Monday, October 31, 2016

Ready or Not

 I've got my pumpkin carved.

I've got my seeds ready for toasting.

I've got cake.

I've got a bowl full of candy.

I've still got the awesome witch costume from last year's production number. I've been wearing it all weekend.

I've got what it takes to tackle some apple cider donuts later tonight after I pour myself a big bloody Mary and light the pumpkin. This should be good. Hot fat, candles and booze. I hope I live to tell about it.
Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 30, 2016

A Halloween Tale of Terror

 Before I get to the scary part let me share my latest soap. Meet Hot Cocoa. It smells just like a steaming mug of Swiss Miss. Nothing scary here. It's major yummy. I can't wait for these chocolate soaps to cure.

I haven't been in the soap room this week because I've been busy. The Magic Mirror was a real pain in the... neck. It looks so simple but it was layers and layers of hand sewing that had to be done over and over to get it centered. I didn't make those curtains. I just bought them. Today I'll be shoving it on the ice to see if it works. Fingers crossed.

 Now for the scary part. Look at that. You all know what that is. Is there anything more terrifying for a knitter?

 I was so happy to find these socks that were lost behind the dresser. I washed them, wore them and never noticed they were infected. Of course I stuffed them in with my other socks before I realized. Sigh. What a mess.

All of my millions of socks are getting a good going over and a wash with my lavender and lanolin bar. Curse you, wool monsters.

On a happy note, a big thanks to Momolake who sent me a lovely box of goodies. Isn't that pumpkin dishcloth precious? I've already lit the candle and tested the pumpkin spice latte and I can tell you truthfully they are both delish. Mmmm, mmmm.....thanks again Momolake,  you are the bestest!!!!

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Button, Button

 I always dread putting buttons on. It never goes smoothly for me.

 This time was no exception. First I couldn't get the buttons off the backing paper. I didn't realize they were glued on.

 I knew it. I didn't get them evenly spaced at all. I measured. I swear I did. It's not really a problem. I never button up anything. They are really just for show so I can move them around if I want to.

 Mugshot time. I'm trying here to prove it fits. It does. It's perfect but I can't get a photo that shows that and I took lots.

This one is better. It is very nice. Is it THE ONE? Maybe. It's wool so it won't be used for a while. Then we'll see.
For the record it is White Pine and the yarn is Wool of the Andes Worsted in Persimmon Heather.

Friday, October 28, 2016


 I drag this project out every year because I feel I have to.

 Then I always remember how much I like working on it. I've got my pumpkin done. Now I have the raven to do.

 Here's the credit where credit is due. I love their patterns.

Ouch. Here's what happens when you drop your scissors in the couch cushions and reach in to get them without thinking. Needlework isn't for sissies.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Wash Day

It was actually more like rinse and spin day. All my fallish sweaters were dusty after a summer in storage. I gave them a quick bath and then hung them all over the house to dry.

 I gave each one a quick blocking first to shape them before I throw them over a railing. My cotton sweaters are always the ones I want this time of year. It's chilly but not cold.

 Cotton is heavy when it's wet and takes forever to dry. We've got the heat and the dehumidifier on so that might speed it up.

 I also get out my acrylic sweaters. I need something to slip on over a tee so itchy is not an option.

 They are some of my favorite sweaters to wear. My poor Elizabeth was gorgeous until I washed her last year. I thought Lion Brand Amazing was all acrylic but it actually is 53% wool so it felted a bit. The label said it was machine washable but it is NOT.  I wash it very carefully now and block the heck out of it.

 Sadly I didn't get the message soon enough with the Modern Lodge Pullover also in Amazing. It's a felted and pilly mess. Look how it shrunk.  I should chuck it.

Last but not least, my woven shawls got a good soak. It's time for chilly afternoon cuddles on the couch with a cup of tea and a snuggly pup. I love fall.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Plenty of Pumpkin

 I confess. I have yet to buy a real pumpkin. Carving a jack o'lantern is like putting up a Christmas tree. It's a real pain in the neck but you just gotta do it. I did however make a pumpkin spice bundt cake.

 It's a mini. I found this cute little pan at TJ Max's last week and had to have it. It wasn't easy cutting down cake recipes for its little 3 cup size but it didn't turn out too bad for my first try.

The little cake went very well with the ice cream The Mister brought home to surprise me.

 I don't have a real pumpkin on the stoop but I did go up in the attic and get the wood ones Mom and Dad made for us years and years ago.

 Boo! Trick or treaters used to be greeted by them. Not any more.

I've had this string of pumpkin lights since before we moved here and that's been more than 20 years. They are still burning. Imagine that.

They used to hang in the front window but since we got the new windows I can't just bang in thumb tacks wherever I want anymore. It doesn't matter where they are as long as they are shining. It wouldn't be Halloween without them. Four more days!

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

More Loose Ends

 The 4th of July towel is finally finished.

 I'm not quite done warping the next one so Mr. Loom is going to be empty for a while.

There's lots of ends in this towel but they're no problem. Unlike knitting where you have to deal with them after the fact, woven ends just get snipped off after wet blocking. Thank goodness.

Here's the official mug shot after blocking with its ends trimmed. Off it goes into the handmade towel drawer which is getting mighty full. That's not going to stop me from making more. I still have a Halloween towel that needs to be made-if I can ever get around to it.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Happy Pupday!

 On December 26th, three years ago I was net surfing in the middle of the night when I saw this photo on Ebay Classifieds.

The next day she came home with me. I had just spent my first Christmas without Dear Old Departed Doggie and it was more than I could stand.

That right there was the cure for a broken heart.

Today, Maggie, aka Pup turns three.

 She's not a puppy anymore but she's still snuggly. She is the best thing ever to take a nap with.

She keeps me on my toes. She's got to move so I have learned to move with her. I knit and spin while we walk.

 She does appreciate my knitting. She thinks it's tasty.

What? You are going to sit and do what? I don't think so.

Come on Mom, let's go!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Sunday Soap: Holiday Edition Part 2

 Meet Christmas Spice. It smells like pumpkin spice to me and you know how much I like that.

 This is another attempt at making a butterfly. It's a pretty messy butterfly but this soap thickened up quicker than I expected. I was lucky, it could have been so much worse than this. So far no disasters like I had with the fall scents. Winter is playing nice.

 These little mini bars are Christmas Forest which smells just like it sounds. I didn't think anyone would want to smell like a pine tree so I made little hand soaps for washing up at the kitchen sink after a day of cookie making.

 This is Cranberry Fig. Slap dash is what I call it. I made 4 loaves that day and I was just pouring the batter in, giving it a stir and moving on to the next. It shows.

Ditto with Peppermint Stick. It was midnight by the time I got around to this one.

 Sleigh Ride smells very brisk. It's a bit minty and and a little bit piney.

 Santa's Spruce is one of my favorite new scents. It's a sugary, sweet pine. Odd but nice.

Hot Buttered Rum is very rummy. It makes me want some rum cake. I love rum cake. I need to make some rum cake.

Finally, meet Peppermint Bark.

It came about because I haven't been able to get my usual deodorized cocoa butter. I bought a pound of natural cocoa butter and discovered it smells just like chocolate.  I never thought about chocolate soap being a good thing but if this scent doesn't cure out, it's going to be really, really yummy.