Friday, October 26, 2012

A pear or two

Talk about fast food!  These whipped up in a jiffy.  In fact I had to stop myself at 5.  I think they will be fun decorations, or even pincushions!

The pattern I used is from the book Sew Pretty Homestyle by Tilda.  I stuck with realistic (sort of) colors for pears, but you could get wild with some colorful modern fabric, or use linen (add some embroidery!), even burlap.  Or maybe velvet for Christmas with some glitter. Yes, I think velvet ones next, smaller perhaps, and strung on a garland.  You haven't seen the last of my pears.
For the stems, I used a raffia braided cord that had been tied around a box of candles.  Twigs from the backyard would work just as well.  I pretty much followed the pattern, except that I added a button to the bottom.  It helps them stand up a little better.

Now if your interested in eating the real thing, check out these chocolate dipped pear slices.
My sister told me about the original recipe here.  Basically just slice your pears, toss with lemon juice to keep them from turning brown.  Dip the slices in melted chocolate, then sprinkle with a little sea salt.  Pop into the fridge for a while so the chocolate can get hard again.  So easy!

Speaking of fruit, if you're in need of a good chuckle, check out the reviews on Amazon for this banana slicer.  The comments were hilarious!  No, I did not buy one : )

Linking up with Debbie at Tuesday at the Table.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

After the rain......

We had our first rain of the season.  Everything smells fresh, damp and crisp.  This morning I left the snoozing dogs inside and slipped out onto the porch for a quiet cup of coffee.  The chairs were full of the summers' dust, but I just threw a quilt down and curled up.  The cool air felt amazing, and the sunrise was so bright it almost hurt.  I've been waiting for this moment for weeks.  

Once back inside, I opened the french doors, put Michael, Josh and the Canadian Tenors (OMG Hallelujah!!!) on Pandora really LOUD, and.......
Yeah.  It really doesn't get any better than this.
Hope you're enjoying your day as much as I am.

Friday, October 19, 2012


An orphan needlepoint block given to me by my mother in law has finally been made into a pillow.  
And after I won this cowl from Kristen's blog, I bought the book Crochet Boutique by Rachel Oglesby.  She has created some beautiful accessories that are simple in design, but have big impact.  This head wrap is going to my sister for her birthday.
It's Friday here!  Enjoy the weekend wherever you are!

Monday, October 15, 2012

If you build it.........

One of the nice things about living on a few acres is having the option to do something with all your property, or not.  We fall into the "or not" category.  It's just nice to have the space, hear the coyotes howl, the hawks screech and pick some wild blackberries.
 Years ago, when my son was about 8, my husband wanted to build a baseball field out back, and he started putting together a backstop.  But my son grew faster than the project, and soon it was apparent that he and his friends were strong enough to hit baseballs into the cow pasture (our neighbor) and the chicken coop (ours).  The project was scrapped.   Until this year.
My son gathered his friends together and picked up where my husband left off.  
They really did a good job.  Of course they were fueled by tons of pizza and soda.  I think my husband was glad to see his idea finally turn into a reality. They finished  just before my son's 18th birthday.  My husband set up some temporary sprinklers and watered the heck out of the field.  Two weeks later, we had a party which included swimming, barbecue, and a Wiffle ball game.  Despite all the room out there, it is still not a good setting for a regular hardball game.
The birthday boy had a good time!
With all of that out of the way, I'm still plugging along on my scrap quilt.......
And after spending about 2 million dollars on cat toys for the new kitten, she has decided that this is her favorite toy of all.......
The cord to the window blinds.  Didn't cost me a penny.  Figures.
 Thanks for stopping by today and letting me share my little corner of the world!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Scrap Happy

On my last post I showed you the scrap quilt I had started.  Here is the sequence for putting a block together. You will need 12 large blocks ( 48 small 9 patch blocks)
 To make one large block, grab four of these small blocks. ( made up of 4 dark squares, 3 light squares and 2 half square triangles.  See previous post for cutting instructions)

Sew two together like this for the top half of your block.
Then two more together for the bottom half:
Now line them up and sew together
Your finished block will look like this

