Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Yesterday I started Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred dvd. It... pretty much kicked my butt. But I'm really impressed how much workout she packs into a small amount of time. Her workout is based on a 3-2-1 system; 3 minutes of strength, 2 minutes of cardio, 1 minute of abs. She doesn't scream or yell at you, which is a plus for me :)

The reason for starting the workout dvd is two fold- I've been wanting to get back in shape for a while, but working out outside in WNY isn't usually pleasant, even with the nice weather we've been having. Also, we started a Biggest Loser competition at work, and I want to win! I'm not comfortable posting my starting weight, but I will let you know percentages :) Maybe by the end (if it goes well) I post some numbers.

So, all this to say, watch for random fitness reports from me :)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Thank Goodness for Leap Day

I get one extra day to knit!

I'm furiously working on items that I want to have finished by the end of the month. Today during my lunch break I finally found time to photograph my current works in progress, so here they are!

First up, my shawl design:
This hasn't gotten a ton of love lately. I knew I wasn't going to finish it by the end of the month, and my goal is to have the pattern released in March, so I'm aiming for it to be finished then. The yarn is Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool in the Walnut colorway. It was my first time using this yarn and I'm fairly happy with it. It can be a bit rough, but I'm betting after a good soak and block it will soften way up :)

Next is my Lack Baktus:

This isn't the greatest photo (and its a few days old) but you get the idea. I have just started the decreases, so I'm just over halfway finished. The yarn is Knit Picks Stroll Hand Painted in the Make Believe colorway. I loved the colors and knew I would need something simple to show them off :)

Now the big one! The first of two color work stockings. 
This one will be mine I think, since the argyle section is a little tight. You can see the actual knitting is finished, and that I have started the duplicate stitching. The yarn is Knit Picks Wool of the Andes in the Hollyberry, Jalapeno, and White colorways. This is my OWL and NEEDS to be done by the end of the month! I think with some dedication to that duplicate stitch I'll make it. Time to start the knitting for the second right away!

This next item has been sitting in this state for a few weeks now. This is the Baby Bunny that I made for my cousins son, who was born a few weeks ago now. I knew I wouldn't see him for a week or so after he was born, and the hubs has been sick, but now I really need to finish it so I can deliver it and meet the little guy!
The yarn is Jo-Ann Sensations Dolcetto in the Lime colorway, which is now discontinued. It is SO soft and perfect for this project!

Last, but most definitely not least, is my brother's teaching vest.
This thing has taken me forever. I lost my pattern (with all my crucial notes) which delayed this for several weeks. All that is left is to sew up the side seams and knit ribbing around the arm holes. My brother has been not-so-patiently waiting for this vest! I'd like to get it to him while he can still wear it in the cooler weather. The yarn is Knit Picks Comfy Worsted

As you can see, I have my work cut out for me! We'll see just how much I get done by the end of the day on Wednesday.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Mushrooms Abound!

You may notice a trend here... the last two food post I have done both involve mushrooms. Mr. Handcraftedsnippets LOVES mushrooms, which is a big deal because he wont eat most fruits and vegetables. Tonight's meal: Mushrooms lasagna and roasted asparagus.

I started by mixing the part skim ricotta with shredded mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses. I also threw in some seasonings and stirred it up. Mushrooms got sliced, and I had my no-biol lasagna noodles at the ready (the recipe called for whole wheat, but I couldn't find them, so I just went with regular.)

From there you build your lasagna, layering noodles, cheese mixture, and mushrooms. I did an extra layer of mushrooms than the recipe called for, and I still had leftovers. You'll see them in a minute :)

I did a final sprinkling of the shredded cheeses and it was ready to bake. My lasagna was huge, so I made sure to spray the foil before I put it on top, and I was glad I did. All of my top cheese layer would have come off! It bakes for half an hour at 350, then for 15 minutes at 425, then another 15 with the foil off. Perfection!

