Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Year!

From my family to yours... I want to wish everyone A Happy and Healthy New Year. Only a few more hours and 2011 will be here. Isn't that right, Mimi?

"Meow! Whatever! Just don't wake me 'til next year! I am getting my beauty sleep. Meow!"
I guess we are going to have a quiet New Year's Eve.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Back to Normal?

The turkey has been eaten. The wine bottles are empty. The Christmas chocolates are still around to tempt me, but I'm stronger than they are. My DH has gone to work. I am alone with my fabrics and sewing machine. So I started to make a scrappy quilt this morning.

It's for a life-long friend (no blog) who has been stricken with cancer. I found out about it a day or two before Christmas and can't stop thinking about her. She will start radiation therapy in the new year. I thought she might need a bright lap quilt to help her through the treatments. So I started on these scrappy blocks this morning. She could probably use some prayers too, if you are so inclined. Thanks.

Now I need your help. Do you think it is too colourful? Should I tone it down a bit? Please let me know.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Table Mats

Hope every one had a wonderful Christmas. We are only half way through our Christmas celebrations. Today is Boxing Day, but I have had enough of shopping so we are going to my sister's house for an extended family Christmas get together.

And I can now show you the Dresden Plate table mats that I made. They were fun and easy to do. I still haven't figured out how to do a pdf file, so I have not done a tutorial on this. Maybe I should make 'learning how to do a pdf file' my New Year's resolution.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas.

Feliz Navidad

Vrolijke Kerstmis

God Jul
Frohe Weihnachten

Joyeux Noel

Buon Natale
Merry Christmas

Feliz Natal

Thursday, December 23, 2010

44 years? Is That Possible?

Where has the time gone? It was 44 years ago today that my DH and I got married.

There are not many photos of our wedding. The photographer (my uncle) was taking pictures all day long. At around 10:30 in the evening he came to us with a long, sad face and proceeded to tell us that the film in his camera had broken and all the photos of our special day were ruined. Being young and in the spring of our lives, we just took it all in stride. It was like an adventure. But we did want to have some photos to remember this important day by. So we took several family shots over. This one is of my family - my mother, sisters and brother. My father is in the top photo, just to the left of me.

We recreated the signing and ring ceremonies.

We even 'rebuilt' the cake because it was half eaten by that time. Luckily the top tier was still intact. We just put some cups under it and took a photo from the front.

And we all went back to City Hall on Christmas Day, even though it was closed, and took some more pictures of the entire family. It was very cold that day! With the wind it felt like -20C! But we made the best of things.

And I was happy.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Sing Along

We are surrounded by snow, heavy snows and winds and traffic woes to the north, south, east and west of us. But here in Scarborough we only got a dusting. That is not to say that it isn't cold, because it is. With the winds it feels like -10C. So I decided to make the most of today with this little poem.

Oh, the weather outside is frightful,
But the view is so delightful,
And since I've got no place to go.
Let me sew, let me sew, let me sew!

I am making Christmas presents. Can't show you right now, sorry.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Wednesday's Hexagons

I don't have any flowers to show you today, but I do have a large piece of my 'Quilt Wannabe' done. This is my evening project, to work on when I watch television. I am now at the stage where I have to make it longer rather than wider. Will have to think about that.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The End of a Blogging Month

Today is the last day of November. I have posted every day for the entire month! Yeah, I know! I can barely believe it myself. From now on I will post only when I have something really important to tell you.

And not only is November coming to an end, it was also the last get together of our mini quilt group. We exchanged cookies. Don't they look yummy?
After our cookie exchange, we went out to a local restaurant for lunch. And, yes, I ate way too much. I don't think I have room for even one cookie.
Also, I should be posting my clamshell progress for this month, but I haven't made any. Not even one clamshell! Too much has been going on around here. I have put the clamshells on my list and hope to get back to them soon.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Quilts, Cookies and Graffiti

If you stopped by to see the first charity quilt I made for the very worthy cause of 100 Quilts for Christmas. Go here. That way you don't have to sift through all my ramblings of the past few days.

Did I say sift? I think the cookies are getting to me. I am still baking.
I still have a few to make.

In the meantime I am working on my second charity quilt for 100 Quilts for Christmas. Here it is on my design floor. I caught Mimi messing up my blocks. She ran away when I saw her, but it really doesn't matter. This is not the final layout. I was just checking to see if I have enough of the background fabric. It looks like if might have to piece the final block. Yikes! That's cutting it close!
Someone sent me a Facebook invitation the other day. I have always told myself not to get involved with Facebook. I don't want to be tied down to my computer. But, guess what? I joined. It's like being a kid again. "Someone wants to be your friend". Yeah, well, only if they come over here and help me bake cookies! "Someone has written on your wall." How dare they? I don't want graffiti all over my walls!

