Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Potholders Received!!

I received the nicest surprise in the mail today. At first when I saw the box.. I was perplexed. I hadn't ordered anything online recently... or had I?? You know those moments.. did I.. had I been sleep shopping on ebay again? But after only a few moments of wonder.. it hit me "This must be from my potholder swap partner!!"

Once I realized it.. I couldn't run to the house fast enough. Straight to the kitchen for a scissors.. and this is what was in my box..
Did I get the best Potholder Pass partner or what!!! Her name is Debbie and she's from New Hamshire as you can see. She learned from reading this post that my 10yr old collects license plates. He was so excited when he got home from school! He already has it hanging on the wall in his room.

I love the Potholders! I have a thing for grommets too. And some yummy fabric included.

Thank you Debbie! You made my day!
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Grandma's Apple Pie

I thought I'd share this recipe in time to add it to your Easter table this Sunday.

When my Grandparents moved into a nursing home many years ago - my Grandma gave me all her recipes. I don't think it was a strategic move since I was far from domestic at the time. When one of us Grandkids would show up to transport her or my Grandpa to a Dr's appt (during this time of transition), she would not let us leave empty handed. I just think I happened to be there the day she was going through her recipes. Just like my cousin Kathy happened to get her sewing machine (I still don't think Kathy sews.. see - not strategic).

Anyway.. back to the recipe. I don't ever remember her making Apple Pie.. or any pie really. She was known for her Banana Bread - truly the BEST Banana Bread I've ever had. But I found this hand written Apple Pie recipe in her collection and gave it a try.. AMAZING!!! So today I'll share it with you.

I make my own crust.. but this is optional if you want, you can cheat and buy the crust. But if you have the time.. make your own.. it's so much better. This crust recipe is actually my Mom's and it's so flaky and wonderful.

1 cup Flour
1/2 cup Crisco shortening
1/4 cup cold water
combine with a fork and roll out on floured surface. This makes one crust - so I double it and roll out 1/2 at a time. You will want to knead a little bit - but not to much.
Place your crust in pie pan

6-8 Granny Smith Apple (peeled and sliced)
1/4 c Sugar
1 Tbsp flour
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
dash of salt
Coat your sliced apples with above ingredients.

And place in prepared crust

Topping with remaining ingredients below:
1/4 cup Butter softened
2/3 cup Brown Sugar
1/2 cup Flour
Blend until crumbly and spread over top of apples.

Roll out your second crust and slice into strips to create lattice top.

Trim all your edges - pinch edges of crust. Next brush top with milk (or half and half) and sprinkle lattice top with sugar.

I use Vanilla Sugar from Penzey's. If you have never heard of Penzey's.. I'm so sorry. It is a spice store and they are You would think that a spice store would be expensive.. but they are not. Even if you never plan to buy spices from them.. get on their mailing list.. because their catalogs have amazing recipes in them. And you can order online also. I also like to sprinkle the Vanilla Sugar on Strawberries for shortcake. (I could do an entire post on their spices..yum)

Anyway.. back to the pie. Bake in a 350 degree oven for approx 45 - 60 minutes.

Homemade pies are so pretty...

And delicious!

If you make this, I'd like to hear what you think. Pin It

Sunday, March 28, 2010

April Friday Night Sew-In and a Giveaway.. with a TWIST!!

Ok.. storytime. When the Friday Night Sew-in began.. it went something like this.

Bobbi and I (although we communicate daily) live approx 260 miles apart. We had a new bag pattern that we wanted to make last year and we decided to make it "together" on a Friday Night. We helped each other along the way.. shared pictures of our progress via our cell phones.. etc. Not only do we sew "together" - but we've also been known to watch a few movies like this as well. LOL.. can you tell we miss each other. We really need to just live on the same street already.

And that is how the Friday Night Sew-In was born. Anyway - we decided to kick future Friday Night Sew-In's up a notch. We will be offering an optional pattern or project that we can all work on that night. Some will be free and others low cost... and all will be totally optional!! I can't stress that enough.

We want the FNSI's to continue to be that extra little nudge to cross projects off your To-Do lists!

