Sunday, July 29, 2007

Lily Purl's Famous Chocolate Truffles

Perfect for a "between stitches" indulgence!

1 lb Oreo Cookies
8 oz Cream Cheese
1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 lb Milk Chocolate

1. Beat cookies into a fine powder using food processor, blender, or rolling pin.
2. With electric mixer, blend cookies, cream cheese and vanilla until throughly mixed.
3. Lick mixing blade.
4. Roll dough into golf ball sized balls and place on wax paper lined cookie sheet. Refrigerate for 45 minutes.
5. Work on knitting project for 40 minutes.
6. Lay out 2 large sheets of wax paper. In a double boiler, melt the milk chocolate.
7. Dip each truffle in the chocolate, removing with a slotted spoon when coated.
8. Place on wax paper.
9. Let cool, then refrigerate in air tight container.
10. Eat left over chocolate.
11. Reward each difficult stitch with one truffle.

For an extra treat, drizzle melted white chocolate over the truffles, or use mint oreos!

Friday, July 27, 2007

I wind yarn ... and talk to it too!

I do wind yarn and I do talk to yarn - sometimes not so nicely but now ... A first class, big honking ball winder from Strauch. After my husband spent too many nights watching me wind customers yarns on my itty bitty ball winder, with frequent frustration and lots of *talking to the yarn* he said I must have a new one. And did I disagree? Oh heavens no. All I did was research the one I wanted. I decided on the Strauch for several reasons. See below...

Text below taken directly from
Strauch Fiber Company.

  • Our products are "Proudly Made in the USA." As part of our company mission, Strauch Fiber Equipment Co. is dedicated to promoting American made products. All the components we use to manufacture our products are made in the USA. We even pay extra for wood certified to come from U.S. forests.

  • We Reduce waste, Reuse, and Recycle. Over 90% of our packing paper and foam peanuts are given to us by local retailers who would rather not feed the landfill. The minimal amount of wood scrap that we generate is used to heat our workshop. We compost the sawdust and wood shavings are used as animal bedding. (end)
  • Oh, and by the way, I got it at Copper Moose. Excellent service and super fast. Ordered on Sunday - here on Tuesday.

    So my friends, anyone need any yarn wound? It is a free service here at The Yarn Grove. If you want your yarn wound into a cake, just let me know in the comments section... Now I will talk to yarn nicely ...

    Wednesday, July 25, 2007

    The Countdown is on...

    Yessirreee... for those who celebrate Christmas or give gifts to people at the holiday, it is a mere 5 months from today. I would highly recommend getting those needles and hooks clickin' away. I have several items made up and hope ya'll are well on your way as well...

    I just finished a hat made from
    Miss Hawklet handspun yarn. She gets the majority of her wool from a rescue farm, handdyes and spins it herself. This particular hat was made from approx. 70 yards of handspun, knit on 11's, including the giganzo pompon I made for it. I cast on 70 stitches so which will fit a large head... We have several handspun artists in our shop, all gawgeous. Even some with little "skull" beads. Some come with a free pattern. Quick and easy...

    As I dumped the end of the coffee from my bowling ball sized coffee container, I thought about ways to recycle this huge honking piece of plastic. I don't always purchase my coffee this way ... unless it is on sale! So with that said, here are a few suggestions:

  • Yarn container. Hold your large ball of yarn and punch a hole in the lid to feed through your end. Could actually and easily hold more than one ball.

  • Make your own hand wipes/baby wipes/or bug repellent towels. No, this is not an original but comes to me from years ago from my ever frugal and fabulous friend, Paula.

  • Stand on, squish it and recycle it.

    • Recipe for wipes:

    1 roll Bounty paper towels. Remove core, cut in 1/2 (careful with that sharp knife) I used smaller sized rolls, not jumbo.

    3 cups water

    1 Tablespoon baby oil

    1 tablespoon hand / baby lotion (or perhaps baby wash)

    Mix liquids together(nothing chemical reactive, okay?), put your *new* 1/2 roll in container of your choice(recycle something please) and pour over 1/2 of towels. Thread towels from center of roll. Very easy.

    For Bug repellent I used Avon Skin-so-Soft instead of hand lotion and baby oil. Whenever we went to the beach, always took a "jug" of my handmade bug wipes with me! (rolling credits: Paula too. I can pretend for one minute I thought of this but guilt just overtook me...)

    Sunday, July 22, 2007

    Hiya!! Lily Purl here. I'm so jazzed to join the Yarn Grove girls' blog.

    As you know, I just love socks- I AM the sock walker! There's nothing more comforting than cozy toes, and nothing more fun than colorful, hand knit socks. During the summer, when flip flops reign, most socks are tucked in the back of drawers to await the first chilly day of fall. That's why I was so jazzed to find this pattern for footie socks- the best socks for summer! I found some summery teal yarn from a gal on Etsy, and got clicking right away! I'm going to spend a lovely Sunday afternoon in my favorite recliner just knitting away. I may even indulge in a iced chai tea with cinnamon...

    My first blog winner ...

