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Posts Tagged ‘sewing’

Mon Ami.

It is hard to believe that today was the last day.
Yes.
The last day of Bells visit.
I have loved having her with me. We have stayed up late at night dreaming of sewing studios. Figuring out purse patterns.
We have had so much tea this week. At least two kinds a day. We ran out of types to try so we took a trip to the tea shop downtown. And today Fed-Ex made me so happy.
They brought tea.
Right now there is Harney & Sons Vanilla Comoro brewing.
And homemade Strawberry Poptarts are in the making.

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Good Fun: part two.

Here is part two of my time with Grace…

Tuesday:


The oven had bread in it all morning but we had to bake cupcakes for a party in the evening. We seriously made them right before we got in the car to go. It was so close. They tasted delicious though.

Wednesday Night:


We made little cream puffs…


with amazing chocolate cream filling.
We whipped cream (by hand) and folded it into chocolate pudding.
What a good filling.


Yes, I ate so many of them.
(and I even balanced them on my tongue. You should try that, it’s not easy.)

Thursday Morning:

The last meal (a.k.a. – Breakfast ).

I think Grace and I will always make these when we are together.
These Cream Cheese Cinnamon Rolls…
man oh man they are the best thing ever.


Breakfast has never been better.
They were the perfect thing with a cinnamon latte for our departure breakfast.
The grand finale to such a wonderful time.

There was much more too. We did some sewing. We watched the entire Little Dorrit mini series in two sittings. Those were some late nights but totally worth it. We drank tea. Brisk, Balanced, and Inspiring tea actually. Knitting happened. There was this one mexican potluck…

So many new memories for Grace and I to add to our collection.
I’m so thankful to have her as a friend. I love the fact that we can talk about the things that we both love. Like new bunt pans and butter.
Thank you, Grace, for always being there for me.

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mini Vacation.

I left town on Sunday, April 19th.
I traveled 129 miles.
I hugged my best friend.

Grace.

She is amazing. I am so blessed to have her friendship. I cannot even begin to describe what a special time we had together. I spent four nights with her and her family. It was so much fun. And really, for only four days… we got a lot accomplished!
We baked scones…cinnamon oatmeal scones.
We drank tea. Boston tea. I almost forgot to pack that.
We milked goats. Well… I guess I didn’t. Grace and Mary Beth did.
We made an amazing gourmet dinner (well worth the wait, everyone agreed.). We made stuffed chicken breasts with wild rice and a tasty sauce and a balsamic salad dressing on fresh greens. It was oh so good. I don’t like mushrooms- the chicken was stuffed with a mushroom mixture- Lewis didn’t even know there were mushrooms- It was THAT good. We recieved an A++.
We weeded the strawberry beds. Oh so many weeds.
We scoured the milk room (that was invigorating!). Ah! runaway water! Bleached knees. Don’t know why we didn’t get out the squeegee earlier. I Loved that thing.
We stayed up untill 2 o’clock in the morning. I will never forget those long late night chats. I felt like we’d both grown up since I was last there. I seemed to be looking into a picture of two young women in conversation on a crisp white bed. Whispering, smiling, laughing, and enjoying each others conversation. I liked it ever so much.
We baked the most amazing cinnamon rolls. Cream Cheese Cinnamon Rolls. Devoured in no time and enjoyed by all!
Drank more tea…
We sewed ourselves some new summer skirts. I sewed button holes on a machine for the first time. It’s so easy! And addicting. I serged for the first time too! So professional, I know.
We listened to NewWorldSon.
We laughed. A lot.
….Yes, It was a very productive week.

Coming home and getting used to my own schedule again is kinda rough. My alarm woke me up at 6 o’clock this morning… I didn’t want to hear it.

There will be pictures of my mini vacation coming soon! Thanks to Mary Beth… the official photographer of the week. *smile*

I hope you all had a good weekend!

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Hello World.

I hope your February has been good.  If it hasn’t… well, it sure wouldn’t hurt to make these…

They’re amazing.  I made the desserts for our Valentine tea this year.  This was my favourite out of the three dessert choices.  Definitely turned out the best.  I used my sugar cookie recipe and just added a little almond extract to the dough, cut out my hearts and windows and baked them.  A few hours before serving, I spread raspberry jam on the bottom cookies and dusted the top “frames” with powderd sugar.  Sandwich those lovely hearts and…

fall

in

love

with them.

It will be easy, trust me.

The valentine tea was a lot of fun, as always. We had amazing food, some really great teas, fun little crafts, good friends, and a lot of laughs. 

     There has been a lot going on this month.  With my nephew, Jason’s, birthday.  My daddy’s birthday.  Valentines day… It has seemed busy, indeed.  I have been trying to keep on doing some of the things I love between working and random events.  I haven’t been reading much, or sewing, or baking.  I was so happy I could bake up the valentine treats, they were such fun.  And I’ve been trying to read more often, when I find the time.  I’ve been reading ‘Tom Sawyer’ to Hunter and Brooklynn while at my nanny job, waiting for the bus in the morning.  It has been great.  They are really enjoying it.  I love when they ask me questions about what’s going on or what a word means. 

I’ve been digging into some sewing projects too!  I made a little button-up shirt for Jason.  I still can’t believe it turned out as well as it did.  It’s a little big for him but he’ll grow into it, right?  That was fun.  The button holes were a bit of a dilemma but they got done, eventually.  Right now I’m working on a dress.  I bought three yards of this amazing deep purple knit material one day.  I finally got up the courage to cut into it on Monday.  I’m glad I did.  The dress is almost finished, it just needs a few changes and a little touching up.  Sewing with knit material isn’t as scary as everyone makes it sound.  There are a few little tricks I would recomend knowing before making your attempt though.   Anyways, the dress is almost finished and maybe someday I’ll get a picture of it on here. For now I think I’ll go work on it and hopefully wrap up this project soon, as there are always plenty of projects on the horizon to keep me busy.

