.  These are the second annual Christmas marshmallows to be exact.

I also finished up my Navajo ply yarn. I used Navajo-Churro wool that I picked up a few years back.  It is pretty funny, I procrastinated with learning how to Navajo ply. It just looked so absolutely complicated! But, with the help from The Joy of Handspinning I discovered that it is so very simple! I have waited all this time for nothing!  I really like the way the wool looks when it is Navajo plied. It reminds me of some of the things that I have seen in Chimayo.

We spent this past weekend celebrating the Holiday with Jeff's family.  I made peppermint brownies to take.

I also spent about 4 hours wrapping gifts.  Who knew it took that long?  You know, I think in years past I would wrap as I bought. This year I obviously did not do that. Note to self: you could be spinning yarn during that gift wrapping marathon.  Next time, wrap as you purchase. 

Jeff's little brother stayed with us from out of town.  After my 4 hour Christmas prep marathon I finally took a break and played Dance Central on his Kinect. Taye was my favorite Avatar. I had a blast dancing to King of the Dance Hall by Beenie Man

Now, I am off to go see The Fighter with a very dear and longtime friend! 


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Have You Ever Heard About The Grilled Cheesus?

Well, I did not exactly wake up to a grilled cheesus but...when I went to put my make up this morning this is what I found....

Yep, just waiting there to make me laugh and boy did I ever! This was so fantastic for a Tuesday morning. I have never seen anything like it. A perfect smiley face in my eye make-up concealer. Just hanging out waiting to say "what's up and good morning."

Monday, December 13, 2010

My Victoria Yarn Is Complete

I finished spinning my Victoria roving a few weeks ago but I just did not get around to finishing it. So, yesterday was a nice day out so I decided to go ahead and give it a bath and hang it out to dry. When I woke up this morning the temp drastically changed and the whole darn thing was frozen! Ah, but it thawed out and turned out perfectly.

I can't wait to knit with it!


Saturday, December 11, 2010

Yarn Wreath Done!!

Ah, Saturday. The antibiotics are kicking in. The elated feeling of receiving hand cards and locks on Friday is everlasting. Oh, and I finished my yarn wreath today. I have been working on and off on it but I figured now was the time to actually bring this little project to a close. I am pleased with how it turned out! 

Happy yarn wreathing!


Friday, December 10, 2010

Friday Turns From Drab To Fab!

Well, I have been off the radar a bit because I have been under the weather all week! I finally broke down and went to the doc today because I have had coughing spells that last an hour or so. Ugh. Frustrating. But, they fixed me all up with some antibiotics.  I went to Target to pick up my prescription and also picked up a gingerbread house to construct.  I figured I would come home with nothing better to do so constructing a gingerbread house was in the cards for me tonight!  Last year I was sick too and I was not terribly pleased with the way my gingerbread house turned out. But, it was still all in good fun! 

When I came home from the doc, I found something much more fabulous than a gingerbread house. My friend from Taos Sunflower send me a Christmas package! OMG!! Now, if there were no such thing as antibiotics I think a package like this would cure any bacterial infection! She gifted me hand cards but she also sent tons of locks to card! I can't wait to get started. I have been wanting carders for such a long time! This was such a wonderful surprise and the best Christmas gift ever! Thank you so much! I literally shrieked when I opened the package. My little critters looked at me like I was crazy. Ha! 

Yep, now you know why I shrieked! 


Sunday, December 5, 2010

Weekend Cocktail Party

We had some friends over this weekend which presented me with the perfect opportunity to use my new wedding gifts! 

I set up a bar that was self serve for those that so desired a little cocktail hour.

I also had a buffet set up with lots of munchie food. I love munchie food.

After our cocktail hour we went to Lola's to see The Orbans.  I love these guys. If you are ever in the Fort Worth area and want to have a good time, check them out. Plus, the keyboardist is a friend from 6th grade! Ha! It is amazing to have know a person for that long.

On Friday night we saw Birds and Batteries. A friend recommend them to us. This was a great show! They are from San Fransisco and are awesome. 

Well, anyhoo, thanks to everyone for the wonderful wedding gifts! I am putting them to good use!


Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

We had a cold front blow in early this morning which I am very thankful for! I am tired of the Texas heat, given, it is not nearly as hot as it is during the summer. But, it would be nice for the weather to actually feel like holiday weather. Yesterday it was almost 80 degrees and now it is in the 40's! Ah, I love it! So, this morning, I did what I do ever Thanksgiving morning, I turned on the Parade! After a bit of morning relaxing, coffee drinking, and parade watching, I got to cooking. I volunteered to cook rosemary biscuits and a pumpkin cheesecake. Now, biscuits...that is not too difficult to mess up  but a cheesecake can be dicey. I have never made a cheesecake before. Things were going so very well too but I soon realized 2 very important things. First, never ever make a cheesecake with store brand cream cheese. It will turn out lumpy. Second, never ever ever ever ever take the bottom of the spring form pan off the cheesecake. This is a risky move which will ultimately end up in disaster. As I was flipping the cheesecake (I am sure those of you who are avid cheesecake makers are gasping at that very thought) 1/4 of it fell right off. As I started having a mini melt down and on the verge of tears, Jeff rescued me and I was able to patch it together. But, not the less...the poor little cheesecake looked quite unsightly but...everyone graciously ate it anyway.

The biscuits turned out great!  Those are pretty hard to screw up. I did not have shortening so I used butter but it worked great!  I cut rosemary from my garden a few days ago and hung it to dry. Oh, I love the smell of rosemary and it is great in biscuits! 

Happy Thanksgiving to all! 


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Thanksgiving Is Around The Corner And Christmas Is In The Air!

This weekend I started doing a little Christmas shopping.  I am getting better and better at getting the shopping done early every year. I really don't like to be running around like crazy the day before Christmas, it makes me miserable and I don't want to be miserable this holiday season.  Plus, I live about 1 mile from a mall and one of the busiest streets in the area. You can get stuck in so much traffic this time of year and I really would like to do my best to prevent all that.  I got stuck in the mall parking lot on Christmas Eve once for one hour! So, get the shopping done so I have have some crafting fun is my motto this year! I love to make stuff and crafting around the holiday season is so much fun! I am a bit short on time but, there are a few quick projects I want to do this year. 

I can't believe that Thanksgiving is this week!  Jeff and I will be going over to my Aunt's house for Thanksgiving and this year. Since I am not on-call for work (that was miserable), I am able to cook a few dishes to take. I am being a bit bold, I must stay, because I am making a pumpkin cheesecake.  This is a challenge that I have never attempted before. I have never made a cheesecake period!  I know, strange. But, I accumulated a spring form pan at one of my wedding showers and I busting it out and giving it a whirl! I am also going to take and some biscuits and am thinking I may add some dried Rosemary to them for an extra kick of flavor.  The recipe I am going to use is from Tammy over here. I will certainly post about this cooking endeavor! 

I went to a craft fair this weekend. A co-worker of mine was selling some of her goods. Her booth looked so cute! And if I do say so myself, it was one of the best ones! Good luck Rebecca! It has been a long time since I have been to a craft fair but it was fun.  I liked seeing what everyone had to sell. 

The crafting bug has bit me. I was in a bit of a funk last weekend but this weekend I am feeling it!  My Aunt emailed me a link to some really cute yarn wreaths. So, I did an online search on yarn wreaths and apparently it is the in thing.  There are tons of really cute yarn wreaths out there.  Of course I ran out to my local Jo-Ann's and got some supplies. 

I picked up a little Styrofoam wreath, yarn, and some red 100% wool felt. Stay away from crafter's felt.  It just is not of the same quality.   

I started by tying a knot in the yarn around the wreath.

Then pinned the yarn down to make sure it would hold.

Then I wrapped the yarn around and around and around and around and around and around, well you get the picture.  This took about 5 hours! Next time, I will select thicker yarn so it will go faster! But, I managed to get it all covered. 

Then I took some festive red yarn to make an accent design.  I pinned it down for a good hold and then wrapped a little design.

I made some cute little felt flowers and pinned them down on the wreath.  

