Sunday, September 15, 2019

Two Quilts, a Top, and WHY WHY WHY??? Oh yeah - zucchini report too.

This is a cute Yellow Brick Road quilt.

Love that panto pattern:  Ba Da Boom from Urban Elementz.

This intrigued me.

It's a block I've never seen before, so I had to examine it closely.

Oh and here's THE TOP.  Yeah, I can be a real idiot.  One of the guild members brought this top and put it on a give-away table, hoping someone would decide to take it home and give it some love.  Apparently (!) that someone was me.  Aaand, now I have another UFO.

Most of it is very wonky but ... it just has something that appeals to me.   It's a fair size, around 75 x 100.  I won't "fix" anything except a couple of seams that I notice have popped open.

WHY WHY WHY???
Stupid basement.  Actually, stupid washing machine, which walked itself across the floor because the load was not balanced.  And then it pulled the drain hose out of the laundry tub.  Grrr.

PITIFUL ZUCCHINI REPORT
Picked last two weeks:   5
Picked YTD:                 22

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Summer Entertainment and Zucchini Report

The summer has turned into that beautiful time of year when it's perfect weather during the day... like 25 c., and then nice and cool at night so you can sleep.  Staying indoors with the quilting machine gets hard to do, especially when the weeds are two feet high and the beans are spilling all over the place.
I played the long game when I was booking quilts earlier this year, and allowed myself some breathing room.  And ta-da... I finally loaded the Singapore Batiks that my niece gifted me many years ago.  My plan was to have the quilting completed before September 1st, but since that is TODAY it obviously won't happen.  It's about three quarters finished.  However, the weatherman is calling for rain this afternoon, so hopefully it will be competed by tomorrow.

I also completed the piecing on a cute little baby quilt for my friend's new grandson.  That will be quilted after the customer quilts-on-board are finished up next week.

My friend Jean took me to a theatre production of 12 Angry Men at the Family Theatre in Cambridge.  I saw the movie years ago, and the stage play was really, really well done.  Afterwards we went to McDougall Cottage for the opening of her artist group's silent auction.  If you want to check out the art and perhaps bid on something as a Christmas gift, go HERE.

I also had tickets with the Beach Girls to see Billy Elliot in Stratford.  Boozy lunches is not normally what we do, but, hey... once in a while you've gotta let your hair down, right?  That was also a fabulous performance.  The kid who plays Billy probably has a hugely swelled head - the applause for him was overwhelming.

On the home front, I brought in 65 heads of garlic.  Heads, not cloves.  Assuming a nominal 6 cloves per head, there are about 400 cloves in this bowl.  It took me three consecutive nights just to peel them.  I decided, finally, to try soaking them in the hopes that would soften the skins.  Yay!!  Success!!

Food processer, olive oil, cloves, ice cube trays.  It'll take me a few nights to get this stuff frozen.  In the winter I'll be glad I did it, though.

And just to make sure I didn't get too bored, I took my little pile of gift cards downstairs to the computer and checked the balances on all of them.  I have a habit of using them and throwing them back in my purse, so I'm never quite sure what still has money and what's all used.  Now I know, 'cause I put little stickers on them with the date I checked and the balance.  Hah!

Sigh.  Zucchini.

ZUCCHINI REPORT (2 week report)

Picked:  6
Picked YTD:  17

I gave two away.  One night I made Eric Eggstrata from the Looneyspoons cookbook.  That used another one.  Link HERE.  I had leftover cooked bulk sausage from ...??? in the freezer.  That is one of those handy things that I use at least a few times every year.  I didn't have cream on hand, so I combined milk and full-fat sour cream.  That is a GREAT recipe.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

The Garden, Technology, Book Recommendation, Zucchini Report

THE GARDEN

At this point, the GARLIC is the most prolific crop.  The large heads are from my planned & intentionally planted bed.  The small heads are all volunteers.  Every year I think... no I mean I hope I have managed to cull all that stuff, and every year I find that well, I guess I missed a bunch.

What will I do with all that garlic?

  • I'll save a few of the large heads as seed stock and replant it in the fall.  
  • Some will be used for PESTO which will go in the freezer in 1/4 cup portions.  
  • Some will stay as dried garlic to be used as needed.  
  • The balance will get chopped up in one of the kitchen whizzers along with olive oil.  That will go into jars in the freezer and be used when we need chopped garlic for anything (stir fry, pasta sauce, salad dressing, etc).  You need to plan a little bit ahead of time and remove the container about an hour early so it softens up enough to dig out what you need, then put it back in the freezer.  Alternatively you can use an ice tray and freeze small portions, then pop the cubes out and toss them in a container.

TECHNOLOGY

Pretty much everyone I know has a tablet of some sort, whether it's an I-Pad or an Android device.  Me, I'm an Android girl.  My nephew 1-800-LUKE 💓 got me on Android many years ago and I'm loath to change.
Anyhow... everyone also has a cover for their tablet so they can prop it up, which facilitates ignoring their dinner companion(s) as they either peruse Facebook, read a riveting book during mealtime, or ruin their meal by reading the news.

My cool little cover includes a removable keyboard.

It sticks to the flippy cover-thing with magnets, which are embedded in the cover-thingy, and in the back of the keyboard.

Sadly, though, my keyboard magnets, which sit inside a little divot, are no longer glued.  They float around underneath the backing.  This is VERY irritating because the keyboard does not stick very well, AND since they've escaped from their divots the added bulk prevents the flap closure from securely closing the cover.
I had a little discussion with DH about my dilemma.  I know the guy has many many versions of glue, so I managed to convince him to find a bottle of Gorilla Glue in his cluttered workroom/garage.  My project today will be to slice open the backing, affix those magnets in their respective divots with the glue, then close up the backing and glue the slits closed.  (note to self:  make those slices where you can glue them closed without impeding the magnets!)

Speaking of books, I just finished a trilogy.  If you like distopian novels, and/or stories about pandemics, this was really good, by Megan Crewe. LINK  I don't think anything will ever top Margaret Atwood's MADDADDAM trilogy, but it was good nevertheless.

ZUCCHINI REPORT

No, the situation has not improved.
Picked this week:  4
Picked YTD:  11

Monday, August 12, 2019

Souffle & Recipe, & Zucchini Report

I feel like I finally earned my "adult" wings.  I MADE A SOUFFLE. And it was delicious!
This is from the LCBO Food & Drink magazine.  For those of you not in Ontario, that's the Provincial liquor store.
I have to thank Susan from our vet clinic - she posted this on Facebook several weeks ago, after SHE made one.  I probably need more practice with folding the egg whites in, but all in all I was very happy with it.  I cut the recipe in half, just in case it was destined for the trash.  DH and I ate it all, with a salad.  Definitely making this again. Yum.
Here ya go with a link....
CORN, CHEDDAR & CHIVE SOUFFLE

ZUCCHINI REPORT
Oh, sad.  So sad.  DH even brought more home for me after visiting with a friend.

Picked this week:  3
Total YTD:           7

Monday, August 5, 2019

Summer Blue Quilts, Beach Day, & Zucchini Report

Blue & White quilts are the perfect choice for summer.

This was quilted with "Tracery" pantograph.

Blue & Cream for a little softer effect.

Quilted with "Chocolate Leaves" pantograph.

BEACH DAY
This is the annual get-away celebrated by the Beach Girls (my longarm pack) for two nights to Diane's house.  If you've ever been on any of her bus trips - Diane's Destinations - you know that she is a super organizer who likes to keep her girls entertained.  This year she took us on a shopping adventure to Exeter, St. Mary's, and Coldstream.  I think we all bought stuff we probably don't need, but what the hell. You only live once.
We had our dinner that night at Eddington's of Exeter, and I had a chance to visit for a few minutes with James - the chef who cooked/taught on the trip to France last fall.
Our evening entertainment was spent with Ashes Alley  having a paint pour night.  Paint is not what I'm usually pouring (ahem! 😋).
Here is how it went, in pictures...

1.  Cover everything, including yourself, in plastic, before you start with the paint.

2. Fill a cup with paint.

3. Hold an inverted canvas over the cup.

4. Flip them both.  Warning... don't drop it.  Notice this is being done over a garbage-bag-lined box?

5.  Gently remove the cup.

6. Tip the canvas so the paint can slip-slide over the surface.

7. Watch in awe as the surface transforms.

8.  This is mine shortly after my pour.

9. Here it is the next morning.  It was transitioning during the night, with bubbles of colour coming to the top.

These take two days to dry so Diane is hanging on to them until we get together again at the end of the month.

