Wednesday, October 31, 2012

It's Halloween!

And the last day of Blogtoberfest! Yay! Thanks to everyone for sticking with me if you did. Y'all are precious. I finished a table runner on Monday. I had made the top a while back but never had the nerve to quilt it. I didn't want to mess up those beautiful Kaffe prints! I ended up doing some waves with my walking foot. Easy.

The backside works for Halloween. Since I ate the pumpkin that was my only decoration, I had to find a ghost.

This spicy tomato soup was really good. I didn't put the honey in because I hate sweet tomato soup. I used a goat milk blue cheese in it. I could only handle a small ramekin for lunch because I filled up on cheese and crackers. I was also eating a taleggio cheese from Italy. Yummy.

I watched this film yesterday. What an odd movie. Loved all the 1950s stuff. Atomic era stuff is so cool. So was the music back then. I hope everyone has a fun Halloween. If you get any banana Laffy Taffys, send them my way.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative

The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) is busy this time of year. The Celebrity Invitational Quilt Auction is November 1-10. The quilts are really wonderful. Our guild member, Mary Sorenson has a beautiful appliqued entry. It in the top row, third from the left.

"The Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative® ( is a national, grassroots charity whose mission is to raise awareness and fund research. The AAQI auctions and sells donated quilts, and sponsors a nationally touring exhibit of quilts about Alzheimer's. The AAQI has raised more than $773,000 since January 2006."

AAQI will also have a booth at the International Quilt Festival held in Houston, Texas each year. They have 2,000 quilts this year. Ten of my quilts will be attending market, so that's always exciting. If you've never made an AAQI quilt, I encourage you to give it a try. It's a great organization and the small format (9" x 12" or smaller) is easy to accomplish.

Here's my latest AAQI creation. Inspector Gadget thought it was a coffin. What is wrong with him?!

In other news, I started a new quilt. These Half Rectangle Triangles intrigued me. I even copied the color scheme. I guess I wasn't feeling all that original that day. Plus I loved the red, yellow, gray combo. The blocks are pretty easy to put together and I'm mostly getting the points lined up.

This Kitty Chronicles fabric is kind of funny. I'm not a cat person, but I do love newsprint motifs.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Monday Musings

What in the world? Now why would Ghirardelli make a dark chocolate square filled with sea salt caramel? Stop it, please. I haven't tried it yet, so it may be awful. Somehow I doubt it.

Turkey burgers with feta, tomato, and sprouts. I think I like turkey burgers better than beef burgers. I put all kinds of stuff in the turkey before I make the patties. I need to remember to make them flatter. Or bread sized. This was a 6" tall burger. Okay, maybe 4".

I made a selvage potholder for one of my buddies that saves me selvages. I like smaller potholders. I use them for hot pot lids and handles.

This one I made for myself using my Farmer's Market scraps and this tutorial. I did a simple four patch on the back.

Red was in serious need of a clean out. I got all the dust bunnies out, put a new needle on, and tackled the accessory drawer.

She's all organized now. And dust free. Let's sew!

Sunday, October 28, 2012


Hollywood's boyfriend carved an Angry Birds (space edition) jack-o-lantern. Now I have the urge to carve a jack-o-lantern. Too bad I'm not very good at it. I did make the barfing pumpkin one year. It was awesome. Drag the innards out the carved mouth. Simple and effective. But no pumpkin seeds for you! (Soup Nazi voice). I also used to stab an X-acto blade into those tiny pumpkins/gourds and draw blood drops and sad faces for my desk decoration at work. We got into so many shenanigans at work. It's a wonder they didn't fire us. Apparently the art department is allowed to be odd.

Speaking of Hollywood, she wants to capture the rogue lizards in our house and care for them. She was outside the other night trying to catch them live bugs to eat. I need to have that kid checked.

I hated getting these candies on Halloween. I love peanut butter as much as the next guy, but these candies were not my favorite.

It's time again for the Blogger's Quilt Festival. I usually participate, but I haven't got my act together this time around. I really enjoy seeing everyone's quilts and hearing the background stories. Grab a cup of something and go look around.

I made these Lightened Up Chicken Enchiladas last night. They were excellent. I probably made them heavier by adding a bit more cheese, but you know me.

And instead of tasteless chicken breasts, I sauteed some boneless skinless chicken thighs sprinkled with grill seasoning. I really like that Harvestland brand of chicken.

