Friday, October 26, 2012

A Little Goodness

This week has been a really rough one. I'm loving that it's Friday so I can finally relax a little bit. I'm seaming Falling as you read this, so watch for it next Friday. Today, I'll just show you this totally awesome cake, which has kept me from dropping out of school a couple times this week. That and I won first prize in the Summer Sweater KAL Giveaway! I've never won anything in a blog giveaway and here I won more than I think I'll know what to do with! I'll show all the goodies when I get them. Promise.

This is a three-layer double chocolate cake with raspberry filling and vanilla meringue buttercream frosting (the frosting is the best part). Mmmmmm. The recipe is from bella eats. I followed the recipe, except in two places, where I didn't take a careful enough look at our pantry. Instead of 3 oz of semisweet chocolate, I used 2, and 1 oz of bittersweet. I also didn't have enough sugar to make the frosting, so I used the last 4-5 tbsp I had and subbed powdered sugar for the rest of the measurement. I don't know what difference it made, if any, but it is really, really good!

I don't bake very often, so this is real treat (and surprise that it's so delicious). Next time, I'll make it a sheet cake so I can share it with people. :)

Because this is already a really scattered post, I must tell you how much I love Halloween movies. Not the scary ones (there aren't any or I would love them), but the others ones, like Beetlejuice, Hocus Pocus, The Nightmare Before Christmas, Edward Scissorhands, and Practical Magic, which I'm watching now. This movie always made me want to be a witch. And have a sister...oddly enough....John has never seen The Shining, so we are going to watch it tonight (over pizza and cake!). I'd love to know what your favorite Halloween movies are!

For some real FO Friday posts, check out Tami's Amis.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Nothing, Really

I've been trying to think of something to write about all day. I've got nothing. Or a whole lot of little nothings, like an obnoxious little fruit fly that keeps bothering me, the cake that has taken me hours and hours to bake and will continue into tomorrow because I don't have enough butter for the icing, my sadness that my favorite Real Housewives franchises are done for the season and I actually have to do homework, the pleasantly warm and stormy weather, my annoyance at having finished a predictable book after a really long time and not knowing what to read next, that I can't read Greek and watch Hulu at the same time because I need the computer for both and Netflix will just draw me away from my work completely....

I'm full of fun nothings. :) It's better than a big something, though.

This week is going to be nuts. Like last week. And the week before that. And the week before that. When will I get an easy week again? This cake is going to make my week so awesome, that I'm not even going to worry about it. I hope you don't need a cake to keep your week awesome. But who says you can't have some cake anyway, right?

Friday, October 19, 2012

Love for Everybun

I often forget to thank you profusely for reading my blog and leaving such heart-warming comments. Grad school leaves a lot of room for wondering what the hell is going on, but I can always count on my bloggy friends to be there posting, reading, and/or commenting. You're so wonderful!

That's the important part of this post. Here is a less important one:

Mug Sweater

Pattern: Mug and French Press Jacket by MK Carroll
Yarn: Berroco Vintage in Smoke
Needles: US 7 or 8 (they are really more of a 7.5)
Project Page

This is just silly, really. I wanted to use up some leftover yarn and the Harry Potter Knitting and Crochet House Cup Quidditch challenge was to knit or crochet either food or food cozies. I had fallen in love with the pattern photo of this cozy just days before, so I knit it.

The pattern I used was really, really terrible, but it has been updated and looks miles better than it did. The cozy itself still doesn't look quite right to me, but it's a flippin' mug cozy! I'm not going to get too cerebral about it. I wish it had used a bit more yarn because now I might be compelled to knit another one, but I will spare you a post about it, I promise.

I'm going to try to finish Falling next week because I've got a really big sample knit coming next week and I need to finish a lot of my own knits. I hope I'll be able to do a little introduction to the book I'll be knitting from. I've been in love with it for a couple months now and finally get to knit from it!

In other news, John took this photo of the bunnies today while he was rearranging the living room. I would tell you what we think actually happened, but it would ruin what looks like a lot of bunny love. :D

For more FO Friday posts, go to Tami's Amis! Oh! And since I'll be studying pretty much all weekend (with a bit of cake-baking thrown in), I'm dying to know what you guys have planned for the weekend. I have to live vicariously, you know.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

If You Don't Sleep....

You can get a lot done in those eight hours your's supposed to be sleeping. I'm too old for all-nighters, so I'm sleeping, just not the usual 8-9 hours. I can function on 5 at the least and I'm testing it hard this week! I've been really productive, so that helps keep my spirits up when my eyes are drooping. I'm knitting up a storm, too (but only when my brain threatens to explode)!

This is an Insouciant, which I'm calling Falling. It's incredible. It's too spring-like to be knitting now, but I can get some fall wear out of it too, I hope. The yarn is from those cones my friend pawned off on me. I'm kind of crazy about the yarn! I wasn't so sure at first.