For April - we came up with this super cute, super easy Canvas Spring Tote!

If you want to make it with us on Friday April 16th, you can purchase the pattern for only $5 on my Etsy site. It is in .pdf format and I will email to you.

There is also the option to purchase the pattern with a partial kit. I say partial because the kit includes everything needed except 2 fat quarters. The partial kit includes the pattern all for $10 and is also available on my Etsy site.

So, join Bobbi and I Friday April 16th for our monthly Sew-In.

Here are the "rules".
1. Enter your blog info below.

2. Make a post on your blog - letting all your readers know about the sew-in. Spread the word.. we could all use the virtual sewing support and encouragement.

3. On Friday – 04/16/10 - Get your house settled, put on your comfy jammies.. maybe make a cup of tea.. and sit down to work on some of those projects (or anything else that you want to work on).

4. Then, sometime on Saturday - Make a post about what you worked on.. show us a picture or two. You can post on Flickr too.

And finally - on Sunday 4/18, we will enter all participants into a GIVEAWAY for something fun! Maybe some fabric.. or a sewing gadget or two.

Friday Night Sew-in Participants
1. Bobbi
2. Cara
3. Pam in Texas
4. lisa
5. Ashley
6. Rene
7. Carol L.
8. Kimberley
9. Annie
10. Jane
11. Edna @ Needling Things
12. Libby
13. Terry
14. Manuela
15. Kerry
16. Polly
17. Karen W.
18. Celine
19. Jamie
20. Anne Lise
21. Crystal
22. Erin
23. Joanne
24. Donna @ Mudpies & Memories
25. marta
26. georgie
27. Dorothy
28. Jennifer
29. Valerie
30. Rachel @ Not-So-Plain Jane
31. Vikki
32. Debbie S.
33. Maria
34. Cleary Kipe
35. Karen
36. Sandy K
37. Oddbjørg
38. Satu
39. Linda -Texas
40. Bev C
41. Mary K.
42. dawn
43. Jill in Ohio
44. Linda
45. Kim P.
46. Jen
47. Jandi
48. Cheryl
49. Tracey
50. Carolette
51. Mrs Moen
52. Jessica C
53. Grethe
54. Susan E.
55. Susan
56. Jacque.
57. Kate quilts...
58. amy @ houseofbadcats
59. Madelyn
60. Annette @ Jindi's Cottage
61. Melissa
62. dianne
63. melinda c
64. Kristen @ beautifulordinary
65. Krista - Poppyprint
66. Sandy R
67. Balinda
68. Marybeth
69. Kim
70. Amanda@Busy Little Quilter
71. Dawn
72. Nikki
73. Joan
74. Sue M
75. Helen Koenig
76. Mikol
77. L. - Carbonated Creations
78. kimland
79. SoozeM
80. CJ
81. Lissa
82. Lisa M.
83. Debbie
84. Erica
85. Michelle - Dresden Quilter
86. Wendy
87. Kimberly Mason
88. Brenda
89. Sophie
90. Susan
91. Molly
92. Mary on Lake Pulaski
93. Laurie N.
94. Dawn Burchett
95. What Comes Next?

Powered by... Mister Linky's Magical Widgets.

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Postage Stamp Quilt along - Tutorial part II

It's been way too long since I posted anything on the Postage Stamp Quilt along - I hope you haven't given up yet.

The more I get done on this quilt - the more excited I get. It's a lot of work, but it does goe together very fast once you get past the cutting.

Remember as you put your strips together to make your section (or block), that you start some with dark colors on ends and some with your lighter (or white/cream) on the ends. See the difference in the blocks below?

This ensures that when you go to piece your sections together - you won't end up with all cream or all dark in the corner when the 4 corners meet. Does that make sense? I know more than one of you has asked that question - so I wanted to clarify. You can see the center where each block meets in picture below.

If you are making good progress - I would love to see them. I will have more blocks to show you next weekend.

Have fun - and let me know if you have any questions. Don't forget to post pictures to the Flickr group if you can! Pin It

Monday, March 22, 2010

Curling Iron Sleeve - The Tutorial

Well, here it is.. the tutorial for the Curling/Flat Iron Sleeve. So simple to make too.