But this is what makes the dish. The sauce. I'm not a huge fan of chipolte peppers, but they are fantastic in this dish. I added a tablespoon of tomato paste because I had some in the fridge. The chipolte peppers in adobo sauce give the dish a bit of warmth and kick.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Saturday in the Burbs

My trip to Whole Foods resulted in a 3 lb. sirloin tip roast, among other things. That hunk o' meat was a piece of art I tell you. And on sale. Apparently organic meat is expensive to produce. Sure is pretty though. Wish I had remembered to take a picture of it in all it's brown butcher paper wrapped glory. I'm such a food nerd. I decided to make a pot roast based loosely on this Italian Pot Roast from Pioneer Woman. I organized tore up my pantry looking for artichokes, but couldn't find any. I'm the only one who likes them anyway.

My recipe included frozen pearl onions, roasted red peppers, sun dried tomatoes, green olives, chicken and beef broth, carrot, garlic, parsley, and basil. After I browned the roast on all sides, I baked it covered at 300 degrees for four hours. After four hours, I removed everything but the broth from the pot and added some white wine. I hate when I forget to keep a chilled white. The cook should really sample the wine before adding it to anything. ;) I let the cooking liquid reduce considerably and made a paste with flour and some of the hot liquid. I just added a bit of the flour mixture to thicken it into a sauce. Not gravy. Although I have nothing against gravy.

I served everything on wide egg noodles. The meat was so tender and flavorful. Velvety even. I hate when you make a pot roast and the meat tastes like nothing or has a weird texture. It made so much I froze half of it. And as usual, I didn't label the container before putting it in the freezer. It'll be a surprise that way.

I discovered a cool blog called Petit Design Co. She's doing 31 days of quilting with a walking foot. You should see some of the designs. Amazing. Perfect for me since just the mere thought of free motion quilting causes me to perspire. I'm not so bad with the walking foot. Quilt basting is not fun for me, but I'm going to try to quilt some of my smaller tops.

This scrappy batik top was one of the first quilt tops I made. It still needs to be quilted. I have a pile of tops. Some of them even have backs and binding. Time to get these babies quilted. I'll send some out and give the others a try myself.

Friday, October 26, 2012


I couldn't resist making this adorable Monster Bib for the baby in our family. She's having a Halloween party and everything. Hard to believe she's eight months old already. That was fast.

Here's a picture of the little one with her sisters.

I liked this picture better! Ha ha!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hoping for Rain

I'm hoping for a little rain from Hurricane Sandy. It's been so dry here. I killed most of my herbs forgetting to water. Rain makes me happy.

Yesterday, I chopped my lone Halloween decoration and roasted it along with some carrots. Then I added some chicken broth, onion, celery, and spice and let that simmer a while.

I ended up with a creamy pumpkin carrot soup. I topped it with some pumpkin seeds I scored at Whole Foods. I also bought out the cheese section there.

 Look at all the seeds that were in this little pumpkin.

I roasted them with a bit of olive oil and a few spices.

I did these pink log cabins on Sew Day.

The black and white versions were completed yesterday. I need to decide if I want to make more log cabin blocks or mix them with some solid squares to get the top big enough for a quilt.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Short and Silly Post

You should have seen the bag boy at the grocery store studying this package of smoked turkey necks. He had one of those "what the heck?" looks on his face. It made me laugh. I use these to flavor dried beans.

That two-foot pile of fabric is gone. I organized it and shoved it somewhere else. Now I'm too afraid to sew for fear of creating another big mess.

Have you seen Brad Pitt's Chanel No. 5 commercial? Cracks me up every time. I saw the Saturday Night Live spoofs first, so I was curious to see the original. Chanel No. 5 was my grandmother's favorite scent. I have a bottle of it and I'm reminded of her every time I open it.

One more week of daily posts. Can I make it?

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Amish Quilts

I joined a swap to trade miniature Amish quilts. This Amish Abstractions book is the bomb. The quilts are breathtaking.

It just so happened Beth was giving a paper piecing demonstration at Sew Day and the pattern she offered had a little Amish look to it.

Ta da, one finished Amish mini quilt.

The big winners from the giveaway are: Pam, Barb, and Michelle. Congratulations ladies. I'll get your goodies in the mail this week. Thanks to everyone for playing.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Sew Day

Our Saturday Sew Day was fun as usual. Judy showed us her completed top. I love the colors and the fussy cut flowers in the cornerstones.

Jodi is hand quilting this king size quilt. It's going to be gorgeous.

I made three more shoofly blocks.

Two more log cabins.

And three more asterisk blocks. The asterisks are my go to sew day project, but I usually only make one each month. I was kicking butt Saturday!

And eating. We always have a big spread on Sew Day. I brought macaroni salad. Our next Sew Day is going to be a workshop with the talented Carolyn Friedlander. I can hardly wait.
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