I'm glad you stopped by my blog. I am happy to share all the content with you and hope that you find something here that is helpful. However, everything here - text, photos, recipes, and so on - is my personal property and has my copyright on it. You may only copy and use any of it with my written permission. Ahh, but you already knew that, didn't you?

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Another Miniature Quilt

First, a thank you to Kathie from the Inspired by Antique Quilts Blog for taking the time to stop by (at my invitation) and looking at my Amish Quilt. Thanks for the kind comment. Thanks to Anne for leaving a nice comment, too - I know how busy you are.
Here is another miniature from the same series as the Amish quilt. It is called Mennonite Baskets and is 10 5/8" x 13 1/2" and is made entirely of antique fabrics. The blocks are 2" finished and the sashing is 1/2" wide finished. Although the color combo is not popular with quilters today, Turkey Red and Chrome Orange were very popular at the end of the 1800's, when the inspiration quilt for this one was made. The toy sewing machine is from our collection.
Till next time....
Sheila H.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A Miniature Quilt

For a change of pace today, one of my miniature quilts is shown above. (I put a 12" ruler up so you can get an idea of scale.) This is the latest one in a series of miniatures made entirely of antique fabrics. The inspiration for this one came from a photo in the magazine style book The Twentieth Century's Best American Quilts Celebrating 100 Years of the Art of Quiltmaking. The inspiration quilt is named Stairway to Heaven, or at least that is what it is called in the afore-mentioned magazine. The original quilt was made by an unknown Amish quilt maker, circa 1930, probably in Ohio. It took me a long time to acquire the appropriate vintage/antique fabrics to make this miniature. The backing is a brown sateen. I don't know what the original backing for the inspiration quilt was, but there is documentation of the use of sateen for backings in the Midwest. My miniature is 13" x 15.5" with a .125" finished binding. It was hand pieced and hand quilted with the binding applied by hand. I hope to show more quilts here from time to time.
Sheila H.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

A non-functioning link

The previous post contained a link to a recipe that doesn't seem to be working. It is from a blog called Kelly the Kitchen Kop. She blogs a lot of interesting nutrition things. The Spanish Rice Recipe is here . I hope these work. If not, just google it and you will find it.
Sheila H.

Friday, January 8, 2010


Above is a very poor photo of a starling heading towards my studio window. We have snow and frigid temps. and for some reason, the starlings keep flying into not only my studio windows, but the house windows as well. The snow aparently has them disoriented. I guess when your house and studio sit in the middle of your small prairie, you are a target for crazed birds. About my photo skills - I have none. Followed closely by having no computer skills. I have tried and tried to change the photos and text problem in the last posting. Oviously, I don't know how to do it. Oh, these computers! We all have a real love/hate relationship with them, don't we? Well, dear reader, you will just have to overlook these kind of things in my blog.

For my cousin, here is a link to a healthy Spanish Rice Recipe. It was strictly a coincidence that I came across it today after our phone conversation yesterday. The recipe is posted on a great healthy style blog, so check it out. And, by the way, some Spanish Rice does sound pretty good. But I have already made chicken livers (recipe from the aforementioned Nourishing Traditions book) and a gluten free Gingerbread cake (a Carol Fenster recipe) to be served with some jazzed up Lemon Curd (from the Homespun Living blog that is on my blogroll). The jazzed up part is that I mixed it with yogurt cream.

Happy weekend to all,

Sheila H.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

A New Recipe for a New Year on a New Blog!

