Thursday, December 23, 2010

Merry Christmas!


May the sweet joys from the Babe of Bethlehem fill your home this day.

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Stockings Were Hung



This weekend I finished up my last Christmas order!

For this order I made a variety of stockings with different Christmas symbols stitched on the front. I really enjoyed this project. The stockings in the pics still need to be ironed and the toes need to be fluffed a little, but you can get the general idea.

I hope you are finding your own stockings hung with care today!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Shh... a secret recipe!



Each Christmas brings the arrival of these delicious darlings on the porches of neighbors and friends. We have to deliver them or I would eat them all - every. single. last. one.

I have been asked for our secret family recipe over and over through the years, so I thought I would share it here in the Hollow! It is so incredibly easy, you will giggle.


Harvest Moon Hollow Peanut Clusters

2 12 oz. bags semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 12 oz. bags milk chocolate chips
2 12 oz bags white chocolate chips
2 cans cocktail peanuts (more or less depending on your affinity for nuttiness)

Melt the chocolate together, stirring constantly. Turn off the heat. Stir in the peanuts. Drop by spoonful onto wax paper or tin foil. Refrigerate until hard.

That's it! I told you it was easy, peasy, lemon squeezy as my children like to say. These little devils are best kept in the refrigerator until ready to devour. They also freeze wonderfully well. The recipe can easily be reduced or increased without effecting the results. We have been known to make batches with six bags of each - with peanut clusters dripping from every surface in our home.

My children start their Christmas break in two hours - I am so excited to have them home and to have the festivities really begin. I hope your weekend will be just as delightful!

**image from www.tasteofhome.com**

Monday, December 13, 2010

12 Days of Christmas Kindness


Our family is participating in the above Christmas challenge this year!
Click here to read more specifics.

The idea is to do at least one random act of kindness each day until Christmas, to help us remember what is really important. Each member of our family is going to write our kindness down each day and put them in a special place. On Christmas Eve we will share our acts of kindness with each other before reading from Luke.

Feel free to join us in the challenge!

Merry Christmas!






Thursday, December 9, 2010

Merry Bidding!


Harvest Moon Hollow is now on ebay!

We've set up our first listing and are hoping to have an ebay store before too long.

Different items will be available at our ebay and Etsy locations.

Please check out our first listing by clicking here.

Merry Bidding!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Final Christmas Quilt of the Season!


My four snowmen have become...




this little beauty!

I really love how this one turned out, the pics just don't do it justice.

This last quilt is now up in the shop!

There was a question as to where the snowmen came from. Harvest Moon Hollow holds the copyright to these cuties, if you are interested in a pattern, just send an email my way.

I sent off my final mitten quilt today and I am one tired lady. But there is still a long line of custom orders to attend to, so I guess the resting will come after Christmas. However, right this very second I am going to go put some chili in the crockpot and a little cornbread in the oven!

Have a wonderful afternoon!


Friday, December 3, 2010

Christmas Favorite


I'd thought I'd share another Christmas favorite with you today! We love Pandora radio, especially at Christmas time. For those of you not familiar with Pandora, the founder explains it this way -

On January 6, 2000 a group of musicians and music-loving technologists came together with the idea of creating the most comprehensive analysis of music ever.

Together we set out to capture the essence of music at the most fundamental level. We ended up assembling literally hundreds of musical attributes or "genes" into a very large Music Genome. Taken together these genes capture the unique and magical musical identity of a song - everything from melody, harmony and rhythm, to instrumentation, orchestration, arrangement, lyrics, and of course the rich world of singing and vocal harmony. It's not about what a band looks like, or what genre they supposedly belong to, or about who buys their records - it's about what each individual song sounds like.

Since we started back in 2000, we've carefully listened to the songs of tens of thousands of different artists - ranging from popular to obscure - and analyzed the musical qualities of each song one attribute at a time. This work continues each and every day as we endeavor to include all the great new stuff coming out of studios, clubs and garages around the world.

It has been quite an adventure, you could say a little crazy - but now that we've created this extraordinary collection of music analysis, we think we can help be your guide as you explore your favorite parts of the music universe.

We hope you enjoy the journey.


What I enjoy about Pandora is the ability to type in a favorite song and then have an entire station created just around my favorite song. Inevitability I end up with a station I love. I have created countless stations from Appalachian Strings to Celtic Folk, depending on the mood I happen to be in.

