Friday, December 26, 2008

Baked Potato Soup

Title: Baked Potato Soup (My hubbie LOVES this)

Description:All the flavors of a baked potato in a rich creamy soup.

Ingredients:2 1/2 lb baking potatoes (BAKED!)
2/3 cu flour
6 Cups milk (I use skim)
1 Cu (4 oz.) shredded cheddar
1 tsp salt
1 cu sour cream
3/4 cu chopped green onions
6 slices of bacon cooked and chopped up

Directions:Bake potatoes, cool, peel and coarsely mash up. Place flour in large dutch oven and gradually whisk in milk and then cook over medium heat stirring frequently as it gets hotter until it just begins to boil. Add mashed up potatoes, 3/4 cu cheese, salt, and pepper stirring until cheese melts. Turn to low and add sour cream and 1/2 cu onions...cook until heated through, but do not boil, Sprinkle each bowl with the remaining onions, cheese, and the bacon crumbles.

Number Of Servings:6

Preparation Time:45 Min

Cinnamon Rolls

My sister's recipe, I'm totally stealing...they are GOOD!

Cinnamon Rolls

3/4 cup + 2 Tbsp warm water
2 Tbsp butter or oil
2 1/2 c bread flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp yeast

1 Tbsp softened butter
1/6 cup sugar + 1 tsp cinnamon

Add dough ingredients (per instructions for your bread machine) and set on dough cycle. When cycle is complete, remove dough, roll into 9x9 square and spread with butter and sprinkle with cimmamon sugar. Roll into log and cut into nine rolls. Place in square pan. Let it rise for 30 minutes, cover with foil, put in fridge overnight

Get it out in the morning and bake at 375 for 20-30 minutes for fresh rolls.

Melt some canned cream cheese icing a little in the microwave and drizzle over the top.

Broccoli Salad

Broccoli Salad

8 slices bacon, fried & crumbled
1 head fresh broccoli
1/4 cu red onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup craisins (or raisins)
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp granulated sugar
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cu sunflower seeds (optional)

In medium bowl combine broccoli, onions, half of the bacon & craisins.

In small bowl, whisk together vinegar, sugar & Mayo.

Pour over broccoli mixture & toss. Refrigerate at least 2 hours.

Before serving toss salad with remaining bacon & sunflower seeds.

Crinkle Tops

Thanks Jodi, these are YUMMY!

Spicy & Sweet chewy Molasses cookies -- winner of the Good Morning America Christmas Cookie've got to try this winter treat!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Uncle Henry's Bib

My Aunt requested that I make a bib for my Uncle Henry because every time they eat at the fox pen he drops food on his shirt. I thought this looked like "fox hunting" fabric -- it is machine embroidered with the name of his kennel in red because I know they like those yucky Gamecocks. I think he is going to roll over laughing, but I also bet he will actually wear it too!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Toile Apron

My grandmother (in the nursing home) wanted me to make several aprons that she could give to some of her caretakers for Christmas. I wanted them to be classy so black & white tiole is perfect! I made the tie long (like 90 inches tip to tip) so it can have a pretty bow in the back. I didn't know the size of the ladies so I made the apron part 28 inches across so for a "normal" (and I use this word at my own risk!) sized person like me, it goes to the back and your sides are covered...but if any of the ladies are "plus" sized it will be substantial to cover their front -- I hope that none of them is more than 28 inches across the front
I did it with no pattern in less than an hour...I still have a couple more to make so off I go, so much to do before Dec 25th!!!

2 ready to smock bishops

Both of these are size 2 -- one is a shirt and one is a dress -- I still haven't made my girls one of these smocked shirts, but I definitely need to -- they are adorable!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Murphy's Laws of Sewing (Thanks Tracy!)

