knitxcore.: 2011

Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Year's Eve + Pizza.

homemade pizza

Dave is sick tonight, so we decided to ring in the new year at home. He's got some ugly sore throat thing; kinda sounds like Bea Arthur.

His mom usually makes homemade pizza on New Year's Eve, so even though we chose to stay at home we still held on to that tradition (even though it meant cheating on our 28-day cleanse) and made our own.

I finally got the opportunity to use the Kitchen-Aid mixer that I got from Santa. I definitely over-salted the dough, but it's still pretty good!

We used Tyler Florence's recipe and subbed half of the white flour for wheat, it still worked very nicely.

There's an hour and a half until the ball drops!!! Untill then, we're gonna hang out on the couch and watch the Big Bang Theory and eat pizza.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Resolution #1: Get Healthy!


This year was littered with discomfort and illness for me. I tried not to whine about it too much, but it sort of began to consume me.

In the summer, I went to the hospital, thinking that I was having a heart attack. (I'm not even 30 and I eat well, so that was probably a little irrational). However, from that I found out that I have both IBS and something called GERD. I didn't really want to share that, because it's sort of embarrassing. However, I've come to peace with my reality, and I think that other people need to know how debilitating something like that can be. It isn't just a stomach ache, or heartburn. Both of these diseases effect your entire body, making you uncomfortable all the time (which leads to extreme social and health anxiety).

I kept googling my symptoms, and it made things so much scarier. It's awful to self-diagnose. I kept finding different things that explained what was wrong me and they got a little worse each time.

I finally got those two problems under control, and I started having headaches and pain in my arms and back. I can't win this year!

I went to the doctor today, fearing the worst, and she pointed out a ton of knots in my back and arms. She explained that they were small deposits of toxins and that they would take a while to heal and that it wasn't anything to worry about. That goes against my nature. I always worry about everything.

So, I want to explore some things outside of western medicine to help things along. I'm not one to leave well-enough alone. I want everything to be PERFECT; including my health. I'm taking matters into my own hands.

In addition to being a New Year's Resolution, GET HEALTHY is going to become a regular feature in which I share the things I learn about living a healthy lifestyle.

For example, Dave and I have decided to do Whole Living Magazine's 28-day cleanse. Today we went to the produce store to pick up all the things we need for Week 1.

two pounds of kale

The cleanse is super simple! It's a one weeks worth of fruit and vegetables ONLY, and then you slowly integrate grains and small portions of meat (fish) into your diet. You read more about it on their website.

Tonight we made the Spiced Butternut Squash soup, and it was INCREDIBLE! Prep time took a little longer than it should have because I didn't warm up the squash before peeling and chopping it. Lesson learned.

I'm really excited to begin embracing a healthier lifestyle!

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What are your New Year's resolutions?

Monday, December 26, 2011

handmade gift #10: surprise party wrap skirt.


Sorry about the super poor photo quality! I had to take this picture quickly, because I had to wrap it up for my friend's birthday party and rush out the door. I hand to hand sew a very small seam, and I really procrastinated until the very last second.


Project Particulars

Pattern: Surprise Party Wrap Skirt from Sew La Tea Do.
Fabric: Jay Mccarroll (from Project Runway) for Free Spirit
Notions: Medium-weight interfacing

Cost: a little over $25?

Time: about 8 hours, because (again) I insisted on french seams everywhere!

Notes: I really wasn't sure if I was going to be able to pull this off! It's been a long time since I've sewn something that someone will actually be wearing and I wanted it to be finished nicely. All-in-all, I'm thrilled with how it turned out. I hope she loves it!

Tomorrow is the first day in months that I officially have off! Absolutely NO OBLIGATIONS!!! I'll probably just melt into the couch and watch some reality show marathon. I can't wait!!!!

What do you do with your "ME-time"?

Sunday, December 25, 2011

merry christmas!

Today was an incredibly long, but exciting day! I can't wait to toss on my PJ's and watch some TV.

How was YOUR holiday?

Saturday, December 24, 2011

handmade gift #9: tiny pants.


Yep! I'm still at it!

Sewing on Christmas Eve, can you believe it?

I just flew through these tiny pajama pants from Pip's book.

I had intended to use this fabric for something selfish, but I'm glad I didn't. These are too perfect!

I actually squealed while I was sewing the hem.

