Monday, February 28, 2011

One Vicious Vixen

A few weeks ago,  we said good-bye to one vicious vixen, the reason behind Faster Kittykill! Blog! Blog!, Tura Santana. She was buxom, black hair and ferocious.  She could kick anyone's butt and look amazing doing it. Sure, her movies were not Oscar winners, hell, they weren't even "B" movies, but she had something...she had attitude that women wanted and men drooled over.

I loved that her past was shady, she was slightly loony but still very sweet. She was smart, owning all the rights to her image and refused to allow anyone to take advantage of her. Before her death she was working on a documentary of her life. Even at age 72 she meant business.

I have featured her fine movies here before but they definitely deserve another shout out.You can find these outstanding  blips of cinema history at your local video store or on Netflix. Be warned-they are not for the faint of heart. Her bosoms alone can cause a coronary. Check out Faster Pussycat, Kill! Kill!, Astrozombies or The Doll Squad, all wonderful  tastes of her take no prisoners attitude. 

I like to think that she is up in heaven showing the big man upstairs some karate moves. Wherever she is, I know that she is kicking ass and taking names, cause she wouldn't have it any other way. Good-bye my little buxom vixen-you will be missed.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Salivating Saturday

Banana bread is the easiest quick bread in the world to make and what better way to make use of those old bananas that no one wants to eat. I like banana bread but chocolate banana bread-watch out, cause I will fight you for the last crumbs. The chocolate is not overpowering and with a little bit of butter-SO GOOD!

Chocolate Banana Bread

1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips (dark or milk, your choice)
2 large eggs lightly beaten
1/2 cup melted butter, slightly cooled
3 ripe or overripe bananas well mashed
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place oven rack to middle position. Butter and flour (or spray with a non stick vegetable/flour spray) the bottom and sides of a large loaf pan.

In a large bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder, baking soda an salt.

In a medium-sized bowl combine the mashed bananas, eggs, melted butter, and vanilla. 

Fold in wet ingredients into dry ingredients. The batter will be very thick and slightly chunky. Now fold in nuts and chips.

Bake until bread has risen and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 55 to 65 minutes

Friday, February 25, 2011

Feel Good Friday!

Howdy pardners! It's Friday  and guess what? I have a deep secret to share with you. I'm a little embarrassed, but I figure I'm among friends, so what the heck. I have secretly always wanted to be a cowgirl. As I look out my window and watch the traffic, I yearn for a wide open space to do my cowgirl thing.
Isn't she the cutest? I'm pretty sure that I look this cute when I am out on the range-and by range, I mean my backyard. My friend Becky stitched this up for me when we first met. She's good people and does some awesome stitching! 

 No one captured the wild west and rodeos like Erwin E. Smith. His photos show real cowboy and cowgirl life and the colorful pageantry of wild west shows. 

Even though I can't live out my fantasy of roping and riding (at least right now), I watch American Cowgirl and get my quick fix

I'm pretty sure I need this shirt to be a real cowgirl.

I definitely need these boots

And maybe this horse...I need to start off slow, I don't want to get bucked off.

Oh my little wranglers! One day I will live out my dream of having a little piece of land. Do a little farming, a little riding, a little gazing of OMP in his wranglers...oops, probably should kept that one to myself. Until then, I will just have to keep looking up at the stars and wishing. Yeehaw!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Moments That Take Your Breath Away

Hi everyone! I'm so sorry that I have been MIA for the past couple of days. Reality once again has gotten in the way of me having fun.  OMP and I loss a family friend  and quite honestly, it has hit us like a ton of bricks.

The loss of a friend not only breaks your heart but also has you questioning your own mortality. It makes you wonder if you have everything in order and even more so, makes you think about the things that you haven't done yet. Here's the thing about life-it is short and it can be taken away at any minute, hell, any second.

The most amazing thing about death is how it reminds us to live. It reminds us to love. It reminds us how limited time really is. Last night, I sat on the couch with my husband, we held each other, with dogs crawling all over us, and all I could think of was how blissful it was. How fortunate I am and how I now had a wonderful memory of my family for the future. If I left this world tomorrow, this one moment in time has been captured and will bring a smile to OMP's face for the rest of his life. How beautiful is that?

