Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

I had a little fun making this zombie. The askew pigtails cracked me up. There's a boy version too. You can get the patterns here. I had the yarn out earlier trying to crochet something, but that didn't work out. I'm all about repurposing.

Carving the jack-o-lantern was a bit less fun. Yuck, what a mess. I am in awe of those that can carve intricate designs into one-inch thick pumpkin walls. I wanted to do the throw up version, but I decided to roast the seeds since everyone likes them.

I did discover a cool idea this year. Cut the bottom of the pumpkin out for the light source. What an aha moment. The top stays nice and you don't have to reach in and scorch your hands to light it. Just sit your jack-o-lantern on a light source and voila.

Enjoy your Halloween. I'm off to make mummy dogs, baked bean larvae, spider deviled eggs, apple mouths, cheese fingers, and spinach dip barf. I have to do something to get that image of Matt Lauer as Pam Anderson from Baywatch out of my head.

Another Blogtoberfest down the drain. Thanks for keeping me company.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

It's Almost Halloween

It's almost Halloween. Candy, check. Trick or treat bag, check. Hollywood is bringing her little charge to our neighborhood to trick or treat, so I made him a fancy bag. Hollywood has fond memories of trick or treating, we have a fun neighborhood. My mom usually made chili for Halloween, but we're attending a chili cook-off Saturday, so I think I'll pass on that tradition.

This is what Bones thinks about the approaching holiday. "Oh no....doorbells and laughing children. I hate both." I'll get the old man cozy in his crate so he doesn't bark all evening. He loves his crate. Or, I might dress him up in a costume. Ya hear that Bones? Behave.

Look at the size of these dried chili peppers. I have no idea how to use them, but I'm going to find out. Mexican night again. Everyone will be happy. Adios!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Let's Salsa

I watched The Great Gatsby (2013) over the weekend. When the movie came out in theaters this year, I watched the 1974 version with Robert Redford, which I had never seen. The new version was very colorful and I really enjoyed the alternative soundtrack. We also watched World War Z, which was pretty good. Inspector Gadget doesn't appreciate zombies like I do, but he was on the edge of his seat the entire time. Ha ha!

There was a Mexican Fiesta here Saturday. I usually hand chop all the veggies for pico de gallo or salsa, but I whirred everything in the food processor to save time. I also made The Best Homemade Refried Beans. They were pretty good! You have to love a confident recipe title like that. We piled the beans, salsa, guacamole, lettuce, fresh cheese, and sour cream on tostada shells and shoved them in our faces.

Last night I made a mess o' caveman pops (aka turkey legs). We shoved those in our faces too. See a trend here?

Linking with Made by you Monday.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival Fall 2013

Amy at Amy's Creative Side hosts a Blogger's Quilt Festival to coincide with Quilt Market held each spring and fall. There are several categories of quilts and it's always fun to see what everyone has made and hear the stories behind the quilts and quilt makers. If you have a blog and a finished quilt, you can submit your blog post to share and also have a chance at winning fabulous prizes.

Help! I'm stuck!
My lack of photography skills decided my entry for the Festival. I had good intention of taking a few quilts out to shoot photos in this gorgeous weather, but I ran into a few snags. Literal snags. Uh oh, Double Delight is stuck on the neighborhood wall. Really stuck. I was sure it would rip. Remind me to bring a step ladder and/or assistant next time. The quilt survived, but my neighborhood reputation may be in question. Again.

This baby quilt hung out on a lawn and behaved itself, so it was the choice. It's made from vintage fabrics that I've collected over the years. I've used the fabrics here and there, but mostly admired them and shared with others who like the old stinky stuff. This summer while cleaning, I decided to organize the vintage fabric bin and donate the prints I didn't love so I could collect more of what I do love. While I was sorting, re-folding, and organizing, I was inspired.

A bow tie quilt being sold on eBay this summer provided the inspiration, so I set out replicate the scrappy look. The inspiration quilt had 929, 2-3/4" blocks. Gulp. I was lucky to eek out 110, 3-1/2" blocks before my eyes glazed over. I worked on the blocks here and there between other projects.

