Saturday, June 28, 2008

On A Lighter Note...

It was a cold winter day. An old man walked out onto a frozen lake, cut a hole in the ice and dropped in his fishing line. He was there for almost an hour, without even a nibble, when a young boy walked out onto the ice and cut a hole in the ice not far from him. The young boy dropped his fishing line and minutes later he hooked a largemouth Bass.

The old man couldn't believe his eyes but chalked it up to plain luck. Shortly thereafter, the young boy pulled in another large catch.

The young boy kept catching fish after fish. Finally the old man could take it no longer. "Son, I've been here for over an hour without even a nibble. You've been here for only a few minutes and have caught a half dozen fish! How do you do it?"

The boy responded, "Roo raf roo reep ra rums rrarm."

"What was that?" the old man asked.

Again the boy responded, "Roo raf roo reep ra rums rrarm."

"Look", said the old man, "I can't understand a word you're saying."

The boy spit the contents of his mouth into his hand and said, "You have to keep the worms warm!"

An Article by Me

I am not eloquent. I am not scholarly. When I am passionate about something I am loud, I am brash, and I am opinionated. I wrote this 'mini-book' during Stefani's chemo treatments and finished it closer to the end. I must say she is living proof that God's Word is true with every subsequent blood test.

If you ever really wanted to 'know' me. Then read this article. If you don't care, then don't read it. If you read it and don't agree...that's your choice.

Read this document on Scribd: WHEN DIAGNOSIS COMES

Friday, June 27, 2008

'Tweener Project...for all you wine drinkers...*wink*

Here's another 'tweener project. I copied this pattern by Drew Emborsky ages ago. I found it last week while I was rifling through some papers. Since I am currently experiencing 'project funk'...I thought, "Ok, I'll give these a try." I totally fell in love with them...totally...
They are THE easiest things to make ever. AND they are totally practical and functional when you are done. I discovered that you can get 8 flip-flops from one solid ball of Sugar 'N Cream...and 6 flip-flops from one variegated ball of Sugar 'N Cream. I still haven't made it through the whole ball of white. You can get an awful lot of flip-flop straps out of one ball of white.

I decided to make these for wedding gifts. All the colors pictured represent sets of 4 in each of the colors. I'm going to throw together the 'leftovers' from the variegated sets into a mix and match set.
As you can see from the first picture and the last picture, I embellished some of the flip flops. The first picture shows some that I beaded. The last picture I just put matching butterfly buttons on the front of the straps. You can do quite a bit with these to make them individual.
Sort of like wine glass charms...only not. And now the wine glass won't leave rings on your tables. Of course, I don't drink wine and don't use wine glasses, so I have no idea if they leave rings or not. I just assumed they did..:)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Fingerless Mitts

I have been on a fingerless mitts kick lately. These are pictures of only 3 of the pairs that I've made. I have been using this pattern:

Size 6 DPN's
CO 40 st. Divide them 12,12,16 on your needles.
K2,P2 for 40 rows
BO 6 st- finish row
CO 6 st- finish row
K2,P2 for a total of 60 rows(women's), 63 rows (men's)

Super, dee-duper easy. And they take about 50g of WW wool. First two pics are Patons Merino Wool and the last pic is mercerized cotton.

Thank you Dooger and Tony for being my hand models!

Log Cabin Blanket for Dad- WIP

Obviously these are progress pictures.

This is from the Mason-Dixon Knitting book. However, I'm using stash yarn. I am only using wool for this blanket. So far I have Patons Merino wool and some Handspun Llama in there. Oh wait, also a yarn called Melody. That's the lighter green in the second picture. I wanted to show you my progress....but I had just cast on another row..grr..

Thursday, June 12, 2008

An Intimate Thought- Rated PG-13

I hope you don't mind if I ramble for a minute or two.

As I was sitting here knitting this morning my mind wandered back to Tuesday night while we were playing games with some friends. We were playing Scattergories in 4 teams of 2. Tony and I decided to be paired together...seemed the natural thing to do since we are married. Anyway, teams would scoot away from the table so that we couldn't hear each other whispering our answers. Well, Tony was writing the answers and I was supposed to be all brilliant and tell him all kinds of things to write down...yeah, right. The first time we scooted back I rested my face on his shoulder to see the pad of paper...well, my mind went blank. And not because I couldn't think of anything...I had a few brilliant was because I was touching Tony. LOL

