Thursday, December 3, 2009

Tis the Season

I finally drug the tree out of storage and decorated tonight. It's feeling a little more like Christmas! And the fact that it's supposed to be -2 degrees tonight means the holiday isn't very far away.

I was excited to get the tree up so I could put my new star on top. The pattern is the Star Tree Topper (Ravelry link) from the 2009 Interweave Knits Holiday Gifts issue. As soon as I saw the pattern, I knew I had to make one out of my handspun. The fiber was easy to choose. I dug out my sparkly batts from Enchanted Knoll Farms and picked the perfect one. Josette is the queen of sparkles!

The batt..

This is the yarn. Unfortunately, it's hard to capture the sparkles in a photo.

I think it looks great on the top of the tree!


Now, to catch up a bit...

In October, I was able to attend the Schacht 40th Anniversary Celebration in Boulder. Here I am with my handspun yarn that was a finalist in their contest.


Unfortunately, I didn't win the grand prize, but it was fun to get to be a part of the event. The woman who won the grand prize spun peacock feathers into yarn. How do you compete with that?

I also took a trip back to Oklahoma for my friend Andrea's baby shower. Of course her baby girl needs some handknits. I made her this sweater...


and this hat.


Mary, Phil and I also went to Taos for the Taos Wool Festival, and once again we had an amazing time with James and Becca.


This is the view from James and Becca's porch. How could a person not love this place?

Finally, I hosted Thanksgiving again this year and was very pleased with how the turkey turned out. Thank you Alton Brown for showing me the way and insisting that I brine the turkey. Yum! I used this recipe from Whole Foods Market: Honey and Rosemary Brined Turkey

The turkey looks a little crispy in this photo, but I promise you it was just right. So tender.


We had enough food for about 20 people. There were 5 of us. Yea leftovers!


Anybody want some turkey?

Xena would, but then she'd have to move out from under the Christmas tree.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Today I found out that a skein of my handspun has been selected as a finalist in the "I made it on my Schacht" contest. Schacht is the company that made my spinning wheel. They're celebrating their 40th anniversary this year and have done several special promotions. The first is the contest. Here's my entry:

It's hand-dyed superwash merino from AllSpunUp. I'll find out in October if I've won. Keep your fingers crossed for me!

The other special promotion is that they are making a special edition Cherry spinning wheel, which is one of the contest prizes. Not anticipating that I would be a finalist, I *may* have already purchased one. I guess I'd rather have two than none. The wheel is gorgeous (sorry for the horrible photo - I need to take it outside for a photo shoot to capture it in all of it's glory). It arrived last weekend. It's been a good week!


Over the Labor Day weekend, my cousin Darren and his wife Ceci made their first visit to Colorado. We had a wonderful weekend! We spent some time in the mountains and hit Copper, Breckenridge and Keystone Mountains all in the same day.

We took the ski lift to the top of Copper...


and hiked in the boulder field with the Marmots.


Riding the Alpine Slide at Breck (zoom, zoom - I think I missed my calling with the Luge. I love speeding down the mountain!)

Fondue at Keystone - they even had a polka band (we may have gorged ourselves and then did the chicken dance)

We came down the mountain and spent a day in Boulder and then the next day Darren, Ceci and I went to the Rockies game where we saw the Rockies hit 5 or 6 home runs and one player from the Diamondback hit 3 home runs. It was a great game and a beautiful day!


After the game, we met up with Mary and Phil at Rio for a margarita and then dinner at Steuben's.


To end the night, we stopped by Hamburger Mary's and sat outside on their fabulous patio.


We decided to take their last day in town easy and stayed close to home. We made a fabulous dinner to end an awesome weekend.


Purl was exhausted from all of the entertaining.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Iowa State Fair, Some Finished Objects and a Recipe

The Iowa State Fair is already over for another year, but I was lucky enough to make it back to Des Moines for the first two days of the Fair. Once again, it was a great time!

Megan in the tunnel at the Master Gardeners' gardens. I have a photo of her in this same spot over the last few years. I think she was able to stand up in the the tunnel the first year I took this photo.


Noah found his favorite spot in the same gardens


Megan got to try on the Fremont County Fair Queen's tiara. So sparkly!


I could have sat and watched the baby ducks all day. Too cute!


And future farmers...



It was a good fair.

I've also done some spinning.


Became this...