I still have a lot of stuff to figure out on this site. So far I have not posted much. And I probably won't any time soon. Maybe after the New Year. But then, if the writing is on the wall.........

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cookie Day

I have been busy baking cookies! These are the maple ones. The recipe came from a 'Better Homes and Gardens Christmas Cookies' magazine from the fall of 1998. I hand painted the icing onto them with a wooden skewer. Half of the cookies are done. Still another 40 or so to make. I had to send my husband out for more butter this afternoon so that I can finish them tonight. He went over to visit a friend who is in a nursing home. Good thing he left. He was eating them faster than I could bake them!

Let me just tell you that it was a lot of fun, but not necessarily easy to paint all these pretty colours. How does Mother Nature do it? She has a gazillion trillion or some such infinitive number of leaves to colour each fall. I have a renewed respect for that woman!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Post 27 for the Month of November

It's the 27th day of NaBloPoMo, so I feel as if I have to post something. After all, I have kept up with this posting insanity for almost four weeks and I don't want to ruin it now. So let me tell you about my day.

I ran a lot of errands and did some shopping. My DD drove me and when my DH came home, we did more shopping. Altogether we went to five different stores, one of them two times. i bought all the things I need to bake cookies. At least I hope I have everything. I am not a real fan of cookie baking, but I did a kind of crazy thing. I joined a Christmas Cookie Club! So now I have to bake cookies for 12 people, including myself - only 6 per person, but that makes 72 cookies!

Since I don't have any cook books with cookie recipes in them, I asked my DD for one of her cookie books and she brought me 5 of them. So now my problem is that I have too many recipes to choose from. I have narrowed it down to four or five different cookies. I'll use the ones that turn out the best. But I'm not going to start them tonight; I'm too tired. Hopefully, if all goes well, I will have some decorated delicacies to show you tomorrow.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Bazaar Stuff

I worked on some more bazaar items today. Five star dish cloths, four amigurumi bears and three large, round dish cloths. I have to take them over to the church at 7:00pm tonight. The bazaar is tomorrow.
Here is a better shot of the bears. They are from a Japanese Amigurumi book that my favourite Japanese students brought me when they came to study English here a few years ago. Cute, eh?

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving to my American Friends

It's a real November day - dark, windy and cold. I have nothing that I can show you today. Have been working on some little amigurumi bears, but all I have so far are body parts. Hopefully I can put them together tonight and show them to you tomorrow.

So for now let me just wish all of my neighbours and blogging friends to the south of us a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Wednesday's Flowers Following A Sleepless Night

I had a rather sleepless night, reminiscent of my long-ago baby days. Mimi is my 'baby' now and she gave me quite a scare yesterday. Remember that Azalea I showed you last week. More flowers have opened up and it looks beautiful. So I thought I would place it on my coffee table in the living room.

While I was sitting there, crocheting, Mimi, in one swift motion, jumped onto the coffee table, made her way over to the plant and proceeded to grab one leaf with her teeth and chew and swallow it. I was frantic! I started yelling at her, but she was too fast for me. She had already swallowed it. I dashed for the Azalea. That scared her and she jumped down and left the room in a hurry. I could only see one small leaf that had been ripped off with only a stubble left on the plant.

For those of you who don't know, Azaleas are toxic to cats. I woke up every hour on the hour last night to check up on Mimi. She was fine, thank goodness. I did not think that cats were so dumb as to eat Azalea leaves. Maybe only Mimi is. The plant has now been placed out of Mimi's reach! Yes this is all certainly reminiscent of my early baby days. Now Mimi is sleeping peacefully in her favourite spot. Wish I could go back to bed and catch a few more winks!

But I want to show you my hexagons for this week first. I have been busy with a lot of other things this week, so I didn't have much time to work on the hexies. I'll do better next week. I promise. Here are some of my prepped hexies. They are for the 'Wannabe Quilt'. I really want it to be a quilt too. But I still have a lot more hexies to add before it is done.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Christmas Bear is Finished!

My charity quilt is finished! He will be going to a women's shelter for Christmas. Hopefully he will bring some happiness to a child. This is also my first entry for the 100 Quilts for Christmas that Aunt Spicy and Swim, Bike, Quilt are hosting. I enjoyed making this one. The bear pattern is my own. I hope he doesn't look to hokey.

