Thursday

[knitting] Lovecraft's Bane

Finished a new hat:

Lovecraft's Bane hat

The pattern is Lovecraft's Bane - Cthulhu Hat (free on Ravelry) and the yarn is Cascade Longwood (one ball each of green and white). I duplicate stitched red yarn over the eyes (or, what I presume are eyes).

I did a provisional cast-on so that I could knit a lining:

Lovecraft's Bane hat

Tucked up inside:

Lovecraft's Bane hat

This is a nice hat- very squishy and plush. I have an extra ball of green yarn and I'm sure I have another ball of white...I just can't find it at the moment. There is a Cthulhu mitten pattern on Ravelry that I want to make to go with this...

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Didn't do any knitting last night. I spent literally the whole evening making mini pot pies. They were so good but way too much work for a weeknight meal. At least I made several so I don't have to do any cooking tonight.

Wednesday

[knitting] Sockhead hat

Sockhead hat (pattern free on Ravelry):

Finished my #sockheadhat in time to wear around Chicago last week. I dyed the yarn at the Green Mountain Knitting Guild retreat in September. Thanks for the workshop, @mariefb1980vt ❤️💛💚💙💜 #knitting #

Finished on the way to Chicago a couple weeks ago, was able to wear it around. It's nice; fold-over brim and long enough to be slouchy. Even all the k2p2 ribbing and stockinette on 2.5mm needles wasn't so bad when knitting continental style.

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We signed up for Disney+ and logged into the app yesterday. The first thing I started watching was Swiss Family Robinson from 1960. I looooooooved that tree house. Later, we watched the first episode of The Mandalorian. So good. Looking forward to new Marvel shows in the future.

Tuesday

[travel] Omaha, NE

Traveled at the end of last week- two nights in Omaha. I've never been before but got to see a bit on Friday morning (my flight out wasn't until 1pm).

There are some wonderful bronze statues in Pioneer Courage Park in downtown:

Pioneer Spirit Park. Omaha, NE

They're all really amazing- detailed and dynamic. It does give you a glimpse at the pioneer spirit, moving west, all your stuff in a covered wagon. Crazy.

Pioneer Spirit Park. Omaha, NE

This guy- trying to push his wagon out of a rut (and some passenger looking back!):

Pioneer Spirit Park. Omaha, NE

Pioneer Spirit Park. Omaha, NE

Some of the buffalo escaped the park and were along (and in) nearby buildings:

Bronze Buffalo

Bronze Buffalo. Omaha, NE.

Bronze Buffalo. Omaha, NE.

I loved all these statues so much.

Then I walked down to the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail and Visitor Center by the river. There's a pedestrian bridge that goes over the Missouri River, from Nebraska to Iowa.

Pedestrian Bridge Over the Missouri River

Pedestrian Bridge

Walked from Nebraska to Iowa

I took about 5 steps into Iowa and then headed back to the hotel- it was pretty cold and windy.

It was a long, long travel day back to Vermont but I made it home. I didn't even mind the snow.

Made it home late last night (or this morning). Delayed flights, dead car battery at the airport, snow, narrowly avoiding a deer standing in the middle of the interstate. I don’t even mind the snow, just glad to be back and not travel for a good long whil

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The rest of the weekend was super chill. Lots of home cooking (after two weeks of travel and eating out). Getting back to quilting. Crocheted a little doily. Finished up several knitting projects (I'm down to one (ONE) wip- a sweater). Actually, I'm kind of filled with knitting ennui. I'm not feeling particularly inspired but I should start making Christmas things...

Planning to take a trip to Hmart with my mom on Saturday- I'm out of everything.

[cooking] Budae Jjigae

Had a hankering for some Budae Jjigae (Army stew) over the weekend. Maangchi's recipe has about a million ingredients but I feel like you can use whatever as long as there's SPAM and other meats, veg, tofu, seasoning paste, ramyeon noodles and american cheese at the end. (I've done baked beans in the past but I don't enjoy the texture in the stew.)

Mine started with:

Budae jjigae. Army base stew

Clockwise from the top: kielbasa, zucchini, onion, hotdog, scallion, tofu, zucchini, spam, scallion. With a decorative crimini mushroom in the middle, on top of seasoning paste (gochujang, gochugaru, garlic, sesame oil, maple syrup, soy sauce). Add some kind of broth and boil.

Budae jjigae. Army base stew

I love my shallow covered Le Creuset for this. (I'm really trying to not pine for the Star Wars pots because they're unreasonably expensive but... that Darth Vader dutch oven. Omg.) Anyway, once things get nice and boiling, nestle in a disk of ramyeon noodles (Nongshim for life). Get it all cooked, soaking up the spicy broth, add a slice of government cheese for the last 30 seconds. Throw on sliced serrano peppers to make it fancy and hotter.

