Wow, I have been blogging for one year! Although it has been quarterly for the latter part of the year due to the craziness that is life.
Christmas was a blast, and I celebrated a milestone birthday in the same week. I made my nieces and nephews reading pillows over the past few months. They are 18 inch pillows with a pocket on the pillowcase and handles. They can hold books or electronics and make a comfy addition to traveling. Here is a photo:
I also made this cute Penquin pillow for my kids’ bus driver. I used a multicolor thread for quilting it. The pattern is by Elizabeth Hartman. I just love all her animal patterns.
I also made some other teacher gifts. I made these cute little mug rugs that look like coffee/cocoa cups. The block was a free pattern from the Fat Quarter Shop. I bagged them with a disposable coffee cup, some coffee and hot cocoa for a special treat.
As you can see Cinnimon the mini chonk cat approves.
I took two weeks off a Christmas from quilting to clean and organize my sewing supplies and just enjoy my family. I am ashamed to say that I was this years old when I discovered the Container Store online website. I found some very decorative storage bins to store my fabric without looking to messy. They also look great on my shelves as opposed to clear plastic containers. Here are a few shots of my sewing area aka my bedroom while it was clean. Since Christmas it has gotten only slightly messy. I plan to do a bi weekly tidy to put away fabric scraps and keep things organized.
I got a great Christmas gift. I actually bought it in October on sale and saved it for Christmas. It is a quilting frame that I can use with my own machine and kind of turn it into a long arm. It is called a Grace Cutie. I tried it out yesterday and it is awesome. I can use pantographs just like a pro long warmer. I just need to practice to get my speed and technique to make the designs cleaner on the quilts. I practiced on a quilt my daughter made for her dolls.
I finished my two block of the months just before the new year. Toes in the Sand came out beautiful and I cant wait to quilt it later this year.
The A Quilting lIfe block of the month also turned out well. I am not in love with the border fabric. I was looking for a navy floral for the border from the fabric line, but since the fabric is out of print now, I was only able to locate the red. To me it feels too loud but it will be a great picnic quilt.
New Years Dinner!! Hopping John from the Instant pot!
I cook Hopping John every year for new years. Its a Black eye pea “stew” that can be served over rice. I usually cook it on the stove in a cast iron dutch oven, but it takes hours and I really didn’t want to spend all day in the kitchen. Here is a quick recipe for it:
Instant Pot Hopping John
1 lb black eyed peas (if dried soaked for 6-8 hours in water then drained)
2 bell papers one green one another color chopped
1 medium onion chopped
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
Salt and pepper
1 quart of chicken broth4
1 smoked ham hock or a few slices of bacon
1 bay leaf
Saute up the onions, and peppers (us can use the saute function on the instant pot). Add the garlic and cook for a few more minutes. Add the peas, ham hock, bay leaf, salt, and chicken stock. If there is not enoiught stock to cover the peas add a few cups of water. Place lid on instant pot and seal valve and select the beans setting with low pressure for 60 minutes.
I hope you all had a magical holiday season. Next week I will show what I will be working on for long-term projects and some new finishes.