Estes Park, CO

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I’m going on a road trip!  My husband told me to find us a little vacation and look what I found!  We’re going to Estes Park, Colorado.    It’s a wool festival.  I’ve done a yarn inventory and have a list of what I can buy.  I’m hoping not to be impulsive and just buy all the pretty yarn, just because, it’s all the pretty yarn!  I will take pictures and tell you all about it.

Bailey is coming to town and we get to cuddle and play with Henry!  We’re so excited.  We can’t wait to get the babies together for play time.  Babies LOVE other babies.  We have multiple walkers and jumpers so they can play together.

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Bailey and Henry

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Bailey made Henry’s belt.

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Bailey has her own blog.  It’s Chipperwithchickens. She is her father’s daughter!  She has a charming personality!  She is a tomboy that loves bling and has her father’s sense of humor!  She’s a beautiful goof ball.  She’s creative and crafty.   She made Henry’s belt all by herself.  See how she did it on her blog.  We can’t wait to see her and Henry!

I’m still plugging away at my Om Shawl by Andrea Mowry.  I intend to wear it as a poncho with jeans in the Fall.  I need to finish it pronto so I can start a new project for the road trip!

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I want to share a great product I found recently.    They are exfoliation gloves that you use in the shower.  I got mine at TJMaxx.  When I opened mine, I was a little afraid they would be too rough for me. (Kinda like those horrible torture devices women use called Epilators.). These feel like steel wool when you open them out of the package.  They are WONDERFUL!  My skin has never been so soft and shiny!   Once they are wet and you have your body wash on, it’s not rough at all.  I feel like my skin looks years younger myself.  My husband has certainly been more attentive to my skin lately!

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I read several knitting blogs and I’m often amazed at how often people can put out project after project so quickly.  I admire it!  I myself have this beautiful distraction.  He is so cute!  He is happy all the time.  He’s like any baby and gives cues as to what he needs, but, if you address his cues, this boy is never sad or unhappy.  He sleeps well.  He eats well.  He is always happy and bouncy.  He ADORES his Papa.  I come a close second behind Papa.

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Luke helping me water the flowers. (No babies were harmed or splashed in the face while taking this photo ;-).

Oh my gosh!  I just want to kiss his cute face and squish him!

I’m off to work on my shawl.

Happy knitting friends and try those exfoliation gloves.

Tammy

Smothered Pork Chops

 

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Smothered pork chops, french green beans, and macaroni and cheese.

I’ve been working on the cookbook.  I have another recipe to share.  It’s super easy.  I have no idea where I got this recipe from.  I’m sure it’s something like my mother used to cook for me when I was growing up.   This recipe is well liked at my house.  Leftovers are great too.  This is another simple recipe with few ingredients, but it is super good.  I’ll be real here and tell you the night I made this dinner, I was tired, and not in the mood to cook.  My tummy and my husband needed sustenance, so this is what I came up with for dinner.  This was a thrown together, I’m tired, kinda meal.  Looks pretty good though, huh.

You can make this with whatever sides you want.  Roasted potatoes or garlic mashed potatoes, glazed carrots, sweet corn…..it’s all good!

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I’m so proud of my daughter.  She left the nest and is flying!  She cooks all the time.  Look what she made for lunch the other day.  She doesn’t need any cookbook.  She is doing great by herself.IMG_4880

Check out her seasoning; a prepared Grilling and Roasting Mix, coarse salt and coarse pepper! Just like her momma!  I’m so happy for her.

I’m still working away at my Om Shawl by Andrea Mowry.  She is so stinking cute!  What a creative and pretty woman.  I was pretty happy to come up with some yarn from my own stash for this project. IMG_5223

Happy knitting!

 

Tammy

 

Happy Mother’s Day

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I hope all the Mother’s out there had a great day.  Whether spending time with your family, or just having a quiet day off, I hope your day was great.

We had a crab/shrimp boil and all my kids came over along with my mom and dad.  We all had an amazing meal and had a great time.

Now that the house is clean again, the kitchen quiet, and we are back to our “normal”. I’m going to work on my Om Shawl by Andrea Mowry. It’s a good day to catch up on the “Outlander” marathon that I recorded on DVD to binge watch!   Knitting…Outlander…a beautiful spring day…….

