Blogger’s Quilt Festival Entry #2

The Blogger’s Quilt Festival over at  Amy’s Creative Side  opens on October 24th. Once everyone links up there will be quilts of every size, style and color to see and enjoy.

October 24 – 31 – Linky’s Open & Nominate for Viewer’s Choice

November 1 – 7 – Vote for favorites in each of the categories

November 8 – Winners announced

I will enter this table runner in the hand-quilting category. Many of you may have seen it before…but we have to have a new post about our entry…a post during the week that the Festival begins.

It is based on the first 3 blocks of the Benjamin Biggs Wedding Quilt. Once I had completed those three I decided to use them as a table runner for a table that is behind my couch. I spent quite awhile hand quilting and enjoyed every minute of it.



I had it out for the summer, only put away recently when I brought out some fall decor.

This was another learning curve project :) The first block in this runner is actually my third attempt at it! The second one seemed far easier, and while I had troubles with the third, it’s just all about practice, practice, practice.

Visit The Blogger’s Quilt Festival over at  Amy’s Creative Side once it opens on the 24th and enjoy lovely quilts of all styles and sizes. I can’t wait to see some of the appliqued quilts from the ladies who are masters at it…I find them to be very inspiring. 

My other entry is in a previous post, HERE.

Blogger’s Quilt Festival Entry # 1

The Blogger’s Quilt Festival over at  Amy’s Creative Side  opens on October 24th. Once everyone links up there will be quilts of every size, style and color to see and enjoy.

October 24 – 31 – Linky’s Open & Nominate for Viewer’s Choice

November 1 – 7 – Vote for favorites in each of the categories

November 8 – Winners announced

IF YOU QUILT: the quilts can be old, as in ones that you made ages ago, but the post has to be the week of the festival. It has to be a new post. Each person can enter two quilts but they must be in separate categories.  So while there is hand-quilting in this quilt, I will enter it in the small quilt category. I will enter a hand-quilted table runner in the hand-quilting category.

This quilt is no masterpiece, and I certainly won’t vote for it, lol…but I just love this quilt. I made it last year and it is currently draped over the rocking chair in my living room. Here it is airing on the line. It is based on a Kim Diehl pattern.

snowball quilt on line

Can I love an imperfect quilt that is not a masterpiece? Of course! This was such a great learning curve quilt for me. I had not appliqued a leaf with a pointy tip since making a honey bee block for a sampler about 10 years+ prior. Whatever corner that I started the applique in first probably doesn’t have any leaves with a good pointy tip but I kept plugging away and they got better.

Next..all of the snowballs and dark background are hand-quilted, and you can barely see that! Plus the little brown adjoining areas were so hard to quilt through with all of the seams, and the quilting is almost invisible.

snowball closeup

Now, a year later, with so many quilters doing big stitch quilting with perle cotton in colors, I can look back and think that a quilt like this would have been a perfect candidate for that.

After I struggled with the applique that I was learning to do, and all of that time consuming hand quilting, I still like my decision to tie the borders with yarn, adding some color and whimsy to the quilt. What I like most of all is that by the final corner, my leaves were fairly pointy, and that led me on to further applique, which I enjoy.

Some people are naturally gifted at things…others, like me, have perseverance. Both are just fine! :)

This quilt is used…to bring cheer and brightness to my room while draped over a rocking chair, and to bring warmth on a chilly day, draped over a grandchild or two. What could be better.

My Blogger’s Quilt Festival Spring entry was about a very old quilt….HERE

I’ll be sharing at Amy’s Creative Side  when the festival opens. Join in if you have a quilt, even if it is quite ordinary like mine, or if you do not, view all of the lovely ones once the festival starts :)

sampler quilt & hand quilting progress mid-october

I made some progress this week on my sampler.

  • I was pleased with the blue and gold star block for the sampler quilt until I started to think about where to put it and then it just seemed washed out.
  • In the end I put a frame around it and that brightened things up nicely.
  • I also wondered if I could use a few of the simple little baskets that I had appliqued this summer. While one would not work at all, I thought that the others could blend in. By adding a little line of color to them on the one side I think that I was able to make them work.
  • I finished the 4th floral applique and added it in. Originally I thought that I’d put the 3rd and 4th appliques on the other side of the eagle but I couldn’t reduce the size on one of them so it landed elsewhere.

