Thursday, June 30, 2016

Peachy Keen

 I bought this lovely basket of apricots the other day and some ripe peaches thinking I could eat them all before they went bad.

Of course I couldn't eat them all that quickly but I did have this ancient cookbook that I used when I had a grapevine and a fig tree.

 I chopped it all up and added plenty of sugar. Those apricots were tart.

 What I got was a sugar covered fruit salad when I added some stray plums and a can of pineapple chunks. It was all I could do not to just eat it as is.

 It cooked down really quickly. I was worried I hadn't chopped the fruit up enough but it worked out just fine. I didn't even need to use the potato masher on it.

Mmmmm....I gave it a taste on some bread and it's going to be great tomorrow morning on my English muffin. Now I need to go figure out where I put those darn lids.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Sticks and String

 It seems like I've been about everything BUT knitting these days but it's just not so. I've got lots going on but nothing is terribly interesting. Featherweight is at the bottom ribbing. Yay. Next up, sleeves.

 Aubade is on her last lace section before the edging. More yay. The yarn ball is collapsing so I've had to jam my nostepinne in it so I can still pull from the center. It works.

 Sock two of Miss Babs MDSW colorway is heading to the heel.

 My handspun hat is on the top decreases. Next up, the lining. That's a provisional cast on at the bottom so I can knit a nice, soft acrylic liner. That handspun is a wee bit itchy.

Mosaic blanket has its second edge in the works. It takes a lot of math to figure out how to center the design and to find out how many stitches to pick up on this monster of a project.

The last thing I do at night is to add four rows to each of Son's cardi sleeves. They had been my Gilmore Girls knit and I am beyond sad to say I finished the series.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

If It Weren't For Bad Luck

 Are you ready for another tale of woe? It begins with an empty warping board.

I had this idea of making a July inspired towel using this pattern from a Cotton Clouds kit that I really liked.

I had red, white and blue in the stash but that design needed four colors so I thought I would add a dark blue to the mix.

I ordered it and have been waiting for it to get here from Arizona. It got here today and look at that.

 It's not darker at all. In fact, it's almost a match. I'm not sure how I did that but I did it. I have to reorder and start the waiting game again.

 As for the big floss dilemma:
The number of the red is Dimensions/Sunset Red 13019 which supposedly converts to DMC 304 or Anchor 19. I had both of those and they aren't even close. I think the problem is that this is a very old kit (1996) and either the color has faded or the colors were different back in the 90's. All the colors in the kit are more subdued than their contemporary counterparts. The colors today are more jewel toned than the dustier "country" colors of yore. My solution.....I bid on yet another kit on ebay. While I was waiting for that auction to end ebay sent me a message telling me there was a buy-it now kit for $14. The Mister convinced me I was stupid not to buy the sure thing so I did. Then the next day I won the auction for $6.99. So... now I'll have 4 of these kits. Running out of thread will NO longer be an option. Jeesh. The things you do.
Thanks for all the offers of help yesterday. You guys are the bestest!

Monday, June 27, 2016

For Crying Out Loud

 I bought two of these kits so I wouldn't run out of thread and I STILL ran out of red. Yessiree. Of course I did. AND I can't get a very good match using the DMC I picked up at Joanne's. I got every red there was but they are all wrong.

This wouldn't be a huge tragedy if I only had the bleeping flag left to do but I also have the whole bottom row of bleeping checked border. That's going to look just awful. If you remember I also ran out of gold for the border but I did find a decent, if not perfect match. Lesson learned: Don't buy kits. Buy patterns and then get plenty of floss from the currently available colors because this is NO fun.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Sunday Soap: While the Cat's Away

 I'm still on my quest to use up all last year's fragrances so while The Mister was out and about I came up with two more re-do's this week. First was a scent that is supposed to smell like grapes, plums and musk. I don't know about that but I like it. It's of my favorites.

Then there was Flowering Herb which got an extra splash of lavender. I was all about simple stripes this week after I watched a video of someone showing how it's done. Even I couldn't mess this up.

 I had intended to make more cold processed soap while The Mister was away at a golf tournament yesterday but I was too zonked from the funeral. I opted to melt and pour some glycerin soap instead.

