Sunday, January 27, 2013

Road to California Quilt Show 2013

I had such a great Saturday that I'm going to share it all with you in photos.  By the way, does anybody else agree that the iPhone takes mediocre inside pictures?  I must find a tutorial to give me pointers...

My day began with breakfast with Debbie of A Quilter's Table.  What a major treat this was to meet her and hubby for breakfast and to share meal at the table. She was in town visiting family and when the opportunity to meet occurred we both jumped at the chance. Wonderful, just wonderful.  

After breakfast, Zina and I made our way to the Road to California 2013 Quilt Show to view the quilts, shop the vendor isles and do our usual talk, talk, talk.  Here are a few that stood out for me....

"Tropical Fantasia" by Michael Michalski from Brooklyn, NY.  

"Barnyard Boss" by Cindy D Burlingham from Calgary, AB Canada. Just love the little chicks!

"Chromatic Transitions" by Rachel Wetzler from St. Charles, IL.  This is just the center -  absolutely gorgeous applique.  
I hunted this one down especially for Becky from Solar Threads...well worth the search. This quilt was made by a friend/neighbor of Becky's.
"Spinner" by Marlene A Oddie from College Place, WA.  Absolutely striking  - the photo doesn't do it justice.  

"Grand Guard" by Linda C Anderson from La Mesa, CA.  Zina and I couldn't believe this was a quilt. 

"All Roads Lead to California" by Sharon Chaffino from Upland, CA.  This would be a perfect quilt for a 4th grade classroom which studies California History.  

"Sirena" by DeLoa Jones who is part of the faculty at RTC.  

Zina and I in front of a giant Route 66 Quilt exhibit.   
What could be more fun that meeting a fellow quilter who listens to my podcast and tweets with me on Twitter?  Zina and I had a fun meet up with Diane, otherwise known as @ddrquilter.  Super fun.  
Fun stuff I bought:  Hexagon Compass Quilt pattern, quilt themed note cards and inspiration for a boy baby quilt.  

Zina made me get on the Harley....
Lastly, I had to get a photo of the boys before my older son went to his first Winter Formal. Don't tell them I posted this....hehe. 

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday, 

Friday, January 25, 2013

It's Almost Here

If you are looking for my post about my History Quilter Podcast Episode 35 Indigo Quilts & A Podcast Anniversary Giveaway, please go here.  

Student teaching begins for me next Tuesday   It's real now - I've met my mentor teachers, seen the students I will be teaching, got my staff ID/parking pass/schedule, and have a teaching plan for my first week all set.

Now for freaking out Susan....
In four days everything changes.
Not an 10.0 on the Richter Scale (Southern California Earthquake talk) but maybe a 7.0 - enough to shake things up quite a bit but not cause serious permanent damage, but it will cause changes.  Big changes.

Believe me when I say that I do not think that for one minute what I am going through right now is that big of a deal in the big scheme of things, but it is real to me and because this is my own personal journal and wish to help others, I've decided to share with you what I'm feeling.

I'll be going to work every week day and I will have a schedule like a vast majority of the people around me.
I have to make my own lunch in the morning! I'll be interacting with other adults on a daily basis in a work environment and not just in a store!
Exciting, scary, nervous, anxious and sad.  Those are the feelings I harbor right now.
I want this so bad and need it with every cell in my body.
I want to teach.

Exciting to be finally embarking on this new chapter of my life. This is going to change me. My world is going to open up to something new, something that I think will change the course of my life.
Scary because I'm finally embarking on this new chapter of my life. Will I be good enough?
Nervous about classroom management - Thinking fast on my feet when anyone comes at me with a snarky comment is not a attribute I have.  Will have to learn smart, respectful and correct responses fast.
Anxious to begin - wish it was today to finally get the first day over with.
Sad to be ending a chapter of my life which I've loved.  The memories are unforgettable and precious.
I know I'll do good.  I know I'll be fine.
Just freaking out a bit.

Now back to quilting/food/history Susan...
I'm looking forward to Saturday as I'll be attending the Road to California Quilt Show with my friend Zina.  I should have photos and a recap here on Sunday.  Quilty goodness will be good for my soul.  Yay!

Enjoy your Friday,

Saturday, January 19, 2013

History Quilter Podcast Episode 35 Indigo Quilts & A Podcast Anniversary Giveaway

Yesterday amidst a very busy but enjoyable day, I carved out a bit of time and recorded my 35th podcast episode in honor of my 2nd year Podcast Anniversary.  Wow - two years!  If you are a listener, thank you for listening, commenting, thinking, and supporting me throughout this most gratifying endeavor in my life.

To thank my listeners for two years of support, I am hosting a giveaway that I announced in the podcast episode.  Now here is the fun part - only those who listen to the podcast and hear what they must comment on will be eligible for the giveaway.  I'm thinking of it as a "pay it forward giveaway" to my podcast listeners and honestly, a way for me to gauge how many core listeners I have.

Blog readers, are you intrigued as to what I'm giving away?  I'm giving away Two (2) Craftsy online classes worth $55.00 to one listener who comments about Episode 35.  
Two years = Two classes. 

Don't know what Craftsy is?  Visit the Wall Street Journal article dated Thursday, January e, 2013 here to learn more about the evolution of this online company which owes much of it's success to us quilters.  Yes, quilters!

To find my podcast please visit iTunes, Podbean, Stitcher Radio or listen directly from this blog with the Podbean box to the right.

My 2nd Podcast Anniversary will be open until I record the next podcast. Go listen and good luck!  

