Archives from September 2007

Knitting Time!

Photo: Sheri Berger
Friday, September 28th, 2007 in Sheri's Recipes

Knitting Daughter and I have snuck away for a couple of days of knitting and movies and hanging out. Yay! We used to do this on long weekends pre-Loopy, and I promised her we’d make a point to still do it. So while the Loopy Elves are hard at work getting your orders out, we’re slacking. And having a great time! Actually, I pre-wrote this because we’re not taking the computer with us, so I hope we’re having a good time. :-) I suppose that I also need to admit that I will be out of town next weekend, too. (I know, I know. Two weekends in a row. Slacker, slacker, slacker.) Next weekend is my Girlfriend Weekend in Colorado. You might remember that I went in March for my annual trip. We’re hoping the husbands are overlooking the fact that we did this twice this year. We used the excuse that we wanted to move the timing for the trip to Fall. Of course it made much more sense to schedule two this year than to wait 18 months in between them. You know how that goes. So next week I’ll blog Monday and Wednesday and then will be gone until Sunday. I’m leaving Loopy in very capable hands, so your orders will still go out – I just won’t be emailing or blogging!

I had a hard time deciding what to take and knit this weekend. We have so many fun new lines coming in and there is so much knitting to be done. (It’s a difficult problem to have.) Our next Sneak Up will be the second week in October (after I return from my second Slacker Girlfriends Weekend), and we will have Yarn Love, 15 colors of the new Heather Sock Yarn from Schaefer (it came in today – so pretty. 55% Merino, 30% Silk and 15% Nylon), more Schaefer Anne and Lola, more Trekking, and …. the things that are on their way as I type. An update on Wollmeise – I had a very fun phone call with Claudia from Germany this week (Hi Claudia!) and our next order will ship in 3 weeks and will include Lace AND Sock yarn. Apparently it’s the rainy season in Germany, and the yarn doesn’t dry as fast as she can dye. At any rate, we’ll keep getting that in and I know you will love the lace as much as you have loved the sock yarn. I have one skein of it and keep trying to find “the perfect” pattern for it. Or maybe I’m scared to use something that nice until I have more lace experience.

Today’s recipe is a quick and easy dessert for your family or friends.

bcakePoppy Seed Bundt Cake
(Am I the only one who thinks of “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” every time I hear the word “bundt cake”?)

1 pkg. yellow cake mix
1 pkg. instant vanilla pudding (3 oz)
5 large eggs
1/2 cup oil
1 cup water
1/4 cup poppy seeds

Mix well. Bake in greased and floured bundt pan at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Remove from oven slightly before done – it will finish baking in the pan. Cool a little and invert on plate to finish cooling before adding glaze.

1/2 tsp. butter extract
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1/4 cup orange juice
3/4 cup sugar

Heat until sugar dissolves. Cool until thickened and drizzle over cake.

Sheri hopeyouhaveagreatweekendwithlotsofknittingtime!

Loopy Takes Over

Photo: Sheri Berger
Wednesday, September 26th, 2007 in Loopy

marlo(Loopy guest edits the blog today to talk about his fabulous summer vacation.)

Oh the places I’ve seen! I was a bit hesitant when the Loopy people sent me out to vacation around the world over the past few months. Things are pretty nice and cozy in The Loopy Room, so I wasn’t sure how I’d like having a summer off to relax and play. I’ve decided that I like it a lot. I went so many places and met so many people.

First the people. Of course my favorite part was just vacationing with all of YOU. No wonder the Loopy People like you all so much. You’re fun! I met famous TV stars (here I am with Marlo Thomas and my friend Rosemary. I don’t think Marlo is a knitter, but she did a good job as “That Girl”, so I think she could be a knitter if she tried it. I think she thought I was cute. And of course I am.) I also met a lot of radio personalities (they may have talked about me on the radio. Or they may have talked about those of you who ran up and shoved me into their hands for a picture, like a crazy person. I’m not sure.) catI also met many famous knitters. I like knitter’s a lot. I especially like sock knitters, so it was nice to meet Cat Bordhi in person. They call her “Cat” but she’s really a person. I couldn’t quite figure that out, but I guess you know who I mean. She was teaching a class at the TNNA Show this summer. I listened to a “Harlot” talk (which I thought was going to be a little scarey. Turns out she hates squirrels and I do, too, so I guess she’s ok after all.) I also golfed with Sergio at the US Open. He may not have known I was golfing with him necessarily, but I totally was. I’m a good golfer, as I can use all four feet when necessary. And what’s not to like about a game that is played on all of that delicious green grass? After we were done golfing, I went to collect my trophy.

