What's for dinner? Omelettes a la Carte

Tuesday, July 27, 2010
One of our favorite dinners/lunches around here are omelettes.What could be easier than making up a few eggs? I make it fun for my kids by chopping up a bunch of ingredients and letting them pick what they want. They even get to add it directly to the pan so they get in on the cooking action.

This pretty much guarantees that my kids are going to eat their lunch since they picked their fillings. Of course sometimes they get a little crazy and ask for blueberries, maybe someday I'll give in... but not this time! EJ has gotten adventurous and now asks for an omelette with "the works" (he wants some of everything.) While Ellie Mae sticks to her "safe" favorites. Our toppings vary by what is in the fridge or in the garden.

I like mine with "the works" and of course some Tapatio hot sauce! While I may not have time {ok so it's more like I don't have the desire} to make eggs for breakfast in the mornings, I may make more of an effort to do so. I recently read an article about a study that revealed that people who eat eggs for breakfast consume less calories throughout the day. Now there's food for thought. By the way it the omelette pictured above was made with just one egg so you don't have to over do it on egg consumption and ruin your cholesterol. You can read more about the study here and here.

Some of our favorite ingredients include: cilantro, onions, mushrooms, cheese, ham, turkey, bell peppers, and cherry tomatoes.

I sure wish I still had my chickens though.


Handmade Bookcase

Monday, July 26, 2010
A while ago I decided to organize my sewing space. I ended up having a few boxes that didn't get put away. I was hoping to be able to go back to TN and pick up some cheap bookcases I had left there in storage. You know, those fake wood laminate ones that you can get at the big box stores for $50-$100 with the flimsy card board back. Oh and lets not forget the shelves that sag!

After thinking about it I decided it wasn't going to be worth the cost to go an get them. I thought I could buy some locally for less than it would cost in gas to drive to TN. After looking around and not really wanting to waste money on something that would eventually end up in the trash or the thrift store, I sweet talked Mr.PD into making me some.

Nothing quite as sexy as a man with tools!

...and while I could have very easily {well maybe not AS easily as Mr. PD} made these myself I let Mr. PD have the fun of building said bookcase. Besides, if I show too much independence in the tool department he won't want to build me my furniture in the future when I'm feeling too lazy to do it myself! You know I think deep down inside our men like for us to ask them to make things for us.

This is what she looked like after Mr. PD put her together. 

 we added a 1x2 along the top sides so that the profile would not look weird from the side

She sat like this for a few days until I got fed up with my sewing room arrangement once more. I was so tempted to just bring it upstairs like this and put her to good use. However, Mr.PD made me see the error of my ways {boy does he know me} and convinced me that if I brought her upstairs in such a sad state she would remain like that forever! That wasn't something I wanted to stare at every day.

Sooo... we dragged her into the kids playroom {it's air conditioned, plus I could watch movies as I worked} 

Where I lovingly {over several days} filled in her blemishes, primed, sanded, painted, and sealed her until her outer beauty was as apparent as her inner beauty. *Note: don't waste your money on Olympic Paint (from Lowe's) that stuff is like trying to paint with water! Their Valspar paint is much better.

Finally I took her upstairs only to find out that her shelves didn't fit!

Mr. PD forgot to make them just a tad smaller. So she sat like this and waited for the rest of her shelves. Meanwhile I could not wait, so I filled her first 2 shelves with neatly folded fabric.

Finally I had to force Mr. PD to fix her shelves {threats of no dinner may have been involved!} so that I could finish organizing all my fabrics.

Isn't she so pretty? I could stare at her all day. I'm really glad Mr. PD did not let me bring her upstairs in her unfinished state.

We used Ana White's Knock-Off Wood plans for "The Favorite Bookshelf." This is definitely going to be one of my favorite pieces of furniture. I'm already planning on making a second to replace that brown one in the picture. Just so you know the cost was Pretty much $90 just for the lumber. We already had paint, brushes, wood filler, nails etc. On Ana's site it gives the cost at $50. Oh but this is such a bargain! See these lovelies here? Those are $500 a piece!! That image is exactly what I want my sewing room to look like, just replace all the pink with red. {...mmm dreamy.}

... in case you are wondering what all I have on this beauty...

Now go build your own!


