Monday

Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Pie

We came home from Portland a week ago to a huge patch of rhubarb growing in our garden.  It might be the largest growth we've ever had, which is funny considering we were gone for weeks and it didn't get watered.   Mother nature is amazing!  The hearty nature of rhubarb is why the pioneers and homesteaders would bring starts of it when left to go across to the plains.  It served as a vegetable and fruit for them.  For us, it is the perfect tart compliment to my other favorite fruit, the strawberry.


Strawberries are in season and rhubarb is obviously ready to harvest, so this past weekend we made my favorite pie the Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Pie.  This pie is so simple with only a few ingredients.  It showcases the fruits of the season without the spices that some fruit pies add, which in some cases detracts from the pure summer goodness of the fruit.  My favorite way to eat this pie is cold, ice cold!  The crumble hardens crisp and the fruits are tender and sweet...with a little tartness.  Oh my heart!  


In addition to how delicious this pie is, it is super simple to make.  You can either make your own pie crust or use a store bought crust.  Sometimes it's just nice to keep it simple and buy the pastry already to go.  Here is the rest of the recipe...

Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble Pie

2  Cups Medium Sized Chopped Rhubarb
3 Cups Fresh Strawberries, Washed & Chunky Sliced
1 & 1/2 Cup White Sugar
3 Tablespoons Corn Starch

Mix these first four ingredients together in a mixing bowl and set aside.  Preheat your over to 375 degrees.
Roll out your pie crust in a deep dish 9" pie dish.
Lightly toss the fruit mixture into the unbaked pie shell.
Make the crumble.

1 & 1/2 Cup White Flour
1 & 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1/2 Cup Cold Butter
Dash of Vanilla

Mix the flour and brown sugar together.  Cut in the cold butter using a couple of knives or a few pulses in your food processor.  It will be just right when the crumble looks like the size of peas.  Add a dash of vanilla and toss.  

Sprinkle and spread over the fruit pie mixture.  Bake in over uncovered for 50 to 55 minutes or until the crumble and crust is lightly browned.
Remove from over and let cool.
Serve with ice cream or fresh whipped cream, but plain is just
 fine with this baby!


Now that you have the perfect summer pie, go find your self some rhubarb.  Most Whole Foods stores have it in their produce section now and differently in their freezer section, in case you can't find a patch of it.  I hope you enjoy this "taste of summer in one bite" pie.




Wednesday

Flower Box Wire Embroidery

I have always loved the look of vintage crewel embroidery.   It was popular in the 1970's and typically was stitched on canvas with bright and muted wool flosses.   Big framed crewel pieces are collector items today, and although I loved framed needlework, I also love vintage floral box trays with the wire and wood.  Often they are discolored from years of plantings.  

When we began designing our floral collections for this year, I knew I had to find a way to combine the look of vintage floral trays and embroidery.  I searched for wool flosses that would be hearty and beautiful and asked my very cute carpenter to make something that looked like the old floral seed trays that I collected on a recent trip to the south.


The first Wire Box Embroidery Tray came out of the shop and I squealed!  I couldn't wait to begin "stitching" on them.  They are lightweight and perfectly distressed, even the wire is antiqued.  I began with a basic daisy and a thick DMC Yarn and tied off the first knot onto the wire.  Then I began winding the wool floss around the wire to create the first flower.  I filled it in until it was thick and full.  It was so simple and easy to create a flower.  Holding the lightweight frame was also a delight compared to heavy fabrics.  


I then experimented with all of my favorite embroidery stitches and found a few tricks to use them all in a collection of flowers.  What I love most about this style of embroidery is you can be a free-form as you wish.  It is simply about winding yarns around the wire until you create a flower of leaf or whatever that you love.  

I use a thick Yarn Darner Needle to get my heavy flosses through and if there is a stitch I don't like, I can clip it out and start again without ruining my fabrics.  


You can find our Wire Box Embroidery Frames on our site in several sizes and shapes.  We also offer kits which include the flosses, needles, stitching guides and patterns.  In addition to using these frames for wire embroidery, they can be used as frames for fabric embroidery and for photos or dried flowers or any other use you can imagine.


If you would like to watch a tutorial on how to begin stitching your own Floral Box, you can watch today's Fresh Living segment on KUTV Channel 2.   We will be posting video tutorials on our Tweetle Dee You Tube Channel in the next few weeks!  We are super excited to share these Wire Box Embroidery Frames and Kits with you and look forward to seeing lots of beautiful stitches blooming in your homes.



Friday

Belle Prairie Wild Flower Mother's Day Sale

 There are two new Belle Prairie Wildflower Block of the Month kits in the shop today, and they just might be the sweetest flowers in the collection.  Wild Clover and Lily of the Valley are prairie wildflowers painted on these adorable hexies.  Each flower in the collection was chosen because of the meaning these little blossoms have.  


Belle Prairie Wild Clover

Wild Clover symbolizes faith, hope, and love.  If you were lucky enough to find the rare four leaf clover you got a little luck too.  The purple and pink blossoms are so dainty and sweet.  Have you ever walked in a field of wild clover?  I have and can say the fragrance is so sweet, it's no wonder the bees flock to those clover blossoms.  


Belle Prairie Lily of the Valley

The Lily of the Valley flower literally translates to "a return to happiness".  I can imagine these little white and blue flowers were given amount the prairie women in times of trial to bring a little smile and cheer...and a reminder that happier times lie ahead.


The entire Belle Prairie Wildflower Collection is available in kits to paint yourself and already painted.  These blocks are different than our typical barn quilt patterns in that they are a template, which means you place them on your hexie and trace the design onto the board instead of measuring for a grid.  

They are so fun to paint.  I use both tape/sponge brushes and soft watercolor brushes to fill in the tiny little bits of color and curves.  They were a joy to paint and even more, I love the meaning behind each and every flower.  

This Mother's Day weekend Our Shop is celebrating the special women in our lives by giving 20% off all orders.  Use code MOMSRULE at checkout.  The Mother's Day Sale ends Monday at midnight.  

We hope you have a lovely Mother's day weekend and pick up the two newest Belle Prairie Blocks to share a little faith, hope, love, luck & happiness in your corner of the prairie!



Sunday

Pina Colada Mini Pineapple Upside Down Cakes

What better was to celebrate National Pineapple Upside Down Cake Day than with a festive update to this classic dessert!  I was asked by KUTV's Fresh Living to share my favorite version of my grandmother's Pineapple Upside Down Cake and because I love coconut and anything mini-sized this is what I came up with.



The recipe is super easy and they bake up in less than a half hour, but the most amazing part of this recipe is the Coconut Rum Glaze that pours into the baked goodness and drizzles over the top.  I mean seriously...coconut, rum, and pineapple?  Goodness me!  

Pina Colada Mini Pineapple Upside Down Cake

Ingredients

One Vanilla Cake Mix
1/2 of Coconut Cream
3 Eggs
1/2 Cup of Crushed Pineapple
1/2 Cup Sweetened Coconut Flakes
1 Teas. Coconut Extract
12 Whole Sliced Pineapple
12 Maraschino Cherries

Mix together all ingredients and set aside.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease 12 large muffin tin cups.  Place a dot of butter and a tablespoon of brown sugar in each muffin cup.
Break a one inch section out of the pineapple slices and form them in a circle in the bottom of each cup.  Place a cherry in the hole of the pineapple slice.  Spoon the batter in about a quarter inch from the top edge.  Bake for 15 to 20 minuets.

Take out of the oven and poke a few holes in each cake with a fork.  Make the glaze!

1/2 Cup Butter
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1 1/2 Cup Coconut Milk
1 Teas. Rum Extract

In a small non-stick pan melt the butter.  Add the brown sugar and whisk until heated through and incorporated into the butter.  Slowly pour in the coconut milk and rum extract whisk until smooth.  Spoon half of the sauce over the top of each cake and refrigerate for 15 minutes.  Reserve the remaining sauce to drizzle over the top when serving.

Slide a knife around the edges of the cakes and pop out of the muffin tins and place on a plate with the pineapple up.  Drizzle sauce over the cake and garnish with a dollop of fresh whipped cream


There are a few cakes that are our family's favorite and this one is a top three.  It is seriously the best rich, cold, creamy and sweet cake!  I hope you enjoy this updated version of this 1950's classic.  You can watch the Fresh Living segment on the site by following the link.  It's always a fun time when we are cooking together in the KUTV kitchen!














Wednesday

Pinners Conference San Diego

 We have loaded our trailer and are on our way to San Diego for this weekend's Pinners Conference!   We are so excited for this amazing event.  We will have our booth stocked with lots of goodies and will be teaching two classes, our How to Paint a Barn Quilt class and our newest Field of Flowers Hoop-Art Embroidery!  

If you have never been to a Pinners Conference, you will not believe how fabulous this event is.  This is the place where Pinterest comes to life with classes taught by leading experts in every field from food and nutrition, to crafts, exercise, family, home decor, calligraphy, and of course barn quilts & embroidery!  And I can't stop talking about the shopping!!!  So many amazing booths full of the best stuff.  I always come home with something amazing. 







In the How to Paint a Barn Quilt Class we will be painting one of my favorite designs, the Farmer's Daughter.  The kits are $25.00 and come with everything you need to paint your own 16" square of farm style sweetness.  We are also excited to be sponsored by Deco Art!  They will be supplying amazing paints and supplies.  Our How to Paint a Barn Quilt Class is on Saturday at 1:00 PM.  You won't want to miss it!


