Monday, December 3, 2007
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Sitting on a beach in the morning, with my husband, watching our kids play. We would be drinking black coffee and eating croissants. Yum!
Monday, November 19, 2007
I am thankful that I am Muslim because Islam changed my life.
I am thankful for my husband for his patience and understanding, generosity and honesty.
I am thankful for my amazing children because they remind me of what is really important.
I am thankful for my mother because she loves me even though I put her through the ringer many times over the years.
I am thankful for my best friend, Melissa because she always understands and has good advice.
I am thankful for my community - I never feel like I have to face difficult situations alone.
I am thankful for nature and beauty.
Aaaaaand.......I am thankful for yarn.
Friday, November 16, 2007
It was a great success! Though of course I have a long list of what to do and what not to do next year. My team was great and the parent volunteers were amazing! Needless to say, I didn't do much knitting this week, but last night I made good progress on Zaahir's sweater. It's a funny pattern at first because I coudn't visualize how it was going to work. But I just followed the directions and it is starting to take shape. I hope to post some pics on Monday.
In other news, my students voted unanimously to knit preemie caps for their next project. I am so excited! I think that many of them will be able to make two or three and we can take a nice bundle to the Kaiser NICU in December. The pattern I have chosen is a two-needle ribbed hat with a pompom. For the bag they learned knit stitch, I-cord, 3-needle bind off, and how to make eyelets. For the beenie they will add purl stitch, pompoms, and seaming. Here is the pattern: http://cache.lionbrand.com/patterns/kja-preemie.html?noImages=
Happy Hippy Yippy Friday!
(Okay, a bit Ned Flanders, but I can't wait till it's the weekend!)
Friday, November 9, 2007
And here is my most recent FO - a table runner/dresser scarf that I made two years ago but never finished. I found it last week in a box, and last night it took me all of 15 minutes to close the edges and press the seams!
I love the way these fabrics work together.
The blue and white fabric is the backing.
In other news, I finally received my Ravelry invite!!!!
Thursday, November 8, 2007
Monday, November 5, 2007
The history of a caffeine addict.
I started drinking coffee in high school, probably around 16 years old when I couldn't stay awake for Geometry! It was about the caffeine at the time because I poured sugar and milk in.
But my appreciation for the aroma began long before; my paternal grandparents and my parents always started the day with strong coffee brewed in an espresso pot or press pot.
In college, I worked in cafes and at Peet's Coffee in Oakland, CA. Trips to Europe sealed the deal - now I am hooked. The first thing I do when I bring home a bag of Peet's is open it and take a good whiff - it smells like home. I have tried to "go off" coffee many times, but the longest I have lasted is 32 days.
Thursday, November 1, 2007
I tried to lighten up the picture, but my skills are limited :(
Last night Zaahir and I made pumpkin muffins - yummy! I think I'll make it an October 31st tradition.
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Last night I got to do a few rows on the Ahmad sweater. I am working out how to enlarge the pattern for Zaahir - hope it works. I love the striping of tweeds in Ahmad's sweater - wish I could do the same for Zaahir, but it has to be for his uniform. Maybe I'll sneek in a subtle light blue stripe among the endless rows of navy blue. I'm due for some pictures - will try to do those tonight.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
I heard about it from Cass at http://shutupimcounting.blogspot.com/ who also blogged about Robin's contest. Go sign up and oggle her beautiful shawl! http://knittincoop.blogspot.com/2007/10/day-in-history.html
Ahmad is one today. I can't believe it! It has been an exciting and difficult year, but it feels like we are over a hurdle. As of a couple of days ago, he started connecting more and showing his personality. He likes to make jokes! I put on the hat pictured at the top of my blog, and he pulled it off and started laughing like crazy. Then he handed it back to me so we could repeat the joke about 10 more times. Sure do love those boys of mine!
Almost Argyle is growing steadily but slowly.
I casted on last night for an Ahmad sweater; Zaahir's sweater is on hold while he decides whether he wants a pullover (I hope) or a cardigan "like the other kids". So it wasn't a total disaster that I made the hoodie too small. I hope he makes up his mind before the cold weather sets in!
The sweater for Ahmad is a pullover raglan from a Debbie Bliss book:
Maybe I will make Zaahir's from the same pattern just to make it easy on myself. But I'll add ribbing to the bottom like the one I had already started. I'll go surf around for an easy cardigan just in case. Happy knitting!