*materials used: mdf, bead board panel, Zinsser BIN primer, Latex paint, Min-Wax Poly Acrylic Top Coat

July Mail Call

Friday, July 23, 2010
July has been a good month for mail goodies. First I got my little quilt from the Modify Tradition Swap quilt from Jennifer of That Girl, That Quilt.

I love the Mendocino fabrics and the modern take on the Bow Tie block.

I also got a nice package from Ryan of I'm just a guy who quilts. I was lucky enough to win a giveaway on his blog. I got a nice little set of some very lovely Tufted Tweets! I love the deep brilliant colors of this line.
Coincidentally, I won a Tufted Tweets notebook from Ashley of Film in the Fridge (scroll down to see the notebook.) I'll post pictures later because I've been using it to brainstorm new quilting motifs.

Ryan also sent a nice collection of scraps! there are so many awesome fabrics in these baggies that would make some very cute hexies or some very awesome string blocks. However I'm restraining myself until I've crossed off a few more of my UFOs.

I also received some charm packs that were on clearance for $4 at Hancock's of Paducah. I got two packs each of Kate Spain's "12 Days of Christmas" and American Jane's "A breath of Avignon."

Did you get any quilty goodies this month?

What I did on My Summer Vacation: QSC Expo

Thursday, July 22, 2010
While in NV my SIL and I drove up to Reno to the Quilting, Stitches & Crafts Expo (QSCE) We actually got there a mere hour before closing time on the last day. It was actually perfect! We got in for free and honestly I didn't think it was very good. It's hard to compare when the only other quilt show I've been to has been the AQS quilt show in that used to be held at the Opryland resort in Nashville TN. Now that is a 5 star event!

It was a rather small event and I was not at all impressed with the quilt show portion of it. Most of it was put in a wing off to the side of the main vendor mall and it seemed more like an after thought. The lighting wasn't very good in the quilt show hall and so none of my pictures turned out very well.

There was a bit of eye candy in the vendor mall. This quilt caught my eye because the construction is very similar to my Tulip block.

The only thing I bought was a yard of this Olivia Fabric:
My kids love all of the Olivia books. I'm a big fan of the art work in the books. I'm not sure what to make with this but I think I need to make up a pattern using a whole yard of fabric as the main focus.

OK so I need your opinions. You see there was an "incident" involving one of the vendors. I've been to several of the AQS quilt shows and have never had a vendor get all uppity about me taking pictures of their booth. Now I have seen some booths that will have a sign posted that very graciously asks not to take any pictures, and I oblige. Now what about the booths that don't have a sign, do you think they are fair game for snapping pictures? Well this vendor saw my SIL and myself pull out the camera and came over and asked us (not too rudely but not very nicely) to not take pictures... this is my lively hood... yadda yadda, I don't know what people are going to do with those pictures... She made me feel like I was trying to steal form her! OK so I understand there are some people who try to pass off other people's designs/patterns as their own, but not us! So yeah, I was a little offended especially when I would have blogged about them and sent people their way etc etc. The thing that really gets to me though is that this vendor has an online website where you can purchase their quilt patterns, and guess what? Pictures of all their quilts!!! So if I really wanted to "steal" their work I could just go online and do it. So what are your thoughts?


What I did on My Summer Vacation: Virginia City

Wednesday, July 21, 2010
During our visit to Nevada we were able to visit to a 150+ year old city: Virginia City. I absolutely love going to old places. There is so much character, beautiful architecture, and a different pace of life. I can't help but imagine what it would have been like to live in a town like this... and then I am so grateful that I did not! Lets just say I'm a big fan of modern conveniences like cars, grocery stores, running water, electricity and such.

One of my favorite things to do in little tourist traps like this is to browse all the little shops because there are often really impressive things sold along with all the touristy junk trinkets. Case in point:
Check out these awesome garden sculptures done by an artist. I really like the angler fish, reminds me of Finding Nemo. I don't usually buy anything but I do love to browse!

We took the kids on a train ride. Again, I'm grateful for airplanes and cars!

Virginia City

The town is littered with really cool old houses, mansions, and buildings.

Chollar/Savage Mansion (restored)
This beautiful mansion has been restored and I just couldn't get enough of it's beauty. It was constructed 149 years ago and was visited by many historical figures including Mark Twain, Ulysses S. Grant (he gave a speech from that very balcony), and the cast of Bonanza!

