Nan's Nappies

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Learning About Christmas

My sweet 4 year old granddaughter, Taylor, and 2 year old grandson, Logan, took their usual naps on Monday. My daughter took advantage of the time to start decorating for Christmas.  Logan was the first one to wake up.  He's a sweet sensitive little guy.  When my daughter brought him downstairs, he just kept looking around and saying " Oh No, Mama!  What happened?"  He was not content until Taylor woke up and assured him everything was okay.  She, being 4, was very excited to see the decorations so Logan followed her lead.:-)

The weekend before Thanksgiving I participated in a holiday shopping open house.  I , along with several other vendors set up displays of our goods and services.  I got over twice as many orders as last year.  Last  year was my first year and I thought I'd give it another try this year.  It's difficult for me to have goods ready for purchase since almost all of my work is custom and personalized.  I didn't get to sew much the days before Thanksgiving but got to sit down to my machine the day after.  My machine was due for it's annual maintenance check up in October or November.  I was hoping to get through until January.  For a few weeks I've had an occasional time when the thread would knot up on the back of the design and then the machine would stop.  If I re-threaded, it seemed to fix the problem and I could continue sewing.  Monday, that changed.  It would sew a few stitches and then start sounding like it was grinding and knot up  again.  I think the timing is off.  I have no idea how it got off.  The last time my timing was off, it happened when I sewed my finger but I  haven't sewed my finger since then!  I was so frustrated at the end of Monday.  Yesterday morning I called to make an appointment to have my machine serviced.  I take my machine to the closest repair shop, which is an hour away. Lilies of the Field in Easton, MD.  I pay extra for same day service.  My son, has recently started working in Easton, so hopefully , we'll be able to meet for lunch tomorrow.  Thankfully, I started sewing early and have plenty of time to complete my Christmas orders!

Many of my regular readers know that I am a registered nurse.  My last full time job was as a school nurse.  I am still a school nurse, but I do it as a substitute now.  One of our CNA's, Fayetta, has had a rough week.  The home where she grew up and where her parents ( aged 70 +) still live, caught fire Sunday.  Her father wasn't home and her mother is in a wheelchair.  Thankfully, someone pulled her mother out through a window but her mom suffered severe smoke inhalation and is in ICU on a ventilator.  Her dad has many health problems also so Fayetta has not been able to work this week.  Her parents did not have any insurance so this has really hit the family hard. Here is a link to the news video about the fire. If you would like to contribute some financial help, please let me know and I can give you Fayetta's address.  You may e-mail me at

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Molasses Gingersnaps and Ornaments

Oh my goodness!  Has it really been six weeks since I last wrote a post???  Since blogging isn't my first priority time can slip by me quickly.  My family, job as a substitute school nurse and embroidery usually take precedence over blogging.  When I do finally take the chance to blog, I get so into it, I find myself wondering why I don't make it a point to do this more often!  But then I look and six weeks have flown by.  Oh well, I'll just enjoy it when I can.  I hope you enjoy reading my blogs as much as I enjoy writing them.

Today I have a couple of new treats to share.  One is edible, and the other isn't.  The first is Molasses Gingersnaps.  My father's sister, Audrey, used to make this and I LOVED them.  I've been eating them all of my life and making them for at least 40 years.  I have used various combinations of the shortening.  Sometimes I use 3/4 cups each of Butter flavored Crisco and butter.  You do not want to use 100% butter, and you do not want to use plain Crisco.  You want butter flavored.  When I was a teenager, my dad would provide black strap molasses for me to make the cookies.  I've found molasses that calls itself black strap but it isn't like the nasty stuff my dad was able to get.  I saw nasty because it was REALLY bitter.  But it made the BEST cookies.  The more bitter the molasses, the better the flavor in the cookies. My daughter has been known to eat almost an entire cookie jar in a fairly short period of time!

Printable Version

Aunt Audrey's Molasses Ginger Snaps
1/2 cup  Butter Flavored Crisco
1 cup  butter
2 cups sugar
½ cup  BlackStrap or less sweet molasses such as Grandma's Robust

2 eggs
4 cup  flour
½ tsp  salt
4 tsp  baking soda
2 tsp  cinnamon
2 tsp  ginger
1 Cream shortening, butter, sugar and molasses. Add eggs. Beat well.
2 Add dry ingredients and mix well.
3 Roll into small balls, 3/4" to 1" in diameter. Dip top of ball into sugar. Place on ungreased
cookie sheet - I use parchment paper- about 2" apart.
4 Bake at 350° for approximately 8 minutes.
Servings: 108

The second thing I want to share is Christmas ornaments.   I have been
stitching lace Christmas ornaments.  I can make them in any color.
They measure approximately 3" to 3.5".  They are extremely affordable at $3.50.
An added bonus is they are non-breakable!
Take a look at the ones I can stitch and see if you'd like one as a gift for a special person.



