Monday, October 13, 2008

A Poncho in the Villa

If you live in the United States, today is Columbus Day where we all revel in the fact that a man got lost, ended up finding some land, and within a few years managed to kill the majority of people on the land through enslavement or disease. This is not a widely celebrated "holiday" in my house and I think it unfortunate how so many people know the cute little Nursery rhyme about 1492 but they tend to forget about the people side of the equation. Well, maybe now a couple more people have thought about it. So, on to our regular programming...

I've been working in earnest on gifts for the upcoming season. First is the one that isn't a secret, the aforementioned Poncho. S requested a poncho with a western flavor that she can curl up in through our cold St. Louis winters. Since I have been obsessed with Barbara Walker's Mosaic Knitting book, it was only natural to go to it to find some pattern motifs. This is the first thing with any complexity that I am totally design on my own. I searched for a long time to find the right combinations of colors in a washable yarn and I finally settled on Plymouth Encore. I'm using two shades of brown, red, and white and I'm using a couple of different techniques to move through the colors. After knitting a gauge swatch, I got started and below is what I managed to finish over the last couple of days.

I gotta say, I am thrilled with how this is looking. I'm working with two strands of yarn held together and it's making a really nice, thick fabric. S is thrilled so far and at the rate its going, I should even be able to finish it on time. :)

I'm also working on another sweater for Darla. She gets so cold during the winter and I haven't quite gotten a sweater to fit her just right. However, I've learned a lot over the last 9 months and I have a good feeling about this one. I bought some wool from Web's and cast on about a week ago. Of course, now I've been obsessed with the Poncho so I haven't made any more progress than you see in the picture.
Another gift I've been working on is shown below...well, sort of. I made some good progress on this one during a work trip last week and I expect to make some more in carpool this week.
Another gift under way shown below. It's turning out cute and very soft.
Now, garden update. I've still got a bunch of watermelons on the vine. Saturday we finally went out and cut one off to see if it was ready to eat. As you can see below, it was a little under ripe but I still ate a piece just so I could say I have eaten a piece of my own homegrown watermelon. Next year, we must plant the plants earlier in the season.
I've also got a ton of green tomatoes on the vines out there so I decided to pick a bunch. I set them up on the window sill but I'm afraid they just wouldn't be likely to ripen very well.
So, what's a girl to do? Well, naturally...make Fried Green Tomatoes. I've never made them before and I've only ever eaten them once, but I was determined to do something with these darned tomatoes! So, I looked up a recipe on the net, sliced my tomatoes....

And viola, Fried Green Tomatoes. They actually turned out darn good. We had a couple of friends over for dinner (my how domestic of me) and we ate homemade chili, cornbread, and fried green tomatoes. Yummy!

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