Friday, February 28, 2014


According to the weather people we are in for yet another blast of frigid weather with ice this weekend.  It's hard to say which components of the storm we will get, as we seem to be on the edge of a weather corridor.  We will wait and see what happens.

It feels good to have a quilt being quilted and I'm looking forward to starting a new project - which will be a UFO.  Most of my UFOs are so old they feel like new projects when I drag them out!  I'm definitely a stronger starter than finisher. 

I have a fairly small sewing project to do for my daughter, who is starting her new career as an Esthetician.  She needs some pillowcases that fit travel pillows to use on her facial table.  I bought a few fabrics for this project a while back.  What do you think ~~~

I think that with these fabrics and what I can find in my stash I can make her a good selection.  The cases will have contrasting cuffs.  I think these will look nice.

Wishing everyone who stops here to visit a great weekend!

Thursday, February 27, 2014


My husband Jeff is supportive of everything I do ~~ hands-on supportive and helpful.  He recently took time to lay out the blocks of a Double Slice quilt I've been making him. 

I love the fabric line, Birchbark Lodge, but it's unravels every time you touch it.  I was clipping loose threads when Jeff came home from work yesterday and he immediately put on his headlight and took over!  In no time he had all the stray threads clipped and it's now ready to go out to be quilted.

I added the borders to the quilt yesterday and that took a few hours.  I had enough yardage to cut the borders lengthwise without needing to seam them.  There was enough fabric to cut the binding the same way.  I prefer cutting binding strips cross-grain because they are a little more flexible that way, but this will work. 

Now that this is done I can pull out another UFO to work on. 

Wishing you a wonderful day!  Barb

Monday, February 24, 2014


Yesterday was Applesauce Day at our house.  I got a great deal on apples and decided to take the plunge since I didn't make applesauce last Fall. 

My Grandma taught me to make applesauce, but I have revised her method to make it easier and faster.  If you have never had homemade applesauce, let me tell you there is no comparison and it's simple to make:

The only apples I don't use for applesauce are Granny Smith (too tart) and Washington Delicious (too mealy and not enough flavor).  My preference is Fuji or Gala apples.   Nine or ten pounds of apples will make a fair amount for a small family or a generous amount for one person.

I use a crank apple peeler/corer/slicer to peel my apples.  Of course, you can do this by hand.  If you don't have a peeler see if you can borrow one.  It makes this job quick and efficient.

Peel, core and slice enough apples to fill a Dutch oven to the top.  Add 6 ounces of frozen apple juice concentrate and 1/4 to 1/3 cup redhot candies and 1 cup granulated sugar.  Bring the apples to a simmer, cover the pot,  and let them cook slowly until the apples fall apart when you stir them.

Once the apples are fully cooked process them in a food processor until smooth.  Don't overfill your processor - do this in batches.  Pour applesauce into a large bowl and add additional sugar and/or more cinnamon if desired.  Let the applesauce cool to room temperature and put in freezer bags (I use pint bags) and freeze.  Your applesauce will have a rosy color.  The bonus of making your own applesauce is the way your house will smell like a huge apple pie all day!

The way we enjoy our applesauce is to take a bag from the freezer and microwave it for one minute on High.  Squeeze the sauce into a bowl and break up the icy chunks.  We love ours slightly frozen. 

I haven't been sewing too much the past few weeks, but my Hubby is wanting me to finish his Double Slice quilt I've been sewing a little here and there.  After a couple more seams it will be ready for borders.  Here's what I have so far:

Jeff chose the fabric from the Birchbark Lodge line by Moda.  Two layer cakes plus border yardage are needed to make a Queen quilt. At first I didn't care for the blue in with the earthtones, but now I can see it needs to be in there to keep the fabrics from being boring.  I have border material in the large orange print.  I had also thought about making the outer border from baby corduroy in chocolate brown.  I may still do this.   Missouri Star has a great tutorial on this Double Slice quilt.  This is one of those quilts that looks labor intensive but it's really super simple.  This would be a good beginner project in a smaller size.  I'll keep you posted on this project.

It's good to be blogging again!!  Thanks to everyone who prayed for me during my recent illness.  The notes and well wishes were a blessing. 

Wishing you a day filled with Peace & Plenty....Barb

Saturday, February 22, 2014


Thanks to everyone who contacted me about missing my blog.  Sometimes life gets in the way of my blog and this has been one of those times. 

