Sunday, January 31, 2010

A finished pair of socks

I am happy to report that I finally finished something in 2010. Yes, ladies and... ladies I guess, this is my first FO of the year, at last:


Pattern: January 2010 Mystery Socks, by Debbie O'Neill
Size: M
Needles: 2.25 mm DPNs (Knit Picks Harmony, how I love thee!)
Notes: Mystery patterns are fun! I think I should have knit the small size though, they're a little big. Also, I wasn't able to photograph the pattern well (I don't (yet!) have a macro lense for my camera). Click on the pattern link to see better version. Oh and the pattern could be knit with or without beads. I wasn't sure I'd want to wear socks with beads so I made mine beadless. But the beaded one are very very beautiful (again, check out the pattern page).

Next: Finish the Nancy Bush socks before the Ravelympics!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Food Friday

I should really be getting ready for work, but I couldn't leave home before writing my Food Friday post!

This week has been a little weird. I've been sick with a bad cold and my boss asked me to work two evenings (Tue + Wed) to cover for a coworker who was in a hospital. With my schedule out of whack and my energy around zero, I just didn't feel like cooking much.

Meatless Monday

I actually cheated on Monday without even meaning too. I was really sick and stayed home from work. When lunch came, all I wanted was some chicken noodle soup and I ate some without even thinking that it was Meatless Monday! I made vegetarian pizza again for dinner.

I made up for it on Tuesday and made sure I had a vegetarian lunch.


I made salad, with mixed greens, red bell peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, black olives, feta cheese and lentils. It was yummy! I even made the same thing for lunch on Thursday!

Slowcooker, new recipes, cookbook

Nothing new on these fronts this week. Hopefully I'll make up for it next week!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Two forwards and one goalie

After having recently met my blogger friend Tara, I had the chance, yesterday, to meet another knitting friend I hadn't met before. Brigitte, who doesn't blog enough, is my friend from the Go Habs Go group on Ravelry. She's also the owner/dyer of a wonderful Etsy shop named Les TricotLores. She sells beautiful yarn, all with hockey-related names (mostly Habs players name), and all the profits go to the Montreal Canadiens Children's Foundation.

We met yesterday at the Second Cup for coffee. Much to my delight (and ok, because I had asked her to), she had brought the boys:


Now, I know I'm on a sock yarn diet. But I've never NOT cheated on a diet before. And she has a yarn named after my favourite player, so what's a girl to do.

Meet Tomas Plekanec:


Now with food diets, when I cheat, I don't eat just one piece of chocolate (which explains why I can't lose weight). I'll eat the whole candy bar and then some. Soooooo.... I also brought these boys home with me:


Brian Gionta


Jaroslav Halak

It shall be noted that on the day that I bought Habs yarn, the team managed a fantastic win, 6-0, against the Rangers. Coincidence? I don't think so.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Food Friday (now with pictures!)

It's Friday! Yay! AND, I'm adding something new to my food posts: PICTURES! Now, I'm no food photographer. If you want pretty yummy pics, check out Smitten Kitchen, Coconut & Lime, Confections of a Foodie Bride or some of the other beautiful food blogs out there!

Oh and I can't promise there'll be pics every week, but I'll try! Now let's look at them resolutions!

Meatless Monday

I had a lot of ideas for lunch, but when I went to the grocery store on Sunday, I couldn't find some of the ingredients I needed. So I ended up with a frozen dinner from Le Commensal. Funny, I used to love them a few years back, but I really didn't enjoy it this time. Oh well.

Dinner was easy, I made vegetarian pizza!


The crust is flatbread that I got at the grocery store. I used mock pepperoni and veggies (I remember onions, lots of broccoli and red and yellow peppers). I froze the leftover vegetarian pepperoni, but I will most likely make another pizza next Monday. It was yummy and I love pizza.


I made pork that was cooked in cider. There were lots of veggies in there, as well as apples, thyme and bay leaves.