Happy Knititng

 

Tammy

 

She did learn something!

I’m a pretty proud Momma right now.  Pardon me while I pat Lindy and myself on our backs.

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My baby girl has moved out on her own into her first place.  She shares a house with 2 of her friends.  As you know, I’m working on a family cookbook for her.  She was like, “Mom!  I don’t know how to cook.  I need those recipes.”   I felt a little shame, actually, as I was writing that post about the cookbook.  I thought that I had failed her as a mother a little bit, because I wasn’t more firm in teaching her how to cook.  I thought maybe I made a mistake and should have made her help me cook more.  I enjoyed cooking for my family, so I did, I cooked.   She helped me when she wanted to help me.  She cut up some things, and stirred some things, and helped me put groceries away.  She occasionally came with me when I grocery shopped.  She often just sat and chatted with me while I cooked.

She made her first grocery store run to stock her new refrigerator at her new place.

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Lindy’s kitchen

She actually made spaghetti for herself and her roommates.  One roommate, opened the refrigerator, took a good look, and said she wouldn’t eat any of that stuff.  She also turned her nose up at Lindy’s spaghetti (it had onions in it).     She tells me that this roommate went to the grocery store to get her own things, and came back with Pop Tarts, crackers, and cereal.     Lindy had loaded up the refigerator with milk, eggs, OJ, fresh produce, fruit, etc.  All the things you need to cook with.

Did ya’ll catch that?  Lindy made spaghetti!  She did it all by herself!  No recipe.  Nothing.    She made it from memory of watching me make it and helping cut things up and stir.  She does know how to cook!  It’s in her!  She may not think she knows, but she knows!

Lindy tells me her roommates love her because she is the only one that knows how to cook!    She learned!   She learned just from hanging out with me.  I LOVE IT!  I didn’t fail!  I did good!

Look what her and her friend, Hannah made!  Banana Bread minus the nuts!

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Lindy and Hannah’s Banana Bread (minus the nuts)

I don’t like nuts, and apparently, my daughter doesn’t either.   Hence “minus the nuts”.

I had to share!

 

Tammy

 

 

 

 

Baked White Fish

I want to thank those that gave me some feedback on my recipes!  Thank you for taking the time.  I have another recipe to share.

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This recipe is really simple.  Just because there are not a ton of ingredients, doesn’t mean it’s not good.

I’ve been watching some cooking shows recently.  There is no way, I’m going to take all those steps and get ingredients I’ve never heard of before.  Food can be good with just a little seasoning.   I feel people have tried to come up with the newest and greatest, and they have lost the pleasures of the plain and simple.  (It could also be from watching too much Iron Chef.)

I’ve had some people turn their nose up at fish before.  They politely try my fish and end up eating it all and telling me this is a great fish recipe.  Even if  you have picky eaters, they should like this.

I grew up at the lake because my step-dad, Jerry, is a fisherman.  I’ve eaten a lot of fish in my lifetime!  I prefer the baked fish over the fried fish.    I’m also trying to do more meal planning.  I would like to incorporate fish in our diet at least twice a week.  My go-to’s are baked white fish, salmon, shrimp, or crab legs.    Orange Roughy is an excellent fillet to make like this.

Just some fun lake pictures.  I have to laugh.  I just noticed my mom is wearing a polka dot bikini in both pictures.  One, when she just met Jerry, probably 45 years ago, and another one, when Jake was little.  That’s 20 years later!  lol.  I guess our basic tastes always stay the same.

Briochealicious

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Wrong Side

I did it!   I finished my first Brioche project!  It’s really not that hard to learn.  I went back to my KnitStars classes, from the first season, and watched Stephen West show me how to Brioche knit.  Since I was “learning”, I used up some of my stash for the project. The pattern is Briouchealicious by Andrea Mowry.   I used Valley Yarns Charlemont yarn (Webs online store brand).

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Right Side

I like the wrong side better than the right side.  Both are really cute.  When it’s on, both sides show.  I can see why it’s such a popular pattern.

I’m currently working on the Om Shawl by Andrea Mowry.  I’ve just cast on!

