Sunday, December 31, 2017

Mrs. DillyDally's Happiest Day 2017!

It all started in May when Boyfriend DillyDally called to ask our blessing ... he wished to propose to Sister!  This had to remain a secret ... he wanted to surprise her!  Brother and Girlfriend were an important part of our plans too.
They were traveling here for a wedding the first weekend in October!  The plan was for him to pop the question the next day!  Mr, Brother, Girlfriend and I worked like crazy preparing a surprise Engagement Party all Saturday afternoon and evening!  Nothing bonds a family like working together on an important event ... we make a great team!
Months prior to the big day ... the dillydally winds blew ... an idea to commemorate the day with a keepsake was born! 
Fabrics were chosen ... it was difficult as I had no idea what they would choose!  I am hoping this is something they will use through out their life together ... so I chose brightly colored solids and a metallic rose gold, heart print on white.
Cutting and piecing began ...
... and I fell in love with the results!
Half done!  See the blocks stacked with each plate?
Each block was layered, machine quilted, and bound on three sides!
I created a banner and displayed it at the party!  My intention is to make another with their wedding date ... the hope is that it will become an heirloom and they will use it on their wedding anniversaries! 
They were such good sports and agreed to a dillydally photo shoot ...
... out the road a few days later!
It looks like a wedding may take place Spring of 2019!  Yep ... the DillyDally winds have been blowing!  Lots of undercover work ahead for 007 Agent DillyDally!

Do what you love!  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally 

Saturday, December 30, 2017

A Head Start!

This morning I woke early.  How early?  So early that even the furbabies didn't bother to get up to accept their dose of morning affection! I made myself a cup of coffee and wandered into my sewing room.  This room always serves as a "catch all" space, and after Christmas it is especially messy.  I took time to tidy up ... thought about 2018 ... the things I would like to accomplish ... and came across a pile of WIPs. 
In true dillydally fashion, on a whim I chose two projects ... they were winter themed ... I decided to finish them today!  The fabric is from the 2010 Minnesota Shop Hop!  All prints are blue ... my favorite color!  This charm square table topper was already quilted, I just needed to bind it!  Easy to accomplish that!
This little 12 inch wall quilt was a kit!  I had done the piecing and layering earlier, so I began machine quilting it!
Yep ... every little snowball block needed to be quilted!  I remember fussy cutting all those snowflakes from a print that included multiple images! 
After I finished the quilting, I decided to make it into a pillow.  Pulled fabric and a zipper from my stash to make the pillow back and finished it with binding!
Added a pillow form ... and it was finished! 
Whew!  Two projects done and January hasn't even arrived yet!  Gosh ... it felt sew dang good ... like I had gotten a head start on 2018!  They will be put to use on Tuesday when I pack up Christmas and pull out my snowmen and winter themed decorations! 

Do what you love!  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally

Friday, December 29, 2017

Building Brown Bears!

In my remote corner of the planet ... brown bears thrive!  They rule the landscape ... and we are always cognizant that their presence.  I don't seek out our wild brown bears ... but love making soft, squishy, huggable ones!  It is time to reveal a bit of my 007 undercover work!
I decided that Brother and Fiance' DillyDally needed huggable brown bears for Christmas!  Here are the pieces that will become their bears!
I love Elizabeth Hartman's designs and ever since seeing her Bjorn Bear pattern, I have wanted to make one!  Sew ... why not make two!
Peak-a-Boo Bears!  I used different backgrounds for each bear, one with blueberries and one with spruce needles ... both reflect the habitat of our local brown bears!
I was impressed with how quickly the bears sew together ...
... the directions are excellent!  When the piecing is effortless, you know the instructions were perfect!
Next came the eye glasses ...
... their eyewear really takes them to the next level!  Too fun!
Additional borders ... sandwiched ... machine quilted ... zippered pillow back ... bound ... and done!  Add a pillow form and Mr. Blueberry Bear is finished and ready for his trip to California!
Next up ... Mr. Spruce Bear!  Coffee, compliments of Mr. Snowman, was an important part of the bear construction team!
Brother met Mr. Spruce Bear Christmas day!  Love how Brother's expression matches the bear.  Wish he had been wearing his glasses instead of contacts!  Too fun!

Do what you love!  Give bear hugs! Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally 


Our lives can be uncertain ... complicated ... challenging ... changing ... and often unfair.  Life is fragile. 
On Christmas Day my brother experienced some serious health issues.
Tuesday morning a friend left this earth after suffering from Alzheimers. 
Lives change in an instant ... we are chastened and find ourselves on our knees.  Once again we are reminded of the commandment to "Love one another." John 13:34
Love is what survives ... it remains steadfast under all conditions.  Love is always the best choice ... the only choice that will lead to healing the hurt and restoring hope.  My brother is doing well and his prognosis is good.  My friend is free and no longer suffering.  My prayers continue for his wife and son as they face their loss. 

Choose love!  
Mrs. DillyDally

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Second Christmas!

We are fortunate ... the DillyDally family has a excuse to celebrate Christmas twice in the same week!  Girlfriend DillyDally travels to visit her family for the Christmas holidays, and because of her work responsibilities returns home before New Years Day!
We didn't receive any snow for our second Christmas, but the weather remained cold!  Cold enough to have a clear layer of ice on the lake ... it feels like Christmas!
We revisited our Holiday menu of Swedish Meatballs and Lefse!  We all agree that having these meatballs twice in the same week is genius!