I know that sounds wierd. We've been married fifteen years. You would think things like that don't happen anymore! Not so. I think sometimes life gets soooo busy and soooo involved that we forget what an intimate thing it is to be able to touch another person. It wasn't like Tony was dressed super nice or had done anything special to himself, although he did smell good..but he always smells good. It was just the warmth of him and the strength of his muscles through his t-shirt that made my mind go all gah-gah. I think men have a secret stash of muscles that they pull out for moments like that! LOL

So anyway, I wasn't much help until Tony handed the pad off to me and told me to write the answers down..LOL Then I couldn't rest my face on his shoulder anymore...*sigh*

Sometimes when life is moving so fast it's hard to appreciate the little things. Every day is so busy and everyone is always so tired. As a married couple you fit love making in where you can...sometimes you are even awake enough to enjoy it..LOL...but life isn't only about love making and having sex. It's so much more intimate than that.

The smallest of touches. The tiniest whiff of the warm scent of your lover. Revelling in the sweetness of their smile, the twinkle in their eyes and the way their eyes soften when they look at you, the way they love their children....all of it is so telling. Learning to appreciate the friendship that you have, being able to enjoy the same forms of entertainment...just hanging out and watching football and nascar together. The fact that even though he doesn't understand how to do it, he still appreciates all of our knitting and crocheting efforts and understands the work that goes into it.

They may not do all the 'little jobs' we have for them. They may be lazy and not pick up their socks and undies (or hang up their clothes after church). They may be neater at work than they are at home (how that happens??? I don't know). They may not always say "I want this specific item for supper"...instead of always leaving it up to your imagination. But, ya know, if that is the worst of it?...I'd say I have it pretty good.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Weather Resistant Clothespin Bag

How can a clothespin bag this cute be weather resistant?

Because it's made out of highly durable nylon Mason Line! Here's what Wikipedia had to say about nylon:
Variation of luster: nylon has the ability to be very lustrous, semilustrous or dull.
Durability: its high tenacity fibers are used for seatbelts, tire cords, ballistic cloth and other uses.
High elongation
Excellent abrasion resistance
Highly resilient (nylon fabrics are heat-set)
Paved the way for easy-care garments
High resistance to:
insects, fungi and animals
molds, mildew, rot
many chemicals
Used in carpets and nylon stockings
Melts instead of burning
Used in many military applications

(I italicized my favorite part!)

Here's the pattern: **This hasn't been tested, let me know of any problems!!**

Materials: Multipurpose Mason Line-twisted nylon. Uses about 10feet of line.
(pattern uses white and high visibility yellow)
G hook, stitch marker

ch31 with white
R1- sc in 2nd ch and each to last ch, 3sc in last ch, sc in rem loops of original ch to last ch, 2 sc in last ch. (62) do not join
R2- 2sc in 1st sc (mark 1st sc as new row), sc in 28, 2sc in next 3 sc, sc in 28, 2sc in 2, do not join.(68sc)
**Continue to move stitch marker up with each row**
R3-5- sc in each sc, cut white at end of row 5, join yellow
R6-22- sc in each, cut yellow at end of row 22, join white
R23-27- sc in each, cut white at end of row 27, join yellow
R28- sc in each
R29- sc in 10sc, sl st in 20sc, sc in 38sc
R30- sc in 10sc, ch1, turn
R31- sc in 48sc, ch1, turn,
R32-36- Repeat row 31. At end of row 36, ch19 and join with first sc of row.
R37- ch1, sc in join and next 4sc, sc dec, sc in 1, sc dec, sc in 29, sc dec, sc in 1, sc dec, sc in last 5sc and each ch across, sl st to 1st sc.
R38- ch1, sc in join and next 3sc, sc dec, sc in 1, sc dec, sc in 27, sc dec, sc in 1, sc dec, sc in 23, join
R39- ch1, sc in join, sc dec twice, sc in 1, sc dec twice, sc in 21, sc dec twice, sc in 1, sc dec twice, sc in 20, join
R40- ch1, sc in join, sc dec, sc in 1, sc dec, sc in 21, sc dec, sc in 1, sc dec, sc in 20, join
R41- ch1, sc dec, sc in 1, sc dec, sc in 19, sc dec, sc in 1, sc dec, sc in 19, join
R42- ch1, sc dec 3 times, sc in 14, sc dec 4 times, sc in 14, sc dec, join
R43- sk join, sc dec 3 times, sc in 6, sc dec 6 times, sc in 6, sc dec 3 times (incl sk 1st sc)
R44- sl st in each st, cut and finish.