ZUCCHINI REPORT

Alas, I have not yet regained my Zucchini Crown 👑.  That darned Nancy on Manitoulin Island is still ahead of me.  Grrr....  All season I've been flipping leaves over, checking the underside for egg masses of squash bugs.  These are copper-coloured bunches of dots. The dots are about the size of poppy seeds.  I tear a hole in the leaf, removing the section with egg masses, so I was shocked yesterday to discover a whole flock of little squash bugs.  Bastards.  I managed to murder many of them... squashing them - is that poetic justice?

Picked this week: 3
Picked YTD: 4

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Kaffe Fasset Chevrons, the Annual Zucchini Report, Recipe

I love bright quilts.  It must be the inner child in me.  And lord knows, enough people have told me to "grow up" over the years.  Not sure that will ever happen...

**Note - this is a Kaffe pattern, not necessarily Kaffe fabrics.
The simplicity of the design really makes the bright fabrics pop.

S.I.D. and simple motifs.

What a lovely view on the back.

So... after last week's post a friend of mine made reference to me losing my title as Zucchini Queen.  Dammit.  I picked this little guy - it's about the size of my thumb.  I HAD to get my numbers (or number, I guess) on record.  It went in a pasta dish.
LAZY PASTA RECIPE - serves 2 with some leftovers

  • 2 cups of rotini.  Cook as per package directions.
  • drain (but do not rinse) the cooked pasta and return it to the pot, OFF the heat.
While the pasta is cooking:
  • 4 cups of assorted chopped/sliced veggies, lightly sauteed to whatever level of tenderness you prefer.  I used onion, zucchini (see above 😄), broccoli, celery, sweet pepper, pea pods.  I basically cleaned out the crisper.
  • 2 sausages that had been barbequed a few days earlier were thin-sliced and added to the veggies.  You can use pretty much any kind of meat you have cooked and waiting to be either et or pitched.
  • 1/4 cup of pesto - add this to the cooked rotini, then add the veggies/meat.
  • combine everything in the pot and leave it covered, off the heat, for a few minutes.


**I made a ton of pesto last year and froze it in 1/4 cup portions.  I still have a few containers left and will be making another batch for the freezer soon.


This is my evening view when I sit ruminating over the loss of my zucchini crown.  So.Sad.

ZUCCHINI REPORT 2019
Picked this week: 1
Picked YTD:        1

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Rosewood Quilt & Garden update

Just like with children, you're not supposed to have a favorite.  But I can't help having a few favorite customers.
This is ROSEWOOD, by Moda.  So pretty.

As usual, when I do "custom" quilting there is a ton of stitch-in-the-ditch.

When the s.i.d. is complete I go back and put in the motifs.

This quilt got lots of feathers.

GARDEN UPDATE & THE NO-ZUCCHINI REPORT

Well, this is really embarrassing.  Downright humiliating.  I have a buddy who lives on Manitoulin Island and she has picked her first zucchini.  Me?  I got nothin'.  There is no excuse for that - it's plenty hot (!) with a 44 c. humidex, and there's been plenty of rain - we had another huge t-storm last night.  I guess my plants just need a good talking-to.
In other more respectable news, I have quit picking asparagus.  I will let it just grow for the rest of the summer so it'll be nice and lush next year.  The peas are still producing, although they don't really love the heat, so unless it cools down a bit they might give up the ghost.
The garlic is ready to be dug, as far as I can tell.  I had a couple of heads that rotted, but they were volunteers, not my "real" crop.  Hopefully the real ones are ok.
The raspberries have started to produce.  Yay, Snoopy dance!  Normally I manage to freeze enough to get me through my yogurt-&-fruit lunches until late winter.
I picked my first cabbage this week.  I used one half for a coleslaw and shared the other half with a friend.  A whole head is just too darned much.
It has been so stinking hot & humid this week that no weeding has taken place, and my flower beds are really starting to look like it.  It's cooled down a bit today so maybe I'll get out there later.  I spent a few evenings in the veggie beds putting down my red-neck mulch of newspapers & grass clippings (this year, those clippings have been mixed with chicken manure from the down-the-road farmer).  That mulch ends up being a real life saver when it comes to weeding.  Yes, it takes a lot of sweaty work in the beginning but over the course of the summer it definitely pays off.