Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Yesterday we (my mom, dad and I) had to put down our dear old dog Buster. Buster Tea Bear Junior, if you please. Buster had an exceptionally large tumor on his spleen causing massive internal blood loss. He had 10% of the normal red blood cells. He could barely walk and was having significant trouble catching his breath. We took him in to the vet on Monday when he stopped eating and found out on Friday about his blood work and he was in the hospital on Saturday for x-rays then back to us Sunday and Monday for goodbyes.
I can't really talk about it any more than that. It was so so so hard and I have been very very sad for several days. I haven't knit a stitch or looked at my sewing machine and can barely get a pan to the stove. Hopefully I'll snap out of this in a day or two... or a week... whatever. I'm going to go get some lunch now and try to think about happy things.
Thursday, September 6, 2007
1 lb catfish, cut into 1" strips
2 cups buttermilk
1 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
1 tsp chili powder
2 tsp Horseradish
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp dijon mustard
Place all ingredients in a plastic zipper bag and squish around to combine, then add catfish and throw in the fridge for an hour or so
Using another zippered plastic bag, combine 1cup breadcrumbs 1/2 cup corn meal and 1 tbsp kosher salt, and mix to combine.
Add the catfish to the breading mixture, and just like shake n bake, shake it up to coat.
Heat 1-2 tbsp vegetable oil in a heavy skillet and add fish, don't crowd the pan. Cook for 3-4 minutes on each side and then place on a rack to cool and drain off excess oil. Serve with potatoes and ceasar salad, make extra.
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
That picture is from Fashion Fabrics Club and the call it "Dark Taupe" which is as descriptive a name for this particular color as any, I suppose.
My question, if you purchase a dress, or suit or jacket in this color... what shoes would you wear? Surely not black, as Taupe is in the "brown" family... and despite what some people say, I still believe there are rules about such things. But a real chocolate brown? No... that would never do.
What do you, oh wonderfully fashionable person reading this blog, think? The only thing I can think of is maybe gold? But that's a little... loud for everyday wear. Red might work if you had something else that was red in the outfit, like a belt or scarf.
Do chime in.
Friday, August 31, 2007
I'm very excited to be teaching the goodness. It was easier than I thought, I never thought I could teach someone to knit since I knit right to left (mirror knitting, for obstinate lefties) but as I showed her how to make a stitch I just reminded her that she would be using opposite hands and she did fine.
Some links that have entertained me:
Paris wants to reproduce, run and hide! (Details in October's Elle)
A rant about kids today and their flip-flops which I enjoyed
I want to make this dress... despite the knowledge, deep in my heart, that it would look like barf on me. Somebody shake some sense into me (Starting with "Alexis, you are neither 6 feet tall nor willowy, so stop it right now!" would probably help.)
Thursday, August 30, 2007
(you can't actually search inside, I just hotlinked from amazon... they make a lot of money, it's okay, don't worry about their servers)
And this is the other one:
Both of these books were on my Amazon.com wishlist, however, being the dork that I am I forgot that and I cooed over my gifts "oh my God! How did you know I wanted that one? I've been thinking of buying it myself!" my friend proceeded to roll their eyes and then it occured to me "oh... these were on my wishlist huh?" and we had a hardy laugh.
The moral of the story is, if you get me something from my wishlist because you aren't sure what to get me, then I'll just think you're very very clever and not realize that you are simply sneaky. Keep that in mind friends.
I would also like to send a big shout out to Mia for sending me a box of goodies! I was very remiss in thanking her earlier, because I am simply a bad interwebs friend. She sent me some really lovely ribbon yarn from her stash, as well as this very neat papery yarn and a couple other skeins that I think shall be quite useful for the CHRISTMAS KNITTING (which I am naturally pretending isn't there). Thanks Mia!
I also long-ago received my Sockapalooza socks but I haven't photo-ed them yet (I have worn them though) Weebug Knits sent me a terriffic pair of, I believe Trekking socks, along with some bath goodies, a couple great skeins of alpaca yarn, and a kit for a dishcloth, and other goodies that escape me at the moment. So much thanks! (P.S. that whole me thinking you were Midgeling thing... sorry!)
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Nothing to report knitting or sewing. I haven't felt well enough to hunch over a sewing machine (perhaps I should not hunch...) and my knitting continues as discussed, I am finishing the gusset of my second pair of Bearfoot socks and working on MS3, which looks far to much like yarn puke to photograph.
Tomorrow I take an Intro to Embroidery class at Twisted. I will be embroidering a tea towel with a pattern from Sublime Stitching the theme is "Swanky decor" which goes just great with my midcentury kitchen. I'll see if I can't capture some images of my embroidery efforts.
On to my query, when I make dinner for Joel and I to share I always plate our food on our two plates and bring the plates, sans extra servings to the table, either indoors or out, which has already been set with napkins and silverware.
This weekend I hosted a wee brunch for my friends and I set the table with plates and brough the food in serving trays to the table for everyone to dish as pleased them. I'm not sure why I did it differently, perhaps four people is my threshold for plate dishing? Maybe since I can easily carry two full plates to the table but must make two trips for four this seemed like the right way of doing things?
What say you? do you plate or do you bring food to the table? I suspect that especially with children it is wise to just fill your own plate, since they can be so picky and also hungry. Plus asking for things to be passed and the act of passing helps teach good manners doesn't it?
I'm curious, do respond.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
*note: Yesterday, when I was bitching to my mother on the phone she said "so what are you going to have for dinner? I mean besides a kitten"
I replied "F*** kittens, I hate kittens" that was the kind of day I had.
We will take part in what a counselor I once had called a B.S. sandwich... *good thing, bad thing good thing repeat from *
1) I have made marvelous progress on my latest pair of socks.
Pattern: Plain stockinette with a German Heel (from Knitting Vintage Socks... Nancy Bush... natch) and a round toe (same).
Yarn: Mountain Colors Bearfoot in "Mountain Tango" this yarn is so amazingly beautiful... every time I pick it up I'm just giddy to see what the next color will be. I love you yarn.