Monday, November 22, 2010

A Busy Day, but Nothing to Show for It

I spent my morning cleaning up the sewing room. It was such a mess! I couldn't find anything. Once it was all cleaned up, I sandwiched my charity quilt. Then I machine quilted it and now I am sewing the binding on. I will have to take a photo tomorrow because it was too dark today to get a good shot. We had a very warm day for the end of November. It was 15C, but it rained the whole day. Tomorrow the temperature will only go to about 4C. I am hoping the sun will come out for a while.

Mimi has a dirty nose. She was drinking out of the plant saucers. I hate it when she does that. I worry about fertilizers and insecticides. But Mimi doesn't worry about those things. She loves water from a plant saucer!

Mimi, your nose is dirty!

"Meow! Haven't you got anything better to do than take my picture when I have crap on my nose? Go away! Leave me alone! Meow!"

Sunday, November 21, 2010

It's Beginning to....Christmas

Oh, heck! Who am I kidding? Of course Christmas is coming. There are signs of the holiday season everywhere. The Santa Claus parade is scheduled for this afternoon. We even had a bit of snow earlier today. It is gone now - just a little reminder by Mother Nature of what is in store for us! The radio is playing Christmas tunes and I worked on the charity quilt. I had originally thought that I would applique a snowman here, but then changed my mind and came up with this little bear. I still have to quilt this cutie, but I have to wait for the batting to relax before I can sandwich it. I'll do that tomorrow.

We are going out for a family dinner at our fishing club this evening. The club is about an hour's drive through rolling, hilly countryside. The fields will likely be covered in snow. It really feels like we are getting together for a Christmas dinner. I wonder why that is?

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Flimsy Finish and a Call for Christmas Charity Quilts

Just a reminder that SewCalGal's Christmas Quilt Show only runs until tomorrow. You can still enter. If you dropped by my blog to see my Christmas Quilt entries, please scroll down a couple of posts. Thanks.

If you came by to see what I have been up then let me show off my Charm and Scrap Quilt flimsy. I used up a lot of scraps on this one. But I have enough scraps to make several more. Felix helped me with this one too. Here he is trying to get under the top.

Here is another photo of the quilt top, including the 'lump'. This was fun to make. I hope to have it quilted as soon as possible. But first I want to take care of some Christmas charity stuff.
This is a photo of a kit I was given at my guild. It is supposed to make a child's quilt. The red fabric is for the centre of the quilt... just a plain red fabric. I thought it would be boring, so I plan to do an appliqued snowman in the centre. I have until Monday evening to finish this one. Then it will be given to Quilts from the Heart.

I have joined this group in their quest to make 100 quilts for charity. It has been organized by Aunt Spicy and Swim,Bike,Quilt.
Go over and take a look. Maybe you have a quilt lying around or scraps that you could make one out of. It's for a good cause!

Friday, November 19, 2010

More Christmas Quilts

If you came to my blog for Sew Cal Gal's Christmas Quilt Show, please scroll down to the next post. But this one contains Christmas quilts too, so feel free to browse...

Since I am still trying to keep up with NaBloPoMo, I will have to post something for today. But I don't have anything to show or tell you, so I think I will just post a couple more Christmas quilts. Ones I didn't post yesterday.

The first one is 'Let It Snow'. I started this at a retreat and then finished it at home a couple of years ago. I will hang this one in my front hallway for the Festive Season.

This one I made last year. It is from a Fons and Porter pattern. It could be a wall hanging, but since I have lots of those I think I will use this as a table topper.
So there you have it. Hopefully I will have more to show you tomorrow.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A Christmas Quilt Show

Are you ready for another virtual quilt show? I wasn't going to enter this year because I have nothing new to show you. But I do have several Christmas items that I think are very nice.

Here they are.

I made this tree skirt a long time ago. The applique was done by machine. The quilting also. This skirt resides at my DD's house.

Next is my 'Quilt-As-You-Go' quilt. I know it's not very Christmasy being blue and all. But the blue fabric has Christmas Bears on it, so I think it should count as a Christmas quilt.

The next quilt is one of my favourites. It gets to stay on the couch all through Christmas and well into the new year. The trees are machine appliqued. As you can see, Mimi likes it too!

And last is an appliqued Santa. This one also resides at my DD's house over Christmas. He hangs in her vestibule to greet everyone who comes to her house during the holiday season.

If you want to see more Christmas Quilts, go to Sew Cal Gal's blog.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wednesday's Flowers and More

Did you think I was going to show you some hexies? Well, I will do exactly that as soon as I show you this gorgeous Azalea. I received this wonderful plant from a friend last night. Isn't it lovely? The colour is fantastic! Just what I needed to cheer me up on this gloomy, rainy, very cold and windy day.

