A Year In Review Episode #98

2018 is on its way out and we’re about to ring in 2019. Can you believe the year is over? It’s been a long and bumpy road but a crafty one, too! In this episode we review 2018 by our Instagram posts and share the big moments of each month.

blocks-with-2018-changing-to-2019_large

We hope you enjoy this fun reflection podcast and if you can, check out our Instagram feed to follow along with the memories posted there. Have a great new year and see you all in 2019!!

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our Zazzle shop for your Hobbies Up To Here merchandise!

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Top 5 Hobbies Up To Here Posts of 2017

It’s been a rather quiet year here at Hobbies Up To Here. We’ve not quilted or crafted nearly as much as we’d have liked but so many other great things have happened: two new munchkins have joined the family, my brother got married, and many other great happenings blessed us.
Even if the blog has been quieter and our podcast episodes aren’t as frequent, we still love to join Cheryl over at Meadow Mist Designs to celebrate the top posts of the year! You can go back and check out 2015 and 2016 to see what our past top posts have been.
Alright, lets jump in and see what our top posts have been this year!
#5 Post With The Most Comments
My dad’s first attempt at a completed, quilted, and appliquéd project received the most comments in the 2017 year with 17 comments. I believe it was his enthusiasm and pride in the work he did that garnered so much positive attention!
#4 Post With The Most Likes
A TIE!
Both of these posts received 8 likes each bringing them both in at #4 on our list.
#3 Highest Viewed Podcast Episode
And it looks like our episode all about hacks to make crafting easier gets another top spot! With 326 views, this podcast episode takes it’s second place on our list.
#2 Jake’s Top Viewed Post
Each year I share at least one or two blog posts about Jake and his sewing attempts. Last year his Darth Vader finish took the top spot as the most viewed post of 2016. This year I decided to dedicate the #2 spot to his most viewed/liked post. And this year it is his finished block post with 624 views!
#1 Highest Viewed Post of 2017
Congrats to my mom for taking the top spot (AGAIN!) with a beautifully finished quilt!! Ironically enough, the first year she won this spot was with a quilt she gifted to my brother in 2015. This year she takes the top spot with yet another gifted quilt, my sister’s curved log cabin. That post clocked in with 836 views, our highest yet!!!
It’s a gorgeous quilt so definitely take a moment to check out that post and read all about it. Or just check out this adorable picture of my nephew Logan sitting on it! Ah forget it, I mean, who can concentrate on that quilt when there is such an precious little man sitting on it!!
From all of us at Hobbies Up To Here, we hope you’ve had a marvelous holiday season and that your new year starts of wonderfully!! Here’s to 2018!!!

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Get To Know Us Episode #76

Welcome back, hobbyists and crafters!
We’ve got a fun episode chatting about, well, US!

Thanks to all our friends and listeners who submitted questions. We had a great time sharing some unknown facts about us and really opening up to all our good friends and our new listeners!

And a quick moment to promote a contest I’m in. As a teacher, getting technology and classroom supplies to support a full class can be a daunting task. Through Duolingo, a language program that can help my English language learners, I’m trying to win iPads for my class! It would really add to my lessons and give my kids the advantage they need to help them build their language skills and their computer skills.

How can you help? Well it only takes a few moments to click this link and then vote for my class! That’s all!! And every vote helps me get closer to winning some iPads for my class to use during language and ELA centers. Thank you to all those for helping out!!

Katie’s iPad Contest Link: Back To School Classroom Contest

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

A Week of Pinterest: Pass or Fail!

This week was our Spring Break from school and work and we decided to stay home instead of travel. While I would have all this time at home, I realized it would be a great time to get creative!

So I scanned my Pinterest boards and found  few things I wanted to try and share the process with all of you! Below are my five days of testing our Pinterest projects, from makeup to DIY art.

Monday

I’m a huge fan of makeup because I love playing with colors and creating new looks. It’s amazing what you can do with a little eyeshadow and some brushes. To me it’s similar to painting a canvas, except that it’s your face. I attempted a smokey eye look and shared my thoughts.

Tuesday

The next day I chose a DIY art project that I’ve seen float through my pins from day one on Pinterest. Melted crayon art looks so cool and yet could go so horribly wrong so I wanted to take a stab at it and see if I could create something beautiful.