I got to meet some of the cutest dang babies you have ever seen this summer. Most of the time I caught them sleeping, which I’m told is a very good thing. Sometimes maybe they’re not hunterquite so dang cute? At least that’s what I have heard. I also met a lot of very nice, friendly family members on picnics, in parks, at baseball games, and all over the place. My buddy Hunter took me to his first day of school, and that was one of my favorite things. I had never been to school before. I’m not sure I need to go back. But I liked Hunter a lot. There were also a lot of other cute kids. One girl let me color with her. Or else she colored on me. I can’t remember. This girl wished that I had pretty blue eyes just like her, and I kinda wish I did, too. I was kept high and dry by this new friend, and rescued from the jaws of death by these buddies.

Some of you tried to give me a bit of culture. I visited the Sydney Opera House (which everyone needs to see at least once.) Dr. Jackie and James took me to hear the St. Louis Symphony. That started out good, but then they stuffed me into a bag for the jackiejamesconcert and everything sounded a bit muffled. Next time I hope they buy me a front row seat. I also visited Wordsworth’s Grave (and had a moment of respectful silence there). I floated on a big boat in Sicily with Theresa, had a walk down Penny Lane in Liverpool, visited a sheep station in Australia, participated in an Irish wedding, took a peak peek at Denali, played in Kellie’s stash in New Zealand (she has a lot, but I’m sworn to secrecy), and even visited The White House. (Do you see George up there on the balcony? He was waiting for me to come in for dinner.) I particularly enjoyed catching Hamlet and Wicked – I love plays. whitehouseAnd did you see that I was on hand for the unveiling of the last Harry Potter book? They had all of the books boxed and hidden under cover, but I pulled back a corner with my teeth, just so that I could say I saw it first. I haven’t read it yet. I’m afraid they might use “fleece” in some of their potions and I just don’t want to know. I also got to see a lot of yarn shops. I know I live in a yarn shop, but it’s always fun to visit someone else’s house shop. Mostly I had to hide in purses and knitting bags when we were in there. But I peeked.

bouncerThere were a few scarey times. I went biking with Karen and her husband and I thought I’d pose on someone’s bike - just for the blog, you know – and I almost got tarred and feathered. Apparently it’s SO not cool to sit on someone else’s bike. But it felt cool. Getting past the scarey looking bouncer at the bar was a piece of cake after that. (Don’t let this photo fool you – he was as nice as could be and I think he is probably wearing handknit socks, although he wouldn’t admit it.) crabI loved the beach, but had another frightening encounter with this grumpy crab. He thought he might like to eat me, but then he decided I tasted like cardboard and left me alone on the sand. Whew. I was also a little scared of a cat named Sophie, until I remembered how much I like my own cat Zoe. I figured Sophie is probably just as nice underneath. I think I met a few cousins at some of the fiber festivals I went to.

mammI did manage to check in with some doctors during the summer. It’s always good to stay on top of your health. So I had an MRI to check out my spine (and they said it looked marvelous, even with all of the standing around I do all day long), I had all my teeth cleaned at the dentist, and I visited a mammogram machine just so that I could tell you to be sure to have your annual checkup. (As soon as this photo was done, I got the heck out of there. I’ve heard about that machine, and I want no part of it, let me tell you.) After all of those medical appointments, I needed some down time so I went tubing with Meg and her family in Michigan. They put me in a ziploc bag so that I wouldn’t get my fleece wet. Then I headed up to the cabin with Valerie in Canada. tubing(Beautiful place up there. I particularly liked the cool weather, because the Loopy People kept complaining about the heat and humidity back in St. Louis all summer long.)

So as you can see, it was a summer FULL of a lot of fun. You can go over to my photo gallery to see all 140+ photos, because I did so many more cool things. The Loopy Lady says that I’ve talked about myself for long enough now, so I’ll end this. After you check out all of my photos, you can leave a comment and vote for:

- best “far away” place that I visited
- most interesting famous person that I met
- most unusual place that I visited
- most creative photo that I was in

Or you can leave a comment and just say hi.

The Loopy Lady says she’ll give prizes to the winners, and she’s going to draw an extra random winner from all of the submissions. She’s glad you all had fun with me (and I’m glad, too.) She also said that I can go again next summer – so where are we going next year??

Love, Loopy theworldwidetravelextraordinaire.Andohsohumble,too.

