Monday, December 29, 2008

trying hard not whine

i've been avoiding my blog lately. mainly because it would have been pretty pathetic. you would have found posts titled "kill me! kill me now!" or" just take me to vet and put me down!" i've been dealing with extreme back pain for over a week now. no position comfortable-unable to endour the car trip to town to get help as i have been unable to sit or lay down. standing has been semi tolerable and sleeping has been minimal.

the hardest thing for me to deal with is the fact that even though i have 2 weeks off from schooling i will not get any of my many planned projects done. i really wanted to put posts in for extending the hen yard and if weather and money permitted even buying the a few rolls of fencing and actually attemping to do it. varies aspects of house cleaning can't be done as lifting and bending is required. some of you may think -oh i bet you are knitting and reading and watching groovy old movies. i wish! but doing these things standing up is not very fun and gets old quik. i'm sick of standing and hate sleeping flat on my stomach.

oh gee-i sense this post is beginning to get whiney and pathetic. i better stop. one more thing...did i mention that i'm absolutely miserable? on to better things. i wanted to post a picture of the solstice cave our family builds every year to honor the return or rebirth of the sun. we light the candles at sunset on solstice eve.
we had a small gathering for the kids-cookie decorating and a solstice play were enjoyed. my favorite cookie..the black one-obviously done by an early teen!

here is blue wanting to the wear the sun costume.

sorry no good pics of the play.....but you get the idea. i took jeanne's advice after my felting mishap as spirits were low and decided to chill and knit myself something. being that my feet are always cold i opted for some coziness--wool socks! thick wool socks done on a size 3 needle. i haven't made the anguishing leap into doing socks on a size 1-anything on a size 1 is just wrong in my book. BUT(notice the caps!) i am willing to change. i'm willing to take the plunge and it is my new years resolution to not fear or disdain skinny needles-something i now use to clean my teeth with or check to see if baked goodies are done. i will go forth. but for now -here's my socks on size 3 needles. been into purples and green this season-purple is usually not a color choice i usually imbibe in.the green is more chartruesy in real life. gotta love it eh? okay-there's something i wanted to mention to you all-i know it's too late for this holiday season but..... for those of you non-fiber folks out there that have fiber fanatics in your family or circle of friends; i don't care how big you think their yarn stash is-gifts of yarn and fiber is all we fiber creatures want!!! check out my holiday haul...i'm a lucky gurl, eh? please, give the gift of fiber! oops! i forgot one! here's one from hubby...

happy new years everyone!!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

happy winter!

i woke early this solstice day after having a small family solstice gathering last night. today is my dear friend Jeanette's wedding day. it will take place at the miner's foundry. the wedding is having a celtic flare and i'm in charge of making vegetarian Irish stew for those who don't imbibe in flesh. i found a wonderful recipe at yes, it includes guinness! very appropriate for nettie. it is simmering on the stove now and smells great. the marmite is a must! i may have a new solstice tradition. i omitted the red lentils(they didn't sound very irish to me) and added more root vegetables like parsnips and turnips- and way more potatoes! the rain is falling and it feels like an irish wedding day. i wanted to share the recipe with you. give it try! happy winter!

Vegetarian Irish Stew

2 medium onions, chopped
1/4 c. unbleached flour
4 c. water
1 c. Guinness stout (or other dark beer)
2 c. mushrooms, thickly sliced
1 c. carrot, sliced into rounds
1 c. celery, diced
1/2 c. split red lentils
1/2 c. fresh parsley, chopped
1/4 c. soy sauce
3 vegetarian bouillon cubes or 3 T. vegetable-stock base
1 bay leaf
2 tsp. Marmite
1 tsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. each dried thyme, marjoram and rosemary
2 cloves garlic, minced
Black pepper to taste
1 package of frozen or refrigerated vegetarian "steak" strips

In a large, lightly oiled, heavy pot, steam-fry the onion until it begins to soften. Add the flour and stir thoroughly. Add the remaining ingredients, mix well, and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer on low heat for about 30 minutes, or until the vegetables are done.

Serves 6. Serve with Colcannon (an Irish dish of mashed potatoes and greens -- generally kale, although some recipes use leeks or green onion) and Irish soda bread.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

a series of unfortunate events

whew-i'm back on line. the snow in the satellite has melted enough to let the signal thru. it's amazing how addicting these machines are. i was experiencing ravelry withdrawals and sweaty palms not being able to check my email.

the weather was great. so happy to have precipitation of any kind. blue loved his first snow!
well, things have been out of sorts lately. you might say frustrating and trying on my nerves. making me a bit on the pissy side. things like too much cayenne on my dinner.

blue getting into one of my holiday gifts in the making-believe it or not-this is a hemp dish cloth. took me all morning to untangle it. damn! time is ticking for gift making. my fault-i left it in the blue zone!
while making liam his lunch today instead of adding cream to his annie's cheesy noodles-i added egg nog instead!!!

not a good thing.....heavy sigh! after a disastrous lunch i excitedly felted liam's solstice gift in the washing machine. i've been knitting nonstop for days. here's a before photo of the gigantic socks.
the felting process was taking rather long. the first time i checked them they had stretched gi-normously! so i kept felting. then they looked like they might fit me. so i decided to let them felt just a smidge more. i don't know what happened- i entered a time warp or something.....then when i took them out they were way too small!
oh how cute you say...they are indeed. but they might fit a 3 year old. liam is almost 11. he couldn't even get the first couple of inches of his foot inside! another heavy sigh! now i have nothing handmade to give him for solstice. i always knit holiday gifts for my family. now i'm even more behind in my gift making and stressing big time. oh well.... i guess gifts of yarn and needles...with a promise of what is to come will have to do.

after a day of heavy sledding-the boys are tired.

Monday, December 15, 2008

winter wonderland!

we really didn't believe it would snow. boy were we wrong. and it's still snowing a bit. i need to get out there and take more pictures. my computer goes in and out because of the snow in the salelite dish. i wanted to post this quick as i may be out of commission for few days. this picture was taken about 7 this morning. liam was up shortly after-all dressed and ready for more sledding. ran out the door before i could feed him! he loves the snow- so does Blue-i better get out of my jammies and get that camera working. it's a day for knitting!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

craft faire

last week as i readied myself for my annual craft faire at the north columbia school house i realized my spinning fibers were lacking in certain spectrums of the color wheel. i needed to dye up some new colors.i dyed about 8 new rovings. i think these two rovings would be awesome plied together.some of my new favorite knits for the sale are this baby sweater made from "JAZZ" yarn-50%alpaca 50% wool:this child size hat made from my handspun-i wish it fit me. i so love the colors.and this baby bonnet also knit from my handspun. the colors were inspired by the robes of tibetan monks.i still have this chartreuse baby sweater- the people who love it don't have kids. i knitted some baby socks that are too cute with it.
my friend and neighbor rhodie shared a booth with me this year. it was nice to have someone to sit with. here's our booth. rhodie is sitting there pricing her felted hats.

close up of my spinning fiber:

well, the sale for me was slow this year. economy? i don't know. no baby sweaters sold. it was the smaller socks and dishclothes. wish i'd made more of those. oh well. might have to focus on lower priced items next year. i'm going to be selling my rovings and yarn at meadowfarm yarn studio and i hope to get my etsy shop updated too.

now i have to get busy with holiday gifts. sneaks up on me every year!