Sourdough Bread and other things…

What a weekend!  Here where I live, Ohio, we experienced our first major snow storm this weekend.  Last year, we had snow all winter…more snow than we had in a long, long time.  We have been pretty fortunate this winter in that we were having a mild winter…until Sunday morning.  It started snowing at about 12 am Sunday morning and it snowed all day….and all night until about 10 am today.  All together I think we received about 12-14 inches.  Thankfully today, I was able to work from home! This is a picture from Sunday morning when I work up:

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So, I took myself to the grocery store (which I loathe) and got a few things.  One of them was a 4 pound beef chuck roast.  I came home and put it in the oven to make barbeque beef.  Three hours later on 350 degrees and it was falling apart.  Then Sunday morning I put some premade (store bought) meatballs in my crock pot with a jar of spaghetti sauce and a can of tomato soup for later in the week to have meatball subs.  Well–I didn’t think about what I would eat the bbq beef sandwiches or meatball subs on, so I ended up making these sourdough bread rounds/buns:

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They are glorious, so good…and if you wanted to make regular bread you can.  It’s a simple recipe and always turns out great.

Sourdough Bread Starter

1 package active dry yeast

1/2 cup warm water

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons sugar

2 cups warm water

Dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup warm water.  Add flour, salt and sugar; stir in 2 cups of warm water.

Mix well.  Cover bowl, stir often for the next 72 hours.  After 72 hours, store in an mason

jar in the refrigerator and occasionally shake jar to mix.

Sourdough Bread

2 packages active dry yeast

1 1/4 cup warm water

1 cup sourdough starter

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon salt

2 eggs

1/4 cup oil

5 1/2 – 6 cups flour

Mix yeast, warm water and starter, let it get bubbly.  Add sugar, salt, eggs, and oil and mix well.  Add flour, knead until

smooth and elastic.  Put dough in a greased bowl and cover, letting rise in a warm place.  Punch down and make

bread as desired, letting rise again covered until double.  Bake at 375 degrees for about 30 – 35 minutes.

Add 1 cup flour and 1 cup water to starter mix to replace the starter you used for bread, mix well and put back

in refrigerator.

I also decided to try my blueberry muffin recipe in another way:

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I made it into a bundt cake instead of muffins, and it turned out way better, although I had to bake it a lot longer, almost an hour.  You can find the recipe here.

I have been in a cooking mood lately!  I also made crockpot lasagna for a coworkers birthday, and it turned out fabulous, even though I don’t have a picture.  Here’s how I made it:

Crockpot Lasagna

1 1/2 pounds ground beef, browned and drained

1 large container cottage cheese

2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

2 jars spaghetti sauce

1 can tomato soup

1 package lasagna noodles (regular kind)

Mix cooked beef, spaghetti sauce, and tomato soup together.  Mix cottage cheese and 1 1/2 cups mozzarella cheese together with Italian seasonings (garlic powder, onion powder, basil, oregano etc).  Layer as follows: meat mixture, lasagna noodles (uncooked), cheese mixture (repeat 3 times) and top with remaining mozzarella cheese.  Cook on high for about 1 1/2 hours and turn down to low for 2 1/2 more hours or until done.

I have to admit that this recipe gave me anxiety, because you have to work and adjust the noodles to fit.  I didn’t like it.  But it tasted fabulous and it was a big hit!!!

Keep Simply Delighting!!!

 

 

 

 

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Getting Started

Happy Sunday!

Last night I was looking over some of the posts on my blog from a couple of years ago.  What a great experience to see how life has truly changed so much.  My life is so different than it was 2 years ago!  Last year around this time I was meeting my great niece Jaidyn for the first time, and now she’s two!  And she looks like this:

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and let me just say this girl…she is full of life and energy and personality!!!!  I love her soo much!

Anyway, today I didn’t get to sorting my fabric, but I did spend some time cooking and baking.  Last year for Christmas, my parents gave me a chest freezer, and so for the last year, I have been obsessing about freezing things.  It’s changed how I grocery shop and cook!  A couple of weeks ago, I was cleaning out the freezer and was amazed at how much stuff was in there.  So…I have been trying to cook and eat out of the freezer.  Today, I made this winter stew that my Mom used to make when I was a kid.

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How I made it: I browned 1 pound of ground beef and added about 3/4 cup of beef broth, a diced onion, minced garlic, salt and pepper.  I had some whole frozen tomatoes from my Dad’s garden that I froze this summer, and I dipped them in simmering water to remove the skin.  I rough chopped the tomatoes and added them to the skillet.  Then I added 4 peeled, roughly chopped potatoes (also from my Dad’s garden), and about 2 cups of chopped green beans (I bought those at the end of the harvest season at a farmers market on sale…another added bonus of a freezer!).  I added a little bit more salt and pepper, stirred it up, and covered it.  I kept it at a low simmer and it was done in about 30 minutes.  It is a great one pot meal and is hearty and warm for a cold winter day!

