Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Car-Baked Chocolate Chip Cookies

Okay, I live in Austin, TX and it's been over 100 degrees here for a few weeks. I found this recipe and I just might try it! You can see the whole recipe with photos at Too funny! The photo is of cooked cookies, they don't brown in the car ;)

car cookies, finished and ready to eat
Car-Baked Chocolate Chip Cookies
Place dough on a large sheet of wax paper and roll into a log approximately 11-inches long by 2.5-inches wide. Freeze for 2-3 hours, or overnight.

When ready to bake, park your car in the sun on a 100F+ day. Slice cookies into 1/4-inch thick slices and place on parchment-lined baking sheet. Place baking sheet on car dashboard (with protective towel underneath) and bake for 2 1/2-3 hours, until done. Just put them on when you arrive at work, and by lunchtime simply open the car door to the smell of fresh, hot cookies for your co-workers!!! If you have a big dashboard (or a friend with another car), you can do two batches at once.

Why I've Never Owned a Sewing Machine

*Reposted with photos!*
People often express amazement and/or consternation that I am a total hand sewer so I thought I'd explain why.

I just love the process of creating a quilt by hand. I love feeling the fabric and slowly building up a block, then carefully ironing it. I do get frustrated on long seams, like borders, and wish I had a machine sometimes, but it's very important to me to do everything by hand.

The Heather Ross quilt i'm currently quilting exemplifies every single thing I love about quilting completely by hand. Here's why:

1) I love using designer fabric with a fine drape and hand, like Heather Ross Lightning Bugs line. If you've never felt it, you're missing out! It's like old sheets, super soft and fine. For some reason, it's just the Lightning Bugs line.
2) I love making every block different, I get bored if I have to make every block identical. I love seeing how each one turns out.

3) I love making wonky square blocks, no measuring involved! This dog block is my favorite!

4) I love quilting in the ditch so the back shows an outline of every block on the front. I just think it looks so sweet.

7) I love using fabric with lots of tiny details and figures because I really love giving even the smallest guy, who would normally be overlooked, her or his own showcase. Meet Andrew.

6) I love putting a lot of love into the quilt and looking at every detail as I go, thinking of how the baby i'm making it for might hold onto it and give it to his first born child as a memory of his own childhood. That makes me really happy thinking that.

What do you love about quilting?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

And this is just the CENTER of the top!

Ok, I forgot how big this quilt is! It's been a while since I made its twin. This is just the center of the top, I still have to put on a 3 inch border of white strips and a TWELVE-inch border of Amy Butler Wallflower in blue around that! It's a monster. I hope my sister likes it!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

We have a Winner!

Would you believe I forgot dress #6 yesterday??? My favorite one, too! Anyone know the answer to this one? The skirt is Heather Bailey Freshcut Paisley, but what is the top? I'll give a prize of their choosing to whomever names it first! Edited to say: free indeed won this little giveaway! It was City Girl by Kitty Yoshida. To tell the truth, I actually didn't know who it was :) so thanks freeindeed!

Congratulations Kathie Comfyquilter! With 14 points, you were the runaway winner of the contest! Here is the winning comment:

"Hi, this is my first visit to your blog, and I picked a good day! Happy birthday to your Mom, and your daughter is adorable, as are all of the dresses. You stumped me on Dress#1, I'm afraid, but I love the dress. Is that an original design of your mother's? I love the little cap sleeves.

Dress # 2 is Sole' Flower Stripe by Valori Wells. Dress #3 is also Sole' by VW, and Amy Butler Martini. Dress #4 is Joel Dewberry Sparrows from the Aviary line, and Amy Butler Fresh Poppies from Midwest Modern. Dress #5 is a batik, and a novelty fabric."Delete

Good job! You really know your fabrics! Here are the answers:

Dress #1 - Alexander Henry Bangle Dot
Dress #2 - Flower Stripe from the Sole collection by Valori Wells
Dress #3 - Flower Stripe by Valori Wells and Amy Butler Martini in gold
Dress #4 - Joel Dewberry Sparrows and Amy Butler Fresh Poppies
Dress #5 - The top is a batik and the bottom is Asian or a novelty
Second place went to Brown Robin with 9 points. Honorable mention to freeindeed who started from scratch trying to look these up on the internet and came in third with 8 points!

I really want to thank you all for the sweet comments about my mom and daughter and the great birthday wishes you sent our way. Thanks ya'll!

Giveaway Contest! Happy Birthday Mom!

This was my mother, Margot and me (with my baby cousin) in 1974 at age 30.

And this is my mom 35 years later! Not bad, huh? Don't you hate when your mom is cuter for her age than you are for your age??? That's okay mom, I don't hold it against you. So anyway, happy birthday! In honor of your 65th, I'm having a giveaway of pre-cut Amy Butler triangles!

You will win at least 75 triangles of EACH of four Amy Butler fabrics (I didn't count). Plus, I'm throwing in about 75 slightly larger triangles in various shades of white on white. You could make a heck of a cute table runner or baby quilt, especially if you add more of your own white. You could make something great, like this or this. The 375 triangles i'm giving away will make at least 187 squares at 2 1/2 inches square when sewn together, so a 2 inch finished size. The fabrics are from this quilt and this quilt. Shhhh, don't tell anyone, but i'm also going to throw in a special surprise of the winner's choosing! Could be a vintage feedsack, could be fat quarters, could be a soft toy, no one knows!

I present - the Cavalcade of Dresses!!! Here are the rules: This is a contest for fabric lovers. You must name as many of the fabrics and designers used in the below dresses as you can. My mother made all of the below dresses for Gigi, so it's a tribute to her work! I will not approve any comments with guesses in them until the contest is over so no one can see your answers. On Saturday at noon I will look over the comments and count how many fabrics each person got right, then select a winner from the group with the highest number correct. Want extra entries? If you become a follower, add me to your google reader, or add me to the side of your blog as a clickable link, I will give you two extra correct points for each! Just comment to let me know. So even if you aren't a fabric expert you can at least get a few points there, plus you can probably get dress #5. Ready? Go!

Ok, dress #1. What's the name of the fabric and the designer? 2 points. (Click any of these photos to enlarge.)

Supercute dress #2 - What's the name of the fabric and the designer? 2 points.

Dress #3 with satin flower pocket - What are the names and designers of both fabrics? Hint, the red one is the same as the dress above! 4 points.

Dress #4 - What are the names and designers of both fabrics? 4 points.

And dress #5 - Alright, on this one I don't expect you to know the names or designers. On this one, just give me a general fabric category for each of the two. An example of a fabric category would be "30s reproductions". 2 points.

You can also tell me which one is your favorite or say happy birthday to my mom. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Ok, here's the back with white strips

Do you like this one better? The first photo shows the whole wall, but obviously its not a perfect layout so i cropped it. I have enough white to do this.