Now that Christmas is over - I have a chance to sit and breath!
I do Love Christmas time the weeks leading up to Christmas are filled with all sorts of activities ... but in our house we have one day where everyone pitches in ..."Cookie Day"!!
It's usually the Saturday before Christmas - I spend the entire day making cookies and the kids and hubby pitch in and help decorate them.
The New Years Cookies are a press cookie and are made TWO at a time!
Long process - but well worth the time!
The line up for the Santa Face Cookie decorating - slave labor!! And this year we had the added bonus of Nana helping us too! Although she decorated her cookies upside down so she was relegated to watching and eating her upside down Santa!!
After 12 hours we made 28 dozen cookies!
16 dozen New Years press cookies (two at a time!) and
12 dozen "Santa Face" cookies!
The number keeps growing every year!
Yesterday was such a nice low keyed Christmas day - everyone opened lots of presents (I received lots of nice quilty gifts from my hubby!) and ate a huge turkey dinner - which I cooked!! I'm on a roll two holiday feasts in a row and no kitchen catastrophes!
My most special quilty gift that I received was from my mom and sister for my birthday.
A beautiful handcrafted wooden jewelry box with a wooden inlaid bear paw design.
My darling husband volunteered me to make a "Fish" quilt for our contractor (bartering for a few extras!!) he saw my husbands quilt and wanted on "just like it" - which is impossible since my husband quilt is 10 years old and none of the fabric exist any more! Well I've been working on "The Fish Quilt" - as it has now become known as! off and on since the spring. I was so glad to have it done, quilted and bound just before Christmas! I of course gave it to my darling husband to make the delivery. He said it was well received. I was so happy! Another project done in 2010!!
In an earlier post I mentioned I was working on "Fiesta" by Lynda Milligan and
Nancy Smith - well I've been working all month on the blocks for my upcoming
block of the month class at Quilter's Stash.
There are 6 different blocks consisting of New York Beauty points, arcs, and pieced blocks, 40 blocks in all. The blocks are coming together and up on the design wall.
The design wall is actually a 52" x 52" tablecloth tacked to my Stash closet doors!!
I'm still working on the placement of the blocks ...I find if I take pictures with my digital camera and then bring them up on the computer screen I get a better look at block placement and flow of color ... and I can look at several options at the same time!
So here is the first picture - now comes the fun part ... moving them all around!
Oops I see I lost a block somewhere!!
Now it's time to sew it together and add the boarders!
Okay anyone that knows me knows I would rather quilt than cook ... so today was a big day for me ... I actually cooked the entire Thanksgiving dinner all by myself (and cleaned while everyone watched the Patriots WIN! - Yippee!). Which doesn't sound like much - but if you knew my cooking, you would know this was a major under taking. As my son has always said "we know when dinner is done when the smoke detectors go off"!! And he's actually right... can't tell you how many times I've set the alarms off, over boiled things on the stove and even almost burnt the kitchen down (but that's another long story!)
I decided not to stress myself out and since no one in the house eats the dark meat I only cooked a turkey breast ... I made a spicy rub (learned that from yesterday's TODAY show!), made my stuffing and added raisins and green apples, homemade Boston baked beans, mashed potatoes, turnip, peas & carrots ... ugh jar gravy (I was not going to attempt making gravy - it wasn't good the last time - why chance it again!)
After a few hours I called the family to the table and .... they were speechless!!! My son jumped up whipped out his blackberry and announced that it was picture worthy!! Notice hie two forks!!! I
Needless to say I was so pleased to have my family tell me I "made a perfect meal"
and no smoke alarms!
I also was able to find a great recipe for Boston Baked Beans - similar to the recipe my Dad used to make. I used his old bean pot and gave it a try ... they came out pretty good - I have a little tweaking of the recipe to do - but all in all I was very pleased with how they came out.
OH and don't think I do any quilting while I was making my Thanksgiving dinner (there was a little down time after all!) ... I had to really pay attention in the kitchen so I worked on a new hand project! I think I'll jump in on the Hexy band wagon!
So I started making hexies ....
Also continued working on another class sample for my "Fiesta" block of the month class at Quilter's Stash.
"Fiesta" is a great booklet by Lynda Milligan and Nancy Smith
Great pattern and good instructions - great way to use up your stash fabrics. I choose Batiks (of course!)
The line up! and BIG fabric decisions to be made....
Used my patio curtain for a design wall ... it works!
So today (and everyday) I'm Thankful for a wonderful family (who puts up with my cooking even when it's bad and the smoke detectors are going off) and for a quilting craft that fulfills my creative side.
This was my first trip up to A Quilters' Gathering in Nashua New Hampshire ... well worth the trip ... or in my case the weekend! I decided to plan a girls weekend away - just mom and myself ... but I had the added pleasure of meeting up with a friend I had not seen in several years! Dawn and I walked through all of the vendors while mom rested (the 2 hour car ride gave her back a bit of trouble) then the three of us viewed all of the beautiful quilts that were on display. I was lucky enough to have two quilts in the show!
My Layered Circles (the quilt featured at the top of the blog) and My Batik Stars in the Garden shown below with mom!
The show also featured a beautiful collection of Amish Quilts - all done by hand by women of all ages some as young as 11 and 16! Some how I don't think I could get my 18 year old daughter to sit long enough to make a quilt! Although she did make a table runner when she was 11!!
But my favorite was the quilt that won best of show - it was all in shades of cream. "Essence" was made and quilted by Ronda K. Beyer - she made this" no color quilt to showcase design and texture through my quilting" AND DID SHE EVER!
Here is the center feathered star with in a feathered star - simply beautiful
the quilting is phenomenal. I kept coming back to it several times during the show -
just to make sure I didn't miss anything!
pictures just do not do this quilt any justice - this work of art just needs to hang and be admired!
Then of course there were vendors! From places I had only heard about or have
seen on line. My first favorite vendor was the Portsmouth Fabric Co. their booth
was so colorful I just wanted to jump in and swim in all of the fabrics! I refrained!
and purchased these Australian fabrics - don't they just look Yummy!
The next stop was to Pinwheels my go to online place for Japanese fabrics. Their booth had such a calm sense about it ... I needed that after swimming in the fabric at the Portsmouth Fabric Co !! I purchased these delectable goodies to add to my Japanese Fabric collection and my Sashiko collection!
And who could ever resist books and patterns! Not that I need any more....
AND to my surprise Handmade Beginnings was a signed copy by Anna Maria Horner ...
now how could I leave that there!! Besides there are just way too many cute patterns in there!!
So all in all a weekend away with my mom, catching up with an old friend,
shopping and quilts ....
I ask you can a girls weekend away get any better that that?!