Saturday, February 28, 2009

working in a series

Having a real design wall up has helped me come to realize that in some instances I have NO BRAIN!!
This is the worlds smallest quilt guilds very first round robin. More of a thunk robin since there were only two of us at the time so it couldn't actually go AROUND, instead going back and forth.
My first thought when I could actually see it on the wall and step away from it was.............
What the heck were we thinking? Could this be any busier?

Well, since that one looked so different up on the wall, I pulled out Thunk Robin number 2, in which we suddenly and for no good reason became obsessed with cats.
Again, what were we thinking????
hello? What you probably can't see because they are so gosh darn small are my mini mice on thunk number 2 in the center. yikes! Do I have NO TASTE at all??

Here is an actual Round Robin, since we added a third member to the group, for whatever strange reason we started ANOTHER CAT TOP!! Poor Flori, our officer in charge of coffee............she just jumped right in on the cat theme with us.
I assumed there must be an end to this madness. I know Anne's tastes are wonderful, and Flori does fabulous stuff...............
uh, it's me! I'm the reason!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
No, I don't do weird stuff with no reason. Do I?

Enter my current project.
Again, I have to ask myself..............
these babies are tiny to sew together and I am going to curse forever the blog, which I can't remember anymore, where I saw the potholder that sucked me into this strange and horrific obsession.

I must say, I have always been fascinated with the little dots on the edges of the fabric............. and many of them have words.............
and, GASP! I found myself asking for an extra half yard the other day because cutting it at one yard would have missed the pretty part of the selvage all together.
this is wrong on soooooooooooooooooo many levels! help me someone!!!!!!!!!!! Send coffee! or Wine! or Both!!!

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Wisconsin Ballet

Okay I'm not sure why the ballerina sock monkey but she (he?) was a funny result when I was searching for pictures.

Yesterday, northeast Wisconsin got rain. A good bit of rain. Rain in the winter is not nice like rain in the summer.
By this morning, the rain from yesterday had frozen on everything, our sidewalk included.
This isn't our sidewalk, but you get the idea.
Our sidewalk had something called black ice on it, that's ice that you can't really see until you are walking or driving on it.
Are you getting where I'm going with this? This morning I took the dog out so she could do (outside) what all good dogs do in the morning. Her idea of what good dogs do usually involves a lot of sniffing and rooting around before she gets down to business, so I had to go further than the back door and remind her what she was out for. All of a sudden I hit the black ice with my non slip shoes (what a load of crap in advertising that was) and I did a very ungraceful un glamorous pirouette and split. There may have been some yelping involved. Meanwhile the big guy was scraping the ice off his truck, I attempted to get up, realized that getting up on the ice wasn't going to work so good so I crawled over to a snowbank for some traction. Big guy is scraping ice, dog is peeing. I finally get my bare hands in the snow and hike myself halfway up when big guy looks over his truck and says "what are you doing down there?" umm, nothing sweetie, just checking the snow. "was that you? I thought you were yelling at the dog." Then the lightbulb goes on over his head and he gets a horribly worried look on his face........... "You didn't hurt your shoulder more did you?" no thanks hon, just my hips and my pride.
Meanwhile back at the castle Miss V says "You did the splits??? I didn't think you could do that mom."
Well, I can't, and that would be the problem. More ibuprofen anyone??? And now we have more lovely winter weather starting up. Think anyone else is going to do the Wisconsin Ballet with me? I hope not!

Just hoping I didn't look quite like this...............

Monday, February 23, 2009

okay okay! here's the recipe!!

