Saturday, January 31, 2009

Rag Quilt Squares, I Got 'Em

Isn't this Scottie Dog print so cute?
I put it together with the gingham and stripe flannels and the minky dots and minky hearts and also a pink wavy chenille for a new quilt kit.

I managed to empty a number of bolts today and fill about 4 plastic bins with rag quilt kit squares.
Gonna have to break down and change that blade on the rotary cutter soon though. It is getting harder and harder to cut 4 layers of flannel, and I have a new blade but I am so cheap, I am hoarding it. How silly, huh? Oh, how I am wishing for that Accucut Studio cutter this year. Of course one could buy a whole lot of rotary blades for $1675. couldn't one?

I really like this combination of colors with the "Booties and Bibs" flannel.

A new baby boy Moon and Stars kit with a star embossed minky.

Little Bug print by Debbie Mumm, this unisex kit will be fun to make!

I even managed to get them all listed in my store tonight!

No more giveaways for a while, but it sure was fun. I am going to tomorrow to pick the winners and will announce them on Sunday night. Now I am going to be looking for more carnivals to join, I am a blogging whackadoo I think.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Friendship Garden Market Bag Set!

Bloggy Giveaways Quarterly Carnival Button

This is my last and best giveaway for this bloggy giveaways carnival! And I know you are wondering "how can she do that, not 1, not 2, not 3, but 4! Four awesome giveaways in one carnival week?"

Well let me tell you. I guess I got carried away with the fun of it because this is my first carnival and I crave attention of the positive kind? That is all that I can figure out. And it has been a nice diversion from working on baby quilt kits, which is what pays the bills. But bags are so much more fun.

So here for the taking is a new market bag and wallet set that I whipped up yesterday for you. It is called "Friendship Garden" so if you are like me and dreaming of spring flowers and farmers markets this will definitely cheer you up. I hope that this bag will inspire some "spring fever" and you will want to enter to win it for yourself or a gardening friend.

I added a cute bow to tie on the top of the bag but it is removeable if you are not a bow kind of gal. Otherwise it is just a big lined A line bag with one pocket inside to keep your phone and keys handy and long padded straps. You can stuff a lot of stuff in here and carry it comfortably on your shoulder! The wallet is a quilted patchwork and it has a couple of credit card slots and a bill divider inside. It is raggy on the edges, although I am not sure that shows up so good in the pictures. But believe me when I say it is cute and totally one of a kind because I designed the pattern myself.

So all you have to do to be ready for your spring shopping is enter to win by leaving me a "spring fever" comment. And click on my blog home if you haven't entered my other giveaways. I have one on The Rainbow Creek Kitchen too. See the fine print below for additional details.

This giveaway is open to US and Canada.

Post a comment before midnight Sunday Feb. 1st 2009 to enter.

Additional entries: Follow me! Add me to your blog list or tweet this giveaway. Leave a comment to tell me you added me.

Please be sure that I have a valid email contact to notify you if you win.

Winner will also be anounced here at Up The Rainbow Creek on Monday, Feb. 2nd 2009.

Visit the bloggy giveaways carnival home for over 1400 more giveaways!

Bloggy Giveaway Carnival! Boomerang Rag Bag

Bloggy Giveaways Quarterly Carnival Button

So who'd a thought to make a rag quilted purse out of this cool retro boomerang Michael Miller print? Rainbow Creek of course! Win it and you will be the only one on your block with this one of a kind bag.

If you don't like attracting attention then you won't want to carry this bag. But if you won't mind stopping and explaining that you won this on the Bloggy Giveaways Carnival, and maybe dropping my name, then look below and enter to win.

How do I win this bag?
Leave a comment here by 12:00 am Jan. 31, 2009.
Who can win?
YOU! if you live in the US, Canada, UK, Australia
Can I enter more than once to win?
Yes, you can. Tweet my giveaway on your twitter and post the comment here for an extra entry. Or follow me on twitter or my blog and I will count you twice.
Will you notify me if I win?
Yes, if your posting id has a valid email address for me to contact you.
Winner will be announced here at Up The Rainbow Creek on Monday Feb. 1 2009

Check back for another giveaway to be posted tomorrow, and dont' forget to go back to
Bloggy Giveaways Carnival!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Bloggy Giveaway Carnival!