Back from college

Photo: Sheri Berger
Monday, September 24th, 2007 in Sheri's Top Tens

DSC01200.JPGWe had a great weekend visiting College Guy for Parents’ Weekend. As usual, I discovered a few things about college days. Or at least I remembered a few things about college days. (Here was my list of things learned last year.) College Guy goes to Taylor University in Upland, Indiana. They joke about it being in the middle of a cornfield. I should’ve taken a photo, because it really IS surrounded by cornfields! DSC01201.JPGThankfully Marion, Muncie, Indianapolis and Fort Wayne aren’t too far away, so they can always go there for fun. It’s a great school and just won a top award for colleges of its size (as seen in the banners that are proudly displayed around campus now.) So – the things I learned this year:

1. College kids can put up with parents hanging out in their dorm room, as long as it’s for a relatively short period of time. Like an afternoon.

2. Guitar Heroes is fun. (I’m expanding my skills. This summer they made me do DDR – and do you know what that is? I didn’t. This weekend I learned how to do Guitar Heroes and I’m thinking we might have to get that. I’m sure it’s good brain exercise, somehow.)

3. It doesn’t matter how good the food is in the Dining Commons during Parents Weekend – all of the college kids still want to go out to eat with you.

4. Roommates can be a good source of information. We all went out for lunch on Saturday (parents + siblings + kids – 12 of us) and roommates like to tease each other. If you’re a parent and if you’re smart, you’ll smile and nod a lot, and this usually keeps them joking and talking, and sharing important info.

5. Most dorm room couches are old and ugly. But very very comfortable. (They’ve been flopped on so many times, that they’re very accepting of any and all body types that want a place to sit.) I have yet to see a nice dorm couch.

6. Cookies are still required upon entrance. Extra credit is given if you happen to also bring PopTarts or something else equally healthy.

DSC01203.JPG7. I miss hearing college chimes. Did you go to a school that had chimes? Walking around campus and hearing them play still takes me right back to my college days.

8. College kids go jogging at midnight and think nothing of it. What’s up with that?

9. Ivanhoes is still the best place for ice cream sundaes and malts. I wish I would’ve taken a picture of what I got. Trojan Two – cookie dough ice cream, chocolate covered graham crackers, and peanut butter sauce. There may have been something else in there, too, but who pays attention after the first delicious spoonful?

10. College visitation weekends are no time to diet.

Today, I’m back in the swing of things here at The Loopy Ewe! In fact, we have exciting things going on around here. More on that later, as things progress. I will tell you that there is a Sneak Up going on right now! Head on over and you’ll find Classic Elite Alpaca Sox, Wendy’s Patterns, Yarntini and Yarn Pirate, a great deal on a few Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Solids, and more. (Note – of course some of those might be sold out again by the time you read this – but just remember, we ALWAYS have more on order!)

Lastly – the winner of our September Blog contest from last week is Emily. She wins a fall skein of Wollmeise and Yarntini this month! I have loved reading every one of your fall comments. I’m glad I have so many fellow-Fall-fans!

Sheri makingsocksoutofthatnewAlpacaSoxyarnandboyaretheygoingtobetoastyandwarm!

St. Louis Fall – 90 Degrees, FPS

Photo: Sheri Berger
Wednesday, September 19th, 2007 in Shop News

DSC01175.JPGI am ignoring the fact that it was 90 degrees here today. It’s FALL and that’s all there is to it. I only have to continue reading through all of your fun Fall comments from Monday’s post, to keep me in the right spirit! I must say – I get hungry reading those posts. All that talk about wonderful soups and stews, pumpkin donuts, pumpkin cheesecake, PSL’s, crunchy apples, etc. It’s best to read those comments right after a filling meal. Otherwise, I find myself peering into the pantry and rooting around in the freezer. (And you all know that there is nothing in my freezer except a bunch of frozen chicken br*asts and half used bags of frozen veggies.)

DSC01179.JPGHey – we added two more Free Patterns for you on this blog! There is one from Monica Jines, done up in Wollmeise (but of course beautiful with any of your sock yarns.) Monica just sent me a large box of 8 different patterns that we will be offering for sale here. I absolutely love her designs. You’ve seen some of her designs at Cherry Tree Hill already. The other free pattern is from Yarnissima and is the much talked-about Firestarter pattern. I can’t wait to try this one, as it has a very interesting heel and beautiful pattern. Enjoy these free downloads, and watch for more in the future. (I have Baby Monkey, but I’d love for a couple of you to test knit it for me before I put it up. I’d like it knit with Crystal Palace Merino 5, and possibly another sport weight that we carry here. Anyone have time to whip up a pair for me and try out the directions?)

