Thursday, November 3, 2011

Not about knitting...Nature's trick without a treat

I know we live in New England and it snows...I know I should embrace it... BUT, it SHOULD NOT snow before Halloween!  That is just not normal.  It's actually pretty unsettling.  And we didn't just get some snow... we got two flippin' feet of snow!!!  The trees still had leaves on them so the snow snapped them like toothpicks.  Power went out everywhere.  We never lost any trees or power but all of our friends and family were in the dark.  As a matter of fact, today, 4 days after the storm and over a thousand people in our town still don't have power... and its been cold...
Anyway... here are some iPhone pics:
Bubba at the start of the storm as we were all rushing to put away all our patio furniture

The next morning.  Amazingly these trees survived with no limb loss!

The backyard.  It's amazing to see all the branches of the tree almost touching the ground!

Our deck, covered with snow.


I really am amazed that we didn't have any tree damage.  We had a horrible ice storm in 2008 and loss a lot of limbs from all those trees but nothing this storm.
Here are a few pics from the ice storm '08




And then on the day before Mother's day '09 there was a bad thunderstorm and we came home from grocery shopping to find this...

So I guess our poor trees have had enough done to them.  I wonder if they will make it through this winter...

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Custom list updated 11/02/11

I am flying through my custom list =]  Here is how it stands right now:

Kate- Bunny Hat: ears and duplicate stitch left
Stacy- Schluttli: cast on, 11/1
Mari- Cabled Longies
P- Schluttli, waiting on yarn
Austin- Longies, waiting on yarn
Ashlee- Schluttli size 3/4, buttons ordered, waiting on yarn

Monday, October 17, 2011

Custom list *updated*

October and November look to be a very busy time for me!  The needles will be flying!

Mari- 2 Schluttli Sweaters: finished, blocking, waiting on buttons
Jeni-Jeffrey Coat: On the needles, waiting on buttons
Candice- Silly old bear longies, on the needles
               Malabrigo longies, wool wound
Kate- Bunny Hat: yarn ordered
Shannon- Alice Mitts: yarn ordered
Stacy- Schluttli: yarn ordered
Mari- Cabled Longies?
P- Schluttli/Hat set?

I just scored some gorgeous wool!!  Paty's Lovies Handspun SW "Fairy Tales" and Mosiac Moon "Birthday Boy" on 3-ply Uruguay Merino!  Woot!!  Be on the lookout for both to be added to available yarns!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Apple cider+beef stew=heaven

Do the happy dance... It's fall!!  This is my second favorite time of year after the holidays.  I love when the nights get colder, the days are crisper and brighter, and my cookbooks come out of hibernation again.  This past sunday i treated my family to one of their all time favorite fall dinners... Cider Beef Stew.  I have been making this recipe since I was given the cookbook for Christmas in 1999.
Here is the recipe:
Apple Cider Beef Stew
2lbs beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 cups apple cider
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 teaspoons salt, optional
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 medium carrots, cut into 3/4" peices
3 celery ribs, cut into 3/4" pieces
2 medium onions, cut into wedges
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup water
In a dutch oven, brown beef in oil; drain. Add cider, vinegar, salt if desired, thyme and pepper; bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 1-1/4 hours. Add potatoes, carrots, celery and onions; return to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30-35 minutes or until beef and vegetables are tender. In a separate bowl combine flour and water until smooth; stir into stew. Bring to a boil; boil and stir for 2 minutes. Yield: 8 one-cup servings. 315 calories per serving.

And some pictures because i love to share like that...
mmmmmm...meat...

Browned beef swimming in cider

 I have to insert right here that this does kind of smell funky while it's cooking!  Don't let this turn you off, it does get better and tastes incredible when it's done!
All the ingredients minus meat and veggies

Veggies waiting to be chopped

oh this looks so good already!

waiting for scraps... poor doggy, she will be waiting quite a while for those...

Finished products after several bowls were taken out.  Delicious!


I served this with some crescent rolls.  Hubby actually turned off the Patriots game to come sit down and eat with us!!  This recipe is such a hit with my family.  We actually have to hoard our own leftovers.  I was able to snag some the next day which was kind of amazing for me. =]
Try this recipe out, you won't be disappointed!!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Fall Customs

I am currently working on a custom order through Etsy.  Here is what I have done so far:
Three Irish Girls "Aidan" on Lindon
Sugarbubbie "Silly Old Bear" on Licorice Twist

October Customs:
Jeffrey Coat for Jeni
2 pairs small longies for Candice

If you would like to get onto my customs list just shoot me an email or message me on Facebook!



Prices and Sizes

I am such a slacker... here I have been in business for over a year and I have yet to post my size and price charts... Well, here i am to rectify that situation!
Sizes
Schluttli Sizes

Sizes for any other items can be discussed via emails to ewephoriaknits@aol.com, through conversations at Etsy, or messages on Facebook.  I am open to making hats, mittens, scarves, shawls, socks, sweaters... basically if there is a pattern or I can write one, I can knit it for you!

While I usually use my own pattern for longies, shorties and soakers, I am a licensed Butt Knits knitter.  I am also licensed to knit Comfort Wool's Springtime in Hollis sweater, Julibeans Juliette Skirty, and KumfyKozies Kumfy Schl├╝ttli Collection.

Prices
My price list only shows prices for longies, shorties, capris, and soakers.  If you want me to knit something else for you, feel free to send me a message and I will get a quote right out to you.

