Quilt Testers In Action

Quilt Testers In Action


Friday, April 22, 2011

Friday In The Garden

There are only a few more plants in blossom this week, but the entire yard is much greener than last week. On my walk around the garden this morning, I saw this tiny flower. It came into our gardens by accident in a pot of something else. I'm not sure what it is, but I love the color.

The hyacinths are blooming. Its often hard to catch the scent outside, but inside they can be quite overpowering.

And we are starting to see a bunch of these. I have a confession to make. I love dandelions! They are just so darned happy looking. I know some bunnies like to eat the blossoms, but Weasley just ignores them. He does like the leaves, though. 

I was followed around the garden by some more creatures this week.

Do they look vaguely threatening?

Not to worry. It's just some little bunny monsters, that will soon be finding their way to live with some very special women. I probably won't post again before next week, so Happy Weekend to everybun. And Happy Easter if you celebrate it.

And Weasley says to remember that  the only bunnies that make good Easter presents are stuffed, or chocolate. Better yet, chocolate stuffed with something else yummy.....He's thinking Kale, but I bet you can think of something better!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Weasley On Wednesday

My bunny man really gets into his hay, as you can see here.

He never burrowed like this, until he lost his eyesight. Now, he gets so far under the hay, that it can be hard to see him.

And of course, when he gets out of the litterbox, a lot of the hay comes with him. Fun times!

"What hay? Where? I don't see no stinkin' hay!"
 On a completely different subject, you may be wondering whatever happened with this week's Sunday Dessert. Well, through a miscommunication with the Husband over use of the oven, it ended up being a Monday dessert. It was a spicy lemon pudding.

Unfortunately, it was not a success. I thought the flavor was great. The texture was odd, sort of souffle-ish, sort of like lemon meringue pie with the layers mixed up. It got stranger as it got cooler, which may be why the recipe said to serve it warm. The Husband unenthusiastically said it was OK. The two kids in the house didn't take more than one bite. Oh, well. There is always another Sunday....

It is school vacation week, so the schedule is very off. So far the only sewing being done is the hemming of this years prom dress.

There are way too many miles of skirt on this thing. And if you've ever tried to pin up one of these dresses, you know that every breathe the person wearing it takes, or even a cross-eyed thought, can make the hem change position, and be uneven. And once the pins are in, they like to come alive, and slither back out of the slippery fabric!

I keep telling myself that at least it's the last time I will have to hem one of these, conveniently forgetting that I promised to re-hem last year's dress, to make it fit a young lady who wouldn't have a dress otherwise. When it is finally all done, these girls are going to be such beauties.

Just a note:
Over the next couple of weeks, I have some family stuff going on. Posting (and blog reading) is going to be a little erratic. I will do as much as I can, and I promise to catch-up at the end of that time. I just wanted to let you know, in case you are expecting to hear from me. 

Friday, April 15, 2011

Friday In The Garden, And A Few Other Things

There has been a fair amount of sewing going on here this week. I finished my friend's handbag, which unfortunately  I forgot to take a picture of before giving to her. It was done in Asian-inspired fabrics, and was quite elegant.

I also finished my own new bag. "Elegant"  isn't quite the word for this one, but it's bright cheeriness makes me happy.

There are lots of pockets inside, and a fabric whose message makes me smile every time I see it.

Now I just need to decide what to do with the old one, which still has lots of good fabric in it. Some recycling is in order.

Speaking of recycling, The Leominster Art Center  is holding a Recycled Art Sculpture Contest. Entries have already started to come in, and they are amazing. This is Colette A. Shumate-Smith with her  recycled young woman. I forgot to ask the official name of the piece. Colette works in many different mediums, but her ceramic tile murals made using the raku process are especially intriguing. You can see part of one in the upper right corner of this picture.

In this picture, the young woman seems to be looking with envy at the cyclist, made from spare parts by the kids in the Leominster High School's Center for Technical Education. 

Meanwhile, back in the garden, the green is bursting out all over. The Neighborhood Lion has been spending a lot of time in our yard, catching rays, and other things.

He seemed to be determined to get in every picture today.

He followed me all around the yard, occasionally attacking my shoelaces. Here he is popping out from underneath some of the grasses that are waiting to be cut back.  

Finally, adding a little movement to the daffodil and red-twig dogwood picture...

And then gone, off to visit someone else.

We are supposed to have a very nice weekend here, with just a little rain overnight on Saturday to water some freshly planted seeds. I hope you have a good one, also, with lots of sun. 

