musings, mutterings, and creative muddle. . .

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Fishing . . . ummm - sort of.

Umm. . . Hello Mr. Boss?  Good Morning.  This is Robin Z.  I would like to take today off.  No, not sick.  Yeah.  That's right.  A personal day.  Yeah, it really is beautiful day today.  Ummm. . . what am I planning on doing?

Gardening?  Umm, no.  No, not washing the car or cleaning out the garage.  No, don't have any painting projects.  Not laying out in the chaise lounge soaking rays (with SPF 7000 of course!) either.  No, I think I'll 'go fishing.'

Where?  At the community lake?  Ummm. . . no.  At Big Hill?  No. . . not quite.  I'll be at home.  No - I don't have a pond, don't even live out in the country.  You don't understand?  Well, I have an aquarium.  A 50-gallon one.  With lots of fish.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Menu Monday - Easter's Calling

Hello lovely readers!

I have pansies!  My wonderful Hubster and J-boy stopped at a garden center on their way home from 'an adventure' and brought me TWO FLATS of beautiful, smiley-faced, purple pansies!!  Aren't they gorgeous?

I'm ready for Easter now!

We celebrate Easter similar to how many people celebrate Christmas - with lots of family, fun, and food that lasts for an entire weekend.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Foodie Friday - Crabtastic Rangoon

I had told you that I would keep you posted on our progress on perfecting our crab rangoon recipe since I blogged about it here.  Well. . . I'm keeping my promise.

Last night we decided to marinate and grill some steak, steam some broccoli and - bake some crab rangoon. 

AND, by crabby, I think we've got it!

Hubster and I worked on the photo-taking and rangoon-making together. . . THANKS HUBSTER!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Stitches and Stitches ~

Easter and Embroidery. . . seems to be going hand in hand (or hand in machine) for me this year.

Here's a pic of my little embellished cocktail napkins from yesterday's post on display above my kitchen sink window.  Cute!  I just laid them over the top of my current 'valance'.  It's a little much, yes, but fun for the season.  Can you see those tiny glass eggs sitting in the mouth of the cobalt vases?  There's one in the back of the birdy juicer sitting in the measuring cup on the right too.  Can you see them?  They are so tiny.  They have little designs - like polka dots or flowers - painted on them in pastel colors.  So incredibly cute.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Easter! Spring! Easter! Spring!

EXTREME disappointment. . . such a sunny-glorious day outside so I set up my 'mini-fountain' with Easter eggs and moved one of the garden rabbits over to join the scene.  Decided it was time for pansies.  Bright, cheerful purple pansies to go in the pot that matches the fountain.  Definitely would make that bunny smile.


Monday, March 22, 2010

Silly Kitties Loooooove tulips!

I had started another blog post, took photos to go with it - then left the house to run some errands.

When I returned, I came in the back door which opens directly into the kitchen and looked over to the dining room.  Holy tulip petals!  I couldn't keep from laughing and knew you would find it funny too.

This morning, while I was upstairs in my second floor office/studio, I had heard these odd noises coming from the first floor.  I knew the dogs were outside so it wasn't them getting into mischief.  But Fritzie and Frazer weren't in their bed - so I figured it was those crazy cats finding something fun to do. 

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Little Rays of Sunshine. . .

Check out the little rays of sunshine I rescued from the garden before things got ugly.

Our world went from a bright sun-shiny day of 70 degrees to a gray snowy one at 30 degrees. . . .

Friday, March 19, 2010

Foodie Friday. . . Spring to Winter

New recipe for tonight - some marinated grilled shrimp with lots of garlic, cayenne and red wine.  Will let you know how it comes out.  Got to use that grill tonight because, if the weather forecasters are right, we'll be frozen and buried under snow tomorrow.  Well. . . not quite, but it'll be bad enough we won't be outside grilling, that's for sure.  6- 8" of snow is what's currently predicted, with a high temperature of 34 degrees - which was our low last night.  ick!