Now, I am in the process of mass producing felt flowers to decorate the wreath with. This could take a while so stick around! I will post a picture of the finished project! 


Cheers and Happy Holidays! 

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Victoria Yarn And Fun Little Yarn Shops

You know, I went to that cute little shop in Victoria but I never showed what I purchased!  I picked up some merino roving and wool locks. Right now I am spinning it up!  I also just found their blog

I don't have carders to card out the locks so I decided to just spin it into the yarn. The nice guy at the shop offered to let me come back and use their carders but we ran out of time and I was not able to go back.  I regret that! 

Here are my locks in their little brown paper sack.  They are so soft! 

I am not quite sure what I am going to knit when I am done spinning but, I know I am going to knit something for myself so when I wear it I will be reminded of Victoria! 

When I travel a favorite thing I like to do is find knitting shops and buy roving in hoards. Stores to purchase roving are few and far between where I live. New Mexico has a great roving selection!  Here are 2 stores that are among my favorite finds in NM:

Taos Sunflower:  The storefront is not there anymore but she has an online store.  I went gaga in this place.  It was wonderful!  There was so much to choose from and the prices of the roving were the most reasonable that I have ever found! I feel fortunate that I was able to visit the storefront before closing!

Miriam's Well:  The lady that owns this place is very helpful.  I actually purchased my spinning wheel there a little over 3 years ago. She is quite liberal and expresses her views...which I like...but I was concerned about what my dad might think.  But, he sat down with her while I was inside shopping and they had a very nice conversation. It was great! 

 (that is Miriam out front of her store moving around her geraniums)

This was a poster hanging in her store (I was not kidding when I said she was liberal, ha!). So, I took a picture of it. You really could not get away with hanging a poster like this in a store in Texas...well, unless the store is in Austin I guess. 

Anyhoo...happy weekend everyone!


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Few Wedding Pictures

I really do not like to post pictures of myself on my blog but...this is for my wedding so why not! I will post more in a few days.  I owe these lovely wedding pictures to Thatcher Photography.  Josh is a fantastic photographer.  He made sure to capture every special moment and detail. I highly recommend him, so very talented. So, all of the following were taken by Thatcher Photography.

  Picture courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography.

The rings and flowers.

Photo courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography 

The cake topper my sister made! I love it! She did such a terrific job. 

Photo courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography

The cakes were made by Erika Bridges.  They were so delicious. The wedding cake was almond with butter cream frosting and the groom's cake was chocolate mint with ganache. Oh, it was delicious! Can you se my Just married banner

Photo courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography

My brother-in-law is a wood worker. He made this little piece of wood with our initials carved on it for part of the wedding decoration. In the background is the Rose Chapel, where we were married and had the reception.

photo courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography

The Rev. made me laugh here. It was right before we were meant to kiss. Our Rev. did such a great job. We found him here. If you live in the DFW area and need a Rev. use them!!

photo courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography

My cousin Phoebe made these signs for our chairs. Mine said "Lizzie" and Jeff's said "Jeff." I have them hanging in my house now. They were really sweet. She is such a little artist! 

Photo courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography

This is a little shot of me pinning on my veil I made.  There was a bit of drama surrounding this.  It accidentally got left behind at my parents house.  About 30 minutes before the wedding was to start we figured out there was no veil at the chapel.  We had to send my dad home to find it. Luckily he found it in time!  

Photos courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography

My biggest regret, not tasting the food!  Everyone said how great it was. There was just so much going on. This was my plate that I never touched. Brides, always taste your food, don't let anything get in the way of that. The most horrible thing is, this fantastic caterer, made us a basket of food and champagne to take back to our hotel and we forgot it! Oh, such a huge regret. But, it is what it is. 

 Photo courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography

And then my favorite. Dear Kyle, the life of the party. He taught me how to do the stanky legg.  I even caught my Uncle in the background doing it too! Good times!

Photo courtesy of Josh Thatcher Photography

My Aunt started a conga line. Oh, that was too much fun!  We just danced, danced, danced. It was a great time.

I will post more pictures later. Good times!

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