Once and Future Cooking

Good morning, my friends. I have a few things to tell you, and then I'm back into spasmodic blogging at least until we get down the road some. We've been watching the weather very carefully. We had what we like to refer to as a "false spring" here in the Pacific Northwest. We had three lovely days of sunshine and warmth, but we're promised the return of cold and wet this week. It's still dry so far, but we could see more freezing temperatures before we leave. It makes it hard to prepare because we can't de-winterize the RV until concern about freezing temperatures has passed. 

Also, we're paying attention to what's happening near the Oregon/California border. Interstate 5 takes us over the Siskiyou Pass. We don't want to get into snow and ice there. We're used to this, however. One doesn't head south from here without thinking about the mountain passes. And so we're in wait-and-see mode, trying to decide the best way to get outta town.

My days have been spent cooking dishes for freezing. Yesterday I made an Overnight Lasagna and some Tex-Mex Chili for the slow cooker. Today I'll be making Frozen Breakfast Burritos, and I'm trying something new in the form of Muffin-Tin Quiches with Smoked Cheddar & Potato. That'll be a new recipe to me, and so I'll see how it bakes up and how it tastes before I share the recipe. Or, if you're in a hurry, you can find it here.

There's been precious little time for sewing, but I have accomplished a few little things. This is Day 23 of the Tiny Hearts. This one is buttonhole stitch and diagonal feather stitch. 

Here is Day 24. This one is feather stitch, stem stitch, double lazy-daisy, and the dreaded bullion stitch. And let me just say I stitched those roses like a boss. No swearing. No gnashing of teeth. No crying nor moaning.

It was such a lovely day yesterday. We applied Advantage to the kitties because yesterday was their last chance to run around outside and roll in the dirt to get that nasty stuff off their furs. They also got in a good session of grazing. From this point forward, they're confined to the indoors until we leave. We don't want anyone to go missing in the few days before we take off.

And look who joined us on our stroll outside. These guys are making their first appearance for spring. 
We've seen them hanging out under the bird feeders and hoping for a handout from the birds.

Back inside, I made the last of the twelve barn blocks for Moda's Barn Block Sampler. I've used up all the colors, and so I used black prints for this one.

 I think I made every mistake possible while sewing this together. It's been the story of my life with these blocks. I can't decide if the instructions are confusing or if it's a problem like a PEBCAK (Problem Exists Between Chair and Keyboard). We learned PEBCAK only just recently. Apparently it's an IT term for people who don't know how to use their computers. Recently, I decided it works for sewing too. PEBCAN (Problem Exists Between Chair and Needle). Or if you want to make it sound more like a disease, PEBCASM (Problem Exists Between Chair and Sewing Machine.)

Here are all 12 blocks together. This will be next on my list to be sewn into a finished quilt top, but that will have to wait until we return.

On the baking front, I baked us some cookies for two. They're good for the soul.

Those were our dessert. For dinner, I tried this new recipe sent to me by my friend, Lisa. Thank you, Lisa. She sent it to me in response to my writing that I liked sun-dried tomatoes. This is Angel Hair Pasta with Spicy Shrimp and Sun-dried Tomatoes. It has a lot of my favorite things. In addition to the sun-dried tomatoes, it also has shrimp and kalamata olives. It's topped with feta cheese, which combines nicely with the salty kalamata olives. We liked this a lot.

It gets just the tiniest hint of heat from some crushed red pepper. It's enough to be noticeable, but not enough to knock your head off. Lisa sent a photo of her recipe that included her hand-written notes about it. I did what she did, which was to substitute regular onion for the shallots. I used only half the amount of feta. I can get feta overload if I use too much. (Feta makes me sweata.) I've linked to the recipe online, although I note they've used linguine instead of angel hair pasta. We used the angel hair, but you could use whatever you happen to have on hand...spaghetti, fettucini...anything long and thin.

Okay, so that brings me to the end of activities for the last couple of days. I'll be doing more cooking today, and I'll probably start packing some of the food. There is still much to do. Sundays always start with Blueberry Oatmeal Pancakes, and so we'll enjoy our leisurely Sunday morning before getting back to work. I've added all the preparatory tasks to the calendar now, and so I can just focus on one day's to-do list at a time. 


Barbara said...

In the Spring, I have counted 136 different kinds of weather inside of 24 hours. ~ Mark Twain

CathieJ said...

I hope the weather cooperates and you are able to start your travel. Your barn blocks are very pretty.

Magpie's Mumblings said...

Didn't know there was such a thing as Overnight Lasagna so will have to check into that one. Lasagna is one of my favourites.
I imagine the kitties are quite miffed to have to stay inside particularly if the weather is decent outdoors.

Lyndsey said...

We have the same weather issues here. Last week was beautiful and spring like but over the weekend it was cold and wet. The trip on the ferry home was very choppy. Over the weekend I suffered from PEBCKN - problems exist between chair and knitting needles. I gave up in the end as I couldn't get it right. I haven't packed ready to accompany you this trip yet but I will be making a new cushion to make my armchair more comfortable for sitting and reading about your visits. I also need to to find a map(s) so I can follow the journey. I hope the final preparations go well

piecefulwendy said...

The weather has definitely been having mood swings lately. We had 60s a couple days ago, then it dropped and it's 6 degrees this morning, along with about an inch of snow last night. Sheesh. Looks like you are doing well with your pre-trip activities - good idea keeping the kitties indoors, too.

Kate said...

The weather definitely has been a bit wacky. I'll bet the kitties aren't happy about being on house arrest till the trip. Hopefully they've been behaving themselves.