Thursday, December 31, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday

"An optimist stays up until midnight to see the new year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves.” - Bill Vaughn

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Yarn Purchase

I broke the yarn diet, but not really since it was not money from our bank account. My mom and grandad gave me some cash for my birthday I had been searching for a 4 shaft table loom but found that some of the prices were above my meager means and so I did the next best thing, bought yarn on sale at Joann's every skein of yarn in the store had a percentage off, I was so pleasantly surprised.
Naturally Caron Spa - Acrylic Bamboo Blend -Ocean Spray I'm planning on using it for this pattern the yarn feels soft and light.

Then there was the sock yarn, I really like the way this yarn knits up.
I got the Rainbow Classic for this pattern which is a vintage shawl. I've never used this yarn before so this is an experiment to see if it goes on the approve list of yarns that don't trigger my allergies.
The Sage Aunt Lydia's are for some weaving I finally was able to find the right green to compliment some other cotton I have stashed for a table runner.

And this is the yarn I've been using for the place mats, its called Tiara Ombre, I know weird name but we don't get to choose those
although I wouldn't mind giving them suggestions.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Fresh Weaving

I started warping yesterday during the sad and disappointing Dolphin's game as Mr. Deepend was screaming in his official armchair coach position, to start weaving on plain, beautifully simple place mats. It was sheer joy, I know most think plain weave is well boring but there is some comfort in the rhythm of tabby weave I can't explain it but I really truly love the monotony of the up, throw, down throw, it's calming. The warp behaved, the weft slid right through the shed it was utter happiness on my part, especially since I'd been having no luck with my previous weavings. I pickup this new yarn (more on that next post, trust me I didn't break my promise of the yarn ban) because I loved the colors, it's Bernat Handicrafter's 4 ply cotton I don't know the name at the moment, but its something Ombre, of course to me it reminded me of a cottage nestle among tall sea grass like you would see at any picturesque seaside retreat, you know the kind that costs 1.2 M steps away from the surf, yeah that one. The camera made the dusty blue almost grey in color which would be another interesting color choice with this palette. I must contemplate dying some yarn in the next year, I have some color combos in my head that I think would be interesting to put out, but one obsession at a time.

(Really doesn't that just scream beach, surf and sand)

I started weaving after an easy, effortless tie up, I was getting nervous because I had no mishaps, makes a girl doubt her abilities for a nano second.
By the end of the night I'd woven almost 18" and I was very satisfied with the results.

120- warp ends

120" warp length

7.5 dpi heddle

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

Isaiah 9:6For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday

Psalm 55:22 (New Living Translation)
Give your burdens to the Lord,
and he will take care of you.
He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.
Picture taken at the NC/TN line.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Tostones (Toes-tone-es)

These little nosh goodness are as fun to make as they are to eat.
4 green plantains - peeled and cut into 2" rounds (I got mine from my mom's plantain tree they are called Hawaianos - Ha-wa-yanos (Hawaiians, they are shorter, thicker and softer easier to peel than regular plantains).
Canola oil enough to cover the pane 1" deep.
Salt to taste

Take the cut plantains and fry them on both sides until fork tender. Take out of oil and drain on a paper napkin,or cotton towel if your going green and if you weave well then, you should have an ample supply of woven kitchen towels to work with.
I have this gadget called a tostonera which is a different way of saying maker of tostones, its made of two wood pieces held together by hinges you open the lid and inside is a routed out circle this is where you place your cooked plantains to squash them. My mom and grandma squashed the plantains with the flat bottom of a glass cup worked out just fine, but someone got the idea of this gadget and I guess it made them some money cause most of my Cuban American friends all have one, go figure!

After you squash the plantain rounds, you then re-fry them, yes friends this is not a nosh without it's good amount of calories and they are oily, but consider it a treat once in a blue moon. My mom has nuked them with the skin on and cut into rounds and then, squashes and fries them, I have tried this but the troops don't like them that way. After they get crispy around the edges take them out of the oil and drain them once again, sprinkle with salt and enjoy.
Mr. Deepend sometimes likes to sprinkle them with garlic salt he says it adds a little something.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Traditions

Some bloggers have written about the Christmas tradition they share with their families and I though it would be great to share one of ours with you. At our house one tradition is the hanging of the Christmas Nail. The nail itself is 8" long, when I purchased the nail 10 years ago it came with a poem:

This is the Christmas Nail. It is to be hung on a sturdy branch, a branch near the trunk, a branch that will hold such a spike without being noticed by well-wishers dropping by to admire one's tinseled tree. The nail is know only to the home that hangs it. Understood only by the heart that knows its significance. It is hung with the thought: The Christmas tree but foreshadows the Christ tree which only He could decorate for us, with nails such as this.
Although the poem is poignant to our family it is the True Meaning of Christmas.

Tomato, Tomahto

You say eether and I say eyether,
You say neether and I say nyther;
Eether, eyether, neether, nyther,Let's call the whole thing off!
You like potato and I like potahto,
You like tomato and I like tomahto;Potato, potahto, tomato, tomahto!
Let's call the whole thing off!