I don't normally make up recipes. Usually someone else has already done it, so it is just a matter of looking it up. But the other day as I was eating a LaraBar German Chocolate Cake Bar and bemoaning the fact that it was one of the last few in the pantry, the urge to try and duplicate it came over me. If you are not familiar with these, think of them as "a nutritionally not terrible treat." For the last couple of years I have had terrible health problems which will be discussed from time to time here, and a lot of foods were eliminated from my diet. Sugar, gluten, and corn are the main ones, with other foods being temporary give-ups. Anyway, over the course of 18-24 months a person's taste will change. Foods that used to seem fine to me, now taste so sweet that I can't eat them. Also, the only kind of chocolates in my home now are unsweetened baking chocolate and cocoa powder. So, if you have a super sweet tooth and a love of milk chocolate, the following recipe will not be for you. But, if like me, you spent a couple of years following a diet to eliminate a systemic Candida Albicans infection and are now well enough to add something sweet to your diet, you are gonna love this recipe, even though it is not a true duplicate of the LaraBar.
Sheila's Not Terrible for you Candy Recipe:
My husband's first rule of cooking is: "Start with good ingredients and don't mess them up." Sound advice. In the photo above you see Scharffen Berger Cocoa Powder, Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil and Coconut Concentrate, Madagascar Vanilla Powder (scroll down and get the one with no alcohol and no sugar), Pitted Dates from Aldi's (although some really expensive dates from Whole Foods were added), and Belgian Unsweetened Baking Chocolate from Trader Joes's. Hiding in the back are some Crispy Nuts - more on that later - both pecans and hazelnuts are in this recipe. O.k., that's the ingredient list. Now a word on measuring. I didn't. All the ingredients were weighed on a digital scale. If you are making up a recipe, you can do that. Since ingredient ratios were the important thing, weighing is actually easier. So, if you don't have a digital scale, don't start this, as I have no idea of the measurements other than weight.
Melt 4 oz. of the Belgian chocolate in a microwave safe bowl. I start with 30 seconds on high, stir, give it another 30 seconds on high, and then stir it until every lump is gone. This may vary if you have a rocket-hot microwave. Set this aside to cool a bit.
Into a food processor bowl, place the following:
4 oz. of Crispy Hazelnuts
8 oz. of pitted dates
3/8 oz. cocoa powder
1 oz. of coconut cream concentrate
2 oz. of extra virgin coconut oil
the slightly cooled chocolate
Process all of the above until it is smooth. This will take a while. How smooth it is is really not all that critical, though.
Now add 3 oz. of crispy pecans and pulse just enough to break them up into chunks.
Grease a pan with coconut oil - I used a 7 3/4" x 9 3/4" glass pyrex pan. Smooth the mixture into the pan. Chill for about 30 minutes in the fridge, cut into pieces and store covered in the fridge. You can let them come to room temp before eating or eat them cold. I think they are better at room temp. Next time, maybe a little cinnamon would be good mixed in - will let you know if I try that.
O.k., about Crispy Nuts......
A few months ago the book Nourishing Traditionsjumped into my hands at the bookstore. It is a wonderful book and much more than a cookbook. It is a philosophy of foods. Buy it. Read it. Sally Fallon is the author and she contends that nuts, while good for you nutritionally, are hard to digest in their natural state. She recommends soaking them in salt water and then dehydrating them and this process will render them easier for our bodies to use. Since digestion issues are a big problem for me, that is what I do.
Well, this simple little recipe turned into a gigantic posting. Till next time....
Sheila H.

Monday, January 4, 2010

A new blog for a new year!

Encouraged by my friend Sandy, I have decided to take up blogging again. In the past year, we have physically moved, my email address has changed and I could only figure out how to post to my old blog -
by registering myself as a guest author. I thought that was o.k., but then I couldn't figure out how to change my layout or anything, so thought it was time for a new blog as well as a new address.
When I started my old blog, it was going to be only about cats and quilts, so hence the name. Then I got sick. Really sick. Everything but the cats got put on hold as I struggled to figure out what in the world was wrong with me. Sandy, mentioned above, thinks I should share what I have learned about health and nutrition and that someone may be helped by this. Without the internet and the generosity of people who were willing to share their knowledge and experiences, I would not be writing this today.
That is not to say that there won't be postings about quilts and cats - I certainly hope there will be, as well as lots of other stuff.
Well, that is all for the maiden voyage of this new blog.
Sheila H.