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Monday, November 29, 2010

Hi Everyone!

Back from 4 days off enjoying the Thanksgiving Holiday.  Hope everyone had a nice holiday and had their fill of good things to eat! 

Remember when I said that I try to get all my projects done before December 1st so I don't put any pressure on myself?  Well, good intentions...I know that it's not quite December 1st but it sure is getting close and I won't be done my Christmas projects done before then!  Nicole from Sister's Choice inspired me to make some zipper bags.  She made it look so easy with her tutorial that I thought...I can do that!  So, I did!  Her tutorial is awesome and it was really easy!  The zippers come in a variety of colors, as you can see by Nicole's blog.  Fun, fun!  Meanwhile, I can't show you any of them because they are Christmas gifts and the recipients may see them!  Check out Nicole's blog, she has some really cute ones on there.  I buzzed up to Life's a Stitch in Janesville, WI for the zippers and pattern.  They carry all the colors of zipper and several of the bag patterns. 

Meanwhile, this past weekend, I had the honor of being invited to one of my best friend, Kathy's, son and future daughter-in-law's engagement party.  They are having a destination wedding and so we celebrated this weekend.  Her son and his finance are both wonderful and it was a joy to be invited.  Here is a picture of my beautiful friend, Kathy with my sweet Tillie.  Isn't Tillie getting huge?!

December for my quilt business is pretty quiet and it gives me some time to rejuvinate and enjoy the holidays.  January, I start up again and have 2 lectures as well as teaching at a retreat for Patches & Prints in Oakbrook, IL.  I will be teaching Across the Ocean out of Olde World Style.  It is a fat quarter quilt and alot of fun to make.  Hope to see you there!  For more information, contact patchesprints@aol.com

If you subscribe to Quiltmaker, hopefully, you noticed that I have a quilt featured in the magazine.  It is Ballyseede and pictured below.  It is inspired by Sue's and my trip to Ireland.  We stayed in a castle named, Ballyseede and this design was made from tile in the entryway.  It is a beautiful reminder of our trip.  www.bundlesandbolts.com are offering kits and we have the magazine in stock.  Order yours while supplies last!  Also, on their blog, Quiltmaker will be doing a feature on the quilt, our trip and how the quilt came to be designed.  Stay tuned for details for the blog dates. 


Thanks for stopping by!

12:39 pm est          Comments

Monday, November 22, 2010

Pattern Winner

Hi Everyone!

I wanted everyone to know who the pattern winner is so here is a quick post.  It is:

Sandy K. said...

I never even knew that you could make homemade marshmallows...thanks so much for sharing. Also the cute table topper...thank you.

16 Nov 10 @ 12:14 PM

Sandy, congratulations and please contact me at info@opengatequilts.com so I can get your full name and address to send your prize. 

Thanks to all who posted comments! 

This weekend, I taught at Life's a Stitch quilt shop in Janesville, WI.  We had so much fun and Pat, the owner of the shop is just a doll!  We had a pot-luck for lunch and had some wonderful food to munch on.  I taught, Wine & Cheese and several of my students used the kit from our website www.bundlesandbolts.com.  Pat was gracious enough to let us sell some kits because she doesn't carry Olde World Style.  So, if you are interested in a kit, we have some on our website.  Here are some of the picture of the girls sewing and showing their blocks.

LeAnne & me

Yes, that's Sue behind the block and new friend, Penny

It's Thanksgiving this weekend and although Canadian Thanksgiving is celebrated in October, I still love to celebrate.  It is a fun time of year with the gathering of friends and family.  Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!

Tillie is getting so big!  She is growing like crazy and we still love her to bits.  We are in the process of training her outside and she does well except for a few mishaps.  She loves to be outside and run.  Sometimes, she doesn't want to come in but always comes running for a treat.  Like the vet said, it is so much easier to train a dog that is food oriented.  Must be like me!!


This weekend I worked on some Christmas gifts.  I sewed a couple of Olde World Bags.  This is the bag that my mom designed.  You can download it on the side bar.  It is really cute and of course I had to use my fabric, Olde World Style.  Here is some step by step pictures to help you guys. 





