Sunday, March 20, 2011

Crafty Morning!

I woke up late today!  Of course, we were up very late last night too!  My other half was in a pool tournament and we didn't get dinner until after 10pm!  Next time he makes it to the "Best of the Best" tourney, I will plan meals better!

Because it was so late, we opted to go out to one of our favorite restaurants, rather than try to cook that late.  We went to Perkins, which we love because it is such a low-carb friendly place to eat!  If you are lucky to live close to one, I suggest going!  My other half ordered his usual "Ham & Cheese Omelet" which normally comes with hash browns or Potatoes as well as your choice of pancakes, toast, or a muffin.  We get their omelets with a side of Bacon instead (sometimes I get sausage links or patties).  I decided to try something new and got the Pork Chops (which I later decided I should have gotten the Lemon-Pepper ones...plain was just a little boring...)!  It was two fairly thin chops (1/4-1/2 inch think) seasoned with (I'm guessing) salt & pepper, center cut with just a little bone still on the side.  We buy loin chops to cook at home...neither of us care for the bone or the stuff around it (grizzle and fat usually).  They let you pick your own sides too!  The chops normally come with applesauce and a dinner roll, which I can't eat anyway, but the waitress forgot them.  She said she'd be back with them, and I just asked to her to keep them.  Easy enough and she didn't have to run back to the kitchen!  For my sides I chose Green Beans with Bacon (it's canned green beans boiled with a little bacon in the water, which ends up on the plate too...the bacon, not the water) and a side salad, which I piked the red onion slices off of as well as the croutons (that I forgot to ask not to be put on).  The sides they offer with their "dinner" meals are great!  I copied their "Side Note" menu off their website, but added a few comments to them too. ;)  They have so many good choices!  Just ask if you aren't sure about how they make it.

On a Side Note

  • Side Salad - Perfect!  Just ask for them to leave off the Croutons (I use ranch dressing when we go out, but feel free to bring your own LC dressing or use Oil/Vinegar. 
    Butter-Steamed Broccoli - Another great choice, but not one I've tried yet.
    Glazed Baby Carrots - I'd skip this one, carrots are high carb on their own...but the glaze is most likely sugar laden!
    Buttered Corn No corn for use Low-carbers!
    Green Beans with Bacon - So awesome I have it every time I order from the "timeless classics" menu!
    Sautéed Asparagus - A good choice, but remember on level 1 of Atkins, 6 spears is all you get (I think it's 12 on level 2).
    Sautéed Spinach - If you like Spinach, this should be okay, but ask!
    Baked Potato (available after 4 p.m.) - This is a no-no.
    Mashed Potatoes - This is also a no-no too!
    Macaroni & Cheese - Not the kind we can have, lol.
    French Fries - Potatoes again, skip it!
    Herb Rice Blend - LC doesn't allow for White rice...skip it too.
    Citrus Rice Blend - Another rice dish...skip this too.
For breakfast this morning though, I cooked (something I haven't been doing recently)!  I made Chocolate Donut Holes (using a low-carb funnel cake recipe)!  They turned out really good too!  I just added a spoonful of Cocoa Powder to the funnel cake recipe before I added the Protein Powder.  I also added a little cinnamon (which is supposed to be mixed with Splenda and used to dust the cakes) to the mix.  They turned out really moist!  To go with them, I microwaved some "heat & serve" type breakfast sausages.  I also had about 1/4 cup of a sugar free Jello Parfait that I ran across at the Dollar Tree yesterday.  It wasn't great...and I make better...but it was pretty good!  Not a breakfast food though...

Basket as I bought it.

