I’m not a relaxed person

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I’m occasionally lazy, irritated, irritating, happy, goofy, sarcastic, smarty pants, bossy, alpha female… but not very often just flat out RELAXED.

That is precisely why I treasure so deeply the moments when drinks have been dolled out dinner has been served, the house is so full of noise from happy friends that you have to yell to get your point heard (ok you might not NEED to yell… but its funner that way) and everyone is LAUGHING just because we are so happy to be together.

And as an added plus if there are a few dogs running around the table, a cute kid or two goobering on a napkin, and no seriously pressing reason to break up the party early so we can all just sit on the floor and talk like we used to do when we were just teenagers, IT. IS. JUST. PERFECTION.

And that is precisely what Sunday night was like.  Sigh!  Happiness & JOY!  If only I had remembered a camera to record some of the good grub & cool people.

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In 30 seconds you could…

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But you wont… instead you will sit there listening to all the things someone out there thinks would be cool to do as a heavy disguise over why you should eat at McDonalds, or drink Coke, or something… I honestly dont know since I never listen to the whole commercial anyhow.

But it got me thinking, what could I realistically do in 30 seconds?

1) I could send a text message to someone to let them know I’m thinking of them.

2) I could eat a hot dog, although if I’m not in a hot dog eating competition… thats just kind of a gross way to eat lunch.

3) I could take a picture.  However in order to getting somewhere cool to take the picture might take a little longer than 30 seconds.

4) I could surf Pintrest for some sort of creative idea to make, cook, drool over, imagine, fantasize about etc… execution of which will take longer than 30 seconds.

5) I could play tug-o-war with my dog.

6) I could burn a bridge or two.

7) I could do some situps…. or eat a mouthful of whipped cream straight from the can.  Yeah, what do you think I’m gonna do.

8) Get annoyed and yell at the radio about how I dont WANT to be famous in some province of China I cant pronounce for doing something dumb and posting it on YouTube.

9) I could go pick up my mail…. but only if I go super fast and no one gets in my way or tries to talk to me.

10) Or I could surf around till I finally find some Steve Miller Band on another radio station.

What could/would/should you do in 30 seconds?

Wild Friday Nights

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So its another wild & crazy Friday night here in the house of Orn.

Saffers & I are taking a training class from Surf City Dog Training trainer Dina Pavlis on Monday nights.  And in order to not blow my budget this month on healthy training bites I have decided to bake my own.

So in the oven right now is a big pile of beef liver and I certainly hope it is dehydrating… because at the moment its just this giant brown pile of viscous organ meat.  Also drying out in the oven are the actual dog treats that I made too.  The dehydrating liver is more of a “well what should we do with the leftover pile of beef liver” sort of experiment.   For way more dog treat recipe’s and ideas check out The Dog Treat Kitchen, it is where I got the idea for Saffy’s Liver Bites to start with.

Here is the recipe I modified a bit for a more Saffy Friendly Dog treat.

Saffy’s Liver Bites
1 Lb Beef or Chicken Livers
1 cup Oatmeal
1 cup Rice Flour
2/3 cup Oat Flour
2/3 cup Quinoa Flour
3 Tbsp Milk
2 Eggs
2 Tbsp Fresh Parsley
2 Tbsp Dog Pawr Joint & Hip Complex Powder (I have a jar of this in the fridge because Saff wont eat it on her kibble, so this seemed like a good way to use it up and add in some healthy extras to the treats)

In the food processor blend the 1 cup of Oatmeal till finely chopped, then add in all the dry ingredients (flours & Dog Pawr) and then transfer to a separate bowl.

Next in the food processor blend the fresh parsley, eggs & milk.  Add to the dry ingredients.

And now the grossest bit… in the food processor liquify the pound of liver till very very smooth.

Add the liver to the other ingredients & blend thoroughly.  The first time I made these treats I used a large frosting bag (which will never ever again hold frosting in it) to pipe out stars on a parchment lined cookie sheet.  This was really cute, but time consuming.  And although I liked how they looked, Saff did not seem to appreciate all the work that went into it.  So this time I decided to go all biscotti-style for the treats and piped long thick lines of the batter onto a parchment lined cookie sheet, and baked them for 20 minutes at 350 degrees till they were set.  Once the strips were baked soft cookie set I took them out of the oven & let them cool down till I could handle them.  Then I used my super sharp knife to cut the strips into bit sized pieces and then put them back into the oven for an additional 20 minutes at 200 degrees to finish drying out.  If you want to get the pieces super dried out & crunchy you can leave them in your oven overnight after you turn it off to completely dry them out.

So far Saffers seems to love them, and chooses them over her other favorite treats.  Its gross, and the smell is less than delicious, but they are healthy, wheat free, and all I had to go buy was the beef liver, which cost me about $2.

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And as we all know, making your dog happy is the best way you can spend a Friday night…

even if your house smells like dried out liver for the next week. 

Muse Wanted

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I’m completely stuck today creatively speaking.  So if you think you can be my source of inspiration, creativity re-leaser, and writing block demolisher please let me know.  I’ll be taking applications thru the end of the week for the position.

