Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Pumpkin Bread

Here's one of my husband's favorite quick breads:  Pumpkin Bread!

pumpkin bread

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Combine the following into a bowl and mix until smooth:

1.5 cups granulated sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
2 large eggs
1/2 cup canola oil

Set aside.

In another bowl, whisk together:

1 3/4 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 tsp. nutmeg

Combine the ingredients of both bowls, folding the flour mixture into the wet ingredients, making sure not to over mix the batter.

Pour into a pre-greased 9"x5" loaf pan and bake for 60 - 70 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center is clean.  Let sit for 10 min.  Enjoy!!

This recipe is adapted from Williams-Sonoma Muffins Cookbook.

Monday, May 23, 2011

I wish I had these to play with when I was a kid

play food

Seriously, don't you wish you had play food as cute as this when you were a kid??

play food, shopping

I made these cute little felt foods for a friend of mine (and her soon to be two-year-old triplets).  Yikes!  I can't imagine having three two-year-olds running around the house.

play food, back from the store

The food is made from felt and includes a banana, tomato, cheese, baguette, carrot, potato, corn-on-the-cob and two cinnamon rolls.  The patterns can be found from Bugga Bugs.  They are super simple and easy to make (although there is quite a bit of hand sewing involved.)

I can't decide what I like more the corn-on-the-cob

play food, close up 1

or the potato or cinnamon rolls.

play food, close up 2

Which one is your favorite??

Friday, May 20, 2011

Black and White Challenge

Black and White Challenge, view 1

At my very first Minneapolis Modern Quilt Meeting (back in February), I learned about a challenge they were having.  Everyone brought ten pieces of black and white fabric (from two prints) (each 3" x 20").  We each kept two of our own pieces and exchanged the rest.  The challenge was open to any project, you just had to use black, white, and only one other solid color.

Black and White Challenge, view 3

The big reveal was last night and most made beautiful quilts or pillows.  Since I"m still pretty new to quilting (and I had limited time to devote to this challenge).  I made this little dress for Gwyneth.  It's a fairly simple design and I just sort of winged it. 

Black and White Challenge, view 2

The skirt is a bubble style skirt, made from the black and white fabric strips.

Black and White Challenge, view 4

It's sewn onto a pre-made t-shirt and a simple sash is tied around the waist.

Black and White Challenge, view 5

She loved the bubble skirt!  (and pushing her belly out in the photos, "like Santa")

Black and White Challenge, view 6

Tutorial coming soon . . . . . .

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Fighting a Never Ending War

I'm fighting a war . . . with dandelions.

Connor picking dandelions

I think they're winning.  But I won't give up!  I've enlisted help.  I'm paying Connor a penny a flower.  If the flowers are gone - no new plants right??  He's picked 700++ so far.  Yay!  Gwyneth has picked about 45.  Connor is learning the value of earning money from hard work and how to count past 100 (since we count the flowers he picks together too).  We're trying to keep our lawn organic, but the dandelions are strong little buggers.  Picked up corn gluten today and I'm going to spread that out tomorrow.  (For those of you who don't know, corn gluten is a great organic way to prevent the germination of new dandelions.)  I keep mowing and mowing them down too, but they just keep coming back.  I've been digging up the plant with roots as best I can, but it seems a never ending task.  They can be quite beautiful flowers (insert gasp of great shock here), I just wish they wouldn't spread so easily.  If only the leaves looked more like grass. . . . .

OK, enough ranting.  Must include sewing time tomorrow or my sanity will be questionable.  

Friday, May 13, 2011

Ruffle Bustle Skirt

ruffled bustle skirt, view 4

Well KCWC is almost over and I haven't done a thing (until this morning at least).  Yesterday, Ashley of Lil Blue Boo posted a free pattern for a Ruffle Bustle Skirt as part of Grograin's month of free patterns.  And it seemed like the perfect thing to make.

ruffled bustle skirt, view 6

I rounded up some left-over knits and started cutting away.

ruffled bustle skirt, view 7

I chose to make the bustle slightly different from Ashley's instructions.  I just used five long rectangles of fabric (about 4.5" high) and gathered them and added it to the back.  I also let the ruffle hang a bit lower than the front section of the skirt.

We went outside this morning to take a few photos.

ruffled bustle skirt, view 5

I didn't even notice she put her boots on the wrong feet until I was looking at the photos. She didn't seem to mind.

ruffled bustle skirt, view 

Gwyneth really liked the ruffled bustle in the back.  Me too (as you can tell from all the photos!)

ruffled bustle skirt, view 1

She kept dancing in it because the ruffle swayed as she danced!  She loves her dancing skirt!  Thanks Ashley for a great free pattern!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Yard-Sale Wrap Skirt

yard sale skirt, view 1

Well, I finally finished this skirt!  There's nothing terribly complicated about it - in fact it's quite simple and sewed up rather quickly, but like most other things, sewing for myself is always at the bottom of the list. 

yard sale skirt, view 2

I started this skirt over a year ago and had to set it aside for some reason or other, and I finally pulled it out to finish it!

It's the yard-sale wrap skirt from Heather Ross' book "Weekend Sewing".  The fabric is from the Bees and the Birds collection designed by Keri Beyer for In the Beginning Fabrics. 

yard sale skirt, view 3

Perhaps I'll finish a few more projects for myself that have been sitting around. . . . one day. 

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Fun with Dye

Hi everyone!  Yup I'm still here.  I've been under the weather the last week, so now life is finally back to normal, . . . well almost.  I just wanted to take a break from trying to catch up on the laundry (apparently the laundry gnomes went on strike while I was sick, and not much was done) and stop in to share something I did a couple weeks ago.

A couple of weeks ago, I dyed this silk tie for my husband. 


It was a plain white silk tie from Dharma Trading Co.  I used their fiber reactive dye in Caribbean Blue. Et volia! -- my husband's Easter tie!

I also threw in a silk scarf for myself in the dye bath. 

scarf, view 1

It was so much fun - I may (MAY) try some yardage next . . . .


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