I caught an unusually serious virus that turned into an infection that baffled my doctors.  After a brain/sinus scan they were able to rule out the worst case scenarios and prescribed me some serious antibiotics.  The medicine to make you well is sometimes harder on you that the illness.  I'm beginning to feel like myself again and I have just one more pill to take. 

I plan to be blogging again Monday come rain or shine.  Please meet me here then.  In the meantime have a great weekend.


Monday, February 10, 2014


When I woke up this morning to more snow falling I knew my plans for the day were going to have to wait.  I had only planned to go to the grocery store and post office, but with the ice factor being what it has been my sensible side told me not to risk going out.  What to do...what to do.....

I know I'm an old softie when it comes to our Scotties, Dottie & Olive.  I thought this morning was the perfect time to bake a few batches of homemade treats for the Girls and they were in total agreement. 

After a couple of hours and a wicked mess all over the floor, here's the result.

I put the cookies into quart bags and freeze them to keep them fresh.  The Girls love their special treats and will be on their very best behavior when there is a chance to indulge in one!

To make these for your furbaby:

Preheat your oven to 350 and put parchment paper onto two cookie sheets.

Mix with electric mixer:
2 eggs
1/2 cup water
2 eggs
1 mashed ripe banana
1/4 cup oil
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 cup peanut butter

Add and mix well:
4 cups flour
1/2 - 1 cup oats
1/2 cup cornmeal
Extra oats for rolling

This makes a thick, sticky dough.  I sprinkle the counter with oats and put the dough on top of the oats and press it with my hands to make the oats on the bottom stick to the dough.  Lift the dough and put more oats on the counter and turn the dough over onto the oats and press so both sides are now coated with oats.

Pat or roll the dough to about 1/2 inch thickness and cut out.  I use a bone-shaped cutter about 3 inches long.  If you use a cutter it will help to dip it into flour after every few cuts.

Place cookies onto parchment lined cookie sheets and bake for approximately 20 minutes.  Turn the cookies over and bake for 15 minutes more.

This recipe makes a good amount of biscuits.  The number of biscuits depends on how you cut them.  I keep a bag on the counter and store the rest in the freezer in zip bags. 

Note:  Today I cut down on the water and added some canned pumpkin.  Dottie is a little suspicious about the pumpkin but Olive loved them.  Dottie doesn't like change in any area of her life.  Olive is a free spirit who's always willing to try anything. 

Now I'm off to straighten the sewing room.

Wishing you Peace & Plenty!

Thursday, February 6, 2014


Today is my husband Jeff's birthday.  He dragged out of bed this morning still sick because he is required to complete training and today is the day.  He's still not feeling nearly well enough to be out of bed.

I bit the bullet and drove to the mailbox this morning and then on to the bank.  White navigating the curve in our road my car began sliding and I nearly missed going into the ditch.  The dreaded ice almost got me again!  I made my bank run and came straight home...not to venture out again anytime soon!  I just heard that our schools will be closed again tomorrow.

I put a roast beef and pot of green beans on to cook about an hour ago.  We will also have Parmesan and garlic mashed potatoes , gravy and Cheddar Bay biscuits for dinner.  I tried making a special birthday torte this morning.  It ended up flowing out of the pan and burning all over the oven, so it was a huge flop!  Ah, the aroma of burnt sugar all through the house....

I haven't been sewing but I have been getting in some good computer time checking out other blogs.  I have gathered more darling ideas than I could possibly ever use.  Quilters are such giving, generous people.  Thanks to everyone of them. 

This evening is the opening ceremony of the 2014 Winter Olympics.  I pray that everything will go smoothly and the spirit of sportsmanship will prevail. 

Wherever you are, stay safe and warm. 

Smiles ~~~  Barb

Tuesday, February 4, 2014


I'm just checking in to let you know we are still down with the bug/virus/flu, whatever it is.  Our lives were complicated today by another winter storm and a trip to take Jeff to the doctor was impossible because the road and bridges were covered with ice.  The highway patrol was turning cars back before they got onto the bridges.  We will continue taking Mucinex and drinking loads of water and juice for Jeff.  I put together a pot of chicken soup yesterday. 

The Girls wonder what's happening to Mom and Dad because we both have coughs that sound like dogs barking!  The Girls happily bark back at us and stand up on their hind legs as though we owe them a treat!

I hope everyone is well at your homes.   This newest winter blast is crossing several states.  Take care and stay safe.