Thursday, January 22, 2009

Knitting ? Yes Other things too! Trying to keep warm in the Methow

It's been very cold, we haven't had lately to many days with the temps below zero, which is the norm this time of year, but not getting over 20 and fog does try your patients. So what I do is take advantage of the time I'm spending in the house. One thing I did was finish a new years resolution, and that was to go through old recipes and try to eliminate, sorry Carol W. but yes eliminate some that I no longer use, and find some favorites to try again. I also finished piecing my quilt together, I most happy that I started and finished what I started, so now it's off to be quilted, that's something I don't like to do. That's OK, because if I had to quilt it, it will still be in a drawer long after I'm gone, then someone else will find it and have it done. So I would rather get some use out of it, don't you agree. I know there are some die hard hand quilters who think it's not quilting if it's done on a machine and I agree, but I cheat. Now you know! I would like to share a favorite recipe, it's one I count on to get me through these cold winter mornings, and I've had it for years, it's like instant oatmeal, but soooo much better. Years ago, and now, I love making mixes ahead for convenience and this is one.
Spiced Oatmeal Mix
8 C. quick-cooking rolled oats
1/2 C. packed brown sugar
2 tsp. salt
2-1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1-1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
1-1/2 C. dried apple pieces or raisins

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl, stirring with a wire whisk until evenly distributed. Pour into 10 C. container with a tight fitting lid. Seal container. Label and date. Store in a cool dry place. Use within 6 months. Makes 10 C.

in a pan put 3/4 of a C. liquid, I use 1/2 C. milk and a little water, then bring to a boil and add a 1/2 C. Spiced Oatmeal. Bring to a boil for 1 to 2 min.

I hope you try it!

I've really been enjoying reading the blogs that keep, everyone is so interesting and we're all so different. So check some of them, or all of them out. Next thing I need to think about doing is putting some thought into my Methow Valley Spinners and Weavers challenge this year, and that is a weave structure called Overshot. You might have seen it before in old colonial history as coverlets. Of course we don't need to make coverlets unless we want to. I'm leaning to do towels, that's always a nice way to learn something new. So we shall see what I come up with. This Saturday, Katie and I will be going over to Omak for a spinning meeting at Sandra's house, it's been awhile since we've been over to see our friends, it will be so nice to see them again.
Seems lately there has been lots of fog sickle's, and frost, so here yet again another frost picture. Also a rare day to have blue skies, boy what a sight, I love it.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

There hasn't been much knitting in the Methow lately

Well it's true, there hasn't been much knitting going on in my house, I am trying to finish a beaded scarf that Vicki gave me, I love it, but it's easy to put down and start on something else, so I will get it done soon. Then earlier this last fall I knit a dickey, and I don't think I showed it in my blog, I love it, and I made it from the beautiful roving that I spun last winter. Boy does it keep you warm, and the cold air from your neck. I got this pattern from a Google search, and came to discover the pattern at a blog spot blog called Lost Arts, I have the link to it on the right side of this page. She has a unusual blog, but if you're into knitting and would like some different kinds of patt. that she designed take a look. The scarf patt. is one that Vicki got at Great Yarns in Everett Wa. We've been having as you've heard I'm sure, lots of fog. With the very frigid cold this makes for some beautiful sights around here when the sun does come out. I was doing some out side chores and came across this at my garden gate. The whole fence and the curly willow I use to keep the gate straight were covered with ice, and as you can see it was a sunny day. On days like this is when you stop to think on how lucky I am to live in such a beautiful place as is the Methow Valley. There has been a couple of things that I've keep forgetting to mention, and one is a Artisan bread recipe that I found in the Mother Earth News, Dec Jan issue. Check it out Something else I learned in the last issue was a great way to build a wood stove fire that has less smoke when you first start it, I think it was called the upside down fire starter. Also about two years ago I started reading a new publication called Hobby Farm Home, they also put out one called Hobby Farm. It just became available to subscribe to. I enjoy this magazine because it has all kinds of cooking and gardening, for instants they might feature home made cheeses, and using compost for your garden. I was really surprised to find some of the articles were written by people who live in Washington. So look it up at So last week we had decided to make the trip to the coast, but the Mt. pass were kept closed for about three days, so finally they opened and so on Friday we took the trip over. This was an opportunity to deliver those Christmas presents that were coming close to being Birthday presents. What a difference a day makes, it was free sailing all the way over, and the traffic wasn't bad at all. So Friday evening we spent visiting Ely, he looks good to us. Then Saturday evening we spent with Jens and Sam, that's always so fun to see how she's maturing and growing into an even nicer young lady. We went to Ivor's for dinner and well that is a whole different story I'll tell another day. Sunday I spent visiting my Dad. Dad and I went out to lunch at a pizza place called Boston Pizza, they have gourmet pizza that is so good. In between visiting I did some shopping and Lonny visited some of his friends, we actually broke down and got an artificial tree. We were happy to visit, but happier to get home, and to see our cat Jr. whom was so happy to see us. Happy Trails! Love Diana

Sunday, January 4, 2009

A great time was had on Roc Day!

I'm not even sure on how many Roc Days I've celebrated, I've been hand spinning for 22 yrs this coming April, so I guess it must be around 22 yrs. The day started out cold, as have most the days since Thanksgiving, but the sun was out and shinning this day. My friend Jan came by at ten to pick me up, and off we went to the Methow Valley spinners and Weavers 1st annual Roc Day celebration. So Jan and I got there early to set things up a little and get a table ready for our pot luck, and a table for spinning related things that we were to draw names for. This celebration was to start around 11am till 3 pm. Well the first person to show up was someone who doesn't belong to the guild, a new spinner. She was so excited to get started, and she had bought a used wheel, this would usually make a seasoned spinner shake their heads, because we know the problems you can have with a very used spinning wheel. Her name is Heidi, and she had bought a used Ashford spinning wheel, so Jan and I set in on getting the problems this wheel had fixed, so this future spinner could get started. So finally we got the darn thing spinning, and Heidi was so nervous to start, but with in a short amount of time she was showing a natural ability to spin. I forgot that feeling, while talking to Heidi, she had asked me question's about my beginnings in spinning, so this made me remember how I felt such excitement, as if I was floating above the floor. I needed to learn everything from the beginning, washing the wool, carding the wool, dyeing and spinning. Boy did thinking about it while I told Heidi my experience's, it took me back and reminded me of why I do this magical , totally mind blowing thing of starting something from scratch, that has been done for hundreds of years, and some people don't even know that we're still out here doing it and feeling the presents of the past with us, and all those before us who celebrated Roc day. So to my dear friends who are not spinners and are wonder what I'm talking about this Roc Day, well I'll tell you, when women and young girls had to spin and weave on top of all the other responsibilities , they would stop during the Holiday preparations. So when all that was over they would take a day to gather with their friends, and and spend a day getting back to the work of the home and also start spinning again. So that was a short version of the story, but the modern day spinner celebrates Roc Day the first Saturday after New Years, by gathering and having food together and just enjoying the common interest that we have and to have new enthusiastic spinners to be remind us why we even got started in this ancient craft.

So we had, I would say, a very successful Roc Day for our first annual, there was eleven of us and we had a great time, when it was time to leave I don't think anyone wanted to go.

It's been trying to snow here all day, but it did'nt accumulate very much, I think it was just to cold, but the morning of Roc Day I got up a little early and the sun rise was incredible, so I hope you can enjoy this picture I had the pleasure of taking. L. Diana