Friday, October 7, 2016

Closure on a swap, a test, and a quest

I participated in Randy's (barristersblock blog) pincushion swap and I received mine today. I was gobsmacked! Look at this beauty made by Kevin (kevinthequilter blog! And the back is a gorgeous solid cheddar. The photo doesn't begin to do it justice!
Kevin had emailed and asked me about my favorite colors, etc. I told him I loved CW repros and purple was my favorite color. I liked to combine it with gold/cheddar, and I would often throw some black in, too. He already seemed to know that I dabble in minis.
Did he nail it or what? I couldn't be more thrilled! It has taken up residence right by my sewing machine and has already been put to use. Makes me smile every time I see it. : )
This brings closure to my first ever group swap, and it was a grand success on my end of things. I hope the one I sent has been received.

My fusible test turned out to be a much bigger venture than I had anticipated. Rather than bore you with a long, wordy post here, I placed it as a tab under my header. If you are interested in the results, you can read it on the "Fusible Review" tab.


I will share with you all of the projects that came about as I tested the fusibles.

 This little piece is a "Front Porch Quilts" design.









 
                                                                                        It finishes at about 3"x7".





One of the Buttermilk Basin "Banners Through The Year" series. The pattern recommended an orange border, and I love orange. But when I was auditioning fabrics, this older Sandy Gervais print just begged to be chosen.






















This is another Buttermilk Basin pattern. It will be a pillow for bowl filling. It is smaller than it looks. : )

















Another Buttermilk Basin design that will be another little bowl filler pillow.  






I have three of the four blocks stitched down on this Buttermilk Basin pattern. (Can you tell I have taken a few classes from Stacy? I sure have a stash of her patterns!)

I saved the most involved block of this pattern for last. Don't know if that was the smartest move I could have made. I'm really hoping to have this ready for the holiday next month. 






This is an adaptation of a pattern by Bird in The Hand Primitives. I wanted something that would fit on this piece of wool, so I consolidated it a bit. There isn't any stitching on this yet, but I believe it will really come to life when that is completed.

As for closure on a quest, some of you know that over 1 1/2 years ago I was diagnosed with celiac disease. This was quite a blow. I loved to bake.

My first attempts at gluten free baking were dismal. I lost my baking mojo and for months at a time I would do no baking. Gradually I started to assemble a very small arsenal of recipes that were tolerable, but as someone who used to volunteer to provide baked goods whenever they were needed, I now avoided having to share the gritty, starchy products from my kitchen. Oh, to have a really good chocolate chip cookie again!
This is a shelf in my fridge.
Well, I have accepted Nancy's challenge to spend 80  minutes a week learning a new skill or working on a goal. I have gathered my courage and my gluten free flours and tackled a few recipes that have been taunting me, and I finally did it!!! 
I have finally made a gluten free chocolate chip cookie that doesn't taste like it is gluten free! No gritty texture, no starchy aftertaste, and it is soft and chewy, like a chocolate chip cookie should be!
 

I was elated! I finally had to freeze the rest of them because I was going to consume the whole batch if I didn't. It had been almost two years since I'd had a good chocolate chip cookie. 

And on that sweet note, I will close--
Until next time,
Janet O.


43 comments:

  1. Janet, I am loving all your woolie projects!! I am not having too much luck with the gluten free stuff either...glad your cookies were yummy!

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  2. Oh my friend! Your little wool projects are nearly as scrumptious as your cookies! So glad you have your mojo back! And that pincushion is wonderful! What fun! And I'm sure the one you sent is absolutely perfect in every way!

    Blessings and hugs!

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  3. Your wooly projects are wonderful as always. I'll be heading over to look at your fusible results in a bit. I've had to find a few gluten-free recipes in recent months as several people in our church need gluten-free, and we have at least one pot-luck dinner each month.
    Your pincushion from Kevin is lovely, and I'm sure yours will be equally well received.

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  4. As I wrote to Randy, this swap is a real success and Kevin's pincushion is sooo sweet !
    I love love love your wool projects, that's a fact ! :))
    And I hope your cookies were delicious ! They had a yummy appearance !

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  5. Will you be sharing your cookie recipe? As much as I love your quilts, I have a daughter AND a DIL that are gluten intolerant borderline Celiac. I would love to surprise them with yummy cookies.

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  6. Wow! Kevin has outdone himself in the "tiny" pieces department. That is simply beautiful! I will take some time later tonight to check out your "fusible" discoveries. Thanks for taking the time to share your results with us!

