Tag Archives: snow

He’s In!

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Today’s knitting blog post is starting with drag racing (don’t worry, there is knitting later.  And banana bread)….

Paul has been thinking about trying to do this HOT ROD Drag Week for a few years.  Drag Week consists of 400 cars, drag racing during the day for five days straight.  After drag racing each day, they have to drive the car they raced in to the next drag strip which is between 2.5 and 5 hours away.  They have to fit all supplies and tools they may need to fix their car in their car and are not allowed to have any other car following them to help. Paul drives a 1970 Buick Sportwagon so he’s got a bit of an advantage over some in the roominess department.

It’s crazy.  Crazy FUN, apparently.  Did I mention the racing starts in Altanta, GA, moves to Darlington, SC, then Concord, NC, then Bristol, TN, then back to Atlanta, GA????

So, this was the year to try and get in.  After teaching my Amulet shawl class last Saturday, I had to make sure I was home by 2:30 pm, well ahead of the 3:00pm start time for registration, so I could help with the process (I can type really fast. Paul can’t.).  There are only 400 spots and last year, it sold out within 5 minutes!  We were in front of the computer at 2:50, anxiously watching the clock turn and refreshing the page every minute just in cast it came up early (it didn’t).  At 3:00 pm registration opened and I typed fast and furiously.  Paul got ticket number 207!!! It was sold out shortly after.  Stay tuned to this blog for preparation updates and race recap (race is in September).  Jury is out on whether I will be attending with him (I’m the jury).

Meanwhile, in the knitting world, I’ve been slowly working on my Paris in Berlin cowl by Joji Locatelli:

It starts off like a shawl and now I’m 4 rows away from joining in the round the make it a cowl. It has a really pretty, subtle textured look and soon will have some slipped stitch details.

I’m also working on a crochet something for someone:

Sorry, that’s all you get.  It’s a semi-secret project.  This is a zig zag pattern that I learned in a class at The Spinning Room.

And in winter-will-apparently-never-end news, we had a whopper of a storm the other day:

About 26″ total.  And we have another storm going on today for which we are in the 12″-20″ range.

The bad news is…..

There sits the Jeep, which Paul has pretty much declared he is done with.  He spent many hours trying to fix it and get it through one more winter.  We’ve been doing that for 10 winters now!  Looks like this is it.  He’s on the hunt for a plow to attach to his truck for next year (in case anyone knows anyone who may have one to sell…).

In the meantime, we are making do with a small plow attached to the ATV and a small snowblower we are storing for Paul’s mom.  Smudge supervised the plowing:

He’s pretty much become the household supervisor in general, even while I’m knitting:

Want to try a new recipe? I made this Chocolate Banana Bread from Two Peas and Their Pod the other day and it was good!….

I dare say it is a tad TOO chocolately (if there can be a thing) and I might put 1/3 cup instead of 1/2 cup cocoa powder next time.  I did use the Hershey’s Special Dark cocoa powder, so that might be a factor.  But, overall, very moist and yummy!

If you try it, let me know if you like it!



Storm Stella Dig Out (and a little knitting)

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The biggest news around here yesterday was storm Stella.  In case you are not tired of seeing snow pictures, I’m happy to give you some more.

We ended up with a little over two feet of snow.

And here is a video of Paul plowing the driveway for the second time:

Paul actually worked most of the day from home and I was busy too.

I did do a little knitting once things calmed down. I’m working on Misty Blue:

An adorable baby/kids sweater (up to size 9-10) that I will teach in a class at The Spinning Room in June.  I’m making it with Malabrigo Rios, a superwash wool, which I love, Love, LOVE!

I also need to tell you about the cowl that I was working on – remember the one I had to restart because I ran out of yarn?  But that needs it’s own post.  Yes, there is a story to tell. [cue the cliffhanger music]

Were you affected by storm Stella?  How did things go for you?

Hanging On

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Well, the weather has been horrendous here, how about you? Snow last Thursday, snow yesterday.

