Saturday, December 31, 2011

Stack 'n Whack and quilter's nightmare

This is a beauty of a s 'n w.
The diamond border design matches the Line Dancing used in the diamond patchwork.
Another gorgeous back.
Now, what's this nightmare, you ask?

Thank the good Lord for husbands. He will be cooking, cleaning and housekeeping for the next six weeks.  He's going to learn how to pin on quilts, too.  As my nephew said today:  "that's what you signed on for."

what i've discovered SO far:
  • the shift button is too much trouble when you are typing one handed.
  • i can dress myself in tshirts & loose pants.  loose pants are ok in the potty, too.
  • applying deodorant, peeling bananas, and loading the toothbrush are difficult, but not impossible.
  • doing up the bra IS impossible.
  • aspirin is my friend.
  • a lot of movies on the tv is REALLY my friend.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Irish Chain quilt and the Christmas Boots

 Here is a very spring-like Irish Chain Quilt.  It went up to Timmins as a gift for my customer's mom.
 This was quilted with a tulip design - matching block and border designs.
As usual, I love the back.

My s.i.l. brought these rubber boots for me all the way from Calgary.  Hah!  I can't wait for spring - I think I can use the pointy toes to dig weeds out of the garden without bending over.  The wiener dog came all the way from Calgary too - but she is not still here.  Just the boots.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Winter House Quilt, Christmas Panel Quilt

This is a beauty of a winter quilt - houses and trees.

The green border design is Ying Yang from the IQ (I am seriously loving Einstein!!) and the wide red border has a ribbon and star design.  The trees were freehand.

The borders, trees & houses were all s.i.d.  Some snowflakes were added to the background, then filled in with a loopy meander.
This is the easy-peasy quilt I whipped up for Sadies vets. It's a panel with three borders.
It was quilted with a panto of holly berries.  I figure their three kids will fight over it because of the flannel backing - yum - cozy.
Now that I've finished up work for a week or two, around the house has been all about housework.  The window screens came off and got scrubbed, and have been put away in the fruit cellar until spring.  The windows on the main floor and the upstairs have all been cleaned.  I ran out of steam at that point, so I'll do the lower level next week.  I love french doors but they are a friggin' pain in the butt to clean. The sheers were laundered and put back up.  Then it was time to tackle the bathrooms.  Right now, you could lick the walls and eat off the floors.  Hmm, does it sound like we've got company coming?  My d.b. and s.i.l. are home from Calgary and will be staying for the next two nights.  Today I just have to do a little dusting and the usual cleanup in the kitchen.  It is good luck to have a clean house for New Years, isn't it?  Please?

I had Christmas lunch with Mom at 'the home' yesterday.  Was chastised by the floor nurse for calling so late to book my meal (sigh...really?  24 hours is not enough notice?).  Hopefully the tin of homemade biscotti I took for the staff will get me back a few brownie points.  FYI, nursing home turkey dinner is ok.  Nursing home stuffing - nyeah - not so good.  Today I will be back there for Mom's physio.  That will get me out of the house and I can hit up the grocery store (I think they're open today) for a few last minute things for supper.  Tonight for the four of us I'm doing smoked pork chops.  Beach Day Diane fed those to me earlier this year and they were delicious, so I thought I'd try some from our local butcher, Gourmet Meats.  Tomorrow Luke and Mel are also joining us and we'll have perogies.  On Wednesday, I think I'll just have water.  I feel like I've gained twelve pounds already.  Oy.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Snowman Christmas Quilt & Stash Report

A real winter quilt.  Sue has a "thing" for snowmen, and here she made a whole family of them.
Outer border quilted with stars.

A bit of piecing with Continuous Curve quilting.
Lots of SID around the applique bits.

Curvy/wavy background fill. Hey!!  These poor bastards don't have any mouths to eat the marshmallows!
On several blocks I used the same motif, resizing as required.

Used this Month 9 m
Used YTD 79.15 m
Added this month 0 (yay - good me!!)
Added YTD 44m
Net 2011 (- 33.15)

 Lookin' good - cleaning off those shelves, bit by bit.  If I ever get to some of those UFOs from 2011 I will knock off a whole lot more fabric.  I have (slim) hopes to still get the Bunny Hill quilt finished before the end of the year.
There are two more quilts that MUST be finished before Christmas, then I have a bit of breathing space.  I commented to a friend yesterday that I had a screw loose (actually, the real words were not something I would print in my blog), deciding to make a Christmas quilt for Sadie's vets as their gift this year.  When did I decide this and buy the fabric?  Monday.  Yup - screw loose.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Oriental Panel & Red Hats

This is a lovely oriental panel which has been enhanced with several borders.
The centre panel was generally stitched around the outlines.
The borders were quilted with a sashiko pattern.

The tiny cornerstones were enhanced with a plum blossom motif.
My Red Hat group had our second annual Pajama Breakfast on Friday morning. The meal was pot luck, and the gals had to be at my place by 8 am - in their jammies.

I was up MUCH TOO EARLY in order to cook my potato pie.  A few drams of Doolies Toffee Cream Liqueur in my coffee kept me going until ... 1:30 when I took a nap. 

I'm sending big kisses out to Susan and Janice who washed up all the china, crystal and silver for me.
We had:  Potato Pie, Smoothies, French Toast casserole with fruit, Scones with preserves & whipped cream, waffles with sauteed apples & whipped cream, fruit tray, profiteroles, and coffee cake.
And, of course, no event would be complete without my useless assistant.

