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Monday, July 11, 2016

Welcome to our Summer Blog Hop!

Welcome to my day on the Buttermilk Basin Summer Blog Hop!  

Summer is in full swing here and I'm doing my best to enjoy every lovely day.  We've had a run of warm and comfy days here where the weather is perfect and being outside is wonderful. 

The house is still decorated in all things Americana, and I've been in this patriotic mode for awhile.  I'm sure it has everything to do with my new patriotic fabric line, called Star Spangled Liberty (Marcus Fabrics), about to hit your local quilt shops next month.

Stacy asked all of us some summer related questions, so I'll fill in my answers for you:

Do I have a Green Thumb?  Well...I can grow things outside the house but have no luck growing plants and flowers inside.  I'm OK with that.  

Average Temp Where I Live:  Here in the suburbs of Chicago, we average temps in the high 80's to 90's with some humid, sultry days getting into the 100's.  I'm not a fan of the hot, humid days and look forward to the cooler days of fall.  

How Do I Stay Cool During The Summer?  Staying indoor with the A/C.  We used to have a pool, but no longer.  I try to enjoy the cooler mornings.

Favorite Summer Drink:  Iced Tea (year round favorite), frozen peach slushes and strawberry martini's.

What Did I Do For July 4th?  Stayed home this year, had a BBQ, and enjoyed the mild weather outdoors.

S'Mores:  Well....I've only had one once and I don't care much for marshmallows.  Am I the only person who doesn't enjoy S'Mores?

Do I Frequent Farmer's Market:  YES!!  We are so blessed to have a truly excellent Farmer's Market about 10 minutes from home.  You can see more about this below.

Favorite Summer Fruit:  Summer brings all of my favorites.  I adore dark cherries and haven't met a berry I didn't love.

Do I Enjoy Handwork Outside?  Oh yes...outside, inside, in the car, on a plane.  I enjoy hand stitching wherever I go.

Favorite Summer Tradition:  It's funny how our favorite summer traditions have changed over the years.  They are so different now than when our kids were small.  The one thing that remains over the years are cooking and dining outside to enjoy the weather because winter will be back before we know it!  We frequent places with outdoor dining, and several places where we meet our friends to enjoy live music, drinks and good food.  

Every Sunday in Frankfort, IL, which is the next suburb over from where I live, they hold a spectacular Farmer's Market.  The village of Frankfort has a town square, village green, loads of artisan gift and antique shops and lots of wonderful restaurants.  (On Thurday evenings, they also have a terrific Cruise Night where my hubby goes to show his collection of vintage cars and hang out with friends.)  We try hard to attend the Farmer's Market every Sunday, weather permitting.

They always have live entertainment.  We bring lawn chairs, a small cooler and choose a shady spot to enjoy the music and people watching.

Loads of people, old and young, families with little ones, and dogs all come for the fun.

Of course, we all come for the food and special items by local farmers and artisans.  The variety of offerings is quite amazing.

Our absolute favorite booth is Stamper Cheeses.  They're a local family whom make their own over-the-moon delish artisan cheeses and offer samplings of everything.  Smart move as they often sell out early in the day which is why we make it our first stop.  We enjoy so many of their creations with the Almond Apricot Gouda and Raspberry Asiago being our favorites.  This Farmer's Market is such a gem in our community and it's absolutely free.  What is not to love?
The Potluck recipe I want to share with you is a big, big hit whether I take it to a Potluck, or just make it for us at home.  It's easy, has just a few ingredients, and is absolutely delicious!
Ice Cream Jell-O has been in our family since my kids were young and a neighbor brought it to a block party one year.  It's something cool, light and fruity when you're serving heavy things like BBQ chicken or ribs, bratwurst and smoked brisket.  It's so, so good, we often have a little as a dessert!  Are you groaning over another Jell-O recipe?  TRUST ME, this is not your ordinary Jell-O recipe and is quite DIVINE!
There's nothing hard about making it.  Like all layered Jell-O recipes, it just takes time and is totally worth it.  You can substitute any flavors of Jell-O you like, but lime, lemon, peach and black cherry are the standard flavors the recipe calls for, and we love them just the way they are.  Click here for a downloadable/printable copy of Ice Cream Jell-O.
In keeping with my Americana theme this month, I was inspired to design this little Americana Pinkeep for your stitching pleasure.
Just the perfect, small stitching project to bring to your porch or patio and whip up.  You'll have the remainder of the summer to enjoy it!  

Click here to download/print my Americana Pinkeep pattern.

If you love making patriotic quilts, be sure to visit my blog for a limited-time special offer on my new Tokens of the Past: Union Forever! quilt trio.  

Click here to read all the details.

My thanks to Stacy West of Buttermilk Basin for once again hosting this oh-so-fun Summer Blog Hop. 

Hey, it's so very nice outside, I'm gathering something fun to stitch, a strawberry martini, some cherries, and a slice of Raspberry Asiago cheese.  See you on the deck!  


  1. Thank you for the pinkeep pattern (I love Americana) and the delish recipe!

  2. So fun to learn more about you, Pam. I don't like marshmallows, either! I used to have a token S'more at our annual family reunion campout, but now that I can't do the graham crackers, I don't even do that. Funny thing is, I roast a beautiful marshmallow--the best in camp! Always evenly brown all around. *LOL*
    That looks like a fabulous Farmer's Market. I want to visit it!! : )
    LOVE the pinkeep. What a sweet pattern. Thank you so much!

  3. That's quite a celebration! Thanks for the cute pinkeep pattern.

  4. Greetings from nearby Joliet! I will be trying that recipe before July ends! Sounds so refreshing.

  5. thank you so much for sharing this, I love the farmers market. Living in France we have nothing like this and would love to visit one someday. Hugs, Joanne

  6. I'm not too far away, in Spring Grove. Your community sounds lovely....I'll have to pay a visit. Love your patriotic pinkeep. Thank you! Looking forward to tasting your recipe too, sounds delicious.

  7. Very interesting fun facts to learn about you. Looks like the Farmer's Market was wonderful. The patriotic pinkeep is so cute- thank you for the pattern.

  8. Thanks so much for sharing your pattern and recipe! Cheery wave from Texas!

  9. Great ideas and picture!! I sew love your patterns! I'm heading to the sewing room to gather the wools for the Americana Pinkeep. Working with my sewing friends tomorrow and taking the finished product to Michigan next month for a friend of mine.

  10. This is my first great blog Shop For Heavenly Heart Thanks For The Sharing With Us Keep It Up.

  11. I wanted to add my thanks for the pinkeep pattern. One of my favorites from past blog hops is your Tree Farm pinkeep. I've already made two of them and plan to make at least one or two more.