We are also teaching our Field of Flowers Hoop-Art Embroidery Class on Friday at 2:00!  You all know how much I love embroidery and these workshops are so fun.  You will learn all of the basic stitches and some of the newest trending floral stitches as well as tips for designing your own patterns.  Kits include everything you need to finish your hoop-art and continue stitching more.  


To sign up for our classes and the many other amazing classes go to Pinners Conference and use code TDD for discounted pricing.  For those of you who can't make it to San Diego we are bringing our Pinners Shop to you with a special discount this weekend only!  Use code Pinners30 to get 30% off all orders.  


We hope to see a lot of you there this weekend with your paint brushes in one hand and your needles and thread in the other!  I can't wait for all of the shopping and classes I get to sneak into.  Pinners truly brings Pinterest to life!  See you in San Diego.


National Food on a Stick Day - Fresh Living

 There is a holiday for everything and today is National Food on a Stick Day!  when the producers of KUTV's Fresh Living asked me to come up with something to celebrate this fun day, I knew it had to have our family's favorite pizza and salad!   We love pizza of all kinds, but for our picky little ones it has to be fun.  So, we decided to make them like we do our cinnamon rolls and add a stick.  This recipe is so quick, simple, and easy.  You can whip it up on the busiest of nights and feel like a hero!

All you need to gather is a can or two of Pillsbury Refrigerated Pizza Dough, your favorite sauce, some cheese and chopped toppings.  I love this dough.  It is soft and super easy to work with and best of all, it tastes as good as my own homemade dough.  

Pillsbury Refrigerator Pizza Dough 
 Roll the dough out on a floured surface and square the edges.  Spread your favorite sauce on lightly.  If you use too much sauce or toppings they will cook out of the roll when baking.  Spread to the outside short edge and leave a quarter inch naked on both long ends so your dough roll will stick together.

Spread Marinara Sauce to outside short edge.  Leave long edge naked.
 Lightly spread on cheese and toppings that have been chopped small.  This is a key need so that you can cut the rolls and not loose any of the goodness.

Add cheese and chopped toppings.
 Roll the dough towards you to make a big pizza dough log.  Using waxed or unwaxed non-flavored dental floss to cut the rolls.  Take a piece a couple of feet long and slide under the log.  Lift up the ends of the floss, cross over and pull down.  This "cuts" the dough into nice chunks.  

Roll lengthwise like a cinnamon roll.  Squeeze long edge together.
 When you are done cutting your pieces, place them on a parchment lined tray and lightly press down on the rolls to flaten them out a little.  Pinch the ends that may come loose in cutting, or tuck them under the roll.  

Cut 1.5" lengths with a unflavored dental floss. Place on parchment lined baking sheet.
 Bake at 400 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes until everything is bubbly and the dough is lightly golden brown.  Let cool slightly before sticking the sticks in.

Bake for 10 to 12 minutes at 400 degrees.  Let cool slightly.
 The sticks I use for my rolls or pies on a stick I get in the hardware section of my local shop.  I cut them to 10 inches and use a pencil sharpener to make a point on one end.  This allows me to slide it into pastry perfectly.   They can be washed with hot soapy water and used again and again.

Stick wooden dowels into each roll.  
 For the Salad on a Stick, I used iceberg lettuce, cherry tomatoes and chunks of mozzarella cheese.  For these sticks I used wood skewers that you can get at any grocery store.  Soak them in water for a few minutes and slide your fixings on.  To serve, drizzle a little dressing on or have a dipping dressing on the side.  These are so yummy and make eating salad so fun!

Finish off dinner with Salad on a Stick.
We made several different types of pizza rolls.  One was a Chicken Bacon Alfredo which had Alfredo sauce, Chopped Rotisserie Chicken Breast,  Fresh Parsley, Hormel Real Bacon Bits,  Chopped Olives, and Mozzarella Cheese.  Oh, man was it good!  

Our favorite though was the Chicken BBQ Pizza Roll which we used BBQ Sauce, Chopped Rotisserie Chicken Breast, Chopped Red Onion, Chopped Green Pepper and Mixed Cheddar and Mozzarella Cheese.  The red onion was amazing in this pizza roll.  

Catch the segment on KUTV Fresh Living!

So, whether you add a stick to these pizza rolls or eat them without, they are our favorite way to eat pizza now!  You can catch the segment on KUTV Fresh Living.  We hope you enjoy this crazy fun holiday and use this recipe for brunches, dinners, and late night snacks throughout the year!


