Tuesday, July 16, 2019

How to Make Bottlecap Flower Magnets - Tutorial Tuesday

Thanks to a shop in Cabo San Lucas and Joffrey the cruise ship bartender, today's Tutorial Tuesday has us recycling bottlecaps to make a flower magnet. 

You can find the video directions right here:


While my patterns, templates, and videos are absolutely free, if you feel so inclined please consider a donation for their use. Every little bit helps! Your donation helps support the blog and allows me to continue to provide free content to crafters and cruisers all around the world.  

Rather not donate? No worries - go ahead and use them for free! If you do donate, thank you for your support!
 

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Last Chance for Free Beverage Package on Princess Cruises


Free drinks on a cruise? You betcha! 

The Sip & Sail Promotion ends July 16 so contact me today to book your Princess cruise. This deal only comes around once a year so don't miss out! 


Pan Pacific Hotel, Vancouver, Canada

In all our visits to Vancouver we had never sprung for an expensive hotel, but last year after a week of bumming it in cheap hotels around Washington we decided to splurge for one. The Pan Pacific Vancouver is right there at the cruise port and was the only pricey hotel we had in mind.

We were lucky enough to be upgraded to a Club Level Room for free. The Club Level has a lounge for guests right down the hallway. You can always find food and drinks in the lounge.
 

Beautiful views can be found from there, too. (Apologies for the glare on the glass)

Now here is where I have to tell an embarrassing situation about that Club Level room upgrade. We found out the next day the upgrade did not include lounge access. We had snacks and dinner there the night of our stay. Took drinks back to our room. Only when we showed up for breakfast and the person manning the room asked for our room number did we find out we weren't supposed to be there. Talk about embarrassing! Hubby hurried and finished his cup of coffee and we slithered on out of there. 

So this year when we knew we were heading back to Vancouver we made reservations at another hotel instead. But I still was watching rates at the Pan Pacific, just in case. Rates dropped significantly just a couple weeks before our arrival. Wound up being just a few dollars more than our other reservations, even. So we got to spend our Royal Princess pre-cruise night after our Ruby Princess trip (that cruise wrap-up can be found here) at the Pan Pacific. No Club Level upgrade to confuse us, thank goodness!
Standard Pan Pacific room.
Can't find the glasses in the room? Check the drawers. 
No purchasing over-priced mini bar items for us.
We love how close the hotel is to the cruise port. Like, it's right there. Here I am, sitting on the deck of the Ruby Princess looking at a tall building. Yep, that's the hotel.
Here's a look from the other side. Can't get any closer.

One of the nice things about the Pan Pacific is they take your luggage to the cruise port for you. Press a button on the phone, the bellman comes up a few minutes later, and off it goes. You don't have to touch it again until it shows up at your cabin. Just awesome. Then for us passengers it was just an elevator ride down to port level to board the ship.
View outside Pan Pacific's restaurant shows us our next ship, the Royal Princess.

Pan Pacific breakfast menu.

Would we stay at the Pan Pacific again? If the price is right. We will continue to book other hotels and then keep a close eye on the price as the date gets closer. Just hope our embarrassing Pan Pacific days are in the past!

Want your own chance to stay at the Pan Pacific Vancouver? Did you know I can book your travel at no additional cost to you? As a travel agent I can handle all your travel needs - hotels and resorts, cruises, flights, car rentals, tours, transfers, and more - so you can focus on the trip itself, not the time-consuming planning piece. In many cases my insider deals are better than what is available to the public.  Click here to contact me and start planning your vacation today!

Friday, July 12, 2019

Foster Friday

You know it's going to be a crazy Foster Friday when these things happen before nine in the morning:

Shortstack, Flapjack, and Cupcake find my box of gift bags and proceed to spread them out around the sewing room.


Buttermilk digs into the bottle caps I'm using for a Tutorial Tuesday project.

Buttermilk and Flapjack decide to dig into the quilts I'm working on for charity.

And what about Crepe? I found her in the garbage can. Guess I'll be hiding that.
Way too dangerous, girl!
They then sent Cupcake to apologize for it all. She did. And then decided to walk across my keyboard as I was typing on the computer.
Crazy Foster Friday.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Tutorial Tuesday - Make a Watermelon Potholder

For today's Tutorial Tuesday we are making yet another potholder. This watermelon one can be made for use or just for decoration. 

In addition to your regular sewing supplies, for this project you will need:

*2" wide strips of miscellaneous red fabrics
*1" x 10"  white or cream fabric
*2" x 10" piece of green fabric
*10" x 10" piece of muslin
*10" x 10" piece of fabric for backing
*1 piece of  Insul-Bright measuring 10” x 10”
*1 piece of cotton batting measuring 10" x 10"
*Basting spray
(Note: All fabrics need to be 100% cotton.)