Progress: Just about to turn the heel on the second sock
2) The reason I have been so prolific... having just started these two weeks ago (besides that they are easy, and the yarn is a bit thick, worked with only 60 stitches) is that I was in a car accident last week and my car was totalled. I am now taking the bus.
Due to a variety of economic and environmental circumstances, I will not be getting a new car. Besides, no car could ever be what Doris the Taurus was to me.
I have been quite childish about the matter. Yesterday I said that I did not want to take the bus and my boyfriend, being ever so f---ing level headed responded "so ride your bike" to which I retorted "No! I don't wanna ride my bike, I want to drive Doris" and then I folded my arms over my chest and proceeded to pout. Because I am now 25 years old and it is well past time for me to act in such a dignified manner, don't you agree?
3) I have something mysterious and wonderful on the horizon which I cannot talk about. I'll give you a hint though...
It has nothing to do with knitting, but if it happens the way I'd like, then it would be totally awesome if I finished my MS3 before it begins. Here's some random person's finished Mystery Stole:
Mine will be in black... and is coming along famously thank you. No... I cannot recall right now how far along I am. Thanks for asking
(Thanks to Quietknitter for letting me swipe your really wonderful picture *kisses*)
I would like to leave you with a quote from "Miss Manners Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behavior"
DEAR MISS MANNERS:
Who says there is a "right" way of doing things and a "wrong"?
Miss Manners does, you want to make something of it?
Thursday, July 26, 2007
And this one that I will not knit, but I like to look at anyway:
I believe that knit dresses should be approached with caution. As with knit skirts. Not that they cannot be cute or flattering, but odds are that you should probably say no if the urge strikes you to knit a dress. In case you're about to say "but _____ is really cute" I will remind you that knit dresses are, in fact, sweater dresses (usually) We all remember that time don't we? Does anyone really want to return to the era of the sweater dress? Don't answer that.
Okay... that's my knitting pr0n for today. Y'all come back now, y'hear?
Here's the rules:
You go to Wikipedia and type in your birthday month and day only. Then post 3 events, 2 births and one holiday that occurred on your birthday, then tag 5 friends.
293 BC The oldest known Roman temple to Venus was founded.
1920 AD The 19th ammendment was ratified
1958 Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita was published in the United States
1774 Meriwether Lewis
1904 Max Factor
Buhe (Ethipian orthodox)
I'm not tagging anyone, but I do hope if you participate you'll leave me a comment so I can go see :)
Wednesday, July 25, 2007
Aha... Caught one!
Name: Sockapalooooza sock
Pattern: Kinda sorta Dublin Bay by Ryan Morrissey
Yarn: Lisa Souza Sock! in What A Melon
Needles: Crystal Palace DPNs size 1
Mods: Well... I didn't really follow the pattern at all... I just kind of looked at the picture and thought "hey... I can knit that" and so I did. The heel is slip stitch, the toe is the "French Toe" from Nancy Bush's Knitting Vintage Socks
We'll see what else I can hunt down in the wilds of my craft room tomorrow.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
It makes my brain tingle with the possibilities. It's a small quick read based on an article from Wired by the same name.
Maybe I'll get some knitting content soon... maybe not... I guess you'll have to wait and see. Is the suspense killing you? I thought so.
Monday, July 23, 2007
1 head chopped broccoli - blanched
Thursday, July 5, 2007
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
Goodwill has an auction site. Did you know this? It's spectacular, much better deals than EBay (IMO) at least in my short perusing time. See I'm looking fora cast iron skillet. I had not yet been able to find one actually at the goodwills near me, so when searching the web (not working) I found the Goodwill Auction site.
It is a lot like a Goodwill store... there's no real search feature although items are categorized and sorted by auction end time, but you really have to "dig" to find stuff. There is yarn there peeps... among other crafty supplies.
I now have 4 bids and a bunch of watched items... I really need to put it away before I get crazy :)
The only downside is the shipping on larger items. Like this 68 piece dinnerware set currently going for $11 but weighs 82 pounds total. Too much to ship, unless you live in St Paul and can pick it up... that'd be awesome!
Anyways, go, have fun, waste time. Remember it's reduce REUSE then recycle.
P.S. I watched a great movie last night "Her Highness and the Bell Boy" 1945, Hedy Lamarr and June Allyson. if you like old movies you should watch it, it's adorable.
Monday, June 11, 2007
I cast on for a practice run of what will be matching mittens for myself and two of my best friends as Christmas gifts (Yes, I'm starting Christmas knitting in June... on December 22 when I have everything done and wrapped and you're trying to build a time stretcher... we'll see who's laughing).
The knitted item is the Pirate Mittens from Hello Yarn. I'm making them with Knit Picks Telemark in Snow Leopard (background) and Aubergine (skulls). Thank god these are not on sale now because I would have just died. Although it's not like they use a lot of yarn so maybe I just shouldn't be such a cheapskate.
When I bought the yarn I thought the Snow Leopard was more blue than gray. I was wrong. It's a lovely pale gray... quite reminiscent of the sky at this moment (because you can all see my sky) It's a lovely color, but paired with the aubergine that make the mittens maroon and gray... my high school colors (Franklin Quakers!).
But the big news about these mittens is that they're my first stranded knitting project! Hurray! I have all but finished the first one (had to rip out the thumb... it was bad). They went super fast and I think I may be hooked on stranded colorwork... super happy fun time. They look great (IMHO of course)
I have so much stuff to take pictures of and upload, but I swear I'll do it... eventually. I did join a new knitalong yesterday. The "Mystery Stole 3" run by Melanie of Pink Lemon Twist. If you're interested check out her blog and then sign up on the Yahoo Group... signups close July 6 so HURRY.
P.S. boy is taking his LSATs today, right this second as a matter of fact, wish him luck. :)
Monday, June 4, 2007
1) Mommy & Girl got me from pet store when I was a baby 10 years ago. They say they wouldn't get another pet store dog because of all my health problems, but they still love me lot's which is nice because I get really sick sometimes and mom says stuff about $300 trips to the vet. I don't know what that means but she doesn't sound happy about it.
