Monday, October 17, 2016

A Taste of Autumn

This past winter, I was at a memorial service for a childhood friend, and I spent time with a young woman who remembered me from her childhood.  I had brought my green tomato salsa to a party at her house, and she wanted the recipe for it.  I don't recall the origins of this, perhaps I adapted it from a Moosewood cookbook.  I have not made this in years.  It takes me back to my attic apartment in Lakeview that I shared with Yoda.  I am reminded of crisp autumn weather that I long for now, and many walks in the neighborhood with my sweet tiny old dog.  There was a little Mexican produce store maybe a half block away where I would buy the ingredients.  I made some again last week, using tomatoes that I purchased at a farm stand in Wisconsin.  With some sturdy chips,  it makes an excellent breakfast.

Green Tomato Salsa

5-6 unripe tomatoes
3-4 yellow onions
4 cloves garlic
1 6 oz can diced green chiles
1 T. cumin
salt and cayenne pepper to taste
1 bunch green onions
1 bunch cilantro

Chop the tomatoes and onions.  I do a rough chop and then put the pieces in the food processor, using the slicing blade.  Bring onions, tomatoes, crushed garlic, and green chiles to a boil, adding cumin and seasonings to taste.  I have opinions on adding heat producing seasonings, but you could add jalapeƱo sauce if you wish.  Let the mixture simmer for about a half hour, then turn off heat and let cool on the stove.
When the salsa has cooled, add chopped green onions and cilantro.
This is a very heavy salsa, more like a vegetable stew, and needs a sturdy chip.  I purchased some home made style chips from a local tortillery at the same Wisconsin farm stand where I bought the tomatoes, and they were perfect.

Monday, October 10, 2016

From the Land of the Truly Busy

Working two safety net jobs, and knitting like crazy.  Mostly for me.  I finished this on Saturday.  Alvy by Jared Flood.  In a Brooklyn Tweed collection.  I knit it in the color featured in the sample, because it was perfect.  I did a little modification to the neckband, added two purl rounds before the 1 X 1 ribbing, to mirror what was going on at the top.  This will be an essential piece to my wardrobe this fall.  If it ever cools off here.  Temperatures in the 70s here for most of the week.
A little excitement is coming up--I have a meeting tomorrow for a new knitted costume piece!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Four Years of Madness

This weekend marks four years since we traveled to Michigan to bring Madeline home to heal our hearts.  Thank you, Mad, for being an incredible companion and muse.  I'm working harder every day to make you a better home, the one you deserve.

Friday, September 09, 2016

The Mobile Studio

The last few weeks the Lucky Penny Headquarters has four wheels and divine air conditioning.  But I haven't knit a dog sweater in weeks.  I've been doing some selfish knitting and finishing projects up for friends.    Unfortunately, I just discovered some terrible inconsistencies in skein colors now that I have the pieces on the blocking board,  It's obvious.  Of course I have to tell my friend.  I think some surgery will have to be done to save the patient.  No good deed goes unpunished.
There's been a lack of posting due to being busy with both safety net jobs.  The hat in the photo is for me.  Mawson by Jared Flood in one of the new Shelter Marls.  I did a tubular cast on instead of the one specified in the pattern.  Because tubular cast on is my favorite.
Tomorrow, I'm taking the day off for a road trip to the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival!

Monday, August 22, 2016


Today is a work day.  For at least two jobs.  Right now I'm girding my loins for the day with some iced coffee and breakfast.  In a few hours I will be helping to set up an estate sale, then will put in a few hours of driving.  But I won't forget that today is the day that Piccolo left me, four years ago.  Her loss is something I feel every day.   When I returned to the apartment, she would come out on the landing to make sure I got in (happily, Madeline does the same).  Piccolo would curl up on the bath mat outside the tub while I showered.  My purpose in life was to love and care for her.  She did the same for me.  In retrospect, it was lucky for me that I witnessed her death.  Coming back to find her would have been a horror.  She left me suddenly, but in a happy moment, the way all pets should.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Road Knitting

I'm so looking forward to driving in the fall.  I think about the wardrobe that I'm going to be wearing. Sweaters.  Fortunately I have a lot.  I'm going to buy some wool sneakers in the next few weeks.  For the winter, I will wear a heavier sweater rather than a coat.  I have a few of those, too.
There is down time during my work day, mostly at the airports when I'm waiting in the queue.  I always have knitting with me, of course.  I just purchased this project bag at Stitches Midwest last week.  It could only be cuter if it had Pekingese.  There's a hat and a sweater sleeve in it.
I had not been to Stitches Midwest in maybe seven years.  The market was so good.  It felt good to splurge on purchases.  It's been a long time.

Sunday, July 17, 2016

The Possibilities

It had to be done.  If you know me personally, you may have known about my financial difficulties.  It hasn't helped that I was working at minimum wage without a raise for five years, was replaced at that job, and that the part time job that I was hoping to be a safety net while I got the Lucky Penny enterprise going has turned out to be a disappointment.  It's not a safety net if I'm not on the schedule for six weeks, however, the people who are on the schedule aren't doing much better.  I haven't had a theatrical project or a sample to knit for some time, and the only cash coming in is from some private lessons and some finishing/ repair work.  And the bills keep coming.  I think about how I'm going to pay for the haircut I desperately need, and the vet appointment that Madeline is due for, which will probably result in teeth cleaning.  I think about the fiber festivals that are coming up, the sweaters that I want to knit, the quilt tops that I would like to take to the long arm quilter, the tattered sandals that I would like to throw away instead of wearing every day.  Throwing out all my worn and tattered clothing, in fact.  Then, there's the biggest thing.  That I've been desperate to move.
So, a rideshare service.  The problem was, the car I was driving didn't qualify.  Eighteen years old, with the muffler held together by a coat hanger, and not fully functioning air conditioning.  Yesterday morning, I saw a huge grease spot under my poor old car, and wondered if she was the source.  I was going to lease a car, and keep the old one as well.  But, that's not how things worked out.  I had a failed leasing attempt on Friday at a dealership nearby, for a sweet little 2014 Corolla.  The dealership was new to the Uber program, and things didn't happen.  I was frustrated, and desperate to get some cash flow started.  So yesterday I went to a dealership with it's own Uber department and ended up saying good bye to my 1998 Rav4 and driving away in this--a new Camry.  With all the features and maintenance that extends for the length of the financing.  The crazy thing is that the financing was based on estimated, and not actual earnings.  The Man was furious with me, but he was the same when I came home with the Rav4.  So, in a few days the hustle to repair my finances begins.  Fortunately, I like to drive.