knitting and cookies and new games, oh my

I finished some knitting projects! (I know, shocking, right?)

First up, the results of my hats for Paradise project. I made six hats.

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My mom made one with a cute pom pom.

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I also decided to donate some scarves I had knit for another donation project and never got around to mailing (oops) plus a cowl I made as a sample for knitting class and the purple one I was knitting over the summer.

A friend of mine from my mostly defunct knitting group also gave me a couple hats, a scarf, a couple cowls, and a baby blanket.

All of these items are now on their way to Paradise, hopefully to bring someone some warmth.

I also put the finishing touches on a baby dress I had knit and whipped up a bunny for the couple who sells my favorite coffee at the farmer’s market.

I love that bunny pattern. If Ravelry is to be believed, I have knit it 28 times. You would think I would have it memorized, but I have to look at it for the ears. I can manage the rest.

In other exciting news, I baked fancy cookies.

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And I got a new game with many game pieces to pop out and build into adorable trees. It’s called Photosynthesis. I grew the best trees when Niels and I played it this afternoon. Go me!

Facebook

I am thinking about leaving Facebook because of recent revelations about their cavalier attitude towards user data and privacy. I am hoping to use my blog more regularly instead of posting everything there.

I have also rejoined Ello and Mastadon. I am abigailvr everywhere if you would like to connect with me.

In the mean time, here are some cookies I baked today.

See you here soon!

cookies and my favorite author

I spent a bunch of time today making mini corn muffins and The WORST Chocolate Chip Cookies for my sons’ pot lucks at school tomorrow.

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look at these cookies
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aren’t they terrible looking?

As you can guess, they’re actually very delicious. That is fortunate, because school has been canceled tomorrow due to the impending apocalypse.

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i live in that purple blobby bit over San Jose

To escape from thinking about the apocalypse, I went to see Neil Gaiman speak at Stanford.

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my fave

Neil Gaiman is my favorite author. I have been to many of his readings, signings, and speaking engagements since 2001 when I saw him read from American Gods. He never fails to delight and entertain. He read us a story about wildfires, read a section of Good Omens, answered some audience questions, and let us all know that what he believes in is empathy and leaving the world a better place than when you turned up.

Also, he compared writing Norse Mythology to knitting. He said writing it was his knitting, like how knitters knit between things and in the end they have a sweater.

Funny he should mention knitting, because that was what I was doing while I listened. I got a couple inches of sleeve done. I am making good progress.

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just the sleeve, but the rest of the sweater was there on my lap

Maybe that can be my project for our “smoke day” tomorrow: finishing this sleeve!

 

christmas means no craft pictures

Actually, I have one craft picture you can see: a craft I messed up. I was going to make these whimsical quilted notecards as Christmas gifts. So easy! So cute! So “You really can’t mess these up.” according to the description. I proved them wrong.

yes, you can mess this up
Blech.

Instead I made something from the book I mentioned in the previous post. A couple somethings, actually, but I haven’t given them away yet, so you can’t see them.

Instead, enjoy my cookies. I made one of my favorites: Double Ginger Crinkles. I actually mixed the dough up a couple of days ago and it was waiting patiently in the refrigerator. Today it was ready for the big time!

First it got rolled into balls.

ready to roll

Then the balls were rolled in sugar spiced with ginger and allspice.

mmm, sugary

Lined up neatly on the baking sheet.

all lined up

And baked until they puff up and then crinkle back down.

don't eat them all at once!

These cookies are delicious, trust me. Or you could make them yourself and find out.

Double Ginger Crinkles
From Washington Post 12/1/99
makes 3 doz. cookies (I get more than this, maybe mine are too small)
2 cups plus 2 Tblsp flour
1 1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp ground ginger
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground allspice
3/4 cup veg. shortening (I use Spectrum organic, nonhydrogenated)
3/4 cup plus 2 Tblsp sugar
1 large egg
1/3 cup unsulphered molasses
1 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup packed chopped crystallized ginger
1 1/4 cups sugar blended with
    1/4 tsp ground ginger and
    1/8 tsp ground allspice
(I only used 1/2 cup of sugar for the rolling – with the usual spices – and I still had sugar leftover. Go figure.)

In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, ground ginger, nutmeg and allspice. Set Aside

In a large bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed, cream the shortening for 2 minutes. Add the sugar in 2 additions, beating for 1 minute after each addition. Beat in the eggs. Blend in the molasses and vanilla. Reduce the speed to low and add the flour mixture in 3 additions, beating just until the flour is incorporated after each addition. Stir in the crystallized ginger. The dough will be very soft. Cover tightly and refrigerate until firm enough to handle, 3 to 4 hours. (If necessary, transfer the dough to freezer until firm, about 1 hours.)

Preheat oven to 375. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper.

Form the dough into balls of about 1 Tblsp. Roll each ball in the ginger-sugar mixture and then place them 3-inches apart on the prepared baking sheets.

Bake the cookies for 12 to 13 minutes or until set. During baking the cookies will puff, then deflate and form crinkled surfaces. Cool on the baking sheets for 2 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Store in an airtight tin.

copycat cookies

I posted a picture of copycat cookies in my Flickr account and Chikn with Stix asked what a copycat cookie is, so here they are!

They're a copycat of a Mrs. Fields cookie, according to the recipe in my newspaper this week. I made half the recipe, left out the nuts (so Stefan could have one) and the grated Hershey's bar (since I didn't have it) and used Rapadura in place of the brown sugar, because that's what I had. They are incredibly good. Next time I make them I am going to try replacing half of the flour with whole wheat too.

Copycat cookies

Makes 112

2 cups (1 pound) butter

2 cups sugar

2 cups brown sugar

4 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

4 cups flour

5 cups oatmeal, measured then finely ground in a blender

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

24 ounces chocolate chips

8-ounce Hershey's chocolate bar, grated

3 cups chopped nuts, optional

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cream together butter and sugars and add eggs and vanilla. In a separate bowl, mix flour, oatmeal, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Mix dry ingredients with creamed mixture. Add chocolate chips, grated candy bar and nuts. Drop golf ball-sized balls of dough 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake for eight to 10 minutes.

Many Home Plates readers

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