Hats Off to January~

I finally got a pic of my hat, and finalized the WIP~

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This was so easy, I’m already thinking I’ll make the girls each one. I’ve started a 2nd one tonight, while Hunters blanket is drying, and will send his Birthday Blanket out when the first of 3 hats is completed. I feel like I’m running the gauntlet,  as each time I begin a Gift project, my time is already run short~ I’ll keep plurking along until they are done, and we’ll begin all over again.  The hourglass keeps spinning…

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I’m fond of this afghan-I love the colors~

back to knittin~check ya laters!


There’s a Giveaway at Gorgeously Green, and I thought, “why not give it a go?” Can’t hurt to try, and I could use a boost to make me feel good about being a responsible Greenie, while striving to use products that are GOOD for you, not just convenient.



Now, if I can just get Sophie to find safe dog care products, so our Igor can go “green” 🙂

Updates on the rain in California:

~Sis says they closed down I-80 yesterday, a 20-car pileup in the snow at Cisco Grove…the Sierras are getting pounded, which is good for the Ski resorts, and means more water for the usually parched Valley.
~Jessica Watson weathers another storm on her way to becoming the youngest person to sail around the world~


Time to call it a day~ my weekend lineup includes much knitting time, and hopefully wrapping up the Mary Jane’s Hat~

Super Bowl Recipe Blitz Continues : Spinach Artichoke Dip

Spinach Artichoke Dip

  • 1 can Artichoke hearts
  • 1/2 cup chopped frozen spinach, thawed
  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2-4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • red pepper flakes, salt and pepper, to taste

Place the spinach and artichoke hearts in a saucepan, with enough liquid to just cover. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until tender. Drain.
In a separate saucepan, saute garlic in olive oil until the garlic is just translucent. Add the cream cheese and stir to a paste. Add the spinach, artichoke and seasonings, mixing well.

Pour dip into a serving bowl in the middle of a serving tray, then arrange corn chips, toasted garlic rye cocktail slices  and crackers around.  Then step away from the platter before you are flattened by the stampede!

Planning Ahead for The Super Bowl ~ Sausage Cheese Balls

DH and I began thinking about what we’ll be serving this year for Super Bowl Sunday.
Here’s the line-up:

Sausage Cheese Balls
Spinach Artichoke Dip
Antipasto deli tray
Assorted cocktail toasts, crackers and chips

Sausage Cheese Balls

Betty Crocker and Bisquick® present:

Sausage-Cheese Balls

Prep Time: 20 min
Total Time: 45 min
Makes: About 8 1/2 dozen cheese balls

3 cups Original Bisquick® mix
1 pound bulk pork sausage
4 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (16 ounces)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves, crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley or 1/2 teaspoon parsley flakes

1. Heat oven to 350ºF. Lightly grease bottom and sides of  cake pan or cookie sheet.

2. Stir together all ingredients, using hands or spoon. Shape mixture into 1-inch balls. Place in pan.

3. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until brown. Immediately remove from pan. Serve warm with sauce for dipping.

High Altitude (3500-6500 ft) Heat oven to 375ºF. Decrease Bisquick to 2 1/2 cups; stir in 1/2 cup Gold Medal® all-purpose flour. Bake 25 to 30 minutes.

Do-Ahead Tip

Want to make these Yummy cheese balls ahead? You can:

~ Cover and refrigerate unbaked balls up to 24 hours. Bake as directed.
~ Cover and freeze unbaked balls up to 1 month. Heat oven to 350ºF. Place frozen balls on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until brown.

~ Bake as directed; cover and freeze up to 1 month. Heat oven to 350ºF. Place frozen balls on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 10 to 12 minutes or until heated through.

~Bake as directed; cover and freeze up to 1 month. Place 6 frozen balls on microwavable plate. Loosely cover with waxed paper. Microwave on High 45 seconds to 1 minute or until heated through.

The best part, you don’t need to cook the sausage before using it when making this recipe!

DH suggested we have Spinach Artichoke Dip with Garlic cocktail toasts, and a nice antipasto tray complete with Riga-Tony’s salami, real fresh mozzarella, olives and assorted condiments.  I’m going to sneak the Cheese Balls in because he’s not big on Bisquick-type recipes, but I know he’ll enjoy these~


Cami’s Books: Book Giveaway – Counting the Cost by Liz Adair

I’m entering a Book Giveaway – Counting the Cost by Liz Adair

Set in Depression-era southwest, award-winning novel Counting the Cost is about Heck Benham, a handsome, hard-riding cowboy, who sees his life turned upside down when Mrs. Ruth Reynolds moves from back east into Heck’s homeland. Ruth and Heck challenge the social rules of provincial New Mexico as they fall in love. That love is challenged as she faces the reality of living as a cowboy’s wife and he finds he must choose between her and the life he loves. This riveting story of choices, consequences, and the cost of redemption rings true because it’s based on the lives of Liz Adair’s ancestors. In fact, the pictures on the cover are of the people whose lives are shadowed in the book.

Book Trailer – Counting the Cost



via Cami’s Books: Book Giveaway – Counting the Cost by Liz Adair.

Knitting Techniques : The I-Cord

The Knitted I-cord: “I” is for “Ingenious”

The venerable Elizabeth Zimmerman rediscovered and named the I-cord (the I-cord, called a “stay lace,” was mentioned in Victorian needlework manuals). The “I” stands for “idiot” because Ms. Zimmerman thought  the technique was so simple anyone could do it.

The I-cord is simply a tube knitted in the round with two double-pointed needles (I’ve done it with a long circular needle, too).

I-cordThe I-cord is one of those things in knitting that is endlessly useful. The technique is somewhat idiot-proof, once you get the hang of it, and it’s also really mindless knitting—the I-cord is something to do in front of the TV or with a good audio book on board for sure!

Here’s a quickie tutorial:

With a double-pointed needle, cast on the desired number of stitches, 3 is a good number. *Without turning the needle, slide the stitches to other end of the needle, pull the yarn around the back, and knit the stitches as usual; repeat from * for desired length.

(The illustration above shows knitting the stitches after you’ve slid the them to the other end of the needle.)

Here’s a really easy Vickie Howell video tutorial (check out her way-cool tatt on her arm!):

I’ve worked a short I-Cord, as a real illustration. I’m a Lefty Knitter, so it’s going to be opposite of what the above illustration shows, but I tried to duplicate it as closely as possible; you get the idea.


These are great for making a tie for a poncho, eyelet closure for a knitted blouse (stay lacing) or strings for a cap.

Reminds me of my elementary school days when I first learned how to make a Daisy Chain with dandelions 🙂

Army Basic Training 1960s: Fort Ord, California

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