This morning after such a good breakfast, I was feeling a little I got out the wire basket I bought a few weeks ago (at the Dollar Tree again).  It's the kind you get the coconut husk basket liners to go into (which I also purchased at the Dollar Tree), but this one is destined to be used in my kitchen for fruits and veggies and things (like onions) that need air circulation to not spoil to fast.  We had one growing up that was tiered with 3 wire mesh baskets, I have been looking for on e of those since we moved to Spokane and haven't even found anyone that knows what I'm talking about!  The closest I've come is someone directing me to a fruit basket with a banana hook above it!  That worked great while we were eating a lot of bananas...but can't have them now that we are low-carbing it, so pointless to have!

I do have to point out the light switch cover in that mother (I believe) painted that for me when I was born or extremely young!  It's two bears playing on a teeter totter!  My office is mid-move, we are moving my office (eventually) downstairs into a corner of the Family Room (which will then be curtained off) and my current office (one of two bedrooms we don't sleep in) will officially be out Guest Room.  Since most of our visitors are young kids (our nephews range from 1.5 to almost 8 years old), I thought this was the perfect room for it!  The yellow on the bottom is starting to come off, but I still like having it here.

I bought 3 rolls (9 feet each) of wire edged ribbon yesterday (at the Dollar Tree) to "test" my idea for the weaving on these.  If you're brave, they also sell lengths of colored wire at the Dollar Tree closest to my house...I was thinking I could use that and a Tupperware dish as a mold to make some really colorful baskets!  But back to my ribbon...  I got this "mesh" style one and two that were sheer white with a gold glittery lattice painted on them.  In retrospect, darker ribbons would have been better since the wire of my basket is Black!  One basket looks pretty good with all 27 feet of ribbon on it...I would use more if the ribbons were smaller though, I used 2.5" ribbon.

I didn't "glue down" the ribbons so that I could take them off and change the color scheme if I wanted to, I just bent the wiring in the ribbon around one of the spokes and started weaving around the basket (over one spoke and under the next), all the way around to the end of the ribbon.  I did the same thing with all three spools of ribbon and just "squished" the ribbons toward the base of the basket so I had room to get the rows all on.  Then, I made the "pretty" when I had all of the ribbon on.  I also tightened the ribbon up after the spool was on so that it wasn't super loose too.

It isn't "perfect", but it looks pretty nice for just being thrown together in about 15 minutes!  And, the ribbons will keep things like smaller onions and Garlic and such from falling out, provided they don't manage to find the hole in the very bottom of the basket, lol!  I plan to remedy that hole with smaller ribbon...but that will need to be hot glued on (a loop of ribbon crossing between 2 spokes for all sides should make a nice and solid bottom there).  I have a few more ideas, but this is definitely a craft I could do with my nephews when they visit!  I also have plans for using pony beads and twine to make hanging planters for standard planters (I made plain old twine ones last year for my herbs, but I want more color this year)!  I even bought some cute little craft butterflies to attach to them too!  Anything to add a little more color to my deck, I eventually want to have a nice little seating area out there...
All finished, for now!

Wow, it has taken me 3 hours to get this posted!  In my defense though, my Mother called and I talked to her for 2 hours while I sorted Pony Beads by color into snack size Ziploc and then, our neighbor's dog got out of their yard and I ran out to call her over (she is the sweetest dog) and ended up petting her while her owner walked across the yard.  She'd rather come get pets from me than obey Travis, lol.  While I was out there I was able to tell them about our chickens too.  They were the only neighbors next to or across from us that I hadn't gotten told about them yet.  He didn't seem too interested in hearing about them (the rest of the neighbors were almost as excited as I am), but he didn't seem to object  either, lol.

As for the girls...they have discovered how much fun it is to dig through the pine shavings looking for "treats" and have decided that the "best food" must be in the bottom of the feeder!  They emptied what was left in the feeder on top the brooder floor overnight, lol.  In a while, I'll take the feeder out and let them eat what they've tossed all over...then I'll replace the feeder, after I figure out something I can put under it so it isn't as easy for them to dig through!  The plate and paper towels under the water are keeping it really clean, no more than a few shavings in it throughout the day!  Too bad I can't fit two plates on the one side, lol.

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