Early last week – and actually for the past month or so – Paul was working on the plow Jeep to get it running.  It was having carburetor issues and we thought for sure that this was the winter it would crap out on us.  Paul already had to shovel the driveway during a minor snowfall in January.  We have had this 1960-ish Jeep for 12 winters and almost every year, we think it will be the last.  It has had MANY fixes and we are just always hoping we’ll get through yet another winter because replacing it would be very expensive.  It will be hard to beat the $400 deal we got on this one.

Thankfully the last ditch effort of purchasing a rebuild kit for the needle and seat (she says like she knows what she’s talking about but really, she just asked Paul) did the trick.

And we think it can hang on for at least the rest of this winter!

Meanwhile, with the snow coming down yesterday, Paul and I made pretzels!  Paul has been WAY into the cooking and baking since I have been limited in this area recently.  I think he is actually starting to like it.

(Paul declared the one in the lower right to be representative of our intertwined love.  You know, with Valentine’s Day coming and all…)

We used the King Arthur Flour Soft Buttery Pretzel Mix (click there to get it on Amazon) and they are so, So, SO, GOOD!  Especially right out of the oven.  Perfect to have watching tv on a cold, snowy day.

Knitting Again

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Hooray for knitting again!  After giving myself a good two-week break, with a short bout of knitting to prepare for a class I was teaching, my arms are feeling better and I’m knitting again. HOORAY!!

First, though, I went to the chiropractor, who did this:


I love Kinesio tape.  It helped my arms feel much better.

My main goal was to be ready to knit during the long car trips this past Thanksgiving weekend.  And to knit s-l-o-w-l-y.  And take stretching breaks often.  So what would normally take me about a day, took me three days:



This is the TinCanKnits Barley Hat made with Periwinkle Sheep Merino Aran in Elderberry. LOVE.

It has been extremely hard for me to slow down. Especially because I am in an I-want-to-knit-ALL-THE-THINGS phase. And that is probably because I’ve acquired a little bit of yarn lately. There was that WEBS trip I told you about in the last post. And then there was some black Friday and day-after-small-business-Saturday shopping:


And an impulse buy from ENGLAND!….


A gorgeous crochet afghan kit for a crochet-a-long that starts in January.

I’m in deep. And I don’t know what to knit with first.

So, while I’m deciding, I’ll tell you about some other stuff that has happened.

We had this a few days before Thanksgiving:

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7 inches!  Down in town (2 miles away), there was nada. So pretty, though, right?

At Thanksgiving dinner near Boston, we met Leo:

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There is nothing like a soft, adorable puppy to make you want to get a dog again. (We are seriously thinking about potentially getting one. Possibly.)

Then, in Virginia, we learned a lot about George Washington at Mount Vernon:


And spent some time with Jake:


Who also made us want to seriously think about potentially getting a dog again.  Possibly.

I taught three classes the weekend before Thanksgiving and forgot to take pictures of two of them.  Here are the results of the fingerless mitt class:


Hooray for learning a million techniques in one little thumb gusset!

And finally, tell me what’s wrong with this picture:


NOTHING!! We gave it the old college try with the CRV but unfortunately things just started going wrong and it wasn’t economical to keep fixing it (no matter how hard Paul, with his mad mechanic skillz, worked).  So we got a two-fer: We traded in two old cars for one new car and I love it.

Stay tuned for the next post when I show you something crazy I did and you get to vote!

Should We Talk About the Weather?

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Let’s just talk about the crappy weather one last time and not talk about it again until there is something nice and pretty and beautiful and spring-like to talk about.

There was a little snow here on Saturday…


Which actually was a tiny bit pretty.  It looked pretty against the maple tree buds, which I then felt a little sorry for.  I hope they are ok.

Then this happened on Sunday and Monday:


You may have noticed the snow plow Jeep in the top picture.  It sits there still.  The motor froze because it was so cold and because it was sitting outside because it was not supposed to snow anymore.  So Paul had to trudge to the shed and find a shovel instead.

And all this snow made it much more difficult for me to work on my 10,000 steps in the doodlebugs backyard:


While they made snow angels:


Let’s hope that’s it.  Seriously, spring.  Let’s go.

