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351  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Discussion and Questions / Eco-Friendly, All Natural on: March 24, 2009 10:32:15 AM
Hola folks, Challenge 2 is on now, theme: Eco-Friendly, All Natural. It lost to the last challenge theme (Unusual Item) by only one vote I think. I know everyone can totally rock this theme!


Challenge 3 will be Intensely Colorful, after that I'll take more suggestions on themes and do another round of voting.
352  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Speedy Recycled Noodles on: March 18, 2009 03:28:09 PM
I came home really tired from work last night and found some left over pan fried noodles from the Chinese place the other night. Normally I'm so tired by 10 pm I would have just microwaved and scarfed em, but I decided to cook a real meal! I tried to get the veggies in small pieces to cook quickly and found some a piece of cooked chicken in the fridge.


1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
Assorted veggies (whatever's in fridge!) I used:
2 carrots, peel removed and then peeled into thin strips
3/4 cup diced broccoli
1 small onion, halved and then sliced into thin wedges
5 large brussels sprouts, cored with sharp paring knife to separate leaves
1 cooked chicken breast, diced
Salt or Soy Sauce to taste
Granulated or fresh garlic to taste (I was out of fresh!)
2 teaspoons sesame oil, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
Leftover cold noodles (I had about half a large take out container, but they were packed down)

Heat vegetable oil in saute pan over, when hot add veggies and stir fry on medium heat until tender crisp. I like my onions softer so I put them in first. Add chicken and warm through. Rinse cold cooked noodles under hot water to get off the oil and to loosen and separate. Don't totally drain, throw them in pan while still dripping a little. Get everything tossed together and hot and season with sesame oil, salt or soy sauce, granualted garlic (if using fresh add when you cook veggies) and red pepper flakes. Taste and readjust seasoning if necesary. Drink some tasty beer while you're chopping and cooking and it seems even quicker!

*I also had mushrooms and water chestnuts, wished I would have added those! Other veggies that would be awesome: canned bamboo shoots, asparagus, cauliflower, zuchini/yellow squash, or cabbage. And of course use whatever cold cooked meat you have or leave it out completely. Also raw shrimp cooks so quickly that would work great too.

For Italian style noodles, use the same leftover chinese noodles or leftover spaghetti/angel hair/fettucine noodles and omit the sesame oil and soy sauce but add some dried or fresh Basil and/or Oregano and/or Italian Seasoning. Tasty veggies for Italian style might be onions, drained canned tomatoes, mushrooms, asparagus and spinach. For meat try sliced sausage links, chicken, or shrimp.
353  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Discussion and Questions / B&B Challenge 2~Eco Friendly/All Natural~Congrats to mcook72667! on: March 05, 2009 02:14:12 AM
In preparation for Challenge 2 (down the road just a bit), what would you guys like to see as prizes? I am going to post on the board asking for challenge prize donations, but is there something specific I should ask for? I know it doesn't have to be B&B stuff every time, do people want craft books, jewelry, sewn items??? Maybe try to get a few small things and throw them together? Let me know your ideas!

Also, what is a good time frame? I probably won't want to start another challenge for several weeks at least.

The theme for the next challenge will be....oh yeah, like I'm gonna make it that easy on ya!   Grin  Actually the theme will be the runner-up from the theme voting previously. Keep posting your ideas for themes and for Challenge #3 we'll either do another vote or keep going and pick the 3rd theme from the last round of voting.
354  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Roasted Brussels Sprouts---No, really! on: March 03, 2009 07:10:59 PM
I never ate Brussells sprouts because my mom didn't like them, although I eat basically all other veggies. A couple years ago we did a co-op type produce thing where we got bushels of produce fresh off the farm every week. We got a ton of brussels sprouts so I found a recipe on allrecipes.com and cooked em up. Seriously, best things ever. I will eat them over french fries every time! This is a great way to cook any veggies, a fave combo of mine is cauliflower and red onions along with the brussels sprouts! They get that yummy roasted flavor that brings out the natural sugars, mmm mmmm.

3-4 cups (or more, whatever) of brussels sprouts, trim off the end if it looks icky and peel of any outer leaves that are holey or black or brown. Cut in half if they are very large
1-2 Tablespoons of oil
1/2 teaspoon or so of kosher or sea salt
Cracked black pepper
Dash of red pepper flakes (optional)

Preheat oven to 425 or 450. In a large roasting pan lay the sprouts out in one layer. Sprinkle the oil over the top and toss gently to coat. Add salt and pepper and stir again. Cook in hot oven, stirring every 5 or 7 minutes. Cook a total of 15 minutes or more, the darker they get the more the natural sweetness comes out. Taste and add more salt and pepper if necesary. If you didn't use very much oil a touch of butter might be good, but usually not needed. Voila, love!
355  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Mock Wendy's Pitas on: March 03, 2009 07:01:33 PM
Does anybody remember Wendy's pitas? I worked there in high school and my (very) early 20's and they were the best! I was craving some the other day so I made an easy version, and am listing all the other ones too in case anybody else wants to re-create them! Super super easy to grab when you're in a hurry if you do a tiny bit of preparation ahead of time, like making the cucumber relish and the broccoli slaw up and keeping chopped cooked chicken in the fridge.