Law of Sewing
by Alida Macor

1. If you drop something out of your sewing basket, it will be your box of pins
- cover off.
2. The fabric you forget to pre-shrink will always shrink the most.
3. Facings tend to be sewn to the "wrong" side - opposite sides
4. This mistake will not be discovered until all seams are trimmed, graded and
5. Fusible interfacings usually fuse to the iron.
6. Pinking shears get dull just by looking at them.
7. If you need "n" buttons, you will find "n-l" in your
button box.
8. Gathering threads generally break in the middle.
9. The sewing machine light only burns out after the stores are closed.
10. The scissor cuts easiest past the buttonholes.
11. Your lost needle will be found by your brother-in-law - while walking
around barefoot.
12. The iron never scorches a garment until its final pressing.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Santa & Candy Canes hand smocked bishop

Finally finished this up today -- this is a size 7 bishop for my daughter to wear this month...thank goodness I got it done in time.

The smocking plate is called "Down Candy Cane Lane" by Junebug designs. I think the bullion stitched mustache is too cute!

Took a while to make, but I LOVE the results!!!

Kid's Painted Ornaments

They had these kits at the Dollar Store when we went on a "reward" trip the other day - 8 of these shapes with the gold string and completely dried up paint...we had paint, added the red ribbon as the string, and added our own beads...the girls really enjoyed the painting.

S Aline Ornament Top

Same pattern, different fabric...I like these aline tops, easy to fit, easy to sew...and adorable too

This one is for my daughter's best friend...she loves when I make her stuff.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Candy Canes smocked on a Tshirt

This Shirt goes with the Candy Cane Skirt pictured here:
My daughter loves them both!

For this project, I took a ready made Tshirt and sewed in a pleated insert...hand smocked the design, and she has a nice shirt to wear to school & shopping. Candy Canes smocking plate is from Ellen McCarn's Candy-licious

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Christmas Pajama Pants

I cut these out several days ago, but finally got a picture of them - the girls LOVE their new Pajama Pants...

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Free Embroidery Downloads

Lots of them, and they are cute too!

Luggage Tags

Made these for my mother's painting friends for her to give them for Christmas -- you just attach them to the handle of your luggage, and I guarantee you will be able to find it at baggage claim!

Green side is corduroy, Initial is machine embroidered

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Embroidery machine frustrations

You may think the tractor longall is cute, but I am having problems with my embroidery machine -- I have a Singer Futura embroidery/sewing machine and I think I am going to have to take it to the shop if I want to embroider anymore -- it pulls the bobbin thread up sometimes, sometimes it stops in the middle of a project and quits -- sometimes it doesn't sew in the hoop where you have told it to -- sometimes you change color and it gets a little "off" in the layout -- but all of this is sometimes... I wonder if it is the laptop circa 1999 that is running it, or the fact that I use it almost daily for what, 2 years now? and have never had it serviced. on a non-embroidery complaint, I press the presser foot and it does one stitch and stops on sometimes basis too, and today for some reason my needle is sewing about an 1/16 of an inch to the right rebooted it and it recentered right back offcenter...ugh!

I have certainly gotten my $500 out of this machine, and I wonder now, should I ask for a laptop for Christmas? or maybe just take it to the repair shop for "upkeep" -- anyway, enough complaining about it, I am so blessed, look on this blog and see all of the beautiful things my machine can do with my will keep on running and I'll keep churning out all of this pretty stuff -- oh, my girls are so lucky

Reversable Tractor Embroidered longall

Cut this out last night and got it embroidered and finished off today -- this is for a teacher at my daughter's school -- for her grandson -- the request was for something to wear Christmas but that he could wear it other times too. I think this is adorable.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Snowman Aline Top

Made this for my daughter this morning in less than an hour -- I will be making more of these cute tops -- I had forgotten how easy these were to make!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Machine Smocked insert in a Tshirt

Debra at machine smocked this design on an insert and I put it in this Tshirt -- Didn't it turn out to be an adorable holiday shirt? Machine Smocking design is by Elizabeth Embroidery

Machine smocking in embroidery done by an embroidery machine on pleated fabric to look like hand smocking -- in a fraction of the time of doing it by hand!

Four Size 2 Bishops ready to smock

Made these for my friend in Louisiana who inspired me to try the ready to smock dresses about 2 and a half years ago...she usually sends me fabric and I put together ready to smock dresses for her. She is a wonderful smocker and you can see a lot of her work on that website.

