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The Falling Leaves, and Remembrances of Home~ October 28, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in California Dreamin'.
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Ou Favorite Trees, Fall '09


WHEW! I just finished the latest batch of incoming orders, it’s been like the rain today-non-stop, a good thing $$$-wise. 🙂

Writing a Rav-buddy about Meals on Wheels, reminded me of my folks when they had M & W’s coming to their house in Calif, until the day I arrived. We cleaned up what was in their fridge since they’d already paid for a week’s worth, and then cooked for them after that. It’s a wonderful way to extend community to those who can’t get out or are inhibited in any way from venturing out.

My dad did not drive, so when Mom became too addled to drive him to the store, he signed up for Meals on Wheels, it was his blessing, a helping hand when he couldn’t manage everything dumped upon him.

Dad never even wrote a check or paid a bill until Mom became too infirmed, then he had to take over the entire household, and did a wonderful job! Mom was sooooooooo MILITARY, she refused to even let Dad have his paycheck-he handed it over, she deposited it and gave him his weekly “allowance”.  He was a happy camper, especially when she took us to Lake Tahoe to play the slots.

I was too young to go inside the Casinos with them, so until about age 13,  I was deposited at the Kiddy Rec. Area for the day, loved it, saw many a Classic Horror show there and even met Emmett Kelly (Sr), the Clown during a performance for us kids!!  I recall he drew caricatures on a large sketch pad, and signed them for us. I don’t have my copy, wouldn’t that be wonderful!!!

When I was old enough (back then), mom and dad would let me just stay in the car, and I’d bring my art supplies and reading along-I was in HEAVEN up in the Sierra Nevada Mts for 4-5 hours, it was my Alone Time and being an only child, I was perfectly at peace with my own company. I would go down to the lake and mess around on one of it’s many beaches and pebbled shores, or hike the trails around the casinos, never venturing far.

Fannette Island Teahouse, Emerald Bay 08 ©Susan Suhr
Vikingsholm, Emerald Bay 08 ©Susan Suhr

Nowadays, I’d shoot myself before I would let my child venture out alone like that!

I don’t mean to ramble, but it is that time of year for me, when I get homesick…..so you just got a ration of my melancholy side this time~ 🙂

Have a lovely evening!

Sentimental Me~


Rick Bayless’ Frontera Recipe : Salsa Mac and Cheese October 24, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in Back of the Fridge Recipes.
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I fixed Mexican Mac and Cheese using the basic recipe from Rick Bayless’ Frontera recipe. The only difference was, I didn’t add the salsa to the whole casserole- instead, we served it on the side and everyone added what they wanted. It was FABULOUS!

Macaroni & Cheese
Macaroni & Cheese

I obviously bake better than I take (pix) 🙂

Here’s my version:


2 tablespoons butter
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 can evaporated milk
1 1/2 to 2 cups Fire-Roasted Tomato Salsa or your favorite jarred salsa
1 1/2 cups shredded medium cheddar cheese
1/2 cup Pepper Jack cheese
Salt to taste
1 pound dried pasta (though elbow macaroni will do, I used Rotini pasta because it was handy)

Get the pasta water boiling, and while that’s happening, we’ll make the cheese sauce.
In a sauce pan, melt the butter and heat until just turning a golden brown-add flour and whisk to mix. Add evaporated milk and continue to cook on medium high for about 4-5 minutes, whisking constantly. When the sauce thickens slightly and turns a pale golden color, take off the heat and add the shredded cheeses, reserving 1/4 cup for top of casserole.

Boil pasta according to directions. My rotini took 12 minutes to just al dente. Drain pasta and pour into casserole.  Pour cheese sauce over pasta, and add 1/2 cup of  milk , stirring pasta and sauce until just mixed.

Cover and bake in a 350° oven for 20 minutes or until cheese starts to bubble-take the cover off at the last 5 minutes to allow cheese to slightly brown, if desired. Remove and let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Take it Cheezy 🙂


The Sock, Shes’a TOO TIGHT! October 23, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in A Stitch in Time | Projects.
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The first LumberJill sock, she’sa too tight.

