Thursday, March 31, 2011

Pizza Dough in the Fridge

Our little monkey's birthday party was the past Sunday, and we needed food that toddlers like - pizza!  But with homemade pizza and an unknown number of adults and children coming, I did not want to be watching the oven for 4 or 5 pizzas cooking.  I just made enough for the kids.  I also thought I would try rising the dough in the fridge!  I had read about doing such things, but never tried it before.  It's not a high pressure situation, just 7 kids and the only food they'll eat at the party.

I mixed the dough Saturday night, and per the instructions in my Enchanted Broccoli Forest cookbook, I oiled the outside of the dough, placed it in a large ziploc bag, and put it in the fridge.

This is what I got the next morning!  The dough had risen!  I just had to grate the cheese, cut pepperoni, and put the toppings on after saucing it up!  It turned out really well, and I can't wait to try rising (raising?) bread dough in the fridge overnight to have freshly baked bread in the morning!  Mmmmm...fresh bread and butter...

Friday, March 25, 2011

Blogger's Pillow Party


I finished my pillow!  My first communal blog craft!  I started this pillow on Wednesday, and it was born out of the desire to enter a pillow in the blogger's pillow party, (a deadline is my best motivator) and also of the fact that my 2 children were napping simultaneously!  I wanted to do a patchwork pillow for our living room, and always had something else to do instead, but not that day!  Not knowing how much time I would have, I feverishly cut and sewed, with insanely uneven pieces of fabric and no pressing - not even finger pressing, just go go go!!!  My husband was away for work, and accomplishing some crafting feels glorious!  I think I could benefit from less speed and more planning, but that's next time - when he's home to wrangle the kids and I'm sewing.

So as you can see, I love colour, and curvy shapes.  I am trying to break free of my natural tendency for symmetry.  There is a lot to be said for symmetry, but while building block towers with my daughter, I noticed I only built symmetrical buildings, while she was more random.  I loved the randomness of her buildings, but had a hard time doing it myself.  Hence the different sizes and shapes of the white patches on my pillow - I'm trying.  And new techniques used?  After piecing a weird shape, I thought about what to do with it, and decided to put it on an angle, but that would make a small pillow, so I pieced additional patches here and there until it was big enough.  And I don't think I've sewn curves before.  I'll definitely do it again!  I love curves!  I wish I could say this is my best work - I was always taught to do my best work, always, but the goal was to make a colourful wonky patchwork pillow in a short period of time.  I feel I could have made something more appealing had I spent more time making it, but then I would have had to spend more time making it!  Instead, I will always look at this pillow and think of my kids, and that is better than a perfect pillow! 

Blogger's Pillow Party

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Very Random Patchwork

I decided to dive right in and do some random patchwork.  This is new to me - the random part.  Also new is two children napping AT THE SAME TIME!!!  I grabbed some of my favourite fabrics ( a lot of Anna Maria Horner, you may notice, although no one is reading this, so nevermind) and started cutting.  I had no idea how long they would sleep, so I had to work fast - no time to think!  Just cut and sew!  After a very short period of time, I had this shape.

Snap a picture.  Notice the dinosaur checking things out.  Move to a brighter location for better light for a picture.  Spend some time getting some silly shots of the dinosaur with the patchwork. (Don't all bloggers do this?) Seriously, you'd think I had all the time in the world.  I could have been doing anything, but I was positioning a dinosaur and chuckling to myself.  It doesn't take much to amuse me people.  I am a fan of the ridiculous!

Then I cut a nice little curvy shape and now I am sewing some white quilting cotton to fit the curves while I wait to hear little footsteps or a cry... More pics later!

Friday, March 18, 2011

The Soap Experiment

So I woke up this morning feeling terrible - sore throat, tired, achy...the cold I had been avoiding for a couple of weeks and that has already infected my husband, daughter and son has now got me!  We postponed our daughter's 3rd birthday party from tomorrow to next week, and in the midst of all this (flooded basement, birthday, messy house) I had decided to make liquid soap.  Which, as my husband pointed out, could have waited until things calmed down around here.

I had seen some info online about making liquid soap from bar soap, and since I am uber concerned about all the chemicals in beauty products, and the price of completely authentic natural and actually non-toxins containing products, this seemed like a cool option. (Check out Gill Deacon )  CBC's Marketplace has a show about such things tonight, but since our tv is damaged... And I LOVE Marketplace (I'm such a nerd)

I've become a fan of Honey Pie Hives and Herbals soaps and bar shampoos, so I used my Pumpkin Pie soap for this.  I grated a third of it into a small saucepan, then added about 1/4 cup of boiling water.
don't be deceived by the mozarella-look
 Not nearly enough.  Basically I kept adding water, once I brought the mix to a boil to help it all melt, and ended up adding over a cup of water.  After a few hours it was getting too firm, so I added more water.
the gloopy mixture

This morning it was still liquid, so I poured it into pump dispensers and...  it has a strange consistency, like how some parts of egg white are a gloopy mass apart from the rest, so too this mix has some gloopy masses.  I shook it up, but maybe it's a bit  thin?  Well, it was a fun experiment that I am not to try again until the summer!

Edited to add: it never went okay, so I used it in the shower so as not to waste the outcome.  I have learned to not mess with perfection!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

"You want to clean up the rain downstairs?"

This is what our almost 3 year old daughter asked the person from First on Site, the emergency restoration people who came Sunday morning to tear out our carpets after the basement flooded!  It's only water, and it's only money...with all the major earthquakes and floods happening around the world, it's hard to be too crazy about this, but it is a headache.  And there is more rain coming, starting tomorrow (Wednesday), and ending Friday.  And all while I was making such progress on my first full size quilt!  It's based on Film in the Fridge's Postcards from the park (I'll make a link when I figure out how to do that).  I hope when things settle down I can start up on it again.  After a few birthdays this month!

Friday, March 4, 2011

I could be baking right now...

...but I'm typing.  I don't know if anyone will read this or not, but I thought why not.  The world needs another blog, right?  I thought about this being a primary means of communication with family, but I really like talking on the phone, and how else will the little monkey get to tell others about her latest adventures?  But why not supplement that?  Also, I enjoy writing, and making things, and sharing.  So whether you are family, friend, or stranger, I hope reading this is not a complete waste of time.  And if it is, don't tell me!  Either suffer in silence or go elsewhere! 

And why Chewy Giraffe?  That's the toy that can keep my 5 month old occupied while I finish typing this.