Opal Rainforest Collection ll and Cookies

currentnewrainforest1I’ve been waiting for this yarn forever! It has finally arrived from Germany (via the US distributor’s warehouse) and we have it up and available at The Loopy Ewe. There are some fun colors and patterns in here! If you’re not used to knitting with patterned yarn – give it a try. I find that I seem to knit faster on this type of yarn. Either that, or the emerging patterns just keep me more entertained. Maybe I’m just simple. :-) I think you’ll have fun with it, too.

DSC00529.JPGGuess what else arrived? Zoe’s Cozy Cushion. I set it down and she immediately claimed it as her own. I was so glad. (Because haven’t you spent money on something for a pet before, just sure they’d like it, and they turn their nose up at it?) Well Zoe’s sold on this cushion and now has warm toes and tummy. I haven’t seen her on the registers once since it arrived.

I wanted to give another big welcome and shout out to the newest members of The Loopy Groupies! Remember, you get to be a Loopy Groupie when you have placed your 6th order with us. We’ll send you a fun Gift Bag and include you in all of the Loopy Heads Up emails (advance notice when new yarns go up, advance notice for the Sock Club), specials once in a while, and other things. (Psst – the Yarn Pirate and I are talking about an exclusive Loopy Groupie colorway. Anyone want to give color suggestions?) I’m happy to welcome these gals, who have become Loopy Groupies in the last couple of weeks: Shelly in MI, Janice in IA, Willi in OH, Kristi in OH, Laura in MI, Josiane in Switzerland, Mary Ellen in VA, Carol in OR, Christy in NC, Robin in MN, Allison in FL, Lisa in TX, Kimberly in AL, Karen in NY, Erika in AZ, Kathleen in CA, Joan in MN and Rachel in NY. We love having you as Loopies!

As promised, here are the frosted sugar cookie cutouts that I make for most holidays. I first found this recipe in the newspaper when I was (I thought) about 2 weeks away from having Knitting Daughter. College Boy (then “Cute Little Two Year Old Boy”) and I made these together and were going to give them to the neighbors for Valentine’s Day. We were able to deliver all but one plate. One of the neighbors wasn’t home. (This is an important detail.) Knitting Daughter decided to come 2 weeks early (that night) and, well …. you know how cravings go. The next day, I was in that hospital bed and just kept thinking about how I really wanted another one of those wonderful sugar cookies. So, I sent Wonder Husband back home to raid the plate designated for the not-at-home neighbors, just so I could have another one. I guess I still owe a plate to those neighbors? I’m taking plates of these to my neighbors today to make up for it. I have called these “Julia’s Sugar Cookies” ever since, because we first made them the day before she was born. Now, they’re a family tradition!

DSC00530.JPGJulia’s Sugar Cookies

2 sticks margarine (1 cup)
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
4 Tbl. milk
2 tsp. vanilla
4 cups flour
4 tsp. baking powder
Frosting Glaze

Beat together margarine and sugar. Add eggs, milk and vanilla until light and fluffy. Stir in flour and baking powder and mix well. Chill in plastic wrap for 4 hours (or overnight is even better).

Roll out on well-floured surface. Cut and bake on lightly greased cookie sheet (or baking stone.) 375 degrees for 9 minutes. Cool and frost.

Frosting Glaze:

2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
food coloring
milk to desired consistency

Let glaze set until dry.

I liked Kim’s suggestion in the comments about you all sending me your best recipes – and my family would very enthusiastically support this idea. They would love to be taste testers. :-) If you have a family favorite, send it along and we’ll test it out. In fact, next week I’m sharing a recipe for pork that came from one of you and was absolutely delicious!

Have a great weekend and make time for your knitting!

Sheri ItookaballoftheOpalRainforestToucanoutformyselfandIwanttostartonit….


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40 comments on “Opal Rainforest Collection ll and Cookies

  1. ok, ok, you taked me into it. i’m going to get one of those for my cat. he’s the boss of both dogs, who are each 3-4 times his weight. we have 2 dog beds. The cat sleeps on one, and the dogs squeeze together on the other one.

  2. I agree that the patterned yarns make the knitting go faster. The spur you on to the next color change and before you know it you are done! (I refuse to believe we are both simple.)

