Category Archives: Uncategorized

slice of life

Or maybe a bowlful of life, since this is a soup recipe:

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It’s a chilled dessert soup; which is a bit different, but totally amazing. When Neil makes it the soup is about the same consistency as a smoothie. It’s sweet, but not cloying. And it tastes exactly the way late spring ought to taste.

I can’t claim this recipe. It is from the internet, somewhere… But we’ve lost the original source.

Just Dandy

Beauty is in the eye of the seed-holder:

so many seeds

This was supposed to be a wordless wednesday. But my love for puns got the better of me.

shadows

Also, I couldn’t pick just one.

backlit

I mean, could you pick a favorite?

sun rays

a little stitching

We made a last minute trip to visit my relatives this weekend. And one result of packing in a rush, in a rainstorm, was that I didn’t pack any summery clothes. So of course it was a warm, summery weekend! Like many crafters before me I decided I could totally solve this problem by sewing up a little skirt for Windsor (you know, instead of just buying some shorts)

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This went about as well as you’d expect. Actually, maybe better – because I totally had that skirt finished for her to wear the last two hours of Sunday!

The other thing that happened is I dug through the box of clothes my mom saved from when we were all little kids. So many of these outfits had gorgeous, hand-stitched smocking. I was amazed at the general changes to little kids clothes over the last 25 years. You don’t see stuff like this commercially available anywhere, anymore.

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No spring chicken

spring chickens

Silverspun yarn

I got a skein of SilverSpun yarn from the Feel Good Yarn Company a couple of weeks ago. I love the concept behind this company – yarn sustainably made and spun here in the US. Sounds like my kind of thing, right? Well there’s a twist* This is a cotton yarn, no wool at all.

feel good baby sweater

And you know me, I love my wool. So I wasn’t sure if I wanted to try this yarn. But they said the yarn is like wool. Bouncy, but not too stretchy, cushy, and with the silver it’s supposed to be a bit antimicrobial too. So I figured I’d give it a test drive.

The people behind SilverSpun actually recommend this for socks. But since I don’t knit a lot of socks these days I decided to knit up a Wee Cria. This brilliant little sweater is designed by Ysolda, and she highly recommends a yarn with the bounce of a wool. Seems like a good test, right?

feel good baby yoke

So what do I think? So far I’m very impressed! In the skein this yarn feels like Green Mountain Spinnary’s Cotton comfort – an 80% wool 20% cotton blend. I hand-wound it into a ball. In the ball it does feel a bit dense, more like a cotton yarn. But once knit up it’s back to cushy and soft.

The yarn handles the modular construction of this wee sweater very well. The garter stitch doesn’t seem to stretch out of shape, and the button holes don’t seem to gape or grow. The yarn is a bit splitty as you knit with it, but not to the point where it slows down my knitting. I just have to pay attention when doing something like picking up stitches along the edge.

feel good baby WIP

I tried to unwind the yarn to see how many plies it contained, and it doesn’t unwind like a stranded yarn. This made me think maybe it was chain plied? But as I picked at it more that didn’t make sense either. I have to admit I don’t actually know exactly what the construction here is. I think it may be either chain plied or two strands twisted – but in either case they’re bound together with a silver thread.

feel good yarn

One thing this yarn isn’t? It’s not that weirdly bouncy cotton yarn that is so stretchy you can’t see the stitches once you’ve knit with it (no offense Cascade Fixation, but I have two skeins of that upstairs that I don’t know how to knit with…)

I would definitely recommend this yarn if you’re looking for the bounce of wool, but don’t want to use wool. Whether for allergies, or for ease of care, or if you’re just knitting something for the summer and want a light, non-wool option. SilverSpun is a great choice. I haven’t quite finished this little sweater yet (it’s a gift for a friend) but I’ll let you know how it turns out.

*haha, a yarn with twist, get it?

(Please note that I did receive this skein free for review purposes. However my opinions are my own, I won’t review something I don’t truly enjoy and think that you will like.)

muffin challenge

We narrowly averted a breakfast crisis this weekend. We had run out of bread the day before, and the chickens have gone all sneaky and are hiding their eggs on us. Which meant that Saturday morning we had very few breakfast foods in the house.

I figured I could whip up a batch of muffins to fill the void. But it turns out that most quick bread recipes call for eggs. Flipping through my beat up copy of Joy I found just one egg free quick bread recipe – and it make beer bread. Their beer bread is dark, dense, and crumbly. It’s amazing with soup, but not really something I’d turn into breakfast muffins.

But I was working on a deadline (we were getting hungry) and I didn’t want to spend a lot of time researching. So I figured I could make it do. The flour in this recipe is half all purpose and half whole wheat. I changed that up, replacing the whole wheat portion with buckwheat. I added butter to keep things moist and fluff them up a bit. And I added raisins – because I like my breakfast muffins with fruit. I used the lightest beer we had on hand, which also happened to be a fruity flavor.

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These muffins were not just passable, they were GOOD. They still had that hint of yeastiness that beer bread always carries. But they were much lighter, and fruitier – which is a good thing in a muffin (probably not in a soup bread…)

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I felt like a breakfast hero all morning!

Go Bernie!

I have no idea how this is playing out in the national media. But I just wanted to speak up as a voice from Vermont – a short thing about Bernie Sanders.

He’s been representing Vermont for as long as I’ve lived here. And if we have any chance of getting the money out of politics, I think he’ll find it. Can we all agree that would be a good thing?

And if you’ve been around here for awhile you’ll know I’d also be really happy to have a politician or two who could talk seriously about climate change.

But don’t worry, this isn’t all going to be political. Let’s get back on the topic of knitting – shall we?

This one time, I was on a plane back from DC. And it turns out one of the better known Vermont politicans was sitting in the row behind me. So I pulled a quick Yarn Harlot manover and asked him to hold a sock:

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(aside: I’ve been on flickr for eight years. Geeze I’m old.)

briefly

I love this blog as a means of telling stories. I can show you the behind the scenes process of writing a book, developing a new pattern, or even just the week by week growth of my veggie garden. But for the times that I have trouble sitting down and writing a blog post there are other options!

If you want to know what I’m up to in quick sound bites, I’m on twitter as BeckyinVT.

If you want to SEE what I’m up to, instead of reading it, you can also follow me on Instagram – also as BeckyinVT.

And of course, if you want to see what I’m knitting right now, look me up on Ravelry. Of course I’m BeckyinVT there too!

Please look me up, if you’re also on one (or more!) of these platforms I’d love to follow you as well. If you’re following me somewhere else, feel free to send me a note (or a DM, or a tweet, or whatever. Geeze, social media has a lot of lingo…)

Testing a recipe

For the last two weekends I’ve carefully baked a pie. Starting with the same recipe each time; I carefully adjust the amounts of every ingredient.

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I’ve made up plenty of recipes in the past. And while we were writing the book I tested several of Calley’s finished recipes. But this is the first time I’ve approached the development as methodically as this.

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I’m perfecting this pie recipe for publication! I’ll let you in on the details, eventually.

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spring, dawn

lilace buds