Wednesday, August 29, 2012

This one's for me....

....because winter will be here before you know it!

And I'll be looking for a cozy but not-too-warm cover while napping on the loveseat :)

Some family cast-offs of soft flannel nightgowns provided oodles of fabric that I cut into 5-inch wide strips and stitched together randomly.  It's about 50" x 50" now, but I'm looking for one more donation to add a few more strips.  Then I'll back it with a length of lightweight flannel from the fabric store (no batting) and do some light machine quilting for a quick finish.


Warmth and coziness will be waiting for me.  Now, how about a cuppa tea?


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Samosa patties

My cooking experiment for Sunday night was an adaptation of this recipe.  I get authentic samosas from a vendor at one of the farmers markets I go to when out of state. My favorite is their potato/chickpea blend.  So I decided to try to come up with something similar because the ones in the frozen section of the grocery store just don't compare.

One small can of chickpeas (garbanzos, ceci) were simmered to soften them so that they could be mashed.  A half cup of frozen peas were thrown in, just like in the ones I get at the market.  I had all the ingredients on hand except the chilies and garam masala.  I also decided to skip the dough wrapper and just cook them like potato cakes.

Yes!  Success!  They're not exactly like the farmers market ones but they'll satisfy me in between trips :)
And they're VERY economical!

(The color is a bit off due to the lighting in the photo.  It's getting dark earlier these days!)

Try something different ..... and Happy Eating!


Sunday, August 26, 2012

What a week.....

This morning woke me gently with a soft cool breeze and chirping critters.  It was the kind of morning that lets you ease into the day.  After opening the windows wide and making breakfast I accomplished one task after another, in no great hurry and in no particular order.  From cleaning the kitchen to filing recent bills, I eliminated those pesky jobs that keep calling when you are trying to do something else.

I needed this kind of morning after having a strange week at work.  There's a "re-organization" in progress which resulted in losing the person I worked with.  My duties are changing and I'm learning (the hard way) so much that I did not do before.  All in all, it should turn out good......after these initial weeks of coming home filled with information overload.  Dropping onto the couch was the highlight of my evenings ;)

I should be back up and running now.  My mind is cleared and I found a few new projects.  I started cutting fabric for a new quilt using new material (not vintage.)


I saw some slippers I want to try to make.


And I found this recipe that I'm going to make tonight to take for lunch tomorrow.  I also want to get back to making bread now that the heat has subsided and I can turn on the oven again  :)

Please keep all our southern U.S. friends and family in your prayers as the new storm catches landfall in Florida.  I hope they are all preparing.  Even more, I hope it fizzles into a light storm.

It's been a while.  What have you been up to?  And what have you got planned for this week?


Saturday, August 18, 2012

Friday Night Sew In - August 17, 2012

A Friday Night Sew In finish!

As my staycation neared it's end, I was able to complete the baby quilt with dresden flowers made from vintage aprons.  I like to think of all those mothers and grandmothers baking pies and cakes or frying crispy chicken for their families, with all the love in their hearts, and wearing these aprons.  The warmth of that love will surround a new baby or young child through this quilt like a grandmother's hug.

With some great music, a quickly prepared dinner, and some phone calls with friends, it was a pleasant evening.  Stitching on the binding was completed effortlessly.

(Hand quilted)

And a bonus....

I've had this old nine patch quilt for many, many years.  It was randomly tied and the batting had shifted and clumped.  I decided it needed a "rebirth" so in a short time it was frogged.

(Batting and backing)


The quilt top is still quite pleasing and has character (ie: wear and fading), and I hope to find it a new home with someone who will create beautiful things with it!  First, today it will go in the wash.

Thanks to Heidi and Crafty Vegas Mom for hosting the Friday Night Sew In!  Follow this link to see what everyone worked on last night.  And have a terrific weekend!


Thursday, August 16, 2012

Love object

Oh, I just adore these!

They were discovered during my excursion to the secondhand shop on Tuesday, in great condition and complete with the box with the name Marge Platt on it.  I don't know who Marge is but she took very good care of these safety glasses, or she may have hardly needed to wear them because they're not scratched, dirty, or have any other issues.  I love the unusual angles on the bottom edge!