Honestly? It wasn't that good. I mean it was ok. The pork was tender and I like all the veggies. And I always like using fruits in recipe. But it lacked some flavour. Chris suggested we add more spices next time we make it, but I don't think there will be a next time.

Trying new recipes

The pork, above, was a new recipe!

New recipes made this year: 5

Cooking from my cookbooks

Again, the pork mentionned above was from a little cookbook I have, called "Je cuisine... plats mijotés".

Thursday, January 21, 2010

I ♥ socks

I love socks. I don't think that comes as a surprise to anyone who reads my blog. I always feel that I should really try and knit something else (and I do. sometimes.), but whenever I go through a little while without having knit a sock, I feel like a smoker without her nicotine.

I like the small needles and the tiny stitches. And there are so many nice sock patterns out there. My advent sock pattern calendar included only a small part of my sock queue.

When the "groups" feature was created on Ravelry, it didn't take long for me to join the Sock Knitters Anonymous group, but it took me a while to get involved in the challenges there. Last September, I joined my first Sockdown! challenge and I've been hooked ever since. I had to skip the December challenge because of Christmas knitting obligations, but other than that, I've enjoyed every month.

And this month, I'm knitting two pairs (we actually have until the end of the following month to finish, so that's two months for each challenge if you cast on at the beginning of the month). Since I'm a slow knitter, it means that those socks are all I've done this month. And they're still far from being finished. But since there hasn't been much knitting pics posted on here lately, I figured I'd share my in-progress pics:


The one on the right is the January mystery sock (Technique is texture! There was also a bead option but I didn't have them so I didn't use them). You see only one of the socks, but I'm knitting both at the same time. I'm currently waiting for the last clue (tomorrow!) to finish them. Unfortunately, I didn't choose the best yarn for it so the pattern doesn't show that much. Oh well.

The sock on the left is a Nancy Bush (designer of the month) pattern (Rib and Cable socks from IK Fall 2005). I looooove it. But I'm only knitting one sock at a time so I'm far from finished.

I had more to write (re: Ravelympics), but I gotta go to work. Toodles!

Friday, January 15, 2010

My cart for Haiti

I wanted to make this post separate from Food friday because it's important.

I don't think I need to tell anyone about the terrible tragedy that struck Haiti this week. I know that when something like that happens, I tend to feel so powerless but I do want to help.

And the one thing everyone can do to help is to donate. I've spent the past few weeks thinking about the Ravelympics and I had a few projects in mind. Of course, anytime I think "new projects" I think new yarn so I had filled my Knitpicks cart with yarn and notions and I was thinking of ordering soon.

This morning and I emptied my cart and gave the money to Doctors without borders. I'll knit from my stash for the Ravelympics. I'm not saying you all have to do the same, but since a lot of people are thinking about helping right now, I figured I'd share my idea.

If you want to donate, here are a few sites you can go to (they're Canadian, but you can find the equivalent to most of them in your country):

Doctors without borders
CECI - Centre d'études et de coopération internationale
Red Cross

The Yarn Harlot's Knit-Signal

Food Friday

I almost forgot about Food Friday this morning. Here's how my week went:

Meatless Monday

Lunch: I had a pear-and-brie sandwich (homemade), with veggies on the side. It was yummy.

Dinner: I made spicy rice with beans and lentils. It was delicious, very filling and I had tons of leftovers for my week's lunches.


I didn't use it this week.

New recipes

The spicy rice I mentionned above was new, and it's definitely something I'll make again.

I also tried a new recipe for pork and veal meatballs and it also was a success. I halved the recipe and I still had so many meatballs I had to freeze a few.

New recipes so far this year: 4

Cooking from my cookbooks

Both of the new recipes I mentionned above were from my cookbooks. The meatballs are from Qu'est-ce qu'on mange? Vol. 3, a book from a series I've had forever. It's very traditionnal Quebec food, but I like it. The blue one (the one I've used this week) is my favourite.