Do you like it?  Are you ready to dig into your scraps?
 Here is the one I made over ten years ago.  My daughter still has it on her bed, and it's very soft and worn just like I like 'em.
The borders are as follows:  1st border: Three  2 1/2" x 90" solid strips
                                              2nd border: 80 mixed light and dark 3 1/2" x 31/2" squares sewn

                                               3rd border: Four  41/2" x 90" solid strips
Backing: 4 yards of 45" fabric or 2 yards 90" fabric
Binding: 3/4 yard
Batting: 70 x 80
Finished size : about 60 x 73
Now I planned on getting a lot more done on my quilt over the weekend but something came up.
An Ombre granny square blanket.  Ooh. La. La.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Three things

I don't know what's up with the lame post title.  I couldn't think of anything else this morning. Sooo.....

Thing One:
I finished another WIP.  I'm feeling pretty pleased with myself getting some of these old projects done.  Although this one took me two years. Ahem.
I was going through a definite orange phase.  This was the fourth quilt I had made back then that had orange in it.
Pattern from Film in the Fridge, fabric line is Anthology High Society, and it measures 56x56.

Thing two:
Last week I kept hearing a kitten crying somewhere in our yard.  Then it took residence in our garage for a day, then got stuck in the redwood tree.  All this time I was calling neighbors to see if they had lost a kitten, while keeping a lookout for the mama.  My dogs were complete nut jobs from all the kitten sightings.  It was hot, so we put out water.  I had no cat food (see earlier post where my daughter took our cat when she moved, and all his paraphernalia.)  One night I heard a commotion in the backyard.  My dogs had the kitten backed up to the edge of the pool.  She was holding her own, but then slipped  into the water.  I don't know how she did it, but she managed to scramble back out (and took off through the fence) before I could reach her.  Enough already.  The next morning I got a pet carrier from my mom, rescued her (again) from the aforementioned redwood tree, and brought her to the vet.
Meet Princess Leia
I found it's really hard to take a picture of a kitten.  Most of the snaps looked like this.....
Or this.....
Hmmmmm.  Not her best side.  She was fighting me for the camera strap. She won.

Anyway, looks like we have a new cat.  I will soon be replacing the linen drapes in my bedroom,  since she fancies them for climbing and swinging, and I have not slept through the night due to her nocturnal nature.  But she's pretty cute.
We have been slowly introducing her to her dogie brothers, Luke and Chewy.  Apparently she hasn't forgiven them yet for knocking her into the pool, since there is major hissing and spitting going on.  If you detect a Star Wars theme to our pet names, you are correct.  Our other cat was called Solo. Maybe I will get a pot bellied pig next and call it Jabba the Hut.  Anyway on to .........

Thing three:

 Further work has progressed on the scrap quilt.  I'm done cutting all my squares, and am now putting blocks together.  I need to make 48 of these 9 patch blocks (which will be combined to make an even bigger block).  It consists of 3 light (3") squares, 4 dark (3") squares and 2 (3") triangle squares.
The triangle squares are made by sewing a light and dark 3 1/2" square right sides together.  Draw a line down the center and then sew 1/4" on either side of the line.  Like this.
Cut on the line, open your squares and press.  It should look like this...
Trim up your square to 3".

For the body of the quilt you need  144 light 3"x3" squares
                                                        192 Dark 3"x3" squares
                                                          48 light 3 1/2" squares (for half square triangles)
                                                          48 dark 3 1/2" squares (for half square triangles)
For the border you will need a total of 80 mixed light and dark 3 1/2" squares.

 It's a lot of cutting, but I enjoyed pulling my scraps and revisiting old fabric.  I used to cut extra squares from whatever I was working on at the moment and save them in a zip lock bag, just for this quilt pattern.  But my scraps have piled up lately so I have to start from scratch.
 Next post I will show you the finished block, and a picture of the first quilt I made using this pattern over 10 years ago.  My daughter tells me it's still her favorite.

P.S.  To my knowledge this is not a commercial pattern.  My local quilt shop typed up the instructions and sold them in a kit with pre-cut squares from all their leftover fabric.  I wouldn't know who to give credit to, since the shop has now closed down, and I have lost touch with the owner.