See you later in the week.  Thanks for dropping by!

11:00 am est          Comments

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Mistletoe Make & Bake - Day 6
Oh, sad day...last day of the Mistletoe Make & Bake.  I am relatively new to blogging and this is only my second blog hop that I have participated in.  My first one was last week...when I get into something, boy, do I!  Anyway, I have been thoroughly enjoying this blog hop.  It has been so much fun reading your comments and sharing your traditions and tips.  Thank you so much for participating in this with me!

I promised that I would give you another Canadian recipe.  It is Butter Tarts.  You get a bonus recipe because you need to make pastry for the tart part of the Butter Tarts.  This recipe is from my grandma, Nanny Myrt and is a wonderful pastry dough recipe and yes, it is lard that we use! You can always use the frozen pastry dough.   Anyway, if you don't like raisins, you can use pecans and call them Pecan Tarts.  Either way, these tarts are delicious.  The Butter Tarts recipe is from my sister-in-law, Tina.  Enjoy!



Question for the day:  Cookie Exchange tip.  Well, like cocktail parties I don't do many cookie exchanges.  If I remember correctly, the last one was around 10 years ago.  I like to do them but it seems like people are so busy these days.  OK, here is my tip.  Take the time to do these kinds of things, participate in a cookie exchange, bake with a family member or friend, meet friends for dinner or a cup of coffee to stop and enjoy the holidays. 

Don't forget to go to the last 2 designers on our blog hop:

Melisa Morrison of Sweet Home Quilt Co .
Vickie Cook Eapen of
Spun Sugar Quilts

I will be announcing my 4 pattern giveaway winner on Monday.  Make sure that you come by to see.  Also, the grand prize winner will be announced some time next week and I will post it as soon as I receive it. 

Thank you so much for coming to our hop and hope you come by again to visit my blog. 

7:48 am est          Comments

Friday, November 19, 2010

Mistletoe Make & Bake - Day 5
Welcome everybody!  The good news is that it's Friday, the bad news is that there is only one more day for the Mistletoe Make & Bake.  Make sure that you check everyone's blog out to get all the recipes and the projects.

My recipe for the day is homemade peanut brittle.  This is another one of my favorite recipes.  You can download it on the left.  You will need a candy thermometer to make this recipe.  It's worth the extra effort.  Enjoy!


The question for the day is:  A holiday tradition that has to be done, not matter what.  I don't know if you could tell by my previous blogs, but I love my traditions!  There are so many traditions that need to be followed, no matter what. 

First, when I'm with my brother and his family, we have to watch the movie Elf.  If you have never seen it, you need to!  It is the funniest, sweetest Christmas movie.  Will Farrell is wonderful comedian and is so great in this movie.  Must see!

Second, baking with my dad and Blaire, my niece.

Third, Holly, my other niece, and I make breakfast casseroles for Christmas eve morning.  So...Blaire and I bake and Holly and I make breakfast casseroles.

Fourth, there is a place in Winnipeg, called the Forks.  It is where the Red and the Assiniboine river meet and it is close to downtown.  It is a little gift shop/gourmet food area and they have ice skating in the center between the buildings.  My brother, my nieces and I go there, sit and have a hot chocolate and enjoy the day.  It is one of those things that has become a tradition that I look forward to every year.  Family time. 

There are so many more but I think that traditions are what help make the holidays special.  So, if you don't have any, spend some time with your family, friends or both and make some.  It can be as simple as the ones I told you above.  Take the time to enjoy the little things, that's what traditions are about!

The blog hoppers for today are:
Roseann Kermes of Rosebud's Cottage
Brenda Riddle of From Little Acorns

Leave comments on all our blogs and you will be entered for the grand prize and remember, I will be drawing for my giveaway which is 4 patterns.  Post a comment to be entered in the drawing.  I will draw for the winner and announce on Monday morning.  Please come back Monday to see if you have won.   

So, I can't resist putting more pictures of Tillie on my blog.  She is as cute as ever and I love to brag!  She's also pretty smart.  A lot of people say that OES's aren't smart but they haven't met Tillie yet!  She is a determined little dog and knows just how to get what she wants.  Here she is looking innocent and cute!


