Monday, August 30, 2010

From The Kitchen: Fruit Crostata

It's peach season! Besides eating them plain, peaches are always good in cooked desserts. I made the Barefoot Contessa's summer fruit crostata with peaches, plums and strawberries. (I substituted strawberries for the blueberries.)

Assembling the ingredients:

Here's the sliced fruit with heaps of sugar and orange peel! Yum.

The fruit and crumbly topping barely fit in the pastry, and the whole thing miraculously made it into the oven without falling apart.

The finished crostata: out of the oven and onto the cooling rack. I wish I could include the smell on the blog. Best just to make your own and find out!

In pug news, I thought I'd include a pictures of Pug from nearly a year ago after we got him. He was a tuckered out pug!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Cabin Quilt

I've finished the quilt/patchwork blanket. Can I still call it a quilt even if I didn't quilt it? I think I'm going to.

I'm happy with how it turned out. I like the color scheme. It'll be nice and cozy!

All bundled up, ready to go.

Pug's been working on tearing his tennis ball/dumbell toy apart.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Willamette Valley

On a lovely summer day, there's nothing nicer than taking a drive in the country. We decided to go look around the Willamette Valley. We had lunch in Newburg and then continued south toward Dundee and Amity.

There were a lot of hazelnut farms. Filbert farms too. Same difference.

We were lucky to be in McMinnville on a Thursday when they have their farmers market.

I got some easter egg radishes. Definitely the prettiest radishes I've ever seen.

Pug spent the day snoozing.

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Curious Cat And A Pug-Nosed Pup

Take a look at one of the best looking cats ever:

His name is Oscar and he lives across the street from my mom. The above picture was taken a couple of years ago. His current haircut is more au naturel.

Pug really likes Oscar. It's so cute to see them together! Interspecies friendships are so sweet.

Pug and Oscar together reminds me a little of one of my favorite movies, Milo and Otis.

If you have not seen this movie, make it a priority! It's a happy feel good movie, and unlike a lot of animal movies, there isn't a sad ending.

Eventually Oscar got tired of Pug and climbed up a fence

and Pug was not quite athletic enough to follow after him.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Cat And Pug At Allied Arts

Last month when we were in California, we took Pug to Allied Arts which is one of my most favorite places to visit in the Bay Area.

I love seeing all the craft studios and the beautiful gardens there. But best of all, there are lots of cats.

We spotted one in a basket. Pug is not the most observant pug ever, but eventually he saw the cat too.

He had to check out the kitty.

And then he stuck his head in a watering can and had a nice long drink.

We wandered around looking at all the pretty things and I made plans for how I hope my house and garden will look someday...

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

For The Pug Who Has Everything

Today is Pug's birthday! Or rather, it's the birthday we've given him since his real birthday (including the year) is a mystery. We brought home Pug one year ago today and it has been the best year of our lives. Hopefully it's been the best year of Pug's life too! So we're celebrating tonight, and Pug knows something's up because he spotted his birthday toy the other day when I took it out of the bag and he's been pining for it ever since (it's up on a shelf, out of sight). Besides the usual dog toys, what do you get for the pug who has everything?

A sombrero!

Pug looks stunning in it but only agreed to wear it in exchange for some banana.

And tonight, Pug will get an extra large piece of duck and potato dog food!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Busy Sewing

I've been keeping busy working on my patchwork blanket. I made a border for it from this fabric:

Here's what it all looks like after I sewed the border on.

Next up: quilt sandwich time. The batting (50% cotton, 50% wool) wasn't large enough to cover the length and width of the blanket, so I had to cut out and stitch the batting to size. Then I put all the layers together.

In between the last picture and this next one, I decided to quilt it. And so I started on it, but I didn't like the design, got my handy seam ripper and ripped the thread out. I decided just to keep it simple and thread the corners of the squares with embroidery thread, like I did on my pug quilt (also technically a patchwork blanket).

While I was working on all of this, I wondered where Pug was. I found him sleeping on a pile of dirty clothes.

Friday, August 13, 2010

A Pug In Ashland

After our trip to California, we stopped for a little visit to Ashland. It was a hundred degrees or more, so too hot for a pug. We did find a couple places to help cool us off, including Cafe Namaste. We got sorbet, and wow, it was about the best sorbet I've ever had! We got pineapple, orange and coconut (and each sorbet comes in the fruit shell).

This is what the package looks like. I haven't seen these yet at any grocery stores, but they've got to be out there somewhere! I am on the lookout.

Pug enjoyed a little sorbet too.

Coconut and pineapple were my favorite.

Afterward, we took a short walk in one of the few dog-friendly parks in Ashland. (Ashland, what is up with not letting dogs in Lithia Park and most all of your other parks? It is bizzare and not cool!)

Pug had a nice time playing in the water and getting his toes nice and muddy.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Quilt In Progress

So I've started a new quilt and I'm really excited about it. It's going to be a gift for someone (that is, as long as it turns out okay). It'll be quite a bit bigger than the last one I did, which was pug-sized. Maybe not quite big enough for a bed, but good as a blanket. I'm using "Bar Harbor" from Moda Fabric, as well as red check and blue dot fabric from "Happy Campers" by American Jane. After I sewed my rows together, I pressed the seams open. Last time, I pressed them closed, but I definitely prefer open seams.

I love my new embroidery table that fits onto my Bernina. It gives me a lot more sewing space, and makes working on a quilt so much easier.

The quilt is a bit hodge podge. Some of the rows don't line up perfectly (at all), but I sort of like that. Gives it a real homemade character. I also didn't spend too much time planning out the quilt. I randomly picked out the fabric for the rows, and also randomly sewed them together. So it will be a surprise to see how it ends up looking!

Meanwhile, Pug is having a ball (literally) with his brand new tennis ball/dumbbell toy from Sellwood Dog Supply.