Be safe and have fun~

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

WIP Wednesday: Stars and an Anniversary

With so much swirling around on this WIP Wednesday I've made a list:

1. Lucky Stars BOM: December Practice Block - happy with my first attempt at paper piecing.
2.  Second Year Podcast Anniversary on Friday, January 18th, 2013.  I'll be recording a podcast that day and will be embedding a special giveaway clue in the recording.

3.  QST Pinwheel Label  and binding fabric for Sea Glass Quilt - must get basting to keep on track with my January 2013 January Lovely Year of Finishes goal.

4.  Parisian Star Block for my month of Modern Blocks Bee:  Now there are seven.

5.  Student Teaching Prep:  Writing syllabi, lesson plans and unit plans to get ready for start on 1/29/13.

I'm linking up with WIP Wednesday.

Don't forget to listen to my next podcast, Episode 35 (!) where I'll be talking about Indigo and the amazing range of blues created by dying fabric with it.

Happy Wednesday everyone!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

T@tT: ad hoc at home Buttermilk Fried Chicken

For my first recipe of working through the ad hoc at home cookbook by Thomas Keller, I decided to start (relatively) easy with something I've already made - Buttermilk Fried Chicken.  I've made various versions of Buttermilk Fried Chicken over the years with Alton Brown's being a personal favorite..until now.

Oh my goodness was this fried chicken delicious.  It was nothing like I had ever tried or made myself before.  The clear difference was the brine.  The brine included garlic, peppercorns, flat leaf parsley, honey (that was a surprise) and lemons. The brine ingredients are brought to a boil on the stove top then cooled completely before adding in the raw chicken pieces which then are to brine for 12 hours in the refrigerator. 

Chicken  Brine
After 12 hours in the brine, the chicken is drained, rinsed and dried.  I deviated from the recipe with my choice of chicken - instead of cutting up a chicken and frying all pieces, I used chicken breasts.  I'm such a wus when it comes to meat on bones.  After drying, the chicken pieces are dredged in a flour/spice mixture then dived into a buttermilk bath and then covered again with flour/spice mixture.

Then it's into the hot oil for about 10 minutes.

Once out of the hot oil and rested for about 5 minutes, the fried chicken is ready to eat. The double coating of flour/spice mixture makes all the difference for the amazing crunch this chicken has.  I would imagine if you are using chicken pieces with the skin on, it would be off the charts. Inside the chicken was so incredibly tender from the brine and had a definite lemon flavor which added depth to the chicken.  My older son kept singing the praises of this recipe.
Buttermilk Fried Chicken
I made biscuits to accompany the fried chicken for my boys - they love making little chicken biscuit sandwiches.  My younger son started making one and I said "Stop! Let me go get the camera!" as I was running down the hall....they were all laughing at me.  
Chicken Biscuit Sandwich
I'm linking up with Debbie's Tuesday at the Table feature.  Go check out her Mod Crosses - very cool! 

Although I began with a fairly easy (for me) recipe, I enjoyed the process that Chef Keller has the reader follow for his recipes and I learned a few things along the way.  His introduction prompted me to spend two hours cleaning and organizing my spice and baking pantry.  A job well worth my time.  As for fried chicken - a double coating is a must from now on....

Eat well and enjoy your Tuesday,

Monday, January 7, 2013

January: A Lovely Year of Finishes

For 2013 I am participating in Melissa of Sew Bittersweet Designs & Shanna's of Fiber of All Sorts  "A Lovely Year of Finishes" to help motivate me to not only to finish projects but to start them.  I have few WIP's so linking up is more of a starting motivator.  

This month I will finish the Sea Glass quilt that I made last year with Jenna's Sew. Happy. Quilt. QAL.  The top is done, batting and backing are cut and I made a tiny little mini QST Pinwheel block (my favorite from the quilt top) for the label.
Sea Glass quilt top 66" x 52" 

QST Pinwheel label 6" x 6"

This quilt top has been hanging in my closet for a few months so I had to iron it before I laid it out on the carpet - once I did my younger son remarked, "Oh you just keep cranking out quilts, don't you?"  I smiled.

Off to make an Ad Hoc meal~

Sunday, January 6, 2013

History Quilter Podcast Episode 34 Goodbye 2012

Happy Sunday everyone,

History Quilter Podcast Episode 34 Goodbye 2012 is now available on Podbean, iTunes and Stitcher Radio.

Here are links to the podcast episodes I spoke about:
This American Life "What Doesn't Kill You" Go here to listen on the TAL website. Act Two called Just Keep Breathing is so good.  Scary, gripping but good.

America's Test Kitchen "New Rule: A Calorie is Not a Calorie". Go here to download/listen in iTunes or here on the America's Test Kitchen Radio site.  This is a podcast (its free!) which has been airing for about an year now.  Consistently interesting, knowledgeable and worth my time.

I won Fat Quarterly Shape Workshop for Quilters published by Fat Quarterly from Jaye of  I'm especially interested in the star section for an upcoming quilt.   Thanks Jaye!

For the new year I've decided to participate in the Lucky Stars BOM from Elizabeth of Don't Call Me Betsy.

For the Lucky Stars BOM, I will be working with a an entire stack of Anna Maria Horner's Loulouthi prints that I've had around for a while waiting for the perfect project.

Hope you enjoyed the podcast episode.  I'm off to run around after a soccer ball....
Happy Sunday ~

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

T@tT: Cooking My Way Through A Cookbook

Starting next week I will be cooking my way through Thomas Keller's ad hoc at home   and will be sharing it with you here every Tuesday.  

ad hoc at home by Thomas Keller
 Not sure what I'll start with first: poultry, a gratin or apple fritters but what I am sure of is that by the end of 2013 I will be a better cook.  

Join me here every Tuesday as I share with you what I've made/learned and my link up with Debbie with her Tuesday at the Table Feature.  

Buon Appetito,