Monday, December 31, 2007

new header

What do you think of my new header? I have been fussing with Picasa today. Trying to find that site I asked about in the last post...getting frustrated! I may change it again soon..but I like it for now! Something a bit different for a new year...and I love blacks with brights! Now I think I will go sew...

DRAT! Falcons LOST...but they played well. The game was not a blowout...I hope Carney was not hurt too badly. Sad to blow out your knee on the last game of your Senior year!

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year's Eve!

I have not made it into the sewing room ...YET! I downloaded Picasa. I am hoping it will help me put a collage together I can use for a header. Does anyone know of a site that has photographs of the alphabet? I saw it on another blog (where I have NO idea!). You could pick from diff pictures of all the letters of the alphabet. They were formatted for posting on a blog. I thought I had saved the site, but I cannot find it in my favorites.


This is one of my favorite free motion books. I may have shown you before, but I find myself going back to this set everytime I quilt. I am trying to decided what to quilt on the red/white/blue quilt on my frame. It seems this is an ongoing problem! I have the machine all ready to go..the quilt loaded...and then I cannot decide WHAT to quilt. I may get really brave and try that panto again.

I also add my own touches when I modify her ideas.

I'm off to have some lunch...leftover homemade alphabet beef soup...and watch AF/Cal game. GO FALCONS!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Getting ready for a New Year!

I am going to participate in Judy's stashbusting report this year. I have also added a list on the side to keep track of what is in progress. This is for me as much as it is for you! If I see it..maybe it will keep me on track...at least that is the idea!

This week I: ~completed a baby quilt (promised by Dec 24th) and delivered it. (no picture yet...I will ask. I was so focused on FINISHING...I forgot my camera!)
~completed putting blocks together for a top. They have been sitting there a LONG time!
~loaded the backing on the frame for a UFO/Quilt of Valor. I am hoping to load the top this afternoon..but hoping does not count for this list!
~I purchased enuf fleece to back my son's new Red Sox fleece he got for his birthday. No quilting fabric purchases.
~ I made 2 dog beds with leftover fleece pieces, scrap batting and left over polyfill stuffing. No dogs have layed on them as yet!


OK..Stashbusting report done!

Do you have any good recipes for using up leftovers? I have two I like. This is the one I made last night. NOTHING FANCY! Just making leftovers SEEM like a new meal. This one is considered comfort food..and there are NO calories in comfort food. (you didnt' KNOW THAT????)

This is Shepherds' Pie



You layer browned ground beef (you can add whatever you like..I cook for a preteen..so we eat what HE likes. :::SIGH:::)


corn...canned or frozen(cooked or thawed)


and mashed potatoes...ending with the potatoes and topped with cheese. I did two layers of each. The recipe says 350 degrees for 30 mins, but this was just warm in the middle. I did start out with cold mashed potatoes..that could be the culprit!


And of course, you need 'Hoover #1" to see if there is anything left on the floor!




My second leftover recipe is Turkey Lasagna. I will be making that next week for my Lunch Bunch so I will show pictures. If anyone is interested, I will post the recipe too. It also freezes well. I have used leftover Thanksgiving turkey in the past to make one and freeze it. Then when busy Christmas time rolls around, SOME day you need a nice dinner in a hurry. With a salad and a bread, you have a company dinner.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

getting organized


I added this small dry erase board just outside the sewing room. I am hoping it will keep me on track. I think I have sew-er's ADD! Somedays I just flit around from pile of fabric to pile of fabric. Next leaders/enders I need, I am starting to cut into my scraps. It will take me a bit, but I think I can get the room tamed for GOOD. I already have a bag of white elephant goodies to take to Lunch Bunch next week. You can just see my reflection! Good thing you could not see much..I think I was still in my jammies! lolol





I took 2 fleece remnants from my little sew-er's projects. I sewed them up...stuffed them with polyfil (sitting in the back of the studio for YEARS gathering dust!) and layers of batting scraps. The batting kinda evened out the lumpy parts of the stuffing. Both dogs now have nice fleece beds in there. That will help me keep the area 'fabric pile free' if there are dogs laying on them! There is just one problem...no dogs are laying on them yet! I may have to resort to putting them on top of the beds in our bedroom...

