Monday, August 29, 2011


The early forecasts last week had Irene go straight through our area which caused me quite a bit of stress, but she turned westward and all we got was some very interesting clouds and strong winds, no rain at all (which we actually need).
I was a bit apprehensive to go to the farmer's market on Saturday but we went anyway. We just bought peaches, apples, eggs, peppers and onions, no meat this week, we had fish instead.

For lunch on Saturday I made the Tempeh Tacos from "Feeding the Whole Family". That book is on top of my wishlist and once I own it I will cook my way through it. I am using a library copy right now and have to keep it well away from the action when cooking. ;-) The tacos were yummy, I also made the mango salsa from the book.

Since we had some stuff left over I decided to give the salmon for our Sunday lunch a bit of a south of the border twist as well. Wow, I never knew how well guacamole and brown rice go together. It was a very tasty meal, lots of flavors which all harmonized well, the brown rice was just lightly seasoned and bound it all together. Definitely a keeper.

After making my shame UFOs public I spent some time sorting them, pulling materials together and actually finished one of them already. They are at all stages from just in planning to almost finished and they will keep me busy for a while. A lot of them will become gifts for birthdays and Christmas, so off I got to work on some more.

Have a wonderful week everyone. And do pop in now and then to remind me to keep working on those UFOs. ;-) Here is a little cuteness on the way.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

UFO Whacking - The Pictures

Jackie, you asked for it, here is what I have found. These are the projects I am planning on working on and - hopefully - finishing before the year is over. I could not fit them all on one photo so I divided them into categories, knitting, sewing and quilting and hand stitching. After I took the photos I realized that I forgot to add two to the sewing projects, so there are 10 knitting projects, 12 sewing/quilting projects and 6 hand stitching projects. As you can see I am an excellent starter of things, but I do lack a bit in the finishing department. ;-)

Friday, August 26, 2011

UFO Whacking

The ongoing and planned projects are growing like weeds around here and it is time to start some serious weed project whacking. I will be gathering them this weekend to see how bad it really is and starting Monday I will work on finishing them. Some of them are meant to become gifts and there is a kind of deadline for finishing them so they will probably be the first ones to get worked on. A lot of them require hand sewing and stitching and it is finally getting cool enough to do so. I just need to tear myself away from the computer long enough to accomplish something. Wish me luck! :-)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Knitting and Reading

Good morning friends, time for another yarn along with Ginny.
After finishing my Wool Peddler's Shawl I am taking a bit of a break from knitting patterns, instead I am making winter blankets for my cats out of a super bulky yarn I found in my stash. Knitting with 10 mm needles is not much fun but at least it will be finished quickly. I am still reading the same book, I am on page 660 of 1040.

Monday, August 22, 2011


My red Wool Peddler's Shawl is finished. Please ignore the jungle in the background, once the last few tomatoes and eggplants are gone, it will be cleaned up. ;-)


Saturday saw us out and about for most of the day. We went to the farmer's market in the morning and then on to Winston-Salem in search of purse handles. Store #1 and store #2 had handles but not in the style that I needed. Store #3 had handles in the style I needed but in a different material, as I was already hot, cranky and frustrated, I bought them anyway. ;-) I did, however, discover that store #1 has much lower yarn prices than any of the others and a nice selection too. I picked up some wool for a birthday gift and some cotton for Christmas presents. I also got fusible batting and now no longer have an excuse for not starting that purse I wanted to make for so long.
We also did something that we had not done in a long time, we went out to lunch. It was good and did not break the bank either. :-)
And we went to Whole Foods Market for the first time ever! Oh boy, I thought I had died and gone to heaven, what a wonderful store. I found everything I need to try some of the recipes from "Feeding the Whole Family" and then some. I love the combination of locally produced items, organic goods and imported luxuries. I found something I had not seen since we moved here - anchovies paste.
A few months ago I thought we would not be able to ever buy locally and eat seasonally and now I am planning trips to Whole Foods Market. ;-) I find that I am shifting more and more of our food budget towards the "good stuff" and it works, I think they key word here is quality, not quantity and there is more and more we simply no longer buy. I am even able to buy better cat food for my girls.
Here is a picture of the combined goodies from the farmer's market and WFM. We bought peaches, figs, eggs, apples, peppers, onions, grapes, sesame seeds, ground beef, tempeh, aluminum free baking powder, polenta and anchovies paste.

My long term goal is to replace things we eat a lot of with organic products. And discovering WFM also solved the problem of what are we going to eat once the farmer's market slows down for Winter. I already saw some pork chops with our name on them. There is very little pork available at the farmer's market and we do like to have it every now and then.
Sunday lunch was meatballs in tomato sauce (from my own tomatoes) with polenta. I have never made polenta before but we both liked it very much.

