Monday, March 31, 2008

Kitchen Joy

We are back from Spring Break, getting re-adjusted to the schedule that is our regular lives...

I'm back with this lovely thing that is making my life so much easier - a gift from my Mom-in-Law - a mandolin. Woah, what took me so long to figure this out? Why not sooner? Hunh? It certainly does let me make all those elaborate, chopping intensive things that I try to avoid...and fast. I'll just try not to take off the tips of any of my fingers...

Got a chance to start my new gift for my fella...shhhh...don't tell him, okay? The wool finally came, so I can get on with it.

We spent lovely holidays with both sides of the family and got tons of cousin/aunt/uncle/grandparents goodness in the bargain. Took our old, deaf dog with us to my parent's house after she was cared for by my sister (thanks again!) and that was interesting. We haven't tried to take her anywhere but camp (and even that not in the last couple of years), so it was new all over again with the hand signals she and I have negotiated between us. We were out in the Kootenay Lake area - a definite no-leash zone. It felt strange to be the only person walking with the dog on a leash, but with her stone-deafness, I couldn't call her if she decided to take off after an interesting smell, a deer, coyote, car or an emu(!).

A sweet local girl took care of our cats while we were gone, so today I got down to making her some sweet thank-you's.

Now, if you've been reading the blog for a while you'll know that I do a lot of whole food cooking, a lot of food from scratch. If you normally tune in for a bit of that foodie goodness....stop reading now! I made something truly decadent for our young friend and some to share with her little brother (maybe). Something that involved buying two (!) devil's food cake mixes. And cream cheese. And butter. And shortening.

It's enough to make any heart patient cringe, but lordy these are good.
They're Faux-reos...yes, Oreo cookies without the trip to the store. Both boys said that these blow the store-bought ones out of the water, and I have to say I agree.

It was a first time 'round with this recipe, and I'll be adding it to our once-a-year, diet-to-the-four-winds cook book.

I can't wait to inflict these on my book club friends.

If you think you can stand the sugar rush you can find the recipe here for the cookies, and here for the filling.

Yes, the amounts are right. There really is that much butter, sugar, shortening and cream cheese in this recipe. Please do yourself a favour and don't look at the nutritional information. It'll only make you sad.

The good news is that it made substantially more than I thought...85 cookies! We'll give away 3 dozen, and that leaves us with 49.
Oh, make that 48.

I mean 47?

Would you believe 44?



Thursday, March 20, 2008

A little newsflash

We're going away for a couple of days. Happy Easter!


Finished Rogue sweater!

I woke up this morning to this:

He asked to be the first to wear the sweater once it was done. Sweet, eh?

He took this photo of me a little later in the morning:

Happy stitching,

Monday, March 17, 2008

Slow progress

I'd have posted some pics sooner, but Sally Stitch has been at school wearing vests for the Afghanistan project. I've got her back over spring break and was hoping to take advantage of the time and get my Rogue sweater together. Sadly, I've got most of one sleeve yet to do and don't know if I'll get it done before we go to Abbotsford later in the week.

I've been really happy with how it's going together, and love the fit! The only thing that I'm thinking I'll change is the hem. I did it differently than the pattern, and now am regretting not putting a turning ridge on it. I'll cut it and re-knit it once the whole works is done, I think. I put a turning ridge on the sleeves and the hems there behave much better.

This pattern is wonderfully written. The shaping is incorporated into the cabling at the sides beautifully. The main modifications I have made are in length...I wanted the body to be longer than the pattern, and my arms are much longer than the ones designed for the smallest size.

I haven't done a whole lot else these days aside from being sick, helping the boys while they were sick, and schoolwork for my new class. I submitted my first assignment last week - and will get it back tomorrow - I'm nailbiting a bit! It's been a really, really long time since last time I was graded on anything like this. Got my fingers crossed.

Hope all is well with you!

Happy St. Patrick's day,


Sunday, March 02, 2008

And just likethat....

I'm a student again.

And I'm sick.

Somehow, though, the weight of the textbook on my lap and the hot drink in my hand makes me feel like it's 20 years ago....trying to ground facts in my fuzzy brain. Are my crow's feet fading with this little trip back in time? Somehow I doubt it...

I'm doing a course toward a certificate program at a local college that will let me apply to work in the school system. Hopefully I'll get it done within the year allotted and not bore you all with it in the meantime. It's exciting, and a little scary...but I figure I'm learning things all the time, I just need to apply that same zeal and focus to the books.

The other night while I was reading Oldest said,"Mom?"
I said," hang on, wait 'til I finish this paragraph"
he said, "I liked it a lot better before you went back to school"

That made me laugh. I'd had my textbook precisely 2 hours by then. What a hoot, eh?

Here's the other thing I've been learning - or relearning, rather - Cables. These cables are different than any I've done before, as they're a little more Celtic in nature, and they don't all originate from some lower stitching. Some of these babies just start or end on the ground stitching without flowing into anything else...nifty, eh?

It's really a dry run for a sweater I want to make for DH. He doesn't know yet, so keep it quiet, okay? I'm waiting for the yarn to arrive....

Happy stitching,