2) Some of my health problems include chronic ear infections, a torn knee (they fixed that but then mommy was yelling about $1200 for a stupid knee), fatty deposits, and last year I had a hematoma (I don't know what that is but it hurt) in my ear and had to have surgery and then I shook my head too much 'cause it was itchy and I tore the stitches.
3) I like going to the vet because they give me treats and tell me how pretty I am. Some dogs (I hear) don't like the vet. They must not be very pretty.
4) I like to be petted more than anything. People like to pet me, but sometimes they forget that they can, so I put my head under their hand to remind them that it's okay to pet me.
5) Sometimes we go to the beach and I think that's awesome. I can run in Tide Pools (Girl yells stuff about delicate ecosystems... whatever that is) and roll in dead things. I think dead things are the greatest thing to roll in. After we go to the beach I get really itchy though and I need a bath.
6) I liked it a lot when girl lived here because she would spend all day Sunday making special food for me because of all my allergies. She'd roast chicken and yams and green beans and turnips and carrots like my vet told her and I'd eat that all week. YUM! But girl doesn't live here anymore and mom is too busy to cook for us so now I eat prescription dog food from the vet. It's good... but I liked girl's food better.
7) Katz R Dum.
1) My people adopted me from the Golden Retriever Rescue in Utah when I was 7 (2002 I'm told) The rescue place was okay, because it was on a farm, but I really liked coming to a forever home.
2) I am not a dog. I'm a rare wolf/bear hybrid and I'm very dangerous. My people think I'm a golden retriever. They're really stupid and don't even know what a wolf/bear hybrid looks like (they look like me). I was born in the wild and captured and raised like a dog.
3) When I lived in the wild I ate bacon a lot from the bacon bush. I tell my people this all the time and that they should give me bacon because it's my natural food but they don't listen to me.
4) I don't like children. I'll growl at them and might even try to nip them. Children make me really grumpy. The people keep children away from me and that's the way I like it. Children are stupid.
5) Sometimes I get grumpy if people get too close to my face and I'll growl. No one's really scared which pisses me off because they don't even know that I could tear their throat out (since I'm a wolf/bear hybrid).
6) My favorite thing to do is nap on the couch with my dad.
7) I think puppies are stupid.
As you can see Aspen & Buster are two pretty special dogs. Buster does have a bit of an attitude problem, but he's old so we let him get away with it.
Friday was Grandma's service in Newport and it was beautiful. I didn't think I would cry because I had already done so much crying and I had been to the viewing earlier and cried a lot then and I was really just feeling unemotional. Then one of the hymns was "On Eagles' Wings" and I started bawling like a little baby (when you get to "take you to the breath of dawn"). Stupid songs.
Joel and I drove home late that night. I was a little tipsy from dinner so I slept some of the way. Saturday I went to the Portland Farmer's Market at PSU where I purchased some tasty sweet sugar snap peas, new carrots, asparagus, and some delicious Hood strawberries. They're a little tart so I think I'm going to mix them with pineapple for some pineapple-strawberry muffins. yummy! Saturday night I julienned the carrots and tossed them with the sugar snap peas with olive oil, blasamic, salt/pepper and crushed red pepper flakes. It was delish.
But the best part was the salad bowl. A large pot with six varieties of lettuce, I can't remember them all right now, but there was two types of romaine, two red leaf, Butter lettuce and regular Green Leaf. I set it in the full sun of our back porch and can't wait to have some tasty garden fresh salads.
Sunday I baked Banana Bread Muffins (using Alton Brown's recipe in I'm Just Here for More Food) and laid around the house like a bump on a log. It was great.
Now here I am back at work, back in the groove. I rode my bike again today and as usual it was great. I think this Friday I'll take some pictures on my way in so you can all see what I mean. 5 of my 7 mile ride to work are on a bike trail along the river, I see all sorts of herons and ducks and geese and stuff.
Anyways, that's all, I hope everyone had a great weekend. See ya tomorrow.
Sunday, May 27, 2007
She is survived by her sister Imogene, daughter & son-in-law Barbara & Kerry, son Don, grandaughter Alexis and grandson Jason.
Saturday, May 26, 2007
I'm just happy that all my belly-aching paid off this time. The funny thing is that I don't think I even mentioned to Joel how much I wanted one. I may have said something in passing but as he doesn't really understand my drive to craft and create, I usually don't tell him stuff like that.
Maybe I was just sending "get me a sewing machine" vibes into the universe... it's The Secret! It works! hehe
In honor of this being my 50th post I decided that what I really needed was a kitten heel red patent leather shoe. How else do you celebrate 50 posts I ask you? So I went to target.com and purchased this:
psst... click on the picture to get yourself a pair
Okay so I didn't really buy them because of 50 posts... but it sounded good right? I bought them because they remind me of my grandma (grandma loves red shoes) and I thought they'd look nice with my navy dress... even if red shoes are played out.
I will do something in honor of the 50th post though... I'll have a CONTEST.
Friday, May 25, 2007
I also bought some Cider Moon yarn from Sheri @ The Loopy Ewe. It's Icicle - Taos, but it's all gone now, haha.
And some of the Lane Borgosesia laceweight (also from Sheri) in Black... to make a shawl to go with my dress to wear to Carmen this fall. maybe I should start that once it arrives huh? I'm still debating what pattern... more on that later.
So after I spent $50 at Sheri's I strolled on over to Knit Picks where I purchased 6 skeins of Telemark (3 Snow Leopard and 3 Aubergine) to make 3 pairs of of Pirate Mittens (arrgh!) for myself and my 2 homegirls. Rather than putting the year I will put "Lex" "Sha" and "Jess" on the palm of everyone's respective mittens. Clearly this yarn does not count since it was purchased for gift making.
