Saturday, September 26, 2009

Showing You My Stash...

Judy over at Patchwork Times - she comes up with all kinds of ideas...  Show Us Your Stash is her latest!

Frankly my stash isn't very pretty... it's mostly still all packed up in the bins I moved it in.  Right now the bins are serving as a base for my large ironing surface.  (The Engineer is making me a rolling base... more about that later.)  I didn't pick up the fabric scraps or threads - so don't look at the floor!

stash storage 001

These drawer units are a complete mess.  What I need to do is take everything out and start all over with them.  They are a hodgepodge of projects, fabric collections (florals, B&W, neutrals), various supplies, leftovers from projects, and a variety of fabrics I've just stuffed in the drawers to get it off the daybed.  I did start a few drawers for pre-cut strips of various sizes - when I re-organize I'd like to expand by either using more drawers or changing over to the larger drawers.  There are smaller bins with various scraps from previous quilts.  Behind the blue drawer stack is a built in storage closet - filled with misc. boxes of other (non-quilt) stuff that I guess I need to go through and get packed off someplace else (like the dumpster).  I moved my sewing table out of the way - so again don't look at the threads on the floor...

stash storage 002

Here is one of the two built in storage closets.  In this one I have my books, misc. projects in totes, some vintage machines still in boxes, and bolts of fabric.  Now in my defense - 5 of those bolts are for curtains - the other 9 bolts - well, lets not talk about them... OK.

stash storage 005  And of course there's all the stuff that accumulates on the day bed... left overs from 3 recent projects, fabrics for the Double Delight, a backing I'm working on, some quilt tops and books to be put away, and a travel bag of supplies I was rummaging through.  The bed was cleared off this past summer when I had company... maybe I need more company to keep this cleared off!

stash storage 006

So that's what I've got going currently.  I miss my Ikea cabinets that I used at our house in MA - but they are too tall for this studio.  I'd like to use the built in storage closets for fabric storage but will need to figure out shelves or drawers or something. 

Nine Months...

You'd think this baby would be done by now!

In January I started Bonnie Hunters Double Delight New Years Day Mystery Quilt... I started late because I wanted to see the end result before I started.

I completed the double nine patch blocks... Double Delight 012

and the 9 patch units for the Star Block.  But had only partially completed the square in a square units.

Double Delight 014

No progress since Jan. 30th when I put it all neatly away.

double delight 015


Now all the cheddar and brown units are sewn - after trimming those I'll be ready to assemble the blocks.


double delight 017

I got tired of trimming the 120 cheddar/brown units - so I shifted gears and put 5 blocks together... only 25 more to go.


Although it would be nice to get the top all together... it's not a high priority - I just want to get the blocks together so I don't risk loosing parts.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Stash Busting (Ha!) Weeks 36-38

I think I have to actually sew to have some busting going on... and that doesn't seem to be happening here during canning season.  What few postings I've had during the past month revolve around canning... and what sewing I do seems to be limited to working on samples while working at the quilt shop.

I did go out to Sauders Fabrics & Dry Goods last week during their Warehouse Sale to find backing fabric for my sister in TX.  I picked up 2 bolts - both were 15 yards - one a print at 1.95 a yard and the other a tone on tone at 2.95... my sister selected the print so I'll be adding the 15 yards of tone on tone to my count this week. 

I had to return to Sauders to pick up some oatmeal and some Clearjel to make my pie filling for canning... and another bolt of fabric came home as well.  (I knew it was a bad idea to wander around amongst the fabric)  It was something I thought would make nice curtains for one of the bedrooms - another 15 yards.

So that's 30 yards in for me... and nothing out...

I'll finish up some canning today and then make my plans to do some sewing this week... maybe next week I can report something going out!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

I need to take the batteries out...

Time is just passing too quickly...

It's already mid-September... past mid-September actually!

I went to the orchard this weekend to pick blackberries again rather than wait until next week.  Last week when I went I only picked from one side of the row of bushes and easily picked 8 pounds of berries in about an hour.  Today I picked on both sides and had to work really hard to find 6 pounds and it took me 2 hours.  I am sooo glad I didn't wait until next week. canning 9-09 007 I don't have nearly enough blackberry syrup canned and I want to make more Black-Apple-Berry Sauce... Applesauce with Blackberry puree added.  canning 9-09 015

It is a wonderful magenta color don't ya think?

Speaking of apples...

canning 9-09 008

The 2 FIVE GALLON PAILS in front came to live with me on Friday... just as I was making headway on using up the apples my neighbor Mrs. B keeps bringing over.  But every time I give one of her buckets back she has Mr. B fill it up and sends it back to me.

I'm going to use what I can and the rest will wait until my sister comes out next week.

I'm not giving Mrs. B her buckets back... ever.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

My Day in the Kitchen...