After that point I’m going out to buy spray paint to see if that shakes anything loose.

Signs of a good day off

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1) You kind of forget it was a Wednesday cause it feels so much like Saturday

2) You get to spend most of it with friends & family

3) You’ve completely destroyed your kitchen

4) The majority of the day was spent without shoes or socks on

5) You successfully tried out a new recipe of which NONE came home with you! 

 

So according to my standards… yesterday was a GOOD DAY OFF!!!

And here is the beautiful recipe that was inhaled by my friends… and myself too truth be told.

Chocolate cake with salted caramel frosting from Kimberly Taylor at Blackberry Farm

Its Not Easy….

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Being Green!

Well it turns out creating with just one color isn’t as easy as I originally thought it would be.  I started out with a couple of ideas and by pulling out every single green bead I had in my stash.  Since green is one of my favorite colors, there were many many many beads to work with.  So then I had to start narrowing it all down.

I wanted to do something with a bit of weight, but still delicate… just like all the plant starts in my garden.  Bright, delicate, and strong.  So I started playing around with some bead stitch work and came up with the basic shape I wanted.  Originally I pictured doing a necklace of various green circles graduating from one color to another.  But time constraints won out this week and I have to console myself with just a bracelet… and plans to make the necklace at some time after our Family Anniversary is over.

So without further ado… here is my little contribution.

I’m looking forward to seeing what everyone else made, follow the links below to check out some what I am sure will be some seriously cool jewelery!

HUMONGOUS Thank you to Sally Russick of  The Studio Sublime for coming up with, co-coordinating & holding this challenge.  As I mentioned, this is my first challenge… and it was really fun!  Thank you Sally!!!

One Color Crayon Hop Participants

Hosted by:

Sally Russick  http://thestudiosublime.com

Red

Therese Frank  http://theresestreasures59.blogspot.com

Rochelle Brisson  http://acreativechelle.blogspot.com

Lisa Lodge   http://pineridgetreasures.blogspot.com

Malin de Koning  http://beadingbymalindekoning.blogspot.com

Bobbie Rafferty   http://beadsong.blogspot.com

Orange

Linda Landig  http://LindasBeadBlog.com

Cherrie Fick  http://designsinthelight.com

Beth McLarnan http://threetrees-art.blogspot.com

Cece Cormier  http://thebeadingyogini.com

Renetha Stanziano   http://lamplightcrafts.blogspot.com

Tanya Goodwin  http://pixiloo.blogspot.com

Jean Welles  http://jeanawells.blogspot.com

Amy Severino   http://amybeads.blogspot.com

Rebekah Payne   http://treewingsstudio.com

Lola Surwillo  http://.beadlolabead.blogspot.com

Judy Turner   http://silver-rains.blogspot.com

 Yellow

Jennifer Justman  http://soulsfiredesigns.blogspot.com

Rose Brisson    http://ahteesblog.blogspot.com

Kim Bender  http://www.kimmykats.com/

Heather Powers   http://humblebeads.blogspot.com

Shelly Joyce  http://www.aujourlejour-shelly.blogspot.com

Blue

Cherie Reed  http://creativedesignsbycheri.blogspot.com

Rebecca Anderson  http://songbeads.blogspot.com

Hope Smitherman  http://craftyhope.blogspot.com

Patti Vanderbloemen  http://myaddictionshandcrafted.blogspot.com

Michelle Buettner  http://MiShelDesigns.blogspot.com

Alicia Marinache  http://allprettythings.ca

Charissa Sloper   http://blog.obsidiansoda.com

Sonya Stille  http://dreaminofbeads.blogspot.com

Maria Grimes  http://mariagrimes.blogspot.com

Nancy Saccoccio  http://risingdesigns.blogspot.com

Sandi Volpe   http://sandivolpe.com

Joanne Tinley  http://daisychaindesignsjewellery.blogspot.com

Catherine Pruitt  http://boobeads.blogspot.com

 Green

Mary Harding  http://maryhardingjewelrybeadblog.blogspot.com

Karin Gilman http://www.qaygee.blogspot.com/

Jayne Capps   http://mamasgottodoodle.blogspot.com

Lorelei Eurto  http://lorelei1141.blogspot.com

Melissa Meman http://melissameman.blogspot.com

Alice Peterson  http://alice-dreaming.blogspot.com

Jenny Davies Reazor   http://www.jdaviesreazor.com

Cynthia Machata    http://antiquitytravelers.blogspot.com

Melissa Essenburg  http://chinookdesigns.blogspot.com

Regina Santerre  http://reginaswritings.blogspot.com

Hey look… its ME!  -> Lauren Streets  https://ornthoughts.wordpress.com

Elizabeth Auld  http://beadsforbusygals.com

Purple

Tracy Mok   http://bumblebeadsdesigns.blogspot.com

Jennifer Judd Velasquez http://jenjuddrocks.blogspot.com

Marti Conrad  http://marticsclay.blogspot.com

Lori Anderson  http://prettythingsblog.com

Donna Bradley  http://strandedbeads.blogspot.com

Courtney Breul  http://beadsbybreul.blogspot.com

Linda Younkman   http://lindysdesigns.blogspot.com

Susan Kennedy  http://www.suebeads.blogspot.com

Lisa Liddy   http://Lisaliddy.wordpress.com

Tracy Stillman  http://www.tracystillmandesigns.com

Dawn Doucette  http://designsbydawnmarie.blogspot.com

Brown

Diana Ptaszynski   http://suburbangirlstudio.com

Shannon Chomanczuk  http://formysweetdaughter.blogspot.com/

Janice Everett   http://JLynnJewels.blogspot.com

Karen Williams  http://Baublicious.blogspot.com

Black

Kashmira Patel  http://sadafulee.blogspot.com

Heidi Post  http://expostfactojewelry.blogspot.com/

Birgitta Lejonklou  http://lejonklou.blogspot.com/

Holly Westfall  http://silverrosedesigns.blogspot.com/

Karin Slaton  http://backstorybeads.blogspot.com

Wait…what happened to March?

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The color green has been on my mind in several ways of late.

Edibly – First off… let me introduce you to something both annoying and delicious.  Corn Vit.  Its annoyingly EVERYWHERE in my garden.  A couple summers back I thought it would be an interesting little thing to try and grow.  And grow it did!  It comes up EVERYWHERE!  In the carrots, around the squashes, twined around the onions, its even snuggled down there at the base of the peas.  Well the good news is that it is delicious, and packed with all sorts of vitamins according to most of the web-searches I did on it.  So last weekend I picked a batch of it, cleaned it, and had my very garden based meal.  (Side note… cleaning the stuff is really a booger if you were not planning to pick it and instead dug up other weeds instead and in the process covered it with dirt.)
Turns out this will now be my new alternative to spinach.  A smidgen of olive oil in a pan over medium heat, a clove of garlic, a large pile of corn vit… sizzle till wilted & fragrant.  Then toss with cooked pasta and toasted sunflower seeds and a pinch of Celtic finishing salt. YUM!

Creatively – Green has also been on my bead table in several different forms.  I’m participating in a monochromatic color challenge put together by Sally Russick of The Studio Sublime.  I’ve become familiar with her work through a couple of super secret beading forums on Facebook.  Yeah, that’s right… I’m part of a super secret forum.  I know people who know people.  Don’t mess with me.  Well I might be overselling that… but in any case those groups are filled with funny and crazy talented ladies who like to talk ideas, beads, projects, and whatever else comes out of their creative brains!  Sally posted an invite to join the blog hop so I’m tryin it out.  I have chosen the color green to make something monochromatic out of and I’ve got a ton of ideas.  I have a hard time saying which color I love the most because it depends on the shade, and the day, and my mood, and whether we are talking something like flowers or house paint.  But green was the color that popped out at me that day so I’m going with it.  Blog reveal is Saturday the 5th of May.  So I hope you (all three of you out there) will like what I put together.
Growingly! – lastly, but not leastly….  Cause that’s the best place you can find green.  Think about it, do you want green on your steak?  NO.  Do you want green in your shower?  NO!  Do you want green coming out of your dog?  NO!!!!  But you do want green in the garden, and you wait ever so patiently for the dirt to start cracking and showing little tiny first leaves.  And even though they aren’t green, here is a quick intro to some upcoming key players in my yard.

FOOD!

The amazing thing about seeds is how something can be so similar and yet so different.  All the squashes were similar in approximate size & shape… but the weight of them, the thickness all different.  Really fun to plant & will be even more fun to turn into my dinners this summer.  And of course… Saffer’s was helping out by keeping me company and chewing on things while I worked in the garden.

Light and Fluffy Friday

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Yesterday night I made marshmallows for the first time.

Wow!  Yeah, turns out those are a completely different animal from what we usually buy in the grocery store.   Sorry Kraft, you just lost a customer.

Imagine the texture of the softest marshmallow peep, but not quite as over the top sweet.

Plus this morning as I was dusting with sugar & cutting away to make fun little squares I got to pretend I was an old fashioned candy maker, instead of just an office drone running late to work.   It was a lovely little fantasy while it lasted.

And it really wasn’t very difficult to do either! Just follow Alton’s directions & make sure you have a candy thermometer & something good for dusting sugar.

Pictured above are my home made marshmallows, turned into single bite smores.  Take marshmallow & dunk into melted chocolate & then rest in a tray of graham cracker crumbs.  And if you want to send someone over the edge, just perch one of these on top of a butter-cake cupcake filled with chocolate ganache, and topped with meringue topping that has been toasted with a culinary torch.  Worth ALL the work!  ….  however I neglected to get a photo of the finished product.  DO’H!!!

Let Simple things be Simple

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Like Vanilla.  Specifically; home made vanilla extract.  I’m sitting here looking at a bottle of clear rum that has about 7 vanilla beans in it.  It also features a label out of masking tape that reads “Use March 2012”.

That is how simple making your own vanilla extract is.  A bottle of booze, vanilla beans, and time.

Granted, not everything can be that simple.  But its amazing how much less complicated things CAN be, especially when you let them.

That is all!