See you tomorrow for the final day!  Thanks for dropping by!

12:18 am est          Comments

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Mistletoe Make & Bake - Day 4
Wow!  Has this been fun!  I keep reading all the comments and can't believe how wonderful everyone is.  I am so glad that I'm involved with this blog hop! 

My recipe for today is bar cookies.  This is from one of my best friends, Sue.  She is an awesome baker and whenever she is making a dessert, I request these bars.  I don't know where she got the recipe but I am glad that she did!  Try them out and let me know what you think.


Topic of the day...Go to Holiday book...my baking recipes of course!  As I've said before, I love dessert so whenever I get a good recipe, I make sure that I get a copy of it.  Then at the holidays, I make sure that I have my recipe book handy.  I love to bake and the holidays give me the perfect opportunity.  When I'm in Winnipeg for Christmas, my nieces and I love to go over to my parent's house and create some mouthwatering traditional family desserts.  It's a great way for hang out with my dad and my nieces at the same time.  Like I said before, we make Nanaimo bars, homemade marshmallows and butter tarts (recipe to come soon!)  My dad loves to hang out with his "girls!"

The designer blog hoppers for the day are:

Lissa Alexander of Moda
Julie Stewart of Keepsake Cottage Fabrics

Make sure that you go to their blogs and say hi.  Remember, if you leave a comment, you will be entered into the grand prize drawing. 

One of the unexpected cool things about doing this blog is the people that make comments about my dogs and about Canada.  It is wonderful to know that their are quilters all over the world, including the US that appreciate and love this wonderful art that we do! 

Thanks for stopping by and commenting.  See you tomorrow!

7:40 am est          Comments

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Mistletoe Make & Bake - Day 3
Hi Everyone.  

I am having so much fun with the blog hop!  Thank you for all the comments, appreciation for the recipes and pattern!

I am as excited as everyone to try the new recipes and the projects.  There are such great ideas and goodies out there!  Today's featured designers are:

Celine Perkins of Perkins Dry Goods
Kelly Richardson of Kelly Ann's Quilting
Patrick Lose of Patrick Lose

There are sure to be some great cookie ideas and projects, check them out!

My recipe for today is another Canadian specialty, probably from Scotland originally.  It is shortbread cookies.  The big hint for this is to make sure that you beat the cookies for a long time to get them fluffy and light.  They will melt in your mouth if you do that.  Yum!


Oh and by the way, there are no calories in these goodies, oh no!  :) That is if you don't eat any but that's no fun!!

The question for the day is:  Cocktail party conversation starters that allow you to avoid standing in the corner alone

They are assuming that I go to cocktail parties :)...even though it has been a while since I have gone to one, I would probably try to find something in common with someone.  For example, I ask if they travel and if so where?  I discuss with them my travels and common places that we have visited.  I ask them if they have been to any good restaurants for dinner.  I ask for recommendations that they may have.  (Can you tell that I like to eat?!)  Anyway, if it's a man, I bring up basketball because I am a huge basketball fan and most guys love to talk about sports. 

People have been commenting about my dogs.  They are Old English Sheepdogs and Tillie is a new puppy that we just got less than 4 weeks ago.  She is 10 weeks old and is quite the cutie.  Our house has been turned upside down with her in it.  Maple is 11 years old and is slowly getting used to her.  Tillie has only had some warning bites a few times but hasn't quite learned to leave Maple alone.  She just bounces back for more!  She is not shy!  We love them both and here is a new picture.  When we got Tillie, she was only 6 lbs but she has to be around 12 now.  Boy, is she growing fast!!


See you tomorrow,
8:39 am est          Comments

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Mistletoe Make & Bake - Day 2

Welcome to day 2!  The blog hop is going well and thanks for dropping by!  We are getting a great response and hope that everyone is enjoying the projects and recipes.