Thursday, September 27, 2012

Dedication Dresses

A friend, Joy, has two precious little granddaughters.  These little girls were going to be dedicated to the Lord.  For those of you who aren't familiar with this, it is based on Hannah and Samuel in the book of 1 Samuel in the Bible.

I'll inject a little trivia about me.  My parents were two of the six founding members of their church in 1957.  That is the year I was born. In 1958, I was the first baby dedicated at Grace Baptist Church .  I am happy to say my parents are still living in the same house they lived in at that time and doing pretty well for their ages.  Dad will be 94 in a few more weeks and Mom will be 91 in February.

Joy made her granddaughter's dedication dresses and I had the privilege of embroidering them.  They were gorgeous!  The little girls are cousins. 

She chose an Imperial Batiste ( 65% polyester, 35% pima cotton) fabric in white.  It is so soft to the touch but had wonderful body for draping.  The lace on the sleeves was overlapped cotton cluny lace.  The lace around the bottom edge of the skirt was an antique 3"cotton lace with a flower motif.  The back of the bodice was closed with 3 pearlized shank buttons.

At first, Joy thought she wanted all white embroidery.  As she began choosing embroidery designs, she decided to go with a touch of pale pink and green.  The results were stunning. as you can see in the photos below.

The bodice.

The center front of the skirts.

This design was stitched repeatedly around the entire hem of the skirt.

This shows the embroidery around the hem of the skirt, the beautiful lace and the pleating.

This is the baby's long gown before she attached the sleeves.

This is the shorter version for the toddler.

She also made slips.  We plan to embroider the names and dedication date on the slips.  they are heirlooms that cn be passed down from generation to generation.  With each use, the name and date can be added to the slip.  The toddlers slip had crinoline added to add fullness.

She made bonnets and attached beautiful ribbon ties but the girls were not happy about keeping those on! 

Below are the professional portraits in their dresses.  Aren't they precious?  You can click on any picture to see it larger.

Friday, August 24, 2012

National Waffle Day! Who Knew?!?

Today is National Waffle Day!!!  Who knew that such a day existed???  Andy and I decided it was the perfect excuse to make waffles.  We didn't have time at breakfast so we decided we would have them for dinner.  I have REAL Belgian waffles rising in my refrigerator right now.  Are you one of the many people who think that a Belgian Waffle is one made with BIG holes?  One that is round?  Well you are wrong!  Belgian Waffles contain yeast. 

When I discovered this I started searching the internet for a great Belgian Waffle Recipe.  I found several.  One is called an overnight batter but really any of them can be made the night before, covered tightly and put in the refrigerator until the next morning.  The one I made today does not say it's over night but I've made it the night before several times and made out fine.

Click on the picture above to see this wonderful recipe.  I serve them with warm real maple syrup.  I pour some of my maple syrup into a glass measuring cup and warm it in the microwave.  It's not a pretty syrup container but it works great!  Real maple syrup must be refrigerated and I don't want to pour cold syrup on the waffles.  These waffles are light with a delightfully crispy outside.  I freeze any leftovers and toast them to warm them.  They aren't as good as the freshly made ones but they are still very good. Can't wait for tonight's yummy dinner!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Chased by Grace

I don't know how many of you read this blog but if you stumble upon it or subscribe to it, I highly recommend you check out some of my favorite blogs that are listed on the right hand side.

I had missed this one yesterday but fortunately a friend posted a link on Facebook.   It's from a blog entitled A Holy Experience and the entry was called When You Are Finding It Hard to Keep Up ( or Chased by Grace)

I need these reminders that I am not the only one feeling overwhelmed by my "to do" list.  I am also not the only one who feels overwhelmed with my failures.  As I grow older I see that time is running out and that makes me feel more panicked sometimes.  I may live quite a while longer.  I'm 55 now.  But I may not have tomorrow!  I have things I want to do and places I want to go and I am quickly realizing my body is NOT 30 anymore! God alone knows how much time I have and I need to be reminded all of the time to slow down and let His grace be sufficient for me.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Cracked Wheat Bread and Fonts

Cracked Wheat Bread (For Bread Machine). Photo by Bobbiann Cracked Wheat Bread for Bread Machine

My husband and I love bread.  Good, homemade, filling, yeasty bread.  We love to have it toasted with all natural peanut butter and my homemade strawberry jam, or with a little butter when it's straight out of the oven.  It is a wonderful addition to a meal of homemade soup.