Isn't it just amazing? I would love to live in an updated (electricity, central heat and air, updated kitchen) historic home!


What I did on My Summer Vacation: South Lake Tahoe

I love, LOVE, the Sierra Nevadas. I have fond memories of road trips, summer camps, and hiking up and down these gorgeous mountains. Lake Tahoe is seriously one of the most beautiful places on earth. I might be just a little bit biased because Mr. PD and I honeymooned at Tahoe {North to be exact.}

After our little stop in Sacramento we headed off to my BIL{Mr.PD's brother, who happens to be married to an awesome lady who has become one of my BFF's. Lucky me!} house near Carson City, NV.  We decided to take Hwy 50 on over to Nevada and the extra time is definitely worth the scenery!

there's Lake Tahoe on the on the left!

everything is absolutely gorgeous!

Bluer than blue skies, fresh mountain air, perfect weather, real pine trees {not like the ones in the south!}, and real mountains! Yeah, I could live here... oh wait, no I can't I'm not that rich!

A few days after arriving in NV we took a day trip up to Sand Harbor at South Lake Tahoe! It's got a lovely beach, blue skies, clear albeit frigid water, and lots of sun. The kids really enjoyed it here. They didn't even seem to mind the icy cold water. Only Mr. PD was brave enough to dive in all the way, only once though. Me, I was content with ankle high water and playing photographer.

We buried Ellie Mae

I can't even tell you how much I love this shot:

It makes it seem as though we have the whole lake to ourselves! So now I sit in Alabama, where high for today will be 95F but will probably feel more like 100F with the heat index, pining for the frigid waters of Lake Tahoe.


What's for dinner? Black Bean Soup

Tuesday, July 20, 2010
I don't know about you, but I can have soup any time of the year. I don't think it really matters in this time of technological advances. I'm talking about the modern miracle of air conditioning and central heating units! I love that I can be toasty warm inside when it's freezing cold out, or nice and cool when it's blazing hot outside. So yes, I enjoy a bowl of ice cream when it's snowing, and soup when it's boiling because magically inside it is not {unless your AC unit is broken on the hottest day of the year like ours was last week. NOT fun!}

Recently we made yet another recipe form the HCAR 09 cook book. It was a really simple Black Bean Soup and it was perfect! It was very, very good just as it's written. But as you can see the next day I pepped up my left overs by adding some fresh cilantro, a squeeze of lime, fresh green onions, fresh avocado, a tiny dollop of sour cream, a dusting of cheese, a bit of crushed tostada, and a dash of my favorite hot sauce {food storage anyone? ooh look you can buy packets too!} I went very easy on the, sour cream, cheese, and tostada because I really want to keep it healthy. Everything in moderation right?

wow, I'm totally drooling now...mmm, wish I had some right now.

So are you a year round soup and ice cream eater or a seasonal one?


A Doll For My Doll

Monday, July 19, 2010
I have finally finished this cute little doll for my little girl. OK, OK, so she still needs clothes but it took me a year to get to this point! I'm cutting my losses and calling it good! She was actually mostly finished within a week of me purchasing the pattern from a very talented lady back when she was still "Bowl's n Annie's" I think I specifically bought the Cupcake Cutie pattern for it's smaller size. However I made this doll twice as big after the first one was gobbled up by the dog within a week of me finishing it!

So if I confused you, the time line goes like this: I bought the pattern, then a week later I finished the cutest little doll with clothes and everything, a week after that my daughter left it outside in the back yard. A few days later I realize what all the "fluff" was outside :(  We move to Alabama and then I decided to make another doll. My daughter steals said doll while she was mostly done (hair mostly done and clothes missing.) After a few months of playing with her the doll's leg seam burst open and so the dolly was placed in a box in my sewing room. We move to a different house and the doll resurfaces. My daughter once again steals the doll. Finally last week she brings me the doll and asks me to fix her "broken leg" I do her one better, I fix the leg and finish the hair. Isn't she cute? Maybe I'll get around to making her some clothes!

I hope she'll survive for a long time because my track record is not very good for doll making!


