Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Beach quilts finished

I love the beach any time of the year, but when it's winter in Kansas, day dreaming of the beach can keep me sane.  Spring has been slow arriving this year.  We've been warm the past couple days, but there is snow in the forecast for tonight. Yes, really. :( So I pulled out a couple beachy projects to cheer me up with warm thoughts.

First up is Beach Walk:
The patterns are by McKenna Ryan.  This was a BOM at the shop a few years ago and I made the sample blocks then.  I had the middle put together, but lost the border fabrics (twice! lol) and was afraid to quilt it anyway.  Last week I decided enough was enough...I had to quilt it and get it back to the shop. So with borders found (again!), I got the top finished.  I was nervous about the quilting because there are millions of tiny pieces just fused down.  The quilting needs to catch everything well enough for it to hold up as a wallhanging.  I decided to use clear thread, which can be tricky.  But I faced my fears and got it done!  I finished the binding and most of the embellishments yesterday, and got the last of the embellishments done this afternoon at the shop.  Now it's hanging at the shop DONE!!! :)

Here are a couple close-ups that show some of the embellishments...seed beads for the birds' eyes and rope for the boat and buoys.

I also pulled out a little kit from the shop that had been sitting on my shelf for a couple years.  The pattern is Sea Breeze Pillow by Chitter Chatter Designs. I decided I'd rather do mine as a wallhanging and am happy with how it turned out.  This one also has some embellishment: embroidery in the hair, scarf, jeans, grass and the sun's rays.  I finished it up last weekend.

I've got my fingers crossed that spring will get here and stay for good SOON. Has spring arrived where you are?

Thanks for stopping by,

Friday, April 5, 2013

Long time, no post.

"Real life" has demanded my attention in several areas lately.  Priorities dictated that quilting and blogging had to take a back seat for awhile. But I'm happy to have some time this morning to show you some quilting that I've been able to do here, lately. :)

First up is this baby quilt that will be a gift.  It's made from the Jelly Roll Race method, which has been popular in the last year or so.  My small group did this together maybe last year...maybe the year before?  I can't remember.  Anyway, I stopped just before the last seam was sewn, when the quilt "top" was long, skinny and cut in half.  Instead of sewing the two halves together for the last step to make it a throw size quilt, I kept it as two smaller quilt tops.  Borders were added to each half, and two Jelly Roll Race baby quilts were born! :)  One went to the charity group I work with, Pieces, which makes quilts for kids in the pediatric unit of the local hospital.  And the other is now finally quilted, bound and ready to give:
My next two finishes are even smaller...but are still finished UFO's! These daffodils are from a series of Patchabilities mini's that I did at the shop. I gave the March one away last spring, and started to make a replacement one. Last month I got it done, with time left in March to display it!
Finally, our guild quilt show is this weekend (if you're near Lawrence, check it out at our NEW LOCATION, Crown Toyota on S Iowa by Wal-Mart).  I have had this embroidered center for several years.  This last week I added the borders, did some simple quilting and got it bound and ready for the silent auction for charity at the show.
Even though none is very big, I'm happy to have these three finishes to report.  And there has been other progress!  My Minglewood top is now at Eula's for quilting (she's going to do fancier quilting than I have the inclination to do myself these days). For Easy Street (Bonnie Hunter's mystery quilt - see badge on the right side of my blog), I have done the 16 Block A's and am ready to piece the Block B's. Here are the A's:
For handwork, besides binding, I've been keeping up with the shop samples for Vintage Tin. I see that my last progress report on it was way back there's a lot you haven't seen yet!  Here's most of what's done so far on display at the shop:
And the April block is at the front of the shop:
So that's what's been happening on the quilting front around here.  What are you working on?

Thanks for stopping by,

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Crockpot Chili

Here's another crockpot favorite at our house.  I mentioned here that you can cook ground beef in the crock pot.  After that, what's left but stirring and simmering?  Pefect in the crockpot, because after the initial stir, you're done til you can't stand the smell anymore and have to dive in!

Crockpot Chili

Before bed, put 2 lbs ground beef in the crockpot.  I use "auto shift" which starts out on high, then goes down to low after awhile.

In the morning, drain or sop up the grease.  (The leaner the beef, the easier this job is.) Stir the beef til it's crumbly.  Then stir in:

3 cans tomato soup (or for a nice twist, try a box of tomato and roasted red pepper soup instead)
2 cans kidney beans, drained
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
1 T chili powder, or to taste
1 t garlic powder, or to taste
1 t onion powder, or to taste

***Tip*** Add 2 bay leaves while simmering (and take out before serving).  It acts like Bean-o!

Simmer on low all day.  You can also start the beef in the morning if you'll be home mid-day to do the rest.

Garnish with cheese, salsa or peanut butter (I know, I know...but don't knock it til you try it!) if you like.  Serve with cornbread, and winter is almost bearable.

Thanks for stopping by and enjoy!