You can put an edging around the opening if you want...but you don't have to, this doesn't stretch like cotton.

Here's a shot of the hanger I used. It's an 18" doll hanger. You can find them here if nowhere else. Otherwise, just be creative and mutate a normal hanger to fit!

Here is what the Mason Line looks like.

If I re-do this I will use straight white. While the yellow has a neat look to it, the dye used to make it yellow make the nylon very sticky-ish. It is hard to work with and makes your hands and arms tired. The white is silky soft and crochets up quite nicely. :)

Friday, June 06, 2008

Sunday Dinner Shepherd's Pie

Oh. Mercy. This was incredible. And yet again, we are just a bunch of pigs and ate it all before I could get a picture!!

Sunday Dinner Shepherds Pie
by Elizabeth Mareno

3-4 B/S chicken breasts, cubed
2 Tbl olive oil
salt and pepper
1 can cond cream of mushroom soup
1 can green beans, drained
1 can kernelled corn, drained ** Don't use creamed, it gets too runny
3 C dry stuffing (traditional stuffing-if you use instant, follow pkg directions for making)
1 pkg Garlic Herb instant mashed potatoes**like the four cheese, it comes in boxes of two
8 oz shredded cheddar
milk**for the potatoes
butter**for the potatoes & stuffing
Casserole Dish like the Oval Baker

Preheat oven to 375.

Cook chicken thoroughly in olive oil over medium heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Make your stuffing while your chicken is cooking. When chicken is cooked through, add can of soup and drained veggies. Cook until well mixed. Place in casserole dish.

To make stuffing: Put 3 C of dry stuffing into a bowl. Heat up 3/4 C water and 1Tbl butter on stove and pour over stuffing. Let sit for 5 minutes.

Layer your pie like so: Chicken mixture, cheese, stuffing, potatoes

Bake for 25 minutes.

YUM! Like eating Sunday Dinner without all of the mess! You might want to serve some cranberry sauce and a salad with this one!! Enjoy!

South Western Baked Goulash

No pictures again.

Southwestern Baked Goulash
by Elizabeth Mareno

1 lb ground beef
1/2 large onion chopped
1/2 Tbl Cumin
salt and pepper
1 can tomatoes/green chilis (Rotel type product) ,drained
1 can southwest style corn, drained
8 oz uncooked elbow mac
8 oz or more of shredded cheddar
8x11 or 9x13 pan

Preheat oven to 375.

Brown meat and onion and spices (salt and pepper to taste). Cook pasta while meat is cooking. When meat is cooked and onions are soft, add tomatoes/chili mix and corn to meat. Add about 1/3 of cheese to mixture. Drain noodles and add to mixture. Place in casserole dish, top with the remaining cheese and cook for about 25 minutes.

Cheeseburger Shepherd's Pie

Sorry to say that I have no pictures to share with you on this one. We pretty much inhaled it so fast I couldn't have taken a picture of anything but the crispy bits left on the pan....

Cheeseburger Shepherd's Pie
by Elizabeth Mareno
**If somebody else already put this recipe out there..I have no idea..I just made it up as I went along.**

1 lb ground beef
1/2 large onion chopped
1 can cond cream of mushroom soup
1 can green beans (drained)
1 can kernelled corn (drained) **Don't use creamed-makes it too runny(DH knows! LOL)
8 oz shredded cheddar**put as much as you like, this is just a place to start
1 pkg four cheese instant tatoes **they usually come in a box with two packages
milk **for the potatoes
butter **for the potatoes
salt and pepper
8x11 or 9x13 pan

Preheat oven to 375.

Brown meat and onion on a medium heat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Make your potatoes while your meat is cooking. When meat is cooked through and onions are soft(which they will be as long as you add the onions to the meat right away) drain the meat if you want. If you don't care (like me) add the soup and let it heat up with the meat. It will get sort of melty. Once the soup and the meat are mixed well add your drained vegetables and mix. (if you really aren't diggin' the veggies and just want the meat, leave them out)

Layer your pie like this: Meat mixture, Cheese, Potatoes.

A 9x13 pan can spread it a little thin. But some 8x11 pans can seem too small. You'll have to use your judgement and make sure you have something in your oven to catch possible drips or Oh Lordy will your kitchen Stink! I usually use the "Oval Baker" from Pampered Chef. Not that I'm trying to advertise from them, but this pan works really well.

Cook for about 25 minutes.

Our family has decided this is a new 'staple' in our food rotation. It is just that good!