Then, I thought I would make some blueberry muffins.  I had some blueberries that I bought (also on sale at the end of the season at the farmers market and froze).  This was not a complete success…in fact, it was kinda a flop.

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I didn’t use a real muffin tin, I wanted to be adventurous and try a couple different pans my Mom gave me.  As you can see, they kinda turned out, but not really.  They don’t look very pretty, but they taste incredible!!!  Here’s the recipe:

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 stick butter, melted

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cup sour cream

2 tablespoons milk

1  teaspoon lemon extract

2 cups blueberries, frozen or fresh

Mix the butter, sugar, sour cream, eggs, milk, lemon extract until well blended.  Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt until just blended.  Try not to overmix.  Fold in the blueberries (lightly dust them with flour so they don’t sink to the bottom of the muffins).  Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

Keep Simply Delighting!

 

Starting over

Well, after almost 2 years, I have decided to start blogging again.  This is the 2nd time I have come back to blogging, but this time I am not going to put as much pressure on myself to blog or link to other sites…I am just going to share my projects and see where it takes me.

The last 2 years have been quite adventurous and crazy…and I am looking forward to getting back into my hobbies and finding some down time in the process of creation.  I am still going to post about quilting, cooking, crafting, etc…and whatever else my heart is lead to post.

The first order of business, which I think I might tackle tomorrow, is to clean up this cabinet:

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As you can see, this is my fabric stash….my unorganized fabric stash.  I have lots of WIPs in there, but how many and what they are, I have no idea (more like I can’t remember).  I am going to sort it out, look at what fabrics I have and get a list together of projects to finish and projects that I want to make.  Baby steps.  That’s what I call it.  Baby steps.

It feels good to be back.

Keep Simply Delighting!

Finishing things up!

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While I didn’t just finish this project this week, I haven’t yet shared it on my blog.  This is the lap quilt I made for myself, that instead of machine quilting, I decided to tie together.  I finished it over the Thanksgiving break at my parents house.  While it was easy to do, I will share that I broke two needles trying to pull the yarn through the fabric.  Both sides of this quilt are the same patchwork pattern and fabrics.  Also, I was able to piece the batting together from the extra pieces of batting I had, which helped me reduce the batting stash I had been acquiring.

I really love this quilt.  It was supposed to be a king size quilt for my bed, but after considering how much work it would be to quilt it, I changed my mind.  I use this frequently when I am lounging around watching TV.  Recently, with how cold it has been, I have been using it as well as an extra blanket on my bed.  It is so feminine and cozy.

Linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts, TGIFF, and Confessions of a Fabric Addict.

As always, keep Simply Delighting!!!

Liebster Award

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Lyndsey over at sewanotherday nominated me for a Liebster award!  Basically a Liebster award is given to fairly new bloggers with less than 300 followers as a way to get the word out about their blog.  The rules are as follows:

1. Share 11 facts about yourself.
2. Answer the awarder’s 11 questions.
3. Ask 11 questions of your own.
4. Nominate 11 bloggers.

Well, when I first posted this, I forgot to share 11 facts about myself, so here they go:

1. I am the youngest of six kids, I have 3 brothers and 2 sisters, and almost 30 nieces and nephews…including great nieces and nephews.

2. I am a born again Christian, and try to live my life according to the Word of God.

3. My Mom is a huge source of inspiration for me.  She embodies everything feminine and motherly…she has taught me so much about being a woman and all that goes with it.

4. I desperately want an iPhone, but am too cheap to buy one.

5. I love music.  All kinds.  I have about 40 stations on my Pandora.

6. I have my Bachelors in Psychology and my Masters in Organizational Management Leadership, yet I would love to be in full time ministry.

7. My sister in law has given me so many nicknames.  Some of them are Martika, Martin, Marty, Marilyn, pretty much anything that begins with an M, she calls me.

8. I love school supplies…markers, pens, paper, pencils, notebooks, I LOVE THEM.

9.  I am obsessed with the color pink.  I probably have more pink fabric than anything else.  And pink bags, purses, scarves, etc.

10. My latest great niece, Jaidyn was born on Jan 2, and I told her Mom, my niece Emily, I expect a picture of Baby J everyday.  But..I am not demanding.

11. Every car I have ever owned has been red.  Weird eh?

Below are the questions that Lyndsey asked, and my answers:

1. What do you look for in a blog, what interests you? Like one topic in particular per blog or do you like a blog with a range of things?

I have to admit, that if a blog isn’t that pretty or organized, I don’t like it.  I am not a big fan of blogs that are super busy, meaning that have a million things going on all around.  Also, I like blogs that have the posts as the main part of the page, with a nice big, easy to read font.  I follow several different kinds of blogs, from crafting, quilting, crocheting, food/cooking, family, Christianity, and humor.

