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I am a wife, mama and grandmama getting through life by hanging on to a needle and thread.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Brightest Flower In God's Garden

It's not often that I post about something that isn't quilt or craft related on my blog, but I could not let the passing of my husband's aunt go by without mention. Hazel never had children of her own and when her brother was trying to raise two young boys by himself the voids were filled for both. Yes, we called her Aunt Hazel, but she was the same as a mother and grandmother to our family and we are all going to miss this dear sweet woman more than words can express.

Mother-love, God's gift to His children,
With heavenly fragrance fraught;
The brightest flower in God's garden,
His truest forget-me-not.

Monday, May 24, 2010

A Special Pillowcase

When I joined the APQ - 1 Million Pillowcase Challenge back in March it never occurred to me that I might actually be making a pillowcase for one of my own family members. Unfortunately my husband's 95 year-old aunt suffered a brain hemorrhage after a fall last week and is now in a nursing home receiving hospice care. She is in a very nice private room, but it's still a nursing home and quite sterile looking, so we have been trying to brighten her room a bit. She has a lovely crocheted afghan on her bed that was donated by a local charity group, so I thought that I would make a matching pillowcase to help brighten her bed even more. It only takes a yard of fabric and a few minutes of your time to make a pillowcase. It seems like such a small insignificant thing, but sometimes the smallest thing can make the biggest difference in a person's day.

Friday, May 21, 2010

@#$% SPAM!

My apologies to anyone who may have seen any of the half a million pornographic Chinese SPAM messages on my blog yesterday. SPAM is probably my least favorite lunch meat and definitely the worst thing to find in my blog comments! I spent all last evening deleting the unwanted comments and I have enabled comment moderation with the hopes of preventing this from happening again. SPAM...yuck!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


I've never felted anything before (that is...I've never felted anything on purpose before) so when I came across some blue wool in my yarn stash and thought it might be fun to try a felted project. I found this pattern for Felted Nesting Bowls from Alice Thelma and I love how quickly it knits up on the big size 10 needles. I can hardly wait to finish it, so I throw it in the washing machine and see what comes out!

Monday, May 17, 2010

May Giveaway Day!

Grab a cup of coffee then head over to Sew, Mama, Sew! and check out all of the quilt and craft related blogs that are participating in the May Giveaway Day! Not only will you be eligible to win some great prizes by entering the different giveaways, but you will find a lot of wonderful blogs along the way!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Bread Machine Oatmeal Sunflower Bread

Bread Machine Oatmeal Sunflower Bread

1 cup water
1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons butter
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
3 cups flour
2 1/4 teaspoons yeast
1/2 cup sunflower seeds

Place all ingredients EXCEPT for the sunflower seeds into bread machine pan in order suggested by manufacturer. Select the dough cycle and press start. Add the sunflower seeds at the "raisin/nut" signal. When the machine beeps indicating the dough is finished remove it to a floured work surface and shape into a loaf. Place dough in greased pan and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Allow to rise in a warm place 35-50 minutes or until dough has doubled in size. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake 30-40 minutes or until the top of loaf is deep golden brown and loaves sound hollow when tapped with a finger.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Posey Pincushion

The lil' Cowboy's mommy has been learning to knit and I just had to share a photo of the pincushion that she made for me for Mother's Day. The pattern that she used is Posey from Kris Knits and it turned out just as cute as can be!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

What Is Black And White And Red All Over?

What is black and white and red all over? A newspaper? A skunk with diaper rash? A zebra with a sunburn? No, the answer is my "It Needs More Red" quilt! I started this Twisted Happy Block quilt back in February on Make A Blanket Day. It took a bit longer than a day to finish, but it's done now and ready to deliver to Project Linus!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

DPN Cases

I normally keep my double pointed knitting needles in the original package that they come in, but the two sets that I bought at the craft sale a couple of weeks ago were not in their original packages and I wanted something a little nicer than a rubber band to hold them together. The answer? Double Pointed Needle Pouches from Kathryn Ivy! These pouches work up fast and the needles fit in them perfectly. The only thing that I didn't like was that I couldn't tell what size needles were inside the pouch. I was just going to mark the size on the pouch with a sharpie marker, but then it came to me that there are numbers on selvages! You guessed it...I fussy cut the appropriate number from a selvage and fused it to the pouch and now it's easy to tell what size needles are inside!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Just In Time!

