Monday, September 19, 2016

Catching up...












I guess this post could alternatively been called "in which I share photos of my mugs." ;) Not at all intended, I didn't even realize it until I uploaded my photos here. As summer fades into fall, I find myself with a mug in hand throughout the day. My Steelers mug came out of hibernation when football season began; the others are in use most days. Funny how despite having a cupboard full of mugs, I have my favorites. Do you?

Summer is slipping away. We enjoyed a warm, sunny week in the 80s and then, just like that, the clouds rolled in bringing rain and chilly, woodstove temperatures. I think I'm finally ready for it. Lessons are underway, and with Daniel graduated, I'm down to one student. Daniel is taking piano this year along with an online rhetoric course and high school chemistry which his schedule didn't allow for last year. AnnaLynn has a full schedule: piano, violin, ballet, algebra I, chemistry, US lit and history, and writing. Add to all that her new puppy, and the girl seriously has a full plate.

Me? I've moved into the realm of being more of a guidance counselor than a teacher, which is fine. I am leading our Gileskirk humanities co-op every other week, so I've still got my toe in the water, but the kids are really on their own with regard to their schooling. My two remaining arrows are rather close to being ready to launch, so I'm thankful for the busyness God's given me in helping Dan run our electrical contracting business as well as running my fledgling knit pattern business. Being a wife, mom, and Baba, volunteering at church, managing the home & homestead, and playing the role of Anna's driver two days each week rounds out my days. Thankful that I rarely am bored. :)

Did you notice that wee angelic face up there? Last week we welcomed our third grandchild into the world. Those of you who've followed me on IG know I'll be off to Scotland later this week to see Simon and to provide help for Jessica and Zack. We skyped on Saturday, and although I'm oh-so-thankful for modern technology, it's truly not the same. Sigh. I'm not ungrateful, just longing to hold and kiss him, Four more days.

Baby knits have been the main occupation of my needles: a pumpkin patch beanie, a pair of hosenmatz, and a chevron cherub wrap to name a few. Others are secret for now. Btw, my pumpkin patch beanie is on sale! Use coupon code "pumpkin" at checkout for 25% off when you purchase from my Ravelry shop now through Oct. 31.

In other news, my Steelers are 2 and 0 which is awesome! Fingers crossed for a good season. I'm thankful that through my NFL phone ap on Verizon that I'm able to watch every single game (unless it's on during church...). Go Steelers!!

Counting my blessings and giving thanks and praise to God from whom they all flow! Until October when I'm home from Edinburgh,

~Lisa

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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

hosenmatz...



Tuesday was nice to me...my copy of the new Taproot arrived...yay! And I found the perfect yarn to knit up a pair of Hosenmatz with! (just to clarify, this pattern is not in the latest Taproot...sorry for the confusion!) These wee pants are so, so cute, and I'm hoping I'll be able to finish a pair before I arrive in Scotland in a few weeks. Yes, you read that correctly. :)  Grandbaby number three is due in a week, and I'm looking forward to meeting him or her and spending some time with my Jessica who will be a first time mama. Please lift a prayer for her for a safe delivery.

I still haven't quite finished All the Light We Cannot See or The Girl on the Train, but All the Light is close, and I've decided to finish listening to The Girl on the Train on my long plane ride. My WIPs are many, and other than this one, they've all taken a back seat to my grandbaby knits, and I'm ok with that.

Yarn: Cascade Yarns Heritage Prints in the Forest colorway (#9824); 75% superwash merino wool/25% nylon.

Joining Ginny :)

~Lisa

Thanks for visiting Happy in Dole Valley! To join us on our journey, look to the upper right to follow or subscribe. :)

Monday, September 5, 2016

Weekend Eucharisteo...






My girls were here this weekend for three nights! Was the first time Linnea had been away from Mommy for an overnighter, but it went really well. She's so easy -- a good sleeper and sweet personality. :)  Charlotte is a non-stop talker -- always asking why this and why that. So curious! Love it!! The weather was rainy and cool, but Saturday was nice, so we ventured out for a long walk around the property and down the driveway to check the mail. The girls are always eager to see Bruce, our bunny, and the chicks. They were introduced to Birdie and giggled. So much giggling! I'm thankful Jeff & Christina are both readers and are instilling a love of books and stories into their girls. A common Charlotte request all weekend was, "Baba, will you read to me?" And Linnea parrots whatever Charlotte says...adorable. Aunt Anna was happy to oblige. :)

Saturday morning was early knitting and pattern formatting before the girls woke up. I'm woefully out of practice when it comes to day to day life with wee ones in the house -- my youngest is almost 16 now. Saturday evening I spent home alone with the girls while Dan was out a an end-of-the-summer lawn dance with Daniel and AnnaLynn. The girls and I enjoyed a quiet evening, and after baths and bedtime, I poured a glass of wine and spent my evening with my knitting accompanied by Amanda's latest podcast.

