Saturday, March 30, 2013

New Toy!

We got our tax refund and Charlie and I got some things taken care of (we paid off and closed our last credit card!), have some put in savings for moving, and some put in savings as cushion money in case something happens with his job, like he loses hours or something. With all that done, we still had a little bit leftover for us to spend on ourselves (yay for money-maker little Arthur, lol!). We rarely get to splurge and treat ourselves, so we are doing it right now since we are caught up and have a little put back.

The first thing that I ordered with my money...


An Ashford Inklette Loom! Here it is in pieces still, drying after being stained and sealed.

I had to sadly sell my RH loom (and my drum carder) in order to pay the bills and was quite heartbroken over it. I had seen inkle looms before at fiber demonstrations and loved the idea of a small and portable loom that can make all sorts of bands and straps. They are relatively cheap, too... I got the Inklette (smaller version of their Inkle loom), The Weaver's Inkle Pattern Directory by Anne Dixon, and 3 cones of cotton weaving yarn for only 110.00, plus there was mind-bogglingly fast free shipping (ordered on Wednesday, arrived today on Friday). It was my first order from The Woolery and it will certainly not be my last.

Anyway, I choose this kit with the smaller Inklette versus just the larger inkle loom because of price (the larger loom is 100.00 and doesn't come with anything extra). If I end up loving it, I can always buy the larger loom later or ask for it as a birthday or Christmas gift. If I end up being so-so about inkle weaving, then it wasn't too huge of an investment. If I got the larger loom right off, then I would've also had to buy the book (30.00 on its own), some suitable yarn, etc, so the cost would've been significantly higher. The Inklette will do 2 inch wide bands up to 72" long and the larger one will do 3-4 inch wide bands up to 11.5 feet long.

I will be assembling this tomorrow and hopefully can warp it immediately. I can't wait! I know that I want to make collars and leashes for the dogs, a belt for me, Charlie, and Arthur, and some shoelaces. Very exciting and I'll be sure to post updates.

I also made a smallish Knit Picks order, taking advantage of the sock yarn and alpaca sales, and made an etsy order. I haven't purchased from etsy since before we moved to Michigan! Kind of hard to believe since I used to order there so much before... I guess that's what unemployment and such will do to you. I ordered some natural handmade soap, some reusable toiletry items, and some delicious roving that you'll just have to see once it arrives. The fiber was a definite splurge, a little more expensive than I usually go for, but the colorway and prep was just too gorgeous to pass up and I haven't purchased fiber in years so I think it's ok (and I got 12 ounces so can actually do something with it!).

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Shoebee, Dooby Doo


Shoebeedoo baby shoes for Mikah! Made the larger size with KP Felici, Minty. Like the Crocodile Stitch booties I  made by the same designer, they run a little small.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Yum

 
 
Ritz cracker chicken and homemade homestyle scalloped potatoes. Both were so good.
 

Stuffed bellpeppers and leftover potatoes. The bellpepper was almost complete leftovers as well... extra Ritz cracker chicken (shredded), leftover brown rice from another meal, and the corn, salsa, and black beans were leftovers as well. I left the bellpeppers in the crockpot a little too long so they were a little soft, but still tasted good.


Popovers! Such simple ingredients and so delicious with jam and butter.


Pasta with asparagus and lemon cream sauce with roasted parmesan acorn squash. Arthur and I loved the squash and Charlie couldn't get enough of the pasta.


Homemade snickerdoodles... my favorite! They are especially good when dipped in tea or milk.

We also had some black bean and zucchini quesadillas, zucchini bread cupcakes, and baked parmesan zucchini slices (can you tell that I had some zucchini to use up?).

And today I got the cutest recipe book to hold all my recipes in (something I've been looking for for a while now):


Thursday, March 21, 2013

He's Here!


My brother and his wife welcomed their son, Mikah James Harper, into the world the morning of March 20, 2013! He is 7lb 6 oz and 20.5 inches long.

Brooke's water broke at midnight and she went into strong and non-stop contractions. They were so close together that Mikah never got a break and he was getting stressed and his heart rate kept dropping too low. After trying to combat the contractions with meds and failing, they decided to pull him. Momma and baby are doing great now.


He looks so much like my brother! I can't believe it. I am so happy for them (and for me... I have a new kid to cover in handknits!). Baby Arthur and I are flying to Georgia the last week of April to visit family and meet the handsome fella. Charlie sadly can't make this trip (work getting in the way and flying is expensive anyway), but I'm excited nonetheless.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

This is the scarf that never ends....


it goes on and on my friends...


Loxley is taking forever!!! I got through the first, more interesting, part pretty quickly but these 32" long garter stitch portions are slow-growing. Granted, I haven't given it much attention in the past few days due to sheer exhaustion and being completely uninterested in much more than caring for Arthur and minimal housework/cooking... Charlie's been on the overnights and Arthur hasn't been sleeping well, so that means I'm up with him night and day. Fortunately, he goes to 3 (sometimes 4) nights starting this week, so will be able to help out a little more. Glad for it, I think I might not make it much longer with only 4 hours of sleep at night and the random and quite rare 2 hour nap during the day!

I seriously need to work on the scarf more though! I had promised it over a week ago, but that didn't happen. I want to have it completely done by this coming weekend so that he can use it. Doable, but I need to actually work on it. I am about 27 inches in on one side; I need to reach 32 inches before I can start working on the decreases. Then I have to do the other side.

It's a fun knit, though a bit boring. I like to wear it while I knit.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Knitting, Bunnies, and Arthur

 I've been knitting a lot lately, mostly after Arthur and Charlie go to bed. Charlie has been on the overnight shift lately, so he goes to bed with Arthur at about 6pm to get a nap in before heading to work. I have taken those few hours as my time and I get some housework done and knit.



