Yarn Dyeing Class at Main Street Yarn

I had such a great afternoon yesterday.  I felt like I was back at summer camp!

I signed up for a yarn dyeing class at Main Street Yarn in Rebersburg, PA. The shop, which just opened a few months ago, is only about thirty minutes away from State College and it’s in a beautiful valley. It’s very picturesque and throughout our class many Amish people passed by on horses, in buggies and on bicycles.

We spent our afternoon under this tent learning how to dye yarn.  Our teacher was Libby from Mad About Ewes farm.

Behind Main Street YarnsWe each got two skeins of fingering weight yarn to practice space dyeing and set to work mixing our cake dyes.

Wilston DyesMixed Up DyesNaked YarnThe next part was the best.  We all started dyeing our yarns and it was so neat to see how we all chose colors differently and placed them on our yarn in a variety of ways.

019 020 023We wrapped our wet yarn up in plastic wrap, squeezing out the excess water and then cooked them in the microwave for four minutes.

017 025 022After our yarn had cooled, we took turns rinsing it in the sink.  The color really stuck to the fibers as there was no color in the water when we rinsed.  We hung our yarns over the hitching post outside the store to see our results.

Yarn on a hitching post More yarn on a hitching postThese were mine.

My first dyed yarnThis horse even came to see our creations.

Amish buggy and horse with my yarnIt was a really great time and I can’t wait to knit these skeins up.  I love the vibrant colors I chose and the way it all turned out.

my yarn

Advertisements

20-Minute Chicken Enchiladas

This week I decided to make two dinners on Sunday so that we would have meals for the week.  One of these meals was Cooking Light’s 20-Minute Chicken Enchiladas.

I did everything the recipe called for except stopped at the step where I was supposed to put cheese on it and broil.  At that point, I covered my pans in foil and put them in the refrigerator to heat up and top with cheese later in the week.

This was a pretty good recipe but it ended up making way more than one 9 by 13 dish.  In fact, I filled two with about 18 enchiladas.  But I wanted leftovers and easy dinners all week so it worked out well.  However, I’d probably double the sauce in the future had I known that.

20-Minute Chicken EnchiladasWhen we made them during the week, we just let them heat up in a 350 degree oven and then topped them with cheese a few minutes before we were ready to take them out.  They were surprisingly good.  I suspect that if I had made them all in one night, it would have taken longer than 20 minutes but it would be totally worth the time.

Curried Chicken with Ginger and Yogurt

We had such a productive weekend around here.  And last night we were rewarded with a delicious, easy home cooked meal.

The recipe, Curried Chicken With Ginger and Yogurt, took no time to put together and cooked all day.  We substituted chicken broth for the water and used chicken breasts instead of thighs.

Curried Chicken with Ginger and YogurtThe yogurt didn’t exactly mix in as creamy as the picture looked.  I wonder if it was because I used 2% yogurt instead of the whole milk yogurt the recipe called for.  I also wonder if there wasn’t enough fat in the sauce because I used breasts instead of thighs.

Either way, it still tasted very good, especially for the amount of work that I put into this meal.  I thought it might taste good with carrots or golden raisins mixed in also.

 

Chicken and Spinach Lasagna

I came about this recipe in kind of an odd way.  I had it for lunch in New Hampshire but it had been brought to the home where I had lunch by old friends in State College.  I traveled all the way to New England only to have lunch that was cooked at home!

I’m so glad because it was such a nice alternative to a traditional lasagna. When I got home I talked with the woman who had the recipe so that I could make it myself.

I love the way it browned a bit on top.  And even though they are Mike’s least favorite, my best part of a lasagna are the crunchy exposed noodle bits.

Chicken and Spinach Lasagna

Inside it’s creamy and with tons of delicious spinach.

Piece of Chicken and Spinach LasagnaWe cheated and used a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store, but even if we had cooked the chicken, it’s pretty easy to make.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 c. butter
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 c. flour
  • 1 c. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 2 c. cottage cheese (we used unsalted 1%)
  • 9 to 10 uncooked lasagna noodles (we used the no cook kind)
  • 2 pkgs chopped spinach thawed and drained
  • 2 c. chicken broth
  • 8 oz. mozzarella cheese, shredded
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 c. milk
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 2 c. cooked chicken cut up

Here’s how I constructed it.

Melt butter and add garlic and onion. Stir in flour and salt. Cook, stirring, until bubbly.  Stir in milk and broth. Heat to boiling and cook for 1 minute. Stir in mozzarella cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan, basil, oregano and pepper.  Cook over low heat until cheese melts.

In a greased 9 by 13 inch pan layer sauce, noodles, cottage cheese, chicken, spinach and then sauce.  Add one more layer of noodles, cottage cheese, chicken, spinach and sauce. Top with remaining noodles and sauce then sprinkle with 1/2 c. of Parmesan cheese.  Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.

So I’m Crocheting Again?

It’s been years and years since I crocheted something.  In fact, I believe the last project I crocheted was a blanket for my nephew when he was born.  He turns eleven this fall.

But last year I saw this post on Nicky’s blog and I thought that pillow was beautiful. Granny Squares are so pretty and I love the way you can mix up colors.  Then in the fall, my mom and I looked at that pattern and she reintroduced me to crocheting which I picked up quickly. In January, I bought the yarn while traveling around the Lehigh Valley.

And yesterday, I started the actual squares for what may be a pillow or hopefully a blanket.  We’ll see how far I get.  But it’s a nice distraction for some of the larger projects I am working on now or plan to start this year.

025 026I plan to mix the colors up but have multiples of the same color combinations. I guess I’ll see as I go along.

It’s been two months!

That was a completely unplanned pause.  I looked back recently and realized I hadn’t blogged in a while.  Maybe it’s because many of the projects I was working on were presents that I didn’t want to spoil.  Also, I feel like most of my time has been planned out ahead of time these past couple months so instead of writing about knitting, I’ve been using that time to actually knit.

Here’s what I’ve been up to.

I finished a New Super Easy Baby Blanket for new baby Liam.

New Super Easy Baby Blanket 032I knit a hat for charity for part of my trip to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival.

striped beanieI’m still working on my Square Peg. This poncho should be finished in a couple weeks.  Really it should be done sooner but I have some travel coming up and I got a little side tracked (I’ll write about that in a future post).

Square Peg PonchoI went to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival and bought these super fun yarns.

From Oasis Farm Fiber Mill, I got this skein of worsted weight yarn. I swear I had a Barbie workout outfit that was exactly these colors.

Oasis Farm Fiber Mill WorstedFrom Delly’s Delights Farm, I got this sport weight yarn.

Delly's Delights Farm Sport WeightAnd I also got this yarn from Juanita Breidenbaugh.

One of a kind natural dyed yarnI cooked one new recipe in two months and it was this Slow-Cooker Curried Lentils with Chicken and Potatoes.  It doesn’t look like much but it was so good.

Slow-Cooker Curried Lentils With Chicken and PotatoesI actually ran a 5K for Special Olympics with some friends. I’ve been feeling like I never move so this is worth noting.  I plan to do some more races this summer.

Special Olympics 5KI helped plan and execute a very successful 2nd Annual End of the Mountain 5K. That’s me ringing the bell as they took off.

End of the Mountain 5KAnd I took some pictures of the new babies that arrived recently. 153203Plus a couple bonus shots of their animal siblings since I sometimes can’t resist their cuteness more than the babies.

061247So it’s been a busy but good few months.