Friday, November 12, 2010

The socks fit!

Hello, Everyone.
It's a coolish night after a bright, sunny, absolutely gorgeous day that reminds me why I live in San Diego. I listening the the "Flight of the Bumblebee", I kid you not.  I use this player that cruises my hard drive and plays music Randomly.  You never know what it'll find. Now it's switched to Lena Horne singing "When I fall in Love", real... slow.

I feel great.  We dove up the coast to pick up Nathan, just a spectacular drive.   Had dinner at Tip Top.  Prime rib, our usual.  It was very good, but next time I'm going to get something more German, like bratwurst or smoked pork chops.   Went to a very nice Buddhist meeting afterward.  During the drive I finished a sewing bug, like this one for a friend who quilts.

Ron sent me a thank you.  His socks must have fit him...

That's a Balbriggan heel, BTW.  My new fav heel.  It's in Folk Socks.  It's Irish.  The turning is more like a rounded flap extension.  You decrease 4 EOR (one each side and two in the center).  The gusset runs all the way to the floor.  Lots of extra pick-up stitches and long gussets.   Makes a very generously fitting ankle area for those with substantial ankles.   Like Ron...  Remember we used to call them "blocky".

When I bought Folk Socks I ordered it on-line.  When it arrived, I was so excited, I pulled it out of the box and immediately sat down to read it.   My daughter came into the room and Said, "Mother, I'm so glad to see you reading a book.  All you do anymore is knit socks.  I think you are really obsessed with this sock knitting thing.  I think it's great you're reading again."  I held up the book so she could see the title and grinned.  She said, "Oh, no! A book about socks! You're hopeless!"   I laugh out loud every time I remember.

Lilo is throwing a quick hello over her shoulder to her adoring fans as she heads into the bedroom to sleep in my sweaters.  Must be cold outside. 


Thursday, November 11, 2010

halloween pix and the Llama

Hello, Everyone.

It's late Thursday night after a hot Santa Ana day.  This is so crazy, yesterday was raining.  San Diegans are not used to weather that switches around.  I had fun today, went swimming with Heather and then we had lunch at the Deli Lama in Hillcrest.  It was really good.

Heather got some pics back of the pumpkin carving contest in Encinitas.  Aren't these great?

I remember Tron! Dare ad I saw it when it came out the first time. 

Sometimes I feel like Wiley Coyote.  If I run real fast and don;t look down, can I run off the cliff and keep on going?

What the... is this?

Mother Theresa on a jack o' lantern??? Really scarey, right???

Lilo sez hello to her adoring subjects. 

I'm tired, bedtime.

Julie and Lilo

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Echos of the upper Midwest in San Diego

Hello, Everyone!

It's late on a cold, rainy, windy, Wednesday night in San Diego.  Dan sez it reminds him of Minnesota, but without the snow.  This is what passes for winter weather with us.  Last week we were roasting over 100, sheeesh.

I feel ok.  I had a minor stomach bug, but it seems to have passed.  Maybe it passed to Dan, he went to bed real early tonight, which I did last night, LOL.  I'm listening to piano jazz on  Go, Herbie!

About that discipline and restraint I was working on yesterday, well, I'm doing just fine.  I have not, repeat not, cast on for the new shawl yet.  Actually, I can't find where I put the yarn.  A week or so ago I was cleaning up the area around my "knitting rocker" and I put this lovely ice blue yarn away somewhere, ahem.  But where?  Oh, well, it is doing wonders for my discipline. I'll find it soon and then we'll see....

In honor of the rainy evening, I made a nice, Midwestern supper.   I made real-deal from scratch mashed potatoes with cheddar cheese stirred in. A green salad with tomatoes and my home made pickles. I make my own pickles so I can control the salt.  Then I made Polish sausage with sauerkraut.  Rice pudding for dessert with yogurt sauce.  All very Midwestern.

