Monday, February 23, 2009

Another Addiction?

I have sent Leah's (Jack's) quilt off to be professionally quilted and bound. I am limited on time on this one and want it to be done right so I am cheating a little.
But, I came across this yesterday. This is CUTE! And it only uses a very small amount of printed fabric. I think I am going to try this one and make it a little larger than the size that is shown.
I currently sleep with a quilt that was on my grandparents bed. It is lovely. Worn cotton with a wool blanket used as batting. Only one problem...It is completely falling apart. Sometime I will try to fix it, but I think I should stop using it every night. This may be a nice replacement.
The actual quilt top looks pretty simple. However, it will be my first attempt at free motion quilting and binding.
At least this one will not require a deadline and I can take my time. Especially since I have so many other things to complete (for paying customers) before I can start it.

Here is the link to the actual instructions. Let me know if anyone else wants to attempt this and we can advise each other.


I don't usually participate in these kinds of giveaways, but this one is great. I have been looking at these kinds of pettiskirts in magazines like Chasing Fireflies for the last year. They retail for around $100. That is not a typo $100!
So when Grosgrain posted this today, I was very excited.
Blushing Buttercream Pettiskirt GIVEAWAY!!!!Stop by her site to see all of the fantastic things that she makes and then just gives away. Can you believe her generosity? And for those who don't win, on this one, she gives instructions on how to make one.
Like I said....Unbelievable!

Friday, February 20, 2009

One Crazy Week

This week has been quite a roller coaster ride for me. I know I said that I'd get some craft projects done this week, but everything I touched turned to crap.
I don't know what it was, but nothing worked....Kinda depressing.
But then for the GREAT news!
My sister had her first baby. A beautiful baby boy who has already stolen everyone's heart. She had quite a long labor but handled it like a trooper. And look at the result.Jack Henry

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentines Day

I have not been crafting much the last couple of weeks. My studio is a mess, my fabric is all over, I am still working on getting the quilt done.
I am committed to cleaning the studio tomorrow. I hope to be able to get some things cut out and start sewing.
I will get some more projects posted soon.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


This was absolutely delicious! Soooooo easy. A little spicy for the kids, but I just took out some of the chicken, broccoli and noodles before I added the sauce. I then put butter and parm cheese on theirs.
I cannot say enough good stuff about this one. You should certainly try it.

8 oz. angel hair pasta (capellini), uncooked
2 cups small broccoli florets
1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
1/2 cup KRAFT Asian Toasted Sesame Dressing
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1/4 tsp. each: ground ginger, garlic powder, crushed red pepper
1/3 cup chopped PLANTERS Dry Roasted Peanuts

COOK pasta as directed on package, adding broccoli to the boiling water for the last 3 min. of the pasta cooking time.

MEANWHILE, spray large nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat on medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 6 to 8 min. or until cooked through, stirring occasionally. Stir in dressing, soy sauce, ginger, garlic and crushed red pepper; cook 1 min., stirring occasionally.

DRAIN pasta mixture; place in large bowl. Add chicken mixture; mix lightly. Spoon evenly into four serving bowls; sprinkle with the peanuts.

Substitute whatever vegetables you have on hand, such as snow peas, sliced bell peppers, sliced carrots or chopped red onions, for the broccoli.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Wednesday Night Tamales

Tonight I made Chicken Tamale Casserole. It was pretty good. I think next time I'd skip the Cream Corn. It was a little to sweet. Otherwise, a good find and very easy to prepare.
Here is a link to the recipe.

Valentine's Day Cupcakes

Lilly and I spent the afternoon baking. We made Red Velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting....from scratch. If this child does not become a chef, her family will at least be in for a treat. She LOVES to cook. She likes to watch food network, look at cooking blogs with me and of course the actual cooking.
Here we are baking and enjoying the fruits of our labor.
Here is the recipe I used.

Commitment to Cook

You may have heard via Facebook, I have made a commitment to cook at least 5 nights a week. Jim is going through a series of short term lay offs and we need to save mega money. So, I thought I'd share any good recipe ideas that I come across.
Last night, dinner was great. It was a slow cooker meal which helps me a ton. I get it ready the night before, put it in the fridge and plug it in in the morning.
So, without further ado, I give you Spiced Brazed Beef with Sweet Potatoes (found in Real Simple 3/09)


1 1/2 pounds Beef chuck, cut into chunks

2 Sweet potatoes (about 1 pound) cut in to 1/2 inch thick half moons

1 28 oz Can whole peeled tomatoes

1 Large red onion cut into wedges

1/2 cup Dried apricots

2 tsp Ground cumin

2 tsp Ground ginger

1/2 tsp Ground cinnamon

1/2 tsp Cayenne

Salt to taste

1 10 oz Box couscous

1 15 oz Can chickpeas, rinsed

2 cups Baby spinach

1/4 cup Roasted almonds, chopped


1. In a 4 to 6 quart slow cooker, combine the beef, potatoes, tomatoes (in their juices), onion, apricots, cumin, ginger, cinnamon, cayenne, 3/4 tsp salt and 1/2 cup water.

2. Cook covered until meat is tender on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 7-8 hours.

3. Ten minutes before serving, prepare the couscous according to the package directions.

4. Add the chickpeas to the slow cooker and cook until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in spinach. Serve with couscous and sprinkle with almonds.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

No more Vonage

We are disconnecting our home land line as of February 27. Please let me know if you do not have our cell numbers and I will make sure that you get them before the shut off date.

Saving pennies where we can!

Monday, February 9, 2009

This made me laugh

Just ask Jim....I laughed out loud.


I should have seen this coming....

If Claire is doing something, Lilly wants to participate. Tonight, Claire was working on her valentine cards for her class. Lilly wanted to "help." Claire didn't see it that way. So, I quickly revamped the valentine that I made for Claire and made one for Lilly. Now I only need to find people for Lilly to give them to.
Here is the new one.She requested a appropriate.

Now back to our regular schedule

After surgery, my incision became infected and knocked me on my butt for a few days. Now that I am feeling better, I figure I should get an update on the blog. I have not touched the quilt. Did I mention that I am scared to start the actual quilting???? Well, I am. I am actually considering sending it out to be done. However, I hate stepping down from a challenge.

Claire's school has an auction every year. Each class is responsible for a class project where the parents can bid like crazy people to raise money for the school. I have been asked to help out with Claire's class. It should be fun.

I also donate each year. Last year I did a "girl" diaper bag, a "boy" diaper bag and a Grandma's Goodie bag. Each bag was stuffed with things that matched the theme. I think I will do a couple of the totes this year, but add a couple of library bags. If there are any readers from the school that have a request, please comment here and I will see what I can do.

Claire is on winter break Friday and Monday. My parents are planning on coming and picking up the kids on Thurs night so we can try and get some projects done at the house. I say planning because if my sister has her baby before that, they will be in Chicago instead. I am praying that she waits until next week. She is praying it is tomorrow. We will have to see who is praying harder!

On the list of projects are: 1) Cleaning and sorting (packing up for garage sale) the toy room.
2) Organizing the office so we can add a desk for the girls and make room in the closet for Coco's stuff (she is moving to our house in June!). 3) Move stuff up to the attic space. We will have to see if we accomplish any of this. I will also have to sew some stuff to be ready for the auction.

Here is a sneak peek at Claire's Valentine for her friends this year. Look familiar?

Have a great Monday!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Quilt Update

The quilt top has come together. I took my machine and the pieces to the conference and sewed at night. It may be the first time the bellman at the Ritz carried up a sewing machine!

Next step is to start free motion quilting. This is the step that intimidates me. I am using a navy flannel for the backing and will add a wool giraffe to the lower corner.

These pictures were taken with my new phone, so they may be a bit blurry.