2. What inspired you to start a blog?

I was unemployed and a friend of mine was blogging, and I thought, that looks fun.  I originally started blogging just recipes and some crafty type things.  Well, I got a job and life took over again and I stopped blogging for about 2 years, until late June 2012, when I picked it back up again.  It is something I really enjoy, and I love reading others as well.

3. Do you have any pets?

I have 2 cats, Elly and Milly.

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Milly

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Elly

4. What’s your favorite TV show and why?

Oh gosh, I have several.  I would say right now, my favorite show is Duck Dynasty.  I was raised in a hunting family, so they kinda remind me of my brothers and Dad.  And it’s hilarious.  Makes me laugh so hard.

5. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

I would live someplace where it is warm year round but still has seasons.  Does that place exist?  I was born and raised in Michigan, and in my heart I still wish I lived there.  I don’t mind winter as long as there isn’t a ton of snow and ice.

6. Do you have a hobby, if so what is it and how long have you been doing it for?

My hobby is quilting, mostly.  I have been quilting for about a year.  I also like cooking/baking/meal planning.

7. Favourite season and why?

Fall!  I love fall.  I love the crisp cool weather that comes after the super-hot August humidity.  I also love football and that comes in the fall.

8. What is your greatest achievement?

Greatest achievement?  Hmmm…I think that preserving daily is a great achievement!  Every day deals us so many reasons to quit and curl up and give up, but we must continue to pursue greatness and our Godly calling.  Staying the course is probably the greatest achievement of my life.

9. Any new years resolutions?

My friend and I have a tradition of making NY resolutions together and then holding each other accountable.  Mine are: save more money, be more consistent in spending time reading the Scriptures and prayer, be more grateful, and to slow down and enjoy the process, not just embrace it.

10. Have you ever met anyone famous?

Hmm…I have met a few sports figures.  When I worked at my first job out of college we had an annual benefit dinner that included speakers that were famous athletes.

11. Will you repost this?

Sure!

My questions:

1. Share any nicknames you have

2. One goal you want to accomplish this year?

3. What inspires you?

4. 3 blogs you follow consistently

5. Your guilty pleasure?

6. Most productive time of the day?

7. One thing you can’t live without?

8. Favorite holiday and why

9. Favorite reality show?

10. Movie that you can watch over and over and why

11. Name of a song that when you hear it you turn it up and dance around like crazy, singing at the top of your lungs

The blogs I nominate:

http://asimplelifequilts.blogspot.com/

http://handymadeheartee.wordpress.com/

http://hannahsfavouritethings.wordpress.com/

http://linnyjcreations.wordpress.com/

http://simplethingsprettystrings.blogspot.co.uk/

http://tooksberry.wordpress.com/

http://sewcrazybrand.com/

http://ourtwosons.wordpress.com

http://doodledodesigns.blogspot.com/

http://wannabequilter.com/

http://chris-acrossthemiles.blogspot.com/

Keep Simply Delighting!

Fun with Fabric

I love Saturdays.  When I moved, I decided that no matter what, I would clean my house on Friday nights so that I’d have all weekend to do whatever I wanted.  And that has been one of the best decisions I have ever made!  Today, after visiting my new great-niece Jaidyn for a little while, I came home and sorted through my scraps to see what I had that I could use for my scrappytripalong quilt.  This is what I found:

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The fabrics in the basket are just my scraps that I need to sort through to see if they are okay for the quilt.  The other two bags in front are scraps that I acquired from other people.  I have a few more bags of scraps coming.  Like I mentioned yesterday, I am not going to run to get this done, but just take my time and see where it leads.  I am very excited about going through my fabrics and seeing what will work.

Last night as I was laying in bed, I remembered that I had a Moda Honey Bun in my stash that I thought I could use to make a smaller version of a scrappytripalong quilt.  I am using the Simple Abundance by Bonnie and Camielle for Moda Fabrics collection to make a smaller block size.  I have all the strips cut, I just need to start sewing…which I might do tomorrow.

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I love this fabric collection! I can’t wait to see how it turns out.

As always, keep Simply Delighting!

Book Review: Yours is the Day, Lord Yours in the Night by Jeanie and David Gushee

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I recently received my copy of Yours is the Day, Lord, Yours is the Night by Jeanie and David Gushee.  This book is a morning and evening prayerbook.  I had been looking for something quick to read in the mornings before work and at night before bed.  Something simple but something poignant; something challenging but something encouraging.  This book is exactly that.  I have read several days, and it is perfect for all of the things I wanted.  It is a series of prayers and encouragement from some of the old greats of the faith…you know, those that walked before us and struggled and wrestled with God in desperate times, those who faith was tested and perfected, those wise sages of Christianity that we all know and are the rocks of our history.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone looking for something quick and easy to read, but that stays with you all day as morsels to chew on and process and apply to your daily life.

BookSneeze® has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book.

Keep Simply Delighting!