In early November, Girlfriend mentioned a wish she had to someday have vintage dishes to entertain with.  She wanted something girly, appropriate for tea parties, showers, and such!  I immediately began searching online, without much luck!  Then I called my favorite personal shopper and friend Mary Ellen!  Within days she located several options to chose from!  The choice was easy ... a luncheon set exactly like my mothers!  I have no idea what happened to my mother's set ... so was thrilled when Mary Ellen found this one!  Mary Ellen drove all over the twin cities to pick up the dishes and then combed antique stores to locate accessories.  She carefully packed each piece and boxed them for mailing!  She is such a blessing in my dillydally life!
The joy on Girlfriends face as she opened the pieces made my heart swell with love!  It always feels great when a gift given is enthusiastically received!  I am always interested in the back story ... and love that these dishes have a story of ... lost heirlooms ... friendship ... an extreme act of kindness ( I cannot thank you enough Mary Ellen) ... and the privilege of gift giving.  I am humbled.  I am grateful.

Do what you love!  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Loopy in Love!

Who are these two young "Love Birds"?

Thirty-seven years ago today (December 26th) Mr. DillyDally popped the question ... and I said, "Yes!"  We were 23 years old and loopy in love! 

We were married six months later ... and have been working and building DillyDallydom ever since! Today we're 60 years old and remain loopy in every way possible!

Happy Engagement Anniversary to us!

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas!

There were only three DillyDally family members celebrating Christmas together this year!
Seriously ... how many cookies can three people eat? ;-)
Even though we were small in number ... we made merry!  Every tradition was kept ... and I treasure this Christmas Day we had together!

Do what you love!  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally 

Happy Christmas Eve!

On Christmas Eve, Santa's helpers are very busy ... including yours truly!
Santa's helpers work hard to make Christmas Day special for their loved ones!  My dillydally day was filled with baking, cooking, cleaning, sewing, church, laundry ... and love.
When motivated by love, it doesn't feel like work!  Sleep deprivation, a sore back, tired legs and chapped hands go unnoticed!  Christmas is the season of love.

"Let all that you do be done in love."  I Corinthians 16:14

Do what you love!  Happy Christmas Eve!  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally

Saturday, December 23, 2017

A New Cookie!

When newlyweds in 1981, we lived in Juneau.  We didn't know anyone, so decided to find those with similar interests by joining organizations and participating in events that interested us.  One of those community organizations was the local Sons of Norway, Svalbard Lodge.
We loved our three years of involvement in the lodge.  When we moved in 1984, we decided to continue our membership ... and still do!  That means we receive the Sons of Norway Viking magazine.  We enjoy it for multiple reasons and the recent December issue had a few Holiday recipes!
Mr. and I really like the flavor of cardamom ... in both savory dishes and baked goods.  There was a recipe for Orange Cardamom Butter Cookies ... yep, I could not resist testing it!  Trying something new is always a fun way to dillydally!  It is a refrigerator cookie ... so I mixed and shaped the dough last night!  It was so easy to slice and bake them this morning!
I cannot begin to describe how delicious these cookies are ... before the chocolate!  A crisp shortbread with the perfect combination of orange and cardamom flavors!  Yummy!
Honestly, I do not think I could live without pyrex mixing bowls!  This middle sized bowl is the only one left from the set we received as a wedding gift 36 years ago!  Today it was used as a double boiler to melt the dark chocolate.  At times ... the simple pleasures in life truly are most important!
Fun and simple ... just dip the cooled cookies in melted dark chocolate!  When we tasted them earlier, we had decided they didn't need the chocolate!  The flavor was so perfect, they could stand on their own.  And they can!  However, the dark chocolate took them to an even higher level of dillydally deliciousness!  I think we found a new DillyDally family favorite!

Do what you love! Try something new! Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally 

Gingerbread House 2017!

Building gingerbread houses are not a tradition that I grew up with.  Twenty-five years ago, my mother sent the kids gingerbread kits.  The kits were pre-baked pieces packaged with candy and pre-made frosting.  My children loved it ... but the quality was poor at best ... and I just knew we could do better!  The next Christmas we made them from scratch ... and a new family tradition was born!
Even though the kids have grown, I still make one each year.  It wouldn't feel like Christmas if I didn't!  I have no decorating skills, so I keep it very simple.  This year I decided to make a different style house and chose a simple color palette ... just red and white!
As always, it was fun to make!  And now the house looks, smells and feels like Christmas!

Do what you love!  Maintain traditions!  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally

Friday, December 22, 2017

Winter Solstice 2017

We were gifted with an absolutely beautiful day today! 
I took this photo from the front deck at 9:15 this morning ... dawn ... the first sight of light!
Actual sunrise ... 9:50 am ... what a glorious sight! 
We took our walk a bit earlier today ... this was taken at 11:50 am ... nearly mid way through the day!  We celebrated a friend's birthday with lunch ... time with friends always makes a day special!
Sunset was at 3:31 ... a total of 5 hours and 40 minutes of daylight!  The clouds had moved in ... limiting the display of color.  But our celebration did not end when the sun set ... we had the kids over for halibut tacos ... a taste from the long days of summer! 

Tomorrow our daylight hours slowly increase as the earth begins to tilt in the opposite direction.  I find comfort in predictability ... sunrise and sunset ... spring to winter.  As a child, I loved winter.  Now that I am retired, I can get out to enjoy this season during daylight hours ... I find those childhood emotions associated with winter remain!  Our days get longer and the solstice marks the first day of winter ... another reason to celebrate! 

Do what you love!  Welcome Winter!  Do dillydally!
Mrs. DillyDally