1 large can petite diced tomatoes, I prefer Red Gold brand
1 large can whole tomatoes, again Red Gold is the best, break them up a bit with a potato masher
1 can Great Northern beans, drained
1 can Black beans, drained and rinsed a bit
1 can Pinto beans, drained
1 can Cannellini beans, drained
1 can Garbanzo beans, drained
I can Navy beans, drained--As you can see my preferred brand of beans in Bush's
1 jar salsa, pick the kind you like best
I can white shoepeg corn, drained
2 Tab chili powder
1 Tab garlic powder
3 tsp cumin
1 Tab paprika
Put this all in a large crock pot and let it simmer all day, or you can start it before bed and let it simmer all night and all day. The longer it simmers, the better it tastes. Adjust seasonings at this point. You usually don't need to add salt since the beans all have salt in them already.
You can add your favorite meat also, ground or shredded. I find that it freezes best without the meat and with all the different beans, no one here misses the meat at all! Another time I'll make and share my white chicken chili with you!

We serve this with a choice of toppings:
shredded cheddar cheese
crackers or Fritos
sliced green onions
hot pepper flakes
sour cream
It goes great with a nice cold beer too! Let me know if you try it and how you like it!!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Snow weekend, again

Snow again, what a surprise? Well we were just supposed to get a dusting on Saturday as most of the storm was supposed to stay south of us, but as you can see, or not see very well in the first picture, we got it.
The weather here in northeast Wisconsin did what it often does when it gets to Lake Michigan, it swirled around and then sat here on the lakeshore pulling moisture in from the lake and dumping it on us.
I didn't mind that much, makes for a good day to stay inside. It was supposed to be done by 3 pm. Along about 9 pm it had pretty much wound down. ;-)
So what is a quilter with a sore shoulder to do? Make chili. Lots of chili.
My almost famous vegetarian chili. It's in the crock pot again today to simmer some more. It's always really good by the second day. Excellent with green onions and sour cream on top, maybe some shredded cheese and of course, a Corona. An Oktoberfest ale works just as good however!
Meanwhile, more comfort food is in order since poor Miss V got the snow day on the weekend instead of during the school week.
Macaroni and cheese. My kids love the real stuff, baked in the oven, with crumbs on top thank you. I don't bother making it for the big guy, he actually prefers the stuff in the blue box. oh well, that's okay we all have our strange tastes right?
Today dawned bright and sunny and crisp! yeah! Big guy got up right away and started plowing us out.
Then of course he threw a bolt on the tractor bucket and dumped hydraulic fluid all over the driveway and that was the end of that for a while.
Best thing to do is to bake. My go to coffee cake is the Quick Sally Lunn from my mothers favorite baking book. It's a basic coffee cake with a cinnamon streusel topping. My family's favorite and the first time I made it for my father in law he swore it was as good as his Nonny Russells. That being a top compliment.
Mom got her book when she was in high school, and when I married the big guy, she found one just like it for me. Mine says 1954 on the cover.
Well enough food stuff for today, I'm off to take some mega strength ibuprofen and try to sew. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Good Stuff!!!

I have days to catch up on! Last weekend started out GREAT! Miss V and I both had Friday off so we spent it together doing things we both love.
We started with coffee at our favorite coffee house..........
mmmmmmmmmmmm muffins too! Then we went to a local antique mall, unfortunately I was so busy looking and wishing and such that I totally forgot to take pictures!

I had to work Saturday during the day and the big guy had to work during the evening so we exhanged Valentines early. He went on to Amazon and got me the quilt book I have been desiring for YEARS!!!!!!!!!!! Yes!!!! Gwen Marston's Liberated Quiltmaking!! Is he good or what? I've checked it out from the library so often I don't know why they don't just put my name on it, but now they don't have to!!! It's MINE MINE MINE!!! ALL MINE!!!
Next the big guy started on my design wall!!!! I didn't even have to bribe him with anything! There does happen to be another homemade apple pie in the freezer though...
Here he is with the initial cuts, shhhh don't tell him I published this shot, he is a bit sensitive about that area on his head...... I sort of think it looks like a heart from this angle, but then I love the guy. ;-)

Next the "wall" goes up..........
Then on Sunday we glued the polyester batting to it.
What else is that stuff good for anyway??

