Sunday, May 31, 2009

Dr. Tiller

I just heard about Dr. George Tiller being shot. These are the things that frustrate and sadden me so much....a person was upset that he "killed babies" so took it upon himself as a "Pro-Lifer" to kill Dr. Tiller at his church on Pentacost. How can you be fight for Pro-Life and kill anyone? I don't get it. I don't understand how someone can do that no matter their beliefs.

The Tiller family's statement: "This is particularly heart-wrenching because George was shot down in his house of worship, a place of peace."

Links to news articles:
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=104766374
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20090531/us_nm/us_usa_abortion_shooting
http://www.kansascity.com/657/story/1225769.html

Pumpkin Cookies with Maple Icing



I had left over pumpkin from the Pie Pockets the other day so I needed to make something to use up the rest. I love how these turned out. I make sour cream cookies that should turn out the same consistency but they never do in the altitude. So now I am going to compare recipes so that I can figure if there is anything I can change in the sour cream cookies to make them more rounded and cakey like the pumpkin.


I got the recipe from Allrecipes.com - but made maple icing instead of the vanilla. These cookies will be great for the autumn or the holidays.

INGREDIENTS
* 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 teaspoon baking powder
* 1 teaspoon baking soda
* 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
* 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
* 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
* 1/2 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 cup butter, softened
* 1 1/2 cups white sugar
* 1 cup canned pumpkin puree
* 1 egg
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Maple Icing
* 2 cups confectioners' sugar
* 2 tablespoons half-n-half
* 2 tablespoon melted butter
* 1 1/2 teaspoons maple extract

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, ground cloves, and salt; set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, cream together the 1/2 cup of butter and white sugar. Add pumpkin, egg, and 1 teaspoon vanilla to butter mixture, and beat until creamy. Mix in dry ingredients. Drop on cookie sheet by tablespoonfuls; flatten slightly. (I didn't flatten as I don't feel that often works good in higher altitude)

3. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven. Cool cookies, then drizzle glaze with fork.

4. To Make Glaze: Combine confectioners' sugar, half-n-half, 2 tablespoon melted butter, and maple extract. Add more half-n-half as needed, to achieve drizzling consistency.



Print

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Five Ways to Live Your Dream

I have been going through magazines pulling out recipes, articles and such that I want to save. And I came across this...in Organic Style (which isn't in print anymore but has an online version but I just subscribed to it today.)

5 Ways to Live Your Dreams
1. Break the rules. Do what you want, if it harms no one.
2. Spend time alone, at home, in a restaurant, or across the globe and you'll hear your inner voice.
3. Follow your passion -- whatever it takes.
4. Stop worrying so much about what other people think. It's your life.
5. Get over your fear. Fear is normal, so embrace it, and then you'll get past it.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Gratitude Friday

I am thankful for...
1. a nice Memorical day weekend with Michael
2. getting quite a lot accomplished this week
3. some pictures I ordered came in the mail - pictures of Michael and family and it is nice to look at them and think of good memories
4. the rain - although it is causing us to turn off our computers because of the thunder and lightening coming with it. I love the smell of the rain.
5. lemonade - always have it this time of the year and it just tastes so good.

I recognize that I have much more to be thankful for in my life.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Do Something...

I get these daily notes in my inbox:

Starting something, Darby, is the best way to finish something.

And just doing a teeny, tiny something, today, anything, from wherever you are, is the best way to start something.

I'm not just a client,
The Universe

ps: Today, Darby. Make a call, ask a question, search the web, buy a book, pound the pavement, measure, cut, paste, poke, and of course, give thanks in advance.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Birthday Wishes....



I love you and hope you have a beautiful birthday celebrating YOU!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Doing Not Thinking Challenge

So my goals for this Doing Not Thinking Challenge goals are:
1. Work on art once a month (great if more but I want to at least try for once a month)
2. Create Soul Collage cards (like at least 3 done by the end of challenge)
3. Organizing and decluttering - which I have been working on already but want to continue with these areas
* storage
* Michael’s office
* bedroom closet
* front closet
4. Sew one thing. I haven't sewn in years and picked up a basic sewing book at the library and want to make it a goal just to sew one thing so that I don't keep putting it off.

Progress: I started on Michael's office a little bit. And we are looking at some optional storage solutions for is office too as he just doesn't have enough room. Although now with one computer blowing up he does have more room to utilize on his desk.

I am going to carve out some time to do art this weekend. I got some repurposed some furniture and really like how I have things organized so it should make creating easier.