The quilt measures 40" x 44" and was machine pieced and machine quilted by myself. I did have to throw in some cheddar orange from newer fabric to achieve the look of the antique quilt, but the majority of fabrics are oldies but goodies.

I even found a fun Wonder Bread polka dot fabric for the backing. Remember when cotton fabrics were only 36" wide? Yep, I had to piece it. Luckily I had plenty. Thanks for taking time to look. I hope you enjoy the Festival.

My Past Festival Quilts

Spring 2012 -- Attack of the Cartoon Characters
Fall 2011 -- Scrappy Coins
Fall 2010 -- Batik Bargello
Spring 2010 -- Postage Stamp Mini

Another thank you to the beautiful park for providing picnic tables and grass for my photo shoot. Is it just me, or does even looking at Spanish Moss make you itch? Chigger city!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

I'm Waning

Two of my favorite things, garlic and sun-dried tomatoes. All the sun-dried tomato products were on sale this week, so I stocked up. I'd never seen this product before. Yum.

The sourdough bread was heavy. See how it flattened out during the last rise? We tried some of it, but I think you need tiger teeth to eat this stuff. It had great flavor for a boat anchor. So much for that little experiment. But I do have another idea for sourdough bread. I won't be defeated quite yet.

The sunrises have been so pretty this week. I've loved the cooler weather too. We'll be back to the mid-80s next week, but I'm hoping the 90s are history for a while.

I made a huge mess with terry cloth Friday. I'm still finding bits of terrycloth everywhere. I used an old towel and scrap fabric strips to make a dish mat. I may have to break out a vacuum cleaner today.

I baked these chicken breasts last night. They were so good. I based it on this recipe, but made a few changes because I didn't have a few of the ingredients. I can't wait to try it with Ritz crackers and cream of chicken soup for the sauce.

3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 cups cheese crackers, ground to crumbs
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 egg
1/4 cup milk
Chopped parsley (fresh or dried)

Cut chicken breasts into three equal pieces. Beat egg and milk in one container, and combine ground crumbs and cheese in another container. Dip breast pieces into egg and milk mixture, and then press into crumb and cheese mixture. Place in greased 9" x 13" dish. Cover baking dish with foil and bake at 400 degrees for 35 minutes. Remove foil, sprinkle with parsley and bake 10 more minutes.

Optional Sauce
1 can cheddar cheese soup
2 tablespoons of sour cream
2 tablespoons butter

Combine ingredients in small saucepan and heat until it warms through and is a sauce-like consistency. Thin with water or milk if needed. Serve over chicken.

Only five more days of Blogtoberfest. I'm plodding on...

Friday, October 25, 2013

Friday Farming

These herbs need a haircut. The oregano must love the cooler weather. I use a lot of cilantro and parsley but I can't get it to grow.

There are four tomatoes on my tomato plant.

The Okinawa spinach is growing like a weed.

Even flowers bloom if you water them.

Pumpkin grows quickly. I'd like to plant these somewhere and see if anyone would notice before they had 10 lb. pumpkins in their yard.

I added some borders to the log cabin quilt top. I wish the blocks were a little wonkier, but I like how it turned out.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Feel Like Laughing?

I can't get enough of these First World Problems. The poor dogs and cats have issues too. It's a rough world out there.

Looks like first world problems have been around a while.

Another laugh:

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


Pretty sure it might be Monday again. The milk was slightly sour in my coffee this morning. Yeah, I was flirting with the expiration date, but if it says OCT 23 2013, you'd think they'd give you until the end of the day. I drank a cup and half of probiotic coffee anyway. Yuck.

And if sour milk wasn't bad enough, I'm still making sourdough bread. It smells...well, sour. I finally get to make the dough this evening and bake the loaf sometime tomorrow. Fun little six-day project for one loaf of bread. I just hope it doesn't kill anyone. I'm sure my super nose doesn't help matters. I'm flying to San Francisco next time I want sourdough bread.

