Monday, January 31, 2011

Friendship Basket Club

Hurray!!  We are re-launching our
Friendship Basket Club

This will be a year long club.....celebrating,
Women, Sisters, Mothers, Daughters & Kindred Spirits. 
We hope to focus on our common love of quilting while we explore
friendships old & new.

Become a follower of the blog...

The end of each month you will find....
A new pattern... (these will be available through a link to a storage site. 
The patterns will be done in template form so everything will be actual size  and compatible for US & International quilters).
* A newsletter... (thoughts, musings & stories about friendship).
* A recipe...  (sharing is caring!!! & what's better than food?)

The quilt consists of 12 basket blocks with some applique'.
A setting block which will be constructed multiple times. 
Blocks are 8 1/2" finished.

This is a mystery quilt you will know what the finished quilt will look like 12 months from now.

We have a limited number of kits available for the monthly blocks as well as the background fabric.  Check with the store for availability.

Have questions?  email JoyLyn

This project is complimentary...and holds a copyright.
Please print and reserve for your own use. 
No teaching, selling, etc.

Since each quilter has a unique style & method for quilting we make no guarantees as to the finished product.  Every effort has been made to produce an error free pattern.  Some quilting experience is suggested (or grab an experienced quilting friend to tutor you).

Friendship Basket Club January

Friendship; Webster's says a friend is one well known to another, regarded with affection and loyalty, someone emotionally close, someone who trusts & is fond of another, an ally, a defender & supporter...
With that said, where do we start to explore this vast arena called friendship?

January is behind us, New Year resolutions are well underway, so I feel the logical starting point would be to turn inward for a better look.  For example, each "New Year" we examine the past year and like a grade school report card we grade every aspect of our lives, judging whether we have made the grade or fallen short in different areas.  Each person has a different set of criteria on which they grade themselves, but one common thread connects us as women: quite often we expect a level of excellence from ourselves that we would never impose on anyone else.  After giving this some thought it felt only natural that our friendship journey begin with some self-evaluation.

Eleanor Roosevelt said "Friendship with oneself is all-important because without it one cannot be friends with anyone else in the world". 
With that in mind I reslove this year to become better friends with myself. 
I will;  Treat myself better, speak kinder words to myself, and become better acquainted with who I am & the woman I want to be.  After all Robert Louis Stevenson said "A friend is a gift you give yourself". The way I look at it, I am going to spend my entire life with myself.  Do I really know who I am? 

Now comes the question, "Where do I start"?  My confession: some time ago (years ago, not months ago) I bought a book titled "Simple Abundance . . . A Daybook of Comfort and Joy" by Sarah Ban Breathnach.  The back cover explains that it is a book of 366 evocative essays - one for every day of the year - written for women.  The hope is that by heightening my awareness & simplifying my life, I will come to recognize the abundance in my daily life, take time to smell the roses as it were and live a simpler more authentic life.  I am finally digging in, reading & taking it to heart.  I must say that it's just a little something I am choosing to do for myself.  It has taken a while to get to this point, who knows why, but I must admit I like it.  I think I'm hooked!

Now for you!  Give yourself a treat.  What is that?  It is certainly different for each of us.  You will need to look inside and discover what your needs are.  It may take some time to get in tune with yourself.  Be kind & patient, it may have been a while since you had a good conversation with the girl in the mirror.  Give it a try, I think you'll like her . . . .keep it up and you might even become great friends!  As George Herbert said  "Take the Gentle path".

Until next time I hope you find Comfort & Joy

NOTE:  The newsletter will contain my personal thoughts about the topic of "Friendship". The quilt blocks and tutorial are my creations and so all questions regarding them should be directed to me (save the girls at the shop from any mistakes made on my part). This also means the project is for your individual, personal use and enjoyment. This is not to be used in any commercial, retail or wholesale format such as selling kits, printing patterns or teaching classes. The "Friendship Basket Club", all patterns, instructions & newsletters are the property of "A Couple of Chicks and Some Sheep" copyright 2010. Kind comments and constructive criticism is always appreciated, anything else . . . Count to 10 and breathe deep. This is supposed to be fun!

Friendship January Recipe

Our January recipe will warm your soul.  Nothing is better than a simple bowl of delicious soup!  Sometime it's those simple meals shared with family or friends that are the most satisfying. 

The base recipe came to me from a friend, then I tweaked it a bit.....(I just can't restrain myself when I am in the kitchen.)  Hope you enjoy!