The sun is a rare thing here lately…I can see that the star block looks more like black and gold than blue and gold in this photo, taken on a dreary afternoon towards the end of the week.

sampler on line mid oct

On the left side of the sampler, I thought to run some 6 or 7 inch applique blocks up from the bottom, and then a strip next to the star. I just started the applique on the strip.

flag applique

I am combining two projects…the eagle quilt + my desire to do a sampler, yet I still want the eagle and patriotism to be a focus. ( The Eagle Quilt project link can be found HERE and it is certainly not too late to join in : )

For Slow Stitching this weekend, I have been working my way across the bottom of the basket quilt towards the last block.

hand quilting mid oct working my way along bottom

I have been using some high tech tools for marking ! :)

hi tech tools

I am not sure what is older… that ruler or the Corelle bowl.

You might also enjoy : Perogy Lasaga Recipe  or Handwork : Table Runner Finish  or  Weather & Wine  or  “How Much Piecin’ a Quilt is Like Livin’ a Life”

Sharing at: Kathy’s Quilts for Slow Sunday Stitching 

Also sharing at :  Sew Many Ways / Cozy Little House / Freemotion by the River / Savvy Southern Style

How to Ripen Green Tomatoes

Here is my experience with how to ripen green tomatoes:

We had a strong chance of a frost awhile ago, and I picked my green tomatoes. We fried some, and as to the rest, while I remember my grandfather wrapping tomatoes individually in newspaper, here is what I did.

tomatoes under newspaper

The general advice is to either wrap them individually or space them…if one starts to rot or has a fungus it won’t affect the others. I had a cardboard box, a spare dresser drawer, and a plastic container. I placed these in the basement under the front porch portion, where there is no heat and little light. These pictures were taken about a week later in the late afternoon when the light was strongest.

tomatoes pull away the newspaper

As you can see, the tomatoes were placed between several sheets of newspaper, with a nice amount of space between them, and they were ripening nicely. No rot, and this round tasted great. Just be sure to wash them and let them thoroughly dry before placing them  between the newspaper sheets.

This is the first time that I have done this and I am quite happy with the results.

You might also enjoy : Making Delicious Pickles with Little Kids  or  Handwork: Table Runner Finish  or  Me? Have fun with Spiders?   or Birds & Blooms Late August

Sharing at  : Sew Many Ways / Cozy Little House / A Stroll Thru Life

Amazing old cookbook: food photography at its worst! :)

I ran into the mission store the a week or so ago. I haven’t been there since I picked up an entire stack of old quilting magazines for a few dollars so it’s been quite awhile.

This is a good time of year to pick up children’s costumes…one year I spent a small fortune on gift costumes for Kate and Brent; brand new, purchased online. Never again. This year I was just looking for dress-up-clothes.  Three young ladies will be happy to play dress-up with my bargains.

Throw them on the porch floor and take a quick picture : )

costume bargains

I picked up a super heavy and warm cable knit sweater for myself…the kind to throw over a lighter fabric top on a cold winter day. It was a name brand, like new, for a few dollars.

But what I can’t wait to show you is this cookbook. I am happy to find old cookbooks on occasion and for .50 or 1.00 what a bargain they are. However …this was the most amazing cookbook that I’ve ever seen.

cookbook cover

This is a cookbook from 1959.

ASIDE FROM CROPPING, I am not going to manipulate the photos in any way…these are true to life taken in natural light ( on the porch floor, of course! :)

It’s hysterical ! There is a section on teaching your children to cook with you and the suggested menu for one meal was hamburgers with relish, spaghetti, and peas and carrots.

spag peas carrots pic

I don’t tablescape or do tea posts, but I have seen a few …and I am sure that you have too, if you don’t do them yourself. Keeping in mind the absolutely gorgeous ones that you may have seen online from various bloggers, or your own blog,  here’s a tea from the cookbook.


Here’s a holiday dinner…the weird green thing is a glazed ham…something done with gelatin. At this point I decided that I’d be afraid to try any recipe in this book and I sent it home with my DIL for some laughs. I just can’t imagine putting this in front of my family at Easter.

the weird ham

And then there is this one.

I know. It’s hard to believe, isn’t it.

old cookbook this is just as bad

Whatever you might photograph and put on your blog from here on in, you’ll know how good you are, and you’ll marvel that General Foods paid someone for these photos back in 1959 :)

The only photo that I found to be a bit fun, due to the kitchen setting, dishes, etc. was this one.