What's for dinner? Banana Blueberry Pancakes

Sunday, July 18, 2010

On Sunday afternoons we like to have a large late lunch (because of church meetings) rather than a big dinner. We usually resort to breakfast comfort foods. On this particular day we had Banana Blueberry Wheat Pancakes. These were really good with the freshly picked berries form that week. I also ended up using all wheat flour for this recipe. You can't beat real maple syrup on pancakes too!

Are you starting to wonder why a lot of my recipes come from this website? Well a few months ago I was able to purchase the "2009 Healthy Cooking Annual Recipes" cook book when they were having an amazing sale! I bought 2 really nice cook books for $5 each and free shipping! I'm really loving this cookbook and so far we have loved every recipe we have made. So delicious and healthy! The nice thing is that most of the recipes are available online so I can share with you the ones that are actually good! See I'm doing all the work for you, weeding out the not so tasty recipes for you!

This cook book is awesome! It has loads of quality images, quick recipes, easy ingredients, and lots of variety. Thumb through it the next time you're in a bookstore, you won't regret it.


Plugging Away

Saturday, July 17, 2010
My UFO (Un-Finished Object) List {over there on the left hand side bar} has really been keeping me on task. I don't know if you've heard the saying " a goal not written is only a wish" or "a goal without a plan is only a wish" but it's definitely true. That little {or not so little} list is helping me to stay focused on my goal of finishing up my UFOs. I don't  know if you've noticed that I've slowly been crossing things off since that little list made it's appearance on June 1st.

Yesterday I finished piecing the quilt top for my Quilt for Kids quilt. This is a very cool organization that has partnered with Downy to provide quilts for children in need. You can donate a quilt or you can request a quilt kit from them. It's pretty straightforward and within a few days you will have the quilt kit with all the necessary fabric {pre-cut even!} for the top and the back sent to you. You provide the labor to piece it, and quilt it, as well as the batting.
Isn't it cute! I hope to get it on the frame tonight so I can very quickly quilt it tomorrow after church. I think this quilt is going to make some kid very happy! I feel rotten though because I've taken longer then the allowed 4-6 weeks {I can't even remember when I got the kit.} I guess I'll have to make up for it by sending an extra quilt!


Quirky Kitty

Friday, July 16, 2010
Meet Savannah, my quirky cutie pie of a kitty. I've had her for about 13 years.

Those of you that have followed me for a while are probably wondering why you've never seen or heard of her before. The truth is she resides with my parents in California. Oh how I wish I could have my dear sweet quirky kitty but alas, Mr. PD is violently allergic to cats. What I mean by that is that he is super allergic and isn't very pleasant to be around when he is in a foul mood because of kitty allergies. When he is in one of those moods he always talks of harming my poor gatos, or any other gato causing his discomfort {mind you I really don't think he would ever give in to his violent allergy related desires.} This is why my poor kitties have to live with my parents where they are spoiled rotten by my dad {oh the horror.} Luckily my mom really loves Mr. PD and when we visit she cleans the master bedroom top to bottom in order for it to be allergy free {that plus medicating Mr. PD helps.}

Can you guess where the picture of Savannah was taken?

Well she is so spoiled by my parents that she will now only drink water while in the bathtub!The story goes that one day my mom walked into the bathroom to find Savannah lapping up shower water {gross!} My mom very foolishly took pity on the poor thirsty dehydrated kitty {exaggeration.} She happened to have a little bowl sitting by the tub and so she filled it with fresh water for the poor little kitty, and that was that. Savannah will no longer drink water from any where else. When she is done eating her food in the kitchen she will stroll over to the bathtub, hop in, and meow until someone takes pity can't stand it anymore and gives her a drink. It's quite funny to walk by and look into the bathroom and see 2 little ears poking over the top of the tub as little Miss Savannah waits patiently for a drink.

Do you have any quirky pets?

What I did on My Summer Vacation: Old Sacramento

I lived in the Bay Area for approximately 14 years before I went of to college. I can't believe that I never got the opportunity to visit Old Sacramento. I do remember that I was insanely jealous of my older brother because he got to go as part of a school field trip in 8th grade History Class. I was a year behind him in school and so when I was in 7th grade I waited eagerly to be in 8th grade history so that I could go. I was so excited when I got into the class of the mean hard teacher because his class was the only one that got to go to Old Sacramento. Well my dreams were shattered when budget cuts caused the field trip to be no more!

