Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tasty Tuesday!

Not only do I love to quilt, but I love to cook.  As a little girl, I used to sit on the counter by the Sunbeam Mixer, and watch mom whip up something great.  I learned a lot by just watching her.  I don't remember if she ever gave my sister and me any kind of formal cooking instructions.  I don't think she did.....she didn't really have patience for that kind of thing.  But, luckily, we learned by watching and doing.  My sister had to make dinner everyday during the summers, but being the youngest, I never had to!!  When I was a bit older, mom was gone a lot.  Her parents were older and sick more often, so she would go and help them out.  I was in charge of feeding my dad and big brother.  One meal that I remember cooking for them was fried chicken with gravy.  I was 12!!  Dear Dad told me the dinner was GREAT, but in reality, the chicken wasn't done and the gravy was lumpy!  From that day on, my chicken has always been done and my gravy doesn't have even one lump in it!! 

When SIS and I are together, we quilt AND cook.  SIS is a great cook and I love getting new recipes from her.

Today I thought I would share a few recipes with you.  Two I made for Thanksgiving and one I made tonight.  I made the Mexican Lasagna tonight.  It is a new recipe that I have never made before.  It was pretty good and my hubby said it was good too, so I will make it again.

***A note to all you empty nesters like me....I always divide my casseroles into two pans.  One we have now and one I freeze for later.  The Mexican Lasagna I put into two 9 X 9 inch pans.  I put the dish together, but do not cook one.  I put the sour cream mixture into a baggie and the Monterrey Jack cheese into another baggie and put it in the large baggie that the pan went into.  I labeled it and into the freezer it went, waiting for another day when I don't feel like "cooking".

Mexican Lasagna

Mexican Lasagna and Jackie's Crescent Rolls
1 package uncooked lasagna noodles                          2 1/2 c. mild chili salsa
1 can refried beans                                                      2 c. sour cream
1 pound cooked ground beef                                       3/4 c. green onion, sliced
2 tablespoons Italian seasoning                                    1 c. Monterrey Jack cheese
2 1/2 c. water                                                              1/2 c. black olives

1.  Noodles
2.  Refried beans mixed with ground beef and Italian seasoning
3.  Water mixed with salsa
4.  Sour cream mixed with green onion and black olives
5.  Monterrey Jack Cheese

4 of #1
1/2 of #2
4 of #1
1/2 of #2
4 of # 1
#3 over all

Cover and bake at 350 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.  Spoon #4 over top and cook another 1/2 hour.  Add #5 and bake another 5 minutes.
Makes a 9 X 13 inch pan.

                                                   Jackie's Crescent Rolls

1 package dry yeast                                                 1/2 c. oleo, melted
1 c. milk, slightly warmed                                         1 teaspoon salt
1/2 c. sugar                                                              4 c. flour
2 eggs, well beaten

Mix first 3 ingredients.  Let stand 1/2 hour, covered.  Add eggs, oleo and salt.  Gradually add 4 cups flour, mixing well after each addition.  (Dough will be sticky)  Cover and let stand 8 hours or overnight in a warm place.  In the morning, divide dough into 2 parts.  Roll into shape of a circle, about 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick.  Cut into pie shape pieces (I use a rolling pizza cutter) and roll up starting from the large end.  Each circle should make 12 rolls.  Let stand to rise 1-2 hours.  Bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes.
Makes 24 rolls. 

***I make these every year at Thanksgiving and Christmas.  These are so easy to make that you must try them.  Everyone will be impressed that you made homemade rolls!

Pumpkin Roll

Beat 3 eggs for 5 minutes.  Gradually add 1 c. sugar.  Add 2/3 c. canned pumpkin, 3/4 c. flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, 2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon nutmeg, 1 teaspoon ginger, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.  Mix together.  Line a jelly roll pan with waxed paper and grease the waxed paper.  Spread the pumpkin batter on top of this.  Sprinkle with 1 c. chopped pecans (optional....my kids don't like nuts!).  Bake 15 minutes at 375 degrees.  Sprinkle powdered sugar on top of a tea towel and turn baked (right out of the oven) cake onto the towel, removing waxed paper at once and roll up as a jelly roll and let cool.  Be sure to roll the cake with the towel with it.  When completely cool, unroll and spread with the following:

1 c. powdered sugar
8 ounce cream cheese
4 tablespoon oleo
1 teaspoon vanilla

Re-roll (without the towel).  Place on a rectangular glass plate and cover with foil.  Chill in refrigerator.  It is much better if made a day before.