I'm not trying to be morbid or a downer, on the contrary, I am trying to get you to see how wonderful you are and how wonderful everything around you should be. You need to smell the flowers, jump in more puddles, down more pixie sticks and pop rocks! Catch a snowflake on your tongue. Look up at the stars. My only request is don't do it alone! Take a loved one with you-it could be your snuggle bunny, your silly cat, or the lazy dog. Just let someone share that memory with you!

The people we love can be taken away in an instance and that truly tugs my soul in different directions. I weep for the loss and celebrate life in the same breath. I try to reason with the loss and figure out a way to make my own life more meaningful. The one thing that I do know is that every little minute should be celebrated, even the crappy ones. Those crappy minutes can teach you a lot, but that lecture is for another day. Life isn't the breath you take, but the moments that take your breath away.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Feel Good Friday!

Awww man! The weekend is here and I am happy about that! Did you survive? Are you ready to get a little dirty?  I know I am!

This is just too sweet. The bunny is a pin. Refabulous does beautiful embroidery (check out her butterfly), super cute pin cushions and this little guy...

I have become a gardening nut and can't wait to move to the country to have a little hobby farm with goats, chickens, a wonderful barn...until then I can The Fearless FarmGirl blog. Patty is very sweet and I love reading about her adventures in gardening and making treats for her dog. My favorite entry is the one about WalMart.

Time to start planting your seeds and getting your plants ready for spring. Even if you live in a tiny apartment, you can still grow something-a little herb garden, tomatoes, a strawberry pot. Try it! You will find such a reward in getting dirty and growing your own food. Burpee seeds are well known for their catalog and are probably the most commercial out there. If you are looking for something wonderfully rare and exotic, check out Heritage Harvest. Both offer great seeds and advice on their sites.

I need this gardening apron. NEED IT!

EEEP! I can't wait to get my gardening on! Maybe I'll even start with some indoor herb gardens this weekend. A little rosemary in my life, a little bit of thyme on the side.....Enjoy your weekend-get out there and GROW!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Pixies! Pixies! Pixies!

Just like the title says....I deliver. I found this pattern years ago and it was one of the first things I stitched up for OMP.

Monday, February 14, 2011

A Little Bit of Love

Love is everywhere today. Boxes of chocolates are flying off the shelves, love poems are being written and smooches are being had all over the world. Now, I love Valentines Day, but I hate romance movies. They are so over the top ridiculous, the dialogue pains me to no end and the stories are week and insulting... with that being are my favorite movies for lovers.

My first choice for a great couple's movie is Grease. How can you not call this a wonderful Valentines movie? It's classic, plus you and your sweetie can sing all the songs together while acting out the scenes...oh yeah, a little role play to spice up the romance. Seriously,  trust me on this one. If you pop this dvd into the player, your scoring points will go through the ceiling. You two can decide who's gonna be Sandy and who's gonna be Danny-I'm staying out of that one. 

Okay, fine, so singing and role playing isn't your sort of thing. You want something a little more classic but will still give you a chuckle. How about Bringing Up Baby? This film has two of my favorites-Cary Grant and Katherine Hepburn in it. You've got a little bit of science, some romance and a terrier! How can you go wrong with a terrier in a movie-you can't, you just can't.

My last love movie has one of my favorite romance guys in it. Almost all of my favorite movies about love have this guy in it. Say Anything, Better Off Dead, Gross Pointe Blank...I'm talking about John Cusack. This time he stars in the quirky  comedy romance High Fidelity. The music alone will make you so very happy and in the mood.

Alright my little loves, time to for me to get my groove on...awww yeah....that's what I'm talking about...Happy V-day. XOXOX

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Salivating Saturday

Saturday dinners are usually either super fancy or totally laid back. Tonight's dinner was totally laid back and very easy. Chicken Milanese is easy to whip up on a night when you just want to order take out.

Chicken Milanese
4 skinless chicken breasts
4 large eggs, beaten
bread crumbs
1 teaspoon coarse salt, plus more for serving
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese. 
A pinch of cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for serving
4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 lemons, cut into 6 wedges

Place the chicken breast in a freezer bag and tenderize both sides. Place chicken in egg wash.