The vegetarian spicy rice is from Rose Reisman Light Vegetarian Cooking (I have the French translation).

Tuesday, January 12, 2010



So apparently, this week is National de-lurking week! I'm a big big lurker myself so I'll have to make an effort and comment more! But if you're reading this: leave a comment! Anything!

Sunday, January 10, 2010


I'm trying to post more, can you tell? I'm not sure what I'm writing is all that interesting, but at least I'm trying.

The whole trying new food and new recipe thing is a lot of fun. I'm going to try to keep up with my food Friday posts because I think I'll enjoy writing them. But even though we're not Friday, I gotta tell you that I tried something brand new on Saturday: I ate kangaroo! We had a friend over and made chinese fondue. We had beef and chicken and we wanted to try something different and the grocery store had kangaroo so I figured, why not? It really tastes similar to beef, nothing special. But it was twice as expensive. I don't think I'll eat it again.

Also, speaking of food, I have a question for those of you who work outside of your home: What do you bring in your lunchbox?.

I like to eat leftovers the most, but I don't always have them. I get bored with sandwiches, but that's probably because I don't know how to make good ones, because most of the time when I don't pack my lunch, I go out and buy myself... a sandwich. :) But I need ideas! Especially vegetarian ideas for Mondays!

In knitting news, I've been knitting away on the January mystery socks. I started Clue #2 today and OMG! I never thought a textures socks (just knits and purls, really) could be so complicated! Well, not complicated per se, but the pattern is not easy to follow. There are many charts who don't have the same amount of rows. So two charts have 12 rows, one has 16 and two have 18. So when I'm done with the 12-row charts, I start row 1 again on them, but keep going on the 16-row one for two rows (and then I start that one on row 1) and on the 18-row ones. Follow me? I don't think I follow myself! But I managed to do two repeats of the 12-row charts so far and the pattern is very pretty so I'll keep going.

I also have another Sock In Progress: a Nancy Bush pattern named Rib and Cable. It's pretty and exactly the kind of socks I like to make. And they're BLUE!


Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Knitting in 2009 and 2010

I usually write a post about my knitting accomplishments at the end of each year. I didn't have time in December so I'll do it now.

In 2009, I knit 18 projects, mostly small ones. My favourites include the Cable net socks:

Cable Net socks (March)

The Waves of blue baby blanket:

Waves of Blue (March)

And my Froot Loop socks:

Froot Loop (August)

During the year, I knit 8 pairs of socks, 5 hats, 1 pair of mittens, 1 baby blanket, 1 shawl, 1 Christmas stocking and 1 neck warmer.

Still no sweater, but all in all, I'm pretty satisfied.

I've also made a few knitting resolutions for 2010.

1. I need to make a sweater. I suck at seaming and I have yet to make a sweater I was satisfied with, but I'm hopeful I'll succeed this year. We'll see.

2. As much as I love joining KALs, I need to choose my commitments carefully. KALs are fun but when I join too many of them, I get overwhelmed and that is usually when I start to lose my knitting mojo. That is why I decided to give up on the Hat Trick KAL this january. I'm already knitting two pairs of socks for another KAL, that's enough for this month. Next month will be the Knitting Olympics and I'll want to join that for sure.

3. I'm on a sort of sock yarn diet. My objective is to knit six pairs with the yarn I have now before I buy anything new. I know I can do that. I already have two pairs on the needles.

4. I'm also on a knitting book diet. I mentionned in my last post that I've been wanting some new books lately but that I hardly ever knit from the ones I own. I've made a list of some of my favourite books and I decided I'm not buying a new one until I've knit at least one pattern from each of them. Here's the list: Knitting Vintage Socks, Folk Socks, Sock Innovation and Latvian mittens as well as two booklets: Steppin' Out and Steppin' Out Two. Yes, I'm aware all but one are sock books. :) And I've already made two pairs out of Steppin' Out but I really should make more because it's a nice little booklet.