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  7. As always your little ones are beautiful. Kevin's pin cushion is perfect for your collection.

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  8. Great post, Janet! Love your swap pincushion Kevin made for you, beautiful color combinations my favorite!

    All your other projects are wonderful too. So do the cookies, Yummmmm! Hug's, Carolyn

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  9. What a great pin cushion from Kevin! And look at all of the wool projects - so much fun! Hallelujah on the cookie recipe! Glad you found something that works for you.

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  10. Yay for a proper chocolate chip cookie! It would be really tough to not be able to bake. I'm glad you're finding ways to make it work. Your little minis are very cute and are putting me in the right mood as the weather cools down and the leaves start to turn. I'm off to check out your musings on fusibles.

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  11. What a wonderful pin cusion! I love all your woolly projects and plan on checking out your test!

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  12. Lordy! I was gob smacked too!!! What a beautiful pincushion and the colors are wonderful!! Your wool projects are wonderful. Bummer on having to give up gluten. Are you doing much better with your diet change physically?

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  13. Lovely projects and yes, a wonderful pin cushion! What a great swap!
    Thank you again for the great fusible review!

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  14. YEAH on the chocolate chip cookie recipe. I'm so happy you can now satisfy your sweet tooth and NOT get sick!!
    And Kevin's pin cushion is fabulous. I could see why you'd smile every time you stuck a pin in there at your sewing machine! Thank you again for participating!!

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  15. Kevin the Quilter''s pincushion is over the top!! What a treasure to have next to your sewing station...
    Seeing all your mini's really makes a Fall statement and happy your gluten free cookies are a success. I love to bake too & the two side effects I get are extra pounds & a blood pressure rise...I remember seeing loaves of bread that were salt free - beautifully risen but totally tasteless ...I fear my future lies there....

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  16. Congrats on perfecting your cookie recipe - a good choco chip cookie can solve a lot of the world's problems :) I think you need to get some kind of quantity discount for all the BB patterns. If I hadn't read the post I would have expected that gorgeous pincushion to be of your making - Kevin definitely nailed it!

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  17. The pincushions seem like it was a very successful swap. Perfect repro colors for you. The little woolies are sweet for the season. You did those so quickly. I'll take some time and read all about your fusible test.

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  18. Love your pincushion, that is a sweet pattern Kevin has used. Good news about the baking. I have a few friends with this disease and it is such a restriction on eating at social gatherings. My friend tells me that I have to add more fluid with the GF flour, but I havent really done much baking because I am afraid of cross contamination.

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  19. Look ... you know I love wool and how much I love your projects and the pincushion is darling (he really did a "you" pincushion!) ... but let's just skip right to THE most important aspect of this post and bless-my-soul, I'm SO happy that you have finally found a GF chocolate chip cookie recipe that delivers! I felt tears of gladness well in my eyes (I've been extremely emo here in the recent past) for you! ENJOY! Was it the recipe, the ingredients, or the combination? Maybe there's more baking in your near future now?!?! :)

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  20. Wonderful post!! Hey, may I try one of those cookies?? :-))

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  21. Oh, yeah, and I love, love love your pincushion!! Next time I come to visit, don't be surprised if it goes missing!! ;-0

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  22. I am just in love with all of these small projects. I really like the bowl fillers. In your last post, is the Kim Diehl piece appliquéd to cotton, flannel or wool? I've just finished reading your fusible comparison post, and it's very helpful. The pincushion Kevin made is just great. It looks like one that you would have made for yourself.

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  23. Janet! What an honor it was making the pin cushion for you! And, I am delighted at your reaction and that you like it! May it provide you with happiness, just as you provide us happiness and inspiration with your posts!

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  24. Well.....wool, fusibles, gluten-free cooking, and yes even pin cushions are all things I have little or no experience with, but I surely did enjoy seeing and reading all about them. I'd even volunteer to test the cookies .... yum, yum!! ---"Love"

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  25. The pincushion is beautiful, the cookies look delicious and seeing your wool appliqué gives me motivation. Enjoyed reading about the fusibles am going to try using them

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  26. I understand about the baking. Becoming gluten intolerant was a big blow to me. I have found that the America's Test Kitchen GF cookbooks are wonderful resources for recipes. I feed these to my family all of the time without any complaints. Most of the time, they don't even realize that they are GF.

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  27. I would say Kevin more than nailed it. The pincushion is so YOU! it is absolutely delightful.
    I love seeing all your fall woolly projects. That little box of fall goodness is a great display.
    Your Thanksgiving piece is charming too.
    Congrats on finding a good cookie recipe!
    off to check out your test.