Wednesday

One of the biggest boards I have on Pinterest is my cooking board. There I pin all the yummy recipes I want to make and some of them I do attempt. But I hadn’t yet made a fried recipe so I pulled one of the most repinned chicken dishes on my board.

Thursday

With three passes under our belt, my son and I attempted another DIY art project that I had seen many times on Pinterest. Around Christmas time we had actually thought to try these as gifts. BOY am I glad we didn’t do that. These were not quite a pass or fail but they definitely didn’t come out as we had hoped.

Friday

On our final day I really wanted to make some cool bath bombs so that we could relax in the bath with some soothing peppermint scented fizziness. Sadly I think I messed these up so I may attempt them again when summer comes and I have some more free time on my hands.

Our five days are up and I’m thrilled to say we had three passes and only two fails. And the two fails are something I’m interested in going back and trying again. It was also a great bonding experience for Jake and myself. We had fun making the videos and also discussing what worked and what didn’t. I think we’d be up for trying more Pinterests projects this summer!

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Oh Look, SHINY!! Episode #65

Happy Anniversary to us!!!

We’ve loved every episode and sharing it with all of our wonderful listeners. Thanks for hanging in there with us through sickness and health, till death do us part!

AMEN!

While I’ve been battling every illness known to man (exaggerate, much?) my mom has been cuddling up with the newest family member. I’m jealous!

Even Jake got in on the action! Thank goodness for FaceTime so I could at least see him hold his baby cousin for the first time.

While we may not be breaking any records in quilting, Dori has definitely been busy working on a few projects like a nursing cover for my sister.

Thanks for modeling for us, Dad.

Even though I may have been down and out with no voice, the hubs and I got some MAJOR spring cleaning done around our place. That included hanging his Star Wars pictures and finally building his new furniture.

Doesn’t it look so nice?

And when we were done with that, sat down and unboxed our first Loot Crate box.

We’ve got a lot of boxes to share with our viewers so definitely keep an eye on our YouTube channel for upcoming new videos!

We also did an update on some of our fitness goals and we shared some of our activities we’re adding into our healthy lifestyle.

Dori is really enjoying this new walking video to include some exercise that’s a good fit for her.

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Shower Thoughts Episode #64

What is it about the warmth of a comforting shower that brings up the most ingenious thoughts and plans? And of course it happens when you are all wet and unable to stop to write down all the great ideas you come up with!

img_6544

Today’s music is brought to you by Reg (AKA Dad). The song was originally written as a lullaby for Jake and all the future grandbabies. Here’s to Jake, our big 11 year old, and our new little Logan.

We were surprised by a call from my sister announcing that Logan was on his way! He decided to come a little earlier than expected and he’s just perfect! Welcome, little man!

img_6875

Papa and his newest little man.

This month we are playing along with the March A Long 2017 hosted by the Scientific Quilter.  The goal is to sew/quilt/stitch/press/organize or anything in the realm of sewing for 15 minutes a day for the month of March.

It’s the beginning of the month so we set some goals. Dori is going to work on her curved log cabin. I’m going to continue with my blocks for the puzzle box quilt.

We share our shower thoughts for our YouTube channel. There is a plan to attempt some Pinterest crafts like this crayon melt art and record whether they are a pass or a fail.

69ebdc80313924bce25668269a57d5ac

Another idea is to continue with the box openings but to expand beyond quilting and sewing. I’m looking into some yarn and art boxes to try out along with including my husband in some geeky unboxings. Keep an eye out for our future video ideas.

Dori had a huge success with an instant pot recipe. They tried a Mongolian Beef dinner that was tasty and enjoyable!

Check out the #IGQuiltFest on Instagram. We’re having a blast hopping around and meeting new quilty friends!

Thanks to our listeners and followers for your subscriptions and your friendship. We really appreciate you all.

*affiliate link

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Instapot Inspirations Episode #63

While quilting and crafting are our top priorities when it comes to our hobbies, we’re human and we have to stop cutting fabric at some point and eat! This is where our new found love of the Instant Pot has come in handy. Check out our latest episode where we chit chat about our recent cooking successes!

img_6544

I’ve already shared some of my success with the InstaPot (really, we know it’s Instant Pot but we love to nickname things!) on my Meal Prep Monday post not long ago. Together, Dori and I talk about our interests in learning and doing more with our magical opt of foodie goodness.

