Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Apps - Part One

This may be the only part of a series on Applications available for our various electronic devices but I think this one is particulary fabulous.

Cook's Illustrated magazine has a free app with 50 of its most popular recipes plus some product reviews.  I put it on my IPod and was prepared to just browse it whan I needed a domestic goddess tweak.

I was mistaken.

I don't cook a lot but I do like a good omelette so the Perfect French Omelette called my name.

This is not a typical egg recipe.  You actually cook the eggs twice with a rest period in between.

The egg mixture includes three yolks, two whites and a half tablespoon of frozen butter.

Weird or what!

I tried it this morning and the results were wonderful.  It was tender, flavorful and it even looked like the picture.

Now on to the Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies or New York Coffeee Cake or ......

Try this app or become a one day member of Cook's Illustrated and you too could impress your friends and family with a new breakfast treat.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Halloween is Coming to Town....

okay, so it doesn't scan but Halloween has been a lot on my mind recently.

In keeping with the changing decorationg themes at Sweet Sadie's I decided to come up with a quick little quilt that screams Halloween.

What do you think?

The pattern may be called 'PS I Love You' but I was introduced to it as a quick two color wheel chair quilt.

Mine is a little larger than a wheel chair quilt and came out to approx. 45" square.  Each block is nine inches square finished and uses 3 1/2" strips of fabric.  Borders can be added but I don't think they are necessary.  It is a breeze to put together however I cheated because I just kept putting blocks together until I ran out of strip sets.

I quilted each block in the ditch and added buttons to the block's centers for extra security.

The cute (but poor quality) orange fabric came from JoAnns and the black (and great quality) is straight Kona Cotton.

This pattern could make a great I Spy type quilt with different fabrics for the little blocks and I bet it would make a great controlled scrappy quilt.

I didn't think I would get to this quilt but when I went to sew last night I had to move the dogs off of it to get to the machine.  I took the hint and finished it off.

By the way... the stuffed witch sitting on the bench will also be going to Sweet Sadie's along with some carved pumpkins and other goodies.  I did not make the witch but purchased her many years ago.  It seems odd to me that she has been sitting on my front hall bench for a few months now and Alex and the Girls have not spent any time playing with her. 

I wonder if she scares them???     

Friday, September 24, 2010

Weekend Work

Even though I don't work for a company any more the weekends still take on a special meaning for me.

Here are the things I should be doing this coming weekend:
  • clean up the backyard
  • move and trim the grass in the backyard
  • mop the downstairs floors
  • flip the cushions and vaccuum out the sofa
  • join others in creating quilts to be auctioned for M.D. Anderson
  • finish my Twisted Yarns socks
  • cook and bake meals for the coming week
  • make/finish three projects for charity events
What I will probably do:
  • Nap with the puppies
  • visit Sweet Sadie's for some BBQ
  • work on duplicating a purse a friend brought home from Florence
  • go to the soft opening of a new Cracker Barrel restaurant just down the street
I know I will accomplish the first item on this list, probably the second...not so sure about anything else.

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

And Another One Bites The Dust

Several moths ago I finished a quilt top.

Nothing unusual in that except that the pieces making up the top were purchased from a friend reducing her UFO stash.

This kit was from a class that my friend had taken back in the 80's and I purchased it about three years ago.  Most of the pieces had been cut out using plastic templates, outlined in pencil and cut by scissors.  Some of the pieces were actually put together by hand.  The basic star blocks were to be sashed together and the center of each blocks was to have an appliqued heart in its center.

Here's what I came up with:
A little washed out in the sun... sorry!

No appliqued hearts, no sashing and lots of stippling event though my intent had been to work fancy feather quilting in each of the yellow blocks.  Oh right... the yellow blocks were my addition to the overall design.

Here's what it looks like after being washed for the first time:

The whole thing is about 84"  square and took over 1,000 yards of thread to quilt.

In some ways this is cute quilt for a someone who likes bubblegum pink flowers.

In other ways, this quilt stinks - only two of the four mitered corners are square, the original fusibale batting had to be ripped out, and my piecing when combined with the original piecing does not match up perfectly.

Then again ... done is better than not done.

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Mushroom Days

When the ground gets too wet to absorb any more moisture, mushrooms come up.

A least that's what the experts claim.