Greek Veggie "Pita" (pictured)


Cucumber relish
1/2 cucumber, peeled and chopped
2 roma tomatoes, chopped
1/2 small red onion diced
Combine veggies in bowl to make relish. Will keep in fridge for a couple days, great to top salads and chicken and other things too.

Warm pita bread (I used whole wheat tortillas)
Lettuce blend (romaine, green leaf lettuce, iceberg, whatever)
Cucumber relish
Feta Cheese
Caesar Vinagrette or Italian dressing

Layer ingredients in pita or tortilla, voila!

For other mock Wendy's pitas~ (I might have some of the names wrong, it was a long time ago!)

Chicken Caesar Pita
Warm pita or tortilla
Lettuce Blend
Shredded Parmesan Cheese
Cooked, chunked white chicken breast
Caesar Vinagrette or Italian dressing

Chicken Ranch Pita
Warm pita or tortilla
Lettuce Blend (packaged mix works well)
Broccoli Slaw
Cooked, chunked white chicken breast
Light Ranch dressing

Veggie Ranch Pita
Warm pita or tortilla
Lettuce Blend
Cucumber Relish (see above)
Broccoli Slaw (packaged mix works well)
Light Ranch dressing
356  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / March 2009 Birthday Swap~LISTS ONLY~Closed on: March 01, 2009 09:32:11 AM



DISCUSSION AND GALLERY THREAD LINK: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=294670.0

Swap name: March 2009 Birthday Swap
Craftster member who is organizing this swap: MareMare

FOR POSTING BIRTHDAY LISTS Sign-up date range:  March 1- March 31
FOR CHOOSING A BIRTHDAY WISH TO FULFILL Sign-up date range: March 1- March 31
DATE TO SEND ITEMS BY:  2 weeks after you claim someone unless other arrangements are made ahead of time

Limited to a certain number of people?: No.
Restricted to people who all live in the same country? No.
You must be 13 years old to swap.

Swap Organizer himself/herself meets these conditions:
- Has fully read the Swap Info Guide: YES
- Has successfully completed two swaps as a participant: YES
- Is not organizing more than three swaps right now: YES
- Will recruit a co-organizer or give all details to a Swap Moderator if this swap has more than 25 participants: YES

Swap Organizer will check each participant to make sure they meet these conditions:
- Has been a member for at least one month: YES
- Has posted at least 15 times: YES
- Has completed one swap successfully before signing up for multiple swaps at a time: YES
- Is not currently signed up for more than five swaps: YES
- Does not have any negative feedback: YES

Details of swap:  This swap was organized so everyone can get something crafty for their birthday!  Please read the guidelines carefully.

1. This swap is list style, like the Ongoing Wishlist Swap, however it is NOT chain style. You can choose any birthday craftsters list that is posted, rather than only picking the last one.

2. This is a medium item swap. A medium item is defined as a craft or recon etc that takes you two hours to complete OR $20 worth of Store Bought Items. (If bought from a thrift store, estimate at what it would have cost new.) However you may also substitute a few small items for a medium.

3. If your birthday is in January, you can post your birthday wish list for this month. To do that, you must first PM me with the Swap questionnaire filled out and wait for approval.

4. Once you have been approved, you may post your list of things that you would like to receive. This is the format for your lists: First post your location and a short bio of yourself, then a list of crafted items you would like (listing surprise as well), then craft supplies (if any) and lastly you can put a few extras that arent crafted, things like candy or tea. Remember, the more items on your list, the more likely you are to be chosen. The minimum of items to post is 5. Also including your wists is a good way for people to get the idea of your likes and style. If you have any allergies please type them in red in your bio section.

5. Please post lists only in this thread. Discussion can be done here in the combined discussion/gallery thread:  http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=294670.0

 6. Every birthday participant who posts a list must make at least one claim.
New this month!:
First time swappers may have 1 outstanding claim at a time.
Friends of Craftster may have 3 outstanding claims at a time.
All others may have 2 outstanding claims at a time.[/b]
An outstanding claim is a claim that has not been received yet. If your claim is in the mail, it is still considered outstanding until it is received, and you may not claim again until you have an open outstanding claim slot.

