Wednesday Giveaway…

And the winners are: Cindy Walker and LaVerne Alves. Congratulations! I’ll send you and email asking for your mailing address. Thank you all for posting your comments. Mark your calendars for the next Wednesday Giveaway.

AmishCover

Amish-Inspired Quilts was published in 2006 and is now only available in a downloadable format. I have 2 copies so there will be 2 lucky winners!

Add a comment to this post to be included in the drawing. All comments made from the time the post goes up until I can get to my computer on Thursday morning will be included. Good luck!

Side note: I use the random number generator that comes up when you google ‘random number generator’. That seems more random that asking Steve to pick a number :-).

DIY Chocolate Bars

In my world, a little bit of chocolate is the perfect way to end the day. I’ve been taking added sugar out of my diet and had finally gotten used to 99% cocoa chocolate bars and they are 1) expensive and 2) hard to find. So I consulted google and found recipes for making my own chocolate bars. It’s so easy that I thought I’d share the process with you.

NOTE: 100% cocoa chocolate is an acquired taste that took me a while to get used to it. You can add sweeteners (listed below).

The 3 main ingredients are cocoa powder, coconut oil, and coconut butter. Coconut butter is very flavorful and more solid at room temperature than coconut oil is. I like a coconut oil that has some flavor. Cocoas have different flavors so try a variety to find the ones you like.

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You can get creative with additional flavors. I typically add vanilla, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper.

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In the past I have added 1 tbsp, you could add more to taste. A friend adds Stevia. You could add plain old sugar, maple syrup, whatever sounds good to you.

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DIY Chocolate Bar Recipe

  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup coconut butter
  • 1 tsp. vanilla (other flavor extracts could be fun to experiment with)

Optional add-ons: toasted nuts, crushed hard candy, coconut, etc.

Whisk the dry ingredients together in a bowl with a spout.

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Warm the coconut oil and butter in the microwave until they are liquid. I find it easier to measure the warmed coconut oil and butter in one of these measuring devices.

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Whisk the coconut oil and butter, and vanilla into the dry ingredients.

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You can taste the mix at this point and adjust the flavor by adding whatever you think it needs.

You will need to pour the chocolate mixture into something to harden. You can line a pie plate with waxed paper. It works, it’s just not optimal. Silicone candy bar molds work much better. If you use silicone molds, place them on a cookie sheet for stability. Pour the chocolate into the lined pie plate or candy mold.

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Sprinkle with whatever you like. I add unsweetened coconut flakes.

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The chocolate will harden quicker if you place it in the refrigerator. When it is hard, remove it from the mold.

This chocolate will melt easily so I store mine in the refrigerator.

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Sit back and enjoy!

 

Visiting the Dallas Arboretum…

NOTE: If you got the way-too-early link to next week’s Wednesday Giveaway it’s only sort of gone. It will post on time next Wednesday. If you already commented, your comments should still be there.

Lorna, the kids, and I went to the Dallas Arboretum yesterday and it looks like spring is already here! Jack took way more pictures than I did.

Jack Taking Pictures

Bear rarely wanted to stop for a photo.

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The cherry trees have begun to bloom. That was a surprise to me — I didn’t know there were cherry trees there!

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The crepe myrtles are lovely even when they have not leafed out.

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This is for my friend, Catherine :-).

 

Wednesday Giveaway

Thursday Update: Congratulations to the lucky winner, Barbara Burkhalter! Be sure to mark your calendars for next week’s Wednesday Giveaway.

Welcome to the Wednesday Giveaway! This week you have the opportunity to win my 2nd-to last copy of our much-coveted out-of-print book, A Slice Of Christmas. It has a very slightly dinged corner, but other than that it’s in primo condition.

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This book is full of wonderful Christmas patterns. Click here to see the quilts.

If you’d like to enter your name in the drawing, leave a comment below before 12:00 midnight, CST, February 15, 2017. I will use a random number generator to choose a winner. Good luck!

Let it go…

I make quilts because I can’t not make them. But, once finished, I am more in love with the next quilt. Finished quilts tend to end up in my closet. It seems that I am not finished with the urge to tidy up because I can no longer ignore the shelves stuffed with quilts.

It began with the need to take better photos of my quilts. As I unload the shelves, I’ve found quilts that I haven’t seen in years, like this Amish pinwheel. It’s one of the few that I kept from before Linda and I started Piece O’ Cake in 1994. I had time to hand quilt back in the day!

Amish Pinwheel

I gave away most of the quilts that I made before-POC. I’ve given quilts away since then, but I kept way too many made for books and patterns. I thought that I might need them in the future! Well, the future is here and I don’t need to keep them all. What to do with the quilts that need a new home?

Several are finding new homes with my friends. It’s easier than I thought it would be to choose the right quilt for a particular person — it’s a lot like the wand choosing the wizard. Giving quilts is one of the funnest things ever. I LOVE putting a quilt-smile on a friend’s face.

I know that I will run out of quilts before I run out of friends to give them to, but that’s OK. There will be more quilts. And there are quilts that don’t fit anyone I know — those are traveling with me and will be offered for sale. One this is for sure, I’m done stuffing the closet!

Daisy

 

The Daisy quilt, above, was made for a magazine article for Rodale Press. Or maybe it was for inclusion in a book.