Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Sorry to Get All Capitalist on You

... but wanted to let you know that new stuff (Socks That Rock! Koigu! Cherry Tree Hill!) is up on the destashing blog and other stuff has been marked down.

Run, don't walk!

Monday, May 28, 2007

A Very Happy Memorial Day

... and a great birthday dinner for an incredibly cool and fabulous Dad!

Relish Tray (green onions, pickles, radishes, olives)
Devilled Eggs
Grilled Ribeye Steaks
Steamed Broccoli with Garlic
Potato Salad
San Pellegrino Water

Then, a postprandial walk followed by
Fudge Pie and Coffee

My Grandma Chance's Fudge Pie (recipe courtesy of her friend Inda)

In a bowl, mix 1.5 cups sugar, 3 tablespoons cocoa, and 2 tablespoons flour. Then add half a cup of evaporated milk and 2 eggs. Mix. Melt half a stick (4 tablespoons) of butter and add 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add to mixture.

Pour into unbaked 9-inch pie crust. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, then at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.

Especially delish with Cool Whip, or real whipped cream for you fancy types.

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Friday, May 25, 2007


Gah! Acquiring new hobbies requires me to reduce the stash! I have set up a destashing blog for myself. If you're interested in nice yarn for cheap, take a look!

Good stuff: Fleece Artist, KSH, Hempathy and more to come...

ETA: OK, the aforementioned yarns are spoken for, but there's more there and more to come!


Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Other Pursuits

I used to frequent thrift stores fairly regularly, and then something happened (kids, maybe?) and I stopped doing it. Seeing other people's finds on the blogs and on Flickr has reminded me how much I like to browse around for unique and cheap things!

Mostly what I like to shop for is dishes. I have this thing about dishes. It might be hereditary, because my mom has it, too. (She doesn't thrift hers, though. When my parents lived in Luxembourg, she got them at the Villeroy & Boch factory store. That's my kind of outlet shopping!) I recently found these out thrifting: the ones on the left are Mikasa and I got a set of six cups and saucers for $5. The lovely little teacup on the right is one of a pair, sadly with no saucers. But both of them cost maybe fifty cents.

Now that I am trying to learn to sew, the linens at the thrift stores call me with their siren song. (Cheap fabric, cheap fabric...) I also like vintage cookbooks from the 1940s through 1960s or so, and also mid-20th century home economics textbooks. A little particular, I know. I hope to be sharing some of my finds on the blog, so get ready for even more non-knitting content! Sorry!

Ebay, of course, is fun for this, and I have purchased some neat things on eBay. But it's not as much fun as finding things in an actual store. Part of the thrill is sorting through a bunch of stuff that doesn't interest you to find the Perfect Thing. Looking for goodies on eBay is like hunting on those commercial preserves where you pay for the animals to be released.* It basically takes all the challenge out of the activity. What do you other thrifters think?

Another little creative project I have going on I am calling Operation Pretty Home. I have never really decorated my house and so it was starting to depress me. I am trying, on a very little budget, to make my house reflect my personality and the things that I love.

I started with my bedroom. Hung some window treatments, looked around for some pretty things for the mantle, finally put some pictures on the wall. In the picture on the left, I got the Vogue print and the frame for less than $20. The other pictures are an idea I shamelessly stole from Alicia at Posie Gets Cozy. They are scrapbooking papers in frames. That is brilliant. It looks really nice, I think.

Also ... swaps! I am doing Sockapalooza 4 and very excited about planning my sock project for my pal. I'm also getting together a package for Jennie's Sound Swap ... more on all this in the next post!

* Before you ask, no, I do not hunt. I heard about these places on NPR.

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Friday, May 18, 2007

Random Things

I didn't mean to let a week go by without blogging. But I have finished things to show!

Pattern: Basically Jaywalkers, except on 52 sts in DK weight. With no ribbing at the top. And a short row heel.
Yarn: Cider Moon Glacier in Cherry on Top (my new favorite colorway of all time!)
Needles: 3.0mm Addi Turbo circulars
Inspired by all the ripply goodness around the blogosphere, I knew I wanted some sort of wavy or chevron-type pattern. I tried several different stitch patterns, then finally settled on an adapted Jaywalker. I left off the ribbing so that it would be very ripply at the top. These are quite short little anklets and I love them. They are posing on a quilt that my great-grandmother made.

And here is the finished Patchwork Purse. It's blanket stitched together with lime embroidery floss, which I then whipped with purple. It looks pretty cute. Really, it's just lousy sewing, but hey, we all have to start somewhere. I left off the buttons; I may add a snap or other closure later.

Annie and Minty both tagged me for the 7 random things about me meme. So here ya go!

1. I own at least ten of those Putamayo world music CDs. This embarrasses me a little, because it smacks of that inauthenticity thing, but I love them. Right now, this one is my favorite.