Project Particulars

Pattern: Cute Kids Pants from Sew La Tea Do.
Fabric: Jay Mccarroll (from Project Runway) for Free Spirit
Notions: 1" wide elastic.

Cost: less than $10

Time: less than 2 hours

Notes: OMIGOD!!!!! These are the cutest thing ever! The pattern was easy and it moved quickly, even though I insisted on using french seams exclusively. I don't want my niece wearing pants with raw edges ;-)

I still have a few things to share, gah!

Friday, December 23, 2011

handmade giftwrap!


Somehow, I was able to turn it into something acceptable!

I used Instax photos as gift tags and I made lil' pompoms with some leftover Lamb's Pride yarn.

Not too shabby, eh?

Thursday, December 22, 2011

handmade gifts #2-8: crackers!


I really wish I had taken the time to properly "research" the construction of these lil' guys! I had originally intended to share them as a DIY, but I missed an important part of tying them off.

I guess we can list these as a "crafty fail". However, their shoddy construction will not hold me back from giving them to co-workers tomorrow. I don't know if the paper was too thick, or if I missed a step? Maybe i should have cut slits into the paper?

I stamped the paper (using the eraser-stamp technique) and I spent about $15 on the things to fill them up. (little bells, candy, confetti, and flake stickers). I mean, they look cute enough, right?

I still have 3 gifts to finish up before Sunday! I'm working until the last minute.

Are YOU finished?

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

handmade gift #1: the fidget.


The fidget is my go-to project every year for Christmas! I'll be knitting these until everyone on my list has received one. I can guarantee it!

It's easy and fast but it still looks intricate, and I get to use one of my my favorite yarns: Misti Alpaca Chunky. I found a great deal on eBay and I stocked up a few months ago. I keep intending to keep this brown color for myself, but I keep giving it away :-(


Project Particulars

Pattern: The Fidget by Robin Dodge (FREE!)
Yarn: Misti Alpaca Chunky (The squishiest yarn EVER!)
Notions: 1" wooden buttons (vintage), embroidery floss (stash)

Cost: I had everything I needed on hand. I found the yarn for less than $10 a hank on eBay a few months ago. Such a honey pot!

Notes: While I adore this pattern, and have knitted about three of them, it is very easy to lose your place. A lot of us are visual knitter's, but this pattern isn't conducive to just picking up where you left off. It's funny, really, it's only a four row repeat, but you can really mess it up if you don't pay attention. I suggest counting your rows very carefully.

Are you knitting anything in the 12th hour? Do you think that you'll finish in time?

Monday, December 19, 2011


Can you believe I spent almost the entire day sewing?

I woke up early and went to Lush to pick up a few back-up gifts. I like to have a few "extras" lying around in case I forgot someone; you never know.
I got a few little things for myself, too. (shhhhhh!)

When I got home I cut out all of the pieces for the Surprise Party Wrap Skirt from Pip's book Sew La Tea Do. I forgot to buy interfacing for the waistband, and I needed a handful of other notions from JoAnn's so I ran back out and took care of that.

Seeing no dinner in our future, Dave conned me into eating at the local super giant buffet. I overate and felt deathly ill. My digestive system is crap. So, we hurried home and by the time we got to the door, I was fine; such a fickle tummy!

I forced the cats into a hat and scarf thing we bought at Target and teased them with treat until I got a good picture. It really wasn't easy! In the end Adrienne obliged for exactly 7 treats and a new bowl of water.

And since then, I have been ironing and sewing.


I actually had some really fun knitted FO's to share, but I became so obsessed with working on the skirt that I never took any pictures. Sometimes, you just get in the zone; especially with sewing. Dave watched something like 3 scary movies on Netflix and I didn't say a word (I hate those things!).

I still have to clean up some details and find a way to take pictures of a skirt. Maybe I'll take it to work and make someone model it? Ha!

I can't believe it's midnight! I guess it's time for bed!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

baking cookies!


I kind of love going into work super early! I leave by 3pm and I have the rest of the day to do whatever I want! It really is a beautiful thing.


I got home and sewed the button onto a scarf I'm giving as a gift, finished a second scarf, prewashed some fabric, and baked a bajillion spritz cookies (with Dave's help, of course!). I actually sort of burned a batch. Baking is on the same list as painting as far as I am concerned; two things I really have no business doing. However, it was really fun to use the cookie gun!!!