Sunday was church and a quiet afternoon at home before the kids suggested getting pizza in Battle Ground. The 30 minute drive was so worth it as we got to see this incredible gloriousness...a true treat since we'd have missed it if we'd been home; living in the foothills is great, don't get me wrong, but we don't get this kind of view of the sunset.



Weekending with Karen :)

~Lisa

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Saturday, September 3, 2016

Gluten Free/Grain Free Peanut Butter Cookies -- YUM!!



Earlier this year our naturopath wanted my AnnaLynn, baker extraordinaire, to go on a gluten free diet. Not because she's got an intolerance but rather to help with some troubles she's been having that I won't go into here. Needless to say, for this girl, my baker, the thought of no muffins, no toast, no cookies was almost more than she could bear. But it's been several months now, and she's seen improvement in the areas we were hoping for, so gluten free it is. I'm hoping that eventually we can introduce wheat again (and I'm looking into einkorn which I'll switch us all over to when and if the time comes), but I'm thankful that we're settling in and finding recipes that not only satisfy Anna's desire to bake, but also her taste buds. Honestly, these are so good that we all enjoy a few when she bakes them!

Gluten Free/Grain Free Peanut Butter Cookies
makes about 1.5 dozen small cookies

1 c. creamy peanut butter (we use homemade)
3/4 c. granulated sugar (we use organic, minimally processed sugar)
1/4 c. packed brown sugar (or substitute rapadura)
1 egg
1 t. baking soda
1 t. real vanilla
1/4 t. sea salt

Pre-heat oven to 350F & line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Beat together the the peanut butter and sugars on medium speed until fluffy (2-3 min.). Reduce speed to low and beat in remaining ingredients.

Using your hands, form balls of dough by rolling about a tablespoon of cookie dough between your palms -- work quickly as to not over warm the dough. Place balls onto pre-lined cookie sheets about 2 inches apart, then use a fork to make them look like peanut butter cookies by gently pressing, creating a crisscross pattern on each.

Bake for 10-12 minutes, and allow to cool several minutes before removing from cookie sheet. Transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool completely. These keep well for several days! May be doubled and frozen.

Enjoy!!

~Lisa

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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

blue and grey and moody...





My blue shawl is finally off the needles, bathed, and blocked. I LOVE the way it turned out and will be sending the patten off to test knitters later this week. Yay!! (If you're interested, I could use one or two more, just let me know in the comments.)  Palouse Yarn Company's Merino Fine is simply delicious, and the colorway, Blue Canyon, has me thinking of the Pacific and how we haven't been there yet this summer (an over site, I'm sure...needs to be remedied...but I digress). This is the skein I shared about here from when Dan and  I took Daniel to Idaho to check out the college he plans to attend in fall of 2017. When I bought it I didn't have a plan for it, but the colors drew me in and begged to be cast on. Don't you love it when that happens? Yarn purchased without a plan? The lesson here is that you never know what inspiration you'll find in a local yarn store, so make the time to visit when you're traveling. :)

A new project on my needles this week now that the blue is finished is a baby knit for my soon to be born grandbaby (#3); we don't yet know the gender, so it's Wallaby & Swan (KPs Cotlin) -- a grayish green and a nice, neutral creamy ivory. Baby is due in two weeks, and I'll be hand-delivering this made-with-love blanket on the 23rd when I land back in Edinburgh!!!! :)

The weather here in the SWWA foothills has turned decidedly pre-fall. I'm including a cloud photo --captured yesterday -- for no other reason than it expresses my mood as I type this up on Tuesday evening. Usually, I love the turn of the seasons and the coming of autumn, but for some reason I just can't figure out, I'm just not feeling it this year. Waking at 5 a.m. and it's still dark. In fact, it's still mostly dark at 6 a.m. now. Sigh.

My latest reads include All the Light we Cannot See (gorgeous blue cover, btw), The Girl on the Train (about halfway through via Audible), and Ann Voskamp's 1000 Gifts Devotional which I'm reading to count down to my 53rd b-day at the end of October. Trying desperately to finish the two novels as school is about to start (next week), and I've got a stack of American literature waiting for me...

Happy knitting and reading! Joining Ginny :)

~Lisa

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