Ditto for the 11 skeins of Wool of The Andes (Grass and Chestnut) purchased for felted clog making (a pair for my mom and a pair for Joel... say it with me now *awww*) I was going to do a contrasting sole on them, but then I decided to put leather soles on.
Then I bought Victorian Lace Today from which I hope to find a shawl to make for Carmen.
Thursday, May 24, 2007
The sweater... not the girl. The girl looks like she's on drugs and doesn't brush her hair. I have no idea who that person is. I assure you that *I* do not look like I'm on drugs, I have a charming rather than creepy smile and I do brush my hair.
Here's a better view of the pattern on the sleeve.
Pattern: Phoebe Pullover from knitpicks.com (based on Elizabeth Zimmerman's percentage saddle shoulder sweater)
Start/End: 2/15/2007 - 5/18/2007
Yarn: Knit Picks Wool of The Andes. 11 balls (not 12, definitely not 13!)
Size: 40" around and 26" from top of shoulder to bottom of ribbing
Needles: size 6 KnitPicks DPN's on sleeves size 6 36" AddiTurbo Circular on body
Mods: I decided not to do the mesh pattern on the shoulders and instead just do the straight lines of twisted stitches. I decided to do this because it is more aesthetically pleasing. It has nothing to do with it being really hard to do the mesh pattern on the wrong side while doing the saddle shoulders. Nothing at all. How dare you even suggest it. Otherwise, that's it.
I feel victorious. I must return to family obligations now... but I just wanted you all to know that I made the greatest sweater ever.
Tuesday, May 22, 2007
Blocked her on Saturday
Wore her on Sunday
Plus I took pictures!
But I haven't gotten them off my camera yet. Joel said that she makes me eyes look "really pretty" So that's nice.
Blogging will be intermittant at best this week. My grandmother is very sick. I'm spending most of my free time with her while I can. (This is not free time... I'm supposed to be working)
I'll get back to all you peeps later.
Friday, May 18, 2007
1) By the time I graduated high school I had attended 7 schools in 4 districts (Yaquina View, North Clackamas, Newport Middle, Sunnyside, Sunrise, Kellogg, Franklin)
2)I had also lived in 11 unique residences in 3 cities (Newport OR, Clackamas OR, Portland OR) if people ask me where I'm from I usually say Portland and don't go into it. I'm not sure why.
3) Today I rode my bike to work for the first time, it was fun. 7.16 miles, most of which was on a scenic path along the river. A good time... good time.
4) I recently moved in with my boyfriend of 3+ years... so far it's working out pretty well, I haven't killed him yet, so that's a positive ;-)
5) I have a three-way tie for my all time favorite movies: Casablanca, The Godfather, and Office Space.
6) I love to cook, even if it's just Mac & Cheese (not from a box, of course). But I have difficulty following a recipe. I am not always a good cook.
7) I don't have a favorite book, I love them all unconditionally, if pressed I will usually say White Oleander by Janet Finch. You should read it for sure.
I'm not going to tag anyone, but if you haven't done this, you should. And then throw me a comment so I can see who actually listens to what I say (if it's no one, I'll be sad, but I'll probably find a way to move on)
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Monday, May 14, 2007
The opera Joel & I went to this weekend was The Magic Flute by Mozart (sung in German, with spoken word in English)
The role of "Queen of the Night" was played by Mari Moriya and she sang with such beauty and clarity and strength that her arias have been haunting me all weekend and all day. Especially Der Holle Rache Kocht in Meinem Herzen (Hell's Vengeance Boils in my Heart). I would really strongly encourage you to go to the bottom of the Wikipedia page and listen to a rendition of it. Even if you do not follow or care for opera you'll recognize the tune and I think anyone can appreciate the difficulty of the notes the soprano must hit in this number.
Listen, enjoy, please.
In other news... I need a sewing machine :(
I know in a previous post I mentioned getting one from Craigslist for a good deal. Well when I went to get it the "owner" was clearly a meth addict with a house stuffed full of things (most likely not entirely legally hers) so I politely declined to take the hot sewing machine off of her hands.
Then one of my flaker friends said I could come over and use hers, she then cancelled on me twice and I have since given up on that angle.
My mom has a sewing machine, the tension is *way* off. I considered using it anyway but decided I would be too mad if it snagged my fabric. It would cost $70 to tune it up, which is far more than the damn thing is worth, even running perfectly. Plus I don't have $70.
So... anyone in Portland want to let me use your sewing machine? I am but a poor pitiful crafter who wants desperately to make a couple of summer dresses. Have mercy on me. I'd even rent one if there were a place that lent them out for the day for cheap. Anyone know of such a place?
*sigh* it sucks to be broke.
I even have pictures! But they're trapped in my camera... I'll try to get to my parents' sometime this week and get it uploaded.
Right now I have finished the saddle shoulder shaping (which I like... it looks nice). I need to put the neck hole stitches on scrap yarn and start attaching the front and back. Which by my calculations will be about 26 rows of 32 stitches back and forth on each side.
That means each shoulder will be approximately 832 stitches, which is the equivalent of 4 rounds of body knitting. Although the shoulders are in pattern and the body was in stockinette... so I guess it's closer to 13 of the sleeve rounds. That would have taken me about an evening, I guess that means I have two more evenings of knitting before I can pick up the neck.
I think I'll only do about an inch of the 1x1 ribbing for the neck so that should take one evening or a lunch hour (half hour).
That means I expect an obscene amount of criticism if I am not finished by this weekend. Feel free to kick me out of the knitter's club. I will deserve it. Yup.
Wednesday, May 9, 2007
Violet invited me to beta with her a month or so ago but I never signed up because their site said they weren't compatable with IE and I'm much too lazy to download a whole new internet browser :)
Anyways, I'd heard everyone talking about it so I had to go and check it out. It seems to be doing just fine with ie and it is so awesome.
You can list your current projects, your yarn stash, your needle inventory, your "wanna do" projects and soon your library of knitting goodies. There's also goodies for designers that I have yet to check out.
