Sunday, November 30, 2008

A Shootin' Good Time

Today was the Oliver Ricketson memorial trap shoot at Maui Trap & Gun Club.  There were about 25 shooters overall, and I competed with another lady for the Ladies Championship.  Last year was the first year I shot in the tournament and I came out with a dismal 50 out of 100. This year was a different story all together!

With a score of 86, I won the Ladies Championship and I beat all of the guys in C Class to win the class - 16 yard trap. Even more exciting...I shot my first 25 straight!
Last February was my closest - a 24 - and I really haven't seen much of the upper 20's for most of the year.  In fact, during the last couple of months I've been lucky to hit 20 at all.  Today it was one target at a time, with 21, 21, 25 and 19. WHOO HOO!

It was a great way to finish the weekend.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Way to go, Ina!

Ina Garten is coming to my house tonight to help me with tomorrow's dinner. Ha! I wish, but she WILL be visiting in the form of this book:

I bought it as a gift recently and, after thumbing through the pages before I wrapped it (I didn't USE it, I swear!), I ran right back out and bought another copy at Costco FOR ME.

I think my SIL bought me my first Barefoot Contessa cookbook and I have steadily added nearly every one she's published to my library (I don't have "Parties," and apparently that is a HUGE oversight on my part after what I've been reading on the Internet, but that's another story).

Keep in mind that you do not buy Ina's cookbooks for their diet-friendly recipes (although there are a few that are passable). I buy them because no matter what recipe I try, it always comes out delicious (with the exception of Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic, which was downright nasty, but I'm sure it was something I did, though I have no idea what).

Last night I made "Baked Shrimp Scampi" for dinner, because Bruce loves scampi and I've never made a truly successful scampi. Not only was it easy (despite quite a bit of prep and chopping), but it smelled delicious and tasted equally so. Bruce said it was the best he'd ever had and my MIL said it was better than going out to dinner! I served it on spaghetti drizzled with a little olive oil. And like Ina says in the cookbook, that last little bit of lemon spritzed on just before serving was the magic touch!

Tonight we're having Roasted Pear Salad, and tomorrow for Thanksgiving we're having Roasted Turkey Roulade as our entree and Pumpkin Roulade with Ginger Buttercream for dessert. Last week we had Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Warm Apple Cider Vinaigrette. That particular salad has become the house favorite - and we're having that tomorrow, too.

If you love to cook, I highly recommend this book. Now, if I could just find pancetta on Maui, I'd be set!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Fun with Jane

Finally! A few spare moments to sit down and post a little bit about our class with Jane Sassaman.  Jane was here for a three-day workshop on "Abstracting from Nature."  I'm a long-time fan of hers but could never get to the mainland for her classes, so I brought her here instead!

We had a full class with 20 students.  Our first day was at the scenic Hui No'eau Visual Arts Center in Makawao.  The children's studio building was just right!  Lots of windows, fresh air, and Jane's stunning quilts to admire.  Many in the class brought fresh plants and flowers for inspiration.  After stumbling around a bit, I chose Naupaka Kahakai or "beach naupaka."  It is a flower with an interesting Hawaiian legend attached (more on that in another post).

Here is a look at the work in progress.  I still have a lot of fine tuning to do, but I'm very happy with the results!

 Jane went back to Chicago yesterday.  I miss her already!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Huelo Hideaway

My office pal, Gina, lives a short trail away from this lovely little bay on Maui's remote north shore.

You can scramble down the hill and walk on the little beach (on the left) below.

Just looking at this view is relaxing!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Quilting World Rock Stars & Top Chef

Jane Sassaman arrives on Thursday for a 3-day workshop and lecture! I am a long time fan of hers and ecstatic that she will be on Maui.

I was trying to explain the significance of her visit to my non-quilting co-workers and left it at this: She is simply a "rock star" of the quilting world. I hope I don't wear her out with my enthusiasm - I'm going to have to kick it down a notch. Thankfully for her sake I personally know a little bit about teaching and a LOT about accommodating visiting teachers, so she can rest assured of a great visit.

I have TONS of pictures in my camera and will try to share some of the backlog over the next two days, including the utter chaos my studio is in right now. Since I am coordinating the workshop and taking it, too, you can just imagine.

And finally, a new season of TOP CHEF starts tomorrow! I really got into it last season and can't wait to see what they cook up next.