Search This Blog

Thursday, 12 July 2018

Making Self-lined Taped Curtains

Moving into a new house inevitably presents one with a whole new array of hick-ups. One of these was the height of the windows in my new abode. No ready-made curtains would fit these tall windows. I was forced to pack away all of my perfectly good curtains and set off to the fabric store to buy fabric to make curtains of the required length. In today's blog I show you how simple it is to sew taped curtains for yourself.


This is a view of the ceiling to floor, and wall to wall windows that needed curtains. As you can see, I was not lying about being in the process of moving in.


Start by pinning rolled seams for the sides of the curtains.


A top stitch always appears neater with longer stitches, so I recommend increasing your stitch length for the whole of this project.


Sew the seams on the sides for all of the curtains.


I then pin a single small seam at the top of the curtains.


Sew this seam for all of the curtains.


Fold the end of the curtain tape over and sew to give it a need finish. Do this on both ends.


Pin the curtain tape to the top of the fabric. Pin top and bottom of the tape.


When pinning the tape, make sure that the open ends of the tape are in the right position.


Sew along the top of the curtain tape.


Sew along the bottom of the curtain tape. Make sure you do not sew over the openings.


Insert the curtain hooks and space them evenly across the length of the curtain.


Completely inserted.


Fold a rolled hem at the bottom of the curtain and pin in place.


Sew the hems on all the curtains.


Stand on tiptoe on a ladder and hang your curtains with great effort. Too long? Too bad. It will have to wait for me to scrape up enough courage to take them down again before they get shortened!


Marietjie Uys (Miekie) is a published author. You can buy my books here:
You can purchase Designs By Miekie 1 here.
Jy kan Kom Ons Teken en Verf Tuinstories hier koop.
Jy kan Kom Ons Kleur Tuinstories In hier koop.
Jy kan Tuinstories hier koop.
You can follow Miekie's daily Bible Study blog, Bybel Legkaart, here in English & Afrikaans.
You may prefer to follow the traveling blog, A Pretty Tourist.
For more crafty ideas and great product reviews, visit A Pretty Talent on Facebook.
If you are in a literary mood, follow Miekie's musings, stories and poetry on A Pretty Author - Miekie.
Remember to keep nurturing your TALENT for making life PRETTY.
You can subscribe to any of these blogs and receive regular updates by email. Simply register your email address at the top of the applicable blog.

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Making A Hearty Vegetable Soup In The Slow Cooker

I am in the process of moving into a new house in Alberton, as I have taken up a teaching job here. This does not leave me with a lot of time to prepare food. With this in mind, and as it is winter, I decided to chop up a huge amount fresh veggies. I used half of this to make myself a huge pot of soup, which I can freeze and defrost for convenient healthy meals. The other half of the veggies were frozen as is to be used in a soup or stew on another day. I show you how to make yourself such a hearty vegetable soup in today's blog with which to chase away the winter blues.


I peeled, sliced, chopped and grated 3 tomatoes, 4 large carrots, 2 celery sticks, 1 leek, 3 potatoes, 3 onions, 3 sweet potatoes, 1 butternut, and 2 turnips.


With everything chopped up, I discovered my bowl was too small.


I transferred everything to a bigger bowl and mixed it well.


I put two pieces of beef on the bone at the bottom of the slow cooker. This is optional. You can leave the meat out altogether, or add more if you prefer.


I then transferred half of my veggies into the slow cooker.


I topped the cooker up with water.


Add salt and pepper to taste. I also added some oregano, parsley, Chinese 5 Spice, and sweet basil.


You can now put the lid on and set the cooker to high.


The rest of my veggies were transferred to a plastic bag and frozen for later use.


A couple of hours later, my soup was ready. I removed the bones from the pot.


I used a hand mixer to chop the veggies even finer. Once again, this step is optional. There is nothing wrong with a more chunky soup.


I tasted the soup and found it needed a bit more salt. It was also slightly too sweet for my liking, so I added some lemon juice.