Goals Completed: bedroom closet

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

With today being Memorial Day, it of course made me think of family and friends that have passed.

Today though I really thought of both my Grandpa's - my Mom's Dad and my Dad's Dad. Both of them passed away quite a long time ago but I miss them. I did think of good happy memories of my Grandpas. I thought of playing cards with my paternal Grandpa as a little girl. He taught me how to play many card games and it is something I enjoy to this day. I remember riding with my Grandpa to pick up my Grandma from work and sitting real close to him because I just always wanted to be near him as he was my hero. He brought me to get ice cream cones and always liked the same ice cream -- anything with nuts but usually butter pecan or black walnut. (photo of my Grandpa and I - 1968)





And I think of my maternal Grandpa working on the farm. I don't have as many memories of him because he died when I was fairly young - I think 6 years old. But I remember watching him work on the farm. I see him saying grace at the head of the table. And I remember the feel his overalls against my skin when he held me on his lap. He had that smell of farm...it was the smell of grass and earth. (photo of my Grandpa when he was in the Army)

So today I kept them in my thoughts as well as other family and friends. And remembered good memories associated with each of them.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Gratitude Friday

I am thankful for...
1. laughing so hard that I woke Michael up. Stephanie Plum books give me many laughs.
2. S'MORES!
3. having a really good time with Michael's friend Lala. I haven't felt so comfortable with a friend in such a long time.
4. the unexpected joy that the movie Sex and the City gave me - tears and laughs - I forgot how much I enjoyed the series.
5. Michael's old t-shirts....I love wearing them. I wore one today and it smelled like him - his cologne. And it just made me feel nice. Silly little simple pleasure.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Beautiful People

The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.

- Elisabeth K├╝bler-Ross

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Doing Not Thinking Challenge

So my goals for this Doing Not Thinking Challenge goals are:
1. Work on art once a month (great if more but I want to at least try for once a month)
2. Create Soul Collage cards (like at least 3 done by the end of challenge)
3. Organizing and decluttering - which I have been working on already but want to continue with these areas
* storage
* Michael’s office
* bedroom closet
* front closet
4. Sew one thing. I haven't sewn in years and picked up a basic sewing book at the library and want to make it a goal just to sew one thing so that I don't keep putting it off.

Progress: Nothing accomplished on these goals.

Monday, May 18, 2009

From the Weekend Baker....Again...



The Weekend Baker cookbook just has so many wonderful recipes that I want to try. It is also has good tips and lists to help with baking.

In the book, these are called Half-Moon Pie Pockets but I realized after making a few circles that just cutting them into rectangles and making little square pockets would be much easier. This recipes is exactly how it is in the book. I will make notes at the bottom. I made some chocolate pie pockets and some pumpkin pie pockets.

Half-Moon Pie Pockets

2 sheets frozen puff pastry, 9-½ inches square each
1 large egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons granulated sugar

For chocolate-nut filling:
1 cup chopped bittersweet chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/3 cup chopped nuts (pecans, walnuts or hazelnuts)

For the pumpkin-spice filling:
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (9 ounces/ 255 grams) canned solid pack pumpkin (not seasoned pumpkin pie filling)
3 tablespoons firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg


1. Remove both sheets of frozen puff pastry from the box, set them on a lightly floured surface, and cover with plastic wrap. Do not unfold at this point. Let the covered puff pastry sit on the countertop until thawed and just pliable, about 20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, position the oven rack on the middle rung. Heat the oven to 425 degrees (220 c). Line 2 half sheet pans with parchment or spray with cooking spray. Have ready the beaten egg and the 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar.

3. On a lightly floured work surface, carefully unfold the puff pastry. Dust the top of the pastry with a little flour. Roll out each sheet, lightly dusting with flour as needed to prevent the dough from sticking to the rolling pin and work surface, into a 12- inch (30.5cm) square. Using a 4-inch (10 cm) round cookie cutter (or the bottom of a 29- ounce tomato can as a guide), cut into 18 circles. Peel away the scraps and cover the rounds with plastic wrap while preparing the filling.

4. For the pumpkin spice filling, combine the ingredients in a medium bowl and stir until well blended.

5. Place about 1 tablespoon filling on the center of the round. Brush the edge of the dough with the egg. Fold half of the dough over the filling to form a half-moon. Using the tines of the fork, press the curved edge to seal tightly. Repeat with the remaining rounds. (At this point, the pie pockets can be covered with plastic wrap and refrigerated for up to 8 hours or frozen for up to 1 month before proceeding with the recipe.)

