Monday, May 23, 2011

Hey, the Postman Cometh Early Today!!!

When I saw the postman come to my house early today, I knew I was getting something special.  I don't usually get my mail until 3:30 or 4:00 in the afternoon and it was only 9:30 a.m. and he was coming down my drive!!! I got two packages, one small one and one bigger one..well, the smaller one was the piece of vintage jewelry that I won!! I commented on Nancy Moser's blog several weeks ago and she notified me last week that I was one of three winners!! How cool is that? The picture above is the piece, it can be worn as a brooch or a necklace.  The green stones look like emeralds and the rhinestones look like diamonds but they  really aren't, I wouldn't know what to do with real ones anyway so I love it just the way it is. It is a very pretty piece of vintage jewelry and I will enjoy wearing it...thanks so much, Nancy!!

Now about that bigger package,,,wellllll, I have to admit that I ordered more books, shhhhhhhh!!!!  (whispering) I ordered nine!! Geez, that's hard for me to admit but I can justify every one of them. (I think)
First, is the book of Gwen Marston's on Four Block Applique Quilts. In searching through this book on Amazon, I found a 4 block Eagle that I really thought I would like to make. Only to learn, the quilt is shown in the Gallery of Quilts only and there is no pattern. Oh well, not all is lost, as there are several quilts in the book that are very interesting but I was disappointed about not getting the Eagle pattern.  Next, the book on silhouettes, doesn't that look like something you would like to do?  That's my sentiments exactly, I have a photo that I have been wanting to use for this technique for several years and it can't hurt to have a book to give you a few good pointers, right? I'm glad that I bought it too. Now, how about this one on Beaded Crazy Quilting?   If you know me at all, you know that I love beads and beading so I'm always looking for some good beading techniques and beautiful things to do with them.  How could I go wrong on a book like this??? No way, so I bought it too!!
This next book by Darlene Zimmerman just really caught my eye..she has a quilt for each month of the year and I truly like about 12 of them. Just a lovely book to pick up and drool over the quilts..Everyone needs a few books like that, don't they?
One Line at a Time, well, I fantasize a lot about being a great machine quilter so I thought I should have another book telling me how to become a good machine quilter.  I have at least a half dozen more on the subject, I study and I read but I don't do much machine quilting yet..but I know when I get up the nerve to dive in,  I should have all the how-to's and know how's that I will need. ;-) I wish myself, Good Luck!    Now we come to the Portraits from Nature.  I just really thought it looked like fun and want to try making something from this book someday.  I have a couple of old window frames and think these whimsical flowers would look good in them. Maybe one of these days, it will happen.
Machine Embroidered Flowers, just because I like Donna Dewberry and I have an embroidery unit that I rarely use..I am hoping this will get me in the mood..No other excuses for me!
Here we are again talking about Embellishments and beads are included too! It's just fun to look at all the ways a person can decorate or embellish a simple item and make it into something someone would love to have...I'm just a dreamer, if you haven't guessed it by now...dream on, Stitches!!
Here we are at's called  " Love of Quilts, A Treasury of Classic Quilting Stories".  A little book filled with inspiring quilting stories, taken from vintage magazines, many from the 1800"s. It will be a nice book to pick up and read a quick story or two..It could be a good resource for a Quilt Guild program, I'm always on the look-out for good programs too.  Whew, that brings me to the end of my "exciting" day with my new piece of vintage jewelry and my new books..time to hit the sack and cruise through a couple of the books.  Gee, I hope you had a "Stitches" kind of day...Sew until next time, take care...Stitches

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Cinnamon Roll Recipe for those who asked!