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  28. Lucky you--that pincushion is so sweet! I quilt baking when my hubby was diagnosed with diabetes, but it's seems to get more difficult to stay away from baking this time of year. I'm glad you found something you like--I'm sure it's a hard condition to live with--gluten seems to be in everything! Love all your adorable projects--they are all wonderful!

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  29. So many goodies in this post (and I haven't even checked the links yet)! COngrats on the success with chocolate chip cookies! They are always a favorite and seem to be the perfect bit of sweet happiness! All of your stitches are beautiful... that little pumpkins 10 cents pillow is a must stitch! Your pinkeep from Kevin the quilter is gorgeous...perfect blend of purples and cheddars! :-) Now to go read the fusible info... and check out the 80 minute a week challenge... sounds interesting! Have a beautiful weekend!

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  30. Awesome pincushion! A few tricks to GF baking is to let your batter sit a bit when working with rice flour and to always use more then one type of flour. My favorite is to mix rice flour and almond flour. In fact a 1/4 of almond flour subbed for other flour in most gf recipes will work and will produce a more tender crumb to baked goods. Occasionally you can also reduce other fats in the recipe. My favorite chocolate chip recipe so far is from meaningfuleats.com, almond flour chocolate chip cookies.

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  31. I really LOVE your pincushion!!! I haven't received mine yet, so I am anxiously awaiting it. Of course, I love your wool appliqué projects as well. They will be wonderful accents to your decor! I'm very happy that you were able to figure out how to make chocolate chip cookies that tasted normal. I've been experimenting with some alternate flours, not because of any gluten intolerance but to possibly loose some weight. Some are OK and others don't turn out at all. Enjoy your weekend!

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  32. I think the "Give Thanks" is going to be my favorite of your projects. Good November display item.
    I agree with your choice of the Sandy Gervais polka dot border. I think I had some of that fabric which got used for witches projects.

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  33. oh janet....wonderful about the cookie recipe...there really is NOTHING like a good choc chip cookie...and i love your pincushion too!

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  34. I love your new pincushion. What a nice surprise that must have been!

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  35. Those cookies are looking so nice ♥

    summerdaisycottage.blogspot.com

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  36. Your wool applique blocks are delightful. That little turkey with the colored tail feathers is adorable. I know you've said you don't applique but... isn't this applique? Congratulations on finding a good gluten-free chocolate chip cookie recipe. It would be a sore trial (to me) not to have chocolate chip cookies.
    --Nancy. (ndmessier @ aol.com, joyforgrace.blogspot.com)

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  37. Congratulations on your success in the the kitchen and on your sewing! Kevin's pincushion is perfect for you. I love your several pumpkin projects and can't wait until you embroider viney tendrils onto that one that is in progress. It will be like Cinderella.

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  38. I haven't tried America's Test Kitchen gluten free recipes but I can vouch for the excellence in their other recipes. I understand they have created a blend of flours that give you similar results of using wheat flour. Might be worth a try for someone who loves to bake. Love all your experimentation projects. I intend to read your test results so thanks for doing all that work.

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  39. SEW glad you had a successful swap with Kevin giving you a cute cushion. It is really nice. I am happy you found something good to make with your gluten free recipes. I would DIE if I had to give up my Cookies, Breads and Gluten stuff. Everything is better with Chocolate. Yes, I think you like the wool projects a lot! I didn't see this posting earlier this week. It's been a little BUSY around here. Sorry to be late to comment.

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  40. Like I mentioned before, I am so happy for you to have found a recipe you like!
    I'm impressed with Kevin's pincushion...and so nice that he did some homework and found out your preferences.
    I love all the little fallish wool projects, especially the smallest one :)

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  41. Oh, that pincushion is wonderful! Well done, Kevin! I'm off to look at that Front Porch Quilts pumpkin pattern. That looks like a good first wool project. I'd love to make it for my boss. They always raise giant pumpkins for the fair. I can only imagine how good those cookies tasted! Would you please share the recipe? I made the recipe you shared with me...my coworker loved it! Thank you!

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  42. Gosh, I've been absent from blogland haven't I? Well done on your successful baking venture- so glad you hae made something you have been able to enjoy!! I love your little woolie projects and look forward to visiting your tab about using the fusible :-)

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  43. PS FOrgot to say wow!! Your new pincushion is gorgeous!!!!

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