Last night was a tasty meal of some beef filets wrapped in bacon and grilled veggie packets ala Robin - that means there were diced red potatoes, baby carrots, green olives, fresh cracked tellicherry pepper and a drizzling of olive oil.  Wrap it all up tightly in foil and toss it on the grill.  So tasty when served with a dollop of sour cream.

Spring before the Snow ~

Seriously folks.  It's 68 degrees out there today (but feels cooler) and supposed to be even warmer tomorrow then BAM!  Snow.  Yup. . . snow over the weekend.

I went out in the backyard and played with the Wonder-Vizslas today.  How could I not?  The sun and the warm. . . Besides - it was time for a good game of fetch.  They love fetch!  I tried to get Zayda 'on film' catching the ball - but no luck.  Will keep trying.  It's easy to catch Jaz 'in fetch mode' - he doesn't move so fast.  I LOVE how intense Zayda gets in contrast to how laid back Jaz is about the whole 'go get the ball' thing.  Funny.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Short. Sweet. Simple.

Challenge:  keep this short.  Seriously - you've read some of my blogs. . . .not easy.  I do promise a pretty 'sweet' surprise at the end of this blog.

Dreary outside.  Laundry rolling inside. 
Flowers from yesterday still looking gorgeous. 

Monday, March 15, 2010

Springing forward for Spring Break. . .

So yeah, it's spring break, right?  But no spring weather?  That's just wrong, I tell you.  Absolutely, irrevocably wrong.  BUT - we're planning on making the most of it.  Is good we'll have a few days to get used to the 'spring-forward' time before actually having to use it.  Back to waking in the dark. . . but only for  a short time.  I'm so excited for warmer weather.

Did you remember to move your clock forward?  We got it covered this time. . . It's always fun to hear the stories of those who forgot.
Hubster trekked south for the week, thanks to a business trip.  J-son and I are heading north to spend the day with J-daughter. . . then a day at home. . . then a day to the east for lunch, movie, and a pet store.  Spent the weekend bowling and doing laundry.  Gotta balance the fun and not-so-fun, eh?

Friday, March 12, 2010

Foodie Friday - Smoked Salmon Tarts

SCRUMPTIOUS - no two ways about it!

My wonderful Hubster has this electric smoker that smokes up the most wonderful of things. . . ribs, chicken, pulled pork, and (drum roll please) my absolute favorite - salmon! 

We're fortunate enough to have a grocery store in town that gets periodic salmon filets that are perfect for smoking.  We may not have 'much' here - but we've got that - oh yeah!   Needless to say Hubster and Butcher are on a first name basis. . .

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Confessions of a Multi-Tasker

Okay.  I have a confession to make. 

I'm Robin Z and I'm a multi-tasker.

Oh, I know it's not necessarily a bad thing. . . I mean, if a person can fold socks, while talking on the telephone and boiling macaroni, they should.  I can do it - and I do.  Pretty well, I might add.  But that's not the problem.

My multi-tasking problem comes from such not-so-instant tasks like making a quilt, glittering Easter cards, and creating earrings.  Do you see the problem?  Could anyone really do all these things simultaneously?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Pretty in Pink - Pearls, That Is. . .

I'm so excited to tell you about my latest jewelry acquisition and creations.

This past fall, I was visiting Dear Daughter in Lawrence, KS.  There's a lovely, unique, jewelry store on Massachusetts Street that always beckons us.  With its wood floors, tin ceiling, and vintage looking cases full of one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces made of so many different metals, and media and stones - a real delight!

We happened into Goldmaker's shortly after a new shipment of items had arrived.  Oh my!  I instantly fell in love with this necklace made my Michael Michaud.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Magnificent Cinnamon-Banana Muffins.