Monday, April 11, 2011

Sunday Dessert

I meant to make this post after dinner last night, but I made the mistake of sitting down on the couch. We had such a beautiful weekend, that I spent a lot of time cleaning up the garden. I guess all the fresh air caught up to me! I did wake up in time to give Weasley his evening eye drop, though.

When I was a kid, we either went to my Grandmother's house for Sunday dinner, or else my Mother cooked a large meal. At some point after I went off to college, Mom decided she'd had enough, and declared Sunday to be pizza night. After I had my girls, I began to understand. Several years back, I told my husband that either he would cook on Sunday night, or we would go out.

So, he cooks about two thirds of the time on Sundays. He doesn't like to think about it till the last minute, so sometimes we eat some interesting concoctions. Occasionally, he waits until we are standing around him, turning him into pork chops with our eyes, before he remembers. I think there was only one time where he left it so long that I took myself out to dinner, and left him with the hungry kids. As long as I'm not cooking (or maybe more importantly, not trying to figure out what to cook for yet another meal), its OK with me.

Not cooking the meal leaves me a little energy for being creative, and I often will make dessert for the Sunday meal. Last week we had blackberry cobbler, to use up some of the too many blackberries still in the freezer.

This recipe was from my trusty old Betty Crocker cookbook, now 25 years old (Eleventh Printing, 1984), and starting to lose pages. I use this recipe a lot. And of course, a scoop of ice cream helps almost any recipe taste better.

This week, I tried a recipe  I hadn't used before. It is a Chocolate Mocha Shortbread, from Mom's Big Book of Baking, by Lauren Chattman (2001). The recipe was easy to put together.The resulting cookie seemed more chocolate than mocha to me, and the texture seemed more brownie than shortbread. The smell was so fantastic, that it was hard to wait till the cookies were cool to cut them apart. I will be making these again.

Now, what to make next week.... Any suggestions?

Friday, April 8, 2011

Friday In The Garden

We've come a long way in the last couple of weeks. It had seemed like the bulbs were a couple of weeks behind this year, but they are catching up.

By next Friday, we may even have some blossoms to show off. I can't wait.  Don't you just love the cheery yellow of daffodils in the spring? Or is there another spring flower that is your favorite?

I had promised to show some handbags that I was making. These were made because I agreed to provide an item for a raffle being held as a fundraiser for the Leominster Art Center. I made two, so the woman running the event could choose. I thought she would pick this one, as it suits her personal style.

But instead, she picked this one. It matches the colors that they are using to  decorate for the event . It will have other donated goodies/gift certificates inside. Hopefully, it does well for them. The center mostly  relies on grants for funding , and we all know how that situation is these days!

They are both made from Quilts Illustrated Mini-Bow-Tucks Tote Pattern. I love this pattern. It's very easy, and you get to include a lot of different fabrics. It's fun to coordinate the fabrics. Over the weekend, I am making two more, in the larger size. One for myself, as the one I made last year is wearing out. And one for a friend who bought everything to make one for herself, and then realized that she wouldn't ever really make time to do it. So, I get the fun of playing with her fabric, without having to spend money on it!

Since the weather is supposed to be good, I also plan to spend a lot of time in the garden this weekend. I hope you all have a great weekend, full of whatever you like best also.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Weasley On Wednesday

The old man is soldiering on. As you can see, he's keeping very busy.

He's picked up a few of Ginny's habits, including digging and destroying towels, and grabbing gates with his teeth and rattling them. Very strange.

Weasley's also developed a TV watching habit in the evening. He stands outside the gate to the living room (it's gated off because he doesn't handle the floor well) until we pick him up, and bring him to the couch. He snuggles up for an hour or so, and then asks to be returned to the kitchen to finish his dinner. I guess you can teach an old dog rabbit new tricks!

I've been doing a lot of sewing lately. It was nice to have these cheerful little pieces to finish up. I have to admit that the quilting is not the smoothest, but it felt good to just let the machine roar.

Spring Bird

Spring Bunny 1

Spring Bunny 2
These quilts have me craving jelly beans. There are also a couple of handbags in the making. I will show them to you tomorrow.  Now I'm headed off to find some black jelly beans....

Friday, April 1, 2011

Friday In The Garden

Not what you would expect, maybe?

Any signs of spring are hidden under about five inches of snow.

The only sun to be found in the garden today. At least it adds a bright spark of color. Not real warm, though.

Definitely not my favorite April Fool's Day surprise. (That would be my oldest brother.  He's probably not reading this, but just in case, Happy Birthday, Brother!) Here's hoping next Friday will bring us a little more color.