Now, to the Christmas part! Our favorite Pandora stations that we have created for Christmas are The Nutcracker and Harry Connick Jr. Holiday. Whether we are feeling contemplative in front of our glittering Christmas tree, or are ready to bop around the kitchen making our favorite Christmas cookies, Pandora always seems to have just the music we are looking for.

If you've never tried Pandora out, give it a whirl at www.pandora.com. And the best part is? It's all free!


***There seems to have been some curiosity over what our miracle was. After years of prayers we were able to secure the funding for a surgical procedure I will be undergoing in January. We are very, very thankful.***






Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Merry December!



I hope each and everyone of you had a marvelous Thanksgiving. Our little family experienced an honest to goodness miracle over the Thanksgiving weekend, and we are standing 'in wondering awe' at the mercies of a loving Heavenly Father. I hope your Thanksgiving was just as wonderful.

December is here at last!

We just love Christmas here in the Hollow! What could be better then a season filled with magic and delight?

Let's kick of the season with one of our favorite holiday recipes!

We LOVE Miss Paula Deen's Corn Chowder.

You can find the recipe here.

I only put 1/2 a stick of butter in at the end. It is plenty rich without the full stick of butter. This recipe is especially good with sour dough bread bowls from Panera Bread. My son looks forward to this recipe all year long, it's that good.

Merry December!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Black Friday Coupon

Welcome to Harvest Moon Hollow!

For those of you just joining us,
please become a follower, found on the right side of the screen.

Now, to the all important code!


Upon checkout, simply enter the code

BLACKFRIDAY

and your 30% discount will automatically be applied.

Happy Shopping!

**Please note, the discount code cannot be used with Reserved Listings/Custom Orders. Thank you**

Happy Thanskgiving!


Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Black Friday Fun and a Coupon


For the past several years I have been one of those crazy ladies who ventures out in the blackest of night to patiently wait in line for the doors to open at 4:00 AM. With my husband being in medical school, it was about the only time we could really afford any goodies. My husband is now in his first year of residency, and while finances are the tightest they've ever been, I am not going to be able to participate in the Black Friday madness. It seems doctors are needed in the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit even on Black Friday, can you believe it?!? Without anyone to watch my children, I am going to have to politely excuse myself this year.

However, that doesn't mean we can't have a little fun around the Hollow on Black Friday!

Starting at 12:01 Friday morning, everything in the Hollow will be 30% off! Do you have a quilt or pillow you've been eying? Maybe a sampler that would be a perfect gift? This weekend is now the time!

Upon checkout, simply enter the code

BLACKFRIDAY

and your discount will be automatically applied.

Now, I'm off to a full day of pie baking - I hope your day is just as delightful!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

'Dear Santa' Quilt


'Dear Santa' - Quilt #3 is now up in the Shop!



The letter from Anthony is my favorite!



Have a delightful weekend!


Friday, November 19, 2010

'Christmas ABC' Quilt


I'd like you to meet 2010 Christmas Quilt Design #2 -

'Christmas ABC'

This little delight is perfect for a nursery, child's room or playroom.

'Christmas ABC' is now up in the Shop!



Thursday, November 18, 2010

'O Come Let Us Adore Him' Quilt


This pile of 'Adoring' fabric has turned into...




Our

'O Come Let Us Adore Him' Quilt

Christmas Quilt Design #1 is now up in the shop!

***'O Come Let Us Adore Him' has sold! More quilts on the way!***

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Worn Recipe


A few days ago I found myself at my kitchen counter rolling out dough. The kids were busy with homework and I had a few moments to myself. As I snitched a bit of dough to nibble, my mind began to wander, wondering if any of the women who had made this family recipe through the years had had a moment where they too found themselves rolling out dough while their children contentedly read nearby. For what occasions did those women who came before me find themselves rolling out a pie crust? Was it a birthday of a loved one perhaps, or was it the passing of a friend? Was it a time when the home was filled with family and the pie would disappear in moments or was it a time when, despite desperate hopes, she knew that this pie would probably only be eaten by her alone one small piece at a time over the next week or so?

What kind of women followed this same recipe, that added the vinegar, the egg, that cut in the shortening? What joys filled their lives when they pulled this recipe from their box? What crushing burdens did they carry as they pinched the crust? I wanted to know how they carried those burdens, how they not only survived, but how they thrived and found joy despite hardship. I wanted to know more about their love filled homes, where peace and the aroma of baking pie shared the same space.

My blood is so similar to that which ran through their veins. How much of me is a reflection of them? Is this where my need to shower my family with home cooked meals to show love and affection stems? So many questions, so many unanswerable questions.

