Friday, December 30, 2011

Santa Peg

My twin sister, Peggy, plays Santa to her two dogs, Ben (collie) and Samantha (Sheltie).  Just like kids all over the world, someone thinks the other's present is better...

Friday, December 16, 2011

Christmas Dove

Lovely pattern from the book 75 Birds, Butterflies & little beasts to knit and crochet



by Lesley Stanfield.  I think that the author calls it Dove but since it's nesting in my Christmas tree, I changed it.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Springerle 2011

This year I am trying the Springerle recipe from Martha Stewart.  Her recipe differs from the traditional in that she uses butter.  Most do not.  Here are a few that are drying.  I will bake them off after they rest overnight.








The link is here:  http://www.marthastewart.com/332892/springerle-cookies

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Flounce Scarf




Here's a preview of a Christmas present...  Since I don't have a model, I placed it around the vase which held my Anniversary flowers.  Eleven years on Dec. 2nd.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Nautical Pillow - Tunisian Crochet

We added a Nautical Pillow to the Nautical Blanket.  It too is made with a Tunisian Crochet stitch, which really looks like knitting!


Monday, November 14, 2011

Wassail Donuts

Here we come a-wassailing,
Among the leaves so green,
Here we come a wand’ring,
So fair to be seen.

Chorus:
Love and joy come to you,
And to you your wassail, too.
And God bless you and send you a happy new year,
And God send you a happy new year

I have a new toy, a non-stick pan for baking donuts. Thanks Mom and Dad.


I hurriedly checked out "Tastespotting" for something delish and found quite a few.  My recipe is as follows:

Wassail Donuts:

2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup sugar 
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 teaspoon baking soda
2 eggs
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup Apple Cider or Ale  (I used Saranac's Winter Wassail Beer)
3 tablespoons softened butter

Combine the dry ingredients and to it, add the wet ingredients.  Mix well, the beer will foam up if it's not flat.

Butter your donut pan and use or make a pastry bag. 


I made mine out of tin foil in my new "New Jersey Glass."

Pipe batter into pan, filling no more than half way.  (You don't have to pipe, I did half piped and 1/2 by spoon.  Basically the same result except that the unpiped side had more batter on the the top of the pan.)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.  Bake for 6-8 minutes.  They should be firm, slightly browned and cake-like when done.  Roll in Wassail Sugar while slightly warm.

Wassail Sugar:

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
2 pinches ginger
Pinch nutmeg
Pinch ground clove



If you want to make Chocolate Wassail Donuts (and who doesn't) add 1 tablespoon cocoa and 1 melted block of semi-sweet baker's chocolate to the batter.

Serve with your favorite Christmas Carol (see above).

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Sunshine Squash

How do you like these beauties?  I grew them in my garden this year.  No, they're not pumpkins.  They are Sunshine Squash and will be transformed shortly into a delicious soup.  Recipe:

1 Sunshine Squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
1 small onion, diced
1 celery rib, small dice
1 apple, peeled, cored and cubed
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
4 cups chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon ginger (or to taste)
1/2 teaspoon salt

Melt butter and oil in a heavy-bottomed pot over medium low heat.  Saute onion, celery, apple until soft, about 7 minutes.  Add garlic to heat for one minute.  Add squash, stock and ginger.  Bring to boil, add salt.  Simmer for 20 minutes or until squash is soft.  Puree and servve with a dollop of sour cream.

Something Wicked This Way Comes

Monday last, John and I had a great evening of dinner and theater.  Mom recommended "The Red Dog Pub" at Rods Ranch House and then we drove over to Drew University's Shakespeare Festival which showed "Something Wicked This Way Comes".    We are looking forward to more visits to the Kirby Theater.



Sunday, October 23, 2011

Moonlight Blaze at Van Dyk Manor

The Third Annual Moonlight Blaze was held last night to great acclaim.  Here are some pictures taken by my DH



Sunday, October 16, 2011

Nautical blanket

I'm almost finished with the Nautical Afghan.  It's an unusual craft called Tunisian or Afghan Stitch which makes a very thick fabric.  It is the best stitch to use in making a blanket as knitting and crocheting are make a single layer fabric.  I'm finishing up the fringe, although I may have to purchase some additional yarn.


The sweater was finished awhile ago

I'm posting it again, this time on the Nautical Afghan

Morristown Harvest Festival

I went to the Annual Harvest Festival in Morristown, NJ a few weekends ago and took these pix.  Statue in the Green.  I have the sign for it somewhere..  Here is the link to the Festival:
http://morristown-nj.org/todo2.html?id=1190303011

I met some important people there who were kind enough to let me take their photo.  Do you recognize them?  Hint:  Camera's weren't around then.

My brother, Gene, niece Molly (with fake glasses) and sister Cathy with our grab bags.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Answered Offer

You sat across and watched me knit
My needles crafting a tiny mitt
I heard you ask, "What's that you're making?
Something to help with the Autumn raking?"
"Yes," I replied, "It's for my child.
Winters here are far from mild."

"I never learned how" she said with rue
"Could you make me one? Perhaps in blue?"
She continued on, offered me twenty
Said store-bought ones cost her plenty.
"No", I answered. "I can't you see.
But I'll teach you how to knit for free."

