28 March 2011

And the Winner Is...

Random.org chose #27! Amy (MamaTea) from A Farmish Kind of Life!

I think it's pretty cool that I won a book from her and now she's getting fabric from me to add to the quilt that she's working on. :)

If you didn't win, don't worry, I am hosting another giveaway later this week. I told Jake that when I reached 25 followers I was going to have a giveaway, well 25 came and went quickly and now I'm up to 30! So stay tuned.

Until then, here's a photo of our new place. We've got a mountain view again! The dogs sure love it. And we do too! :)

Bee Blocks

Don't forget to enter my giveaway here, if you haven't already.

This week I finally feel like I've got my sewing mojo back. I have found most of my fabric that I had stashed "in a safe place" for the move. I still have 2 more blocks to make for March, but I feel like I accomplished a lot over the weekend.

Patchwork Square in Square for Casey (Modern Stash Quilting Bee)
I don't really care for pink, purple, or yellow, but those were the colors that were requested. By the time I finished this block I've started loving these colors. It was a fun and easy block to put together.

Liberated Churn Dash block in reds and pinks for Toni (MSQB)
This was my first piecing experience. It was a lot easier than I expected. I don't know why I get so nervous about learning new sewing skills because they always more fun than I make them out to be.

Pinwheel block for Theresa (MSQB)
Theresa's only request was a pinwheel made in spring colors. There are some great pinwheel tutorials out there, but I decided to go with Cherry House Quilts pinwheel designed for the Block-a-palooza.

Improv Log Cabin block for Beth (String Me Along bee)
Beth used this photo as an example and sent us some Innocent Crush by Anna Maria Horner and solids to play with. I've decided I love improv blocks. It was so much fun to just slice off some fabric and sew it together, then slice off some more, square off one side, and attach the new piece. It went together quickly and I really like the look of it.

And for your entertainment...
Jake got to take Fancy to work on Saturday. They pushed the heifers into a smaller pasture in preparation for calving. I was working around the house when all of a sudden a hear a knock at the door. This is what I found when I opened the door. She easily walked up the 3 porch steps and I think she would have come inside if he had asked. She still only has a handful of rides on her, but she is one good horse! :)

24 March 2011

4 Prizes and a Giveaway!

My luck has been amazing lately! Since moving back to Wyoming less than a month ago I have already found a new job, have found that the nearest town has a pool (I love to swim), and have won 4 online giveaways!

I would like to share what has been showing up in my mailbox and offer a giveaway of my own.

1) As I've mentioned before, I am a member of SwapBot which is a fun swapping website. I am a member of a group called Nuts For Sewing and they do a monthly Winner Take All drawing for fat quarters. Each person that wants to participate leaves a comment and at the end of the month the host draws a name and everyone else sends the winner a fat quarter of some fun fabric. I was the February winner! This is what has shown up so far...
Fabulous FQs from SwapBot buddies. Thanks all!

2) I finally jumped on the Twitter bandwagon. There's a great quilty chat on Tuesday evenings called Talkin' Tuesday (#talknt) from 7-9 Mountain Time. Every week there is a different sponsor and tweeters have 2 chances to win. Two weeks ago 1Choice4Quilting was the sponsor and offered up some gorgeous Sunkissed by Sweetwater. I was the lucky winner of 8 half yards!
Gorgeous Sunkissed by Sweetwater. Thanks Shawna!

Isn't it beautiful? The best part is that I had just bought 2 charm packs of Sunkissed and a coordinating solid to make a small quilt. Now with these added 4 yds I can make a larger quilt.

3) The next day I got a notice from A Farmish Kind of Life that I had won this fun little book with easy rules for healthy eating. It's a quick read with gems like "Don't eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn't recognize as food." And "Don't eat breakfast cereals that change the color of the milk."
Michael Pollan's "Food Rules." Thanks Amy!

4) Saturday, March 19th was National Quilting Day. I went into work to help with all the fabulous sales that she was having at the quilt shop. While there, my boss told me that I needed to put my name in for a drawing for one of the 5 $10 gift certificates that she was giving away. Yesterday she told me that I was one of the winners.

I knew I needed to keep the giveaway gods happy so I put my gift certificate towards a giveaway of my own. And here it is...
One lucky winner will receive this fun little FQ set that I put together.

See that striped fabric? That's from Heather Ross' Lightning Bugs and Other Mysteries (you know, the goldfish collection). I sure wish that my LQS carried other fabrics from this collection, but I was excited just to see this one in person. The orange and blue in this fabric are just beautiful. :) I didn't pay attention to the names of the other fabrics that I picked out, but I can find out when I go into work tomorrow if anyone's interested.

The shop still has 3 or 4 FQ's of this HR fabric left (for a reasonable price), so if you don't end up winning the giveaway but are in need of this fabric for your collection just let me know and we can arrange a swap.

* * * * *
And now for the giveaway rules. Everyone gets up to three chances to win. Leave a separate comment for each of the following.

1) Leave any comment. Tell me your favorite fabric collection, favorite color, how your day is going, anything.

2) Become a follower or tell me if you already are following my blog.

