I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Friday, August 31, 2012

Farmer's Market August's End

Hi! Oh the delights of outdoor marketing in late August! Do you enjoy the farmer's market like I do?

I suppose a big part if the fun--and challenge---of going to the farmer's market is being open minded, getting creative with what you find when you get there....

I went on Wednesday [yikes no parking! ]...went back later...my list was corn and squash, pickle cukes, berries for new cobbler recipe.

But no.
No Corn?
Instead I found the tiniest reddest sweetest grape tomatoes....

Of course we ate them  ''as is''...but I also bought fresh ravioli with mushroom/ ricotta filling. And more ricotta...

Tonight I threw together a fast and delicious dinner:
in a large saute pan I put olive oil, 1/2 sweet onion, cut in thin strips, minced garlic. Cooked for about 6 minutes, added the little tomatoes...plus red wine, sugar, pepper, lemon pepper, tarragon, basil. I cooked all that on High til it caramelized. Boiled the rav' for 4 minutes, drained, added to big fry pan, tossed gently with the tomato sauce. Sprinkle with parm, dot with fresh  ricotta. Yum! yum-yum-yum.

Watched Project Runway and enjoyed the savory fresh food.

For the weekend, I got this new cheese...a fresh cream cheese with pistachios.

"Cow's milk" sounds odd, doesn't it?

And from Bread Alone, Cranberry/oat/ whole grain rolls. I'll slice them and serve with the cheese spread.

I also succumbed to a tiny apple tart too since I didn't find berries...the guy gave me two freebie squares of apricot cloufouti too...Sometimes it's good to be a late-bird!

No pickle cukes though. Here's my pickles so far....

bread and butter/ sweet pickles

the kids love the little oldfashioned Weck jars

Oddly the dill mix [from Ball] has an additive [?] to keep the pickles crisp. My kids didn't like it, they kept saying the pickles weren't ''done yet''. No more crisper stuff for us, I guess....

tarragon dills

btw What are those squash like little green soccer balls? And what the heck does one do with pattypan squash? [cute, cute, so cute...but weird.]



gone to the beach

Monday, August 27, 2012

Completing Summer


Hi! One of my internet friends recently asked me if I ever get tired of the beach.

[maybe she is tired of my beach posts!? lol]...and I had to think about it. But really I don't.

I think part of the reason is that I make sure I bring plenty of things to entertain myself. When my kids were very small I usually drew or painted in my nature journals...not as demanding, not as much prep time needed, as handquilting or applique.
And that taught me to really see the beach and all its details, waves, shells, creatures, birds, grasses....

I yearned to be a professional painter...but was not good enough.

In the past couple years I've been quilting at the beach. The light is of course, without compare. Move over, fancy sewing light gadget!

Here are my Porch blocks for August:
Two simple blocks [the basket will have the quilt's completion date, later....]:

And this guy! I LOVED how this looked when I cut it and set the pieces out to audition them before sewing. Isn't it cool, a huge sunflower. I though Maybe an entire quilt? But OMG, all those points to meet at the center! Once is more than enough.

I finished both of these small quilts, binding and all!
Pink Lemonade, from Humble Quilts 2012 quiltalong.

Pink Lemonade

back of Pink Lemonade

And the Beach Baby quilt. Probably I'll hold onto it and list it next spring for a summer baby? I plan to offer to applique the baby's name...it was designed for the name to be pieced in and I think needs it?

It came out much better than I thought. And better than this photo....
Thank you, Mel! For making me not toss it out!

And my Kitty in the hollyhocks got her bluebird!

Here's Stripey, the feral daddy cat. Kitty the mama cat is the black cat on the quilt....

And this is a substitute section for The Porch quilt. I was tired of baskets and did this crock instead. My mom's beloved Steamboat Springs Colorado crock....Yes, it's very crooked! That's what happens when you sew in a 40 mph gale. I'll fix! Really...

And more beach...and a few birds...



...............gone to the beach...

all pix except sewing tote taken yesterday, Sunday August 26.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Quilt "Finds"

Hi! I wanted to show you! Last week when I was hunting for the hollyhock mini quilts I found a few other fun quilts to share....

I have a big blue Shaker 2-drawer blanket chest in my bedroom. My daddy made it for me....it's supposed to hold my clothes but you know, I'm much more into my junk and quilts than clothes---so the drawers actually hold things like my large  antique Staffordshire turkey platters, layered under winter nightgowns and quilt tops etc. Multitasking!

Anyway the hollyhock quilts were in the bottom drawer, under the sepia tureens, lol. And under them I found...

Another of my old small quilts! This one I designed myself. My friend "B" at that time yearned for an Early American cross-stitched school girl's sampler and got me interested too. I'm not great at cross-stitch so I made a little quilt!

Later, I realized both of us really wanted a true antique, a big bucks early 1800s sampler. That never fit my budget but my mom gave me this version, made by a great grandma...

Swiss or German sampler "Berlinwork"?

Note the doggy! [above left]. And a bird...roses, maybe hollyhocks? It is wool, not silk, and more like needlepoint in style. But I still treasure it. The family story is that it was embroidered on the ship on the way to America. But no one came at that time, that we know of...a mystery.

So I stuck this little quilt away with the other little quilts. It's kinda cute, huh?  It has my trademark scrappy binding and the tiny sawtooths I love...all those years ago. Stuffed work ladybug and bumblebee too. (Mr Sunshine/ flag/ watermelon/ heart / sunflower...still favorite motifs)....

And underneath everything was a neat old muslin and gingham apron [for etsy?]...and this interesting quilt top:

I bought it maybe ten years ago from my quilt dealer friend. He was so happy to find a Hearts pattern for me.

I pulled out ( or he gave me) the tiny blue calico to add a border.

 Black and white check binding?

But I never quilted it or had it quilted. It got set aside, lost in the hectic pace of life at that time. And now I  like either simpler quilts or deep-toned, odd colored quilts [cheddar and/or faded blues].

Now that I again have a wonderful machine quilter I took this out to think about. Should I quilt it? Sell it? Or just fold it away again for someday...?

PS Those hollyhocks would make a great full sized quilt, wouldn't they!?

traditional Mountain Mist "Hollyhocks"
I *love* the chrome yellow ground!
And the blue and black sashing and borders

More vintage hollyhock patterns: here and  Mountain Mist Hollyhocks c. 1934 here


gone to the beach.....