Monday, September 28, 2009

Men's Dress Shirt Re-Do

Here's my first attempt at re-fashioning a men's dress shirt. There's so many examples on the web that inspired me, that I had to try it. In the end, I like it, but it did take me a little longer to do than I had hoped. That's probably because it wasn't that much bigger than my normal size, so I had to sew in some triangular pieces of fabric under the armholes to make the armholes small enough. Then I re-shaped the top of the cut off sleeves to give a more feminine gathered cap, cut straight across the bottom for the hem, and added bias tape inside to give me an elastic empire waist. If you try an elastic waist, make sure you add it directly in line with a button, so the elastic doesn't pull a gap in the front button band. I was quite pleased with myself for figuring this out BEFORE I had to rip and re-stitch! Sometimes I amaze myself.

And in the true spirit of recycling, I made the leftover cut-off sleeve parts into dog toys. I stuffed them with orphaned socks and stitched up the ends. Although they weren't pretty enough to take a photo of, my puppy didn't seem to mind that. She's busy chewing one of them right now.

On My URGENT To-Do List

I ask you: who would NOT want this on their to-do list? Find the recipe, along with tons (referring to the number of ideas, not the weight you would gain by trying them all...) of other tempting ideas at Bakerella's incredible blog:…-oh-my/

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Burger Weekend

It probably started because I watched Bobby Flay make burgers on the Food Network. That, and the fact I have 25 pounds of hamburger waiting expectantly in my freezer. It was on sale. A really good sale. So Saturday I made bacon cheddar hickory smoked burgers topped with coleslaw.  Sunday I made Italian burgers topped with mozzarella, spinach, and caramelized onions. They were grab-your-napkins good!

Friday, September 25, 2009

A Love/Hate Relationship

I have this special relationship with my iron. I love it when I use it in sewing construction. I love opening up a fresh seam and pressing it flat, and shaping a dart into a nice rounded curve. I'm a master at getting the iron point to fold over the tiniest strip of fabric into a narrow hem. Then when the project is done, I lovingly give it one more final pressing.

But once I am done, I send the item off to live a life of it's own, like a bunny mother sending her children into the wide, wide world, never to return. I'll try hard to never use the iron on them again. I hate maintenance ironing. I'm not a fan of any laundry task, and least of all ironing. I have a closet full of wrinkly clothes to prove it! Why is it that it's fun when I'm creating, and evil drudgery when I need to simply get the clothes back into wearable condition? Oh iron, iron, why art thou so fickle?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Mixing It Up

I haven't been able to get down to my sewing machine lately due to one child packing to move out, another child's cross country schedule, and my day job getting busier, but I did have enough time last night to make up a batch of homemade biscuit mix while dinner was cooking. The recipe comes from my very worn copy of Make-a-Mix Cookery by Karine Eliason, Nevada Harward and Madeline Westover. I've had this book since my college days, and I'm sure it's the only cookbook I own that I can say I've made almost every recipe in the book. Honest. It satisfies my "make it myself" mentality, I guess. After making the mix, I was inspired to use it to put together some peach cobbler. Ya gotta love peaches while they're in season.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

September Peaches

Peach pie filling ready to be tucked away in the freezer. Somewhere in the deep depths of winter it will be brought out to remind me of the fresh taste of September. Yum.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Fall is Coming

While taking a walk this weekend, I witnessed one of those late summer storm clouds gathering in the evening dusk. It's a reminder that Autumn can't be far behind.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

My Week

Here's a small run down of a week that went by way too quickly, as they all do!

My daughter studying for a test went from earnest contemplation to...

this, to...


Sophie being, well, Sophie.

Cookies I baked for a Cross Country team dinner. The snickerdoodle recipe came from my old copy of the Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook, and the chocolate chip cookie recipe is a family hand-me-down. I love the connection I feel to family as I'm following an old recipe- memories, touches, even smells come back to me to give me that warm and fuzzy feeling! Have a great labor day weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Red Sun, New Days

The last couple of mornings we've had a bright red sun to greet us in the morning. This was taken more than an hour after I first saw it (I didn't have my camera till then), but it was a bold, bright red ball as it came over the horizon. I'm told the color is due to the California fires. Strikingly impressive sight, yet it humbled me to think of the massiveness of the fires that caused their effects to be seen here.

The red sun started a conversation with my daughter this morning as we headed to school. We first remembered the Hayman fire in our home state of Colorado several years ago. She remembers trying to skateboard around the neighborhood with her older brother, but the smoke was so thick it looked like fog and burned her throat after being outside for awhile. She was eight at the time. Then farther back in history is the eruption of Mount St. Helens. That's before her time, of course, but I described for her the raining ash and smokey skies that we saw here. It was an interesting conversation, talking about nature and its far reaching effects. In a way, nature connects us, doesn't it?