Monday, October 29, 2007
Somehow, I did have time to buy yarn! I stole away (ALONE) to get a blood test, and sneeked off to the yarn store on the way back. Two balls of lovely sock yarn will insha'Allah become fingerless gloves,
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
I think that if I had less stuff (except yarn of course), then I could concentrate better and have a more organized brain. I wish that I could apply my academic brain to housework - somehow it just doesn't transfer.
On a related note, the principal at our school gave upper graders a lecture yesterday about the importance of being on time and not wearing coats in class. I showed up late and don't want to take my coat off because the only blouse that didn't need ironing is slightly see through! I hate man-made fibers, but I might just have to give in and buy some polyester (Uhh, I can barely even say that word out loud!) for the days when I wake up 10 minutes before I am supposed to be at work.
Haiku of the day: Knitting, laundry, and getting it all done.
Crying over socks...
How do some women do it?
Try again today.
Monday, October 22, 2007
I sure love winter! One day, I would love to take a vacation to Norway or Alaska in the winter and be really cold! Or maybe, stay in that Ice Hotel in Canada. No time or money for a vacation this year, but a coffee swap is the next best thing!
What are your favorite kinds of coffee? Peet's French Roast and Italian Roast.
Do you prefer whole bean or ground coffee? Ground - no grinder.
This time of year, there are often Holiday Blends available, and many flavored coffees - do you drink flavored coffee? I make Arabic (Turkish) coffee flavored with cardomom every morning for my family. Do you enjoy special blends? Peet's Holiday blend is usually pretty good.How do you take your coffee? Cream and Sugar? Straight up? Straight up and caffinated (otherwise, what's the point?!)
Do you prefer drinking from a nice thick mug, or a matched cup and saucer? Definitely a mug for American coffee. We drink Arabic coffee in tiny espresso cups.
What is your favorite part of Winter? The cold.
Do you celebrate a holiday in December, and if so, which holiday? I am Muslim, but it happens that one of our holidays falls in December this year.
Would you enjoy items related to the holiday, or would you prefer a Winter themed package? Winter themed would be great - I do love snowflakes.
Do you collect anything? Nature photographs - especially snowy ones.
Are there any holiday or winter-themed items (Snowmen, Angels, Snoflakes, Santas, etc) that you collect? I am not much for knick-knacks, but I love snowflakes and reindeer. (I guess it's the Norwegian ancestry)
Do you wear scarves? Mittens? Hats? Love mittens!
What is your favorite holiday or winter treat? In addition to coffee, I love anything chocolate!
Please share a favorite Winter or Holiday memory. One year my family had a reunion in Kansas City in my uncle's four-storey house. The week was filled with cookie baking, snowball fights, and talent shows - it was magical!
Do you Knit or Crochet? For how long? Knit - on and off for three years.
Do you like wooden, metal, or plastic needles\hooks? Wooden
Circular or straight? Circular or double-pointed.
What sort of projects do you enjoy making? Anything that isn't a scarf.
What are your favorite types of yarn to work with? Natural fibers.
Do you spin or dye? Not yet!
Do you do other crafts such as scrapbooking or needlepoint or anything else? I love to sew/quilt and embroider when I have time.
When is your birthday? August 3rd.
Do you have any children? Two boys, ages five and one. Oh, and a hermit crab.
What are your favorite colors? Greens and Blues - ocean colors
Do you have any allergies? No.
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
Today we got home and Zaahir immediately opened a gift from his best friend - a lego fire truck with about a million pieces that had to be assembled. I told him I would help him with it after the baby went to sleep. The kid with the attention span of a humming bird sat in the SAME PLACE for TWO HOURS and finished it by himself. I am in awe of my children and so blessed to be a mom. I never pictured myself as a mother of boys, but now I can't imagine my life any other way.
My first sock is too big and might become a puppet.
Zaahir's sweater is too small and I have to start over.
I haven't even LOOKED at the bag I am supposed to knit for knitting club.
My solution to UFO's? Buy more yarn of course! I just bought yarn to make wash/dish cloths. I am going to try the "Almost Argyle" dishcloth on shutupimcounting.blogspot.com.
Knitting haiku of the day:
What's up with dishcloths?
Cheap yarn, trying new patterns
Okay, I get it.
Sometimes I wish I had the patience to homeschool. The boys and I could have so many adventures!
Monday, October 15, 2007
Last night Mohamad's cousin came over for dinner:
Eid Menu #2
Yesterdays meatballs in pea pod stew (from peas we picked this summer)
Roasted chicken with potatoes and eggplant
Rice with garbanzo beans
tomato cucumber salad
berry soup parfaits (this time made with cranberries and 2 kinds of blueberries)
We Do Eat Well
Apricot and Strawberry Butter Cookies
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Eid Menu #1
Berry Soup with whipped cream
Simple and Yummy!
