The apples are ripe and its time to make apple butter. When you live on property with apple trees, the temptation to make apple butter is overwhelming. Like childbirth, you are excited at the prospect and then half way through you wonder what you were thinking when you started this endeavor! Picking, cleaning, peeling, cutting, with sugar and spices gracing on every surface. The fruit flies arrive in force. And then cooking, pureeing, and putting the apple butter into a turkey roaster to cook down in the oven. It does smell divine! And then mess and the hours over the stove, the massive cleanup of pans, bowls, spoons, ladles, canning equipment reminds you of how much work this is! And then you clean again to get what you missed the first time.
Spartans from our yard!
32 pounds of apples translates into 14 jars of apple butter. Delicious! Am stopping at 14 jars this year, so they will be very carefully distributed among true apple butter lovers. And I am swearing that this is the last year I am engaging in this particular labor of love.
Wrapt in Love is another labor of love. But less sweaty and far less sticky! My center is complete, and the fiddley cornerstones and twirly center and border corners completed as reported earlier. But now for the baskets. I did a test basket and discovered that because I had made my center burgundy stripe slightly wider than the pattern (and made the cornerstones to that scale), the baskets are a bit off scale. After playing around with changing the scale of the basket, I decide to keep them as-is at 75%, which is the scale that I am working to, and simply add a bottom strip under the baskets to even the height of the border with the cornerstones. I like the look of it with the “shelf” under the baskets.
Piecing is not my forte, and my first three baskets are a bit wonky. I have decided to go with the burgundy grunge for my triangle pieces, so I cut new triangles and decide on what fabric to use on my contract color basket, sticking with the speckled batiks in contract colors.
The baskets were a generous 1/4″ short on the width after squaring, so I added 3/4″ strips on each basket end to make the baskets and vine “handles” meet well. I really the separation these inserts give to each basket, helping to define them.
The top measured 60 x 60″ at this point. Because it is for my grand daughter’s twin bed, and plenty wide, I decided to add two borders to lengthen the quilt. I played with HSTs and utilized as much as of the batiks from my applique flowers as possible (a number of them were fat quarters or 1/4 yd so it was challenging!). I also brought in both background fabrics from the squares to make it a little scrappier.
The HSTs echo the basket shapes a bit and I am quite happy with the result. Now WIL goes into my “quilt soon” pile and I am aiming for a holiday finish with the FMQ. This quilt is for my 11 year old grand daughter and she has been eagerly following the process!
Here’s to our labors of love, Lennea