Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas

Having a wonderful time.  Oldest son and his wife from Arizona arrived last Saturday and will stay until next Monday morning.  Youngest son and his wife from Iowa were here T-W-T but had to go home Friday morning.  Middle son, his wife, youngest daughter and her daughter, all from Missouri, were here for a full day on Thursday (those who work in retail don't get a lot of time off during Christmas).  We'll see the Missouri folks again tomorrow when we travel to our other Granddaughter's home tomorrow.  But I at least got one day with all three sons together and I am grateful.  It had been four years since it last happened.

With sons Jeff, Mike, Mark

Tom and I with all four sons (son Jean-Richard in the painting on the left is deceased).  We didn't plan the picture this way, but it is sort of cool it worked out that way.

Mark (middle child), Jeff (youngest), Mike (oldest)

Four Generations
Mark, Mary, Alyxandria, Caitlin

The daughter-in-laws
Deb (Jeff), Stephanie (Mark), Lindy (Mike)

Miss Aly--getting ready to walk

Aly in the cap and poncho I crocheted last week at her mom's request (not a lot of quilting going on lately, but I haven't been totally idle)

Lots of calories consumed

And lots of cards played

And because you can never have too many cute baby pics (at least I can't)

Wishing all my friends in blogland a Merry Christmas and healthy, prosperous New Year.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Dutch Trade is Done!

A Christmas present to third Dutch Treat quilt, which I'm calling "Dutch Trade" is now finished!    Tom says it is the best of the three.

I will need help getting a good full on picture.  But for now here are a few angle shots

The individual blocks and progress pictures of this quilt can be seen here

Dutch Treat #1  can be seen here

Dutch Treat #2 can be seen here

Is there a fourth one in my future?

Friday, December 9, 2011


Trying to get a few goodies made in preparation for Christmas week.  This year is one of the special ones when we'll have the three sons with us, at least for a few days prior to Christmas, if not on Christmas Day (Iowa DIL has to work that day). 

Yesterday I made some Munchy Crunchies, a candy I've been making for about 40 years.  The original recipe called for chow mein noodles, but somewhere along the line I started using shoestring potatoes instead and we like them better. The salt in the potatoes is a nice contrast to the  sweetness of the chips.
Sorry I forgot to take a picture before putting them in the freezer (away from temptation) but here's one I found on the internet

These have been a particular family favorite for many years.
6 oz. chocolate chips     
6 oz. butterscotch chips    
2 (3 oz) cans of chow-mein noodles
1 C. peanuts (optional)

Spread candy evenly in an 11 or 12-inch electric skillet. Set control at 200º. Cover; cook 5 minutes. Stir to combine softened candy; mixture may not be smooth. Add noodles & nuts; stir until coated. Remove from heat. Drop by teaspoons onto waxed paper.

**I prefer using shoestring potatoes. The saltiness gives excellent contrast to the sweetness of the chips. I often substitute peanut butter chips for the butterscotch chips and I never include nuts.

I had a big can of shoestring potatoes so there was some left over after making the candy.  I decided to try using them as a substitute (actually in addition to) the potato chips in these long time favorite cookie.  I made them today and they turned out great


I first made these cookies about 1972 and they became one of our favorites. A great way to use the last broken chips in the bottom of a bag.

1 C. soft butter or margarine
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C. brown sugar
1 C. chopped walnuts (optional)
1 C. sugar
2 C. crushed potato chips
2 eggs, beaten
1 tsp. baking soda (optional)
2 ½ C. sifted flour (or slightly less)

Combine butter, sugars and egg in large mixing bow. Beat until creamy and smooth. Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Roll in balls and place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 º for 12-15 minutes. Cookies will appear not done when first removed from oven. Let set a few minutes before moving from sheet to cooling racks. Makes about 6 ½ dozen.

Note: Can add butterscotch chips or oatmeal or coconut and less flour. Pecans are good in place of walnuts.

Happy Baking!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Christmas Wallhangings

Since I haven't had any finishes to show for awhile (well I finished a T-shirt quilt last week, but haven't taken a picture yet), I thought I'd share some pictures of the wallhangings I got out to hang today. I've shown several of them before, but it's been a couple of years at least, so maybe they will be new to some of you and the rest will have forgotten they've seen them.

Frosty (aka "Fumity").  This one is an original design. It has glittery pom-poms for snowballs and white paint sponged on the tree fabric.

Santa in the Trees. The tree blocks are based on a published pattern, but the Santa is my design.  I used the "strings" from a recyled chenile bedspred for his beard.

"All Tangled Up".  Pattern found in a magazine.

"Chillin' With Sue". the Skating Sue is a published pattern. The others are my designs.

My December table runner

"Crazy Patch Santa".  My original border around redwork embroidery

"The Road Home".  Another crazy patch border around embroidery.

"Winter Trees"

That's what I have left.  Many others made and given away. Guess I need to make some new Christmas decorations one of these days.  Happy Holidays!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Childhood Games

Trying to go to sleep last night I started thinking about the outdoor games we played in the 1950's and how sad it seems to me that my great-grands may never enjoy this kind of simple fun, preferring cableTV, computers and electronic games.
How many of you remember playing Fox and Geese after a nice big snow?
And just making huge snowmen and snow forts?

Or Red Rover in the warmer months?
Also Kick the Can?

Annie, Annie Over?

Crack the Whip?

Roller skating up and down the sidewalks and back and forth to school with our skate key on a string around our necks.  It was the height of fashion to make a braided chain out of yarn or string for your key.

Hour and hours spent in the municipal swimming pool playing Bird Catch (though I have no idea why we called it that or exactly what the rules were..basically a tag game).

What fun times we had growing up in a small Iowa town when it was safe for kids to be gone for hours without cell phones to keep in touch.  

Parents didn't have to max out credit cards to buy Christmas presents for us.  I even got the same doll for more than one Christmas.  I told that story here
In this picture my cousin Phyllis is holding that doll, with my sister and me sitting behind her.

Miss those simple days!
 Lastly, because this is a quilting blog..a couple of pics of the progress being made in quilting the borders on Dutch Treat #3.  Two borders done..two more to go and then bind the scalloped edge. !

Think I'll make it by the end of the year? "2011" is appliqued on the botton border, so I'd better