Bloggy Giveaways Quarterly Carnival Button

Yaay! I can't think of a better way to make friends than to give away free stuff. I guess that is what the Bloggy Giveaway Carnival is all about and there are tons of giveaway's to be had there. Or at least 1,219 counting me!

Here is what I am offering today: That's right! A cute handmade cheeky monkey grocery shopping bag.

This bag is a perfect substitute for those plastic shopping bags. In fact, it is even perfecter because it has a nice inside pocket that you can carry your checkbook, debit card, or even your phone. It has sturdy doubled handles and a cute yellow gingham check lining to make it extra strong and extra cute.

This is my first giveaway and I am so excited to give this grocery bag away that it might even come with an extra surprise gift tucked inside, just out of gratitude for you taking the time to enter my giveaway. winky, winky ;)

So, I had to make up some rules for this golden opportunity to give this bag away and here they are:

Leave a comment by 12:00 am Jan. 31, 2009.

Live in the US, Canada, UK or Australia. Really I am not picky about where I ship to as long as it is not difficult, so consider yourself in if your country does not have restrictions that would make it impossible to ship to you.

For an extra entry opportunity you can twitter this giveaway and leave me a comment with your twitter. This will give you two entries.

Follow my blog or my twitter for an additional entry.

Make sure your comment is linked to a valid email address so I can contact you if you are the winner.

That's it, 'cause that's all I can think of now.

I have two more giveaways coming on Thursday and Friday. So come back!

And don't forget to go to the Bloggy Giveaway Carnival for more giveaways!

The Big Bag Theory

Plenty of room to pack everything you need in this new Big Batik Bag with a Bow.
The pattern was kind of Amy Butler inspired, but it is really a modification of my green grocery bag pattern. I cut it bigger and kind of A line shaped. I love the bow, but it is removable or can be tied on the other side.

I got a request for a pattern for the Oasabi bag today and promised to try to get that tutorial done, in a simplified version, so I will be working on that tomorrow.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

I found this site on the Swap-Bot Blog: One Pretty Thing. Prepare to fall in love with this page! It is a daily round up of DIY tutorials with links to some oh so awesome projects. There is a kids craft section too.

I found a ton of wonderful blogs to follow on there and will be checking back often for more.

I had such a peaceful day today cutting out kits. I am determined to get every yard of my flannels and chenilles precut so I can list all my kits and then have more time for sewing bags, wallets and table runners, towels, hot pads...

Just too many projects to keep my mind going. So now back to browsing for more projects...

Friday, January 23, 2009

Show and Tell

I got this oh so cute bag made today. It is Amy Butler Daisy Chain fabric. I really like this pattern. Can't wait to do another one in the Daisy Chain in the pink/orchid colorway.

The inside is a damask that has a silver metalic in the print. Doesn't really show in the pic, but I think it is pretty. I added one large and one smaller pocket, since the pattern didn't call for any pockets. I think most people need pockets in a purse. Don't you?

The straps are not shoulder length, so I will modify those for the next one and make them longer.

I have quilt kits to get shipped tomorrow. Boo hoo. I would much rather make another purse.
I made a boo boo last week and shipped the wrong kit to a customer in Canada. Now I will have to get the right one sent tomorrow, along with another two that I sold on the bay. Anyway I felt terrible for the mistake when she explained that the weather has been so gloomy and cold and she was so looking forward to spending the weekend sewing a cute baby quilt =0(

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Bonanzle Booth Is Up

I got my Bonanzle Booth activated tonight, finally. I did have to call Patti for some help on the google checkout setup, but other than that it was pretty quick and easy. Turns out you have to have a separate google account for each site you accept google payments on. How was I to know that? And I am learning more each day about all the gadgets and widgets and RSS feeds and twitters too!

This is pretty time consuming. No wonder I don't have anything to sell, I never have time to sew any more!

