Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Yesterday, the neighbor girl came over to play with the kids in the yard with the sprinkler.
They had a good time but the irony, after 5 minutes, Hannah announced she was cold. Um, honey, it was 100 F outside!
In between knitting many items on small needles, I dug out some cotton and started this Ball Band Dishcloth from Mason Dixon Knitting.
Just a little something to break up the size 3 needles and 900 yards of lace weight yarn!
Monday, May 29, 2006
The Veteran's Group out where Dad & Linda live had a Memorial Service for the Veteran's today. My Dad served as part of the color guard to raise the flag from 1/2 staff to full staff at 11:00 am.
There is Dad in the baseball cap in the middle of the photo.
Here is Dad raising the flag to full staff.
And after it has been raised.
I am so proud of Dad! Thank you to Dad & Linda for inviting us. After the BBQ, we saw a very good film from National Geographic about Arlington National Cemetary. It was really interesting.
I was talking to Dad about how I felt when I returned to the USA from Norway. I have always been patriotic but when I saw the flag as I was pulling into JFK in New York on my way home from Oslo in 1988, I can still remember the pride and the amazing feeling running through me when I saw Old Glory.
Dad said he had a similar feeling when he returned from Vietnam via Hawaii & San Diego.
Thank you to all the Veteran's for fighting to make the United States what it is today. This includes Linda & my brother, Matthew!
Sunday, May 28, 2006
Thank you Grandma Linda & Grandpa for coming over this weekend! I sure do LOVE having family in town!
We also made Beer Can Chicken tonight. You basically stick a beer can up the bum of a chicken and grill it. Believe me, it makes a mighty fine chicken. Here it is just off the grill on the can. (No pun intended......)
BEER CAN CHICKEN
This odd recipe makes some of the most moist, succulent, flavorful barbecued chicken I've ever tasted. The secret: an open can of beer is inserted into the cavity of the bird, which is cooked upright on the grill. Besides being incredibly tender, the bird makes a great conversation piece. The recipe was inspired by the Bryce Boar Blazers, a barbecue team from Texas I met at the Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest. The proper beverage?
Beer, of course.
1 large whole chicken (4 to 5 pounds) 3 tablespoons Memphis Rub* or your favorite dry barbecue rub [recipe follows} 1 can (12 ounces) beer
1. Remove and discard the fat just inside the body cavities of the chicken. Remove the package of giblets, and set aside for another use. Rinse the chicken, inside and out, under cold running water, then drain and blot dry, inside and out, with paper towels. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the rub inside the body and neck cavities, then rub another 1 tablespoon all over the skin of the bird. If you wish, rub another 1/2 tablespoon of the mixture between the flesh and the skin. Cover and refrigerate the chicken while you preheat the grill.
2. Set up the grill for indirect grilling** placing a drip pan in the center. If using a charcoal grill, preheat it to medium.
If using a gas grill, place all the wood chips in the smoker box and preheat the grill to high; then, when smoke appears, lower the heat to medium.
3. Pop the tab on the beer can. Using a "church key" style can opener, make 6 or 7 holes in the top of the can. Pour out the top inch of beer, then spoon the remaining dry rub through the holes into the beer. Holding the chicken upright, with the opening of the body cavity down, insert the beer can into the cavity.
4. When ready to cook, if using charcoal, toss half the wood chips on the coals. Oil the grill grate. Stand the chicken up in the center of the hot grate, over the drip pan. Spread out the legs to form a sort of tripod, to support the bird.
5. Cover the grill and cook the chicken until fall-off-the-bone tender, 2 hours. If using charcoal, add 10 to 12 fresh coals per side and the remaining wood chips after 1 hour.
6. Using tongs, lift the bird to a cutting board or platter, holding the metal spatula underneath the beer can for support. (Have the board or platter right next to the bird to make the move shorter. Be careful not to spill hot beer on yourself.) Let stand for 5 minutes before carving the meat off the upright carcass. (Toss the beer can out along with the carcass.)
1/4 cup paprika 1 tablespoon firmly packed dark brown sugar 1 tablespoon granulated sugar 2 teaspoons salt 2 teaspoons accent (MSG; optional) 1 teaspoon celery salt 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1 to 3 teaspoons cayenne pepper, or to taste 1 teaspoon dry mustard 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon onion powder
Combine all the ingredients in a jar, twist the lid on airtight, and shake to mix. Store away from heat or light for up to six months. Makes about 1/2 cup. Enough for 4 to 6 racks of ribs.
