“I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way--things I had no words for.”

~ Georgia O'Keeffe

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Sew and Tell Friday

Baboo Quilt
the front
the back

The Baboo Quilt has entered the building, and brought a couple of fabulous pillows along. Ain't they purty? Feminine, funky, vibrant and colorful. I love the log cabin pillows. I see many more of those in my future. This quilt is large enough to use as a coverlet on my daughters double bed or to wrap herself up in whilst reading Jane Ayre or Little Women. Oh, who am I kidding, whilst on the computer or watching The Hills on TV. In any case, it will cozy up her room nicely, making it warm and comfy and maybe even a little groovy!

"The most potent muse of all is our own inner child." - Stephen Nachmanovitch

Little Sister - Elvis Presley

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Potatoes and Spice and Everything Nice

Chef Paul Prudhomme's Magic Seasoning Salt...the best!

This is just a quick little post to share a favorite recipe with ya'll.

Spiced Roasted Potatoes

3 med. Russett potatoes
1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. Magic seasoning salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice potatoes in half lengthwise. With a sharp paring knife score sliced surface of potato in an angled grid pattern. Place potatoes on a sheet pan. In a small bowl combine oil and seasoning salt. Brush potatoes with the mixture and allow the oil to seep into the potatoes. Use all of the oil. Bake for 1 hour then increase temp of oven to 400 degrees and bake for another for 15 minutes to brown the tops and make the potatoes crispy. Mmm mmm good!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

This Little Quilt of Mine.

The front
The back

I finished my first quilt! I have made lots of other quilt-y type blankets in the past but none in true quilt fashion. I didn't use a pattern since I don't like following directions (surprise, surprise). I just created it as I went along. I don't have a darning foot for my sewing machine yet so I was not able to do free motion quilting. I just quilted straight lines in a grid pattern. Not bad, if I do say so myself. I was totally intimidated by the binding process at first. I made bias tape from Kona cotton in burgundy to accent the various fabrics used . I think it frames the quilt nicely. Since this was just for practice it will be used as a "watching TV on the couch" quilt or possibly a "Jack (Little Muffin) is cold and wants to burrow" quilt. I love the fact that it is machine washable so I can just throw it in the laundry when ever it gets dirty, like when it's used as a "Ron (husband) is eating chili-dogs while watching football" quilt. It's only a matter of time...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Life is a Process

A Woman in a Room, Pierre Bonnard, 1925

Two Friends, Pierre Bonnard

I am in awe and amazement at the inspiring creativity, absolute desire and clear purpose of the other crafty bloggers I have stumbled upon in my crafty blog travels. I am such a newbie that I have yet to join any blog circles, but I am putting my toe in the water bit by bit. My blog list (on the left) is just a portion of the blogs that give me pure joy. I discover lovely new blogs every day and will add to my list from time to time. I encourage you to go ahead, click on some of the links and take a journey into crafty blog-land. Once I entered I realized that these women (and man: Quilt Dad) were doing what I had only dreamed about. They had the courage to chronicle their dreams, thoughts, passions. Journaling their day to day happenings, their appreciation for the simplest of things that bring them pure joy! Hand knitted socks for a young child, a hand made quilt fresh from the dryer, a basket of harvested vegetables from the backyard garden, or just having the time, the space, the ability to create what is in your heart and soul. I had always thought I was just a quirky hippie-chick, born in the wrong generation. I wondered why a counter of freshly canned tomatoes glowing in the sunlight or picnicking atop a handmade quilt with my baby daughter while singing songs could bring me to tears. What was wrong with me? I finally have the answer....NOTHING, I'm just a quirky hippie-chick who has finally found her calling amongst others who have found theirs.

"The personal life deeply lived always expands into truths beyond itself." - Anias Nin

Nina - The Durutti Column / Keep Breathing

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Good for the Soul

Hark, is that Fall I hear? My crockpot is banging at the pantry door wanting to be let out. I think it's time to start "Stirring the Stew"! I love this time of year. I'm sad to see Summer slip away but I embrace the rituals of preparing for Fall. A simmering crockpot on the counter and cookies baking in the oven totally turns me on! It's not quite time for a fire in the fireplace but that will come soon enough. Cuban Pork and Sweet Potato Stew is one of my favorite recipes. It goes together quickly, is very low fat, tastes delicious and is freezer friendly. Everything about it shouts "Fall has arrived"! I ususally prep it at night and place it in the fridge till morning. Then I just toss it into the crockpot and away I go! Serve this spicy stew with a crispy salad and you have one filling, healthy dinner. Who would like a cookie for dessert?

"There is nothing like soup. It is by nature eccentric: no two are ever alike, unless of course you get soup in a can." - Laurie Colwin, Home Cooking

Perfect stew making music: Candela - Buena Vista Social Club

Cuban Pork and Sweet Potato Stew

1 lg. sweet potato (1/2 inch dice)
1 lb. lean pork loin
14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes
1- 7 oz. can diced green chiles
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1/2 c. orange juice
2 large dried chiles
1 bunch chopped scallions
1 tsp. each salt, cumin, chipolte chili pepper
1/2 tsp black pepper
16 oz. chicken stock
1 Tbsp. lime juice
1/4 c. chopped cilantro
1 can white kidney beans

Place all ingredients except lime juice, cilantro and beans into crockpot. Cover and cook on low for approx. 7 hours. Using tongs pull out the dried chiles and pork. Allow to cool enough to handle. Remove stems from chiles and puree with a little of the broth. Add the chile puree back to the crock pot. Shred the pork into bite sized pieces and add back to the crockpot. Add the white beans, lime juice and chopped cilantro. Cook for 30 more minutes. May be be served over a scoop of brown rice and topped with chunks of avocado & a few dashes of green Tobasco....SOOO Tasty!!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Alone with a pile of fabric.

I just had to show you this sweet picture of my little Muffin!

Here are a few more quilt tops I have been working on. I hope to complete the backs to these two and the Baboo quilt so that I can prepare the quilt sandwiches (top, batting, backing). I will then attempt machine quilting for the first time! I am really looking forward to it as I have read up on the technique and watched several web tutorials so I feel ready to take the plunge. I am holding off from starting any new quilts until I finish these three. I have so many new ideas swirling about in my head just waiting to jump out. I never understood how sewing could become addictive but now I get it. What a luxury to have all day just to sew and create...without interruption. A little Sting in the background, a lavender candle burning and a huge pile of colorful fabric! Oh, the things I would do...a girl can dream, can't she?