I made several new years' resolutions- many of which are based upon the 'write more' resolution I had last year. I do enjoy words, but sometimes the speed at which my life moves prevents me from really appreciating them. And So. I'm once again going to attempt to be a regular blogger. My resolutions of 'cook one new thing a week' as well as 'document life in photographs' and 'knit' and 'sew' are all things that I can share on the blog- and may also help keep me accountable. I am a sucker for accountability.
And so, without further adieu, some photographic evidence of what I have been up to lately:
This is my baby quilt that I finished the night before I went down to my good friends baby shower. The G-mas at the baby shower were all very impressed with my hand quilting, which I did around each baby robot square (of which there were 20). Each square took me just over one episode of 24 to complete. So perhaps 1 per hour (as each 'hour' of 24 is really 40 minutes when you take commercials into account). The stitching together of the top pieces I busted out in a day. It was a long day, but I really couldn't stop myself. This was all due to my beautiful and amazing new sewing machine. A Husquavarna. It's not fussy, and it doesn't make me cry.
Moving on. I finished this last week also (last week was a good one for finishing projects).
This cowl from Last Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson was an easy knit. Using 16" size 3 (it called for size 5) needles knit stockinette except for one purled row on either end to keep the cowl from curling up on itself. Snuggly, cozy and perfect for the dreary winter days in Portland. It's also good for biking (Nic wants me to knit him one, as well as my father- but that's a different king of biking- think motorcycles).
At work on New Years Eve, my boss brought in 2 presumably totally decent bottles of Champagne and had everyone go around and share 3 resolutions for the new year. I had come up with several that I felt were unique and exciting like, 'taking a samba class' or 'actively seek out new music,' but when it came my turn to share, my mind went blank save for the ones that made me sound like Suzie Homemaker. I said, 'I'd like to knit myself a sweater, sew a quilt and cook or bake one new thing a week.' What I really should have said was, 'try to be as domestic as possible,' and share the unique things in an attempt to make my co-workers think that I am actually an interesting person (I have little to no personality at work... it's sad but true).
Aaaanyway, the recipe that I tried this week were Meyer Lemon Curd Tarts.
I went out and bought the adorable tartlet pans from Kitchen Kaboodle, a locally owned kitchen supply store. I lusted over many things in the store, springform pans, cookie sheets, colanders, teakettles. Sigh. Someday I will have a dream kitchen. But for now I can make mini tarts and quiches to my little heart's content.
1. Don't these photos look like they were taken during daylight hours? Well, they weren't! While there is a dusky gray line on the horizon when I leave work now, it far from the sort of lighting that one can expect to still be around when one gets home. There's a setting on my camera that makes the lighting 'cool.' I usually avoid this setting, opting for the 'warm,' but in this case, it works like a charm. Or a dream. A charming dream.
2. The tart recipe I got from NPR- oh how we love NPR at our apartment. love love love. Below the luscious lemon curd that I found in The Fanny Farmer Cookbook is a layer of sweet marscarpone cream. I brought these to a dinner party we attended and they were a hit. This only works when the number of attendants is confirmed. Otherwise your brilliant plans will be botched.
That is the end of my project news to report. I shall leave you with several photos of 'Snowpocolypse 2008' in which I learned how to drive in snow and in which Portland was effectively paralyzed for about a week. The children were happy, the adults were supremely frustrated. Personally, the commute by public transit was long and it was pretty chilly, but it's absolutely charming how snow transforms familiar surroundings. Just. Magical.