Tuesday, November 25, 2008

My daddy's favorite christmas cookie

I have been making these cookies for at least four years straight as my regular "gift" cookie and I ain't got no complaints yet! The men love them..they actually start asking about them around this time of year.
They are also a great cookie to send in the mail because they will stay yummy well over a week and a half( I have never had a batch last longer then that). My daddy just loved them!
I make my batter ahead of time and store the whole bowl in the freezer then bake them off s I need. I think they bake off better even right out of the freezer(just thawed enough to scoop out the dough. I use heaping tablespoon for each cookie and cook them on the light side for a chewier cookie but with all the coconut in them they really are chewy even if you burn them(which I have done) A few times this summer omitted the chocolate chips and nuts and I added raisins. Burger loved them(he doesn't really dig chocolate). So this year I will do at least a third with raisins I thought of adding some peanut butter to part of the batch as well I have not made mine yet ...probably another week or two then I will start. My mom sent me a bunch of good looking cookie recipes so I will share some of those as well. Happy cookie making!

Cowboy cookies

This makes 3 dozen large or 6 dozen small

3 c flour
*1tsp baking powder
*1 tsp baking soda
*1tsp cinnamon
*1tsp salt
*1 1/2 c room temp butter
*2c +1tbsp sugar
*2c light brown sugar packed
*3 eggs
*1 tsp vanilla
*2 1/4 c semisweet choc chips
*3 c old-fashioned oats
*2 c sweetened flake coconut
*2 c pecans chopped

Preheat oven 350
~Mix flour, baking powder, soda, cinnamon, salt
~Beat butter on medium till smooth and creamy (about 1 min)
~Gradually add sugar. Add eggs one at a time beat after each then add vanilla
~Stir the flour mixture into butter, just combined. Add chips, oats, coconut and nuts

On ungreased cookie sheets
For really big cookies use 1/4 c of dough
3 in apart cook for 20-30 min
Until edges are lightly browned; turn sheets halfway through.
For a smaller cookie (I prefer maybe a little smaller even) 2 tbsp dough bake 15-18 minutes

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Custom Chic and a New Market Spot

~Another Saturday another day at the Farmers Market. It was a bit nippy out there as you can see Blue Mama is lookin' a a wee bit frozen here. We moved to the other aisle which was a first on that side for me... and I am really feeling it, I think my partner is too(are you feeling it girl?)
Anyway it was a particularly bubbly day for me..not quite sure why. Maybe it was blue mama's new men's shaving soap(lalalalove these)!
I am feeling particularly snuggly about this new custom apron I made.~I lost my little chic pattern I had been previously using so this is a tweaked chic. ~This chic is made from some vintage quilted pieces I have hoarded for quite some time.

~I used a little of the leftovers on the pocket to make a flower
This is really my first holiday season as a maker selling made stuff, so maybe that is what is sew exciting and fun...I love how personal people get when they are buying gifts; I love being part of a special gift! (I am a dork, I know cali-trans) oh well tootaloo

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Amendments to the Fabric and Button Barrette tutorial

There have been several people that have made the barrettes (including my self)that have had issue with the fabric button barrettes staying together. The problem that occurred most often for myself was buttons coming off, especially with the larger buttons.~I really want my barrettes to last. I presume most folks who are making them feel the same way so I have spent some time the last month or so coming up with solutions that are working for me. I have a few tips and some big button solutions plus a new design idea that I hope helps ease barrette woes.
~Through my testing i discovered somethings that do not work. My first solution was to change glue for the buttons. The problem is you need a glue that lets you open and close and I have found the hot glue is most pliable after drying ( I only tried 3 glues)also most people have hot glue on hand this is supposed to be and easy cheap project. Not something you have to buy super specific materials for that you may not have another use for(I like multitasking craft tools). Next I just added more glue...more better? Nope, more is actually worse here(including the glue on the barrette. Experiment with this; using just enough seems to make the barrettes last the longest.....I do not know if it is the weight of the glue or what but it seems when there is an abundance of glue things come apart more easily.

~The next problem I wanted to try and resolve was the buttons coming off. I really only had problem with big buttons coming off again this was probably a weight issue. Barrettes with this size or smaller seem to stay just fine with just the glue. ~I tried sewing the buttons on. The problem here is when do you sew the button on? If you put them on the fabric first the positioning step gets wacky (harder) and if you sew them on after you glue the fabric to the barrette well putting needles through glue is not fun(or easy). The long and winding crafty road;

*I finally sewed the buttons on to a small piece of fabric

* then glued that to the barrette.

*If you do not want any fabric to show use a small scrap and match your barrette fabric closely.~ I also found sewing the button onto a small piece of fabric allows me to use shank buttons...I love shank buttons~ Using the shank buttons inspired me to make little fabric bouquets . This pair I have been wearing almost 4-7 times a week for 6 weeks and they are not showing any signs of degradation. ~I really love this bouquet idea because you get to use more little fabric scraps and shanks (which were off limits but now they are beautiful center pieces) This makes this project a super duper scrap pile and (single button jar) buster.
*First design the bouquet

*Sew it together with a few tight stitches

*dab glue on end of barrette and apply bouquet

~Well that is my long winded crafty solution. I didn't want to put up a project that is cute but you cannot use or give-away for fear they may fall apart. Hopefully these tips will help anyone having barrette difficulty. I would love any feedback on what is working for you.

*The break down~A list of the tips and modifications*
1.Modify your glue use to "just right" on all glued pieces

2. sew small piece of fabric under larger buttons then glue that to barrette
3. make button and fabric bouquets

4.position your bling on the edge of the barrette

5. leave an even 1/16-1/8fabric edge around barrette

Monday, November 17, 2008

hey everyone is doing it!

I saw this fun swap happening at a couple of my bloggy pals locales so I of course wanted to join the fun...
Mama sings the blues
apronstrings and the ties that bind
Lifes little adventures
They still had spots open


The Rules
I will make a handmade gift for the first 3 interested people who comment on this post and I have 365 days (ample time) to do it in. I can assure you, it won’t take that long to receive your gift…but it will be a surprise when you do…one of those “when you least expect it” moments. You must have a blog to join in and be willing to do the same for three other people.

Sounds like fun to me and a great way to meet some new folks

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Somewhere down in Texas, missed posts

So much has been happening and I have lots of it on my camera So here is a mixed up summary

I Sent this sweet little rodeo gal skirt to A Crazy Texas Mommy

~Texas Yard art at the natural gardener

~lots and lots of pumpkin bread( when burger actually likes something we stick with )

~and chili

~Basil went to seed so I pulled all the plants and made pesto using Giada's recipe
San Antonio zoo trip for burger's birthday

A night at the river walk

~ and of course the reason we went to the zoo....L'fant...and an emu

We saw some sleepy gators

and very sleepy kangaroos(I hope they were only sleeping)
~Lots of painting,

drawing and ...even some printing
Daddy has been working so hard on his screens for his guerrilla screen printing class
with Kathleen Mctee

~first crotchet lesson
~and of course sewing

finding Fun fabric

to make fun stuff with! Custom marker pouch for a 6 year old sweet heart
At the Farmers market getting back into the groove with Blue mama
(Our lovely gal pal over at Sweet tooth crafts supplied this picture that actually included both of us !!thanks )

A very windy day called for drastic precautions(hangers wired to rack)

~Blue mama's favorite display~new rosey skull lady apron gone by noon

~And a bunch of little sweet things