My next eye appointment isn't until December so I'm thinking these may just be my holiday present to myself this year, complete with transitional lenses for sunshine.

Here's looking at you, kid!


Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Away....or not

I've been on a small staycation, or self-imposed retreat, as it were.  Escaping the hectic stress that is abundant in the workplace, I scheduled a few days for personal care.  Turning off the constant buzz at the office can be considered "personal care" for the body and soul.  A few days of good music, home cooking for every meal, and afternoon naps can be sooooo refreshing!  Listening to the thunder get closer and feeling the cool breezes as a storm approaches are things I haven't been able to enjoy in eons.  It could be midnight-black at noon and I wouldn't see the darkness, sitting at my cubicle in a windowless office.  Soooo......

I gave myself a long weekend without leaving home.  I was able to get close to finishing the baby quilt and drew up the plans for a lap quilt made from new materials.  They've now been pre-washed and ironed, ready for the rotary cutter.  I'll be joining this month's Friday Night Sew-In with either of these projects.  Please stop by Saturday to see photos of my progress.

Yesterday was my first day out and about.  I planned an excursion to the secondhand store a half hour away, which always turns into a full day adventure, and it did not disappoint.  Within one minute of walking in the store I found something I've been wanting for over a year.  Hint.....

Out came tables of goodies, a few vintage clothing finds, the Ball Canning book of the same year as the one I started with (which had a great picallily recipe), and so much more.  I'll be sharing photos of these finds over the next few days.

Today is a general cleaning day while waiting for the gas company technician to stop by and do the annual furnace tune up.  I'll handwash the vintage clothes and hope to take photos so they can go in my etsy shop.  I'm also thinking about doing some baking if the weather stays cool.  I'd better sign off now to get the most out of the day.  Soon enough I'll be back in my cube!

Hope all is well out your way, and that you're able to take a break for yourself.  Got staycation or vacation coming up?


Sunday, August 5, 2012

It isn't the heat, it's the humidity.....

It hasn't reached 90 today but the humidity is close to 80%, affecting the air quality level.  It was a good day to stay inside and clean.  (...and check on a few older folk by phone to make sure they are doing well.)  My brief excursion was to drop off some books at Goodwill and pick up some eggs and fruit at the store.

Tonight I'll be doing more of this.....

I'm getting close the completion on this baby quilt so after yesterday's visit with my mother, I went to the fabric store to buy new material for my next quilt.  It certainly felt strange picking out fabrics for a quilt (*wink*) but I've almost run out of old aprons!  My last few trips to the second hand shops yielded no "cutters"!

I tried to mimic the randomness of a pile of aprons by choosing about ten prints of assorted colors.  I couldn't reproduce the tone and exact colors of vintage aprons, but I think it may have the general "effect".  Only time will tell.  The pattern I've chosen would lend itself well to scraps that a 1940's housewife would have on hand.

Tonight I'll be working on this.  There's a Friday Night Sew In coming up soon.  If I've finished this one, I'll have my next project ready!

Have a wonderful evening!


Thursday, August 2, 2012

Mixing it up

Sometimes I try complicated recipes that I might find in a magazine at the hair dressers, and sometimes I just mix a few things together.  Lately I've been doing more of the latter.  Like with my favorite lunch from last week.

I bring my lunch to work almost every day, so one day I decided to try put a twist on a cup of cottage cheese.  Based on an intriguing recipe for jam made with peaches and basil, I added a cut up fresh peach and chopped basil.  It was good enough to be for the next day's lunch.  (If you don't like cottage cheese, try it with part skim ricotta.  It would be awesome lightly broiled over whole wheat toast.)

I took advantage of the zucchini overload from a coworkers garden and made the summer pre-requisite zucchini bread.  Yes, I gotta have that slice of homemade goodness each summer, but most of this loaf was then gifted to Mom and my neighbor.  I wanted them to try the awesome breakfast I had while away two weeks ago.  The breakfast special at a small restaurant was Zucchini French Toast with Honeyed Ricotta.  Ohhhh, was it good!  The zucchini bread was lightly dipped in egg (not too much, the inside was still dry) and topped with ricotta that had just a slight bit of honey mixed in.  No need for butter, syrup, or anything else!  I'm thinking I might have to hint for more zucchini......

Have fun with your food :)