And I finished my very first lace project in July. The Girasole shawl. It is made out of my merino/silk handspun and was a wonderful pattern to knit. Now, I'm trying to figure out my next lace pattern to tackle.



If you've made it all the way down to here with all of those photos, I'll reward you with a recipe. This is one of my favorite cookies that my Grandma makes. They're called Butterscotch Squares, but I've always called them Red Hot Cookies. No matter what you call them, they are yummy!

Butterscotch Squares

2 Sticks margarine
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
Red Hots
Chocolate chips
Nuts (optional)

Melt the 2 sticks of margarine over low heat. Once melted, remove from heat and let cool. Stir in and dissolve sugar and brown sugar. Add two eggs (make sure your batter is cool - you don't want to scramble the eggs).

In another pan, mix the flour, baking powder and salt. Add this mixture to the batter and add the vanilla.

Place mixture in a 9 x 14" greased pan. Sprinkle the chocolate chips and red hots and grind the nuts on top of the batter. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes (may vary based on your stove).

Let me know if you try this recipe. I'd love to hear what you think.

Finally, I went to take Xena's photo the other day, and you'll never believe what happened. Those crazy squirrels are trying to get in everyone's photos.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

And I'm Back...

After a long blog hiatus, it's time to start blogging again. This weekend Linda, Mary, Phil and I spent a long weekend in Steamboat Springs. We all had a wonderful time - it was a relaxing getaway. We did some hiking, knitting, cooking and watched the final stages of the Tour de France and a few too many episodes of the Deadliest Catch. We even made it to a rodeo. Here's some photos from the trip:

Hiking at Fish Creek Falls




A night at the rodeo


Riding the lift to the alpine slide




Heading down the alpine slide



We survived the slide! Mary and I capped off the weekend with a night out at Red Rocks Amphitheater to see Lyle Lovett and his Large Band play an amazing show. I can't wait until he comes back to Denver next year. To see more photos of the weekend, visit Mary and Phil's blog.

Coming soon - more random photos, a recipe and possibly even some knitting and spinning progress!
But for now, I'll leave you with a kitty photo.


I think Xena disapproves of my lack of blogging.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I have become a social media junkie lately. Ravelry for my knitting and spinning exploits, Facebook to reconnect and stay in touch with friends from my many moves and volunteer activities, and now Twitter, which allows me to give my loyal followers minute by minute updates on the exciting life I live and dailymile, a social network and training log which lets me track my workouts. Being this connected (and holding down a job along with living my life in the real world) has caused me to slip on the blog updating. But I thought I'd check in share photos from my recent ski trip, annual girls weekend and a recent finished knitting object.

It was a glorious weekend to be in the mountains a couple of weeks ago. Blue skies without a cloud to be seen and perfect temperatures. Absolutely spectacular and it was much more fun to be outside than the two times I tried to ski last season when it was insanely cold and windy. Mary, Phil and I skied Copper Mountain.


We skied together for one run, then they went off to play in the more challenging terrain, while I met up with a ski instructor to take a lesson. I would consider myself a really bad intermediate skier with lots of bad habits, so I wanted someone to tell me how to become a better skier. Money well spent. My instructor was quickly able to identify what I needed to work on and he ran me through drill after drill to practice. I was exhausted when we were done.

That night, we made dinner back at the condo. I learned a new trick from Phil - we stopped by the local grocery store and purchased unbaked French bread dough. It makes the most wonderful pizza dough.


MMMMMMMMMM. That was good pizza.

Sunday morning, we got up and lounged around a bit, but then we set off for a snowshoe hike around the mountain. Needless to say my legs were tired! But it was another day that too good to pass up.


Last weekend my girlfriends from Kansas City (some who have moved away like me), all flew in to Denver for our 3rd annual girls weekend. I am so lucky to have such a wonderful group of friends. We spent the weekend snowshoeing, hiking, eating and just catching up and enjoying each others company.

Hiking at Chautauqua Park in Boulder


Snowshoeing in Winter Park at Devil's Thumb Ranch


A night out


I can't wait for Girls Weekend 2010!

And finally I finished my handspun Clapotis. I had been looking for the perfect pattern for the 3-ply yarn I had spun from roving dyed by my friend Stacy. I am thrilled with how it turned out.


Here is what the yarn looked like...


And this is the fiber on the wheel...


And the fiber in a braid...


And this is two kitties snuggling...