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December 31, 2014

Goodbye 2014, Hello 2015!

2014 is going out tonight, and I must say, after this last 4-6 weeks, I'm not sorry to see it go!  There's been a lot going on at work and I've been pulling 10-12 hour days since Thanksgiving.  I'm officially off until next Monday and I plan on filling it with a lot of rest, family, sewing, and relaxation.

But one of my things on my "to-do" list was to share with y'all the projects that I KNOW I'll be working on during 2015.  Some of it are things to finish, others are new projects, but all promise to be fun!  I'm hoping some of you will decide to join in.

1.  Quilt the Union Jack quilt.  Cassidy graduates in June and this is her graduation quilt.  It needs to get done.  At least the top is done, and thankfully, mom has pulled all the paper off the back for me. (Thanks Mom!)

2.  Finish the Zodiac Star quilt.  My niece was supposed to graduate in June too but she decided to graduate early in November! (brat!)  I told her I was on a different time frame so she'd have to wait for her quilt.  :)  

3.  I want to work on one of my Dear Jane quilts.  You read that right, one of them.  I'm embarassed to say how many different versions I've started!  I was discussing this with Deana of Dreamworthy Quilts and am thinking that maybe a weekly linky party so we can urge each other on with this long term project?  I'll share details as I get them finalized.

4.  Finish my Austen Family Album block of the week quilt.  I've really made great progress on this one lately.  Only 12 blocks to go.  

5.  Finish up the Quilter's Garden Swap.  This one is being hosted by Deana over at Dreamworthy Quilts and I absolutely love it!  

6.  Now the things I KNOW I'm going to start.  First up is the Snapshots QAL from the Fat Quarter Shop.  I can't see how this one can be resisted by anyone.  I love it!!!

7.  On the 20th, Fort Worth Fabric Studios will be hosting a new quilt along that was designed by Deana at Dreamworthy Quilts.  I'm super excited about it.  I love everything Deana makes and have been wanting to make one of her medallion quilts for a long time.

8.  I stumbled across a relatively new quilt along being hosted by Calico Gals.  It's called Old Friends.  You have to subscribe to their newsletter to get the info  on the blocks release, but the quilt is gorgeous.  I can't wait to get started on it.

9.  I really want to make the Super Mario quilt that Cora's is sharing for my nephew, Ryan.  It is perfect for him!

10.  So Scrappy hosts a rainbow scrap challenge every year.  This year I'm catching it right at the beginning so I'm super excited about joining in and working through my scraps.

RSC 15

I'm sure there is a lot I'm forgetting but for now, there's my list!  I really hope you join in and play along with me!!

Austen Family Album Progress

I'm amazed that I found time to work on any sewing at all this week, much less actually get 4 more blocks done.  But last night, after a long, long day at work, I was still kinda wired so I pulled out my Austen Family Album BOM and made 4 more blocks.  Here's blocks 21 and 22.

I changed up block 21 a little bit. That huge square was supposed to be a huge HST, but....it was screaming at me that it wanted to be a fish.  So block 21 is a fish! :)

Next up is blocks 23 and 24...

I love using my 1930's fabrics in this project.  They are turning out so bright and that makes me happy every time I work on it.  I only have 12 more blocks to go then I can start putting them together.  I can't wait to see it finished!!

December 29, 2014

Grand Illusion Parts 4 and 5

Busy. Yes, that's what Christmas week was, very, very busy. I really enjoyed the time with my kids(all three were home) and my family.  I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!!

That being said, I was so glad when things finally slowed down enough for me to enjoy some of this over this last weekend:

Cutting and sewing in front of the fire.  It was soooo relaxing after all the rush of the last few weeks.  I managed to get quite a bit done.  First up, clue #4 from Bonnie Hunter's Grand Illusion mystery:

Then clue #5!  All caught up again...
For Christmas, I treated myself to the awesome cubby I found at Target.  You can see that I've got my first four clues sorted in it and the bottom row are fabrics from active projects.  I've been looking for a better way to organize everything in my tiny apartment!  All of this had been living on my dresser.  So happy to have found a solution!

After that, I decided on some easy sewing.  I settled on my Austen Family Album quilt along.  I'm terribly behind as she has already finished posting the blocks.  But this weekend was a good surge ahead on that project.  

Here's block 16.  The blue is an old feedsack from my grandmother's stash.  
Here are blocks 17 & 18....

And then blocks 19 & 20...