Tuesday

Simply Vintage Spring 2018

My babies are cover girls!  It is always fun to have your creations published, but I was super excited to see two of my hoop-art embroideries make the cover of the spring 2018 Simply Vintage Magazine published by Quilt Mania Inc.


Inside the issue you will find the pattern and instructions for both She Was a Wildflower and Hello Beautiful, as well as many other amazing quilts and projects which are all inspired by everything vintage.  These two hoop-art patterns were designed for my daughters with a lot of love.  

If you are new to embroidery or would like to watch a video tutorial of the stitches used in these patterns you can find them on our Tweetle Dee You Tube Channel.  



In addition to the pattern in Simply Vintage, you can purchase kits for both of these embroideries in My Shop.  Each kit comes with the hoop, fabric, transfer pen, needle, floss and scissors as well as our Stitching Cheat Sheet.  


To get your copy of the Simply Vintage Spring 2018 Issue either visit your local quilt shop, Barns & Noble or click on the link.  You will love this issue!



Friday

A Basket Full of Felt Flowers

Flowers are beginning to bloom, well sort of.   I collected a basket full of felt flowers yesterday to add a little spring to our All Seasons Angel.  I thought she needed a little color and so I'm sharing how to make these simple layered felt flowers today.  They are perfect to make hair clips, brooches, or embellishment to anything.  I am making a wreath to add a collection of them to.  They are super simple to make and best of all, they don't fade with the season.


 I added them to the basket that comes as part of the All Seasons Angel with 3M Adhesive dots which can be popped off and changed for the seasons.  One of the features I love about this angel is that her arms move so it appears she is holding whichever of the six accessory pieces you want to show.  For the flowers though, it allows for a super full basket or a few simple flowers.  Whoever designed her with moving wings is a genius!  (That would be my hubs.)


I made three simple layered flowers.  They look like a hydrangea to me and are the simplest felt flower.  To make them, you need about an 10" square of wool felt in the color you want your layered flower.  You can find the felt at most hobby or quilt shops.  You will also need a 6" square piece of green felt, a few wool balls (optional) and a hot glue gun.  How simple is that?


To begin lay out the wool you want to make the flower with.  Using a round lid (I used a spice lid) about 1 to 2" round, trace 6 to 8 circles.  The larger the circle the bigger the flower will be, the smaller the circles, the smaller your flower will be.  Pretty easy.  If you want a wavy look to your petals,  use your scissors to cut a wave around the outside of your circle.  This is such a cute look when finished.


Cut out the circles and heat up your glue gun.  A low temp gun is best for this project.  


Squirt a small dot of glue in the inside center of your flower.


Fold the circle in half with the glue inside and hold until set.  To speed up the process you can set it under a book or cup edge to press until set.  This allows you to glue all the pieces pretty quickly and not have to wait for each piece to set before making another. 

Oh, and don't mind my manicure...or lack of one.  I am heading to get my nails done this weekend once our paint orders are out the door!


After the glue is set in your half-circles.  Repeat this process again folding your half-circle into a fouth-circle.  Basically squirt the glue and fold in half again.  Let set.


Now you have your petals to make a layered flower!


Take two of your folded petals and glue together at the outside points.


Continue to add more petals around the first two to fill in and make your flower bloom!  Let the hot glue dry.  Fluff out the petals to get the look you want.  Wool felt folds in mysterious ways and it is so fun to see how each flower it different.  


Now it's time for the leaves.  Trace out the shape and length of the leaf you want onto the green felt.  Cut inside the tracing line to eliminate the tracing line.  I cut two petals for each leaf. One large and one smaller.  I love the layered curved look which I will show you how to do now.



The same as when you made your petals,  you will squirt a dot of glue in the center bottom of your smaller leaf and fold in half.  Hold in place until set.


Next, wrap the larger leaf around the base of the smaller leaf and with two squirts of glue on either side fold and glue the larger leaf to the smaller leaf base.  Let dry.



Now you have a curved layered leaf that is ready to glue to the base or bottom of your flower.   To figure where to glue, I set the flower down flat and look for where there is a gap that the leaf would fill in.  


Glue your leaves to the base of your flower.  If you are going to use your Layered Felt Flower as a hair piece or brooch, cut out an additional circle of felt to glue onto the base of the flower and leaved to cover up the bottom.


If you want a center to your flower, look for an opening in the folds and with a little itty bit of hot glue, adhere your wool balls in place.  Let dry.  There you go!  Your first wool felt flower.  It was super easy wasn't it?  


This is the same simple Layered Felt Flower that I made for the All Seasons Angel basket.  You can pick up your angel on sale now and enjoy her all year.   I'll probably add a few more felt flowers with some more tutorials throughout the year.  I can't wait to make some more wildflowers to fill her basket come summer.


 
BLOG TEMPLATE BY DESIGNER BLOGS