Posts Tagged ‘Christmas fabric’

Return of the Forgotten Things

December 10, 2014

I went through the two small drawers in my sewing table, and discovered they are magic. When I’ve opened them in the past, they presented a collection of straight pins, sewing machine feet, screwdrivers, and the occasional hidden candy bar. When I started taking things out, however, I discovered a cache of items I lost so long ago I forgot I had them.

Lani Longshore scissors

There are scissors in some of my project bags, scissors with a project I’m working on in the family room, and scissors next to the sewing machine. Now these two little critters show up, and I have no idea when I got them. Nor do I have any idea when I acquired two boxes of replacement cutter blades. I never can find them when the need arises.

Lani Longshore needles

The same with needles – I’ve been nursing my favorite hand quilting needle because I thought it was the last one. Where were these two months ago? In the drawer, obviously, but covered by what cloak of invisibility? I can understand one package of needles hiding in the far corner of the drawer, but half a dozen?

The good news is I’m not the only one discovering forgotten things. My mother was looking for wrapping paper, and discovered a stash of Christmas fabric instead. She says it is part of the collection I gave her a few years ago when she wanted to make Christmas totes. She decided to cut a large enough square for the gifts and tie it with a gold ribbon. Some people send fruitcakes back and forth – Mom and I send fabric.

Lani Longshore Christmas fabric

I opened one of the presents early – the decoration package. My mom makes ornaments every year for us. This year it is a free-standing ornament, and the first decoration I put on display.

Thank you, Mom!

Thank you, Mom!

Luck and wisdom!

Series of challenges

October 5, 2011

I started this week with energy and a long to-do list. Mom went back to Maryland on Friday, I had Saturday to miss her, and Sunday to get started on my deadlines. Sunday went well enough, but Monday . . . didn’t. Somehow the cough that I thought was on its way out turned itself around. By Tuesday night it was back in full swing – along with a scratchy throat and strained vocal chords, to the extent that this morning when Mom called she thought my husband had answered the phone. So I said a prayer of thanks that Sunday was productive, because I did manage to get finished with my absolutely-must-accomplish-now list.

This first project, however, is not from that list. This is one of the boxes Mom and I made for the crocheted angels. Mom glanced at the soda carton and thought it might be the right size if we cut it down a bit. I pulled out the scissors, hot glue gun and some Christmas fabric.

We made the lid from poster board. Mom was delighted to find a way to recycle the soda carton. I was thrilled to have another use for the stack of Christmas fabric that never seems to get smaller no matter how many projects I make.

Another item on the list was the Challenge Group project. Our assignment was to take a garment-related phrase and turn it into something else. My phrase was “she pursed her lips.” As it happens, my friend Ann Anastasio and I are working on a series of patterns (loosely) based on our novel, Death by Chenille, and its sequel-in-progress, When Chenille Is Not Enough. I decided to use the Challenge project to play around with purse designs.

This inside pocket is made from chenille (like I said, loosely based on the book).

Last on the list is “do something with the rest of the apples.”

I’ve made enough apple crisps for the season, there is no more room in the freezer for applesauce, and I’ve filled three containers with dried apples. Recipes are welcome, but I should tell you I’m a vegetarian so your German grandmother’s pork and apple bake won’t work for me. Here’s one for you, however:

Potato-apple tart

1 large potato, sliced paper-thin

1 large Granny Smith apple, sliced thin

3 oz Gruyeres, sliced thin

2 onions, sliced thin

1 tsp butter

1 tsp olive oil

tsp flour

1/2 cup milk

1 sheet puff pastry

Slice the potato, apple and cheese and set aside. Melt the butter with the olive oil over medium heat. Add onions, and cook until caramelized or until you run out of patience stirring the rascals. Add flour and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, add milk. Stir until milk stops bubbling, then return to very low heat and cook until thickened.

Spread puff pastry on a buttered baking dish. Layer potato, apple and cheese slices in center, leaving an inch of pastry all around to turn up. Pour onion mixture over top (you may want to spread it gently if it is very thick). Turn up edges of pastry. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 minutes.