And here we have it in use!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
yeah! I'm so excited, you just cannot imagine!!!!!!!!!!!
It's so nice and BIG!!! I will have to keep the stool next to it all the time.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Friday the 13th

In honor of Friday the 13th here is a black cat not crossing your path. The dopey look on his face is from his catnip high. oddly enough he didn't fall off the ironing board.
Friday the 13th....
Once upon a time I worked as a seamstress in a bridal shop, and every Friday the 13th one of the ancient sales ladies would drag up this ratty looking cat cut out from the bowels of the building and put up a "Friday the 13th Sale" ugh ugh. I never really noticed that it was that great of a sale. Perhaps she just liked the black cat? Perhaps she was actually a witch and it was her way of letting her coven know the party was on for that night? I mean, what else could she have been? The only sweet roll she would eat was a prune filled one!
Oh I do digress.........
Lately I've been working on my scraps, attempting to reduce the plethora that is threatening to overtake every available container and corner. I did dump a load at the guild meeting last night. I"m not sure how many people fell for them because I left before it was over. Still, it was a start. Right now I'm doing some wonky log cabins in red and pinks. I guess Valentines Day really got me going on those colors.

Speaking of which. I won one of the block lottos at quilt guild last night!!! Not surprising I guess since I made 4 of the 10 blocks that were in the drawing! Still, I went with 4 blocks and came home with 5 so I'm not complaining. My good friend Trudy said she was really relieved that I got them since I have nothing going on in my sewing room. yeah, most of my friends are smart ___'s.

But of course she is totally forgiven anything since she let me have this ADORABLE baby quilt for the project Linus!!! Check it out Flori!!! Isn't it precious??

She didn't have any plans for this one, just wanted to play with four patches. She plays nice with fabric!!

And here is a really bad shot of one of my project Linus quilts. Honestly it does look better in person!
Miss V and I are going to work on some more of them on Sunday. Too bad there isn't a football game to distract the big guy. Oh well, maybe I can convince him to get going on my design wall. That's the parts for it leaning up behind the ironing board in the black cat picture. I am really WANTING my design wall!! I must convince him. Another pie perhaps?

Monday, February 9, 2009

Getting ready for Valentines Day

this woman is not standing next to a photograph. She is standing next to the landscape quilt she made at
Is this not phenomenal??? Sort of makes me want to NEVER take a landscape class!
So, why am I showing this to my quilty blogging friends?
Her name is Sue and she is going through a very rough time right now with a bone marrow transplant. Many people have her on their prayer lists, but one of her really good friends has asked if anyone would like to send her a Valentine to help cheer her up.
If you are interested and have the time to send a Valentine to a fellow quilter, just give me a heads up in my comments section and I'll give you her address.
After all, isn't that what Valentines Day is all about?
Well.............. that and eating chocolate.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Goats and Flowers and Bags

Sort of eclectic things running around in my head tonight.

Gosh, that would be sooooooooooooooo different from the usual right? See this lovely lady? That is the very pregnant "Layla the Beautiful" from Gizmo's blog.
She is probably carrying MY twins!!! Well, they are her twins, and technically Gizmo's but I get to name them!!! Does that make them Godgoats? Oh wait! baby goats are kids, so Godkids is appropriate!!!!
It got so cold the last couple of weeks that I brought my geraniums in from the back hall where they spend the winter. The drooping leaves and blackened flowers were a little clue that there was freezing going on. I was nicely rewarded by these pretty little purple flowers from the drapey plants I stuck in the pots last summer. I have no idea what they are really called. Just pretty little purple flowered drapy things.

Then I started messing around with some reds and pinks that reminded me of Valentines Day. I stitched and quilted and came up with this tote bag

Here is the outside.............

And the inside......... Isn't that polka dot lining fun? You can just never have too many bags. I even put binding on the raw edges on the inside so it's all nice and finished looking.