I hope that you enjoyed this ugly old cookbook as much as I did :) I paid 1.00…the amusement: priceless.


You might also enjoy :  A Frugal Little Quilt Retreat  or  The Garden is Thriving   or  Saving Money Even When You Have to Spend it: they don’t make ‘em like they used to

Sharing at : Savvy Southern Style

Fall Fun

My little grandson and I had an entire “fall fun” sort of day together not too long ago. After a nice long visit with my mom, we headed first to one local farm and then another.

cornstalks at simmons

simmons farm display

simmons farm display 2

  • Simmons Farm is a working farm with activities for the children as well as seasonal “Pick Your Own” produce opportunities, and there is a petting zoo and market on the farm. My first job was there…picking strawberries as a kid.
  • The Springhouse is a dairy farm with a restaurant, and they too have fall activities for the children.

brent haystacks collage

brent on slide

tractor collage

Someday when he’s a teenager I will blackmail him with this picture :

brent flower blackmail someday

Well, clearly you all have varying opinions about that!!!

pumpkins with opinions

You might also enjoy :  March: ” we are caught between two forces”  or  Shades of November & Our 1st Snowfall”   or  The Front Porch; end of May

Sharing at : Sew Many Ways / Lavender Cottage Gardening / Frugal by Choice / Cozy Little House / Savvy Southern Style

PIE: oh was she ever right about this recipe


dough in bowl

cutting apples

apples in bowl

Rolling the dough

pie slice

I haven’t baked an apple pie in ages. I decided to make the recipe that Doreen posted over at House Honeys HERE. If you go over for the recipe, a few quick notes.

I used my regular flour and cinnamon, didn’t have the caramel or dried cherries, and I doubled the recipe in regards to the pie crust and apples, but just made the 1 pie amount of streusal, which was fine…it was enough for two pies.

In regards to the crust, doubling the recipe provided me with ample dough for two lattice-topped apple pies, and two bottoms for pumpkin pies. So if you double this, plan on a third pie or something :)

I had some happy kids the day that I baked these pies :) Oh. this was a good recipe…trust me :) Next time I’ll have the caramel on hand.

Sharing at : French Country Cottage / A Stroll Thru Life

Garden Update: Columbus Day

Garden Update : Columbus Day

Sunday morning was quite chilly with a light frost…but at one point in the morning the kitchen was bathed in a golden glow. I grabbed the camera and went outdoors for a bit because the morning light was highlighting some things in my yard as well as the neighbor’s tree so beautifully.

morning light tree etc collage

moon and tree cold morning

I enjoy the sight of this majestic tree from my kitchen window each autumn. It’s not done turning…I’ll have a lovely show all week :)

A week or so ago I gathered all of the tomatoes due to a frost scare. There were quite a lot of green ones. This is just one shot of the green tomatoes that I had in the sink. I had red ones, half-ripe ones…I had tomatoes everywhere for awhile there .

green tomatoes in sink

Anyway, I put these green tomatoes between sheets of newspaper in various containers in the basement, in the coldest portion under the front porch. A few readers said this worked for them in the past,  and a few others wanted to know if it was working for me down the line.

The other day I gathered the remainder of green tomatoes and pulled everything up and put my compost pile materials over the beds. I also add sand from the children’s sandbox to the beds, and we replenish the sandbox the following year.

When I went down to see if anything was happening with the green tomatoes in the cellar, a few were starting to turn! Whether they’ll taste good or continue on I don’t know at this point but that’s my update thus far :)

There is still much beauty to enjoy here …the hydrangeas are a deeper pink than I’ve ever seen here.

Flowers and bees collage

You might also enjoy : Broccoli-Cheese Soup, Storms & Sky

Sharing at : Savvy Southern Style / Cozy Little House


Pumpkin Festival Parade

Every year my little borough has a parade and pumpkin festival. It benefits the local fire department.

On Saturday morning we went to see the Pumpkin Festival Parade, which is pretty easy to do.  I just have to walk one block up to the main street :) Friends and family meet and park here prior.

Fire engines, the local high school marching band, the American Legion and scary characters…

parade collage

There are a few floats, lots of tractors, a few horse drawn carriages, some dancing schools, old car clubs, and the unicylists are always enjoyable to see.

parade collage 2

For the little kids, what is important is that most of the parade participants throw candy.