#quiltnon2017 was a blast and we even WON SOMETHING! How cool is that! Check out the hashtag on Instagram so see all the great posts from this weekend’s stay-at-home party while all the Quilt Con-goers got to party it up live in Savannah.

img_1172

UH OH!! There are a few finishes in da’ house!!! Dori wrapped up grand baby #2’s quilt and even a little fuzzy-love for it to cuddle some day. That post will being coming to Hobbies Up To Here soon!

coffee chat

  • A shout out to a new follower/listener: Nat Alee (@natalee4444). Thanks for the love and sharing our fun little podcast!
  • Alida gave us some great insight into how to talk to a designer about a problem with a pattern, our last podcast topic. It was super helpful to here what she had to share!
  • G of @blingnailsbyg shared our little podcast with some of her Instagram followers! Thanks for the love, G! xoxo

Thanks again to all our listeners and friends. We feel blessed to be apart of such a wonderful, crafty community that’s supportive and loving. We hope you continue to enjoy our little chats and that you feel like we’re sitting with you, laughing and sharing with you 🙂

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Meal Prep Monday: Instant Pot Magic

Instant pots cropped up in my world around Christmas time. Many friends were gifted the magical pot that cooked instantly and can cook just about everything.

Having a kitchen full of items, I wasn’t really jumping at the idea of adding another one to my arsenal. While all the food cooked in it looked great and seemed like this incredible, too good to be true item, I just couldn’t bring myself to buy one.

Luckily for me, my mom has one. She’s had it for a while now. Except she always referred to it as her pressure cooker. She even suggested it give it a go at some point because she felt that I would like it.

As my media feeds were food with pictures and posts of this cooking revolution, I asked my mom if her cooker was the same and she told me that yes, the one she had been using for some time is the same one that everyone was in love with now.

So, I borrowed it. And this weekend I made a few meals to help me make it through the week with healthy options.

Our first attempt was simple. Steaming some green beans coated in a little oil and salt and pepper.

These didn’t last long once they came out because my husband started eating them like candy. So I’d say they were a success.

My next recipe was a whole meal with honey teriyaki chicken and carrots. I got to use the sauté function and brown the chicken then pressure cooked the whole thing together. It came out great! So good that AGAIN I had to hide it from my husband. Within minutes of it being out of the cooker (while I was making the sauce thicken up a bit) he had devoured a whole chicken breast.

See?! I’m not lying. He totally nommed on a whole breast while I was busy stirring.

My last effort to play with the instant pot was cooking a whole spaghetti squash.  Now I’ve never had a spaghetti squash before but I’ve aways heard great things about it working well as a low calorie option for pasta.

Initially it took 15 minutes to soften but it didn’t feel completely cooked through so I put it back in for another 5 minutes. After that second round it was perfect. I carefully took it out and cut it open to pull apart the meat.

For lunch I made a spaghetti squash, green bean, and chicken sausage bowl and it was good. Not great, but good. I’d have to say that the spaghetti squash was definitely something I’ll have to get used to but it’s nice to have some different options for healthy eating.

So far my first foray into the instant pot has been successful. I’m fascinated by the process and I think my husband is too. He’s been very hands on with helping me cook and test out new recipes, although his favorite job in my kitchen is taste testing. I can’t wait to try it again, maybe with a meat sauce to go with my spaghetti squash.

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Meal Prep Monday: Casseroles Are LIFE!

Hey my fellow crafty chefs. It’s been a while since I’ve shared some of my creative endeavors in the kitchen. Why? Well, things have been super busy with the new teaching job and cooking took a back seat.

Plus, the husband shared with me that making all of the food over the weekend and eating it throughout the week wasn’t desirable because he felt like he was eating just leftovers again and again. I could see his point so we made some adjustments and made most of the protein items on Sunday and then cooked sides through the week.

Nothing like a fresh batch of veggies or rice each night to complement some chicken or steak!

