Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Chopping, Mixing, Baking!

We're chopping, mixing, baking today--lots of goodies to go on our holiday tray.  Each night  after dinner as we sit around to visit, we bring out Dan's famous eggnog along with a tray of baked goodies--oldest daughter has fudge, spritz cookies--have you seen the recipe for that Fireball fudge!  OMgosh--  Our friend, George is a distiller at Shire Distilling CO and he makes a great fireball liquor-- I think this will be added to our tray this year!

Dan has made pralines--I don't make candy!! It never turns out good; most of the time, it is runny and you need to bring out the spoons.
These are so delicious--creamy and smooth!

His recipe is sooooo old!  It's hard to read--I suggested
he needed to write it off so it doesn't get lost in years to
I'm mixing up my sugar cookie recipe--only because son ask
if we were going to have some cookies to dip in milk--I posted that
recipe last year, I think. 
Don't you just love old recipes that have been used over and
over again?  This is a savory cracker--lots of heat with the cayenne

And to round out the starter of the evening--Cheese ball.
Plus, I have my world famous chili cheese log to savor as well.
Gee, how we love the holidays and all the foods of
our memories.

Monday, December 17, 2018

Gift from My Hands

Every year our Expatcher group gathers for a Christmas luncheon.
I always hope to have a handmade gift to give each of my friends.
This idea popped into my brain last year--

of course, I waited till the last minute to finish up the
details--why, oh why do I do that?

Anyway, here is my gift for my dear friends.
It is handspun silk stitched on handwoven brown cotton cloth,
which has been handspun as well,
   The silk ribbon and yarn have been dyed
with indigo.
I found the bamboo 3" frames on Amazon--of course.

My hope that they will enjoy this piece from my hands.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

2019 Planning

January 2019 brings new challenges!  
It is time now to plan for those upcoming projects .
One of my favorite designers, Elizabeth Ravenwood, aka
dogyarns on Ravelry is hosting another lace knitting
venture in 2019--a different pattern each month--I
finished my 2018 lace scarf but it isn't blocked yet--

Another 2019 knitting adventure is one coming
from Toni L. Lorenz, aka 

stlorenz on Ravelry (oh how I love Ravelry!)

This is going to be an exciting learning experience!

I've begun to spin while watching playoff football games
This fiber is very well aged!  It has been in my stash bin
for years--it's lovely to spin

The singles are doing well but I'll ply singles for 2 ply before
the knitting begins.  I have attached a small piece of velcro
to the wheel and when I stop spinning I can put the
loose end of the yarn to the velcro and it sticks!!

This lovely fiber comes from my friends at

I sure there isn't any more of this fiber--I love the
name--it comes from her animals, which are all
named wonderful names.
I still need to decide on another fiber to spin........

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Mistakes..................Can Be Corrected............

It must be my month to make quilting mistakes--oh, yes, I'm making mistakes in other routines of my life too; But, do you know, all mistakes can be corrected?  Thank goodness!

When I have a few spare minutes, I've been sewing on Bonnie Hunter's 2018 mystery--I'm liking the color combinations.  So far, I've worked on two clues--making mistakes on both clues--oh, well.......I should read the instructions more carefully--really!  Take my time!  Read thoroughly!

Okay--what does this read to you?  2.5" unfinished--my brain
glazed right over that the "unfinished part" and went to download my sewing papers
for half square triangles

Now, what does this say at the top of the page??

2.5" FINISHED!!  (You can find these free half square papers
at quilting and what not--there are several sizes--)
Yes, so wrong!  I sewed several of these papers and the
brain kicked in----oh, no!  these need to be 2" finished!!

So back to the drawing board--I need to square up all these already sewn
to 2.5" unfinished!!
Thank goodness, I have this tool to make that process go quicker:
You line up on the stitching line that size you want the 
square to be--not pressed yet--and trim.

This tool is product of  New Leaf Stitches--it even trims the
'dog ears'!
Oh the joys of a mundane brain working overtime!!

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Whew! Finished...................

Well, I thought I was finished---------then, I took a photo of my "finished' quilt top.  The next day I looked at the photo............................guess what??

And there it was!!  a glaring mistake!  A big fat mistake!
Can you see it?