It’s time to welcome more Loopy Groupies to the bunch! Remember, you reach Loopy Groupie status when you have placed your 6th order with us. We so appreciate your business and support, and we want to give back to you in different ways. The Loopy Groupie program is one of those ways! So big hugs to all of these new Loopies: Kathy in TX, Karen in CA, Lucinda in MO, Jillian in PA, Deborah in MN, Michelle in NY, Monica in IN, Cynthia in MN, Amanda in CA, Heidi in Norway, Ellen in OK, Katrina in WA, Lynn in OK, Dorothy in VA, Beverly in IL, Mary in MA, Sydney in NY, Margaret in MI, Cathy in CA, Lucy in TX, Michelle in NC, Tammy in CA, Mink in NY, Michelle in Canada, Barb in IL, Christine in France, Shanidy in TX, Amy in CA, Polly in IL, Phyllis in MD, Elizabeth in MD, Victoria in NY, Angela in NV, Tory in TX, Suzanne in MD, Michelle in MA, Margi in NY, Linda in GA, Lynne in IL, Elizabeth (APO), Patricia in DE, Angela in LA, Sally in VA, Helena in VA, Ann in TX, Katherine in TX, Leslie in CO, Gail in MN, Janis in MD, Carin in NE, Elizabeth in MA, Heather in CT, Kim in VA, Cori in KS, Sheryll in RI, Susan in MD, Linda in NJ, Kellie in Australia, Theresa in FL, Marilyn in KS, Lori in OR, Ruth Anne in OH, Regina in CT, Channon in VA, Lynda in WV, Sharon in TX, Leah in IL, Christine in FL, Olivia in WA, Sherry in PA, KatieBea in PA, Aimee in NC, Susie in NY, Michele in ME, Carole in MA, Heide in TX, Fiona in the United Kingdom, Mary Pat in NE, Ann in VA, Linda in NM, Ellene in CA, Beth in OH, Michelle in PA, Kathy in IA, Jane in IL, Peita in TX, Selina in NY, Nancy in FL, Heather in CA, Bonnie in VA, Michelle in NJ, Kristie in CA, Hattie in WA, Ruth in NJ, Hayley in IL, Jenny in WI, Ellen in NJ, Ruth in NJ, Jennifer in IN, Kristin in IN, Daisy in NY, Gaby in TX, Maria in NY, Samantha in NJ, Christine in TX, Esther in the United Kingdom, Darlene in NY, Natasha in VA, Leslie in CA, Kathleen in MA, Shelley in PA, Jenna in VA, Rachel in VT, Martha in NY, Jill in WI, Tabitha in KY, Sylvia in TX, Carole in TX, Catherine in VA, Allen in Ga, Laura in PA, Brittani in AZ, Melissa in MA, Diane in NY, Dianne in New Zealand, Stormy in WA, Erin in CO, Cynthia in NC, Marsha in CA, Nichole in NH, Linda in WA, Catherine in WI, Carol in WA, James in MO, Frances in NC, Kristan in ID, Jennifer in NY, Glyn in AK, Van in NY, JoAnn in NJ, Liz in IL, Dionne in VA, Shari in Canada, Elizabeth in VT, Sarah in CT, Tammy in MO, Jennifer in CA, Beatrice in VA, Betsy in MN, Kitrin in MT, Barbara in WI, Judy in IL, Kathryn in PA, Eva in Norway, Megan in TX, Heather in NC, Pamela in CT, Sharon in TN, Danielle in MA, Pam in IA, Rebecca in NY, Ann in MA, Denise in OR, Kathryn in TX, Carol in Ca, Jana in NC, Joanna in Canada, Eileen in CT, Leslie in MI, Patricia in CA, Danielle in NY, Amy in PA, Anne in NY, Dawn in MO, Annie in MO, and Lynne in IL. And because we have been known to screw things up before, despite our very best intentions, please let us know if you ought to have been on this list, or you ought to have gotten a Loopy Groupie welcome bag and did not. Just email me: sheriATtheloopyeweDOTcom. We’ll get you taken care of!

DSC01176.JPGBack to Fall – do you find that your decorating tastes have changed? I look at some of the things that I have used for Fall decorations over the years, and …. I don’t like some of it any more. Should I get rid of it? Should I save it for sentimental reasons? (WH would say get rid of it.) Do you decorate your house for the different seasons and/or holidays? We have a “garden window” over the sink in the kitchen. I usually change stuff out in there for the season. Other than Fall and Christmas, I don’t decorate the rest of the house too much. Frankly, I’d rather be knitting. :-)

Just a reminder – we’ll be out of town Friday morning through Sunday night, so orders placed Thursday evening and through the weekend will begin shipping out on Monday. Also – no blog on Friday, but I’ll be back on Monday to tell you any new things I learned at college this weekend. (Parents Weekend for College Guy – yay!) Also, new stuff will go up on the website next week, including some Cherry Tree Hill Supersock Solids that we bought at a great price and will pass on to you!

Sheri hopefullyI’llhavemoreknittingtoshowafterallofthistraveling,too

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