My sauerkraut is pretty special.  Dan Likes it even though he doesn't generally like sauerkraut.  Well, I am German, you know. He's Polish, so this fits us both.  Here's the recipe if you want to make it.

Julie's Polish Sausage with Sauerkraut.
serves 4, or 2 people twice in my house

1 pound Kielbasa (Polish Sausage), can be frozen!
3 slices of bacon (Yes, I know the word rashers, but it is too old fashioned for me)
1 large onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 small can sauerkraut.
1 tsp caraway seeds. You can use cumin if you do not stock caraway, they are actually very close.
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
no additional salt, as the bacon, sausage and sauerkraut all have lots
1 Tbsp brown sugar
3/4 cup potato water

Cut the Kielbasa into 4 pieces.  Cut the bacon into bits, and add to a large frying pan that has a lid over med-low heat.  Cook the bacon until crispy.  Just as it is done add the onions and stir it all up.  Add the garlic.  Add the sausage.  Open the kraut can and drain it really well. Taste it.  If it is real puckery sour, rinse it in a colander. Tonight's can was fine without rinsing.  But sometimes you get a real sour one.  Add the kraut to the onions. Add the caraway and pepper and mix well.  Add the sugar.  Stir it frequently as it browns.  Careful, once the sugar is in, it will burn easily.  When it is all yummy and caramelized, add the water.  If you forgot to save the potato water, it's ok to use regular.  Put the lid on and turn the heat down.  Keep it on low heat until the sausages are done, maybe 5-7 minutes. The water will disappear. Serve beside the mashed potatoes with mustard for the sausage.  I don't need to tell you how to make cheesy mashed potatoes do I?

Yum.  My fav.  But then I am German. We drank some nice cocktails made with run, mandarin soda and cherry syrup.  The sort of thing you might get on a cruise ship with a colorful umbrella in it. The drink of the day is...

Wasn't that crazy about the cruise ship with the engine fire off Cabo?  No AC, at first no water, no toilets.  4000 people and no working toilets, wow!  Only cold food like spam.  Not moving at all, dead in the water.  Then they got the aux power on, so cold water and toilets working again.  Great fun I'm sure.  And I really do love to cruise.  But not on that cruise.

I was eating a bowl of the rice pudding with a sauce of strawberry yogurt as I started this post.  Yum!  Lilo kept begging and I kept telling her it was nothing a kitty would like, but she would not believe me.  So I gave her some.  She looked at me like, are you nuts?  Ha, silly kitty.  She's staying inside tonight, spent most of the evening snoozing in my sweaters.  Great, now they'll all have white cat hair on them.

Sorry, I did not get a picture of my plate for you tonight.  I just ate it right up too fast to photograph!  So, I gave you the recipe instead...

Have a good night's sleep, rainy nights are good for that...
Julie and Lilo, yawning and heading for bed

Friday, November 5, 2010

olso walk shawl

Hello, Everyone,

It's a hot (90+) Santa Ana Friday afternoon in November in San Diego.  Listening to the "King", a little less conversation.  But just a few minutes ago the wind shifted, it was sweeping down the mountain passes from the desert like the hot, dry breath of Dante's inferno.  Now it is coming in cool, moist and soft from the ocean.  I'm hoping this is the beginning of the end of  the Santa Ana, as we San Diegans call these "devil winds".  Same idea as "Foehn" in Munich, Sirocco in North Africa, etc.  I feel fine, just a little sniffle from sleeping with the fan blowing on me, it was so brutal hot last night.  What's wacky is that this summer was cool, LOL.  Well, I have an iced coffee in one hand so I'm prepared.

I have not heard from my daughter so I guess I don't have my grandson this weekend.  It all depends on her work schedule.  Too bad, he and I had such fun last weekend.

Has anyone seen the new Interweave Knits?  I just got their email a few minutes ago, I have not actually bought the issue yet.  The Pattern for the pretty lace Oslo Walk Shawl has me all in a lather.  I'm going to have to make that.  Wow! it's pretty.  Let's see if I can get a pic off their email to show you. 