Claims need to be made from the "crafted" and "craft supplies" sections of a person's list. The "extras" are just that--extra items you may want to throw in if you are feeling generous, but claims cannot be solely extras. Keep it crafty :-)

7. You may get claimed more than once, but your minimum amount to claim is one.  It is possible you may not get claimed at all. In this case you will not be provided a swap angel; angels are only if you get flaked on. However I do my best to make sure everyone gets claimed by keeping track of how many times each person is claimed at the top of the second post. If possible try to pick someone who has been claimed 0 times versus someone who has been claimed 3 times.

8. If it is not your birthday but you would like to send a birthday present out you may do so. Fill out the non-birthday swapper questionnaire and send it to me for approval. Birthday swappers who receive a present from a non-birthday swapper must send a snail mail birthday card. You will not receive feedback until I hear from the other swapper that they have received a thank you card.

9. When you choose to fulfill a birthday wish, PM both me (MareMare) AND the chosen Craftster. At that time, please request the address for where to send it. It is your responsibility to get the address. After you make the claim you have 2 weeks to get the item out the door.

10. It is super important for everyone to keep good communication. It is REQUIRED that you PM me when you've sent and of course, don't forget the DC#. It is REQUIRED that when you receive, you PM me and publicly announce in the gallery (even if you don't have pictures). If I do not receive PMs from you when you send and receive, you will be left Poor Communication in your feedback.

11. When one of your items is chosen, please cross it out so that it is easier for others to see what has been chosen. It wouldn't hurt to thank the person at this time either.

12. If you are sending late you must pm me by your send-out date. If your send-out date comes and goes and you dont pm me, you will receive poor communication feedback. It should not be my job to hunt you down and find out what is going on.

Please make sure to put March Bday Swap or something equivalent in the subject line on all communications. The most important thing to me is communication. Please pm me when you send and receive, and please reply to my pms to you in a timely manner.

Format for PM's:

Proper label:
"March Bday Swap" and either "Sign-up," "Claim," "Sent," "Received," or "Question"

When sending sent and received pm's include the send-by date, listed in the second post of the main thread, your user name, their user name and the item. Just copy and past the info from the second post if you want!:

Send by March 14
MareMare to javastain--handmade soap and lotion


Name of swap-  March 2009 Birthday Swap
Craftster username:
Email address:
Real name and Address formatted for mailing:
When is your birthday?
Have you read and understand all of the rules to this swap?
Are you willing to send at least a medium item per claim?
(If not then you will not be approved.)
Who and what do you want to send to? (if you know already)
Are you a Friend of Craftster?
If shipping within the US, I agree to obtain a DC#: Yes/No
Test: What happens if you do not pm me by your send-out date?
Test: Where do we keep all chit-chat?

If it is not your birthday and you want to SEND TO A BIRTHDAY CRAFTSTER:

Name of swap- January 2009 Birthday Swap
Craftster username:
Email address:
Real name and Mailing address, formatted for mailing:
Chosen Craftster and item:
Are you a friend of Craftster?
If shipping within the US, I agree to obtain a DC#: Yes/No


Also remember to read the Swap Info Guide to find out how to ship your item and other details about participating in a swap.

Please make sure to post in the combined Gallery/Discussion Thread to keep up with updates: March Discussion and Gallery Thread
357  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / March 2009 Birthday Swap Gallery on: March 01, 2009 09:01:32 AM
This is the gallery and discussion thread for the March 2009 Birthday Swap. Please post all discussion and pictures here, there is to be no discussion on the main thread, only birthday wishlists.

Link to Main Thread of wishlists:  http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=294680.0
358  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Discussion and Questions / The random soapy babble thread on: February 22, 2009 08:23:11 AM
I just realized we have been kinda OT on a couple of the recent threads. Not soaping OT but OT from the original poster's thread. And that's mostly my fault cause I'm chatty lol. So stick it here~ Some of our recent babbles spread amongst a multitude of threads~goat's milk soap, craft fairs, hp, lavender eo varieties, family members using your soap. Ok GO!
359  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / March Bday Swap~Now Open, see page 3 for link on: February 20, 2009 09:51:25 AM
Any March babies out there wanting to do a March Birthday Swap?
360  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / Talk About The Swap Process / SMALL Flat Rate Boxes! on: February 06, 2009 10:17:09 PM
Yay, the post office now has small flat rate boxes for $4.95! I can swap soap again! It was getting really expensive, more than two bars of my soap had to go priority, that stuff gets heavy. I could probably get 4-6 bars of soap in one of these new boxes! Great for anyone that has small but heavy items!

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