Monday, November 7, 2011

Weekend Wrap-Up & Coming Up this Week Nov. 7th- Nov. 11th

Is it just me or isn't the days just after daylight savings time weird? You would think an hour wouldn't make much difference, but it can.  I hope the difference in time has been a good adjustment to shake things up with everyone ;) I know this weekend definitely didn't go as planned on my end- but it was still a really great weekend/ start of the week so far.
Here is the wrap-up from the weekend:

Saturday Kevin thought he would finally have the day off possibly and we were getting stuff done around the house, then he got called in for the rest of the afternoon/evening. I decided if I was going to drop him off at work which is right next to JoAnns I would go in and get some glue before going home.  I ended up wandering aimlessly- which can be inspiring and overwhelming... but what was crazy I thought was how great some of the products/ customer base is now vs. 10 years ago.  10 years ago I feel like all the good knitting and crochet patterns were vintage hand-me-downs or collected patterns- all the ones in stores looked like ill-fitting 80's knits from the home shopping channel or something. Now look- there is trendy magazines marketed with French Bulldogs on the front and all kinds of awesome hip new things. I love that more young people have taken over this wonderful pastime.

The new face of crochet/ new line of supplies from The Crochet Dude even has tattooed carpel tunnel/ work gloves.  I dunno the whole story behind The Crochet Dude, at first I was thinking it is crazy that all these products say dude and it is historically a lady hobby.  But, its kinda not 100% true because back in history sailors would knit...
Kevin used to joke about the reason he'd never take  up knitting back when we were dating and I would teach knitting to people in college. He'd say why should he learn, that's what I am there for.  Totally cute and funny- not rude... more like something that would be followed by a laugh track on a sitcom. My friend Omar was another good example of boys who are awesome at crochet- take that Kevin. He used to come over to my old place and try and explain to me why I am horrible at crochet.  It has been one of my life's missions to make a granny square afghan.  The squares have eluded me for years.

I kinda wish I had a crochet dude to make me some sweet projects once I saw this Crochet book of "Celebrity Slouch Beanies" (BTW, the price is more like $5 it is in the wrong place in case someone wants to purchase it). There is always way cooler crochet patterns for sale. I had hoped even with Omar and others' tutorials to get better but I totally screwed myself learning knitting fist. Since I am a knitter and it is hard to tell where to place stitches compare to knitting I  make lumpy, misshaped crochet projects leading me to not consider them an option, even though they are my favorite design wise. I figured I would take a picture and maybe write up a little post along the lines of "what does it say about our obsession with celebrity to have patterns influenced by them- yada yada".

I was super stoked to  find the knitting one on another isle and totally bought it ;)  Between the two little booklets they both have different projects. I really liked the finished projects in the knit beanie book which was perfect after all. 
Back in college I would knit Kevin so many beanies!  I hope I can take this project book with me over the Holidays and get some awesome hats made- Fingers crossed!

I saw this new yarn by Martha Stewart online and I was looking forward to checking it out.  It looks like wool roving all caged like puffed cotton sausages with a spidery but squishy feel.  I am not sure what type of process they use to bind the second layer on top of the other- it is definitely a crazy machine though for sure. 
I really like this fabrication and texture of this yarn.  Since I want to use up my yarn first, I really want to try out using a finger crochet over a chunky yarn to achieve a similar effect. The old me would have totally had 4-5 skeins of this yarn come home with me, basically to sit in my collection just because I liked it. Now that I have  pledged not to by "new things" I blog about how I love them instead and that has been way more positive on my pockets :) 
I will definitely make a few allowances when it comes to buying new things, it is not as easy as I just don't by things.  Some things like glue or items that need to be sourced are an exception for instance:
If I were to try and make my own packaging for the Reinbeers it would take me forever, and it would be hard to find enough to fit the demand for boxes 2nd-hand.  So if we must source something Made in the USA, 100% Recycled Content/ Green Resourced, and ethically resourced are the requirements before I will make a purchase.  This has been a helpful way to cut down waste, needless spending, as well as cluttering up our place while buying a ton of projects.
*These boxes came today- we reordered gift boxes and thankfully it got here just in time!

Yesterday was a bummer.  All day I was haunted by our decision to stay put vs. brave a potential tough storm with the car and I kicked myself on and off over the course of the day.  We made the day count since it was a let down- working on getting ahead for next week's show in Culver City.  I am totally ready to get a car before then, I am so anxious to get this little snafu nipped in the bud and never have this as a hindrance again. Thankfully whether we get a car or not the Helm's Bakery is pretty darn close to walking distance and is close enough to test fate and drive in the rain.
Over the summer Kevin has taken more interest in cooking.  Sunday nights Kevin likes to do dinner and I am really enjoying it being a reoccurring thing. Since Patchwork was a no go, and we were planning out our day, "Kevin wanted to do something we would never do" which ended up being him making jalapeno beer bread for dinner and I made fresh cranberry sauce.

Last night he came back from the store with all the supplies and said we were making this bread as our "something different". I loved that idea! It was totally unexpected and surprising. His mom had passed along a Cooking with Beer cook book to him as a Christmas present previously and I was super impressed that he had dug up the recipe and decided to try out this easy cornbread.

1 1/2 Cups beer
2 Cups flour
1 Cup Cornmeal
2 Tablespoons sugar
3 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
Fresh or jarred jalapenos 
Mix ingredients together in a large bowl.
Pour batter into a greased loaf pan.
Bake approximately 40 minutes at 350 degrees.

I tried my hand for the first time making cranberry sauce from fresh berries.  Cranberries have always been my holiday favorites.  I could eat them daily from now until the end of the holidays and not ever get my fix.

12oz. Cranberries
1 Cup Pineapple Juice
1 Cup Sugar
Dissolve the sugar and juice over med-low heat. 
Once fully dissolved bring to a boil, cover and simmer fro 5 minutes.  
Add cranberries to the mixture and cook covered for 10 minutes stirring on and off.
Around the 10 minute make you should hear the berries pop.  This is good.  
Turn it up to med.- hi heat, give it a good stir, and do this off and on until you think all the berries popped.
After you have fully cooked all the berries and popped them- transfer the mixture into a bowl.  
The mixture/ sauce will thicken as it cools.

Tomorrow, there will be a tutorial on upcycling tissue paper tubes into packaging for small items this holiday season.
Turn This:
Into this:
Looking forward to even more holiday tips and helpful tricks this week so stay tuned!

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