Sunday, August 21, 2016

Another Stash Dash is in the books

This year Stash Dash was extended to the end of the Olympics, and although the closing ceremony will be this evening it was time to declare myself. I'd thought with the "Never Ending Blanket of Doom" I was a sure winner of the 10k. However, that pain in the neck only netted me 6,800 meters.

With other items completed this summer I was able to cross the finishline this afternoon with a 9,354 meter or 9.35K and am now a self declared winner of the 7K!

When I finished the Down The Rabbit Hole Blanket I knew it would be a LONG TIME before I made another… but I still had bits and pieces of beautiful yarn on hand.

I loved doing Pure Joy and needed a little joy after the never ending nightmare…..So out came the leftover hand dyed yarn the family have been dying every time they visit and I started this scarf/shawl. LOVE the results!
Pattern: Pure Joy
Yarn: Leftovers, Knit Picks Bare Fingering
Colorway: Indie Dyed Greens and Blues, Off white
Amount: 2 skeins
Needles: Size 6

After finishing the Hand Dyed Pure Joy I wondered if I could produce another beautiful scarf/shawl with leftover yarn. This time I used blues and it's a beauty.
Pattern: Pure Joy
Yarn: Leftovers, Cascade Heritage Sock
Colorway: Indie Blues, Navy
Amount: 2 skeins
Needles: Size 6

This pattern is like potato Chips - you can’t knit just one!
I’m sure there will be another on the needles soon.

The Chick gave me this yarn and it has been languishing in my stash since I made a scarf for The NorDakPurlGurl. They are loosely based on the Stashbuster Spiral Socks. I only use two colors instead of the recommended three colors and so am making an entire round in each color.
 Pattern: Stashbuster Spirals with Fish Lips Kiss Heels
Yarn: Premier Yarns Deborah Norville Serenity Sock Weight Prints (Merino/Bamboo blend), Premier Yarns Deborah Norville Serenity
Colorway: Chili, Violas
Amount: 2 Partial Skiens
Needles: US Size 1
Pattern: Blueberry Waffle Socks by Sandy Turner with Fish Lips Kiss Heels
Yarn:Stroll Hand Painted Sock Yarn
Colorway: Koi Pond
Amount: 1 skein
Needles: US Size 1

I prefer to knit my socks from the toe up and so this popular pattern is upside down to the observant viewer!
Pattern: (Hanging Upside Down) Monkey Socks bu Cookie A
Yarn: Knit Picks Bare Stroll Fingering Sock
Colorway: Easter Egg Dyed
Amount: 1 skein
Needle Size: US Size 1

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Summer visit 2016

As the grandkiddos grow up it seems my visits are beginning to shrink! They have had a very busy summer.  Unbelievably Chloe went to visit her Grannie and Grandfather across the pond - ALL BY HERSELF! She did fine but it's hard for this Grandma to realize she is old enough to travel so far alone. Both grandkiddos also spent time back East with the English side of the family and then it was on to Northern California for just their immediate family to enjoy sometime together!

I convinced myself that when they came for their visit with me they needed a bit of a rest! So off we went to the Public Library and checked out books, had The Chick come with her new kitten Zoey, and mostly just hung around the house.
.Zoey loved her deck experience and The Chick added a deck to her "must have" list for a future home.

We went paddle boarding a couple of days at "Lake" Elmo.  I was pleasantly surprised to find out it really wasn't a bad place to paddle.
 Grandpa is convinced the only reason the kiddos keep coming is to drive the 4-wheeler around but this year I think it was to see the kitten! I was sure I had several photos of the kiddos on the 4-wheeler but this Gramma slipped up - no photos! Trust me they had fun and became quite comfortable driving around the property.

