Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Friday, May 6, 2011


Although little G is not yet eating solid food, she has allergies to some of the things that I eat - mainly dairy and soy products. So I have had to radically alter my eating and cooking habits to accommodate her allergies. I have been having fun, though, meeting the challenge of my dietary restrictions. It is dessert, in particular, that I miss. So I have come up with a couple of recipes for dairy free desserts, carrot cake, chocolate chip cookies and chocolate cake that use fats like coconut oil and olive oil instead of butter. In fact, I prefer my coconut oil chocolate chip cookies to the ones made with butter. One of my family's good friends and neighbors is diabetic and she really has to watch her sugar intake. So when she comes over, I don't like to serve her the sugary treats that I usually make. Instead, I came up with an assemble-your-own dessert that can accommodate several different dietary restrictions. Last night, I put a number of different dishes on the table after dinner:
a plate of crepes made with almond milk rather than dairy milk
a bowl of whipped cream (I had a hard time not licking the beater when I made it)
a jug of strawberry syrup
and a big bowl of fresh strawberries
We each assembled our own crepes. I had mine with strawberries and strawberry syrup. My neighbor had hers with strawberries and whipped cream. Her husband had his with everything. I imagine if we had a gluten-free guest, she could have had strawberries and cream without the crepes, or I could have modified my crepe recipe with gluten-free flour. If I had a guest with a strawberry allergy, I could simply add another type of fruit, or nutella to the table.
I wonder if there's a way to make vegan crepes?

Thursday, May 5, 2011

The sweater little G is wearing was knitted for her by her godmother. At storytime today she got many compliments on it. I love its simple design, its stretchiness, and it washes beautifully, too.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

baby bootie fail

One of little G's outfits was accidentally felted when it went through the wash. So I tried making some baby booties from one of Martha Stewart's felt bootie patterns. First mistake: I sewed them on my sewing machine. Granted, I'm not so great at sewing stretch fabrics, but this turned out pretty bad. Next time, for such a little project, it will be worth doing some hand sewing. The felted knit stretched weirdly with the stitching, creating a funny shape - they almost look like booties for duck feet. But, I figured, if these would stay on her feet due to the ankle straps, it was worth shouldering ahead with the project. So I embellished them with some scrap yarn (using blanket stitch, whipstitch, and some lazy daisys), and put some little buttons on the straps.
And after all that work, and some intense patience required to fasten buttons on kicking little ankles, little G had a session of baby rage, and they immediately came off her feet. Strange how every time I try to put shoes on her, she has a fit of baby rage and the shoes come off.
In any case, the total cost of the project was zero dollars, thankfully.
I do like how the lazy daisys turned out. I am excited to use that stitch on another project.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Safe sleeping

Because infants are not supposed to sleep with blankets or pillows (to avoid suffocation), I made little G this sleeper thing. The fuzzy fleece was a remnant I got for about five dollars. I cut out two big rectangles, one for the front, and one for the back. In the front rectangle, I cut it in half, lengthwise, and inserted a zipper (about $1.50). Then I made the applique lion by cutting out the little lion from fabric that I already had and simply zig-zagging it on. I chose the lion because Mr. Lion there is her favorite toy. I also made a little tab for a snap at the top of the zipper to protect her neck from the zipper pull. It's a sew-on snap so I didn't have to use the snap setter (those things are expensive!). I sewed the front and back together along the shoulders, leaving room for the neck hole. I finished the neck with some pink bias tape that I already had. Then I sewed the font and back together along the sides and bottom, leaving room for the hand holes. I finished the hand holes by simply folding the fabric under and zig-zagging a satin stitch. I don't know if you can see the satin stitch in this photo, but it's better if you don't because this satin stitch is not the best ever. In any case, little G is sleeping in it right now in her crib.
Total cost of this sleeper: about $6.50

Monday, April 25, 2011

I knitted this sweater for little G. One thing I learned about picking up stitches: it's easier to do with a really little knitting needle. I knitted the body of this sweater on size 8 needles, and the borders on size 7's. But I picked up the stitches on the body to knit the border with a size 2 needle. (My mom gave me my Great-grandmother's set of needles - there are all sizes in a nice little zippered case). Can you see the little bear button closure? I love that little thing. Of course little G is cuter than the button.
This was a bit more expensive than I would normally pay for a baby sweater. I purchased the kit for about $15.00. It included enough yarn for the sweater, the pattern, and the buttons. But I had a great time making the sweater, and it's a perfect warm soft snuggly sweater.

P.S. This sweater turned out much better than the last sweater I tried to knit for her, which was a hot mess of pink boucle (swiped from my mom's yarn stash). Though it was free, I'm trying to keep it hidden in the back of a drawer somewhere - I can't even bring myself to give it away. It's that bad.