In the meantime, Paul and I tried to celebrate one of our favorite spring things, the opening of Jumpin’ Jacks Drive-In:

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In the cold and the rain.  But it was yummy, so it was worth it. (That’s my pistachio soft serve on the left.  YUM.  I love pistachio.)

In knitting news, I had several classes last weekend, including the TWF(Three Way Fun) Cowl class, where they all got a good start on these fun, quick cowls:


And we had the first session of the Fish Lips Kiss Heel class, where everyone got to feel slightly uncomfortable while someone else traced their bare or sock-clad foot:


But it was a necessary first step to make these socks that will fit their feet perfectly!  Stay tuned for their progress after the second class….

And I started this cute Milo vest on Sunday:


….and finished it on Monday.  Full disclosure, it’s the newborn size so it’s really tiny and took less than 137 yards, which is one ball of the Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino Tonals yarn, which I love, Love, LOVE!!!

Ok.  Do you think that cabbage patch doll picture is a little creepy to model a human sweater?  I kinda do, but they really are about the size of a newborn, so…..  So here is a normal picture:


So adorable.  Fun, easy pattern.  This will be a class at The Spinning Room in May!

That’s it.  That’s all the snow talk for this year.  But there will be tons more knitting talk.  I’m still working on my cotton cardi.  Just giving my hands a rest.  And I’ve got a must-knit-by-September project for someone-who-won’t-be-named-but-is-going-to-a really-excellent-college-so-excellent-in-fact-that-it-is-an-ivy-league-college-in-the-fall that needs to be started.

This and This

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THIS is happening:

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And I made THIS:


Apple Crumble Slab Pie.  You should make it.  (You don’t even have to be good a rolling out crust, and let me tell you, today I was challenged in that department.  I ended up just piecing the many pieces together and smooshing them up the sides.)  And how convenient — the picture cuts off the corner I tried. ; )

No knitting to show you today.  But wasn’t that up there enough? I mean really… go make that pie.

What We’ve All Been Doing

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1) What I’ve been doing….

Making Classic Macaroni and Cheese from my America’s Test Kitchen Cookbook…

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Baking pumpkin muffins, since I didn’t make anything pumpkin in the fall, and I just wanted to….


Recipe from my trusty The New Good Housekeeping Cookbook.

And finishing the knitting on one side of my Second Story Tee:


…then working on my Spectral Cowl:


2) What Paul has been doing….


$20 scooter from a flea market in Vermont.


And a $10 step stool from a flea market in Cape Cod….

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He took all the pieces apart, sandblasted, took out dents, bondo-d, sanded, painted…. Don’t they look great???  Not sure if we are selling, using or giving.

3) What the doodlebugs have been doing….


Watching bean seeds NOT grow.  We planted these Scarlet Runner bean seeds because the plant is supposed to grow several inches in a day, and we can measure how tall they are getting as they wind up the tape measure.  But, several days later, they haven’t even sprouted.  More research is on my to-do list.

However, here is a funny story:  After they were planted, I was in the kitchen working on setting up the tape measure so it would go over the curtain rod and stay secure.  Miss Ladybug came in and asked what I was doing.  I told her, “I’m taping this tape measure to the bottle.”  Then she said, “I guess that’s why they call it a TAPE measure!…..Get it?”  Three and a half, and ready for her stand up routine!

4) What Christine at the yarn shop has been doing….


5) What Janell, who took my mitts class, did:


So pretty!

6) What the crocuses are doing:


Nothing.  Freezing. It’s March 30 and supposed to snow on and off again today.  In two days it will be April.  It has to get better in April, right?

Tenth Verse, Same as the First

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More cold and more snow.  More cold and more snow.  More cold and more snow…..

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You can’t even tell we have a pond anymore….

We recently watched a whole bunch of episodes of Alaska State Troopers.  It should have made me feel better about this weather we are having.  In some places in Alaska, they have much colder temperatures, more snow, and hardly any sunlight.  For a really long time.  So why am I complaining about a couple of months, one of which the average temperature has been 12 degrees when it is supposed to be 38?