***This is so good and RICH!  My kids and hubby ask for it every year at Thanksgiving.



Monday, November 29, 2010

One Thing, One Week Challenge

I got my challenge done for this week.  And, it is now at it's new home....my daughter's!  My challenge was to quilt, bind and make a label for an advent calendar.  The calendar is for my granddaughter.  My daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter were here for Thanksgiving, so I really, really wanted to get it done before they headed home to Colorado.

This was a kit and wasn't hard, but I just couldn't get too excited about it.  I am so glad to have had the One Thing, One Week Challenge since it really made me get it done.  I know that my granddaughter will enjoy and treasure it for a long, long time!  And isn't that why we make things, so that others will enjoy and treasure them?


Thursday, November 25, 2010

An Attitude of Gratitude

About 9 months ago a pharmacy tech where I get my prescriptions asked me if I was a quilter. She had heard that I was and she wanted to show me a pattern she would like made out of her deceased husbands shirts. They loved Hawaii and these were his special shirts he wore when they went for visits. I went to her house to see the pattern and what I thought was to see if the pattern would work with the shirts that she had. I totally anticipated being a resource for her and helping her find someone to make her quilt. I showed excitement for her plan. With tears in her eyes she said that she missed him so much and that she was wondering if I would make the quilt that she could use to cuddle with on snowy Colorado nights. I very tactfully said I really don't make quilts for others. I am too busy making quilts for my family and friends. I know it sounds a little selfish now!! I did tell her I would think about it. (I was thinking about it and the pattern was origami little shirts sewn to a block with sashing around the block. NOT my kind of quilt nor did it sound like fun.....I sew for therapy and for fun!! HA!)

I mentioned the quilt to friends and they said, "Don't do it! It isn't worth the time and money you get paid." I mentioned it to my kids and they said, "Oh, Mom, that was so nice she asked you, you should do it out of the goodness of your heart. Poor lady is probably so lonely. How can you say no?" (They don't quilt and know how long it takes to make quilts.) Of course I asked my sister. She said she had done that once and would not do it again. It is really hard to get into a quilt like that and there are usually deadlines! Oh, such wise counsel but I did decide to make it for her anyway. I didn't set any guidelines, amounts to be paid, time line, etc. After spending at least 200 hours on it I wish I would have. The quilt is beautiful and I know it will be a blessing to her and it will make her Christmas a very special one. I thought I would wrap it and give it to her in a week or two. I still need to make a label. I did find that the blessing was mine to receive over the past 9 months even though I did complained a bit.

Individual shirt squares!!

Me with the finished quilt

Ya know......life is full of surprises when they hit. We just got a not so good diagnosis for my precious grandson, my husband's brother just passed away 15 minutes ago from melanoma, we have friends who need prayers, etc. but I am so thankful for people who have hearts with an attitude of gratitude. I am thankful for my friends and my wonderful family to share the joys and sorrows of life. I am thankful for blessings of new life (in June) and for God's love and especially his son who died to give us eternal life!! And yes dear sister, you are there at the top of the list!!!

Happy Thanksgiving!!
Luv ya, Gigi

Monday, November 22, 2010


Natalia over at Piece N Quilt is having a little Thankful link-up party, so I wanted to join in and give you my top 5 things I am thankful for:

                                      5.  My fantastic hobby...QUILTING.

4.    My sister, who is my best friend and best quilt buddy.

3.  My 3 great kids, son-in-law, and granddaughter, who always make me laugh and who have brought me more joy than I ever thought was possible!

2.  My husband who has stood by me through thick and thin for the past 32 years.

                           1.  All of God's Blessings and Freedoms in my Life!

                                What are you Thankful For? 

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Friday Night Sew In

Last night was the first Friday Night Sew In for me!  The FNSI is the brainchild of Handmade by Heidi.  (See her link below!)  Since I am still in Colorado at my daughter's house, I only brought my wall hanging to hand quilt.  So, that is what I worked on last night.

I really do like to hand quilt, so it is a nice thing to bring along with me.  The lighting isn't very good here, so my SIL got me his "spotlight" to use........

I know....it looks super silly (it's OK to laugh, my DH always does!), but it works great!!  Here is a close-up of the hand quilting.....

I am now working in the border doing my loopty-loop.  I didn't realize how time consuming this design would be!

I just had to include this picture of my SIL and me.   He is a silly guy!!  But he is also a wonderful SIL!

Next week for the FNSI, I will be back home.  I will have company for Thanksgiving, but don't worry, I will find plenty of time to sew. 


