beans

lemon-roasted garbanzo beans

This is one of my favorite snacks of all time! I have been known to make a midnight sandwich by simply stuffing these in a roll and devouring it! Doubltess some will like these hot, but I prefer them room temperature or cold. You are aiming for almost-overdone. These are also really great with a veggie tray, alongside a vegan ranch dip!

2 cans garbanzo beans
2 tablespoons olive oli
1 lemon, juiced
1 tablespoon tamari
1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper, chili powder, salt, and garlic powder

Preheat oven to 450°F. Drain the cans of garbanzo beans and save the liquid (this liquid is aquafaba, and it is the most magic baking and cooking ingredient).

Next, rinse the beans so they’re easy to handle. Sit down with a friend or your kids and de-hull each bean, setting the hulls aside for compost or the garbage. It is easy to de-hull – simply gently squeeze the pointy end of the bean and the hull slides off. Every bean has a hull, even if it doesn’t look like it! De-hulling two cans takes a few minutes, and there are shortcuts to be found. But I’ve never found a shortcut I liked as much as doing each bean by hand.

The good news is, you’re almost done!

Drizzle the oil on the beans. Place in the oven, single layer in a cookie pan, and roast about thirty minutes. About halfway through roasting, combine the lemon juice, tamari, and spices; add to the pan, stirring well.

Continue roasting. You have to really check the beans out. One minute they’ll be underdone and then next, overdone! But even a little overdone is better than under, in my opinion.

Enjoy!

We Visit Louis

if you fall asleep, down by the water / baby I’ll carry you all the way home

We Visit Louis

Christmas was not precisely difficult this year; but it was a bit off. On the 17th of December, a series of ATM fraud charges cleaned out our account – I mean entirely, taking our pending mortgage payment, and everything. Talk about an unpleasant surprise!

Then, Ralph shaved off his beard and left a huge push-broom moustache. Which he occasionally tries to rub on my soft skin. So that’s something that happened.

But – it’s impossible to have a poor holiday, or just a poor regular day, with my children. They keep things spicy. On the 9th, our oldest came out as non-binary, meaning they no longer associate with either the male or female. Fine, fine. After all – this is the child who changed their name at age eight. Not only do I totally respect this child’s autonomy, I also know it’s unlikely it’s “just a phase”, not that I wouldn’t support my kiddo – phase or no.

Night Creatures

(night creatures)

Using “they” and “them” pronouns for Phoenix has been such a novel experience – even harder than getting used to a name change. Ralph and I are at the stage where we are gun-shy around the female pronoun set. Every time we say “she” or “her” – about my mom, a friend, or a kitty cat – we flinch as we are sure we are getting it wrong! But – we’ll get used to it. Phoenix is very patient at correcting us politely.

Nels has taken off in gaming. He and I are downstairs at night – I’m sewing while he’s into Competitive Play on Overwatch, and has been recording, editing, and uploading compilations to his YouTube channel. In true Nels style, he is entirely immersed. After the summer where he was outside with the local tribe of boys – I mean he was always outside if he wasn’t at home eating or snuggling/sleeping – now he’s gaming all day unless I drag him out on errands.

Nels, The Joy of Gaming

The last few weeks I sewed so much for gifts and for clients that I was shipping and packing up and delivering faster than I could photograph. Having a little space to sew for myself, has been lovely.

So, we’re getting through. We had a lovely gift exchange and our first Christmas in our new house (we were traveling last year); we enjoyed our first vegan Christmas as well, with a repast from The Herbivorous Butcher. Life doesn’t get boring, let’s just say that!

Wishing all of you a really fabulous end-of-year.

Me, Kitchen

Grandma Jean & I

grandma Jean & a flannel jacket

Grandma Jean & I

My maternal grandmother passed in 2004, and I was fortunate enough to be with her at that time. She met my daughter, then just four months old. As my children grew, I began to wish very much my grandmother was still with me. I remember she asked me, after I had my daughter – the first great-grandchild – “Are you nursing?” What a wonderful woman.

I now carry two things of my grandmother’s: a platinum ring, and her 1950 Singer 15-91

Well and, arguably, an irascible nature.

Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat
This coat is perfect. This happens sometimes. There are darts and pockets and bias-sections in this puppy and yet you have to work to find them all. 🙂

So yeah, it’s full of pockets. Five, all hidden. My grandma would approve. She was a li’l shady. There’d be a pack of cigarettes in one of these pockets, too. I smoked for seventeen years before quitting, so now I keep my phone there instead.

The waist patch pockets are lined and affixed by fell stitch. Even with a super-closeup, they are hard to see!

Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

The coat features a 2″ padded hem, with an interlining and full satin lining:

Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

The padded hem gives a wonderful weight to the coat.
Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

The lining is semi-quilted – quilted in chevrons in the upper back, for stability and ease of wear:

Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

Clean-finish sleeve hems:Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

Black buttons ala bakelite! No nonsense. I also liked the idea of a tidy collar, so I put some teeny tiny 3/8″ buttonholes in the collar:

Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat
The sleeves have a lovely bias-cut inset. It would be easy enough to reverse-engineer the full sleeve for the lining – in this case, the lining is similarly pieced.

Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

More about those hidden pockets! Side seam pockets as well – also lined in satin:
Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

And for the fifth pocket – a welt pocket in the right-side lining. Ala menswear!Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

My grandmother’s hair was waist long; she never wore it down, ever. In her later years she spent lots of money keeping it platinum. I can’t do platinum today, but I am doing my best, and thinking of her fondly.

Grandma Jean & A Flannel Car Coat

 

Hot Patterns Plaid & Simple Woven T-Shirt Dress Badge

hot patterns plain & simple woven t dress sew-along: bodice preparation

Hot Patterns Plaid & Simple Woven T-Shirt Dress Badge

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Hello stitchers!

Wow – December is already here! I hope, if you celebrate the holiday, that you are finding peace and serenity during what can be a very intense time of year! I know it can be difficult to sew for yourself this time of year. If you are joining me here to make yourself a holiday dress, a daywear dress, or just something special – good for you!

If you are here to make the dress as a gift – good for you, too! The sample dress I’m showing here, is going to be pressed and off to a friend just before Hanukkah. I hope she likes it!

So – who’s pumped to get started?

Yeah!

Vesper Fox!

vesper fox!

Vesper Fox!

I am in love with the bamboo stretch french terry from Nature’s Fabrics. Just – in love. So far I’ve made my family several hoodies, I’ve made hoodies for clients, and today I debut a little toddler fox outfit (from the fabulous Max & Meena MEGAMAX raglan in 2T/3T, and the Alex & Anna PJs in 3T) – along with a hand-crotcheted beanie.

Vesper Fox!
I was sewing ears into hoodies before it was trendy, and I’ll keep doing it even if other people get tired of it!

Vesper Fox!

All the threads are color-coordinated to look good both on the outside of the garment…

Vesper Fox!

… and the inside! Shown below – the waistband (elastic enclosed) at left – the hood lining at right:

Vesper Fox!
Pretty sure this outfit is ready for action!

Vesper Fox!

Who knows how much holiday sewing I’ll be doing – for clients, for friends, for family. Life has been incredibly busy lately – supporting my daughter in her first 15 credit quarter at school, taking on more web design, and taking care of a full household!

I hope you are staying warm, safe, healthy and happy.