    I like the Opal Rainforest collection very much. My top 3 are Peacock, Tree Frog and Caterpillar. I have to say though that ‘Snake’ is probably not in my future. I am P.H.O.B.I.C. about snakes. I had to excuse myself from the dinner table while we were watching a news segment on Python Pete, the beagle that smells out loose pythons in Florida. Snakes upset me greatly. (Probably a throwback to some very unpleasant events waiting at the bus stop in elementary school. You know how little boys tease little girls they have a crush on? Enough said.) I now have the snake/sock image burned in my mind and fear I could never put them on my feet. My compliments to great yarn dyers at Opal for their exactness though. And lest ye think I am a meanie, I love nature and animals and I do understand that S’s are one of God’s creatures and have a place in the ecosystem and all that. Just not around me thank you very much.

    Love the yarn line though. :>)

  3. I’m seriously on my way to the Loopy Groupies. Only four more orders to go :-) I got my second order yesterday and the yarns are so pretty! Don’t know which one to use first!

    I love sugar cookies! I plan to make some this weekend.

  4. Darn it, Sheri! You just had to put up the Rainforest Yarn! I just HAD TO order Tree Frog…I think it was just meant to be…afterall..I love the rainforest…I love frogs…ergo HAD. TO. HAVE. TREE. FROG. YARN.

    :-) (btw…am going to make the cookies this weekend – yummy yummy!)

  5. I adore sugar cookies as well. I am definitely trying that recipe. I can’t wait to be a part of the Loopy Groupies, maybe in the next few months. My color suggestions would be something with a pastel feel to it, mint, pineapple yellow, sugar cookie pink, baby blue, pale orange. Something that says spring, lighthearted colors that twinkle and meld together in the sun. Similiar to the Loopy Groupies themselves, people from all over the world who come together as one, people who adore your website and love sock yarn.

  6. Aww, I love the story about the cookies.

    I don’t like working with Opal yarn, but I do love saying the German names for the animals. Die schmetterling! It is gorgeous, though. Maybe I’ll tough it out for just one pair of socks.

  7. I’ll send you a recipe for my Potatoes Supreme. The recipe exists in many places but the secret is using the slowcooker. It’s a crowd pleaser and I recently won first place at my LYS’s knit in!

  8. I’m going to get right to work on my Loopy Groupy membership, as well, because you provide much more than just a yarn-selling service. I think of you as a friend, although I have never met you. I enjoy reading your blog so much. You brighten my day, Sheri. I like Belinda’s colorway suggestion very much, and would also like to add one of my own. It’s a combination I don’t recall ever seeing anywhere else. Think about those big blue hydrangea blossoms, with touches of pink, lavender, yellow, and green. Hydrangeas are my favorite flower, periwinkle is my favorite color, and I think this color combination would make a beautiful yarn!

  9. I just placed my first order and can’t wait to receive it. I tried knitting toe-up socks but just can’t get the toes so I am going to attempt to do a cuff down pattern instead. Could you please advise me on a generic easy to do cuff down pattern. I just love the raintree collection. I had a hard time deciding which ones to get so I ordered the Butterfly (because I just loved the orange colorway) and the Tree Frog.
    ~Ana

  10. Ridiculous–I just got an order yesterday and loved the yarn J-Knits is my new favorite. Then I saw that the new Opal was here so had to order that. As I said, ridiculous, I am addicted and Sherri’s wonderful Loopy is my enabler. I have made three pairs using the Opal Tiger before (great for Mizzou kids) and everyone really enjoyed. The cookies look yummy. Last week-end I tried the crock-pot chicken with the cream cheese and it was great.

  11. Zoe looks comfy. And I will have to think about a color combination for Georgia to dye up. Although I love dyer’s choice.

    And I must be strange because I am not a big fan of Opal. The one time I knitted with it, I found it to be harsh on my hands. Does it really soften up quite a bit after washing it? But I should add that I am not a huge fan of Trekking XXL either.

    I am eying that ATH Red Hat yarn. My mother is a Red Hatter and socks would be the perfect Christmas present since I can knit them up right under her nose.

  12. I think a good yarn pirate colorway would be seagreen (or celery),red,grey,black and white. Just like the colors of the Shop. ;)
    PS- I *heart* my new sock blockers (thanks)

  13. I am glad you shared the recipe for the cookies and the story behind them. I was thinking of baking suagr cookies this weekend with my little boy and now we have a recipe! Do you always use maragarine or have you used butter?

    Have a great weekend!

