Friday, November 30, 2007

We've got a Winner! (Contest Wk 1 Results!)


Congrats, Ames!
You are the winner of the "Shopping Spree Fantasy" contest! Please email me your address, so I can send you your prize!

She's the first to receive the new "Splash" of my "Marble Collection. I've got more for my Esty shop that I'll add in later. However, I'm debating if I should keep them sets of 5, like the others.
Gosh, I'm soo addicted to making these suckers!!!
What will be the prize for the next contest, you might ask... well, hold on to your hats! I've already made them! But you've got to wait until I announce the winner! Mwa ha ha ha... (OK, I'm a nerd.)

I was really pleased with all of your answers! I give my thanks to everyone who answered. It was really hard to choose the top answer (I had to do two best answers). :)

Thursday, November 29, 2007

...Check!

1. Completing my last semester of college course registration online...check.
2. Going to Graduate Analysis department and switching the department codes to get back 6 S.H on two "non-countable" courses AND making sure that all I have to do now is fill out my degree application in February and finish up this year's classes...check.
3. Updating my Etsy shop, swifting skeins, and mailing them out the next day...check.
4. Finishing book 1 of 2 for another 10+ paper due in a week...check.
5. Beginning to study for my Botany lab exam on Weds...check.
6. Knitting a few more inches of my sock for the club...check.
7. Being a dummy and missing Project runway, despite me being in my room...check.
8. Shaving my legs, slipping, sliding across gross public shower floor, cutting up my elbow deeply and probably fracturing the tip of the bone...check.

LAST CALL FOR THE CONTEST!!
It looks like those few people are going to have a really easy chance to win....
Tomorrow afternoon/evening, I call the winner for a free set of my new stitch markers.


See post below for more details.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Stitch markers...Hello addiction! And a CONTEST??

Because I'm all excited about updating my Etsy shop, and finally getting more than 2 items in it...I'm going give away a FREE set of stitch markers from my "marble collection"that hasn't been "released" yet!

I will announce the winner of the contest on Friday evening! Good luck! :)

The rules: first, answer the question. This puts your name in my hat. If you post this contest & your answer on your own blog, you get another entry in the hat!...But, you must link the post to your blog, because I'm (unfortunately) not a mind-reader. Shame.
I will pick one name out of a woolen hat on Friday. The question has a two-part answer. The best shopping spree answer gets on extra entry in the hat (so "technically," you could get a whopping total of 3 entries all together in the hat if all of the circumstances are right).

The "Shopping Spree Fantasy" Contest closes at 7 pm Friday (11/30). Stay tuned.

~The Contest Question~
If you had (free) $200 to blow on knitting stuff (yarn, knitting accessories, etc), A.) how exactly would you spend it? (maybe name brands, or stores) and B.)Is your buying pattern (not knitting instructions...I mean "tendencies") on this shopping spree "smart" (as in a huge pile of cheaper yarn), or "luxurious" (meaning, buying maybe several expensive yarn you wouldn't normally buy)?

Note: keep in mind the general monetary value of the things you would buy to help you answer the question.

I'm really curious to see what you all have to say! :)

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Indulgence.

The holidays is a time for indulgence, don't you think? After what seem like months of working on my research project, and studying for another Botany exam, and working diligently on my holidays knits, it is time for a little "R & R" and succulent dyed fibers.

I dub the left one "Safari," and the right one "Gypsy." I experimented with water-painting, starting with a base color and adding new ones to the pot, and voila! Something exciting and filled with an abundance of colors within colors. If you were to hold these skeins in person, you would see many different colors of green, violet, blue,...you get the picture. I can't wait to knit these skeins up!

What else have I been up to?
Well, I finished reading The Rescue, by Nicolas Sparks. It was a great read-definitely a "chick choice." The plot was a little predictable, but it lived up to the page-turner type. I recommend this to anyone who likes romance, chick-flick movies, heart-string pullers, and just plain 'ol good writing. I also just finished another book today while sipping coffee at Caribou Coffee (read out-of-order in my series like the other two books): Death on Beacon Hill, by P.B Ryan. It's a really good series, if you are interested in 19th century Boston storylines that has a slowly flourishing romance between two of the main characters. Uh! I know "Will" is just a character, but man is he hot! (and rich! But that shouldn't matter.)

I started knitting the pattern I just designed for the "Winter" installment of our sockclub. It's interesting, fun to knit up, and simple on the noggin'. You can't get better than that. Plus, I think that the pattern really compliments the colorway Liz dyed up. I'm about 3 inches through the leg.