Y'know. . . it seems we go in 'moods' when it comes to things like bananas.  We'll go for a week or two where we darn near eat them faster than we can buy them. . . then other weeks (like the past few) it doesn't matter how many I buy - there are always some left.  Buy one - and it stays lonely and ages not so gracefully throughout the week. . . BUT, there is a good thing with over-ripe bananas.  They are *perfect* for making one of our favorite banana muffins.  YUM! 

Monday, March 8, 2010

So close and yet so wet. . .

What a tease.  So the past three days, while it was not necessarily sunny yesterday, were definitely teasing of spring.  Warm temps, bright sun. . . and yet, today?  Gray.  Rain.  Blah.  Hoping this is not the start of our annual rainy season.  I do think we deserve a few days (weeks?) of sun and fun before getting chased inside by weather once again.  At least there's no ice on the *inside* of my 90 year old wood-framed windows.  That was ridiculous.  Winter most definitely is over and not a welcome guest come next year.

There are still lots of hints of spring though. . . here are a just a couple I heard (then saw) today:

Right outside my second story office window.  I heard chattering and

Friday, March 5, 2010

Aaaaaahhh. . . Friday.

I don't think this day could have gotten any better - and it had nothing to do with me, really.

So exactly where is this essence of awesome coming from?  Well. . .. let me count the ways:

1.  It's Friday
2.  The sun is shining
3.  Temperatures hit 70!

I thnk that totally covers it!  Does there need to be anything else?

So how did I make this awesome day even awesomer?

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Day the Modem Died

Is this the end of the world?  Seriously - is it?  Just tell me.  I can take it.  I swear.

Yesterday afternoon at precisely (give or take about 20 minutes - ha!) 4:03 p.m., while faxing documents, talking on the phone, and looking over e-mails, the internet modem died.  A couple of very faint' blips' on the phone line and it was gone.  Flatout redlight gone.  All multi-tasking ceased.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Glitz, Glitter, and Glue


Okay. . . So I'm a little early.  I LOVE Easter.  It's my second favorite holiday.  Seriously.  No. . . Christmas is not my favorite.  I mean, Christmas is cool and all because you have a great excuse to 'refeather your nest' and see all kinds of family and give out (and get) nifty presents.  But, it's cold.  I don't like cold.  Winter?  BAH!. 

Fourth of July's pretty sweet because you get to play with fire.  What's there not to like?  Valentine's Day is special because. . . well, all of FTD's advertising on TV reminds Hubster to send me flowers;-).  It just goes without say that Mother's Day and Father's Day are pretty neat.  But nope.  NONE of those are my favorite.  Can you guess?

While you're thinking.  Let me show you the little Easter postcard invitations I made.  Oh, BTW:  Spoiler Alert!  If you're family who gets a little invite from me each year. . . well. . . these pictures may very well show your Easter-vite.  No worries, though.  Each and every single one is different, like Easter Eggs, no duplicates at all.  I LOVE that!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Fried Rice - Fantastic Fried Rice

Fried Rice.  Fabulous, tasty, versatile, easy Fried Rice.  Just isn't anything else to say except this is one of Son-o's favorite recipes.  He's always ready to help with the prep of this one. . . and a second set of hands makes this easy recipe even snappier.  Team-cooking is F-U-N!

Fantastic Fried Rice
2 cups long-grain white rice
4 cups water

Monday, March 1, 2010

Behold the Treasures!

What an awesome weekend!  Non-stop - it's amazing sometimes how much a person can pack into just two days.  WOW!

On Saturday, J-girl and I trekked to a neighboring town to one of our favorite gift shops / flea markets. She was having a heckuva sale to reduce her inventory and I found some GREAT treasures!  I found these beautiful Mary Carol plates (and who knew Mary, and her shops, Nell's Hill, were right here in Kansas. . . and not very far north of me, besides.  I'm thinking ROADTRIP to all three of her shops.  Wanna come?) which complement the white beaded square plates I bought several years ago.  I'm totally motivated to completely revamp my dinnerware. . . .