6. Arrange the pockets on the prepared sheet pans, spacing them about 2 inches apart. Brush the tops with the remaining egg and sprinkle evenly with the granulated sugar. Bake until pastry is puffed and browned, 20 to 25 minutes. Transfer the sheet pans to racks to cool. Serve warm.

Storage: You can bake the pie pockets up to 6 hours ahead and reheat them in a 300 degree (150 C) oven until warm. About 15 minutes.




NOTES
* I didn't make as much filling because I wanted to do two different kinds of filling. I think I cut each filling recipe in half. I didn't do nuts in the chocolate as Michael doesn't like nuts. I also used a mixture several types of chocolate chips - dark, semi-sweet and milk.

* As I said above I made some rounds and then the rest square. I just cut the dough in rectangles and then folded over to make square pockets.

* I didn't warm back up before serving. Just topped with some whipped cream and ate. Yum!

* I also think doing apple pie filling or cherry would be very good. And so easy.

* I think having some in the freezer and taking a few out when needing something fairly quickly would be great.

PDF Downloadable and Printable

Friday, May 15, 2009

Gratitude Friday

I am thankful for...
1. a good friend that sent me a Princess package. So much fun to open and so very sweet of her!
2. wanting to walk back into the theater again and sit back down to watch Star Trek again. It ROCKED! Loved the cast they just did a fantastic job at the characters.
3. Michael still loving me though I can't do the Vulcan salute. Being a geek it was a real tragedy him finding out that I couldn't. :)
4. getting my name at dreamwidth.org. I have a unique name but it still is hard to find it available out here on the web.
5. my parents giving me that unique name. I have always loved it and thankful they named me Darby.
6. for spending a great afternoon with Michael at the Art & Jazz festival. Pretty much right away we bought something. A little metal sculptural wall piece to group with a few other pieces we have from local artists. (take pictures later)
7. going out of town to meet a new friend (new to me old to Michael) and getting together with family to celebrate a special occasion.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Art on the Corner

Every year in Grand Junction we have what is called the Art & Jazz Festival. Michael and I have gone most years - I think maybe missing one out of the 6 years we have been together. They close off Main Street and line it with art vendors and then have a stage where then there is of course the other half the name...Jazz. It has gotten smaller each year - or at least it feels like it has to us. But we still go and support Colorado artisans.

With the festival comes the changing out of Art on the Corner. Grand Junction's Main Street has sculptures up and down it which they call Art on the Corner. And many of the pieces get moved or taken out to get ready for new pieces that are basically unveiled at the Art & Jazz festival. It is one of many things that I love about Grand Junction - is the art that lines Main Street.

Here is a few new pieces for 2009...


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Star Trek

Oh my gawd I don't think I came out of a movie so excited in a long time. I loved it. I really did want to walk back in and see again right away. I want to be able to have it on DVD right NOW so I can watch it over and over. I am seriously not even a huge Star Trek fan. I mean I have always liked it but it has been one of those things I could give or take it. But this I loved and want more.

I am not even sure I know why I liked it so much. I just thought they all did so great - the cast. I mean Karl Urban was channeling DeForest Kelley. Which some might not like but I LOVED - I laughed so much at his lines because he was so Bones! Perfect! I wonder how JJ Abrams even saw him in that role as Urban's other roles are so tough and stoic. I love Urban in his other roles - drooled over him many times but I would have never though he could be Bones. Christopher Pine did a great James T. Kirk. I really didn't know him before. I mean I have seen him other things but not paid much attention to him. But I thought he did great in this role. We just have been watching Heroes recently so knew Zachary Quinto from there and I knew he would do a good Spock. And I feel he did. It was a slightly different Spock but one I really enjoyed.

When the credits were going, I was surprised to see a couple of names....I had no idea Wionna Ryder was Spock's Mom. Same with Eric Bana who I really like and can't wait to see in Time Traveler's Wife as Henry. I didn't even get that he was Nero through the whole movie.

Of course I was picking out JJ Ambram's Alias cast - Oz Perkin's was in season 4 just a few episodes. Amanda Foreman was in several seasons as Marshal's wife. And then Rachel Nichols was a main character in the last season of Alias. I saw a couple other people that I think were just one timer's on Alias. Like the guy that Kirk gave his motorcycle to was on Alias once. Yes I am an Alias fan.

So yes I liked it! I really was squeeing when we got to the car.

