Sunday, March 31, 2013

An Easter/Birthday Cake

 I don't bake too much any more, I love too, but we also love to eat it!  So, I try and only bake on special occasions, mostly birthdays.  It was so beautiful out today, and it was Easter, so I thought something light for spring, Easter, and Ruth's Birthday was called for.
We are getting a lot of eggs now, so decided to make this white cake, 9 egg whites with a cheesecake filling.  I'd been wanting to try a cake with a cheesecake for the filling for some time now.  I wasn't disappointed with the results either. YUM. I cooked down some raspberries with oj for a little extra flavor. This is a Martha Stewart cake recipe, and I think the cake could be ate with no frosting and taste wonderful.  The filling is from Paula Dean. The whole cake was frosted in a cream cheese frosting. I'm just glad there were enough people to take the leftovers home. Of course we did take a couple of pieces for later though ......

Saturday, March 23, 2013

A Taste of Spring

It's been so warm the last couple of weeks, everything is starting to bloom.  I'm not ready!  Well, I'm ready for warm, but we haven't finished trimming up the apple trees and raspberries yet. 
 It's funny, it starts out so slow, you notice one little flower about to bloom, and the next thing you know, there are flowers blooming all over your yard!
And then this morning we wake up to a skiff of snow.............go figure!
I have so many projects going. I don't know why I keep doing it, but I keep starting another knit or crochet project before I finish the one I was previously working on.  I feel so scatter brained.  It's like I have so many ideas in my head I want to start them all before I forget.  I'm just going to have to make myself focus on one task until it's done, it's just so hard though, maybe I can blame it on spring fever.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

1st Attempt Hairpin Lace

 Hairpin Lace is something I've been wanting to try for quit a while, but just never really got around to it.  Now with all the lacy type tops out there, I figured now was a good time to give it a go.  I had a thinner type yarn in my stash I thought would work pretty good. I couldn't find any patterns I really liked, just directions on how to make the panels and then connect them once they were done.  You-tube is a great source for ideas and directions.

I'm ok with how this first top turned out, and it's given me some great ideas for the next one. Yes, it was that easy, there will be a next one!  The one thing to watch are the seems on the sides, they are a little large for my liking. I think I will be doing the next top in a light lavender yarn I have, and I will run the panels up and down.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Much Needed Organization

Craft room = Crap room, well it had been since we moved in. I think I spent about 3 hours upstairs trying to get stuff organized today.  It's come a long way, I still do not have my sewing machine set up, but it's a good start............


The walls still need painted, but not this time of year.  It's a small room with slanted ceilings so tall shelves really aren't an option.  I came up with an idea to put a big dowel across the slanted side of the room and put shoe holders on the dowel for the yarn. I think that is going to work pretty good. Now that it's semi organized I can see many projects I want to start on.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Cookie Madness

 When my kids were little I used to bake sugar cookies and we'd decorate them with some of their friends. So, I thought I should pass the insanity on to my grandkids, but at my daughters house......
 It's so much fun when kids don't have to worry about making a mess, and sprinkles really are easy to clean up. I thought they did a pretty good job.  I just noticed one of the heart cookies in the "done" section has a bite out of it! Taste testing at it's best!
I can't wait till the next holiday with the kids!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

A Blankie for Hannah

My niece just had a baby! Since she did not do an ultra sound we did not know if she was having a girl or a boy..........I was prepared for either, but I just had a feeling she was going to have a girl.  I was just finishing knitting this blanket when Hannah decided it was time.  This is the before blocking picture.........and the after.  This time I blocked using the wet method instead of steam, I'm thinking even though it takes longer, the results are much better then steaming with an iron.
 My daughter says I always make too big of baby blankets, but I want them to fit the crib, hello!  So this time I took her advice and went smaller, seems way too small, but will fit nicely in a car seat.  You can't see the pink too well in the pictures for some reason, must be this photographer.......

I'm happy with the results, a first for me....knitting a blanket.  I'll include a couple of pairs of booties I had made a while ago, something I like to make when I'm between projects. The white ones are crocheted and the green ones knitted.  Now if I can just get them in the mail before little Miss Hannah outgrows them!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

The "Man" Scarf

 After I had finished the big infinity scarf for my niece, my husband decided he needed one to wear in the duck blind. Camouflage please.....
 I worked on this during lunches at work, so it would be a surprise for Christmas for him.  HA, he had no idea, thought I had forgotten him.......

It's the same as my nieces, just front and back posts worked all around, It's made in the Lions Brand Homespun, very soft and thick.
He says it is perfect to wrap around his head, to keep the wind out, and warmth in.  Now all he needs is a nice windy cold day to go duck hunting........

