Saturday, May 29, 2010

Food Glorious Food!

We harvested some Sugar Snap Peas and some Snow Peas. We took advantage of Pendleton Farm's free pick Fridays. We pick the peas then they keep half and we keep half for free.


The girl kid made sure we harvested one more batch of asparagus. When I got home I looked over our sad strawberry patch and found about quart of fresh berries too.


Friday, May 28, 2010

Ahhh Friday....

Kind of a miscellaneous week. A little bit of walking, a little bit of knitting, a little bit of skate boarding and making plans for the summer.

Last week after taking stock of the stash I started on a stashbusting project or two:


A felted bag made from leftovers of my handspun. It needs a strap. That will just have to wait.


A hat that was going to be a bag. The bling is not a part of the hat but I couldn't resist taking a picture with them still on it. The "jewels" are stitch markers. Maybe I can start a new trend?


I finally started the heel on my socks.
I know it does look like it but I really, really have.


Since temperatures are rising I finished the last square I will knit for a while on my Crazy Blanket. 67 squares so far. So I got quite a bit done. The photo below shows where I was on May 12th.


Remember my Iris Dyeing?


I used some of the iris dye liquor to overdye some onion skin yarn. That the bit on the left that's the lovely olive green. The stuff on the right was only iris liquor. The one in the middle was sort only iris dye liquor. It was meant to be only irises. It's a toned down color because the pink ties I used were dyed and it leached into the iris dye bath. I just harvested the last of my irises and out them in the freezer. There is something about freezing the flowers that helps bring out more of a blue. I'll let you y'all know.

The original plan today was to go harvest some food from a local farm but the kids, one of them balked. When they realized that we were going to actaully get out an do things this summer discussions ensued. We have 13.5 waking ours in the summer maybe more we need to take advantage of it. This does not mean screen time. It mean get out of the house and do stuff!

So on our list to do this summer is Letterboxing. We now have most of the supplies gathered. We still need some log books. Soon, very soon. First I need a beer.

Yes that is bottled beer from Free State Beer! Yum!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Dinner is Prepared!

Smoked Chicken Wings from the wings we have been saving up for about 6 weeks or so plus a few more from the store. Also starring: Black and Corn Salsa, Cream cheese dip, Carrots, Hummus, and Chips. There was also a hot dipping sauce for the wings that was even too hot for this family. Everything else was fantastic!


We worked up an appetite picking strawberries.

Local Berries

We picked pounds and pounds of strawberries about 19 pounds in all. It's a lot but it didn't take all that long to do about 45 minutes.

19 pounds of Strawberries

The container on the left was for strawberry shortcake. The rest will be for jams and smoothies and more.


Have some short cake!


Sunday, May 23, 2010

Nom, Nom, Nom...

Pizza, Pizza, Pizza!


Black olives and sauted red peppers on homemade crust. Yummy melted cheese goodness. There was yummy pizza for all that's just one of the pizzas Stephen and I shared. Then for breakfast Waffles.


Multigrain waffles with hand whipped egg whites and yummy local berries. I finally got the farmers market in time to snag the berries. Let me tell you people are serious about their berries.

Nom, Nom, Nom.

Saturday, May 22, 2010


In the jungle of our backyard I found a toad:


The boy kid was able to catch it:

Friday, May 21, 2010

Sort of Sweet & Spicy Peanut Pasta Stir Fry

I say sort of because I didn't use pasta and didn't use peanuts. I made this before exactly and it's fabulous. My favorite part is the sauce. I followed the recipe from the February 2010 Merc Newsletter. Follow the link, down load the February 2010 Newsletter. Recipe is on page 7.

I followed the sauce recipe exactly.



I added some cabbage so there would be plenty of leftovers. I added some green onions on top after it was cooked because we had some from the farmers market that needed eatin'


Finally I steamed up some Edamame to top it with on the table since I didn't have any peanuts. My original plan was to have a bit of sliced beef in the stir fry but I forgot to thaw it soooo beef was not for dinner.


No pics of it all together. We ate it over rice rather than on noodles but it is really good over noodles. Try it you'll like!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Italian Lentil Soup

How authentically Italian this is I don't know but I'm going for an Italian taste.

1 - 28oz. can ground tomato
6-8 C - Chicken broth - How much depends on how thick you like your soup. You can also adjust the lentils. I was going for a lighter soup rather than a thick stew so I did about 7 C broth
1 onion chopped
1 large carrot chopped
2 stalks celery sliced thinly
1 red pepper chopped
.25 pound spicy Italian sausage cooked then chopped
4-6 cloves garlic crushed
1 T oregano
1 tsp marjoram
1 C Lentils
1/2 - 1 C red wine (optional) - Idid use red wine but if I had had some hand I would have.


Heat the oven up to 350 deg F then quickly sear the sausage in an oven safe skillet on the stove. Then place sausage in the oven for 2o min. I cooked up two sausage links but save one back for later this week with pasta.

Sauté up the veggies starting with the onions then adding celery, carrots, and peppers. This will take about 10 min. Add garlic and other spices.

Add the canned tomatoes, broth and lentils. Cook until lentils are tender about 1- 1.5 hours. Add wine some where near the end of the cooking time.

Mmmmm... Smells good!

Serve up with the some fresh bread and a salad.


