Super Mom – No Cape!

One mother sharing her knowledge with others

Archive for April, 2011

What To Do With an Old Doll Cradle

Posted by supermom on April 10, 2011

Just after we moved to Northwest Georgia, I came across a handmade doll cradle at a garage sale.  At the time, I had intended to sand it down, paint it white and do a tole painting of a teddy bear on the ends.   The plan was to use the cradle to display my childhood teddy bear and two of my old dolls.

Well… that was the plan.  But now that our children have all left home, Dave and I are thinking that with our next move, we might downsize to a smaller house and I’m looking around at the things we’ve accumulated over the years and deciding what must stay and what things we really wouldn’t have room for with less square footage.  I decided that the cradle (which I never got around to painting or displaying) was one of the things that could go.

So Dave sanded it down, put a few coats of polyurethane on it and glued some felt in the bottom.

Then I got busy and made a mattress, pillow and doll quilt for it from the flannel leftover from the baby/toddler quilt I made for Dave’s granddaughter.

Doll cradle with handmade mattress and pillow

With doll quilt added

Another view of cradle and doll quilt

Dave’s grandchildren live thousands of miles away.  Shipping the cradle would have been prohibitively expensive so instead we listed it on freecycle earlier this week.  After it was picked up, I got an e-mail from the young woman we gave it to.  The e-mail said that her little girl was so excited she couldn’t wait for her to get the cradle out of the car and had been playing with it ever since.

Now that’s a much better use for that doll cradle than sitting in our living room filled with my old toys!

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Posted in Conserving Resources, Gift Ideas, Sew easy projects, Thrifting | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Cranberry Coffee Cake

Posted by supermom on April 8, 2011

Since I haven’t shared a recipe in quite a while, I thought I’d share one for the cake I made yesterday afternoon.  I usually only make it after Thanksgiving or Christmas to use up any leftover cranberry sauce.  But this year, I canned our own cranberry sauce.  I have lots of little half-pints jars and so I can make it whenever I want.

It’s a great cake to serve to company.  Not too sweet and just a hint of tartness from the cranberries.

½ butter, at room temperature  (the original recipe called for shortening but I’ve switched to using either butter or coconut oil for baking)

¾ c sugar

2 eggs at room temperature

2 c flour

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

¼ tsp salt

1 c plain yogurt

1 tsp vanilla

1 can whole berry cranberry sauce (or whatever is leftover from turkey day as long as you have at least 1 cup)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Generously grease and flour a bundt pan.

Cream together butter, sugar and eggs until light and fluffy.

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a separate bowl.

Add to the creamed mixture; alternating with yogurt and vanilla.  Beat until smooth after each addition.

Spread half of the batter in the bundt pan.  Top with half of the cranberry sauce.  Repeat.

Bake for 50 to 60 minutes.  Test for doneness by inserting a skewer into the cake.  When it comes out clean, the cake is done.

Remove from oven.  Turn onto a rack.  Remove pan and allow to cook completely.

Allow cake to cool completely.

Then you can either dust it with icing sugar as I have done here:

We prefer this cake generously dusted with icing sugar.

Or you can drizzle with a glaze made of 1 c icing sugar, 3 to 5 tsp milk and 1 tsp vanilla.

Each slice is marbled with cranberry sauce.

Note:  I did share this recipe in this post way back in Jan 2009, but the recipe kind of got lost amongst the other recipes.   This cake is so good… it deserves to shine in its own post.

Posted in Recipes | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

WIP Wednesday – Baby Quilt

Posted by supermom on April 6, 2011

Now that one of the larger secret Christmas projects is finished, I’ve decided to pull out an old WIP.  I made this baby quilt top a little over three years ago.

Three years is a long time to wait to be quilted.

Here you can see that I fussy cut all the squares for with teddy bears.

I actually made two of these; one with teddies on a yellow background and this one on the green because I wasn’t sure which I wanted to send to Dave’s granddaughter when she was born.  I ended up sending the yellow (on her second birthday).  That one was so easy to quilt once I got a walking foot for my machine.  If only I’d gotten the walking foot sooner, she’d have had her quilt sooner.   Thank goodness I made them large enough that they’ll work on a toddler bed too.

This one has been in the drawer waiting to be finished.

Yesterday, I pulled it out and then started cutting the pieces for the backing and sewing them together.

Pieced quilt backing

Now I just need to cut the batting to size.  I’m using flannel drapery lining for the batting so that the quilt isn’t too heavy.

Once I get that done, I can start basting.  I’m going to use this quilt to practice Sharon Schamber’s hand basting method.   I pinned the yellow one when I quilted it, but found that I didn’t like having all those pins everywhere.  I’m hoping I like this method better.   Sharon has a couple of videos demonstrating how she hand bastes.

 

This post has been added to the WIP Wednesday link party over at Freshly Pieced.

Posted in Gift Ideas, Quilting, Sew easy projects | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

How Not to DeStash – Part Two

Posted by supermom on April 3, 2011

The past couple of weeks, I’ve been working to complete a major Christmas project.  I had purchased the flannel for the project from Hancock Fabrics a week or so ago but when I went to iron it to get it ready to use, I discovered several flaws in the fabric itself.  So I had to make a trip to Hancock’s to return it and hopefully find a suitable substitute because I really wanted to have this project done by the end of this weekend.

Well not only did I find what I needed to complete my project, I also found that they were having an unadvertised fabric sale with prices ranging from $1 to $5 per yard.    Any of you who love to work with fabric will understand that $1/yd for fabric is almost irresistible.

But resist I did because the above mentioned return was the third of it’s kind in three months and I had pretty much decided that I’d shop elsewhere for fabric in the future even though the next closest store that sells fabric is over 20 miles away and the next after that is over 40 miles away.   I figured that this would also help in my bid to destash before our possible move because if I wanted to sew something I’d have to use what I had on hand or wait until we were making a trip to the other towns.

Then when I was on my way to check out, I came upon tables (three to be exact) stacked high with bolts of 100% cotton fabric.   I decided a quick browse through couldn’t hurt… you know… just in case there might be some hidden gems in those piles of fabric.

This is the result of that little browse through:

Santa pillow panels to be used for a gift. The red and white to be paired with redwork embroidery pieces and the blue with white dots just because it never hurts to have that kind of thing in your stash.

 

This fabric reminded me of Hawaii. As there was less than a yard of this left on the bolt, I'm going to make an apron with it paired with the fabric underneath for the ruffles, ties and pockets.

This Mardi Gras fabric will be making an appearance in a quilt (possibly on both the front and back.)

I think the two on the left will make perfect backing fabric for some charity quilts and the owls as backing for a quilt to keep because I do love owls.

In my defense… pictured above are almost 23 yards of fabric and 1.5 fabric panel for just under $35 plus tax (two of the fabrics were $2/yd) and I do already have plans for most of the fabrics.  Plus buying fabric when it’s deeply discounted is, of course, a great budget saver.   But if I’m going to get really serious about destashing before the move, I’m going to have to stay out of fabric stores!

Posted in Budget Savers, Quilting, Sew easy projects | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

A Beautiful Spring Day

Posted by supermom on April 2, 2011

The sun is shining.   The sheets are on the line drying.

The mint is growing.

Strawberries are blooming.

Just one of several strawberry plants that are blooming

And my herb garden survived the unusually cold north Georgia winter.

Red yarrow (bottom left), Parsley (top left), Rosemary (center), Sage (peeking out from behind Rosemary), Oregano (right) and Thyme (very bottom right)

Posted in Gardening | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »