Thursday, 17 April 2014

Back To My Machine

I returned to the sewing machine today after my brief sabbatical. It was nice to have a break, and now good to be back. This is the first time in four months that I have no secret sewing, no deadlines, and I can just do what I want.

Today I decided to do more on my latest quilt-as-you-go cushion top. I finished the piecing, only covering part of the cushion as I had the intention of covering the other part of the cushion with linen. Needless to say I had to complicate things.


I must remember if I ever do this again to not do the porthole part of the qayg until I have attached the curve bit. Needless to say that needed some 'adjusting' as my tear drop porthole did not end up right where I wanted it to be. And the linen is more than a bit wonky.

On the other hand it is a fairly smooth curve and that makes me smile. There was a great deal of pinning involved, maybe some colourful language as well.


Now I am pushing my luck by doing matchstick(ish) quilting and working my way out around the tear drop. Tears are sure to fall if it all goes wrong as it approaches the middle of the cushion where the linen joins the qayg.

And I leave you with this photo I had on Instagram. I thought this fussy cut was so funny. Couldn't figure out what it meant for the love of me.


@craftycalm got Google to translate it for me though. She said it means 'hang up straight out of the washer to dry nicely, if still creased wear a cardi'. Now that I understand perfectly!

Susan

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

One of Those Days

It was one of those days.

One of those days where you just had to be happy. The sun shone down. The birds were singing happily, but didn't wake me up at some stupid hour.

One of those days where I almost didn't mind cutting the grass and pruning the hedges because it was so beautiful out.

One of those days where the trees have all turned magically green as the new leaves spring forth. And I noticed that I have flowers in the front flower bed. And my stargazer lilies are pushing up through the fresh layer of soil I gave them a couple of weeks ago.


One of those days where I did tonnes of laundry and it all dried outside. And cleaned the loos without losing the will to live.

One of those days that I went grocery shopping and paid someone else to clean my car while I was in there. (Because it was filthy and I really didn't want to do it no matter how nice it was out.)

One of those days that it is so nice out that I came out from grocery shopping laden down with fruit and stuff for salads.

One of those days where I didn't need socks, for the first time this year. (Reminder to self - must paint toe nails.)

One of those days my eldest makes cupcakes. And I stopped for the kids at the end of the lane to the farm where they were holding up a hand painted sign saying they were selling eggs. So I bought some and they give me some daffodils because they were so happy I stopped. Then I got home and saw they had marked on each egg by hand the date each one was laid. (I love that!)


One of those days where I got loads done, felt good for it and still had time to go sit in the sun at the end of the day to do a little hand stitching while dinner cooked.


It was one of those days where you just had to be happy.

Susan

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Home Again, Home Again Jiggiity Jig

Our extended weekend away has come to an end, but what a good time. The sun shone (a lot), there was plenty of laughter, lots of good food, some wine and a huge amount of relaxing. Perfect.

There is a real joy to being on a ferry,
that makes a not so long journey seem that much more exciting
and the destination more of an escape.
The days were about being outside,
on the beach much of the time,
with friends.
And playing with the various animals,
the rabbit, Basil the dog and the degu.
There was a guinea pig too but I somehow failed to get a photo.
But really it was about the friends...
... and one extremely bouncy dog.
Susan

Thursday, 10 April 2014

In For A Penny; In For A Pound?

Last quarter in the Finish-a-Along I played it safe. I know that, and it worked for me giving me an 80% success rate which is unheard of up to now. This quarter I decided to make a total fool of myself. Here goes.

1. Hexie quilt (my one sure fire finish so that I don't succumb to total humiliation). One hanging sleeve to attach and that silly paper label that the quilt shows want you to sew on the back.


2. DS epp. Been around for just about forever. Failed to make anything with these every time I put them on a FAL list.


3. More epp, started at the Retreat last summer. I just needs making into a cushion or something. Not exactly a big job, but one I keep putting off.


4. Finish hand quilting my Walk In The Woods baby quilt.


5. Turn these beautiful churn dash blocks my bee mates made for me into a quilt.


6. Turn these amazing star blocks my bee buddies made for me into a quilt.


7. Finish hand quilting this quilt, also from my wonderful world of bee friends.


8. Turn something I have never blogged about before into a beautiful quilt. More on this soon, but it involves my last birthday, my amazing eldest daughter and her conniving with my Brit bee pals. It was a total surprise so Helen is going to finish this block she started all on her own and I am going to contribute to the quilt and we will combine that with the blocks she collected and have a memory to share forever.


9. Let's not forget the Christmas quilt.


10. Then there is the newest bee quilt.


11. There is a little project I started using my DS fabrics. Only just started but a start is a start.


12. And I have also been playing with some flying geese.


13. Then there is Sunrise Sunset.


14. And the latest QAYG.


15. Almost forgot this.


I am sure I could find more, but I'm not going to try. Instead I am going to be the one in the corner rocking too and fro and whimpering. I shall link this up with Katy at the FAL Q2 linky party. It would make this whole process rather redundant otherwise.

Finish Along 2014


I'll be away for five days now. Larking about with the girls and friends on the Isle of Wight. Leaving poor himself to fend for himself. The food is all packed, as is the wine, and some clean socks and undies too of course! Hope everyone else who is indulging in school holidays is having a good time too. I shall be on IG if you are looking for me - @canadianabroad

Susan

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Food Pinning

Do you pin recipes on Pinterest? I do - right here. I'm a little food obsessed. Have been all my life. I have mentioned before that I have a fairly substantial cook book collection. And I use them, honest I do, but lately I have found that those recipes I pin really do come in useful. They have provided us with some new family favourites within the past year.

Today I prepared for a little trip the girls and I are taking for an extended weekend away. Since we will be staying with long time friends I am bringing food to help out on the kitchen side of things. All three items I made are from my Pinterest board. All have been tried before and proved very successful with others as well as us. If you are looking for something new to add to your repertoire let me tempt you with these ideas.

Snicker Doodle Cookies


The pin is here. These are soft and chewy, and when you sandwich some vanilla ice cream between two of them they go from delicious to pure bliss. Perfect for entertaining as the recipe will give you about five dozen cookies - that's 30 wee ice cream sandwiches folks. Enough that you can sample without impacting on your hostessing duties. Ha! (Would I?!) Oh, and the cookie dough is a-maz-ing! Another food group for sure.

Another good recipe for entertaining is this Cinnamon Roll Cake.


It's huge. And sweet. You have to like sweet here. Though I do cut the glaze to half the amount to reduce that sugar content slightly. The girls love it and their friends love it. Last time I made it I was sending them to school with extra pieces to share because if it all stayed home I was going to be the size of a house. The pin is here.

Last up on the culinary show today was Thai Chicken Salad. It's better described as a Thai Chicken Peanut Coleslaw though.


This is my prepped veggies container. The shredded chicken, dressing and chopped peanuts are in separate containers. I will mix it all together at dinner tomorrow night. This salad should come with a warning as it is highly addictive. Just ask any of the Brit Bee members who have had some at our get togethers. I just ramp up the amount I make according to the size of the crowd. I put in whatever is at hand really, as I seldom have the green papaya specified, but shredded radishes are nice, and red onion works well. Use your imagination and do what works for you. The pin is here.

Quite obviously, from the above photos, I will not be dieting over the next few days. But I fully expect to be having a lovely time with friends I haven't seen in far too long.

Susan