May 17, 2011

Homemade Playdough!

I finally found a homemade playdough recipe that I love!  I've tried several, and you're probably thinking, she's never posted anything about homemade playdough.  And you're right, I haven't.  Because I didn't like any of them.  Some come out gooey, no matter what, some are grainy, some smell gross, some go bad in a few days, but this one meets all my requirements.  I love the feel of it, the scent, and it's super easy.  When I showed it to the Hubby, his response was, 
"Hey, that actually looks like Play-Doh."  
I heard about it from Meg, she got it from Marina, and she got it from Tiny Bird Organics.
If you don't want to follow the links, the ingredients and instructions are at the bottom of this post.   
 Whenever a recipe calls for oil, I generally use Olive Oil.  Unless it very expressly states to use a specific type.  I had bought Walnut Oil for a food recipe, and this big bottle is all they had.  So I used it for this, thinking that perhaps it would add a pleasing nutty aroma.  Honestly, I can't tell.
 It has to sit after you cook it on stove.  I didn't think to take a picture of the concotion while it was on the stovetop-the instructions say stir constantly, so I was too busy for it anyway.
Once there was enough for everyone, I lost my helpers.  Ahh, well, that's okay, I understand.  I really enjoy this stuff-very nice to mold and smash.

The orginal recipe made a pound, but I halved it, since I didn't know if I would like it or not.  I'll save you the trouble and give you both sets of measurements.

To make one pound-
1.5 cups of flour
1/3 cup of salt
2 teaspoons cream of tarter
1.5 cups water
1.5 tablespoons oil
Food Coloring

To make 1/2 a pound
3/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons & 1.5 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cream of tarter
3/4 cup water
4 teaspoons oil
Food Coloring

Mix dry ingredients in stove-top pan.  Add wet ingredients, including food coloring, if you want.  Cook over medium heat, sitrring constantly until thick.  It takes about 5 minutes for it to turn into a single mass, the longer you cook it, the more solid and less sticky it will be when you take it out of the pan.
Set dough on plate/countertop/whatever and let it cool for 3 minutes.  Knead it into a ball.  If it's to sticky, add flour and cook a little longer next time.
You can get really organic with this if you use natural food dyes, which I didn't b/c I didn't want to take the time and effort.  Remeber that it takes 3-4 times as much red dye to make anything truely red and not pink.

Happy Thoughts Everyone!

February 4, 2011

Rearrangeing difficulties

I mentioned before that I was going to be cleaning out and organizing the sewing room.  And I have been, it's mostly consisted of taking things out of the room, putting them into some sort of storage, and then putting that into the attic for future use.  I'm down to the last bit.
 I've discovered that I have an obnoxious amount of stuff.  The really sad part is that much of it gets used, at the very least weekly.  However, I don't have room for all of the things I use to be out all the time.  As I've been sorting, it's occured to me that I might work more effieciently and finish things faster if I get rid of some of the distractions.  Flylady says never get out more than you can do in an hour, and she also says you should set a timer.  She suggests working in 15 minutes increments, which I've found works really well with little children-stop what you're doing, spend a few mintues playing, go back to work for 15 minutes. Lather, rinse, repeat.
 I'm also hoping that if I have less available, I'll use moreof what's out.  Which is where the difficult decisions are.  What to keep out?  How to decide which idea to work on next?  How much of this or that should I have handy?  Once I've gone through everything, I have to decide where to put it.
I have to consider a few things when I get to that point-
I don't work well in clutter, and I have to keep somethings out of the reach of little hands.  I also want my space to be inspiring, a space I want to work in-no point in setting aside a 9' X 6' space if you never want to do anything there. 
Suggestions are welcome!
Happy Thoughts, Everyone!

January 20, 2011

Demoliton Day!!

The Hubby & I moved into this house in the fall of 2003.  And I have wanted to take out the island from the first year we moved in.  However, it took until now to convince Hubby that this was a good idea.  As soon as he sort of agreed, I set a date and called in the troops.  Sorry the pictures are blurry, we were laughing quite a bit.
The Troops-The Quilter(right side) & S'up Girrl(left)
The Quilter immediately declared herself project manager due to carpel tunnel issues that prevented her of being any use otherwise.  She did bring the necessary tools, but I guess she didn't want to be called the
go-fer-girl.  Her hubby, The Deputy, loaded the vehicle and made sure she had safety glasses.
 First thing, I popped the counter top off-a few strong hits with the sledge hammer
 Then the project manager tried to use her cordless drill.  Thankfully, the union rep stepped in.
 This was sort of a (belated) birthday present for me, so they decorated the wall before knocking it down.  Or maybe no matter how old you get, coloring on the walls is always fun!
 My cake is bursting into flames, but she did put butterflies on it.  I also got a present, and I'm not sure if that says snort or short.
 SA-WING!  Must say, that was fun! 
 She's all ready and dressed appropriately with her jammies, boots and safety glasses-I mean, she is the union rep, after all.  Look closely, I tried to open my present, but no luck- union rep jokes that there must be to much tape on it.
 Project manager did a couple one arm swings, if you look, you can see that she did manage to dent the island.
 Then we loosened it from the floor
The Hubby wasn't really aware that this was going on, so they wrote him a note.
 And the best part of the demolition came when the project manager put her foot at the top of the island and pushed it over!  Yes, we were ridiculously happy about it!
 It was a quick and relatively easy job, even with clean up.  The union rep and I came up with possible responses from The Hubby when he came home to find that part of the house was missing.
 Going to have to play around with where to put the furniture.  We still have remodeling to do-new lighting, a functional island in the kitchen, lastly new floors.  However, this change gives me a great deal of satisfaction.
Happy Thoughts, Everyone!