Design Wall Monday

cs It’s Design Wall Monday over at Judy’s … I love Design Wall Monday and On the Needles Fridays — you get to see all the projects everyone else is working on. Such fun!

So City Street’s is of course on the design wall.  Today, since I gave myself a 3-day weekend, I may get started on sewing these pieces into rows and making the border checkerboard sections for the top and bottom.    I also want to make the borders for the dog block shown yesterday.

Don’t know what else I’ll find to keep myself busy today. Laundry is started and I’ve got cream cheese coming to room temp to make some Cream Cheese Squares.  I first had these on a quilty vacation with Judy – she made them for us and they were delicious!  She’s such a bad influence – makes me buy fabric, makes me buy yarn, and makes me bake treats! 🙂  Actually I waited to make them until today so hopefully I won’t eat them all and will take them into the office tomorrow to celebrate  (hopefully) the gals in my corner of the office and I moving back into our new digs in our newly remodeled space.  The desks are supposed to be installed today.  I’m tired of working on banquet tables.

Oh and speaking of Judy making me by yarn 🙂 — I cast on my pooling sock yarn last night and was watching movies and sort of knitting on automatic pilot and was surprised to find I had knit nearly the whole first leg by the time I decided to quit.  There’s definitely a pooling thing going on but I think it will be more interesting to see what happens as I do the heel and gussett and the stitch count changes.

Okay – enough blaming Judy for my addictions for one day. LOL  Go see what everyone else has on their design wall.

Don’t forget – the Just Stitchin with Justquiltin projects (current project is City Streets), as well as Strictly for the Birds – are available for download for a limited time only and then they are gone.


BOM photos and Pecan Bites

Check these out – Joanne in Canada’s January and February Granny’s Hankie blocks.

I love seeing all the different fabrics people choose.  I’ll be adding these to the main Granny’s Hankie page so you can see all the blocks made by others that they email me there.

The January block was downloaded 5,499 times – amazing.  February almost half that so far and gaining.  Be sure to email your photos to show off your blocks.

I found this recipe in Granny’s cookbook which I inherited. It’s a little three ring binder of all her hand written recipes, some cut for old newspapers, others written on the backs of old envelope and tucked inside.  Some are a bit interesting to decipher like “butter the size of a walnut”.   Inside the shell or out? 🙂  I ws a bit worried this one wasn’t complete since it had so few ingredients but forged ahead.  They are delicious!!!!

Pecan Bites

  • 1 Cup light brown sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 2/3 cup butter

  • 1-1/4 cup chopped nuts

  • 1/2 cup flour

That’s it!  Cream the sugar and butter.  Add eggs and mix.  Stir on the flour and nuts until just blended.  Put in greased mini muffin pans.  Bake at 350 degrees about 22 minutes.  I filled the them up to the top since these don’t really rise.

These are very addictive (and I don’t know who stole that one that’s missing!) 🙂


Sunday Stuff and French Onion Soup

No stashbusting to report this week.  Not like that’s anything new lately. Tho I did turn down an offered trip to the local quilt shop so did avoid  the temptation of adding to the stash.  One of these days there will be some progress to report and something up on the wall for design wall Monday — really there will!

As promised earlier – here’s the French Onion Soup Recipe I use which  I made yesterday.  It’s quick an easy and oh so delicious.

  • 1/4 c. butter or margarine
  • 2 very large onions (my personal preference vidalias or something similar) very thinly sliced
  • 1 tsp  sugar
  • 1-1/2 c dry white wine
  • 5 c. beef broth
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
  • Melt butter over medium hi heat and add onions and sugar. Cook, stirring occasionally until onions are tender and carmel colored.
  • Stir in flour until well blended.  Add wine (and pour yourself a glass to sip while cooking).  Stir constantly until mixture thickens and boils.
  • Stir in beef broth and pepper and bring to a boil.  Taste it and add salt as needed.

Freezes great. I don’t have ramekins I can put in the oven to bake the cheese on top so I generally don’t put salt in it because I use Texas  Toast restaurant style  croutons that have salt on them, put some in a bowl, pour piping hot soup over, and then top with shredded swiss. Yum.

The last installment of the Continuous Chain BOM is now available in the link on the right sidebar.  Please share photos if you’ve made this quilt. I’d love to see them.

Here’s what I woke up to yesterday morning.  It’s pretty so I’ll try to enjoy that rather than thinking of how long it is until the spring thaw. 🙂

So after filling the bird feeders this morning to make the birds happy, hung up this cute little painted  tin decoration I found.

Here’s the second boss’s scarf all finished.

  I love the way it turned out.  Decided I needed one more for a friend so I started on it last night and here it is so far- I like the way the colors are making a sort of twisted X look.

I also started on my sweater.  Haven’t gotten too far but so far so good.

Here’s as far as I’ve gotten with the tree – it’s up – just still lacking ornaments so far.

Look What Came Today!