But I actually did finish two little baby quilts today, and cut out a new bag, with an actual pattern, from the Amy Butler fabrics I bought yesterday at Great American Quilt Shop. I can't wait to get started sewing on that tomorrow. It is going to be so so cute. I hope. I am not used to using patterns, so will have to see how that goes.

Maybe show and tell tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Oh My Oasabi Baby

I love this Oasabi Kids print by Alexander Henry. I am going to get this listed in the morning. I made a matching baby blanket, have to bind it tomorrow. And will list it on etsy too. I picked up some so so cute Amy Butler fabs today for more bags, can't wait to get started on those.
Today was Morgan's official 3 year old birthday. Her party is on Saturday, but I went to visit her and took her a little present to open. The artwork is by Anna. She painted the anchor and drew and cut out the Sponge Bob and Gary. She is 6, and I think her artwork is just amazing!

Morgan and Carter both liked the books. We read them a couple of times.

And I picked out a special Care Bears balloon for Morgan. It says "have a Rainbow happy birthday!" She had fun playing with it all afternoon.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Look To Your Right

I am changing things up a bit here.

Started a new personal blog My cooking blog is The Rainbow Creek Kitchen. Find the links on the sidebar, just look to your right.

I got a twitter now too. Not sure why, just seemed like the thing to do since all my quilting friends were doing it. I put a feed for that on here so you can follow my every boring move it you want. Sign up so you can
tweet me.

This becomes my official crafting and business blog now. I do hope to have some new creations done to post about soon. Just that this computer stuff takes too big a chunk out of my sewing life and I am trying to get my priorities straight.

I worked on a cute new bag today, but didn't finish it because I was unhappy with the inside pocket so I ripped it out. So show and tell tomorrow.

Friday, January 16, 2009

I Love, I Love, My Valentine Bag

I started this flirty little valentine bag yesterday. It took me a little longer than expected because I changed my design a couple times along the way. I was going to do a tote bag tutorial for this one, but then decided it was a bit too complicated by the time I got it done.

Do you love it!!?

Hope it will steal someone's heart. I listed it in my etsy store tonight.

I also listed this cute puppy dog and denim bag that I made before Christmas and didn't sell.

The little Noah's Ark Bible tote bag was started over a year ago. I ran out of lime green bobbin thread and put it aside until I had time to wind a bobbin. ha ha! All it needed was topstitching on the straps, so I finally got around to that today!

That isn't too bad for one day. Still have all that flannel to cut for quilt kits so I will be a busy girl tomorrow.
I signed up for twitter today! If you know anything about twitter, clue me in.
I also plan to send my personal blog to another site this weekend so I can keep Up The Rainbow Creek updated with my newest creative work. Will post a link here when I get RainbowCreek @ Home up and blogging.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Lunch Sack Recipe Book- A Quickie Tutorial

Time for a quickie show and tell. These brown lunch sack scrapbooks are fun to make and I did this one on the cheap with some of those little $1 scrap packs from Joann's and a set of vellum stickers from the dollar store. This one is a recipe book, which would make a great shower gift with recipes from all the attendees. Or you could do a cute "Girls Nite Out" album for everyone.

The How To: First you take 3-4 brown lunch bags and fold in half. Fold each bag in half and stack them, don't fold them together. It doesn't really matter which direction the flaps are going, you will be using them for sticking little pullouts in.

Next you want to stitch your binding on the sewing machine. Use a heavy duty needle and a long stitch length. Go slow and don't force it through or you will bend your needle.

Now you can start to build your pages with coordinating papers and embellishments. For this book I used the $1 scrap packs and blue and white index cards. I cut the corners off the index cards, punched a hole and tied a gingham ribbon through to make a tag style pull out, which I tucked in the flaps.

These pages can have a recipe card glued on or a photo. I printed the recipes on plain paper to glue onto the cards.

This is a little clip that I had in my scrap box. I tied a blue gingham ribbon to it and attached it to a piece of cardstock then glued it onto the page with a recipe card clipped to it.

Another good page for a photo.