This is going to be quite a busy week, but I'm going to update you as much as I can.
I have a really fun DIY planned for this week, so stay tuned!!

What did YOU do today? How is your holiday planning going?

Saturday, December 17, 2011

gingerbread folks!

I just got the cutest gingerbread ornaments in the mail from the lovely Sian Lile!!!! Thanks lady!!!!
She sent me a pink and a brown one. I didn't get a good shot of the brown one; I'm still experimenting with the new camera. I'll figure it all out


I tried taking some super hip bokeh pictures of our un-decorated Christmas tree, but I'm missing something. They just look like sort of blurry, dark photos. IDK.

I have to be at work at 6:30am tomorrow, so I'd better feed the hamster and go to
bed, huh?

Friday, December 16, 2011

good things!


Today has been quite rewarding! I finally finished all of my school work for the semester and I finally get to rest.


-I finished my last paper!
-We finally pulled out the Christmas tree!
-Lentil+Barley soup is on the stove!
-I watched "Beauty and the Beast" on ABC Family.
-We're going to make spritz cookies with a big gun thing after dinner!

I'm so excited to have some free time again!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

more decorations!

I'm still so busy! Today, I had my profile assessment for Crafts class. I got an A+ (obvs). I still have a lot of work to share from that course, actually. I should get on it, huh?

After that, I cam home and worked on a paper about the Antebellum South while Dave made the tastiest Orange-Rosemary Biscotti. I was so jealous!

I'm absolutely to the point were I'm struggling to finish this mind-numbingly boring paper. I know history is important and blah blah blah, but I just wanna do Christmassy stuff and have fun!

At about 8:00pm, I decided I couldn't write anymore and I started dragging out Christmas decorations. I actually think the Santa and Mrs. Claus robots are a little creepy, but they've been in family for a long time. I think the were originally my Grandma's in the late 80's.

Can you believe our tree STILL is not up? I'm hoping to have family and friends come over sometime this weekend to help.

What are YOU doing tonight?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

my day in pictures.






It's finals week!!!! The most stressful week of the year. Ugh.
I spent almost the entire day weaving a tapestry for my crafting final, while watching DVR'd episodes of Martha. My lower back hurts from leaning over the frame for 7+ hours but, it's finished! I'm not completely happy with the proportions of the tree but, we just had to showcase the methods outlined in class. I took on a little more than I could handle or was necessary, but that's what I do. Overachiever.

Our vintage shower curtain came in the mail today, so I took a few minutes to hang that up and put out a few more decorations. My house is being overrun by red velvet-y deers and tinsel trees!!!!

Now, I'm going to sit down with our box of Christmas cards and a glass of wine. Maybe return a few e-mails????

What have YOU been up to?

Thursday, December 08, 2011

cute mail!!!

cute mail!

I got the cutest things in the mail today!

The pin is from one of my long time internet franz, Danny Brito!
We've been pals on Flickr forever, and I just found out that he has an Etsy shop. I'm going to buy something fancy for myself later, but this id for a lil' Christmas gift.

The roll of teal washi tape came today , too. I'm going to use it along with some Instax photos and my not-so-great homemade wrapping paper to wrap a couple of presents this week :-)

Don't you just love getting awesome things in the mail?!

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

i made a book!

accordion book

If you didn't already know, I'm taking a "traditional" crafting class. We've made rugs, and baskets, clay pots and tapestries. I still have a lot of things to share from it!

The other day our project was book making. We had to make an accordion book and a stab bound book. I chose to make my accordion book with pockets so I'd have a place to put my growing collection of precious lil' Instax photos!

accordion book!

While my little book is really cute, it's no where near as elaborate as my pal Steven's is! Check his out!

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

it takes a village.

It never really feels like December until we put up the Christmas village. The entire house could be decked out with icicles and ribbon and I would still feel a little empty inside.

We've been adding to our little village for 8 years now, buying pieces when they go on clearance after Christmas every year, and the holidays just wouldn't be the same without it.

I can't wait to see what new pieces we find this year!

Anyone who knows me (or reads this blog regularly) knows how much I love miniatures and knick-knacks, so it's no surprise that an entire village of them brings me so much joy.


I really never realized how creepy their faces are close-up!

I love these ladies!

One of my favorite buildings!


See what I mean about the faces?

Are they any special decorations that you just can't live without?