Plastic Bins and Contest Winners

DSC00372Done, done, done. 🙂  What a project that was! Although, based on the amount of things thrown away, and piled up for Goodwill, WH wants to know why there isn’t more empty space on the shelves. He was in charge of dispersing garbage and the give-away pile, so he’s aware of exactly how much stuff came out of that room. We both agree that it looks better, though, so that’s a good thing. What’s left? A LOT of childrens books and toys. I just saved the good stuff. Unfortunately, since I was a reading teacher and my mom was a kindergarten teacher and my mother in law has good taste in children’s books, there just aren’t a lot of “bad” kid books in the bunch. (Except maybe Captain Underpants, which was a particular favorite of Knitting Daughter’s. I had to save those two books.) Also, I have decided that I love plastic bins. And Uline, because that’s where my bins came from.

DSC00376I found an expandable file of reports that I had done in junior high. (And it was important to save those for all these years, because …?) Tossed it. I also found this paper in there – “I will not talk without permission”, 50 times. I have no recollection of the event, but I can confirm that it was my handwriting, so it must’ve been something. I also found lots of fun hand drawn pictures and letters from both of my kids (you know, back when writing an “I love you, Mommy!” note was fun for them). So glad I saved those then, and of course I saved them now as well. Those are keepers.

DSC00375I also found this photo of me, WH (the dark haired one) and one of my oldest friends in the world, Steve (the light haired one). He’s now married to one of my best friends, Janice, but I’ve known him since 7th grade, way before Janice appeared on the scene. (Isn’t it nice when you really like the people that your friends end up marrying?) We were all about 19 in that photo, and now all of our kids are older than that. How can that be? (And what is up with my hairstyle? I have no justification for it. My hair is naturally straight as a board, so you know that between my 80’s perm and my faithful curling iron, there was some time spent on that interesting ‘do.)

Enough about basement cleaning – on to the Anniversary Contest Winners! We had 1593 comments (thank you for all of your wonderful wishes!) and so we picked 8 commenters for the gift certificates.  All winners have been notified.

Winners of the $30 Loopy Ewe Gift Certificates:
Ruth in Ontario, Canada, Bhama in KY, Alicia in GA, Erin in OH, Dawn in NC, and Ruth in Thunder Bay, Canada.

Winner of the $50 Loopy Ewe Gift Certificate:
Jennifer (not sure where she is from, but I have emailed her. If you’re a Jennifer, check your email!) Edit: from Delaware. She emailed back!

Winner of the $100 Grand Prize Loopy Ewe Gift Certificate:
Tamara in TX

It’s steamy hot here in St. Louis, and we’ve been under an “extreme heat advisory” all week. What’s it like where you are?

Sheri verythankfulforairconditioning!
Andplasticbins.DidImentionhowmuchIlikethem?

I Hope I Come Out Alive

Boy, do I ever have an exciting few days in store for me. Wait ’til you hear! I am off work today (ok, most of the day) and will also be off Monday and Tuesday. Not that this upcoming project will take that long (please tell me it won’t), but because Knitting Daughter is off on a little trip to visit a friend, and for some reason I thought I’d turn my attention to the house.

Or more specifically, the basement.

It’s a nice basement. After all, that’s where Loopy resided for the first year of our shop. Now, that old Loopy corner is all set up for my scrapbooking. (Never mind that I haven’t scrapbooked in four years – which, coincidentally, is how old The Loopy Ewe is. Enough said.) But hey, it’s ready for me, as soon as I want to sit down and do it.

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There’s an area for sitting and watching tv. (With the oft-used treadmill behind the couch. Cough.)

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But the scary part of the basement? It’s The Back Room. Really, I usually avoid it at all costs. It’s not that big (which is part of the problem) and it’s almost impossible to find anything in there (which is also part of the problem). But lately, it seems to multiply things when we’re not looking. No one sees the back room. If you were to ring my doorbell and ask, I’d tell you no. If you were over, watching a movie and knitting with me and Knitting Daughter, and begged to see the scary Back Room? I’d tell you no. Also, no to my parents, my mother-in-law, my best friends, and the meter reader. (Not that there is a meter back there to read, but just in case there was – the answer would be no.) No one gets to visit The Back Room.

So I am going to be buried back there over the next few days, sorting, tossing, Goodwilling, and organizing. Who knows what I will find? I can hardly contain my excitement. I know that WH was pretty excited when I mentioned this possibility of organizing to him. (As a member of our household, he DOES get to see The Back Room, but he tries not to.) I hope I come back out alive.

room

Am I alone in this? Do you have a room, or a closet, or a part of your home that no one gets to see? That needs a bit of organizing? That is off limits to everyone but you? (Now that I showed you a picture of my Back Room, I’m assuming you’d allow me to see your unorganized area. I just need to knock on your door and ask, right? Just between us?)

Sheri whomightonedaydeletethiswholepost
PrettysureIdon’twantthatpictureinitafterall.