The other day, when it was only 15 degrees, I took the doodlebugs outside to play.  It was sunny, so it felt warmer.  By the way, the threshold for how “warm” it has to be to go outside has gotten lower as the winter has gone on.  Early in winter, temps in the twenties seemed too cold.  Now, if the temp is in the teens but the “real feel” is in the twenties, we’re all good.  And I’m telling you, those snowsuits keep them so warm, they are sweating when they come inside.  Anyhow, back to the other day…..Miss Ladybug stopped playing to ask what I was doing – I was just standing in the sun, with my face tilted up and my eyes closed.  I told her I was trying to get some vitamin D.  The sun felt so good and I realized how little time I had spent in the sun these past couple of months.  She also asked me recently when summer was coming. I told her not soon enough, but I would settle for spring arriving pretty quickly.  On the plus side, it is not pitch black when we wake up, it’s still light out at 6pm, and in two weeks we’ll be changing the clocks.  So spring can’t be that far.

But meanwhile, and as usual, the knitting helps.  Having something warm and wooly to work on makes things nice and cozy.  I’m plugging away on my Tea Leaves Cardigan….


It kind of looks like a jumbled mess right now.  When I separate for the sleeves, you’ll get a better idea of what it looks like. Also, can I just say that I love this color?  But then again, purple is my thing.

And I’ve started working on another pattern to publish. I’m breaking all the rules and giving you a teeny tiny sneak peek:


Are you staying warm?

The Knitting Helps

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I’m not going to complain about the 0.9 degree weather with the minus 30 wind chill today.  Or the snow that is expected tomorrow.  Because all of that is such old news.  Who needs old news?

But I will clarify that in my last post, no one seemed to realize that the pictures of the heater I was showing you at the end, were because the pipes inside the baseboards froze and burst.


Two holes in the pipe and so lucky that nothing flooded and we caught it quickly.  And boy was I ever thankful that Paul knows what the heck he is doing.  What could have been a several hundred dollar emergency call to a plumber, was a $30 piece of copper pipe that Paul replaced himself.  Whew.

And lucky me, I got to help by taking the million and one heating element thingys off the old 6 foot long copper pipe and put them back on the new 6 foot long copper pipe:


I’m really terrible – such a complainer and grumpy about the boring-ness of it all (after all, I could have been knitting).  Paul is very patient.

And this morning we woke up and discovered the need for this (again):


After we thought we had all our bases covered, another frozen pipe (inside a closed closet) that, again thankfully, was caught even earlier and this one didn’t burst.

But here’s a good thing about the snow…..

This is Jake in Virginia, who hardly gets to see snow and loves it soooooo much….


Isn’t he just the cutest thing you’ve ever seen and makes your frozen face melt into a smile?

Also, on an “inside day” with the doodlebugs, they practiced counting by making tarts for the Queen of Hearts with play-doh:


And so all this boring, monotonous, every day, all day cold stuff is helped a lot by the knitting, which I’ve been doing a lot of.  I finished my Heaven and Space shawlette and gave it a cozy blocking by the fire:



(I have no idea what happened but all my pictures on the dress form came out crooked.)  I am mostly happy with it and a tiny bit unhappy.  I love the color. I love the pattern – easy and great for tv knitting.  I really liked knitting with the yarn, Cozy Soft.  However.  The yarn is 75% acrylic and 25% wool, which means the fabric will not really relax like I want it to.  I wanted it to look like the pattern picture, but even though I stretched it out flat, the acrylic is making it scrunch back up and get all wavy and bumpy.  While this looks ok, it looks “only ok” and my preference would be for it to lay flatter.  Next time, which there might be, because I really really like this pattern, I will use wool.  Or wool/alpaca blend, because I love alpaca and it would be so cozy.

I also made a sample Homesock for an upcoming class:

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I made a pair for my sister for Christmas.  They are funny looking when you aren’t wearing them and look like they won’t fit, but they stretch right out and fit nice and comfy and snug.  Sized for toddler to adults!

And then I started my Tea Leaves Cardigan, which I’ve had in my queue on Ravelry for a long time and have always wanted to knit.


