Fruit roll-ups and more jerky

So the fruit roll-ups turned out so good! The strawberry ones are in front and the strawberry-blueberry ones are in the back:

So tasty! I also modified my jerky recipe again, with two different styles. I tried a siracha flavor last time, with a teriyaki base, but it just wasn’t right. So I went digging around my fridge and found some bulgogi sauce from an ill-conceived experiment several months ago. Turns out, it’s just perfect for jerky. So one batch was bulgogi siracha, and the other is my standard make-you-cry spicy (soy sauce base, brown sugar, liquid smoke, and a special blend of spectacularly hot spices). Yes, the fun with dehydration continues!!

Tour de Fleece 2015

Why hello, poor, sad, neglected blog. What have I been up to these last few months? Funny you should ask, I’ve been traveling the country, working 7 days a week, coming home every 4-6 weeks, and generally being far too busy to be an active member of society.

But all things must come to an end, and the project I was working on that allowed me to travel to a new awesome location every week did reach its completion, with nary any upcoming work in sight! Thus began yet another job search. I did indeed secure another job at the beginning of July (hooray!) but it was not to start until the end of the month. What to do between July 4th and July 26th, then, you ask?

Why of course, Tour de Fleece! The spinning “competition” that runs concurrent with the Tour de France just happened to start the day after I got my job offer and end the day before my first day. Well if that’s not meant to be, I don’t know what is. I joined a great number of teams *cough cough* 12 *cough*, made my plans, and then exceeded them! I made a goal to spin 15 braids, just under double what I did last year, but it felt feasible. I don’t have a job to go to right? Right:

CTA Collage

From left to right, they are in the order I spun them:

So that got me through stage 16, or July 20, but I still had a full week before my first day at work. What to do? Well I have this sweater’s worth of Nerd Girl Yarns Falkland (noticing a theme here?) in “Dinosaurs on a Spaceship,”, maybe I can at least get the singles done…

…five days later:

2015-07-25 12.52.02Yup, three ginormous skeins: 276 grams with 612 yards,  258 grams with 592 yards, and 145 grams with 339 yards. Plus a mini – 25 grams, 53 yards.

So that was a pretty productive tour! Here’s a lovely group shot:

2015-07-25 17.03.39And the totals:
Yards: 8343 yds
Spinzilla Yards (singles + plying): 24,553 yds
Grams: 2400g (2.4kg)
Ounces: 84.6575oz (5.29109 lb)
Braids: 21
Skeins: 18

Hot damn!

 

 

 

Adventures in dehydrating

Adventures in dehydrating

 

 

So a few weeks ago, Groupon had a Christmas in July that was much better than Amazon’s sorry attempt at Prime Day. I got a dehydrator, which has been something on my wishlist for a verra long time. Since then, I’ve made a ton of beef jerky, brussels sprouts chips, and dehydrated fruit. This weekend I decided to try my hand at making fruit roll-ups.

There was a special at the grocery store for buy-one-get-one free 16 oz strawberry containers and 18oz blueberry containers. Well, that’s some timing, I tell ya! I got two of each and set to work. Last week I made blueberry raisins, which were delicious (though they took 2 days to dry) so I have some of those started today in addition to the fruit leather. I went ahead and cut up 2 pounds of strawberries, separating out the ones that look like they’d hold on a few days from the ones that you invariably get every time you buy a pound of strawberries that look like they might turn to mush if you look at them sideways. These mushy ones are my winners – they’re going straight into the blender. DH loves to eat fresh strawberries, so I put the others aside – for now, I may end up co-opting them later for further adventures.

First I pureed the strawberries just to get an idea of what kind of consistency I would get. I’m kinda wingin this whole thing, you know. I added 2 cups of unsweetened applesauce as filler, because it’s not as sugary as fruit juice, and it’ll make the fruit leather thicker. Juice was recommended by the book that came with my dehydrator, but I wanted it to be a couple of centimeters thick, not actual fruit roll-up thickness. Maybe I’ll try the juice next time, but I digress.

fruit rollups

So the mix goes in the tray, and as I only have 3 trays, I decided to fill 2 with the straight strawberry mixture, and then mix in the remaining blueberries from my blueberry raisin experiment. So I have a tray of mixed berry as well, and the remaining blueberry-strawberry mixture is in the freezer becoming sorbet (after a fashion). So, stay tuned for the results!

 

Happy New Year!

