Wednesday, March 31, 2010

My work has just begun.

Sunday was the uber successful Quilt Haiti event at Make and Mingle. I cannot express the joy we all experienced coming together, doing what we love, with loving people- many who we all met for the first time, and many quilting for the first time! Karen and I even experimented with some silk screening of gnomes and Buddha's- all hand drawn by Natalie!
I had two days before I recovered from my quilt hangover- the only remedy being, quilt, eat, quilt, eat... you know? The "old hair of the dog"....
The first 3 squares are from Charlotte Lyons, Kate Spain and Jennifer Paganelli- I wish I could remember who did all of the others. A giant kiss and thank you to everyone who participated, and especially to Natalie, without whose blueberry muffins , I would have never made it!
The finished product should be ready for viewing mid April. Details to follow!

I love my wheat grass, but horses love it too!

Lucky Tys and Lonesome Dove get the left over cuttings from the wheat grass trays. I think my husband ,Tim, spoils them... makes me love him even more!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Teacher's pets.

I have to say that my experience teaching (what limited knowledge I have to offer) has been most rewarding. We laugh the whole time, and no one ever makes a mistake! That's because I encourage imperfection. While we attempt to do our very best, we have lowered the bar. That way we all feel accomplished and in the end our projects are "perfect"! Perfectly us.
The Pillow 101 has been a huge success, and will continue on Tuesday mornings at Make and Mingle- projects to be announced. I think we will either make grocery totes or a clutch. I'm leaving it up to the class.
This Sunday is the "Quilt Haiti" workshop with Jennifer Paganelli- some of the blocks have already been mailed in- it is going to be amazing! Thank you to everyone giving their time and creativity to such a good cause. Special thanks to my dear old friends ( not that old) Patty Carroll and Creative Director at Vogue/ Butterick Patterns, James Bosco. Great job on the squares.
One of my first students, Jessica Donahue, moved away to South Carolina, but keeps me posted with her sewing projects. This "Scottie" is a downloadable pattern from Denyse Schmidt (in Sis Boom fabric). We are hoping Denyse will come and teach the Scottie class at Make and Mingle in June. She is trying to squeeze us in!
All in all, a very productive month so far- and spring has just arrived! Yippee!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Taking the High Line in NYC.

While my husbands family was visiting from Oakland we went gallery hopping in the West 20's, and then took a stroll on the High Line. An old railway that hovers over Chealsea and ends in the meat packing district (now a chic shopping area). It was inspiring to say the least. I found a few quilt ideas, a fellow crafter soaking up some rays while knitting, and we ended the evening at Apotheke, a bar in an old Pharmacy in Chinatown- worth the search, even if the drinks average $15.00 a pop! My "Lychee Three Ways" was divine as was the "Hemingway". We felt as though we had tripped into a 1920's speakeasy, complete with jazz quartet avec handsome crooner. We are pictured outside the bar with the gals of Makezine (Nancy, Katie and Glenda), and my sister in law Amy and niece Sophie. The "Makers" are here with founder, dad Dale Dougherty, preparing for the first ever Maker Faire in NYC! September at the Worlds Fair Grounds in Flushing. I will be there! It is going to be quite an event.
Daughter, Katie is a fellow equestrian- we chatted horse business all night!- is in charge of Craftzine. This is a daily must see for all that is happenin' in the world of crafting.
Besides the huge undertaking of publishing books and magazine, creating Maker events, and raising his beautiful family, he and his gorgeous wife, Nancy, have an amazing farm in Sebastipol, CA. Check out his blog, Pillow Road, and website. I'm ready to move....

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Magic carpet ride.

My niece, Sophie, is doing double duty this month. You may remember her and her friend Glenda from the Anna Maria Horner apron shoot. Not only is she maintaining her (stellar) grades at NYU, but she's decided to get her yoga training certification from Yoga For The People.. This is a rigorous training and I admire her for biting off so much- ah, to be young! I've made he a yoga throw/mat from a vintage sari with a magnolia motif. The opposite side has a japanese fabric, and the corners have tassels and magic gem stones! (Okay- they are rhinestones...) She deserves something a little special, as she is special to me. Good Luck, Soph. xoxo

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Quilt Haiti

We are holding a quilting bee of sorts at Make and Mingle. This will be a collaborative effort for all who attend. Jennifer Paganelli will be there to sew along with all of us as we each make a block or two with Sis Boom scraps that will then be pieced together, quilted, and sent off to Haiti. The wonderful blogger, Tammy Gilley, has started this quilt drive and quilters from all over the world have been sending their love to those in need. I can't think of a better way to spend the last Sunday afternoon in March. Please come to Make and Mingle and join us if you can.
*No previous sewing or quilting experience necessary!*

Friday, March 12, 2010

A nice pearing.