(I know.  Shocking that it’s purple. But it’s an awesome, deep, heathered purple.)  It is a top-down sweater and I will be teaching a class for this as well.

And last night I taught a colorwork fingerless mitts class:


Although teaching a full mitten would probably be more appropriate.

Two classes to teach this weekend and I’m hoping to finally make some cupcakes!  Stay tuned….

Easy Cabled Scarf and Going On and On about the Cold/Snow

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My Easy Cabled Scarf pattern is now for sale on Ravelry!


USD $2.50

That is the last pattern for a little while. However, I have another hat pattern in mind, and another cowl.  AND, my Aunt Kathy suggested mitts to go with my Bulky Twisted Rib Hat, which was a great suggestion.

So, this Easy Cabled Scarf:

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I. LOVE. IT.  First of all I love the yarn I used, Cascade Cloud.  It is 70% merino and 30% alpaca, so you can’t go wrong there.  It also has an unusual construction in that it is a chain yarn.  The strand of yarn looks like a tiny knitted i-cord (or a chain) and that gives the yarn a nice texture.  It is an aran weight yarn (also known as heavy worsted) and knit with size 11 needles, which means the fabric is fairly drapey and nice and squooshy.  I have scheduled a “Cables!” class at The Spinning Room (March 21, 12-2pm) to teach how to knit various cables by getting started on this scarf, as well as learning to cable without a needle. Second of all, I love that using the size 11 needles makes it a fairly quick knit.  Mine took a day and a half.  Although, you can’t go by me because I knit pretty fast these days.  Especially when I’m on a mission.  Your mileage will vary.  Let’s just say it is probably quicker to knit than your average scarf. *And a special thank you to Yvette who braved the cold with me today to take the final pictures I needed of me wearing my scarf!

If you decide to knit any of my patterns, I would LOVE to see the results.  Please post them on Ravelry or you can email me a picture:  lizatlizytishknitsdotcom

So, that’s it for pattern news.

How about me going on and on and on about how cold and snowy it is?…..

I have decided that I really need some snow pants:


Trudging up Grandma’s back hill through the 15″ snow to make a path for the Doodlebugs so they could sled (1 time for Miss Ladybug, 3 times for Mr. Doodlebug) made this very clear.  They did well trudging on their own when it was flat:


Luckily this week the sun was out, so despite temps in the teens, it wasn’t too cold to get outside for some shoveling-the-yard-then-pushing-each-other-over-then-burying-themselves-then-eating-snow.

One of the days, after we came inside, we made craft stick/bottle top catapults and measured how far conversation hearts would launch:


So much fun! Great fun to see how far they would go and great practice for them to read numbers, especially the twenties/thirties/forties.  They loved the idea of launching them and then eating them.  We were following the 5-second rule, in case you were wondering.

Today, it got all the way to 7 degrees, after starting out at minus 7.  AND it was very windy.  So it was wonderful running all my errands, making my 8 different stops into the warm stores and back out in to the frigid cold.  I was so happy to get home.  It’s going to be cold all weekend and we are supposed to get 6 or more inches of snow Saturday into Sunday.  While this is painful to think about and makes me want to complain even more, it will be great for sitting here in my comfy cozy chair under my knitted woolens, knitting more woolens:


I don’t plan on leaving the house.  Might even bake some bread and cook a pot roast.

P.S.  My new favorite thing:


Mechanical pencils from Staples.  I never use pencils when I’m making notes on my knitting patterns because you have to sharpen them, and there is never a sharpener around when you need one (or you have to go to a store to buy one because you can’t ever find the one you have but never use because you never use pencils).  I always use a pen, scribble out my mistakes, and overall make a general mess of things.  But then Deirdre at The Spinning Room had these in her pencil cup and I fell in love.  Best things ever.  No need to sharpen.  There is always lead there.  Even extras in the handy dandy holder under the eraser.  And how cute are they with the cute patterns and cute colors? Meanwhile, Paul, a mechanical engineer with an intimate knowledge of mechanical pencils wonders if I have been living under a rock.  (Deirdre, I’m bringing back the one you so nicely gave me after I made such a big deal about how great they are.)