Welcome to 2015! So every new year, we as humans take some time to set goals for bettering ourselves during the next year, and Miss Anthropy is no exception. I recently started a new job that has me traveling all the time, so with that new beginning, my plans for the upcoming year have evolved a bit. Traveling is both a boon and a burden, especially when it comes to crafting. Knitting is pretty portable, but spinning has become a challenge and weaving has pretty much ceased altogether. So with these things in mind, I present the following goals:

  1. Knit 4 sweaters in 2015. I have many more sweater quantities in my stash than this, but I think if I can do four in a year, I’ll be sitting pretty well. I also have plans to buy more SQs, but we won’t talk about that quite yet.
  2. Knit more from stash, without over-enhancing. Look, I’m addicted to yarn. It’s pretty, it’s squooshy, it comes in so many colors and fandoms…but this year, as every year, I need to pare down my buying, and choose projects from skeins I already have. I could probably stop buying today and still have enough yarn to knit as much as I want for the rest of my life. I know that goal is not remotely going to happen, but seriously, I’m gonna die with a huge stash.
  3. Design at least 2 more shawls. Maybe design some socks. I love designing, but it’s time consuming and can be kinda tedious sometimes. Especially when you think you’ve math’d something correctly but the execution just won’t line up right. I think 2 shawls is a good goal, that’s how many I did in 2014, and I’d like to give sock designing a shot. Smaller canvas, but oh so many possibilities! Plus I need more socks (:
  4. Save up for a Hansen miniSpinner with a WooLee Winder and take it on the road with me. This will help with the spinning issue. In the meantime, I did buy a secondhand Vespera e-spinner from Heavenly Handspinning, which uses the same bobbins as my Navitas wheel. So I will be able to spin on the road fairly easily, but I really want that miniSpinner. And the Akerworks bobbins that fit it (:
  5. Prepare for Christmas shopping, not Christmas knitting. I knit everyone’s presents this year. And by that I mean, I’m still knitting everyone’s presents. Which means for the last 2 months and for the foreseeable future, I am not knitting anything I want to, but focusing entirely on what other people want. Yeah, this does not a happy crafter make. So next year, everyone’s getting store-bought presents.
  6. Make gauge swatches from leftovers. This is especially true with leftovers that I think I might want to make sweaters out of down the line. I need swatches for CustomFit, baby!
  7. Donate yucky yarn. We all start with acrylic yarn. It’s what’s cheap, widely available, and hard wearing. And when you are a yarn hoarder like me, you end up with A LOT of it. So I need to find a local place that will take the yarn, be it for kids crafts or a senior center knitting group. But I need it gone.
  8. Work on filling out the heavier end of the yarn spectrum. I buy pretty much only fingering weight and lace weight, but I’ve recently been considering the benefits of heavier weight yarns. Especially in light of the recent Christmas present debacle.

So that’s what I’m going to work on this year. In addition to trying to blog and podcast more regularly. What are your goals for 2015?

 

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Spinzilla!

So knitting has been a little lax lately, because from October 6-12, The National NeedleArts Association hosted Spinzilla! A contest to spin as many yards as possible in one week – National Spinning and Weaving week, to be exact. I played on Team KnitGirllls, which is one of my favorite podcasts, and our team spun over 96 miles! Spinzilla measures yardage not only for the singles you spin, but also for how much you ply. So when you spin 2 singles and ply them together, you count your yardage 3 times. With that math, I spun 12,485 yards myself! I had 5 skeins at the end of the week, and my handspun stash just keeps on growing. Since I was going for maximum yardage, most of what I spun during this week was lace-weight, but I expect that my two polwarth skeins and probably my falkland spin will poof up to be around light fingering-fingering weight once I soak and set them. The polwarth poof! So here are the final skeins for your viewing pleasure :)

 

Northwest Forest

Squoosh Polwarth – 8 oz, 1800 yards

Stitch this, mate

Nerd Girl Yarns Polwarth, 4oz, 410 yards

Happy Accidents

Spunky Eclectic BFL, 4 oz, 639 yds

Tweedy Harvest

Cupcake Fiber Co. Falkland, 6 oz, 1040 yards

Burdened with Glorious Purpose

Mad Color Fiber Arts Mixed Merino/Silk, 4oz, 648 yards

 

I also recently finished knitting on my SFC sweater, so once I weave in all the ends and wash and block it, I’ll post some photos!

