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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Cedar Planked Salmon with Mango Salsa










This is one of my all time favorite recipes.  The cedar adds a touch of smoke flavor to the salmon fillets and it is so very easy to prepare. This is also very healthy and low calorie (I am still trying to get rid of the extra padding around my middle from the holidays).  I always serve it with Mango Salsa which I love.




 You can buy these cedar planks at your local grocery (if that doesn't work for you try Bed Bath and Beyond or any kitchen speciality store)  This particular brand comes in a two pack.
You will need to soak your plank completely submerged in water for a hour or more. (place a heavy object  on it to keep it from floating)






I usually use a teriyaki seasoning for the fillets (I have made teriyaki sauce in the past but I like to keep it simple these days so store bought is excellent).  I live in the southwest so I do envy those of you that are able to buy "fresh" salmon but for now I love these little portions.


Cedar Planked Salmon

Start by soaking your plank (remember if the plank is not soaked for at least an hour, it will catch on fire)  At this time I marinate my fillets with the teriyaki sauce and  I will turn them in about 30 minutes so the marinate covers both sides.  I also make the salsa at this time  and place it in the fridge to allow the flavors to marry.

When the plank is ready, I place the fillets on the plank leaving space between them to allow the smoke to surround the fish.  Of course I then take the easy way out, because my lovely Fellow takes over and places the planked salmon on the grill.  But just in case he is not around, this is what he does.

Heat the grill to medium and place the plank with the salmon on the grill, close the cover.  It will smoke, this is exactly what you want, keep the cover closed so the smoke can penetrate the salmon fillets.  Remove  in 10 minutes and check for doness, the fish should be flaky and cooked throughout. He removes the plank with the salmon.  Serve immediately with the awesome Mango Salsa (below)












Mango Salsa

1 Mango, diced
1/4 cup red onion. chopped
1 jalapeno, chopped (I used 2)
1/4 cup red bell pepper
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
salt to taste





Combine all ingredients, cover and chill in fridge. So Pretty and so easy.  And I believe a must with the Cedar Planked Salmon!





Linking to:     These Awesome Parties!
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Sunday, February 19, 2012

Working on the Big Truck!


My Fellow is still working (manufacturing, designing, welding etc) on the Big Truck.   He laughs and says if he wasn't  such a perfectionist he would be finished by now.

  If you don't know it yet, this is the truck that will be pulling our Fifth Wheel across the great United States.  Over a year ago we purchased a over the road  2002 Volvo 610 diesel truck. 

 Since we will be living in the RV full time,  my dream RV is kinda large. hehehe.  There is even a washer/dryer stackable in the front closet. 
 He did not wish to worry about climbing or coming down off any mountain with a vehicle that would have problems. We found this truck for $13,000.   A major price difference from an F-350 pickup and with so much more power.  
 He removed the commercial fifth wheel and is in the process of designing the bed of the truck to have enough space between the trailer hookup and the cab to place our quad runners or even a smart car on the back of the truck.  

He amazes me, no he does not have a degree in any kind of engineering, but he is a self taught designer and hands-on manufacturer of anything he decides to build.  I have watched his projects over the years and he is so talented! I try to help him but I am limited, I know tools but am unable to weld or cut metal.  (I was a mechanic's daughter and love to be in the middle of all things mechanical)  
 So the other day, he asked for my help I was elated (not that he ever makes me feel unneeded)!  I grabbed my old overalls and a hoody and hurried out to the scene of the project.  He has finished the framework and is now covering the bed with a heavy metal sheet.




He asked me to stand on the bed to push the metal sheet down in order for him to weld it to the frame.  Hahaha!  I guess my big help to him today is the extra pounds I gained over the holidays.  Hey, I do what I can!!













My Fellow working on the Big Truck!







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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Granddaughters

What's better than having daughters?      

           Granddaughters!!!!

It's like getting a second chance to be the person you wished you could be when you were raising your daughters.   And of course having grand kids is the ultimate blessing!  When I was raising my daughters, I worked full time,  I didn't have the time to do what I do now for my grand kids.  I have just finished crocheting a little monkey for my youngest granddaughter.  My crocheting talents are a little rusty and I have just obtained the "beginner" status again, so that was a challenge! But I hung in there because "Grammie" will do anything for the granddaughters!   And I am making Barbie clothes, hand over fist, and loving every minute of it.  Oh Yes! These little girls are ever so perfect.