You will need:
1 fat quarter of fabric
Insul-Bright (can be found at JoAnn's)

Cut a rectangle of fabric 12 1/2 inches x 22 inches
Fold in half with RST (right sides together) as shown below

Sew along one short end and the open long end. You will have an opening on one short end remaining.

Turn right side out and press

Next take your Insul Bright which has a silver (almost tinfoil like) lining to it..

(Can you see the silver lining in the picture? It's not a very good picture.. sorry.)

and cut a strip that is 5 1/2 inches wide x 21 inches long.

Now slip the Insul Bright into the "sleeve" of fabric. This will take some work and adjusting to get it flat.

Next, fold your fabric over the Insult Bright at the opening and press opening closed.

Leave this open for now.

Next - go to the other short end (the closed end) and stitch along this end. You can use any stitch you want - I used a decorative stitch, but a straight stitch looks good too.

Now fold this stitched end over and down (does that make sense? LOL) approx 2 inches from bottom opening.
You can see in above picture the stitched end and the open end. Pin in place to prevent shifting during next step. (walking foot recommended)

Next - you will stitch along 3 sides as shown in picture below. This will close your open end. 

That's it.. you are done!

Now go put away that HOT curling iron!!!

If you make one - I'd love to see it.

And don't hesitate to ask questions - I will answer them all!
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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Winners and Slacker(s)!!

Where did I go? Where have I been all weekend? Why didn't I post yesterday what I worked on Friday Night? Well, I don't have a good excuse.. but if I did, it would be one of these

1. I think my computer has a virus.. it's crazy slow.. beyond crazy slow.
2. I pulled a muscle in my back Saturday morning.. lifting a sleeping 6yr old.. it hurts to breathe
3. My husband left EARLY Sunday morning for a business trip (before the Sun came up)
4. I had mounds of laundry to do before said business trip
5. My kids both got new bikes.. so I've been outside ALOT!

All true.. but still no excuse. I'm the slacker.. All I worked on Friday Night was this...

It is a curling iron sleeve for my sister. She asked me to make her one... and it feels good to have it off the to-do list. If anyone is interested.. I can do a quick tutorial. They are super easy and great for traveling. Or if you are like me and hate to leave the curling iron on the counter.. you can put it away as soon as you are done if you have one of these!

Now you are probably wondering who the Winner is?  Once again - we have two. One on my blog and one on Bobbi's.

Over here the winner is #94 - Dawn from over at

Dawn, please email me your address and I'll get this little package in the mail to you.

And finally - one last tease about the next Friday Night Sew-in which will be on April 16th.

After much conversation this weekend between Bobbi and me - we have decided that we will be adding a fun alternative to the April Sew-in. It will be an optional alternative... details will come within the week along with signups.

Now, if you haven't already, go over to Bobbi's blog and see who her lucky winner is!! Pin It

Friday, March 19, 2010

Tonights the NIGHT!!!

Bobbi and I are so pumped and ready for the Friday Night Sew-In tonight! Are you? Get your fabric cut.. get your machine warmed up.. something to drink.. maybe a hot tea.. or a coke.. or a margarita (wouldn't that make for some fun sewing. lol).

I am hoping to get the "creative space" organized a little today in preparation for my sewing. Dinner will be something simple.. so simple I haven't thought of it yet. lol. Maybe burgers on the grill.

Going to a movie this morning with the kids (Diary of a Wimpy Kid).. then I'll be finishing up my "on a budget" closet makeover (I'll share those pictures soon).

And to make this day even better - it's a cloudy day with scattered rain and sunshine. Aaaaaahhhhhhh... I love Spring! Pin It

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Snakes, Bats and Flowers

Bobbi has gotten me into stitchery lately.. just what I needed, another hobby. Well, my boys have become interested as well. They started last night with these simple snakes.. so cute.
Pretty good since he was doing it with his left hand!
We turned Michael's into a pillow. Joe still hasn't decided what he wants to do with his. He might frame it. Michael sew'd the pillow (with mom's help). But he did the snake all by himself.. he even colored the inside with colored pencil.