Om Shawl by Andrea Mowry

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Happy Knitting!

Tammy

 

 

Family Cooking

I’m making a family cookbook!  I’m retired now folks.  I have tons of time on my hands and honestly, I can’t stay in my chair knitting ALL the time.  My daughter, Lindy, has often told me to write my recipes down for her.   My new daughters have also mentioned a recipe or two that they would like to learn to make.   So, I thought I’d make a cookbook.

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I thought I would share one of my family’s favorite recipes and hopefully get some constructive criticism.

I was a fortunate kid in the fact that my mother made a home cooked meal every night.  Almost every night, we did eat out occasionally.   I usually helped my mom cook.  I was responsible for the salad.  Yes. We had a salad with every meal.  A meat, a veggie, a carb, and a salad/fruit.

I remember when I moved out and had my first box of Hamburger Helper.  I thought it was terrible!  It tasted like cardboard to me.  I was not used to processed food.  I learned to like it.  Hamburger Helper is great on some nights.

I enjoy cooking for my family.  My daughter didn’t seem interested in learning much and I enjoyed cooking, so my daughter doesn’t know how to cook much.  She’s watched me and helped me cut up ingredients and did a bit of stirring for me, but other than that, she doesn’t know much else.   So my cookbook is directed at her and teaching her how to cook.

My mother follows directions rigidly.  (Other than when a recipe calls for soy sauce.  My mom is like an alcoholic with the soy sauce and requires direct observation.)  I follow directions more as a guideline and/or suggestions.  I eyeball almost everything.  Rarely do I measure anything out.  While creating my cookbook, I’ve been trying my best to pay attention to ingredient portions.

 

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Let me know what you think about the recipe.  If you make this (which I highly recommend), please tell me what you think.  I love honesty.     Let me know if my “Notes” helped.   I’m working on cooking up all the meals and taking pictures for the girls.    My daughters are helping some too!  Lauren made the Chicken Salad the other night and took pictures for me for the cookbook.

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I’m collecting recipes from all my family to add to the cookbook.  We all get to participate.  It will be a fun project and will make lots of memories.  I think it’s a great idea.

Any tips to add to my cookbook?  Has your family done anything like this?    I think I’ll add some pictures of all of us, old and new, with the recipes.  That will be fun too.

The Arrow Sweater

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I finished the Felicitas Sweater by Lisa Hannes .  It’s too big!  I was running out of blue yarn so I had to “wing it”, hence the  bottom rotation of blue and gold stripes.  That’s not how the pattern is written.  I really like this sweater, it’s just too big.

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My daughter, Lindy, and I laughed so hard at this picture.  First of all, you can see how large this top turned out on me.  Secondly, I was making a turn, so my feet look weird.  Lindy said, “Mom,  that’s the most innocent awkwardness I’ve ever seen”.   That is a very good description of me.  I am awkward.   I am a huge dork!  It’s all good.  I’m happy with who I am.  It creates a lot of laughter.   One thing I love about my family is that we can laugh at ourselves.

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Notice the long sleeves.   The sleeves go well beyond my hands.  It’s meant to be a boxy, loose-fitting sweater.   If I had gone down about 2 sizes, I would have had enough blue yarn and it would have fit well.

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If I pull up the sleeves I think I can get by wearing this.  I’m going to try to shrink this a little bit.  I’m going to block it again, but in warmer water, and hope it shrinks some.  The only experience I have with shrinking clothes is from the washer/dryer by accident.  It usually shrinks from the length, not the width.  I tend to buy tops a bit on the large size, so after going thru the wash, it tends to fit better.   Otherwise, my tops have short sleeves and short hems.  I’m tall and lanky under some necessary extra fluff for snuggles with grandkids.

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This is my step-dad, Jerry, my step-sister Jeree, and me.  I think I was  12 here.  See what I mean.  Check out those long arms and legs.  That’s why I buy larger size tops, so that the sleeves will be long enough and fit my long arms.  “Awkward”.  Definitely a good description of me.  I think I had my full 5’8″ height when I was 11 years old.

Anyone else have experience with a too big top and how to fix it?

One last pic to post for today.

