Friday, August 31, 2012


What a day this has been!  

I'm not 100% sure at this point but there is every indication that my Windows Live email account has been compromised...or HACKED!  

Why can't the people who get their jollies from doing things like this GET A REAL LIFE???

I started having problems last night as I was answering your comments from my last post.  Every couple of minutes a pop up window would appear asking me to sign into my Live account.  I did a couple of times and then it just got to be so frustrating, I gave up and went to bed.  Then this morning, I could not sign into my account at all so it was obvious to me that someone found out and changed the password to my account and now I can't access it because I don't know the new one.  

After contacting Microsoft, I had to answer a gazillion questions to satisfy them that I am indeed the REAL owner of this account.  I am still waiting for their reply.

Having said that, I have created a new email account which follows...

If you received an email from me today from my old Windows Live account (, it was NOT from me but from the person who hacked my account.  

From this time forward, I will only be using my new gmail address.

If you would like to be added to my new contact list, please leave a comment at the end of this post as it will now be redirected to my new gmail account. Looks like I have to start all over again.  *sigh* 

I am NOT an evil person but I can assure you that if I ever find out who did this, I'd like to personally wring their neck...but not before I tell them to


Wednesday, August 29, 2012


There's a hint of Fall in the air this morning.  We got some much needed rain yesterday and as it cleared overnight, we were gifted with cooler, drier air.  

What a great night for sleeping!

Mr. Painted Quilt and I have been sharing in the Ollie sitting and training duties which has allowed me some free time to work in my sewing studio.  I was able to complete the fifth block of the Comfort & Joy quilt hosted by Anne at Cottons 'N Wool and am currently working on September's First Friday Freebie.

My appliqued blocks are done in wool-on-cotton and I'm using mostly homespuns for the piecing.

If you'd like to see the blocks that the other gals have done, be sure to visit Anne's blog by clicking on the link above and then on the names within the post.  It's fun to see all the different versions and interpretations of the same design.

At yesterday's hooking group, my friend Diane brought in some zucchinis from her garden to share with us all.

I took two home and made these zucchini loaves last night. 

Ollie kept me company as I did the prep work, sleeping at my feet just in case I needed some help...or in case I dropped something.

Here's the recipe...

Zucchini Bread

3 C flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
3 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs
1 C vegetable oil
2 1/4 C white sugar
3 tsp vanilla extract
2 C shredded zucchini
1 C chopped walnuts (optional)
1 C raisins (optional)

1. Grease and flour 2-8" x 4" loaf pans.  Preheat oven to 325 F.

2. Sift flour, salt, baking powder, soda and cinnamon together in a bowl.

3. Beat eggs, oil, vanilla and sugar together in a large bowl.  Add sifted dry ingredients to the creamed mixture and beat well.  Stir in zucchini, nuts and raisins until well combined.  Pour batter into prepared pans.

4.  Bake for 40-60 minutes or until tester in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes then remove from pans and cool.

Yesterday we picked the first crop of tomatoes from our kitchen garden.  In spite of the very hot and dry summer, we're pleased with the yield and there promises to be lots more.

I envision many salads, grilled cheese and tomato sandwiches and baked tomatoes in our upcoming meals.

Ollie is continuing to grow by leaps and bounds and he's not doing too badly for an eleven week old pup.  Of course some days are better than others and I have to keep reminding myself that he is still a baby.  Just one look at that face and all is forgiven.

Honest, wasn't me.  Frankie did it!
Have a super day!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Busy Hands

Although the temperatures still remain high, we did get some much needed rain recently which thankfully seemed to break the high humidity.

Ollie went for his second set of puppy shots yesterday and we were so proud of him.  He took the injection like a little man, as well as all the pokes and prod-dings by the Vet.  I was holding him while he was being examined and although he did seem to tremble at times, he wasn't the least bit fidgety which really surprised us for a ten week old pup.  He got a clean bill of health and will return next month for his third and final puppy shots.  

He weighs a whopping 5.9 pounds now!  It will be three weeks on Saturday since he's come home and we've noticed a significant change in his size during that time.  

Here he is just a few minutes ago.  Do you think he has enough toys to keep him occupied?

You mean I have to share my toys with Frankie?
How many dogs do you know that get mail?  Ollie did.

This afternoon our mail lady dropped off a package addressed to Ollie from his Auntie Ter'e in Florida.

Inside we found a slew of toys for Ollie and even a catnip mouse for Frankie.  

Thanks Auntie Ter'e!  We love them all!

