Friday, August 28, 2009

Artistic Photo Quilts by Charlotte Ziebarth

While Maxi Fortend is all about unfocused fun, I am finding I do need a bit of focus!  There are just too many fun things to do!  So,  I have seen folks do book reviews and I thought, yeah, that sounds like something I could do!  Hmmm, focus found! 

Here goes! C&T Publishing has many, many wonderful books and I just got this one in yesterday's delivery. 


Artistic Photo Quilts by Charlotte Ziebarth. 

I paged through it last night and as I was updating my blog, it is already giving me lots and lots of ideas on how to use the pics from this summer! I love photoshop and quilting, so how much greater can that get?

So my focus for the next week is to dig into this book and then post my results.  I'm kinda excited! 

Mom, ya better not blog this...


Now, I ask could I not?  Your 9 year old picks you a flower and you have a camera in your would be a crime!


My two cuties got a little play time in at the lodge this past weekend.  Oscar-boy has a tendency to take off wildly if he is not on a leash. (Wouldn't you?) A spur of the moment decision, I let him go and he ran with abandon up and down the field.  Max got into the act and soon, the dog was in the pond up to his chest.  Well, there's water there and I'm thirsty!  No pics of the wet, messy puppy....

My father-in-law put in wildflowers this spring and they are blooming!




Monday, August 17, 2009

Hexagon Piecing Madness!

My grandmother had a quilt that was made out of impossibley small hexagons - from the 30's?  I have seen lots around on the internet and tonight read Alicia's post about how she is having some fun!  I will make one of these someday...cause if Grandma can do it - I can do it!  All fo the quilts on this page are beautiful - but in particular, Cheryl P's and Joyce M's are fabulous!  Happy viewing! 

Yum, Yum, Double Yum!

If you are wondering about wanting a new cookbook for the fall - I must recommend The Lady & Sons, Too! and/or The Lady & Sons-Savannah Country Cookbook.  Both are by Paula Deen from the Food Network.  I have had these now, for probably 2 years and have made several of the recipes.

WARNING - these are not recipes for clean eating!  These are stick to your ribs, use real butter, sour cream, etc! 

I searched Food Network to save me some typing, but these recipes were not in there.  I made them for the first time tonight - thus the Double Yum! 

Easy Herb Rolls - Serves 6-8

One 12 oz package refrigerated buttermilk biscuits

1/2 cup melted butter

2 tbs (or to taste - I think I doubled...we love blue cheese!) blue cheese

2 tsp dried parsley

1 tsp of minced garlic, mined chives dried tarragon

1/2 tsp dried oregano & celery seeds

1 tbs onion flakes

Preheat oven 375 degrees.  Cut the biscuits into quarters.  On a greased baking sheet arrange the biscuit pieces into an 11 in long loaf.  I should resemble a loaf of french bread.  In a small bowl, stir together all of the rest of the ingredients.  Spread the herb ed butter over the loaf and bake for 18 to 20 minutes until golden.

Notes - I used onion powder - 1/2 tsp, cause no flakes and did not have tarragon either - still yummy!  I quartered the biscuits and then just kind of mooshed them together so there was peaks and valleys - the better to grab the great herb and butter sauce!  The outside edges did get done sooner, so I tore those off and popped the rest of it into the oven to finish getting golden.  Each little quarter pulls off into it's own bite.  You could totally have this bread with a great salad and it would be plenty filling! 

Recipe #2 - Chicken Breasts in Sour Cream Sauce - the most TENDER chicken breast I have ever made!!  Serves 4-6

8 slices of dried beef (in a jar)  You can find this in the same aisle as tuna in store,

8 skinless boneless chicken breast (7 oz) each.  I usually get the bags of breasts and they are HUGE - so cut those in 1/2.

4 slices of bacon or 1 slice per piece of chicken...

1 c sour cream

1 10 1/2 oz can of condensed cream of mushroom soup - I would actually get the low sodium, because the dried beef is salty...

2 cups of fresh mushrooms sliced.  (I like to coarsely chop these, so you really get good bites of mushroom)

Preheat the oven 300 degrees.  Lay one piece of dried beef on each chicken breast and wrap with 1/2 slice of bacon.  Place in a 13 x 9 casserole dish, seam side down.  Mix sour cream, soup and mushrooms together.  It will be thick, but the juices from the chicken will thin it down and make a great gravy!

Cover and bake for 1 1/2 hours - YEP, you need time with this one.  Serve with rice.

Well that does it for recipe sharing!  Paula Deen rocks!  We are trying to lose a bit of weight around here, but I just need to make a good dinner, especially with school starting in a bit.  Plus, gosh - I think I ate 1/4 of the breast and was totally full. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

First Art Quilt - It looks like koolaid spilt all over it.