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Veggie Sushi and Fancy Onigiri

We've been eating lots more meals for both lunch and dinner. Mostly in the effort to save money. The time we get together as a family is bonus. On Tuesday we made veggie sushi together and some onigiri. Much eating and laughter ensued.

Sushi and Onigiri

Veggie Ingredients: nori, sushi rice, carrots, red pepper, avocado and cream cheese.

I'm informed byt the girl kid that the onigiri is not fancy it's what you would find in a kids lunch. I think it's pretty fancy compared to your basic onigiri triangle or ball. She made the onigiri and I think it looks really pretty. So there ;)

Ita daki mas! (ee-tah dahki maas - I think that's close for the sounds) - I'm ready to eat!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Iris Dyeing

Lovely irises that smell really good too. Another dyer on Ravelry did a some iris flower dyeing and got a lovely pale green. So I thought I would give it a try.


80 grams of flowers. I poured boiling water over them a let steep. Wait stop that, reverse that. Do not I repeat do not pour boiling water over the flowers. If you do you get nothing. The boiling water "kills" the colors. Pray pay attention! Place flowers in pot and let soak for a few days.

Okay lesson learned. So the next day I picked more spent blooms. Then in a few more days I got this:


So I took a wee bit of Alum mordant yarn and tossed it in the jar. Heated it to 180 deg for an hour and let it soak overnight.

Now I have this lovely pale green.


It looks prettier in person. Seriously. I'm going to let it soak for longer to see if it will get any darker. Maybe some solar dyeing will help.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Taking Stock of the Stash


Off to the left you can't see some of the handspun yarn very well I have a few skeins and small bits that need to find a project. You can see it a better better in the photo below.


Sad things is after sorting it all out I only have ideas for about half of the yarn and fiber. I have a small to med-bag of yarn leftovers. Some of it I could make into something but some of it I like to keep around just in case for sweater repair. The left over sock yarn might go in blanket but might not. I can't decide. Maybe a market bag?

I inherited the acrylic stash from a friend thinking I would make some toy veggies but I'm not in the mood. I'm tempted to use in a ripple blanket but then I would need more yarn. I'm not sure I want to start another blanket project.

I'm really tempted to pass the misc stuff on to someone who would enjoy stitching it up into something fun. Because I do have about 3 shawls I'm working on, a crazy blanket, socks, and some yarn I need to finish spinning.

I need to make room for about 3 pounds of fiber to spin up yarn for a sweater. I don't need all the fiber for the sweater but I want plenty for practice. I need to make room to start the Central Park Hoodie. I'm dying to get some of the new felici sock colors.


It has to fit in my fiber dresser. So some yarn has got to go....

Friday, May 14, 2010

Sunshine, Daisies, Butter Mellow

Turn this boring yarn:


How did I do it?

Onion skins about 4 ounces or so saved from this winter. I simmered the yellow onions skins in enough water to cover them for about an hour. I saved it for a month or so in some canning jars until I had time to mordant some yarn.

Yarn is mordant with 1 T Alum and 1 tsp Cream of Tartar.

Added the yarn to the onion skin dye liquor in my big pot and cooked for about at hour got it to 180 deg F. It made a lovely yellow yarn. Let me show you again!


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Dyeing Progress and 8 of 10


A blurry pic but shows the neonish greens kooliad dyed mini skeins. I overdyed it with some acid dyes. 2tsp red, 1 tsp blue, 5 drops black. The mini skeins total up to about 100 grams of yarn.


I wish I had saved back some of the colors for a better comparison. I think photo above shows how overdyeing with a wee bit of red really tones down the colors. I like the greens much better.

On the left you see some of the Raspberry Sherbet next to Purple Rain. The Purple Rain is about 100 grams of the Raspberry Sherbet overdyed with 1 tsp blue, 10 drops yellow and 5 drops black, 50 ml vinegar.

While dyeing yesterday I started 8 of 10. Yes that means another shawl. I'm using my teal dyed handspun merino/silk.


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Dyein' to Dye

I've been yearning to dye for for a few weeks now. Finally there has been a break in the cooking and cleaning to get some dyein' done.

I started by getting the dyes ready. Then washing up some of the bags I wanted to dye.

I wanted to make an Eye of Jupiter Bag inspired by the Eye of Jupiter painting and symbols from Battlestar Galactica.



I'm such a geek. The bag along with 180 plus yards of handspun will be a prize for the Ravelry BSG Games in July.

While the bag was dyeing I started on some of my handspun yarn.

This is merino/silk single about 500 yards plus. I went for a medium dark teals green color. I'm pretty happy with how the color separated in the dyeing.


I started with 1% stock solution and added 5 teaspoons blue and 2 teaspoons yellow and 100ml of vinegar in the water before I added the dye. Got the temp up to 180 deg for one hour then let it cool for a few more before rinsing and hanging to dry.


I can't wait to hook this up into a lovely shawl.

Then next day I started snagged some of my Knit Pick Worsted Weight Bare Wool and mixed up a redish color, 5 teaspoons red and 2 teaspoons blue, 100ml vinegar added to the water then added the dye.


Fiber peeps call this Raspberry Sherbet. I think it's a good name for it. I'm going to take half of it and over-dye it to get something a bit more burgundy or purple. This yarn will find it's way into my Crazy Blanket which I have done a wee bit more on since I last shared.


I really like this square with the stripes.