 Man I hate cutting this stuff. I can't get it straight to save my life even with a $40 soap cutter.

 Crooked or not, they're not too bad. These are two new soap bases sold by WSP, my go-to online soap source.  The orange is Americana Citrus and the green is Australian Tea Tree. Both are lovely. I added some kaolin clay and activated charcoal to the white bases which are coconut milk for the orange and goat's milk for the green.

As pretty as they are as whole bars, no one needs that big a hunk of soap for their face. It will go all peculiar before you have a chance to use it up so I cut them in half.

The really big chore is wrapping it all in plastic. In the summer, glycerin will attract moisture from the air resulting in dew drops on the surface. It's not a bad thing, in fact it's a good thing but it doesn't make for a very pretty package. Speaking of packages, now they all still have to be slipped into bags and labeled-but that's a job for another day.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Something Done

 Ouch. I hate this part.

 Cutting weaving off a loom is like steeking. Scary. You just know it's all going to fall apart.

 But it doesn't.

 After they are zigzagged I feel better about it.

 Now for the trimming and hemming. I have two big towels and a half.

 I love those clips. They are so much better than pins for woven material.

 Before I even had the hemming finished I had the latest warp on the loom. I did it all by myself this time. The Mister was cleaning out the gutters. We have had storm after storm and he is a fanatic about clean gutters.

 After a wash and dry, it's mug shot time.

Now I can't wait to see what my scrap bag Bumbarete looks like because these rock.

Friday, June 24, 2016

The Big Chill

 That's a quote from my senior yearbook circa 1971. Today, in a little church in Davidsonville, me and the group of ladies I lunch with are gathering to say goodbye to one of us.

She and I went waaaay back. We went to highschool together. She was just a few pages away from me in the yearbook but world's away from me in popularity. She was one of the cool kids. I was not.

That's me trying hard not to look as silly as I felt. Yes, I had Morticia Adams streaked hair. Didn't everyone?

My friend and I didn't just share the same high school, we taught together for 20 plus years at the same school. One year we even taught first grade together.

When I got the call that our friend was gone I had to dig out the yearbook and take a slow stroll down memory lane. It shakes you up when you lose a contemporary. How can someone so alive just a few weeks ago when we met for our last lunch be gone so quickly? She had been ill, we could see that but she chose not to share and we respected that.

The yearbook had little to offer for answers to the age old dilemma of what's it all about.

 1971 was a confusing time to be alive. There was the war. It hung over our heads and weighed heavy on our hearts. We all knew someone who went and didn't come back.

 We were boomer babies who felt the need to rock the boat only we weren't sure what boat we were supposed to be on.

We faced the world we wanted to change without fear as long as we had a cigarette in our hand and a stash hidden where our parents couldn't find it-and I don't mean the kind of stash you're thinking of.

The world was changing but not fast enough for the trail blazers. You have to admire this girl's guts. Nothing was easy back then. There were barriers to be broken everywhere you looked. We had to have a sit-in just to be able to wear pants to school.

Dig those groovy go go boots. I had a pair.

This was one of my best friends but when we went out I had to pick him up and drop him off far from the eyes of anyone who would notice a white girl and a black boy together.  We were just friends who shared a love of art but Daddio would have tanned my hide if he knew. It just wasn't done.

My first kiss. I was a very late bloomer.  He says he wants to join the Hell's Angels in his yearbook quote. I see on Facebook he's retired from Amtrack. Tee hee... I got in my first (and last) fight ever at school defending him from a guy that took exception to his long hair. They sent me home for the day. 

My last big highschool crush. He didn't know I was alive. I tore the pocket off his blazer and slept with it under my pillow. I probably still have it around here somewhere.

My one and only claim to highschool fame was that my Grandmother is also in the yearbook. Who else can say that? She was the Attendance Secretary. You know I couldn't get away with anything. I was in trouble all the time. Having Grandma right down the hall all day was no fun.

Our lunches certainly won't ever be the same again. I was making tons of soap for the one scheduled in July. She loved my soap. I had made some just for her. No, nothing will ever be the same.