I grew up believing that mushrooms in the grass came from dog poop.

Around here the ground can get super saturated very quickly and the mushrooms come soon there after. 

Anyway, I proved to myself that the dog poop theory is somewhat wrong when these sweet little mushrooms appeared in a large flower pot outside.

Then I went on a mushroom hunt in the yard and did not find any other cute mushrooms but I did find this aged one.

Ewwwww!  That looks like some old guys butt.

On walks with the dogs I have found a lot that are scattered through various  yards.  They tend to be clumped together and contain more than one type.

I have not tried to eat any of them because, despite evidence to the contrary, I still believe that at least some of them come from dog poop.

Prove me wrong.

Have a great week!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Another Thing I don't Understand

While driving on the freeway today I passed an eighteen wheeler transporting cars.  Each car was covered with a custom fabric cover. 

That makes sense to me as a way to protect the cars in transport but what I don't get is that each cover had a transparent bit over each window.


Why would a car in transit need the windows uncovered?

I just don't understand.

Saturday, September 11, 2010


I recently upgraded my cable package to include HD channels.  The new cable box also has a DVR in it (who knew?) and I can get movies on demand.

With all this TV goodness I decided to explore On Demand movies this past week and I have decided that I have becaome a very shallow person.


Because the content of the movies is not as impressive as some of the clothing.

For example:

The Young Victoria - An Oscar winning movie about Queen Victoria's up-bringing and her eventual marriage to Prince Albert.  The story is great but the clothes are wondrous.  I would almost give my soul for the beautiful night clothes and underwear and the silk gowns took my breath away.

Bright Star - The story of a young fashionista in love with John Keats.  This time the garments are part of the story and they are wondrous.  All of them were constructed by hand and match the styles and techniques of the day. 

Coco Before Chanel - Yes, the clothing is part of the story but watching her actually work the fabric and the designs is an education in itself.  The film is mostly in French so don't try knitting a sock while trying to read the subtitles.  The story of her rise from an orphan to a leading light in the world of fashion is fascinating.

Valentino - Yes, the clothing is part of the story but the creative process is fascinating to watch.  I was entranced as he added ruffles to a beautiful pleated gown.  If you ar interested in Valentino and his story, this is a must see documentary.

So, yes, I am shallow, but with this kind of eye candy available to a fashion junky who can blame me?

Monday, September 6, 2010

Really Bad Knitting

Actually not really bad knitting but a very bad knitted product.

It all began a month or so ago when someone gave me some yarn.

It was very pretty yarn.

There were two types - a black chenille one and a varigated blue fuzzy one.

I knitted them together on a pair of huge needles and ended up with a six foot long, ten inch wide piece of scarf wonderfulness.

I don't need any more scarves so I was going to send it to the Red Scarf Project.

Its not red but they will accept other colors these days.

Anyway, before I send something like this off in the mail I always give it a good wash.

Into the washing machine and dryer it went.

Here is how it came out:

 The varigated yarn was wool and it felted itself!

The black yarn was something fake and when the wool felted the black had no where to go so it became a bunch of uneven loops.

One other thing... it is now about three feet long and sixteen inches wide.

Lesson learned:

Know your yarn.


Never wash something in the washing machine when you do not know the fiber.

Another one for the trash heap or for the dogs. 

I wonder if Alex would have fun with it?  I better not find out as the house may end up full of little bits of yarn.

Have a good week!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

How Things Have Changed...

This is a silk hanky I found in a bunch of old linens I have had for quite a while.  Not sure where it came from.

Strip Club 08282010 - Update

I finally finished my ruffle quilt yesterday and it was truly a comedy of errors.

I intended to quilt with black thread but all I could find was heavy weight button hole twist.  Instead of waiting to buy some more black thread I decided to use what was on hand... YELLOW!

Then I quilted in a big pleat in the backing.  Instead of tearing out the quilting I decided to just add more fabric to the backing.

By adding more fabric to the backing I did not have enough plain black fabric for the the binding so I ended up using one of the prints for the bindng.

The upshot is that by the time it was finished I had a huge headache from all the black and white prints.

Here it is:

I think this one will end up in the tub with the rest of the dog bedding.

And, to end on a high note, here is feeding time at the zoo:

They go to these poistions to eat as soon as I call out 'DINNER'.