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Kindle Cover, updated.

Added a simple liner to the kindle bag/envelope/sack/whatever because the yarn kinda sheds a lot and the little hairs were getting in the little crevices, as my honey kindly pointed out to me.  “Who’s hair is this?”  Silly goose.  Anyway, I just used the fabric from an out of commission pillowcase to make the lining.  I like having the lining because the bag feels more finished and I feel the kindle is more protected.

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Curried Chicken

Curried Chicken.  Coconut Rice.  Creamed Spinach.

I have fond memories of my mother’s curried chicken from childhood.  And although I can’t remember her ever making curried chicken for me, my stepmother is of West Indian heritage.  Obviously, I needed to come up with a signature curried chicken of my own.  Served with some coconut rice, reminiscent of the islands, and some creamed spinach.

All recipes serve 3-4.

Coconut Rice (easy peasy) — 1.5 c rice, 2 c coconut water, 1 c water.  Salt & pepper to taste.

Creamed Spinach

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1.5 tbsp minced onion
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 c warm milk
  • 1 pkg frozen spinach
  • couple tablespoons of vegetable (or chicken, or beef) stock
  • S&P

Per directions on frozen spinach packet, defrost in microwave substituting the vegetable stock for water. Drain and set aside.

In a large skillet over medium / medium-low heat, melt butter.  Add onion and sautee until onions are translucent (not very long because the pieces are so small).  Add flour and combine.  Before flour becomes colored, add warm milk and stir to incorporate. Add drained spinach and season with S&P to taste.

Curried Chicken

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/4 onion halved, then sliced thin
  • 2 – 3 large skinless, boneless, chicken breast cubed
  • 1/4 c curry powder
  • 1 c chicken stock
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • S&P

Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet, on medium / medium-high heat and add onions.  Sautee briefly, when onions are starting to wilt, add chicken and season with S&P.  Cover and wait for chicken to cook through (3-5 min).  Uncover. Add half of your curry powder and half of the chicken stock, stir, and wait for the sauce to reduce.  Then, add the remaining curry powder and chicken stock stir and add flour to thicken.  Simmer for 10-15 minutes.

Knitted Kindle Cover

Project of the day.  A knitted purse for a kindle.

Shopping for a case for my new kindle was frustrating.  Cases & “envelopes” for them were either boring, ugly, or expensive.  And because I am Clumsy Carly, I definitely need to have it covered if I’m going to take my new toy out and about.

Using (very simple) crochet & knit techniques, this is how I made it…

  • Size 13 knitting needles
  • Size K crochet hook
  • 1 skein Lion Brand Homespun yarn in “Corinthian”
  • Black button & thread

Cast on 20.  Knit 60 rows.  Starting at the 61st row, decrease (with whatever methods you prefer — I knit two together at the beginning of the row, and then slip slip knit at the end of the end) by one stitch on either side for the next 10 rows.  Tie the end off, make a slip knot and chain for whatever length you like (I didn’t count).  Tie off end.

Fold the straight end up about 4″ and, using a yarn needle, sew the sides together.  Flip inside out.  With the thread, fasten the button (placement shown below). Make sure you allow space between button and knit  so you can wrap the cord around.

Put your kindle inside…. wrap the cord around the envelope and then the button.  And go! 🙂  Nice, easy, and fast.

 

A week ago, the only color on the walls of my house was some bright yellow in the nursery.  I hope little Bella will grow to love that as much as I do.  For months, ever since my pregnancy nesting instincts kicked in, I’ve known I wanted to paint the walls in the living room some sort of tan.

All of the walls int he house were an off white (Pittsburgh Paint’s “Summertime”) and all of the trim is a bright white-white.  There was some contrast between the two, but the white molding didn’t pop — and that was my mission.

Never you mind the paint strip hanging on the wall – I forgot to remove it before I took the photos.  Oops!

So you see, the room needed some contrast.  I finally made it happen.

Thanks to Glidden’s “Warm Carmel” (apparently one of their top 10 most popular colors)… the room is starting to get some of the contrast it needs.

See how the molding pops now?  I especially love the mantel above the fireplace.

Most of the open space in the house is filled with walls with rounded corners.  Which, although beautiful, make painting fairly difficult.  I think that a sharp line on a rounded edge would look very abrupt… unfinished, or something.  So, most of the space will have accent walls for the pops of color.