** Indirect grilling on a Charcoal Grill:
To set up your grill for indirect grilling, light the coals. When they are blazing red, use tongs to transfer them to opposite sides of the grill, arranging them in two piles. Some grills have special half-moon-shaped baskets to hold the coals at the sides; others have wire fences that hook onto the bottom gate. Let the coals burn until they are covered with a thin layer of gray ash. Set the drip pan in the center of the grill, between the mounds of coals. Place the food on the grate over the drip pan, and cover the grill. You'll need to add about 10 to 12 fresh briquettes to each side after an hour of cooking.
If you want to add a smoke flavor, add 1 to 2 cups of presoaked wood chips, or 2 to 4 chunks, to the coals just before you start to cook, and again whenever you replenish the coals.
YIELD: Serves 4 to 6 SUBMITTED BY: Evie Werthmann SOURCE: The Barbecue Bible, by Steven Raichlen
Thursday, May 25, 2006
And the yarn???? 1350 yards of lace weight merino wool in hunter green. My, oh my....I want to wind it right now and start a new shawl.
But, I have to finish a couple of other things first.
I will be spending more time on the couch with Simon today since his fever has kicked up again so I will probably finish the Log Cabin shawl today.
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
A wee bit o' Project Spectrum May. This prickly pair started out as one pad with 3 ears. It is now this plant and one other one in the yard. We ignore it and look what happens.
Every year we get a huge load of these "babies" as Simon & Hannah call them. It is so sweet when I see Simon out there going, "Look at the little babies".
They eventually flower and if they get pollenated they drop to the ground and give us a whole bunch of cactus pieces like we have below the pot.
So, can anyone guess how much time I spent on the couch with Simon yesterday?
Boy is it nice to finish a project in a couple of days. I gotta quit knitting all my stuff from lace weight yarn on size 3 or 5 needles! They take FOREVER.
I think I am over Pi shawls for the same reason!
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
This one came from Jen in Australia. It is from a local mill in her area outside Melbourne. It is SSSOOOO SOFT and it is wool.
These two came from Marilyn on the East Coast. It is Lana Grossa "Meilenweit Cotton Fun" Yarn in muted colors but still very pretty. They are cotton & wool.
Finally, since Simon was sick yesterday and pretty much esconced on my lap or very near it, I started this prayer shawl in a modified Log Cabin design a la Mason Dixon Knitting. The yarn is Cotton Ease from my stash.
I am trying to make a rectangle but it still turned into a square so I think I will be striping along either end today as Simon & I are holding up the couch.
Monday, May 22, 2006
I modified this free pattern for the Retro Tote from Joann.com. I made it smaller, put a pocket inside and added a magnetic closure. I gotta figure out how to put a magnetic closure on the inside and still be able to put a nice top stitch around the top of the bag.
I LOVE my serger, when it works and I can find the right foot. I had put on the rolled hem foot at Christmas and could not find the regular one anywhere. Um, when I finally looked in the pouch with the serger "hardware stuff" it was right there. I got it on and it worked well for quite a while and then decided to not thread. Ick, I HATE threading my serger, hate it and I had to fix it 4-5 times. Ack.
I taught a sewing class once back in Fargo when I worked a fabric store while in grad school. In the class you cut apart a throw blanket to make a jacket. A really easy project, especially if you have a serger.
There were 4 ladies in the class and everyone brought a serger. However, they were all borrowed sergers and NO ONE knew how to thread their sergers. I spent the better part of the 90 minute class threading sergers. After that class, it was put on all class registration that if you brought a serger, you had to know how to use it and thread it!
I had to add something to the green one because it was really blah...so, I found those iron on patches in my sewing basket. Who knew I had them??
Also, my little guy is under the weather so I doubt I will get much work done BUT since he like company on the couch, this might be a good knitting day.
Saturday, May 20, 2006
We went swimming in the pool this afternoon and it was really nice. I did not feel like cooking tonight so when we came in from the pool at 4 pm, we went for an early dinner at Johnny Carino's.
Oh my, did we eat a lot of garlic! We had calamari with tomato sauce & spinach artichoke dip for starters (or my whole meal).
Hananh & I with our "pool" hair. ;)
David & Simon looking "cool" in their after pool attire.
The food was great...really garlicky and we have enough for lunch tomorrow. MMMM.....I love garlic. Their spinach artichoke dip was full of freshly sauteed spinach is so good.
I always wonder if the kids will continue to eat calamari once they know what is really is.......I hope so.
