Archive for April, 2010

Fundraiser + Raffle for American Animal Rescue Society

My new Ravelry friend KnittyPitty is hosting a fundraiser and raffle for the American Animal Rescue Society.  The raffle prizes are pretty awesome, and it’s for a good cause!  Find out more and donate here:

http://knittypitty.blogspot.com/

9 week chickies (almost)

The little girls will be 9 weeks old on Monday, and since they haven’t had their pictures taken in a while, I thought I’d post an update on their growth.

Recent Knitterings

The weather during the week last week was lovely and warm, but as soon as the weekend rolled around the temps dropped 30-35° F to the upper 50s and the wind kicked up.  I had wanted to do some gardening but I just couldn’t bring myself to do anything outside in this weather, so today I caught up on some knitting.

I have 2 projects that I’m actively working on- the first is the Alice Top by Katya Wilsher, which I am test knitting for her to help give it more publicity on Ravelry.  It’s the most challenging pattern I’ve attempted, but I’ve been pleased to find that it’s within my abilities.

Since this project has been going to slowly and requires such concentration, I have also started a mindless and very rewarding scarf for Alex.  I recently discovered Lion Brand Amazing yarn, which was created to rip off Noro’s beautiful colors.  It has the added benefit of being about 1/2 the price of Noro yarns and, unlike Noro, LB Amazing is soft and pettable!  I highly recommend it. I am knitting Jared Flood’s Striped Noro Scarf with it in colorways Olympia and Arcadia, and both Alex and I are loving the results so far.

What to knit?

At the Vienna Fiber Festival last month, I picked up a skein of some interesting “barber pole” spun baby alpaca yarn made from the leftover ends of various other handspun alpaca. This skein is about 200 yards in a worsted weight. What should I knit with it? All suggestions are greatly appreciated!

Boozy Mud Cake- Secret Recipe Revealed!

Tonight I decided to make my famous (ha) Boozy Mud Cake recipe as a thank-you for a friend.  Mostly so that I have a digital record of the recipe (instead of just the ingredient-stained paper I scribbled the recipes onto) and since almost no one reads this blog, I am posting my secret recipe below.

Boozy Mud Cake with Boozy Mud Glaze

Cake-

2 T instant coffee or espresso powder, dissolved in 1 1/2 c boiling water

6 oz chocolate chips

2 sticks butter, melted

2 c sugar, divided

2 eggs

6 T bourbon

2 c flour

1/2 t baking soda

1/8 t salt

Grease 9″ x 13″ x 2″ pan.  Preheat oven to 375° F.  Bring coffee to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring occasionally.  Remove from heat; add butter and stir with whisk until melted.  Add 1 c sugar and bourbon, and whisk till combined.

Beat eggs and remaining sugar in medium bowl for 1 minute till light ivory in hue.  Add chocolate mixture.  Add flour, baking soda, and salt and mix till smooth.  Bake exactly 30 minutes.

While cake is baking, prepare glaze.

Glaze-

3 T butter

3 T brown sugar

1 t instant coffee or espresso powder

3 T heavy cream

3/4 powdered sugar

1/4 c bourbon

Melt first 3 ingredients in pan on low heat.  Add cream; simmer 1 minute.  Remove from heat, slowly whisk in powdered sugar.  Whisk in bourbon.  Allow cake to cool slightly, then pour glaze over surface.

Chick Temperature Requirements

Spring Break Projects

Last week was my spring break and I had lots of outdoor projects planned.  The first four days were cloudy and cold, and I was sure I wouldn’t get through my list.  However, after spending the remaining 4 days (not including Easter Sunday, since there were family obligations and thus no time for yard work) out in the sun for about 10 hours each day, Alex and I got through just about all of it!

We managed to complete the chicken run, which measures 15′ long x 4′ high x 5′ wide.  It is made of 1/2″ PVC pipes and matching corner joints, chicken wire (4′ wide and 3′ wide rolls) and zip ties.  In total it cost right around $50, it was relatively easy to make, and it’s pretty lightweight given its size.  The big girls certainly don’t prefer it to free range grazing in the back yard, but it allows them to stay “out” in the yard while we’re not at home instead of being cooped up in the little eglu run.

Since the eglu has been vacant except for at night with the nice weather, we have been putting the little girls in there while the big girls are out in the yard or in the new run.  They are still hard to catch from both their “sleep cage” in the sunroom and the eglu when it’s time to go back for the night, but they are a lot less freaked out when we’re carrying them from place to place.  I think they have the routine down and know that the eglu is great fun.

Today my first (of three or four) Spring Hill Nurseries shipments arrived while I was back at work, so when I got home I had quite a treat waiting.  I knew that this shipment would include my dwarf orange and lemon trees, a dwarf blueberry bush, and a wisteria vine.  The first 3 are all said to thrive in relatively small pots, and the latter will hopefully grow up the back house on the otherwise boring, empty brick facade.

There are lots of other things in the works for the “grounds” here so check back soon to see our progress!

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