So while Ollie plays and naps, I try to keep my hands busy.  I finished the second stitchery design from Brownyn Hayes' Wishes quilt which you can read about here.

In addition, I was able to prep the last five blocks for the Comfort & Joy quilt along.  I'm doing mine in wool-on-cotton which is a technique I love.

I'm currently working on the gingerbread men block...while Ollie sitting, of course.

Although I'm not spending a lot of time at my sewing machine, I feel as though I am getting a lot accomplished.  

Ollie sitting isn't such a bad job after all!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Ollie Sitting Projects

One of the many good things about having a new puppy to train is the time you spend with them.  Their attention span is so short and as they move from one toy to another, they tire themselves out very quickly...which is not a bad thing!

I'm trying to learn as quickly as I can...honest!

I've managed to get quite a bit accomplished during his little siestas.

This month's block for the Comfort & Joy quilt along is now finished with plenty of time to spare which I'm thrilled about.  After lagging behind for a couple of months, I am not only up-to-date but I'm ahead of schedule!  But you'll have to wait until the end of the month to see it because those of us who are participating all reveal the current month's block on the same day.

One thing that I can share with you is I think one of the best kept secrets in blogland...or at least in the Northern Hemisphere!  

My friend Julie from OZ (used to have a blog but doesn't any longer) knows my taste so well that when she found out about this free Christmas quilt called The Wish Quilt, she just had to share it with me.

Australian designer Brownyn Hayes of The Red Brolly has just recently released the first four blocks of a quilt that she designed a couple of years back. The patterns were published in several consecutive issues of one of the down under magazines back in 2008.  I didn't ask Brownyn's permission to copy and paste the photo of the finished quit from her blog so rather than possibly violate copyright issues, you can view it here.

Bronwyn has released the first four stitchery patterns in PDF format which can be downloaded from her blog.  You'll have to scroll back several posts to find them all but you can't miss them.

If you like piecing, redwork, stitching and applique, then this will be right up your it is mine!

Just this morning, I completed my first stitchery while Ollie sitting.  Isn't it darling?  I love her designs!  

I didn't have enough of a variety of reds and tans in my stash in order to complete the quilt so I just had to buy a bunch of quarter yard cuts which I think will be perfect for the project.  *wink*

I prepped all four stitcheries at the same time so now that the first one is done, I'm ready to move on to the next.  Guess what I'll be doing once I'm finished here...if Ollie is still snoozing, i.e.?

Think I'll start on "Home Is Where The Heart Is" next.

And just this morning, look what I found in my mail box!

My friend Mieke from Holland (no blog) sent me this wonderful Ollie dog fabric! 

I can see a pillow or perhaps a bag to hold all his toys...or a future project(s).  Thanks for thinking about us, Mieke.

So you see, having a puppy is not all hard work.  We humans can have our play time too!

Friday, August 10, 2012

First Friday Freebie - A week late!

Here it is First Friday Freebie for the month of August!

It has been such a hot, dry summer and since we turned the calendar over to August, I find myself dreaming about and yearning for the cooler, Fall weather.  

It was these thoughts that inspired me to come up with this month's design, 

"Think Fall!"

With the arrival of our new puppy, my sewing/stitching time has been reduced to an almost standstill.  In addition, I am still in the very early stages of learning how to use my new Mac, specifically how to create a document.  Just a few minutes ago I was able to complete my first PDF file which of course was this month's FFF design which you can find HERE

Although the actual stitching of the design is done, my final project has not been completed.  I also made a second project using the raw edge applique method but that too remains unfinished.  *sigh*

As soon as time permits, I will be making pillows out of both my versions but you may have other ideas as to how to finish yours.  Some suggestions might include a wall hanging or a mini quilt.  I might even consider framing the appliqued one.  

For those of you that hook and would like to use this design to hook a mat, you certainly have my permission to do so.
Have fun and enjoy!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Ollie Days

Things have been busy around here.  Our daily routine has changed dramatically since Ollie's arrival.  It's been fifteen years since we last had to train a puppy and I must admit, I'd forgotten how time consuming it can be.

Aren't I just so cute?
Mr. Painted Quilt and I are both amazed at how well things are going.  Ollie has fit into our family seamlessly and it appears as though he doesn't miss his brothers and sisters at all.

Frankie and Ollie are getting on famously.  They went from this...

"You stay right there, Ollie where I can keep an eye on you."
to this. 

They might appear to be fighting but they're actually playing.  Frankie is really gentle with him but can only tolerate the 'abuse' for little bits at a time before heading for higher ground.

