Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Did Someone Say Tortillas?

Good morning, dear friend, and welcome!

It's been HOT in these here parts of the west, as I know most folks are in the throws of full blown summer heat...and I find myself making fresh and easy to prepare dinners, which regularly includes the addition of tortillas. They are wonderful for transporting all manner of yummy food from your plate to your mouth.

With that in mind, I wanted to share with you the art of making corn tortillas, which have always been a huge staple at our house. We still eat a ton of them, even though the nest has emptied, and to my delight, the kiddos have carried on the tradition in their own homes. How fun is that!

I was taught how to make tortillas as a very little girl by a most beloved baby sitter, and we made many tortillas together. We used our hands and a rolling pin, and cooked them right on the burner of her old stove...they tasted like heaven.

I still follow her recipe, only now I use a tortilla press, but the memory is still with me. And, my own Mom always says that I am the one who taught her how to make tortillas, when I was a wee girl sharing my newly learned skill...and we enjoyed them my entire childhood!

I have to start by sharing two important items that I find make all the difference in the final product...

The first is your tortilla flour, I have found that Maseca Instant Corn Flour makes the best tasting and softest tortillas.


The second item is your cooking pan. It is important to have a pan that is both flat, as well as a good heat conductor for evenly cooked and soft tortillas.
I use a flat griddle that I picked up years ago at Target, it is basic non-stick and NOT cast iron. I want to state that I don't use cast iron for stove use, as it is very heavy and rusts really easy, but many people use them and love them...your choice, just make sure it's a good one that conducts evenly...

Okay, on to the good stuff...
I share with you the art of  Corn Tortillas...

What you will need:
  • Mixing bowl
  • 1 tsp measure
  • 1 cup measure
  • Tortilla press or rolling pin
  • Parchment paper
  • Flat griddle pan

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups Maseca Instant Corn Flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 1/4 cups water ❋

❋ I always find that I have to add more water as the amount called for leaves a dry and crumbly dough. I add water, a bit at a time, until my dough pulls together nicely, but doesn't stick to the wall of my bowl when I knead it.


Directions:
  • Mix together the corn flour, salt, and water until the dough is nicely formed into a ball, and it is ready to be kneaded.
  • Knead the dough in the bowl, for 2 minutes.
  • Roll the dough into 16 golf ball size balls.
  • Preheat your griddle pan over medium until a drop of water "dances" on the surface.
While your pan is heating, begin making your tortillas...
Place a dough ball inside your tortilla press, between two pieces of parchment paper...And flatten that baby, using your press...Once flat, I like to flip over the parchment covered tortilla and give it another good press...Peel each side of parchment paper from the tortilla...very gently...And, viola!
Now...you could easily do this using a rolling pin, so don't go out and buy a press if you don't own one already.


Remove the flattened dough to your pan
Cook the first side, for about a minute...until you see brown spots...


Then flip the tortilla and cook the other side, until it puffs us...
Look...puffy!

I remove cooked tortillas to my trusty tortilla warmer, but a dish towel wrapped nice and tight will also work, while I cook up the rest.


How easy was that?!

These tortillas can be eaten right away, warm with some butter...sooo yummmy...and never stay long before they are all gone, however they can also be made 2 hours in advance, wrapped and reheated. I just wrap the stack of tortillas in foil, pop them in the oven, and Bake then in a 350°F oven for about 12 minutes.

Stay cool, dear friend, and remember to drink your water, and as always, thanks for stopping by, and for suffering through my cooking lesson.
Hugs

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

July Already...Good Grief!

Hello, dear friend!

I can't believe that it's July already...where did the days go?! And more important how can it be 5 months since I last blogged! Honestly, I blame Instagram, as more and more of my dear friends are on social media, I find that it's so much easier to visit and catch up, not to mention much more efficient than old Blogger, which can be daunting to manage a whole post everyday, how many of us are just sitting around waiting to blog? We are out there, living our lives.
Now, don't get me wrong, I love reading all of your blogs! I look forward to it with my cup of morning joe in hand. I liken it to when I'm in line at Costco, I spend the whole time gazing at other people's carts to see what they're purchasing, because it's always way more interesting to me than mine. You get it...

Anyhoo...

Let's get this post started with a wee update on the light of our lives, our wee lass GG...This girl, is not only the world's greatest genius who can both point and wave, but she's also gor-geous! I did mention that she's a genius, right? Seriously, though, my heart melts each and every time I watch her learning about the world around her. She is gaga for her Mama and Dada (the feeling is mutual), Peppa Pig and bananas, and has a smile that can light up a room and goes for miles...she's just the best!

She has her Mama's eyes and her Dada's lips...



I can't believe that she is almost a year old!

The Pa and I will be heading out there for her first birthday bash, though we haven't decided whether we will be traveling across country via RV or Plane...I'll keep ya posted!

On the Stitching front...