Still to come in the living room transformation…

  •  paint the walls tan
  • get a mirror (black / white frame) for over the fireplace
  • make photo frames white
  • build ledges for initials & white framed b&w photos of the fam
  • white sheer curtains
  • white & red accent pillows
  •  more colorful (red and white?) “flowers” – or 86 completely

Yellow Rice Recipe

I love the way yellow rice tastes with either Latin American dishes or in cajun or southern cuisine.  The only way I knew how to make it myself, was straight out of the box.  I decided this must end.  Came up with the following recipe for a delicious side dish — shown here with baked chicken ans slow cooked collard greens.

Homemade Yellow Rice

(serves 4-5)

  • 3/4 c wild rice
  • 3/4 c white rice
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp minced onion
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • 1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
  • 3 c chicken stock (or however much your rice cooker suggests)
  • 1 tsp tumeric
  • 1/2 tsp cumin

Melt 1 tbsp butter in large skillet.  Add minced onion and garlic and sautee on medium-low heat until the onions are transparent.  Add wild & white rice to skillet and toast until all butter is absorbed and rice grains are glossy.  Transfer to rice cooker, add spices and chicken stock, turn rice cooker on… presto!  After cooking is complete, add last tbsp butter and stir.  Serve and enjoy.

Without rice cooker: Toast rice in a saucepan.  Add chicken stock and spices, bring to a boil.  Lower heat so the boil becomes a simmer, cover and cook at a gentle simmer until the water is completely absorbed and the rice is tender (12 min-ish).  Let sit, covered, for at least 5 min and fluff adding the last tbsp butter.  Serve and enjoy.

B-A-N-A-N-A-S

I’m guilty of leaving bananas to ripen for too long far too often.  Usually I pop them in the smoothie when they get mushy — or sometimes I forget to use them at all and all hope is lost.  Another great use for the overripe bananas is delicious banana bread.  Growing up, my mother made delicious banana bread, and now it’s time for me to perfect my own special recipe.

Banana Bread

Right out of the oven, super moist the way banana bread should be.  I want to work on getting it a little sweeter and a little more banana-y.  The recipe is a work in progress, but even in it’s fledgling state, it’s  delicious!

Banana Bread #1

2 1/2 c all purpose flour

1/2 c sugar

1/2 c dark brown sugar

1 tsp salt

3 1/2 tsp baking powder

3 tbsp vegetable oil

2 large eggs

3/4 c milk

2 mashed ripe bananas

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine dry ingredients (flour, sugar, brown sugar, salt, baking powder) in a mixing bowl.  Stir to combine. In a separate bowl whisk eggs, oil, and milk together.  Combine wet mixture into dry mixture and fold in bananas and vanilla.  Use your mixer at a medium speed until well combined.  Pour into a greased and floured baking dish and bake for an hour.

That's spit up on my shoulder

Little Bella has had her share of colicky episodes so far, and with the doctor’s suggestion to use Mylicon to reduce her gassiness — things have been looking up. Everything was looking up — she was less gassy — which led to less crying. But in the last couple of days her spit up has been gradually increasing to full on vomit. Today was probably the most worrisome day we’ve had in the last 8 weeks of her little bitty life.

At first, she didn’t appear to be very concerned.. she was a little fussy and then, blah. Blah all over my chest. She seemed to settle down, smile at herself in the mirror and then all of a sudden blahhhh again. All over my freshly cleaned chest. Within the next hour, I washed off at least three times outside of two t-shirt changes. Whoaa, Bella. But still, she seemed contented.

I leafed through my library of baby books… told me not to be alarmed (yet) and to try and feed her for about five minutes every two hours. But she kept spitting up, and I grew increasingly worried/frustrated/tearful/sad/you know the deal.

And then the poor dear started getting hungry and crying more beause of it. Four and a half hours later I am in freak-out-time-to-call-the-doctor-mode. Improperly timed, of course, at 9 pm Sunday night. The nurse puts me on a Pedialyte feeding schedule every five minutes for four hours.

It has worn both of us out. She only stayed awake for about 2.5 hours before knocking herself out. Not sure whether to wake her… I’m sure she’s much happier now in her deep slumber.