Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Summer Challenge

Every other week we get a box of local produce delivered to our house by Dominion Harvest.  The box also includes a dozen fresh eggs and some type of locally produced cheese.  It is sometimes a challenge to use everything in the box.  The latest box included goat cheese, which isn't hard to use but some of it ended up in  Spicy Red Wine Spaghetti...yum!  And I used the sugar snap peas in Bowties with Sugar Snaps, Lemon, and Ricotta.  I still have mustard greens and a ton of broccoli.

There was also a little lavender in the box.  I didn't want that to go to waste.  I remembered a lavender tea cake recipe that I used to make when I had lavender in the yard.

I had everything on hand except yogurt.  I really didn't want to go to the store for yogurt.  I figured that I could substitute sour cream or buttermilk...but I didn't have that either.  The cupboard and the refrigerator were pretty bare.  So I made buttermillk with milk (the last of the milk actually) and vinegar.  It works.

The cake smelled so good cooking.

And tasted so good...especially while it was still warm.

I don't think I ate the whole loaf by myself...but almost.  That is why I only bake occassionally.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Owl Girl

Owl Girl is the third pattern in the Six Months of Softies club.  The first two were primarily made with the sewing machine....which still somewhat scares me.  I just hate it when that bobbin thread gets all bunched up and even though I try to do everything right it still happens from time to time.  

This doll is made all by hand.  It looked really time-consuming but once I got started I couldn't stop so it really wasn't that bad.  I'm not happy with my overcast stitch yet but I'm working on it.  

Besides the sheer coolness of a doll with a mask, her arms and legs actually bend so that you can pose her.
And she has an owl hand puppet also.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Mentoring at Swansboro

I just finished my third year as a mentor for Meosha at Swansboro Elementary School.  I spend about an hour a week with her at school.  We sometimes do school work but usually do projects or just talk.

Monday was the last day for this school year.  A group of mentors and mentees had lunch together in the gym (it was planned for the garden but wet ground and impending storms moved us inside).  I tried to make lunch both healthy and fun.  I think I succeeded there but the food, itself, was not a huge hit.  Cute though, huh?

Gifts are discouraged but everybody kind of breaks that rule.  Since Meosha and I have spent time with a couple of sewing projects, I put together a sewing kit for her.  I may have spent $7 or $8....mostly on the scissors.  Every sewing girl needs decent embroidery scissors.

I bought the scissors, the seam ripper, the needle threader, and embroidery needles.  I can't remember where I found the little stitch book...somewhere online.  I made the needle book from this GingerMelon free pattern.  Everything else was just here.

A few easy patterns in a notebook.

A little embroidery floss.

And a bag of felt scraps.  Here's hoping for a fun summer sewing.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013


This is a repost.  While trying to post from my iPad last night I deleted this post..  Thank you Google Reader...I will miss you.

I kind of like my job...the paying one..but I dream about making dolls and softies (and cupcakes) full time.  I could probably do more of the fun stuff but then painting the bedroom or the dining room or planting flowers and tomatoes or washing windows...or just generally wasting time...seems to always get in the way.  

But recently I found this....Six Months of Softies.  It is a project started by Wendi Gratz of Shiny Happy World.  She does great softies, dolls, and embroidery and quilt patterns.  I have been following her blog for a while.  I am a sucker for something like this that will inspire me to keep going.  So I bit.  And I am glad that I did. 

The first project was Wendi's.

A great elephant...that I named Richard...and his mouse friend, Martin.  The mouse was hand-sown...which I need more practice with.  I used to be pretty good at that but years of inactivity have taken its toll.  But I am embracing the sewing machine.  This elephant went together so well..except that I wasn't paying attention to the pattern and couldn't figure out where the opening for turning was supposed to be..only a minor glitch.  I have gifted the mouse but can't bear to let this big guy go.

The second pattern is a whale...designed by Jen Gubicza of Zooguu.  I used the fleece left over from the elephant and some fabric in my stash...and his name is Jonah (duh).  This one will be hard to let go of too.

By the time this is done I will either have an extra-bedroom full of toys...;)...or I will have loads of great gifts for the children in my life...just depends on how selfish I am.