Thursday, May 18, 2006
As many of you know, Hannah walks to the bus stop at the end of our street all by herself. She is a responsible child and I have to let her go...even when I don't want her to grow up so fast.
This morning Simon was ready to leave for preschool by 7:25 am and really after me to go so I figured we would do some errands on the way to preschool. So....I get to the end of the street and I notice the bus had not come yet, it was coming up the street, so I looked to wave at Hannah as we turned out of the street BUT I DIDN'T SEE HER!
The bus then pulled up and I decided to pull up next to the driver's side to ask if Hannah was on the bus and I just missed her. The driver used the loud speaker on the bus to "page" Hannah, TWICE.
I know he could see the panic in my face. I was biting my nails, and I don't bite my nails, and trying to remember specifically what she had on this morning and tried to figure out who would take her and why and there had to be a reasonable explanation and WHAT SHOULD I DO NEXT?!?!?!
I was truly panicking inside and followed the bus to the next stop, hoping against all hope that she went up to that stop to hang out with her friend Wendy.
As I pull up behind the bus at the next stop, I get a glimpse of the purple shirt she had on and know she is ok.
The bus driver was very sweet because after everyone got on, he pulled over and waved me up to tell me she had gotten on at that stop and was OK.
I can't tell you all the horrible things I was thinking when she wasn't at her stop.
My instinct was to follow the bus and pull her off as soon as she got to school and give her "what for" but......I am trying to cool down before I do that because I don't want to scare her so much that she is afraid to do anything but to tell me if she changes the plan.
Thank you for putting up with my LLOONNGG story today. I feel better now that I have gotten it off my chest and will try to be rational when I talk to her this afternoon.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
And, I have created a MONSTER. Now that David's computer is available for kid consumption, Simon & Hannah have taken to playing the Nick Jr. games online. Up until a couple of days ago, Simon would watch Hannah but now that I got the speakers working, he has taken over the home computer and Hannah is using my work computer.
This is Simon this morning after Hannah went to the bus stop and he gets SO PROUD when he is able to finish doing a project. He is learning so fast.
Thankfully, Windows XP has the function that you can set up different identities for each user. This works well because Hannah once sent a nonsense email to a bunch of people while using my computer when she was Simon's age. I certainly learned my lesson! ;)
The Icarus is coming along quickly. I know my progress will slow considerably when I get to the next chart but for now, it is moving pretty quickly.
Monday, May 15, 2006
Grandpa & Grandma Linda came over for dinner last night and we had a really nice time, as always, with them.
I started my Icarus shawl last night during the finale of Survivor. It is a pretty easy pattern once you get into the groove of the main section. My only mishap was this morning, when I went to answer the telephone, my lovely son pulled the needle out of about 25ish stitches. Thankfully, I was able to tink back and get it back on track.
I finished the knitting of the baby sweater. I just have to weave in the ends and reweave some ends I wove in while knitting because I put them on the WRONG (actual right) side.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
I think part of being a Mom makes your realize that what you imagine is NOT what you actually get most days. I had visions of sleeping through until 7 am, which is like 10 am for most people. I have not slept past 6:30 am (a VERY VERY late day) in a very long time. I have been waking up between 5-6 am most of my adult life. Of course, it is for that same reason that I have no problem what so ever, going to bed a 8pm if I am tired...even in college, except for the year I turned 21 and they no longer carded me at the bar because I was a bit of a regular. Yep, scary in a college town but I digress......
This morning was no different. My personal alarm clock, Simon, woke me up at 5:20 am as he was crawling into bed with us. It is a double edged sword. Early mornings are my favorite time of day and a favorite time with my winkies. They have the sleep still in their eye's and are all cuddly.
There is also a part of me that knows my babies will grow up before I know it and not want any part of me, at all and Lord knows, no cuddles in my future once that happens.
So, Simon was quite and snuggly until about 6 am and then Hannah came in too. We had a nice cuddle all around and everyone took off to do their "Mother's Day" festivities.
I got tea (PG Tips) and toast in bed along with my favorite parts of the paper, any magazine Simon could find that he thought I'd like to read in the house and THIS:
I really like this book. It is a fun read and it has useful, every day patterns in it. There are a lot of knitting books that make me think I want them but when they come, um...they have maybe one pattern I would actually knit. However, this one has a lot of basic but fun patterns that can be used with any type of yarn you have around in your stash. LOVE IT!
I also got a homemade flower from Simon, a lovely homemade card & flower from Hannah and this gorgeous bracelet from Hannah. I have been wearing it all day.
