Thursday, October 25, 2007

This week's sewing

I have been happily sewing this week. I made 4 polka dot place mats, the fabric was from the $1 a bag full rummage sale.
Recovered 4 sofa pillows with thrift store fabric.
Table cloth and pillows from thrift store fabrics.
I recently moved this table in to the living room in front of the fireplace and for now, I really like it there.

Apron for a gift in November.

I also made 8 criss cross coasters in browns for Jimmy but forgot to take a picture of them before he left.

The strip piece quilt I started a few weeks ago has been getting lots of attention, I think it is up to 25 completed squares.

Such sweet compliments from you all! I am blushing!

Heidi, my mother crochets lots and she gave me 3 large bubble-gum pink doilies. I am always switching them around.

Juliean, I would love to share a cup a tea with you too. And all of you sweet readers.

I think blog-world is so nice, especially for us homemakers as we share our homes and appreciate other's homes and the works of their hands.

Shiny sinks

You may think posting my sink is weird but if you have ever read the Flylady, you know she is a stickler of clean, shiny sinks.
My sink is white porcelian and takes a lot of scrubbing to keep it clean.
Jeff installed the brushed nickel faucets about 2 years ago. The spout on the left is for liquid dish soap, very handy!
I posted mine as a sticky post to Juliean at
She has a very sweet blog and she is currently living in Southern California near all the fires.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Things that made me happy this week!

Jeff has been updating our computer and changing files around. He found this old picture of our children. I think they are 4,6 and 7 years old this summer. (Yes, they were born really close together) I have very fond memories of when my children were young. They smiled most all the time, played together, were usually happy, polite and funny, and cute too.

After being in the shop for almost 2 1/2 weeks, I got my sewing machine back yesterday. The bill was $65, more than I was expecting, but it works good as new again. I sewed 3 more quilt squares last night and have another one started.
I made these for our evening snack and for Jeff's lunch tomorrow. If you like chocolate and coconut as much as we do, you will love this recipe too. The recipe is from Everyday Food, a show I watched on PBS. The recipe calls for very basic ingredients - eggs, butter, sugar, flour, cocoa, coconut and vanilla. Everything can be mixed with just a spoon. The recipe says to line the pan the pan with foil but I have baked them in plain Pyrex and stoneware, both worked perfectly.
Jeff planted this little magnolia tree in our front yard about a year ago. It was barely a stick with a few leaves on it. He bought it at Atwoods on clearance for $15. We do not have green-thumbs or much gardening experience so I did not have much hope for it. But it surprised us by living through our unusually cold winter and blooming in the spring. And it is blooming again! It has 1 bloom already bloomed and wilting, 1 bloom that will probably open tomorrow and 8 more little buds that will open soon.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Easy and yummy weekend breakfast

This is a very easy Bisquick recipe that I have been baking for years. We enjoyed them for our breakfast yesterday morning. It is one of Jeff and Nina's favorites. They taste almost as special as going to a bakery for breakfast. I like them because the ingredients are all low cost and items most people that cook have on hand.
This batch is filled with apple butter, plum jam and apricot preserves.
The recipe says to use milk or heavy cream. I have used both and think milk is best.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Shocking laundry soap discovery

I just refilled my laundry soap jar and the new box of soap came with a scoop. I also discovered this scoop had markings on it to measure out the correct amount. It is marked for small, medium and large size loads.

If you just use one scoop full ( like I am sure most people do, they assume one scoop = one load) you would be using way too much.

Most of our laundry loads are medium sized so I need less than 1/2 a scoop for those loads.

I used a marker to highlight the correct sizes on my scoop. This new box of soap should last a really long time!

Homemade dog treats

I got an email yesterday from HGTV about 50 things you could make for your pet. I am sure our pet Theo did not want a dog dress or catnip fortune cookie but this peanut butter doggie cookie recipe did sound like a nice treat.,1801,HGTV_3153_5508341,00.html

This is a simple recipe, mostly whole wheat flour, oatmeal, peanut butter and canned beef broth.

Before I baked them, I talked to Nina. Remember how I said she likes the deluxe version of everything? Nina baked dog cookies for her doberman a while back and her versions included being dipped in white chocolate!