You wouldn't think that there would be much of a need for hand knit socks in the middle of May, but it was only 25 degrees here in northern Pennsylvania this morning! I was starting to think that I should have made this pair of Kids Socks in the next size larger and saved them for next winter, but it seems now that I finished them just in time!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Selvage Coins

My selvage coin quilt top is all together! At first I thought I would use a bright pink for the background fabric and it did look nice, but then the color consultant at my local quilt shop directed me to this green. Even though it doesn't look it in the photo (the lighting isn't the greatest here this morning) the green is perfect! I think I will do some simple straight line quilting, add a binding and call it done!

Friday, May 7, 2010

From WIP To UFO To WIP Again

I don't know if there is a specific time frame that makes a project a UFO, but I think spending 6 months in a closet makes a project about as close to a UFO as you can get. It has been pointed out to me that once work resumes on a UFO (Un-Finished Object) it becomes a WIP (Work In Progress). I guess my Dear Jane quilt is no longer a UFO and is a WIP now that I have started working on the borders, so I did actually make progress on a UFO this week, but something tells me that I need to work on some of the other quilts that I have vowed to finish before they turn from WIP's back into UFO's again!

Did you work on your UFO this week?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

What A Wonderful Day!

I would probably get a lot more sewing done if I actually stayed home once in awhile, but how could I refuse a trip to the Weaver-View Farms Amish Country Store in Penn Yan, NY with three of my best quilty friends? The store was filled with bulk foods, groceries, old fashioned toys, clothing, handmade gift items, quilts and oh yes, FABRIC...many bolts marked down to just $2.98 a yard! Just down the road from Weaver-View Farms we found another Amish owned fabric shop, Golden Lane Fabrics, that also had a nice selection of quilt fabrics at bargain prices. After a break for lunch we made our way to Watkins Glen for a stop at one of my favorite quilt shops, O'Susanna's Quilts & Gifts followed by a stop at the Great Escape for some ice-cream before heading home. What a wonderful day it was, but now I really do need to spend some time in my sewing room!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Poor Neglected Jane

Two years ago the Mountain Laurel Quilt Guild formed a group called the Laurel Janes which I happily joined with visions of making my very own Dear Jane quilt. It didn't take me long to realize that vision was just that, a vision or more of a mirage far off in the distance. Once reality took hold, I decided to downsize the quilt to a more manageable size of 32 Dear Jane blocks. Certainly I would be able to complete a throw sized Dear Jane quilt without too much trouble! I planned a simple pieced border and set out to finish the quilt. That was 6 months ago and the top still isn't finished. Schedules changed, so I wasn't able to attend the regular meetings, and without the encouragement from the group I found it difficult to stay on task. Due to the fact that so many members have actually finished their quilts (all 169 blocks plus hand quilting) the group has undergone some restructuring and as it works out I am able to attend the regular meetings again. Yesterday my poor neglected Dear Jane quilt came out of the closet and I'm happy to report that work has resumed and progress is being made once again!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Carrot Cake Cookies

These cookies are just like mini carrot cakes! Mmm!

Carrot Cake Cookies

1/4 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
3/4 cup shredded carrots
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease cookie sheets or line with parchment paper. In a large bowl, cream together butter, shortening and brown sugar. Beat in the eggs and then stir in the pineapple and carrots. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon; stir into carrot mixture. Mix in the walnuts if desired. Drop by rounded spoonfuls onto the prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until bottoms begin to brown and cookies are set. Allow cookies to cool for a few minutes on the cookie sheets before removing to wire racks to cool completely. Drizzle with cream cheese glaze.

Cream Cheese Glaze

2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners sugar
2 tablespoons milk

Mix ingredients together until smooth. Drizzle over cooled cookies.

Monday, May 3, 2010

A New Toy

Kelly, of I Have A Notion fame, just celebrated the one year anniversary of her online store by having a giveaway each and every day for 30 days. I was one of the lucky winners and this brand new Flip N Set Ruler just arrived on my doorstep. This ruler is designed for cutting the side triangles when setting quilt blocks on point...without having to use any math! Any tool that eliminates quilt math is a good thing in my book. Now I think I need to start a new project and set some blocks on point, so I can try out my new toy!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Out With The Old And In With The New

Yesterday's Quilt, Craft and Stuff Sale was a huge success! I sold a good portion of what I took to the sale, made more money than I spent and the best part...I did not bring home more than I took! Naturally I found a few things that I couldn't live without, but the important thing is that I replaced things that I was not using with things that I will use!

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