Friday, September 08, 2017

When Bonnie Bakes --

While we waited to hear from my Aunt Gail and Uncle Tony how things fared for them in Puerto Rico, I got busy in the kitchen.

Gail and Tony have a home in Puerto Rico, on the south side of the island, and also a place near Tampa.

I laugh every time that Gail relates the story of why they still have both places.  “Florida is too cold in the winter!” says Uncle Tony.  And we laugh and laugh.

Uncle Tony has family still in Puerto Rico as well, and so they go.  I’ve never been to their place yet, but it is on my bucket list!  Maybe I’ll spend some winter time in Puerto Rico, because North Carolina (And Southwest Virginia) can be mighty chilly in the winter as well.

These photos came in while the banana bread I was making was still in the oven, and I finally could let my mind and heart rest, knowing they were okay.


Oh, poor tree!  But it could have been worse!

“Hi everyone, we lost a couple of good trees - banana trees and fruit trees but other than that everything's fine no damages to the house. Cars were in the garages so that was good.
I guess you got to be prepared. We really didn't get hit that hard on this end of the island but the other end got hit pretty bad.”

I was also on the phone with my sister Mary discussing this situation – the fires in the northwest, the hurricanes in the south – and Mary relayed to me what she had heard from mom, Aunt Gails sister, that they had gone around the yard picking up all of the coconuts – and picking them from the trees as well and putting them INSIDE the cars.  Because coconuts can fly like cannonballs in 180mph winds.  Ackkkk!  I had never thought of that.

Puerto Rico is used to weather like this.  Houses are made of concrete.  Windows have decorative but sturdy bars over the windows.  Not to keep hoodlums out, but to keep coconuts and debris from smashing your windows in storms like this.  The Puerto Ricans are hardy folk.


Trying a new recipe and making it gluten free.

I had bought this gluten free flour blend from Pillsbury a while back, but haven’t really had MUCH time to test and play around with my own recipes to see whether it would be a success, or a complete flop.  And I don’t do a lot of sweets baking because we really don’t NEED to be eating baked goods all the time.  Diabetes runs in the hubster’s family, and in mine so baking of this kind only happens on special occasions.  Like when on hurricane alert mode!

It turned out really good!  If you want to try this with wheat flour, just substitute it for the gluten free flour.

  • 2 cups Pillsbury gluten free flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 very ripe bananas
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In a large bowl, cream together the eggs and sugar. Stir in the mashed bananas, vanilla, oil and cinnamon. Stir in the flour mixture, a third at a time, until just combined. Stir in walnuts.

Pour the batter into a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan. Bake for about 1 hour.


No loaf pan at the cabin!

Try a 9’’ x 13’’ pan!



This turned out more like a coffee cake this way, and it was really moist and not gritty, which is something I usually worry about with converting a regular recipe to gluten free.  Definitely don’t skimp on the bananas.  It says 4.  Do 4.  You need the extra moisture.


Getting this round on!

In between all of the behind-the-scenes mystery sewing I’ve been doing, my Hourglass Leader & Ender challenge has been in hyper drive! I’ve got nearly enough units to add them to the 2 long sides.  Then just top and bottom will be left and I may just power through those as a NON Leader & Ender project.  I’m loving the purple outside of that blue.  And I don’t know yet if I will want to put another round of the single neutral hourglass rows around the purple to finish it.  At this point my brain is screaming NO!!!!

Because I really want to move on to kicking this year’s Checkerboard Rails Leader & Ender Challenge into gear!

This happened last night!  Our fridge at the cabin has GOT to go.  No one should have to get on their knees to see what is in the back of the fridge because they are too tall and the apartment sized fridge is too short.  Lowes had an ad for this one at 45% off.  Deal.


This will be installed today!

And, blow up yard art season seems to be in full swing!  Oh boy.  (I hate this stuff, really I do! LOL!)

But I love THIS stuff:

Good morning from the mountain!

As I walked to the back side of the yard to take a photo of the cabin I startled a couple of deer in the woods behind me and they took off like thunder. I'm glad it was deer, not bears!

