Jul 11, 2012

Cake, rice, and sweet potato

Hiya everyone!  Hope all is well with you and yours.  We've had major repairs to do (septic and pumps) along with family member projects (hot water tanks and spigots) so we've been busy and I haven't done too much stitching.  But we finished yesterday so I'll return to Eunice today.  Every once in a while I get a bug to work on something that is time consuming and often never even materializes to my satisfaction.  These did.  I made a set with houses for a friend but needed to replace an older order that has bugged me.  It ended up that I remembered how much this friend loved A&E's, and since I was working on one anyway, voila!!  She will be getting these and I get to keep the houses!  One of these is only reproduced because she is a friend of the designer and it can't be done again or sold - I know someone will ask because of its popularity, but no can do! 
I'm going to have to stitch a lot more if I want to come up with some new labels. In the Company of Friends (click on) is doing printed sampler labels on boxes and other items and a wonderful site to browse.  Lots of great items and fabulous gifts for stitchers.  And here's my first attempt at the rice stitch.    
It's going to take a while to do the entire alphabet in this but I will.  I was going to use eyelet in one row but this linen is coarse, yet soft, and the tension will be tedious.  So far I think I've come up and gone down with that needle in every possible direction.  I need to look it up again and follow a stitch pattern.
I want to mention that if you plan on using the pearl gray to tone down your floss, use a tiny bit of the powdered in a cup of hot water and test the intensity.  I just tried it again and used a sprinkle of the powder, maybe even less than 1/8 tsp.  If you need more you can always add but start with the tiny amount, and if too dark, add more water and dip quickly.  My reds needed a soak time and the yellow - one quick dip!

Now for a few pictures of my favorite summer plant - the lime sweet potato vine.  Since the house is bare of shrubs in the front and very stark and primitive, I don't like a lot of flowers and use the vine for color, and simple white miniature petunias.  The back is loaded with flowers and color and that's where I spend time.



























Now for the cake.  For those of you with gardens, another way to use zucchini.




 
Chocolate Zucchini Cake
Preheat to 350 degrees.
In large bowl combine 1 double chocolate (or dark chocolate fudge) cake mix, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 3 eggs, 1/2 cup vegetable oil, 1 1/4 cups of black coffee and blend.  Beat 2 minutes at medium speed, then fold in 1 cup shredded unpeeled zucchini, 1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans, and 1/2  cup chocolate chips.  Pour into a greased and floured 10" tube pan or bundt pan and bake for 50 - 60 minutes.  You can add a chocolate drizzle or glaze but it's not necessary.  Very moist and delicious!

That's all I have to report!  Today will be a day of a little rest and I MUST make a decision on this kitchen layout.  Both plans are good and each has pros and cons so how do I decide?  I've drawn the plans, like them both, and will of course want the one I didn't choose when it's finished.  But this time, picking #2 first is too risky!!!  And I also need a haircut.
Have a beautiful day and thank you very much for taking the time to read this sometimes boring and not very stitchy blog of mine. 
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26 comments:

Laurie in Iowa said...

The set of sampler boxes looks fantastic.

Margaret said...

Those A&E boxes are wonderful!! I know which one you can't do again. lol! Doing well with the rice stitch -- that's a fun stitch to do. Nice pics of house and plants too! Have to note down that zucchini recipe. Love zucchini!

Shirlee said...

My dear Marly ... your blog is NEVER boring! I always enjoy my visits & enjoyed visiting today as well : ) Your house is oh-so-gorgeous! That vine is really pretty & you have a great start on your sampler there! The boxes are great as well! Have a wonderful day!

Carol said...

Wow, Marly! I think your latest set of boxes is the best yet--really gorgeous! Thanks so much for sharing the cake recipe--will definitely be making that very soon!!

Pendleton Primitives said...

I admire those of you who needle point, cross stitch, etc. it's so beautiful but I don't have the patience for it. I've had zucchini muffins but never a cake so this recipie is going on the to do list for the weekend! I'll need to ration out the slices so my husband doesn't eat it all in one sitting.
~Christina

Deppen homestead 1862 said...

Beautiful boxes~ thanks for sharing the recipe~ oh, yum~
smiles
Teresa

Vickie said...

Gonna go get a wild haircut Marly? ;) Thanks for the recipe. I copied it. I have the tricolor sweet potato vine. Pink in it!!♥

Primitive Stars said...