With or Without
I don't know what was going on with Blogger but they had some major difficulties, I think. I had lost the whole last blog post, it's back but my comments are gone. I treasure those nice comments, dang, I would like to have them back!! A couple of you had asked for the recipe, can't remember exactly who it was, so I will just post it here for anyone who would like to have it. It's rather lengthy so bare with me.
2 envelopes active dry yeast (I use Rapid-Rise)
1/2 cup warm water
2 cups milk, scalded
1/3 cup plus 1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 T. baking powder
2 t. salt
1 egg
6 1/2 to 7 1/2 cups all purpose flour ( I use Bread Flour)
1 T. cinnamon
1/4 cup butter, softened
     In large mixer bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water.  Cool milk to lukewarm and stir into yeast along with 1/3 cup sugar, oil, baking powder, salt, egg and 3 cups flour.  Beat for 2 to 3 minutes with electric mixer. Stir in enough remaining flour to make a dough that's easy to handle.  Knead on well- floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.  Place in oiled bowl, turning to grease the top. Cover and let rise in warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.  Meanwhile, prepare two 9"x13" baking pans.  For frosted cinnamon rolls, liberally grease pan.  For caramel rolls, prepare topping (recipe follows) and divide evenly between two pans.  Mix 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon; reserve.  Punch down dough and divide into halves.  Roll one half to a 12"x10" rectangle.  Spread with 2 T. softened butter (or more) and sprinkle with half the cinnamon sugar mixture.  Beginning on the 12" side, roll up dough, pinching edge firmly to seal.  Cut into 12 one-inch slices. Arrange on one prepared pan.  Repeat with remaining dough, butter and cinnamon sugar mixture. Wrap pans with sprayed foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 12 hours, but no longer than 48 hours. (To bake immediately, do not wrap; let rise lightly covered until doubles, about 30 minutes and proceed with baking.)  To bake, remove foil from pans. Bake at 350 degrees until golden, about 20-25 minutes. Immediately invert pan onto baking sheet or heat proof serving plate.  Wait a minute, then remove pan.  Caramel-topped rolls are ready to serve.  For cinnamon rolls (without caramel) prepare glaze and spread on rolls while warm. Makes 24-26 rolls.
     Caramel Topping:  1 cup brown sugar, 3/4 cup butter, 1/4 cup white corn syrup and 1 cup pecan halves. Heat brown sugar and butter until melted. Remove from heat; stir in corn syrup. Divide mixture between two baking pans and sprinkle pecans evenly in each pan.
     Cinnamon Roll Glaze: 2 cup powdered sugar, 2 T milk, 1 t. vanilla or almond flavoring. Mix all ingredients until smooth.  Drizzle or spread over warm cinnamon rolls.    Enjoy!!!

Seven Sisters, Fray Block, Glue Pen & Cinnamon Rolls

This is sort of a weird title for this post but it includes everything that I want to show you.  First, the Seven Sisters Civil War block is shown above. I hand appliqued it and used some 'new to me' products. I used the Ricky Tims' Stable Stuff Poly to make the templates and then I used the glue pen to turn the edges over. Because the star points were so 'pointy' after I had finished appliqueing them, I used some Fray Block on each of the points. I let it dry then I washed the block to get rid of the stiffness from the Stable Stuff. The SS did soften up a lot but it still has quite of bit of body to it. I'm not sure I would use it if I were to hand quilt, especially if I needed to do some quilting within the stars..Since the stars are small, I think it worked fine and would use it again for a project like this.  I did like using the glue pen, small and easy to handle and the glue worked just fine too! Although Elmer's Washable School Glue is very inexpensive and I think it works just as well.  The Fray Block hopefully did the trick to keep the points safe and sound when washing after the quilt is finished. Overall, I was happy with the results of all of the products.
Now, on to the Cinnamon Rolls that I made for a Mother's Day breakfast at my daughter's house. Nothing really special about them, except everyone likes them so being the bread maker in the family, I whipped them up the day before. They are 24 hour rolls, so you can make them up and stick them in the frig, get them out the next day and bake them fresh to eat.  Can you smell the aroma? My house still smelled like cinnamon and bread when I came home after breakfast. Gotta run for now, sew until next time,  have a "Stitches" kind of day...

Sunday, May 8, 2011

A Laughing Matter!! ;-) ;-0 !!

I don't know if I can write and get this across to you or not but I will try...Today I was at my DD house (she had back surgery a couple of weeks ago) planting some flowers for her and my 23 year old grandson was digging up the dirt a head of me so I could get the flowers in. Well, my "beloved" (and I truly mean it) SIL was afraid the GS was going to hit a sprinkler head so he decided to turn the sprinklers on to mark the heads.  BUT I was sitting on the ground and just happened to be in the line of fire (water) when it came on. Needless, to say, I got wet. I'm yelling at my SIL, Mike, Mike!! I tried to lay low to the ground, hoping the water would go over me, duh!!! That didn't work so I rolled over (picture this in your mind) to get up on my knees and got blasted from the back and when I got up, I sort of got it from the front. My glasses were completely covered in drops and everyone was laughing so much they were crying. I thought my DD was going to undo her back surgery, she was laughing so hard. It was not a pretty scene, just wish someone had recorded it so we could have sent it in to America's Funniest Videos..I'm still laughing when I think about it and it will be something that comes up in conversation in our family for a long time, I'm afraid..It was an eventful afternoon to say the least!!! I had a "Stitches" kind of day for sure!!! sew until next time..keep dry!!!

