Friday, June 01, 2018

Stitching Pink

A long long time ago I started this blog and an even longer time ago I registered the website www. stitchingpink.com.  A lot has happened over the years including work as a nurse-midwife, the birth of my daughter Lucy, a stint as a personal trainer and most recently the privilege of selling Bernina sewing machines to customers at Pennington Quilt Works.

So here I am, again, at another crossroads in my life.  My job as a Bernina salesperson is coming to a close though I will continue to teach English Paper Piecing and coordinate community events.  For the first time in my life I honestly have no plan.

Well, that's not entirely true.

I'm going to rest. And read. And write.

My plan has always been to blog more and make this an active space for my creative pursuits and occasional deep thoughts.  But there have been so many roadblocks, most of my own making but many out of my control.

I can't promise that this page will become super-active though I hope that it will become a space where I can explore, with a bit more depth than Instagram, my life.  Not all of it of course because I'm sure you don't want to hear about my true hatred of laundry. I mean like I really hate laundry.  But the other stuff.  My exercise goals.  My sewing projects.  My cooking adventures.

Also, my plan is to migrate this site to another platform.  You will know when that happens which won't be anytime soon.  I'm mostly putting this plan out there so that I follow through with it....

Until next time.

Happy Stitching.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

The kindness of a sandwich

We are blessed that we are able to send our daughter to a Sacred Heart school here in the New Jersey. One of the main reasons that we chose the school was their focus on social justice and community involvement.  Lucy has always been a deeply empathetic child so having her in a space where she can express that and have the ability to act on it was important.

This past week her school participated in a program called Loaves and Fishes.  The students made sandwiches for bag lunches to give out at St Mary's in Trenton.  The entire school gets involved.  The day began with the teachers setting the intention of giving to others.  And with that, they started.

The girls formed an assembly line of bread, cheese and luncheon meat.  As the sandwich was passed down, an ingredient was added until it was complete and arrived at my daughter to place in the bag.  It was here that Lucy paused and noticed what was happening.

Some of the sandwiches were meticulously prepared, others were done in haste.  Lucy noticed and said something to her friends.  As she relayed the story to us, she said something like this:

"Hey guys, take your time putting together the sandwiches.  Someone is going to receive this and eat it.  Someone who doesn't have as much as we do.  Would you rather have a neatly made sandwich or a messy sandwich?"

And as she told us the story, Mitch and I held back tears.  Tears of absolute pride.  Because she gets it.  Giving to others is so valuable.  But you must give in a way that respects the value and pride of the recipient.  And in so doing, you are also respecting all of humanity and ultimately yourself.

Because every person deserves to be treated with kindness.  And even such a small thing as how you make a sandwich can reflect that.

I'm proud of Lucy for speaking up.  And proud of her friends and classmates for participating in this day of giving.  And of the school for providing the opportunity to give to others.

Because, charity is an act of love. And learning how to be charitable is a gift that one carries for life.  And you never know when you might need to be on the receiving end.  And when you are, which sandwich would you prefer?  The neat one or the messy one.

You know the answer.  And I'm proud that my daughter at the young age of 13 knows it too.

Sunday, October 01, 2017

Rugelove





Yesterday I made a batch of raspberry chocolate rugelach.   My recipe is a combination of a few recipes plus my own modifications/additions over the years.



I love making this cookie.  It's super easy and always a delicious crowd pleaser.  You can modify the filling based on your own preferences.  My preference is on the sweeter side with raspberry jam and chocolate chips.

Here it is with one caveat: I am not a professional baker so I can't guarantee that these directions are perfect.  Also, you may brush tops with butter before sprinkling with sugar but I have found that they are pretty tasty with out the additional butter!

Dough:

8 ounces cottage cheese
1 cup butter - 2 sticks
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp sugar

Filling
1 cup Bonne Maman rasberry jam
1 cup Ghiradelli mini chocolate chips

In an electric mixer mix cottage cheese and butter until well blended.  In a separate bowl combine flour, salt and sugar.  Add flour mixture to mixer and combine.  Do not over mix.

Place dough onto a work surface and knead into a ball.  Divide into two.  Shape into disks.  Wrap in wax paper and chill in fridge for 1-2 hours.

Preheat oven to 350.  Use convection if you have it.

Place disks on lightly floured work surface.  Roll out to 1/8" thickness and about 8x12" rectangle.  Cut into roughly 1 x 4" strips.

Warm jam in microwave for 15 seconds.  Spoon thin layer of warmed jam onto strips of dough.  Sprinkle chocolate chips on top.  Roll each strip and place seam side down on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Sprinkle sugar over prepared cookies

Place baking sheet in oven for 17-20 minutes until tops are lightly browned.

Remove from oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes on baking sheet.

Enjoy.