Posts Tagged ‘Pi Day’

Experiments for Pi Day

March 14, 2018

My husband asked for pecan pie to celebrate 3/14, Pi Day. I have a great recipe, because it’s easy – when you have all the ingredients. When you don’t, well, how else should one celebrate a made-up math holiday than by experimenting?

The pie for Pi Day

First, I had some Trefoil Girl Scout cookies that needed eating and not entirely by me, which is a problem because I’m the only one who really likes those cookies. I decided to make the crust from them, which worked fine except I ended up with more cookie crumbs than required. My experiment was to add a little more butter and use them all. It worked. Then I discovered I didn’t have corn syrup for the filling, so I used molasses. That made the filling a little bitter, so I added chocolate chips – and more butter. Heaven only knows what the calorie count is, but the pie tastes good. That’s all that matters with cooking experiments.

The same is true of quilting experiments. I took Peggy Martin‘s Jelly-roll Jive workshop on Sunday, only instead of a jelly-roll I brought some 2 1/2″ strips from my stash. I chose from the not-quite-scraps drawer, those pieces too large to go in the scrap bag but too small to make an entire quilt. I figured if I got a decent block out of it, great; if not, I hadn’t lost much.

Perhaps I’ll call this Blueberry and Pecan

Turns out I got a great five blocks. I made four blocks from blue and beige fabric. My first thought was to make a traditional 4-block medallion wall-hanging, but turning it on point is more interesting. I’m not sure how I’ll fill it out, but that’s an experiment for another day.

A second experiment for another day is this last block that I made from fat quarters I bought in New Mexico. I have enough fabric of a similar nature to make a small wall-hanging, and a boatload of beads that might find a home on the piece.

I hope all your experiments go well today and every day.

Luck and wisdom!

Pi Day and The Bribery School of Living

March 11, 2015

My second favorite holiday is this Saturday. It’s the Pi Day of the Century – 3/14/15. Yes, it’s a made-up math day, and it only works in countries that put the month first, but that’s part of the charm. We will have pie, and because I am a life-long practitioner of the Bribery School of Living, I don’t even have to make it.

When the kids were little, I discovered that bringing pizza home after spending all day at the Amador Valley Quilters monthly meeting made everyone so much happier. Even when I don’t go to the meeting, the second Saturday of the month is pizza day. Even when we are out of town, the second Saturday of the month is pizza day. So, we will have pizza pie on Pi Day, and all will be very well.

Here’s how the Bribery School works – when you have to make yourself or someone else do a hard thing, make sure there is a reward for completing the job. The kids would behave when I ran errands all morning because they could count on doing something fun in the afternoon. Sometimes the difference between finishing an unpleasant task and not is knowing there’s a treat waiting. Also, when you can’t face the job regardless of the bribe, you know it is time to get some help.

Lani Longshore beading project

The beading project that has been part of my bribe for the bathroom remodel is going well. I may not be able to lift it before long, but it’s shiny and pretty and I like it.

Lani Longshore bathroom remodel

The remodel is almost done. Everything but the shower is in place. For now, I’m counting this as a victory.

Luck and wisdom!

Made-Up Math Block

March 13, 2013

I love made-up math days. Today is one – 3/13/13. It occurred to me the numbers can also be spread apart – 3/1/3/1/3. Then it occurred to me that I could make a block based on those dimensions. This is the block:

made-up math block

There are 3 squares in a row. They are 3 1/2″ squares. The three rows are separated by 1 1/2″ strips. I put two extra strips on the side so I could set the squares like the Twist and Turn pattern.

made-up math 2 blocks

By the time I got to the third block, I realized I was making a split 9-Patch, so started paying more attention to color placement. Still, when you get four blocks together the result is very scrappy.

made-up math 4 blocks

My original plan was to sew a 2 1/2″ border around it using the same fabric on all four sides. Then my eye fell on a small pile of 2 1/2″ strips and I decided to audition a scrap border.

made-up math framed

I’m not sure where this piece is going, but I suspect it will become a sample for my prison class. In the meantime, I have to prepare for tomorrow, which is another made-up math day. March 14 is Pi Day – 3.14 – and must be celebrated with pies. I believe I’ll start with cherry.


My Personal March Madness

March 14, 2012

March is a holiday-heavy month for me. Today is Pi Day, tomorrow is the Ides of March, Saturday is St. Patrick’s Day and next week is the vernal equinox. My synapses are tap-dancing with odd connections, ideas for special food, ideas for decorations and possible quilt titles (Leprechauns with Logarithms comes to mind).

While all this is going on, I’m still attempting to finish old projects that have languished in corners. I ran across a tote bag of cross stitch kits that I finished – which is good – but discovered that there are leftovers – which is not good. I also discovered that I still can’t count so the designs on my Aida cloth don’t look exactly like the designs on the kit’s cover, but that’s a story for another time.

In this story, the offending bits are the extra strands of floss the manufacturers include in case of stitcher error. While I made plenty of errors, I didn’t discover all of them until the very end, when I was in no mood to pick out the mistakes. So, I have a little purple, a little blue, some red, some orange – not enough to do anything big but enough to make me feel guilty for throwing it away.

Then I remembered the cross-stitch trim. For some unknown reason, I bought a yard each of gold- and silver-bound, 1″-wide trim suitable for cross-stitch. I decided to use up the extra floss with the silver-bound version. Here is the first experiment:

Next I tried a version of Greek Keys:

Once again, the simple act of getting from four spaces to five spaces eluded me, and the pattern went awry. More than once. After the third attempt, when I could see there was yet another mistake, I decided to turn a bug into a feature. I’m working on When Chenille is Not Enough, the sequel to Death By Chenille, with my friend Ann Anastasio (of Art Quilt Santa Fe fame). We decided we’re going to use the fragment of crazy quilt from the first book as a plot point in the second book, which means we have to come up with a real design for the quilt. The secret behind the quilt is that the woman who made it used designs from the writings of space aliens, so my wonky miscounted cross-stitch would fit right in. With that in mind, I made this:

and this:

I have a little more space on the silver trim, and the entire gold piece. If you have any wonderful, narrow cross-stitch patterns that I could easily mess up, please share or at least point me to a resource. The crazy quilt from space needs you!

By the way, Death By Chenille is available now as an e-book on, and When Chenille is Not Enough will be available soon (okay, soon-ish).