  14. Mia, you aren’t alone. I can’t use Opal either, but I will say that the one pair I did manage to crank out have worn extremely well. I think I’ve had them over a year now, and they look exactly the same. They go through the wash and dryer like a champ, but I do advise making them a bit longer if you want to machine dry, and they will shrink ever so slightly. =)

    Oh no!! I still have 4 orders before I’m a groupie! I better go make another one, just to ensure I get in… by next month =P

  15. Does anyone have a good generic cuff down pattern to suggest to Ana? I confess – I almost ALWAYS use Wendy’s toe up pattern, with adaptations to the cuffs in all of the wonderful other sock patterns that I love.

  16. 3 orders to go till I’m a Groupie. Well soon to be 2 orders to go. My valentines day gift this year is yarn….WooHoo. Hubby knows the way to my heart. I’m definitely going to get my Skitz kitty a cozy cushion. I’m sure she’s going to love it.
    I suggest getting Knitting Pure & Simples Beginner’s Lightweight Sock #216. They are simple and very easy to use. I use the ones in the kids size to make for my daughter. I also have a website that you can put in your gauge and foot measurement and it gives you a pattern. The site has never failed me. Let me know if your interested.

  17. Just a note before I hop off to order – if someone (like me ;) wants to make a vegan or non-dairy version of your cookies today, they can sub soy or rice milk for the milk (same amount), and half a banana per egg. (And of course, margarine that doesn’t have dairy in it, like Earth Balance.) Just FYI from one cook to another!

    (BTW, there are other things you can use in place of banana, but I like the taste. Especially when you make it with coconut milk…. mmm, tropical valentine hearts!)

  18. Trish, I’m definitely interested. I have all this yummy sock yarn and more coming that is just screaming to be knitted into socks!

    You may email me at ana2_11@yahoo.com with the necessary info.

    Thanks Sheri for putting the question up.

  19. Wow, do I ever want to be a Groupie! Only 3 orders to go! But now it will only be 2 more, cause I’m going to have to order some Opal!

    Will have to make cookies too. Music daughter here wants to give some to friends for V-day…

  20. hi sheri. what a great day for me. just got my latest order and love it, love it, love it. i don’t know what i love more. the yarn or the sweet notes you always include. and i do believe i got the last 2 apple laine but being it was purple, it was meant to be. i have included a website where ana can check out all kinds of free sock patterns. so far, all i do is a generic cuff down kind of sock. some day, i’m going to do some fancy cuffs but not sure i’ll try toe up socks. zoe absolutely looks so color coordinated to her new bed mat. how nice it is and i read about it at the website. maybe lily will have one some day too. happy knitting to all and a great weekend too.

    http://www.socknitters.com/sockpatterns/alpha.htm

  21. The basic sock pattern (cuff down) included in Knitting Rules!: The Yarn Harlot’s Bag of Knitting Tricks by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee is a great one. Cahpter 8 I think . . .

  22. Ana, the Ann Norling pattern offers three yarn choices and has three needles sizes. My first pair were made from the Beginners lightweight sock pattern from Knitting Pure and Simple. The Twisted Sisters Sock workbook is a wonderful source as well. Sherri……DH wants to put me on a yarn diet before I get as big as he is….lol. I personally think he wants the cookies all for himself. Last time I made cookies he told me I could do “anything” I want as long as I make him cookies. Hence the next day came my first order from you…..LOL!!!! And I am with Janet on the Hydrangea colors. Beautiful!!!! Recipe will follow this weekend as soon as I can locate the actual recipe box……

  23. I love those cookies mostly bc they are pink and heart shaped. Also Julia’s birth story was fun. :>) I bet you make clover cookies at St Patricks Day don’t you Sheri?

    I finally ordered 3 of the kitty warming beds like Miss Zoe is modelling. And yes, I have spent plenty of money on things they look at once and then ignore. I am guessing they will love these beds though.

    My pick for a new colorway would be soft tones that includes a yellow. Say some combo of (1) butter/pink/green/brown or (2) butter/lavendar/green/brown.

    I just got a shipment from Sheri today which included some of the new Panda Cotton. I see these as excellent ‘footie’ socks for summer time and lightweight garments. I know most of you are in a deep freeze (and you have my sympathy) but summer is just around the corner here in the Valley of the Sun in Arizona so must get to it. :>)

  24. I used the A. Norling pattern as well. Sherri – I heard somewhere else that Sweet Georgia is going to be taking extended break. Say it aint so??? :)

  25. Sheri – the cookies look sooo good. May have to surprise the kids on Valentine’s Day when they get home from school. Actually, more like shocked, since it’s been years since I’ve made cutout cookies.