Now, here's a pic of a sock in progress I started on January 1st (yes, they're for a KAL). They're a mystery sock pattern so I have no idea what they'll look like.


Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Food Friday

Since many of my 2010 resolutions are food-related, I thought it would be fun to write weekly about how my week went, food-wise. Here's a little reminder of my food resolutions:

1. Meatless Mondays. 2. Master the Slowcooker. 3. Try two new recipes a month. 4. Cook from my cookbooks.

Meatless Monday

Lunch: I made a veggie soup on Saturday and brought the leftovers. It was a very simple soup made with whatever I could find. Hehe. I had onions, red peppers, green onions, garlic and carrots and I also added some frozen veggies I had. I sauteed everything, added vegetable broth and water, as well as a can of mixed beans. I can't remember which spices I added. Anyways, it was very good and filling.

Dinner: I made a spinach quiche, using a recipe for Swiss chard quiche that Tara shared a little while ago (replacing swiss chard with spinach of course). Oh and mine wasn't crustless. It tasted great and I had some leftovers for another lunch!

(I'm not mentionning breakfast because I very rarely eat meat for breakfast.)


I tried my brand new slowcooker on Sunday and made a veal stew with beer and cumin. I got the recipe here but it's in French. OMG it was good. The meat was wonderfully tender and it was a great success. I would definitely make it again!

New recipes

Both the quiche and the veal were new recipes so I've already reached my goal of two new recipes a month!


I haven't cooked from my cookbooks yet! Hopefully I will have by next week.

Book lust

I'm having a case of major book lust. I'm not sure why. Maybe it has to do with this startitis I have? I see beautiful FOs on Ravelry and on blogs and then I wantwantwantwantwant.

I want this:


And this:


Oh and this:


Problem is: I tend to get books, look at them, love their patterns and put them on a shelf... I have two Nancy Bush books (Folk socks + Knitting vintage socks), Cookie's book and a Latvian mittens book and I haven't knit anything from them yet.

But still. I wantwantwantwantwantwantwant!

Ps/ This "getting up with my alarm" resolution rocks! I have time to blog in the morning!

Saturday, January 02, 2010



Resolutions, schmesolutions. I make them every year because I like to have goals, but like most people, I always have a hard time sticking to them. I usually want to lose weight, stop eating sweets, go to the gym more often and well... I try... but often fail.

So this year, I'm trying to have fun with my resolutions. I'm making them food related and I want this year to be a year of discovery. Ooooh. Here they are:

1. Meatless Mondays. I'm not the kind of person who absolutely needs meat at every meal. I like veggie food, in fact, I was vegetarian for a year and a piscetarian (fish only) for three years. Funny thing though: I can't remember what I used to eat. I think I recall there was a lot of pasta and cheese. Anyways. I've already told Chris that our Mondays will be vegetarian (well he can eat whatever he wants but I'm not cooking meat). If you have a favourite vegetarian recipe (it can include cheese and/or eggs), feel free to share. No mushrooms though. Ew.

2. Try at least two new recipes a month. I want to eat new things and find new recipes that will become staples and that I'll want to make often. I figure two new recipes a month is reasonnable enough, but I can make more of course.

3. Cook from my cookbooks! I often check online for new recipes and I will definitely continue to do that (I get a lot of inspirations from other people's blogs), but I also have tons of cookbooks that I never use. I'm hoping to cook from each of them sometime this year!

4. Master the slow cooker! I got a brand new slow cooker for my birthday and I'm looking forward to using it. I already have something planned for tomorrow. I didn't like my old slow cooker and never used it. Hopefully I'll be using my new one a lot this year.

And my only non-food related and not-fun resolution for 2010: I want to get up when my alarm goes on and not press snooze a dozen times. That's going to be difficult but it needs to be done.

I wish you all a wonderful year. And if you have resolutions, please share them!