Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The modern bathroom and its problems

This is a really interesting article on the history of the "modern" bathroom, how it came to be and why it isn't such a great idea.

Cold and sunny out

It's very cold outside but it's warm and cozy here.

Pink Linoleum, my Christmas Project 2014

I often make a project that I start on Christmas Eve.  I don't plan it that way but it happens a lot.  Here is this year's (though it isn't yet bound).

Pink Linoleum

  And I pin things on top of this quilt to look at them.  It makes me think of old style pink linoleum.

Here it is on the floor.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Sculpture in Wellington, Australia

Our friends Dave and Nancy who live in Sydney are on a bicycle trip and they blog about it.  This is a sculpture garden they wrote about and photographed.  Isn't it cool?  Now that is something I'd like to see up close and touch.  It makes me want to run my hand over it.

A camper I love

This is one beautiful camper!  I think I could live here.

More photos here.

Finished quilts

I finished two quilts but never posted their photos.  I was disappointed with the photos I took.  I am still not crazy about how this new camera does color.  I wish my old one hadn't broken.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

A fun Christmas Eve at the neighbors

This is a rare good photo of me, taken by my neighbor Charlie.  John says Charlie knows where to stand.

Me & Anita on Christmas Eve

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Christmas Eve Eve

We live near Peacock Lane and, even more fun, near this guy who has a full size leg lamp, AKA a major award, in his window.  So we went out for a look.  It was very balmy and wonderful to be out walking.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

How Dave makes gnocchi

I mentioned making gnocchi in a recent post and my friend Dave (of Leave Without Pay) sent me these photos of how HE makes gnocchi, in Australia!  Isn't it interesting that the kitchen looks like it is from another part of the world?

Sunday, December 21, 2014

A touch of Christmas...

Refrigerator Art

I've been playing with fabric bits, making what I call "refrigerator art".  I've been having so much fun.

Here is one just the squares..

And here it is decorated a bit.

Tonight I added some beads but no photos yet.

Handquilted Colorwash

A friend made it and I hand quilted it and will soon send it back to her.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Making pasta

We've been making all sorts of dough things that we haven't made for a long time.  Potato gnocchi... John said they were the best he ever had.  Chinese pancakes for mu shu pork.  And handmade pasta.  They all came out well.  The handmade pasta is the most labor intensive.

This is the pasta drying a little before it was cut into noodles with a knife.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Quilting progress

I am on the home stretch with two quilts.   This one needs a little hand quilting, binding, and a decorative band.  I keep my current handwork project in the basket below.

This one needs its border and band added.  The band and border fabrics are at the bottom edge.

I am really into handwork these days, especially hand quilting, hand sewing bindings and even basting.  I need to get busy on some new projects to fuel my handwork obsession.   I don't have a problem with quilt tops piling up.

Making chicken broth

We make our own very rich and delicious chicken broth.  We use it for so many things.....a base for soups and stews, flavoring stir fried vegetables, simple Asian noodles we have for breakfast, cooking chicken thighs.

The ingredients are lots of chicken/chicken bones (this batch has one whole chicken, three packages of necks and backs, one roasted chicken carcass), celery, onions, carrots, bay leaf, pepper corns, ginger.  I leave the salt out, which gives me more freedom when I use it.  You can always add salt.  The recipe makes about a dozen 24 oz containers ( 9 quarts) of very rich broth.  For some recipes, we thin it with water.  A concentrated broth takes less room in the freezer.

Here it is starting to cook.  We simmer it about four hours after it starts to a boil.  Then we strain it and refrigerate it.  The next day we package it into containers for the freezer.

Here it is starting to cook.

That's a five gallon pot.  Before we had it, making broth was a lot more time consuming and MUCH messier.  Our big farm sink helps, too.  We set the pot on a cutting board in the bottom of the sink for straining and packaging.  It's a much better height and any broth spills happen in the sink.  The sink is also great for washing huge things like that pot.  Can you tell I love my sink?