Thursday, June 30, 2011

big quilt equals lots of work

Many years ago I got the coolest gift my my friend Julie.  Her mom had made me a quilt.  At the time I thought it was the best gift.  She had made it in purples and greens to match my bedroom.  How sweet!


I never realized how much work actually went into making this queen sized quilt.  I have made a handful of quilts but never as big and never as many pieces until now.

Over the past three days I have been planning, cutting, ironing and sewing like a mad woman!  I totaled up that I cut out 315 pieces and it doesn't seem like that large of a number.   But, it is when you feel like you have been doing it for a hundred years.


I just finished the top piece of the quilt.  It is at this point that I am so ecstatic that I got the top finish but then quickly realize that I am still not done!  I need to either find a big sheet to put on the back and put the batting in the center OR piece together a back.  Either way it is still more work...

shown on king sized bed
When I started cutting out the pieces I really didn't have enough of any fabric to use so I had to use LOTS of different fabrics.  Some I didn't know how they would work together.


When I started to sew them I saw that they were surprisingly coming together nicely.  I am really happy with the outcome.  Now to get working on the back so I can use it.

a fairy sort of day

Today is a "going down to grandma's house" day.  I told the girls to go get dressed.

They came out looking like this.


Not sure those are the most practical outfits. 

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

relaxing

When the girls were younger, when Emily was still taking two naps a day, Bella and I would watch Dawson's Creek during that second nap time.  We used it as our own little bonding time.  And don't worry any of you Dawson's Creek haters, she requested it!

Now we are heading back in the same direction.  Emily still needs a daily nap.  Bella is getting to the point that she can get by without one.

Today I had them both lay down for their nap.  I was cutting and sewing for the STUPID quilt that I decided to make.  I needed a break.  My fingers were hurting. 

I looked into the girls' room and noticed that Bella was just laying there.  Since she had been laying there for at least 30 minutes and wasn't sleeping I figured we would have some alone time. 

Having two girls so close in age (these two are 14 months apart) it doesn't happen often that I have one on one time with either of them.  They are different children when they are by themselves.  Example:  I don't hear any fighting!

So, while Emily is sleeping, Bella and I are hanging out.


We are laying in my bed watching Enchanted. 




We are having some edamame and iced tea as a snack.


It is nice to just be relaxed with one of my girls.  It doesn't happen very often.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

chocolate chip cookies

Usually I am a planner.  I love knowing what is going to happen and being prepared is great.  But, it isn't so true when it comes to me baking.  I mean, I don't plan when my sweet tooth is going to start yelling.  It has a mind all of it's own. 

So, when the sweet tooth does start up, I need something to calm it down.  And nothing irritates me more than finding a recipe where you need to have room temperature butter when I am wanting to make it on the spot. 

Sure, I know I can put it in the microwave and HOPE that I don't leave it too long.  But, I am not talented like that. 

That is one of the reasons I love the recipe I found to make chocolate chip cookies.  Not only are they great.  But, they don't use room temperature butter.  The recipe calls for melted butter!  Now that is something I can handle since that is probably what the butter I put in the microwave to soften will become.

I made some of these bad boys today because I got this really cute cookie jar Sunday and I wanted to put it to use. 



So go make some for your cookie jar.

Monday, June 27, 2011

new view

We went back to Cantia yesterday. I love that place.  This visit was a little different.  I didn't make Jorge walk about the store just so I could stare and ogle over all the pretty things.  I had a list.  A good thing for him.

The walls in our house aren't painted.  Not even a base coat.  So, if you lean against the wall it looks like the wall attacked you with a big chunk of chalk.

I'm not sure why the owners of the house never had it painted.  We are actually the first people to live in the house.  Jorge mentioned to the landlord about painting.  She seemed OK with the idea but it seemed like she assumed we would pay.  Without a base coat even on the walls, I wouldn't even want to guess how much it would cost for all the paint needed.

We have one blank wall in the living room.  There are two small pictures hanging on the wall, but it just needed something.  Plus, I needed a place for me to put all my books.  They were stacked here and there.

Yesterday at Cantia I bought a somewhat solution to that.  I got these two shelving units to put against that wall.  I really like how it looks.  And, it shows off how much crap I have.