    Seriously, you spoil us with all these wonderful yarns. I’ve been enjoying knitting with the Fleece Artist I got last week, then the J-Knits arrived yesterday – so soft and pretty colors. (Yes, ahem, 2 orders in 2 weeks – guilty!) I’m trying really hard not to start any more until I get the two pair I’m working on finished. The hard part will be deciding which yarn to use next.

    So, besides the Opal Toucan, did you set aside any of the other new ones for you?

  26. That is one happy cat. I wonder if weight is an issue with these? My Corgi girls are around 24-25 pounds and sometimes on our 20 degree below nights I worry about their crates being a bit too cool since they are on the floor.

    BTW I am totally jealous of you having a family member who is a Starbucks Barista. Does she bring you a treat every night?

  27. i got my package today, and it’s LOVELY1 i got the panda for my SIL because she is allergic to wool, and i KNOW she would appreciate handknit socks (she cried when i gave her the flowerbasket shawl for christmas 2 christmases ago). can’t wait to cast on!

  28. I too am jealous of the Starbucks Barista in the family. That is one of my guilty pleasures, white chocolate mocha latte is my weakness. Love all the new Opal yarns, I am so glad Valentines is just around the corner. I will have to try out your cookie recipe, my family will love them.

  29. Sheri, i loved my gift bag, it was so nice and extra yarn too. I suspect I need to start hiding it now. I am loving the sweet georgia yarn that I ordered so soft and wonderful to knit with. I am holding the yarn pirate yarn that I ordered, and can hardly wait to start that, but since I have 3 different projects going right now I think that I willl have to restrain myself. I may make the cookies, my college daughter and her boyfrined came home for the weekend, and they look hungry.

  30. I’m finally knitting up some of my Yarn Pirate and I can see why it’s knitting daughter’s favorite. I’m making baby socks (Ann Budd’s free pattern on the Piecework website) and they’re looking great! Now I can’t wait for more of that beautiful yarn to come in.

  31. There’s a basic cuff down sock pattern in the Knit Simple winter 2006/2007 edition. The pattern is for three different weights of yarn and for babies/children and adults.

  32. OK, like I wasn’t already going to order again, but now I am WAY motivated – i wanna be a Loopy Groupie too!

    Ana, I second the Knitting Pure & Simple pattern, and there is also a way easy pattern in Sally Melville’s ‘The Purl Stitch’.

  33. A great big welcome to all the new Loopy Groupies! We are the new Ya Ya’s of the knitting world ala Sheri. Maybe I should say Yah Yah’s because we have Sheri and she gave us The Loopy Ewe.

    I cast on the J. Knits Superwash Me – Sock yarn in the color Boston immediately when it arrived. I’m going to knit a pair of Widdershins socks in the cable version. This pattern is by Knitty.com. Let me tell you, this yarn is just gorgeous! Wonderful to knit with and very soft…but, does not split. When I wound it into a ball I thought the blue was not that varigated or stripped, however it is knitting up into a beautiful classy strip. I’m very impressed….love it! I NEED MORE.

    Also, Sheri sold me on Zoe’s Kitty’s pad. I received a shipping confirmation that my cat (Jake) will soon have one as well. He told me he couldn’t wait. I showed him Zoe’s picture and I hope you don’t mind Sheri, but I think he has a little crush on her.

    Oh, and may I have one of your cookies? yum! :~)

  34. Hi Sheri, I have to say I really look forward to reading your blog because you’re always so cheerful and funny! You have a lovely family and I think it’s great that they’re so involved in the Loopy Ewe.

    I’m home sick today and my fiance told me, “sleep! knit! drink lots of orange juice!” so I’m going to follow his advice. :) :) I think I might cast on the sweet georgia yarn! When it got here I thought it was the most horrible hideous mistake, but when I wound it into a ball it looked luscious, and it’s been peeping seductively out of my knitting basket all week! It’s going to become Mom socks, if I can bear to give them up…conveniently, we have the same size feet, so I don’t have to decide who gets a pair until they’re all done!

  35. Hi! I don’t knit but came across the sugar cookies randomly. I have been thinking of the cookies every since and decided to make them. They are awesome! My husband said they “are the best sugar cookie ever!”. Just thought i would write this so everyone else will make and eat them!! Thanks a bunch and I think I’ll try the chicken cheese casserole next! Carla :)