Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Skill Builder Sampler FINISHED

Back September/October I decided to divide my skill builder sampler blocks into two lap quilts for my parents' November birthdays.  I actually put 3 solid fabric blocks in each front and then put 4 of the SBS blocks on each back.  (and of course I didn't take a picture of the backs. But I did remember to snap pictures of the fronts with my phone.)

I am really happy with how they came out and looked once I got them quilted and bound.  

The fronts:

Friday, February 15, 2013

Food Day Friday: My favorite granola

Husband bought a HUGE box of rolled oats at the end of the summer with the idea of using it in our smoothies. Well, that's great.  But it was the end of the summer, getting colder and we don't drink smoothies much when it's cold.  COFFEE.  COFFEE in our veins.  So for months, the Quaker Oat Man has been in my pantry taking up lots of space in with his bulk sized packaging.  Husband suggested we make granola.  Oats, honey and raisins, he thought.  Easy.

Well, I start googling recipes and it was a little more involved than just oats, honey and raisins.  But not much. Most of the recipes are the same except for give or take an ingredient or two.  So, I decided to base our recipe on Alton Brown's.  Seriously, I can not think of an Alton Brown recipe we've ever tried and not liked.  ever.  Actually, our smoothie recipe started off based on his also.

Anyway, here's the recipe for our current favorite snack and the reason I have more space in my pantry.

What you need:
3 cups of oats (not instant)
1/2 cup shredded coconut
3 tbl light brown sugar
1/2 tea cinnamon
1/4 tea salt

1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup veg oil (I use coconut oil now)
1 tea vanilla (I use 1/2 tea vanilla and 1/2 tea almond extract)

1/2 cup dried fruit (I use crasins)
1/2 cup nuts (I use almond slivers that I pretoast)

What you do: 
heat oven to 300 and plan on using the middle rack

combine oats, coconut, sugar, cinnamon and salt.

in a separate bowl combine honey, oil and vanilla until mixed completely.  then combine wet and dry. (It'll be a sticky mess at first.  Once the honey warms up in the oven, stirring will be much easier)

Place in large sheet pan and bake for 15 minutes, stirring halfway.  continue baking at 5 minute intervals (stirring in between) until oats and coconut brown.

And it's going to smell amazing.

Remove from oven, add fruit and nuts and continue stirring at intervals until cool.  Store in air tight container at room temperature.

What you get:


the artsy fartsy view

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

WIP: Daughter's Friendship Quilt

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

I've been busy the last couple of weeks turning Daughter's room from a toddler room to a bigger girl's room. Out with the toddler bed and all the lady bug stuff from waaaay back when she was in a crib.  And on to a twin bed, a night stand, a vanity with a stool and a chest of drawers. I was incredibly fortunate that my mom told me I could have all my old furniture for Daughter.  


That was great to hear, especially after I spent a couple of days pricing furniture. WOWZA.

Ok, well, the title of this blog isn't "Daughter's New Room" so on to the main event.  The quilt for her new bed.

Thanks to my new purchase, The Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt, I had great inspiration.  I decided to do an entire quilt of Block 39: Friendship.  But seriously, those blocks are like 6.5 inches finished.  There was no way I was going to make an entire twin sized quilt out of 6.5 inch blocks.  So I enlarged the templates and PRESTO: 11.5 blocks.  Much easier.  

I've spent hours cutting and sewing and sewing and sewing and sewing and this is where I am now:

the top row is completely put together and the rest is pieced.
I used 12 different fabrics. I based the color scheme on 3 fabrics.  If something matched those 3 fabrics, they were in!

the top left and both bottom fabrics are the 3 main matchers. (FINALLY , I found a use for the bird and fern fabric that makes me happy!)
The pink polka dots fabric is actually the new "theme" of the room.  I made her valances, bed skirt and dollhouse cover out of it.  And I'm planning on putting a border of it around the quilt and two yards of it on the back.   I haven't decided on the entire back, quilting or binding yet ...

The pink loving girl is in love with her new room and hopefully I'll have made some progress for a bigger reveal next week! 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

"PLEASE stop taking pictures of the television"

Daughter got a camera for Christmas.  And she loves it.  She takes pictures of anything.  ANYTHING.  But her favorite thing to take pictures of ... the television.  Seriously,  The television.

In an attempt to broaden her horizons, the two of us took a trip to the Birmingham Botanical Gardens and the Birmingham Zoo ... armed with nothing but our water bottles and cameras.  She must have taken over 100 pictures at the Gardens but by the time we got to the zoo the picture fun was over.  It was the first time ever it's just been the two of us alone at the zoo.  And she took full advantage of getting to go where ever she wanted for how long she wanted.  No time for pictures.

Here's a few of our favorite pictures:

She took this shot with her camera after she saw me take it with mine.

She's still trying to learn all the camera settings.  She has macro down pat.

"Mom, take a picture of me taking a picture of you."  Sure.

"Try  to take a picture so you can see the bridge's reflection in the water."
"Sure, Mom.  That's easy."

at the zoo.  climbing ant hills.