Creamy Tomato & Basil Bisque' Soup

1/4 Cup butter (yes it needs to be butter)
1 med. onion, diced
3 celery ribs, finely chopped
2 carrots, finely chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 Cup flour
6 Cups chicken broth
3 cans (14.5 oz size) Italian Style stewed tomatoes w/basil
1 can (6oz.) tomato paste
1 Tbsp sugar
2 bay leaves
2 tsp. dry basil
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
3/4 Cup Whipping cream
salt & pepper to taste
croutons and fresh parmesan cheese for topping

Melt butter in a heavy stock pot, over med. heat.  Add onion, celery, carrot & garlic.  Cook until very tender. 

Whisk in flour over low heat.  Add broth & whisk while adding.  Add in the 2 cans tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, bay leaves & basil; bring to a simmer for about 15 min. whisking occasionally.  

Remove bay leaves. 

In blender, carefully puree' the soup & set aside.  Into the stock pot add remaining can of tomatoes, chunk and mash them up, then add the soup puree into the stock pot.

Slowly stir in cream & simmer for 10 min. then add the Balsamic vinegar.  

Season to taste.  Garnish with croutons and fresh shaved parmesan cheese & Basil sprig.  Now here is a little slice of heaven! 

Monday, January 17, 2011

Monday Book Club

Another great book for your consideration...

     Friendship Strips & Scraps
              by Edyta Sitar  (Laundry Basket Quilts)

This book invites quilters everywhere to enjoy the fun, creativity & camaraderie of friendship fabric exchange.... trading strips.

Edyta uses a simple strip panel technique to create fabric panels which are then used in constructing the beautiful projects you will find in this book.

She suggests sharing from your own stash, or using pre-cuts.  Some of her exchange suggestions are friends, quilt shops, guilds & retreats.
She suggests the more people, the more variety! 

Love the idea of trading little bits of your fabric to old friends and trading to create new friends. The projects offer great ideas to sew with your stash...

The book is beautifully photographed, the instructions are clear and very well detailed, some applique'.

I think you will enjoy it, I know I did!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Quiltsmart Lone Star Work Shop

Saturday, March 26th  10:00-4:00
This class will blow your socks off!
I was so impressed with the technique'
& it really got my creative juices flowing.
This is a great stash buster class.

This is the largest size

This is the medium size

This is the smallest if you leave off
the broken border

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Quiltsmart Hunter's Star Workshop

Saturday, February 26th  10:00-4:00
This is a fabulous workshop!

Very stash and scrap friendly.

This is the packet you will need for a table topper or
baby quilt size.  Then purchase the printed pellon
by the panel to make a larger quilt.  The pattern,
supply list and instructions are in the packet.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


Are you looking for something fun and portable?
Well we have it.....

This is a
Block of The Month Stitchery project....
12 different patterns.... each on on it's own card stock card.
One side has the stitchery pattern....
the other side a beautiful art print, ready to frame.

Save room in your busy schedule for this one!

Monday, January 10, 2011


Starting Saturday, January 15th

Winter Sale!!!


Welcome Winter....

Time to sew!

A few additions to the program....

Daily Demonstration...
We have partnered with Eagle Mountain Quilting to offer you
Come see what the fuss is all about!

Daily Special...
Amy Butler Fabric....15% off  All Day Thursday (1/13/2011)
Moda Fabric.....15% off  All Day Friday (1/14/2011)
Civil War Era Fabric....15% off  All Day Saturday (1/15/2011)

We look forward to seeing you!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Monday Book Club

It seems that Block of the Month programs are so attractive to
us quilters....
Logically you should be able to do one block a month and at
the end of the year.... a quilt is done.
Well it usually doesn't work out that way, but why not have some

great reading material to go along with your quilting.

Across the Wide Missouri...
"A quilt reflecting life on the Frontier"
By Edie McGinnis & Jan Patek

This book combines the primitive applique' we have come to
know and love by quilter extraordinaire Jan Patek &
Eddie McGinnis adds her publishing and quilting expertise to the quilt design along with the 12 fascinating life histories
(11women and 1 man)
All who were facing life on the
new frontier.
I loved reading and pondering how each block portrayed
the life story of these remarkable individuals.

The patterns and instructions are clear and well written,
each of the authors have given you their own fabric
and color interpretations,
there are 3 extra projects as a bonus.  Loved this book!

Remember:  Monday Book Club (each Monday or most Mondays)
we post a book review on a new or old favorite.  That Monday
you can visit the store and receive a discount on the featured
book.  Just a little something fun we do for you!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Complimentary Stitchery 4th Quarter

The year has come to a close & so here we have our last set of patterns for the...

2010 Complimentary Stitchery
For those of you who are new,
has offered a monthly, in store, complimentary stitchery pattern

Some years each stitchery combines to make one finished project &
other years each month is a new independent project. 

Hummmm..... I wonder what is in store for 2011.   

October, November & December 2010