Thursday, March 2, 2023

This and That for March

 February was a very interesting month of weather for us.  We broke all kinds of cold temperatures and low snow levels.  I am hoping March is a bit kinder to us.  I've been having to cover all of my tender plants each night and it is getting rather old at this point.  We have, however, added inches more rain to help fill up our lakes and streams - all good and welcomed.  We've enjoyed rain, rainbows, hail and snow.  The groundhog was apparently right about six more weeks of winter.  

All the cold temperatures have made me want to stay in the kitchen and turn up the heat.  The Meyer lemons ripen at this time of the year so processing them was necessary.  Lemon curd and preserved lemons are always favorites around here.  Of course, sourdough bread also heats up the kitchen and is great with warm soups.  

A bit of sewing has also been completed.  Our great grandson loves to help his mommy cook, but was in need of an apron.  Doughnuts on one side and vehicles on the other seemed like a good idea for a little guy.

Project Quilting 14.5 prompt for this week was Sew Not a Square.  In the hopes that spring is on the way here, I created a quilted puzzle piece. Instead of sunshine, I added clouds and rain. 

I've been sewing lots of HSTs for my Harrisonburg Quilt Quiltalong (#harrisonburgquiltalong) hosted by Wendy Sheppard.  Harrisonburg is such a gorgeous pattern and it's not too late to join in on it.  I love these blocks.  

When Wendy had her Crockpot Weekend Sewalong, I was selected a winner of a layer cake from P&B fabrics.  It is a beautiful selection of red, black and white fabrics.  I think it will make a gorgeous Christmas quilt.  

 For Valentine's Day, my husband gave me tulips growing in water.  They have lasted so long, but I finally had to call them officially expired today.  I loved seeing  them in the kitchen and will miss them.  I hope the bulbs will bloom again next year.

I hope that March will consider leaving like a lamb.  I am excited about the time change coming up soon.  How about you?  

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Mid February

I'm not quite sure how we have already reached the middle of February, but the calendar never lies.  I guess I can start pulling out the greens for St. Patrick's Day now.  

We had such beautiful, warm days last week and we are now under freeze warnings for the next few nights.  Today was spent covering up all of my frost prone plants, and there are quite a few.  The stone fruit are all in full bloom and too big to cover.  The citrus is as well.  We just need a tent to cover the entire yard at this point. lol  I am more than ready to see the arrival of spring.

I have finally finished piecing the Quiltville Mystery Quilt, Chilhowie, for this year.  Between my design trials and mistakes, I think I have sewn every seam at least twice!  It feels really good to have it finished and ready to quilt.

This week the Project Quilting Season 14 prompt was a novel project.   We were to stitch something that reflects a book we have read.  The book I chose was Goodnight Moon which was read over and over and over again to our children and continues to be a favorite of the grandbabies.  The children always enjoy searching for the hidden mouse with each turn of the page as you slowly put each item in the room to sleep.  Goodnight red balloon fabric postcard!

I managed to finish the quilting on my red Kaffe heart quilt in time for Valentine's Day, but I need to find a good binding for it.  I was not pleased with any that I had so it got displayed this year with no binding.  I guess I need to make a trip to the LQS.  That's always a dangerous place to visit.  ;-)  

One of my favorite heart quilts I have made was for our youngest granddaughter.  I think I need to make another one for our house.  Ramona of Doodlebugs and Rosebuds just made this quilt as a baby gift and her version is so sweet.  

We have no big, fancy plans for dinner out tonight.  We've always preferred to fix a nice meal at home.  Two of our sons own restaurants and it is always their busiest night of the year.  I made a nice loaf of heart shaped sourdough bread and a fresh orange cake.  DH is going to BBQ lamb chops and we will both be happier with that than any meal out.  How about you?  Do you dine in or out on Valentine's Day?

Thursday, February 2, 2023

Bits and Pieces

The last few weeks have allowed for some fun sewing in between the hectic life schedule.  There have been so many SALs/QALs floating out in blogosphere and it is so easy to get sidetracked.  I’ve joined in on several of them.  

There is the Fat Quarter Shop’s Sewcialites 2.  I’ve managed to keep up with this one, using my bin of solid fabrics.

Then there is Project Quilting Challenge with a new suggestion every other week.  This week our inspiration is 54-40 or Fight.  I’ve always loved this block.  I went with some wild colors and will use the block as a small table topper or a large mug rug.

Over the weekend Ivory Spring had a SAL Crockpot Weekend.  Other than fun recipe links, we created a nice sized small quilt top using HSTs.  I had a stack of green charms and made a table topper for St. Patrick’s Day.

Then there is the Bonnie Hunter Chilhowie Mystery quilt.  I am down to my final borders.  I decided to add some navy stars to mine, but I’m not too sure about the new shape that I created with the sashing.  I hope the borders convince me.