Friday, November 19, 2010

That Girl..........That Quilt Along

Yes, my sister talked me into joining this Quilt Along and it has been sooooo fun. We talk while we are sewing, we discuss fabric, and we totally enjoyed it together. We are now waiting for the instructions on finishing up the quilt and quilting it!! She is behind now but she has a good excuse. She has been babysitting her Granddaughter and having a great time, I might add!!!

I love it as projects start to finish up and you can see what it is going to look like. My quilt is for my grandson who lives halfway across the country from me. I see him about every 3 - 4 months!! Kinda a sad deal wouldn't you say? He and his family are coming for Christmas. I am so excited. I have already made a quilt for his big brother, his cousin and his "AunTy". This Quilt Along came at just the right time!!

Chaining the squares together.

My blocks with both borders on them.

My precious Grandson who will receive this quilt!!

My squares all put together!

I am planning on putting Minki on the back to make it really soft and fun for him to snuggle with. I love it and I love him! Thanks you That Girl for having this Quilt Along!

Luv ya, Jodi

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

WIP Wednesday


I joined the Works In Progress Wednesday group at freshlypieced.  I always have lots and lots of Works In Progress, so I thought this would be a good way to inspire me!  Plus, I just like to join groups (LOL) and I love looking at what other quilters are working on.

Since I am in Colorado visiting my daughter and son-in-law, I didn't bring much to work on.  But, I did bring my "Memories of Mom" quilt that I have shown on this blog before.  I am still hand quilting it, but I almost have the center done.  In the border, I am going to hand quilt it in a loopty-loop pattern.  This quilt has been staring at me for the past few years, so I really need to get it done and up on the wall so I can stare at IT!

The center girls are colored using crayons and then embroidered.  It was a great take-along project.

I really struggled with whether or not to post today.  My sister wrote a cute post last night about her precious granddaughter, Maren.  So, read on down the blog to see what fun the two of them had yesterday.  My Sis is so lucky to have Maren live so close to her!!


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Some days just don't happen like you plan!!

I was planning on sewing all day today. We were given our directions for the Layer Cake Quilt Along by Moose on the Porch Quilts. I couldn't wait to get started. I was looking forward, you know, to one of those days that you don't put on make-up, you wear your most comfortable clothes, and you hibernate in your sewing room. Nothing happened like I had planned........... but an even better day was about to take place for me and I loved every minute of it.

Maren, my granddaughter came over to play, spend time with me, play some more, read books, play, etc. You name it, we did it!!! We even sewed together! Sewing isn't new to Maren as her mom is very talented and creative in her crafts, sewing, decorating, and writing! Go on over and check out her blog oh write.

Back to Maren..... I did work on my quilt square and Maren sat at my feet and cut my fabric scraps from the trash can. Every time she would cut them in half, she would raise her hands and cheer! Oh, she does everything with gusto. Life is good in Maren's world.

We went to lunch with Papa and enjoyed looking at the fish in the aquarium, seeing different looking ceiling fans, and eating yummy macaroni and cheese!! (That is her favorite.) When we got home she went down for her nap and I ran straight for my sewing room to sew!! I finished my LCQA square and worked on a few of my other projects. (More about my projects at another time!) My son was coming soon to get Maren and I had promised that I would let her play in my bathtub so after 3 hours of napping I had to wake her up. I guess I really wore her out with all of our activities!!

Isn't she precious!!

I watched her play in the bubble bath and make beards on her face with the bubbles. She loves the water. We got her jammies on, hair combed, teeth brushed and she was all ready to go home. You know, I had the best day and I think Maren did too!!

Luv ya, Gigi

Monday, November 15, 2010

Friday Night Sew-in!

I joined the Friday Night Sew-in tonight started by Heide over at homemadebyheidi.blogspot.com and Bobbi at craftyvegasmom.blogspot.com!  What a great idea.  I have always loved sewing with other women!  So, every Friday night (well Almost every Friday night) you will find me either at my machine sewing or in my chair working on some hand work.  It will be fun to know that there are a lot of other quilters out there working on their projects right along with me!  So, hop over to Heidi and Bobbi's blogs and sign up to join in the fun.

Aaaaa, I Would ask my Sister.....but she has given me a hard time lately of getting her into new quilting adventures, i.e. Quilt A Longs!!  So, my mouth is zipped.  If you read this Dear Sister....feel free to join.  But....NO pressure from me!!
                                                       Handmade by Heidi

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Moms and Daughters

As I mentioned in the last blog, I am in Colorado.  First I went to my sister's house for a night where we sewed and just had a great time.  Then yesterday I came to the Denver area where my daughter and son-in-law live.  They have a 4 month old little girl who is just precious to me.  So I just have to share a photo of her!  Parker is such a happy little girl!
Parker Elyse Dodson

While I am here, my daughter and I will be working on a few things for her Etsy store.

