Sunday, April 23, 2006

Burn, baby, burn!

It has certainly been a busy weekend for me. My sister came over yesterday and helped me paint the ceiling in the living room. It's a huge room and painting even half the ceiling is a daunting task. Her help was much needed and I'm grateful to her (even though we didn't finish it - yet). The ceiling is now white, instead of tobacco. The idiot woman who owned the house before us smoked inside. Note to homeowners: If you ever plan on selling your house don't smoke inside! This is the stupidest thing you could do, beside smashing the walls in with a sledgehammer before the real estate agent visits. She lost quite a lot of money on the house because of the smoke-covered walls. Idiot.

Painting took up most of yesterday, but we did get rid of the two armchairs and the two ottomans. Put them in the van and dropped them at the dump. Good-bye uncomfortable furniture, hello trying to fit three people, three cats, and one large dog on a couch.

I lounged on the hammock today and turned into a lobster. My shoulders, arms, back, and calves are a nice roasty toasty red. Owie! I can't wear sunscreen because it burns my skin. Anyone know of a sensitive skin sunscreen that works? What made me think I wouldn't get burned after four or five hours of blazing sunshine? Why do I insist on being so stupid? Why do I have such fair skin? Why why why?

I had fun with chalk on Friday. Traced my footprints all over and created a Wool Kingdom. I've got a serious case of Yarn on the Brain. I chalked poetry all over the driveway and then watched the dog lay in it. Talk about Movable Type, eh? (ohhhh....make it stop...)

Alright, to the knitting.

Charles' sock:
I'm knitting a pair of socks for my sister's fiance, Charles. She won't knit him anything because she's even lazier than me when it comes to Doing Things For Other People. They're just plain vanilla ribbing, but the yarn is pretty scrumptious feeling. It's Sisu Maskinvaskbar. Try saying that 5 times fast. Mas..vsss...durhhhh...
I think he'll be getting more socks from me. He has MS and spends the majority or his time in a wheelchair or just not walking which means less wear on handknit socks. Yay! (For no sock damage, not for him having MS...oh, erk.)

Still working my way through the 5.25" of St st to the waist decreases. Allison, I'm not really to the waist decreases. Almost, but not yet. I love the yarn (Frog Tree 100% alpaca), but I definitely think it needs to be blocked. You can see how uneven it looks in the closeup.

yuck, yuck, yuck...

Here's a closeup of the stitch detail and the picot edging. I knitted the picot edging in instead of seaming it later. I knit 2 rnds of St. st, k2tog yo a rnd, k 2 rnds of St. st then folded the picot over, picked up a stitch from the cast on edge and knit that stitch together with the next stitch on the needle, etc. Saves me some time later. The picot is rolling quite a bit which worries me. I'm not sure it'll stop rolling once I block it. Maybe I should've taken the hint when so many other Picovoli knitters said they had picot problems. Ach so! Otherwise, I'm happy with Picovoli.

The dreaded Forecast:

Yes! The first sleeve is done! Don't even talk to me about the second sleeve! I think Forecast is going to take a vacation with the lace sock. Toodles!

Kitty Pi:

Here's yesterday's progress of Kitty Pi. I'm almost done with it. I just have two or three more eyelash fun filled rows to knit until I can cast off, weave in a few ends and felt this sucker. I spent quite a lot of knitting time wondering what I could block it over until I remembered the huge metal bowls we have for making large quantities of food in. Ah-hah! Eureka! By jove, she's got it! Any others I've missed?

I made Farmer's cakes today. They're so yummy. Chocolate yummy filled with yummy cream cheese yummy's the yummy recipe:

Farmer's Cakes

Yield: 18 cakes


3 cups flour

2 cups sugar

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 tsp. baking soda

2 cups water

2/3 cup vegetable oil

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

2 tsp. vanilla extract


8 oz. cream cheese

1 egg

1/3 cup sugar

pinch of salt (1/8 tsp.)

6 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Make the cake:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease two muffin tins (or use muffin tin liners)

2. Sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa and baking soda into a large mixing bowl (you don't have to sift if you don't want to). Add the water, oil, vinegar and vanilla and beat at medium speed for about 3 minutes until well combined.

Make the filling:

3. In a large bowl, cream the cream cheese. Add the egg, sugar and salt and beat until smooth and thoroughly combined. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Assemble the farmer's cakes:
4. Pour the cake batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling each about 2/3 full. Spoon 2 teaspoons of the filling into the center of each cake.

5. Bake for 20-25 minutes (20 minutes should do it) or until the cakes spring back when lightly touched. Serve warm or at room temperature.

These are so easy to make. There's no way someone with even a small amount of culinary knowledge can screw these up.

I feel like watching a foreign film tonight. Amelie or Delicatessen? Decisions, decisions...


Rain said...

Picot edging has a habit of doing that, you could try gently pressing it once you've finished. It's coming along really well.

Your forecast is looking great so far. I love that green.

turtlegirl76 said...

You mean she didn't have the house painted before she tried selling it? Truly, an idiot. Gah! Did you use that white ceiling paint that's tinted while wet so you can see where you've painted? I love the thought of that.

The Picovoli looks good so far, I think it'll all end up ok. My tee was a bit wonky before it got wet, but it all worked out in the end.

allisonmariecat said...

So many things! Let's see, first sympathy for your sunburn. That is no fun, and particularly unfair after you'd done all that work.

I like your sock. I'm inching along on Jaywalker #1. Actually, more like centimetering, as I don't think I've hit an inch yet.

Your Picovoli is so pretty, I wish I could pet it. The yarn looks scrumptious. Yeah, the picots roll, but iron the heck out of them. If they still roll, it's a "design feature".

Forecast is stunning. I am in love with that green you're using. (And the Ghirardelli bar next to it...)

I have to start my kitty pi. The problem is that I'm determined this will be a stash yarn exercise--no purchasing allowed. But I'm not altogether thrilled with my feltable (NOT Debbie Bliss!) stash yarn color selection.

I am so making farmer's cakes this weekend. Yum!

Danielle B said...

Ooooh, I just found your site entirely by accident, and I am thrilled! Much entertainment to be had here, I think :D
re: the sunscreen issue...have you tried Neutrogena? It costs an arm and a leg, but it's the only stuff I'll use. I dated a military man for a while, and he tipped me off to it - non allergenic, doesn't drip so it can't get in your eyes, and fantastic even if you have really sensitive skin. The military boy used to use it when he'd be on long parades where he definitely wouldn't be allowed to wipe his face ;)

Stefaneener said...

Oh, poor poor you. You're not supposed to get enough sun to burn! I'd quit trying to use sunblock if I had really sensitive skin and go for sun protective clothing (a search using that will get you lots). My swimsuit unfortunately looks like I'm auditioning for a a job on the Enterprise, but I don't get burnt shoulders! My cute hawaiian print surf shirt looks better, and I can wear it over teeny bottoms when I'm feeling svelte.

On the needle side, your knitting is so amazing. Lovely for you knitting socks for a future bil! They can be very appreciative. The sweaters (plural sweaters, bwaa haa haa, my overdone life laughs at you) are both lovely. I think all of the others are right -- the picot will work out. What's better than a green sweater? A green sweater with chocolate!

You so rock.