Stickers from the scrap pack spell out "A Sweet Treat" and a vellum "recipe for love" sticker.
I stitched on a cardstock binding and used a Cropodile to punch the holes. I don't think a regular hole punch would work on this many layers. But you could just glue a ribbon over the edge and make a loop for hanging if you like.


Ten Things

Ten Things I Want to Do In 2009:

Learn to hand embroider.

Learn to use my Singer embroidery machine

Go to Casa Bonita and the Denver Zoo with Missy and Morgan, Carter, Kyle, Anna and anybody else who wants to join us.

Go to the beach.

Buy an Accucut Studio Die Cut machine.

Paint the family room.

Finish at least one adult size quilt, including quilting and binding it.

Leave ebay.

Decorate the back yard with birdhouses and garden ornaments.

Have enough crafts made to do 4-5 shows.

Go to the Beach.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Sunday Evening: Random Notes

Went to visit Matty, Krissy and David yesterday. Got almost to Louviers when I remembered that I forgot my camera. We came back to get it so here is a new pic of David. He smiles and makes the cutest faces, however he doesn't do them for the camera. There are more pics over on my flickr photo album. Of course after I took the pic he went to TaTa and fell asleep, slept the rest of the time we were there. Maybe he just bores them, but no baby can ever resist taking a nap on Grandpa Fluffalump. I told him if he ever wins the lottery or by some miracle retires he should volunteer at a hospital as one of those baby rockers in the NICU. He thought that sounded great and would love to do that.

OK, here is my completely cleaned up and organized batcave. This is one of my new years resolutions to keep my studio organized. And that is really a big challenge for me. Will check back with you in a couple of months on this. I know, I am totally spoiled with all this space. I posted some before and after pics over on flickr so you can see how bad it really was.

I visited with Missy from my ebay group in her new Bonanzle booth. They have live chat from individual seller's booths. That is a pretty cool feature. I checked out the site and decided to open a booth, am in the process of setting it up but haven't activated it yet. I have heard quite a bit about Bonanzle from some of my other groups, and some sellers seem to be doing pretty well there so I guess it is worth a shot.

I am just moving very slowly toward getting back into working, maybe a little bit of winter blahs. Maybe if I would just get some new projects started I could get over the hump and start feeling creative again instead of hanging out on this computer all day!

Here's another quote from The Quotable Bitch: The problem with people who have no vices, is that, generally, you can be pretty sure that they are going to have some pretty annoying virtues. Elizabeth Taylor

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Unswap Anyone?

The fun part of doing online swaps is that you get something that is a complete surprise from someone who doesn't know you at all. The bad part about swaps is that you might get something that is a complete shock from someone who is obviously clueless.

I try, I really try, to fill out my profile so that someone who reads it will have some idea about the kinds of things I like, hobbies I enjoy, colors that make me happy. And I try to do my best to check my swap partner's profile, read their blog, look at their forum posts and get to know them so that I can hopefully bring a smile to their face when they recieve their package. That does not mean that everyone who participates actually "get's it." Sometimes you just get a swap mate who has all the best intentions and perhaps is not resourceful or creative. Someone who can't discern that a person whos fave colors are deep red, yellow and blue and likes retro and contemporary design, might not be crazy about pink, aqua, and lavender florals. Maybe they send you something they love and assume you will love it just as much. Who knows what nugget of info they found in your profile that led them to believe that this gift is the right gift for you.

I know for a fact that this happens to all swappers at some time or another, but we perservere and swap on. So I am thinking somehow there should be a way to unswap these inappropriate gifts and get them to someone who they actually belong with. Because it is not that they are such awful things, just that they were not the right things for the right person. The tricky part of this is finding that person. And also not offending the giver, who sent the item in good faith and hopes that it would please the givee.

The idea of doing a random unswap is not good, because it would most likely have the same result of the wrong gift for the wrong person. I thought of two other possibilities. First is a swap clearinghouse blog, where you can offer an item for swap and when you have a taker you just send it then you pick from the other available items. I think I saw something like this on, but I am new there and haven't learned my way around yet and don't know the rules of participation. The second idea is a round robin box of gifts where each person recieves the box and puts in one item for every item taken out, then sends it on to the next person. That one might be a little iffy, the last person could end up with their original items coming back, but it sounds kind of fun. I am not sure how or where to organize this, but I will be looking into it and taking ideas, so if you have any ideas or would like to start an unswap, leave a comment.

