Wednesday, October 31, 2007

it was a dark and spooky night...

and it is. the wind is blowing; the fog is creeping in; there is a hint of mist in the air; but it is not stopping anyone from getting dressed in their current fantasy and walking the streets! it is always fun to see. my sweet friend was delighted she was able to wear a pink tu-tu and angel wings to school today. and that's what it is all about!

hope you are having fun! happy halloween.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

when birnam wood comes to dunsinane

my sweet friend has been performing in her high school musical the past two weekends. they are performing into the woods, a wonderful but very subtle and smart musical. as refreshment co-chair and makeup help, i have also been to all of the performances as well as the dress rehearsals and there are still things about the play that surprise me. that sondheim is layered!

but i digress. as refreshment co-chair, my main concern is, "are there enough treats to sell?" to that end, i knew we were a little light on treats tonight so offered these: the cupcake version of into the woods. though the design made perfect sense to me, i found myself explaining the squiggly line was the outline of a tree with green sprinkles for the leaves and multi-colored flakes for the trunk. sigh. though the cupcakes may not have been understood, at least they sold out!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

in honor of orange

finally some FO's. i was beginning to think i was in a circle of hell where there was only endless knitting, no finished projects.

the dish cloth is in honor of halloween. out of sugar 'n cream orange on size 7 crystal palace needles. there is a jack o' lantern image that is difficult to see in this picture. coupled with the fact that it is not as cute as i expected. but it will still be a fine dish cloth.

the scarf is a christmas present for a friend who loves orange. this is the misti alpaca chunky, ribs and ruffles scarf in the copper melange colorway. the pattern is free on their site and is a one hank project. i used size 15 needles instead of the 17 called for. the pattern seemed more defined with the 15's. and can i tell you how much i love this yarn. it is so soft and cuddly. delightful to work with. though it may not show, the colorway is a bit heathered so there are various tones to it. and, if one were to devote some serious knitting time, this scarf could be made over a weekend, if not a day. my original thought was to make this up for a couple of friends as christmas presents. then i thought i should really knit from my stash; but now that the scarf is done, i am once again drawn towards using this yarn. time will tell.

on the bread baking front, last sunday's bread was once again courtesy of the tassajara bread book, but i added one of my favorite flours, buckwheat. only a cup of it and the white whole wheat, for fear my sweet friend wouldn't eat it (and she won't) but i love it. didn't have poppy seeds for the top (thought i did), maybe next time.

plus i just received the new bread pan and package of yeast i ordered from king arthur flour. the pan is chicago metallic and supposed to be professional weight like real bakers use. so i will see how it does this sunday and keep you posted.

Monday, October 22, 2007

trick or treat

both the big guy and my sweet friend were/are involved in their high school music program. the big guy was friends/acquaintances with most of these folks for five or six years, some all of his school life; they went to australia, new orleans and new york together as well as rehearsing for seven musicals together (the big guy opted out of the eighth). the kids all know one another, the parents all know one another and the kids and parents all know one anther's kids and parents.

so this evening, one of the moms had us over to make halloween treat boxes to send to our college kids. there were about 18 moms representing 25+ former music kids now in college. each mom was to bring enough of something to put in each kids box, along with a card for their college kid that everyone would sign. i knew it was going to be fun, because this group is fun, but i didn't realize how sweet it would be.

the dining room table was overflowing with treats to stuff into boxes while the living room coffee and end tables were full of card signing mom's. everyone made sure they signed all the cards, even the really former students we may not have known. everyone made sure they caught up with one another and shared stories of how our kids were doing their first few months of college. everyone made sure we checked in with each other to see how we were doing without our kid! it was a truly delightful evening.

i have always believed it takes a village to raise a child, and i am so very grateful for this one.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

i got it today!

i would like to take a walk and i have to make three more headdresses for the spirits in my sweet friends musical that opens this weekend, but i just got my invite to ravelry and i am having such a hard time staying away! i need some tea!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

i need another bread pan...

little did i know that tuesday was world bread day. the sole pupose being to bake some bread. so i offer my simple little post:
World Bread Day '07
sunday bread came from one of my all time favorite bread books, the tassajara bread book. though these loaves were courtesy of the revised and updated version, the original tassajara bread book introduced me to the vast world of bread baking beyond betty crocker. it introduced me to my first sponge and sourdough; it helped me continue my experimentation with various grain(s); and it taught me how to braid six strands of bread dough. i am forever grateful to this simple bread book.