Don't forget to drop by the other participant on today's blog hop.  Heidi Kaisand's blog: http://blog.heidikaisand.com/

Today's recipe is another one of my Canadian favorites.  I am taking some liberties on the "cookie" theme but want you to enjoy some of the traditional recipes that I grew up with.  Homemade Marshmallow is the treat for the day.  You can dip them in chocolate (my favorite) or toasted coconut or even put them in hot chocolate.  They are easy to make and would be great for any cookie exchange.  They don't taste like store bought marshmallows and are sweet and yummy.  Here is the recipe and you can download the pdf on the left.


My giveaway for the Mistletoe Make & Bake is 4 of my patterns featuring my fabric line with Maywood Studio, Olde World Style.  You can see the whole line and order kits on www.bundlesandbolts.com.  If you comment on my blog at any time this week from Monday through Saturday, you will be entered for both my drawing and the grand prize drawing.  Good luck!

I also have a free pattern for you.  It is for a table topper or wall hanging using charm squares plus some yardage.  Download it on the left in the bar.  It is a wonderful, quick quilt that you will want to make more and more!  Here it is pictured below.



Question for the day:  Holiday sanity savers - what's the one thing that you do or not do to get through to the end? 
There are a few things that I try to do.  First, I don't put any extra work onto myself at Christmas time.  I don't travel for lectures or classes in December.  I also make sure that if I am going to make any Christmas presents, I either make them before December or realize that if they are not done by December 1st, wait until next year.  It is too hard to try and get everything done and I want to enjoy the holidays with friends and family and not put that extra stress on myself.  I try to remind myself that the holidays only come once a year and that we need to enjoy the time because it passes by so quickly.  Try to remember when you were young and the excitement and anticipation of Christmas.  Spending time with children at this time will definitely help you to realize this!

New picture of Maple and Tillie...could they be more adorable?!


See you tomorrow!


PS.  I wanted to let everyone know where to go for the entire week so here is the list of designers, their days and blog addresses.  Make sure you check out their recipes and projects...so much fun!!

Monday, November 15
Sherri Falls of
This and That Patterns

Tuesday, November 16
Heidi Kaisand of
Hen and Chicks Quilt Studio
Monique Dillard of Open Gate Quilts

Wednesday, November 17
Celine Perkins of
Perkins Dry Goods
Kelly Richardson of Kelly Ann's Quilting
Patrick Lose of Patrick Lose

Thursday, November 18
Lissa Alexander of Moda
Julie Stewart of Keepsake Cottage Fabrics

Friday, November 19
Roseann Kermes of
Rosebud's Cottage
Brenda Riddle of From Little Acorns

Saturday, November 20
Melisa Morrison of
Sweet Home Quilt Co .
Vickie Cook Eapen of
Spun Sugar Quilts

8:41 am est          Comments

Monday, November 15, 2010

Mistletoe Toe Make & Bake - more!

Hi again,

I was having some "issues" with my computer and I wanted to post the recipe on the actual blog so here it is:


Also, I had a question about where the recipe came from and the story behind it.  I was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada and lived in Winnipeg until the age of 18.  Nanaimo is a city in BC and Nanaimo bars are a popular dessert in Canada.  My grandma used to make them when I was young and now my dad, my niece and I make them when I visit Winnipeg at Christmas time.  Very yummy! 

Here's a hint for melting the chocolate.  I use the microwave and I make sure that I break up the pieces before I start melting.  Also, melt for short increments, 5-10 seconds, stir and then melt some more.  Chocolate is very tempermental and if you overheat, it will not melt to a nice consistency. 

Let me know how the recipe turns out!


11:09 am est          Comments

Mistletoe Make & Bake Day 1
Hi Everyone!

Thanks for stopping by the first day of Mistletoe Make & Bake!  This is going to be a fun week so make sure that you stop each day to get your recipes from everyone!   My first recipe for the week is one of my favorite recipes.  My grandmother used to make this when I was growing up.  I have a huge sweet tooth and this satisfies anyone's sweet tooth!  It is a bar but it could easily be cut up for a cookie exchange.  Enjoy!  Download pdf on the left. 