A very large box from Hoffman Fabrics was delivered.  A perk of the job – free fabric! What quilter doesn’t love that.  So much for stashbusting but I don’t think “found fabric” counts. 🙂

I thought I was getting just the fabrics for Woven Ribbons, the pattern I designed for these fabrics for them, but instead got the entire line.  How wonderful is that!  A quilting dream come true. They have a wonderful sort of sateen almost feel to them.  I may need to leave them on the floor to admire a bit longer and dream of projects to use them in.  The photo doesn’t really do them justicie.  The fabrics stacked on the right side of the photo all change like the one laid out at the bottom of the photo.  Some change color like that one and others just change shades of a single color across them.  I am in love with these fabrics!  So my unabashed  plug for Hoffman Fabrics – if  you like them watch for the Sand in My Shoes fabric line designed by McKenna Ryan! :–)  These are the fabrics used in the design in my blog header which is a portion of the Woven Ribbons quilt.

I’ve got a week at a cabin in Northern Wisconsin along Lake Superior coming up the end of August so may have to try to sneak in my featherweight and some of these fabrics to work on.




On the gardening front – I finally picked one of my Kale to give it a try.  I’ve always planted them before just cause they look pretty in the garden until the frosts finally get them.  But I found a recipe that said it was the “best ever” Kale recipe.  Honestly, if this was the best, I’ll be going tback to just growing them cause they’re neat to look at.   It was a roasted Kale recipe.  Just add a tiny bit of olive oil and salt and roast in a slow oven until they turned paperlike and crispy.

 Here they are ready to go in the oven.  That shine is not all oil – they were still a bit wet.  You actually use less than a tablespoon of oil.  A little drizzle goes a long way as you toss them about.






Here they are all roasted.  Not exactly attractive but I hadn’t given up on them yet.  They definitely turn paper thin and brittle.  The only way to eat them is with your fingers since if you tried to put a fork in them they disintegrate.  It had a very faint brussel sprout sort of flavor – not bad since I like brussel sprouts.  But the texture – now that’s another thing. They absolutely disintegrate as you eat them.  You know how when you want through a really dry pile of leaves in the fall they just crack apart into little pieces – well these do the same.  Honestly, if this is the best recipe for kale, they shall remain decorative in my garden.  If I want to eat a pile of dried leaves, I’ll wait until fall. 🙂   Most recipes are soups or stews with kale in them and I think that is definitely the way to go.  So much for my venture into roasting kale.


Sunday, May 9

First things first:

 Speaking of EQ – okay we weren’t yet but I was thinking about it  – this is another fun use of EQ.   I use it to make my own epostcards by adding lettering over a design.  This is the one I sent to my Mom this morning.  Actually I’ve used it to make real fabric postcards too – just print the designs on Printed Treasures (or your favorite printable fabric – that just happens to  be mine) and finish off into your postcard.

Now on to the stashbusting report – pretty darn good this week if I do say so myself.

Used this week:  10 yards (backing and cut baby quilt); purchased this week – zip, zero, nada

Used year to date:  139.5 yards ; purchased year to date 66  (Net used of 73.5)

Finally finished the binding on my niece’s graduation quilt



One graduation quilt down and the other to finish.  So off to do some pin basting.


Quiltathon Progress

It’s been a busy day.  Judy L. has a Quiltathon going this weekend – a weekend set aside to quilt – and I was finally able to join in this afternoon.  You can go here to find links to what others are accomplishing during their Quiltathon.  I decided to start on a wedding quilt for my niece.  It will be scrappy, done in batiks with hand dyed for the background and it is all coming from the stash too!  I also found a great use for those old cutting mats that are pretty well shot.  I needed some irregular shaped templates to avoid having to use paper ones and cut with scissors so I simply traced the shapes on the old cutting mat and grabbed an old scissors and cut them out.  Great templates that I can use a rotary cutter to cut around.

Here’s the blocks I have done so far.

Despite the way it looks in the photo, the backgtround is a dark navy blue, rather than black, hand dyed.  I really need to replace that lamp that died in my sewing room.  It’s too dark to get a good picture at night and too dark to sew – which is why my living room is a disaster since I’ve been sewing in there instead.  Perhaps tomorrow when I’m running errands I’ll remember to shop for a lamp to shed a little more light in there.

It’s been a bit slow going on these blocks – not the sewing, that’s actually really easy – but pulling all those batiks which have been stored in an extra suitcase because I forgot they were even in there – sheesh I’ve lived here several years and never noticed they were missing!  Is that a sign of too much stash?  Actually it’s more that I had previously made so many batik quilts I was sort of burnt out on them and had been using different fabric styles lately so hadn’t even wondered where they were.  But needless to say, all those fat quarters are a bit wrinkly so pulling them, ironing and then cutting just a strip off each one is timeconsuming – I think that’s why I don’t do more scrappy – prep time takes longer.  But I’m loving the way these blocks are looking.

The day was also spent doing some baking.  This is the yummiest bread and quick to make since it only rises once.

