Sunday, April 29, 2007

little things mean a lot

i tackled my crafting supply closet this morning. i want to start sewing again sometime soon and had to get things sorted out first. it felt so good rearranging everything, getting my crafting books off the floor!, and tossing a few things that i know i would never use.

my dusty sewing machine was looking rather gloomy. until i sew a dustcover for it, i need to cover it with something else.

in my plastic bag full of plastic bags, i found this bag and it fit perfectly. i was so thrilled about it. clearly, i need to get out more.

so that will do for now, and my closet looks much better.

my mother is coming over for a visit this afternoon. i suppose i've been watching too many jane austen period pieces because i have a hankering for some cucumber sandwiches. they are incredibly and surprisingly tasty.

mr. biddles? will you help me make some sandwiches?

hmph. didn't think so. okay then...

i got white sandwich bread, and some whole wheat too. all else you need is:
  • softened organic butter (a substitution like alouette cheese is also quite pleasing. i used that on the wheat bread.)
  • english (seedless) cucumber
  • kosher salt

the trick is to slice the cucumber as thinly as possible. i suppose a mandoline would have been perfect for this, but i don't have one so i used a short paring knife. put cuke slices on paper towels for a quick pat to take away some moisture. you don't want your sandwiches to get soggy. make sure you spread the butter completely covering the 'face' sides of both slices for the sandwich. sprinkle with salt. put on the cuke slices. i found one layer sufficient, but it depends on how thick they are, of course, and what your preference may be.

cut off the crusts. cut into triangles that should be no bigger than two bites.

use a cookie cutter if you want. i used a flower cookie cutter. here are two sandwiches.

aren't they cute!

serve with tea, of course.

also had a luscious dish of fruit and cheddar cheese (cheese at room temperature, please!) yum. yum.

heart-shaped strawberries. does life get any better?

we had pastry from a local bakery for dessert. sorry, that disappeared too quickly for a photo-op. ;)


Monday, April 23, 2007

thank you, la

thank you jenla for the lovely stitch markers.

mr. biddles is very proud to have won such a lovely prize.

"i would like to thank the academy...."

"i'll have my people contact your people."


Saturday, April 21, 2007

i knitted this but wanted to knit again an hour later

i've knitted a present for mr. biddles.

shhhhhh. don't tell him.

i like these books by shannon okey. they are put together quite nicely with very clear instructions and excellent how-to photos....

...and you know i had to get it since there are two patterns for cat toys. the "dim sum" contains the wonton and egg roll. i decided to make the egg roll. very simple pattern, quick gratification. me likey.

very nice reynolds yarn. the one-piece pattern is done. ready to stuff n' stitch...

i chopped up an old pair of socks to use as the stuffing. of course this would be an opportune time to put in some catnip, but mr. b doesn't care for it so we'll leave it out. {correction - he likes catnip, but only fresh off the plant.}

i found it helpful to pin the eggroll closed to hold in place while i backstitched it closed.

dinner is served! (presentation is everything.)

yoo hooo, mr. biddles?! look what i made for you cuz i loves you so much! i just knows you're going to love, love, love this new toy and play with it forever 'n ever! here you are mr. b, here is my present to you....

"what am i supposed to do with this?"


Thursday, April 19, 2007

what is that glowing orb in the sky?!!?!

oh, its the SUN!!

time for some sunbathing, then, i should say. don't forget to flip over, mr. biddles, for the best coverage.

time for a close-up

i could not resist my luck with another japanese craft mag. it'll be a couple weeks or so before i get this one as well. it's chock full of handbag patterns.

cute, eh?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

a tad bit of rain

ok, so i guess we did indeed get a nor'easter, obvo.

i have to admit i love rainy days. i love windy days. i love rainy, windy days. however, even this much gray is getting to me. and it's not over yet. the good news is though, that the odds are we'll have a nice weekend. i guess the old saying "april showers bring may flowers" is not antiquated just yet, no matter how bad global warming is.

i was taking pictures of how gray it is out there. why? not sure. they didn't come out well anyways - too darn gray? so you have been spared!

here is a cute pic from a greeting card that hopefully puts a little light in your day.

no current projects on deck just yet. i'm craft blog-surfing and getting my creative juices flowing. it's always fun to see what other people are creating. it is one of the greatest personal benefits of the web, if you ask me.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Good day for knittin'

its amazing how quickly a project will complete when using large needles. i love the nearly-immediate gratification factor, thats for sure. it is a very pretty and airy scarf/wrap which will be perfect for the warmer weather, which is definitely coming despite the gloomy and cold recent weather. my nose knows. i'm sneezing more often already.

so now you know what i've been doing. what has mr. biddles been doing, you might wonder? well...

yup, rough life, mr. b.

not sure what to do next. i've still to try felting something, which for some reason i am a bit intimidated by the process. i'll probably try some embroidery - i've purchased jenny hart's 'sublime stitching' book and set which i am very interested in. mother's day is coming and i'd like to start something now and hopefully have it ready in time. (i'm not good at deadlines. i oddly rebel against them.)

now i will make some oatstraw tea (yum!) and settle in for a jane austen flick. persuasion? p & p? decisions, decisions.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

no-no, nor'easter?

it certainly doesn't look like a storm is coming tomorrow; however, the juncos, squirrels, and blue jays are acting quite adamant over collecting seeds and nuts this morning, so something must be brewing.

the scarf/wrap is coming along beautifully. i cant stop squishing it:

i love how it looks with some natural backlight. look at all the lovely loops! squeee!

what do you think, mr. biddles? mymy, you have such wonderfulls whiskers! i must keees you! mmmtchwaa!

Friday, April 13, 2007

It's in the Air Mail

i took a good look on ebay at japanese craft magazines after seeing molly chicken's post about it. the ideas are absolutely scrumptious and i cannot resist! i ordered the april issue of "Stitch Ideas".

i do not know how long it will take before i receive it, but i will keep you posted.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

vintage quilt. well, errrr, sort of.

thanks to my mother sorting through some of her clutter, i've recently been reunited with a childhood blanket. i had forgotten about this one and it tickles me to look at the pictures on the fabric. my cousin had made it for me many, many moons ago.

it is very lightweight and i am amaaaazed at how warm it is.
i think this blanket has super powers.

this is one side:

this is the other:

i like how there are many kitties on both patterns. i might not be consistent in many things, but love of cats (and critters in general) goes waaaay back.

aren't they cute? i like the blue hair, and blue fur!

Sunshine...on my yaaa-aarn...makes me happieeeeee

gosh this yarn is beautiful.

i've changed my mind about the needle size. 50 was indeed too big for what i wanted, so i'm using my 35's instead. i love the uneven-ness of the stitching. i'm a big fan of the "imperfect" looks of certain fibers, weaves, etc. Not always what a project calls for, but its a look i'm very fond of.

it looks so pretty in the sun. i think its amazing that a beautiful yarn can make a simple garter stitch look so fanciful.

Monday, April 9, 2007


Here is a very cool yarn store - "And the Beadz Go On" in the lovely village of Wickford, RI. i bought this beautiful yarn there.

It's made by Schaefer Yarns, "Danya" from their Color Concepts for kids line, color "Little Barney", 78% mohair with wool and nylon, is very soft indeed for a mohair fiber.

These muted colors remind me of clouds and bunnies and easter eggs.

I'm going to do a swatch (i confess i am a swatch-hater and trying to get over that) with my mondo Susan Bates size 50's. yes, that is "50", not "5.0". what can i say, i like the speedy gratification of a quick knit. i'm aiming towards making an airy wrap. we'll see what the swatch tells me.