and my sweet friend is grateful i am making white bread. though the majority of the bread is white flour, i have always put a couple of cups of king arthur's white whole wheat into my bread, just to give it a bit of heft and to make myself feel the kids were getting a bit of whole wheat without all the "but i hate whole wheat bread" discussions. i do risk a "MOM!" by putting sesame seeds on top though.

and lest you think this is turning into a food blog, i have been knitting. but i seem to have so many WIP's nothing is getting finished. coupled with the fact that since doing the vvs swap, the number of blogs i read has expanded! i spent this afternoon doing a bit of reading until i came across the breast cancer awareness month dishcloth pattern by vyvyan from knitting in a happy camper. it made me run to my sugar 'n cream stash to make sure i had enough yarn to knit this "reminder" for as many of my women friends as i could. it is a bit quirky and i truly don't mean to offend, but click on over to see if you would like to "remind" someone you know to stay healthy. take care.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

pure simplicity...

many, many years ago, when i still lived with my parents, i baked...a lot. every sunday i would bake a pie. the house favorite was lemon meringue since my father and uncle henry, who lived next door, loved lemon meringue pie.

i also baked bread. which was difficult since this was the era when baking bread was considered buying those pre-packaged bread loaves in the freezer section and the only cookbooks available were those all encompassing cookbooks like settlement or better homes and gardens, etc. until, one christmas, a dear friend gave this book to me. it changed my life. there were actual bread recipes in it, multi grained ones! i was very thankful and excited.

though i was into rye and pumpernickel and oats, the fam could only tolerate white or whole wheat. so, as you can see, the honey whole wheat bread got made A LOT. it was simple, it was good and it made two loaves at a time.

i took the book to college with me and proceeded to make weekly bread for my various roommates. it survived my introduction to the tassajara bread book (first edition, where all the recipes made four loaves of bread at a time; way to much to eat in a week). but it had a difficult time surviving my seduction by sourdough, biga or sponge based breads. and when the kids came along, the big guy was only willing to eat sourdough type breads, so that is what i baked.

but today, while wandering thorough the local hardware store, i came across these.

which reminded me of how a friend of mine used something similar to sprinkle flour onto her work surface while making pizza dough, which got me thinking about making bread; which got me thinking about how i couldn't make bread because i would only get half way through a sourdough, biga or sponge recipe today.

until i remembered the honey whole wheat recipe. my sweet friend eats whole wheat bread with her turkey sandwiches (though she wasn't fond of the sesame seeds). my cute husband will eat any home made bread, and i need something for lunch. plus i got to use the new "salt" shaker that is filled with flour to sprinkle my work surface with. quite the lovely evening.

Friday, October 05, 2007

recognizing right from wrong

i have been knitting the leg of my cute husband's sock for quite some time now. so i was pretty excited when i took the measurement that told me it was time for the heel turn.

off i knit, feeling comfortable with the measurement and having no problems with the pattern, when, eleven rows into it, i realized, the purl side of the heel turn was on the knit side of the sock! and vice versa. isn't it supposed to be knit side of the heel turn on knit side of the sock...and vice versa? yes, i believe so. so what the heck happened? am i sure about this? let me look at this again. check it again!

and so i did. and i was pretty sure my assumption was correct, but not exactly sure where i went wrong.

so i started to unknit. and unknit. and unknit. i won't even discuss the transition on my cp circular needles and how i am feeling about them right now. let's suffice it to say these may be the only socks these needles will ever knit!

after much yarn tussling, i got back to where the heel turn started and read the instructions 88 stitches - ok; work in k2p2 rib - did that; knit leg to length desired - did that; starting with ws row, TURN work before first row - did that...didn't i? i mean, i uhhh, used a different needle. but...let's re look at the... ummmm, ..... OH! that's what the directions meant! no! no, in fact i didn't, i didn't turn the work. oh nuts! ok, so let me turn the work and give it another try.

and off i knit, take two. and this time it all works. the knit side of the heel turn is on the knit side of the sock...and vice versa. and it looks soooo much nicer. and my camera isn't embarrassed to take the picture. and i am thankful i caught this mistake on row 11 and not row 44!