2. At the rate S & J are going, I estimate that I will have seen this movie well over 200 times by the end of the summer.

3. Other than yarn (ahem), I have several small "collections." I collect teapots and teacups, things related to or picturing Paris, and 1940s-1960s Betty Crocker cookbooks. Oh, also ... I have a little problem with handbags and shoes.

4. I was 27 when I first got a driver's license and 32 before I drove a car on a regular basis.

5. Favorite domestic chores: grocery shopping and laundry. Least favorites: yardwork and cleaning the bathtub.

6. Jobs I have, at one time or another, had: babysitter, salesperson in a candy store, tax attorney, policy analyst, telephone fundraiser for my college, legislative assistant, salesperson in an American handcrafts store. Jobs that I have, at one time or another, wished I had: high school English teacher, bookseller, FBI agent, LYS owner, idle wealthy international jetsetter, restaurant owner, broadcast journalist (when I was 12!), rare book librarian.

7. My favorite time of day is between about 5 and 8 pm, on a clear summer evening.

And if you're game to play, you seven are tagged! Amy, Olga, Cat, Kate A., Ellen, Preeti, and Melinda.

ETA: I have no idea how I, comment whore that I am, managed to disable comments, but it's fixed now.

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Friday, May 11, 2007

Lest You Think All I Do Is Play with Flickr Toys

So, here's my first pincushion! I used this fantastic tutorial from The Purl Bee. She is not so flat on the top. In point of fact, she is rather lumpy. But I like her. The tutorial directs you to stitch the wool felt onto the top. I could not make that look nice and tidy, because essentially I do not know how to sew, so I sort of satin-stitch embroidered it on. It's completely made-up and incorrect from a technical point of view, but I think it looks OK.

The fabric is from a toile fat quarter that I bought in the prepackaged-fat-quarter section of the craft store, because I am too intimatidated to Approach the Cutting Counter. It's funny, being a newbie sewer* reminds me of how I felt in yarn shops when I first started knitting. It's the feeling of not-belonging. And also that feeling of deep fraudulent inauthenticity, like the non-Spanish speaker who nevertheless calls those Central American countries Hwah-teh-mah-lah and Nee-cah-rrrah-hwah. You know what I'm talking about.

This is the beginning of a Patchwork Purse from The Crafter's Companion. Clearly, asymmetry is where it's at in my craft room. One of these days, I will sew a straight seam. And that will be a very good day. Several people commented about my silly little sewing machine. It was purchased at Target, for about $25, and only does straight stitch. It has no guides for seam allowances (this may be part of my problem). It is extremely flimsy and can actually run on batteries. (Just in case you need to sew while camping, or maybe at a ball game? That would bring a whole new meaning to "Stitch and Pitch.") If I get obsessed, I'll get a real machine.

Having become seriously disenchanted with the ripple afghan I was working on, I have moved on to granny squares. I have to say, this is fun. I am also working on some knitting ... suddenly, I find myself obsessed with socks. But I'll save that for next time since this is already a very long post.

In the meantime, I have an important question. To paraphrase Hugh Grant in Love Actually, who do I have to screw to get into this or get some of this yarn? Just kidding!!

*Seamstress? Would that term make me sound like a heteronormative gender fascist?

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Thursday, May 10, 2007

Today's Favorites!

1. angry, 2. Pink knee high, 3. handspun french press cosy; favorite mug, 4. rosy baltics :: birk mary-janes, 5. the Happy Mexican napkins, 6. Marigold Sock, 7. The Baby Quilt Lounges, 8. jaywalkers, 9. sweet peas, 10. Dorothy Moved On Up To Diamonds, 11. taco time, 12. Bird, 13. Market Bag, uncinched, 14. Hydrant Bokeh, 15. Untitled, 16. I can resist everything except temptation., 17. She can almost touch the sky, 18. La Belle Chocolatiere - Das Schokoladenmädchen, 19. cups, 20. Wendy's baby blanket, 21. needlework and wool shop in Toronto, 22. sweet :: sour, 23. Flicker falls down, 24. Two 60s cups by Arabia, 25. kurt halsey pillow, 26. lace hankies, 27. duro dress green background, 28. Tiki Bib, 29. first steps on first quilt, 30. Eiffel tower pillowcases, 31. cherry trees, 32. sketchbook april 21 07, 33. bunny deviled eggs, 34. Joyce and Genvieve, 35. blue trees embroidery, 36. Japanese mugs


Friday, May 04, 2007

Celebrating Chez Affiknitty

Thank you all so much for all your kind thoughts and comments about my last post. I fully intend to answer each one of you ... if you don't get a response from me, it's because I can't find an email address for you.

But, in the meantime, I thought I'd share some news.

I passed the Bar Exam!

I feel a little like I did this.

And now I think I will celebrate by spending the morning playing with this.

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