Sunday, March 30, 2008

Mmmm, mmmm, Good

Up to my knees in babies…..and to think I was complaining about not having any to knit for. Is it awful that I want to sneak in a couple of knits for moi before I tackle this other blanket?? I’m making good progress on Beryl, the body is all knit in one piece, I just have to make it through all the stockinette. It shouldn’t be too difficult considering I’m still in love with the Pima Fresca yarn by Queensland, in all its Blush colored goodness. I’m hoping I can give cotton a good name again! I’m knitting it pretty tightly and making a smaller size, we’ll see how it goes.
I also started a new project!! The Spiraling Leaves Fingerless Gloves by Lynne Vogel. If you think you know that name, it may be from the new Knitty. She designed the Spirogyra mitts; they look like Pomatomus for your hands. It’s kind of funny how I’m loving making these mitts with tiny needles & yarn, yet I still haven’t finished a pair of socks. At any rate, they are a nice distraction from the sweater and the aforementioned obligatory ‘blanket that I’m supposed to be working on’.

For dinner, we’re having some baby back ribs…yum. Not sure yet what sides, probably rice & broccoli. Need some healthy stuff in there somewhere, right?

I made some super awesome ham & bean soup on Friday night, here’s my not 100% clear recipe: (Ummm, yeah, my ham bone's sticking out....)

Super Awesome Ham & Bean Soup
- Leftover ham and bone – cut off as much as you can from the bone into chunks (no, I have no idea how much I had left). Mine was Gwaltney and it was a Brown Sugar Honey Ham. I’m totally sold that the spices on the ham added a lot to the flavor of the final soup. If I didn’t have the honey ham, I think I’d add some brown sugar/cinnamon/nutmeg to get a similar flavor.
- 1 lb. of large white lima beans (because that's the kind Grandmom used)
- 1 ½ medium onions
- 2 stalks celery
- 2 tspns. Poultry seasoning
- 2 tspns. Dried parsley
- 2 tspns. Sea salt
- 1 tspn. Black pepper
- 1 tspn. Dried mustard
- 1 tspn. Garlic powder (bet fresh garlic would be even better!)
- 1 small can tomato paste
- 4 medium potatoes
* Take the beans and add about 6 cups of very hot water to them in a saucepan. Bring to a rapid boil for 3 minutes. Let sit for 1 hour in the water.
* Drain beans. Put in a large soup pot. Cover with new water to about 1 ½” above the beans. Add everything listed above, EXCEPT for the potatoes. You want to add the ham bone last, after you’ve gotten everything nice and stirred up. Turn up stove to high until you get a boil, and then reduce to a low simmer.
* Let simmer on low for about 1 ½ hrs. Skin and dice up your potatoes and add them. Cook for an additional 30 minutes or until you can stand waiting. Enjoy!
* I’m sure you could add some extras….I bet carrots or peas would be really good!
Here are a couple of pics of the little skirt I made for Sydney’s 4th birthday. I started off with a simple twisted rib at the top, added an eyelet row for a drawstring, and then double my # of sts. for a lacy traveling vine pattern down the length, changing stripe widths as I went.
She likes it, but I think I need one of those little plastic thingies to hold to drawstring closed up for her. I used Cascade Luna, a cotton yarn that was fine to work with, but somewhat annoying with all the knots in it! Bet you can't guess her favorite color....

I’m also designing some fingerless gauntlets for my husband. He loves armor(yes, the metal kind), and I’m attempting to create an armor looking pattern in knitted stitches, which is proving to be a challenge. I’ll give you some pics next week.


Sunday, March 16, 2008

Creating for what is To Be.....

A Lace Blanket for a sweet baby girl to be named Lelia, eta April 20th, 2008.

Yarn: Berocco Comfort, in colors #9712 (Buttercup), #9736 (Primary Blue, though my colorway wasn’t as bright) and I’m not certain of the third colorway, an off-white.

Needles: Size US 8 used throughout

Finished Dimensions: 42” X 38” after blocking, since I like big blankies!

This is a blanket I have designed myself, playing around with my wonderful stitch dictionaries. It was originally drawn out to be much different, but as many of you know, patterns don’t always work out the way we imagine they will. (Or at least not at this point in my designing….) What came to be is very serendipitous, and I’m quite happy with the results. If you’re interested, I may write up the pattern….let me know.
Now, the parents went the non-traditional route of a color palette for this baby girl, since they already have a blue room, they decided to keep it and add yellow. Hence the color scheme is not what I myself would have picked, noting my penchant for pink. (Pink, who me??) I think they will be pleased.
It took some amount of figuring to get all these patterns to play nicely together. I primarily used patterns with all purling on the WS rows, though some have patterning on both sides. I think the most difficult one was the tulips, since it was a 36 row repeat. I used the Lilly of the Valley pattern for the top left corner, since that is the mother to be’s name.

I’ll also throw in a quick shot of the last minute hat & baby booties, found here, I love these! (Since the blanket wasn't finished in time.) They remind me of little fortune cookies the way they are folded up. Umm, I ran out of yarn for the blanket. (Hey, I thought 1000 yards would be enough!) Yes, this is me, being driven to the shower and seaming up the second bootie literally until we pulled into the parking lot. Why do we knitters drive ourselves crazy?? Why, of why can’t we just go to Target and get SOMETHING ELSE until we finish the ________. (Insert item you’re driving yourself crazy trying to finish here. Feel free to add any explicative you see fit as well.)

What else is going on? Uhhh…..a lot. I felt like this blanket deserved its own post, I have plenty more to show you soon. Sydney’s birthday is this week, she’ll be 4. FOUR. Holy moly, how on earth did THAT happen? Time goes on…..

‘til next time, knit on.