Saturday, September 11, 2021

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Economie Zoologie Top

I bought this kit on clearance from Craftsy - they had some great deals back in the day - in September 2016 (blogs are great for keeping track of everything) and last year I decided it had lived in a bin long enough:

I'm not a big fan of kits, but I've caved on occasion. Pulling fabrics together for projects is one of my favorite parts of the quilting journey and kits remove that aspect so I'm thinking that may be why I'm not drawn to them more often. But the fabrics in this little quilt were too fun to resist:

Once everything was cut, the blocks came together quickly:

I pieced this in February 2020 and soon I had a completed top. Once Jackie worked her magic, I stitched on the binding:

She used a fun alphabet quilting design 

and I backed it with these happy dots:

It's bright and cheerful and at 66" x 84" it'll be the perfect size for all sorts of grandbaby adventures:

Monday, September 6, 2021

Pinwheel Polka Quilt Top

I know, I am posting a lot of quilt finishes lately. I didn't finish anything the first half of the year and now they are all coming together at once, but most of them have been on the assembly line for a few years. I have 2 more here that need binding and I'm picking one up from Jackie on Monday - that one needs to be finished first. Sometimes I feel like I'm spinning my wheels and not finishing anything so this feels pretty good.

This little quilt began in June 2019 with some cute charm squares:

And a simple plan. I like simple and I'm a pretty simple girl.
Make some pinwheels and alternate with a charm square.

Let's put it on point.
Sashing might be good.
Oh, let's add cornerstones.
I'm sure a pattern exists somewhere for a quilt like this, 

but I took the road less traveled and made it up along the way.

And let Jackie work her magic

I had enough of that pretty blue print for the border and I used a blue Kona for the binding:

And at 60"x60", I really like the end result, but next time, I hope I can keep things simple and put the pinwheels and charm squares in the right spots.  I never even noticed that I mixed a few up until just before I hit the button to publish this post. Funny how this last photo camouflages my 'well fiddlesticks' mistake. Now I really will need to make it again - just to prove I can make it right, but since there is no pattern, we'll just say it IS right and that the mixed up blocks just add character. 😉

Friday, September 3, 2021

To Bee...or Not to Bee...

 That really IS the question around here lately. DH has been toying with  the idea of diving into beekeeping. I laughed and told him I liked being his only queen bee. 😂 

A few years ago he bought this book and he recently pulled it out again:

I have been reading a financial planning book at night and he has been reading his bee book. I laughed and told him we had odd bedtime reading selections. 

So last Thursday we drove into town at 7:30 in the morning to spend some time at the tire shop to have some ranch tires repaired :

And to stop in at the local Seed store:

To pick John's brain about bees:

We had no idea there was such a robust bee community in the area, but I think we're swarming (LOL) around the idea of taking part:

DH has seen bees set up around the ranch through the years and they have always peeked his interest. He saw this ball of bees in a mesquite bush the other day when he was spraying Cockleburrs:

So we drove up to North Adobe after dinner and attempted to capture them into our newly acquired hive:

DH scooted the box under the tree 


Cut the branch

And the bees just fell into the box


After sliding the lid on                                 


He loaded them up


DH wears a lot of hats around here - looks like he's added one more:                                      


and we drove them back to headquarters, setting them up with some sugar water for 2 days before opening the hive back up and hoping they'd settle and stay. We shall see. I figured he'd tie into this when we slowed down and semi-retired, but if this is something that interests him, then beekeeping it is. I'll admit that I'm a little fascinated as well:

P.S. John siphoned that jar of honey directly from the extractor on Thursday and made us promise not to tell his wife that he gave us the first jar from this year's crop. 😉I have to say, it was the best honey I've ever tasted. I think my initial question of to bee...or not to bee...has been answered. 

