Posted in All things food

Organic Food

This post is more reference because it’s the one safe place to put reminders to myself and may help others.

The advice is we should all be eating more fruit and veggies and even if they’re not organic it’s still healthier than not eating them.  But the best produce to buy organic (in rough order of amount we consume) are:





bell pepper




imported grapes





Fruits with thicker peels don’t absorb as many pesticides.

Useful link: The Dirty Dozen (as above) and the Clean 15 in pdf format

Book to check out:  Dawn Jackson Blatner’s The Flexitarian Diet


Posted in All things food, creativity, quilting, stash

You’d never know this has anything to do with Lutradur!

but it does.


Lutradur is a non woven synthetic material that can be warped or distressed with heat, painted, almost anything goes.

At this point I’m most interested in exploring the translucency of Lutradur.  Laine Canivet whom I know through FAD, is teaching a Lutradur class for the Quilt Guild at the retreat next summer and asked volunteers to make inspirational projects.  My first was a bowl, which Laine now has.  Then my thoughts went in another direction and my current project is to make a tote bag from Lutradur.


Although I’ve had the Total Tote Bag Book (Joyce Aiken and Jean Ray Laury, published in 1977) for ages, I have to confess this is the first time I’ve actually set out to make a tote bag from it.  I measured the Lutradur I have on hand.  Use what you have is becoming my new mantra, as you can see.  Based on the supply of Lutradur I did the math and decided it would be a good idea to make a “muslin” out of fabric to be sure the directions made sense and the measurements added up.  I found a practical piece of fabric from my stash of suitable size, then decided to use some of the assembled fabric I’ve been making in odd moments using up scraps and smaller pieces from my stash.  The intent is to make a bed quilt but if I keep on cannibalizing it it may be like Penelope’s weaving in the Odyssey!

Feeling that with all the seams it would be a good idea to line this, I used the fabric I’d chosen from my stash to make that.  Then I thought since I’m doing this, it would be good practice to make handles (although the plan for the Lutradur tote will have different handles).  Back to the stash, and more math because I figured 18 inch handles were too long for a boxy, undersized tote.


So now I’m at the point of assembly, some hand sewing is required.  One reason not to make a tote bag is the proliferation of totes we’ve acquired from various conferences, events, grocery stores, etc.  But this one now has a purpose in life, it’s destined to hold wooden blocks.


And here’s an inspiring photo of pomegranates!  The colour is so beautiful but when I tried using the arils with salt and vinegar to dye cotton I got a feeble mushroomy pink-brown colour.

Posted in All things food, Homeschooling

Yet Another Reason to Homeschool

or yarths for short, which has a great piratey sound, doncha think?

This is an entertainingly written but ultimately chilling  piece on the 20 worst fast foods for children.  It starts by pointing out that the average family spends more on eating out than on books and educational materials, music, movies, and video games combined.

In the ensuing discussion, one poster points out that school dinners are just as bad and suggests that Emeril, Rachel Ray, and Martha Stewart should be tapped to do something about it.  In England Jamie Oliver had a series, Jamie’s School Dinners, where he worked with kids in one school to get them to try healthier alternatives.   The difference was that the kids were bringing their own packed lunches and he was trying to get fresher/healthier stuff packed by the parents.

Families who are able to homeschool can teach their children to cook from scratch, can eat lunch at home usually, and dinner can be made as part of the daily routine instead of exhausted parents getting takeout or going out because they’re too frazzled after a hard day’s work to cook from scratch.

Posted in All things food, quilting

Playing with Food

foodquiltThis is a collection of four different kinds of cheese crackers I got for my birthday.  Having noticed that they were subtly different colours I couldn’t resist designing a quilt.

It’s fun to look for patterns in unexpected places and I will try to post more from time to time.

Of course one of the first rules of etiquette is that once you’ve touched something, you should eat it, so I did!

Posted in All things food

Psychedelic Bread ~ far out :-)

purple haze0001

This is a scan of a slice of purple wheat bread.  Hopefully I’ll soon figure out how to crop images.  I agree there is a purple tint in it, especially noticeable when it is made into a cheddar cheese sandwich, but are they marketing to boomers?  It’s supposed to be very healthy.

Well, gotta go feed the unicorn!

Posted in All things food, Art, Writing

Theme Thursday

Realized I need to get an early start on this as I’m going to be working tomorrow morning then going out mid-afternoon for a get together with my fibre art group followed by a workshop on making rubber stamps.

I still need to collect some inspirational images for that. Maybe a coffee mug with the handle on the left, which will then be on the right side.  My first coffee mug stamp looked funny, finally realized that I had drawn it with the handle on the right so when stamped it was for lefties, LOL!

Melanie Testa is an inspiring fabric artist whose first book , Inspired to Quilt: Creative Experiments in Art Quilt Imagery, just launched.

I was fortunate to have taken several workshops with her while she lived in Flagstaff.  This is a scan of part of a soy wax batik piece I made in one of them.

melly class fab0001

Sewq’s new blog is here at {Mu’Mu Design} ~ things are rudimentary right now but she’s getting them straightened around internet access permitting.

For people who want their journal to reflect their life in all its facets, this three-part article on the workhorse journal by Christine Cox is worth reading.  At one point I was using a similar approach but this was before my artistic side really kicked in.

At the moment I have a binder for organizing stuff; a sketch book with art journalling, swatches, and notes on projects both ongoing and potential; and a larger (11 by 14) sketchbook for more art journalling and the work I’m doing on manifesting my dream home.  My other sketchbook is 9 by 12 which give me room to let loose on the page and still be able to pop it on the scanner.

When it comes to preservation, I keep the loose leaf pages from the binder in file folders and keep my old sketch books and refer back to them from time to time.  It’s interesting to see how the same themes and images pop up from time to time.

And keeping the old pages and notebooks has saved my butt a couple of times, including one time when someone was threatening to sue me, and I was able to turn through my notes and tell them the substance and date of every conversation we had had!  I heard teeth gnashing but never got sued.

I’d be curious if anyone else has had similar experiences?

Posted in All things food, Art

Graphic Novels & Diet

At the Pacific Festival of the Book event yesterday, I enjoyed a slide presentation by Martin Springett, an illustrator and author whose work really does have a magical touch.

He’s working on a three-volume epic graphic novel, The Wixletree, for which he is still trying to find a publisher.  The subtext is his belief that the creative artists are the underclass of society and do all the heavy lifting.  I suspect that growing up in Britain informs this awareness of class structure.  Without a doubt, Britain is the most caste-conscious society outside of Asia, and is something that stays with those who grew up there.  Speaking from personal experience there.

Seeing his illustrations and hearing his stories tickled my intermittent desire to tell more stories.

I recently enjoyed reading The Big Skinny, by Carol Lay, a graphic novel about diet and body image filled with good advice.  As a family we are trying to reorder our diet, and I find myself thinking about this book often.  There’s something about the combination of words and pictures that makes a deeper impression than words alone and is more engaging than passively watching a movie.