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     Today I tried to get back into the swing of creativity.  I started sewing.  I didn’t really feel like it, but I did.  And I liked it.  I’m hoping to sew up lots of little stuffed animals for the second annual ♥ Lovely Heart Project ♥ Click Here to check that out and see what it’s all about.  We could always use more volunteers.  I would like to find a simple pattern for some knit children’s toys as well.  For now I’ll just keep sewing farm animals.  The pig is my favourite.

    I have been thinking of Marble Cake lately.  Good old-fashioned marble cake.  As I imagine my great grandma would have made for some special occasion . (I wish I could have known her.)  I have contemplated marble cake,  with those vanilla and chocolate batters swirled to perfection,  all week.  Today was the day.  Yes, there is a three layer marble cake covered with fluffy chocolate frosting in the fridge.  I am looking forward to a cold glass of milk and a chilled slice of cake later tonight.  You should come share the joy with me.  Because really, food is a joy to share.

     This recipe will have to be good enough for now, friend.

Marble Cake

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 5 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoon Dutch-process cocoa powder

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously butter cake pans; set aside.(I used three 8 inch pans, two would probably work as well though.) Whisk together the cake flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until combined after each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Mix in vanilla. Add flour mixture, alternating with the buttermilk and beginning and ending with the flour. Set aside 1/3 of the batter.
  3. In a bowl, mix cocoa and 3/4 cup boiling water with a rubber spatula until smooth. Add the cocoa mixture to the reserved cake batter; stir until well combined.
  4. Spoon batters into the prepared pans in 2 layers, alternating spoonfuls of vanilla and chocolate to simulate a checkerboard. To create marbling, run a table knife (or wooden skewer) through the batters in a swirling motion.
  5. Bake, rotating the pan halfway through, until a cake tester comes out clean, about 30 minutes.  Turn out cake from pan and cool completely on wire rack. Cake can be kept in an airtight container at room temperature up to 3 days.

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A Day of Aprons.

     This last Thursday we had a handful of ladies over for a day of fun, encouragement, and instruction.  We had a lovely potluck lunch and tea… always lots of tea.  After that we got down to the subject of the day.  Aprons.  Everyone brought their own aprons to share.  It was fun to see them all.  We had a little sewing lesson given by Laurie.  She did a wonderful job.  We learned how to make three different aprons from one pair of mens jeans.  Now that, my friends, is resourceful.  And of course some wonderful, basic sewing tips as well.  I love sewing and I love aprons.  Here is a little poem someone shared about Aprons.

The History of ‘Aprons’.

I don’t think our kids know what an apron is.
The principal use of Grandma’s apron was to protect the dress underneath. Because she only had a few, it was easier to wash aprons than dresses and they used less material, but it also served as a potholder for removing hot pans from the oven.
It was wonderful for drying children’s tears, and on occasion was even used for cleaning out dirty ears.
From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven.
When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids.
When the weather was cold, Grandma wrapped it around her arms.
Those bis old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow, bent over the hot wood stove.
Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron.
From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables. After the peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.
In fall, the apron was used to bring in apples fallen from the trees.
When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.
When dinner was ready, Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved her apron, and the men knew it was time to come in for dinner.
It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace that ‘old-time apron’ that served so many purposes.

-Author Unknown

     A woman I know, once said it well –‘Aprons are a uniform.’  I love thinking of it that way.  Aprons are the uniform of the Keeper of the Home.  A homemaker, in her kitchen wears her apron while making meals for her family.  A homemaker, in her garden wears an apron while planting, weeding, and harvesting produce for her household.  A well-worn apron says ‘Welcome’ to whoever may drop in.  

     Someday, I hope to be that homemaker.

     For now, I will practice wearing my apron… and fine tuning my homemaking skills.  Dinner was late last night.  All on account of me, the green beans took longer to roast than I expected.  Yes, I have a lot to learn…

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     Life has been crazy, busy, fun.  Yesterday I started the day early.  I cleaned the house, scrubbed the floors (even though I knew they would get dirty later), washed dished, did laundry, and  nearly finished the dress I started sewing the night before.  What fun.  I, honestly, love scrubbing our kitchen floor. And of course, sewing is a favourite. After all that the real fun began…Tamales! Yes, some friends came over and we made tamales. Loads and loads of them. It was so warm in this kitchen. Not the most ideal weather to be making tamales in but….It was so much fun. I had never made them before. I officially love tamales. Homemade are just so delicious too. I ate so much last night…I couldn’t stop. And for dessert I served up some homemade frozen yogurt with fresh raspberries and blueberries on top. I’ve had fun trying out the whole frozen yogurt thing. Creamy, cold, refreshing, and sweet goodness. It is so nice on these amazingly hot days. It melts very fast though…

     There is more excitement to come.  Tonight the family is going out to dinner for My sister, Alyssas’, birthday.  Italian food.  Joy.  (I think it is a tad tragic that I love good food so much.)  Tomorrow will be an adventure.  I’ll be off to the zoo with a handful of little kiddos.  And I hear we are to break a record and most likely hit 100 degrees.  I might melt but I am very excited.  I haven’t been to the zoo in so many years. 

     Hurrah for summer fun!

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