Appliqued Baby Onesies
My daughter designs the appliques, cuts them out and irons them onto baby onesies and tee shirts.  Then I get them and I sew around the pieces (she doesn't sew, but wants to!).  Carisa (my daughter) and I make a great team.  As of this coming Thursday, she is becoming a stay at home mom and she can't wait!  During her "free" time, Carisa is getting her Etsy store up and running and hopes to get her photography business going again.  (She took time off from it when she was pregnant.)  Carisa also wants to start designing patterns.  I am so proud of the things she is doing and what a great mom she has become!   And, I am so thankful for the wonderful relationship that Carisa and I have.

I am also working on a WIP while I am here.   I started the wall quilt several years ago.  I am hand quilting it.  I love the little quilt, but other more important projects have found their way to my sewing room, so it got put on the bottom of the list.

Memories of Mom
Pieced using 30's fabrics
I started this quilt when my mom first found out that she had cancer.  She was in the hospital for a week and while I was there with her, I began the embroidery.  I worked on it off and on for the next year or so, and then finished the embroidery right before she passed away.  The quilt is called "Memories of Mom" because of all the chores that the sunbonnet girl is doing.....washing, ironing, cooking and mom's favorite thing......shopping!  I can't wait to get the quilt done and hang it in my sewing room.  It will always remind me of my mom!


Friday, November 12, 2010

Drum Roll Please...

Jodi and I are once again together in Colorado! WooHoo!! I drove out here today and we have been having a great time this evening, quilting and catching up. We also drew a name for our very first give away!

Jodi drawing a name...........

And the winner is.......
Congratulations!!!  Here is what you won!!!

A mug rug made by Jodi, a mug with hot chocolate and some stir sticks!  We hope you will enjoy your prize. 
Stay tuned.....Jodi and I will be having a give away everytime we are together!  You never know when that will be!
Thank you to all of you who left us a comment.  We just love to read them.
---Jackie and Jodi

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Pearl and a Give Away!

In our family, we have a habit of naming objects.  Such as, our dad's first car (a model T??) he named Mable Hooffenagle.  Then he insisted that my sister name one of her dolls Mable Hooffenagle.  LOL!  Over the years growing up, our cars had different names like Old Yellow, Big Blue, etc.  I was never into naming my things....I don't think my dolls even had names!  But that all changed when my sister and I bought these beauties!!

Circa 1958
Our maternal grandmother's name was Minnie and her sister's name was Mamie!  (Aren't those cool names?)  So, when we bought our Singers, my sister named hers Minnie and I named mine Mamie.  We were told that these two sisters were very close, that they both sewed, and that they were both quilters.  (Our mom sewed but did NOT quilt!)

Back to the story.....

Circa 2003
Meet Pearl!!!  Isn't she lovely?  Pearl is a very happy lady these days because she just got home from the beauty shop/doctors office.  You see, Pearl had a good cleaning and now she is purring and humming.  Oh what a beautiful sound that is!  I just love Pearl and I have to admit, she maybe my favorite, but don't tell the others!  (I have 5 sewing machines!)  Pearl was a surprise 25th wedding anniversary gift from my DH.  That was 7 years ago and she is still going strong.  Why the name Pearl?  Well, when I was thinking about a name, Minnie Pearl came to mind, so Pearl stuck.

I'm so glad she is home safe and sound with me.  She and I will be spending a lot of time together the next few weeks!

Have you named your sewing machine(s)?  I would love to hear what some of the names are since I still have 2 other machines to name!!!

Also I wanted to send a shout out and a reminder to you all to comment on our blog!  We are having a give away and will announce the winner on Friday.  For all the details, go to the post below and read what you have to do.  See the little  pieces of fabric on Pearl?  They may have something to do with the give away, so leave us a comment about what you are thankful for!!  This is our very first give away and we are so excited!!  Spread the word!

Now, I'm off to visit with Pearl!  She and I have some catching up to do.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Trying to keep up with Sis!!

After our Friday night date is over, yes we still date every Friday night, the weekend begins with anticipation and enthusiasm. Of what you may ask.....it is uninterrupted sewing time. My husband usually plays golf, works in the yard, or works on the "Honey DO List!" I usually have no commitments on Saturday until dinner time and if we possibly have evening plans. Fun, fun time for me hibernating in my sewing room!

