Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Fall is for Projects... and Granola

Summer was blissful.

But, like any other mom who needs to nurture her urges to plan, by late summer I was creating my list of "things I'll do when..." One of those being "when the kids are back in school."

I've been playing with color. So fun to see how swapping out one color block changes the dynamic.


I'm shamelessly ripping off an idea from Amanda and Mary Beth in making a Good Folks throw blanket. I ordered fat quarter bundles of this vivid set of fabrics directly from the designer, Anna Maria Horner. Would you ever put these colors and patterns together? I sure wouldn't. I have a long, long history as a color-phobe. I'm sure I'm not alone in that dirty little secret...

I recruited a little helper for the pinning. Seemed like a better use of our time than spending another hour trying to get her to nap.

If you peeked at either of those above links to stories about finished blankets, you may have noticed there was no how-to, no tutorial detailing the assembly of this blanket. Being a newbie sewer, this was slightly intimidating, but I have to admit that stitching squares together has to be among the easiest of projects.

I cut my fat quarters into 16" squares in my typical way, a slice here, a slice there, run to move the laundry, another cut, fetch the baby after naptime, one more cut, and it's time to pick up the kids at school! Such a relaxing hobby.

I'm waiting for my batting to be delivered, and then I'll figure out how to finish this off, likely using an old bedsheet for the back fabric.

I've also been doing a bunch of batch cooking: make two, freeze one. Spinach and leek lasagna, macaroni and cheese, chicken enchiladas, and stove-top pot roast.

Another big project was settling into a new desk corner. My temporary sofa table solution was really backfiring when the toddler figured out how to climb on the sofa herself and yank all the cords out of the monitor. So I followed the cues and moved my electronics to a safe(r) zone. Moving the family control tower was not a quick project (and, by the way, have I erroneously given the impression that any of my projects are quick?). See, I do have a sanded and primed craigslist find out on the driveway (thank you, sweet hubby). Which means I might be making a second move sometime in the future. Or maybe not. Anyhow, it does interfere with blog updates...

And I am still just ruthlessly obsessed with making granola. I'll share my latest recipe, a slight variation on my last, which is so cleverly titled "New Granola." I guess the next version will have to be "Even Newer Granola." Enjoy.

New Granola
Fills 3-5 quart jars.

Liquid Ingredients:
3/4 cup oil (I usually use canola but 1/2 cup coconut + 1/4 cup canola is delicious)
1/2 cup honey (I prefer clover or orange blossom)
1/2 cup maple syrup (I prefer Grade B)

Dry Ingredients:
9 cups rolled oats
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (or 1 cup whole wheat flour + 1/2 cup flaxmeal)
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 cup flaked coconut (I prefer unsweetened but it's hard to find)
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 325F. Combine the liquid ingredients in a large bowl and mix well. Add the dry ingredients to the liquids and stir to evenly distribute. Spread the mixture over two half sheet pans lightly covered with nonstick spray. (For a crispier granola, use three half sheet pans.) Bake for 20 min; for best results bake one sheet at a time. Store in the pantry in a well-sealed container.


Kylie said...

I love your granola. I'm excited to try the flax idea.

Kelly Lange said...

Mom, i helped with everything on this page