Friday, March 27, 2015

I know. It's been a while.

Dear Readers of My Humble Little Blog,

I am sorry. Sorry I've not written in a long time. I've been busy knitting, and planning more knitting, and vacuuming up cat hair. But fear not! For here I am again!

March is kind of kicking my butt. The weather has been sketchy, the time change really threw me for a loop, and I'm still recovering from a night out last weekend (I'm so sleepy!). We had some beautiful warm spring days, then a week later, we got eight inches of snow. My daffodils are very confused.

The good news is: I booked two out of three vacations for the year! As usual, they are all jammed up around the same time of year, but that's not my fault. All the trips revolve around events and I had no choice of dates. But, vacation is vacation. I know I can last until then!

I did also get a new fruit-based device. I may still have a dumb-phone that I rarely use, but as long as there's WiFi, I'm with the times. I have 4.3 days worth of music, social media, and a nice camera to play with.

See? I'm hip like the kids with the Instagram!

The cats continue to entertain us constantly. Bogey has learned to play fetch, which is super cute. Unless it's 3am, then it's just rude. You have to hide the cat toy under your pillow, and then it takes him a good 10 minutes before he gives up searching for it and lays down. The Captain continues to be handsome, although hairy (hence the aforementioned vacuuming)





I just realized that Syttende Mai is rapidly approaching. I did promise my old boss that I'd bake krumkake, so I'd better practice up. Anybody want some cookies?





Saturday, February 28, 2015

No Worries

A couple of weeks ago, I volunteered to bake something for a bake sale. I decided to use a couple of old recipes I haven't made in ages (literally at least a decade), and both of them use boxed cake mixes. If you know me at all, you know I bake from scratch. I have not purchased a cake mix in years. But I was really craving these two things, so I caved and bought 4 boxes of Betty Crocker mixes. Yes, four, because they were on sale, and I can always donate the extras to the food pantry. Well my caramel brownies sold out right away, and the pistachio cake was a hit too. And yes, I paid money to eat my own baked goods - it was for a good cause.

This past week was my Dad's birthday. Dad appreciates tasty baked goods, so I volunteered to bake his cake. Lo an behold, I was low on flour and there wasn't enough to bake a cake. (I know! What is wrong with me? I normally have a stash of flour in the freezer)  On this particular night, we were having a little bit of a snowstorm. Not terrible, but enough so that I didn't want to go back out. Plus I already had my fuzzy PJ pants on.

So, I got out one more cake mix, dressed it up a little bit with some chocolate marbling, and Voila! Dad's cake. It was pretty tasty, but I couldn't stop thinking about all the ingredients that can't pronounce in that are in that mix. It didn't stop me from eating it, mind you, but the thought was still there.

The fact remains that I'm almost out of white flour and completely out of whole wheat. I'm picky about my flour and I only buy King Arthur brand. They carry it at our grocery store, but not the White Whole Wheat variety I use - I always slip a little whole wheat flour in everything I bake. It makes it healthy.- A trip to Woodman's is in order! They carry every kind of food you will ever need, including King Arthur White Whole Wheat flour. There is a Woodman's conveniently located near where I work, so I stopped yesterday after work.  To my delight, they now carry the 10 lb bags!

I bought 30 pounds of flour. That should hold me for a couple of months.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Family

I have a big family. Not so much immediate family - just 1 sister and 2 parents. But my extended family is just that - extended. I think we counted 21 cousins. I don't think there has been a time when the entire clan has been together in one place. It will probably never happen.

I have a few cousins that I haven't seen in over a decade. I have a few cousins that I really don't even know, have only seen a couple of times. We are spread all over the country.

A couple of my cousins tried to plan a reunion, but things fell through. Even though I wasn't going to be able to go, I was still disappointed. We're going to try again - make some different plans. See if we can get it to stick this time. It's going to be a challenge, but I think I'm up to it.

And any cousins reading this - please comment with any ideas you might have!!


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Merry Christmas 2014

For those of you who normally get a Christmas card from us, don't hold your breath. It's not that we don't like you or that we aren't thinking of you. It's just that time has really gotten away from me, and Writing and printing a letter, addressing and signing cards, and going to the post office (again) are just not high on my list of priorities right now.

So let this blog post serve as your official 2014 Christmas Card from the Baumeister family.

It was, to put it mildly, a trying year for us.

January came in with a bang - plenty of snow and cold.
Karl took the traditional New Year's Day bike ride.
Then the 5 month adventure of car repair began. I won't go in to the details, but let's just say that my January 7, 2014 prediction of "buying an engine off the internet? What could go wrong?!" hit pretty close to home.