After the new kitten Zoey left, the brave Denali came out of the woodwork and tried to make up to the kiddos. Probably to little to late but neither Cameron or Chloe were going to turn their backs on her.
When they got home their Mom asked about their visit. They responded, "Lots of ice cream, cookies, television, four-wheeling and late bedtimes." Guess the visit was a success!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Relaxing with the Bunco Gals

Recently I took a quick trip to the Stillwater. We were intending to play a little Bunco and just hang and relax with the gals. In the end hanging out and relaxing won - no Bunco was played!
Artis, yours truly and Jinx

The Bunco Gals with Murphy - the three legged dog.
Switch-er-roo...Artis, Courtney and Jinx 
We had a wonderful time at one of my favorite places in Montana.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Have the Bro's caught the genealogy bug?

Bro' Mike and wife came into town this last week. He'd shown and interest in my family research and wanted to sit down and take a look at what I'd found.

My father never knew much about his father's family, not because Dad wasn't interested but my grandfather died when he was twelve and my grandmother just wouldn't talk about family to anyone. Dad's older sister told me a few things she thought were the dynamics of their family but she certainly didn't state them as factual.

Dad often asked me to search for information about his family and to help him learn about his father. At the time I just didn't have any facts to hinge a valid search on. I promised Dad I would continue to look for that tiny bit of information needed to "break the case wide open" and so, from time to time over the years I have searched on internet trying to find anything that might get me started on a solid search of Dad's family. And in the fall of 2015 I found my first solid lead:
The WWI Draft registration filled out and signed by my redheaded grandfather, Joseph Henry Murphy.  And so the search began!

I feel confident with the information I found on my grandfather, his parents, and siblings. I will continue to search the next generation back who I have lined out and think are family but not quite confident enough to totally embrace as my own.

The Bro's enjoyed their evening looking through their notebooks and being introduced the family who had been such a mystery.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

“Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop.” ― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

I almost can't believe it.....
The Down The Rabbit Hole Blanket is complete!!!
This blanket weighed 1,700 grams and there are 400 meters of yarn is each 100 grams so I knit 6,800 meters of yarn which is 6.8 kilometers. (Think I've aced the 5k Stash Dash!)

I started this blanket three years ago and have been working on it ever since. It took approximately 4,230 hours to knit the 721 squares (Not counting weaving in ends or knitting the i-cord) at $10 per hour this is a $42,300 blanket.

Am I crazy to be thinking about starting another? Hmmm, I still have leftover scrap yarn...

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

It's cherry picking season again!

Jo is on vacation and left me with the key to the cherry orchard. I've only been slowed down by the mail. Unfortunately, there is an ingredient in the pie filling recipe which is worth its weight in gold in our town - Clear Gel. Both Jo and I checked and no one in town has this valuable ingredient. They could order it - but so can we and while waiting for this item to arrive I made some outstanding Amaretto Cherry Jam.

Amaretto Cherry Jam

1 quart pitted cherries
1/4 cup Amaretto
1 t almond extract
2T bottled lemon juice
1 box pectin
Several drops red food coloring
Bring to a rolling boil and add:
4 1/3 cups sugar
Stirring, bring to a full boil and cook for 2 minutes more. Pour into sterilized jars and place in a water bath for 15 minutes

I had 12 pints of jam, and a gallon of pitted cherries marinating in Everclear in the refrigerator for ice cream sauce when the Clear Gel arrived. I went right to work and now have added 14 quarts of pie filling to the list.
It would be nice to have 7 more quarts of pie filling but I'm back to waiting for the Clear Gel. Next year I will be more prepared!

Monday, July 18, 2016

A Wyoming Wedding

Last Saturday I drove south to Cowley, Wyoming for "a family wedding -  well almost." The Wyoming Cowgurl and I have been friends for 38 years. Thru thick and thin we've stuck together and now we just introduce each other as "This is my sister - well almost."

It was a perfect day for a Wyoming backyard wedding, not to hot, not to cold, but just right. The ceremony began at 7pm and as sunset approached the twinkle lights began to sparkle everywhere in the yard, beautiful.
 Beautiful bride, beautiful MOB, beautiful Kynlee!

Meet Zoey!

I'm a proud new kitty grandma....
Yesterday The Chick drove to Bozeman to adopt her new kitten. She is nine and a half weeks old (born May 11, 2016?) and a very playful feline I'm told!