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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Bill Bailey finally came home!

Well, after a month of waiting my mid arm quilting machine arrived. It is a Bailey 15 and it has a lot of arm to quilt in! I unpacked it and got it set up, pinned on some old fabric (sheets that I salvaged some large areas from) and batting and quilted one section. I forwarded the 'quilt' and called it a night. I am SO very tired. That wore me out.

It has been a good incentive to get stuff done, though. Since I knew I'd want to 'play' with the quilter a lot I did a major grocery store trip and stocked up. I've cooked ahead and planned easy meals. It didn't hurt that our cooktop bit the dust and we had to order a new one. That means casseroles, crockpot meals and salads. So I made Calabasa con Pollo y Arroz, doubled up, so that's two days. I made taco salad today. I also got my laundry caught up. The time is great 'cause Erin is on spring break and is going to a church day camp, Mon - Fri, 8 - 5. I've had my days free to get stuff done. Now... I can quilt tomorrow!!!! At least, quilt until my shoulders and neck give out. I need to set a timer so I don't kill myself and be unable to do anything.

I also worked on some UFO projects... I finished a table runner, a wall hanging for my friend, bordered a quilt I've had all but the border done to be ready to quilt, finished up two machine appliqued butterfly blocks, stitched the 16 together and bordered them. Then I've got 24 of 25 blocks ready to put together, sash, border and quilt. The blocks were partly some orphans I picked up at a guild sale, partly my orphans and then some applique and embroidery that I did and didn't have plans for. So it will be my "Orphan Train" quilt. I have a pieced backing for the orphan quilt that belonged to my husband's grandmother that she never got to use. I feel really good that I've finished up these projects and now I can quilt them. I also have two others that are ready to quilt.

I know I've got to do a lot of practice before I'm going to put these quilts on the frame, but I got quite a few cheater panels and baby panels and some charity baby quilts that I can practice on before I do them.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Well, I didn't take a picture, but I set up my Viking (short, short arm) on the frame and tried it out. I had some fabric with little apples on a ticking print for the top, batting, and then a navy back. I pinned it all on and started quilting. It went really well! I am please with how it turned out. Then I took it off, trimmed it up and turned it into tote bag. Maybe I'll put a pic on later.

Still waiting on Bill Bailey to come home....

Sunday, March 8, 2009

B Line Quilt frame up and waiting for...

Bill Bailey won't you please come ho-----me!

I've ordered my Bailey quilting machine and it's supposed to be shipped on Monday or Tuesday.... Yippee~!!!!

My little sewing corner, too.... It's funny. What started out to be a long wall of sewing space is now a little sewing space and a BIG quilting space, but... the great thing is that the table (when I pop off the bars) easily doubles to a cutting, ironing and even extra sewing space. The storage is wonderful. We purchased the unfinished wood printer stands and I finished them. Hubby put the casters on and built this cabinet top for it. It is SOLID, just like everything he builds. I stained it dark walnut and I need to wax it up, but that's later.

The stand drawers are full of goodies and I got those wheelie plastic storage drawers and they're full, too. Where does it all come from???? At least for now, I am super organized.

I put up pics of the shelves with their goodies, too.

Next, I'll make the leaders for the poles and I'll be ready to attach a quilt when Bill Bailey comes home!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Baked Penne with Roasted Vegetables

We watched this food network show with Giada the other day and it looked so good that we wanted to try it. It's a vegetarian dish (which we aren't, but that's okay. We love our veg!) Then Erin wanted to cook for us...so she got to try to make it first. Wow... awesome.

Erin worked hard and did all the cooking and 98 percent of the prep. I helped her clean up and you'll see why as you look at the kitchen aftermath. That's okay... it was wonderful and worth the mess and clean up.

The recipe is:
2 red peppers, cored and cut into 1-inch wide strips
2 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 summer squash, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 cremini mushrooms, halved
1 yellow onion, peeled and sliced into 1-inch strips
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 tablespoon dried Italian herb mix or herbs de Provence
1 pound penne pasta
3 cups marinara sauce (store bought or homemade)
1 cup grated fontina cheese
1/2 cup grated smoked mozzarella
1 1/2 cups frozen peas, thawed
1/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus 1/3 cup for topping
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
On a baking sheet, toss the peppers, zucchini, squash, mushrooms, and onions with olive oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper,
and dried herbs. Roast until tender, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook for about 6 minutes. Since you will be
cooking the pasta a second time in the oven, you want to make sure the inside is still hard. Drain in a colander.
In a large bowl, toss the drained pasta with the roasted vegetables, marinara sauce, cheeses, peas, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2
teaspoon pepper. Using a wooden spoon, gently mix, until all the pasta is coated with the sauce and the ingredients are combined.
Pour the pasta into a greased 9 by 13-inch pan. Top with the remaining 1/3 cup Parmesan and butter pieces. Bake until top is golden
and cheese melts, about 25 minutes.