Since then I have always wanted to go to Old Sacramento and I finally got my wish 16 years later! It was so worth it {at least to me.} There was so much to see and photograph. It's so beautiful and old. Love it!

How cool is this yellow Lego bear?

I found the colors of this guy really appealing. The colors would make a great quilt.

Of course Old Sacramento is know n for the railroad museum.

Lots of beautiful old buildings form the early 1800's with great architectural detail.

I was so in love with this shop! The blue apothecary style shelves, the hardware, the counters... everything

Hey that look like my Ikea pitcher. Love the ladder and the blue with the white.

I love the red of the building, and the wood from the barrel and the planks on the floor.

I seriously could live in one of these old buildings. Loved it all!


What I did on My Summer Vacation: Six Flags

Thursday, July 15, 2010
One of my favorite memories as a kid was going to Marine World (now Six Flags Animal Kingdom) in Vallejo, CA. Back then the park was all about the animals and I can only assume it was something like Sea World {I've never been to Sea World so I'm assuming here.} We only went a handful of times as this sort of thing got expensive real quick for a family of six. It was always a trip I would eagerly anticipate and look forward to all year long.

It was on a trip here that I decided I wanted to be a marine biologist, then a veterinarian, then an animal trainer, then a marine biologist yet again! I still have a soft spot for the majestic sea creatures. Maybe that's why I love scuba diving.

Of all the times I visited Marine World in my youth, never once did we get the opportunity to sit up close in the "splash zone" during the whale show. I remember being envious of all the kids sitting up in the first few rows and thinking how lucky and special they were. Well it was finally our turn!

We got to sit in the 4th row and I was so thrilled to share with my kids what I had always wanted to do as a kid. The kids were thrilled with the beautiful majesty of Shouka the Orca whale and her best friend Merlin the bottle nosed dolphin.

EJ had a huge grin on his face the whole time and  his eyes were huge with amazement. I couldn't help but remember the times that I sat in that stadium filled with the same wonder and amazement at such wonderful creatures. Ellie Mae loved it and was having the time of her life... that is until Shouka said hello.

Then she wasn't so thrilled after all. Let me tell you, whale water is overrated! It's stinky, tastes gross, and for some reason it's a little more slimy than ocean water. EJ was still thrilled!

I caved in and bought the kids a stuffed Shouka toy and I love to see my kids playing with it at home. Especially when they play "splash."

Mr.PD and I were able to go off on some roller coasters with my little (21yr old) brother while my mom graciously watched the kids for 2 hours. It was fun to actually go to a theme park and get our money's worth. We had horrible luck though. 2 of the 4 rides we were trying to squeeze in broke down while we were in line!

This is my little brother 

...and there they go. Check out the little boys sitting behind him.

I couldn't resist a few pictures in the butterfly house. Which felt just like Alabama! Hot and very humid!

This guy is awesome and looks like an owl face to me!


What I did on My Summer Vacation: Airplane Hexies

Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Remember when we were in grade school and we had to write the obligatory "What I did on my summer vacation..." essays? Well we never went anywhere exciting or cool growing up so I always struggled to write a full page on staying home and playing with my siblings all day long. Sure we kept ourselves occupied with roller skating {yeah I said roller skating, old skool baby!} catching spiders {don't ask, but maybe that's why I'm not afraid of creepy crawlies and furry rodents} and making obstacle courses in the living room, but those things didn't sound as cool on paper as Susy Q's trip to Disneyland.

So I thought I would share a bit of my summer vacation with you. It will be a few posts here and there and if you are not interested go ahead and skip them! Hopefully I'm not making you feel like I'm the "Susy Q" of the class and that your vacation wasn't cool enough to share.

I'll go ahead and share the very best part of my vacation first because it happened way before the vacation started. The best part of my summer vacation was that it was paid for in cash! No credit cards were harmed in the taking of said vacation. I've shared with you in previous posts how we have used Dave Ramsey's advice to get our finances in order. So this little vacation was our we're debt free gift to ourselves and a little break before tackling the task of setting up our 6 month emergency fund {which we've already started to work on full force since being back and already have 1 month saved up!}

We were able to go back west for a glorious week and a half of sunny weather, fresh air, mountain views {sorry but those aren't mountains in Alabama} and peace and quiet. It was nice to unplug from the computers, the phones, the tv, and to just take each day in stride and do whatever struck our fancy. We split our time between California (Oakland and Sacramento) and Nevada (Dayton and Tahoe area.)

