Saturday, September 29, 2007

Dear X: You're Wonderful!

Yes, that's right. The best secret pal in the world is Knitter X from City X. DH, the kids and I were driving off when DH spotted an innocent little package on my front stoop.

Straight from Rococo Chocolates in London came my second package. Read it and weep--a package of Frutti di Bosco (white chocolate bars with fruit--already gone b/c my kids opened it immediately and ate most of it), one Cranberry and Nutmeg White Chocolate Artisan Bar, one Orange and Geranium Dark Chocolate and one Morello Cherry Dark Chocolate (I predict my favorite).

Just the thing to get my knitting mojo back--chocolate.

Thanks X and to all you who don't have a great pal, na na a-boo a-boo.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Knitting Slump

I feel blah. I'm in a knitting slump. I mean, I still love to buy yarn but I can't bring myself to cast on. I tried to knit a simple triangle shawl in a sparkly mohair blend But half way through, I discovered I hated the yarn and bound off b/c frogging this yarn would have resulted in a rat's nest or worse, something kin to my daughter's bed head hair in the morning. So now I have a shawl that would only fit a Cabbage Patch doll sized pimp in a yarn I hate.

Any suggestions to get me out of this slump? I just feel no enthusiasm for a new project. Please help! Is there a Knitter's Anonymous in Athens? At this point, I'm willing to get road rage in Atlanta traffic for help.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Kelly Rosebud's Brisket

This brisket is melt in your mouth good. My sister Kelly Rosebud (Rosebud is not her middle name--just a nickname) has been perfecting this over months of Sunday cookouts. It cooks on low heat for ten hours. Yes, you've read right--ten hours

Do not substitute seasonings or meat (like a london broil). It will not be the same. Go ahead and buy the Tex Joy seasonsings online here. You will not be disappointed and use them all the time.

To my utter surprise, many people east of the Mississippi have never eaten brisket. In Texas, it's like a required meal at least weekly otherwise you get deported somewhere. It's also a pretty inexpensive cut of meat. We just bought one 14 pounder for $24.

Kelly Rosebud's Brisket

1 large beef brisket (we typically buy a ten pounder but my other sister Pam buys a fifteen pounder, cuts into thirds, cooks one section and freezes the other two sections)
Tex-Joy seasonings (bbq and steak seasonings each)
Garlic bulb--separate and peel cloves
Oven bags

Preheat oven to 250.

Bore holes into the meat and put peeled garlic cloves. I use two per five pounds of meat. Rub every side of meat with bbq seasoning and steak seasoning. Sear every side on grill or stovetop until it looks dark brown. Place brisket in oven bag, twist shut and put into pyrex dish. Poke one hole in oven bag so steam can be released. Cook at 250 for ten hours. Enjoy!!!!

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I'm taking the plunge.

Into Cat Bordhi's Moebius cowl. She used the cashmere blend from Hand Maiden. Dave and I both watched the Knitty Gritty recording when Cat was on demonstrating the cowl. Dave thought it was a really cool looking technique and I just fell in love with it. You can find the free instructions here.

The picture above is from Colorsong's website. I love the Hand Maiden and Fleece Artist yarns especially the Camelspin Knitter X sent me.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Big Giant Kntting Lies

Some pretty big whoppers...

"It's supposed to be there." I told my friend that the hole in my son's new afghan was not a mistake but rather part of the "Hole in the Wall" afghan pattern. Zack our dog slept with Wesley on the couch back then. Zack would have an air hole during the nap.

"Yes, it was very difficult to knit." This was particularly effective with the added martyr sigh. The scarf was a fan and feather pattern and easy peasy. It just looked difficult.

"Sure I'll make you a scarf, hat and matching mittens once I finish all my other projects." That was two years ago.

"No, it's not that bad." I grimace as I said this. A kid had ripped out ten rows of knitting.

"I watch it for the knitted costume pieces." I tell everyone when I watch a period Colin Firth or Hugh Jackman movie.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Scarf Extravaganza

Once again as Christmas rolls around, my son has volunteered my knitting to the masses. The list lengthens daily but here's just a few...

2 Georgia Bulldog red scarves for his teachers
2 hats for the aforementioned teachers
3 more scarves for assorted people I've never met.
4 washcloths and homemade soap for his Sunday School teachers and Ray's
1 afghan for his best friend
1 set of mittens for himself (he has a couple already)
1 shawl for me (at least I'm in there somewhere)

If history is any indication, this list will open up to include Clifford the Big Red Dog (Wes was two at the time) and his favorite baseball player, Lance Berkman of the Astros.

Ready, set, reach for the Tylenol, and knit.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

What is a hissyknit?

Someone asked me to post the story behind "hissyknit" so here goes...

One month after I learned how to cast on, knit and bind off, I was knitting a basic garter knit scarf for my mother in law. I wanted it to be perfect so I only worked on it at night after the kids went to bed. I was almost done when I pulled at it to untwist it. Right there in the middle was a huge honking hole. I had inadvertently created an eyelet stitch by knitting two together and doing a yarn over.

I had no idea how to repair it and my only recourse was to frog back to the middle. So before I did that, I (and I was 35 years old) threw the biggest tempter tantrum I've ever done. My kids could not have exceeded the decimal volume of my screaming. To this day, I blush at the Korean, Spanish, French and ASL swear words I used. In short, as Dave put it, I had a royal "hissyknit".

It stuck since it was the first of many hissyknits while I learned to knit.

