Sunday, December 25, 2011

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Hot Almond Joys....

Here is a treat sure to put a little merry in your Christmas.

Hot Almond Joys

Make a batch of hot chocolate.  You can share this with the kids. 
For you, grab your favorite mug and add

For the adults, add
a shot of Coconut Rum
a shot of Amaretto
 top with whipped cream

Delish & Delightful!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Reindeer Beer...

This morning, I met a big bunch of my BBFs for coffee.  It was so nice to see everyone.  Diane, my friend that is equally beautiful on the inside and out, brought a cute four pack of Coke she had decorated like reindeer.  Maybe you have seen it done.

I thought it was so cute, I ran to Michaels and grabbed the neccessary supplies {brown pipe cleaners, googly eyes, and red pom poms}.  Then it was off to the grocery store for a couple of six packs of beer, knowing the husb would enjoy that more than the Coke.

I wrapped a brown pipe cleaner around the top of each beer bottle, and twisted smaller pieces {about 1/3 of a pipe cleaner} around each end of the pipe cleaner to make antlers. Next, I hot glued googly eyes and a red pom pom to make the reindeer face.

Then for fun, I printed out "Reindeer Beer" labels and covered the cardboard beer carton with wrapping paper.

I am pretty pleased with myself.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


The sun is shining today and I should get out and walk.  Shoulda....Woulda... Coulda...   I have really fallen off my 10,000 steps wagon.  And it is hard {for me} to get motivated when it is 28 degrees outside.

It is not that I haven't been busy.  I just finished this Christmas gift for my sister-in-law.  It was a joy to knit out of Malabrigo Worsted in Ravelry Red. 

The pattern is Ruffled and Rouched by Pam Powers.  Here is her Ravelry picture for an idea of how it is to be worn. 

I also am working on a lovely pair of fingerless mitts.  I taught myself the Magic Loop and I am delighted not to be using 5 doublepoints.  You can find a great tutorial on the Magic Loop here on the KnitPicks website.  I don't know why I waited so long to try it!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Pecan Pie...

This year, for Thanksgiving, I took on... pie... well really, pie crust.  I have been married 25 years and I have never really made pie crust.  You see, according to the husb, his mom made the best pies.  Because I did not have the benefit of being schooled by his mother in pies, I avoided them or relied on a frozen, store bought crust.

This year, my lovely and talented BFF Mary, gave me a lesson in pie crust.  I really should have taken pictures of the event.  We had a fun afternoon the Wednesday before Thanksgiving that even included a little knitting while our crust chilled.

I do want to share the pie crust recipe (at the end of this post).  It is from Cooks Illustrated (which is like the cooking bible to Mary... and therefore me too).  Oh and I should mention, it contains cold vodka.  Vodka keeps the pie crust moist for an easy roll out.  It totally cooks out of the crust and finished pie eaters will never know your secret... unless you eat the pre-baked pie dough I suppose!

You will have 2 crusts using this recipe.  I used one crust for the Pecan Pie.  I borrowed a pecan pie recipe from Martha.  You can find it here.  This is the before picture.

 And here it is out of the oven.

I used the second crust for a quiche Thanksgiving morning.

One more very important note on the Pecan Pie.  Shortly before Thanksgiving, I saw a Thanksgiving Throwdown on the Food Network between Bobby Flay and Ree (aka The Pioneer Woman).  Ree made a Whiskey Maple Cream Sauce for her pie... so I copied.  It was AWE*SOME!  We drizzled it on the pie and my fav bread pudding.  I could have eaten the entire bowl with a spoon... alone.  Yummy!  This stuff would make cardboard taste good.  Here is that recipe, and thank you Ree!

Now, don't wait 25 years to give pie a try!

Foolproof Pie Dough  (Cooks Illustrated, November 2007)
Makes enough for one 9-inch double-crust pie

2 1/2 cups (12 1/2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon table salt
2 tablespoons sugar
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch slices
1/2 cup cold vegetable shortening, cut into small bits
1/4 cup cold vodka
1/4 cup cold water

1. Process 1 1/2 cups flour, salt, and sugar in food processor until combined, about 2 one-second pulses. Add butter and shortening and process until homogeneous dough just starts to collect in uneven clumps, about 15 seconds (dough will resemble cottage cheese curds and there should be no uncoated flour). Scrape bowl with rubber spatula and redistribute dough evenly around processor blade. Add remaining cup flour and pulse until mixture is evenly distributed around bowl and mass of dough has been broken up, 4 to 6 quick pulses. Empty mixture into medium bowl.

2. Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together. Divide dough into two even balls and flatten each into 4-inch disk. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Happy Birthday Skinny Sister!

Today is my skinny sister's birthday.  I won't reveal her age because she is my little sister too!

Skip & Eva K with Jeanne & Annemarie

Happy Birthday Jeanne!

(This is the only picture I could find where your cheeks are cubbier than mine.)