Question of the day...Santa or Christmas Trivia - Myth or Truth.
My parents were wonderful to my brother and I growing up.  Christmas was a time where family got together and Santa left a huge pile of presents under the tree on Christmas morning.  My brother and I would get so excited that we would literally throw up.  My parents took it all in stride and continued to spoil us at Christmas.  I believe that Santa is a spirit that is with us even as we get older.  I now spend Christmas with my brother, sister-in-law and their two girls, Holly and Blaire.  We all spoil the two girls like crazy and they enjoy the same excitement and anticipation of Santa's arrival that my brother and I did.  So, yes, I do believe in Santa and the joy of giving!

Don't forget to check out Sherri Falls blog for her cookie recipe and pattern:

One more thing, there will be a grand prize at the end of the week so make sure that you post comments on my day, which is tomorrow!  I will also have a prize so come back and enter for that too!

8:52 am est          Comments

Giveaway WInners!

Thanks everyone for posting comments and visiting my blog!  I really appreciate the feedback and hope everyone comes back to read more!

Here are the winners for the giveaways.

The first winner for the Fit to be Geese ruler is:

Joanne said...

The table runner looks great....I need to make a couple for Christmas presents. joannekourtz@bell.net

The second winner for the tablerunner kit is:

Kay Mc said...

I'm anxious to make your block. I have your ruler & it does make a big difference in makine flying geese. Thanks for the chance to win. I've been using a Handi Angler when making 1/2 square triangles & that has really helped with them.

The third winner for the Quiltmaker 100 Block magazine is:

Christie said...

Really really like your table runner! Thanks for the free pattern. I like using half square triangles in my blocks. there are so many possibilities and you see them in so many quilts. Thanks for the chance to win! HUGS... and stitches

Congratulations to all the winners!  If Kay Mc and Christie can email me at:  info@opengatequilts.com so I can get your full name and address, I will send your prizes to you.  Thanks!

Okay, Carrie, I will have new pictures of Tillie soon!  I promise.   

Don't forget to come back tomorrow for the beginning of the Mistletoe Make and Bake shop hop!


8:51 am est          Comments

Friday, November 12, 2010

Quiltmaker 100 Block Blog Hop

It's here...the Quiltmaker 100 Block Blog Hop!  This is my first blog hop that I've participated in so thank you for stopping and welcome!  Check out other participants on Quiltmaker's blog.  There are dozens of different designers participating in the hop.  In the hop, many of the designers have posted free patterns and giveaways that you don't want to miss!


One of the questions that was posed by Quiltmaker is how did I come up with my block design.  My inspiration for the block is from different tile works that I have seen.  I used my fabric line, Olde World Style from Maywood Studio.  The inspiration for my fabric is from antique tiles, tapestries and textiles from Europe.  The red in the block is a tone on tone tile design.  The black is from a Medieval look and the tone on tone cream is a large floral print.  All of the fabric can be found on our website:  www.bundlesandbolts.com.  We carry my full line of fabric plus many kits using the fabric.


My favorite quilt piece/technique is flying geese.  A few years ago, I was having trouble with my flying geese units and decided to create a ruler to trim them to be accurate.  This is how my Fit to be Geese ruler came about.  It trims sizes 2" x 3 1/2", 2 1/2" x 4 1/2", 3" x 5 1/2" and 3 1/2" x 6 1/2".  I used it to trim the flying geese in my block, Tile Works.  This brings me to my first drawing/giveaway, the Fit to be Geese ruler!  To enter to win the Fit to be Geese ruler, enter a comment on my blog about your favorite quilting piece or technique.  I like flying geese but there are so many different quilting techniques or pieces to love...1/2 square triangle, 1/4 square triangles, Y-seams, square-in-a-square, hand applique, machine quilting... etc.  Let me know what you love!

Fit to be Geese free pattern with ruler.  Made from Olde World Style fabric collection.

Because I really like flying geese, I decided to give you a free pattern to create a Tile Works tablerunner using my block in the 100 Block magazine and flying geese, of course!  Pictured below is the quilt and you can download a pdf of the pattern.  (in the left bar)  If anyone creates the tablerunner, please email a picture to me at info@opengatequilts.com !  I would love to see how it turns out.   Now, for my next giveaway... it is the quilt kit to make this wonderful tablerunner.  Again, if you post a comment about your favorite technique/unit, you will be entered for both drawings.  There will be 2 seperate winners...spead the gift giving around! 