Random Acts of Kindness, Week Two

Week Two of our December Random Acts of Kindness contest! You all had such good ideas last week and I’m looking forward to reading all of the ways that you found to bless others this week. Leave your RAK comment on today’s blog, and I’ll use the Random Number Generator to identify the winner of the prize (which you can see pictured in this previous post) and will post it on Monday.  That also means that if you haven’t had an opportunity to do a RAK this week yet, you have until I run the numbers and post on Monday to do one and comment on it. One of the things that I really love about RAKs is that often the people who are the recipients, then go on to do something nice for someone else – and so on, and so on, and so on.  We really have no idea where that chain of events will end. It’s nice to know you might really be starting something!

Have you seen the newest issue of Knit 1? I wanted to give a big congratulations to some of our wonderful Indie Dyers who are featured on the “Indie Spirit”. There are 10 different dyers listed and it says their yarns are “dyed in small batches, these yarns have heart, soul, and a whole lotta color”. (And the people behind the yarns are pretty special, too!)  So congratulations to: Georgia with Yarn Pirate, Claudia with Wollmeise, Marie with Brooklyn Handspun, Khris with Chewy Spaghetti, Jana with Hand Maiden, Jess with Yarntini, and Angela with Duets. (Rounding out the top ten list of indie dyers, you’ll also find Sundara with Sundara Yarn, Julia with Knitterly Things, and Tina with Blue Moon Fiber Arts.  And yes, I’d love to have all three of those lines here at Loopy, and yes, I’ve asked before!) Further congratulations to Cookie A and Wendy for being picked as wonderful knitting bloggers (who have both designed and shared a sock pattern in this issue.) If you haven’t picked up this magazine yet, you need to. There are lots of great patterns in there!

As promised, here is the recipe for Meg’s amazing Peppermint Pudge. And the name? When one of her sons was little, he was eating a piece and then asked for “more pudge please”. It has been known as Peppermint Pudge ever since.

Meg’s Peppermint Pudge

4 1/2 cups sugar
24 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 (12 oz) can evaporated milk
1/2 lb. (2 sticks) salted butter
1 jar (7 1/2 oz) marshmallow cream
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups (10 oz. bag) Andes Peppermint Crunch Baking Chips (reserve 1/4 cup to sprinkle on top)

Butter or line a 9 x 13 pan.  Place chocolate, butter, marshmallow cream and salt in a large mixing bowl.  In a 3 qt. saucepan, combine sugar and evaporated milk and mix well. Place over low heat and stir until dissolved.  Increase heat to medium and cook, stirring mixure frequently, until candy thermometer reaches 234 degrees F. Remove pan from heat and pour hot mixture over contents in the mixing bowl. Beat on a low setting until all ingredients combine thoroughly.  Increase speed slightly and mix until fudge is thick and holds shape.  Stir in the Peppermint Crunch Baking Chips and vanilla.  Pour into prepared pan and let set.

Thanks for sharing the recipe (and sending us fudge!), Meg!

I’m off to the grocery store this afternoon.  College Guy and College Girl are arriving home today for the holidays, and I’m sure they need some Peppermint Pudge.  That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

Sheri lookingforwardtoreadingyourRAKcommentsagaintoday!

Where do you like to linger?

DSC01753.JPGLinger. Webster’s says (and yes, I had to put my reading glasses on to read that teeny tiny paperback dictionary print) that “linger” means “to remain long or be reluctant to go”. We like it when you linger at The Loopy Ewe! (You’ll linger even longer pretty soon, when our cool new search feature goes up. It’s fun to play with. But first, College Guy needs to finish up with Finals at school.) This is the time of year that we linger on our back porch, and I just love it. We eat dinner out here every night. Dinner in the wintertime consists of sitting at the kitchen table and eating, and then getting up and going on about our night. It’s a nice kitchen, but we don’t usually linger. Dinner on the back porch consists of eating and then sitting there and talking for quite awhile. The birds are singing, the cats are exploring, and we …. linger. It’s peaceful and relaxing, as any good lingering place must be. Of course it’s also good for knitting! I hope to be getting some good knitting done this weekend again.

Today’s recipe really is called “Yummy Salad”. That’s not a very creative title, but it is a good salad. You can also add in some cooked chicken to make it into a meal.

DSC01642.JPGYummy Salad

1 head lettuce (bite-sized pieces)
1 head cauliflower (bite-sized pieces)
2 cups Miracle Whip
1/2 to 1 lb. bacon, fried crisp and crumbled
1/2 med. purple onion, chopped
1/2 cup sugar
2/3 cup Parmesan Cheese
1 cup dried cranberries
(next time I think I’ll also add some sliced almonds. It would give this a good crunch. I’ll have to pick up a bag the next time I’m at the store use one of the seven bags in the pantry, FPS.)

Mix the Parmesan Cheese with the Miracle Whip. Layer the lettuce, cauliflower, Miracle Whip mix, bacon, onion and sugar. Cover and refrigerate. Toss just before serving.

DSC01755.JPGTonight we have “Senior Celebration” for Knitting Daughter. I can’t believe that she is graduating from high school in just over a week. That means that, come Fall, WH and I will be Empty Nesters. Boy, did those 18 years fly by. (I have to keep telling myself that it’s a good thing when they grow up and you’re proud of them and they move on to the next stage in their lives. Right?) I think I’ll head out to the porch and “linger” a bit with Zoe. She likes to linger out there, too.

Sheri
doyouhaveaplaceinyourhouse
thatisperfectforlingering?