For the past couple of weeks I’ve had a problem with a trigger thumb. As strange as that sounds, I think it’s more common that people realize although there are more instances of trigger fingers than trigger thumbs. This thumb is stuck open rather than closed. It’s actually a bit of a challenge when you try to pick up an object. I had no idea how often I used my thumb or what a challenge it can be to lack strength in your thumb. Who knew? I’ve had a cortisone shot and it’s getting better but I’ve also found that it’s better when I can ice it. The freezer packs work ok but they always seem a bit awkward and they are really cold unless you cover them. I know many people use the rice bags and freeze them as well as heat them so I made an articulated rice bag specifically for the freezer. It’s great. I used some cotton fabric so that it would be comfortable. I really didn’t want flannel for this one. I poured a little rice in, and sewed it shut and kept filling until I had made several pockets. I like the result. I think that next time I’m going to mark the size of the pockets so they are equal. I was also careful not to overfill the pockets so they would bend easily. All in all, a successful project.
As it’s getting closer to holiday time my family starts to think about lefse. If you’re not Scandinavian, you might not know what lefse is. For those that don’t know or haven’t heard of this delicacy it’s like a tortilla that is made from potatoes. Most people eat it rolled up with sugar and butter. Some like cinnamon added however and my dad liked it plain with potatoes and gravy. Now lefse is made from mostly potatoes however it does have some flour and butter and cream added. This creates a problem if you have Celiac disease and need to eat gluten-free. My youngest brother is a diabetic and also has Celiac disease so food is a challenge for him. He loves lefse and can eat some sugar if he’s careful so I’m on a mission to make some lefse he can eat. Dale and Jill have been eating gluten-free for 3 or 4 years now and they have much of the diet worked out. They make bread every week, have a list of recipes that work for desserts and have started to eat pizza again and more. There are so many more options for gluten-free diets that it’s becoming easier all the time. We even had adults and children at camp that needed a gluten-free diet so it’s been a part of my life for a while now. I have been searching the internet for people who have successfully made lefse with gluten-free flour. I have found many adaptations of the recipe but there has been not consensus about the best type of flour to use. This lead me to my local store to see what was available. We are fortunate to have several large stores and options in the immediate area. I chose the local grocery type natural food store and they had many options. I ended up with a new flour make by King Arthur Gluten free flour. I know this brand is preferred by many bakers so I decided to take a chance and see how it turns out. I suspect that as long as it tastes remotely like lefse and it stays in one piece that Dale will be a willing subject to try out the end result. I think this might be tomorrow’s adventure.
The fall table runner is finished and I think it looks ok. When I added the oatmeal colored border it really helped pull it all together. It gives your eye a place to rest among all the busyness of the patterned fabric. The dark brown binding really finished off the runner by framing the entire mini quilt. It think it was a good choice. I also decided to try my hand at free motion quilting. I traced a stencil on the middle portion and then just did a rounded zig zag down the sides. It’s far from perfect but for the first time I felt it was acceptable and not so bad I had to rip it out and start again. I figure it’s on the table for only a month or two and no one really looks at the stitching but only the overall effect. I know this is how people get better at a skill but I was lamenting to a friend that it’s hard to admit that at my age I’m really just a beginner. When people get older I think there is a tendency to think you should be able to master a skill the first time and not have to start at the bottom of the skill level. Sort of a humbling reminder I guess. I did have great fun doing the free motion quilting however and really look forward to finishing more projects so I can do it again. I think it’s time to finish up the x’s and o’s quilt and see how I do on that one.
Middle daughter was home this weekend to celebrate her birthday. The actual date was almost a month ago but with her work travel schedule she wasn’t able to come home until this weekend. It’s always good to have her home and the other kids came and joined us for dinner. We had great conversations about jobs, activities and QR codes. If you don’t know what a QR code is, it’s the little box with squares that you find on advertising that can be read with a smart phone. This link will give you more information about a product or take you to a web site with more information. After a yummy dinner she opened her gifts. I had to do some sewing of course so she got this little snap pouch and a covered pillow for her bed. After looking at the pictures I wish I had thought about design placement on the fabric before I cut it but I only had a small piece and not much flexibility as to where the pattern was on the fabric. It is cute however and because she is a transportation planner it seemed appropriate. She also lives in a studio apartment so her bed is a focal point and she has started a pillow collection on her bed. This one I used some really soft cuddle fabric and made a slip cover for it so she could use it as a decorative element or it could be used for guests and still look not so bed like when it’s not being used for sleeping. All in all, another successful weekend.
I love cold water with lots of ice but it makes a mess on the table. so I guess glasses will still drip but they won’t leave a mess on the table any more. It finally occurred to me that I didn’t have to keep using napkins or towels to clean up the mess but I could make coasters. When I was walking through the fabric store today I saw this print with apples. They were about 4″ squares and I knew I could cut them apart and they would make great coasters so I took a few minutes tonight and made a couple and now I’m off to try them out.