Previous month:
December 2008
Next month:
February 2009

I Wordled Myself

So I Wordled my blog.

Wordle is a toy for generating “word clouds” from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text. You can tweak your clouds with different fonts, layouts, and color schemes. The images you create with Wordle are yours to use however you like. You can print them out, or save them to the Wordle gallery to share with your friends.

Wordle: BlogofMe

(clicking the graphic above will take you to the full-size image at Wordle.net)

Man, it looks like I talk about a whole lotta nuthin'! I think I might need to rethink my blogging strategy and come up with a little more direct...direction.  (I mean, really - when "cheese" counts as much as, if not more than, "yarn"...well, it's time for some soul searching.)


Cookie Sheet Advent Calendar

A little late for recent holiday countdown, but maybe offering a head start on Christmas 2009...

I present to you my Advent Calendar, crafted on a jelly roll pan (aka a cookie sheet).

Adventcalendar-numbers

Ap-cookiesheet-adventcalendar
More closeup pictures in this photo album: Project Examples

This calendar is the result of my yearnings for a meaningful family countdown 'system', for lack of a better word - I blogged about this desire here and here.

I am posting this now, because someone had asked to see examples of my cookie sheet calendar.


Dinner Tonight: Slow Cooker Lasagna

WWcrockpot-lasagna

Another successful experiment tonight, given the official "you can make this again" vote of approval.

Slow Cooker Lasagna

POINTS® Value: 7
Servings:  6

Ingredients

  • 16 oz raw turkey sausage
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 28 oz canned diced tomatoes
  • 15 oz canned tomato sauce
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 cup fat-free ricotta cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheeses
  • 6 dry lasagna noodles
  • 1/4 cup reduced fat Parmesan cheese

Instructions

* Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add beef, onion and garlic; cook, stirring frequently, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon as it cooks, about 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, salt, oregano, basil and red pepper flakes; simmer 5 minutes to allow flavors to blend.

* Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together ricotta cheese and 1 cup of mozzarella cheese.

* Spoon 1/3 of beef mixture into a 5-quart slow cooker. Break 3 lasagna sheets in half and arrange over beef mixture; top with half of ricotta mixture. Repeat with another layer and finish with remaining 1/3 of beef mixture.

* Cover slow cooker and cook on low setting for 4 to 6 hours. Remove cover; turn off heat and season to taste, if desired.

* In a small bowl, combine remaining 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese; sprinkle over beef mixture. Cover and set aside until cheese melts and lasagna firms up, about 10 minutes. Cut into 6 servings.


Fancy a shawl in chainmail lace, anyone?

So you may have read some of my Twitter updates last week, indicating I was working on what I had *hoped* would be a lacy wrap to wear out to a nice dinner for our 16th anniversary last Saturday.

===========
going out to dinner in a fancy dress Saturday - hoping I have time to crochet this Sweet Scallops Shawl: http://snipurl.com/99zsp - 4:30 PM 12/30/08

I picked up black yarn for the shawl/wrap today at lunch - to go with my black dress. (black yarn should hide stitch errors!) 5:42 PM 12/30/08

Just got some GORGEOUS Feza yarn for my shawl - now must knit like the wind to finish by Sat nite! Too bad I still have to work 2day & Fri! 1:45 PM 12/31/08

In case you're dying of curiousity - it's Feza Mesmerize in Passions Kiss - Just stunning! 1:54 PM 12/31/08

settling in to knit in the New Year. I figure if my husband and kids can 'game' in the New Year, knitting isn't much geekier! 6:53 PM 12/31/08

getting very little knitting done - http://www.popcap.com/games 11:12 PM 12/31/08

definitely out of my comfort zone with this wrap/shawl - very lightweight yarn wants to fall off the needles. Making progress, though. 8:41 PM 1/1/09

just read some of the latest Artful Blogging - now to work on my wrap. I fear it won't be done by tomorrow. Looks chainmail-ish anyway. 1:46 PM 1/2/09

Make me feel better - does this look lacy & delicate, or rather like chainmail?   2:24 PM 1/2/09

one vote "do the hustle" and one vote "chainmail". Well...fart. Wonder if someone on Etsy can get me something by tomorrow?? ;) 2:51 PM 1/2/09

sigh - giving up on the shawl, I think. Wonder if I can find something local fast? A consignment shoppe, maybe? 3:26 PM 1/2/09
============ 

I wound up giving up completely on knitting the shawl.  I started out loving the yarn and just all the possibilities of it, but then it just went downhill.  It was so fine - probably DK or even fingering weight, and it kept wanting to slip off my size 13 needles.  My neck and shoulders were so tight because I was so tense trying to keep it all together and finished in time for the dinner. And I finally got to the point where I was able to realize, and accept, that if you're doing or making something, and you're not enjoying it, and it's not really a 'have-to' kind of thing, just stop.  It's not worth it.  Time to regroup and figure out another plan.  A lesson I learned during Christmas crafting with the ill-fated family set of mittens plan.

So I went shopping after work on Friday, and within about an hour, I found a lovely silver wrap with a hint of lace texture.  Much prettier than mine would have ended up being, and just the thing.  And on double sale (marked down, after being marked down) - well, that's just a no-brainer! :)

All in all, I felt quite fancy. :)  This is me with my dear husband of 16 years.

Ang&david-16thanniv-2009-1