I have some ice blue variegated  lace weight merino yarn that would be just killer in this.  From that hand paint company in Alaska, I forget the name.   I have a pattern for a diamond lace off the Berocco library (it's the edging in a pattern for a little girl's skirt).  I think it is the same lace as the edge.  If I did up a little swatch, and then blocked it, I could sort out the gauge.  Then I could string some sparkly beads, cast on 65 inches of stitches with a knitted on cast on with a bead in each stitch, or maybe every other, knit I repeat of the lace, switch to a razor clam lace, short row the center to add an extra 7 inches in the middle, work 3 inches even in the razor clam and bind off with an I-cord bind off.  Would not be too far off from Oslo, maybe like a Stockholm version.  Hmmm.  We'll see.  Right now I have too many things I'm trying to finish by Christmas.   Must be disciplined!!!

I'll let you know how that discipline thing goes.

Lilo is somewhere hiding from the heat.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Hi, Everyone,

It's a lovely clear, sunny Tuesday afternoon in San Diego.  I feel fine.  I'm listening to jazzy Christmas music. Ha!

Don't forget to vote.

Here are some Halloween pics from Heather...

and Ron...

Looks like they had fun!

See ya,

Monday, November 1, 2010

Heather's birthday socks

Hello, Everyone,

It's a nice, warm Monday evening after a warm, bright, clear Indian summer day in October in San Diego.   I feel great.  I'm listening to Mozart.

Heather sent me a pic of the socks I gave her for her birthday.  Thought you might like to see them.  I got them out to her so quickly I did not take the time to capture a pic first.  So, here they are now...

Lilo is making a pest of herself.  She must be hungry.  I'd better go to the kitchen and feed her.  "Hey, Dan, are you tending bar tonight?"  LOL.

Be sure and vote tomorrow!!!!    It's important and it really does matter.


Pala is the place for lobster

Hi, Everyone, Happy Halloween!

It's a nice, coolish Sunday night in San Diego.  I'm listening to Enya,  "the memory of trees".  I feel fine, although a bit full.  

Dan and Dare and I went to Pala casino for the buffet.  My street gets so many hundreds (yes, really) of trick or treaters that I either spend $100 and buy 10 big bags of candy, or leave for the evening.  This year I left.

It was a lovely drive through the country to get there and then when we got there,  the buffet was out of this world.  Specifically, they had lobster claws.  All you want.  Dan took a huge pile, spent some considerable time shucking them and then poured melted butter and squeezed lemon over the big pile of lobster meat and ate the whole lot (probably over a pound) in a few minutes.  Yowza, they had good stuff.  Mexican style lamb chops.  Nice salads, nice soups. The sweet potato mash was out of this world.  The creme brulee was so good.  Even the coffee was good.  Pala is definitely "it" for lobster and crab.  The rest of the buffet is good, too.  "Tomorrow" we diet, LOL.   My vote for best buffet.  Here's a pic from their web site.

Here's one from yelp.

Today I proctored a Buddhist study exam at Val's house.  That was a lot of fun.  The season for study exams is ending... a couple of make -up exams and we're done.

I'm knitting on a pair of men's brown socks these days.  Christmas is coming to town!!!  The guys are hard to knit for.  There is a lot more stitches in a pair of socks than a ladies scarf.  I'm looking at my list and there are a lot of men's socks on it yet to knit.   Hmmmm....  I'll have to think of something.  Since I'm thinking of holiday knitting,  I changed the music to north pole radio.  Since it is early in the season, they are playing jazzy or bassa nova songs based on carols, LOL.  I'll have to find my usual German station this year as we get further into the season. 

Lilo is missing in action.  She loves to get out a bit when the weather is nice.  Especially after she's been cooped up in the rain.  Oops, here she comes.  She knows when I type her name.

See y'all soon,