    The names were shuffled and my husband drew one yesterday on the last day of my first blog contest. And the winner is: Beth of TX. Way to go Beth. Contact me for your choice of color of O~Wool Balance, 100% certified organic yarn; 50% wool, 50% cotton and it will be on its way to you along with a copy of Knitting for Peace (which everyone should have). Hope you enjoy it. And thanks to all who emailed me or left comments concerning the new website.

    I *love* giving stuff away. So much fun that I will dream up some sort of contest soon... Any ideas from you will be most appreciated.

    And here for everyone's viewing pleasure ... my finished plain vanilla, toe up socks from Cheryl B. Design. These were out of Cheryl's sport weight and are so soft and squishy I am having a hard time deciding whose stocking these will go in. Maybe mine! Cheryl does a fabulous job of dyeing. Her base for her yarns is Louet, which how can you go wrong with that? Gawgeous... and great to knit. Please notice my martini sock blockers that I ordered from Scout's Swag . They are too fun...

    Pictures later from my marathon canning day yesterday. 50# of tomatoes, homemade salsa and dilly beans... My house smells like vinegar and I don't even dye yarns!

    Friday, July 20, 2007


    Just arrived in to The Yarn Grove, Sockittome Sock yarn from Cherry Tree Hill. That is what I have been doing for 2 days - photographing, petting, and simply drooling over this yarn. It is a 80% merino / 20% nylon yarn - soft and in CTH's gorgeous colorways.

    I will be picking out a color or two because, hang on to your seat, my husband was watching me put the finishing touches on one Cheryl B. Design sock last night and asked me if it might be possible to knit him a pair or two. Huh, are you talkin' to me? why sure honey. Of course, here are the instructions... "I don't need them all the way up my calf, just to the ankle". Better still. He sleeps with socks on every night. He is so cold natured - *me*, oh heavens no. I cannot sleep with socks on. The only time I did/do was when our power was out from an ice storm for 3 days. I must admit, it was a little chilly here. But that's it. No sock sleeping for me. How about you? Socks on or Socks off? Just curious...

    Tomorrow is tomato day. Yep, I'm cleaning my canning jars now. Went to farmers market this week and bought 50 lbs of them. I *love* to can. I have about 10 tomato plants myself but they don't yield enough for me to put em up. However, we do enjoy eating them... a lot! Picked my first ones last night.

    Where am I headed now? To fix me a tomato sandwich. Now here in the south, the only real 'mater sandwich is one on white bread only - with mayonnaise, salt, pepper and a fresh juicy sliced 'mater, fresh picked. Yummmmm....

    Wednesday, July 18, 2007

    Meet Lily Purl, SockWalker™ extraordinaire

    Here she is, Lily Purl, the SockWalker™. While some of you have met Lily Purl in person, here she is in her SockWalker™ form. She loves socks ... any kind... can you tell?
    Many many thanks to the extraordinary artist, Cynthia of hula-la design co., (also designed our logo), who took our SockWalker™ idea, Lily Purl and brought her to another dimension...
    Lily Purl. will for sure be popping up in several different places. She is quite the chatty one too as I'm sure you will see...

    Monday, July 16, 2007

    Ever wonder where your balloon goes?

    Have you ever released a balloon into the air... or lost one accidentally ... and watched it go and go? Well, I walk out into my backyard to check out what all the birdies are squawking about , I figured it was another hawk or vulture, and lo and behold ... is this what is freaking them out? I have absolutely no clue where this balloon came from but it landed on my bird feeder. Weird... I know. Guess I needed a happy face today? It did make me smile .. a lot.

    Speaking of smiling, a great announcement to The Yarn Grove. SockItToMe sock yarn from Cherry Tree Hill is on its way. I received an email from them about a week ago, ignored it, then decided to call and chat it up on Friday. I ordered *lots*. In fact, all 31 of their colorways. Stay tuned for much goodness this week.

    Boy, I needed a fabric fix as well. I volunteered myself to make a memory quilt for my mom's friend who is turning 80. These 8 ladies, ranging in age from 79 to 91, declare themselves the "beach bunch". So I decided to attempt to make a quilt. Since I also embroider, I have "interviewed" my mom on just exactly what it is that they do/did at the beach, 2x a year. So far I have dominoes, cards and wine. She said make that a bottle please. Well, okay!

    I went to InTown quilters, a splendid shop that carries every piece of Kaffe Fassett fabric that he ever birthed. It was a hard decision but once I picked the main fabric, it was easy. So of course, I will show photos as I muddle through this. I know it will be a cherished gift.
    Only 5 more days til I draw for the blog contest. One book, Knitting for Peace and 3 skeins, your choice of color, O~Wool Balance... Good luck. Lots of entrys.

    Sunday, July 15, 2007

    Knit Simple- Fall 07

    Have you guys seen the new Knit Simple?? Its a good one! In addition to 30 awesome patterns, there is a great article on getting the most out of hand dyed yarn. They show swatches of 12 different hand dyed yarns (including Lorna's Laces) knitted in different stitch patterns to show how the colors look different under each pattern AND the first 6 sweater patterns are designed for hand dyed yarn!

    In other news, I have my teen Sewing Camp next week. Both sessions are full and I'm a little nervous about keeping the kids focused for 3 hours at a time. I'm also worried about little fingers getting too close to needles! Its certain to be an exciting week.

