We’re back up and running in the new space – yay! We shipped orders on Friday and Saturday (which you know, if you had some “pending” while we moved) and we’re ready to do all of your weekend Sneak Up orders today. Did I throw you by having a Saturday night Sneak Up? There were so many lines that we had come in during the week, and I knew that some of you were waiting on a few of those. (Including Claudia – and more Peppermint Mocha, Louet - just in time for the two-yarns/colors Q4 Challenge, Shibui Knits – although some are on backorder, Apple Laine, Nature’s Palette, Trekking – lots of new colors!, Austermann Step – lots of new colors!, Sockina, Oceanwind Knits – almost sold out but more shipping next week, Stitchkeepers, Honey House Bee Bars, Zecca, and patterns by Cookie A and Heartstrings – fun new lace ones in there.) Whew! Now that those are all up, we can focus on taking new photos of the stuff waiting in the wings. Here’s the Sheepaints sock that I knit up – isn’t it pretty? Sabine sent us some beautiful colorways from Germany that will go up in the next Sneak Up. We also have Numma Numma almost ready to go up (you’ll remember the fingerless gloves that I knit with that – gorgeous stuff), more Seacoast, Mrs. Kwitty’s bags, and Ham’s Jam Yarn Cruisers in new fabrics. We’ll see what else arrives this week in time for photo-ing.
The New Loopy Room is …. not completely Loopified yet. Close, but not yet. I’ll take in-progress photos again soon. I suspect that space will constantly be evolving, just like the “old” Loopy Room did. We’re going to have a Loopy Wall of Fame in there so that when you come visit, you can sign it and we can remember that you were here! (Ok – maybe not ON the wall. Not sure the landlord would like that. But maybe we’ll have a giant sock blocker to sign, or something. We’ll get shopping hours up and going in November.) Look at this cute SHEEP cookie bouquet that my sweet friend Monica sent last week! It was fun to see that come through the door.
I have winners for the Q3 Challenge! You all did such an amazing job on your projects, and there were a LOT of votes cast. The winner of the random drawing was Alison with her gorgeous Seraphim Shawl. (Alison – you also had a lot of votes, so it’s fun that you won the random drawing!) The winner of the “Knitter’s Choice” award with the most votes was Alex for her amazing Norwegian Stocking. (Alex – did you knit one sock or a pair? People want to know!) It was fun to see all of the photos come in. Do feel free to continue to add to any of the Challenge Photo Galleries as you finish up – people still love looking at them and I know many of you have said you’re still working on it. (And don’t forget Q4, now in progress!)
On the knitting front, here is the Alpaca Sox that I knit up while in Colorado. This yarn is so wonderfully warm and will keep your feet happy all winter long. I’m knitting this pair up for a friend who is making me a beautiful felted tote in exchange for it. She likes blues to wear with her jeans, and this colorway was perfect. Now I’m working on another yarn line that we have coming in sometime in November (which I haven’t told you about yet. These are definitely going to be Happy Socks, guaranteed to chase away the winter blues.) I also have several new Heartstrings lace patterns that were tempting me when I was putting them away this week. Like this one, and this one, and this one (and it ought to be noted that I don’t even wear things like this. They just look so beautiful that I’m thinking I need to make one or two.) I also liked this and this and this. Maybe for some Christmas gifts this year.
On the home front – the cats seem to be getting along well. Here they are intent on chasing the laser light across the floor. They seem to love pouncing on each other and rolling around. Zoe (on the left) has such huge eyes that I think Gracie gets intimidated as they sit and stare at each other. Gracie will bob her head and chatter, and then dash around Zoe in an attempt to get her rolling and playing. My friend Sharon assures me that the pouncing and rolling is all good cat play. No one is hissing or growling, so I have to assume that everyone is happy. Right?
So technically, it’s still Friday. At least here in the midwest. What a busy week! I don’t have Loopy pictures today, because now I’ll wait and show you when we’re all done. I will say that that set of shelves along the green wall from Wednesday’s post is full of Cherry Tree Hill and Apple Laine, and it looks beautiful! All of the bags and cases of yarn are put away …. and all of the shelves are completely full. So, we have more shelves coming on Monday. (Because we have more yarn arriving daily around here.) Things are almost feeling Loopy over there. I’m thinking about another week and we’ll have it completely Loopified. I’ll keep you posted. (You all have been so nice about wanting to see photos!) Monday, it’s back to business as usual here at The Loopy Ewe – yay!
Have you ever been completely frustrated with automated phone systems? I had to call AT&T this week. We had our phones switched over, and had to get new phone numbers. The gal taking the order assured me that the toll-free number would stay the same, as it’s a “forwarding number”. However, when I tried it out after the technician left, there was a recording that stated that number had been disconnected and giving our new (local – so not toll-free) number. All I needed to do was call someone at AT&T to tell them that the forwarding wasn’t working. I spent 45 minutes on the phone. What was I doing? Oh, entering my “account number” 9 different times, picking “the option that best describes the problem” about 15 times, finally reaching someone and then being put on hold because she was “residential” and I needed “business”. (Although I picked the “business” option several times before reaching her.) When she told me she’d have to transfer me, I said, “Don’t put me on hold! I can’t get out of that endless loop to get a real person!” She said, “I understand. I won’t.” And then proceeded to do just that and I was then disconnected and had to start all over again. (Yes, I do know about hitting “O” for Operator, or pushing the # or the * buttons. I tried it all. I guess the phone company is wise to all of those tricks.) Needless to say, I was completely frustrated with that phone company at the end of all of this. Today, I had to call back. But, this time I had a real number and got a real person who quickly solved the next phone problem that had come up, went the extra mile with her customer service, sent out an extremely helpful techinician within 2 hours, and restored my faith in the phone company. Or at least restored my faith in her part of the phone company. I really really can’t stand automated phone systems, though.