My eldest granddaughter is a princess and all  girl.  She loves dressing up and all things girly.  She is confident, brilliant and has such a loving personality.  In her world, everything is exciting and amazing.  We went for a walk to the park during my last visit and I had ever so much fun, just walking with her!
She exclaimed "This is an adventure!!"   She then circled her eyes with her fingers and said "Use your binoculars!!!"  I was able to see the world through her eyes and yes, it was an amazing adventure!










We are still getting the know who the baby will become, what fun!  But for now she is a happy growing baby that is so responsive, showing her little emotions completely on her little face.   What a perfect little bundle and a special gift from God. I just love her so very much:)
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Monday, February 13, 2012

Priorities

MAYONNAISE JAR & TWO BEERS
When things in your life seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the 2 Beers.
A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full.
They agreed that it was.
The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full.
They agreed it was.
The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full..
The students responded with a unanimous 'yes.'
The professor then produced two Beers from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand.
The students laughed..
'Now,' said the professor as the laughter subsided, 'I want you to recognize that this jar represents your life.
The golf balls are the important things---your family, your children, your health, your friends and your favorite passions---and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.
The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your car..
The sand is everything else---the small stuff.
'If you put the sand into the jar first,' he continued, 'there is no room for the pebbles or the golf balls.
The same goes for life.
If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you.
Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness.
Spend time with your children.
Spend time with your parents.
Visit with grandparents.
Take your spouse out to dinner.
Play another 18 holes of golf.
There will always be time to clean the house, fix the disposal or deal with things from your job.
Take care of the golf balls first---the things that really matter.
Set your priorities.
The rest is just sand.
One of the students raised her hand and inquired what the Beer represented.
The professor smiled and said, 'I'm glad you asked.'The Beer just shows you that no matter how full your life may seem, there's always room for a couple of Beers with a friend.
Please share this with someone you care about. I JUST DID!
LIFE ISN'T ABOUT WAITING FOR THE STORM TO PASS..........
IT'S LEARNING HOW TO DANCE IN THE RAIN
(author unknown)
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Thursday, February 9, 2012

Free Barbie Valentine Dress Instructions

I made this adorable little Barbie Dress in a less than two hours. I use the same concept as the Ballerina Costume.

  Materials needed:   One (1)  1 inch diameter Red Covered pony tail holder
                                 Size C crochet hook
                                Red and White yarn
And I have a Barbie for a model to insure fit.

Round one: With the Red yarn work 30 single crochet stitches around the pony tail holder, join with a sl st in the first sc.
Next round: Chain 2 then Double crochet in the next two stitches, dc2 tog: continue this same pattern: At the end of the round, you should have decreased to a total of 21 stitches.
Continue double crocheting until dress measures 4  inches.
Tie off.
Use the white yarn, double crochet twice in every stitch to create ruffle on the bottom of the dress . Tie Off
Complete the neckline: With white yarn  chain 30, single crochet on the pony tail holder (3 times), chain 30 tie off.
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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Blacksmith


We have a local blacksmith that does amazing work.  Hooper Shannon  does everything by hand, heating the metal and pounding it into shape. 

We always see him at our local farmers' market and I love to see what new item he has designed.  He is soft spoken and gentle with a contagious laugh.  He is always friendly and always asks about my son.  His lovely wife Kate is usually with him and assists with the sales, they are both just good people.
These are small samples of his work:


                                                                  


This is one of the newest items I have purchased from Hooper, it is a chopping knife that was made from a file.  I bought it when we went to the Cowboy Cook off in Ruidoza.  We were pleased to learn that he is there every year demonstrating his talents and selling his work.
 



A large spoon and a ladle. These like numerous other cooking tools he designs have a little hook so it can be hung. We have a rod over our grill and these items hang and are ever so handy.
  

                                   






This is probably the item that is used most often.  It is a meat hook and used to turn steaks or chicken on the grill.  It is made from cast iron and I clean it the same as a good cast iron skillet.  Wash it, NO SOAP, and wipe it down with vegetable oil and heat to dry:)















This is my absolute favorite, a horse head letter opener made from a horse shoe. Hopper gave it to me a few years back and I absolutely love it!!












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