This year, I have devised a system for maximum good-eats:
1. If you've been standing by the snack-food for over 15 minutes, you are already in trouble. If you ate a whole plate's worth of snack-food...you better save yourself some effort and loosen your belt right now.
2. First scour out the important "must have" food items that you couldn't live without. Put a nice portion of each item on your plate. BUT WAIT! Don't put too much. If your plate is completely full at this time...you were a little zealous in your "hot-item" endeavours.
3. Take less mashed potatoes. They fill you up way too much. Place a small heap on your plate and move on! If you still want more, eat the leftovers.
4. Corn... Corn??? In my house, it's cooked so long that there aren't even nutrients left in the darn golden things. Take a very small serving. And not too many greenbeens either. (Same problem.)
5. ONE roll. I repeat... ONE ROLL. Two will do you in. Rookie mistake.
6. Eat slower. Do some quality talking with your family and let your stomach tell you when it's full. That way, you can still eat dessert before midnight.
7. If you are drinking milk with dinner, you better loose the mashies.
8. If you need two regular plates for dinner, you know you aren't going to have room for dessert.

Have a great Thanksgiving everyone!
I'm in charge of cranberries (simmered in Red wine & sugar) and my "mini pumpkin cakes" for dessert.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

The long & the short of things.

Boy do I have some more eye-candy for you all today! I really feel like I'm back to expressing my blog title for a change. You'll have to excuse the lovely and highly original "bed poses." It's just too late for further creativity. I've been knitting so much today (and lately), that I'm quite shocked that my hands aren't bleeding right now. No joke.


"Coiled Cables & Ribs"
This patten was released for our fall sockclub...and I'm excited that enough time has passed by where I can finally show you the sock! I have the new exclusive Winter colorway in my room, and am waiting for the brain to kick in, to create a whole new sassy pattern.




As you can see, I finally finished my first sock, and have plunged into the second one. I can't wait until I can finally wear my "Quidditch" socks.

Above is my chunky horseshoe scarf that I started a few days ago. I only have two more small skeins left, so I'll be cutting it close to what actually qualifies a rectangle as a scarf. If I happen to find another skein, I'll add the finishing touches to the two ends of the scarf.

What is this?!? Oh, it's me actually working on Christmas gifts in NOVEMBER! That's an idea, huh? I realized that I still had a couple more people that I needed to add to my Xmas knit-list, so if I don't start it now, it ain't going to get done.


This blue & white sock is for my Grandma. Sadly, the picture doesn't do the LT ribbing justice. This really knits up twice as fast as the other pair. When I switched back and forth, the Lorna Laces felt like I was knitting with thread, for Pete's sake. There's no bet on which sock will reach the finish line first. That's for sure.
Above is my FMIL's pair of socks, in Lorna laces. I still am waiting for the FH to find out her shoe size. He's really no help when it comes to family questions. I asked him what color she likes. He says, "I don't know." I ask him what shoe size she is. He says, "I don't know." I ask him what his dad would wear (knit-wise). He says, "Probably nothing."

Ok, it's time to soak the poor hands, *sigh.*
Maybe "attempt" more "school work" tomorrow, perhaps?

Friday, November 09, 2007

The glass is half full.

I won!!
The new colorway is called "Seven Nation Army"
The Lotus Knitter is awesome, and started a monthly yarn contest! Here's her question this month:
"You can see by my project details above that I don't always pay that much attention to gauge. How often do you knit a gauge swatch? Be honest now. Every time you plan a project? Do you wash and block too? Maybe you check your gauge on the fly. Cast on, knit for a while, then check and see how close you are, and rip out when you're way off. Or are you a 'fly by the seat of your pants' kind of knitter who never checks gauge. It will fit someone right?"
Check out her Etsy Shop! She has some gorgeous colorways going on! I'm always drooling over them!

This totally cheered me up, because I just received her "you won" email after being rejected by Red Cross for donating blood, since I get anxiety over needles, and my heart-rate wouldn't come down low enough to be safe. I felt like such a failure. I really wanted to donate...
This really made my day! :) Thanks again!