Well, this is the way it's suppose to be--that meant lots of
ripping--goes to prove--you're never finished until you REALLY
look at the finished project!
This was a free project from Fort Worth Fiber Studio and measures
33"X 33"

Sunday, December 9, 2018

All About Socks!!

Oh My Gosh!   Free patterns and tutorials on Socks!
I'm in heaven--sock heaven, that is!
You too can become a sock knitter and enjoy
these free patterns--Knotions has this just for you!
How can you resist??
I can't decide which one to knit first.

Then the other day, I discovered this interesting pair of sock knitters
and oh my--the yarn!  where have I been all this time??!!

Friday, December 7, 2018

Taste Driving---Recipes!

Let's Party!!  We are spending the holidays at the Hill Country house this year!  Yeah!  This will be an adventure--it's a much smaller place but we'll have a grand time with the family.
I'm in the food tasting mode now--found some interesting recipes that family might enjoy but first-- there is the taste driving test!

Damn Delicious has this tasty treat for your mouth!  It sounds so yummy!  and Costco had a special on croissant rolls!  Bam!  we're in business! 
I bought this book just for this one recipe--have you ever done that before?
There are many other good recipes too to try but the one below is one of our

And we have already taste driven this one!  But, I think whipping up
another batch is a go!

Don't they look delicious! Well, they are!

Had to try this recipe, just to use my Instapot, that I received last
Christmas!  Adventures of a Nurse gives us the copycat recipe
of Applebee's artichoke and spinach dip.
when making my list for grocery, I realize that ingredients for
Dip and rolls have the same things!! 
Wonder which one the family will like the best!!  At least,
they will be eating some spinach either recipe!

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Advent of Kindness!

Here is a perfect way to celebrate Advent each day--it takes nothing but

Monday, December 3, 2018

Today Is The Day To Begin....................

I know you're not busy today--Right?  NOT!
Busy with cooking, shopping, gift wrapping, etc.
But, here is one that you might want to save
for future sewing times!

Jan Daly Quilts will share the steps on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from the 3rd through the 21st.  The final project is a mystery that will be constructed and revealed in stages throughout the month.  This year there will simple machine piecing (with some smaller patch sizes) making this quilt along suitable for most quilters, including confident beginners.  Check their website for past mystery QAL

I'll be saving these steps along with Quiltville's 2018 mystery
and Temecula Quilt company Secret Santa steps.  So much to sew
so little time--but we'll be ready for 2019 Christmas season!

And don't forget about the New Year's Day 2019
quilt along with Merry Mayhem--every hour a step
is revealed and by evening you'll have a wonderful new quilt--
if you keep up!

Saturday, December 1, 2018

AQS Christmas Countdown

Just another reason to sew during the holidays
of if you're like me
save for future stitching.
Join this group through Facebook--

Each day from December 1-25 we will be posting a block. Please use your preferred construction technique.
Share questions and process images along the way. Be sure to show off your finished blocks with lots of pictures! We may even use your shared images on AQS Social Media platforms: AQSBlog, OnPoint, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, & Facebook. Always giving you credit, of course.

The full projects along with the finishing quilts for 2015, 2016, and 2017 can be found on AQSBlog:

Our 2018 Christmas project starts here:…. You can even combine all the blocks and make a 100 Block Christmas Quilt!
Blocks are shown in red and white. Please feel free to make your blocks in any color. If you would like to use the same fabrics we are using, look for active links to within the blog posts.
Joining this group means you agree to abide by the AQS Social Media Terms & Conditions found here:…/social_media_terms_and_con…

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Advent Calendar

It's that time of year when my mind turns to Advent--time to reflect on the reason for the season.  We have an advent wreath--a circle of life--candles are lit on Sundays before Christmas.

I also like to prepare myself by knitting an advent scarf, which I've
done for the past several years.  This year is no different--

Unkatissima hosts this special knit along beginning December 1--Each day a 'window' will open to reveal the pattern for the day--It is my meditation time--yarn in my hands is certainly a blessing.  The pattern is free--knit along!