My very wonderful husband sat with the kids during each flight to give me a break, although I think he did it to have more room for himself. I got to sit next to the chubby chick and the tween who didn't know about personal space!

Anyway the first flight wasn't so bad because I had an aisle seat and the middle seat was empty. I was able to spread out and work on some hexies to pass the time. I found it amusing that we got those 100 calorie packs of chocolate chip crackers {I refuse to call them cookies, because cookies they aren't!} shaped like hexagons! I couldn't resist taking a picture of some yummy hexagons {yes I find the crackers yummy too.}

I'll go ahead and answer those questions that I know will come. Yes, I got scissors on board an airplane (twice!) Yes, you can bring scissors as long as the blade is less than 4" long and they are blunt (it's posted right on the signs at the security check point so I'm not making it up.) No, I didn't get frisked, stopped or questioned, and didn't even got a curios look from the agents. Yes, I brought needles, 2 to be exact. No, I did not bring pins. The fabric is Patisserie by Fig Tree Quilts and I have no idea what I'm going to do with the hexagons but it sure helped to kill time. Oh and my fabric hexies are 2.5" from tip to tip (I think.)



Tuesday, July 13, 2010
OK so I have to admit that this whole business of naming quilts and blocks is harder than it seems! I tried out a few names for this new design, most of which were pretty lame and along the lines of "star block" and "easier than it looks star block."

Well this design is easier than it looks because it is made up of all half square triangles (HST.) I love how easily half square triangles can be made up and the many possibilities of quilt layouts from such a simple block. I came up with this layout because it was my turn at my LQG(local quilt guild) to demonstrate the block of the month. I wanted to pick something super easy so that everyone could make it. I also wanted it to be a block would be interesting as a quilt. So after I showed the ladies how to properly make a block (see awesome tutorial here and here) I showed them 4 of the 12 layouts I had come up with using EQ6.

Well the Starglass layout was a favorite among those attending and the ladies wanted copies of it, which I didn't have with me, so I told them I would post it here. Welcome Lick Skillet Quilt Guild members! Now this layout can be made into a block by using small HST or into a nice baby quilt by using 5" charm squares. 5" charm squares would yield a quilt measuring 33"x33" to which you could (I would) add borders to.




Monday, July 12, 2010
I'm glad you've decided to follow me on over to my new home on the net. Welcome to Petit Design Co. This has been in the works for a couple of weeks (thus my lam-o posting or lack thereof.) Why the change? Well I no longer felt that my old name, Petit Debutant, was encompassing all that I do and all that I plan to do in the future. Petit Debutant served me well in the beginning when I started out selling children's clothes, then when I moved on to sewing patterns for children it still worked. By the time I began to focus on my Profile Silhouettes it still worked because I was mainly doing children's portraits. While I still want to, and love to, make profile silhouettes I want to focus more on quilting. Quilting is my passion and I want to focus my efforts there. That doesn't mean I wont' dabble in other creative outlets. Thus my new name was born. I kept Petit because I already have name recognition and I don't want to loose/confuse my loyal customers and admirers. I dropped debutant and replaced it with Design. Company (Co.) was added just for fun because I decided it made me sound real official like, and because it just rolls off the tongue! When I ran my new name by my husband he approved it right away and then added with a smirk, "That means I can still be Mr.PD!"

I've been able to upload all of my old content to the new blog but the search function doesn't seem to picking up old posts, at least not yet. I think the search engines haven't crawled through everything yet so hopefully that will be up and working soon. My old site will remain active indefinitely (or until blogger makes a rule about deleting old blogs) so if you have stuff bookmarked you should be able to find it. I have a few pages that are still under construction and if you don't mind a little dust come on in! I'm so happy to have you!


Friday, July 9, 2010
These are my June blocks for the Modern Tradition Quilt Bee (MTQB.) You can find the very easy tutorial for the Starflower Block on the Modify Tradition website.

These blocks were made for Noah and Lilah who just happens to have the cutest Etsy store chock full of delightful goodies! So go take a peek!

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