Put the breadcrumbs on a large plate and mix in the salt and pepper. One by one remove the chicken breasts from the eggs and lightly coat both sides in the breadcrumbs. Place the pieces on a rack while you continue with the remaining chicken breasts.

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter and 2 tablespoon of the olive oil until bubbling but not browning. You will have to cook the chicken in two batches. Lay half of the chicken breasts in the pan, without crowding, and cook until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes.

Serve the chicken with a wedge of lemon and a sprinkling of salt and pepper.

OMP loves this chicken dish with a salad and a side of pasta. You can add more spices to make the chicken hotter or leave out some to serve mild. The butter and the oil need to be used together to achieve the perfect crust on the chicken. Enjoy! 

Friday, February 11, 2011

Feel Good Friday

FRIDAY! FRIDAY! FRIDAY! We made it! I am feeling so good. My work day is almost over and I am ready to kick back and relax with my sweetie and the pups. I LOOOOOVVVVVEEEE Fridays!

I would like to thank OMP for putting me in an Adam Ant mood today....

This is just about the cutest valentine EVER! Xperimentl is so talented! Not only in the embroidery field (BTW, her work always blows me away) but with gingerbread, sewing and toys.

D.I.Y. Louisville is a great blog offering up so many awesome valentine ideas.  I'm in love with the dessert table and the free valentines. Get those little kids away from that table! It's all mine!

Speaking of OMP, oh honey! If you are reading this, I like this necklace and just about everything else in this shop. Just saying, for future reference. Zafirena offers wonderful vintage pieces mixed with contemporary style.

 This is so not okay but I couldn't resist.

Well, there ya go. A little bit of love to start your weekend off just right. I really am sorry about the last picture (okay, not really). I am off to start my smooching early! Oh OMP, where are you?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Let Me Call You Sweetheart

I was scouring my patterns to see if I could find any cute little valentines for you. Well...I didn't exactly find valentiney patterns but I did find a couple patterns that is just dying to be modified. I love the fact that they look surprised, like we just caught them in the act.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tie One On Tuesday

 Oh yeah....feeling the love in the air....Don't be shy baby...come on over to the couch and snuggle up with me. I've got a few good cocktails to make sure you are warm and fuzzy on the inside....Oh Good Lord, who am I kidding, I'm about a sexy as Phyllis Diller. HA! HA! HA! are a few cocktails for you and your sugar booger.

Remember that song Afternoon Delight? You don't? Well, look it up and then let it get stuck in your head for a few hours or days... while you're waiting, mix up this lovely concoction for your own sky rockets in flight.

Love in the Afternoon
2 ounces fresh orange juice
1/2 ounce rose water
2 fresh mint leaves
4 ounces dry (slightly sweet) champagne
Add the orange juice and rose water to a champagne flute. Twist the mint leaves with your fingers and drop them in the glass. Fill the glass with champagne.
This next cocktail is a throwback to the 1960s and was a big hit during that time period. Now you can enjoy it just like you do your Hey Love album you bought at midnight while watching public access TV. How's that for an obscure reference?
Soul Kiss Cocktail
2 ounces Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey
1/4 ounce Dry Vermouth
1/4 ounce Dubonnet Rouge
1/2 ounce Orange Juice
Combine liquids in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake to blend and chill. Strain into a cocktail glass and live large like Don Cornelious.

Remember that Axis of Evil everyone talked about a few years ago. Well, they were wrong! There is an Axis Kiss cocktail that is anything but evil but it will definitely make you do evil things-maybe that's what they were talking about.
Axis Kiss Cocktail
dash of amaretto almond liqueur
dash of creme de cassis
chilled Champagne
Pour the amaretto and creme de cassis into a champagne flute.
Top with Champagne.
Make the drink sweeter with larger dashes of amaretto and creme de cassis.

Okay my wonderful valentines. I think I have made enough bizarre references to late night TV and 1970's one hit wonders. Now I'm off to comb my archives for even more obscure references and even better cocktails. H's and K's too all of you!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Scrappy Dog Sunday!