Then I made a 'Goofy' bat. It's mini - that's what he wanted. His brother wants a big one - like the Goofy Doll size - I'll be sewing that tonight.
Did I mention it's Spring Break right now? So my days are filled with activities to keep these monkey's busy. We also planted all our flower pots.. front and back.
We planted Strawberries....
And also planted Garlic - but no picture since it looks like a pot of dirt right now.

And here is a snapshot of how my afternoon ended...
I really need some "Me" time and it's only Wednesday... maybe I'll sneak out for a walk ALONE after dinner!
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Saturday, March 13, 2010

Heavenly Spears

It's recipe time.. Do you love Asparagus? You will if you try it like this!!
Sautéed Asparagus Spears
You will need:
2 Tbsp of Butter
2-3 cloves of Garlic - minced
Lemon (fresh is best)

Start by warming the butter on Medium Heat

Then add your Garlic, Salt and Pepper to taste.. and the Asparagus

Sauté until they are the desired doneness.

Place on plate and squeeze the lemon juice all over the spears.

Give it a try - you won't be disappointed.
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We have a Winner!!!

While I have your attention, I want to show you my finished Laundry Room Quilt before I tell you the winner!! Now I just need to get in there and do the laundry, paint.. and get this up on the wall.

I "wrote" the word laundry on there... it was good practice on a small project. My goal is to be able to free motion words on much larger quilts. Like someones name.. maybe my kids names on the corner of their quilts.. or "Baby" on a baby quilt.. You get the idea.

Ok.. now for the fun part.. DRUM ROLL please.....

Her name is Candace and she has a sweet little blog called Wraggedy Patches
So Candace.. you LUCKY DUCK, send me your address so I can get this in the mail to you before I change my mind so you can enjoy it.

Don't worry - I have one for myself too. And for all those who asked where to get one - check with your LQS, most of the quilt stores that I've been to carry them. And if they don't have the new one - ask for it.

However - one interesting note - the old one (with 102 blocks) and this new one (with 160 blocks) only have 2 or 3 repeats that I could spot - otherwise they all look different. I didn't do a scientific comparison.. so I could be wrong. Either way.. get one! You won't regret it!
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Friday, March 12, 2010

The ole Football injury...

So after school yesterday - my 5th grader asks if he can meet his friends at the park for a game of football. Naturally I say "Yes, just be home in time for dinner".

About 45 minutes later.. there is a bang bang on the front door. I go to open it and it's my son. The minute he see's me, he starts to cry. "Mom, I hurt my arm.. Alex landed on it when he tackled me."

It was starting to swell - so his Dad put ice on it.

Fast Forward 2 hours... The conversation goes something like this:
Mom: I think I should take him in

Dad: No.. it's not broke, he can move his fingers and wrist.. he's fine

Mom: Just because he can move fingers doesn't mean it's not broke

Dad: Trust me.. I've seen these kinds of things.. It's not broke

Mom: I think it's broke

Dad: It's not broke

Mom: I'm going to error on the side of caution. I'm taking him in.

Fast Foward an hour - We have a confirmed broken Radius in the forearm. His Right arm.. and he's Right handed.

This is just the splint - he will be getting his cast Monday morning.

In the eyes of a boy.. that's one awesome Trophy!!

Lesson Learned: Never ignore a Mother's Instinct!!!!
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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Oh baby..

Have you ever became friends with someone and soon realized that you would always be friends with them? One way or another.. down the block or miles away.. they'd always be your friend? That is my friend Monica.

She just had a new little baby.. almost 3 weeks ago. This is her second child.. another adorable boy. His name is Samuel.. and I got to meet him today. I made him some gifts and delivered them today. He is adorable.. I should have brought my camera to take some pictures.

I made him this quilt...
I used "Animal Party" fabric by Robert Kaufman

I also made 6 matching burpcloths..

and a matching basket

to hold the burpcloths.

And because 'big brother' is 4 1/2.. and it's never fun for siblings when people come and shower that baby with attention.. I made him a Goofy Doll so he wouldn't feel forgotten.

We had a nice visit.. I got my baby fix in without having to wake up during the night ;-)

Can't wait to see him grow!
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