Sunday, May 12, 2024

Monday Meanderings 5 - 13 - 2-24

It was great to be able to spend a lot of time in my studio this week.  There were no rehearsals to go to and not much reason to go out except our normal morning workouts 4 days a week. So, yep! I got all my goals done this week.  And I finished four actually 6 books and audio books this week. I'm not sure how I did that but I often have 2 books going at the same time. I did spend a lot of time reading since I hadn't been able to do that much the week before. 

5/6/24

✅Finish Ombré log cabin top — done! 

✅Keep making bow tie blocks — all blocks made for the top.

✅Continue processing scraps/fabrics on cutting table … fold and replace or cut into usable sizes — cleared off cutting mat by cutting and returning fabrics to correct locations.

Attend ‘Annie’ in Maryland where 2 grands are performing — great fun watching Annie Junior at their middle school.


Finished ombre log cabin top spread out to be measured.


And this week ----


5/13/24

Quilt Jenny’s quilt

Put border on pinwheel top

Make another basket block or two

Cut, layout, and start stitching the stars quilt top for Va Star Quilt Guild

Sew misc blocks — RSC, FCQEquilters


And, I had another great week for the 15 Minutes to Stitch. Sometimes it was knitting and sometimes I was sewing in my studio. I've decided both activities count as stitching along with needlepoint and counted cross stitch. Every week I stitch for all 7 days raises my success rate.  Yea. Maybe next week I'll make it to 9.5%! 


W/ending 5/12 133

  • 15 minute days/week = 7/7 days
  • 15 minute days/April =  12/12 days
  • 15 minute days/2024 = 126/133 days
  • Success rate = 9.47% 
Because I finished all my goals early on Sunday I decided I would start planning a quilt with these fabrics. I picked up the top left gold fabric on the free table at the Country Piecemakers meeting when Sharon and I went down to it in April. The following week I picked up the cute forest animals at the Virginia Star Guild free table the following week. The grey, black and orange and black plaid were in my stash.  I've gone through two of the Ursula Reikes baby books.  I only have 17" x WOF of the animal print so I am trying to pick a pattern that will let me use most of it. I should make a decision soon as to the pattern and then get it cut out.  I'm going on a retreat in July and will need quite a few cut out projects to work on. 


Now, on to more of our Costa Rica trip.  In Monteverde we went to an agro tourism farm that showed how coffee, sugar cane and cacao are grown and processed. El Trapiche tour shows a bit of the culture of Costa Rica through these crops. 

Kevin and Ellie in front of sugar cane.

Young coffee plants are nurtured until they can survive in the fields.

Our guide showed us four colors of the coffee beans.

Teddy was fitted with a basket just like a coffee picker would be.  Luckily he wasn't put to work picking the beans. 

The beans at this farm are hand picked so that only ripe beans are picked.  Many commercial coffee plantations also are hand picked as it is difficult to get machinery on the hills where plants grow.  



This was one machine used to sort the coffee beans.

Truth be known I am not a coffee drinker so I wasn't paying close attention to the coffee bean information. For more info about what happens to the coffee bean to become a cup of coffee check here.  


We also learned how sugar cane used to be processed.  They demonstrate using old equipment that squeezes the sugar out of the cane. If this was a commercial operation the juice would then be clarified, concentrated and crystallized. You can read about the steps needed to make sugar out of cane here. 

Old fashioned way of processing sugar cane.

On the tour the sugar was boiled so cane candy could be made.  The four grands had a chance to push the hot liquid around to make hard candy.  Surprisingly it wasn't all that easy.  I don't think I got more than a taste of the candy and I'm not sure what happened to the rest of it. (It was pretty sticky so the moms may have tossed it out.) 

We also learned how chocolate was made from cacao. I'm pretty sure the green one is unripe while the yellow one is ripe (or almost ripe enough.)  


We were given a taste from a raw cacao pod. 

Aimee is checking out the inside of the cacao pod.  

We were each given a taste of the white liquid that surrounds the beans. The beans don't taste very good until roasted and sugar is added. The white liquid was sweet with a hint of chocolate flavor. 

At the end of the tour we were able to sample some chocolate, coffee and a traditional taco. There is a nice gift shop where you can buy some of their products.  I bought several dark chocolate bars to take to my stitching group.  Dark chocolate which has less sugar was recommended because it holds its shape better in heat. I was afraid our luggage might ended up sitting on the tarmac in various airports or even sitting in the car as we drove back to the airport.  Most dark chocolate I enjoy but this was a higher percentage of dark chocolate than the Ghirardelli chips I buy. So it was almost bitter. 

It was definitely an informative and fun tour.  The grands were engaged most of the time.  It was pretty hot during the tour but we all seemed to enjoy it. You can read more about the long history of cacao and chocolate at this link.

I've only got two more days of the trip to share.  I haven't decided if I'll do next Monday or the next two Mondays.  Check back next week to see what else we did. 


Happy Quilting All! Bonnie 







9 comments:

  1. I like your plans for the next kids' quilt! The tour sounds very informative--the whole point in learning about another country!

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  2. The ombre quilt is beautiful. It's a perfect example of how the right fabric/color choices can make a simple pattern really dramatic. Great job! And the new one you're planning has more great fabric choices, especially since some of the fabrics were free.

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  3. Gosh you did get a lot done! Love that ombre Log Cabins quilt!!! and your new fabrics - what fun!

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  4. What a great week you had! Have you been down to the beach house yet this season?

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  5. I love the ombre log cabin quilt top! What are you going to quilt it with? Your tour sounds super interesting! Coffee and cocoa bean both--that'll interest most everyone with one or the other!

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  6. Do you have a quilting plan for the Ombre? Love exploring your trip, thanks for sharing!

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  7. The Ombre Log Cabin is stunning!!

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  8. The Ombre Log Cabin turned out beautifully! Congrats on all the stitching time, you definitely have had a good week. The coffee bean/cocoa bean processing is pretty cool. Sounds like not just fun, but a good bit of education too on the trip. Happy stitching this week.

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  9. That Ombré lob cabin top is stunning! Well done on getting it to the top stage! I enjoyed reading about your Costa Rica trip.--TerryK@OnGoingProjects

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