Breakfast today was Ezekiel Spouted Grain bread, toasted with raw almond butter and sliced pears. I cannot sing the virtues of almonds enough. Raw almonds. Have some everyday. Soak them in spring water for a few hours and add them to salad- they take on a new texture and sweetness that is divine, and the sprouting process gives them more oxidizing benefits. Check out Ezekial Bread in the freezer section. The fat and oil in the almond butter will stave off hunger better than a bowl of Special K!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Ingredients for a healthier me.

I'm on a mission. Actually my son has been after me for a while to get healthier. I've had times in my life when I was better, even a year of macrobiotics! But this winter was a challenge for me. Not only did I gain a good (Bad!) 12 lbs., but I feel rather like a slug. It wasn't until the sad passing of my brother in law, J.D., who lost his battle with pancreatic cancer a week ago, that I was jolted with the reality that I can only do my best to be healthy, and I have been slacking! Spring is on it's way and I can't think of a better time to try and honor this body that I have been blessed with. So the road to health will begin each morning with my Bob's Red Mill Bran Flax Muffins, to be followed mid morning with a wheat grass carrot juice. I am bound to find this a difficult task, and don't expect to be perfect, but I will try to do my best. My son Jack there, right behind me, ready to crack the whip! I guess he does love his mother....
Thanks to my friend, '80's super model Nancy Donahue and her Barefoot and Buff blog for introducing me to this recipe. Her blog has all kinds of great vegetarian recipes, fashion tips, and beauty secrets for "women of a certain age", and anyone who just wants to look and feel great! Check it out if you haven't already.
I add unsweetened coconut and used Red's White Rice flour instead of Unbleached white, but there is plenty of room to make this recipe your own. The recipe is found on the Whole Ground Flax Meal bag.

Bran Flax Muffins
Contributed by Bob's Red Mill Natural Foods

1 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
3/4 cup Brown Flaxseeds Meal
3/4 cup Oat Bran Cereal
1 cup Yellow D Sugar ( Brown Sugar)
2 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp Salt
2 tsp Cinnamon, Saigon (Premium)
1 1/2 cups finely shredded Carrots
2 peeled and shredded Apples
1/2 cup Raisins (optional)
1 cup chopped Nuts
3/4 cup Milk
2 beaten Eggs
1 tsp Vanilla
Mix together flour, Bob's Red Mill Flaxseed Meal, oat bran, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a large bowl. Stir in carrots, apples, raisins (if desired) and nuts. Combine milk, beaten eggs and vanilla. Pour liquid ingredients into dry ingredients. Stir until ingredients are moistened. DO NOT OVER MIX. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Bake at 350 degrees F for 15-20 minutes.

Yield: 15 medium muffins

You can also use 1 1/2 cups Unbleached White Flour in place of the Whole Wheat Pastry Flour.

For a twist on this great recipe- try substituting 3/4 cup Hazelnut Meal in place of the Oat Bran.

One muffin contains Calories 220, Calories from Fat 80, Fat 9g, Saturated Fat 0.5g, Cholesterol 30mg, Sodium 310mg, Carbohydrates 34g, Dietary Fiber 5g, Sugar 21g, Protein 6g.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The wheat grass is always greener.

My husband Tim's birthday gift this year was a wheat grass garden and juicer from Living Whole Foods, Inc.. We sprouted these seeds under news print and before you knew it, we had the most luscious little lawn I've ever seen. And if I push the planter up close to the window, and crouch down a bit to obscure the snow that is still on the real lawn, it almost looks like spring! April, come she will!

Strip because it's fun.

I've collected leftover strips from quilt trimmings, some 90'' long. Cut to 2 1/2'' widths, sew together in one long consecutive roll, then cut to 70'' each. Placed randomly along side each other vertically. That simple, that spectacular. All of the fabrics are from Sis Boom.