Budae jjigae. Army base stew

This is so good, stick-to-your-ribs winter food. I can't imagine eating this in the summer- all the meat and noodles. But when it's cold out, it's the ultimate Korean comfort food.

Monday

[travel] Chicago

Was away in Chicago last week. I didn't see as much as I could have liked (landmarks, museums, etc) but the food was amazing. Had to get a Chicago dog (twice):

When in Chicago...

I went to a great Korean restaurant:

Kimchi jjigae, kimchi pajeon, soju. ❤️❤️❤️ 🍲🍸

All the food I had everywhere was good. I missed out on authentic deep-dish pizza (which I'm actually pretty annoyed about)- we just never got around to a proper place. I did very minor yarn shopping (two skeins at a local shop). Really, these work trips are pretty mundane. It's just nice to hang with everyone that I email/talk to frequently but only get to see once a year.

My first snow of the year was in the city:

Snowy...

Photo

I came home on Friday. A big storm came through the night before and we were without power for more than a day. But that's okay, I needed a day and a half to sleep and cuddle with the kitties:

Still without power this morning. Thankful for the generator. We turned it off when we went too bed last night- house was 60 degrees this morning.  Good thing I’ve got so many knit things to wear and share.

Friday

[knitting] Totally Biased with Hand-dyed yarn... finished!

Finished the totally biased cowl:

Totally Biased: Hand-dyed yarn


The yarn is bulky hand-dyed. I cast on 52 stitches and worked this up on US 9 needles. I used two skeins (prob... 350 yards?) and remembered to do my garter ridges at equal intervals.

Totally Biased: Hand-dyed yarn

Totally Biased: Hand-dyed yarn

Totally Biased: Hand-dyed yarn

Long enough to wrap around my neck twice. I love the yarn- it is a soft two ply (I love the nubbly texture that two-plies have). 

Ready to take this on my work trip next week.

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TGIF but I have a metric ton of work to finish up before I can relax. I'm getting my hair dyed tomorrow (something spooOoooOOoooky). Chores and football Sunday. Packing and stuff. Leaving Monday midday. Back next Friday.

Thursday

[cooking] Skull Cakelets

Made some small chocolate cakes for the band last night:

Skull Cakelets


I used this Chocolate Fudge Bundt Cake recipe from King Arthur Flour. I used KAF Double Dutch Dark Cocoa powder and they ended up nice and dark. The recipe called for yogurt or sour cream- I only had maple yogurt on hand and used that. 

I filled up my Nordic Ware cakelet pan, only leaving about a half inch of space for each skull. The recipe makes a smidge too much batter for this pan- I had to throw away about 3/4 cup of batter. I baked at 350 for 35 min. They domed a bit and I had to cut away some of the back of the skulls before turning them out onto a platter, so that they would rest flat. 

Skull Cakelets

The looked perfect straight out of the pan but I wanted to add a white glaze. The icing is just powdered sugar mixed with milk- I used a pastry brush to brush the skulls (avoiding the eyes and nose). The glaze dries hard to the touch, so the cakes can be handled.

The glaze is forgiving- a little thin here, a little thick there- it just makes it more spooky.

Skull Cakelet

Skull Cakelet

Skull Cakelet

Skull Cakelet

Love how these turned out- I'm sure they'll be an annual tradition.

Wednesday

[cooking] Grape jam

A couple weekends ago, my neighbor let us come over to pick some concord grapes:

Concord grapes 🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇

We picked a couple big bowl's worth. I turn some into jam right away:

6 half pints of grape jam. A bucket of grapes in the fridge will be turned into juice tomorrow. 🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇🍇

It's good and sweet and set up well but it's not particularly grape-y. We've been having it on toast but I might try using some for baking- swirled into pound cake or something.

That same weekend, I had the crock pot going all day with apples and spices to cook down into apple butter. It broke down into a tasty slurry but it wasn't butter-smooth (I didn't take an immersion blender to it or anything). I froze most of it but have got to come up with more ways to use it.

Tuesday

[knitting] DC hat

When I was in DC a couple weeks ago, I thought it was going to be cold and I didn't bring a hat. My hotel was only a few blocks from Fibre Space in Alexandria, VA, so I went down and bought one skein of Studio Chunky by Neighborhood Fibre Co. and Knitter's Pride US 10 DPNs. The hat is a basic k1p1 rib, using the entire skein:

Quick ribbed hat. One skein of @neighborhoodfiberco Studio Chunky, bought at @fibrespace in Alexandria, VA a couple weeks ago. #knitting #hatknitting

Turns out that it was still basically summertime down there and I didn't need the hat but... it's ready for wearing around Vermont. This yarn is divine- sooooo squishilicious. My only complaint is that the finished hat is a little too short to be properly slouchy or to have a deep fold-over brim. Still, I like wearing it as is, without folding the brim.  Maybe over time it will relax into a nice slouch.