It’s Nutty Whole Wheat Bread and the recipe is definitely a keeper.  It’s very similar to one of those expensive breads I buy as a treat at the bakery and now I can make it at home.  I will be making this again.  It has a nice walnut taste – those things sticking out on it – and is really good toasted too.  Half the loaf will be going to a friend I’m having breakfast with tomorrow and I’ll have to add more whole wheat flour to the shopping list since I used the last — Judy – could you spare a bucket full. 🙂

Here’s the recipe if anyone wants to try it themselves.

  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
  • 2 tbl. brown sugar
  • 1 pkg  quick rise yeast
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup reduced fat plain yogurt
  • 2 tbl butter

In mixing bowl, combine 1 C all purpose flour, the whole wheat flour, walnuts, brown sugar, yeast and salt.

In saucepan, heat water, yogurt and butter to 120-130 degrees.  (the yogurt easily stirs into the water) Add to dry ingredients beating till smooth. Stir in enough remaining all purpose flour to form a soft dough.  Turn onto floured surface and kneed till smooth and elastic (about 4 minutes) (I did mine in the Mixmaster).  Shape dough into a ball, place on baking sheet coated with nonstick cooking spray.  Cover and let rise in a  warm place aprox. 20 minutes.  Bake at 400 deg. 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.  Remove to wire rack to cool.

Now as for what I changed – I didn’t have quick rise yeast so used regular and it took an extra 10-15 minutes to rise to where I wanted it.  Also, I never buy plain yogurt so substituted vanilla which worked fine.  Make it a nice round tight ball – I always forget how it spreads sideways as it rises and had sort of a flattened ball when I started – rounder will be higher rather than longer slices.

Now back to ironing more batiks so I can cut out more quilt block pieces so they are ready to stitch on tomorrow afternoon.  I’m hoping I can not repeat any batiks in it so time will tell but I’ll have lots of extra pieces cut for a second quilt since I’m cutting one strip and then can get three or four templates out of each so I may have enough pieces cut to make one for me too when all is said and done.

Banana Oatmeal Cake Recipe

Susan you wish is my command.  Here’s the recipe for the Banana Oatmeal Snack Cake.

1 cup sugar

1 cup margarine or butter, softened

2 eggs

1/2 cup buttermilk  (I hate buttermilk so use regular)

1 cup mashed bananas (I use 3 bananas which is usually a little more than a cup but I dump it all in)

1 tsp. vanilla

2 cups flour

1 cup quick cooking rolled oats

1-1/2 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

Combine sugar, margarine and eggs, mix well. Stir in milk, bananas and vanilla.  Blend well.  Stir in dry ingredients.

Spread in greased pan.  Bake at 350 35-40 minutes till toothpick inserted comes out clean.

OPTIONAL stuff:   I dust top with powdered sugar once completely cooled.

Try sprinkling chopped nuts across top before baking.

I’ve added raisins – yummy. 

This time I added coconut and left out raisins – also good but I love coconut so anything is good with coconut in my opinion.  Course that was before I spied the chocolate chips – drat, a cup of those mixed in could also be very good.

Mom’s Hot Fudge Sauce

One of the goodies I put in the bosses’ holiday baskets this year was my Mom’s homemade hot fudge sauce for over ice cream.  In my biased opinion, it is the best hot fudge sauce ever and so easy to make.  I’d show you what it looks like finished, but….ummm.. I ‘ve already finished off the left overs.  🙂 If you’d like to try it yourself, here’s the recipe.

Mom’s Hot Fudge Sauce

  • 1/2 c. (1 stick) margarine or butter
  • 4 oz premelted chocolate (Nestles or some other brand that comes in the premelt pouches).  Run the pouches under hot water to totally liquify and make it easier to dump out.
  • 3 c. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp.  salt
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Melt margarine over medium-low heat.  Add chocolate, salt, vanilla.  Add 1/2 c. sugar at a time until all is moistened.  Slowly stir in milk.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until all sugar has dissolved.  Do not boil.  Taste test is the easiest (and most delicious) way to make sure all your sugar has dissolved.  It should be a smooth creamy mixture with no sugar granuals left in it.  Pour in jars and refrigerate.  It becomes thicker once refrigerated so when you are ready to use,  put some in a bowl in microwave and heat till slightly warm – heating it will bring it back to a pouring consistency to dump over your ice cream and enjoy!

I finished two more towels last night for my sister – two more left to go.  These are both Nancy Halvorsen designs from her 12 Days of Christmas book.


 It’s another frigid cold day here – 20 below wind chill and 4-5 inches of snow overnight.  Had to hang a quilt up over the glass doors since the hinges on the inside are frosty!  Put more seed out for the birds this morning. With all this snow and cold the feeder has been very busy with cardinals, snowbirds, sparrows and even some doves looking for food.  It looks like a remake of “The Birds” with them scattered on the ground below the feeder, on the feeder and sitting on the fence across from it waiting their turn to swoop in.

Here’s another EQ pattern I’ve drawn up to add to my christmas quilt making list.  Actually drew it up last year but haven’t started on it yet so maybe while I’m on vacation I’ll get a start on it. I call it Holiday Geese.