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bonusblue (3)

I completed the final block in the Sew Sweet Simplicity BOM, which in my case was Bonus Block 2.  It turned out to be my favorite block because of the chevrons in the patchwork and the blue fabrics I used.

Since I only had 5 bluebird embroidery patterns and needed 6, I made a duplicate of one of the blocks and used blue floss for the flowers.

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Jacquelynne posted the final instructions and the time has come for me to decide what to do with these pretty blocks.  I really don’t need another wall hanging and the embroidery patterns were of kitchen subjects, so I decided to make panel curtains for my kitchen windows.  I have a bay window with three sections and a large window over the sink.  I decided to make one-block sections for the two small bay windows and two blocks each in the larger windows.

The first step was to pin the blocks to a backing ….

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…and then do some very simple big-stitch hand quilting along with some random starbursts.

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I auditioned several different approaches to making the curtains, including using some old lace material, but decided to keep it simple and streamlined, using sashing and borders.  I just completed the curtains and the first non-snowy, bright, cheerful day that comes along, I’ll post some pictures.

This has been an interesting BOM series and you can still make your version from Jacquelynne’s web site – she doesn’t archive patterns for very long, so it‘s best to copy the free patterns and save them for when it‘s time for a new project in your sewing room.

The embroidery patterns were found here.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/29529717@N04/

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After 3 major snowfalls in one week, we were more than ready for something hearty, warm and comforting for supper.  I used ingredients and techniques from a couple of my favorite recipes to make this dish which my two daughters and I loved.

BAKED HAM, BEANS AND DUMPLINGS

2-½ cups (home-cooked or two 10 oz cans) Great Northern beans, drained lightly
½ cup cooked ham, cubed
½ cup sour cream
½ cup mayonnaise
½ cup milk
1 packet (small envelope) Goya ham seasoning (optional but adds really nice flavor)
Dash of pepper
10 oz can cream of mushroom soup, undiluted

Dumplings:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1-½ tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
3 Tblsp. Shortening (Crisco)
½ cup milk
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
Greased 9 inch baking dish

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Place drained beans and ham in the bottom of a greased 9-inch baking dish.

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In a small bowl or food processor, whisk together the sour cream, mayonnaise, milk, ham seasoning and pepper.

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Whisk in undiluted cream of mushroom soup.

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Pour soup mixture over beans and ham in baking dish.

Prepare dumplings:
In a medium bowl, mix together flour, baking powder and salt.  Cut in shortening and stir in milk.  Drop mixture by measuring tablespoon in small dollops on top of mixture in baking dish.

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Bake in preheated 400 degree F oven for approximately 20-25 minutes until dumplings are done and very light brown on top.

4-6 servings

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Refrigerated leftovers are good warmed uncovered in a 350 degree oven for about 15 minutes.  The dumplings will be crispy on top but still delicious.

Valentine Runner or Banner

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I combined some hand-embroidered squares with some paper-pieced hearts to make a runner for Valentine’s Day.  Some of the embroidery patterns were found online and I made up some of them using vintage Valentines from my collection as a source.

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The boy and girl in the top row of these squares are from a Valentine my mother received from her teacher in 1923.

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I added a sleeve to the back so I can also hang this piece.

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I like this cheerful addition to my Valentine’s Day decorations.  Hope everyone has a great Valentine’s Day.

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I’ve completed Block 4 of this series with another hand-embroidered vintage bluebird.

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I’ve decided to make the two bonus blocks to make a total of six and here is Bonus Block #1.
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I have one more Bonus Block to complete and have already finished the bluebird for it.  Now, I have to wait until the end of the month to see what finishing instructions are provided and make up my mind how I want to assemble the blocks.  It’s been an interesting series.

For free vintage embroidery patterns:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/29529717@N04/

jbwl (1)

Saturday on our way to lunch in our small town of Loveland, Ohio, my daughter and I stopped off at a thrift store sponsored by our local autism group.  My daughter spied this great McKee jadeite bowl for only  $10.  It’s a nice size serving bowl measuring 8 inches diameter by 2-1/2 inches deep.

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I have a lot of jadeite, mostly Fire King, so this was a new piece to add to the collection.  I use my jadeite as my everyday china and this bowl will get a lot of use.

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We stopped at a favorite restaurant, Paxton’s Grill, and then drove on up the road to two more antique stores in Lebanon, Ohio, but I didn’t find any more bargains.

A Blog for the Kids

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I have four children and when I turned 70, I sorted all of their childhood photos, records and ephemera into bins and binders so it would be easy for each child to have his/her own stuff when I was ready to part with it.  Now, 12 years later, in my 80s, I thought it might be nice to have the material on a blog where the family, even great-grandchildren, could see it.  Also, most of the notes I made when they were children involved more than one kid and I needed copies for all of them.  So, I started the monumental task of sorting, scanning and posting on a private blog.

I’ve completed the first baby year for each child ….

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…and now have started on the preschool and grade school years.

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This is my goal for this year – to complete posting the pictures, records and keepsakes for each child through college.   It’s time-consuming but also very pleasant to look back  and live those days over again in my mind.

havsand-bot

I wanted to dress up a grilled cheese sandwich and went around the kitchen picking up things – some good homemade raisin bread, Havarti cheese, a small amount of jam left in the jar, a tart apple, and butter.  This was definitely a welcome change from the usual cheddar cheese sandwich.

HAVARTI, APPLE AND JAM SANDWICH

For each sandwich:
1 Tblsp. butter, divided
½ Golden Delicious tart apple, sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 slices raisin bread*
1 slice Havarti cheese
1 Tblsp. jam or apple butter

In a small skillet, melt 1 tsp. butter and add apple slices.  Cook apples until light brown on each side and fork-tender.  Set aside.
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havsand-bread*My favorite raisin bread

Wipe out skillet and place on burner over medium heat.   Butter a slice of bread,  add a slice of cheese and the jam.

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Place the apple slices on top of the jam and add the remaining slice of bread, buttered side up.

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Place the sandwich in the skillet and brown on each side until cheese is melted.
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Makes one delicious sandwich.

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