As I write this, Hannah is out swimming in the pool while David does the pool chemicals and all that to the pool. I really think she will finally be swimming by the end of summer.
I am almost finished with the baby sweater. I only have the left front to do and then I am done knitting and can start my shawl for the Amazing Lace.
Saturday, May 13, 2006
Hannah picked out these light pink roses.
Simon picked out these orange/apricot roses. I always love this color because it seems so unexpected of a color in roses.
I am also going to order my new vanity plate K4TOGR, also a Mother's Day present.
And finally, the kimono sweater for my neice's daughter to be in the UK.
I have to get a move on because I want to use these needles for the Icarus Shawl I am knitting for the Amazing Lace that starts on Monday.
Here is Miriam (the designer) modeling her Icarus shawl. I am going to knit this from Misti Alpaca for my Mom as a Christmas gift.
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Some GREEN Project Spectrum photos for May.
Photos taken on Rosie & Woody's front porch...in front of the red door.
This pot of succulents is my favorite....I have really got to plant some.
Monday, May 08, 2006
So, off to the post office I went this morning. I look at and think, hmm, I don't have any clients in the Ukraine and the guy I do know is not sending anything to me. Suddenly, OH YEAH, I ordered that black lace weight on ebay. Look at the return address, all in cyrillic.
Here is the yarn. They are two BIG skeins! I am going to dig out my cyrillic pocket dictionary and figure out what the label says if it kills me!
Hubby put my KNIT sticker on my car. I am thinking about the following vanity plate...K4TOG. Saun suggested it not too long after I thought it last week. Hubby thinks I should put something like K4TOGR to try and help the non-knitters in the world to figure it out.
And, my baby continues to grow up. She asked for dangly earrings when we were at the mall this weekend. I got her some sterling silver little flowers.
At this rate we should be having the make up argument in about a year. NOT!
Saturday, May 06, 2006
I like almost any yarn. Right now I am in LOVE with Misti Alpaca. I would like to try Koigu, just once. I knit with acrylic yarn (there is a time and a place for it) but prefer natural fibers most of the time.
I can’t seem to master mohair. Too scratchy and sticky.
2. What do you use to store your needles/hooks in?
I store my needles in a box and inside that box are three needle rolls made of pretty, quilted fabric.
3. How long have you been knitting? Would you consider your skill level to be beginner, intermediate or advanced?
I have been knitting nearly 20 years. I learned in 1987!!! I would say I am an advanced knitter.
4. Do you have an Amazon or other online wish list?
I don’t have an Amazon wish list.
5. What's your favorite scent? (for candles, bath products etc.)
I like lavender, lemon & vanilla.
6. Do you have a sweet tooth? Favorite candy?
I love candy & chocolate. However, since my mailbox is currently 90+ degrees so chocolate is NOT a good idea.
7. What other crafts or Do-It-Yourself things do you like to do? Do you spin?
I don’t spin but I do sew.
8. What kind of music do you like? Can your computer/stereo play MP3s? (if your buddy wants to make you a CD)
I like 80’s music, pop and country. Yes, my computer, ipod and mp3 players all play music! ;)
9. What's your favorite color? Or--do you have a color family/season/palette you prefer? Any colors you just can't stand?
I LOVE any shade of green & turquoise. I like reds, hot pink, blue and purple. I am not must on light pink or browns. As I rule, I am not a huge fan of orange (unless it is bright) brown, rust, etc.
10. What is your family situation? Do you have any pets?
I am married to my hubby of almost 9 years, David and have two winkies, Hannah (7 yo) & Simon (almost 4 yo). We also have a long haired Himalayan cat named Obie.
11. Do you wear scarves, hats, mittens or ponchos?
None of the above. I live in Arizona and wear sandals/flip flops 10 months a year.
12. What is/are your favorite item/s to knit?
Right now I am loving lace shawls. They are pretty, interesting and warm but surprisingly small for travel.
Of course, I like the patterns which have a knit or purl row every other row. With two little ones, knitting a fancy pattern EVERY row would probably kill me!
13. What are you knitting right now?
Baby sweater, a second sock, two pi shawls and one lace stole.
14. Do you like to receive handmade gifts?
15. Do you prefer straight or circular needles? Bamboo, aluminum, plastic?
I prefer circular needles. If I knit with straight needles, they must be the “short” ones, less than 12 inches.
I like aluminum/metal needles but do like the new Bryspun plastic dpn’s.
