Monday, June 22, 2009

Butterflies and Birthdays

I'm not quite sure how it happened since it's all a blur but two days ago I had a three year old and now I have a four year old! This required not just one, but two cakes. The tier of cupcakes (designed by ds in the red tshirt) was for the party with her friends (finger foods - no forks required).
What's fun is how excited she is about everything - she asked for a big pillow, a new comforter, sheets and an armoir for her Build-a-Bear. Hmmm, does she have a future as a decorator?
Prior to the celebrations, I got to use my blocking wires again for Knitty's Flit and Float. I love this pattern - it's much fun and so pretty (except that it rolls into the middle). I think if I did it again, I would make it twice as wide. It would be a gorgeous stole. The design is butterflies - perfect for Spring.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Teenagers and Loud music

You are lucky that this site doesn't come with volume. The teenagers are out of school and they're home. That means loud, obnoxious music! I sound like my parents! Aarrgghh! It's not just the music, it's the singing that goes with the music. Still, better to have them here than hanging around somewhere else getting in trouble, right?

Quick, does anyone have a pattern for knitted ear plugs?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Join me in the Happy Dance

(Make sure to check out the contest in the post below if you haven't already!)

I have finally arrived at the end of a long, long, long journey that proves if you keep moving you will get there eventually even if there are several setbacks along the way. I think I spent as much time unknitting this as I did knitting it!

I started it well over a year ago. It was a Secret of the Stole - clues and rows revealed weekly. Somehow, I fell behind - way behind. When everyone else was wrapping themselves up in their lacy beauty to go off to New Year's Eve parties, I was still struggling along - knitting and then unknitting trying to follow the complicated pattern.

Part of the problem was tha I kept getting side tracked by other, simpler projects that I could actually get done in days or weeks, not months or years.

I kept at it, however, sometimes knitting just two rows at a time (one complicated, one straight purl) I thought for sure I'd have it for last New Year's Eve - but no.

I learned so much from this project - like how to read a chart, how to read my knittng and how to correct knitting several rows back. Now I'm going to have to learn how to close up a hole - the one I made months ago during one of those frogging sessions! I found it when I was blocking - actually when I was taking pictures to post. The best I can figure is that it was a failed k2tog or ssk. I think fixing it will involve some sort of duplicating stitch. Well, at least it should be done by this coming New Year's Eve!
It's blocking on a set of my children's foam blocks. How convenient that they just recently dragged them up from the basement to play with!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A riddle and a contest

I have a riddle for all you clever, creative folks (put your funny on):

How many seam rippers/needle guages/row counters does one crafter have to buy before actually having one when needed!?

On June 24th (my birthday) I will randomly pick the name of someone who answers the question. The prize - your choice of a seam ripper, needle guage or row counter (plus a few surprises on the side)

This is my very first contest so please send your friends over so I won't feel like the school yard geek who no one will play with!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

what I would have bought

A few posts back, I mentioned a site called where you can send an email to yourself to be delivered in the future. I lamented that you can't send one to your past self like this - buy three skeins of the Cascade 200 in green and a few in pink and blue while it's on sale. No, I had no way of knowing then that I might discover a pattern for what is quite possibly the cutest crocodile ever on the Twist Collective!
Perhaps I could send an email to future me - if you find Cascade 220 on sale - remember the crocodile pattern.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Never buy store made pasta salad again

I had obligated myself to bringing pasta salad to the aforementined birthday party. DH kindly said I should give myself a break and just buy it. The selection at the deli counter, however, was so, well, icky is the only word to describe it. One was too globby, one looked just paltry and another was dried out. There wasn't one I wanted to eat let alone serve anyone else! I was stuck in the store with no recipe just hours before the party so I decided to wing it. What should cooking be if not an adventure? I love what I came up with so much that I want to share it. It's more of a formula than a recipe. It should be easy enough for anyone to remember. It's flexible enough that forgetting an ingredient or two won't matter.

Basically it's this: salad dressing, pasta and some veggies. Make it fancier with mozerella cheese, shrimp or cooked chicken.

The one MUST is pasta! I used corkscrew pasta, although I think any of a number of others would be fine.

Next a couple of bottles of really good salad dressing - I used an Italian Vinegrette, Ceaser and Ranch. At home, I combined them in a bowl - I started out with 1/4 cup each and added a little more of my favorite (the Ranch) until it tasted right. I also added 2 tablespoons of mayonaise, which mellowed the flavor quite a bit. I might have added more, but I ran out.

I found that I about a cup of sauce per pound of pasta. You could use more or less depending on how saucy you like it.

Then I added:
Cherry tomatoes cut in half
Cucumbers sliced small
One can of chopped black olives

Toss the sauce and the veggies with the pasta and 1/4 to 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese.

Optional ingredients:

Mozzeralla cheese (cubed would be best but shredded works)
Red onion
shrimp or cooked chicken