3) Tweet about the giveaway. An example of what to post: "Wanna win some FQs? @aprairiesunrise is having a giveaway. Visit for a chance to win. http://aprairiesunrise.blogspot.com/"

If you are a no-reply blogger or anonymous commenter be sure to leave your email address in your comment. Otherwise I will have no way to contact you if you win and I'll have to draw another winner.

The giveaway will be open until Monday, March 28th at 8PM Mountain Time. The winner will be announced Tuesday, March 29th.

Edit: For a fourth chance to win, either mention the giveaway on your blog or FB. Make sure to leave a comment telling me that you did. :)

Good luck!

Comments are now closed. Thank you for entering. The winner will be announced tomorrow.

16 March 2011

WIP Wednesday

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
Head on over to Freshly Pieced to see everyone else's WIP for the week.

We're finally unpacked enough that I feel like I can take time to sew again. Here's what I've been working on the past couple days. It is headed to New Jersey for a redwork swap on SwapBot.

I have several other WIPs, but I'm still searching for many of them. Hopefully there will be more progress to share next week.

In other news, I started a new job this week. I am helping my LQS get her website set up for online sales and future classes. I spent most of yesterday and today reorganizing what was already on the website, and then began uploading fabrics today. It's a big job, she has tons of fun fabrics, patterns, and notions. She also carries clothing patterns, flannels, and beautiful wools.

For now the website link is a secret because it is definitely a work in progress, but I will be sharing soon. :)

Stay tuned...

11 March 2011

CSN Product Review & Sunday Brunch

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I was asked if I would like to review a product from CSN Stores. After taking some time to cruise their many online shops (and adding several items to my shopping cart for future reference) I remembered that I've had a wok on my wishlist for ages and ages.

I did some research on what makes a good wok and then entered my criteria. From there I chose the 14" Professional Carbon Steel 7-Piece Wok Set by Concept Housewares. During my research, I found that cast iron seems to make the best woks, but they are WAY out of my price range at this time. I wanted a wok that wasn't non-stick. I despise non-stick and love my cast iron pans. This wok does require a few layers of pre-seasoning before the first use and careful care and seasoning after each use. But since I use mostly cast iron cookware I'm used to this kind of care already.

I got my order very quickly and couldn't wait to use my wok, but I still had lots of unpacking to do so it took me a few days to actually make anything. I was a little disappointed when I pulled it out of the box because it seemed a bit flimsy, but I think that's the point of carbon steel, light yet sturdy. Because of the light weight I didn't even need to use the helper handle. I had made sure to order a wok with a helper handle because I wasn't sure how heavy it would be.

I had read some reviews on the website that this product was prone to rusting, but I also read a review warning people not to soak their wok, especially in soapy hot water. It needs to be treated like cast iron; no soap, scrub gently, and season with lots of oil. It will change colors with use. After just one use the bottom 1/3 is already getting a nice seasoning, I can't wait until the whole thing is well seasoned.

In my opinion, you can't review cookware properly without sharing a recipe and pictures. So here is what I made the other day...

Are any of you familiar with the Pioneer Woman's Tasty Kitchen? It's a great recipe sharing website where amateur and professional cooks alike share recipes and make new friends. I only use it occasionally, but if I'm looking for a new recipe I usually look there first. I found this recipe several months ago and it has become a regular on my menu, but there was a problem. I didn't have a large enough pan and I would always end up with half the stir fry on the stove top. This time, with the wok, I had plenty of room and didn't spill anything. :)

Cut and cook chicken. I used my only "non-stick" pan while I was pre-seasoning my wok.

Gather my ingredients.

After sauteing the onions and adding the chicken I pushed it to the side to scramble the eggs.

The rice was a little chunky from being in the fridge all day. I broke up the pieces and continued to mix ingredients. As you can see everything fit very well in the wok with room to stir and not make a mess.

Served with a Thai coconut soup. Yum! Yum!

My final thoughts: This wok is a great addition to my kitchen! It has a great price point and as long as I continue to treat it well I see it only getting better with age. I can't wait for many more stir frys and am interested to try the bamboo steamer rack and other accessories.

Thank you to Sean and CSN Stores for allowing me to review this product. I had fun and look forward to more reviews and hopefully some giveaways in the future!

09 March 2011

Torrington Chariot Races

The other day I posted on Twitter that we were headed down to Torrington to watch our friends in the chariot races. My Sewing Summit roomie jokingly asked if we saw Sparticus while we were there and I realized that most people have no idea that this is actually a sport in Wyoming and The West.
So here are some pictures to show you what we do for fun around these parts. :)

First they ride past the crowd to show off their horses and their awesome outfits. Love the chicken hat, Dave!

They load up in the gates (see the blue gates in the background) and GO!!!!

And they run!

Sometimes it's too close to call. Good thing for photo finishes.

But by the time they're back from their cool down lap the times are in. It's a short race, only about 24-26 seconds, but it sure is a lot of fun! And see the cowboy in the background? There are outriders in case any of the teams decide to run away.

This was the final race of the day (we were on the other side of the track).

It was a beautiful, snowy winters day in Wyoming and we were glad to be there! :)


In other news, we're back online. Hooray! And there's a sewing circle today at my local quilt shop (LQS) so hopefully I'll have something to share for WIP Wednesday today. But even if I don't you should hop over there for a visit to see what everyone else is working on this week.