Tuesday, March 18, 2008

By special request......

I hear Ms. Yvette, the FitQuilter, is tired of looking at my last blog entry. I've been kinda busy and not blogging, and rumor has it she thinks "Spring Has Sprung" for long enough....

So I will catch up on all the blog-worthy items I can think of, for all my three (or six) loyal readers. First up.....some canine cuteness.....Ms. Yvette likes dogz!

Tiger was in such a hurry to get to her dinner yesterday, she forgot to come all the way downstairs.

And last Friday night, we had what may have been the Last Ever Second Friday gathering of the clan......A vote was taken at the table and everyone but me is in favor of having Second SATURDAYs! As Billy so clearly put it......"see that way, we can sleep in, run a few errands, take a nap, and THEN come to dinner!" Makes sense to me! Everyone is pooped after a long day at work on Fridays....so we will give this a try and see if any of us can stay awake past 8:30 PM! (Maybe Mr. Patrick will be able to come.....hint, hint!)

We did enjoy a nice meal and some of these creme de menthe brownies in honor of St. Patrick's Day!

Yum! This is a big favorite from back when the girls were little. Recipe as follows:

Crème de Menthe Brownies

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 13×9 inch pan.

1 c. sugar
4 eggs
1/2 t. salt
1/2 c. butter (real butter)
1 c. flour
1 t. vanilla
1 - 16 oz. can Hershey’s Syrup

1-1/2 stick butter, softened to room temperature
3 cup confectioner’s sugar
6 tablespoons Crème de Menthe

12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
10 tablespoons butter.

For the Brownies: Cream butter and sugar, add eggs, salt and vanilla. Add flour and syrup alternately until mixed. Pour into pan and bake 30 minutes or until they appear barely done. Cool in pan.
For the Filling: With an electric mixer beat the butter and confectioners sugar until smooth and creamy. Add the Crème de Menthe and adjust the consistency with additional sugar or Crème de Menthe. When brownies are cool, spread frosting and refrigerate until firm.
For the Icing: In a small saucepan melt the butter and pour in chocolate chips and stir over low heat until melted. Pour over the green mint filling and refrigerate.
When you are ready to serve the brownies, let them sit at room temperature for a little while so they are easier to cut. Close the windows before the moaning starts and the neighbors become alarmed. They're that good!

At one point, Laurie curled up on the sofa with her childhood friend "Stuffy" (a pink bunny). Sadie was obviously insulted!

Now for the quilting/sewing portion of this entry. Late this afternoon, I threw up my hands and stormed out of my office. Enough! I had started at 4 AM and I wanted to sew! I had purchased some of the cutest owl material recently and wanted to make a tote bag for my Mom. Here's the material....and the pattern....

Mom taught me to sew when I was really young. Her mom, my Nana, even let me use her sewing machine and I was in seventh heaven! Mom was an excellent teacher and she demanded that I learn the correct way, and that I try over and over until I mastered various techniques. I remember thinking she was picky......but I'm really grateful to her today! Things like easing curves are a piece of cake, or at least, a bit technically difficult for me, but I can do them! (Thanks Mom!)

Here I was easing the curves of the lower corners of the bag onto the band that separated the front and back of the bag. Then I got to do it again for the lining!

I "fussy" cut some strips of the materal to stitch onto the strapping, to jazz it up a bit.

Pockets abound, both inside and out.

I took cloth-backed vinyl to make the bottom and side pieces. Wasn't sure it would work, but it did!

Got it all sewed together, lining to bag, right sides together, left a small opening to pull everything through, and Voila! A tote bag for Mom's birthday! (She loves owls. Last owl count, according to my Dad, was up in the two or three hundreds, located all over their house!) So here's a few more in honor of her 75th birthday!

Now I have some vacuuming to do - I am not a neat seamstress!

Night, all!


Anonymous said...

Yay!! So glad to see some more blogging - missed you very much! The brownies look cool, and the bag is a work of art; sure hope Mom appreciates it, cos it's really cute and colorful. Where do you find all those great fabrics?? Love you, Jackie

Yvette said...


I was expecting to see "Spring Has Sprung" yet again.

OK, I am so impressed with your tote bag. That is the cutest bag I have EVER seen. It looks like you are a master of curves and you will master our "Winners Circle" class next month.

I gained another pound drooling over your brownies and I am not a chocolate person. LOL!

I hope to see you very soon my friend!

Karene said...

SEW CUTE !!!! I love the bag and I really, really, really want you to make one for MY MOM's birthday too on April 26th...ha,ha,ha!!! You and Yvette are just awesome. I hope to be like you when I grow up someday, my friend !!!

Love ya

Anonymous said...

oh mom! i love the purse!! i want one too!!! so does everyone i know!! are they hard? can you help me make one? maybe i can come over on a saturday and make one with you????? love laurie

Joy said...

Absolutely! We could have a fun time making you a one-of-a-kind cool purse! Remember that skull fabric you liked? Whoo-hoo! It has "Make me for Laurie" written all over it! I'll watch for another Joann's Coupon and keep you posted! Love, Mom