We took off for a little vacation in the Sierras.  The amount of snow they have gotten this year is incredible. The trip up was like driving in a snow tunnel.  The little ones had a blast in the snow.

I'm not sure that I am overly thrilled with Mr. Groundhog's prediction of six more weeks of winter.  How about you?  

Saturday, January 7, 2023

Project Quilting 2023

 Kim has kicked off Season 14 of Project Quilting for 2023.  The theme for the first challenge is One.  Thinking along those lines, I came up with FIRST.  There are so many firsts in life, but I went with first signs of spring, which I am eagerly awaiting.  To me, the happy little crocus popping up is always a sign of spring to me.  They pop up right through the snow in some areas.  My simple postcard reflects the yellow crocus in backdrop of ice crystals.  

Pop on over to see what others interpret number ONE means to them.  You can check it out at  

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Virtual Cookie Exchange

Today is Day 3 of the Virtual Cookie Exchange, hosted by Carol at Just Let Me Quilt.  Carol always does such a great job with these blog hops and is so good at keeping us in line and ready.  Thanks, Carol.


                                  These are the fabulous maker/bakers you'll meet:

December 5

I always enjoy the Virtual Cookie Exchange.  Over the years I have accumulated so many great cookie recipes shared by wonderful bakers.  

We have too many favorite recipes to count, but one that is a constant favorite around here is the Raspberry-Nut cookie.  Not only do they melt in your mouth, but they look so festive too.  It's a recipe that was found in a Sunset Cookies cookbook.

1 cup softened butter
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/3 cup ground pecans (ground finely in food processor)
2 cups all purpose flour
Powdered sugar
Approx. 1/4 cup raspberry jam

In a large bowl of an electric mixer, beat butter and granulated sugar until creamy; beat in vanilla.  Gradually add pecans and flour, blending thoroughly.  Cover and place in refrigerator until firm enough to handle (1-2 hours).  

On a floured board, roll out dough to a 1/8" thickness.  Cut with 2" cookie cutter.  Using a very small cookie cutter, cut out center of half of the cookies.  Bake at 375* for about 12 minutes or until lightly browned.  Transfer to racks and cool.

Sift powdered sugar over cookies with the center hole.  Place small dollop of jam on bottom portion of cookies and top with sugar covered cookies, making a sandwich.  Can be stored in an airtight container.

This is the time of year that I love to decorate our home with Christmas quilts.  Although not quilted yet, this is my latest Christmas quilt.  

A few of my other favorites...

Another fun thing to do with fabric, if you are not a quilter, is to make a festive ornament.  My mother and I taught these in my daughter's 4th grade class, so they are very doable this close to Christmas.  We had so many compliments from the parents on them and thought I would share it here.

What you will need:
3 or 4” styrofoam ball
white Gesso
school glue
ribbon and beaded trim
iridescent glitter

 Dilute gesso slightly and paint the styrofoam ball.  Allow to dry.  

Cut out fabric motifs while the ball is drying.  Using white school glue, paint the back of the motifs with the glue and apply to the dry ball.  

Once all the motifs are placed, paint a slightly diluted (with water) glue over the entire ball.  Sprinkle lightly with glitter.  Allow to dry completely.  

Using the ribbon and beaded trim, make a bow and glue to the top of the ball with a ribbon hanger.

Hang on the tree. 

Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Quiet Time Sewing

 I haven’t been at the sewing machine much the last few weeks due to acquiring a bit of new hardware in this creaky body, but I have had fun catching up on some hand sewing projects.  

First in the queue were a couple quilts that needed the binding stitched down.  I had done the machine sewing in anticipation of my sewing vacation so the hand stitching was left.  Years ago I participated in a New York Beauty sew along.  I can’t remember who sponsored it, but the earliest note I made in my blog was in 2012.  Well…..ten years later it is now in the finished pile and I love it.  I am not a professional quilter, but Karrie at @karrie_ann_longarm_quilting on IG is, and she did an incredible job on it for me.

 After that it was time to tackle the points on my Kaffe Escher Cubed quilt.  The pattern had called for cutting them off, but I thought it would be fun to leave the points if I could figure out the binding of the angles.  I really like the way it turned out too. 

And lastly  I finished the Christmas stocking for the newest granddaughter.  I have made the felt stockings for each of the children in my daughter's family and love seeing them all hung at Christmas.  Ramona also makes them for her grandchildren and has a nice way of finishing hers off.  She was kind enough to give me her hints in completing this one.  I have always lined mine, but she makes a lovely quilted backing stocking for hers.  The stockings are Bucilla kits with all of the needed parts to complete the stocking - beads, sequins, threads and felt.  They are really quite fun to sew and they have such great detail.

These are the stockings for the rest of the children. 

Next week I will be participating in the Cookie Exchange Blog Hop so please be sure to pop back then.  It's always a fun event with some great recipes over the years.