Friday, April 11, 2014

Pic Monkey...better late than never?

 Yes, I'm late to the dance, I know and I wasted spent a good amount of time playing with all the different features of Pic Monkey, a favorite blogger photo editing software.  Of course, the features I really liked were all the ones requiring money.
 These plants were 1/2 price at Wal-Mart yesterday.

 "One of these things is not like the other one".....too much Sesame Street when my children were little....don't judge me.
 Ah, yes...I wasn't going to mention this but here is the evidence of the third coat on the ceiling.  I think its the paint.  The first time I used it I had no problem but it has sat for a couple years and I think it chemically changed it's composition.  It was Dutch Boy's ceiling white with a novel pink dye that showed up so you could see where you painted and where you hadn't.  The "pink" disappeared after it dried but I won't be using it again.
 I picked up this pack of material at Wal-Mart to make some Easter candy bags for the grands. I do love me some polka dots!
 My friend Sue, the book fairy stopped by today but now she is not only the book fairy but the yarn fairy too!
 Look at this gorgeous yarn she gave me!!!!  I just keep gazing at it.  It is called "Coming Up Flowers" and tells you to "watch as little boucle flowers magically appear".  I should have taken a picture of Sue's scarf she is knitting from it.  She used a skein with reds and it is so pretty.  The yarn label states to "cast on 14 stitches with  size 11 needles and knit until you are happy or run out of yarn"!  LOL!  I'm happy just looking at it!  Thank you, Sue. 
Tonight is Friday Night With Friends where I attempt to sew on some projects.  Wish me luck as I am fading fast tonight and haven't even had supper yet.  But what a beautiful day it was here in the Ozarks!  It's still 80 degrees and no humidity....ahhhhhh.....Spring!  Open season on windows!
Happy Trails!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

10 steps forward and 5 back......

 Things haven't exactly been "humming along" this week but compared to what else is going on around the world I'm not complaining.  Prayers to all who are suffering from all kinds of atrocities this week and this month!  I can't even keep up with it all.
I was so enjoying my sock knitting but they look like they may be too small?  I'm not sure but when I measure it looks like I have about 11-13 stitches while Susan Anderson (whose pattern it is) says she usually has 7-8 stitches per inch for these.  So do I go ahead and just see it they work or take the hint now and go up a needle size?  I don't have size 2 dpns so I'll have to order them.  Will I ever have socks?  Good thing the warm weather is coming!
 I did make some delicious cookies though!  Does anyone remember the old Dutch Windmill cookies you used to be able to buy in the store?  When I was a child I loved those as they had an imprint of a Dutch windmill on them and they were crispy and yummy!  I finally found a recipe for them but it requires a cookie mold which I don't have so I decided to try and make them without one.
If you roll them into balls and bake on an un-greased cookie sheet they are crispy on the outside and soft on the inside but if you roll them into balls and flatten with your fingers (you can see my imprint) they turn out crispy all the way through.  I can live without the windmill. 
 Here's the recipe:  (don't ask me where I got this....I get so hot on the trail of something I literally get lost on the internet but I definitely want to give credit where credit is due!)

Production Manager Mark Moynihan's Speculaas (St. Nicholas cookies)
By Sue Moynihan
This classic Dutch recipe is also known as St. Nicholas Cookies, or in northern Germany, Spekulatius. St. Nicholas Day is celebrated on December 6th.
  • 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl, combine butter and sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add beaten egg and blend well. Sift the flour and all remaining dry ingredients together and beat into the butter mixture. Mixture will be stiff. Press dough into a special Speculaas mold or other cookie mold. Cut off excess dough -- wire or dental floss laid flat and drawn across the mold work best. Decorate the cookies with sliced almonds. Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet for 10-12 minutes until a light brown. Store in an airtight container. Makes about 36.
My Mom's Mom really loved Christmas. She wasn't satisfied celebrating only the 25th. She kicked off the season on Dec. 6, St. Nicholas Day, by baking this delicious, buttery spice cookie.
I continue this family tradition by baking them with my kids just as I was taught by my Mom and Gram, using the same 60-plus-year-old mold. The spicy scent of these cookies in the oven is one of our family's favorite harbingers of Christmas; each one is a yummy expression of love from my Gram through four generations to my family. And it's not the only one. St. Lucia Day comes on Dec. 13 and we'll bake Lucia cats, but that's another recipe with another story!

I am testing cookies for the holidays too and this is definitely a "keeper"!

 Look what I found out in my yard leftover in a pot from last year
...bless it's little heart for blooming!
 Easter will soon be upon us and I am starting to do some little projects for the grand babies.
These are called Easter Marshmallow Babies by Doni Spiegle.  I'm not sure if they're on my Easter board on Pinterest but I think so.  I have a "secret" board too for presents for people who look at my boards (my daughter) so I can keep some things a!  She doesn't crochet though so I think I'm okay on this one.  They look just like the "peeps".
Here I go attempting to replicate them.......I just started........why am I getting those spaces in the middle?  I think someone jinxed me this week.  I'll keep practicing.  You make 2 the same, stitch together and stuff.
  Her's are so perfect and I'm using the suggested hook and yarn type.....oh boy!
Also, my painting of the bathroom ceiling is still ongoing.....2-3 coats it's you believe it?
I would like to see some progress around here if it's not too much to ask?  I am certainly putting in the hours but nothing much to show for it....everything in "limbo".  Oh well, it could be worse...lots worse!
I hope all is well and good in your world this week.   Happy Trails!
If anyone has any hints as to what I should do with my needlework dilemmas, please do tell!  Thank you all.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

YOP Sunday

 Boy, did this week go fast!  The swallows have returned to Capistrano or the songbirds are back in Arkansas rather and singing their little hearts out.  I usually open the windows but it has been cold and wet here this week.
 I had to tell you about this quick, delicious and healthy little breakfast that I found in Country Living magazine.  Take a little ramekin, put a slice of Canadian bacon in the bottom, whisk one egg in a separate bowl and pour on top of the bacon, microwave for 30 seconds, stir the egg, microwave for another 15-30 seconds and top with some shredded cheese.  Fast, healthy and tasty!  I must admit I have to have a couple pieces of toast with it as it isn't enough to fill me up but maybe some day it will be.  It would be great for kids too.
 A new book I picked up at the library.  It's non-fiction and was written by a woman who was married for years to a man who was gay and she didn't know it but more specifically it is how we deal with sometimes drastic and dramatic change in our lives.  So far it is very good.
Oh, yes, what have I been working on this week for my YOP's?   I am moving right along with the afghan made out of the "yarn from hell" and not doing too bad.  It has required patience and concentration and following directions....not bad for a woman who has trouble in all those areas! LOL!  I'm actually learning to work with this yarn and because the rows are so long I get a rhythm going and can even watch t.v. while crocheting it.   I'm come a long way, baby!  I am on row 9 of 102 not counting the edging.  Last week I misspoke and said there were 110 rows.  Whew, instead there's only 102....every little bit helps!
I've cast on the socks for MOI and have more done on the cuff than shows here.  I'm getting used to the tiny needles and sit down and knit a row when I want to take a break during the day.  I've been painting the bathroom ceiling this week and it is slow as I can't stay up there too long...the air is
I'll be by later to check up on's been a busy week!  I hope it was a great one for you and that this next one holds lots of promise too!
Happy Trails...........