Yep, I’m pretty sure I made the wrong size… I made a 6 when I shoulda made a size 7, but it felt right at the time. I even tried it on several times.

Tootsie Toes
Tootsie Toes

Igor thinks they will fit him…

Now that I’m on Sock #2, Sock #1 is definitely smaller when I hold them up together, so I think I’m gonna rippit and redo, after finishing Sock #2…will that make it Sock #3 then? hmmm…..

Back to ma knitt’n, ciao!

Froggy Me~

Cutest Dog Competition October 21, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in Uncategorized.
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Vote for my Dog Sponsored by All American Pet Brands makers of premium dog food.

Easy Turtleback Jackets : The Book October 20, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in A Stitch in Time | Discussions, Books and Authors.
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EDITED APRIL 24, 2011 TO INCLUDE CROCHET VERSION LINK! Now you can crochet this one with the FREE PATTERN!

I found an easy crochet version at Lion Brand here:

If you can knit a square or rectangle, you can make all of these jackets!

All the stitches are rated easy. Most jackets use a bulky weight yarn and US size 17 and 10 1/2 needles, so they are quick to knit. The first step is to knit a square or a rectangle in the dimensions given. Then the piece is folded and sewn at the sides. The result is a very comfortable and loose-fitting jacket that is just right for any occasion. All the designs use a rib stitch which give each jacket a flexible fit. These pop-on garments will quickly become your favorites!

Get your copy at Annie’s Attic today!

Enchiladas Con Salsa Verde October 17, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in Back of the Fridge Recipes.
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Ok, I got a little Italian in there~;0) I remembered this recipe from a TV Cooking show, turned out pretty good.

Enchiladas with Salsa Verde

2 chicken breasts, skinless
white corn tortillas
1 jar salsa verde (green salsa)
1 small can sliced olives
1 packet/can of enchilada sauce
1 small can tomato paste (for packet sauce)
1 cup shredded colby cheese
1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese

In an iron skillet, brown chicken breasts, turning once. Add 1/2 cup water, cover and simmer until tender and falls apart. Meanwhile, lay out a dozen small corn tortillas, spray both sides with cooking spray and set on cookie sheet. You will heat these for about 1 and a half minutes to soften, just prior to filling with meat.

When the chicken breasts are done, remove from pan and shred or pull apart with two forks. You can also cut them into smaller strips before shredding. Place shredded chicken in a medium bowl and add 1/2 cup of the salsa verde, mixing to just coat all pieces. Add half of the 2 cheeses to chicken and toss.
Heat tortillas in a 350 oven 2 minutes until soft, turning once. Pour half of the salsa verde into the bottom of a large casserole dish. Place one heaping spoonful of chicken/cheese mixture into tortilla, roll and place in casserole dish. Continue to make enchiladas, until all meat is used up, about 12-14 enchiladas.
Prepare enchilada sauce as per packet instructions, or use canned sauce. Pour enchilada sauce over all, sprinkle with remaining cheeses, and bake in 350 oven for 20-25 minutes, or until cheese is bubbly. Remove and let cool 5 minutes. Serve with refried beans and salad.

Bon Apetite!

New Booklet – TREASURES IN CROCHET No. 296 October 17, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in A Stitch in Time | Discussions.
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I picked up a copy of a neat little crochet booklet today. The tablecloth on the back cover is beautiful, like nothing I’ve got in my collection, the Pineapple Tablecloth A-1016.

This pattern first appears in the Elizabeth Hiddleson #18 book, the first pattern in the book, and is called ”Pineapple Lei”. It gives a choice of size 20 thread and size 10 hook for a tablecloth of 66”. If a larger cloth is desired, she says to use a size 10 thread and 9 hook. She used 16 skeins of Daisy Merc Thread. Her book contains several pages of written instructions and enlarged pictures for checking against your work.