Someone suggested that I should get one of those inflatable scary trees from Lowes and put in the yard to keep the bears away.  LOL.

My heart is with those in the path of hurricane Irma. We may get some of this up here in Southwest Virginia, and North Carolina as well. Please be safe, everyone! This has been the craziest September to date.

I contacted the guild I am visiting in Florida on the 19th and they will let me know whether we postpone those dates or not. In the meantime, I keep sewing!

Oh, the shipment retrieval will happen on Monday morning and I’ll drive to China Grove, NC to pick it up – it’s about 120 miles from here.  If the rain is too bad I’ll push it to Tuesday or Wednesday.  All will be fine.


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

This is where faith comes in!

Garlic Knots quilt made from my addicted to scraps column with Quiltmaker magazine. Shared by a student!

Have a great Friday, everyone!

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  1. Thank u for sharing that recipe.I have a wonderful Gluten free whoppie pie recipe if you'd like.I too am baking N prepping and waiting for family N friends from FL.

  2. a dark neutrals outer border would be fun?

  3. Playing the Glad Game like Pollyanna. No Fires, hurricanes or floods locally. Just a little Smokey still. Hoping for Rain!!!


  4. Well, I live in Orlando and we finished putting the plywood over the windows so I'm making banana bread and chocolate chip cookies. Hubby is out with his tools helping others put up their hurricane protection. We're a little anxious, but helping others and sewing keep our minds occupied. Pray for all who are in the path of the storm. We trust in God's provident hand.

  5. I adopted how Montana hikers keep bears at a distance, they sew small jingle bells to their hiking socks. I attached my bells to a stretchy bracelet I keep by our dog leashes (or put outdoor hanging bells on your doors).

  6. Good news about your aunt and uncle that hurricane is really bad the news here in the U.K. Is full of it.
    A neutral border would look nice but it will then take a bit longer to complete, but will you be happier with it in the end? Decisions decisions lol.
    Your banan bread recipe looks much easier than mine I have to rub butter into the flour first, and the addition of the walnuts sounds delicious mine has glacé cherries in and it's my younger brothers favourite.
    Keep safe I think you need to get some bells like jackiero suggested above, have a fabulous weekend and I hope the hubster is recovering nicely from his dental surgery
    Quilty hugs
    Anne xxx

  7. Anonymous12:09 PM EDT

    So glad they are ok and didn't have too much damage.

    A tip for people for the bananas. My home ec teacher taught me if you don't have quite enough banana, add a little applesauce, so you don't lose the moisture. Now I need to go pull out my banana bread recipe!

  8. So sorry to tell you this --- yeah, you need that outer neutral border. I'm sorry, really I am... but you need it! lol!!! And it is perfectly fine to ignore me - everyone else does and it seems to work just fine for them! Thanks for sharing each morning!! You always manage to start my day on the right foot!!

  9. Could you please post the directions for "fixing" our computers when we cannot see your videos? I could not see some of the pictures in this post either.

    I thought you had mentioned that those "fixing directions" were somewhere on your main page, but I cannot find them. Thank you so much and I am sorry I didn't write those instructions down when I first saw them.

    Rita Brown

  10. Bonnie, I wanted to pass along a comment somebody from Alaska made about bird feeders - it would work for your deer feeders, too.

    They put their bird feeders out in November and take them back in in April. They enjoy feeding and watching the birds while the bears hibernate, but once the bears are awake, the feeders come down as they don't want to have them destroyed. Or, as you experienced, enticing unwanted visitors!

    I didn't know if anyone had mentioned this as a possibility, but know and understand why you enjoy feeding the gentle wildlife.

    In the Finger Lakes, where fall is in the air.

  11. My next banana venture is banana cream cheese muffins!!!

  12. have a fabulous weekend and I hope the hubster is recovering nicely from his dental surgery


  13. I like the purple 'border', it reads as a solid for me and would stay cleaner while quilt is used if for the couch or as a throw! (From a houseffull of grandkids who like to bundle in their quilts!


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