This is a vest for John. I'm calling it Hancock for the skyscraper in Chicago. The color reminds me of the building. I've knit the vest before. I love it, but didn't want to knit it for him. He wanted a buttoned vest, though and liked that one. I hope I can make it look less '30s and more...him. The color alone so far is doing all the work.

And this is Rock Island. I'm doing one 8-row edge repeat for every page of Greek I read a day. I'm not reading enough, but the prize of knitting a repeat is great incentive to read. The reading is also getting much easier, faster, and more enjoyable, so it's a win-win situation. I have no idea where all my shorter cables are (you know you need to finish something when...), so I've been knitting 14-16 stitches on a 32" cable! It's obnoxious, but it will be easier when I start working the body of the shawl. Right now the edging looks like...well...that. I have to keep stopping and stretching it to remind myself that it will be stunning.

I also have a freshly-started Double-Leafed Saroyan in the car. We are knitting-along at the shop where I work and it's so much fun to see all the different yarn, color, fiber, and pattern choices! I think I'm officially the slowest right now. Hopefully, I'll have some progress and pics to share next week.

I don't know if I'll have anything finished for Friday. Maybe I'll finally get some baby booties done. I do have a small project I'll share if nothing else comes off the needles. It's cute, if nothing else. :) How are you guys doing? Got any extra hours lying around I can borrow for the next couple of days? Sleep well for me, if nothing else! I'm going to bed early tonight and sleeping in tomorrow, I'll tell you that much!

For more WIP Wednesday post, go to Tami's Amis. Have you seen her Witch's Brew colorway? I'm hankering for it big time. If I survive the week, I'm buying it!

Friday, October 12, 2012


I forgot to post Wednesday. I feel pretty bad about it too, because I have some cool new stuff to share, but I suppose it will be in a more-shareable state next week, so it's not a complete loss. I hope you will accept a bunny photo as an apology. :)


Pattern: Henslowe by Beth King
Yarn: Madelinetosh Tosh Sock in Lepidoptra
Needles: US 4
Project Page

I received this yarn as a gift. I had my choice of colors and, believe it or not, I chose this pink one! I haven't liked pink...ever. But now that Madtosh is in my life, I like pink a lot. You'll recall that I made a pink scarf this spring. Also Madtosh.

This pattern was pretty awesome. It's simple, though it seemed to take a very long time. If I were to do it again, I might go to the trouble of figuring out how to do it top-down. I don't like that my cast-off is looser than where I picked up the lace edging. I know some have remedied the tight pick-ups by doing a double yarn-over at the beginning of those rows. Smart!

Tosh Sock only has 395 yards, so I had to modify the pattern to suit my consumption. I read the notes on every project that used Tosh Sock and decided to do 3 Roman Stripes instead of 4 before the knitted-on edging. I also didn't do any extra garter rows between the last Roman Stripe and the edging. I could have gotten away with maybe two.

I need to block it again to get the lace to really expand. I don't have enough blocking pins, so I may have to do it in stages. You may be able to tell the lace edging is every-so-slightly ruffled. I know it will be gorgeous because I fall in love with every photo I see of this shawl, but right now, mine is not at its loveliest. I'll tell you this, though, it fells like a dream! I can't believe how soft and silky it is after its bath! I have a Tosh Sock sweater that I don't think is quite this wonderfully soft.

How have you been? I've seen a lot of zombies walking around on campus (not literal zombies, I was gone the weekend they came through town) and I know I've been one of them for the past two weeks. I've got to snap out of it! Hopefully you've all been well, too. There's some dreadfully icky stuff going around in my area. :P

Stay safe and well and stress-free! Here's a bunny to help.

Don't mind his disapproving look. He really loves you. We think. There are more FO Friday posts at Tami's Amis!

Monday, October 8, 2012

We Survived

I survived Midterms. Barely. Well, almost. I still have a stack of grading to get through and a little bit of Greek to catch up on, but I should be back on track by the end of the week. That explains the blog silence as of late. I haven't even been reading all of your blogs! I'll catch up, promise.

This weekend, John survived the Chicago Marathon. It was my first time and his third and we both had a blast! I should note that I didn't run. I just watched, but I feel like I ran it! My legs are so sore from traipsing around Chicago! I shouldn't complain. I didn't walk anywhere close to 26.2 miles.

Here are some photos.

I had so much fun taking pictures of people running. If I could get away with taking pictures of random people on the street, I'd absolutely do it. I feel like a marathon is just good cover for anonymous photos. I got to see a lot of Chicago in a few short days and I loved every second of it! I wish I had gotten more knitting done, but I wouldn't give anything up for a few more rows!

I'm hoping to get my schedule back together well enough to post some knitting progress for you Wednesday. I've got a pretty FO for Friday, too. I'll have to find some sun for a photo-shoot. I hope you all have had a great week and a lovely weekend! I know I was bundled up in my hand-knits, so fall has officially come. It sure is pretty....