Tag Archives: Finished projects

Movie night on the lawn at Rideau Hall

For someone as busy as I am, I have spent a surprisingly small amount of time and energy exploring the events going on in Ottawa since I moved here in 2007. I was very excited when my friend Stephanie invited me to an an outdoor movie night at Rideau Hall.

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They set up a screen on the grounds and hundreds of people showed up for a free screening of The Grand Seduction; an English adaptation of the French Canadian film. We had such a great time. There was free popcorn, beverages provided by a local Scout troop, and even the weather cooperated. The Governor General, David Johnston, said a few words then we all sang Happy Birthday to the director. It was really really nice.

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The Governor General, David Johnston, giving his speech

I even managed to get some knitting done. It was pretty cold, and it got dark so I had to put it away eventually.

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In-progress hat: Rikke.

I finished it a few days later and it turned out perfectly!

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Finished hat!

 

Recipe: Strawberry Banana Trifle with homemade pudding
Strawberry-banana trifle
Mmmmmmmm trifle

I set out to make a simple dessert, but it ended up being a bit more complicated that I’d intended. It still turned out fabulously, so I’m not really complaining. I bought the angel food cake at the grocery store, but the whipped cream and pudding mix I made from scratch.

Vanilla Pudding Mix

Original recipe adapted from The Brown-Eyed Baker.

Making pudding from scratch. Like a boss.

I substituted for the corn starch and added vanilla when mixing up the pudding on the stove. Potato starch was a little “glutonous” in the end, I wish I had used tapioca or rice starch but it still worked.

1 cup white sugar
3/4 cup starch (tapioca, corn… I used potato)
3/4 dry milk powder
1 tsp kosher salt
2 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla extract

  1. In a medium bowl mix together all dry ingredients with a whisk.
  2. Combine 2 cups of milk with 1/2 cup of pudding mix in a medium saucepan over high heat, whisking constantly.
  3. Bring to a boil, and then immediately reduce the heat to a simmer and continue whisking until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon (about 3 to 5 minutes).
  4. Let sit for at least 5 minutes before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Strawberry-Banana Trifle

Original recipe found on Clever, Crafty, Cookin’ Mama

1 store-bought angel food cake, cut into cubes
1 batch of pudding (see recipe above or use instant)
Strawberries, halved
Bananas, sliced
Whipped cream

  1. Cut angel food cake into 1-inch cubes.
  2. Prepare pudding mix with milk as above (or use instant pudding)
  3. Cut up strawberries and set aside. Slice bananas as you layer to keep them from going brown.
  4. Whip up your whipped cream
  5. Layer all ingredients in glass trifle bowl and store in the fridge for a few hours to set, or make it the day before and let it sit overnight. Keep cold until served.

I sprinkled some cinnamon sugar on top and in-between the layers for a little extra. It turned out great!

Moon Crystal Power

The hardest thing about having moved away from my hometown kind of surprised me in the end. Of course I miss the people: my family and friends. But I’ve found that when I’m homesick, what I am homesick for no longer exists. Sometimes my visits home actually leave me feeling even more detached than before I arrived.

That’s why it’s been so important for me to maintain personal relationships with those people. It’s become really important to remind myself that what I really miss is the people, not the place.

So in the interest of maintaining those connections, I got together online with some friends back home for a bit of a nerd-fest. We watched the new Sailor Moon Crystal reboot together online with synced up video and Google voice chat. It was wonderful, and we’re going to do it again in a few weeks.

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Sailor Moon Crystal. OMG a Sailor Moon reboot you guys!!!!

My English course is going really well. I submitted assignment #4 last week and am keeping a pretty good pace. I’ve done a good job of getting ahead during the week so that I don’t have to worry about course-work on the weekends.

Last weekend was the first one in awhile where I wasn’t overbooked. The only thing I had was the Sailor Moon Crystal online party with my friends, other than that I went for a run, did some cooking, and did a crap tonne of laundry (so exciting!).

I even managed to do some knitting. I finished a project I’ve been working on since December and I’m so excited to show it off. I’ve been wanting to knit a Christmas tree skirt for years, and now I have.

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My completed Christmas tree skirt. It only took me 7 months.

The pattern was written by Teva Durham (ravelry link) and I found it in Handknit Holidays. I used Knit Picks Brava worsted and didn’t change anything about the pattern except for the bind off. I used Fleegle’s no-wrap short row technique and it worked amazingly. I can’t barely see them, even with the doubled yarn. And when it came to binding off, instead of carrying the red up the side and binding off normally, I decided I wanted to add buttons. I followed this video tutorial for an i-cord bind-off that incorporates button loops. It worked so well!

The button loops on my Christmas tree skirt
My finished Christmas tree skirt, complete with buttons loops and an i-cord bind off

There was a bit of a dark spot this week. One of our two guinea pigs, Fessik stopped eating and then passed away. The vet couldn’t find anything wrong with her. We had her on anti-biotics, but I guess she was already too sick. Goodnight, sweet piggy. We will miss you.

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Fessik: 2011-2014

December Knitting List

I can’t believe how well this Christmas season is going for knitting. I credit you, dear bloggers! I have knit 17 gifts for Christmas, including the one in progress right now. So I present to you, my December list!

1. Gift Item: Sherbrooke Cowl (ravlink)
Recipient: Gisèle (fiancé’s grandmother)
Pattern: Sherbrooke by Lauren Weinhold (free PDF download)
Occasion:
Christmas 2008
Finished: Dec 1/08
Notes: This cowl went a little slower than my other knits. Maybe it was because the stitch pattern was a teensy bit boring… maybe it was because I needed a break from knitting… either way, it turned out quite nicely. Yay! One gift down, one left before christmas!



2. Gift Item: Hedgerow Man Socks (ravlink)
Recipient: Chris (fiancé)
Pattern: Hedgerow by Jane Cochran (free)
Occasion:
Christmas 2008
WIP: Nov 30/08
Notes: Finished the cuffs of both socks, and got them both on the needles for two-at-a-time. Man this yarn is tiny! I love it though, very soft, I’m sure he’ll love them. I can see this stitch pattern getting a little boring, but that will make them great for a travel project. I’m already a good couple inches into the legs.

Once those items are all done, I’ll get to start working on birthday and wedding knitting for 2009!

3. Gift Item:Gloves or mittens
Recipient: Joel (brother)
Pattern: Ken Gloves or Tweedy Mittens
Occasion:
Birthday
Due date: Jan 7/09
Notes: To go with his hat

4. Gift Item: Undecided
Recipient: Auntie Julie
Pattern:
Occasion:
Awesomeness
Due date: Feb 7/09

5. Gift Item: Lace knitting
Recipient: One of my bridesmaids: Lise, Rin, Ve, or Elsa
Pattern: undecided
Occasion:
Wedding
Due date: September 2009
Notes: I would like to start one of these in December

Other gifts I’m thinking about:

  • Joel and Chantelle — Wedding Gift / May
  • Dad — Birthday / June
  • Auntie Julie and Auntie Linda — Thank you gift / September
  • Holly — Thank you gift / September
  • Fran, Pete and Blip — Thank you gift / September
  • Mom — Thank you gift and Birthday gift / September