Sunday, March 15, 2015

Inspiration Sunday


 Out of Focus, by Martin Fisch via flickr.  Shown under CC BY-SA 2.0


This prompt is yours to draw inspiration from. If you use it, and decide to post the resulting piece on your blog, or other online forum that hosts your writing, let me know in the comments section. I'll make sure to drop by and share my thoughts.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Inspiration Sunday


Broadway Snow by Christine L. Hardy.

Christine L. Hardy analyzes data by day and writes fantasy by night. A proud member of the South Jersey Writer’s Group, she lives with her son Jeff, her cat Koko, and an escape beagle named Zeke. Their escapades can be found on Facebook as well as at “Write First, Blog Later,” aka www.ChristineLHardy.com. Her stories have appeared in the anthologies Tall Tales and Short Stories from South Jersey, Different Dragons II, and A Bard Day’s Knight: Tales from Fortannis Vol. III.

This prompt is yours to draw inspiration from. If you use it, and decide to post the resulting piece on your blog, or other online forum that hosts your writing, let me know in the comments section. I'll make sure to drop by and share my thoughts.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Inspiration Sunday




Artist unknown, found on Trish Is Thinking Again.


This prompt is yours to draw inspiration from. If you use it, and decide to post the resulting piece on your blog, or other online forum that hosts your writing, let me know in the comments section. I'll make sure to drop by and share my thoughts.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Tutorial: Making Plastic Yarn (Plarn)

The cold weather here in the northeast has been pretty brutal this year. We're looking at a rather nasty weekend ahead, so I'm planning to cocoon myself at home.  I know I run the risk of going stir-crazy with family cabin fever, but if I keep myself busy, I should come out of it okay. I think I'm going to make "plarn" (plastic yarn) for some future projects.

Here's a little tutorial I've put together on how I make plarn.

Materials Needed:
- Plastic Grocery Shopping Bags
- Scissors or Rotary Cutter
- Yard Stick (Not necessary, especially if you have a good eye at keeping cuts straight)
- Cutting mat (Only if you're using a rotary cutter. Although, unless you have a dedicated crafting table, using a cutting mat will protect your furniture.)

Steps:
 Step 1: Open up and smooth out the plastic bag.

Step 2: Trim off the handles and the bottom seal.

Step 3: Open up the bag, releasing all the folds. Flatten and fold vertically to a width that you are comfortable cutting. I fold until the piece is about 4 inches in width.

Step 4: Cut bag across into 1-inch strips. (A standard-sized shopping bag should produce about 11 or 12 1-inch strips)

Step 5: Open up the strip and chain the strips together.

Process as many bags as you wish. One standard sized plastic bag yields about of 5 1/2 yards. Once you've made your desired quantity, simply roll the plastic yarn into a ball. Sometimes I get lazy or too excited to chain all the loops before I start a project so I just chain the loops as I go along with my project.

This can be used on any knitting or crochet project that requires a chunky weight yarn.


Here are some links to free patterns for the items above:
Grocery Bag Purse by Michelle Molis on Another Knitting Blog (the middle one)
Crochet Grocery Bag Pattern by Knit-O-Matic (the one of the right and left*)
*I modified the one on the left with the body of the Knit-O-Matic pattern and then handle of the bag by Michelle Mois.




Sunday, February 15, 2015

Inspiration Sunday



Artist Unknown, found on Trish Is Thinking Again.

This prompt is yours to draw inspiration from. If you use it, and decide to post the resulting piece on your blog, or other online forum that hosts your writing, let me know in the comments section. I'll make sure to drop by and share my thoughts.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Avocado Toast with Poached Egg and Proscuitto

One of my great indulgences is a long and unhurried luxurious breakfast.  I treat myself to one every Saturday or Sunday morning, when I don't have to push anyone or myself, out the door for school or work. It's a welcome change from the workday morning rush.

For these days, an egg dish is my breakfast of choice. I enjoy the forced patience required to make the perfect poached egg*.

I recently discovered the sublime yumminess of avocado toast.



Avocado Toast with Poached Egg and Prosciutto

Ingredients:
1 slice whole grain bread
1 small ripe avocado
salt
pepper
lime juice
1 slice prosciutto
1 slice sharp cheddar cheese
1 poached egg
Chopped parsley or basil or cilantro to garnish

Method:
  1. Turn on your broiler to low.
  2. Scoop out the flesh of a small ripe avocado. Mash with a fork to desired consistency (I prefer it a little chunky). Season with salt, pepper, and a squeeze of lime juice.
  3. On a lightly toasted slice of bread, spread the mashed over it.
  4. Lay down a thin slice of prosciutto.
  5. Lay down a slice of cheese.
  6. Poach the egg according to your own desired method.
  7. Without the egg, place the entire piece under the broiler to melt the cheese.
  8. Once you've achieved the desired doneness for your egg and melted cheese, gently lay the egg on top of the cheese.
  9. Garnish and season with parsley, basil, or cilantro, salt and pepper.

Serves 1.


*The "perfect"poached egg is pretty subjective.  I like mine with thick yolks whose edges are just about to turn firm.