Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Richard Armitage is bringing sexy back!

Found this fan vid on YouTube, of course!

I first became aware of Richard Armitage from watching the final two episodes of the Vicar of Dibley, which was one of my favorite British comedies, starring Dawn French as the vicar. I then saw him in a BBC miniseries called North & South. He is one very handsome man! Apparently, I'm not the only one who thinks so. He looks like he coule be the UK's answer to Hugh Jackman. His fan base is kindof freakish in their demonstrations of admiration as evidenced by the following clip. Enjoy!:

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Canned and good to go!

After doing my research on canning/preserving, I ran out to the store this morning and bought some 1/2 pint canning jars, which I think are a much more manageable size for my marmalade. I reheated the marmalade and sterilized my jars and rings, etc. I followed the instructions here. The coolest thing is hearing the little "popping" sound the lids make when they seal as they're cooling. I knew I was on the right track then. The only bad thing is that I think I lost some of that pretty pink color (it darkened a bit) when I reheated it. I'll do better next time for sure. I canned 5 jars and put the remainder in the fridge to enjoy now. All I have to do is figure out who I'll share these goodies with.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Pink Grapefruit Marmalade

A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to find a jar of Elsa's Story Pink Grapefruit Preserves at Home Goods. I think I paid under $6.00 for it. It was amazing! I was hooked and immediately wanted to make some for myself. Only problem was that I had never made preserves or marmalade before and didn't know how to proceed. I Googled for recipes and when I found this one on, it sounded too good to be true. Too easy! I figured I had nothing to lose but a couple of grapefruit and some sugar. I happened to be watching the final season of Ballykissangel on DVD and one of the episodes involved a jam making competition. That was the impetus I needed to get off my butt and make the marmalade. Since I altered the recipe and process a little, I'll post the recipe here so I don't forget what I did.

Pink Grapefruit Marmalade

3 red grapefruit
1 kilo white sugar
6 tbsps. Realemon lemon juice

Place grapefruit in pressure cooker and add enough water to cover fruit halfway. Cook on high pressure 40 minutes. Release pressure and remove fruit to a large bowl with a large spoon so as not to lose any pulp. Cut fruit with a fork and knife into small pieces. Add lemon juice. Pour cut fruit into a large pot and add sugar. Bring to a boil over medium heat and boil for 15 minutes, stirring frequently. If you have a thermometer, bring to jel stage or 220 degrees. I did not have a thermometer so I just had faith that it would turn out.

Since I made this marmalade on the spur of the moment, I didn't think enough ahead to get some canning jars so I made a quick dash to the store and bought some pint containers. I figured that whomever I gave the marmalade to would just have to consume it all within 3 weeks or risk food poisoning. I was assured by one friend that this wouldn't be a problem and after tasting it, I am sure it won't be!

Saturday, May 09, 2009


Glue stick basted hexagons

I thought I blogged about this already but I guess it must have been a dream. I've been making my hexagons like this lately for a couple of reasons. First of all, it's much faster than basting with needle and thread and secondly, my eyesight isn't what it used to be. I've realized that I need reading glasses to see what I'm doing, especially since I am making such small stitches and using needles with tiny eyes. Also, I don't see too well when I'm up at 2:00 a.m. trying to sew! I don't sleep well at all these days. In fact, I have to be completely exhausted in order to fall asleep and stay that way. I'm thinking it might be the dreaded "change of life". Anyway, back to the glue stick case you're concerned that it will be difficult to remove the papers once the hexagons are sewn together, don't be. They release just fine! I honestly haven't come across a reason not to do it this way, especially since the glue will come off in the wash and the glue sticks are readily available in any drug store and are very inexpensive! Try it, you'll like it.