And the directions? They are right here:


While my patterns, templates, and videos are absolutely free, if you feel so inclined please consider a donation for their use. Every little bit helps! Your donation helps support the blog and allows me to continue to provide free content to crafters and cruisers all around the world.  

Rather not donate? No worries - go ahead and use them for free! If you do donate, thank you for your support!
 

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Sewing for Good Sunday

While I haven't been posting on my Sewing for Good Sundays these last few weeks, I most certainly have been busy. I'm working on quilts for the assisted living center where our neighbor's wife is living, with my plan being to give one to every single resident there. That many quilts creates quite the mess. Fabric and backings and scraps and thread have been spread all over the place. But now I have five pieced and their backings added, and have one of them completely quilted. Good enough for a picture.
I still have umpteen more to go, and most likely another big mess of fabrics/threads/backing/scraps spread out all over the sewing room as well.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

Dining at Share on the Ruby Princess


We recently took a California Coastal repositioning cruise on the Ruby Princess. Since it was a short five day cruise, there wasn't a Most Traveled Guest Party for those 40 passengers with the most days sailed with Princess. Instead we received a letter in our cabin congratulating us for being one of the most traveled and the option to eat one night at Crown Grill, Share, or Salty Dog for free. We've done Salty Dog a couple times before on this ship during past cruises, Crown Grill a bunch of times on several ships across the Princess fleet, but had never ventured into Share. So guess what we chose?

We had our dinner the last night of the cruise when the ship was docked in Victoria, Canada. Since many people were onshore we arrived to an empty restaurant. Nice!

Share was amazing! So much better than I had expected. The multi-course meal (6 courses!), the service, the atmosphere, the flavors, and the view? Oh, yeah.

I think the best way to give you an idea of the food is through pictures. Everything was delicious and the service was excellent. And don't get me started on the tasty bread. Oh. My. Gosh.

Course One: Starter
Charcuterie: ’Nduja is a spicy, spreadable salami that comes from the southernmost Italian region of Calabria. Cured from prosciutto, with prominent chilies and spices. Choice of beef bresaola, duck prosciutto, or fennel-infused finocchiona. (We chose beef bresaola.)
Taleggio Cheese with accompaniments

Course Two: Salad
Tomatoes and Burrata: A variety of local tomatoes paired with oregano oil and dressed fennel leaves 
Asparagus and Radish: Lightly roasted asparagus with arugula pesto, red bell pepper relish and
sourdough croutons

Course Three: Pasta
Ricotta Cavatelli: Roasted sunchokes, pickled beets and a Castelmagno espuma

Pork Ravioli: Green curry filling coated in lemongrass cream, and topped with crunchy chicharrones
 

Course Four: Sea
Lobster Bisque: Quick-seared cold-water lobster tail pieces with Madeira crème fraîche and fennel confit

Prawns “Baja Style”: Jumbo prawns simmered in spicy tomato water, roasted garlic and a black pepper frisée salad 
 

Course Five: Land
Brown Butter Berkshire Pork Chop (for 2): A hard roasted double-bone pork rack, with confit carrots, broccoli purée and a jus of whole grain mustard

Course Five: Dessert
Almond Marzipan: Warm cake paired with strawberry coulis, candied almonds and crème fraîche ice cream

Toffee Cheesecake: With a red wine reduction, homemade raisins and macerated grapes

Here is the menu in case you'd like to see their other offerings. Currently the cover charge is $29 per person.



We will absolutely try Share again. (OK, I've made myself hungry now.)

Want your own chance to try out Share? Did you know I can book your travel at no additional cost to you? As a travel agent I can handle all your travel needs - hotels and resorts, cruises, flights, car rentals, tours, transfers, and more - so you can focus on the trip itself, not the time-consuming planning piece. Click here to contact me and start planning your vacation today!

Friday, July 5, 2019

Foster Friday

If Cupcake would wake up and get off the quilt I'm working on I'm sure she'd be happy today was another Foster Friday.
And Shortstack? I think he's just ready to give someone a hug.
What about Flapjack? How does he feel about Foster Friday? He's a bit too occupied to answer, trying to get in one more feeding with Mama Sienna.
Today Mama Sienna heads back to Simply Cats all by herself. She'll be fixed and available for adoption soon. If you're in the Boise area and looking for the sweetest cat around, Mama Sienna is your girl!

It'll still be a while before the kitties leave me, thank goodness. They are too much fun.