Our side was roasted asparagus, and I threw the extra sliced mushrooms on the pan as well. They were delicious. The hubs has requested that we roast mushrooms every time we eat them now. I highly recommend it! The portions are plenty big- I couldn't even finish mine.The hubs, however, had the rest of mine, and two of his own. What can I say? He likes mushrooms :)

Saturday, February 11, 2012


I feel like I'm in a bit of a stalemate as far as crafting goes. I mentioned two posts down about the fiber I'm currently spinning. I had originally split it into thirds, and the first third spun up beautifully. Since its my first real fiber to work with I did still drop the spindle a few times when my fiber broke, but all in all it was awesome to work with. I got it wound off and started the second third. It could not have been a more different experience! I don't know if its me, the fiber, the spindle, or what, but I'm having a really hard time spinning the fiber. First I thought I was just tired the first night I was working on it, so I packed it up. The second time I wondered if maybe it made a difference which end of the fiber I worked with, so the next time it broke I tried starting from the other end. When that didn't help I thought maybe this chunk was too think, so I split it again. Nothing seems to be helping. I set it aside to work on some knitting projects and I think I'll try again tomorrow.

In other news, I finished my swap handmade items just in time for shipping next week. I don't want to say too much about it, but the box is just about complete. I may try to pick up one or two small things to throw in there. I feel bad cause its no very Harry Potter themed, and it is a Harry Potter themed swap, but we had a minor issue with the account/card we usually use to buy stuff online, and so a lot of the items got bought locally and I didn't find anything HP. Hopefully my partner likes it anyway!

I'm still plugging away at my shawl design. I'm doing the scarf version, and I'm really liking how it is knitting up. The yarn isn't the softest thing in the world, but I think after a good soak and blocking it will be fine. Other than that, I'm working away on my Order Mission scarf and my OWL stocking. The stocking is going to be my main focus for the rest of the weekend I had set it aside when I messed up part of the color work a few rows back, so I need to get that back on track. With any luck I'll have it finished by next weekend!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Fancy Schmancy

I don't mention it a ton on here, but I really enjoy cooking. Its just the hubs and I, so lots of times our meals end up being simple and small in quantity. I'm always on the lookout for meals that are healthy and can be made cheaply! However, every once in a while I like to splurge a little bit and make a nice meal for us. Last night was one of those occasions. The menu? Cracked pepper french bread rounds with mild brie cheese and Gouda with a creamy bisque style mushroom soup. Simple, elegant, and satisfying. (We did have oreos for dessert, but that's not really part of the elegant part!)

I started by sauteing a gourmet blend of mushrooms in a skillet with oil, cooking sherry, and a small amount of chopped onions (hubs doesn't really like onions, so I try to keep them to a minimum.) I also seasoned with the essentials :)

The mushrooms were an actual prepackaged "gourmet blend" from Wegmans, my favorite grocery store. It had Bella, oyster, and a few other types I didn't immediately recognize.

After those got all soft and yummy I added the soup. I'm not a huge soup fan, so I haven't made a lot of it, but I decided to try this soup from Wegmans. Even though the package just said to heat it up, I obviously bumped up the flavor by added the sauteed mushroom chunks and onion.  The soup had a nice flavor, very mushroom-y without being stale or overly salty like other prepared soups we have tried.

Wegmans also has an awesome cheese shop. Like I mentioned above, I chose a nice mild brie and a gouda for our meal last night, but they probably have hundreds to chose from. 

Yeah, I ate some of the Gouda while cooking. I was hungry! We were so hungry, in fact, that I didn't get a photo of the yummy bread rounds (seriously. I even ate one without cheese, they were that good) or one of our finished plates. I think the winner of the night was the brie cheese- hubs thought it was fantastic, and even I, who has a love-hate relationship with brie cheese, thought it was pretty darn good. A culinary win for me!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Not much of anything

The title sums up what this post is going to contain. Its been a busy week or so- I'm in the middle of a new design, our appliances in the house seem to be ganging up on us, my knitting plans seem to be larger than the time I have for them, and I just finished grades for the January class (HPKCHC). If you look over there ---> you'll see a list of what all is on my needles. That's about all that will get accomplished this month, minus a small swap project and some spinning. I'm really glad I bought some fiber to play with! Here's what I'm currently working on:

The lighting makes it look more blue than it is- in reality its more green than teal-y blue. I'm really enjoying how it is working up!

This weekend I'm hoping to put a dent in my housework, knitting, and spinning all while catching up on podcasts and watching my new Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone Ultimate Edition.

As you can see its not terribly expensive and its supposed to have lots of extras for Potter fans like me :)