Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Hill Country Spring Quilt

 This quilt started with the first jellyrolls I ever bought - back in 2009. I grew up in the Texas Hill Country and it will always hold a special place in my heart. The bluebonnets sealed the deal and I came home with 3 jellyrolls. Back then they were $25.00 -a bargain on today's market. And then they sat. I often struggle with settling on a pattern, but in October 2020,  I finally settled on making a St. Louis 16-patch and unrolled the strips. Why is that so hard? 

I started making blocks, pairing the prints with solids from my stash, but they just didn't sit well with me and I switched things out for Grunge in some of the blocks

 I like the rustic look of Grunge better than the solids although you can't tell the difference from the back of a loping horse. Before long, the top was stitched and I handed it off to Jackie. She quilted a pattern called Bora Bora with a cobalt blue thread. This quilt is pretty busy and I made it even wilder with the back

But I found it on clearance years ago and if you know me at all, you know that I cannot pass up a field of wildflowers - they are my absolute favorite!

I bound this with a blue Grunge from my stash to match the bluebonnets

It's 66" x 74" - smaller than I usually make, but a good napping size and it makes me happy. 

I was surprised when DH said he liked it and I couldn't give it away. 

We recently had our first freeze and the first flakes of snow fell on Saturday so this quilt's a cheerful way of enjoying the Texas hill country wildflowers all year long

Saturday, November 19, 2022

Hunting for Furniture

 We've been on the hunt for living room furniture for a while now. I love our couch and loveseat, but after 22 years, it's seen better days. I've hopped from town to town in search of something to no avail. Maybe I'm too picky, but I want something we'll love because we'll have it for 20+ years. We want leather. Good quality. Good support but comfy. And please, no console or cup holders! Apparently consoles are in high demand because that's about all there is, but our family likes to snuggle, and nap, and curl up with quilts and consoles just get in the way. We found one set, locally, that we liked, but the loveseat had a console and we could not order it without one. It's a deal breaker. 

So last week, I tried another town a few hours away

I got there before the store opened and popped into Walmart to pick something up that the store in town does not carry. Did not expect to leave with this, but I was simply charmed by these snowmen and the little gnomes made me smile. The wooly looking things clip onto the branches of a Christmas tree.

I am a 'no Christmas decorations until the day after Thanksgiving' gal. I love Thanksgiving and just want to give it  my full attention. No judgement for those who believe otherwise and I'll admit that the Christmas spirit filled my heart the minute I stepped into the furniture store

This family owned store is the prettiest furniture store I've ever been in

DH could not come with me because he was tied up all day. Many of our ranch roads are practically impassable and DH had a fella out to look at and bid on the job so I made a solo excursion. I found some good possibilities, but although DH told me to just buy it, I don't like doing that without him putting his hands on it. And I want him to choose the leather or fabric for his recliner. The loveseat in the photo has a console, but they have one without it in the warehouse.


We'll make a return trip after Thanksgiving - deer season started today and DH is out crawling through the pastures - it's a 5 day hunt and that takes us up to Wednesday. It just started snowing - the first flakes of the season! I think I hear my sewing machine calling.

 I drove into town yesterday to pick up groceries for Thanksgiving. I've been finalizing the menu and texted this to our girl - her reply made me chuckle. 

We love trying new recipes, but we'll save that for the other 364 days of the year. Around here, Thanksgiving is all about tradition and treasured memories which includes 1 more Thanksgiving with our comfy furniture and I for one am perfectly happy about that!

Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Fabric Mail

 Saturday evening I drug the ironing board out into the living room and pressed fat quarters.

There are 40 different prints in this collection and it took me a couple of days to get everything pressed. This is the Branded Collection that I'm using for our rancher friend who asked DH if I would make him a quilt. I just love these prints. It's a western collection, but it's subtle and understated. 

Previously I mentioned that I was loath to cut into this bundle because I had my heart set on making us a quilt from it, but I knew it was the perfect fabric for M's quilt. The other FQ bundle I ordered arrived on Friday. I laughed when I opened it up because there was an envelope with DH's name on it. I hadn't realized that I used the address with his name instead of mine when I placed the order. I read the note and then handed it to him saying, "You received a Thank You note"

He said, "For what"?

I grinned, "For placing a fabric order. And you got extra goodies"

He replied, "What'd I get?" I let him open the gifts wrapped in pretty tissue paper

Isn't that sweet? And now I can say I didn't order all this fabric. He did! I should have thought of that years ago! 😂

Monday, November 7, 2022

Pickled Jalapenos

 We had our first freeze 2 weeks ago so that means the garden is done.

 I picked everything and ended up with a lot of jalapenos. 

I cut some up and froze them - we add jalapenos to lots of dishes - right now I am thinking these will be perfect on homemade pizza - but I still had a lot left so I figured I'd can some pickled jalapenos. I contemplated making Cowboy Candy which is a sweet version, but DH nixed that. He didn't want all the sugar so plain old pickled jalapenos it was. 

I never wear gloves when I chop jalapenos, but I did this time because I was dealing with a lot of jalapenos and the ones from my garden are notoriously hot although they are less so this year because we just didn't have a crazy hot summer.

I followed this recipe

                                          Super Simple Canned Jalapeno Slices

Just making notes here so I'll know what I did when next year rolls around. I had enough jalapenos for 7 pints so I used 

5 C vinegar

5 C water

4 Tbsp Kosher Salt

for my brine. Next year I'd like to add some mustard seed, peppercorn, and a little garlic. Now the hard part is waiting the 4 weeks for these to be pickled enough to dig in. 

Wednesday, November 2, 2022

Extra Lemony Lemon Squares

  Lemon Squares have been around for a long time and I've been making them forever, but most of them are pretty sweet which I guess is what a dessert is supposed to be, but if I'm eating something lemony, I want it to be tart with just a hint of sweet in the background and these lemon bars are just that!  

I guess lemon bars are more of a summer dessert, but it's what I made the other day for the crew so you get lemon bars in November. 😉 Here's the original recipe with all the details and I'll attest to the fact that this is a place for great recipes so poke around some while you're there.

                                                            Jo Cooks - Lemon Bars

Now, I think it's hard to beat my Lemon Meringue Cake, but I made these bars before and the crew loved them so they were quickly added to my favorites recipe collection. These also freeze well so pucker up buttercup - these are yummy! 

Extra Lemony Lemon Squares

For the crust you'll mix: 

1 C softened butter 

1/2 C sugar

 2 C flour 

1/4 tsp salt


3 C sugar

6 large eggs, beaten (room temperature)

2 large lemon, zested

1 C lemon juice (I juiced 6 fresh lemons - they were extra large)

1 C flour

Topping: Sprinkle with powdered sugar

*Preheat oven to 350°. Spray 9x13 pan with cooking or baking spray. Mix together butter and sugar. Blend in flour and salt. Press into bottom of pan. Bake for 15 minutes. Make filling while crust is baking. Mix sugar, eggs, lemon zest, lemon juice, and flour. Pour over hot crust and bake for 30 minutes or until set. It will set up more as it cools. Dust with powdered sugar. Cool and cut into squares.         


*Notes: I think I'd like a little thinner crust so I'll probably only use 3/4 of the dough next time. The chickens can feast on the rest. 😉

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