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Stopped by my mom's to pick up kimchi after work yesterday. I've been without for a while and I want to kimchi all the things.

Worked away on my sockhead hat during the football game- just about ready to start the stockinette portion.

I'm going to be gone for work next week. I'll miss Halloween week at home, so I want to make some spooky food this week. A pumpkin shaped pizza? Skull cakes? 

Monday

[cooking] Misc. jjigae

Good weekend. Stacked wood on Sat, then went to my sister's for a get-together. Fun drinky times. Spent most of Sunday in a legit fog. Made my hangover cure:

Hangover cure. Misc jjigae (beef shank, onion, scallion, zucchini, mushroom, garlic, gochujang, doenjang, dangmyeon). 🍲😴

Korean stew. I wanted yukgaejang but the market didn't have beansprouts. I got a nice piece of beef shank and just boiled chunks for over an hour. Then added garlic, gochujang, a little doenjang, scallions, onions, zucchini, mushrooms, some soaked japchae noodles. The best part was the slice of bone that simmered away with the meat the whole time- dat marrow...

Somehow, I did laundry and dishes, too (during football commercial breaks). Finished the bulky cowl. Started a new slouchy hat. Should be able to get some good knitting in tonight while the Patriots play!

As long as I'm able to sit on the couch. Lately I've been getting up and coming back to:

Oh hell no. You get out of my seat and get into your soft, squishy, awesome bed.

This is a classic Penny move and I'm surprised Murderface is doing it. Especially when he has a (practically) new, soft, orthopedic, squishy bed of his own. Sigh. 

Friday

[knitting] Totally Biased with Hand-dyed yarn

Working on a new Totally Biased cowl:

New biased cowl using bulky hand-dyed yarn. 💙💛 #knitting #totallybiasedcowl

I'm using a couple skeins of bulky yarn that I dyed at Scratch in Lebanon, NH earlier this year. The Green Mountain Knitting Guild organized a dye class at the shop and it was fun to play with the acid dyes. 

Based on the yarn from yesterday and today, I apparently like dying with blue and orange.

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TGIFFFFF. Going to try to finish the above cowl this weekend. Wind some sock yarn for a hat (I'm going on another work trip at the end of the month and I want a new slouchy hat). Maybe get back to the sweater that I joined the sleeves for (maybe even finish the sweater in time for the work trip?). Going to stack some wood for someone tomorrow and then go to my sister's for party. Gotta visit my grandmother, too. Busy busy busy.

Thursday

[knitting] Send in the Clowns

I was looking for a pattern for my hand-dyed yarn and found one for socks:

Send in the Clowns

The pattern is Send in the Clowns (rav link), free. It's meant to be good for "crazy" (aka clown barf) yarn.

I especially like this pattern name because it was dyed during the Green Mountain Knitting Guild retreat at the Circus Smirkus campus. Circus... clowns... circus clowns.

It is working up well, the slipped stitches and purl rounds break up the colors.

I've started the second sock with a new kitty cat stitch marker:

Pussy cat pussy hat stitch marker

Still cute. They will never not be cute.

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I watched all three seasons of Kim's Convenience on Netflix. It's pretty funny but I'm half Korean and can relate to a lot of it. I really started watching it because it has Simu Liu, who is going to be the lead in the Marvel movie Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings but I got hooked. The Kim family is funny but the side characters (Mr. Mehta, Mr. Chin, Gerald, Terrance, Frank) are so good.

I will say that after three seasons, there hasn't been any progress between Appa and Jung. They tried to... I don't know, hang out at Handy for Jung's GED party and then there was a ping pong game but it's all been kind of forced and not particularly... good. It makes me wonder if the actors playing Appa and Jung hate each other's guts and just don't want to be in any scenes together ever.

I recently finished the first season of Broadchurch and I can't do any more seasons. It's too sad. 

What else... Oh, The Good Place. We caught up through Season 3 on Netflix and started watching the current (final) season's episodes weekly on Hulu.

Speaking of Hulu, I should watch Over the Garden Wall again. That's a good autumn series (and it has nice artwork).