I worked hard completing my quilt alongs and blocks for my various bees. I definitely can't have my sister getting ahead of me. HA! First on my list was to finish and post my Alabama Spinner Block for the Layer Cake Quilt Along. Gene Black designed it for our quilt along. Check out his blog.

Next I moved on to our Charm Square Quilt along. I had everything cut out from last week's assignment so I was all ready to take off. That is exactly what I did as I chained an inner and outer border around the squares in my charm pack. It really didn't take too long and I am all set for this week's directions. I think we are cutting our squares wonky. Woo hoo!!

I was feeling pretty good about myself when I talked to Sis, and she had not only gotten her bee projects done, she also made a mug rug, blogged, and worked on her granddaughter's Christmas Stocking. Boy does she spur me on. HA!!!

Sunday afternoon I got busy working on my November house for my partner in the Calendar of Houses Bee. Cat lives in New Zealand. Having never been there I was struggling with what to do for her block. Not only do they NOT celebrate Thanksgiving, it is also the beginning of Spring for her. She told me they celebrate Guy Fawkes Day on Nov. 5th. which is celebrated with bonfires and fireworks. What do I do??? Cat also told me that on Nov. 6th she had 6 baby chicks hatch. This is what I made for her. This is so fun but it sure stretches my creativity!!

WELL, enough about me and all my projects! My sister is coming to town on Thursday and that is a good deal for YOU! We are having a "give away." Please leave us a comment telling us what you are thankful for during this season of the year. Our give away closes at midnight on Thursday, November 11th. We will post the winner and the prize on Friday by noon. Please pass along our "give away" to your blogging friends. You are in for a treat!!

Luv ya, Gigi

Sunday, November 7, 2010

My Little Mug Rug

Since Mug Rugs are quite the rage now, I decided to make myself one, even though I don't drink coffee or tea!!  (I WILL use it for my diet coke or hot chocolate and a cookie or two.)  I think it turned out pretty cute and honestly, I love it!  The little squares are cut 1".


Saturday, November 6, 2010

Quilt Alongs and Bees!

Well, I did it....I talked my sister into participating in TWO quilt alongs!  This is the first time for me to be in a quilt along and I am having a great time....and so is my sister!  We have had many phone and IM conversations about our fabrics for the QALs and how our progresses are going.  That is what is so great about having a sister who is your best friend AND who quilts!  We both joined the Layer Cake Quilt Along and the Charm Pack Quilt Along.

Alabama Spinner using Moda's Origins - My 1st block for Layer Cake Quilt Along.

                        I am making two quilts in the Charm Pack Quilt Along.
                      I am using charm packs from Moda - Makin Friends and Adoring.

I also joined several bees in September.     My sister told me about the bees during the summer and I kind of put her off.  I just wasn't sure if I wanted to be stressed with a time limit to have a block done.  Thankfully, I did start to look around at some of the bees on Flickr and decided that it looked like a lot of fun.

The first bee I joined was the Calendar of Houses Bee.  This bee was started by my sister and her friend, Susan.  We are to make a block each month for a different person.  The block for each month should represent that months theme, such as October was Halloween.  This is what I came up with for my month's partner, Patchwork Queen who lives in the UK.

October Block for Patchwork Queen.
The other bees I am in are Tag Square Bee, Stitch 6 Bee, and the Lovely Linen Bee.

Block for the Square Tag Bee for November.  Jo wants pink and white blocks.

Block for Stitch 6 Bee for November.  Kritta sent us her fabrics and asked us to make any block.

Being in quilting bees and quilting quilt alongs has really helped me reconnect with quilting.  I have to admit, I was in a bit of a slump.  Everything I was making seemed to be the same old, same old.  When I joined the bees and the quilt alongs, I have had to think outside the box and  my comfort zone. It is a journey that, to my surprise, I am loving!

I have enjoyed meeting new quilters through their many blogs.  I just think it is nice to read about someones day and know that they are experiencing the same things that I am.  There are so many talented and creative people out there who are willing to share their ideas with everyone. 

So, I just want to say a BIG thank you to all you quilters and bloggers out there in blogland.  You have all inspired me to be better and to stretch my limits.  I owe you all a big debt of gratitude. 

But, the biggest thank you goes to my wonderful sister who never gives up on me and who is always encouraging me.  Without you, SIS, I wouldn't be who I am today or the quilter that I am.  I love you bunches!

Jackie and Jodi on a quilting retreat in Colorado.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday #2

Cathedral Windows

Jackie's VERY 1st quilt.  Started in 1976 and never finished.  Size: 12" X 24".
Made out of muslin and gingham!
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