About the pattern:

  1. This year the shawl has
     7 different consecutive lace patterns which mirror each other harmoniously,
     a 20 stitches repeat which allows you to knit the shawl as wide as you like and
     on day 13 a pattern that you can knit as often as you like to adapt the length of the shawl to your liking.
  2. The pattern
     is a multiple of 20 pattern stitches + 3 start/end stitches + 2 or more edge stitches, and has a total of 386 rows with the day 13 pattern knitted once.
     The day 13 pattern has 28 rows and can be knitted several times if necessary.
     The daily instructions contain each as well charts as written instructions.
  3. To knit the shawl you need
     yarn with needles in appropriate size (the shawl looks as beautiful knitted in lace yarn as in fingering or bulkier yarn),
     know-how about knitting yarn overs and different decreases and
     if you like stitch markers to mark the repeats.
  4. If you want to make the shawl
     broader/narrower simply adjust the number of repeats;  shorter,
    • use smaller needle sizes and/or
    • finer yarn and/or
    • knit less loose;  longer
    • knit the day 13 pattern more than once and/or
    • use larger needles and/or bulkier yarn and/or knit more loose.
Advent Skalender is another shawl to knit during this period.  It began November 20

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Wool Work---

Sleep as I will--wish as I would--
It just doesn't get the job done!
I bought this book for some wool applique
sense--I've not done much wool work.  A few small
pieces but I bought this book to make 

This tea cozy!!  I loved this tea cozy!  I have the book
now.  I have wool too.  I have floss to do the stitching--
BUT............A cold spell came along

My tea pot is still naked!!

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Not Early Enough!

Every year I think and believe that I will begin gift making
earlier in the year--but here I am in mid November
and just working on a few--and I mean a few!
Not going to have time to create all the gifts
I thought I could--intentions went by the wayside!!

This pattern by Denton Foreman, Cozy Fingerless Gloves

is a perfect mindless knitting project--
knit in front of TV, in the car, in a lecture,
talking to friends--
I found lots of small bits of yarn that will 
work for this easy peazy pattern.
I divided my yarn into two so I can knit both mitts
as the same time on circular needles--and the best
part--it's all Knit!!

Friday, November 23, 2018

Post Thanksgiving Food.....................


Are there Thursday leftovers in your refrigerator?  Each person in our family love those leftovers and want a 'favorite'--be it just turkey sandwich or turkey ala king, turkey tetrazzini, turkey salad, turkey gumbo--we could eat turkey for days after the BIG day!  What is your favorite?

Here is my recipe for turkey tetrazzini:  which is my family favorite!

  • 12 oz dry spaghetti
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 onion diced
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 2 1/4 cups chicken broth 
  • 1 1/3 cups half & half or light cream
  • Juice of one lemon
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 cups chopped turkey
  • 2 cups mozzarella cheese 
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, topping
  • splash of white wine, if on hand

Prepare spaghetti in boiling salted water.  In a saute pan, melt butter, brown chopped onion in butter, then add flour to make a roux.  Add liquid--chicken broth and half/half, stir till thick; then add chopped turkey, juice of one lemon, salt and pepper, mix in cheese--
place the cooked spaghetti in a greased casserole dish, pour the turkey mixture over spaghetti, mix together; on top sprinkle parmesan cheese--sometimes, I'll sprinkle some fine bread crumbs on top to get a nice crunch.  Bake at 350* for about 30-40 minutes till bubbly around the edges.  Serve to the waiting crowd!
Can be prepared ahead, frozen and then served at a later date.

Enjoy your leftovers or in our house we call it "must go"!

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving!

FAll colors will soon turn to Christmas Red and Green,
but before that happens, I'm enjoying the newly fallen
leaves, rosy crisp apples, butternut squash filled with

We will continue to Give Thanks for the small things in
our life
We leave you with this tablescape From My Carolina Home
May your Thanksgiving day be filled with many
blessings and riches of bounty!

Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Can You Help?

There are tragedies that occur everywhere in the world - right now there is utter devastation in Paradise California. There is a call out for quilt blocks and quilts if you care to donate to those who have lost so much.
It breaks your heart to know they have lost Everything!!
Here is how we can assist:


Complete quilts that are ready to be given to children can be mailed immediately to the address below:
Care of Kathy Biggi
14280 Bar Ela Ranch Rd.
Grass Valley, CA 95945
Donation Quilts website has links to patterns of other heart blocks.  If you have completed quilts or tops, please consider sending those along as well.