You can link to your blog, browse other people's projects, it appears that there's even a yarn trading area either up or in the works (I haven't looked too closely yet), link to pictures from Flickr, start -alongs. It's still in beta and I guess they have something like 3,000 people in the queue to send invites to (they are making sure they can handle that much traffic before they let them in... good idea!)
So come see me and definitely think about joining once it's 100% open. I plan on doing much photographing over the weekend to update all my projects and stuff. Yay for the internet!
Tuesday, May 8, 2007
I made a winner of a meal last night and the title of best girlfriend ever (BGE) was graciously bestowed upon me.
I thought I'd share with you the secrets of my masterpiece so you to could become a BGE or BBE or BWE or BFE... whatever.
Rachel Ray's Cognac Steaks from 2,4,6,8 (the "Aren't We Fancy" supper for 2)
Caramelized Onion and Bacon salad
fresh French Bread from New Seasons bakery
Two 1" thick New York Steaks (raised in Oregon, from Oregon Country Natural co-op)
Season one side liberally with pepper, pat into the meat. Place in a Medium High pan with 2tbsp Olive Oil and sear 3 minutes on each side (for rare). Remove from heat and cover with tin foil to keep warm.
Add a cup of coarsely chopped onions and 2 cloves of garlic to the pan (more olive oil if necessary) season with salt and cook for 5-7 minutes until soft but not browned. Remove from the burner, add 2 shots of cognac and return to heat, allow the cognac to flame up. Once the flames die down add about 3/4 cup of beef broth and 1/4 cup half and half. Cook until reduced by half. Serve over steaks.
6 cups washed chopped spinach
1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped carrots
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes (if you don't live with someone who thinks tomatoes are evil)
3 strips bacon
1/3 cup sliced onion (either rings or strips)
Cook the bacon to very crispy. Drain the bacon grease and add 2 tbsp of Olive Oil to the pan.
Add onions to oil, stirring frequently, cook for 10 minutes. Remove onions and place on a paper towel to drain. Remove pan from the heat, to prepare dressing add 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar and 2 tbsp dijon mustard, whisk until mixed. Very slowly whisk in another 4 tbsp olive oil, set aside.
Combine vegetables, and crumble bacon over the salad. Mix in dressing. Top with onions before serving.
So go, make, and become the BEST GIRLFRIEND EVER. Be sure to serve with your SO's favorite beverage (mine is a gin martini).
Monday, May 7, 2007
I finished up the second sleeve this weekend. I did about 13 inches in a week... without trying that hard. If only that had happened, oh... 4 weeks ago.
Now I have about 3 more inches of boring stockinette tube to finish for the body, then I join the three pieces together at the armpits and continue up the shoulders to the neck. Hurray!
Here's where I'm concerned. I purchased 12 balls of Knitpicks Wool of the Andes in Arctic Pool Heather for this project. I am currently using the 8th ball (50% finished), on the body. I used 1.5 balls on each 19" sleeve and have so far used 4 full balls (probably 5 once I'm done) on 17" of body.
Does this sound like 4 balls will be enough to finish once I join at the underarms and work up to the saddle shoulders then complete the crew neck? I really think it is, but since this is my first sweater I don't feel 100% confident. Do I need a 13th ball?
The thing that's keeping me from just getting some spare yarn is that I'm sure if this isn't enough all I'm going to need is one more ball. But since it is KnitPicks that means I'd have to pay $2.50 shipping on a measly $2 ball of yarn and that hurts my heart a little. Am I the cheapest person alive? I think maybe I am. *sigh*
So the only comments I want to see right now are "Yes Lexy, you will definitely have enough yarn to finish that sweater. Don't worry about being 6 yards short and crying yourself to sleep because you're a cheap idiot who doesn't order an extra skein. You will have enough yarn"
P.S. I do realize that if I do not order the yarn, I will be short, and if I do order it I will finish not only without using the 13th ball, but with 20 or 30 yards left on the 12th one. I'll accept this in time.
Thursday, May 3, 2007
I tried to leave my sockapalooza pal a seceret comment on her blog and the damned thing automattically put in my blog address in the comments.
So if you're here, Ruth, look away! Don't come back! I know NOTHING.
I hate autofill...
Luckily I have posted nothing about here sock here or on the blogger blog... hopefully nothing will be spoiled. And I suppose I'll just have to refrain from posting in the future. I'm really mad that I gave myself away in the first week. I love a freaking surprise.
Damn my idiocy sometimes.
Tuesday, May 1, 2007
Monday, April 30, 2007
See, Joel only has dial up (the horror, I know) and a really old laptop, which he takes with him much of the time. I sold my computer to my mom when I moved... well my half of it since we paid 50/50 for it. Anyway, the blog may be photoless for a little while until I figure out some voodoo. I could take pictures with my phone, but, ew.
I finished one and a half repeats of the Phoebe sleeve so that the second sleeve is now 13 inches long (I believe it needs to be 18, I'll have to look that up) I'm really closing in on the sweater... I know that it will not be sweater weather when it's finished (or maybe it will... I can be pretty slow when I want). But I'm still excited to get my first sweater off the needles and in the closet.
This weekend, I organized my stash *gasp* *shock*. See, at my parents' house the stash was very spread out, there was some in my room, some in the living room, some in the office, some crammed into tiny corners... whatever. I had to pack it all up and find room for it in Joel's impeccably organized tiny little house.
So I stuffed it into two drawers in my dresser and two drawers in this little wicker 3-drawer organizer thingy. The top drawer in that is holding all my WIP's from the previous post, and those two bottom drawers are stuffed with sock yarn. I guess what this means is that I shouldn't any problem sticking to my yarn budget, since I can't buy yarn that I don't have room for, obviously. Except for the yarn for Andy's petit bebe yarn for gifts doesn't count toward stash right? Right? Somebody get my back here.
Mission 1: Finish WIP's, do not cast on new projects (except for Dulaan, charity doesn't count)
Mission 2: Use up my tres awesome stash yarn for most future projects. Until I deem a reasonable amount has been used. One dresser drawer full, at least. Not counting yarn necesary for gifts, of course.