Monday, August 30, 2021

Songbook Quilt Finish

 It's not often that I begin a quilt and finish it the same year, much less the same month, but I pieced this a few weeks ago using fabric from the Songbook collection

 And this pattern

 I shared it with ya'll a few posts ago here:


And I handed it off to Jackie on a Monday. I have a few others waiting in the wings, but I asked her to move this one to the top and she called a week ago Sunday to let me know it was ready:

I love the fun quilting design her daughter, Sandy, used - it shows up beautifully on the gray Minky I used on the back:

I bound it in this burnt orange from the line because it's one of Brooke's favorite colors - I teased her and told her she was going to the wrong school because their colors are red and black. 😉

I don't usually stitch binding during the day, but I spent some extra time working on it during the week:

And yes, I am watching an Aurora Teagarden movie on Hallmark. That series is one of my guilty pleasures.

I really like the addition of the pieced border:

I loved these fun prints and am looking forward to making another quilt...or two!

The colors practically glowed in the setting sun

The quilt is 60"x72" and I was able to hand it off to the new college girl when she drove by the ranch on Saturday. 

Friday, August 27, 2021

New Jelly Roll Project

 I've brought home a lot of Jelly Rolls through the years. 

Jelly Roll Admission

I don't buy them anymore and have been working on releasing them and turning them into quilts. Last week I ran across some 2x4 quilts online and that led me to this tutorial:

2x4 Quilt Tutorial from Film in the Fridge

It uses fat quarters, but I was determined to use a couple of Jelly Rolls. I've had these 2 Posh Pumpkin Jelly Rolls since 2013 and suddenly I felt they just needed to become a 2x4 quilt.

And then on the very first cut, I made a mistake. I made a cut at 3 1/2" instead of 4". Sigh. But that ended up being a good mistake because it allowed me to make 3 blocks from 2 strips instead of only 2. If you make one though, beware that there are literally NO scraps so cut carefully:

I pulled a few coordinating pieces from my stash for some of the blocks because I like the options better:

And the blocks came together quickly. Long-stashed jelly rolls and a tutorial that's been around a while made for lots of fun, mindless sewing which I must have needed because I loved every minute:

I threw a few blocks out on the bed and I like the way this is coming together. Nothing fancy. Just a beginning of a good, Autumn snuggle quilt. 

It crossed my mind that a design wall might come in handy, but I think I'll just live dangerously. 😉

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Lemonade Pie

 I've been making this refreshing summer pie for a coon's age -which probably translates to about 34 years because before I was married I didn't know how to cook even though this recipe doesn't even involve any cooking. It doesn't get any easier than stir and pour, but DH loves this pie so it earns a spot in our favorite family recipe book as well as a post. It's especially welcome when the temps shoot up in the summer so it made it's way to our table last week:

I think I found this in an Eagle Brand cookbook when I was a new bride. I haven't made this in a couple of years because last year I never could find frozen pink lemonade. And yes, you could use this with regular lemonade and even orange juice, but I've just always made it with pink lemonade and I couldn't find those either.

Lemonade Pie

Graham Cracker Crust (the 2-extra serving kind)

1 8 oz tub of Cool Whip

1 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk

1 container frozen pink lemonade concentrate

2 or 3 drops of red food coloring (optional, but amps up the pink factor)

*Thaw out Cool Whip and lemonade. Combine Cool Whip, lemonade, food coloring, and sweetened condensed milk and mix well with electric mixer. Pour into graham cracker crust. Freeze overnight. Pucker up! 😉

P.S. I just thought about adding a bunch of fresh strawberries to this. Who wants to come over so I have an excuse to make another one?

Monday, August 23, 2021

Another Spring Splash Baby Quilt

 5 or 6 years ago I ran across this pattern online - here's the link 

Spring Splash

 and I made it once in 2017

a second time in 2019:

And when I found this fabric last year

I made it a 3rd time:

I found a peachy-pink minky that works well for the backing:


This has become my go-to pattern for a baby quilt when I find a print I really love

I used a green dot from my stash for the binding 

and Jackie used a sweet flower with a soft feather pantograph for the quilting:

I added a wider border than the pattern calls for so this one finishes at 44"x44". This pattern is hard to beat for a sweet, fast baby quilt

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