28 February 2011

We're Here!

Just a quick note to let ya'll know that we made it to Wyoming. No internet for awhile unless I come into town to use the library's WiFi. That's OK with me though, this is a great library. I don't mind spending some time here. :)

We're getting settled. 3 of the 4 trailers are unpacked although half of our stuff is still in the garage. We are definitely going to have to downsize some of our things, but I've been meaning to do that for quite awhile anyway. I'll get pictures to share with you soon.

The dogs are loving exploring the ranch and Fancy, our mare, seems to be enjoying here pasture.

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!

24 February 2011


Starting tomorrow we are going offline for a few days. We are unplugging our satellite, throwing it in the trailer, and hauling down to our new home in Wyoming. Our appointment to get it installed in the new place is March 1st. I'm hoping the weather is good so the tech can keep his appointment.

A few days with no internet is probably a good thing. I've got some sewing to do once we get there. Most of the month of February was been devoted to organizing and packing our house. I haven't fallen too far behind on projects, but a few swap deadlines are quickly approaching.

I may go on a wi-fi hunt once we get there, but if you don't hear from me for a few days know that we're getting settled and I'll be back soon. :)

Tomorrow is another day.

20 February 2011

Sunday Brunch

At the beginning of the week, when I was packing the trailer, we had some absolutely gorgeous weather. It was into the 40s, the sun was shining, the snow/ice was melting, and the dogs were having a wonderful time playing outside. Today, I woke up to this...

To give you a little more perspective, the back of this trailer is nearly 2 feet off the ground, so that is a pretty big drift. And notice the exposed concrete? The wind has been blowing out of the east for this entire storm so there are still some areas of exposed ground on the west side of the house and then there are some HUGE mountains of snow where the wind has whipped around the house and built up the drifts.

It's a little difficult to tell how big this drift is, but do you notice how you can just barely see our fence in front of the trailer? There was still a little snow on the ground before, but that whole ridge line that comes down the picture (which is about knee high) is new since yesterday. Fun times, huh?

The dogs refuse to go out today. Even Cordi, my snow dog, was only outside for the time it took for me to snap these photos. Although he did decide to stick his face into a drift before coming in.

And now, what you've been waiting for (I'm sure)...this weeks recipe. :)

Shredded Beef Burritos with Homemade Flour Tortillas

Set your defrosted roast into the crockpot (Or you can do this in a roasting pan in the oven, just use a low temperature for it to simmer all day). This time I used a cross rib roast, but usually I just use a chuck or whatever we have in the freezer. Oh, the perks of living on a cattle ranch.

Add your spices. Turn meat over and add more.

These are the spices I use. I like my food spicy so I add cayenne and red pepper flakes to nearly everything. The chipotle and ancho add a nice smoky flavor. The Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime adds a nice little sour bite with the lime flavoring.

Cover and turn your crockpot on to low. And make sure it's plugged in. :)

Several hours later take the roast out and shred it with a couple of forks. (See the steam?) I think this was in for close to 10 hours. Remember the first week how I said I wasn't very exact on measuring? It's the same with time. When it's done, it's done.

Generally, the longer you leave it in the the more tender it will get, but since I don't add water or stock when I make shredded beef I start checking it after about 6 hours so that it doesn't burn.

*Remember, crockpots utilize the steam created to cook the meat. The more you lift the lid the drier your roast will be.

Add your fixings and enjoy!

The tortilla recipe comes from the Smiling Country Ranch blog, but she seems to have privatized her blog recently. I'd like to try to contact her before I repost her recipe, especially since I've been reading about blog etiquette all week, but hopefully I'll be able to share it with you soon.

Thanks for stopping by!

18 February 2011

On the Road in 8 Days

Sorry I haven't posted this week. Here's why:

We are moving back to Wyoming!