I've been a busy stitching bee, with both a start and a bunch of small finishes, as well as a lot of progress in between.

I am progressing nicely on "Bee's Knees"

Ink Circles "Bee's Knees"
The entire border is finished, and I have begun stitching the inside design.
I'm stitching this one on White Monaco (a moment of silence) 2x2, using Gloriana "Topiary" which is a buttery dream to work with...it slides through the fabric! I'm really enjoying this WIP.
Note the Avocado needle minder...courtesy of "Mad For Minders" on Etsy  I fell in love with her needle minders when I saw them on a friend's IG page, and when I went to look at her site, it was full of all sorts of wonderful needle holding treasures, so I purchased a few...


Aren't they adorable?!
I had to have the voodoo doll, cuz, well c'mon every gal should have a voodoo doll, not mentioning any names...LOL. Next, notice the "Link" needle minder...that's my own little tribute to Big Brother's childhood and Zelda. The other two just caught my eye, as did the avocado, because, it's an AV-A-CAD-O, on my WIP...it's a hoot! I encourage (enable) you to visit her Etsy page and check it out for yourself, you will be awed by her creativity, inventory and customer service! Pass it on...

I made a start on Rosewood Manor "American Flag Quilt Sampler"

Rosewood Manor "American Flag Quilt Sampler"
At home, I have been stitching outside on the deck, and what a treat that is!

I'm stitching this one on "Antique White" Lugana 2x2, using the charted DMC floss. This is not going to be a quick stitch, and I have designated it as a BAP that will take as long as it takes, in other words it will be my go to between WIPs, and I'm ok with that as speedy stitching has never been more important to me than really enjoying myself. I have never been one of those bloggers who basks in the "oohs" and "aahs" of comments on my "needles smokin'." Watch for updates as they come...

I finished all of the Hands On Design "A Year of Celebrations," though I can only show you through June, as that's all that I have FFO'd. I stitched these babies one after the other and then started FFO'ing them right before their month...why not put off 'til tomorrow what you can do today, am I right?

Here's May...
Hands On Design "A Year of Celebrations"
 And June...
Hands On Design "A Year of Celebrations"
These were a treat to stitch and really fun to finish. I finished them off using my dear friend, Vonna's Flat Fold Finish, over on her blog , "The Twisted Stitcher."
I realize that it is July 9, and I have not presented you with "July," so stay tuned. :)

On the travel front or Out Yonder

We took the "Lance" Out Yonder and on the road for a bit of travel in June. We headed out to one of our favorite spots, Prescott, AZ, for a two week sojourn. As always it was heaven!





Giggle...notice the mop attached to the ladder? I get a hoot out of it back there, and it comes in really handy as the floors inside get dirty, what with two active adults and a pup.

This RV resort is one of our favorites, as it's nestled right in and among the Granite Dells, between two lakes, which gives us such a wonderful interaction with the beauty around us. We see all manor of native plant and animal...I even watched a road runner catch a snake and make it his dinner...it was gross, the end!

We take a lot of amazing hikes...


And I get to enjoy a lot of stitchy time...


 Remember way back when we lived in New England, and I'd post tales, on this here blog, of how we trekked to the "Up Yonder" house, every weekend so Pa and the boys could snowboard...and Ma could stitch to her hearts content among the feet of snow? Well, dear friend, this is the West Coast version, only the house travels with us "Out Yonder" so Pa can mountain bike ride, the caveat, no boys along as they went and grew up...and Ma can stitch to her hearts content among the Ponderosa and Creosote...and when we are both done enjoying our play time, we meet back at the "house" for a quiet evening of cocktails and sunsets. Heaven!

Most important, Ruby approves and loves it too, and has all her favorite spots...





...until we arrive home to a bath, then not so much, but she is a trooper...


And there you have it, dear friend, the reason for my very sporadic blogging.

Thanks for stopping by for a visit and indulging me in a long-ish version of show and tell.

I sign off as your elusive butterfly...though, I will post again soon.
Hugs

Monday, April 1, 2019

April Already?

Good Monday morning, dear friend, and happy first day of April!
I always appreciate a month that starts on a Monday, as it just seems right...nice and tidy, you might even say it's quite "tickety boo!"

I have a couple of finishes to share with you, but first, please indulge me while I get all Grammy on ya, and share a few pics of GG...

The kiddos had some fun first outings this past month, as GG received her necessary vaccinations that allow her to venture out into the world, and boy does this sweet girl love her world!

She went out to dinner with her Mama and Dada, and was the perfect little lady...


I'm just so over the moon with this sweet little darling!

And had a big adventure to the local Nature Center, where incidentally her Dada and Uncle Little Brother also went when they were wee ones. It's so fun to see the legacy continue with the next generation. I am only starting to realize how blessed we were to raise our boys in a part of the country that has such a rich and enduring history with beautiful surroundings, buildings and stories passed down through the ages. Very fun!


