Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Our Tree

It's been pretty busy around here!  I hosted Thanksgiving this year at our home, and now I've been preparing for Christmas.  Lots of holiday decorating, cookie baking, knitting, & sewing! I also finished painting my antique desk!  I'll post the before & after pics tomorrow!  For now, here is our tree!  We planned on getting a smaller tree this year, but feel in love with this huge beauty!  It took a real long time to cut down & I don't even know how we got it in the house, but here it is:
Stay turned for the awesome transformation of my new desk!  I'm so excited!!  It turned out beautifully. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

at home

{ i started decorating the house for the holidays }
{ new.vintage kitchen rug }

{ our halloween costumes -mad men- } 
{ new.vintage yarn storage tote }

{ finally found a use for the old kitchen scale i bought last summer }
{ another new.vintage yarn tote i bought on etsy }

Monday, November 12, 2012

Easy Blaze Orange Cowl

It's hunting season here in Wisconsin and living in the country & hearing gun shots can make you kinda nervous.  Especially when you have pets.  I decided to make blaze orange cowls for both of my dogs! I chose fleece due to is snuggly warm quality.

Blaze Orange Fleece
Coordinating Thread
Tape Measure
Cutting Mat / Rotary Cutter or Scissors

Measure your dog's neck circumference with a tape measure.  Add two inches, one for the seam and the other for a looser fit.

Measure the length of your dogs neck as well.  No need to add any length to that you don't even have to finish the seam.

Cut your fabric with your rotary cutter or scissors.

Wrap the fabric around the dog's neck with the outside fabric up against the dogs fur.  Put both end seams up against each other and pinch off where you would like the cowl to be sewn.  Hold that spot!

Make sure your fabric is inside out and sew the ends together where you pinched off.

{ I cut my fabric too long, so I cut the remaining off with pinking sheers }
Double knot both ends of string and clip them close to the knot! Turn inside out!

Be happy that you took a step closer to keeping your pets safe!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

It's Been A While...

{ hand sewing hexies in the car }
It's been quite a couple of weeks!  I haven't posted in a while due to my dog Laila taking ill. 
Long story short we thought she sprained her paw.  However after multiple 2 hour long trips back and forth to the vet with an extremely sick dog { I literally had to carry her } we found out she has Lyme's Disease.  After receiving her last antibiotic today { HOORAY } she's looking & feeling a lot better.  I am beyond happy and humbled to have her healthy.

We also took a business trip out to Chicago & stayed in a pet friendly hotel which was a lot of fun!  We ate at Portillo's - they have the best cheesy fries and Italian beef sandwiches!  
I spent the long hours in the car working on hand sewing my hexies for my new throw pillow!  I finally finished it, and I am very proud because this was my first attempt sewing with hexagons/quilting!  I am hooked now and can't wait to start my next project.

{ We've been having the most beautiful sunsets here lately }

Quinoa Stuffed Green Peppers With Homemade Guacamole

I recently discovered quinoa and I've been hooked!  I was craving stuffed peppers the other day and I came up with this delicious and filling recipe! I also topped it off with my homemade guacamole!

**  This recipe feeds one person, just double the pepper ingredients to feed more than one **
                 { You could also remove the Chicken granules for a vegetarian meal. }


1 Green Pepper
1/4 C Quinoa
1/4 C Diced Red Onion
1 Tsp Wyler's Chicken Granules
3/4 C Water
1 Tsp Chopped Cilantro
Can of Vegetarian Refried Beans
Can of Enchilada Sauce
1/4 C Shredded Extra Sharp Cheddar 

1/2 Avocado
1/2 Tomato Chopped & Seeds Removed
1 Tsp Chopped Cilantro
2 Tbs Frontera Tomatillo Salsa

Add the diced onion, quinoa, water, & chicken granules to a small sauce pan - cover slightly with a lid.  Cook on a medium to low heat until all water is absorbed.  Fluff with a fork. Once the quinoa is cooked take the quinoa off the stove and mix in 1 tsp of the chopped cilantro, and add the shredded cheese, stir.

In the meantime heat the oven to 375 and cut the top off the pepper. Gut out the insides.  Cook the pepper in the microwave for 90 seconds to soften the pepper.

Add a layer of refried beans to the bottom of the pepper, fill the rest with the quinoa mix.

Pour a layer of enchilada sauce in a baking dish.  Place the peppers on top of the enchilada sauce. Cover with tin foil and cook for 25 minutes.  After 25 minutes take off the tin foil and cook for another 5 minutes.