Friday, December 28, 2007

my Christmas List

I never understood growing up...or even as a young adult, how my parents and grands could EVER say "there is nothing I want for Christmas"?? I do now! We are not extravagant..and SURE there is always some new gadget dangled out in front of us on TV and in the newspaper. There were two things I enjoyed MOST over the holiday. One was having my daughter home. She didn't need to be IN my house for me to enjoy her company! I was just happy to have her running her errands and seeing her friends. I got to see her everyday and even had Starbucks she brought me. Happy mom! The other thing I enjoyed was being able to volunteer at Church on Christmas Eve. Our church had candlelight services on Dec 23rd and on Christmas Eve. Since we had HAD our candlelight service on Sunday, we chose to stay home and have family time. I was able then to go the Childrens' area coordinator and offer to show up on Christmas Eve ready to hone my grandmother skills (they won't be used for a LONG time here!) She didn't have a set place for me..but used me where she needed me that night. I even told her she could send me home if she had enought help. She looked SO relieved..I think that was HER gift!~ I had SUCH a good time! I was in the 3 yr old room with a dad and his daughter...we had 10 kids total. Not ONE tear...I was amazed! I'm sure we had some that were new to our church..but everyone had a great time. Some did the craft..some played...we had our playground time...we said Happy Birthday to Jesus. The cheese puff balls for snack were a BIG hit! I told them about seeing one rolling down the ramp on Sunday! ESCAPING CHEESE BALL! Lots of giggles! The best part was that when the time was over..I got to go home to my BIG kids~








Did you have something on your list this yr that was...well..unusual? This is what I asked for:







I will show you pictures of WHY I asked for this...as my project unfolds. It will take a while as my husband has to 'ponder' on just where to PUT this organizer! I'm off to work on my projects.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

OK.....I'm a crossword puzzle fan!

OK..I'll admit it! Used to be I could read the Living section of the newspaper UNACCOSTED. I read ALL the comics and do the United Artist cross word puzzle. Our paper also has the LA Times one, but I have not 'graduated' to that one yet! All this week, the paper has had 'gifties' in it. Monday was a read-along story and yesterday was THIS:
It is a whole middle section wide! I started it yesterday and am about a third of the way done. I did find a hidden word! There is a word in the puzzle..but no clue. Today they published the answer..and the hidden word does not appear on IT either! I had a bunch of letters, but hubby got the word. Not bad for no clue! Yesterday's paper had 12 Sudoku puzzles in a little booklet. My husband fights me for the Living section now to do those. He graciously let our daughter have them for the flight home.
Here is a batch of Italian meat sauce simmering :it has mild Italian sausage and meat balls. I need it to make THIS:
Here is the eggplant frying up....
For my DD's favorite: Eggplant Parmesan. She will FIGHT you for it for her breakfast! LOLOL
This is my favorite t-shirt of Christmas presents. My daughter gave it to her youngest brother...he eats NON STOP and is under the impression I'm his STAFF! HARUMPH!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

AHHH!

Isn't it lovely to SIT down when you have just been FLYING around (low altitude tho!)??? Every room in my house looks like someone ransacked it. My loving husband decided we needed a new bed. (its nice..I like it!)..BUT..the old one is still in my living room! (hence dinner in the family room! lol!) He decided we needed some drywall and painting done (hence the painting supplies and ladder left by workman who is not done yet...in the living room AND the family room)..oh...and a cornice was 'living' right in front of the TV...:::SIGH:::: I finally gave UP and decided my family could really care less. I ignored it and enjoyed them instead.






here are the two big ones playing Guitar Hero...we actually had two of them in one room on PS2 playing..and the youngone on his new Wii playing Guitar Hero in the FAMILY room! too funny! (Note the red cornice laying on its side on the right! Oh and the spray bottle in the foreground..THAT is for ironing my fabric which never got put away!)





drawstring bags for gifties to the ladies I teach sewing with.




more pillowcases....

closeup of the penquins...this was WalMart fab..I rooted around and found two cute patterns with coordinating fab for the cuffs and contrast.


THIS was my favorite! It just followed me home! I didnt' feel too bad because as soon as I washed it, it was cut up and sewn..and out the door!

I have more pictures..but will wait till tomorrow so I don't post pictureless. I hope everyone had a nice holiday. Our Christmas was lovely. Quiet....all 3 kids here (even the one who lives in Mississippi made it all the way to AZ!)