Today’s recipe is from my Grandma Bass (from Germany) and was probably my very favorite thing that she made. She used to have one ready for me every time I visited, and every time I came home for a break from college. My mom brought this one over to us this week, knowing that we needed a little extra TLC in the midst of moving-mayhem.
5 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
3 eggs, beaten + 1 egg white
4 Tbl. shortening, melted and cooled
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup raisins
1 1/2 cup sugar
2 Tbl. yeast
- Dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup warm water. Add a pinch of sugar to it and let it rise for 5 minutes.
- Mix dry ingredients. Add in raisins.
- Add in yeast mixture, vanilla, 3 beaten eggs and shortening. Mix and knead well.
- Let rise until double. Punch down and let rest for 5 minutes.
- Divide into 3 equal balls. Roll out each ball into a long tube shape and braid the 3 of them together. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until double.
- Brush top with egg white.
- Bake at 325 degrees for 40 minutes. Let cool and then sprinkle with powdered sugar.
(One time my mom made this for me for my birthday and dropped it off while it was still warm. I took the towel off the top and there were strings poked down into the top at regular intervals. I asked what the strings were for and found out that she had put birthday candles in the top and the warmth from the Hefenkranz had melted the skinny little candles into puddles and left the wicks hanging there!)
So this month’s contest is simple – what is your favorite recipe that you remember someone special making for you or for family gatherings in your childhood? (Mom, Dad, Grandma, Grandpa, Aunt, Uncle, etc.) You don’t have to share the recipe – but tell us what it was in the comments. (Of course if it’s really good, you’re always welcome to share the recipe!) I’ll use the random number generator to draw a winner from all of the comments during this next week, and the winner will receive $25 in Loopy Bucks!
Well, we’re working hard, but that space is definitely not Loopified yet. We did paint a few walls. (Actually, there is no “we” about it. My mom came to help clean the new place the first day and when I started talking about needing some color on a few walls, she volunteered that my dad was a wonderful painter. Being a great sport, he agreed to take on the job on our very first day of moving in. So he gets all the credit!) I love walking in and seeing color instead of beige. This is the wall when you first walk in and we’ll put our Loopy sign up above there. Right now, the shelves are sadly empty. That’s the status. Painting is done, most shelves are up, but there are bags and boxes of yarn to unload and put away. There’s just no way to hurry that process up! It doesn’t feel like The Loopy Room yet, but I do have high hopes for it. I am really really really loving all of that space. (It’s going to fill up quickly. We have so much on order.)
On the home front, we introduced Zoe and Gracie today. It went so well! Not a hiss between the two until much later when they both went dashing after the same laser light and Zoe wanted dibs on it. In this photo, Zoe was interested in Gracie and Gracie was much more interested in being let out into a very big room, after her confinement in the guest room. They had a great time racing around and playing. Zoe is definitely the alpha cat, and Gracie is happy to let her have that roll. If I had known this was going to be so easy, I would’ve gotten a second cat ages ago. Why didn’t any of you tell me that I needed a second cat??
Hope you’re all having a good week. Your emails and blog comments have been so fun. (Yes, I’m woefully behind on answering emails – there is no computer in the Loopy Room yet. But I’m reading them all when I get home at night and love hearing from you. Soon, life will get back to normal. I think.)
The movers are busily moving all of our yarn and shelves to the new Loopy home today. We spent the weekend packing up the yarn and trying to move around all of the boxes and bags that kept accumulating in the dining room, hallway, and basement. I think the whole house will give a sigh of relief when the new place has taken all of this in! Here is a picture of where we’re going. Never fear, we will soon have the whole doggone place turned “Loopy” by the end of the week. Right now it just looks boring. In typical moving-day-Murphy’s-Law, it’s supposed to rain all day. So far, so good, but it’s getting cloudy. Good thing the yarn is bagged and protected.
In order to make my week a bit more complicated (and I seem to be good at that), we got a new kitten over the weekend. (Honestly, WH looked at me as if I might have lost a few marbles when I talked to him about it. Why would I do that during a week that is sure to be our most packed and overwhelming week in a long time? Um …. because we took one look at her and fell in love with her? Because I want Zoe to have a buddy to hang around with, now that I’ll be gone during the day? Because we needed a second cat? Because I like to stir things up? I can come up with a whole list of reasons. He knows this about me. He gave up and said yes.) So here she is – sweet little Gracie. Is she not just the cutest thing? She is soft and fluffy and extremely affectionate. She’s residing in the guest room until it’s time for her to meet Zoe. However, they have been playing “pawsie” under the door and meowing at each other, so I think it will go well. When you see a photo of the two of them together in the blog, you will know we have succeeded.
Onward with the move. I hope you all have a great week!