Oh, Christmas weather

Often, we don't get a cold December.  Many years, we've shopped for Christmas in short pants.  Those of you that just shrugged out of a huge bulky coat, scarf, hat, gloves... just asked "what's wrong with that?" 

Nothing.  But, once in a while, it's nice to have cold rainy weather for the winter holidays.  Everybody wants a different experience, right?  So, this is nice for us.  I mean, it's part of the season.  So many of the season's songs talk about fires and coats and snow and sleigh rides that it's hard not to long for that. 

Anyway, Syd worked and we shopped in the mornings and napped in the afternoons.  We bought a few gifts for one another.  Rob is impossible to shop for, but we found a couple things he needed...and when he said his feet were wet from a hole in his boot, I knew he needed to get that gift now and I'll wrap the empty box.  Needs must, right?

Yesterday, I did a good bit of cooking.  I made tomato-basil soup and Rob and I had soup and grilled cheese sandwiches for dinner.  I also made some Hello Dolly cookie bars.  We've been watching the Great American Baking Show and one of the recent ones we saw was cookie bars and while mine are delicious, they'd be judged as kind of "crumbly".  When the home cooks made Mary Berry's Apple Almond cake, I went to the internet for the recipe to see what they were trying to accomplish because it looked fun.  They left steps out of the recipe for the show, so we giggled about how the cooks adapted and compared that to what they were "supposed" to do.  Anyway, since I had the recipe, I decided to make my own. 

The cake is extra moist.  I don't think I cooked enough water out of the apples.  But, it is DELICIOUS!!!  And, as far as I know, it's the only gluten free thing I've ever made. 

I need to piece Barbara Brackman's latest Westering Women quilt block, but I didn't get around to that.  I just quilted.  Little, tiny circles. 

Hundreds and hundreds of little, tiny circles. 

As I've worked on that, I've run into several structural curves that have "problems" so I'm picking out and repairing that as I go.  I also had a pretty significant pucker in one corner, and I ended up picking out a good sized triangle of quilting there.  But, that wasn't enough.  the crease just wouldn't go away and I was pretty sure I was just going to quilt it in again, so I turned the quilt over, spritzed it and pinned it perfectly flat, like I had ironed it.  But, there's so dang much blue ink in this thing I wouldn't dare approach it with anything as hot as an iron. 

This one is a long term project.  But, it's going faster than I expected.  I'm trying to figure out what to quilt in the border...the quilt is so densely quilted and the border is a busy print, and I've got to find some way to "meld" those together.  Or, replace the border...

Everybody have a great Monday.  It's a new week!  Anything can happen. 



P. said...

Ooh, that cake sounds wonderful. Had to Google the recipe. So how much, cup-wise, did the ground almonds amount to, would you say? I have almond flour on hand and would probably substitute.

We got about four inches of snow yesterday. It fell softly all through the day and was so pretty and peaceful. I can imagine a rainy day for you would have a similar effect this time of year.

Beautiful quilting!

Vesuviusmama said...

I haven't yet done November's Westering Women block either. Tomorrow, hopefully.