Monday, March 15, 2010

Thread Sketching

I finally finished making new pillows for our family room. We are really hard on throw pillows and I end up needing to make new ones every few years. These are my favorite ones yet. I learned a new sewing technique called thread sketching over the holidays and decided to use it on the pillows. My MIL gave me some beautiful fabric to use. It is the Natureology line from E Studios.

It is beautiful, modern and all about nature and birds. So, of course I decided to stitch birds. My inspiration also came from Tara Badcock. LOVE LOVE LOVE her work! Mine doesn't even compare, but it was fun to try.

My first attempts, a partridge and a pear to go on Christmas tea towels:

The finished pillows:

To do it, I iron the shiny side of freezer paper onto water soluable solvy. Which I then run through my printer, photocopying the image I want to sew onto the solvy side. I then peel the solvy off the freezer paper and using an upside down hoop and the darning foot of my sewing machine, do the sketching. Sounds pretty easy, but it took me forever to figure out how to do it!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Rethinking My Approach to Food Storage

I really have spent far too much of my life thinking about this, but once again I have changed my plan for our food storage. At least for our 3 month supply of foods we typically eat. Previously I had based my storage on 12 weeks worth of menus. It was great, because except for some perishables I never figured out how to store, I pretty much could cook anything I wanted to, IF I had my storage complete. Unfortunately, because it was what we usually eat, I never seem to manage to keep it complete.

Now, I'm thinking that wasn't the best approach to begin with. Since the idea is to have enough food for 3 months in the event of a crisis, I really should be storing 3 months of our usual CRISIS foods. In other words, if my world is falling apart around me, I'm not going to be making Korean potstickers and Bolgogi or Southwestern egg rolls, or anything else that is time or effort intensive. So, I am going to pare down my menu. It will now only contain meals that are:

1. Completely storable with no dependancy on perishables.
2. Simple and easy to prepare.
3. With an emphasis on Freezer Meals. Because freezer meals in a crisis are heavenly.

And I want a generator to keep my freezer going if the power goes out. (Is that a sign of finally being an adult if the one material thing you really want is a generator? Or maybe a power washer. I can't decide which I want more.)

By paring down my menus, I'll have fewer different items I am storing and trying to keep tracked of and up to date. I narrowed it down to a 6 week menu, which I am going to triple, so we have 18 weeks worth of food, or slightly over 4 months. That way we aren't below the 3 month target the very next time we have a meal.

I'd like to say I have finally figured it all out. But, I know I will come up with another revision to the plan. Anytime now, in fact.