In February, we said goodbye to our kitty Sally. Since we were down to just one cat, I filled that void with some foster kitties - a mama cat and her 5 kittens - later in the spring.

In May, Katrina marched in her first parade as a band member. Of course I cried the entire time! I'm so proud of her.
She has great form! Look at how level her horn is!
As predicted, Katrina has grown taller than her mother. She makes sure I don't forget it too.

I had carpal tunnel surgery in June.
Some of the foster kittens never left (securing my status as Crazy Cat Lady)
(L) Captain Fuzzypants  (R) Colonel Bogey

I actually followed through with my New Year's Resolution and knitted a sweater to enter in the State Fair. I finished knitting just before my hand surgery in June, sent it off for judging, and won a ribbon!

2nd Place!

In July, I started a new job. After eleven years of part time work, I am back working in a "grown up" job, and back in the field of veterinary medicine - sort of. I am a sales support person for a veterinary supply company. The adjustment to full time work has been a little rough. I really miss not being able to cook dinner every day, and it always feels like there are not enough hours in the day to get things done (hence this virtual Christmas Card!). But I am really enjoying the work I'm doing. I am in the equipment department, so learning about all the advances in technology has been rewarding. My co-workers are fabulous, which makes it so much easier!

The chickens are still clucking around the yard, all three cats get along like they are littermates,
I have time to bake on the weekends, and I did finally get my car back. Despite the trials and tribulations of the year, we're all happy and healthy. 

We may not have any snow, but I am sure we will have a Merry Christmas, and I wish all the same to you!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Finish Line!

One marathon ends, another begins.



The weekend at knit camp was uber-productive - with Kathy M's help, I got the blanket put together and half of the edges done. A mere four days later, the edges are finished, thus ending the knitting marathon.

There's just one week to go before the lucky winner's name is selected, and we're not anywhere near our fundraising goal! Every little bit helps - even a $5.00 donation gets you one chance of winning this beautiful blanket. Imagine a cold January night, snuggling with your Honey by the fire, under a cozy warm blankie, sipping hot cider, maybe a little smooching... Or how about just napping on the couch on a lazy Saturday? Yeah, you want this blanket!

Get out your wallet right now and give the Krempels Center a little love. I'll be forever grateful.


And the marathon that's starting? Christmas knitting! Socks. Mittens. Scarves. My fingers will be flying!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

In which I go west

So today I drove 6 1/2 hours so I could knit.

Well, not exactly, but yes, that's what I did. I'm currently in Nebraska, at Ponca State Park, in the Osprey cabin. Well, not exactly a cabin, more like a woodland palace. I mean the place has cable TV and Wi-Fi, for crying out loud! But I digress.

As a consolation for not being able to take my vacation this fall, I got to come to knit camp. Well, it's not exactly an official camp. There aren't any counselors or anything. But here I am, in the woods, knitting.

The drive here was really pretty boring. Once I hit Iowa, it was literally due west across the entire state. That part when I almost ran out of gas was fun. Well, not exactly fun. More exciting than fun. There is not a lot of civilization in Iowa. I was not sure I had enough gas to get to the next major city, so I took a chance and turned off into a town.

Well, not exactly a town. More like a grain elevator, a bar, 3 houses, and an unmanned gas pump. Luckily, it was a real gas pump with a credit card reader, so I filled up.

Then there was that 40 mile stretch when the 4 lane divided highway quickly became a 2 lane country highway. In that 40 mile stretch - one single town. And corn. A lot of corn. But the scenery was pretty - rolling hills, farms, manure...

But now it's lights out. Tomorrow is arts & crafts!

I love camp.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

I'm Not Complaining, But...

The season of shenanigans continues.

In the past 48 hours, these cats have:
  • Stolen and eaten a whole pancake
  • Eaten through the foil and well in to the carrot bread on the counter
  • Eaten part of a twist-tie
  • Spilled about a gallon of water
  • Attempted to eat out of the cereal bowl while I was still enjoying my Mini Wheats

And picture this:
I'm standing naked in front of the closet, trying to find something to wear. No, wait. DO NOT picture that - I don't want you to have to deal with that mental image.
Anyway, I'm standing at the closet, and The Captain leaps from the bed behind me to my shoulder. Apparently he wanted to help me choose which pants he would be covering with cat hair today.

But they have also been adorably cute and cuddly, so that totally makes up for it.

See how adorable?

In other news, I'm making progress on our blanket for the Krempels Center. Three more squares arrived today from Australia, and I'm expecting the last batch from Seattle tomorrow. Donations are trickling in. Help me spread the word by forwarding the website to anyone you think might be interested in a beautiful hand-knit blanket.

And that reminds me, I've got some knitting to do!