I've been working like a dog very hard getting customer quilts finished for Christmas.  I have two more to go and then I can take some time off.  My normal schedule seems to have come off the rails this year - I have not done my Christmas cards and it is too late now to send any.  So, if you were expecting one....

Before I go to bed at night I like to have a glass of wine and read for a half hour or hour.  Right now I'm reading Unless by Carol Shields (Canadian author).  She has a wonderful vocabulary - I think by page 40 there were already several words I had to look up.  My favorite, so far, is lacrimonious:  extremely teary & weepy.  My cure for lacrimoniosity is vodka.  It totally reverses you, making you lighthearted & giggly.  I highly recommend it if you're having a bad day.  Caution:  exercise judgement - only one or two!!!!

Here is the breakfast recipe, from

Potato Pie with Saint-Damase

  • Course Main Dishes
  • Prep. Time 15 mins
  • Cooking Time 55 mins
  • Yields 4 servings


What You Need

2 large potatoes
5 oz (125 g) Canadian Saint-Damase cheese (I used a soft goat cheese)
1 onion
8 slices bacon or pancetta
2 tbsp (30 mL) butter
2 eggs
1/2 cup (125 mL) whipping cream 35 %
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 unbaked pie crust or pizza crust (available in stores)


Cut potatoes and Canadian Saint-Damase cheese in small dice, chop onion and bacon.
Heat butter in a saucepan, sauté onion over low heat without browning. Add bacon (or pancetta) and cook 5 minutes. Mix in potato dice and cook 5 more minutes, then drain and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 °F (180 °C).
In a bowl, beat eggs, then blend in cream and Canadian Saint-Damase cheese. Season with salt and pepper. Spread potato mixture on uncooked crust, then pour over egg mixture.
Bake in oven 30 to 40 minutes until golden.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

TQS BOM 2009 finished, and my lovely oven

Here is the front - wow, beautiful.

And some details...

Here is the back.

This is my handy-dandy audition helper.  Cello wrap & sharpie markers.  I lay this over the quilt top and doodle designs until I am happy.  Well, maybe not "happy" - sometimes that depends on hormones, eh?  MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE EDGES OF THE WRAP CLEARLY MARKED - DO NOT DRAW ON THE QUILT TOP!!!

Here is my lovely new oven, with no goo left on the doors. 

Oh, and look.  Someone is making cranberry biscotti (from the Martha Stewart web site).  Monica brought some over for me last week, and they were sooo good that apparently I needed a very large batch, all to myself.  Monica went all out and dipped both ends in chocolate, then added icing & sprinkles in red, green and white.  I am not sure I will go that far.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

TQS BOM 2009

Saturday progress... I'm working on finishing up the stitching with tan thread, then I'll switch over to a cream coloured thread.  I should have this puppy finished today or tomorrow.  This has wool batting, which is my all time favorite.  It quilts beautifully, launders well, is comfortable to sleep under, and shows the quilting very nicely.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Quilt Show BOM 2009, and other stuff...

I'm working on the BOM from The Quilt Show. This is the 2009 quilt. Beautiful, but my back is starting to scream at me about all the stitch in the ditch. Shut up, back.
I'm listening to Paul Simon's new album - So Beautiful or So What. This brilliant musician turned 70 on October 13th.
Yesterday I celebrated my NEW OVEN with a cheesy casserole (heh, heh, heh, slight double entendre, there). If I ever get the sticky goo off the oven front I will show you a pic of the outside.
Have a listen to the first track from Paul's CD....

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Quilts, Box Cushions, Leek Roundup

Log Cabin. Yum - love the blue & yellow.

Garden Quilt. Cozy flannel-ish backing.

New upholstery on the box cushions for my nephew's window seat.
Now for the (last) Friday Report.  It was a beautiful day, around 13c.  This nice weather won't hold for much longer.  It was time to dig the leeks.
Approximate leek count:  120
Avoid the playful distraction
Arm myself with the steel toed boots.

Chop off the bulk of tops with handy-dandy hedge clippers.  Lee Valley Tools, I heart you.

As a lazy gardener, I will leave the leaves as on-ground compost.  The rabbit-bastard(s) will enjoy the greens after they finish up with my cabbages.
Three hours later.  Thirty leeks have been put aside for Jean & Jane, the rest are in the bag.

Time for a cocktail and hors-d'oeuvres.  Two parts vodka, one part mandarin orange liqueur, generous glug of orange juice.  Two ice cubes.

Can you tell I've been eating alone this week?  Soup bowls and sandwich plates.  This is the new 'stealth' dishwasher.  OMG - so quiet!!!!
OK.  Back to work.  Cut off the roots and the dark green parts.  Slice lengthwise and swish around in a sink full of water.  In my lovely NEW 9" deep sink.  I heart my new sink, too.

Drain,  Chop.  Line cookie sheet(s) with wax paper.  Freeze leek bits on cookie sheets.  The whole house will have a noticeable odour.  Wait 24 hours, then bag the frozen leeks.  I use leftover milk bags because 1) they are free, and 2) they are a nice heavy food-grade plastic.  For you non-Canadians, yes, we get our milk in bags.
The garden is pretty much empty now, except for a huge batch of volunteer cilantro which has sprouted, and some lettuces which are also volunteers.  I may put some cloche hats on the lettuce and see if I can harvest a couple heads later in December.  I have nothing the lose, right?