You know, in January I didn't have enough stash yarn to join knit from your stash. My how the mighty have fallen.
Friday, April 27, 2007
Friday, April 20, 2007
I went to Sip 'n' Stitch at Knit/Purl last night as I generally do on Thursdays. I got very little knitting but much talking done. I also did some pre-shopping. I just found out that Joel's best friend and his new bride (of a year) are expecting their first child. They have chosen not to find out the sex of their petit bebe. Which to me means that they are begging for a pink lace cardigan... but I will refrain from making an incident.
It seems to me the best knitted choice for a baby of unknown gender is a toy. Plus it's a reletively easy knit (just say no to blankets!) and an appreciated one. So, now to lower the field.
There's LouLou the Elephant. In Tracey Chapman's Toys to Knit, and in that book is also a Kangaroo with a Joey in it's pouch, and a monkey in a cute little vest. So those are all adorable possibilities.
Also, Debbie Bliss (The queen of baby knits as Rodger put it) had a book... I think it was Simply Baby but don't quote me... at the store which had two little baby costumes in it, one was a bunny and one was a lamb... now since the wee one is due October 30, I thought these would also be a great idea! Plus there was another Debbie Bliss book (aren't I being specific and interesting? I know) which had a bunch of cute toys.
Those are my thoughts so far. What do you guys think in the way of Unisex Baby Gear to knit?
Not that a lacey pink cardigan can't be unisex... I just don't want to make anyone uncomfortable.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
I'll be making it next. It is slightly more complicated, with lining and interfacing and stuff, but still a very simple pattern.
I used to sew all the time in high school. I (with my mom's help) made most of my dresses for school dances as well as some rather crazy halloween costumes. I made my prom dress and a wedding dress for a woman I worked with at the hotel. Mind you it was a very simple dress... but it was white, and she did wear it to get married in... so it was a wedding dress.
This will be the next on my list. I will make the short one, in red, to wear to Carmen at the Opera next season. Next season's theme is "Great Women of the Stage" and I would like to make a dress for each show (Carmen, Cinderella, Rodelinda, and Aida)... but that might be a tad ambitious for me. As you all know... I love to voer extend myself and make lofty goals. Following through... not my strong suit.
I'll keep you posted though. And I'll even post pictures if I ever finish anything.
Monday, April 16, 2007
Beary Nice hat! MWA ha ha... heh... It's for either Dulaan or Sheri's Loopy Ewe q2 challenge. I haven't decided. Made with some of the Encore that Mia was kind enough to donate. I'm working on another one with a neck/ear flap to keep the little ones warm.
Awww... Buster is such a cute model... he even sort of tolerates it. IT's the same hate, I just couldn't resist this picture. Look at that face!
Here's my glorious Cookie A. Sock (The color is off in this photo... the weather is crap, there's no natural light, leave me alone). See the beautiful lace? The intricate cabling (with n.u.m.e.r.o.u.s. errors) on the leg? ::sigh:: I'm so in love. So in love I must return to knitting it.
I have been very busy, with knitting and with life and I haven't been blogging. Because I'm a very naughty girl.
I have some fantastic stuff on the needles right now. Like Cookie A.'s Twisted Flower sock pattern. Which I am knitting with Yarn Pirate BFL in Celery. (Note to Georgia: I love the BFL... a lot... a really inappropriate amount... please get it again if at all possible. *heart*) The sock is truly a thing of beauty. I have a picture on my camera but it's old... and on my camera (not my computer) This weekend I finished the entire second repeat on the leg, did the heel flap, turned the heel and picked up the gusset.
I am so in love. It is not by any stretch of the word an easy knit. I have to have the pattern in front of me the whole time and there has been much tink-ing and much ignoring problems because I'm just not going to rip the far back.
I opted to not use a cable needle, because doing so with 1x1 cables on every row (during the cabling pattern) would make me crazy. Knitty.com has a pretty good tutorial on doing mini-cables without a needle here. I also used the method for twisted stitches sans cable needle found in the Phoebe pattern that I am "working" on. I think that buying the pattern is worth it just to learn that technique if you do not know it.
I went very quickly from monogamy to poly-amory with my knitting though. As you recall I was very happy to be working on the now cast aside sweater, but then, I made mittens, and hats for Dulaan (a good excuse for whoring, no?) now I'm in love with this sock. Plus I Still haven't cast on my blue moon sock and the next package should be here this month. And I have all my great sock yarn from Mia the awesome. Which I have no firm plans for just yet. I'm thinking basic ribbed socks.
I also have an extensive list of gift knits. However, one item got knocked off, not because I finished it but because the wedding was called off. How sad is it that when I was told this the second or third thing out of my mouth was "thank god I hadn't started that shawl" I'm a bad friend. I've accepted this. No need to call me out.
Lastly... Have you guys been watching Planet Earth on the Discovery Channel? You totally should. I watched it for like three hours last night while working on Twisted Flower. Not the best choice for knitting since it's so beautiful you want to have your eyes glued to it. But I enjoyed it none the less.
If you haven't seen it, look up the times (Comcast has it on On Demand) Tivo, record, sit in front of the TV, whatever. It is so breathtakingly beautiful. Nature in all it's dirty, eating, fighting, f***ing glory. The captured, on camera, a Piranha feeding frenzy. Awesome. Really freaking awesome.
That is all... maybe I'll get some pictures up this week. I don't know, leave me freaking alone about it. Geez,
Wednesday, April 4, 2007
Yesterday I stopped to get gas, and in Oregon the general public is not deemed smart enough to handle the massive responsibility of pumping our own gas, so I pulled up to the pump and there were a few other people there so I grabbed my knitting while I was waiting for the attendant.
The attendant in question was an older gentleman with a very thick French African accent (or maybe French islander) and he got a big smile on his face and asked me what I was making, I showed him the first mitt I had already finished. He said, in his very weak English something like "So your spare time is spent wisely" nodding at my knitting. I replied that yes, it was so he said.