And here is the birthday boy! He now has his Wii FIRMLY ensconced in the family room where his mother has to listen to him play guitar ALL DAY LONG! :::::S I G H::::: He would not let me take a picture of his face...so you will have to be content with a picture of the back of his Red Sox/Ortiz jersey and his long hair (NOT FOR LONG!)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

need a quick homemade gifty?

Oh drat...I hit enter and the blog published...and all I had typed was the TITLE!







It is a gray rainy day here in the desert of AZ. Yes it DOES rain here! ( We are a desert..but not the GOBI desert!

(yes I KNOW this is really White Sands National Park in New Mexico...) I believe most people think this is what Arizona looks like. We are in the Sonoran Desert..and THIS is what we look at:



All those plants need water too! They are just adept at living inbetween waterings.



Norma has a great "time consuming' recipe for gift giving. I have one too..but no pictures to go with...so if you need a quick gifty..here is the recipe, and I promise pictures when I make mine next week:

Mock Turtles

small twisted or square pretzels
Rolo candies
pecan halves


Put pretzels on waxed paper on a cookie sheet. You can put as many as you like.
These do not spread. Top each pretzel with an unwrapped Rolo candy. (this takes the longest...unwrapping the candies!)

Put in 200 degree preheated oven for TWO minutes. Press a pecan half down so the candy smushes into the pretzel. (don't you LOVE those very TECHINCAL terms...SMUSH)

I like to pop the cookie sheet into the oven when its cooled a bit. It helps the caramel in the candy to set. You are done!

A good box to put them in are the Chinese food boxes you can buy new (and in lots of colors!) at Micheals. Be sure to include the recipe!

Sometimes I need just a bit more time in the oven. If the cookie sheet is full...or if your oven is not quite at 200...you may need a little more.

Friday, December 07, 2007

snowflakes!



I'm on a snowflake kick...Here are the one hanging on either side of the front door. I had a hard time getting a decent picture. too much glare! The middle one was a dollar store snag. The flat ones were a Micheals purchase. I like how they kinda of turn around through out the day. ( I had promised Norma a picture yesterday...and you know what happens when you make plans??? Well, God had a good chuckle at my expense. I ended up squiring all three of my men around...1st trip at 7:30 am...ending up with a quick trip downtown getting home around 9pm! No wonder I feel washed out today! Sorry Norma!)


Today was my Lunch Bunch Christmas potluck. We all brought a gifty (the dollar limit was $10..but you will see what I got was MORE than that!) We drew a number..and then picked a present according to that number. Look what I got!! My friend made one of these last year...and it was a HUGE hit! I'm the lucky one this yr.





Cute bag...sewing fabric...open the flap...CHRISTMAS!

Look at all the sewing gadgets! They include a small olfa green mat (have you ever seen them this small???, small rotary cutter, scissors, mechanical pencil, seam ripper, tape measure. 1X6 inch ruler ...needles and a chalk wheel! I'm guessing I will grab THIS as I head out the door to class! I think I'm headed off to the sewing room to try them out. ((If I don't get headed off at the pass by a raving, starving, BORED 11 yr old boy!)

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

A Christmas mess!

How is the level of STUFF at your house? It used to worry me...I wanted everything neat and tidy. But I got over it a few years ago, and now I just enjoy the process. I'm finishing up 2 table runners destined for gifts. They are the same pattern ..just different themes.



Here is the 1st one

close up of the center ...I love the feel of grape leaves!




The small squares are wine corks! I also chose a fall fabric for the back so it is reversible...and heat resistant (insulbrite inside...a bit of a challenge to quilt tho..it was puffier than what I usually use)





The center fabric on this runner is a childrens' Chrismas pagent. I hope I have enough to make one for me too!




Here are the cookies in a jar for teacher /school presents. I had fun making a MESS! Now off to print out the baking instructions. If you would like the recipe I found it
here



PS ignore the crock pot in the picture. I made oatmeal in it this morning. After I take out all the rest of the leftover oatmeal, I fill the empty (sticky) crockpot with water...turn it on low for about an hour and VOILA! Easy clean up! It just has not made it over to the sink yet...but it WILL! HA!


Off to sew up some pillowcases. I have a set to get in the mail to my mom...see you tomorrow!