Bark

Down with libraries
We need them no more
Technology rules
Books are a bore

Originally defined as
"the inner bark of a tree"
libraries carried knowledge
to you and to me

But science said
"We can do it better
Pay and it's yours
in the blink of a letter"

So close the buildings
Empty the shelves
When we lose knowledge
Blame ourselves

Monday, September 5, 2011

Attraction

One evening as I settled in
I saw it on the ceiling tin
A thing of beauty - mosaic hued
Hovering above its favorite food

My eyes unlocked from the tiny beast
To see what was its tasty feast
My handmade items, Victorian to goth
Were irresistible to the hungry moth

Song of My Yarn

I hide my mistakes
within plain sight
Knitting a sweater
by cover of night

Some will rip out
or frog their errors
I soldier on,
no heed to my terrors

Click, clicking away
Until daylight's warn
the only sound heard is
the Song of my Yarn

Monday, August 8, 2011

Stone Harbor

John took a picture of our home in Stone Harbor.  Can you guess what is new?

Friday, July 29, 2011

Oatmeal Cran Whole Wheat Cookies

I found this recipe for Oatmeal cookies on Tastespotting.  Here is the link from Sweet Tooth:  http://www.ericasweettooth.com/2011/02/trail-mix-cookies.html

I thought the use of Whole Wheat flour was inspirational and made them this morning.  Warm out of the oven, with a cup of cold milk, it was the perfect after lunch snack.

I swapped in white chocolate chips and walnuts.  I did not chill the dough.  I used a melon baller to make the cookies and baked them for 15 minutes on parchment paper.  I then turned off the oven and left the cookies in for another 4 minutes pulling the baking sheet before over browning occurred.

Crisp and delicious!

Here is the recipe tweeked:

1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
3/4 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
3/4 cup oats
3/4 cup mixture of chopped walnuts, craisins, and white chocolate chips

In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat together butter, sugar, and brown sugar until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- Add the egg and vanilla
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
- With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the dry mixture into the wet until just combined.
- Stir in the oats, walnuts, craisins, and white chocolate chips.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Lightly grease a cookie sheet and spoon dough in 1-1/2 inch balls onto the sheet.
- Bake for 9-10 minutes and cool on a wire rack

Recipe yields about 24 cookies

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Mom's Date Nut Bread

Whole Wheat Date and Nut Bread

I used 1 1/2 cups of wheat flour and 1/4 cup bran flour. We really liked it.........................

Ingredients

    • 8 ounces pitted dates
    • 1 1/2 cups water
    • 1 large egg
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 cups whole wheat flour
    • 1/2 cup raisins
    • 1/2 cup toasted chopped walnuts

Directions

  1. Heat to 350°F Grease interior of loaf pan.
  2. Place dates in food processor (make sure there are no pits) along with 1 cup of the water.Pulse into a coarse puree, then add the egg, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and the remaining 1/2 cup water. Pulse until mixture is thoroughly blended.
  3. Sprinkle the flour over the date puree, and pulse until mixed.
  4. Add raisins and nuts to mixture and stir to mix.
  5. Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan, and bake 40-45 minutes, or until a toothpick can be removed clean.
  6. Cool in pan on wire rack about 15-20 minutes, then turn out bread to cool completely.
  7. Wrap in plastic wrap and store for one day before slicing.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

July Harvest Tart

We now have an wonderful abundance of fruit coming in, and what to do with it all?  I'm recommending a July Harvest Tart of strawberries, blueberries and bananas.

Ingredients:
1 cup blueberries, washed and picked over.
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 cup sliced bananas
1/2 cup lemon curd
1 sheet puff pastry
1 egg, mixed with 1 tsp water

First, roll out a sheet of puff pastry to about the size of a sheet of paper, 8 1/2 x 11".  Brush with 1/2 the melted lemon curd.  Arrange fruits of your choice on the puff pastry.  Here I tried a red, white and blue theme.  When you've arranged the fruit to your liking, brush on the remaining lemon curd.  You don't need to roll up the sides as the pastry will rise, but you should brush it with an egg wash.  Please in 425 degree oven and immediately lower the temp to 400 degrees.  Set timer for 15 minutes and bake until brown around the edges.  Remove and let cool.  Serve with whipped cream if desired.



Sunday, July 17, 2011

Fireworks at Stone Harbor




We were "Down the Shore" for July 4th and had a great view of the Stone Harbor fireworks as well as Avalon's, Sea Isle City, etc., all from our balcony.  My brother Gene also stayed with us and we had a grand time.  Here are a few pix of the fireworks and a photo of Gene and John.

Anchors Aweigh!



I'm almost finished with John's Anchors Sweater from a pattern called Mystic by Alice Starmore in her book Fishermen's Sweaters. I have to attach the sleeves and knit a crew neck collar.  Started on June 15 and here it is July 17th and almost done!   Update:  finished on July 21st. Here is a link to my post on Ravelry:  http://www.ravelry.com/projects/SkillinWorkshop/mystic


Monday, June 13, 2011

Vogue Knitting

I recently purchased some Vogue Knitting Magazines for ideas.

My list includes:


VK Fall//Winter 1982
VK Spring/Summer 1989
VK Fall 1990
VK Winter Special 1990
VK Fall 1992
VK Winter199219/93
VK 1995/1996
VK Spring/Summer 1996
VK Winter 1996/1997
VK Spring/Summer 2001
VK Fall 2001