Friday, November 27, 2009

Newport

Today we went to Newport with the family -- Nana, twin sis, her BF, Daddy, and Ella.

The weather was the most cooperative it had ever been while there and we got to stop by all these shops I'd never been too. Here is Ella in the candy shop with some radiant lollipop rays coming from her head. And the proud auntie in her new scarf too. :)
Ella will be 8 months on the 1st!!
Crazy, right~?


Stay warm, everyone!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Spreading the love...

Happy day!!
My twin sister and her boyfriend came down today to spend the Thanksgiving holiday with us :)
And finally after two weeks of laboring, I finished the garter-stitch scarf I made her!
Why does it always seem to take two weeks for me to finish anything...?
Anyway, here she is wearing it proudly~


I made it out of one of those "1 Pound of Yarn" skeins and it is a very gentle and soft pink. With pink and purple tassels! Not shown here, but you can imagine it I'm sure ;)
And she was so taken by the craft that I got to sit down and teach her how to sew the basic knit stitch!! It feels so good to teach knitting to others and knit quietly together.
She is now working on a scarf for her boyfriend and doing smashingly well. Maybe she'll even get it done in less than two weeks!!
Well, that's all in the world of knitting this week.
Take care and Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Newspaper Logs

The weather has gotten pretty chilly out here in the Northwest. And what with having a fireplace, there's no way we're going to spend this winter without some cozy fires to warm our feet and souls.
But instead of going out and buying chopped up wood, I figured we could repurpose all the newspapers we've been accumulating after reading!
So, behold! Newspaper logs:


The steps are pretty simple for making these...

1) Spread open newspapers and pile on top of each other

2) Roll nice and tight

3) Dip in bowl of water/run water over them (this encourages them to retain their log shape)

4) Tie with yarn

5) Let dry for at least 2 days

And there you have it!
They burn pretty well though they do create a lot of fine gray ash that you have to clean up after.


And so you have our first fire in Oregon:


Enjoy and stay warm, everybody!!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Homemade Dog Treats

With Thanksgiving coming up, I wanted to do something special for Take (pronounced, TAH-keh, for those of you who are unsure). ♡
So I whipped out this book I'd gotten a couple of years ago, Doggy Treats : Homemade Treats for Happy, Healthy Dogs, and whipped up some "Chicken Biscuits". What a great way to use the leftover chicken, I figured!
The recipe, as you can see, is quite easy:
  • Chicken leftovers (all the bits of meat still stuck to the bones in those hard-to-reach places)
  • 3/4 C water
  • 1/3 C vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 3 C whole wheat flour
1) Shred off the meat of the chicken from the leg, wing, etc from your leftover chicken. A good 1/2 C. outta do it.

2) In a large bowl, mix oil, egg, and flour.

3) Stir the shredded chicken meat and water into the dough.

4) Knead the dough on a floured surface until firm.

5) Roll out the dough to 1/2-inch thickness

6) Cut out shapes with cookie cutter (or, as I used, a metal 1/4-C measuring cup)


7) Place cookies on a baking sheet, 1/2 inch apart.


8) Bake at 325 degrees for 55 minutes.

9) Cookies will be firm to the touch when done. Leave them in the oven to harden after 1 or 2 hours.


Ta-da!!
I got 35 cookies out of this recipe. :)
Hope your doggies get a kick out of them, the way Take did!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Bike Trailer!

Since moving to Corvallis, I've had bikes on the mind.
After all, one of Corvallis' big selling points for me was the many bike lanes you can find all over town. In fact, Bike USA listed Corvallis, 9th in the nation as a Bicycle Friendly City and Bike at Work listed Corvallis 9th in the nation as a car free community.
And with our location, we could easily hop over to the local supermarket, thrift store, or farmer's market without getting the car involved.

Then, as you all recall, our bicycles were stolen. I felt robbed of my mobility! ;_;
But with our new Africa Bike, I felt free again! ...Almost.
It's hard to get around without little Ella, so I started to look into another thing you can find all over Corvallis: bike trailers.
With these suckers, you can stick your kid (or even two!) in a secure little seat and add the groceries, clothing, or anything else you get on your errands about town!

Typical brands of these bike trailers include the Burley and Chariot, and are usually $200+, but wanting to be as non-consumery as I can be, I just kept an eye out on the local Craigslist...and after two diligent months, spotted a great deal on a used InStep Rocket!!

After waiting for the rainy weather to clear up, I finally took Ella out on her first ride, making sure she was bundled up enough for it:


Pants, mittens, hat, jacket...it was the whole kit-n-caboodle!
And then...the departure!!

video

I have to say, she loved it from the moment we strapped her in! First, I rode around the neighborhood just to get her acclimated. And once it was apparent that she comfortable and happy enough to even be singing to herself, I took her all the way to the LBCC for our mommy & me class. She fell asleep on the way, she was that comfy!!

Needless to say, I look forward to many a bike&trailer day!! ♡

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Yarn Hunting!

Today one of my most favorite people, Celeste, invited me out to look at yarns around Corvallis. ♡

First, we hit up Fiber Nooks & Crannys which is a local shop with tons of rich, rich yarns. So lovely!! I've never felt Baby Alpaca before, but I gotta say it was great!
We didn't buy anything, but it was a great introductory exposure to all the glorious textures and oh, the colors!!!! Being an uber beginner, I figure I'll start with lotsa so-so yarn, and then save the high-end stuff for my more ambitious (skilled) endeavors~

So next we hit up good ol' Joann Fabrics ^_-
Celeste was right! So many deals and not-too-shabby textures and colors available!
Just look what I scored!!


That, my good people, is a pound of yarn!! And it's pink!!
And there was another one not shown in the photo that's purple!!!
As you can probably tell, the wheels that say "Christmas-present-making-time!!" are already turning in my head, and hopefully many a nice present (aka scarf) will be knitted from all those colors you see around Ella.
Wish me luck~!!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Happy Halloween!

This year was Ella's first (out-of-the-womb) Halloween!
We didn't go trick-of-treating or anything, and actually held a little shin-dig at our new place! It was the first time I've ever treated the trick-or-treaters and boy was it exciting! Though only 10 or so kids showed up...boo-hoo! ;_;
Anyway, Ella was a Yellow Pikmin (from the video game of the same title, that consumed the month of February for Dash and me last year):


Adorable, isn't it?? ^^
Her costume was custom-made by the same Holly Q who did the little bunny hat I mentioned back in September.


The costume fit her perfectly and was so comfy and warm...but the legs were actually a pinch too long so they tripped her up when she would try to crawl. Did I mention she started crawling a couple of weeks back...? ^^
My good friend, Celeste, was a doll and sewed the legs a little shorter for her! And thankfully the sewing job was simple, so we can undo it when we have her dress up in it next year too!! Bwa ha ha...

As for the shin-dig, we had over Kae and the gang, along with the funny Russians, and got to meet their good friends, Sang and Antony, as well as introduce them to Celeste and Johnny. It was all one happy meet-n-mix, me thinks~ :) I took a couple of photos, so I will probably write up another entry on it. Until then, see ya!!