Back in the Sewing Saddle

You can tell things are getting back to normal around here because I have a mishmash of things to tell you today. We finished unpacking the trailer yesterday, and it is now safely down in its usual parking place. Of course, once Mike moves it away from the house and the rain starts, I remember several absolutely essential items that I left behind. Then I put on my rain gear and rain boots and make the trek down to the trailer about six or seven times before I actually have everything unpacked. Oh well. That's okay because I did laundry today and I have some things that need to go back out there as well.

In my quest to recreate some of the delicious regional dishes we tasted in our travels, I tried a recipe for Crock Pot Chicken Enchilada Soup last night. That's not a regional dish, mind you; but we had it at the Rustic Pine Tavern when we were in Dubois, Wyoming. I went in search of a similar recipe, and couldn't find anything exactly right. Their soup was made with ground beef, and it had a beef base. All the recipes I found were made with chicken and had a milk base. The one I've linked to there caught my eye because it's made in the crockpot. It was very simple, and delicious.

This recipe is from a blog called Your Cup of Cake, written by one of my Oregon neighbors. She makes some suggestions at the end of the recipe for toppings. We ended up with a sprinkling of grated cheddar cheese and the chunks from a quarter of an avocado each. I intended to give it a sprinkling of crushed up tortilla chips too, but I didn't have any. I think the crunch would have been a nice addition. Nevertheless, Mike declared it a "keeper". I served it with a side of cornbread. This is the recipe I like to use for my cornbread. Also, I think the Marie Callender's cornbread mix available in the grocery store is excellent. I use it when we're traveling just to keep things simple.

This morning I puttered around for a while after Mike went to work. I got the laundry started and worked on my quilting snowlady. I should have her finished in my next sitting, which will be tomorrow. Then I needed to pick up my quilts from my fellow guild member, AnnMarie, who was kind enough to retrieve them for me when the Oregon State Fair ended. 

I was kind of anxious to get them back and to see the comments of the judges. There was really nothing notable there. They noticed the "unfortunate bearding" on the back of the Shine On quilt. (I knew it was there too.) And they complained that my hand-stitches on the binding for Love Me, Love My Cat needed to be closer together. I had to take issue with that one since I couldn't even see the stitches. Otherwise, the comments were positive and constructive, and interesting to read. 

Also included were the little cards used to vote on the viewer's choice quilt. (One of my fellow guild members won that one, which was kind of cool. I think it was her first time entering a quilt in a show.) Three of my quilts had several votes, and so that was sort of gratifying. The comments were just nice things like "Great!" and "I love it!" One person practically wrote a book telling me what she liked about Snow Birds. I wasn't expecting to read those, and so that was kind of fun.

Included in the box with the quilts was this four fat quarter bundle of fabrics,

and a $25 gift card from a Salem quilt shop.

And since there was a $5 entry fee for each quilt this year, it turned out to be both fun AND profitable to enter the fair. Cool! I wasn't really expecting that. I think that was for having a division-winning quilt...which was a reward worth the price of entry in and of itself. I'm still so stoked!

So I've spent time both yesterday and today getting things organized in my sewing room again. Today I had time to finish up the Gardener's Journal quilt top.

I've been working on this quilt for nearly two years, and so it feels very good to have it to this flimsy stage. I'm going to piece together a back for it, and then it will be ready for quilting. As of now, there are four quilts in line ahead of it, so it might have to wait a little while.

And that was my day. How did your Monday go?

Don't forget that the September NewFO Challenge goes live at midnight tonight. I can't wait to see your new stuff!


Junebug613 said...

What a fun thing to come home to after a trip. Your winning quilts, I mean! Congratulations, again!

crazy quilter said...

Your gardeners journal Quilt is so wonderful, no doubt it will be a winner in next years fair. I know the kitties are glad to be home at the three cat ranch. The soup looks yummy, I will have to give it a try. Thanks for sharing.

Vroomans' Quilts said...

The soup is similar to one I make - love the smells coming from a crockpot soup! Congrats again on your wonderful success at the fair.

Teresa in Music City said...

Love the Gardeners Journal quilt! It will be challenging and fun to quilt. Congratulations on your show wins - your quilts deserved the accolades :)

Marei said...

Congrats again on all your wonderful ribbons. Well deserved, each and every one.

Brown Family said...

Congratulations on the win. I know you are excited to be back at the machine!

quiltzyx said...

The soup looks so delicious & am I so ready to start making some soup...and we're supposed to be back up into the 100s by the end of this week. ARGH! I have some dry split peas & a ham bone in the freezer waiting for the crockpot. I found a few recipes when I Googled "beef tortilla soup" - maybe one of those will be close to the one you had at the Tavern.
For the "unfortunate bearding" on the Shine On quilt, you might try spritzing the beards with water. When they dry they might suck back inside. (I learned that from a friend who was a long-armer) Congrats on the ribbons & the prizes too!

Lou said...

Congrats on your winning!!!!
Always feels good when other people enjoy your quilts:)

Monday... well I have all the pieces for the sunflower mosaic ready to sew together. Man there are a lot!!! haha!! I blame this project on you since you made it and I fell in love with it! Or we could blame Smitty:) haha!!!

Tami C said...

Glad that you are settling in after your trip out east. It's always wonderful to get home after being gone, no matter how much you enjoyed yourself when away!

Kate said...

Sounds like you are getting back into the groove of things. Gardener's Journal turned out beautifully!