Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Crabby, cold crafter

Is there a 12 step program for crabby, cold crafters? Do they meet at a tropical resort? Sign me up!

While I was freezing my considerable hiney here in MI, my hubby was working in AZ. The nerve! He came back with his face and arms tan! This was my daily view, not his.

What did I do that kept me away from the computer since last week? I performed my annual reorganization and purge in my craft room. My house and my budget would be much better off if I only had one hobby, but which one could I possibly give up? I considered taking a before photo of these shelves, but after being the catch-all for the items that I didn't know where to stash temporarily over the holidays, that photo would have been just too embarrassing.

Everything was hauled out of the closet in that room and evaluated before it was repacked, set aside for donation or tossed out. The house looked like a tornado hit it with most of the other rooms housing displaced sewing, knitting, scrapbooking, jewelry making, or art supplies. All of my fat quarters (that is not a butt joke!) and small yardages of fabric are in 18 qt bins, sorted by colors and labeled. These are on the shelf in the closet.

Besides ten of these, there is a very large bin on the floor with large cuts of fabric waiting for creativity to strike. There is also a box of quilt kits, mostly wall hangings or table toppers, on my long neglected to-do list.

This was my second quilt class project from years ago. I never finished it because I didn't like the color balance when I pieced the blocks together. I took it apart and reassembled it. It is now pinned and ready to be quilted.

In the evening as I watched TV, huddled under a fleece blanket, I worked on this knitted stole. I am at the halfway point now.

Even my bedtime reading has been craft related, and not just craft themed magazines. I am reading another Maggie Sefton novel about a knitter who solves mysteries.

The only mystery I've solved recently was what to make for hubby's homecoming dinner yesterday. Not certain if he would be off schedule regarding meal times, I decided to make soup and have sandwich makings ready. The soup is Paula Deen's Golden Ring selection in her current Cooking with Paula magazine.

Italian Sausage Soup

  • 1 (16 ounce) package sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 cup celery, minced
  • 1 cup carrot, minced
  • 3 (14 ounce) cans beef broth
  • 2 (14 1/2 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with garlic, basil and oregano
  • 1 (16 ounce) can light red kidney beans, drained
  • 1 (15 1/2 ounce) can great northern beans, drained
  • 2 cups diatlini (short tube macaroni)
  • salt and pepper to taste
In a large Dutch oven, cook sausage, onion, celery and carrot over medium high heat until sausage is browned and crumbles. Drain well. Stir in broth, tomatoes and beans. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Add pasta; simmer for 8-10 minutes or until pasta is tender. Add salt and pepper to taste.

My notes: The recipe also called for a can of regular red kidney beans which I left out. My soup cooked much longer than 20 minutes before I added the pasta. I used two cans of low sodium broth and one regular can. I barely added salt at the end. The soup was delicious and very thick. I will probably add fluid when I reheat it. The next time I make this, I may cook the pasta separately and then add it so as not to dilute the soup through absorption.

Lastly, this having nothing to do with crafting, today is Inauguration Day. Here's to new beginnings, another chance to do better. That isn't a slap to the outgoing administration. Almost all of us can always do better when we think about it and try. Isn't that what New Year resolutions and my annual craft purge is all about?

I am blessed to live in a country where the change of power is done without violence. I joke about being crabby, but I recognize I am lucky in more ways than not. I hope to spend this year more grateful and hopeful while I work at doing better in all ways.

Cheers to all of us.


andrea said...

Welcome back! You really need to post more...I look forward to your daily dose of humor, and feel neglected without it! The room looks great, and I am jealous of your energy!

The Urban Chic said...

Okay, if you are so cold, come down south (cold here also) with temps at 45(day) and night at 31. You could help me re-organize and purge. Love the snow. Hugs, Pat

Nettie said...

Well, I would gladly give you some of my sweltering heat but don't know how I would package it?
The next few days here in Sydney, Australia, are supposed to be up in the high 90's & humid, sticky & good swimming pool conditions.
Stay warm

Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) said...

That looks yummy!