Friday, January 9, 2009

What are these strange things on my feet?

Look! Carter has shoes on his little feet. It was only slightly more difficult than wrestlin' an alligator. But look how cute! I mean honestly, taking a baby out shopping barefoot in January, even when it is 67 degrees can raise some eyebrows. And Carter does not believe in footwear. He does think socks are yummy chew toys, but as far as he is concerned they do not belong on the feet.

We took the kids on an outing today to get out of the house. Missy suggested we could go to Chuckie Cheese or the Children's Museum. I suggested the outlet mall. I needed a few things for some of my swaps, and it seemed like a good compromise. We were leaving the Gymboree store when we spotted these shoes on sale and Carter was sound asleep in the stroller clueless of the plot.

Once I got them on him when we got back to the house he just kept looking at his feet, "what am I going to do about this?" he was thinking.
Mogan got sick on the way down here today, so we had to change her into the Harley shirt that Anna outgrew. It is a little big on her but she thought it was pretty cool. When they got ready to go home she asked if she had to give it back. I wanted to take her picture,but she wanted me to chase her.

Carter had to think about whether or not he was going to show me that he knows how to walk.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Retro Roosters Are Back!

I saw a discussion about rooster theme kitchens the other day and almost commented on the cool retro rooster canister sets I have stashed away.

So what did I find on my most recent trip to the fabric store? These cute retro rooster prints, which I couldn't resist.

So I played around today with this child's apron pattern, so cute, what little girl wouldn't want a rooster apron with a red checkered flounce?

And the fabric journal cover. Keep your recipe's and cooking notes handy in the kitchen here.
This pattern is so quick and easy, I think I will be making a lot more of these.

I tried one yesterday out of some heavier decorator fabric and really liked the way it turned out. I think I will try some in batiks and then there are the retro Boho fabrics that would be great too.

Then I did a little rag quilted table centerpiece mat and mug rug set.

These rooster prints were so much fun I almost went and dug out my canister sets.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Technology Challenged R Us

There are very few people who know less about computers than me. Unfortunately I am married to one of them.

Mr. Rainbow Creek was a truck driver for 30 years until he landed this cushy job as manager of a package delivery depot. Well, cushy if you consider working 24/7 for a minimally respectable salary cushy. That is where the fun began. That job requires a little bit of computer skills, like sending and recieving emails, a little excel, downloading scan reports, and mapping routes.

Starting with the emails, we had troubles. He used to call me... and I am not lying about this! you can ask The Tattood Mama, she was here and actually witnessed ask me to get into his email on his laptop because he accidentally emailed a very important document to himself instead of his office email. ROTFL I actually had to go to his office one day and prove to him that he could open his email from there. He finally got that I think. Then one day I told him that he could just google something, and he actually said to me ... I am not lying! he said this..."I don't even have google on that POS computer at the office." I just looked at him and said, "you are scaring me."

Now a few days ago I said something about his computer "issues" and he said that he is actually getting "pretty good" at it. Nice. No more frantic phone calls to ask for help.

Today, he tried to install the 2009 version of Streets and Trips, which he uses every day. The first thing it did of course is uninstall 2008. And of course he called me to report that it was not working and he could not find the little arrow thingy to select the pushpins. I told him I was pretty sure there was an arrow thingy somewhere and he would just have to find. And he said absolutely there was no arrow thingy, he looked everywhere and the whole thing was different and he could not use it. I told him that since I did not have that program I didn't see how I could help him unless he wanted to bring it home for me to look at. He decided to uninstall it and reinstall it for some reason, and then he argued that if he installed it in the program files folder he would not be able to find it so he wanted to install it somewhere where he could find it. I continued to tell him, "you know I can't really see your computer screen, so I don't think I can help you unless you want to bring it home so I can see it." (I had actually just set up a wholesale account with a fabric supplier and was browsing the fabric selection and kind of only heard half of what he said. But I am sure that would have made no difference in whether or not I was able to help him.) The only advice I could give him besides bring it home was to try right clicking on the area and see if there was an option to select his pushpins. No, there was not. I told him he would have to bring it home and I would look for the arrow thingy. bye bye, love ya.