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Originally uploaded by Maxi Fortend
Yes, those are the words out of my lovely husband. From the Max-boy, mommy it just looks too muddy, not crisp. No offense. LOL - well, who cares! My son, the ART CRITIC. It's done and you have to start somewhere! It was TOTALLY an experiment from start to finish, just took some fabric and started using plain markers, pens and water colors. Stitched it up when I saw a flower theme happening, got some hand quilting practice (it's been a decarde) and then added beading to it - again, to learn some techniques. I am going to make a photo album on facebook here in a bit, so there are more pics to see. It actually looks alot better when it's folded, so I am going to add some elastic and make it a journal cover. Max thought that was a great idea and thougtht I should name it "Kelly's Creative Art Quilts" in bubble letters, no less. Bubble letters are cool since he learned them last year in 3rd grade - that would save it!

Cool Quilt Designer and Great Giveaway!

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Go check out this wonderful blog and her great designs!  Being a fellow blogger, I get that the 200th post is a big deal! 

Sipiweski Quilt Designs Giveaway!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Let's go have a picnic!

When I was growing up, I lived across the street from acres of ponds, fields and forest. It's now a housing development, but I will never forget the sun beating down on me, the smell of the grass and the feel of the paper bag lunch I was carrying on my adventure! There used to be a farm house down by the ponds and it was burned up in a fire, all that remained was a big concrete block with stairs going up to it. Magical place it was! All sorts of imaginary stuff happened there! I would go with friends and sometimes just by myself. Where we are now, we do have some trails to explore, so off we went today Max and I. Max lasted about a 1/2 hour and then his butt fell asleep from sitting on the ground. I guess it's just not the same when your Mom goes with! :)

Monday, August 10, 2009

My Super-Pitcher Max & Daddy-Coach

JulyAug 09 pics 16825 I posted the pics finally to flickr, but I need to capture the super-cool, adrenaline pumping last inning of the 2009 Pony League Tourney!  Score is 6-4 and it's the last inning.  Max's swing was a bit off, so no hits for the boy.  Kids start to go to their positions and I notice Max is warming up with Scott to pitch.  I am like...uh oh...I want this season to end on a happy note...should he really pitch?  You have to understand that when Max pitches well, he pitches REALLY well.  When he is off, is he REALLY OFF.  So Scott comes in from the warm up and I ask him what's up and he says, I think he'll be ok, he was really throwing well.  I am on the EDGE of my seat.  BAM, strike one, BAM, strike two, BAM - strike 3!  Second hitter is now up, he strikes, second pitch, gets a grounder that Max catches and throws to first.  2 Outs!  Now the 3rd hitter is up!  REPEAT OF HITTER #1 - YEAH!!!!!  Was I ever screaming my head off.  THAT is the way to end the season!  Aren't they cute?  (Dad is a great coach, but can get a little wound up.  They worked almost every night for an hour this spring/summer on pitching, hitting, catching.)

Have you Swaptree'd Yet?

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Yes, I did talk about swaptree recently... (facebook?) Anyway - I have been using it now for a couple of weeks and whew!  Pretty cool!  I am a book-aholic.  Admitted and will not recover.  So, I went downstairs to the bookshelves and snagged some books I knew I would never read again and logged into my account on swaptree.  Right away it said I could swap for over 8000 items.  I scheduled some swaps and now I am routinely sending out 2-3 items a day.  I am starting to get items back and everything is going really well!  No surprises, good quality, fast delivery.  What's so cool is, no need to run to the post office, you can print a postage label right on the site.  I am guessing they make a little profit off that, but jeez - for the cost of one hard cover book, I am getting 11 things swapped.  They have music, video games, DVD's.  Go check it out if you have a pile of books and you never know what you could get! 

Serenity Weekend - July 2009

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Originally uploaded by Maxi Fortend
Doesn't just look peaceful? This is the view walking down to Marilee's dock. What a wonderful place and relaxing weekend. Myself, Marilee, Monique and Ann had some shopping fun at Bargain Bills, lots of great food, lots of great talks and got to hang with the Josie-puppy. Our pontoon rides were awesome too! Can't wait for next year - it's already on my calendar!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Rain & Green beans!

What a rainy few days we have had.  You would think then that I have gotten lots of projects done?  Ran out of floss for my first quilt binding, so we will be out and about today and will pick some up.  Did get my living room all moved around.  Max and I like it, Scott not so much, but he does not spend as much time in it as Max and I, so too bad, so sad, it's staying that way!  :)

In the brief time between rain showers, I was out checking on the garden while Oscar joined me and I found 3 cucumbers (1 is a snack for some little guy - little bits being eaten - kind of cute!) 5 little green beans (which I ate right there as I was searching for more) and lots and lots of little green tomatoes.  The plants are very strong and healthy, just need some heat to really get them going!  Note to self, next year you need to rabbit proof and not put the green beans behind the tomatoes - doh-doh bird! 

I have tons of pictures that need to come out of the camera - great girls weekend and I don't know what else is on to get another cup of coffee and make french toast for the boys.