The grand-littles were all dressed up to attend the parade. ( and we have a DIL dressed up as a mom telling her kid to hand over some of those Nerds in the collage as well :)

kids collage

The festival is held on the grounds of the American Legion, and includes many activities to ruin a grandparent’s budget, from face painting to bungee jumps, pony and train rides, etc.  This year I managed to escape all of that.

I always think of the weather when I look back over the years…some years it’s been so hot and summer-like that we have attended the festival in shorts and sleeveless shirts. Some years it has been miserable, cold and rainy. Some years this was the weekend that the first hard frost hit and killed the flowers off.

On Sunday morning, it was 38 degrees and my car was covered with frost, but the flowers all survived this one; it was quite light on the ground.

thungergia vines oct

Checking the forecast, I see that a reprieve is coming…Monday and Tuesday are to be nice and warm…they say 80 degrees for Tuesday.

You might also enjoy : Saving Money : Sewing & Craft Supplies   or   Chilly Day: Picked a Big Garden Bouquet

Sharing at : Being Frugal By Choice / Cozy Little House / A Stroll Thru Life / Sew Many Ways

Seasonal Sewing Disorder?

I am quite sure that the weather and seasons affect what I am interested in sewing. I was sitting at the sewing machine and looked up the other day and had to laugh and then grab the camera…see why? The pile of fabrics on top of the basket are echoing the fall decor, which reflects what is occurring outdoors.

fabrics by decor similar colors

  • I was working on the red & green applique in the winter after Christmas, completing 3 blocks thus far.
  • In the spring suddenly I dropped almost everything to piece a quilt of lavenders and greens and other spring-like shades for my son and DIL’s house.
  • After a summer of quilting a bright and cheery summery quilt, working on bright solids for a quilt top, and working on a few house blocks with flowers and such, suddenly here I am playing with a different variety of colors.

Where I am now :

My heart was not into that Eagle quilt. The pattern that I chose is lovely yet I caught myself saying to myself ” you have to do another applique block this week if you are going to get this all done by next July ” but I really didn’t want to anymore.

Was it because I was following an exact pattern and thus there would be no surprises? Or that I felt uncomfortable having a must-do along with some wants cropping up…such as wanting to make more of the star blocks ( I showed 3 last week ) and wanting to make a sampler quilt.

I made a few blocks for it and then as I was thinking how would I ever get everything done…I decided to use what I had for the Eagle quilt thus far ( Eagle + 3 applique blocks ) in the sampler. The colors will blend in nicely and I have another applique block ready to sew, but this way I’ll merge two projects into one, and I am more comfortable with that.

  • I cut the Eagle and 2 of the applique blocks down a bit to make this work.
  • I made two crosses & losses and one basket block with existing templates.
  • Did two little make-things-fit sections for the bottom of the star block.
  • Two more Lori Smith applique blocks will go on the other side of the Eagle.
  • After that I can just play…picking and choosing a mix of pieced and appliqued blocks in this or that size as I go along, making a jigsaw puzzle of sorts.

sampler on line

Here is the basket block and then a star block from a book that I have.  I thought it looked easy to do. It wasn’t…I am easily confused :) These need a better pressing but I figure later on…when I am ready to use them.

star and basket block on the line

Thus far I have found another eagle that I like, as an 8 inch block..I want to draw him to be just a bit bigger, perhaps for a 12 inch, but use the blue and gold color scheme that I have in that star.

As to hand-quilting, I did not do much of it this week. I got most of the white portion quilted last Sunday, and finished it one morning. I am now going back in to do the red print part…using a beige thread. That’s what I’ll do for my slow-stitching session this weekend and hopefully move on to the next block.

Meanwhile….note the center motif?

basket in hoop

I have a few old quilting stencils…here was one and the clamshells was another. I had left them sitting out on the train / activity table up in the kid’s toy room.

The little grandson that comes here before and after school came running downstairs asking what these were? I explained, and then drew a design with this one on paper. To ME, it looked as if he could color it in, then say I Love You Mom, and put a flower there or something.

To HIM, it was an ocean :) Bad photo with my iPhone but hey, this masterpiece had to be shown :) Who knew this stencil was ocean waves?!? Not this unimaginative grandma :)

quilting stencil Javis pic

 You may also enjoy : A Creative Genius and Her Cat

Joining the other slow stitchers at Kathy’s Quilts / Also sharing at Sew Many Ways / Stitch by Stitch / Freemotion by the River / Savvy Southern Style / Freshly Pieced / Sew Fresh Quilts / A Stroll Thru Life