Are you ready for some PUPPY BOWL 2011? Awwww yeah! While the rest of the United States is watching football, the Pedersen household will be watching Animal Planet's Puppy Bowl for the 7th year in a row.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Puppy Bowl, it is hours upon hours of cute puppies playing. That's it. There is a kitten half time show and this year, they've added chickens into the mix.  There are several puppies and they just play and play and play. It drives Lola, Jujube and Pete crazy! They try to attack the TV, they jump around and have a good time. While they are attacking the TV, I get to scream over the cute puppies. It's a win-win situation.

So, get your snacks ready, plant yourself on the couch and prepare for hours upon hours of cute puppiness. It will brighten your day and make your scrappy dogs happy.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Salivating Saturday

Some days I am just plain lazy. I don't want to cook and after eating my weight in red vines, I need to make something with a little more nutrition. On days like this, I will make up a quick pizza. Pizza dough is the easiest thing in the world to make and you get to top your pizza with whatever you want. Although, I don't recommend red vines-yeah, not good.

The following is the easiest pizza dough ever! It will make 2 pizzas or one deep dish pizza.

1 teaspoon Instant Or Active Dry Yeast
1-½ cup Warm Water
4 cups All-purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
⅓ cups Olive Oil

Sprinkle yeast over 1 1/2 cups warm (not lukewarm) water. Let stand for a 5 minutes.

In a mixer, combine flour and salt. With the mixer running on low speed (with paddle attachment), drizzle in olive oil until combined with flour. Next, pour in yeast/water mixture and mix until just combined, and the dough comes together in a sticky mass.

Coat a separate mixing bowl with a light drizzle of olive oil, and form the dough into a ball. Toss to coat dough in olive oil, then cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap and set it aside for 1 to 2 hours, or store in the fridge until you need it.

When you are ready to make the pizza, grab HALF the pizza dough (recipe makes 2 crusts) and squeeze the dough toward the bottom to form a nice, tight, pulled ball. You can roll out the pizza with a rolling pin if you’d like, but sometimes it’s just as easy to throw it around and pull and stretch till it feels right. And when the crust is nice and thin, lay it on an oiled baking sheet or pizza pan. Drizzle a little olive oil on the dough and spread it with your fingers. Very lightly sprinkle some salt on the crust.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Top your crust with your toppings of choice. Then bake for 15 to 17 minutes, or until crust is golden brown and toppings are bubbly.

There ya go! Easy as pie...get it pie...HA! The second dough will last in the fridge for 3-5 days and in the freezer up to 6 months. I usually make a couple of batches, wrap the dough individually and freeze. 

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Quit Marshing My Mellow

Okay, so I have rewritten this post about 5 times. At first I was going to write about how negative people invade our lives like those creepy bugs from the Star Trek movie (KAHN!!!!!). I tried writing about pity parties, how to not take things so personal and then it hit me...I know exactly what I should write about.

Let me give you a quick background. I read A LOT of blogs and while I was being self absorbed and trying to avoid writing another report, I read about a woman with severe depression and how she looked past that to help someone else. It hit me like a ton of bricks. Although I have my problems, and I love to sometimes make mountains out of molehills, I am truly happy and blessed. Yes, negative thoughts and people will get to me, they will burrow in my skull like those bugs, lay their little negative eggs and make my head explode...okay, that was a little gross...but in reality, it's how I react to them that's important. It's how I see the BIG picture around me. Not just the past hour of crap.

I guess that's what I'm trying to drive home. People and things will drive you crazy, will try to bring you down but how you react to them is really up to you. I know this is a  constant theme with me, but it's so true and I think everyone needs to have this bug planted in the brain.

Life is too short to dwell on sadness, what if's and negative nancys. It just is not worth it. What is worth it is the smile on your face when you think happy thoughts, the sound of that special someone's voice, the shake of your butt when your favorite song comes on.

Get out there!  Plant those positive vibes. Drive people crazy with your smile!

When life is marshing your mellow, make whoopie pies! And yes I KNOW it's harshing my mellow but I like marshmallows.