So here are the hexies I made this week. No, they are not flowers, but they are little units for the 'Quilt Wannabe'. I have made 12 of these already. Now I have 6 more. I need to make another 6 of these to create the design in the quilt.

Several people emailed me for the apple cake recipe. So here it is. I baked another one this morning for my husband and family. I took a slice to have with my mid-morning coffee. Delicious!

Mrs. Van's Dutch Apple Cake
(I took this recipe out of a very old Woman's Day cookbook)

1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup butter or margarine
I egg yolk (I put 1 whole egg into my cake)
2 tbsp brandy or milk (I always make mine with milk)
Apples and dried currants, raisins, cranberries or cherries.
Cinnamon topping

Mix together dry ingredients.
Blend in butter or margarine.
Add egg and brandy or milk.
Press dough with fingers into a 9-inch cake pan.
Cover with apples that have been peeled, cored and cut into eighths.
Sprinkle dried fruit on top. (I usually put this on the dough before I add the apples)
Cover with cinnamon topping.

Cinnamon Topping
Blend together:
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tbsp all purpose flour
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
Edit: Bake at 350F for 45 minutes.
Thanks to Vicki for pointing out that I had forgotten this part.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

More Fat Quarters

Today was our Tuesday morning quilting get together. It was my turn to bring treats, so I baked an apple cake last night. I didn't have a chance to take a photo of it. It was devoured in minutes by my quilting friends. These ladies take their treats very seriously! I am really glad they liked my cake.

As I was waiting for a friend to pick me up, the letter carrier came by. He handed me a shit-load of bills and a large brown envelope. I threw the bills aside and concentrated on the brown envelope. It was another installment of the Bargain Lovers Fat Quarter Club at Sew Sisters. This is the club I joined where I get 10 fat quarters a month for only $17.99. This month the fabrics are fantastic. I love these modern colours! Have no idea what I am going to make yet, but I am sure I'll find something.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Felix and I Have a Chinese Coin Flimsy to Show You

My Chinese Coin Quilt is at the flimsy stage. I just sewed the last border strip on. I wanted to take a photo in natural light, but I wasn't quick enough. It gets dark so early now. I had to use my flash, so you really can't see the true colours. But that's okay because I will take a final picture when it is quilted. Felix was my big helper. He is in the photo too. Can you spot him? He is that lump right in the middle, under the quilt. He loves tents, so I thought I would let him play as a reward for all of his help.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Working on My Chinese Coin Quilt - Sort of...

It's a dark, rainy, fall day here in Toronto. No one is home this afternoon so I have lots of time to sew without being bothered. I have done some work on the charm quilt and have almost finished the Chinese Coins. Just part of one strip of coins to go. Then the borders. I could probably do this a lot faster if Felix wasn't helping me.

Oh, well. He makes me smile.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Just One of Those Days

If I don't post something today I will have wasted two weeks of NaBloPoMo. So let me just say that today I did some quilting, some knitting, some cleaning and fixed a small family crisis. Also had some errands to run in the afternoon - a stop at the bank, the drug store and library. I never used my wheelchair or scooter. It was all done under my own power. Now I'm exhausted! Think I will curl up in front of the TV for the evening. Since I don't believe in a post without a photo, I am giving you Felix! Don't let those little slanty eyes fool you. He is quite harmless.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Time to Finish Another UFO

As I was working on the Chinese Coin quilt, I realized that it was a new quilt I had started. I promised myself I wouldn't do that. I was going to finish a UFO before beginning anything new.

Then I found this UFO. It's on my design floor right now, but it is not sewn yet. This pattern is especially good for using 5inch charm squares or scraps and I am using scraps. So I figured this quilt is very similar to the Chinese Coins. Perhaps I can work on them at the same time. The fabric I can't use in this quilt can be used for the Coin quilt. Am I making sense? Have I bitten off more than I can chew? I'll ask Mimi to help me. Oh! Maybe not. Never wake a sleeping cat, especially a cat named Mimi!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Wednesday's Flowers on Thursday

A new crop of flowers have bloomed in my garden. I can hardly believe it, but I made 9 new flowers this week. It's a good thing too, because there are no more flowers in my outside garden. Only these leaves on my Cranesbill (perennial geranium) give the garden some colour. This is a real bonus this year. I had beautiful blue flowers all summer and now these gorgeous orange leaves. It has been a good year for my garden.