Friday, November 20, 2015

Friday Finishes: Twinleaf

It is official. The shawl is done.

I am pretty sure I miscounted somewhere along the way during my wrap and turn adventures (this is for the contrast color stripes) and well ... I kept going. Afterall it's 340 stitches wide. That's a lot of tinking. I think it turned out okay considering all the late night knitting this entailed.

I started it in June because it called for light fingering ... (*please someone tell me is this code word for lace weight or am I hallucinating?) and that seemed easier to knit in the warmer months. I picked it back up in the fall, since it seemed like a practical, functional piece, light but warm wearing. Also, it was a lap cozy, while knitting. heh.

This project got me thinking one day, I'd like just to use the dimensions and do another large stripe or colorblock wrap in the same weight yarn. I just don't think I'll do it anytime soon ;) I need a few small projects of instant gratification.

*Really is this lace or fingering what is this light fingering, it's not really sock weight either,  you know?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Adventures in Weekend Baking

To tell you I remain busy is putting it lightly.

I am making time for everything fairly well, including myself and being true to myself the best that I can.

Suffice it to say, I'm still exhausted.

I'm still, behind.

I did manage to try that Gluten Free Almond Butter cookie recipe I've had on my list, this weekend. The Kid, allergic to peanuts had his first conceptual taste of a nut butter cookie. He said  it was a winner.

It took some ... work getting there.

For the first sheet, I put a dollop of jam on them in the last 2 minutes, attempting to get that peanut butter and jelly feel. It was tasty, but a hot visual mess, and if there was too much jam, I worried the bit of dough underneath was underdone.

Kinda ugly right? Kinda like a cookie casualty.

The "batter" is very crumbly and requires heavy shaping. Second sheet, I used a cookie baller and then with my hands sort of packed the balls more.

Each batch improved with time. Go easy on the sea salt. But the sprinkle definitely elevates the flavor with the dark chocolate. I'd chop some dried cherries in a batch too, cause, why not. Since the batter is so crumbly I would not put too much of anything in these cookies. One batch only calls for 1/2 cup of dark chocolate chips. See what I mean?

Have you baked or cooked anything new to you recently?

Monday, November 9, 2015

Sweater Weather Challenge

So I admit, I saw this first at ChrisKnits and then at Wandering Cat and of course at Ravell'd Sleeve. The list was so much fun to read, I thought I would give it a go. Turns out not only is it fun to come up with, but it really put me in a seasonal weather spirit.

I realize that my answers border on the holiday/winter/Christmas time or season, but perhaps we should chalk it up to the mild weather we have here.

Sweater Weather Challenge

1.  Favorite Candle Scent:  Christmas Pine (for this season)

2.  Coffee, Tea, or Hot Chocolate:  Coffee and Black Tea. Give it to me with the milk and the sugar if you're feeling generous. 

3.  What Is the Best Fall Memory You Have?  Running up and down the street with my friends at twilight trick or treating.

4.  Best Fragrance for Fall:  The smell of rain.

5.  Favorite Thanksgiving Food:  Stuffing and Gravy. Not necessarily in that order. 

6.  Most Worn Sweater:  Gray Target open Cardigan. Not snazzy, but it wears well with anything. I think it may be about to die out of the work rotation.

7.  Football Games or Jumping in Leaves? Does Football called Soccer count? I like American Football when I have some money on it as in the weekly pick em' pool. (lunch money amounts people, I promise, there is no REAL problem here, move along). I am a city girl now. I would be worried about bug things jumping in leaves now -- but I have really fond memories of raking and jumping at my Aunt Millie's as a kid. 

8.  Favorite Fall Accessory:  Boots and hand warmers. My friend HM gave me these beautiful blue malabrigo hand warmers before I started knitting. I still wear them. I still love them and hand warmers remain some of my favorite gifts to give.