These thoughts tumbled over and over in my mind, until the pie at last went into the oven. As I put my recipe back in my box, I realized that for now, all I have is a simple worn card with a family recipe. And somehow - that is enough, for now.


Never Fail Pie Crust

3 C flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 1/3 C shortening
1 egg
5 TB water
1 TB vinegar (I prefer apple cider vinegar)

Blend dry ingredients well with shortening (I use a pastry blender). Add liquid and form into a roll. Wrap in wax paper and store in the refrigerator. Take off as much as needed each time - do not warm to room temperature. Roll out dough on heavily floured board.


Monday, November 15, 2010

Snowman Query


I have a question that I'm hoping you can help me with.

I have these four snowmen stitchings that I was going to finish individually.



However, the more I look at them, the more I think that they really belong together.



Now I am wondering if I should maybe sew all four into a mini quilt?



What do you think?

Individual finishes or one mini quilt?


Please help! I can't make up my mind!



Thursday, November 11, 2010

Christmas Treats Round One


Our first round of Christmas treats are now in the shop!

Delightful snowmen...


shimmery threads for holiday sparkle...


festive Moda holiday fabrics...


experiments in aida...


simple and sweet nativity scenes...


And more snowmen.
I think I have a thing for snowmen this year.
Somewhere, deep down inside, I believe I am hoping for a white Christmas.
Not likely in Houston.

Christmas Quilts will be out very soon!
I will have three different Christmas Quilt designs, maybe four.

Don't you just love Christmas?

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Market Goodies



What a whirlwind of a weekend!

My parents flew in from Colorado so my mother could attend the International Quilt Market with me and so my father could endlessly tease his grandchildren. Needless to say, a great time was had by all.

This is the third time I've attended the International Quilt Market. The first two years were in 2000 and 2003 where I attended the wholesale portion as an employee of Liberty Gardens. I debated this year whether to attend as a wholesale buyer. In the end I decided to just attend the retail portion, figuring that most of the exhibitors from the wholesale market more then likely would stay on for the retail market.

I was sorely mistaken.

My aim in attending the quilt market was to visit the various Moda designers and preview their new lines for the coming year. Much to my dismay, the Moda designers only stayed for the wholesale portion. There was not one scrap of upcoming fabric at the show, and believe me, I looked. I was more then a little disappointed.

But all was not lost!

My mom and I did find a few cute booths that we did love. I had a great time kicking around the Moda Bakeshop booth. Moda Bakeshop is a blog that is overflowing with ideas of way to use Moda's jellyrolls, layer cakes, turnovers, honey buns, charm packs etc. What I really loved about Moda Bakeshop was what they were creating from the fabric - so many things to create from Moda goodness that I had never even thought of before. My head is spinning with possibilities after that stop!

The other booth I really enjoyed was Puddingstone Road. This booth was filled with patterns and kits for various projects. What I really appreciated about Puddingstone Road was their tremendous originality and creativity in their patterns and packaging. I purchased the above 'Frosty' kit from their booth. It's a pattern for a 'Frosty' potpourri of sorts - with everything I need tucked neatly away in a mason jar. Seriously - how cute it that? My mother and I made a third trip back to the quilt show just to visit this single booth, between the two of us I think we bought just about everything in the booth.

Inspired by these two booths, I have added a 'Delights' column to the side of Harvest Moon Hollow. You will notice the 'Moda Bakeshop' button, as well as the 'Fat Quarter Shop' (I think I'm in love with the Fat Quarter Shop). I would love to add more buttons! Do you have a 'delight' in your stitching life that you would like to share here? Do you have a button from your own blog that you would like listed? Please let me know - the more 'delights' the merrier!


P.S. Christmas items should be released this week!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

To Market, To Market


Tomorrow I am heading off to the Houston International Quilt Festival!

I am so excited to preview the latest and greatest the quilt world has to offer. I am especially excited to visit Moda and check out all of their fresh, new lines. I'm sure to return with a few goodies and more then a few new ideas. I do wish you wonderful ladies could be here, I'm quite sure we would have a grand time exploring the show together.

Happy Market Day!


Monday, November 1, 2010

Welcome Thanksgiving



I love the quiet simplicity of early November.

Over the years Thanksgiving has become one of my very favorite holidays, second only to Christmas. I find such renewal in pausing to rejoice in the bounteous blessings that, unfortunately, so often I take for granted. The gratitude of November prepares our family for the wonder of the Christmas season. This year I was so anxious for the simplicity of the season that, after the kids were tucked in last night, I took down all of our Halloween goodies and filled our little home with the lovely colors and reminders of Thanksgiving.

