Wednesday, May 29, 2013


Memorial Day weekend was grey and rainy, which meant plenty of knitting time. I made this little cardigan as a baptism gift. I'm not really sure what to give as baptism gifts (esp. when you don't have the same religious leanings as the parents), but I figure handknits are always safe. Made with love, right?
pattern: ribbed baby jacket, by Debbie Bliss (Special Knits)
yarn: knit picks simply cotton worsted, haze, 2 skeins
needles: US 6 and US 7

This is a great little pattern! I actually used it for the very first baby sweater I ever knit, way back in 2006. I love that you knit the sleeves as you go, and the seaming at the end is easy. If you don't like picking up stitches, this may not be the pattern for you, as you have to pick up quite a few for the ribbed collar. Adding some short-row shaping to the shawl collar would be a good idea. As is, you need to shape it while it's wet-blocking to get it to keep the shawl-collar look. I made a little crochet button loop, attached to the back side of the shawl collar.
And my little helper strikes again...
in the kitchen

Lots of successes in the kitchen lately! A few highlights:

- ginger pineapple sparkling punch
- chicken souvlaki
- gnocchi with squash and sweet corn (next time I'd cut back on the butter)
- homemade bagels (perfect texture! cut way back on the salt, though)

Decadent Berry Streusel Muffins

makes 12-18 muffins (12 muffins with large "muffin tops"; 18 small muffins)
muffin ingredients
2 C. all-purpose flour
1/2 C. sugar
1 T. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1 large egg
1/4 C. butter, melted
1/2 C. almond milk or milk (skim is fine)
1/2 C. sour cream
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1.5 - 2 C. fresh or frozen berries -- I like a mix of raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries

streusel ingredients
1/2 C. sugar
1/3 C. all-purpose flour
dash of nutmeg
dash of cinnamon
1/4 C. butter, softened, cut up into small chunks

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Spray muffin tins or line with muffin papers.

In a large bowl, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. I use a whisk to keep it light and fluffy since I don't bother to sift my flour.

In a medium-size bowl, beat the egg, then add the melted butter, milk, sour cream, and vanilla, and mix well. Add the wet ingredients to the dry, and stir with a spoon until just combined and the dry ingredients are moistened. Fold in the raspberries.

In a small bow, combine the sugar, flour, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Work in the butter with a fork until the mixture is crumbly.

Fill the muffin cups with batter -- to make 12 muffins, fill them just about to the brim; to make 18 muffins, fill about 3/4 full. Top with the streusel mixture. Bake for 18-20 minutes (for the large muffins -- a little less for the smaller ones), or until a toothpick inserted in the muffin comes out clean. Serve warm.

adapted from Cindi Flahive-Sobel's Daily Bread

Monday, May 20, 2013

my little helpers

This is what it's like around here. Try to take a photo of a handknit baby blanket?
You end up with a sweet little feline model helping you out.

pattern: zig and zag sock yarn pram baby blanket, by Debbie Orr
yarn: knit picks felici sport self-striping, "too cool," 4 skeins
needles: US 6 Clover bamboo circs (4.0 mm)

Easy pattern that doesn't involve too much concentration. It knit up quickly (mainly on the plane and while waiting in airports), but the end result is a pretty tiny blanket. Definitely a pram or carseat blanket.

Try working at the computer? (Or in this case, take a break and catch up on my Google Reader feed.)
The results are similar. Silly cats. They are such sweethearts, though.