Round 1.  Take it easy boys.
Ollie is only eight weeks old and we're amazed at his progress.  Potty training is going really well.  When we take him outside, he knows why he's there.    

He's had a few accidents and they happened right at the back door which is where we take him outside and didn't notice his signal.  He just hasn't figured out how to ask as yet.

During the summer months, our local farmers' market is also open on Wednesdays.  I needed a few things so Mr. PQ, Ollie and I decided to head off and do a little shopping.

I picked up some home made bread, cherry and beefsteak tomatoes, wild blueberries, blackberries and green onions.  I can't wait until our own tomatoes are ripe enough to pick!

Last weekend we purchased some local peaches with the intent of eating some and using the rest to make a peach pie.  Even though it was another hot and humid day, I bit the bullet and decided that I'd better use up the rest today before they got too soft.

Here is tonight's dessert and the easy-peasy recipe follows.

It tastes like peach cobbler in a pie crust and is soooooo good!

Peach Pie

1/4 lb butter
1 C granulated suger
1/3 C flour

10 peeled and sliced peaches

2 - 9" pie crusts

Line a 9" pie plate with one of the pie crusts and cover the bottom with about half the peaches.

In a separate bowl, stir the flour and sugar together to combine.  Add the butter and cut it into the mixture until it looks crumbly.

Top the first layer of peaches with half the mixture and repeat this step second time until all the peaches and crumbly mixture are gone.

Fold the edges of the bottom crust under, just enough to frame the outside edge of the pie plate.

I decided to make a lattice top and to do this take your second pastry crust, roll it out and cut it into strips. 

Weave the lattice strips over the filling and trim the excess.  Press onto the bottom crust to seal.

Bake at 350F for about 45 minutes or until the crust turns brown and the fruit is bubbling around the edges.  Serve cold with vanilla ice cream.

Easy, huh?

The entire time I was making the pie, Ollie kept me company, sleeping on my foot.

Betty, Bea, Rue and Estelle are really making themselves at home around our property these days.  I wanted "free range" hens and that's what I've got!  

Here's their favorite my rose garden!

Mmmmmm...delicious bugs...and the roses smell good too!
Be careful what you wish for!

It goes without saying that I've had no time at all to spend in my studio.  Puppy training is a full time job and I wouldn't trade it for the world where Ollie is concerned.  

Mr. PQ said that he would Ollie-sit for a few hours tomorrow so that I can prep some hand work to do at the kitchen table while keeping an eye on our little guy.


Saturday, August 4, 2012

Home At Last!

Here he is...Ollie is finally home!

"Hi guys!  It's me, Ollie."

Originally we were supposed to pick him up on Wednesday but the breeder asked if we could postpone it until today because of having to make three trips on consecutive days to bring some of his brothers and sisters to the airport to be flown to their new homes.

So to help ease the disappointment...*wink*...I went out and purchased a new Mac computer and have been spending the last two days trying to find my way around and work through the differences between it and my old PC.  This is my first attempt at a blog post using Blogger which I haven't used in almost three years...hence the difference in appearance to my post.  I had been using Windows Live Writer which of course is not compatible with a Mac.

"I've never had a mouse to play with.  Thanks, Frankie!"
Back to Ollie.

The breeder asked us if we had a preference as to the sex and disposition of our new puppy.  We asked for a male with a laid back disposition and that's exactly what we got.  When we met Ollie a couple of weeks back, he was perfect then and is even more so now.

Frankie was sitting in the window to greet us as soon as we pulled into the driveway.  Ollie was very indifferent when he met Frankie and I honestly believe that Frankie was happy to meet him.  I thought that there might have been a few hisses and spits but nothing other than a few "welcome" sniffs and that was it.  

Mr. Painted Quilt always said that Frankie missed Mac and now I believe him.

"I'm so hungry I could eat a horse!"

Mac's old food dish was too tall for him so I had to put his food in a little saucer.  He ate just a bit but we're happy that he ate at all which is a good indication that he's not too upset with the HUGE changes that have just taken place in his life. 

Right now he's asleep on the floor with his head resting on my foot.  I can't tell you what a cutie he is and how he has us wrapped around his little paw already!

Our house is a home once again!

My sincere apologies for missing this month's First Friday Freebie.  

I have to figure out how to publish the project on my Mac and I still haven't been able to as yet. As soon as I do, you'll be able to find it here...hopefully sometime this week.

And finally, thank you all so much for your emails wondering where I/we had disappeared to.  Now you know the rest of the story.  *wink*