Jake is a member of a couple ranching forums and he was approached by one of the other members wondering if he might be looking for a job on a ranch where they don't any have 4-wheelers. All the cow work, except feeding, is done horseback. Jake is a cowboy through and through and for a true cowboy working cows on a 4-wheeler just isn't the same.

Well, Jake wasn't looking for a job, he had a good job here, but his dream job is to work horseback so he put in his application. We went down there for a visit in January, got a tour of part of the ranch (before a blizzard blew in) and got to see the house where we'll be living and came home with a job offer. It didn't take us long to decide that this is the path we're supposed to take. We're very grateful to Jake's boss, here in Montana, for the past year's work. We were planning on staying around a few years, but as they say when opportunity knock you've got to answer.

Jake with Fancy, our beautiful mare.

I'm looking forward to being back in Wyoming and closer to friends and family, but I will miss Montana. If we hadn't moved to Montana I probably wouldn't be sewing and quilting and I probably wouldn't have this blog. Living so far from anything has made me more independent and creative with how I spend my time. We've enjoyed our time here in Montana, but we've come to realize that Wyoming is home and that's where we belong.

My cowboy with our nephew. Yes, he is wearing cowboy boots at the beach.

13 February 2011

Sunday Brunch

Which came first? The chicken or the egg? Today, the chicken came first. This morning for breakfast I made myself a delicious omelette.

You're probably saying to yourself "Silly girl. An omelette is made from eggs not chickens." And I'd say you're right except when it's a chicken omelette, with onions, mushrooms, and olives. And I sautee my ingredients before I add the eggs. So, in this case the chicken did come first. :)

Sautee the cooked chicken, mushrooms, onions, and olives.
(I wish I knew how to add accent marks)

In a bowl beat 2 eggs and add a bit of milk. The milk will fluff up your eggs while they are cooking. Sometimes I season the eggs with pepper (black, white, cayenne), but today I went plain. (We are out of milk so I added water, then I decided to add some powdered buttermilk for flavor. The chunks of white in the picture below are the buttermilk. Suggestion: Mix the buttermilk first, then add to eggs.)

Add beaten eggs to sauteed mixture.

Cook eggs through. I use my spatula to push the eggs around a bit so that the top gets cooked tas well. Sorry, no action shot.

Once your eggs are done how you like them add your cheese.

Fold in half and let the cheese melt and the eggs cook a little while longer if needed.

Oops. Too much cheese. That's OK, that's the best part.

Enjoy with a glass of orange juice. :)

In other news... Last week was spent packing. Finding more boxes and packing more. I got my craft room packed and completely empty except for our upstairs phone and a desk that was here when we moved in.

The beginning of this week will be spent packing up the trailer and moving this pile

into here---------->

I did make the 83 mile trip for some "big store" shopping last week. I got frustrated with the big stores (just about all of them in town), but the visit to the thrift store and antique store made up for it. Pictures of that fun tomorrow.

Thanks for visiting. :)

11 February 2011

My Dog is Very Talented!

Lotte and Cord checking out a banana.

Lotte decided that she wanted it, but it has to be peeled first.

Looks like she'd rather have the peel than the banana itself.

09 February 2011

WIP Wednesday

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

My creative WIP's were all put on hold this past week for the following...

We're moving back to Wyoming at the end of the month. So I've been trying to get organized and packed. There are a lot more boxes than this, but some are in the basement and some are upstairs and still need to be brought down. I can't wait to get moved and settled. I'm looking forward to decorating a new home and creating an inspiring work space for all my crafts.

All my WIPs from last week have been put on hold, but there are some things that need to be finished before we move. Hopefully I'll have more to share next week.

Go on over to Freshly Pieced to see what everyone else has been working on this week.

Thanks for visiting!

06 February 2011

Sunday Brunch

When I think about Sunday brunch I don't just think about omelettes and cantaloupe. I also think about catching up with friends, reviewing the past week, and planning for the upcoming week. So I've decided that on Sundays I will share a favorite recipe and anything special that might have happened during the previous week.