Charlie goes once a week to play Dungeons & Dragons with some of his friends. He's always the DM (Dungeon Master) and apparently he's supposed to wear something having to do with the game. His friends have an old ratty robe for him, but he refuses to wear it because it's pretty gross (I haven't seen it myself, but I hear that it's been around for years and never been washed). He requested "something knit that is from like medieval times or something." He originally wanted a wizard hat, but I found something much better... Loxley, by the very talented and popular Stephen West. It's really a clever, though simple, design and I think it will look a lot better than some old witch's hat (and he could wear it outside of D&D).


More progress on the scrappy socky blanket. I've been making more squares and joining them here and there. I absolutely love how it's turning out!


I've been joining all the scraps too small for a square and have a larger-then-softball-sized magic ball now. I don't know what I'll end up doing with it... Maybe a bunch of crazy squares? Use it for the border? Something else not related to the blanket? We'll see.


Remember this? It's the hexagon blanket using only Noro fingering weight yarns. I had put it in a bag and then forgot about it. I fished it out the other day and it's much larger than I remembered it being. I've been working on hexagons here and there.


Not knitting, but my MIL has asked me to make some of these coat hangers for her. She likes to take 2 wire hangers and knot RHSS around them to make them thicker and non-slip. I've been charged with the task of making more for her since she doesn't have the time (and she gives me a little spending money for doing these little things for her).

Now for the bunnies and Arthur :)

We had to find a new home for Sally and Chip because the city is being really stupid. The ordinance has nothing about goats and we found out before we got them that they are ok here. Everything was fine until animal control came one day and said that they weren't allowed (the paper she gave us with the ordinance typed out had, "Not sheep/goats allowed" handwritten at the bottom). Apparently, they are allowed here, but the city forces you to fight every case and you can't keep the animals while fighting. It's ridiculous. We didn't have the means to fight or anywhere to keep them in the meantime, so we were forced to find them a new home. Fortunately, we found a really nice and experienced 4-H home for them. Charlie was so upset; they were his birthday present from him mom and stepdad and he had wanted them so badly. He invested so much time into them just to see them gone.

We still had the fence up and all that hay, so when I saw these guys on craigslist for free...


They had to come live with us! I bred and showed rabbits for years and missed the little guys so much. We also wanted to get Arthur a pet that he could love on (he loves the dogs, but they aren't so crazy about him... never aggressive or anything, but they just leave when he comes at them) and I mentioned rabbits. These two are Flemish Giants (they are roughly 13 lb each). The gray at the front is Buster, a neutered male, and the black is Rue, a female. Rue is much friendlier and less skittish than Buster, who Charlie says is going in the stewpot once we get another rabbit to replace him. I don't know about all that, but for now he's in the yard.

I love looking out the kitchen window and seeing them hopping around the pen. It's huge, about half of our backyard, and they have toys, holes, etc to play with. They have access to the shed at all times and are locked up in it during really bad weather, at night, and when we aren't home.

Here's a cute little video I got today, on Arthur's 11 month birthday :)

Friday, March 8, 2013

Macaroni

We call Arthur "Macaroni." It's become his nickname and he responds to it just like his actual name. It came about because we would call him Arthuroni, then I called him Arthuroni Macaroni, so he's now just Macaroni. People always think it's funny when we call him that, but it just stuck and it seems to fit him.

Here is a pic of him eating some macaroni and cheese, his favorite when we go out to eat somewhere:


He looks so grown up in this picture! Makes me a little sad...

Here are some recent favorites:




Proof that I really do love this kid:


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Cap Sleeve Lattice Top


Since I finished the fair isle hat, I decided to cast on for a big project. I ordered some KP Shine Sport in January to make a Cap Sleeve Lattice Top and, guess what, I'm actually making it! I always buy yarn with a project in mind, but never actually cast on for it and end up using the yarn for smaller projects instead. Not this year! I bought the fair isle hat yarn specifically for that hat and I made it, so now I'm working on this summery top.

The torso is stockinette stitch and I'm using the Platinum colorway. It's a warm beigey-gray color. The top mesh part will be in Dandelion... a bright and sunny yellow. I'm loving the yellow and gray combo right now and love that the top will have a pop of color! I had a false start and some gauge issues, but I think it's going to fit. I may have to airdry this one since I lose about half a stitch in gauge in the dryer, but I didn't have small enough needles so am making gauge prewash instead. We'll see.

Eats From Last Week


I made Arthur some homemade baby cookies using rice cereal, natural applesauce, baking powder, a little sugar, a little vanilla, water, and egg yolks. They turned out pretty good and he loved them. I will make more of these since the kid goes through a container of baby cheeto puff things every single day! That's about 2.00 a day in snacks!


Blueberry muffins. Ok, I admit, they are from a package and I just had to add milk. But boy were they delicious. It was a morning when Charlie was sleeping in a little and Arthur and I wanted something easy and yummy for breakfast. I put him in the Moby wrap and we made the muffins together, then enjoyed eating them together in front of the tv.


Grilled chicken (mine was tiny since last time we went shopping I just got a cheap bag of breasts and they weren't very big) and more baked potato casserole. It's sooo yummy and I wanted to use the last of the broccoli and sausage before it turned.


Chicken enchiladas! These came out great! It made enough to have for lunch, Charlie's dinner, and some to put back in the freezer for another day.


It's not pretty, but it tastes really good... Manicotti. Next time I think I'll add some ground beef.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Floppy Fairisle Hat

I finished the hat I showed in the last post!





I haven't done a stranded project in a while and really missed it! I'm really proud of my floats.