I even gave Jorge space on the TV stand for all his cars.  Now he can feel part of the decor.  He loves his collection. We already had the talk with the girls (mostly Emily) that those cars are off limits for little hands.



Now that I have changed the look just a bit in the living room, it is time to rearrange the bedroom!  I love rearranging furniture!

Oh, and just a FYI.  I found some sweet corn!  Jackie suggested looking at Waldo's ( a sort of dollar store).  And sure enough, they had some! 


I also scored this bag of Butterfinger goodness!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Bentley

I miss this little guy.  All the time.


Wish I would have brought him with me.  Wonder where he is now?

Saturday, June 25, 2011

night and day

Just a lazy Saturday here.  Usually Sundays are dedicated the lazy day, but for us, Saturdays are too.

These two girls of mine are as opposite as they come.  Anything from what they like to eat to what they want to wear. 

A few weeks back when Jorge and I went to Aguascalientes, the girls wanted to come.  But, that was the big Cantia trip and I wanted room in the car for any purchase I might want to make.  So, they were forced to stay at their grandma's house.

They started the whining and crying, wanting to go with us.  And what tool do I use in those times of need.  Sure enough, bribing!  It seems to an effective tool sometimes.  And one that I am not too proud to use.  Don't judge!

I asked the girls what they wanted me to bring them back.

Emily said, "Batman!".  Of course. The inner tomboy was shouting out that she wanted an action figure. 


Bella, unsurprisingly, said she wanted a purse. She has about 100,000 of them, but what is one more?!


Right now I am listen to the only thing they do have in common....FIGHTING!  Joy, joy.  I take back that we are having a lazy Saturday.  It is quickly becoming a stressful one.

Friday, June 24, 2011

just a question

I don't really have anything to post today.  But, I do have a question. 

Why isn't there any sweet corn here in Mexico?  Or, is there and I just can't find it?

I remember being younger and there was a family that lived down the street from us that sold corn.  Glorious sweet corn.  I mean, I did live in Indiana.  I believe that people not from Indiana think that all there is in Indiana is corn.  Which is not true.  But there is plenty of corn there. 


I want some of that sweet summer corn on the cob.  The corn on the cob here is hard as a rock.  I can boil it for a thousand hours and it never becomes tender.


Do any of you have tips on how to get the corn more tender or have knowledge of the whereabouts of some sweet corn here?  Send them my way if so.  Thanks.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

perfect timing

Every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday my MIL comes to pick up the girls around 10 am and takes them to her house for the day.  Ever since I started working from home it was more than apparent that I needed some time without them to get my work done.

This morning the girls were brushing their teeth and putting on clothes while I was doing the dishes.  They had already had breakfast and I was thinking about what I wanted to eat.  I got a craving for gorditas but didn't have anything to make the salsa for them.  Oh well.

When my MIL knocked on the gate I noticed she was holding a bowl with a lid.  She handed it to me and told me I just needed to blend it.  It was salsa!  The kind that goes perfectly with gorditas!  Talk about timing!

The reason she brought the salsa down (not sure why it happened to be today) was because I keep telling Jorge that her salsa is perfect.  When I attempt to make it, it just tastes different.  So, that is why she brought it down unblended.  That way I could see how many of each ingredient were in her salsa. 


I mixed up a batch of dough for the gorditas and enjoyed a little Mexican breakfast.


I worked the ENTIRE day yesterday so today, with the nice temperature and overcast sky (although the sun is trying to make an appearance), I am going to take it easy!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

food to set your hands on fire

I'm sure most of you have heard of The Pioneer Woman. If not, please introduce yourself.  Immediately.

I love her site.  She is so funny.  Her recipes are to die for. Plus, most of the time I can find all the ingredients.  That is what matters most!

She has a recipe for bacon-wrapped jalapeño thingies.  I can confirm that they are really tasty.

I made some last night to surprise Jorge when he got home from work.

Other than the fact that they cause immense pain to my fingers and hands from working with the jalapeño, the come together quite easily.

Artist's rendition of a hand on fire.
 Just cut open the peppers and scoop out all the seeds and stuff that causes hand burns.


I bought this nifty little tool that does make the job of scooping out the insides a little bit faster.


