Sunday, March 30, 2014

A Spring Sweater

This little spring sweater is finished.  

And another one in the works.....

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Nordic Sweater Knitting

It's been years since I knitted Nordic style sweaters.   They were very popular in the 1980's.   This little sweater was knit with a bulk style acrylic yarn in a size 4.  I did this in an acrylic for easy washing for young children.   It knitted up quite quickly and was fun working with the various colours.   

I found the pattern at our local thrift store along with enough wool to make two of these sweaters in small sizes.    The pattern comes from an old Beehive "Nordic Knits" pattern book #440.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Hiking Silver Creek Conservation Area

It was a beautiful day today for a hike.  The temperature started off cold (-18C) and the wind was bitter. However, after we were going for a while we warmed up and by noon the temperature had risen to about -11C. 

Lots of evidence of little creatures
Trail was well used and packed.   If you stepped off the trail you would sink a couple of feet into the snow
My new amazing icers
The spikes on these are quite nasty looking, however, they kept me on my feet - no slipping even on ice.

Park bench  - the snow is so deep only the top of the bench is showing.
Lots of damage to trees from the ice storm just before Christmas.  Lots of trail maintenance work to do come Spring.
Lunch stop on the bridge.   There were spots where the ice and snow is melting and the streams are running

Friday, March 7, 2014

Learning to Cook Gluten Free

I am trying an experiment by going gluten free to see if there is any difference to my health.   There has been so much hype in the media these days of the affects of gluten related diseases and intolerances.   We also have a couple members of our family now that for health reasons are on strict gluten free diets.  Learning to cook and bake gluten free is becoming more important - especially when they come over for a meal.

So far it's been a couple of week without gluten and it hasn't been too difficult.  Cooking without gluten has been fairly easy since I am used to cooking most of our meals from scratch.   Our meals are fairly simple without fancy sauces or gravy that require thickening with flour.  I don't thicken soups with flour either.   I rarely ever buy pre-made food/frozen foods so that hasn't been an issue either for us.  And I as a rule don't eat much bread.  But once in a while a sandwich is really nice.   Eating out or on the run can be problematic.  It's hard to find a restaurant that serves food without gluten.

The difficult part has been baking.  Baking without wheat flour has been challenging.  How to make muffins or cookies, pie or a cake that doesn't turn out to be like a brick or not worth eating.   I'm not a big dessert eater, but once in a while I like a treat.  Gluten free baking is different from the way I have baked for my whole life.  It's certainly a mind shift - when it comes to baking with different flours and the taste / texture is different.  Finding all the right gluten-free flours locally hasn't been easy either without spending a lot of money.   The bulk food stores carry a lot of gluten free products, but you have to be careful as there is no guarantee with cross-contamination of items at these stores that are not packaged individually.  If you are celiac it is very important there is no cross contamination of any kind.  

I am enjoying trying out new recipes from the two books by Alissa Segersten/Tam Malterre;  The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook and Nourishing Meals.  Everyone of the recipes tried so far have been an success.

Monday, March 3, 2014

The Anticipation

Oh the anticipation.... which every knitter knows.

When you imagine your next project...
When you search for the perfect yarn.....
When you feel the texture of your wool....
The excitement begins.....

It takes discipline to finish your current project before starting the new one !

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