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Burgess Hill, West Sussex, United Kingdom
I love patchwork and quilting; I love learning new techniques and perfecting the old ones, but most of all I enjoy passing on what I have learnt to others. The most important thing is that we all have loads of fun!

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Saturday, 16 June 2012

Italian Quilting Holiday - first few days

We've been here a few days now and have completely settled in. It really feels like home. Our quilting guests arrived just two days ago and already we have done so much.

The ladies were greeted at Rome airport by a very handsome young man called Alessandro who brought them in his Mercedes Minivan, up here to the Villa in the mountains above Spoleto, Umbria.
We had lunch waiting for them, which we ate outside; then came in for 20 mins to escape a short shower; but the sun quickly reappeared.

Pat sat sewing on the sunny balcony, Gill was drawing templates on the shady terrace and Collette was flitting backwards and forwards between the two, doing some design drawings to make a patchwork wall-hanging based on the view from the Villa.

Alistair cooked up some Chicken with Artichokes, Potatoes and Rosemary for dinner which we served with a green salad, followed by Tiramisu.

Thursday, we had a Quilting session from 10:00 until 1:00, when the ladies made further progress with their projects.
Alistair then had our lunch ready – some appetizers left over from the day before, plus some lovely little savoury bready-cheesy-bacony things that you warm up in the oven.
This was followed by gnocchi with wild mushrooms, sage and truffle oil.
After lunch there was more sewing time until about 4:30.
Time for a bike ride (for the energetic amongst us i.e. Alistair!) or a slow walk (for the rest of us) to the top of the hill to look at the view in the other direction.

At 7:30 pm we went to meet up with some other guests and a local man called Luciano, who led us to his house in a convoy of four cars, where his wife Daniella had cooked us a wonderful meal eaten al fresco under the olive trees.

A true Italian meal – it comes in dribs and drabs, so you just get a little bit of everything, but spread over the course of about 3 hours!
All the way through there is a constant supply of wine and water.
To start with: (just a spoonful of each, so you get a taster without getting full up)
Deep fried zucchini flowers with a ricotta filling (I think)
Pizza with prosciutto topping
Carne Misto (a kind of ‘mixed meat’ stew)
Zucchini stuffed with tuna in a tomato sauce
Then fresh, home-made pasta with a simple, but delicious tomato sauce
Followed by:
Pork and prunes
Side Salad (dressed with oil from their own olives)
And chunks of Slow-roasted Lamb
And finally:
And Limoncello
It was 23:45 and the twinkling fire-flies were out competing with the stars by the time we had finished.
Got back to the Villa just after midnight.

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