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Enter his gates with
and His courts with
give thanks to Him
and praise His name.
For the LORD is good
and His love endures forever
His faithfulness
continuews theough all generations.
Psalm 100:4-5

Thursday, November 17, 2011


Last week I met my Iowa quilting friends for a 4 day retreat just outside of New Glarus, WI.  Boy did we have fun!

My friend Jackie is always teasing me about my quilting projects.  It seems I like squares... four patches... nine patches... square in a square... you get the idea.  Well Jackie is forever pointing this out to me {and she is right}.  To remedy my quilting pattern rut, I purchased 2 copies of Chopsticks by Jaybird Quilts.  I sent a copy to Jackie in August letting her know this would be my project for our fall retreat. 

I thought the "triangle in a triangle" theme would be fun and save me from being the butt of every joke.

Here is my quilt made out of a Denyse Schmidt's Picnic fabric line and a nice Bella Solid (from blog friend Anna's store, Thimbleanna). LOVE IT! 

Jackie chose Chez Moi's Hunky Dory.  Isn't that solid great!

While at Quilter's Compass in Monticello, Wisc, Theresa and I both purchased Kate Spain's Terrain for more Chopsticks.  Theresa chose the pink and purple colorway, while I chose orange and green {trying again to think out of my box... again}.

Theresa used her Mini Design Board {(tutorial by the super duper Lori Holt of Bee in My Bonnet}.  We made these as party favors for our quilt camp last July.

Diane purchased Basic Grey's Max & Whiskers for a Chopsticks of her own.

Jackie, cutting extraordinaire, cut all of our quilts out for us!  She is a*ma*zing.  We paid her off in Polish Pottery.


The pattern calls for a 60 degree triangle ruler by Creative Grids.  Jackie had a 60 degree 12 inch ruler (not a Creative Grids ruler).  When she cut out her quilt and pieced her first few blocks they did not size up correctly.  The Creative Grids ruler is actually 12 1/2 inches.  Get the Creative Grids ruler (CGRT12560), and purchase it when you get the pattern.  I called a dozen quilt shops between Indy and New Glarus and found it at one shop in Rockford, Il - thank you Quilters Haven.  The pattern also provides templates. 

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Daisy Cottage Fat Quarter Giveaway...

The super talented Lori Holt is giving away fat quarter packs of her new line, Daisy Cottage.  If you haven't been reading her blog, you are definitely missing out!  Lori's new patterns are 2 die 4! So run along and leave Lori some love.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Field Trip #2...

While in Boston, I found a yarn and fabric shop that I wanted to visit in Cambridge.  Walking there wasn't really a possibility.  A taxi ride would run me about $25 each way.  It was time to learn to take public transportation. 

I know I am crazy, but fear of public transportation nearly paralyzes me.  My fear is not totally unbased.  Did you ever see the episode of the 1960's show Family Affair where Buffy and Jodie are lost on a bus in Spain?  This must have made an impact on me in my early years because I remember that episode, however I don't recall what I ate for breakfast this morning.  I grew up in a small town... the population less than 300 when I left for college in 1980.  Obviously, my only experience with public transportation was a carpool or school bus.  Enough excuses, we can just go with "I am crazy".

Back in Boston, I conquered some fear by taking the Silverline {bus}, to the Redline {subway or "T"} to Central Square Station in Cambridge. I then walked ten minutes to Gather Here at 370 Broadway.
What a delightful shop!  Inside I met the owner, Virginia.  She is young, enthusiastic, and... from Iowa!  Her personality was in every bit of the store.

There is a comfy spot to sit and knit...

Plenty of yarn to fall in love with...

Look at these cute, decorative chairs...

And there is fabric...

And more fabric...

 And vintage buttons in this repurpased card catalogue...  sew clever!

And thread.  Check our her cute hand-stamped tags on everything.

And inspiration abounds....

I loved the cutting table decorated with vintage yard sticks.

And here is something you don't see at every shop...sewing creative space!  Bunches of Berninas to use!

Now doesn't that just make you want to ....

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Window Shopping...

While in Boston, I walked Newbury Street.  I was looking for a store called Newbury Yarns, but it was no longer at the location I had listed.  So, even though it was raining, I did a little window shopping.

Here was my favorite window...

Wow.  All those Featherweights....

...just for decoration.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Field Trip #1...

Oh my... it has almost been a month since my last post.  Busy, busy, very busy.

I had the opportunity to travel to Boston with the husb for a conference.  We did the usual sightseeing.  We took a trolly tour which I repeated the second day.  Very fun and informative.

Naturally I googled to find all the local fabric and yarn shops.  That is how I found  Windsor Button on Temple Street just off Boston Commons.

When I walked in I found this to the right...

More yarn then imaginable... waiting in boxes to be unpacked.  Since I work in a yarn shop I was just itching to dive into these boxes.  Crazy!

They had a nice yarn selection.  Everything from Lion Brand to Lorna's Laces.

But the BUTTONS.  Check this out...

and this...

and this...

I, of course, had no particular need for buttons... but I picked out 5 interesting wood buttons for my stash.

And here is the good news... they have an Online-Store!  The bad news is, it is not nearly as fun as beeing there!

Site Design By Designer Blogs