Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Let the Holidays Begin!

My camera doesn't capture a beautiful snowfall very well! ;-) There really were big fluffy flakes gently falling.  What a beautiful way to begin the holiday season!  In my remote corner of the planet, there is no Black Friday ... our local quilt guild's Annual Tea & Auction kicks off my holiday celebration!  Sunday was one of those perfect dillydally days!  And it all began with the beautiful snowfall that I can't capture with my camera ... you're just going to have to trust me ... it was wonderful. ;-)
I began the day early ... made a holiday favorite ... Cranberry Eggnog Braid!  Bread making is my favorite type of baking ... I enjoy the whole process ... especially when I have the time to mix it by hand.  Of course I have and love my bread machine and Kitchenaid mixer ... both of which make great bread!  But ... when I have the time, I love to dillydally in the kitchen by making bread with my hands.  This recipe was in a Taste of Home magazine ... I've had it since sometime in the 90s and tweaked it just a bit so that it is more moist and tender.
While the bread was rising ... I finished up my blue string blocks for the Orca Bay Mystery!  OMGosh ... I love string blocks!  I can't believe that I've been avoiding some of Bonnie's patterns because of them.  Sometimes I am the silliest person I know!  They are so relaxing to piece ... I am addicted and am now disappointed that we only need 72!

Now... I am able to reveal three of the 007 projects I've been working on ... they were auction items!
 As some of you might remember ... this was that woodland panel I struggled with in an earlier post.  The piecing ... eventually was very simple ... hmmm, funny how doing the math correctly makes things easier! ;-)  The machine quilting is what ate up a lot of time ... yep, I quilted around every little bird in the border fabric!  I ended up really liking it when it was finished ... even thought about keeping it ... I liked how it really was more of a winter theme rather than Christmas!  Perfect to hang from January through March.  It sold for $55 and will help cheer up someone's home during our winter months!
These two pillows were my other two auction items.  I bought the fabric this summer while visiting the Thimbleberries Studio Store!  I did an extensive amount of machine quilting on these as well ... couldn't help myself ... it just brings them to life!  For me ... ruffles are just one of life's necessary evils ... love the look, only tolerate the process! ;-)  Anyway ... I was very happy with the way they came out.  And I was thrilled that they went for $135!
Guild members are asked to decorate a table for the auction ... this was my table ... simple and mostly handmade. ;-)
I made the napkins years ago ... loved having a serger ... they made napkins simple to make.  I am in the market for a new serger ... too many choices.  Table favors included an icicle and stocking ornament with a chocolate treat!
Used the Tomten family I knit years ago as the centerpiece!  Simple and easy ... that is my dillydally style!  It is fun to see what guild members do every year!  Love it!
I came home with treasure ... I love this kind of holiday shopping.  These potholders were made by one of my 7th grade students!  She is the guild's youngest member!  We won't mention what I paid for them, but Mr. DillyDally has been told that they are not to be used in any practical way, they are just for looks!  And ... they are just as sweet as the teen who made the ... plus ... they are worth every nickel! ;-)
This amish inspired quilt was made by one of my former students ... who is now an adult ... she and her husband are expecting their first child in the near future.  Much to celebrate!  I love amish quilts, her color choices are stunning and her hand quilting is inspiring!  Beautiful!
The third treasure I brought home was made by QBee Julie!  Love the pattern ... love the fabric ... but especially love the quilter who made it!  ;-)

Yep ... it was a perfect dillydally day!  What a wonderful way to begin the Christmas season!

I wish for you many perfect dillydally days!



  1. I love your table setting! And your 007 projects for the auction were wonderful and brought such nice prices, too! Would have enjoyed attending that one for sure. :)
    I agree that's a great kickoff for the holidays!

  2. Your blocks are great. Don't be disappointed, maybe Bonnie has more strings planned for us. I also like to make bread with my hands and yours looks yummy!

  3. Your bread looks and sounds great. I like to make bread, but somehow have been lazy lately. My husband loves cranberries. The string blocks look great and I keep hearing that there are more with the main color, Bonnie's red. I guess we'll find out. Very pretty table.

  4. I have been reading your blog for quite some time now. I especially loved your adventures over the summer. I was wondering if you might share your recipe for the Cranberry/Eggnog Braid? It looks divine and I know that my family would gobble it up. Thanks!

    Amy Varnell-Miller