Sunday, December 11, 2011

sewing with a niece

Yesterday evening, we had my brother-in-law's kids while he and his wife had to work.

My nephew, 11, loves to play video games and so does the hubby.  You've heard about this pair before - they do well together.

But what to do with the 7-year-old niece?  She is desperate to make a quilt, but afraid of the sewing machine.  She also has the patience of a gnat.  (Gotta love 7-year-olds!)  Hmmm...

First, she helped me make bread.  In my bread machine.  She kept asking when we got to punch it down?  The machine does that.  What do we do with it when it's done?  We eat it - I think she was expecting to have to knead it.  Finally I convinced her that the machine did ALL the work and then she decided her mom needs one.  :)

Next, on to dessert.

I've seen these candy acorns out in blogland a few places and though fall is over, they were fun to make.  Hershey's kisses, Nutter Butter mini cookies and chocolate chips, held together with chocolate frosting.  We made a big mess, ate our mistakes, ate some for dessert after dinner (beef stew in the crock pot - another mystery I had to somewhat explain - her mom DOES cook) and there were even quite a few for her to take home.  These are my share. 

And then we sewed.  I decided embroidery might be fun - and teaching her to wield a needle and thread can't be bad even if she decides she doesn't like this particular technique.  I let her draw on some white fabric with a blue water-erasable pen and showed her how to do a backstitch and running stitch.

There's not great contrast because she used every pink shade of DMC floss I have, but she had a blast.  Figured out if you take bigger stitches you get done faster, though I don't think that ANY of what she stitched looks like what she drew.  Maybe I should have left the blue lines there, but there was a LOT of blue - it's on the 4th spritz and still not all gone.  (Though some of it bled through onto my carpet!)

In between helping tie knots, rethread the needles, and finding the needle (I finally got her to stick it in the pin cushion by telling her the next time she lost it she was DONE), I managed to sew some swirls.  (I'll show a photo later.)  The piece is about 8" and I plan to use both hers and mine to make a little pillow.  I'll date hers and put her name on it.  She was so proud of herself.  I'm proud of her, too.  And she got significantly better as she went along.

Now it's Sunday and I have a delicious coffee cake recipe to share.

Yesterday, A Left-Handed Quilter posted a link for this recipe - no photo.  But you know me, I love to bake, so I clicked on the link.  Looks yummy!  This didn't last 30 minutes.  The hubby and I devoured it - ALL.  It is fantastic-amazing-delicious-givememore good!  And easy.  Easy Cherry-Almond Coffee Cake from Pillsbury is a W-I-N-N-E-R.

And now I hope to get some more binding sewn down on the 2nd Christmas-gift quilt.  It's about half done, but I'm ready to have these projects done and off the list!

Happy quilting,


Beth said...

Those acorns look really cute and yummy too.
How patient you are to teach a seven year old to stitch. It is great that she has you to inspire and teach her, seems like she is interested.
I will have to peek at that coffee cake a bit later. Looks very tempting.
Happy stitching.

A Left-Handed Quilter said...

Katie - glad you liked it - and thanks for the plug - AND photo! I didn't even think to post one - I figured the link had a professional photo if anyone wanted to see - and besides - it didn't last long enough to photograph anyway! It was way too YUMMY!! ;))

canuckquilter said...

Can my kids adopt-an-aunt? It sounds like you came up with plenty to keep your niece happily occupied. And I will not go click on that recipe link...I just have to be strong...

Ruth said...

It's good to help your niece learn how to sew. Beginning by just doing some hand stitches is fine for a 7 year old. The coffee cake looks scrumptious!

Christine said...

Wow that cake looks delicious! Looks like you had a great day with your niece. I think I'm in need of another auntie :)

Queenie Believe said...

All your baked goods are making my mouth water :o)
Its a good feeling to pass down sewing to the next generation, enjoy.
Have a great day.
Always Queenie

---"Love" said...

Yummy looking stuff! Your telling about sewing with the little girl makes me wish I had a granddaughter to play, cook, and sew with! But it's a little late now! I wouldn't trade the GS's! ---"Love"