Wednesday

[vermont] Vermont Sheep and Wool Festival

My finished stitch markers for the Vermont Sheep and Wool Festival a couple weeks ago:

All the 🐢 stitch markers done. I’ll be wearing this pin at #vtsheepandwoolfest tomorrow. Swap with me! I’ll be at the Green Mountain Knitting Guild booth (across from Festival merch) from 3-5 pm.

They are so cute and I used one right away to make another little knit pumpkin. I have so many leftover, I only swapped a few and gave several away. 

The festival was a whirlwind this year. I took a class on weaving a cornucopia with willow branches, met my sister at Worthy Burger for lunch, went back to the fest together to do shopping, got a stack of handmade soaps (my fave) and then volunteered at the Green Mountain Knitting Guild booth for the last two hours of the day. I only bought one skein of yarn, no spinning fiber, some wooden VT tags and stitch markers...

The greatest stitch markers ever...

Pussy Cats in Pussy Hats stitch markers

Pussy cats wearing pussy hats. I can't even. They were so expensive but I had to have them and I have no regrets buying them. I'm using one for a new pair of socks I'm knitting:

Pussy cat pussy hat stitch marker

Omfggggggg. It's so cuuuuute!! It's by WeeOnes Creations and all her stitch markers are freaking adorable and detailed.

Tuesday

[embroidering] Snowflake Bundt Bag

Another finished bundt bag:

Another bundt bag because we’re special snowflakes. ❄️❄️❄️ But that doesn’t mean we’re ready for snow. #bundtbag #bundtbagfactory #nordicware

This Nordic Ware snowflake is my favorite brownie pan. The stitching on the bag was pretty quick and easy- held a strand of light and dark blue floss together.

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Whipped up an actual bundt cake this weekend with the autumn wreath pan:

Gingerbread bundt. 🍁🍂🍁🍂 #nordicware #gingerbread #bundtcake #bundtpan

I used this recipe. Nice and spicy.

It was a pretty lazy weekend. I picked some concord grapes at my neighbor's house and made some jam. Still have a tub of grapes in the fridge to make into juice. Made a pot of Vermont Curry that we could eat all weekend. Knit some more on my clown socks (started the second). Cast on for another Totally Biased cowl (with hand-dyed yarn). Sat down at my craft table and joined the sleeves of my Starfall sweater. What else... Hm, I feel like that's pretty much all I did over three days. 

We finally rented Midsommer. Ugh. About 30 min into the movie, I was like, "I feel bad for this girl but she's literally the worst." It's hard to care about a movie when you don't care about any of the characters.

Friday

[knitting] Latvian Fingerless Mitts

Finished Latvian Fingerless Mitts:

Finished Latvian Fingerless Mitts

The pattern is Latvian Fingerless Mitts by Beth Brown-Reinsel. This was from a workshop that she taught at the Green Mountain Knitting Guild Retreat in mid-September. 

Finished Latvian Fingerless Mitts

The details are nice- lots of colorwork, Latvian braids, lace, afterthought thumbs... The yarn is Valley Yarns Northfield in five colors and I have a lot leftover. Since it's superwash yarn, I might slap together some kind of sweater for my niece. Oops, not superwash. Thanks for the comment. I'll do something else with the leftovers.

Finished Latvian Fingerless Mitts

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Was in DC this week. It's still summer down there. Got back Thursday. Nice to have one day in the office and then roll into a three day weekend.

I plan to do some cooking this weekend- maybe make some jams, get a pumpkin and roast the seeds... Go for a hike if the weather's nice. The leaves are pretty nice right now.

[knitting] Making Turtle Stitch Markers

Working on stitch markers to swap at the Vermont Sheep and Wool Festival tomorrow:

Making turtle stitch markers

I found some turtle beads at Michaels (50% off!) and they are so cute. They're pretty detailed- with a belly side and a top shell side. I'm adding a seed bead just above the head.

Making turtle stitch markers

I finished them all last night. I'm trying to keep the jump ring as sooth as possible. I worry that there could be sharp edges or openings that catch yarn, which would be pretty annoying and render the marker basically useless. I think I'm going to cast on something(s) tonight and give one or two a test. 

But they're so cute. If you can't use it as a stitch marker, maybe you can use it as a charm on  something.

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TGIFFFFFF. Looking forward to my class at the festival tomorrow morning: weaving a cornucopia with willow. I want to stuff all my little knit pumpkins inside of it when it's done!

I'll wander around and do some shopping. I need my semi-annual bulk purchase of handmade soap. I'm down to a nearly transparent sliver of soap from the last of the bars that I got at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival in the spring.

Then I'll be at the Green Mountain Knitting Guild Booth from 3 - 5 pm. Come find me there for a turtle stitch marker!