Tuesday 24 September 2013

A Cooking and Sewing Kind of Day

Are you sitting comfortably? No? Well this is going to be a bit of a marathon so nip off and make a cuppa, get a biscuit or a slice of cake and get settled in the comfy chair.

I did no housework yesterday except for 2 loads of washing, my time 10 minutes, job done. I walked Ben, 30 minutes and made umpteen cups of tea. Dinner was Lasagne from the freezer, 30 minutes in the oven, and a quick chopped salad.

First I sewed my strip sets together, cut and sewed 9 blocks to make 1/4 of the quilt.

Pretty aren't they      NNNNNNNNNNoooooooooooooooo. They are so wrong.

This is the pattern sheet that I did not read correctly and only a quick glance stopped me in my tracks. I only had to unpick 9 blocks instead of 36. I did the unpicking, pressed the strips again and made these up from scraps as a guide.

More haste less speed is so true, I then decided that I needed a break from sewing, I have not made cake for a while and I had 6 eggs that needed using. I also had the cake mixes that I bought from AF and decided to try some of them out.

Chocolate chip muffins, very tasty, lots of chocolate chunks but next time I will add more water. They were just a little heavy, more like buns than muffins.

Carrot Cake, I made these into cupcakes for speed and in the interest of sharing and portion control. Very spicy just how I like them, if they were for me I would add chopped walnuts or pecans. Lovely light texture and were very moreish.

Vanilla, I added a small blob of vanilla paste to these as I could not smell any in the mixture. They were light and fluffy and very tasty, and I would not change a thing except to add extra vanilla, but that is a personal preference.

I made 12 of each, 4 of each went to Neville, my neighbour. Michael had 1 of each for breakfast in the interest of Quality Control and I 'fess up to eating 1 of each during the course of the day.

The rest are wrapped and in the freezer, little sweet treats for Francesca.

During the course of this I made 2 loaves of bread, sorry no pics, I used equal parts of Rye, Wholemeal and White bread flour. When they went into the oven I poured boiling water into a tin on the bottom shelf, this kept the crust nice and soft. We will toast this bread and a hard crust turns to charcoal remarkably quickly.

Back to sewing.

Nine new blocks made and labelled to ensure that I do no more unpicking. The rest are pinned ready to sew, later this afternoon.

I have lots of help with all these straight seams, I have not introduced you to my little "Gem", Michael bought her for me three years ago just for projects like this. She has a special feature that enables me to sew when in the throes of a Sciatica attack.

Here she is, sweet little thing, much smaller than Toya and lighter too, just the job for classes and holidays. Those strips are 2 1/2" to give you an idea of her size.

The start stop button is wonderful, I press that and away she goes, no need to use the foot pedal. I use the needle down function so when I need to add more strips I press the stop start button and the needle stays down so my fabric does not slip. The reverse feature is automatic as well and the slow button is wonderful for tricky seam alignment and sewing bias binding on wavy hems and rounded corners. She has all the feet that Toya has including a walking foot and extension table but would not take anything bigger than a single bed quilt.

Reasons to be grateful.

1. Another warm, dry day, full of birdsong.

2. Ben sprawled out on the sofa with his head just touching me.

3. Francesca happy in her new position at work.

4. A day of pottering and sewing in front of me.

5. A long walk with Ben later on to get me in a decent frame of mind before work.

I did warn you that this was lengthy, I will keep it controlled tomorrow.                TTFN                      Pam 


  1. Thanks for your lovely posts and pictures. I am just beginning to think of quilting, knitting and rug hooking after a year of helping my mum through a terminal illness and now clearing out and painting her home in preparation to have kept me inspired each day and I look forward to your posts. I am sorry that I have not said this before, but sometimes had only just enough time in the morning to read your post before I took off for the day....thanks again from a smallholding on the east coast of the USA...

    1. oh Lynda, it is not an easy path to tread as I know from experience. All I can say to you is that the pain does recede and you will think and talk of your Mum with joy and laughter again. Take it one day at a time and do not try to live up to others expectations. I hope to keep you entertained in the future. I have not hooked a rug for many years but it was a regular winter occupation when I was a child. Take care. Pam


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