Now, to something unrelated!

Have you checked out Harvest Moon Hollow Pattern Company lately? Patterns can now be purchased directly from the site both for wholesalers and those of you who just love to stitch! I have ePatterns and paper patterns available for purchase. There are several Christmas designs now available, ready to stitch just in time for the holidays. I will be posting many patterns on Harvest Moon Hollow Pattern Company that will not be available at my Etsy Shop. Be sure to become a follower!

And for those of you in the giveaway - don't worry, I haven't forgotten you! I will keep you posted!

Have a marvelous first of November!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

A Few of our Favorite Halloween Things


We are gearing up for a few spooky days in our neck of the woods!
Here are a few of our favorite Halloween things...

Pumpkin Jack is a fantastic book about a boy and his beloved pumpkin. This is a great book to explore the life cycle of a pumpkin.


Who Will Haunt My House on Halloween? has delightful illustrations that keep you reading again and again.


Scared Silly is a fun compilation of Halloween poems, riddles, jokes and stories. The author/illustrator is Marc Brown of Arthur fame. When my son was four or five I read him a suspenseful story from this book that made him nearly jump out of his skin. The memory of it still makes me giggle hysterically.


Love this book! I have read this to various classrooms of children and it always proves to be a winner. Megan Lloyd is one of my favorite illustrators and she, once again, does a fabulous job. This book is just lovely.



Another Halloween favorite is our annual Haunted Gingerbread House creation. My husband and I made our first Haunted Gingerbread House when we were newlyweds and our family hasn't missed a year yet!


We LOVE pumpkin bread! Below is, hands down, the best pumpkin bread recipe I have ever tasted. It is super easy, delightfully tasty, and makes your house smell so good when it is cooking.


Downeast Maine Pumpkin Bread

1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin puree
4 eggs
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup water
3 cups white sugar
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour three 7x3 inch loaf pans. In a large bowl, mix together pumpkin puree, eggs, oil, water and sugar until well blended. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and ginger. Stir the dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans. Bake for about 50 minutes in the preheated oven. Loaves are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

**Recipe from allrecipes.com**

Happy Halloween!
Images from womansday.com, recipetips.com, neatsolutions.com, rd.com., newportnewslib.org

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Help Needed!


Good Morning ladies!

I am in need of your assistance this morning
.
As you can see from the pics, I am currently in the throws of wrapping up many mitten quilt orders. I have spent a great deal of time stitching lately as the entirety of the stitching around the mittens is done by hand. As a result, something curious has happened. I have worn the skin off of my left hand between my index finger and thumb where my hoop is constantly touching. Now, I have been stitching all of my life and have never had that happen! My index finger on my right hand will occasionally become a little tender depending on the thickness of the fabric I am working my needle through, but I have never had the skin on my left hand blister and peel off!

Has this ever happened to any of you and if so, do you have a solution?

I have switched from my wooden hoop to a plastic hoop, even though I feel like my wooden hoop holds the fabric more taut, the plastic seems to be be less abrasive. I'm probably just going to slap on a band aid, but if you have a magical cure - please let me know!


Aren't these fabrics fun?
I have been designing mitten quilts from them for customers and I am loving working with the bright colors.


(This is my hand and the hand of my daughter, she was six at the time, sewing a Christmas quilt for one of her dolls)

Speaking of mitten quilts...

Typically I work when my children are at school or sleeping. When they are home and awake I try to give them my full and undivided attention. However, this Saturday, I needed to spend part of the day working on mitten quilts. I was working with a quilt made from the bright fabrics pictured above when my seven year old daughter came into the room. (Well, room is a stretch. I work on our kitchen table which is situated so that if you are doing anything but sleeping, you are probably where I am working) Anyway, my daughter wanted to know who the mitten quilt was for, to which I replied that I was, at the moment, making two for a brother and a sister just a little bit older then she is. To which she replied, 'No fair! How come they get the quilts?' I then told her it was because their mom had paid me to make them for her. After a few moments of thought she said,

'Mom, if I pay you some money will you make me a mitten quilt?'

I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. So I just gave her a big hug instead. Later that night, when she was supposed to be in bed, she tiptoed out to the table, snuggled next to me on the bench and watched me sew until I tucked her back in.

I do believe that there will be a mitten quilt made just for her to discover this December.