9.  Favorite Type of Pie:  Honestly? I know it's not very fall like, but I love chocolate creme pie, but I also like pumpkin pie ... with lots of whipped cream. Like lots. I like pumpkin pie also for breakfast in the fall. Hmm, maybe the real answer is pumpkin pie. 

10. What Is Fall Weather Like Where You Live?  Real fall here, starts literally November 1st. It becomes crispier in the morning and the middle of the night.  The rest of it is the usual high fifties to high sixties. We used to get this thing called rain every now and again. We don't get so many falling leaves.

11. Favorite Fall Makeup Trend:  I think maybe one is, I wear it? I usually don't, because I think I'm worried I will sweat and smear it and become walking tie-dye. (The old tomboy in me has never really ever recovered from this concern). Anyhow, I definitely wear lip stick/gloss and slap some eyeliner on this time of year for functions. Also I start fussing over pretty sparkly things.

12. What Song Really Gets You in the Fall Spirit?  Anything Ella Fitzgerald.

13. Pumpkin Spice - Worth the Hype?  I am going with general consensus and say, I like it in baked goods and that's about it. Trader Joe's has got me a little freaked out with the amount of Pumpkin Spice items they carry right now. Stop it.

14. Favorite Fall TV Show:  Dunno. Bob's Burgers? Is this a fall show? I feel like they just started a new season. I have accidentally learned to like this odd show, thanks to living with the boy child and his man child father. So condescending sounding, but I really do love them and value their presence and intellect even when it devolves into crass or punny humor. Besides, everyone knows I'm the funny one in the family. No, really!

15. Favorite Fall New TV Show:  Great British Bake Off. Hands down. So sad it's over. I will have withdrawal now.

16. Skinny Jeans or Leggings? I like skinny jeans with boots. or the right shoe? Leggings I get concerned. I need to make a statement right now. Leggings are NOT pants. with a tunic or long shirt or something OK. But ... not you know as pants. 

17. Combat Boots or Uggs?  Combat boots, all day,  any day. Uggs are awful to me. They are like slippers in public. They make short stout girls like me look shorter and stouter and maybe that's your thing, but personally it's not the look I would like to enhance for myself. What really gets me, is here in California  when you see the girls with the denim mini skirts and the Uggs. Come on ladies, is this the ski-lounge or are we going pool side, pick a  team theme! ;) 

18. Halloween: Yay or Nay?  Yay, I say!

19. Fall Mornings or Fall Evenings?  Evenings. Mornings are for weirdos. ;)

20. Feelings About Black Friday:  I am American. I am a consumer more than I should be. But no, I do NOT Black Friday. I try to spread out my holiday shopping/spending as much as possible so I'm not spending a huge amount of money in a short period of time, this takes more organization than you'd think I have. GAP coupons have been good to me this season. Matching jammies for all my little people (at 40% off ...) ha!

21. Favorite Fall Traditions:  Thanksgiving.Thanks for giving me good food for my belly and 4 days off in a row. Yee-haw!

22. Any New Traditions to Start?  I'm going to take a page from The Wandering Cat and say I'd like to ensure I had a getaway or an overnight since my anniversary is in the fall as well. I'm just not huge on pomp and circumstance for all things, and I noticed that my husband likes to celebrate with The Kid too. If there is something in particular I really want to do one year. I try to let him know and when he understands it's importance to me, he usually complies. I think we are low motivation this year. 

23. Favorite Alcoholic Beverage for Fall:  A nice red wine. Nothing too heavy since I like to have my wits about me. But we will usually have something nice on the gathering and celebratory days. Also, I like a little Baileys Coffee with whipped cream or Coffee with Bailey's whipped cream sometimes. Maybe that's more of a Christmas thing?

24. When Should the Holiday Season Start?  The week of Thanksgiving. I would like to say after, but who am I fooling. 

25. Who Do You Love to Spend the Fall With?  My famil. That takes on a lot of shapes between us. It's always a pleasant time.