Monday, June 29, 2009

Lots of Goodies

On Friday, this cute little siggy arrived from Margun in Norway. What a sweet little owl!

And today's mail brought my winnings from May's OPAM challenge. Kris was too generous! In the package was a darling Raggedy Angel wall hanging, pillow & pin pattern; a very useful pad and marker; a pocket size sewing kit and some unique Australian candies called Muskettes..yummy!

Thank you so much, Kris. I love it all!!

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Exciting News & Giveaway

My good friend, Geta, has been working so hard for several months putting together her first E-pattern to share her sensational Shadow Trapunto technique. The day has finally arrived that it's ready and I am so excited for her. Rush on over to her blog, Geta's Quilting Studio and see what an amazing job she has done.

I've taken quite a few workshops, especially those in which I hoped to learn a new technique I have to say that I've never encountered a teacher quite as thorough as Geta. I've had the honor of getting some sneak peeks as she was working on this first pattern and I have been so impressed with her plain and simple instructions and excellent pictures. And her pricing is just as unbelievable! I truly feel that anyone with a basic familiarity with free motion quilting will be able to make a Shadow Trapunto project and amaze their friends and themselves.

To make this ever better, Geta, generous as always, is giving away SIX prizes to those ordering and/or commenting.

So get on over there and check it out.

Geta, you will be famous one day and I'm so blessed to call you friend.

Friday, June 26, 2009


Another hot and humid day in S.E. Kansas. I'm back to working on my "Flowers For........." quilt. 48 blocks done so far. A lot more to go!

'Twas The Night Before Christmas

Helen over at Hugs & Kisses has designed a wonderful new pattern for a fabulous redwork and pieced Christmas quilt. She's even offering to give away a full set of patterns to a lucky winner. So hurry on over and enter for your chance to win. There are only 6 more months until Christmas so you need to get started!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Chicken Dance

I finally decided today what I was going to do for our guild's challenge which is due at next month's meeting. Each year we get a fat quarter in our membership packet and we are required to use a recognizable piece of it in our challenge project. Every year the challenge is something different. Last year we made new portrait blocks.

This year we were challenged to make a finished quilt that had at least one 3-D element made from fabric (didn't have to be the challenge fabric). The finished measurements could not be less than 12" nor bigger than 18".

I've really struggled coming up with an idea and finally thought I had one only to change my mind again this morning. Last week while sorting through some UFO's I found a leftover from doing this wall hanging in 2006:

It's called "Boots Rooster and Sunbonnet Chick". When I made Chick the first time I didn't allow enough room for Boots on the left. So I had to start all over. That left me with a completely appliqued Chick that I wasn't about to throw out.

So this morning I decide it would be perfect for this challenge...being half done and all...sounded good to me. I added another wing to balance her out a bit and then she looked like she might be doing the Chicken Dance.

Since I love Sunbonnet Sue, have chickens all over my kitchen and lived most of my life in Iowa where I don't think a marriage is official if the Chicken Dance isn't performed, it seemed like a perfect fit. I just added some yo-yos to the bottom of her skirt for my 3-D element. And the challenge fabric was used for the binding.

Now any fellow guild members that might be reading know what I've made, but it doesn't matter much since everyone has seen Boots & Chick and would recognize it anyway.
Can you tell there is actual netting for her hose?

And guess what I received in today's mail..another siggy with Sunbonnet Sue! Thanks, Layla.

Thunder and a spattering of rain rolled through a bit ago. Just a couple miles north in Frontenac it rained like everything. Crazy.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Snails, Pears, Fennel & Oranges

Two people contacted me yesterday to say they'd like to swap siggy blocks. So I had to get some more ready.

Then the mail came with two more siggys from people on the list. It is such fun to see all the different fabrics and designs.

Gerry in The Netherlands put a lot of work into hand appliqueing this beautiful pear because she lives in an area with many fruit trees.

Renate from Germany did a wonderful job on this cute snail siggy.

Then, even though our air conditioning was struggling to keep up with the high 90's yesterday, I decided I needed to bake some bread. I pulled out a recipe I hadn't made for awhile, but one of our favorites. The ingredients are a bit unusual but it has a wonderful flavor and texture, especially toasted. I didn't have fresh orange peel so had to use dried, which works, but isn't as good as fresh.

If you like to bake bread, give this one a try and don't be put off by the white pepper. It gives a nice zing to the flavor.


1 pkg. yeast
1 C. warm water
1 1/4 C. milk
1/4 C. butter, melted and cooled
1/4 C. sugar
1 1/2 T. grated orange peel (fresh is best, dried will work)
1 T. fennel seeds, crushed
2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. white pepper (if you have it, otherwise black is okay)
6-7 C. flour

Dissolve yeast in water and let stand until foamy. Stir in remaining ingredients, adding flour last. Let rise in greased bowl until double (1 1/2 hours). Divide in half (or fourths like I do) and form into loaves. Let rise until almost double (1 hours). I like to cut a cross or other pattern in the tops just before baking--suit your fancy, but you need to pierce it somehow to allow for expansion. If you just snip a "plus" sign on the top it looks pretty.

Bake about 25-30 minutes for smaller loaves or 45 minutes for larger at 375 degrees. Brush with butter after taking out of oven (of course!)

Be sure and try this toasted!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Wanna Trade?

Not finishing a lot least it doesn't seem that way. On the other hand I've completed two projects this month and that's one more than my OPAM goal so I shouldn't be complaining I guess.

While watching the final round of the U.S. Open this morning (exciting, even for a non-golfer like me), I stitched another siggy block to have in reserve.

Now I could pick a name from Annelies' siggy list , or I could wait for one of YOU to email me and tell me you want to swap siggies. They are really easy to make..5" (unfinished) square in a square blocks...also known as D-4 in the Dear Jane patterns.

So what are you waiting for? Let's trade...................just let me know and I'll be happy to put one of these in the mail to you and share my own snail mail address with you.

Gonna be a sauna here this week I'm afraid.....mid to high 90's and typical Kansas humidity. Yuck!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Bears for Baby

Yesterday I made this little baby quilt for my cousin's first grandchild, due in September. Mom just arrived back in the states from her new home in Indonesia, so I wanted to get this to her while she was here. I used some fun bear fabric front and back.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Cinnamon Rolls

I've had several requests for the recipe for the cinnamon rolls so thought I'd just go ahead and share it here.


1 1/2 cup warm milk
1 1/4 cup warm water
1 pkg. dry yeast
1 cup warm water
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
10-12 cups flour or enough to make a soft dough
butter or margarine, softened
brown sugar

Warm milk and combine with 1 1/4 cup warm water. Dissolve yeast in 1 cup warm water. Combine eggs, sugar, salt and oil; add to milk and water mixture, then add yeast mixture. Using an electric mixer fitted with a dough hook, add flour a little at a time, until stiff dough is formed.

Mix dough together at 5:00 P.M. Let stand in a greased bowl until 10:00 P.M. Cut dough in half; roll each half into a rectangle about 1/2 inch thick and spread with softened butter or margarine. Sprinkle generously with cinnamon and brown sugar. Roll up from long end; cut into 1-inch slices. Place in greased pans until morning. DO NOT COVER OR REFRIGERATE! In the morning, bake rolls 10-13 minutes in 350ยบ oven.

Drizzle with powdered sugar icing, if desired, after removing from oven. I use strong coffee and half and half to thin my icing. Makes about 3 dozen large rolls.

( I usually punch the dough down a time or two or three between 5:00 and 10:00 p.m. as needed.)
I also usually only make a half of a can easily get 18 large rolls.

Hope you enjoy!

Give Away

Barb at Bejeweled Quilts is giving away a marvelous pattern in honor of reaching 100 followers. It's an awesome Dresden Plate pattern complete with acrylic template. Be sure and check it out and get acquainted with this great blog.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Day After

We had a terrific time yesterday with Billie Lauder. Wish you all could have been there! Since you weren't, I'll share some pics. Get your cup of coffee, tea, Coke, Pepsi, whatever floats your boat and enjoy. Pretend you're sharing one of these with your beverage of choice. I made three dozen for the workshop.

From 9 a.m. to nearly 4 p.m. we were entertained and educated by Billie's " Diamond's Can Be a Quilter's Best Friend" workshop. Billie has such a knack for making seemingly difficult piecing not only doable, but often easy. She's a wonderful teacher; patient and eager to help no matter what your skill or experience level.

Billie took us through working with diamond shapes a little at time, showing us how to piece several kinds of units that are composed of diamonds and the dreaded "Y" seams. We had 25 people signed up for the class and I think everyone felt they learned a great deal.

If your guild is looking to book a terrific teacher and program, you can't do much better than Billie. She's a sweetheart with a sly sense of humor and will teach you to open your mind and loose your fear of working with shapes that compose so many of the prettiest blocks.

Since it was a technique workshop I only have pieces of different blocks to show you as opposed to a whole project.

3 of my tumbling blocks

1/2 of a star

A different star block

Billie showed us many antique blocks and tops. I found this star block beautiful and so intriguing. I think she said it dated from the late 1800's.

In the evening we had a wonderful Show and Tell prior to Billie's trunk show. One of our members shared several amazing antique quilt tops that she is privileged to own. It was interesting that this particular top is composed of a diamond star block that Billie showed us during the workshop. It's definitely on my "to do" list. Wish I had been able to get a better picture, but the ladies were quickly moving the quilts around the room for all to see.
Another of Joyce's family tops.

And another.

The Parson's Quilt Guild is giving away this gorgeous Opportunity Quilt next weekend. Maybe Tom and I will be lucky and win it! I hope so.

Elma made this great little wall hanging based on a photo taken on a vacation. The photo was of their reflection in the water as they stood on a bridge. How creative!

Lea Anita showed this spectacular quilt that showcases about 20 doilies she crocheted. If that isn't amazing enough, consider the fact she said this is the 22nd quilt like this she has made. Yep..not a typo...22!

One of our newer guild members showed this beautiful quilt she made in the beginner's class earlier this year. I'd say she learned the beginning lessons quite well and is going to be a terrific quilter!

Cindy showed the little basket wall hanging I quilted for her a week ago.

I don't remember who showed this wonderful sampler but it's great!
And Stacia made us all envious with another fantastic thrift market find. The top is quite's folded in half in this picture. It's in wonderful shape and she picked it up for $18! I need to go thrifting with her!

Then it was time for Billie's trunk show. She shared many of the quilts that are showcased in the 24 books she has published. So if you see a quilt you like, chances are you will find the pattern in one of her books. One of the things Billie does so well is demonstrate how you can take a simple block and with a few changes make it into an entirely different quilt (in her words taking things from a Four Yawns down to a One Yawn or No Yawns).

Billie also says that it is when she is left alone in motel rooms for too long that she comes up with her innovative designs and methods. Wish my mind worked like that. I'd probably just fall asleep!
These are just a few of my favorites:

This was the last workshop I have scheduled for my year as Program Chair. I have three more trunk shows and a birthday celebration and then my year is up. It's been fun, but I'm ready to just sit back and enjoy.

By the way...we had a new member join our guild last night...Tom!