I'm back at work this morning and will be working the long houred days for a few more weeks so I'm not sure how much sewing will be done.  But I will share as I go!!!  I hope you all are enjoying the holidays!  Come see what everyone is working on.  I'll be linking up to Patchwork Times and Quiltville today.

December 23, 2014

Orange Creamsicle Cookies

And the baking continues! Last night I started with Orange Creamsicle Cookies.  These are some of our favorites so I thought I'd share the recipe!

Orange Creamsicle Cookies Recipe:
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons orange zest (for me that was the zest of 2 oranges)
2 cups white chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  In a small bowl, combine flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
In a large bowl, cream butter and sugars until light and creamy. Beat in egg and vanilla until smooth. Gradually add flour mixture until combined. Stir in orange zest and white chocolate chips.Drop rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Do not flatten cookies; it will make them dry. Bake 8 – 10 minutes or until golden brown around edges. Do not overcook! Cookies will be plump. Cool for several minutes on cookie sheets before transferring to rack to cool completely. Store in airtight container.

Hope yall enjoy!!!


December 22, 2014

Grand Illusion Part 3

Not a lot of time for piecing this last week.  I did put the binding on two baby quilts, so I managed to have finishes!!  I'll show you those later this week.  I did get clue 3 of Bonnie Hunter's Grand Illusion finished...

I didn't get anytime to work on clue #4 but I'm off starting Wednesday for five days so have high hopes on getting it done before Friday.  No change to the design wall at all...

Linking up with Bonnie at Quiltville and with Judy at Patchwork Times.

Don't forget that we have one more day to linkup with your leader/ender projects.
A Quilting Chick


December 18, 2014

Enchanted, Inc.

I just found out that this book is on sale for .99 on Amazon right now and just HAD to share with you.  It's called Enchanted, Inc.: Enchanted Inc., Book 1.  This is the first book in a series and it is SOOO good.  I've reread it at least five times.

Here is what Amazon has to say:


Katie Chandler had always heard that New York is a weird and wonderful place, but this small-town Texas gal had no idea how weird until she moved there. Everywhere she goes, she sees something worth gawking at and Katie is afraid she’s a little too normal to make a splash in the big city. Working for an ogre of a boss doesn’t help.

Then, seemingly out of the blue, Katie gets a job offer from Magic, Spells, and Illusions, Inc., a company that tricks of the trade to the magic community. For MSI, Katie’s ordinariness is an asset. Lacking any bit of magic, she can easily spot a fake spell, catch hidden clauses in competitor’s contracts, and detect magically disguised intruders. Suddenly, average Katie is very special indeed.

She quickly learns that office politics are even more complicated when your new boss is a real ogre, and you have a crush on the sexy, shy, ultra powerful head of the R&D department, who is so busy fighting an evil competitor threatening to sell black magic on the street that he seems barely to notice Katie. Now it’s up to Katie to pull off the impossible: save the world and–hopefully–live happily ever after.

This is a really fun read.  I recommend it to anyone that I know that is a "reader."  And with the sale price, you just can't beat it.  Hope you enjoy it too!

Christmas Charm Quilt

So I finally got the binding finished on this simply sweet quilt over the weekend.  I finished the center of this a long time ago but it sat waiting for a border for a very, very long time.  I'm so glad that it's done!  It's so cute!!

I don't remember the fabric line, I'm so sorry.  It's a simple charm pack quilt, using two charm packs.  
I love the colors in this.  The binding is a fabric I picked up on a flash sale at the Fat Quarter Shop.

This little gem is now on my couch, adding a bright touch to my Christmas decorations.  
And just a quick, funny pic to wish you a Merry Christmas from Texas y'all!  Linking up with My Quilt Infatuation and Crazy Mom Quilts.

And just a reminder that our linky party is open to share your leader/ender projects!  Come see what everyone is working on!

A Quilting Chick

December 16, 2014

Steam That Seam - Block Received

I've been having quite a bit of happy mail lately. Most I'll share later this week for Sunday Stash, but this little cutie couldn't wait!  I got this Steam That Seam block from Di.  Isn't it just the cutest??


Patches and Pinwheels Progress - Leaders/Enders

When I pulled out the blocks for this post, I was surprised to see how much progress I've made.  That's the wonderful thing about leaders/enders, isn't it?  You do all of your normal sewing, but in between, you're building another, beautiful, free quilt.