When the peppers are almost done start making the fresh guacamole!  Cut an avocado in half, don't use the side with the pit.  Keep the pit half in the fridge (it stays fresh longer with the pit left in it).
Mash half of the avocado with a fork. Mix in the chopped cilantro, tomatillo salsa, and diced tomatoes.

Cut the pepper in half to serve, drizzle the enchilada sauce on top and serve with guacamole!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Loaded Baked Potato Soup - Two Ways

{ My Husband's Soup -- see mine below }
I have a picky eating husband who won't ever eat a vegetable.  This recipe works well for us because you can make it two different ways.  You honestly could throw all the ingredients together and mix in the serving bowl, however I always make our dinners "buffet style" that way my husband can skip the veggies all together.  This soup is really easy to make, and very filling! 

2 XL Baking Potatoes, or 4 smaller potatoes
1 Can of Campbell's Chicken Broth
1 Cup of Milk (I used skim)
Shredded Cheddar Cheese (I use Kraft Extra Sharp Cheddar)
Top The Tater or Sour Cream
Diced Red Onion  
Salt & Pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 and line a cookie sheet with tin foil.  I only cook as much bacon as we will eat so I don't waste it.  This dinner I used 9 strips (5 for my husband and 4 for me). Cook the bacon for 12 minutes and flip bacon.  Put the bacon back in the oven for another 5-10 minutes depending on how crispy or soggy you like your bacon.  You can always cook it stovetop too if you prefer.

With a paring knife peel the skin layer off the potatoes & cut potatoes into small pieces.  Add potatoes to a large pot of cold water and bring to a boil.  Cook the potatoes until they soft and almost ready to mash.

Steam broccoli in a steam basket.

Once the potatoes are soft add them to a large microwavable bowl.  Add the milk and can of chicken broth, stir.  Microwave for 5 minutes, stir.  Microwave for another 5 minutes.  Mash the potatoes with a potato masher until all potatoes are mashed.

Serve buffet style! Start with the potato soup as a base and add bacon, onions, steamed broccoli, Top The Tater, & Cheddar Cheese - as much, or as little as you like!

{ My Soup }

Tuesday, October 16, 2012


I've been wanting to start quilting with hexies and I finally got the urge to do so!  I ordered these white paper hexies from Paper Pieces.  I am having a lot of fun going through my scraps & vintage bed linens.  I think this is going to end up as a pillowcase for my sewing chair pillow...Stay tuned! 

Monday, October 15, 2012

Great Weekend

It was a great weekend!  I had my family over on Sunday for the season 3 premier of The Walking Dead (which was AMAZING).  I also finished the quilted camera strap I've been wanting to make,
I used vintage fabrics and vintage bed linens. Kevin & I went shopping and we both got new slippers since it's getting cold here.  I also bought a cute pair of winter boots too!

Homemade Beef Stroganoff

You know when your mom makes something so delicious and you try, and try to recreate the recipe at home but you're doomed for failure?  Yeah this was that recipe for me.  I feel like I have finally perfected it though & I want to share it with you!  It's my go-to recipe for Fall.  Very warm and filling, and might I add pretty easy!

Chuck Roast
Lawry's Season Salt
Onion Seasoning
2 Tbs Spice World Squeeze Garlic
3 Tbs Extra Virgin Olive Oil
6 Wyler's Beef Cubes
6 Cups of Water

1/2 Large Bag of Egg Noodles
Campbell's Family Size Cream of Mushroom
1/2 Cup Red Onion
6 Tbs Butter
1 Tbs Spice World Squeeze Garlic
1/4 C Sour Cream
Salt & Pepper

** Please note the roast has to be prepared one day in advance **

Step One
Before bedtime make the following:
Bring 6 cups of water to a boil.  Add the 6 Wyler's Beef cubes & stir until the cube disappears.
Take your roast and sprinkle Lawry's Season Salt, Onion Seasoning & rub the Squeeze Garlic into the roast.  Get a large saucepan & add 3 Tbs of olive oil, turn the heat up on high.  Once the oil is heated add the roast and sear all sides.
Once the roast is seared (to lock in all the juice) place the roast in your crock-pot. Then add the beef broth you made.  Put the lid on and set the crock-pot to low.

Step Two
Supper Time!!
Boil a pot of water and cook your egg noodles according to the back of the package.

Chop 1/2 C of red onion & remove roast from the crock-pot.  Cut up roast into pieces and trim off excess fat.  Take 6 Tbs of butter and place it in a large saucepan on medium-low heat.  Once the butter has melted add the 1/2 C of chopped onion, and 1 Tbs of Squeeze garlic.  Heat the onion and garlic for about 5 minutes until the chopped onion appears puffy. {see picture below}
Add your cut up roast pieces & can of cream of mushroom to the saucepan & stir frequently. Once the sauce appears to be heated throughly add 1/4 C sour cream and stir. Season with salt & pepper!