The bright pink ones are made of a high quality pique fabric. The light pink is a tiny corduroy, ooh so soft, and the brown bishop is a cool corduroy with little horses machine embroidered on it -- super cool! I could only pleat a couple of rows on this one because I didn't want to run the horses through the pleater.

Her little girl is going to be adorable!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Twice Baked Sweet Potato Recipe

Try this recipe for Twice Baked Sweet Potatoes -- They turned out really yummy, and they looked just like the picture on the website -- My oldest daughter even ate the skin!

Especially pay attention to how they are baked -- usually it takes over an hour to bake the big sweet potatoes, but they slice them in half and bake them face down on a pan...cut the time to 35 minutes -- that is FAST for a baked sweet potato!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Turkey Game

My sister gave me this fun idea -- you make several turkeys with construction paper, google eyes, and a slice of a toilet paper or paper towel roll, then make the game board with a lane for each turkey - each turkey is assigned a number on the dice and roll the dice and if you roll your number then you move up one - first turkey to the end is the winner -- a kid could actually play this by themselves...We colored our lanes to match our turkeys.
If you could make a dice that had the colors on it that would be even better, but we were too excited to try it out to wait -- black & orange turkey won the first 2 games!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The 2-hour Candy Cane Skirt

Got this fabric for a buck a yard when walmart in our town was closing the fabric department (sniff)

Didn't know what I was going to do with it at the time, but this month I learned how to insert the smocked panels in a Tshirt so I have this red Tshirt and was trying to figure out what to smock on it...decided to make a bottom to match and now I know I want to smock candy canes on it --

This skirt is an adaptation of the Simplicity Sewing pattern for Dummies # 4206 -- if you sew for little girls, you need this pattern...peasant shirts (easily lenghtened for night gowns), cool goucho pants, shorts, and this skirt -- I made it a skort by sewing the included shorts pattern can see my blog entry on how to do that:

Anyway, my daughter loves this and I wonder how long you have to wait to wear Christmas clothes? Is the rule Thanksgiving?

Monday, November 10, 2008

Floral Corduroy Bishop

Made this ready to smock dress for a client -- for some reason I just love these sleeves with this fabric...adorable!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Smocked Ladybugs on a Teal blue Jumpsuit

I LOVE this outfit. I was asked by my friend to come up with a first birthday outfit for her daughter. Her party is themed ladybugs. She wanted a teal jumpsuit type of outfit so we did the hot pink & black ladybugs on it -- they are TOO CUTE aren't they?

I altered pattern simplicity 9967 by not doing sleeves or a collar so I had to get creative...I lined the bodice and made the neckline a little bigger, did the bottom of the legs a little different, but it all worked out. Now I hope it fits - if it doesn't we'll just have to make it fit somehow.

The smocking is from Little Memories "Bugs & Kisses". I of course, altered it a little doing beads instead of smocked black dots on the bugs and adding beads to the ends of the antenna...what do you think of the final product?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Two red Tshirts with Smocked Inserts

I am pretty excited about this new thing I tried - they go together rather quickly too if you have ready made piping --

These are ready to smock and the larger one belongs to me and the smaller one on the right to Debra at -- The piping wasn't quite the same color as the larger shirt so I used the white piping on it to match the insert. It definitely looks different, but I haven't decided which one looks better...

Also, here is a look at what the inside of the Tshirt looks like -- these will be great to sell as ready to smock because you have full access to the back of your work...

I'm too excited about my new skill!!!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Freestyle Apple Tart

Got this recipe from the website - yummy, quick and super easy!

1 ready-to-use refrigerated pie crust (1/2 of 15-oz. pkg.)
4 oz. (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) Cream Cheese, softened
3 red and/or green apples (1-1/4 lb.), thinly sliced
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp. flour
1 tsp. cinnamon sugar
1 cup thawed Whipped Topping

Make It:
HEAT oven to 450ºF. Line 9-inch pie plate with crust. Carefully spread cream cheese in 6-inch circle in center.
TOSS apples with sugar and flour; spoon over cream cheese. Fold crust partially over apples. Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar.
BAKE 25 min., covering loosely with foil for the last 5 min. Cool. Serve with COOL WHIP. Refrigerate leftovers.

