Saturday, January 26, 2013

Map of California Kinda

This map is for those of you not native to California and still learning where everything is located in the state.  I am one of those still trying to figure out what is where and this really is a good representation although not perfect.  Many parts of the state I'm still trying to visit but we go regularly to where the "wine snobs" are located.  I also think this could be labeled" happy and tipsy".  Lots of Texans visit and are welcome here.

Not really sure what the label "Texas" means towards the southern part of California but I will be researching and letting you know.

Ask my children, we always stop at In-N-Out Burgers after they land in California  and they say they don't taste the same in Texas.

Where else do you have a city where "You Only Live Once", Yolo?

Hagen and I visited Gilroy, the garlic part of the state this past summer and also Berkeley where the "hippies" are represented.

One of the greatest things about California is the diversity of the state and Jim and I look forward to checking out all that it has to offer.  If  you want to come along for the ride we welcome you.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


The end of mandarin season in our area is here according to my friend Judy who has a mandarin grove and sells them.  I bought 5 pounds of mandarins from her and decided I wanted to extend the season and can them. 
 The great thing about them is the ease of peeling.
However according to all the information I gathered about canning mandarins it is the pith that makes them bitter.

 I tried to remove as much pith as I could and then proceeded to can them.  Not wanting to add any sugar I simply added hot water and put them in a water bath for 15 minutes.
In a week I plan on doing a taste test and if it is a successful operation I plan on buying some more mandarins at the farmers market to can some more.

Monday, January 21, 2013

My New Lunch Bag

I recently started working part time at a quilt shop.  I obviously needed a new lunch bag befitting such a job.  I had bought this fabric and the pattern a while back on one of my visits to Texas from The Cabbage Rose Quilt Shop in Fort Worth, a phenomenal quilt shop you need to visit if you're ever in the city.  The Camilla Insulated Bag is from Serendipity Studio.
I made the medium insulated bag.  The instructions to make this bag are excellent.  The only change I made was cutting the bias binding 3 1/8", folding it in half and then sewing it on with a 1/2" seam on the inside, folding it over and sewing it down.
I used Vinyl Fuse  by Pellon which is a flexible iron-on vinyl on the inside so I could wipe it down.  I also use Insul-bright from the Warm Company, leftover from the oven mitts I made my girls for Christmas.
It looks like I'm going back to my sewing roots but no worries I'm still knitting.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013


For Christmas I asked for and received a yogurt maker from my favorite oldest daughter Rachel.
  Today I decided to make my second batch of yogurt forgetting that it takes 9 hours in the yogurt maker. When you start at 5:00 p.m. that makes for a long night. Fortunately even though I generally go to bed at 11:30 p.m. I'm awake again around 2:00 a.m. - this is generally when I solve all the world's problems.  Tonight/tomorrow I will be getting up and putting lids on my yogurt to put in the refrigerator.  And in the morning I will have very tasty almond flavored yogurt.  Yes, that was the added flavor.

If you have a yogurt maker I would love to hear from you your trials and tribulations.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Great American Aran Afghan

I am not a big knitter of afghans but I have long admired The Great American Aran Afghan. My knitting guild, Camellia City Stockinettes has proposed to their members a year long personal challenge. We each are responsible for deciding on what that challenge might be. One member is knitting a nativity scene a few figures each month, another is starting a project each month using yarn in her stash and another has decided to get some of her personal patterns published on Ravelry. These are just a few examples of the possibilities. I have decided to tackle the Great American Aran Afghan.
My thought is to complete two blocks a month for a total of twenty blocks.  November I will put it together and it should be ready in December for gift giving. 
I had bought 15 skeins of Cascade 220 Superwash to do this project over a year ago. I cast on last night for my first block.
I'll keep you posted over the upcoming year on my progress.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!!

When we sold our house in Texas we kept the mineral rights.  We got our first check yesterday for a whopping $34.60.   It looks like we won't be 'loading up the truck and moving to Beverly' but instead staying another year in our lovely brown house in the Sacramento area of California.  With that in mind I extend an open invitation to our family and friends to stop by for a visit.

Enjoy a glass of wine or two
And maybe stay for a few days.
Our door is always open and we look forward to sharing our home with you in 2013.