Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Organization Rocks!

Well, I intended to show the horrifying "before" pics of my quilting space, but it appears I've lost them. However, I can say that, after spending weeks cleaning and organizing, it's a thrill to be in that room now!

Here's the basic organizing scheme: small scraps in plastic bins, sorted by color; fat quarters in storage boxes; anything between a small scrap and a fat quarter rolled and tied and standing in a storage box; anything larger than a fat quarter made into a "mini bolt" (find out how to make your own mini bolts here!):

I've always folded and stacked my fabric on the shelves, and that was a huge pain because every time I pulled a piece out, everything on top of it got a little more disorganized. Now I can slide a "mini bolt" out and back in with no problem, plus I STILL get to see (most) of what I have available.

At some point I will move all that fabric into a closed-shelving system to protect it from sun damage, but for now I'm inspired by it, and it's not in direct sunlight so it should be ok for a little while.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

The Canning Count

Peaches are in season here in Central Texas, so it's time for some canning! This year I made spiced peaches for the first time (instead of peach preserves), and bread and butter pickles (which are AMAZING). I also made some chow chow (I think it's also called "picalilli") which I've actually never eaten before and I'm hoping tastes good :-)

This season's can count (to date):

Spiced Peaches: 4 & 1/2 quarts; Bread & Butter Pickles: 2 & 1/2 quarts:

 Chow chow: 5 pints:

Still to come: more spiced peaches, peach preserves, and apple butter. Oh, and more bread & butter pickles, since we either gave them all away or ate them :-)

On the quilting front, I have way too many projects 1/2 done, so I need to finish those up. I'm also finally repurposing those paper towels I use to clean up when painting; I'll try to post more on this (and maybe a tutorial?) in the near future:

Oh, and Happy (early) Summer. We're definitely feeling the heat here in Central Texas, where we just experienced our first 100+ temperature day. I'm sure there are many more to come before Fall arrives sometime in October!

Friday, May 18, 2012

She's Here!

Our first girl grandbaby has arrived! We have two wonderful grandsons, ages 12 and 11, so it's been a while since we've had a tiny one around. Her name is Cali, and she's gorgeous! She was born Wednesday, 5/16, at 9:22 pm, is 19" long, and weighs 7 lb. 1 oz. I feel the urge to make pink ruffly things coming on . . .

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day!

I hope all the mothers out there have a wonderful day. We celebrated with my mom earlier this week--she has the fortune/misfortune of having a birthday on May 9, so it frequently overlaps with Mother's Day. Today we took my partner's mother to lunch. Now the rest of the day is mine to play!

As usual, I've been too busy to blog, but here are a few of the things I've been working on. I used some of the painted fabric I talked about last time to make journals, and listed them on Etsy:

The rest of the time . . . well, who knows where it went! The creative ideas are flying so quickly through my head I can barely grab onto them, but I'm having a hard time executing on anything besides these small journals. I'm going to try to get into a better routine next week so I won't have excuses for not starting some of the bigger projects I want to work on.

Monday, April 30, 2012

The Blogging Dilemma

Where do people find time to take gorgeous pics of their work, post them on their blogs, and write blog posts? More and more frequently, I’m faced with a choice: talk about working on my blog, or do some actual work.

Of course, there’s a slight possibility that too much of my time is sucked up by Facebook.
At any rate, I’ve been happily tucked away in my studio painting fabric and paper. Now I just have to figure out what to do with it!

painted fabric001 

painted fabric004 copy 
painted fabric006 
painted fabric011 copy 
painted paper007 
painted paper002 
Guess how much I love my leaves thermofax stencil?

Back to work now!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

The Best Soup I’ve Ever Made!

Ok, I don’t usually post recipes on my blog, but I’m so proud of myself. I decided to make soup today, and somehow it turned out to be the best I’ve ever made—and maybe the best soup I’ve ever eaten. So, I thought I would post this for all my friends and cyber friends. Bon appétit!

Sausage, Chard & Bean Soup

2 T. oil (I used oil infused with cayenne pepper for a little bite)
2 small onions, chopped
2-4 carrots, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large red bell pepper, diced
1-2 links sausage (probably 4-6 oz.) (I used smoked link sausage; the smoky flavor is REALLY nice in this, so if your sausage is not smoked, you might want to add a little liquid smoke)
2 t. dried Italian herbs
1/2 t. fennel seeds
4 c. stock (I used 2 c. vegetable & 2 c. chicken)
a big bunch of Swiss chard, stems removed and chopped
2 cans of navy beans, drained and rinsed

Saute the onions, carrots, bell pepper, and garlic in olive oil. Add the sausage and spices and continue to sauté until sausage is cooked and vegetables are soft. Add stock, Swiss chard, and beans, and simmer for about 30 minutes until the flavors are blended.

I served mine with cornbread, and we ate it for lunch AND dinner. YUUUMMMMY!