Canoe Ridge Creations is starting a Giant Starburst Quilt Along November 18. Go see how pretty this quilt is. And it looks somewhat easy. Gigantic half square triangles. I'm game.

If you enjoy mystery quilts, Quiltville is hosting a mystery called Celtic Soltice. Bonnie traveled to Ireland over the summer which provided inspiration for her colorful mystery. Bonnie's mysteries are fun, sometimes challenging, and usually yield king size quilts. This time you have the option of making a smaller version. Thank you, Bonnie!

Another whine if you will indulge me, I reduced the speed of my sewing machine when I was attempting free motion quilting. Didn't help. That was Saturday or Sunday. I've been sewing on medium speed since then. What? Finally realized it today. It didn't stop me from making a few 15" blocks with my scraps. Slow motion piecing. I have 9,000 yards of that white on white floral print fabric. Ick. Not sure how I obtained that. Think I'll add even more as borders now that I'm sewing up to speed now.

Starting soup always makes me happy. Even when it is 90 degrees. It's supposed to cool down today. 81, brrrr. Break out the jackets.

I was chatting with my mom on the phone while I cooked and she dared me to dump an entire box of frozen, chopped spinach in my chicken soup. Apparently, I'm hoarding frozen spinach. That box was one of five. Must be craving spinach dip. I served the soup with toasted pimento cheese bread.

Off to get some milk and water chestnuts, I think I smell spinach dip in my near future.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


What's up chicken butt?

Had a little fun in the scrap bins yesterday. Colorful log cabins in the making. Some of these are courthouse steps because I always get screwed up doing log cabin blocks. I was going for an improv look anyway.

Eek, scary dolls.

I roasted a couple of garlic bulbs yesterday. My house smelled so good. I think Yankee Candle should consider roasting garlic a candle scent. Right after they make a chicken stock one. I like smearing the roasted cloves on bread or tossing them in mashed potatoes. I might even eat them plain.

My favorite vinaigrette: lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. This combo really wakes up a salad. It's also great on avocado.

Oh hello, pumpkin plants! Don't you love the way I Macgyver'd the ceramic pumpkin? It didn't crack as cleanly as the instructions indicated. It's getting all Little Shop of Horrors and Attack of the Killer Tomatoes around here. It doesn't help that I have the movie Cujo streaming in the background. The mom and kid are trapped in the Pinto at the moment.

I've always loved Stephen King's books. Scared me to death as a kid, but I devoured them. I talked my mom into reading Christine when she was camping and as she was outdoors reading, her car windows exploded. First and last Stephen King book she ever read. Ha!

Oh snap, Cujo's in the Pinto. This is not looking good.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Monday, Monday

Happy Monday! I received a package this morning and it rattled. I knew it was a slate cheeseboard, so I assumed it broke during shipping. Nope, it was the metal handles rattling around. Yay! I ordered some cheese knives as well, so I'm ready for a cheese party. There may be wine involved too. Anything as an excuse to buy and eat cheese.

I use my blog as reference for many things, recipes, sewing and quilting projects, snake encounters, etc. I'm defrosting the turkey meatballs I made last month and wanted to see when I froze them. I made them on September 14, 2013. What was funny was when I did a search, I also made them on September 14, 2012. Same exact recipe. Bookmarked and photographed for reference. I raved about them back then too. Ha ha!

I finished the little pumpkin mini quilt this morning. Hope my friend likes it. I was going to try some free motion quilting in the white part, but my test/practice piece looked horrible.

Anyone watching The Walking Dead? As if zombies weren't bad enough, now there's a flu that turns you into a zombie. I'm also getting a little sick of them poking zombie heads through the prison fence. Wouldn't that get old?

Look! My first tomato. I'm a bit excited.

Don't forget the Shabby Apple dress giveaway.

Linking with Skip to My Lou's Made by you Monday.
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