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This is my oldest son, John ,and his wife, Lauren, with Luke, Bootsy, and Daisy hanging out on our back porch.  Bootsy has a litter of Aussiedoodles that are ready to go home.  Okay, one more picture.

Have a blessed day!   I’m working on potting plants for the patio this weekend.  I’m excited to finish my next project – Briochealicious by Andrea Mowry.  It’s almost done!

Please let me know if you know of any hacks or tips on shrinking sweaters on purpose!

Tammy

Craftsy

Hi Friends,

You all may know of Craftsy.com, but they are running a really good special right now.

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I love Craftsy classes.  For $120.00/year, you get unlimited access to classes.  (They also have a monthly charge for $14.99) They are not just for knitting.   This morning,  I’ve been watching a gardening class.  They have painting, photography, cooking, sewing, jewelry, wood working, quilting, etc.   I recently  enjoyed a class on colored pencils.  (Hmmm, I need to check out if they have a class on yarn dying….)

Also when you sign up, you get a FREE knit project including enough yarn to complete the project for FREE!

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I picked the Entwined Blanket (bottom right) in a pretty lavender color to make for my daughter, Lindy, for when she moves into her own place for the first time.   Plus, they offer a $25 coupon for any supplies you may want to buy, in addition to the free kit/yarn you are already receiving.

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This is a really good deal and I wanted to share with my knitter friends.  It’s a cool Spring rainy day today and a perfect day to sit in my creative space and dream of beautiful projects to further enhance my home.   I’m especially looking forward to the gardening classes.    I love the Boho look – natural fibers, lots of fresh green plants and flowers, the tinkling of wind chimes, beautiful textures, splashes of running water, and the fragrant notes of the outdoors.   I love spending time outdoors, particularly in the Spring and Fall. It gets really hot here in Oklahoma in the Summer,  that it  sends you inside for the air conditioning.  My favorite room in my house is the sunroom.   Lots of natural light and plants.

Check out Craftsy.

Have a great day friends!

Tammy

 

 

 

 

 

Hooded Cardigan for Baby.

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Lauren and I were yarn hoarding at our LYS that was closing and she found this adorable cardigan pattern.  It’s the Jump for Joy Hoodie from Universal Yarns.  It uses Cotton Supreme Batik cotton yarn by Universal Yarn. There are a ton of color combinations available.   I used the color “Navy Salute”. The yarn is so soft and cozy!  Love it!

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Lauren knows crochet and some knitting.   She started this cute cardigan and when she got to shaping the sleeve portion, kinda got hung up there.    I finished it for her.  It was an easy and quick project.  (Did anyone notice I did a button band?). As long as instructions are included, I can do almost anything.  When they just tell me to add a button band however I like, then I get caught up.

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I had just finished watching Knit Stars 2.0 from Loops, particularly the class from Steven Be.  He was talking about mistakes in knitting.  He was talking about how mistakes are okay, and it adds to the ambience of knitting.  Not his exact words, I’m paraphrasing.  So, I was finishing this cardigan for Lauren and got to the hoodie.  I made a mistake on the top of the hoodie.  Where the  dark blue starts on the hoodie, there is a garter ridge row and it should be stockinette throughout.    I thought, “Well, it will add character.  I will try and change my perfectionism and just “go with it”.”

I am so disturbed by my mistake!!!   I can’t believe I left it there!  Lauren was knitting her first baby outfit for her little boy, and I left a mistake in it.   I was so aggravated at myself.  What was I thinking?   Why on earth, would I leave a big mistake like that where everyone can see it.   It wasn’t even my project, it was Lauren’s.  Ugh!  No more “just go with it” for me.

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You can see my mistake well  here.  That garter ridge is not supposed to be there.

Other than my mistake of my own doing, I absolutely LOVE this cardigan.  I think I will make a couple more for fall.    Actually, I’d like to make one for myself.    I love all things hooded.  I have no idea why.  I just do.   Maybe it’s the casual nature of a hooded garment.

 

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Here are just a few color combinations of the Cotton Supreme Batik yarn from Universal Yarns.  I couldn’t fit all of them in the picture.  There are even more colors available.

Happy Knitting

 

Tammy