Sunday, November 21, 2010

Busy time in South Texas

It has been a week since the Once a Year Holiday Market, and I am very happy that it happens only Once a Year.  The two setup evenings are very labor intensive.  We have a small space to put alot of fixtures and tables.  For starters, the walls are covered to make the customers feel like they are in a little gift shop.
Although we each have a designated area, our items can be placed around the shop with like themed items. There was a big variety of handcrafted items from edibles in the kitchen area, a kidz korner, lots of jewelry, paintings, quilts and sewn items, all the way to a blacksmith's creations.

One of the perks you get from being at a show is you get to meet lots of new interesting people... at least the first time anyhow.  They all have their own talents.  Sometimes they do things you couldn't begin to create yourself, but sometimes you can discover something you didn't know existed before.  One of those was Chili Pequin Jelly.  Now I would never in 100 years think of buying a jar of Chili Pequin Jelly.  For those of you who are not from South Texas, Chili Pequins are among the hottest peppers you want to encounter. 
They can hurt you really bad.  One of the ladies had to bring in an open jar for the workers to try in the kitchen.  If you take a jar of hot pepper jelly and pour it over a block of cream cheese, then spread it on crackers, you will experience an awesome treat... and outside of a little kick, you would never guess how great a treat it could be... made with chili pequins.  I actually made a batch of jelly this afternoon, and upon testing it... you can tell that peppers are in it, but the heat level is very minimal.  My husband who does not do hot in any shape or size, took a taste at my prompting and was pleasantly surprised.
I have not made jelly for many years.  I have not lost my touch.  Chili Pequins are so hot that this batch of jelly only used 8 of those pea sized pequins.  The pequins are red when they are ripe, but the red color comes mostly from the 4 red bell peppers.  I have 9 jars of jelly, and the little bit that was left that I put in a small bowl jelled very nicely, so I'm confident that they will all be set up nicely.

Yesterday my husband asked me if I was going to put the blocks from my Farmer's Wife Sampler back up on the design wall.  I took them all down while I was finishing up some items for OAY, so when I loaded up everything I was taking to the show, the wall became very empty.  No color to brighten the blank wall.  It has been nearly two months since I added any new blocks to the 58 that I had complete before I started my final crunch for the show.  So I put all the blocks I had completed back on the wall.  With 111 the final goal, 58 done means I have a bit further to go.  I sat down and got 4 new blocks sewn in one afternoon.  My biggest challenge with these blocks sometimes is picking out the right fabric to do each block.  I have lots of fabric in my stash... too many choices. 

I thought I would take the time to post some new pictures.  It has been a while since I have had the time to put together anything decent out here.  Hope you enjoyed today's post.

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