Grammy's Cutie Patootie ❤︎

I can't hardly believe that she is 7 months old...where does the time go?!

Moving on reluctantly to the stitching front...

March was a very productive month, stitching wise, as I kept both my pace and my mojo, and had three finishes! Yay me!

Now, this silly dude took two tries to finish, as I murdered the first finish by not following the words of every person who has put needle to fabric, "Measure twice, cut once." Unfortunately, in my haste to finish March's HOD by the last day of February, I measured once and cut...leaving zero working edge, and then in my frenzy only made it worse...let's just say that the poor Leprechaun never stood a chance and leave it at that...

March 2.0

Hands On Designs "March" A Year of Celebrations

Next Up...

My April finish...

This may be my favorite month yet, the colors are truly yummy!

Hands On Design "April" A Year of Celebrations
I have been stitching this series on Monaco 28ct, which is no longer being made, as I understand it...or perhaps just not by Charles Craft, but either way, I have a nice stash of it that I am slowly using up. I do have to say, however, that even before the announcement was made I had noticed a very big change in the quality of the more recent Monaco that I purchased, so as anything I might be a bit intrigued to see what takes it's place in the world of stitching fabric.

And the big drumroll, please, maestro...

I finished the final Shepherd's Bush Stocking, thus far, as our family is hanging at seven...

Shepherd's Bush "Jillian's Stocking"
These stockings have been a labor of love for me. I began stitching them when Big Brother and Daughter in Love got married, carrying on a tradition that my own Aunt began. She would stitch a personalized Christmas stocking for each new baby born into our family, and as our family grew, so did the stockings...they are now a treasured treat to be taken out each holiday season. I decided to pass on the tradition and begin a new version where each new person who enters the clan, be it spouse or babe, will receive a personalized stocking, adding to the chapters of our growing Teakettle family. Thus, the stocking project began in 2013, with the first ones being finished in 2014. I stitched and had finished, one or two stockings each year, depending on time allowance. It was a great joy to find out that we were expecting our first grandchild in 2018, and once I knew that she was a girl, I started right in! Six years later, we have one grandchild and seven stockings...mine being the last to finish, which just seems right somehow. I have now tucked away the fabric, floss and trinkets where they will stay all snug and cozy until there is call for another stocking to be lovingly added to the family.

Now, if you look real close at the bottom of my stocking, you'll notice a good looking shepherd upon the hills of Bethlehem who fetches quite a close resemblance to our Pa, gray fuzzy beard and all, and you'd be right! I fashioned his stocking fellow into mine, so I'll always have him close.


You'll notice that I haven't added either the charms or beads to the stocking yet. I won't attach them until I'm ready to send it over to Miss Faye's house for finishing, to save the fabric from sitting with trinkets against the fabric...just my funky thing.

Our winter was a rather cold and wet one, and as a lover of the cold weather, having spent the kid's childhood living in New England, I had no complaints...and neither did my roses! They have come into bloom with a blaze of glory!


Divine!

Thanks for stopping by for a visit, dear friend, and indulging me in some sharing
Hugs

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Happy Saint Patrick's Day

Top of the morning' to ya, dear friend!


May the road rise to meet you, 
May the wind be always at your back, 
May the sun shine warm upon your face, 
And, 
Until we meet again, 
May the Lord hold you in the palm of his hand

Hugs

Thursday, March 14, 2019

My Lowery Stand Video

Hello, dear friend!

I wanted to share a video of my Lowery Stand set up on Instagram, with ya'll...but somehow the Internet does not look kindly upon those of us who require more than 15 seconds to share their video, and it ran too long...Fangool!

Below is the video, please keep in mind that it is in no way close to the standards of such FlossTube queens as Priscilla and Chelsea, but I think you'll get my message ;)

Disclaimer: Please ignore my funky voice, age spots, and broken finger nail...I'm just keeping it real.

Without further adieu..

Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by for a visit!
Hugs

Monday, January 21, 2019

Two Finishes

Good Monday afternoon, dear friend!

I wanted to share a bit of stitching updates with you. I have my first two finishes for 2019, both from the Hands On Design "A Year of Celebrations" SAL.

I enjoyed some finishing time in my Stitching Nook, and it was such a treat, as I haven't had much time for such things, lately. It was a cold and rainy day, last week that prompted me to look for an indoor project to keep me warm and busy inside the house. So, with hot tea in hand I wandered into the Nook and sat down at my finishing table and went to work.

January



February


I love these guys!

I stitched them on 28 ct Tea Dyed Monaco, using the charted floss...and finished them into Flat Finish Ornaments using the model as a guide. I am also using Cathy's display idea, and throughout each month I am going to hang them upon the fun clip frame.

Next...on to March, so stay posted!

Thanks for stopping by for a visit, and I hope that you are finding a warm project to keep you safe and cozy at home, as the winter winds blow.

Hugs