I looked up her books in eBay, they are going for quite a lot. I’ll have to watch these, the patterns are beautiful!

Treasures in Crochet No. 296
Treasures in Crochet No. 296

“Pineapple Lei” seen on the back cover, left.

Nat’s car is back from repairs,  runs like a dream. She and I rode over to Walmart in Delavan and we picked out some new rubber floor mats for winter, a new long-handle ice scraper, some windshield washer fluid, and got her all set. What a difference a new transmission makes, Dennis said the car will be good for another 4-5 years if taken good care of.

Back to my LumberJill sock-I’m about 2 inches from binding off the cuff on sock #1. Should be done this weekend.

I made chicken enchiladas for dinner yesterday, they were killer! Recipe to follow~

French bread pizza tonight, comfort food for a cold Friday night.

DH is bonding with the neighbor, showing off N’s car. He’s happy for her too.

G’night, sleep tight~


The Furnace, She’sa Broke~ October 13, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in A Stitch in Time | Projects.
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The Igniter Module (2nd one since we’ve lived here) is no longer in the Universal Parts manual, so it has to be ordered. They expect to have it installed tomorrow.

This part was 4 yrs old, having been installed after a lightning storm in 2005 melted the old part.

On the upside, the Techy accidently broke another important part, so they will replace that for FREE.

We’re looking at another night with the two space heaters again, but it wasn’t bad last night.  It wasn’t too bad last night, threw on a pile of comforters and fleece blankets, and snuggled in. It’s only going to get down to around 36° tonight. Not like it’s freezing or anything…

Time to get out the Winter apparel, including my favorite wool cap. It’s made of vintage Alpaca wool, inside and out. The ear flaps are an added amenity, and keep the ears warm.

Me HatMe Hat

Obviously, this was taken during late-summer. I had just received it from a talented lady up in Canada, who made it for me. It wasn’t long after that,  she went out of business.

A Short Row Heel

I dunno about the “afterthought heel” technique, but my heel looks fine, except for a hole I cannot explain, right at the conjuncture of the heel start. It looks to be a gusset hole if I were doing a normal heel, and I can’t explain how it got there, it’s only on one side. I’m going to sew it up when I get done with the sock, and forget about it. Other than that, it looks pretty much the same as my other heels.

Here’s a pic, and that little dimple you’ll notice, that’s the hole:

Afterthought HeelShort row Heel

I got about 3 inches worked on the cuff. Moving right along, am going to need those pretty soon, to keep my tootsies toasty.

It was a busy weekend, so back to work! :)


The Friendship Plaque October 10, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in Random Musings.
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It was a given to me as a gift several years ago.  I hung it up in the kitchen window, a cheery little ceramic plaque that professes a friendship freely given.

The Friendship Plaque has taken on a different meaning for me these days. It reminds me of what it means to have a friend, but more than that, it reminds me daily of how it feels to have a friendship taken away, for reasons I still do not understand.

The loss is profound, and it saddens me every time I see that little plaque as I gaze past it, scanning the back woods for critters.  Those little things that give me joy, I keep around. Our home reflects the joy that fills my heart, as do the articles that fill the spaces, nooks and crannies. It’s not too cluttered yet, it’s just filled with “things”.

I keep The Friendship Plaque in its spot in the window, so that I can always be reminded of the joy and comfort it once brought.

Maybe someday I’ll be able to move on, but The Friendship Plaque will stay where it is.

11th Annual Kettle Moraine Studio Tour Oct 10-11, 2009 October 7, 2009

Posted by Stella☆LunaC in Art from the Heart.
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Just a reminder:

Mark your calendars~ there will be Studio and Guest Artists with lots of beautiful art  to see and the surrounding Kettle Moraine area is one destination you won’t want to miss. There will be something for everyone and hopping with fall activities!

Guest Artist Linda Godfrey will be there, so will we!


Check out the maps page for more information on how to get there;