I remember the first time I ever heard that song I was 9 yrs old , watching an old Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers movie, they were singing and rollerskating to that song in "Shall we Dance ". I loved watching those movies, since I was enrolled in tap dance and ballet classes, my inspiration was to become a Radio City Music Hall Rockette, and dance with Mr. Astaire, lofty for a kid.

This is our first tomato of the season although she's blurry, she was really sweet.

This is how the plants are looking so far there are about 12 or so on one and four on the other. I have to figure out why one is producing so much more. But for now we're waiting for them to ripen.

And because no post can go without some fibery goodness this is my log cabin afghan that I have been working on. I put it together yesterday to see how large the final ghan would be. It's plenty long but I think it still needs another row to widen it. I'm going to use it tonight, since its really chilly here 53 F when I got up this morning, and see how it works out if it can't cover me the way I want it to, then I'll add more squares before the edging to finish it off.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday

When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, "I used everything you gave me" - Erma Bombeck

Picture was taken Dec 2007, Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

Monday, December 14, 2009

The afghan that never was.

I started with high hopes as evident in this post, but wound up with this:

What is it you say, well its a small curtain for my master bath, why you ask? Because cotton chenille is the devil's yarn spawn!! I hate that yarn, no matter what I tried, how tight the tension how many pick up sticks I inserted to get it tighter, it didn't work it damn nearly killed my patience, that's not to say that I have a lot of it, patience that is, but really how annoying. After a few choice words and some internal screaming, this is as far as I could fathom working on it without pulling the last bits of my hair out and thinking wow, this is suppose to be fun? As soon as I freed the loom of this devil's yarn, and I can attest, I loved taking the scissors to it, that my friends was one of the best feeling I've had since I started the whole project. I promptly pulled out my sewing machine and put together this window covering. I figured if I didn't do it right away I'd be so disappointed I would put it away not to be seen in like forever. At least it didn't all go to waste and I got a cute window covering that actually matches the walls and shower curtain. I have more of this devil's yarn spawn, I think I'm going to offer it up to someone that can appreciate it, I don't plan on using it for anything else, I'm done, thank you very much.

I started warping my loom with what will be easy cotton place mats we need some and I need something simple, that can actually be accomplish and used as planned.

Friday, December 11, 2009

It's That Time of the Year

To figure out what got accomplished, what didn't and what are the goals for next year.

I don't make lists it's something that I hate (although hate is a strong word) to do, I've always felt it sets you up for disappointment when you don't get everything done and adds extra pressure and deadlines, which is yet another concept I loathe.

Last year I said that this year would be the year of lace knitting and it was, these were some of the results of that statement.

I figure I conquered some of my doubts and fears with lace knitting. One thing I regret this year was the lack of time I spent with my weaving loom, I only got these done.

With just one more WIP on the loom it seems that it was the year of the knitting bug.

I have a few WIP's on needles which I will finish, but this next coming year will be the year of weaving. I have a few projects in mind some practical and others just for fun. I plan to knit only at club, for any car trips and on my lunch hour. With this idea, anytime I spend at home will be in front of my loom. Since it worked last year once I made the statement of lace, I figure I'll go for broke this year and Claim the Year of Weaving.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday

Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds. - Albert Einstein

Picture taken at Smather's Beach, Key West, I figured I would share some sunshine with everyone buried in snow.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Is This Nuts?

For lack of any content today I question the love in my house for this animal. This is Sasha, my, I guess I should say our, 11yr old Pekingese. Lately she's developed a barking habit at the ungodly hour of 4:30 am. We have resorted to clothing her in a t-shirt to stop the barking, because she hates clothes she stops whatever she's doing and lays down. I feel awful at doing this to the poor thing but after a few nights all the troops are complaining louder than her barking. I know this is a face only a mother could love and I do.


But how can you resist that face, yes she does get almost all the bits she begs for.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Pudin (Cuban Bread Pudding)


2 loaves of day old Cuban Bread (can use any day old bread)
1 can of evaporated milk
1 can of sweeten condensed milk
1 egg
1 small box of raisins
1 cup of sugar
2 cups of water
1 can of coco rallado (grated coconut flakes in extra heavy syrup this stuff is really sweet)

Let the bread dry out overnight in a bowl covered with a dish towel.

Take the sugar and water and put in a sauce pan on high to make the caramel the color of the cooked sugar should be a dark caramel color.

Pour the caramel into a Pyrex container or a spring form pan.

In the bread bowl pour the can of evaporated milk, sweeten condensed milk and the egg and raisins. Stir mixture until incorporated

Pour mixture into the Pyrex loaf pan and cover with foil, pierce the top of the foil with a knife to let steam escape while cooking. Place the loaf pan inside the crock pot pour water into the sides of the crock pot until it’s half way up the loaf pan, cook on high for 4 hours. This can be done in the oven, same concept set the oven temp at 450 and cook for 35 mins.

You can check the if its ready by inserting a knife in the center if it comes out clean your done.

Chill the pudin in the fridge for two hours, then serve with coco rallado over it. You can omit the coconut flakes, but the troops at my house think it add that extra something.