Happy Mother's Day and Grandma's Too!!

And Grandma's too... While we honor all our mothers
with words of love and praise.
While we tell about their goodness
and their kind and loving ways.
We should also think of Grandma,
she's a mother too, you see....
For she mothered my dear mother
as my mother mothers me.
Author Unknown

I just wanted to take a few minutes to honor Mother's and Grandmother's on this special day.  I'm a Mother (3X) and Grandmother (8X), roles that I will always cherish. We had a nice brunch this morning up at my oldest DD's house and I received some lovely gifts....but the real gift was just being together as a family. My youngest DD wasn't home today but she will be here next week for a graduation celebration..I got her beautiful card yesterday with a gift certificate to one of my favorite stores so I think I'm about the luckiest Mother around today. Blessings to all of you and I hope you are having a "Stitches" kind of Mother's Day....until next time.  Enjoy your day!!!

Monday, May 2, 2011

My, Oh My, Don't Be Shy!!

Please don't be shy about leaving a commnet or two, they make a blog so much more interesting. It's fun to read what others think and they really do help to encourage a blogger to post more often.  I'm really not begging you or pleading although you might call it that, hmmmmmmmmm!!!  Frankly, I had this cute little card and wanted to post it, so I thought I would put out a call for comments...Did it work???? Sew until next time, have a Stitches kind of evening. 

Sunday, May 1, 2011

It's Good to Be Back!!

     Greetings to all of you and Happy May Day!! Yes, it has been over 2 weeks since I have written on my blog, whew, I can't believe it!  I really have been busy but I know the rest of you have been busy also. My oldest DD had back surgery on the 19th of April and that same day but in the evening, I had a trunk show at my guild..It was a long day for me to say the least. I am happy to report that DD is getting along okay but I think she is trying to do to much to soon, guess that might just be the mom in me! I think our cold, rainy weather the last couple of weeks didn't do a lot for energy levels, I really needed some sunshine and have finally gotten it the last few days. Thanks be to God!

     First, I want to show you my progress on the Barbara Brackman Civil War quilt. Here are 3 blocks that I made on April 15th. All on one day!! Whew, it must have been raining again!  Here is mine called North Star.
This is Texas Tears.
And this is Kansas Troubles. The picture looks rather faded but it is a light lavender background, not grey.  I also have my Seven Sisters done and will post it soon too. I hate to admit that I have 2 plastic bins (big ones) full of civil war reproduction fabric now, I think scrappy civil war quilts are on my agenda in the future. But you have to buy when you see something you like or it will be gone, never to come back, right??  That's my theory and I'm stickin' to it!
I had looked at these books for several weeks and finally decided to take the "bull by the horns", (that would actually be ME) and ordered them. I have really enjoyed looking at all the projects in them and can see several quilts that I want to make. I want to make some doll quilts for a doll stroller that belonged to my mom and her sister. And then I have my doll cradle that could use some fixing up and TLC and that would include a quilt or two. I also joined the group on Yahoo and have enjoyed reading on it.  But, and this is a big BUT, now I really would like to have this book.
The price is $28.00 and I just don't know if it is worth it, books are getting really expensive, don't ya think? Does anyone have this book?? Do you really, really like it?? I wish you would let me know what you think about the book and the projects. I hate to order a book and not know what is inside for projects. I hope to hear from some of you about this book.

Lastly, I want to show you a couple of pictures of my Lenten Rose. This is about the 3rd or 4th year for it and it has really made a spectacle of itself. There are easily over a hundred blossoms on it right now. Mine happens to be a dark purple color and they don't show up real good against the dark green foliage. It started blooming back in March and still is getting buds on it! Way to go, Lennie Rose!!  I think on that note, I'm going to call it quits for this time...Sew have a great "Stitches"  kind of day...see ya soon!!