Monthly Archives: January 2015

Just like Jay?

Published / by Mary / 6 Comments on Just like Jay?

My HeartStrings friend Jay pieces blocks and quilts from trimmed bits and pieces and I was thinking of him today as I gathered up the leftover trimmings from my 16 patch blocks (the last 12 blocks are cut and ready to sew). I laid them out on the cutting mat and wondered if I could assemble them into a small quilt.


Rae could use one for her doll. I gave her the small red blanket I’d knit while she was here but she loves her quilts and blankets and I’m sure she could use another one. Wrapping the baby up is quite a production!


Making time for the beach

Published / by Mary / 6 Comments on Making time for the beach

We’re living about 20 minutes from the beach but we hadn’t spent any time actually on the beach until a couple weeks ago when we took Rae. We headed down today for a couple hours later in the day and I carried my Kindle with me (I don’t go anywhere without something to read!). It was breezy and a little cooler as the sun went down but I draped the towel across my shoulders and was perfectly comfortable. Hard to believe it’s January!


Fat Quarter Friendly

Published / by Mary / 7 Comments on Fat Quarter Friendly

I love Fat Quarters and if they’re on sale, I just can’t resist buying them. Using them can be more of a challenge. Sometimes I mix them in with stash for a more scrappy quilt but sometimes you just want to grab a bundle and sew – like I did today.

I’ve had a 16 patch quilt on my list for a while and I had every intention of using 2.5 inch strips for it but I came across this fat quarter version a few months ago and it was just what I wanted to sew today. She calls the pattern St Louis 16 Patch and she’s done all the math for you for different size quilts using different numbers of fat quarters.

I think I’m making the 56×70 version using 20 fat quarters but I have enough for the next size so we’ll see. After pairing my first two fabrics together and making two sets of two blocks, I decided I will mix my fabrics up a little more so my quilt will be a little scrappier.


I’ve got 8 blocks made and 6 cut and ready to sew. This one goes fast.

If you’re looking for other fat quarter friendly quilts, check my website for these.

Framed 9 Patches

I combined two different sets of fat quarters for this Happy Block quilt. Instructions for making Happy Blocks are here.

New recipe Monday

Published / by Mary / 6 Comments on New recipe Monday

I felt like I was kind of under the gun having been gone until last night but I served up a Mediterranean dinner tonight … Excuse the plating/photography – I could definitely use some food styling advice!

Tonight I served hummus and pita along with red wine for happy hour and followed it up with Mediterranean chicken and a tomato and cucumber salad.


It was quite tasty and with 2 thumbs up (on 2nds) I’d definitely fix it again.


With Keith’s travel schedule don’t expect a new trial every week. My goal will be two per month. More if he’s traveling less.

Here’s a link to the recipe for the chicken which I followed except substituting kalamata olives for the ones in the recipe.

Back to work

Published / by Mary / 6 Comments on Back to work

You might wonder what I was thinking with this one … It’s pretty bright! My scrap bins are overflowing so I wanted something quick to cut and sew that I could quilt here in FL and this was it. It’s simple – just half square triangles but you can find the quilt info here on my website in case you want to bust some scraps too.


I’ve already started sewing the blocks into rows and I’ll work on getting the top done this week but I’m pretty tired after all the activity and travel over the last 6 weeks and I need to get some walking miles in so I’m planning on a pretty easy week.


Published / by Mary / 6 Comments on Resolutions?!

Do you make resolutions at the beginning of the year?

Typically I don’t but I do think about what I want to accomplish in the new year. One of our issues with the move is that so many of the dinners in our current rotation are suitable for MINNESOTA winters and when it comes time to figure out what to fix in FLORIDA, we just don’t have that many choices. One of my goals this year is to try some new recipes and see if we can find some favorites to add to our standards.

Waiting for my flight home today, I’m flipping though a couple food magazines and since I do best with a plan or schedule I’m going to pick Monday as the day of the week to try out new recipes. Keith is typically home on Monday and any leftovers will feed me one or two of the nights the rest of the week when he travels!


Sometimes you just have to swatch!

Published / by Mary / 7 Comments on Sometimes you just have to swatch!

Mom and I have been crocheting and looking for the perfect ripple afghan pattern for the baby sport she likes to use. All the patterns either seem to be the wrong size or use a different weight yarn and we’ve guessed a time or two about how many repeats we needed to get the size we wanted and haven’t been exactly right SO today I decided it was time to stop guessing, crochet a swatch (I made Mom do it), and actually measure and do the math. Assuming it comes out correctly we now have a written pattern to refer to and don’t have to keep guessing and trying to remember what we did last time, or recalculating.


On my needles

Published / by Mary / 7 Comments on On my needles

Progress is being made on my purple lace scarf – the drives to Tampa and Orlando and back helped but I’m setting it aside and casting on another Yowza Weigh it Shawl – this one in blues for my sister. I love this pattern and loved wearing mine when I was in Minneapolis. I’m heading to VA tomorrow for a visit with my Mom. She’s been sick with the flu (I think half the family caught it at Xmas) and while she’s better, we’ll have a quiet visit while she continues to recover. I’ll take some knitting and maybe even some piecing to occupy myself.