I had some cracked wheat ( bulgar wheat) in my freezer.  It's been there a LONG time.  But it was still fine.  I have an old bread cookbook and found a recipe for Cracked Wheat Bread.  It was grand.  Since getting the cookbook 30 years ago, the Internet has become my main source for recipes.  I did a search and found many recipes for Cracked Wheat Bread.    I haven't made all of them yet but this one was VERY easy.  If you click on the picture, you will go to the website where you can get the recipe.  All of the ingredients can be put in a bread machine.  If you want to bake it in the bread machine you can.  I like to put my bread in a loaf pan so I set my bread machine to the dough setting.  If you slice each loaf into 16 slices, each slice will have 121 calories, 1.6 g fiber, and 3.5 grams protein.  I had a slice for breakfast.  I sliced 1 oz. of Cabot's Seriously Sharp Cheddar Cheese onto the top of the slice and top browned it in my toaster oven.  Yummy!  With a bowl of fresh cantaloupe and peaches, I had a delicious breakfast.

As for embroidery, I have been busy this summer.  I'll have to post pictures of some of my projects in other blog posts.  One of the things that has kept me busy for the past month is fonts.  I follow some wonderful embroidery pages on Facebook.  One of the pages, 8 Claws and a Paw , offered a 1 month font membership.  I looked at their fonts and decided it was well worth it.  I purchased the membership and started buying fonts.  Once they are purchased, they are sent to me in an e-mail.  I could only purchase 10 at a time.  It took me many hours of sitting and "shopping".  After receiving the e-mail with the link to download the fonts, I had to create a folder  for each font and unzip each file.  This isn't difficult at all for one or two items but I purchased over 200 fonts!!!  Now I'm creating pictures of the fonts so my customers can see their choices.   As you can see below, I'm working my way through alphabetically.  The fonts below are a small sampling of some of the wonderful fonts I have now.

When you order from Nan's Nappies, you can pick out a few fonts that you like and I will e-mail you a picture of what the words you want will look like in that font. 

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Weddings, Showers & House Warming Gifts

The invitation arrived!  You are thrilled for the happy couple.  You send a positive RSVP.  Now what will you get them?  You look on their registry.  Many of the items in your price range have already been purchased.  You want to get them something practical and useful but unique.  How about something personalized?

 Many of these designs will work well on towels, blankets, pillows, flags, etc.

Towels can have a simple one letter monogram,  a three letter monogram, one letter with some simple designs added, or full names .  I will work to help you find the perfect font to fit the personality of the bride and groom.  I've been embroidering the towels from Sam's Club and have found them to be thick, and thirsty.   The embroidery thread is bleach resistant and durable. The towel will wear out long before the monogram does!  They make such an elegant gift.

A bride approached me with a unique request.  She had some dainty little antique linen napkins that she wanted embroidered for her and to give as gifts to the mothers of the bride and groom, and grandmothers of the  bride and groom.
  Their colors were periwinkle and celery.  She chose a font and thread colors.  The top picture is of the ones for the bride and groom to carry.  The picture to the right are the ones for the parents of the bride.  The center one shows how the mother's looked when folded and the far right shows how it looked when she opened it.  What a wonderful unique gift for this bride to give!  They can be used and will always be a reminder of their beautiful wedding.

Napkins .Another wonderful and unique gift!   This customer found these beautiful napkins and napkin rings and had me embroider the one letter monogram.  This bride can set a really nice table when she entertains.

 Pillow cases.  Is an entire sheet set out of your price range but just giving pillow cases is not your idea of a nice gift?  How about embroidered pillowcases?  The top case belongs to my husband and me.  I love using them.  They are sateen.  The bottom case is of 600 thread count Egyptian Cotton.  I found them on Amazon.

I bet no one will give the couple a garden flag.  The flag can be one sided or two sided.  It doesn't have to have a butterfly.  I can help you choose a design.  I sell these in my Etsy shop where you can see the other colors in which the durable flag material comes.

How about some kitchen towels to fit the personality of the recipients?

 This was purchased for a couple who love to hunt.

The Fruits of the Spirit are needed to maintain any successful relationship.  These towels are not only pretty and practical but a wonderful reminder.

I love this kitchen towel.  It belongs to my husband and me. 
We love coffee and Slow Lane Cafe is a website my husband used to have and also our e-mail address.  We love those moments when we can sip a cup of coffee and take life in the slow lane.

The following designs are great for showers and weddings also or as a housewarming gift.  So don't feel as if you need to give another set of glasses, baking pans, or a toaster.  Get your imagination going and lets come up with a unique gift that is sure to be a big hit with the recipients!