"Do you drink?" I said no (a lie? yes, but i Thought maybe he was going to ask me out for a drink, so I'm bad)
"Do you smoke?" I said no
He nodded and said
"My son, he is married to a lazy woman who drinks and smokes, he should meet you"
So now that I type this it sounds creepy, but I swear he was just a sweet old man with a really strong work ethic who thought it was great that I spent my waiting time doing something productive.
It kind of made me smile and I thought it was really sweet.
Normally if a man said something along the lines of "I love seeing women knit" it makes me kind of mad and I want to tell them where I'd like to stick the needle in my hand. But this was a little different.
What's your favorite KIP story? Share with me, thank you.
Tuesday, April 3, 2007
She has spoiled me rotten in the Lime & violet Yarn Pr0n swap. I luff her. I'm going to take pictures (except for the candy I've already eaten) tonight but let me see if I can get a complete list up here.
- Ruby Sapphire Sock Yarn in "Alexis" (hey, that's me!)
- Ruby Sapphire Yarn in some crazy name I can't remember but it's lime green beautifullness
- Crash Into Ewe in "My Beating Heart" (as in be still, and it is)
- A bag of Noro Daria (9 skeins) in a crazy bright variegated colorway
- A pattern to go with the Daria
- Two books (novels) "Knit Two Together" (I think) and another one that's escaping me right now.
- A whole bunch of Wool/Encore for Dulaan knitting
- Some store bought adorable easter socks
- A bunch of delicious candy like a whole foods caramel/fleur de sel chocolate bar, reeses peanut butter eggs, Whoppers, Kit Kats, Good 'n' Plenty, and Hershey's Kisses with Coconut which taste like a mounds bar...mmmm.
So, that's it for now. Back to work with me. Pictures tonight/tomorrow, soon. Plus more blogging, coming to a computer near you.
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
Anyways, last night I got home, made dinner for my brother, hung out with the dogs and stayed up until almost 11:30 fighting with my computer. That equals 19 hours awake. Again, regular awake hours, closer to 16. I was really really tired last night and it's a good thing no one else was home 'cause I would have been cranky too (if you're cranky and no one's around to hear about it, did it really happen?)
This morning I woke up at 6 to get my brother up and ready for school. (his bus comes at 7am, isn't that sick?) However, the dogs were not pleased with this situation since they usually get breakfast at 5am when my mom gets up (the poor woman has to be at work by 6... I'd kill myself) Aspen got on the bed and made a growl like noise, which I ignored. I don't wake up at 5 to feed dogs. They get breakfast at 6 when I'm in charge and they'll like it too.
Anyways, now it's 2:30 in the afternoon. I'm SUPER DUPER tired and all I want to do is go home and nap. I would also like to say the Rhonda Shelby of the KGW weather team can kiss my ass. She was forecasting cloudy and cold today so I didn't wear my beautiful spring dress which would have withered in the gray, what do I see right now? ZERO clouds, I'll tell you that. Freakin' Rhonda Shelby, way to ruin my first day of spring.
Okay, that's all, just a bunch of sleep deprived ranting, sorry for the interruption.
13 inches done on the Phoebe Body. Hooray!
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
First, the knitting.
I am really rolling along nicely on the Phoebe body. I didn't get much done this weekend because I was busy over indulging in alcohol. I have a little more than 12 inches right now and I need 16.5 before I join the sleeves and start working my way up to the shoulders. I'm halfway done with the second sleeve, the first one is almost complete. I believe I can legitimately say I'm half way through with this bad boy.
I know many of you are thinking "but Lexy, aren't you going to finish this right when the weather is getting nice, thus rendering it unwearable until next winter"
a) Even so, I don't care, I just want it off my back (haha... punny)
b) I go to the Oregon Coast quite frequently, and even during the warmest days of summer it can be windy and quite chilly on the beach, making a sweater practical, punk ass.
c) Our family vacation is in Sunriver (yup, that's the house we're staying in, no it didn't cost that much, we got a deal) this year, the beautiful High Desert of Oregon. While the summer days are lovely and warm the evenings (and mornings) can be down right cold.
So, that's my knitting world right now. I'm actually finding it quite lovely to be monogamous with my knitting. It brings me peace. Someone please remind me of this in a week (day? hour?) when I'm dying to cast on some new fling.
Friday, March 16, 2007
This, naturally, makes getting work done... impossible. I want to go down to Starbucks (1 block) and get one of those tangerine smoothie things...mmmm.
Oh yeah, knitting content, I worked on my second sleeve for Phoebe last night after I put up the show notes , I'm about six(?) inches into it and have gotten quite used to the pattern, although I do still need to glance at it. The main problem I am finding is that after about an hour of flying along my hands start to cramp up from all the pulling and twisting. So I can work on the sleeve for about an hour and then I have to work on the body, or just do nothing, which is fine. I'd really like to get the sleeves/body joined and start on the shoulders this weekend... but I doubt it's going to happen.
In other news, I became completely enamored with Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab yesterday when I was putting up the show notes, so today I ordered six "imps ears" of perfume in:
-Morgause (Bewitching Brews): She is a sister, or sister-self, to Morgan Le Fay. A bouquet of five night-blooming flowers deepened by dusky violet, purple fruits and the barest breath of medieval incenses.
-Poisoned Apple (Bewitching Brews): A perfect, lovely, gleaming red apple whose sweetness masks a swirl of narcotic opium, oleander, and hemlock.
-Pride (Sin & Salvation): Vanity in extremis. The scent of rabid hauteur: Moroccan rose and narcissus.
-Marie (Diabolus): A blend of sinuous violet and elegant tea rose: the chosen scent of France's Demigoddess of Debauch: Marie Antoinette.
-New Orleans (Wanderlust):Reminiscent of hothouse blooms on a humid night, ripe, but touched with decay. Sweet honeysuckle and jasmine with a hint of lemon and spice.
-Queen (Voodoo Blends): For use only by women. An extremely potent passion blend, used to great effect when you're converting feminine sexual energy into power.