These prices are for my knitting only (YYMN: your yarn, my needles). If you would like to use some of my yarn, there will be an extra charge added for the yarn based on the original price of the yarn and amount needed.
Charges per ounce for MYMN(My yarn, my needles) with my current stash yarn:
Three Irish Girls - $4/oz
Mosaic Moon - $4.50/oz
Purewool - $2.75/oz
WWbN - $4/oz
Sugarbubbie-$4/oz
Malabrigo-$3.50/oz
Available yarns are posted here.

All longies come with an i-cord drawstring.
Additional options:
Cables - $10
Cargo Pockets - $5 per pocket
Duplicate stitch – starts at $10, price depending on the size and complexity of the design
Stripes - $10 for longies, less for shorties or newborn sizes
Ruffles: single - $5, Double - $10
Fancy cuff - $10
Feel free to contact me for any additional options you would like added!

I know everyone has their own feelings as to pooling... I personally don't mind it at all and tend to let the yarn do what it wants while knitting.  If you don't like pooling, please let me know before i begin a project and I will do what I can to prevent it.


Sunday, August 28, 2011

We be jammin'

So i ventured into a new realm for myself this weekend... i made and canned my very first Blueberry Jam!  My first in-laws gave us a bucket (and by bucket i mean 2 gallon pail!!) full of fresh picked blueberries.  I baked some goodies like a buckle and a crisp, and since i ended up eating most of those dishes i decided to find some other use for the berries.  I decided to try jam and I used this awesome link as my guide.  I won't go into the recipe since it's all spelled out on the list, but i would like to show you in pictures what i did (cuz i'm so proud of myself for being all domestic-like)

This is what 3.5lbs of blueberries look like!

Sanitizing the jars... i used little quilted pint jars... so cute!

Other supplies... lots of sugar, 2 packs of pectin, and my super handy little canning tool set which includes a jar grabber, magnetic lid grabber, funnel, and this little tool that measures head space in the jar.  Throw in Z-man's little ben10 toy and we are good-to-go!

Supervision is a must...we are working with boiling water after all, so your best friend should be there to make sure things go smoothly

the process can get tiring, so just get comfy there...

 She knows how to do comfort.

 anyway, an insane amount of sugar goes into this recipe... 7 cups!!
 Mashed up the berries in the lazy way, a la oster!

Voila! Berries ready to be made into jam!

Gather up your other necessities... pectin, mixed in a bowl with 1/4c of the sugar (very important so it doesn't clump!!) 1/4c lemon juice and 1/2c water

Berries go into the biggest pot i own, along with the pectin mixture, lemon juice and water.  Stir and boil.  I stirred pretty much constantly because we have a ridiculous glass cooktop and just about everything burns on it...no temperature control with this baby... i want to cook on gas again... but that's a grumble for another day!

Keep a cup of ice water nearby with a spoon in it.  This will be used to test the jam to see if it's the right "thickness"  When i tested mine, it was too runny for our tastes so i added more pectin mixed with sugar and boiled it again... tested and it was still too runny, so at the end i used the second package of pectin and boiled it an additional 2 times.

Filled jars!  After this i put on the lids and rings...

and into a boiling water bath the jars went!
(this is the only picture i have of the jars with their lids... fail on my part)





I do however, have a picture of the pickles i made last night... apparently i got the canning bug yesterday!
Those pickles were INCREDIBLE and made with this recipe.  Go make them... they are so worth it!!


Friday, August 5, 2011

A new pattern!!

I came up with a new pattern!  It's a fun and functional cowl.  It will keep your neck and face warm in the coming winter, you can even pull it up over your head for a makeshift hat!


Many thanks to my little mini-me for modeling winter gear in August!
So, here is the pattern... it has not been tested so if you find any mistakes please let me know!!  I would love to see anything you make from this pattern!!!



Lattice Cowl

4oz Worsted weight yarn
6 16” circular needle
8 16” circular needle
use whatever needle you need to get gauge. I get 5spi on 8's.

Cast on 103 stitches on smaller needle (a little loosely, remember, this needs to go over your head!), pm and join in the round. Work in seed stitch for 1.5 inches. Work last stitch of seed stitch pattern as k2tog or p2tog, keeping in the pattern, 102 stitches remain. Switch to larger needle.
Row 1: knit around
Row 2:sl5 keeping working yarn in front, k1. Repeat around
Row 3: knit around
Row 4: k2 *pick up float on right needle, lift up and knit the next stitch, allowing float to go behind worked stitch, k5. Repeat from * around to the last 3 stitches, k3.
Row 5: knit around
Row 6: k3, *sl5 keeping working yarn in front, k1. Repeat from * around to the last 3 stitches. sl3 keeping the working yarn in front.
Row 7: Sl2 keeping the working yarn in front, knit around.
Row 8: k5, *pick up float on right needle, lift up and knit the next stitch, allowing float to go behind worked stitch, k5. Repeat from * around.
Continue working rows 1-8 of the pattern until the piece measures 6 inches or longer if you prefer. Make sure you end of row 4 or 8 of the pattern.
Switch back to smaller needles. Kfb, then k1p1 around, end in k1, 103 stitches. Continue in seed stitch for 1.5 inches.
Bind off using a stretchy bind off. I prefer a sewn bind off. A great tutorial can be found here

Here's a wonderful tutorial for the lattice stitch:

Remember, this is only a cowl and feel free to play with the pattern! This would look great with a ribbed border edge instead of seed stitch, or you could even try garter stitch or just knit plain for a couple inches for a rolled edge.