June Crafternoon – Yarn Dyeing






Last month’s crafternoon was all about dyeing wool yarn. Using similar techniques as the time I dyed yarn before. I had everyone bring 100% white/off white yarn. We used my niddy noddy to wind the yarn into skeins from the balls they came in. Then everyone used a disposable roasting pan for the dyeing. We used a combination of hot water, kool-aid, food coloring, and vinegar. I was supposed to provide gloves for everyone but when I went to get them out they were not there. Luckily everyone was a good sport about dyed fingers and I found Dr. Bronners soap removed most of it.
It was also a pie potluck and the pies varied from whoopee pies to a plantain meat pie! I decided to “invent” a pie the like movie Waitress. I began with a crushed plain animal cracker and melted butter crust, then a layer of marshmallow fluff. That was then topped with a dark chocolate pudding, whipped cream and iced animal crackers. It was an interesting combination.
July’s crafternoon will be all about learning to knit & crochet, and we will be using our hand dyed yarns! I’m pretty excited about it!

May Crafternoon









May’s Crafternoon was all about English Paper Piecing, just like I did in my paper piecing necklace, but larger sizes. I love paper piecing and I should of been working on my “five year quilt”, which at this point should probably be finished considering I started in back in 2009! But instead of hexes I wanted to try out diamonds, so I have basically started a second quilt. You can see some photos of my hex quilt here and here.
Jessee was nice enough to use her Silhouette to cut out the paper pieces ahead of time. She really makes me want to buy one with all the fun things you can do with it!
I made a pan of these snickers bar brownies for crafternoon (the perfect excuse to make crazy indulgent sweets because there will be lots of people over to eat them up) The only changes I made were I did not add hot fudge to the mix and I didn’t add any peanuts. I keep the finished brownies in the fridge before cutting them, and that was great, but you can see in the photo above that once they sat out cut for about ten minutes they melted down into piles of brownie mess. They tasted really good, and someone said they were more like cadbury egg brownies. I agree, especially with out the nuts, the nougat was very much like a cadbury egg. So, very delicious, very messy, and very time consuming to make so one time is plenty.

February Crafternoon






Yesterday was February’s Crafternoon, you might have noticed that I skipped having one in January. It was nice to take a month off after the holidays to unwind and not think about parties.
We made little dolls out of beads, and munched on a variety of scones. I wish I had taken photos of everything everyone made, but when I am in the middle of it all I often forget to grab my camera.
They were so much fun though and I’ll post a DIY tomorrow with the people I made (I went a little nuts and made 8 of them)
For a snack I made three kinds of scones… cheddar chive scones, these were great-so moist and fluffy, I think would make excellent biscuits. Chocolate walnut espresso scones, those were just “ok” a bit too dry and not memorable enough to ever make again. But the real star and the one that everyone seemed to rave about were gluten-free white chocolate lemon almond scones. I loosely followed this recipe here but for the “gluten free flour blend” I used 2 cups of gluten free bisquick, used the zest of a whole lemon, left out the cranberries and mixed the white chips into the dough instead of melting them on top, and tossed in about 1/2 cup of almond slices. They were slightly prone to fall apart while still hot, but as they cooled they held their shape really well. We only have 3 gals who follow a GF diet, but everyone seemed to like these. Some people liked them topped with lime curd & whipped cream, but they were really good plain too. I’d make them again for sure!

Cream Cheese Red Velvet Muffins

red velvet muffins
red velvet muffins

Cream Cheese Red Velvet Muffins
muffins:
-1 cup of all purpose flour
-2 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-1/2 teaspoon baking soda
-1/2 cup butter melted
-2/3 cup granulated sugar
-1 large egg
-1/4 cup sour cream
-1 teaspoon vanilla
-1 teaspoon gel red food coloring

cream cheese mixture:
-1 8oz package of plain cream cheese
-4 tablespoons granulated sugar
-1 large egg
-1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Pre-heat over to 350F and line twelve muffing tins with paper liners.

1. Sift first 4 dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and set aside.
2. Beat butter, sugar, and egg until well blended.
3. Add sour cream, vanilla, and red food coloring and blend until the mixture is a even red.
4. Slowly mix in dry ingredients until smooth.
5. Divide batter between all 12 muffin tins and set aside.
6. With hand mixer/stand up mixer beat all ingredients for cream cheese mixture until smooth.
7. Spoon over top of each muffin. The red batter will all be covered.
8. Bake for about 20 minutes, then let cool on wire rack.
Makes 12 muffins

red velvet muffins

Chicago-1

A little earlier this month Thomas and I headed up to Chicago for a few days, just the two of us. Our friends were having a grand opening party for Great Lakes Tattoo, and Tom was going to guest spot for a few days. I have some great photos from the shop-so more on that later once I sort through my photos.
It’s Chicago so of course we ate like kings! Our first lunch after landing was Native Foods Cafe. Everything was really good, and this is the first time I’ve seen boxed water, but I loved its proclamation.

We had to go check out Rotofugi because last time I was there they were still in the smaller location. We bought a bunch of goodies and then we were really excited to get to try out the Roto-a-Matic (one of those amazing plastic molding machines from the 60′s but with Tim Biskup’s Helper Dragon mold. So much fun!!
I maybe had one or two honey bear lattes during my stay in the Windy City. One of them at The Wormhole Coffee, a place I felt like our 17 year old son Kurtis would of really loved. They have a Back To The Future vibe with a DeLorean, old nintendo games, and old posters on the walls. I regret not trying the peanut butter paratroopa latte.
We had dinner one night at The Chicago Diner (the newer Logan Square location) since we’ve been to the other one before. Of course everything was delicious, and as you can probably tell Tom has a habit of ordering vegan wings from every single restaurant that offers them. It’s been a good few years since I’ve been in Chicago and it was wonderful to be back. I’ve got plenty more photos to share, but i’ll spread them out a bit so as not to bore anyone ;)