Screw Needlepoint

Ok, so I think I took the wrong approach with needlepoint. I thought it would be beneficial for me to try every single type of needlepoint stitch on a practice swatch while also creating a visual library of my options. That became… what would I call it…overwhelming! And did not fit with my irrational need to be constantly productive (creating the swatch with all types of stitches was taking far to long). That being said, I did find a great site with a ton of picture demonstrations of stitches and may come back at a future date. In the mean time, I’ve started crocheting. This is far more satisfying. It goes so fast. Way faster than knitting and much easier, which are two reasons why knitting never stuck with me either. That make is sounds like I’m quick to quit on things. Er, I guess that’s true, but only because there are so many other things I want to try, that if something doesn’t resonate with me, I’m not going to force it and will move on to the next. That happens to be crocheting at the moment. I taught myself over Thanksgiving weekend. It took me three days to understand that when the websites wrote “yo” they weren’t trying to be ironic, but were referring to the phrase “yarn over”. By the following week I completed my first piece; an oatmeal colored wool cowl. Even with all the fans and details, the concept of creation was easy and quick. I’ve moved on to a star-shaped baby blanket for my good friend, Aynsley, who just gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. With two more friends who are pregnant, everyone gets baby blankets this year!

Over the holidays I also did a ton of baking. The first year of owning a house has left me short on funds so everyone received baked goods for gifts this year. Holiday cookies were, of course, essential and I baked pumpkin molasses cookies and chocolate dipped peppermint biscotti. But since everyone and their grandmother bakes cookies for the holidays (then brings them to the office to make other people fat) I also decided to make granola and spiced chick peas for the health conscious. And, of course, let’s not forget the pooches out there. All my dog owner friends also got peanut butter dog treats. Over achiever much? Yeah, that won’t happen again next year. So much work. I was in my kitchen all weekend and so tired by the end of the day that all I wanted to do was go to bed. Next year everyone get’s the same thing. But in all, I think they were a success, especially the cookies. Which is probably why that’s the item everyone makes. Who doesn’t love the person who brought cookies into the office?

Here are links to the recipes I just listed:

Chocolate Dipped Peppermint Biscotti (I used regular chocolate when they asked for white)
http://traceysculinaryadventures.blogspot.com/2011/12/candy-cane-biscotti.html

Spiced Chickpeas
http://willowbirdbaking.com/2010/09/02/snack-attack-2-chili-lime-roasted-chickpeas/

Pumpkin Ginger Cookies
http://www.ahealthypassion.com/2011/10/23/pumpkin-ginger-cookies/

Pistachio and Cranberry Granola
http://www.sweettreatsmore.com/2011/12/holiday-granola.html

Peanut Butter Dog Treats
http://acozykitchen.com/homemade-dog-treats/

Chocolate Dipped Peppermint Biscotti

Spiced Chickpeas

Pistachio and Cranberry Granola

Jolie snooping Around



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