Friday, September 14, 2007

I'm a Pattern of the Day again.

Yippee!! My Junk Yarn Dog Afghan was yesterday's Pattern of the Day by the Daily Knitter! How cool is that?

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Stupid Hurricane!

I went to bed last night and woke up this morning to find my hometown (family and friends are fine back home--it takes a lot more storm to scare Texans) being pummeled by Hurricane Humberto. Freaky storm! I've never heard of a storm developing so quickly.

For Sale: Shawl, Model Not Included

A felted shawl made from wool, hand dyed roving! Modeled by a very crazy but great friend, Jenn. Darilee from Main Street Yarns makes these and you can buy them! I don't usually advertise things but these are unique and they are gorgeous.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

SP11 X is the bestest!!

Sorry Handmaiden Seasilk in Rose Garden. I have a new favorite. Say hello and I love you to Handmaiden Camelspin in Glacier. My camera does not do this colorway justice so I copied it from a retailer's website.

Knitter X from SP11 is the best! She nailed me perfectly from the exotic fiber (silk/camel) to the colors of the beach of browns, blues, greens and even some gray. I don't know whether to knit with it or just gaze at it lovingly. Thank you, X--you rock!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Popeye's Spinach Salad

This is my favorite thing to eat (except for chocolate of course).

1 package of spinach (washed and stems pulled off)
3 Roma tomatoes, diced (can use any other tomatoes)
1 small red onion, diced (can use yellow, sweet or other)
1 large package of feta cheese (or 1 cup shredded cheese of your choice)
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Italian seasonings
Garlic powder to taste
Optional: Bacon Bits or grilled chicken strips or a couple of cups cooked corkscrew pasta

Mix spinach, onions, tomatoes and cheese in large bowl. In separate bowl, whisk olive oil, vinegar, Italian seasonings and garlic powder. Pour over spinach salad and toss well. You can add optional ingredients. Referigerate for about 30 minutes before serving. Very yummy and what a surprise--somewhat healthy.

Thursday, September 6, 2007

The Evil One Starring Zack

Dave took this picture and I feel like I should be tossing holy water on the dog. It looks like Zack is slowly being sucked back home to the seventh layer of hell. He's phasing out of our existence. I'm sure the UPS lady will be grateful.

He was running from me and his monthly flea drops. Dave calls it Pest A Palooza and finds it endlessly entertaining as our seventy pound dog flees (or is it fleas?) in mortal fear from the three drops of flea treatment with me in pursuit. I finally got him this month with switch and bait. I held out a Puparoni treat and when his snout was sniffing my left hand, I grabbed him with my right to apply the treatment. Dave snapped this picture as Zack tried to shake of the drops.

Monday, September 3, 2007

I made a new Knit Bag...sort of...

So I admit it. It was a kit of iron on transfers with a canvas bag from Wally World. But to me, a true ironing moron, it was a success. I never, ever learned to iron nor do I have any desire to iron. My only ironing experience was fourteen years ago when I burned myself ironing a shirt. Very traumatic and educational as I learned I hate ironing and never to use a hot iron while wearing the wrinkled clothes. Jeez, wet the shirt and throw it in the dryer for a few minutes while you eat your breakfast of Mayfield Extreme Moose Tracks.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

I confess--I killed a beautiful yarn.

A great alpaca yarn died....uh dyed this week in a horrible accident. It was awful. I don't know what happened. Wes was Igor to my Dr. Frankenstein when something went wrong. I'm sorry. It turn a strange eggplant color that is so blinding and ugly that I don't know anyone I dislike enough to knit a scarf with this...this monstrosity.

I feel like I should be sentenced to life without the possibility of yarn for what I did to this victim. Next I'll be slapped with a wrongful death suit from American Alpaca Association.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

The Perfect Storm

When hunger, anger, sleeplessness, and sheer stubborness are combined in one place, meet the perfect storm--my daughter, Regan. Four years old and already legendary in family lore and local history. Here she is at Folly Beach, SC before a meltdown. Cute and sweet looking, right? Read on, non-believers!

The first PTO of the year saw Ray stuffing herself with cheese pizza and apple juice. She sat through the first speech, ran to Daddy while he was starting the second speech and kicked the table during the third. Hurricane warnings were issued when her little jaw clenched after I refused to give her another cookie.

After settling down in Wes' first grade classroom to discuss the "new" math, the storm surge started. She plowed down a computer keyboard and literally blew past a poor grandmother almost toppling her while she admired her grandson's drawing.

I scooped her up just in time to avoid a collision with blackboard. Kicking and screaming (her, not me), we picked gingerly past the crowd while Wesley slunk out in shame, holding his sister's Bob the Builder bag of Hot Wheels. The first hurdle was the teacher's desk. It lost. Ray 1, School property 3 (remember the computer and table).

I saw daylight! The door was pushed open by eager teachers silently begging me to hurry before the full force of Hurricane Regan hit. The door decorations didn't make it. Like a vicious twister spawned by hurricanes, Ray's legs whirled dangerously, tearing the crepe paper from the door along with the children's name tags.

The tirade against "Mean Mommy" lasted for a full 90 minutes. I'd rather have a ninety minute mammogram than put up with her.

After ninety minutes of pulling, tugging, hoisting and generally dragging Ray to bed, she wailed, "I want to be good." Good at what? Disaster zones, Alien invasion sites, Armaggedon? 'Cause, girl, you'd put Signourney Weaver on the ropes.