Camping Poem and First Quarter Challenge Winners

I’m back! What a crazy time to be gone, but it couldn’t be helped. More about that later. Check out the fun Camp Loopy poem that Mary B. from Scotland wrote and emailed to us:

Camp Loopy

Summer’s round the corner, it’s that special time of year
Groupies gather round for Camp Loopy time is here
From North and South, East and West, all around the globe
We excitedly await the news, where is our new abode?
No bears or snakes to scare us, no tiny crits to bite
No woodsmoke there to choke us, nothing to give us fright.
Fun, chat and laughter, with knitting will abound
Crochet hooks, sticks and string will be found all around.
No rain will cause a washout No sun will burn us crisp
We will not miss our families; or our beloved pets
The magic of Camp Loopy means we sleep in our own beds
We will never get seasick or have food we do not love
We will have the time of our lives, a blessing from above.

What tent will I be in this year? Who will be my mates
Which mountain trail will I be on? How many new friends will I make?
Tinknomore or Kaytwopeatwo I wonder when I’ll know?
Loopious, Knitsalot, Fibreopolis to which one will I go?
Will I complete the challenges, one, two and three?
Will I get lost along the trail and lonely will I be?
Mistakes, maybe I’ll make a few, I do hope none too many
I want this to be so much fun not see me have a benny!
Off I go to stalk the shop to see which yarn I choose
And a pattern I must find, it’s easier to buy shoes!
Then a wait till June the 1st when all the fun will start
Loopy Ewe I salute you, you have the greatest heart.

Isn’t that fun? We have such talented Loopy Groupies all over. Mary – thank you again for allowing me to share that.

Ribbed-Rope-SocksWe do have winners from the First Quarter Challenge! The Reader’s Choice Award goes to:

Christine from Canada, for these beautiful Ribbed Rope Socks, made out of Baah! Yarn in the Grey Onyx color way. Christine wins a $35 Loopy Ewe credit for her win!

We also ran the random generator to determine two $25 Loopy Ewe credit winners and those will be going to Laura in NY for her Nola Cloche and Mary in AL for her Swapped Stalagmites Socks. Congratulations to all of you and thanks to everyone who participated last quarter!

It’s almost time to start working on your first Camp Loopy project. Are you ready? Now that we have all of your Camp orders out, we’re gearing up for Monday night’s Update. We have so many boxes of yarn in our stock room that we had to split them up over the next few Monday Updates. We shouldn’t take a Monday off like we did this week!

I haven’t knit in seven days. I need to get cracking. I have a project or two to finish up before Camp starts. Does anyone else go seven days without knitting?  

Sheri whowouldratherknitallmorningandthenworkafternoonsandevenings.

First Quarter Challenge

We have a lot of fun with our Quarterly Challenges each year. Be sure to take a look at the projects completed last year in the challenges for First Quarter, Second Quarter, and Fourth Quarter. (During the summer we do Camp Loopy instead, which involves a monthly challenge for 3 months in a row. You can find those photo galleries here, here and here. Lots of beautiful projects in there!)

Before I announce the First Quarter Challenge for 2013, we need to vote on a Reader’s Choice award for our Fourth Quarter participants. Take a look at the Fourth Quarter gallery and email us your favorite project (support@theloopyewe.com) and we’ll announce the winners soon. Thanks for your voting help!

Our first challenge project for 2013 involves 1 skein of yarn and cables. You’ll need to pick a one-skein project that features cables in the design. You can use any weight of yarn, but just a single skein. You might consider Hats, Cowls, Socks, Shawls, or Mittens/Mitts/Gloves. One of my favorite cable projects was my Camp Loopy 2011 mittens (All the Water by Through the Loops, shown above.) At that time, I mentioned wanting to make a pair of red mittens, and a pair of yellow mittens, too. Of course I haven’t done that yet, so maybe now is my time. Although I could use a new cabled hat, too. And I saw some really cool sock patterns with cables. Choices, choices.

Details:

– The challenge runs from today through March 31st. All projects must be done and photos uploaded to our First Quarter Challenge 2013 Gallery by 3/31.