    Also, I'm selling some of my vintage knitting patterns on ebay. Take a peek!

    Thursday, July 12, 2007

    Stringing along...

    Our organic string bags are here. Here's a brief history of these bags. I found them, put together an order for several samples, lost the paper for a week, ordered on a Friday, Oprah had some sort of version of these on her show that *same* Friday afternoon... I said to self, you have got to be joking. I know what that means to my order! Same flippin' day. My samples were delayed ... just a bit... but the wait was well worth it.

    Each year, here in the USA, it is reported that we throw away more than 100 billion plastic shopping bags. Of course, those bags end up in various places including our oceans and streams which kill our fish, sea turtles, birds and creatures.

    These string bags are great for stuffing full of yarn, hanging in a closet, hiding your stash. Or how about trying them at the grocery store. They will hold a considerable amount of weight. And best of all, you're saving a plastic bag from ending up somewhere it shouldn't.

    I am knitting away on Cheryl B Design Studio socks. I did end up frogging what I had started and now have them on size 2s. They are coming out nicely and I am thrilled with the yarn. Excellent yarn - vibrant colors. I knit on them last night when I was at Noble Knitters. Yep, we meet at a Barnes and Noble and these ladies are so much fun. Lots of friendship, laughs and knittin'.

    3 of the ladies, Pat, Ellen and Diana are working on the Mystery Shawl. It was quite comical to hear them chatting about it and some of the challenges a couple have had.I saw all 3 of their in progress shawls and they all look great!

    Friday, July 06, 2007

    Ohh la la

    Here is the beginning of my toe up sock using Cheryl B. Design Studio brand new sock yarn. Now when I put her yarns up on the website, I did not realize (shame on me) that some are fingering weight and some are sport weight. The one I showed you the other day, Autumn Afternoon, the one my *precious* Junior got into is the one pictured here. After knitting this much on size 2's, I realized that it is sportweight. I'm thinkin', how can this be fingering weight? So I look at the label and sure enough, it was sport weight.

    Now that changes things a little for me. I should be knitting this on at least 3s so will probably frog the whole thing and start over on 3s. But I did want you to see it and how gorgeous and tight this yarn is. I love it!

    We have some new handspun yarn in -
    Fortune Cookie Fibers - from the ever delightful Julie-Ann of PA. Check it out - it is great yarn. Hand dyed and hand spun by Julie-Ann.

    Hope ya'll had a wonderful 4th and now it is time to get serious about holiday gifts. No joke - it'll be here before we know it. What are you planning as hand made gifts?

    Wednesday, July 04, 2007

    Ummm, my next project... Not by choice

    I came home to this last night ... This is brand new yarn from Cheryl B. Design Studio and my Junior decided he needed a skein of it. I do not have a clue how he got this - I had literally just taken photos of it and put it up on the website yesterday afternoon. Hub and I had just returned from old town Norcross - viewing some spectacular fireworks from the front yard of a friend's house - and I guess Junior got bored.

    I was not happy and he knew it. I said "who did this?" and while he tried to blame it on Wooly Bully, the cat, I knew better. The little varmint. My husband looked at me and said, "he's just a baby". I swear Junior smiled when he said that. To prove he loves yarn, the picture of him here is when he recently pulled another project out of my bag on the sofa and found my glasses too...

    So, I will be attempting to wind this into a ball but I can say I'm not all that disappointed because this new line up from Cheryl B. Design Studio is great stuff. The yarn is so soft, squishy and bouncy and I love it. Beside the fact that the colors are scrumptous too. The base has a very tight twist which does resist pilling... Of course, Cheryl B. Design Studio is close to my heart... Perhaps you recognize the name... Cheryl? Look here on my blog...

    As many of you already know, we give a portion of our sales of Duet Sock Yarn to A Place to Bark and Meow. For those of you who may remember my blog from a few months ago about the story of Noel - a rescue dog - I read with a warm heart recently that Noel has gone to her *forever* home. And she seems to be doing mighty well, I might add - from all accounts of Bernie's blog...

    Happy 4th of July - and our freedom...

    Sunday, July 01, 2007

    The Chevron Scarf

    I am knitting away on the Chevron Scarf. This is out of the book Last Minute Knitted Gifts and I love this pattern. Since it is only 4 rows of pattern, I can remember it! Especially when rows 2-4 are purl,knit,purl.

    I am knitting this out of Woolly Boully's Red Robin: Bird, Nest and Eggs in her scrumptious fingering weight yarn. This is some of the softest yarn with nylon in it that I have ever felt. Hmmm, this will be added to my Christmas gift list for someone special.

    Speaking of Holidays, I know it is only July 1st but it is time to be giving some thought about it. I have a couple of pair of socks knit up, a couple of hats and now this scarf that will be used as gifts, after marketplace in Nov. What are you working on and what have you finished as holiday gifts?

    Also, don't forget my blog contest. If you email me or leave a comment on my blog regarding our new website, you are entered into the drawing. The prize is Knitting for Peace book and 3 skeins, your choice of color, of O~Wool Balance . Come on and play!