Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas!

First, my apologies to everyone who left a comment on my last post! I had the best intentions of responding to each one, but I still haven't. I am sorry! This is such a busy time of year! I thought once I delivered all the Christmas gifts and goodies up to Fairbanks on Friday, things would slow down. They did not! We had a sick dog and our vet is gone for the holidays, so that meant an emergency trip to Fairbanks Saturday evening, arriving home at 1:30 am Sunday morning. Monday was uneventful at least, but we were too tired to do anything. And there are puppies to care for because Mama Dog is not feeling well. Then, Tuesday we made another trip to Fairbanks to visit a dear friend  who is in the ICU unit, she is in a bad way so prayers for Shawndra are appreciated.

I did deliver the Christmas Quilts!

DS2 and the Hunter's Star quilt. I hope to get a better photo of it with both DS2 and DIL together.

DS3 and girlfriend with the Shimmer quilt. I caught them both right after they got home from work. 

DD1 and the Plaid quilt.

The best thing of all was meeting up with my oldest granddaughter and meeting my great-grandson Zaylin, 3 months old.
He is just too precious!

 I did get a chance to stop by the library and take a few photos of the Gingerbread House contest entrants. We did not have very many this year, there are usually three times this many gingerbread houses entered. When ever I go to see them, I think "I should make a gingerbread house to enter.", but I always forget until I see them displayed at the library at Christmas time!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas Day filled with joy and peace and family! God Bless! Rebecca

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Cinnamon Roll Recipe

I had a request for my cinnamon roll recipe, so I decided to add a page to my blog with the recipe and some photos of how I make them. I have made these rolls for so many years now that I usually just kind of dump things in without really measuring. So I took a little extra time today and measured the  ingredients. There are two list of ingredients, one list will make 4 dozen rolls and the second list  of measurements should make about 1 dozen rolls. Please contact me if you have any questions! Rebecca

4 Dozen Measurements:

Hot Water - 3 Cups
Cold Water - 5 Cups
Crisco - 1 Cup
Sugar (white granulated) -3 Cups
Salt - 3 TB
Yeast - 3 1/2 TB
Flour - 21 Cups

1 Dozen Measurements:

Hot Water - 1 Cup
Cold Water - 1 Cup
Crisco - 1/4 Cup
Sugar (white granulated) - 3/4 Cup
Salt - 3/4 TB
Yeast - 1 TB
Flour - 5 to 5 1/2 Cups

Bake at 350 for about 25 minutes depending on your oven.

I place the Crisco, sugar and salt in a mixing bowl.

I then pour in the hot water, I usually heat it in my teapot and stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved. and most of the Crisco has melted. There are usually some small pieces of shortening that do not completely melt.

I then pour in the cold water. This usually brings the mixture to the right temperature to add the yeast.

I sprinkle the yeast on top and then stir to dissolve.

I let this mixture set until it cools some. I do not like to add the flour if the water/yeast mixture is still warm. It can take 10-20 minutes. 

After the water/yeast mixture has set. You can see the yeast has reacted to the sugar in the mixture. 

I then start stirring in flour. I add most of the flour at this time and stir it as much as possible.
Then I start kneading. I add a small amounts of flour as needed. The dough can start sticking to the bowl, so I lift the dough up on each side and sprinkle in a little flour into the bottom of the bowl. I may use a cup to a cup and a half of flour during the kneading process. I try to knead the dough for about ten minutes. It will still have a little bit of stickiness to it .

Then I place the dough into a bowl that I have sprayed with Pam or you could use more Crisco or a vegetable oil, just so the dough does not stick to the bowl. I place the dough in the bowl and then turn it over so the top side has some of the Pam on it. I then cover this with plastic wrap and place it in a warm place to rise until it has doubled in size. I place mine on top of my dryer in the basement, it is about 6 feet away from our wood stove and is nice and warm there.

Dough as risen to double. The time this will take depends on how warm it is where you have it rising. Mine takes about 1 hour or so. If making the 4 dozen recipe I punch down the dough and knead it for a bit in the bowl. Then I divide into 4 equal parts.
I take one part of the dough and place it on my pastry mat that has been dusted with flour. I pat or roll it out a little into a rectangle and then let it rest for about 10 minutes cover with a piece of plastic wrap.

Next I roll it out to the size of my pastry mat, approximately 24" x 18".

Next I spread it with softened butter or margarine.

Then sprinkle generously with cinnamon sugar.

Then add raisins or nuts if you like.
Next I roll it up. staring at the back edge and rolling forward.

I slice this long roll into 2" sections.

I place each section on to a baking sheet that has been sprayed with Pam or greased with Crisco. My baking pans are about 17" x 12". 

Now this is the part I learned from the baker at the lodge where I worked. You smash down on the rolls and flatten them out.

I just kind of mash them down and out a little bit.

This is what they look like after I have flatten them out.

Now the rolls need to rise until about double. Then bake them at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes, depending on your oven. It could take less or more time.