And here is a little cuteness for the day. I wonder if she knows what is in the box? Well, of course she does, cats know everything. She is finally getting over her fish allergy and coming back to her normal lively self.

I wish you all a great week, mine is looking to be very, very busy (if I am a good girl and do everything I should be doing).

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Just some random cuteness

Today's Project


and after.

Amazing how little time it takes to bring order to a space. The pile of newspapers is waiting to be put on our garden beds once they are empty. The flat boxes are set up as cat beds for the two outside cats, so is the litterbox. And of course my girls had to inspect it all.

Knitting and Reading

Happy Wednesday, time for another yarn along with Ginny.

I am still reading my big book about a French family, I have just reached the 50s, I like it very much. And I am making progress on my new Wool Peddler's Shawl. I have decided it will become a birthday gift for a friend. I am using Simply Soft in Fall Red.

The birdie in yesterday's picture is a goldfinch on a sunflower. It is in the middle of the picture, to the left of the purple flower. They blend in so well.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tuesday Morning

Can you spot the birdie?

Monday, August 15, 2011

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Farmer's Market

We got there early today and just as we got there a thunderstorm broke. Yikes, I know we need the water, but could we please get it without the noise? ;) The first fall fruits are showing up (at least they would be fall fruits where I come from, we do have a different growing season), plums, pears, grapes and more apples. And I discovered that it really depends on the presentation and the attitude of the people whether I want to buy from them or not. If I ask if the really huge peaches are juicy ( I have made the experience that they usually are not) I do not expect to get "I don't grow crap" as an answer. Luckily other people sell peaches too.
We bought figs, peaches, apples, eggs, ground beef, potatoes and peppers.

Late Harvest

My garden is almost done and the fall crops are planted but there are still some tomatoes coming in and eggplants. Looks like I need to make an eggplant dip.

Wednesday Evening

I noticed that the sky had a strange color and when I went to check it out, I saw this.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

In the garden

The mornings are already noticeably cooler and unfortunately also darker, which, on the other hand, gives me a chance to watch the bats flying around between the big trees across the road while I pack Del's lunch and make breakfast. I just took advantage of the cool morning and spent a delightful time in the garden, hanging laundry and planting Fall vegetables. I was serenaded by cicadas and surrounded by the scent of honeysuckle and I had a helper - behold Mr. Floyd, the last remaining garden cat (he chased off all the males and the two girls are now inside cats).


My Eliina Shawl is finished. It still needs to be blocked but I was curious to see how the color changes in the yarn had worked out.

Monday, August 08, 2011


Saturday arrived wet and foggy and looked more like November than August. Here are some pictures I took from the car on our way to the farmer's market.

I did not wake up until 8.30 so we got to the market rather late but it was not so bad. The sun came out and burned off most of the humidity. We bought peaches, ground beef, peppers, onions, a large tomato, eggs and fresh figs. The figs did not last long, we ate most of them on Saturday and finished them off on Sunday, they were so good.

It was tax-free shopping weekend in NC so we decided to head out into the wild world of retail. Besides, we had a power outage on our block and the house was getting a bit uncomfortable with no fan on. I have not done any shopping, except for groceries, in a while and looking at the materials, styles and colors of what is sold as women's clothing these days it must have been longer than I thought. I think it is time to dig out those old sewing books and start practicing. Yikes!
I also wish Hobby Lobby would finally decide if they want to be a craft store or a home decor store. Every time I go there I find less and less stuff and higher prices. Very disappointing. We try to shop right here in town and we are forced to go to the next bigger city to find what we are looking for.
The only positive shopping experience I had was in the health food store where I found Dr. Bronner's Lavender Soap. I plan to use it for making laundry soap, the soap I use right now does not exactly smell good and lavender oil is very expensive.

Sunday brought early garden work (before it got too hot), two beds are ready for fall planting, and a breakfast fit for a king.

Followed by lots of resting, knitting, reading, a yummy lunch (hamburgers with farm raised beef and homemade buns) and more resting and watching a favorite TV series from the 90s (Highlander).We planned to go to an outdoor concert but since we had thunderstorms at the time it was supposed to start it had to be moved inside and we decided not to go.

Why are weekends always so short?

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Knitting and Reading

I am happy to join with Ginny for another yarn along.

I am working on the last rows of the my Eliina Shawl. There was a problem with the color change in the second ball of yarn and I had to do some unwinding and re-connecting of my own to keep with the flow. The last few rows are very long and a bit more complicated. I also cast on another Wool Peddlers Shawl for some less complicated knitting.

I picked up a book I had on my shelf for ages "Claude Michelet: Firelight and Woodsmoke - Applewood - Scent of Herbs" (3 books in one volume). It is the story of a French family over a century starting just before 1900.