I just thought it was so funny because it really illustrated how Nina and I are so different.
We both bake treats for our pets but my dog cookies are the simplest recipe I have ever seen and Nina decorates her dog cookies!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Fall at our front door

The fall items displayed inside and the cooler weather have really inspired me to do some more fall things. So I put a few things out by our front door. The leaf garland was purchased at a thrift store and I have always used in the house but I think it looks really good over this curved window. I hope to add a big pumpkin or 2 the next time I go shopping.
Theo our dog is such a good sport! But he only sits out front when I am taking his picture.
Other fall doings
baked an apple pie on Saturday
made potato corn chowder for Tuesday supper
sorting recipes with Thanksgiving in mind

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Finally fall-ish

It has just started to begin feeling like Autumn weather here. I was so happy to turn off the central air a few days ago. I have a huge storage box of fall and Thanksgiving decorations but I just started off with a few of them.
This is our formal dining room. The runner is from Big Lots a few years ago. Everything in the basket is artificial and is a real assortment of finishes but I think it works well together.
I found coasters similar to these for sale in Country Living magazine for $8 each. My motto is always "don't buy it, make it yourself" Once I started making them, I got a little carried away. I think I made about 3 dozen of them 3 years ago. I scatter them all around our home and gave away lots to friends.
They were very easy to make. I just drew a maple leaf pattern. (think the Canadian flag, we don't have maple trees in Oklahoma) For each coaster, I cut out 2 from different fall-colored felt, then machined sewed around the edged and added some veins.

Rummage sale finds :)

A church in my town has a big rummage sale twice a year. On Thursday, the items are marked with individual prices. On Friday, they pass out brown paper sacks and everything is $1 a sack full. I spent $5, got 4 sacks and a full length mirror and hat box.
I have been going to these sales for years. Nina remembers her first pair of real designer jeans came from this sale, I think she was in 7th grade.
I should of taken pictures of everything but only took this one of my favorite purchase, a big stash of fabric. Most of it is cotton, perfect for quilts. And I love the aqua polka dots, it is 3 long pieces, about 20 inches wide. I plan on using it for place mats for our breakfast nook.
Now if my sewing machine would ever get fixed.....It has been 11 days and I called about it this morning but it is still not ready.
some of the other rummage sale purchases
dress pants for Jeff and a top for me
play clothes for my great-neices
Pampered Chef ice shave -like new!
Easter and Thanksgiving decorations
craft magazines
tennis ball and frisbees for Theo
crystal candy dish
paper doilies

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

3 nights of budget suppers

On the first night, we had enchiladas made with seasoned taco meat from the freezer and home made enchilada sauce, a big green salad and coconut macaroons.
Country Living Coconut Macaroons
2 1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoon flour
2 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Toss coconut, sugar, and flour together in a large bowl and set aside.
Whisk egg whites, vanilla extract, and salt together to soft peaks and stir in the coconut mixture.
Spread heaping tablespoonfuls of the batter into 2-inch circle shapes 1 inch apart on a lightly greased baking pan. You may need to press the together into a nice shape and so they will hold together.
Bake until macaroons begin to brown around the edges -- about 12 minutes. I got 14 nice sized cookies from one recipe.

On the second night we had Salmon patties, fried potatoes made with leftovers from Sunday's baked potatoes, cole slaw, apple crisp and iced tea.
On the third night we had taco soup made with the last of the ground beef from the enchiladas, brownies made a little bit healthier by using whole wheat flower, 1/2 sugar and 1/2 Splenda and substituting apple sauce for half of the butter.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007


My DD Nina has just started her own blog, Nina is a great girl and a very special daughter. In some ways we are very similar, like our love of homemaking, wearing the same outfits at the same time without knowing the other one is going to, buying the same books, talking the same.
But in other ways we are really different, I tend to like things simple and Nina likes lots of bells, and whistles and frills. So I guess we usually balance each other out.
Nina took this picture of the 2 of us. She says self-photography is one of her best talents. I agree that she is really good at it, you cannot even tell her left arm is holding up the camera and taking our picture.

Welcome to Blog-World, little girl!

Quilt progress

As of 10/25/2007 , 25 squares completed.

This quilt is really fun to sew. I have finished 6 blocks and have a 7th one almost done but the tension on my sewing machine decided to stop locking the stiches. I cleaned all the dust out and tried to adjust it but could not get it to sew right, so for now, the sewing has stopped while the machine is in the shop getting a tune up.
It has been about 2 years since I had it serviced so I guess it was just time. Hopefully, I can get it Saturday at the latest.