Serve the stroganoff over your egg noodles. 
This also tastes great the next day, just reheat your leftovers and serve! 

Friday, October 12, 2012

Easy Bow Brooch

I usually make purses with a patterned fabric, but I found this really pretty purple tweed!  When I was done with the purse it was missing a little something.  So, I made this super cute felt bow brooch.  
They can be used on sweaters, cardigans, scarves, coats...anything!  Plus it's very easy! 
Scissors or Fiskars Rotary Blade
Safety Pin
Cut a strip of felt measuring 5" x 1 1/4" 
I used my Fiskars rotary blade and healing mat.  You can use scissors too!
Fold the fabric inwards to find the middle.  Add a strip of Fabri-Tac to the center.  
Fold the sides inwards.
Place another small drop of glue on the underside of the felt.
Pinch the middle and hold for about 30 seconds.
Take about 16" of twine and wrap around the bow's center.
Leave a small strip hanging in the back to tie off.
Double knot both ends and clip excess twine.
Push the safety pin through the underside twine.
Here it is the completed bow on my new Fall purse!
Find other purses similar to this one here at my Etsy store: Lace Anne Queen

Deer & A New Purse

Anyone that knows me knows just how much I love deer!  I've only been fortunate enough to see them in our backyard only once until yesterday!!  I was busy sewing my new Fall purse when I heard Laila growling out the window.  I ran over to the window and there were 2 deer in our backyard!  I went screaming and running through the house to find my camera!  The 3 of us sat and watched the two deer eat what was left of some of the green leaves in our yard for about 10 minutes until they casually walked off onto the woods!  I honestly can say I love where I live!

 I was laughing so bad at the intensity of Laila & Buddy watching the deer! 
I finally completed my Fall purse!  I found this vintage purple tweed at my secret fabric spot.
I added a mustard colored button for an extra front pocket.
The inner fabric was purchased in Mexico on our honeymoon this past Summer.  
I made a mustard colored pocket embellished with vintage lace and a typed label.
I added a flap and sewn the same inner floral fabric on the backing.
I make similar purses H E R E in my Etsy store: Lace Anne Queen 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Easy & Affordable Curtains

I've been wanting to finish off some of the windows in our home and I couldn't find curtains that I liked.  I found this great fabric at a local store on sale for $2.30 per yard!  I also found a curtain rod at Walmart for only $3!  I've never made curtains before, but I came up with this quick and very easy way to finish off a naked window.  

Coordinating Thread
Sewing Machine
Ironing Board
Curtain Rod
Command Hook 

Measure your window's height and length.  Mine was 38"x 38".  I added 3" to the vertical sides (1.5" for each side) and 8" to the horizontal sides (4" for the top and bottom).
So, my fabric measured 41"x 46" after I cut it.  When you cut your fabric add 3" to the width and 8" to the length

After your fabric's cut onto the sewing....
 Take one of the vertical ends of the fabric and fold in 3/4" 
 Press your 3/4" folded edge.
 Fold the 3/4" seam again, so you hide the unfinished edge.  Press the folded edge.
Now you have a nice clean folded edge.
 Secure the folded edge with pins in prep of sewing. 
 Get the fabric ready for sewing wrong side up, so you can see the edge you're sewing.
 I like to sew very close to the seam line, so the fabric doesn't fold over during time. 
 After you're done sewing both ends will have remnant string. 
Tie those into a double knot and clip off the extra string.  Trim any other excess strings as well. 
Now you have a nice clean folded edge!   Press again to seal your hard work. 

Repeat the process on the opposite side. 
Next fold the bottom edge up 2" and press.  Trim any excess strings.
Fold the edge over again like you did with the vertical sides to create a nice clean edge.  Press again. 
Pin down the folded edge in prep for sewing. 

 Sew the folded edge close to the seam line as pictured.   Knot off the hanging threads and clip excess. 
Now you have finished sides and base.  Repeat the same process on the top as you did the base. 

Now that your curtains are complete you can work on the tie.
Cut a piece of fabric measuring 27" long 1.5" wide
 Press all 4 sides 1/4" inward.
 Fold the strap in half and press.
Sew the strap close to the seams.
Now you're all done with sewing!
Put a small command hook on the inside of the window frame.  Tie the curtain & pull to the side.  Secure the swept curtain with the tie & wrap around the command hook.  
VOILA!  Handmade curtains!

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