Welcome to Thunderdome

The Red Tape

Welcome to the inaugural Miss Anthropy Knits blog post, also known as practice for my new podcast that’ll be starting around Halloween-ish 2014 (to correspond with the release of an upcoming shawl design!)

So I’ll be testing out different formats and segments that I’ll eventually port over to the podcast, and any feedback you have is greatly appreciated (: So without further ado…

Faits Accomplis

Things I’ve finished! I’ve been pimping photos all around the internet of my newly finished shawl that I designed, so I guess I should do so here as well:

2014-09-21 14.18.54

It doesn’t have a name yet, but it’s designed specifically for those highly variegated yarns that are so gorgeous in the skein but so hard to find the right project for. I used 716knit yarns’ 716twist in the colorway Slayerfest and US6 needles. I love the way the lace breaks up the variegation, and there is a nice braided effect in the border rows. Topped off with a simple spiky edging, it’s a great use for those skeins not destined to become vanilla socks. Also, you can use any weight of yarn! It’s currently in testing and will be released around Halloween (yup, this is the above mentioned design).

Next up, my first project for the Oh!Loops Harry Potter KAL – A Firebolt for the Quidditch challenge. I’m playing for the Ravenclaw house, so I decided to use a blue-gray yarn to rep my house! This yarn is Ewereka Yarns Perpedes in Hedwig’s Flight. So that means my shawl is Hedwig on a Firebolt, which gives me all the feels. Anywho, here it is:

Hedwig on a Firebolt

Lastly for this week, is a test knit I just completed for Mia Rinde (second Mia shawl this week!) It’s called Two Twigs, and I used Tosh Merino Light in Leaf and US 6 needles. Apparently those are my go-to needles for fingering weight shawls.  Unbelievably, this was my first time ever using TML, and it was heavenly! It was a lot of fun making the nupps with this yarn and the pattern was very quick and easy for something so beautiful!

Two Twigs

I’ll link to the pattern when it’s released so you can make your own (:

UFOs (Unfinished Objects or works in progress)

I’m currently working on a huge number of projects, primarily because my wedding was about a month ago and I knit and crocheted a bajillion flowers for the bouquets and as you might imagine there was something of a frenzy in the last few months of nothing but wedding knitting. So as soon as that obligation was over, I went a little cast-on crazy. Here are my current unfinished objects:

Lovebird Sweater

So this is actually a bit further along than pictured here – I’m almost to the end of the first sleeve – but I haven’t taken another picture recently. The yarn is Sunrise Fiber Co. Frolic Sport in Lovebird (the variegated color) and a custom dark teal that Wren from SFC to match the Lovebird color and I’m using US 8 needles. I’ve kinda lost my mojo on this sweater, but it’s not hibernating yet. I had to tear out the sleeve three times so it’s in timeout.

Next up is the second sample of my new shawl design for the variegated yarns. This time I used Nerd Girl Yarn’s Swagger in Bangarang! from the September Random Fandom club and again, US6 needles.
The colors are like the food fight scene, and they look freaking awesome in the pattern.
I also have a Great Divide shawl on the needles, finally, after having it in my queue for a million years. It’s SFC again, Vintage DK base in Farmers Market (variegated) and Fern (semisolid), and US9 needles.
I also thought I’d give loom knitting a shot, so I busted out my KB Sock Loom and yet another skein of SFC (Classic Sock this time) in Sorbet. I’m not a huge fan of loom knitting, as it turns out, but I did put these socks in Detention for the HP KAL, so maybe I’ll finish them before the end of the year. I do really need some new socks.
Finally, my last knitting project is a secret test, but I can show you these adorable yarn cakes! It’s a gradient set from Sunrise Fiber Co. on Classic Sock, in the colorway Escape.
Baby yarn cakes!
I have a spinning project going right now too, but no pics of my bobbin. I think we’ve had quite enough for today anyway.

IRL (in real life)

So I mentioned earlier that I recently got married. My wedding was at the end of August, and it was a frickin blast! I apologize to all of you who have seen these photos a million times, but I had a wonderful time and want to share:

Bride's bouquet

Okay, yes there are a million more, but I’m getting really photo heavy here, and I really wanted to share the crafting I did. I made the shawls, socks, and flowers!

Since the wedding, I’ve been job hunting – which is dead depressing, by the way – but I do have an interview on Wednesday. Wish me luck!

So that’s pretty much my entire life for the last couple weeks, thanks for caring!

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