Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Ice Ice Baby

The ice storm on the first of December was followed by another storm system that left a mess of broken tree branches in our yard. Here is the view walking out of our back door onto the porch, the tree still had some leaves left on it. This branch also fell on the roof of my car, but fortunately no damage was done.

In February this year we had a similar storm that caused power outages across our state, to the point our county and many surrounding us were considered at the level of federal help. We were with no electricity for almost two weeks. This time 6 hours (We were worried!), but relieved when the electricity came back on.

In the mean time I got pictures of the stocking DD and I made. Her's is a black velvet with some fancy painting decoration on it and is in the shape of a feminine high heel. We got the idea from a book about Christmas by Martha Stewart. I wanted mine to look more like a teacher's stocking as this has been a big event in my life this year. The guys stockings ended up being purchased ... yes they "cheated", but they did work on them for a few hours with us and we still have the material cut and ready to turn into a stocking someday. Matthew wanted a more complex design though, something with a symbol of a bear or resembling the renassance time period. I was lost as to how to preceed with this without a pattern and instructions.

Knitting is a popular past time recently revived in popularity, so I learned to knit recently. After mastering the lessons in the teach yourself how to knit book my sis gave me a while back I was mesmerized by the idea of a warm pair of socks to make for my feet, but didn't want to spend any money on a pattern that I did not know if I had the skills for. I surfed the net and found a free sock pattern to try and I created one knit sock (pictured above) and yes, it has a few mistakes, but I think I am hooked ... no "needled". I know that if I try to make another sock like my first it would not turn out the same becasue I would want to correct my mistakes so I decided to turn that one into a stocking for a special "my first sock" memory. After running around the house with one sock on showing all I could find who were thrilled with me (one dog and a cat that decided I could talk all I want as long as she was petted) I knew what I wanted for Christmas... tools to pursue my sock hobby. Come Dancer, come prancer, come donner come .... I found what will be my Christams present, but I'll get it after Christmas. The book is KNIT TWO SOCKS AT THE SAME TIME by Melissa Morgan Oakes. I like knitting because it relaxes me, but it is hard for me to set it down before a project is finished.


Busy at work still, but not as much as it has been over the past few months as I am adjusted to my new schedule and organized my class room in a way that works for me. A few things that have been cooking at my house include recipes from Dreena Burtons new cookbook called Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan.

Dreena's Palak Soyabina Panira p. 137. I really liked this dish, but since I am the only greens fan here I am the only one who ate this dish, but this was fine because I really did like this!
Blackened tofu (p. 121) served with baked squash and a romaine salad with pomegranate seeds. This tofu has a spicy bite to it, but I liked it well enough. I had never tried blackened anything before trying this dish, so it was a new experience for me.

Dreena's white chocolate chip with macadamia nut cookies p. 202. DH's favorite! I made the five spice almond cookies also which were my favorite and DH ranked them his second favorite.
Then a few Bryanna Grogan recipes...

Rosemary red potatoes from her Italian Nonna cookbook (yummmmmm).

Neetballs that are baked dry and ready to add to a savory sauce. The powdery substance on the outside is whole wheat flour and these actually stay together when put in a sauce to cook. They swell up while taking liquid from the cooking sauce making them a treat that iI have served at previous holiday functions. I am planning on using them to make a saucy crockpot style neetballs sometime during the holiday. They take some hands on prep time, but they can be made ahead and frozen to have handy for the day I am ready to cook.

I have also been enjoying hot soymilk cappuchinos using my soyajoy soymilk maker. I like these with a little carob powder, stevia, vanilla, and instant decaf coffee granules. CHEERS and I hope everyone is staying warm, we are trying to.


Wheeler's Black Label Vegan Ice Cream said...

Mmm, these all look so good! Especially the red potatoes and the palak soyabina panira. Delicious! -Amy @ Wheeler's

aTxVegn said...

The stockings and socks are so cute! I am not crafty at all so I'm very impressed.

I love blackening seasoning, but I don't eat tofu so I guess I won't be eating either of those recipes from ED&BV. The cookies, however, are on my list to bake.

Veg-a-Nut said...

Brrrrrrrrr baby its cold outside! I am so glad all is well with you and your family amidst the ice storm. The stockings are great and knitting is a learned craft. Try and I might my pearl one and ... are always loose and uneven. lol.. I can crochet! Maybe I will have to give knitting another try. It has been about 20 years since my last try. As for dinner, I would have shared the Panira with you as I love greens! I wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

theONLYtania said...

Oh man I LOVE the black stocking. That is so cool. The other one is good too but you better close that flap so more stuff fits in! Haha.
Aughh I'm so jealous! I consider myself a decent knitter but I haven't yet attempted anything round. No double-pointed or circular knitting needles for me. I am intimidated!
And I agree with you on not being able to put it down til it's done. Not only do I want to finish it.. but its also just plain hard to stop knitting.. you forget where you left off!
On to the food.. that panira looks good, I love greens! I need to get that book. And I need to try the neetballs.. mine fell apart when I just made it up.

bazu said...

just popped in to wish you and your family a merry Christmas, Dori! Brrr. Your photos are reminding me of Syracuse, and what I'll be going back to soon. Keep warm!

urban vegan said...

Hope the ice has melted by now, Dori. You've been as busy and crafty as ever. Glad you discovered knitting. I love it, but haven't done it in awhile since my cat always chases the yarn and needles--and since we live in a loft--one big room--there's nowhere to hide!

Marry Xmas to you & your family!

erica said...

Merry Christmas Dori!

Amy O'Neill Houck said...

Hey Dori--congratulations on the sock--watch out for that book on knitting two socks at once, it's stumped more than one of my friends. Other great sock books include "Sensational Knitted Socks" and "Socks Soar on Two Circular Needles" Good luck!