Monday, January 31, 2011

Ribbon Flowers

This year I'm getting married. It could be no other way that I would hand-make as many things as possible. I am designing my dress, and my mother is making it. She will also make my cake. I'm making the invitations. I'm thrifting a great number of other things. I may even make the candles. And yes, I will also make the flowers. The idea of ribbon and fabric flowers disgusted me at first. Dirty-pink-old-woman-curtain-looking things came to mind. Ugh. But then I saw these. I fell in love. I HAD to make them.

I don't usually do the crafty sort of thing with needle and thread, but I've done some sewing in my time and thought this shouldn't be so hard. Well, many many many attempts later, I have what looks like a decent ribbon flower. My technique needs refined, particularly with folding consistent petals, but I'm proud.

Notes to self:
Don't use shiny ribbon - it doesn't hold! It just slides around.
Use strong enough thread. Many of my flowers could have been saved if not for weak thread.
Make small folds in the ribbon, or your petals will be flimsy.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Wedding Quilt

I'm terribly excited about the quilt my soon-to-be mother-in-law is working on as a wedding gift for Ron and I. She was kind
enough to let me have my input, so I sent her a draft and she reworked it to fit a queen size. She (Gail) is also posting her progress as she goes on her blog Sip and Sew. Oh, goody!

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Lemony Shrimp with White Beans

This is one of my favorite meals. It's simple to prepare, has minimal ingredients and yet the flavor is well- balanced. I got it from Real Simple, only modifying it from using butter to olive oil and swapping the couscous for jasmine rice. Serve it with a vegetable or salad for a full meal.


1 Tbsp Olive oil
2 garlic cloves, chopped
4 scallions, chopped
1 lb. medium shrimp, peeled and deveined (or use frozen salad shrimp)
1 can cannelloni beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 ¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and scallions; cook 30 seconds. Add shrimp and cook, stirring, 3 minutes or until they begin to turn pink. Stir in beans, parsley, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Cook until heated through, about 3-5 minutes. Serve over rice.

Monday, January 03, 2011

Gourmet Grilled Cheese

My fiancĂ© has this goal to plan out all the places we eat when we travel. He figures it’s a waste of time eating the same old cheap fast food junk when we can forge new experiences and broaden our tastes. For example, yes, it may be a routine drive home from the holidays with his parents, but that doesn’t mean we can’t take a few minutes to enjoy a meal we’re proud to say we ate. I completely agree. So in Cleveland we stopped, and thanks to UrbanSpoon we had a lunch we’ll never forget.

What was so great about Melt Bar & Grilled was their a) reasonable prices b) extensive selection c) fresh, and quality ingredients d) casual and lively atmosphere e) menu options for both our tastes. Oh, yeah, and rethink everything you knew about grilled cheese.

a) Seriously. For my insanely awesome veggie burger plate complete with house-baked bread, slaw and a mound of fresh-cut fries, $8 is a steal.

b) I promise you’ll find something to suite your palate. And if you thought fried Twinkies was only for the fair, you’re officially wrong. Also, we rarely do alcohol, but if you like beer with your grilled cheese, they have a huge and not-your-ordinary selection.

c) Yes, they make their own dressings and sauces, including the chipotle tofu mayo that was slathered on my sourdough.

d) Friendly servers? Check. Spacious dining? Check. A Christmas Story lamp? Check.

e) Boy can have his meat and cheese. Girl has vegetarian (and vegan!) options. It’s a win-win.

Wanna see their menu? Click here.

2 locations: East & West