Then fill with cream cheese and wrap with bacon.


Use a toothpick to secure everything and put in the oven.


Now use this time to nurse your burning hands and fingers.  Or, you could be smart and use some type of rubber gloves.  Or, just don't make them at all.  That will definitely eliminate the pain involved.

Take them out of the oven and enjoy!


They are really good and easy to make.  Try them!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

smuggling

Over time I have adapted to living here in Mexico.  Not having things available that I would normally have access to in the States.  Although some are harder to get used to than others. 

But, there are a handful of items that I haven't found here and either bring back with me or beg someone to mail me some.

Even the postal service here in Mexico thinks I might be smuggling something that shouldn't be here in Mexico.  I ordered a region-free DVD player and had my mom mail it to me (with some other goodies) and just got the package yesterday.  Not only was the box opened and verified nothing illegal inside.  They also opened the DVD player box.  Nope, no guns or any such illegal things inside, Sir!


Things I feel I HAVE to have:

First and most important...TEA!


Good ol' Leslie has a post on her site that shows a somewhat substitute for iced tea here.  I have bought the pinguica powder but haven't tried it yet.  Soon.

I would say the next most important items for me to bring/have mailed are these!  Q-tips and my Target brand eye make-up remover!  Especially the Q-tips, though.  You can find cotton swabs here.  But, they are just not Q-tip quality and they are a bit pricey.  So, I just bring them here with me.  You can find one of those giant boxes of 650 count for $3.50 at Target.   I buy 4 or 5 and stuff them in my suitcase.  No biggie!


Here is another staple that I just recently found out about a substitute.  However, I haven't tried it yet.  As you see, I still have a 7 lb bag waiting to be used. 


The rest are things I wouldn't say I "need" but really like having.  Especially this!  These are courtesy of my aunt Janny!


My mom just sent me this.  I have seen several recipes on this site that call for this ranch seasoning.  Now I can try them!


And, lastly, I have a handful of Tastefully Simple seasonings.  It is just fun to have stuff like this around because I can't find anything here remotely similar. 


There are lots of other things that I have brought back from the States.  Most of it is just impulse shopping.  It is too easy for me to get carried away when I go.  I always pack lightly knowing that I will need the room and more in my suitcases.  I've already started thinking about what I want to buy when I go back.  And I don't go back until the middle of October.

Monday, June 20, 2011

eventful weekend

For a change, we had a pretty eventful weekend.  And it wasn't even due to the fact that it was Father's Day yesterday.

Saturday we went to a friend's wedding.  It was fun because I got to see a lot of people that I used to work with back in the States.  It was nice catching up with all of them.  Plus, Emily got to see her friend, Ruben. 

He is the plant manager at Lovett Pallet.  That is where I worked for 8.5 years before I moved here.  Every time we visit Indy, we stop by Lovett Pallet so we can see everyone.  She has always been fond of Ruben.  I used him in order to make her wear a dress (remember she is my tomboy).  I told her if she wanted to see him she would have to put on a dress.

I don't have pictures (why didn't I take my camera!) but I do have some of her in a dress from yesterday.

Yesterday was another friend's little boy's baptism.  They went all out for the part and had it catered and plenty of drinks were available.  As well as a band.  You know the band was my favorite. ;)

Here is Emily cutting a rug with my sister in-law's cousin.  Emily danced with a few different people.


My husband is NOT OK with having his picture taken.  Here is proof.



But, I finally did get him to cooperate and have his picture taken with me.  And I will admit that I don't like my picture taken either.  So, this is a rare moment.


Here is a small video of the girls dancing.  Please note that Emily is NOT used to wearing dresses. 

video

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there. 

But, I especially want to say Happy Father's Day to my step-dad who treats me like his daughter.


We love and miss you so much!  Have a great day!  My mom should be giving you something from us.  Make sure she does.  We all know how she is! :)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Favorites: Emily

Now it is Emily's turn.  Of course I have plenty of favorite pictures of her, too.  Take a look at my favorites.

3 weeks

3 months
7 months
8 months
9 months
9 months
10 months
11 months
11 months
16 months
17 months
2 years 1 month
3 years
3 years 3 months
 This one is a stinker!