Good Afternoon Marly, oh what beautiful boxes, wonderful work. The potato vine is very pretty, does not do anything for me though.Blessings Francine.

Solstitches said...

Those boxes are gorgeous!
Your flowers are pretty and that looks like a good recipe to try.
Margaret

TheCrankyCrow said...

I'm loving your A&E boxes Miss Marly! Lucky friend of yours! Rice stitch? Huh?? Paaaleazzzeee...you're making me feel like a stitching hillbilly. :o I want to live in your house. It looks amazing....Your SPV displays are gorgeous! I only planted one this year (for some reason, the bugs LOVE those things), and I forgot how large they like to grow.....Ooops. Happy Wednesday - hope you get some stitch time in. Smiles & Hugs ~ Robin

Peggy Lee said...

Beautiful boxes. I am looking at three of them right now. They hold a few different kinds of threads.

I like sweet potato vine too but I'm not sure where I would plant it. Someday I will figure it out.

I have seen your many pins on pinterest of kitchen ideas. Can't wait to see what you decide.

MMmmmm....cake.....

samplerlover said...

Love your boxes. They look wonderful. Rice stitch is one of my favourite stitches.

Barbara Shores ~ Village Folk Art said...

The rice stitch looks wonderful, as do the boxes you made. You must have a green thumb too as the the SPVs are so huge and overflowing...
As always I really enjoy your blog ... nothing boring about it.
BTW, I just finished my 3rd PS Santa ornament...5 more to go. Another reason why I stop and visit...inspiration!

I too get my 'ears lowered' Friday ... tired of looking like a shaggy dog.

Have a great rest of the day with Peace and Blessings, Barb

Penny said...

You do such a beautiful job on the boxes! Your rice stitch is looking good! That cake doesn't sound good for my diet, but I think I will live dangerously and give it a try. :)

Barb said...

The set of boxes is wonderful. Thanks for the recipe. It's that time of year for zucchini!

Poussy Stitches My Love said...

Merveilleux !!! j'adore les boites !

bisous de FRANCE

Chris said...

The boxes are wonderful, I think your rice stitches are too.
I love that color sweet potato vine. They are so easy and exuberant.
The cake sounds yummy.
Get some rest :)

Lanie said...

Hi Marly! Just had another lovely visit to your blog.

How about that rice stitch, huh, it's a bit crazy! But ... it does add a great texture to an alphabet. I did it once on a Scarlet Letter sampler. I followed the instructions on the chart. Took me awhile to "master" it without constantly referring to the chart diagram! Good luck! Your stitching (as always!) is looking great!

Your home looks beautiful! I love the color of your sweet potato/petunia planters against the dark brown of your house ... just perfect!

Hope your kitchen plans/decisions are coming together. Can't wait to see what you decide ... I know I'll have kitchen envy ;)

Mugwump Woolies said...

Hi Marly,
Love the A&E boxes! Your front door is so wonderful! The squirrels have eaten my SPV right down to the dirt...twice! It is the darndest thing..it will be all pretty and full in the morning and by the afternoon it has disappeared! Your backyard looks so inviting.
Robyn

Dani - tkdchick said...

Nice rice stitches I like doing these.

Vickie said...

Hi Marly! TAG! You are it! Come and see! http://astitchersstory.blogspot.com/

Chocolates4Breakfast (TerriBoog) said...

Your boxes are wonderful, Marly! The SPV is really pretty. I can't say I've ever heard of that cake recipe but it does sound intriguing. Your rice stitches look great! Good luck on the kitchen layout decision!

Judy said...

Lovely boxes..don't know how you do them..but very nice! Thanks for sharing the photos from around the house. Spv is a perfect fit. Thanks for sharing,

Judy heartland stitcher

Anne said...

Such lovely A & E boxes! I'm sure your friend will be thrilled to receive them! I love your primitive lime potato vine!! Thanks for the recipe! Oh and Eunice is looking great too!!

Charlene ♥ SC said...

Glad your problems are cared for and you're back to stitching! Lots more fun. Love the new box set - but love mine, too! Do the SPV grow well until frost?

Suzanne said...

Love the A&E boxes. Can't say that rice stitch is my favourite stitch, you a doing a great job of it though.

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