So far, all of those 36-patches have been from individual squares.  The blocks I'm working on now are from strip sets.  Isn't it turning out pretty??  I can't wait to see what y'all are working on.  So here you go.  Here's our linky party for this month.  Come join in and share what you are making for your free quilt!

Linking up with Freshly Pieced and Quilt Story and A Quilting Life.


December 15, 2014

Chocolate Wafer Cookies

So part of my crazy, busy day on Saturday was to help my mom with some things in her storage unit.  We ran across a box that had a bunch of old pictures from my grandmother's house.  Nestled in with the pictures was this old cookbook!


This cookbook was left to my mom by her mom.  It was given to my grandmother by her aunt (written inscriptions inside the cover).  Don't you just love old family cookbooks like this?  With the scraps of paper stuck inside?  Full of old food labels with recipes on them, the pages falling out because it's been used and loved so much?  And I think one of my favorite things about this cookbook is that it is one of those community compiled books.  Needless to say, this cookbook didn't stay in storage.

There is an old family recipe that I've been trying to hunt down for 20 years.  I thought it had been lost forever.  But no, it's from this cookbook!  There, on page 115, Chocolate Wafer Cookies.  These were my dad's favorite cookie and I remember making them as a child and thinking I'd surprise him with them.

 Chocolate Wafer Cookies 

I'm so excited to have this recipe again.  And I wanted to share it with y'all.  So here it is, just as it appeared in this recipe book from 1946:

Chocolate Wafers

2 Cups Sugar
1 Cup Butter
2 Eggs
1/2 Cup Chocolate (cocoa powder)
2-1/2 Cups Flour
2 tsp. Baking Powder
1 Cup Pecans (I don't use them in mine)
1 tsp. Vanilla
Pinch of Salt

Sift flour, baking powder and salt.  Cream butter and sugar.  Add beaten eggs and blend well.  Then add other ingredients.  Roll into little balls and bake at 350 degrees F. about **15 minutes. 

**I don't know if ovens have just changed that much in the last 70 years but mine were done in 12 minutes.  Keep an eye out on them.  (Or a nose).  

Cassidy tried one when she got home from work yesterday and after her first bite said, "I can see why they were his favorite."  If you try them, I'd love to hear what you think.  Hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Be sure to stop back by tomorrow for our Leader/Ender linky party to see what everyone is using working on for their "free" quilt!

A Quilting Chick

Grand Illusion Part 3

What. A. Weekend.  I came home Friday and immediately started working on Christmas baking.  Did two batches of cookies and some cheesecake brownies.  Saturday was running around.  All.  Day.  Long.  By Sunday, I was starting to go through sewing withdrawals!  So I pulled out my Grand Illusion fabric and started cutting.  By bedtime, I had gotten this far...

Strip stets are done and I've started subcutting them for sewing.  For those of you not aware, these are for Bonnie Hunter's winter mystery quilt, Grand Illusion.  We are only on week 3 so there is plenty of time to join in the fun!

I finished clue #2 on Thursday night...

Since the last clue took so long, nothing has changed on my design wall.

Hope to get finished with clue #3 tonight but not going to stress if I don't.  Things are way too busy for that. 

Don't forget to stop back by tomorrow to join our Leader/Ender linky party!!!  It's so much fun to see what projects people are making for their "free" quilt!

A Quilting Chick

So what have y'all been working on?  I'm linking up with Patchwork Times and Quiltville.

December 11, 2014

Finished Clue #2

Whew! Finished! Just in the nick of time as the new clue comes out tomorrow!

That picture represents many, many hours of work on this rather simple unit in Bonnie Hunter's 2014 Winter Mystery, Grand Illusion.   The longest part was squaring everything up.  They aren't perfect by any means, but they are at a point where I'm comfortable working with them.  

Here's clue #1 and clue #2 side by side:

I seriously love this quilt so far.  This week we'll get to play with green and I'll be able to see how the colors play together.  Cassidy hasn't really gotten an idea of how this quilt will play out yet, so she hasn't been fighting me for custody.....yet!

It's not too late to join in the fun!  I hope you will all come to play!

Grand Illusion

Tonight, I hope to be able to work on more blocks for my Christmas quilt.  But works been long hours this week so I may just take a break and nap!  :)  

Don't forget to stop back next Tuesday for our Leader/Ender Linky Party and see what everyone is working on between their regular projects.

A Quilting Chick

Linking up with NTT at My Quilt Infatuation.