Geee Whiz my feet hurt!

Today I spent the whole day in the kitchen... not to be confused with the past 3 days where I spent only nearly all day in the kitchen.

Previously I had told you I had canned:

  • Apple Slices: 13 pint jars
  • Blackberry Syrup: 12 - 8 oz jars & 2 - 1/2 pint jars

Over the weekend I made more applesauce (and 18 cups set aside for applebutter) and Jam from the blackberry puree...

  • Black-Apple-Berry Sauce: 7 - pint jars
  • Blackberry Jam: 10 - 1/2 pint jars & 1 - 4 oz jar

Today's goal was to make apple pie filling.  Here is my kitchen table set up for work.  The slow cooker has been simmering the apple butter since yesterday morning.  You can see I'm ready to peel, cut, and soak the apples to prevent browning.  I've also mixed the filling ingredients so it is ready to cook after I've blanched the apples.

canning 9-15 007 Seems like there is a never ending need for pots and bowls and spoons and lids... the canner has to be kept ready... the red pot will be used to blanch the apples and the large bowl is keeping the apples hot...

canning 9-15 008 canning 9-15 013

Then I'll swap the red pot out and cook the filling... no cooked picture as you have to move along once this thickens up and you add the apples back in.  It all has to stay hot while you fill the jars and get them into the canner...

canning 9-15 011

Then you clean up and do it all over again with another batch... then clean up again to process the apple butter - which was done cooking.

Today's canning totals...

  • Apple Pie Filling: 14 - pint jars
  • Spicy Apple Buddah: 8 - 12 oz. jars, 7 - 1/2 pint jars, & 1 - 4 oz jar

The Spicy Apple Buddah was made from a total of 24 cups of Applesauce, sugars and spices and then cooked in my slow cooker for 2 days.

Here's today's picture of my dining room table...

canning 9-15 014

Aren't those jars of apple pie filling yummy looking?  And the PINK jars in the box to the left... that's the Black-Apple-Berry Sauce - Applesauce made with blackberry puree added.  Ooooo the blackberry puree makes it a beautiful magenta color and gives it a wonderful flavor.  I'll have to get better pictures during the day.

And yes those are more clean dish towels in the basket... I told you I use lots of towels when I'm canning.

Tomorrow I get a day off from canning... I get to go to work at the quilt shop... YaaaHoooo! 

Well then I'll stop at the grocery store and pick up the stuff I need to continue canning...

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Finer Details of Laundering $$$

After washing - lay out on a flat surface to dry...


If you put them through the dryer you will have to iron... and nobody likes to iron... even if it is money!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Fall Make-Over... and Misc. Rambling...

It's chilly.  All my windows are closed.  It's been rainy all week... at least it seems like it's been raining all week... I know for sure we got 2" of rain yesterday because several folks told me today that's what it was... oh well - 'tis the season.

To celebrate - I went over to The Cutest Blog on the Block and picked out a Fall theme background... I'm all set for the next couple months...

My daughter and her fella drove down over the holiday weekend... the visit was too short but it was sooo good to have them here.  Touristy stuff happened in Hershey & Lancaster, we wandered around and around in a Corn Maze, spent a day at the PA Renaissance Faire and at the end of each day we sat and played cards in the kitchen... wonderful weekend - wish they could come down more often.

All the class samples are hanging in the shop, the new class list is out and I've even begun teaching already...

Then of course it's also apple season...canning 9-09 003

My neighbor keeps bringing over apples.  I have already cooked up two batches of applesauce for the freezer and canned a dozen or so pints of apple slices.  Each time I return her buckets she gives them back to me full of apples... LOL  My sister will be visiting next week and will take some off my hands - until then I'll be busy.  I want to make and can apple butter and apple pie filling.  And don't mind the dogs bed... she keeps pulling her covers off and sleeps on the plastic lining of the mat... ??

Last Thursday morning I went and picked 8 pounds of blackberries before the rain started up again.  I have one batch of syrup canned and some of the puree set aside to make "Black-Appleberry Sauce" tomorrow.

canning 9-09 005

A quick shot of my dining room table tonight... blackberry syrup waiting for labels - apple slices ready for storage - calendar of my fall quilt classes - a pile of clean dish towels (I go through a bunch when I'm canning) - and a pile of quilt and canning books.

What I may lack in counter space in the kitchen - I make up for in deep window sills... which comes in handy while cleaning up after canning...canning 9-09 004

Don't pay any attention to the onion in the sink - I picked it off my pizza tonight... and no I haven't painted my kitchen yet... some day after canning season is over the walls will become yellow!  Can't remember what I picked out last year for the trim... ???  Maybe red??  I guess it will be a surprise - sure hope I still like it - what ever it is.