16. Do you own a yarn winder and/or swift?
I own both a ball winder and a swift so hanked yarn is OK!
17. How did you learn to knit?
I learned to knit while living in Norway in 1987 as an exchange student.
18. How old is your oldest UFO?
12 years. A vest that is 99% finished. However it was for a very EX boyfriend and will be frogged for the wool!
19. What is your favorite holiday?I like the 4th of July.
20. Is there anything that you collect?Yarn, yarn & more yarn!
21. Any books, yarns, needles or patterns out there you are dying to get your hands on? What knitting magazine subscriptions do you have?
I keep eyeing Knitting over the Edge and Knitting on the Edge but never buy them.
I subscribe to Interweave Knits.
22. Are there any new techniques you'd like to learn?
None that I can think of at the moment.
23. Are you a sock knitter? What are your foot measurements?
I knit socks from time to time.
10.25 inches long (women’s size 10)
9 inches around at the widest part of my instep
24. When is your birthday? (mm/dd)
Friday, May 05, 2006
I took a photo of David, Pam Gaber & Gabriel at the luncheon but it did not turn out so, you just get a photo of Pam & Gabriel. Everyone did a great job and I sure hope they raised a lot of $$ for such a great organization.
David helped with the "giving" request and did a great job. There was quite a swarm around him when I left.
I love the turtles on the way into the zoo. They are some of my favorites and they were all sunning themselves this afternoon.
I had a little bit of time before I had to pick up Simon so I stopped at Tempe Yarn & Fiber and bought 3 skeins of hot pink DK yarn for another baby sweater. This one for my "grand niece"? She is the daughter of my neice on David's side. Anyway, Grandma to be (David's sister) is coming for a visit in June so I thought I had better knit something quick.
On the way, I ran into this horrid road construction in front of ASU. Ack...a real pain!
And finally, I saw this in the parking lot when I got gas (that cost me $52.00)! It is a Volkswagon Thing. Our family had one of these in 1975-1976. We were one of two families in our small town that had one. Ours was white with a blue & green V design on the hood and it was a convertible.
I often wonder WHY we had that car. Granted, it was a fun car. The doors come off, the windows came off (they were vinyl) and you could pull the plugs in the bottom of the car and hose it down. However, in the winter, it was a tin can on wheels. I can remember putting my head on the side of the car and how cold the metal was on my cheek.
I also remember how I lost the hat to my Pioneer dress, like the girls wore on Little House on the Prairie, during the summer of 1976. Our whole family had "period" clothes for the Bicentennial. We were driving through the corn fields of Wright County Minnesota with the top down and the windows off, and I, in my infinite 7 year old wisdom, took off my bonnet and put it behind the seat. I am pretty sure it blew out about 1 second after I let go. Strange, I can see it all in my head as write this. So, my Grandma Hinz made me another one. Good thing she had more fabric because we had matching dresses that summer.
Dad tells me we used to get stopped in Canada (my two youngest siblings were born in Winnepeg...whole 'nother story) by the police just so they could check out that car.
My Mom & Dad tell me that the car didn't run more than it actually did run and we didn't keep it more than a year.
The other family in town, didn't either. Surprisingly, it was not a good cold weather car. I always remember that car when we go to Mexico because so many of them are used as taxi's. I just read that there was a Las Brisas model in Acapulco for the hotel. We stayed there during our honeymoon and got the Ricardo Mantalbon Jeep Wrangler in Pink & White.
Just seeing it brings back all the memories of that car.
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
Darn you Margene (darned knitting blog enablers)...I didn't even know this decal existed until you led me to to the Knitty Cafe Press store.
Of course, I want one of these to go along with the pink hibiscus flower on my white van AND I am toying with a new vanity plate. Maybe K1P2 or something equally related to knitting.
If you have ideas for my new license plate, let me know. I have until somewhere near the end of May to figure one out.
Heather was a great Secret Pal. She gave very thoughtful gifts and I have used every single one of them. Spoiled me so much, I didn't want to jinx my chances and join SP7....although I did cave and join SP8.
Thanks for making the effort to come to a Chandler SnB meeting so we could meet! I know Tuesday nights are busy for you!
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
I have this magnet and a decal I want hubby to put on my car.
I always have knitting with me when I take the kids anywhere, to any event where I have to wait. Everyone that knows me, knows I knit either because I talk about it or they see me knitting in public.
That is my, how do I show my knitting spirit so Catherine, you better randomly draw ME, ME, ME! ;) (just kidding)