KNITTING UPDATE: pictures & more ramblings coming soon! I've been soo busy lately... finishing up my Senior's research paper and final presentation. The whole thing is my only grade in the class, and the professor is a little tough on grading papers, as I noted after he marked up comments everywhere on my rough draft I sent him to look at. All of the stress from everything is really starting to take it's toll. I mean, I've invested so much work into this dang paper, and I still don't feel completely satisfied with it. I already have another big Botany exam (on plant metabolism, DNA, etc.) coming up next week, plus having all of my Senior's stuff due on the same day. Breath in, breath out. Breath in, breath out. Two major breaks are coming up...*sigh*
...And I still need to buy some yarn to knit up these gifts. *sigh.* I need a car, a jet, a train....or something, to get to the LYS.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

The Christmas Knit-Along & My To-Do List

Are you knitting for Christmas? Wanna be part of the knitting elf crew??
Ladies & gentleman, fire up your needles. There's a whole 'lot of holiday knitting to do!

Hey everyone! My list isn't complete, but here's what's on the list right now:

1. Fionce- I CAN'T SAY HERE, he'll see. But I need to finish something from a long time ago that you all saw, and maybe add another knitted gift. It depends on how good he is to me... lol. j/k.
2. Grandma- knit something with a specific flower on it (that she saw in the book "Knitting over the Edge")--maybe on white socks.
3. Grandpa- Knit Henry.
4. Find something to knit for my mom & maybe dad (he's not too interested, besides wanting a "truck cover"--yeah right). Maybe i'll find a lot of black Red Heart yarn & size 50 needles and knit the dang thing. It will be table talk for months.
5. Maybe knit my uncles a scarf. They've been asked for one for a couple of years. I'll say that the uncles get the knitted stuff this year, and the Aunts will get something next year.
6. Knit my FMIL a pair of socks, or a new yoga bag with a "tree pose" cable.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Anna's Mini Pumpkin Cakes

Recipe by Anna Peck
http://www.knitting-up-a-storm.blogspot.com/

This is a great recipe for an additional holiday desert. Feel free to make them even smaller, to pop in your mouth. It is best served warm, as it is soft and deliciously moist.

If you love white cupcakes & pumpkin pie...be prepared to be addicted!

Recipe yields about 18 medium-sized cupcakes
Skill: easy

Ingredients:
1 box of Betty Crocker's white (vanilla) cake mix.
1 can of pumpkin pie filling
1 tsp each of Cinnamon, nutmeg & ginger
A dash of clover (no more than 1/2 tsp)
1/8 cup of white sugar
4 eggs
A little more than 1/3 cups of canola oil

Pumkpin Cupcake Directions:
Beat the eggs, pour the oil in, and slowly add all of the dry ingredients together. Beat until completely smooth. Pour evenly into your cupcake pan, and bake for 17-18 minutes at 350 degrees(F) per 12 cupcakes. Do not over-bake.

(Optional) Frosting Ingredients:
1 brick of softened creamcheese
1-2 cups of powered sugar
1 tsp of pure vanilla extract
A couple drops of orange food coloring

Frosting Directions:
Place 1 brick of soft creamcheese in a good size bowl, add 1 tsp of vanilla & about 1-2 cups of sifted powdered sugar, and blend all together with a mixer until creamy. Add a couple drops of orange food coloring, and blend for a couple seconds more. Smother the frosting on the top of all of the cupcakes. Refrigerate the leftovers, if you're luck enough to have any left.

Roasted Red Pepper, Onion & Garlic Hummus

Recipe by Anna Peck
http://www.knitting-up-a-storm.blogspot.com/

This recipe yields about a full bowl of hummus. This would be great for parties. Feel free to divide the recipe in half for smaller portions.

Ingredients:
1 can of chick-peas (24-26oz can)
1 lemon
1/2 red pepper
1/2 onion
2 cloves of garlic
1/4 (or less) cup of water
3 tbs light olive oil (and extra to coat the flat bakesheet)
1-2 tsp of salt (depends on how salty you like it) & a dash of pepper
White or wheat pita bread for dipping

Directions:
Cut up the 1/2 red pepper & 1/2 onion into strips, and remove the skin of 2 cloves of garlic. Pour some olive oil on the flat bakesheet, and put the veggies on top of the oil. Sprinkle about a tsp of salt and pepper on top. Bake for about 30 minutes at 400 degrees (F).

After the veggies have cooled, add the can of chickpeas, 1 lemon (the juice), 1/4 cups of water, 1 tsp of salt & pepper, 3 tbs of olive oil and the veggies, and blend it until completely smooth.

Simply dip your pita bread in, or enjoy on a turkey sandwich.

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