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Road to Wichita Falls
by Ricky Tims

When it started quilting, dyeing fabric was not part of my experience. Like most quilters, I began hoarding fabric… er… building my collection, and I tended towards bright colors, jewel tones, and large-scale prints. I remember seeing a show-n-tell quilt at a guild meeting that the maker called Road to St. Louis. The pattern was sixteen patches alternating with hourglass blocks (quarter-square triangles). I liked it so much I wanted to try it—but… as always… I had to shake it up a bit. 
If you look at this quilt you’ll see it is indeed basically two blocks. The trick was that I altered the hourglass block in places and changed the colors to give a big impact to the overall design. That’s one of my magic tricks…doing something simple, but making it look more complex.
FUN FACT: I was living in St. Louis at the time, and my hometown is Wichita Falls, TX. As a point of interest, Interstate 44 starts in Wichita Falls, TX, and ends in St. Louis. Therefore, the "Road to St. Louis" is also the "Road To Wichita Falls”.
This is a fun pattern which I named On The Road Again. It's easy to make, and you can make a few extra blocks to make a bigger quilt if you wish. Maybe this one is for you. I hope you have fun.
Get the pattern here.


Choose your own difficulty. Click the 9-patch grid to change number of pieces. Click the circle arrow to make the puzzle pieces rotating instead of stable orientation. Also, there are tips under the "?" on the upper right of the puzzle. If you'd like a full screen version, click the button below. Have fun!




Ricky's Birthday Cake or Cheesecake
by Hugo Dos Santos

I wanted to bake one of the things that Rick's like.

Did you know that Ricky loves Baby Ruth? (...and Snickers, and Butterfinger, and Reese's Cups)

This Cheesecake is very simple and you can change Baby Ruth for another chocolate.

I know that cheesecake it's one of favorite desserts in America, so I wanted to combine cheesecake with Baby Ruth.

It's so delicious!

Tip: You can always freeze the cheesecake.

Ingredients for Cheesecake Filling:

  • 2 cups cream cheese, softened
  • 1 - 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp. malted milk powder
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cups Baby Ruth pieces


  • 1-1/2 cup salted caramel cookies, for crumbs
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted, warm


  • 1 cup chocolate sauce, RTU
  • 1 cup caramel sauce, RTU
  • 2 tbsp. malted milk powder
  • 2 cups Baby Ruth pieces


In a food processor, blend salted caramel cookies, sugar and melted butter to a fine grain. Press crumb mixture into a 12” spring-form pan sprayed with food release spray. In a mixer and using a paddle, mix the cream cheese, evaporated milk, vanilla, and malted milk powder on medium-high until there are no lumps. Switch to low speed and mix in the fresh lemon juice and mix until smooth. Pour mixture into form and place in the refrigerate overnight until the cheesecake is firmly set. Carefully run a sharp knife tip around the sides of the cake pan to unmold the cheesecake. Warm chocolate and caramel sauces in a small pan to 100oF and add malted milk powder, stirring until smooth and shiny. Tightly place the mini cream puffs in concentric circles, covering the face of the cake. Top with the Baby Ruth® Pieces and drizzle a thin layer of chocolate caramel sauce evenly over the top of the cake.







Photos of the Week - Week 8

Critique Group Challenge: 

Week 8, Time

Photo by Clark Poppleton

Click to view larger image 

Clark says:

We have been taught that TIME is linear and never changes. But we all know that the perception of time is a different story. That is evident by a few of the phrases we’ve grown up with such as “Time flies when you’re having fun” and “A watched pot never boils”.

Recently I acquired a Lens Ball so I thought I’d see what fun perception effects I could come up with using it. I’ve lost count of how many images I captured. Funny that we depend on the auto focus so much, yet with the Lens Ball, I found that you can’t. You must look THROUGH the Lens Ball, and focus on the image in the ball, which meant manual focus. I was also using a handheld light source that only highlighted parts of the image because I didn’t want the light to reflect off the surface of the Lens Ball. Moving the light source around like I did, also meant changing the shutter speed from 1/60 of a second into a 10 second exposure.

Well, time was distorted when a 1/60 of a second exposure took me two hours to get something I was satisfied with.


