Sunday, January 12, 2014

Christmas in Seattle 2013

The trip started out with a definitely feeling of Christmas with a lovely sunrise turning to a brisk snowfall!

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These pictures tell the story better than any words. It was a joy and the week went by much too quickly.

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Monday, February 27, 2012

Socks and More Socks

I've been working with more patterned socks - just to broaden my sock drawer repertoire.

This is a pattern called Almondine that I found in the book Sock Knitting Master Class by Amy Budd


The books has lots of great tips for knitting socks and so I was inspired to try coming up with my own sock "design" - really just a mix and match of different elements from other sock patterns.


I call this "Scalloped Peas and Celery." You can't really see the pattern well in the photo, but the top edge is scalloped and the pattern on the leg portion reminded me of celery and peas -- sort of!

I think the design still needs work.

I think I need a better sock model. It's hard to get good pictures without trying to twist your leg in ways that it wasn't meant to twist!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Fast Knitting

It's always fun to find a knitting pattern that not only uses bulky yarn for speeding knitting, but also produces something fun to wear!

I started this project on Feb. 1 and was finished on Feb 4th, knitting just a few hours each evening.

I still need to find a nice big button to finish it off, but it doesn't need it.


I've also recently discovered needlepoint! A guest at our inn happened to be the owner of the Needle Nook in LaJolla, CA and we are now friends on Facebook. (She is also a Wee Forest Folk collector.) I happened to mention once on Facebook that I was curious about needlepoint and the next thing I know my Needle Nook friend is sending me a kit, complete with painted canvas, fibers, scissors, needles, and instruction book!

Here is the completed piece.


I'm going to use is for a small pillow for one of the guest rooms. It was fun and relaxing to work on, but now I'm thinking of creating my own designs and painting my own canvases. The ideas are churning. It was my friend who got me thinking of creating my own designs when she saw my squirrel quilt and suggested that I turn it in a needlepoint pattern.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Knitting and Cooking

Winter is always a great time to experiment with new recipes and knit. Here are pics my latest creations.

I found a recipe for yogurt cake and it was suppose to be wonderfully dense and rich.


The recipe was for a vanilla cake but I added chocolate (cocoa) for National Chocolate Cake day!


They look good and, while it is true that they weren't bad, they were not quite up to the Cupcake Royale standard of excellence!

I'm still experimenting with them, so maybe they still have a chance. I have frozen a bunch of them and will later thaw and ice them. I have discovered with other baked goods that I have made that some time they are better after this treatment. We'll see. A good cream cheese icing might help, too.

On a more savory note, I made a pork shoulder roast. The idea with this pork roast was pulled pork leftovers! It was delicious the first night with the roasted carrots and onions, but it was just a yummy the next couple of nights as pulled pork sandwiches slathered in a smoked applewood BBQ sauce (gluten-free, no less).


There are still more leftovers, so tonight I'll try something different. Maybe a pork lo mein.

I finished another knitting project. This is a mini shawl in yarn that I picked up in Seattle when we were visiting Adina before her wedding.


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Mark's Fog Sweater

Finally finished the sweater that I "gave" to Mark for his birthday/Christmas in 2010. I started it in March of 2010, after a "required" trip to Webs in Northampton, MA for yarn for this project (and others!), and finished it on Dec. 31, 2011 (only a couple days after his birthday).


The pattern was named the "Fog Sweater" by the designer who patterned it after a sweater worn by someone in the movie "The Fog", which was filmed in Mendocino, CA.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Christmas in Seattle

This was a first Christmas in Seattle with Adina and Zeke - and it was wonderful. They are perfect hosts!

Adina had many projects lined up for the week because not only did she have us as house guests, she was also leaving on a weeks vacation to Lake Tahoe, CA on the 26th.

I had fun helping her with some customizations she made to her New Years party dress.


Cookies seemed to be constantly in the works. These are gluten-free oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.


Stockings hung by the chimney with care.


The beautiful Christmas tree.


Gluten-free Moravian Molasses cookies.


The traditional new Christmas socks for 2011!


Hmmm. Santa is skinnier and younger than I remember.


Mark with all his stocking goodies.


Pre-gift opening, just waiting for the word . . .


I think Adina seemed happy with the crepe maker set that we gave her.


Mark with his new Kindle Fire from me. He has already told me that it was a "dangerous" present because he'll get lost in it. Way easy to find and download any book he wants, including ones that are no longer in print.


Nice thermal shirt from MMI.



Adina trying out her comfy new Ugg slippers.



Adina and Zeke gave each other snowshoes, which they were hoping to use in Tahoe.



Love this image. It reminds me of a Kim English painting. Kim is one of the instructors who teach for us and he frequently paints scenes that are through doorways.


We gave Zeke a beer brewing kit, so on Christmas day, Mark took Zeke through the process of brewing his first beer - a gluten-free variety.



Adina and Zeke have the most comfy sofa. I'm cuddled up with my Kindle reading Two Years Before the Mast by Richard Henry Dana.


All-in-all, it was a most delightful holiday and we are looking forward to a repeat. It's just too bad that we missed Parsley!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Pre-Christmas Christmas

Mark's mom is visiting us and so Mark wanted to have a little pre-Christmas Christmas while she was here. So we bought a small live tree, got out a box of ornaments and a single strand of lights, and Mark whipped up a batch of egg nog.

Here is the egg nog. It was super thick and rich.


The tree ready for trimming.


Me ready for trimming.



Our new ornament for the year!