But even that change still proved to be too tough to keep up with. The demands of my new job and our already hectic life kept getting in the way. Between grades and soccer and long working hours for the Mr., I was in need of a meal prep schedule that I could keep up.

Enter the casserole! Sorta…

I call it a casserole because I tend to put it together in a large casserole dish but in all honesty it’s more like a tossed together full meal that we reheat throughout the week. It includes a meat, veggies, and a carb like pasta or rice at the base. I’ve had some successful meals come from this new plan of attack that I’ll share below.

Butternut Squash and Spinach Ravioli Casserole

Ok this one literally was an off-the-cuff last minute idea. I had guys over watching football and a kiddo playing Minecraft so I was stuck at home trying to come up with something to feed the troops.

In the freezer I had some butternut squash cubed and ready to cook so I roasted it with garlic, oil, cayenne, oregano and sea salt. While I did that, I layered cheese ravioli into a casserole dish along with some washed spinach. When the butternut squash was fully cooked, I blended it until it was soup like and then I spread that between layers of ravioli and spinach. My thinking was to make it like a lasagna but instead of the long, flat noodles, I’d use the ravioli for layers.

I covered the top with cheese and baked it until the ravioli was cooked completely. As a finishing touch I broiled the top so that the cheese was nice and melted. And we were super impressed! I thought the guys would hate it but in the end they both ate it and enjoyed it! We added a little simple basil marinara sauce on top or to dip it into and that added bonus flavor.

Italian Sausage and Beer Pasta Unbake

My husband confided in me that he didn’t like baked pasta. Particularly the crusty bit around the edge (oh my favorite!). So, taking the idea of a pasta bake, I boiled noodles, browned sausage and beef together with garlic and seasonings, and mixed a bag of roasted peppers into a marinara sauce with the intention of tossing it altogether in a casserole dish but leaving off the last step of baking it together.

That way we still get the goodness of a full meal without the crispy bits around the edges. And when we heat it up throughout the week, we melt a little cheese on top to keep it fresh and new.

My other go-to is my Turkey Chili. I can vary certain ingredients (like marinara for salsa) to include whatever I have on hand. I’ve got a list of a few things I need to always have on hand to make one of these all-in-one meals. Things I replace when I run out, not things I buy weekly. The meat I buy weekly and that’s about it. Otherwise I have a decent stash of these items in my cabinets and freezer.Canned tomatoes

pasta sauce
salsa
frozen mixed veggies
pasta (a variety)
frozen ravioli/tortellini
frozen meatballs (Trader Joe’s are awesome)

With these things always  at home, I know I just need to grab the beef, chicken, or turkey to add. We also shop for the pasta and the frozen veggies on days when it’s a 10/$10 sale. It saves us a little money and time to grab a bunch and store them.

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here

Hobbies Up To Here Episode #46

Hey hobbyists and crafters! Episode #46 is ready to roll out!

img_6544

Going into this episode we had NO clue what we would talk about. We were without a topic!!! Instead of our usual discussion about some crafty topic, we decided to just sit and chat about what’s going on in our lives.

We chat about our new healthy lifestyles and the few crafty things we’ve got our hands in. I share my issues with too many electronics in everyday items (I see you Sleep Number bed). My mom shares some of her thoughts about exercise and getting herself moving again!

My mom is super happy with her interaction with the people over at Doll Makers Journey. Not only has she learned a lot from their tutorials and videos but they have been nothing but wonderful when an item she ordered didn’t arrive. They were quick to resolve the issue and with a great sense of humor about it. Thanks Mary Ann!

My baby quilt is moving along. I shared my disappointment in it this week but the positive response from our readers kept me going and I’m now putting the blocks back together. I’ll post updates soon!

Myra over at Busy Hands Quilts is hosting a new Friday link up. It’s for those projects that just don’t get finished by Friday but you’d like to share all your hard work. Check it out by using the link attached to the button below!

Finished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts

Like us on Facebook: Hobbies Up To Here

Subscribe to us on iTunes: Hobbies Up To Here

Check out our YouTube channel: Katie V. with Hobbies Up To Here

Tune in for some Periscope fun: Katie V.

And follow us on BlogLovin: Hobbies Up To Here

Pop by on Instagram: Hobbies Up To Here