[spinning] Golden yarn

Spun some yarn last week, as part of the Ravellenic Games:

Spinning fiber

I bought this fiber at the VT Sheep and Wool Festival last fall (can't remember the vendor). It was two pieces of sliver- golden brown yellow and the other was very similar but had a bit of an overall green color. I spun them separately. Here's the gold:

Spinning yarn

Santana performs some QA/QC of the spinning:


After plying/washing:

Hand spun yarn complete! πŸŒžπŸŒ»πŸ’«πŸ’›πŸŒ…πŸΊπŸ―πŸ±πŸ‘‘ #spinning

Love it. Loveit loveit loveit. Overall a light-worsted weight yarn.

Handspun Yarn

I have such a collection of handspun yarn- I need to find patterns on Ravelry. 


[quilting] Dog block

Still working on quilting, trying to do a block here and there when I have time:

Next quilt block... what’s it going to be? #quilting

I found a pretty cute block for a dog. Cut all the pieces and...

🐢 @jenmac1818 It’s Tash! #quilting

It's so cute! A rather accurate representation of my friend's dog for her quilt- two different colored eyes and everything.

I think I'm going to switch to some more traditional designs. 


[cooking] Shrimp Dumplings

I've had dumplings on my to-do list since the Chinese new year last Friday. I picked up some wraps at H-mart and decided to make them for dinner *gasp* mid-week. 

For the filling, I thawed some frozen shrimp and put it into the food processor with scallions, ginger, garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil and a dab of hot Chinese chili sauce.

Shrimp dumplings

A few pulses later:

Shrimp dumplings

So, the filling only took a few seconds. Then I wrapped the dumplings while watching Olympic hockey:

Shrimp dumplings

My wrapping game is literally one trick- those pleats. Some day I'll try other techniques and styles but the pleats look traditional and it works with steaming them upright or pan frying them flat. And I can do it fast.

Steam in the double-level bamboo steamer for 10 min and voila:

Shrimp dumplings>

Served with all the little Korean banchan:

Shrimp dumplings

All in all, probably only 30 minutes from start to finish. The greatest time saver was that it was a relatively small amount of filling and made about 20 dumplings. Generally when I make eggrolls or dumplings, I have a gigantic bowl of filling that will make 4,000 dumplings. Good for a party but labor intensive for a weeknight meal for two. 

Added bonus: this totally fulfilled my craving for pasta. 


[knitting] Little blue pouch

I used some yarn leftovers to knit a little square bag- with the intention of adding a lining and zipper (since I know how to do that now). But of course the bag sat around for ages, ends not even sewn in. Finally I blocked it and got all the accouterments together:

Lining a knit pouch

Since I'm doing so much sewing, I cut some blue fabric and sewed a lining. I shortened a zipper. (I love my little pincusion biscornu- I should make more. They are so adorbs and useful.)

Pin in the lining (ehhhh, it's a little too big):

Lining pinned

Sew it in (ehhh, it's a little wonky because it was too big):

Lining sewn

Pin in the zipper (oh look, it covers the wonkiness of the lining):

Zipper pinned

Sew that in and voila, zippered and lined pouch:


Knit pouch with zipper and lining

After I got all the stuff together, it only took about 30 minutes to do since the project was so small.


[crochet] Cacti

I've been making little cacti with leftover green yarns:

🌡🌡🌡🌡 #crochet #amigurumi

The pattern is called


[quilting] Sailboat

Accomplished so many fun and crafty things over the long weekend. Friday afternoon I spent on a quilt block:

⛵️🍺 #quilting #zerogravitybeer

Yeah, that's a beer in there, too. Because it was beer o'clock. 

The finished sailboat:

Sailboat quilt block. ⛵️ I cut up the entire piece if fabric to get the skeleton situated right. #worthit #quilting

I basically had to massacre the entire piece of skeleton fabric to get a square just right for the sail but it was worth it.

I've decided I'm just going to do whatever quilt blocks I find and like and I'll worry about how they all fit together later... 

I bought a bolt of inexpensive (coughcheapcough) 100% cotton grey fabric at Joann's. I plan to use a bit here and there as a solid color. As I was working on this block and pressing pieces (with steam- I know I'm not supposed to but I'm glad I did) the grey was shrinking like crazy. Alarmingly so. Enough to make me freak out. I frantically started Googling what to do- and the answer was so simple I don't know why I didn't think of it: prewash the fabric. Duuuuuuhhhhh. (slaps forehead). So I washed/dried some and I'll iron it to see if it still shrinks. 


[cooking] Valentine's Day

Got all the cats to agree to Valentine's Day pictures.







Dinner was pizza (with turkey pepperoni because we eat sooooo healthy):


And dessert- heart shaped brownie with whipped cream and red glitter:

Valentine Brownie

I had to stop by King Arthur Flour for a few things earlier in the week and couldn't resister the edible glitter. Now I need to glitter all the foods since I only used .0001 grams last night.