After tea we snacked on figs and chestnuts.
Friday, October 12, 2007
On a sweet note - I baked (so far) three kinds of cookies for Eid - tiny chocolate chip (Zaahir's favorite), thumb print butter cookies with apricot jam, and butter cookies rolled in almonds and cinnamon and sugar. Krumkake is next in the wee hours of the night when the question will be, "To dip or not to dip in chocolate?!" I also made some kickin' fruit soup - all berries - which will be layered with cream parfait style tomorrow. I am making the traditional Palestinian rice and chicken for dinner tomorrow, so I had to represent the Norskies for dessert :)
Enjoying the rain as I knit...
Wednesday, June 6, 2007
On this blog I hope to muse about knitting and sewing and find my creative muse.
As soon as I can get my hands on one of those new-fangled digital cameras, I'll include pics of creative work, past and present. Looking forward to being part of the online community of knitters whose blogs I have been admiring for months.
I am transfering all previous posts from another blog attempt because I couldn't figure out how to upload images using the other site!!! Here goes!
May 30th, 2007
The following is a list of my knitting goals for summer 2007, originally inspired by a recent contest posted on skeinsherway.com (http://www.skeinsherway.com/2007/05/pre-summer-contest.html):
- One cotton sweater for my baby and
- one for my stepson (who will only wear jackets that have zippers and hoods - even in the summer! )
- One tunic - I am eying the Debbie Bliss "family tunic"
- Finish my knitted flower necklace
- I am also recently obsessed with unraveling sweaters from Goodwill (in order to save money and the planet), so I'll see what kinds of creative experiments surface there. The goal is to find and transform at least two sweaters.
- I am sewing cool patches on a second hand cashmere sweater that has holes in the elbows. I'd like to finish that up too.
- Finally, I am gathering cheap yarn to use for a knitting club that I will start in the fall at the middle school where I teach. If anyone wants to get rid of old yarn, send it my way - it will go for a good cause: teenagers will learn how to knit and will send their hats and scarves to Afghanistan.
- One more thing - I want to find my copy of Poetry in Stitches - can't remember who I lent it to!!!
Well today I am knitting a scarf that I work on when I need something easy and mindless to do. It is an all grey basketweave pattern.I added a small rectangle of pink just to mix it up a bit, and to try incorporating color.
I twisted the yarn, but still came up with small holes. So I am surfing in search of good intarsia instructions with pics.
I found a beautiful sweater at goodwill that is too small but the yarn is in good condition and is a wool/mohair mix. It is also a good neutral color, so if I want to dye it later, I can.
At first I thought it could be a sweater for baby Ahmad, but it is a little fuzzy and I don't want him to eat it! So maybe it will transform into a shawl. I am excited about the deconstruction process but want to take a picture of the sweater before I take it apart.
Tomorrow is my preschooler's graduation - he is going to big kid school next year! Maybe that's why I can't sleep:)
June 5th, 2007
Today my five year old graduated from preschool. I have always Pooh-pooed the idea of graduation ceremonies before high school, but today I was bawling my eyes out with the best of them. The highlight of the program was when the kids sang their welcome song. The boys competed to see who could shout the song loudest!
Of course we all had to bring something to eat, and the moms of this group are pretty amazing cooks: homemade baklava, real falafel, seven different kinds of samosas, you get the idea. My dish was simple but people liked it :)
All ingredients were from Trader Joe's. Someday I'll blog about the adventure of going to Trader Joe's with two screaming boys!
2 packages organic penne
1 15oz container ricotta cheese
2 jars marinara sauce
2 cups tomato, roasted red pepper soup
2 cups shredded mozzarella (which I now buy in a bag because one can only do so much with a babe on the hip)
Boil pasta until almost al dente (the package said boil for 11 minutes, I cooked it for 8 because it cooks more in the oven)
Heat sauce and soup together in a pan; put some sauce in the bottom of a large casserole (13"x9").
Toss hot pasta with a little good olive oil and add half of it to the casserole dish.
Mix a little sauce into the ricotta to make it more spreadable (I also added some salt, pepper, and ground cumin). Spread ricotta over pasta. Cover with mozzarella. Then more pasta, sauce, mozzarella.
Then, into a 400 degree oven for 20-30 minutes. Let rest for 5-10 minutes. Yum! Since I was going to a potluck, I covered it with foil and a towel after I took it out of the oven. Four hours later it was still warm and yummy.