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Just Say Moooooo

This was a commission hat I just finished. A friend from Alaska asked me to make a "fun" hat for her sister who will be starting chemo shortly. Her goal is to wear a different hat everyday. She sent me a picture of a cow hat she liked and this is what I came up with.  When I first saw the picture I wasn't impressed, even in my picture it is not as cute as in person.  I used a baby soft yard to help with comfort. I think it came out pretty cute, but when I look at the is just not the same.   I also included a soft simple knitted hat, just because sometimes you feel like a nut and sometimes you don't.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

New Socks for ME!

I started these socks last summer, finished the one sometime in the fall and decided to finish up the other one last week.  It only took me a week to get it done............why do I wait?

 I have a book that I got from my dad called the Readers Digest Complete Book of Needlework. Copyright 1979, some things never change! It tells you the basics of how to knit, crochet, quilt, macrame, etc, and the tools to create your own.  This is the Horseshoe stitch from the book. When I started I didn't realize the pattern was listed for a flat item, not knitted in the round.....that didn't take me long to figure out though, I knew something was wrong when I couldn't see any pattern forming.  The yarn is Cascade sock yarn.  So far this has been my favorite yarn for socks, plus it's semi affordable for me. 
 I'm amazed at how good the Kitchener stitch came out this time, I must be getting better. There are great directions on knitty site
 The heel I did in the Peacock stitch, I don't know where I first saw this, but I love how it looks.   I did keep loosing my place for such an easy stitch.  All it is, is: slip 1, knit 1, repeat across, purl back, then slip 2 (only on the first stitches), knit 1, slip1, knit 1repeat across, purl back, easy. I couldn't remember if is was slipping 1 or 2.....that's what happens when the TV is on.

The pattern for the Horseshoe is as follows:

Cast on 60, rip on the band
This is in multiples of 12
Row 1: yo, k3, sl 1, k2 tog, psso, k3, yo, k1
Row 2: and all alt rows, purl
Row 3: k1, yo, k2, sl 1, k2 tog, psso, k2, yo, k2
Row 5: k2, yo, k1, sl 1, k2 tog, psso, k1, yo, k3
Row 7: k3, yo, sl 1, k2 tog, psso, yo, k4

Every row is basically the same except for the beginning and end of the pattern. It doesn't take long to get it figured out.

I haven't made that many socks, but I'm amazed that I still have all the pairs I have knitted in the last few years, and I wear them a lot, but they haven't worn out. It's so worth the time and effort.


Sunday, January 6, 2013

Boy, Are We Spoiled!

Last summer when we went back to Alaska to visit, we stayed with our friends Jacque and Peter in Juneau. Staying at their home is like staying at the best B & B you can imagine. Jacque spoiled us rotten, her daughter gave up her bedroom for us, made sure they had our favorite food items and drinks on hand, they really are the best hosts ever.  We got to experience first hand their espresso machine they had bought a few years earlier. Talk about a good (no great) cup of coffee, I was bouncing off the walls most days because I couldn't stop drinking it.  The machine is a Saeco brand,(order through Costco online)  it has a hopper on top that you fill with coffee beans, and a water reservoir on the side. You put your cup under the spout, dial how much coffee you want, a full cup or shot of espresso and push the button. Wonderful!  We fell in love....................when we got home we looked up those machines online, then decided our little Mr. Coffee pot would have to do us for a while, since we could not justify the cost of the Saeco......probably for many years.

Sometime in December I got home from work and there is a huge box on our kitchen table. I asked my husband "what did you buy now?"  He thought I had ordered something.  Then I noticed the brand on the side of the box, and the packing slip had Jacques name on it.  I was in shock, didn't even want to open the box........oh my....................

The first thing I said when I called Jaques was "have you lost your mind" Her response "OH! You got your present!" 

I would not normally recommend or do reviews, but this makes the best cup of coffee, and it's so easy. She said she has had hers for over 2 years and has never had any problems with it.  We are looking forward to many happy years together!  Thank You, Jacque and Peter.............

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Blog or not to Blog.....The New Year Question

I haven't posted in months. I start out good and then peter out. Now the question I am asking myself: keep blogging or stop?  It's not like I've quit crafting, I've been so busy crocheting and knitting for the holidays I just haven't had time to blog.  So here I am again trying to decide what to do.  This year I want to knit more, I want to make more clothes and get away from the hats and scarves.  I'm thinking those round cardigans, light summer sweaters, and big thick cowls for winter. First I will finish up the socks I started for myself last year and work on a baby project for my great grad niece/nephew that is due in February. I will start the New Year off healthy, going off sugar, alcohol, and wheat.(notice I did not say coffee)........................and I will post the goings on of the Byrd Farm. 

So here's to a good start of a Happy 2013!