The soup was now ready to be enjoyed immediately, and for next few meals when I was short on time.


Marietjie Uys (Miekie) is a published author. You can buy my books here:
You can purchase Designs By Miekie 1 here.
Jy kan Kom Ons Teken en Verf Tuinstories hier koop.
Jy kan Kom Ons Kleur Tuinstories In hier koop.
Jy kan Tuinstories hier koop.
You can follow Miekie's daily Bible Study blog, Bybel Legkaart, here in English & Afrikaans.
You may prefer to follow the traveling blog, A Pretty Tourist.
For more crafty ideas and great product reviews, visit A Pretty Talent on Facebook.
If you are in a literary mood, follow Miekie's musings, stories and poetry on A Pretty Author - Miekie.
Remember to keep nurturing your TALENT for making life PRETTY.
You can subscribe to any of these blogs and receive regular updates by email. Simply register your email address at the top of the applicable blog.

Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Yams!

I am teaching once again. The school where I started out as a young teacher was in desperate need of an English teacher and I agreed to go help out. It turned out that the Grade 11's were doing Chinua Achebe's book Things Fall Apart as their prescribed reader. In this book, the main character, Okonkwo, grows yams, a staple food in Nigeria, the setting of the book. I had never seen or tasted a yam and had a hard time explaining to the kids what this was. The other day I walked into my local greengrocer, and they had yams on the shelf! I immediately bought one, at much to high a price, to show to my pupils. Then I returned home with it and experimented with cooking it. Join me today on a taste exploration of yams!


This is what the yam looked like.


On the inside it was stark white.


I noticed that it quickly started colouring due to oxidization once I'd cut it. For this reason, I hurried to get it in water.


I decided to cut the yam into thick slices before peeling it.


I put it in water to stop the oxidization, but also to wash it.


After tasting a small morsel of it, I realized it had a very bitter after taste. I therefore put it in clean salt water.


In the meantime, I brought a pot of oil to the boil.


I cut the yam into thin slices.


The slices were returned to the salt water to prevent them from discolouring.


Finally, I added the yam slices to the hot oil.


I prepared a plate with kitchen towels to drain the worst oil from the yams when it came out of the oil.


The yam slices soon started puffing up very interestingly.


I removed them from the oil when they had turned golden brown.


I tasted one and was appalled at the bitter after taste it still left in my mouth. I added some roast potato seasoning to the fried yams.


The seasoning improved the taste, but it was still far from delicious. I would try something else with the leftover yam slices.


This time I brought a pot of water to the boil and added a bit of salt and quite a bit of sugar.


I added the yam slices to the warm water and allowed it to boil.


I soon realized I would need a bigger pot and quickly transferred the yams.


When they had turned soft, I mashed them.


I added a scoop of butter and a little more sugar and gave it a quick stir.


I desperately hoped this would be better than the fried yams.


This version of the yams turned out absolutely delicious. It is very similar to sweet potato in taste and consistency. If I ever get my hands on another yam, I will boil it, mash it, add cream and honey, and then bake it in the over for a little while.


Two completely different versions of the same vegetable.


Marietjie Uys (Miekie) is a published author. You can buy my books here:
You can purchase Designs By Miekie 1 here.
Jy kan Kom Ons Teken en Verf Tuinstories hier koop.
Jy kan Kom Ons Kleur Tuinstories In hier koop.
Jy kan Tuinstories hier koop.
You can follow Miekie's daily Bible Study blog, Bybel Legkaart, here in English & Afrikaans.
You may prefer to follow the traveling blog, A Pretty Tourist.
For more crafty ideas and great product reviews, visit A Pretty Talent on Facebook.
If you are in a literary mood, follow Miekie's musings, stories and poetry on A Pretty Author - Miekie.
Remember to keep nurturing your TALENT for making life PRETTY.
You can subscribe to any of these blogs and receive regular updates by email. Simply register your email address at the top of the applicable blog.