Saturday, September 25, 2010

Brought to you by Coffee

This weekend is brought to you by coffee. And jammies. Clean sheets and no makeup. By knitting and lots of it, taped tv and sitting on the porch with a lap full of yarn. From a book long in progress and the promise of time spent just being.

There is somehow never enough of that! :)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Weekend Dawning

I have to say, I'm really looking forward to the weekend. I'm (blessedly and blissfully) off the bride trail and have knitting to do and lots and lots of taped tv to watch. What I'm not doing is wrangling brides OR making nice with folks I'd rather drop kick to the curb. Or painting, I'm not doing that either, which is a very good thing!

The sweater in my lap in the photo above was taken at knit group last week. I can't tell you how happy I was to have been able to go. Like, really glad. Work has been a kicker and I needed the smell of yarn and knitters to set me back to rights!

While enjoying the yarny camaraderie, Yo-El said that she hadn't seen many brides wielding knitting on the blog this season. She is SO right. And the fact is that brides this season have been---- well, it is not that they wouldn't have been accommodating. Or willing. Or even somewhat happy to comply. It is the fact that I haven't had much of a relationship with them, they've been ------ well just not my usual needle wielding happy subjects engaging in the first flush of marital bliss. Add that to the fact that this season has had me off contract for many of them and there has been a dearth of the usual bridely knitting. Tomorrow's bride would be wonderful, but instead I'll be sitting at home eating brownies in my jammies and happily knitting. Seems a fair trade-off if you ask me.

The lap full of sweater in the photo is indeed the cardi that has been in progress for a very long time. Since that shot, I've put on another few inches and hope to arrive at the armhole shaping on the back soon. As knitters know, once you get to that point the back seems to come together pretty quickly. I think I'll then knit a front (positively zoomy after the back) and then the sleeves before finishing with the other front. See, I must be getting into this sweater again since I'm making plans! ;)

The mondo blue lace wrap is DONE! Finito! After a good soak, she's now laying on the supah big table in the basement for a block. 80" inches of length, perfect! I had to add a bit more yarn on the end of the project to make it long enough. I'm really pleased with this super easy project, my second gift laying in wait for Christmas. Photos to come!!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Beyond Tired & Some Knitting

Good grief I'm tired! The studio is moving------ very exciting to be sure but MAN what a lot of work! The nasty carpeting was removed and gorgeous olivewood floors were laid. The entire 2400 square feet of remarkable space had to be painted. (Yes, more painting for me). Then everything had to be moved over, re-set and the final styling is in progress as we speak. Looks good, but have I said how tired I am?

Some knitting has happened, this is the view of the uber simple scarf sitting on my lap out on the deck. Gorgeous yarn---- and it has proven to be (while ridiculously simple) a sanity saver.

The mondo wrap continues, the final balls of yarn are in progress now. I will knit it until the yarn has given its last gasp.

Weatherwise, its finally gorgeous, I haven't had the a/c on for two weeks. Working at the studio has meant I've missed the couple of hot days and the nights have been glorious. Perhaps fall is going to be here at last and with luck it will be beautiful.

Hope you're enjoying life on YOUR deck!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

The flowers above were delivered yesterday, are they just the happiest things ever? Nothing like sunflowers to make a gal smile, and the accompanying blue-ness is fantastic!

Speaking of blue----- electric blue so says the ballband------- the scarf is coming along. To me it is more like a mondo scarf or a wrap-ette but who asked? Erica commented that she liked the matching needles (well, yeah...). It's still a bit like making macrame or something with 3 strands of bulky knit on these mop handles, but I like it. Does anyone remember the mile a minute afghans that were so popular years ago? This is sort of like that, with a couple of hours knitting time and 3 balls of yarn this much of the gift was born.

I'm just glad to be knitting again!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Chocolate Heaven Fluff Pie

Since my knitting seems to be, well-- a bit "off" these days, maybe I'll cook. I've been cooking a lot lately, I do work out a lot of stuff in the kitchen. One of the things that seems to have really peaked is my pie crust, good news/bad news. Good news in that I finally GOT it, bad news in that I'm afraid there will be more pies coming out of the kitchen. Last night this pie made its debut along with a giant wok full of fried rice with bok choy, tofu and radishes. The radishes sound like an odd addition but they were pretty darned good.

I FINALLY made knitting with the group last night---- which was lovely. And since all knitting is made of frustrating stuff what else to do but start a new project which is frought with frustrating elements of its own. The Magnified Lace Scarf from Lion Brand, a free pattern. I saw this simple piece styled with a pair of jeggings, a white shirt and wide belt and it looked fabulous. I immediately thought of my oldest daughter and what a great gift it would make. Mind you, while I played with gauge and resulting fabric from the heavily acrylic yarn (my daughter doesn't care well for garments), those at knit group reminded me that the fabulous Emily just completed a gorgeous shawl knit from high quality spiderweb and teensy needles in a complex lace pattern. In a foreign language. Ahem. This is a simple lace, knit on needles so large they're like broomsticks (which do have their own inherent problems) and tripled bulky yarn. We shall see. Two repeats in I'm not sure, just not sure. My yarn is a rich jewel toned teal.

Well it is a long weekend coming up, right? What better way to enjoy a long weekend with something from the kitchen that shouts to the world what a great catch you are! Pie! Pie? Not just any pie mind you but a rich yet fluffy slice of chocolate heaven. Pair it with takeout pizza or bbq if you must but let there be the labor of pie. Personally I believe that if you make something fabulous they'll leave you alone to be creative for a bit....... I could be wrong.

Chocolate Heaven Fluff Pie

1 baked pie shell (from scratch is lovely, I mean don’t be lazy!)

¾ cup sugar + 2 Tbs.

¼ cup cornstarch

½ cup heavy cream

2 cups milk (you can use any kind but you’ve gone this far, use whole)

¼ cup dark cocoa

2 Tbs. butter

4 egg yolks, beaten gently

2 Tsp. good quality vanilla

1 cup mini marshmallows

With the pie shell cooling (because you did make it from scratch, right?) prepare the filling. Tumble together all of the dry ingredients and whisk up. Slowly add the cream and stir, add the milk and heat over a medium heat. You can use a double boiler if you like but whatever you do stir constantly. When the liquid begins to steam, add a bit slowly to the beaten yolks and stir up, then remove them back to the mixture on the stove. Continue stirring, add the butter. The filling will go to a stage where it looks kind of lumpy or grainy, keep stirring. When the mixture reaches a bubble, turn off the heat, add the vanilla and the marshmallows and stir off the heat. When the filling has incorporated all of the marshmallows, take a taste. (You know you want to!)

Place the chocolate fluff filling into a totally cooled pie shell and place a sheet of plastic cling over the top to keep a skin from forming.

In the “old days” I’d make a nice meringue for the top but the state of chickens and raw eggy-ness has made me either leave things plain, or add a whipped cream topping if necessary. Luckily this pie is creamy and dreamy enough to need neither unless you just want to take it entirely over the top. It is of course up to you!

Cool the pie at least 4 hours.