Some Pretty Pictures (Originally published 10/5/2011)

My daughter’s elementary school had their annual Walk-A-Thon last Saturday, Oct 1. All families were supposed to donate baked goods for the bake sale. Sounds simple right? You could even go buy a carton of cookies from the grocery store and donate that if you wanted. How complicated can it be?

If you know me at all, you already know the answer to that…because I’m CRAZY. Not certifiable, mind you, but, you know. So what did this mean for me? It meant I decided to make cake-pops. And not just one batch, mind you. Oh no! Not me! I never do anything by half measures! I baked up 4 entire cake mixes. Do you know how many cake-pops you can make out of a single cake mix? Neither do I, because that depends on how big you make them, of course! I’ve gotten 50-60 out of a single cake mix. After looking at the four crumbled, frosting-mixed batches ready to form into balls, I decided that I should probably go bigger than normal, just so that I wouldn’t have to make so damned many of them. Think double the size of the ones you can find at StarBucks. With sprinkles of course. In individual treat bags (which they barely fit in). Tied with lengths of the shooting star garland in the school colors.

I ended up with 72 cake-pops to donate. And a dozen to take to a friends Festival of Dolls get-together. And I still have an entire batch sitting in my freezer for another day. I gave up when my hands and arms started screaming at me for being such an idiot!

And of course, I forgot to take pictures. And they were gorgeous! And they were a HUGE hit! Yay!!! I’m hoping to be able to snag a couple of shots from other parents. I’ll post them and link when I can. In the meantime, here’s a pic of some cake-pops I made a while back. Imagine these about 50% bigger. And 72 of them.

But I promised you pictures…plural. And I’m a woman of my word. So here are some lovely pictures of some pettiskirts I made a couple of weeks ago.

I made this one for my niece. I actually went back in after this photo and added a purple ruffle to the under layer as well, so it’s a bit more ruffled than this. Sure hope she likes it! I did this one before I found an on-line store that sells the nylon tricot/chiffon in slit rolls in solids and animal prints. So I totally went nuts at that store. It’s not cheaper than buying the fabric, but it saves TONS of time on cutting out strips.

And when the box arrived, I made this one for my daughter! I tried a different waist band on this one, based on this tutorial, and I have to say, I’m not thrilled with it. My waist band didn’t stay flat and filled like hers did. I may give it another try before I go back to the solid elastic waist band.

Finally, I tried making some Christmas Halloween Crack Candy. I’ll gladly send some to the first person to come up with a good name for this stuff…just not Moose Munch…someone is already using that. I normally make it with almond bark at Christmas, but that’s hard to find at Halloween. So I used more of the candy melts from the cake-pops. I had to thin the candy melts for the cake-pops, and they hardened up beautifully. For some reason, the thinned candy melts didn’t harden well on the Halloween Candy. But it still tastes good! I’m very thankful that I immediately put it all into treat bags, or else it would all be in my stomach right now! I was trying to make it an orange color, but the candy melts simply wouldn’t turn orange! It comes off as sort of pinkish, depending on the light.

So that’s been the crazy at my house for the last couple of weeks. Thanks for asking! 🙂  So how have you been?

Well, It Took Long Enough! (Originally published 9/26/2011)

We’ve only been in this house since the middle of May, and I’ve FINALLY gotten my machine quilting frame up!

See those poles? Therein lies the reason. See, in Seattle, I had a 12′ long room in which to set up the frame. Those poles are 1.25″ electrical conduit poles, which come in 10′ lengths. Pretty handy. But here, it was either put the frame up in the garage, which would rob us of, you know, parking in the garage…and I understand that we’re kind of weird in that we do, actually, park our vehicles in the garage! Or put it up in the 9’x10′ room…and you need about 2′ available at one end in order to do maintenance.

Now, my first choice was to buy a new pole end kit from the frame manufacturer (containing all the bits that get pounded into the ends of the poles so that they’ll fit nicely into the slots), and then buy new poles and have them cut down to size at the store. Then I’d have TWO sets of poles (I know! Luxury!), just in case we eventually found a place with a bigger space, then I’d have the possibility of switching pole lengths if I needed/wanted to.

So I called the manufacturer and ordered a pole end kit…back at the beginning of JULY! And I waited 6 weeks…nothing. Called, and finally found out the kits were on back order, “but they were coming in that week, and should be shipped out by the end of the week!” Two more weeks and I started leaving messages…and suddenly they’re not answering calls, or voicemail, or emails. I’ve been emailing/calling/leaving voicemail for the last two months! I don’t know what’s going on, but I’m sure not getting any answers.

So I finally got fed up enough to go purchase a $30 pipe cutter (half the price of the pole end kit), and we went to work! Each pole had to be cut twice: once near the end, so that the pole end insert could be knocked out, and then once to length. Pole end inserts re-inserted. Last night and today before and after work, I put it back together!

Now to find the stitch regulator and cut the leaders down (or make new ones), and she’ll be ready to go! Good thing, too. I think I counted 8-12 tops that are waiting to be quilted!

Ready Spaghetti! (Originally published 9/23/2011)

I am sitting here, satisfyingly full from a dinner that my darling daughter cooked herself!

I love how proud she looks! She did a great job! She chopped onions and garlic.

She browned the ground beef.

She put the spaghetti in, and stirred it until it was done.

And then, she ate an entire plateful!

We found a kid’s cookbook at the Klutz sale a couple of weeks ago, and she looked through it, and decided that this was a recipe that she wanted to try. So we went through the ingredients, set a date, and off we went!

Now, you’ll grasp the enormity of this when you realize that this child will not eat the spaghetti with meat sauce that *I* make. And the recipe is the same! Only difference is that I cook the spaghetti separate from the sauce!

Ah, the wonders of getting a kid to eat something by having them cook it themselves. 🙂

Hello World!

I’m starting a new blog, that hopefully will be easier to find.

I’ve tried importing the old blog posts, but that’s a bust. I’m sure someone knows how to do it. But I’ve searched, and followed directions till I’m blue in the face, and gotten nowhere. Ain’t technology wonderful? So I’m going with the old “copy/paste”.

See ya later.