Fresh out of the oven!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Cinnamon Roll Season

I am not sure how many years ago the Christmas Cinnamon Roll tradition started, but it is an established tradition now. I have never counted how many I make, but probably about 16 dozen to make sure everyone gets some extra to put in the freezer. I send some to my sister and brother too. I have had grandchildren request them for their birthdays. I will make some with raisins and pecans too, but most everyone, especially the children, like them  plain. I guess you could say this is my own recipe, I took a bread recipe a friend gave me 35 years ago and tweaked it. Then when I worked at a lodge as a waitress I picked up some tips from the baker there. Anyways, my family loves them, and it is a joy to make them for them. I also usually make some fudge, cookies and a white fruitcake. I'm not sure if I will get all that done this year.

Three pans rising.
One pan baked.
I wrap them each individually, put them in freezer bags,  and quickly get them in the freezer.

I  needed a binding for the plaid quilt. I had a red that I really loved. but had only a 1/2 yard. So I took an idea from Julie Quilts blog HERE and made a scrappy pieced binding. .
Here it is all rolled up ready to stitch to the quilt.

I also got 8 blocks sewn last week for our guilds raffle quilt this year. They hope to put it together on January 10th.
Happy quilting, Rebecca

Monday, December 8, 2014

Quilting, Quilting, and More Quilting!

First I want to say a huge Thank You! to all my blogging friends who have been in contact with me through emails. All your kind words and prayers have helped me so much during this time. I still have days that are a struggle to get through, days that I am overwhelmed with sadness and feeling too tired and down to do much. I have tried to stay busy and that  helps. My goal this year was to make each of my grown children and their significant other a bed size quilt for Christmas. I had three tops done, with one partially quilted. I decided if I really tried I could still get them done in time for Christmas. So I quilted, and quilted, and quilted some more! I  had hoped to do more varied designs on each top, but with time short I ended up doing a loopy/meander sort of design on all of them. Two are done and bound, they just need a label. One needs a binding and label. I hope to get some photos of the finished quilts to share soon. I have also been making lots of quilty plans for the new year.

Hunter's Star quilt for DS2 and wife.

Shimmer Quilt for DS3 and girlfriend.

You can kind of see the quilting in this photo. 

Plaid Quilt for DD1.

You can see the quilting a little better in this photo.

Thanks for stopping by!  Rebecca

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Blogger's Quilt Festival Fall 2014

I had not planned to participate in the Blogger's Quilt Festival, but I have seen so many blogging friends participating I thought it would be fun to join in too. You can read about the Festival HERE . This is my first time to enter the Festival.  I made this quilt for our guild's silent auction this Summer  at our local fair.  We have the auction to raise funds for our charity projects. This little quilt brought in $90. This is a pattern from Lori Smith of From My Heart to Your Hands. It is called Garden Path and measures 16" by 20".You can read more about my journey making this quilt HEREHERE, and HERE.  I have entered it in the MINI QUILT category.  Good luck to all my friends who have entered! Rebecca

Garden Path

Monday, October 27, 2014

Mourning Baskets

First, I would like to thank everyone for their kind and gracious messages concerning the loss of our daughter. They truly touched my heart, and to know so many were praying for our family was such a comfort. Our lives will never be the same, we miss her too much to even express in words. When you are in such grief everything else just does not matter anymore, except the loved ones you still have with you. You hold them dear to your heart and hug them like you never want to let they go.
 I had been working on Christy's applique quilt, needless to say that has been packed away. Maybe sometime in the future I will attempt to work on it, right now I could not bear to look at it. You can read about it HERE. I had no heart to even work on a project. Finally a couple of days ago I picked up my Baskets and started appliquing. The box I had them stored in as right by my chair. It seemed to help to have my hands busy. I had planned to call these, Baskets of Joy or Joyful Baskets, they will be called Mourning Baskets. As I work on them I remember my daughter and all the wonderul times we shared, so many beautiful memories.
Baskets I have appliqued. I am having a little trouble with the diamonds on the center of the baskets. I will get better with practice I hope.
Baskets that I had prepped.

This is the pattern for the Basket quilt. It is from the book "When the Cold Wind Blows" by Barb Adams and Alma Allen. There are 291 baskets, so this will be a long term project.

Thank you again dear friends, Rebecca

Thursday, October 2, 2014

In Memory of Our Beloved Daughter

Christy Marie, our beautiful daughter, May 22, 1979 - September 30, 2014

We lost our daughter Christy on September 30, 2014. The loss is unbearable. Our hearts are broken. Please pray for our family.  Thank you, Rebecca

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Wildlife Report

 We had a bull moose chasing a cow moose at the bottom of our driveway yesterday evening. He did stop for just a minute and we were able to snap a few pictures. Sorry that they are not real clear.  It is the rut season and can be a dangerous time on the roadways. There was an accident just a few miles North of us, a man hit a cow moose and it flipped his car. He was not seriously injured but the moose was killed. The Troopers had to contend with a bull moose at the scene of the accident, he had obviously been chasing the cow moose.  This is how our local paper wrote it up, "This time of year is referred to as the rut, when cows are beckoning to the bulls, and the bulls come running. All of the chaos will result in moose calves being born the following spring, but it also makes for hazardous driving conditions when the sequence of events leads moose onto the roads." We both got a chuckle out of their description!

The same evening our neighbor drove over to get my DH. She had had a bear at her front door getting into the garbage and then trying to get into the house!  Her husband works up on the North Slope so was not home. My DH left and went to her house with his rifle and I stayed to watch for the bear here.  Below is a photo she took as the bear was leaving, but she was frightened that he would come back. As far as we know he did not show up again, so all is quiet tonight.