One more thing...another giveaway!  Quiltmaker has been generous enough to provide a magazine for each blog hop host to give away.  So, if you post on my blog, you will be entered for that drawing.  So now you have a chance to win one of three giveaways, a Fit to be Geese ruler, a kit for the Tile Works tablerunner or a Quiltmaker 100 Block magazine.  Enter your post before the end of the day on Saturday and I will announce the winners on Sunday.  Good luck!


Don't forget to enter and enjoy the tablerunner pattern...thanks for dropping by!


7:54 am est          Comments

Monday, November 8, 2010

Home again!
Back from the 10th Annual Chalet Quilting Retreat in New Glarus, WI.  It was a beautiful weekend and there were many laughs.  Kay and Kay, the orchestrator's of the retreat are a blast and put skits on each night.  Friday night, they were Ethel and George from On Golden Pond and Saturday they were Lucy and Ethel.  Funny!

Lucy and Ethel

George & Ethel from On Golden Pond

I taught, Courtyard and my class got lots of blocks done.  They are all going to be beautiful!  There was a wine tasting on Saturday night and a 3 hour break on Saturday to go shop, rest or sew, it was up to you.  There is a new quilt shop close to New Glarus in Monticello, Quilter's Compass.  They had my fabric and several of my patterns.  It was so exciting to see them!  If you are in the area, make sure that you stop by the shop, it's well worth the trip.

Susan, Kathy and Lisa in class working on their blocks.

The 100 Block blog hop is happening this week and make sure you check out the different blogs.  Remember, my day is Friday and I will have a drawing for a giveaway and a special treat for you!


Tillie is growing so fast!  She is over 10 lbs now and her little paws are getting bigger and bigger.  She was quite happy to see me yesterday when I got home from retreat.  She cried and jumped.  I am trying to get her used to being outside and she was running around like crazy out there.  We are getting tired of puppy papers and it's time to start training her outside.  I'm not sure how she is going to respond to coming when I call her but that's something we are going to work on.  Here she is wondering where I went...to take a picture, of course! 


Yes, Maple is getting used to her and this pictures proves it...isn't this just great!


Talk to you Friday for my blog day...hope you come by and post a comment.

12:42 pm est          Comments

Monday, November 1, 2010

Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks

It has arrived!  Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks from today's top designers is here!  I received it on Friday and it is wonderful!  There are several different settings for the blocks and ideas for how to use the blocks.  I am very impressed with the different blocks and am looking forward to making some of them.  Don't forget next Friday, November 12th is my blog day for this blog hop so make sure that you join me.  There will be give-aways, including a copy of the magazine and a special treat.


This coming weekend I am going to be teaching at the 10th annual Chalet Quilting retreat in New Glarus, WI.  I will be showing my students how to make one of my favorite designs, Courtyard.  I had it redone using Olde World Style and it is pictured below.  If you are interested in kits, we have them available on www.bundlesandbolts.com.  We also have Wine & Cheese kits as well as Half & Half kits. 


One of the recent questions on my blog comment from Martha was where can she get Olde World Style fabric?  We have the entire line on www.bundlesandbolts.com as well as several different quilt kits to make using the fabric.  Hope you check it out. 

Puppy!!  Tillie is doing wonderful!  She is totally at home in our house and has taken over our hearts.  Even Maple has been getting used to her.  Tillie loves to chew on fingers, toes, shoes, blankets, (no quilts yet!...thank goodness!!), and whatever her little teeth can sink into!  Whenever Bill or I leave the room, she cries pitifully for us to come back.  Therefor, she hasn't been alone for the last 48 hours!  One of us is usually in the family room with her and yes, I slept on the couch with her on Saturday night.  She loves all the attention, who wouldn't?  Carrie had commented to smell her little paws and yes, they smell like hot buttered popcorn! She has grown a bit, see what you think.  

Who me?  It wasn't me chewing on your bathrobe mom!

Talk to you soon!

1:51 pm edt          Comments

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