52-Week Photo Challenge Class
Week 8 - Mirror


Week 52 Photo Challenge:

Week 8, Mirror

Photo by Marci Stokke

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Marci says:

Originally a large painting displayed at a very fun nursery in TriCities WA. Cropped to the most interesting swirals, mirrored and there he was, staring at me. Love the color mix and original design; love the outcome. Wish I was this talented! I enjoyed mirroring several images but liked this outcome the best.


Smart Phone Photo Challenges
Week 8 - Liquid

Smart Phone Challenge:

Week 8, Liquid

Photo by  Carol Huston Lindow

Click to view larger image.


Ricky's Challenge Photos

Smart Phone Challenge:

Week 8, Liquid

Photo by Ricky Tims

Click to view larger image.

Ricky says:

Bubbles come from liquid. Right? I blew some bubbles in a blue bowl. This was then edited in Picasso. I enhanced the saturation.


Critique Group Challenge:

Week 8, Time

Photo by Ricky Tims
from the 2021 Critique Group

Click to view larger image.

Ricky says:

Recently my first year class learned mirror image and I decided to have some fun with an antique clock face in my studio in a montage with one of my raven quilts by Judy Alborn, the pocket watch indicates it is almost midnight - time is running out. I then duplicated the project and in Topaz added a filter - but then back in Photoshop I erased some of that layer so the magic drifted in an out rather than being one static filter over the entier image.






Click on quilt for full view.

Bending Tree by Ricky Tims  

My dear friend Libby Lehman (prior to her stroke in 2013) was known for a wonderful appliqué technique. She called it Pot Luck, but she also explained it as being a sort of “excavated” appliqué…meaning that the pieces were not applied on top of the background, but rather they were applied under the background and then the background was cut away, exposing the fabric underneath. These fabric pieces were not shapes, like leaves, or hearts, or flowers, but rather, they were simply odd-shaped pieces of fabric. The cut away of the top layer is what created the shape. The layers have a single stitch holding them together, and then the edges are stitched with a lovely machine stitch to create the amazing and beautiful result.
Bending Tree is made using Libby’s method and the pattern is meant to be a symbol of faith. The message is… bend, don’t break. Life can present plenty of challenges, but we must withstand the storm. My thoughts at this time are with my friends in Ukraine and I pray they they will withstand the attacks, and most importantly, retain their fighting spirit. 
What is happening in your world…or with someone you know… who might just need this small wall quilt as a visual reminded to ‘hang in there’? Hey, you might learn a new fun appliqué technique too!


Pattern - $24.98


Choose your own difficulty. Click the 9-patch grid to change number of pieces. Click the circle arrow to make the puzzle pieces rotating instead of stable orientation. Also, there are tips under the "?" on the upper right of the puzzle. If you'd like a full screen version, click the button below. Have fun!




Hugo Strikes again...
by Hugo Dos Santos

I am a big fan of coffee!

I like coffee without sugar, like many wine aficionados and quilt addicts, I must admit that coffee is one of my passions. I LOVE coffee  (don't tell Ricky).

I also love sweets...Who doesn't? So I searched for a recipe that combined sugar and coffee.

This cake is a perfect combination and has a lot of flavors.

This recipe's so easy to do, I saying that because most of you don't live on the mountain where high elevation baking is challenging.

Have fun!


Serves 6-8 people / Prep time: 30min    / Total time: 1h and 15min 


Flour | 4 cups

Sugar | 1 cup

Brown Sugar | 1 cup

6 eggs |

Cinnamon | 1 tsp

Milk | 2 cups

Shopped Pecan | 2 cup

Coffee (brewed, liquid) | 1/2 cup

Baking Soda | 1 tsp

Baking powder | 1 tsp

Melted butter| 4 oz


Cream Cheese Icing

Cream cheese | 8 oz

Powdered sugar sifted | 1 cup

Coffee | 10 tsp


  1. In a bowl, mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon
  2. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, sugar, and melted butter.
  3. Add half of the flour mixture, add the coffee and the milk and add the rest of the flour mixture.
  4. Fill greased bundt cake pan evenly with batter. Bake at 375˚ for 40-45 minutes until a cake tester come out clean.
  5. While the cake is cooling, beat together the icing ingredients until smooth. Fill a Ziploc bag with the icing (cut a tiny hole in one corner) and decorate the cake, or you can decorate using a fork.





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