3 minutes later the phone rings. "I found it!" Great. He said he would bring it home and show me how it works 'cause he couldn't explain it. So he brought it home and installed it on his laptop and showed me "see, you have to right click here and drag this and that arrow thing makes a box to select the pushpins." Oh, right click, huh? glad you figured that out. I guess he is getting pretty good at this.

Now I am thinking I might call him some day when I am having trouble making a French Seam on one of my bags and try to describe that problem to him and see if he has time to help me figure it out. Just for laughs.
It was back to work day for me. The hardest part was figuring out that I sold 5 quilt kits, and who to ship them to. At first I thought I sold 3 then found out one person ordered two, then when I went to print the shipping labels I discovered another one that I had not known about. That got me scrambling to get another one cut out and packed up before the 4:45 deadline to make the run to the PO. But I made it easily with 7 minutes to spare :) I think there is a lesson here somewhere about what I need to do to improve my business plan, but if it wasn't for the stress of mismanagement I might bore myself to death.

After I got that done I was back to the fun stuff, working on swaps. I am sure that the internet was invented just so a bunch of women could go out and spend time and money buying gifts for perfect strangers for absolutely no reason. That makes perfect sense to me. But seeing that I have a lot more time than money it seems like a good idea to make something special for my swap buddies. I found this cute fabric journal project at and made one tonight for one of my swap partners. It came out really cute and the composition book was only 92 cents at wally's, plus a few dollars for fabric and ribbon! I will post a pic once I get the ribbon sewed on for the tie. I am out of brick red thread. Imagine that of all colors to be out of!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Mug Cake: We Tried It

I finally got too curious and had to try the Chocolate Mug Cake Recipe. It worked just fine. I would defnitely suggest using the Xtra large size mug. It rose all the way to the top but did not go over the top. Then when I got it out of the microwave it shrunk back down.
Tasting Notes: This mug cake makes enough to serve two people easily. I would say that it needs a little work on the texture and the chocolateyness. But I like the idea of the novelty of mixing up a warm dessert to serve after dinner. And if you have kids this would be fun to do together with them for a bedtime snack. If you use the large mug you could add the ingredients and let them stir it up, and they will like watching it rise in the microwave while it cooks. A little canned frosting would be fun for them to add too. I would split it in half.

I have a few ideas about improving this recipe. I plan to try it again with some melted bittersweet chocolate and butter in place of the cocoa and oil. I may have to play around with it a bit, but will definitely let you know how it works.

bloggidy blog blog

That is kind of like "yada yada yada" in the blogosphere I guess. I spent the day reading blogs and and checking out blog rolls. Gonna get this figured out soon. My new food blog is now named The Rainbow Creek Kitchen. I discovered that my CMHS swap buddy, A Cowboy's Wife, is a pro blogger and got a wealth of information from her sites. So I am psyched about the possibilties of networking and making some money at this.

I found some really awesome penny rugs at
KM Primitives Penny Rugs. I ordered a set of the busy bee's mug mats from Karen, how cute are those! I love her site and checked out her tour of her hometown, lots of pretty pictures of some cool looking places.

At some point today I discovered that I had gotten some money in my bank account from google checkout that I was not aware of where it came from. Tracked it down to 3 quilt kit orders I had, but missed the emails for them somehow. YIKES! I guess tomorrow will be back to work for me.

I always feel bad when I post without any pictures. It just seems so boring. I think I will try to do the
project365 this year. Make that 364, I didn't take a picture today. It is kind of hard to find interesting subjects to photograph when you work at home and don't see people for days on end. But the effort itself might make it interesting. I bought a couple books today. We ventured off to Barnes and Noble on our way to Wally's for toothpaste.