– If you’d like to order yarn for this project, you can get 20% off of the skein you choose to work with. This discount is available between now and next Friday, January 11th. You must leave us an order note, letting us know which skein you will be using for the project so we know which one to apply your discount to.

– If you purchase this project yarn between today and 1/11 and finish your cable project and upload a photo of it by 3/31, we will double your Frequent Shopper points for that skein. So if your skein is $18.50 after discount, you will see 18.50 added to your point tally when we ship the yarn, and another 18.50 added to your point tally when we have received your completed photo (by 3/31). With our new Loopy Rewards Program, the extra points accumulate to earn you even more rewards!

– You are also welcome to participate using stash yarn, as long as it’s a line that we carry here at The Loopy Ewe. You won’t be eligible for the double Frequent Shopper points, but if you finish in time and upload your photo to the gallery,  you’re still eligible to win a Reader’s Choice award or our random drawing done with all entrants.

Do you need some pattern suggestions for one-skein cable projects? I’ve started a list for you! If you have other ideas, please feel free to leave them in the comments below.

Hats: Princess Lace Beret, Soft Shimmers Hat, Koolhaas, Antler Hat, Declans Hat, Claudia, Gretel, and Iced Hat.

Mittens/Mitts/Gloves: Bellas Mittens, Fetching, Knotty Gloves, Vancouver Fog, Eugenia’s Mittens, Wanderlust, Yummy Mummy Wristwarmers, and Wood Hollow Mittens.

Socks: Owlie Socks, Java Socks, BFF Socks, Neely Ohara, Katniss, Sunshine, Aragorn, and Smaug.

Shawls: Marin, Creekwood, Batik, Sunset ShawlTheia, Dubliner, and Lafant Wrap.

Cowls: Cream and Sugar Cowl, City Creek Cowl, Lava Flow Cowl (shown here), Nennir, Cabernet Infinity Scarf, Heart on a String, Tom’s Crossed Cowl and Caera Cowl.

Are you up for the Challenge? And if so, what are you going to make?

Sheri contemplatingyarnchoices

Brrr – Time for Soup!

It has been so cold here this past week, and it looks like it will continue for awhile. The best thing for a cold day? Surely it’s grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup. Right? I tried a new recipe over the holidays and wanted to share it with you. The Greek yogurt adds a wonderfully healthy creaminess to the soup. I hope you and your family enjoy it as much as mine did.

Tomato-Basil-and-Cheese-SoupTomato, Basil and Cheese Soup
(found on Pinterest, originally from the More Fruit Please blog.)

2 (28 oz) cans of diced tomatoes
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp. olive oil
2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 cup cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped, loosely packed
2 tsp. oregano
1 tsp. sugar
salt and pepper to taste

Add olive oil to a large pot. Over medium heat, add the chopped onion and cook for 3-4 minutes (until tender). Add in the chopped garlic and cook for 2 more minutes. Pour in the cans of tomatoes (juice and all) and the vegetable stock. Stir in the basil, sugar, salt, pepper and oregano.  Let this simmer for 10 minutes with the lid on.

After 10 minutes, remove from heat and stir in the greek yogurt and cheese, mixing until blended. Use an immersion blender (these things are the best – I use it to slightly thicken all of my homemade soups) or food processor to puree the soup. Garnish with additional chopped basil and grated cheddar cheese if desired.

As for the grilled cheese sandwiches, I think the best ones come from Mimi’s Cafe. I found a copycat recipe (which I shared here) that comes pretty close to those. But we generally simplify things for regular grilled cheese eating. (Like not using that many different kinds of cheese.) I like sourdough bread for our grilled cheese, and I always butter the outside of the bread and lay that butter side down into a pile of grated parmesan so that it forms a wonderful cheesy crust on the outside of the sandwich as it grills. YUM.

Have a great weekend and be sure to check the blog next week, as we have new things to share with you, including the First Quarter Challenge for 2013!

Sheri hopingformoresnow,aslongasit’sgoingtobecoldanyway