Thursday, March 27, 2008

Early Easter Equals Leg Warmers

I knitted up a pair of leg warmers for my daughter to wear with her Easter outfit. She is my "freeze baby" and hates to be cold so since the outfit involved a skirt we made sure she wore tights AND leg warmers. I didn't have a pattern for these so I made this one up. I'm sure it's pretty simple for many of you knitters but for my first pattern I was a bit challenged at times but I'm happy with how they turned out. And do you see that pile of yarn there in the picture? I was sweatin' it when it kept getting smaller and smaller and wasn't sure I'd have enough but phew! I made it with three and a half yards to boot!

By the way, there is a give-away going on over here. I have purchased one of her bags and her work is impeccable. Love the fabrics she used for the wristlet.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Easter Weekend Projects

A while back I purchased a Cup O Joe pincushion kit from Betz White and finally assembled it this past weekend. You don't have to use a sewing machine to assemble it but I wanted to use one (because I want one so badly) and don't own one yet so I used my mother-in-law's trusty Singer from the '60's?? She's an awesome seamstress and still sews and I can't believe she hasn't treated herself to a new one yet. But it does what she needs it to so I'm sure she doesn't think she needs to upgrade. I'm not sure what machine to get and I know eventually I'll be quilting again so keeping that in mind do any of you have a favorite? I had an entry level Husqvarna but sold it a few years ago. It had one of those upright bobbins and I never could get the tension right so I know I want a drop in bobbin for sure. The purse strings are a little tight right now so I need to find one under $400 which I think is doable and I'll even consider used. I probably don't need another hobby but there are so many cool projects I've seen that require one like this and this and this and this. The hunting begins... Here's how my pincushion turned out. Makes me want to take a sip.

Another project I closed the book on was the felted eggs. I didn't embellish them because they turned out more like dinosaur eggs rather than cute little chicken eggs. But I know now next time to knit only the small pattern. My little guy is having fun with them; of course, pretending they are rockets and flying them all over the room. I'll have to sew them shut and let him play. Note to self: for next year pick 5-6 colors all at once, in same brand of yarn and knit small pattern:)

Thursday, March 20, 2008

How do you eat your jelly...

bean, that is. Is it just an Easter indulgence? Do you pick out your favorite flavor and eat it exclusively or do you scoop and eat by the handful or maybe you don't eat them at all? I'm partial to the cherry flavored beans. That's one of the reasons why our dish looks like this:

In my family's opinion, not all beans are created equal. We love Jelly Belly and Brach's Classic beans but now we need to invite my dad over to eat up the black beans. I guess that's all they had growing up.

Surfing around today I found this cute kids activity with jelly beans. Have the kids plant some jelly beans (because our ground is still frozen we'll do this inside in some cups). Have the kids water them. Then on Easter morning swap the jelly beans with lollipops instead!

Useless trivia
  • there is no jelly in a jelly bean

  • it wasn't until the 1930's that jelly beans became part of Easter traditions

  • because of their egg-like shape they became associated with the Easter bunny who is believed to deliver eggs as a symbol of new life

  • each year the U.S. manufacturers produce more than 16 billion jelly beans for Easter

  • April 22 is National Jelly Bean Day!

Who knew? So what's your favorite bean?

Happy Easter!

They've got a kick...

but they're really tasty! Here is a recipe I made for my little guy's third birthday party (I doubled the recipe). My sister had made this before and cut back on the spices but now we both agree that they are de-lish just as the recipe states. Here is the original recipe online but we cooked it differently so here's our take:

Pulled Pork Sandwiches
1 large onion, chopped
6 garlic cloves, peeled
1 pickled jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1 tsp of Chipotle Chile Powder (Schillings brand makes one)
1 Tbsp tomato paste
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
¾ C distilled white vinegar
1 bay leaf
1 tsp paprika
1/3 C ketchup
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
¼ C light brown sugar
3 lbs pork shoulder

1. Puree all of the sauce ingredients (except the bay leaf) in blender until smooth
2. Put sauce, bay leaf, and pork into a large pot (Le Creuset) and add 1 quart water.
3. Place in oven covered, 300 degrees for 3-5 hours or until the meat pulls easily.
4. Take meat out of sauce and place pot on stovetop on med. to med. high heat and reduce the sauce by two thirds (about 45 min)
5. Add the pork back to the sauce.
6. Serve hot on buns topped with coleslaw.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Peep peep peep!

Welcome to the roost! Meet the three chicks:

Here's Coco who is a bit shy but quite the risk taker.

Clementine who is loving and very easy going.

And then there's Chiquita who was born with a bit of 'tude and already has pigmented her backside with a tattoo.

We love our new brood. They are fun to be with and remind us that spring is almost here.
Pattern is by Marie Mayhew .
Yarn used was Frog Tree Alpaca, sport weight. On Coco, Trendsetter Aura in white was used (every other round) along with Frog Tree to give it a fluffy effect.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Happy Birthday, Big Boy

Tomorrow my little guy turns three (or twee as he would say). He's always had a unique (and cute) way of communicating with us and of course mom, dad, and sister are probably the only ones who understand most of what he is trying to say. Little by little he's making progress as he attends his weekly speech therapy sessions. If you ask him his name he says "big boy" and when he counts, every number is "two" so we've been working on "three" so he can tell people how old he is.
Here's a little video clip I took of my daughter and "big boy". I've wanted to capture what he has been asking for for his birthday for quite some time.

This is the translation:

He says: pat pat lwua why
When in fact he is trying to say: pat pat red fly
Which translates to: I want Little Einstein's Pat, Pat Rocket

(Please excuse the runny nose (which is almost a constant all winter long), the dinner stained shirt and the nose picking - eeww how do you get kids to stop that?? And for some reason he thinks I'm much farther away and feels the need to be heard. Oh, and he also interrupts his big sister when she is introducing herself to introduce himself as big boy)

Happy birthday, Big Boy! Love, Big Momma

Saturday, March 08, 2008

Part Two

Baby shower is less than three hours away and I have just completed the second gift. Whew!

This is the flower pacifier from Susie's
Itty Bitty Nursery book. It does involve crocheting around the petals but it's just a simple single crochet. The tricky part for me was to figure out where to insert my needle to pick up stitches, but I think you really can't go wrong. I am so happy with how it turned out. At one point it wasn't going to make it and ended up in a pile of yarn waste but I decided to give it another try. So glad I did. Lots of piecing together involved so it's not a project for everyone (hi Trace :)

Happy knitting!

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Part One

Baby gift [Part One]. I saw these on this blog and then immediately purchased the pattern here. I loved knitting these. They will be gifted to a sweet girl named Gabriella.
Pattern: Merry Janes by Bekahknits. I used Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino and size 3 needles.
Part Two to follow...