So here is quote for you from The Quotable Bitch: I envy paranoids; they actually feel people are paying attention to them. Susan Sontag

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Another Chocolate Cake Recipe

I have seen this posted on a few different forums and people swear it works. Give it a try and let me know! If it does you can drive people crazy at work making the break room smell like chocolate cake!


4 tablespoons cake flour (that's plain flour, not self-raising)
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons baking cocoa
1 egg
3 tablespoons milk
3 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons chocolate chips (optional)
a small splash of vanilla essence
1 coffee mug
Put dry ingredients in mug, and mix well.
Add the egg and mix thoroughly.
Pour in the milk and oil and mix well.
Add the chocolate chips (if using) and vanilla essence, and mix again.
Microwave for 3 minutes at 1000 watts. The cakewill rise over the top of the mug, but don't be alarmed! Allow to cool a little, and tip out onto a plate if desired. EAT!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Vacationland in the Batcave

Well who'd a thought that when you work at home that you might need a vacation even if you don't go anywhere? I am thoroughly enjoying my time off. Usually when I say I am taking a break it is to spend time on new quilt kits work on listings etc. So I guess that is still work. But this break I am actually spending time doing some just for fun stuff and have put the quilt kits and baby fabrics completely out of my mind. I have been to Joann's twice and not even looked at the flannels! I also have been working on my projects without turning on the TV or the computer to check emails and print shipping labels.

Here is my first mini "penny rug" that I finally finished tonight. It was a learning experience anyway. I am planning on taking out the blanket stitching on the outside edge and putting a backing on it since I found out that it needs one. Maybe I will do a little quilting motif in the center too.

I went to my favorite LQS, Fabric Expressions, today and went gaga over the wool and the gorgeous sample penny rugs and wall hangings they have. And stocked up on a pile of goodies to play with. I also bought a pattern for a Baltimore Penny Rug. I think it will take me about 20 years to finish it if I ever do, but I loved the motifs and might just use some of the pattern for other projects.

I got some spring colors in the wool felt and a few FQs of homespuns, these will be fun! Then I went to visit Ruth, she left her pictures here on Christmas eve and I said I would bring them to her, but I really just wanted to visit and talk about crafts. She gave me a wool felt rug hooking kit that she got in Paducah years ago. She was working on it while she was at her booth then she never worked on it again. We dug through some magazines and finally found some instruction for how to finish it. It looks like it will be pretty, so I might give that a try too.

I am still going to have to do some research to figure out if the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA)that goes into effect on 2/10/09 is going to prevent me from selling baby quilt kits. I know for sure that finished quilts will be affected unless they pass an exemption for handmade cottage industries. I saw that ebay is having a listing sale this month so I guess I will have to end my vacation soon and get some baby things listed before they become illegal.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Hello 2009!

We made it all the way through our New Years Eve dinner and popped the cork on the champagne just in time for the countdown. For dessert I did this molten chocolate lava cake. I would highly recommend this recipe, it was so easy and turned out perfect. We paired it with the cherry wine from Carlson Vinyard we picked up on our western slope wine tasting adventure. It would have worked out better if I had used bittersweet chocolate instead of dark in the cakes, but I forgot to pick up chocolate and had to get by with what I had on hand. I found several variations of the recipe by Jean-Georges Vongerichten, the originator of this cake, but I liked this one because it makes two servings and seemed just right for the occasion.

The recipe:
Melt 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate with 4 Tbl butter in microwave, about 1 min. Stir until smooth and set aside to cool.
Beat one egg plus one egg yolk with 2 Tbl sugar until thick and pale yellow
Beat in 1 Tbl flour and a pinch of salt
Stir in the chocolate mixture
Pour into 2 buttered and floured 6 oz ramekins, bake at 450 degrees for 12 minutes. Let stand for 1 minute before plating. Sprinkle with a dusting of powdered sugar.


The tree is going to have to go today, it is so dry. I will miss it, the kids decorating made it my most special Christmas tree ever. Anna's leapord bear will go back to the playroom. Bye Bye tree!
And these vintage Santa's are some of my favorites. I always look forward to seeing them when I open the Christmas boxes each year. Bye Bye for now to all my Santas.
Hello 2009!

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