[cooking] Yukgaejang: Spicy Beef Soup

With the winter Olympics in South Korea this year, my Olympics-watching menu has been non-stop Korean food. It's easy when I can just stop by my mom's for kimchi (ugh, I just want to rub it all over my face), marinaded bulgogi meat and yukgaejang.

Food for the Olympics- my mom’s spicy beef #yukgaejang. May not be the prettiest but I’m okay with #uglydelicious. 🍲

Yukgaejang is a spicy beef soup and this one is loaded with vegetables: Tuscan kale, leeks, scallions, bean sprouts, dikon radish, mushrooms. I wasn't sure about posting the picture because it's not the prettiest... But after watching chef David Chang cover some of the food in Korea for NBC and checking out his Instagram, I learned that he has a new Netflix show coming later this month: Ugly Delicious. My go-to cooking/travel program is always Parts Unknown with Anthony Bourdain (mostly because he's an excellent writer/narrator) but I think Ugly Delicious might be just as good.

Happy Valentine's Day. Not sure what's on the menu for tonight but it's all probably going to be heart-shaped. 


[knitting] Nilas #2

I did a a bunch of aran caps for Dollar's band for Christmas. The recipient of the top right hat said her friend loves this hat and wanted one exactly the same. EXACTLY the same. So I made another:

Another Nilas hat. First #ravellenicgames2018 project. #hathalfpipe #teamcatitude2018 #knitting

While this one isn't exactly the same (I think this one has a shorter brim and is a half-pattern longer), it's close enough. I did it over a couple days and it is my first Ravellenic Games project for the Hat Halfpipe event. Go Team Catitude!

In the meantime, I'm still working on Fox Paws.


[misc] Santana Monday

Brought Santana to the vet on Saturday morning for her annual exam, shots, blood work.

Santana at the vet

She handles it pretty well. We're bringing Penny down this coming Saturday, which is definitely a two person job. Penny does not travel well.

Had quite a productive weekend. Brought my quilt stuff up to Fairlee to be finished. Cooked some good foods. Watched a lot of Olympics. Did house chores. Started a hat for the Ravellenic Games.


[misc] TGIF

Cat grass brings all the cats to the kitchen:

Cat grass brings everyone to the kitchen 🌱🌱🌱🐯🐱🌱🌱🌱

So happy it's Friday! (This week has been brutal.) Dropping my quilt off after work! Heading home to watch the Olympics! Going to cuddle with the cats and couch surf! 


[quilting] Country Charm - with border

And just like that, a brown border is sewn on and it's ready to bring to the quilting shop (I might take a spin up there to drop it off tomorrow after work!):

Brown border. Ready to be quilted. #quilting

Going to start some basic blocks for the next quilt- half square triangles and flying geese. 

I've started queuing/printing my knitting and crochet project patterns for the Olympics. Trying to finished up the Totally Biased cowl that I've been knitting with sock yarn by tomorrow night (before the opening ceremonies). 

Is it Friday yet? 


[cooking] Oatmeal Cranberry Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

Had a case of the Mondays yesterday and the only cure was cookies:

I’ve got a case of the Mondays and the only cure is cookies. Oatmeal cranberry coconut chocolate chip.

The recipe is the basic Oatmeal Raisin cookies from the King Arthur Flour Baker's Companion cookbook, I just didn't have raisins. I used some dried cranberries and the last of a bag of shaved coconut (unsweetened) and mini chocolate chips. It makes a lot of dough and I usually bake a dozen as soon as I make it- then I keep the rest in the freezer. Then I can just defrost as needed.


[quilting] Country Charm

The quilt top is done and I'm calling it "Country Charm":

Quilt top is done. Still need to get fabric for border, backing and binding. #quilting

Well, almost done. I'll be taking it down to Hen House Fabrics in White River Junction tomorrow to get some binding and backing fabric. And I think I need to get some border fabric. 

It's crazy to think that this is how I first laid out all the charm squares in late December:

Going to try making a new quilt top with misc charm squares while on vacation this week. I placed all the squares and stopped fiddling with them so the hard part is over.

Lots of sewing and cutting and resewing. And I only have two little blue cornerstones leftover from the 4 charm packs I used to make this quilt. I forgot to measure the top but it's probably twin-sized at the moment.

All those small 3.5 inch squares from my sister that I've been using as leaders/enders have been paired up and sewn:

Sewed all the random squares into pairs. Now to sew the pairs into tetrads. #quilting

I'll sew about 60% of these into 4-squares. Once those are done, I'll add another strip of two- making 6-squares. Then I'll cut and sew muslin rectangles along the long edge. Once all those squares are done, I can arrange them to look like this.


[knitting] Fox Paws progress

Progress is slow on Fox Paws:

🐾 #knitting #foxpaws

It's a difficult knit but when it looks that nice, it keeps pulling you back. The colors remind me of Greece. ... Okay, I've never been to Greece. I should say that the colors remind me of pictures of Greece.

I am periodically sewing in ends- just so I don't have 5000 ends to sew when the project is finished. 

The Ravelympics... wait, Ravellenic games begin during the Olympics opening ceremony. I've got a little over a week to figure out what I'll be working on...