Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Casserole and DIY

I hope everyone had a happy Valentines Day. Mr. P and I went out for sushi and enjoyed a quiet night at home together. I was off work today, so I had some time to work on a more complex project. The yarn heart hanging in my kitchen window really inspired me. I've been saving cans and jars for the past week for a project involving gluing yarn around them. For a little variety I will also be using some of that vintage wall paper I found to cover them. They become instant flower holders, candle holders, or whatever pretty holder you want!

At my trip to the store today I found some great Peaches & Cream brand thread/yarn in the color I wanted, along with a spring rod and clearance flowers. Spring rod you say? Jars and cans? How is this related, you may ask? The plan is to cover the cans and jars. I have some floral wire on hand to wrap around the tops to be able to hang them. I will then hang the finished cans from the spring rod and pop that bad boy in my kitchen window. Hanging flower holder!

Recycled Hanging Flower Vases

  • 3 Recyled mason jars and/or cans. ( I used 2 soup cans and a relish jar, but if you have a bigger window you will need more!)
  • Elmer's Glue All
  • 1 skein of yarn/thread of your choise. I used Peaches&Cream in Daffodil Daze, it's more of a yarn used for dishcloths. it's not as "linty" as yarn used for clothing. Easier gluing!
  • Floral Wire
  • Curtain Spring Rod for your windows size. (awesome if you already have one at home!)
  • Any stock paper/contact paper whatever patterned paper you like! I'm using a great vintage wallpaper I found at the local thrift store.
  • Any other embellishments, ribbons, stickers. Be creative! Try to use what you have on hand!

First, tie the floral wire, length of your choice, around the tops of cans/jars. On one of my cans I put sticker letters, so I made the wire come up both sides to have a "handle" to hang it with.

Glue the yarn to 2 of your cans/jars. I started at the top and holding the glue, using the tip the whole time, just twisted the cans  and glued the yarn around. Using the tip made it a more continuous motion, less mess, and more precise layering. Remember to give the yarn lots of slack! Once finished, just snip off yarn and glue down.

Glue or modge podge your paper design onto the 3rd can. I also trimmed this one with the yarn and added scrap book sticker letters on it. I picked the word, "Dolce'" for sweet!

Hang spring rod in your kitchen window and hang your work! I added the clearence flowers I found today, but if I had the money and/or garden I would use fresh! I also hung my yarn heart up, even if the color kinda clashes!

I also made my mothers' Mexican Casserole. It's a very simple casserole dish, there are tons of variations found on the web. Here's her version.

Momo's Mexican Casserole


1lb. ground chuck
1 bag Nacho Cheese Dorritos
1 10 3/4oz can Rotel
1 10 3/4oz can Cheese soup
1 10 3/4oz can Cream of Celery
1 10 3/4oz can Tomato Soup
1 medium onion, diced
1 bag shredded "fiesta' cheese (2 cups)
1/2 can of water


Pre-heat oven to 350F. Crush dorritos in bag and layer on bottom of 13X9 baking dish. Sautee onion and cook beef in a skillet.

Combine all canned items in a large pot with 1/2 can of water, warm on med-low heat.

When beef is browned, add to sauce mixture in pot. Warm through. Pour evenly over dorritos in baking dish. Cover with shredded cheese.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbly. Let cool for 5 minutes to thicken. Yum!!!

Some suggestions/variations on this:
I used to add a can of black beans to the sauce mixture and would top it with sliced black olives. Mr. P doesn't like either of those, so I went back to my moms' basic recipe.
Add jalapenos for spice! Or other kinds of beans, even rice!
If the Dorritos are a bit much for you, I would suggest using regular tortilla chips or taco shells. For a healthier option try using multi-grain tortilla chips!
You can also top more chips on top of mixture then add the shredded cheese.

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