Last week Jake got a job offer from a ranch back in Wyoming. As much as we like living in Montana it's just not right for us and this job is just what he's been looking for. He'll get to be horseback a lot more and we'll be a bit closer to town. The job starts March 1st so the majority of this week has been spent gathering boxes, sorting out junk for the garbage, beginning packing, and working on my February swaps.

Today and yesterday were spent cutting. Cutting for my Modern Stash Quilting Bees blocks, my Block-a-palooza blocks that I'm catching up on, and the applique pieces for my Birdie Big Block quilt. This week there will be more cutting, sewing, and packing. Jake will spend his days feeding the cows and supposedly the snow will let up for a few days and things will begin to melt and mud up. I guess that means that spring is on her way.

As for my recipe* this week...My favorite food lately has been pizza. Actually, I've always loved pizza, but I received the Pioneer Woman's cookbook for my birthday and I can't get enough of her pizza dough. It's fabulous! Usually I make pizza one night with half the dough and a couple days later make calzones with the rest. Tonight I made a pesto chicken calzone and it was delicious! I split the dough into 4 pieces (remember this is half the recipe) and flattened them onto cookie sheets. I made a creamy pesto by reducing part of a jar (1/3 - 1/2) of pesto into about 1/2 cup of milk. I spread the sauce onto the dough then added mushroom, olives, cooked chicken, cheese, and onion onto half of each piece of dough. Then I folded the dough over and pressed the ends together. I baked them in the oven until the dough had a beautiful crispy brown color. I served these with a hearty ground elk and veggie soup that had been simmering for a couple hours on the stove. Dessert was some Tollhouse cookies that I had made this morning. I wish I had taken pictures because the meal was definitely a success.

Since I decided to begin these Sunday Brunches at about 9.00 this evening I didn't get pictures this week, but I hope to have plenty for future weeks. If you would also like to participate in future Sunday Brunches just let me know. I would love to turn these into a linky party. If you're not a cook your "recipes" can be a favorite tutorial instead.

Have a wonderful week and thanks for stopping by. :)

*When I cook (unless I'm baking) I do not measure things out. I eyeball everything. I use a little bit of this and a lot of that and taste test often.

02 February 2011

WIP Wednesday

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Everything is pretty much the same as last week, except that I got 2 WIPs done this week. I completed the Cosmo Bag, which took most of the week to finish. I also finished half of the "secret project." Which is an apron for my boss. The other half of that picture from last week is an apron for the other cook.

The Birdie Big Blocks and Cottage Apron still have not moved from where they were stashed last week.

I do have some upcoming projects that need to be started before we move at the end of the month, but they are still in my head for the time being. Hopefully I'll have more to show you next week.

Thanks for stopping by!

01 February 2011

Fabric Tuesday

Go on over to Quilt Story to see everyone's fabric creations for Fabric Tuesday!

Here's what I got done this week:
Cosmo Bag
First bag of Amy Butler's Style Stitches Sew Along over at My Crafty Crap.

Close-up of button closure

This bag took up most of my weekend. It took me a good part of a day to cut all the pieces and iron on the fusible interfacing. Constructing the bag took a couple days, and it's absolutely worth the time that it took. It's a great bag and it's going to be my bag for carrying all my sewing things when I go to quilt guild meetings. The pockets on the side are tall and skinny and hold my good scissors perfectly. The inside pockets are very large and fits my 8 1/2" square and idea book. There's plenty of room for whatever project I'm working on and all the extras I need.

My other project for the week was an apron for my boss, who is the cook at the bar/cafe where I work part time. She loves purple so when I found this fabric at the op shop in town I knew it would be perfect for her. The main body of the apron is canvas. I split each pocket (upper and lower) into three sections. The upper pocket has a section that's the perfect size for a lighter since she always seems to be losing her lighter.
This is the fourth canvas apron that I've made. It's a very easy, quick project and looks great (in my opinion). :)

Thanks for visiting!