On a sidenote - the Terminator movie was one of the pre-views...the ships in the trailer look like the Firefly...Joss Whedon's Firefly ship.

Doing Not Thinking Challenge

So my goals for this Doing Not Thinking Challenge goals are:
1. Work on art once a month (great if more but I want to at least try for once a month)
2. Create Soul Collage cards (like at least 3 done by the end of challenge)
3. Organizing and decluttering - which I have been working on already but want to continue with these areas
* storage
* Michael’s office
* bedroom closet
* front closet
4. Sew one thing. I haven't sewn in years and picked up a basic sewing book at the library and want to make it a goal just to sew one thing so that I don't keep putting it off.

Progress: I got the bedroom closet organized and decluttered. I have a box started that will be going to goodwill after I am done going through the house. Nothing else accomplished on these goals.

Monday, May 11, 2009

I support gay marriage

I just ordered a free sticker to support gay marriage here is the letter that they sent out to share for others to order the sticker also...

Dear friend,

After a lot of years of devastating setbacks in the fight for marriage equality, it seems like we're finally moving in the right direction. With marriage legal in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, Vermont and Maine, and the fights going strong in New Hampshire, New York and California, this movement is gaining more momentum every day, and I'm excited to be a part of it.

To that end, I wanted to let you know that CREDO Action is giving away some awesome stickers about supporting gay marriage - I think you'd really like them. I just got mine - if you have a minute, click this link to check out the stickers and get one of your own (for free!).

https://act.credoaction.com/stickers/?r_by=-305079-qIAw7ix&rc=fb.connect&sp=i_love_love

Thanks!

Friday, May 08, 2009

Gratitude Friday

I am thankful for...
1. Michael being home from Denver!
2. the presents he got me - toys! Stickers, coloring book and magnetic "paper" dolls! Sqeee! (All Disney Princess stuff - specifically Belle as she is my favorite! She loves books too!)
3. getting quite a bit accomplished this week - steam cleaning carpets, deep cleaning bedroom and bedroom closet reorganized
4. getting one of my Doing Not Thinking Challenge goals done. (Bedroom closet reorganized)
5. friends getting married - just perfectly for them! The bride was just beautiful in her ring of flowers in her hair and bouquet from her flower garden. I am so happy for them.
6. giant cinnamon rolls that are just so YUM! It was a nice treat tonight!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Doing Not Thinking Challenge

So my goals for this Doing Not Thinking Challenge are:
1. Work on art once a month (great if more but I want to at least try for once a month)
2. Create Soul Collage cards (like at least 3 done by the end of challenge)
3. Organizing and decluttering - which I have been working on already but want to continue with these areas
* storage
* Michael’s office
* bedroom closet
* front closet
4. Sew one thing. I haven't sewn in years and picked up a basic sewing book at the library and want to make it a goal just to sew one thing so that I don't keep putting it off.

Progress: Well I didn't really do anything on these goals. I have been organzing and decluttering but not the specific areas I put down as goals. I haven't done art yet but I do think I have my studio organize in a way that will be more productive - easier to find things and see things that inspire me. For the Soul Collage goal I did tear some images out of magazines that I think I want to use for some of them. For the sewing goal as I said I picked up the book. And I have read it so now just need to see if I have fabric to make something or start deciding what I want to make.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Quick Wit

I am not a person that has quick wit. I wish I was but I just don't have it. The other day though we were in the car and I told Michael that although I am going to miss him next week when he goes out of town, that I was looking forward to getting a lot accomplished. It isn't that I don't get things accomplished when he is here. I just still am having problems balancing working for him - his business and being my happy homemaker-self which I was before he owned his business and worked outside home. And so when he is away I have a focus that I can't have when he is here.

He jokingly did crying sounds and whining that I wasn't going to miss him and that I wouldn't remember him at all when he walked back in the door after being away. I came back with - "I have pictures of you, so I know what you look like." I said it so seriously and Michael's mouth just hung open for a moment and then we both just started laughing. It could be one of those: "you had to be there moments" I guess but it was a surprising moment for me.

Friday, May 01, 2009

Gratitude Friday

1. for making really good progress on reorganizing.
2. for some good grocery store deals.
3. for finding a basic sewing book and excited about getting back to sewing some thing for the house.
4. for finding some good storage solutions for my studio
5. for being the first of the month. Every month on the first Michael wishes me happy anniversary - although the actual yearly anniversary is February 1st. But we try to celebrate the relationship every month as a reminder of how blessed we are to have each other.