Saturday, September 23, 2006

Happy Challah-day and A Mystery Solved

L'shana tovah! (Or "happy new year" for those of you who don't speak Hebrew -- of course, I don't speak Hebrew either, but I know a phrase or two.) Today is Rosh Hoshannah, the Jewish New Year, which is celebrated by eating apples dipped in honey to ensure a sweet new year. A circular, raisin-studded challah flavored with honey and spices usually is on the table, too. The challah must be covered and blessed before it is eaten. And that's what the mystery block of a few posts ago has become -- a challah cover:

After Val described a meal she had at Jocelyn's, marvelous in most ways but pitiful in that they resorted to using a paper towel to cover the challah, I knew I had to get busy and make something a little more elegant. I found the pattern in Q is for Quilt by Diana McClun and Laura Nownes. It's a block from a larger quilt. The blocks are made in such a clever way -- each basic block (as in the mystery block) is cut in half diagonally to make the basket, then setting triangles are added and a plain rectangle is stitched to the top. The apples are appliqued.

I completely loved the machine quilting in the book, but of course, I have no skills in that area. But what the heck -- a challah cover is small and each block makes two, so if I totally blew it ... But it came out pretty well! I added the bee to symbolize the honey. I wrote apples and honey in one of the v's of the basket, but it doesn't really show up. (To make the rest of the quilting easier to see, click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Val, I sent this one to Jocelyn (care of Laurel, since Jocelyn currently has no address -- though she will soon! -- and Jocelyn got to play a little with Julia and Andrew as a bonus when she picked up the cover), but yours is underway!

Saturday, September 09, 2006


Happy Mother's Day to me! Val made that very cute tea caddy you can see among all those tea boxes. It's a Mother's Day gift that just got finished. I love it! I'll put several different tea bags in it and keep it in my purse. I wish I had had it this past week in Denver. The hotel I stayed in had only Earl Grey tea in the room, one of the few teas I just don't like. Rather an odd choice for a hotel, but I suspect that they used to have several varieties and this is just what was left. I don't think very many people are that fond of Earl Grey (nothing against the Earl himself, please, but the tea...).

'Tis a mystery!

Ah, yes, a nice boring square- in-a-square block. What's mysterious about that? It won't stay that way! I can't tell you more than that (it would spoil the surprise), but I will post the finished product. I promise. It's already getting close.