The only one of these similar to my usual scent(s) is New Orleans, I *love* honeysuckle and jasmine, I decided, for the most part, to try new things though since they have so many unique concoctions. Narrowing it down to six was definitely the hard part. The short list of other scents I was looking at:
I think I had about 20 on my list before I started crossing them off and paring down. Anyways, I know it takes them a long time to put it all together, but I am *super* excited about my new scents. Hopefully one will really really stand out to buy in a full vial.
I ramble. Do excuse me.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
I don't know how or why but the sewing bug has gotten to me in a bad way... actually I do know how and why... it's this site, that's how.
So, I bought this pattern (Go here for more vintage patterns)
The really pertinent question right now is "Hey, Lexy, do you even own a sewing machine?"
That my friends is a mere technicality thanks to craigslist.org I have two possibilities, not fancy, but functional, that I can pick up tonight. Sucka.
Oh but what about the fabric? Well I went to Josephine's today, and they have such beautiful stuff... but I'm not going to spend $24/yd on fabric for this little number. That's why I'll be going to Fabric Depot this Saturday for their 15th anniversary sale. I'm thinking something pink/yellow, maybe a big print, I don't know... think think think.
I don't know when I'll get it all together, I haven't sewn a garment in... six years? Plus I'm thinking I'll try to maintain the integrity of the vintage pattern by tracing it onto seperate pattern paper rather than cutting the pristine factory folded pattern I've got headed my way.
Here's hoping I'll have a new dress for the opera.
Oh, and I bought a cute spring dress at Ross for $17... totally adorable Anne Taylor Loft *heart*
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
I do have some thoughts on my knitting though, I'm having a bit of ennui and I think I've found the culprit. Naturally, it's all in my head.
Knitting is not a race.
I am not knitting to have finished projects.
Handling beautiful yarn is its own reward.
These are my new mantras. I feel like I haven’t been enjoying my knitting enough. Not that I don’t love doing it, because I do. It’s more that I feel like I’ve been trying to win some sort of speed competition when that’s not why I took it up in the first place.
A year and a half ago, when I learned how to knit I didn’t learn because there was anything in particular I wanted to make. I spent probably a month just knitting swatches (garter, stockinette, ribbed, seed) because I really just enjoyed the *idea* of the craft rather than any particular end.
My skills have increased. I would describe myself as a confident intermediate knitter. 90% self taught at that, not to brag. I enjoy the challenge of new things, socks, sweaters, intarsia, lace. I want to try it all, and I’m working on that. I also want to knit for other people, to give them the joy of a lovingly crafted gift. I have, I believe, knit more finished objects for other people than myself.
Gifts: 1 blanket, 1 scarf, 1 fetching, 2 hats, 2 socks, 1 gloves, 1 bag
Myself: 1 scarf, 1 fetching, 1 socks, 1 hat, 1 gloves
Yup, I’m a giver.
Currently I am working on Phoebe (for me) and the felted flower bag (for me) and the twisted flower sock (for me) so that should make it even(ish). Of course I have a long list of gift knits to do this year as well. Not to mention Dulaan.
But here’s the thing, I’m working on my current projects like I’m going to win a prize when I’m done. This would be great if I had an enormous stash I need to whittle down, or if I was going to win a prize. But I don’t, and I won’t.
I’m going to slow down and enjoy this moment, right now, with my knitting. I was about to type that I’m going to cherish every stitch… but that’s a little flowery and stupid for my taste. I’m going to enjoy each stage of each project for what it is.
For example, Phoebe:
* Ribbing: Creates support, structure, holds everything together and clamps it down. Simple, powerful.
* Stockinette in the round: A tube! A beautiful perfect tube. Look at how even my tension is, I can even knit with my eyes closed
* Complicated twisted stitch pattern: Beautiful! Fun to watch, fun to do, zen, I can even talk to myself without guilt (purl, left twist, right twist, left twist, right twist, purl and so on)
* Saddle Shoulders: A new skill! I can’t wait to watch my sweater come together, front and back attached with a simple k2tog, 4 letters, one number, one sweater.
* Collar: The end! The closing bell, the finale, the fat lady sings. The. Best. Part.
* Grafting the underarms: Oh kitchener bliss… every time I successfully execute you, I feel like a magician.
So rather than performing each task eagerly awaiting the next, and eventually the finished sweater, I vow to perform each task for its own sake. Because I can. Because each part of this thing has a purpose in it’s making, not just in it’s wearing. Yes I will end up with a sweater, but more importantly I will end up with a sweater I have spent hours of quality time lovingly preparing, as opposed to rushing through to the end product.
I am not a sweatshop.
Thursday, March 8, 2007
The first one was a gift for my 18th birthday from my high school boyfriend it is the Japanese Kanji for "Strength". It is a tramp stamp... it's true, although I got it before everyone had started putting tattoos on their lower back, so I started it... really I did. Due to it's location on my lower back I can't really take a picture of it.
My second one is also in a non photographable location... it's on my hip and most swimsuits cover it... just to give you an idea of the location. it's a skull and crossbones which I got my junior year of college. The skull and crossbones is one of the symbols of my sorority, along with owls... but the skull & crossbones is way cooler than an owl, hehe.
So those are my two current ones... I'll probably get another one I'm just not inspired as to what/where yet. We'll see.
Wednesday, March 7, 2007
Also, my buddy Mia sent me six (I think) skeins of Encore to do some Dulaan knitting, along with three great patterns, some delicious candy (The PeanutButter things are already gone) and a really delish Jasmine candle. Mia's really thoughtful and awesome, I was so lucky to get her as my Knit Mitt Kit Swap Partner back in January.
Here's the yarn... it's a really pretty mixture of blue/white. I think I'm going to do a child's sweater with a matching hat for some special Mongolian child. I turned down some Avalanche yarn from Ryan because I think I have enough Dulaan knitting on my plate for now and I really don't want to disappoint anyone because my eyes are bigger than my stomach (or faster than my fingers, as with knitting)