Brown Striped Top

I made the striped top, the shirt underneath and the cord pants underneath are 'sigh' from the store.

This is a shortened mary de top that I smocked a geometric on so my older daughter will have a pretty fall outfit -- I can't wait for her to get home from school today to try it on -- I think the pants are a little too long for her -- but hey, she can maybe wear it next fall too!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

If at first you don't succeed

try, try again -- and it worked!

I had to apply the piping to the insert and then work it into the shirt -- isn't perfect, but I had to rip the whole thing apart to do redo it, and I think the shirt got a little stretched --
now to figure out how to address the raw edges on the time, I'll apply the piping to the insert, then surge the entire insert then put it in the shirt -- i think that will address any raw inside edges...
isn't this cool looking???

Monday, October 27, 2008

I'm human, I can mess up

Thought you'd like to see what I am working on right now...this is a Tshirt with a ready to smock panel, this is the first one i've tried to do so it looks BAD and I wanted to show you all that I mess stuff up! BAD! I think I have an idea of how to make it better next time...Maybe my next post will be prettier...not all puckered & wonky

They don't tell you how to put the piping in -- so i had to try the corners a couple of I know. Thank goodness this wasn't a pretty picture smocked panel and just a blank! I did get the bottom left corner to work so there is hope!

Our Pumpkins

The girls decorated pumpkins on their own at the Corn Maze this year ( and I think they turned out nicely...

Thursday, October 23, 2008

2 more bishops

I completed 2 more bishops for the green cord one is size 18 months and the red gingham is size 7 (I folded under the hem on this one that is why it looks a little short, right now it is about long enough for me!) -- What nice holiday fabrics!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Ready to Smock little Girl's Shirt

This is a size 2 ready to smock girl's shirt. Won't this be cute when it is smocked? This is for Debra at Palmetto Kids -- made two of these this week. The sleeves sure are easier to do on a girl shirt than a boy one! The only difference in the boy & girl shirts is the sleeve actually.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Wreath Bishop dress Finished

This one turned out exactly how I wanted it to look -- I am proud of these results! (Click the picture for an up close look)

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Susan's Wreaths - Smocked Bishop on Corduroy

This is a sneak preview of the bishop I'm smocking for a friend. She brought me this gorgeous light sage corduroy and wanted wreaths smocked for her size 2 granddaughter...I adapted the smocking plate a little (As usual!) and did beads and a bow -- the original smocking plate was Ellen McCarn's Holiday Greetings.
I should finish it tomorrow and I'll post the final shots before I pass it on to her.
This bottom right picture was just so you would see how a bishop dress looks after you smock it and before you finish it off...weird looking huh?

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Three Ready to Smock bishop dress

Finished these for Debra & Kim at

Can't wait to see how pretty they will be -- the red & green microcheck are size 6 with elastic sleeves...the red, green, and white plaid is size 12 mos...

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Ready to Smock Boys Shirt Size 3

This is a brother shirt to go with the brown bishop I posted yesterday -- it is a size 3 ready-to-smock boys dress shirt -- it has buttons down the back. It was made from the Chery Williams pattern called "Button-on Suit"
You'll have to click on the picture to see it more closely.

Another ready-to-smock bishop

I sure like making bishop dresses!

This are also for Haydebug Heirlooms at

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Cool Handmade Gift ideas site

Check out all this cool handmade stuff!

2 Ready to smock bishops

These are for Haydebug's Heirlooms at -- I can't wait to see the fall theme she smocks on them...isn't the orange on the arms a nice touch?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Our "little" Ridgeback Jumps Through a Hoop

I know this isn't a craft, but it took my time and talent to teach the dog to do this...Took about 10 minutes a day for a couple of days to train her...She'll do anything for a Milkbone! She won't do it every time and gets scared when her back legs bump the hulahoop -- that is why she runs off at the end of the clip -- funny girl!

Cinderella Smocked Mary De style dress

finally finished!

this is a "mary de" dress in a size 3-4 with added sash to tie in the back.

Smocking was derived from Tiny Nay's plate named Fairy Godmother.

Can't wait to see a pic of the sisters in their dresses!