Saturday, October 30, 2010

Vacation knitting

We went on vacation to the wilds of West Virginia last month. I had taken great pains to plan the knitting projects I wanted to bring, but despite the best laid plans, the yarn I'd ordered didn't arrive in time. So, the day before departure found me at my favorite local store, where Maggie kindly hooked me up.

The small, portable car-project were a pair of Dashing fingerless mittens, also known as my first ever cabled project. I love them so much! It only took one skein of Rowan Felted Tweed, so it wasn't very expensive, either.
The second project was a faith-based project for me. That is to say, I had to continue in faith that it was all going to come right in the end. The Baby Surprise Jacket was my first true foray into Elizabeth Zimmerman knitting (very clever lady that combines math with knitting and makes it interesting, unlike 11th grade algebra). No line by line instructions, it was new to me, but fun. The best part is how it goes from a blob like this...

to a cardigan like this...

Hint - it's all in the increases and folding!

So, now Ellie has a sweater of her own that Mommy made. Of course, she's also inherited Abigail's Libby, since Abi accidentally threw it in the dryer! I was horrified for about 10 seconds, then thought, "Oh well, I guess I'll have to knit another one!" So, that's all right, then.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Baby Gnome

Because a kid this cute needs a hat to match

Pattern here.

Monday, October 11, 2010

My Everest

This sweater is finally finished! It has taken so loooong, though there were(somewhat) understandable reasons.
I managed to complete the front, back and sleeves in a couple months. Not great, but not bad. Then, I realized that I didn't have enough yarn to finish the collar and put it together. So I put it aside for a while - you know, ignore it for a while and hope an extra ball of yarn will magically appear?

Yeah, didn't work out so great.

So, after searching a few places (namely my wonderful local store and the nice knitters at ravelry) and finding the yarn had been discontinued, I found one last ball here. Truly, it was meant to be.

The Plymouth Tweed was lovely to work with, very tactile without feeling either fuzzy or slippery.
I think the waiting, searching and more waiting took longer than the actual knitting.

Come winter, though, it will all be worth it. I'm gonna be one warm mama!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

My Kind of Day

'"After all", Anne had said to Marilla once, "I believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens but just those that bring simple little pleasures, following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string."'
~Anne of Avonlea by LM Montgomery

Monday, October 4, 2010

Butternut Squash Soup

Ever wondered what to do with those oddly-shaped and strangely-named butternut squash?
Here's a suggestion:

Photo from Stuart O'Keefe.

Chop 2 onions and saute in 3tbsp butter until soft.

Add half a butternut squash that's been peeled and diced, and 1 apple that's been cored and chopped. Fry for a few minutes.

Take it off the heat and add 3 tbsp flour, 1 tsp curry powder and a pinch of nutmeg. Stir.

Slowly add 750 ml (3/4 pint) of veg/chicken stock, 400ml (almost 1/2 pint) milk & 1/4 cup orange juice. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 20 minutes until everything is tender.
Pour it all in a blender or food processor and blitz until smooth. Add a pinch of sugar and serve, with cream or sour cream, on a rainy day.

Friday, October 1, 2010

A good day

Monday was my birthday. I am now 33 years old. So, in honor of such an occasion, I am prepared to share 10 little known or interesting factoids (I thought about coming up with 33, but I don't think I'm that interesting).
1. I have had more than 50 (cumulative) stitches - so far.
2. I was the first in my family to start training in karate, and the only one not to receive my black belt (I got close, though).
3. I always wanted a big family, though I never had a lot of experience with kids and didn't quite know what to do with them.
4. I have always wanted a home birth, have tried three times for a home birth and have had pretty much every birth experience - except the home birth.
5. My secret occupational dream: disaster search & rescue.
6. I once went through a dyeing-my-hair phase. First, it was jet black, then cherry red. After that, blonde. Over the black, the other colors didn't really take, but as my hair grew out, it created an interesting striped effect that strangers would stop me on the street to ask me about.
7. With another point toward vanity, I have a tattoo on my shoulder of a sunflower. I'd have it removed now, but that (for me) would just be another bit of vanity. And a lot of money.
8. There are only 2 places in the world I'd really like to visit: Montana and Venice, Italy.
9. I have met and photographed Robin Williams. We're pretty tight now. (Okay, the first part is true, but not so much on the second.)
10. Making this list has shown me just how pedestrian I really am, but I'm cool with that.