Thursday, January 6, 2011

Goodbye Christmas, Hello 2011

How was your New Year's Eve?  I spent mine over a hot stove at work... but I think if you have  to work holidays then you might as well do it at a restaurant (in case you didn't catch it, I work at a restaurant) - at least everyone around you is celebrating and you can live vicariously :)  In my case it was twice vicariously since I only saw the servers, but whatever, I still like the idea.
In any case I did make it home in time to ring in the new year with my journal and my puppy sleeping on my toes.  There also may have been chocolate, but I'm not saying.

I didn't make a "list" this year.  I usually like to make some sort of goal list but this year I didn't feel the need.  However, if I had to say some goals for this year, they would be:

Knit More
Blog More
Be Creative More

There that's done.  As for the first I don't think it will be much of a problem.  At the moment I'm working on a marvelous surprise project.  I don't think she reads my blog but just in case we'll stay hush hush until after it's delivered.  I'm also totally inspired by Amanda Soule!  She knit 12...13... 14! Sweaters this year.  
Now for the second, this one I'm counting on my sisters to keep me in line for and as far as being more creative goes, I think this is a good first project.  January is cold and dry and depressing here - some patches of bright would be fun to pull out when we have company with children or for a birthday, don't you think.

Now, on to these babies...
These are French Macarons - Sort of like a sturdier meringue sandwich cookies.  And the chocolate ones are to die for.  

No, really, they are.
I should have had someone else hold this thing.  Look at my cuticles!  I was the one eating it I  suppose.

I found these macarons surfacing in the blog world last yearish?  Mostly from the Portland area I think.  I made them for our family Christmas this year. 
 And I'm not going to lie, they are a lot of work but as I said before the chocolate ones are to die for.

I found the recipe over at David Lebovitz site.  I followed his recipe and instructions and they worked fine when I didn't pipe the cookies out too big.  I think they're supposed to be pretty small but I've never seen one in real life!  The big one's just cracked.  I got very impatient waiting for the ganache to harden so I would recommend making that first and letting it chill until you're finished with the cookies.  The white one's are just vanilla with buttercream in the middle, they really aren't very impressive - I've a request for a different flavor and think i'd like to try raspberry or something else.

They (that is the chocolate ones) pair nicely with a cup of strong coffee.
Oh... and I read that these little guys are the new "cupcake" so watch out for them.

I also wanted to post a picture of the last Christmas Project.  
This is the one I was finishing on Christmas Day... 
This is a pretty traditional dress for me to
 make and it wasn't complex I just had sooo much going on.

Unfortunately the pictures of this dress aren't fantastic.  By the time I finished it I had lost the light.  This dress is for little Lilly, my 6 month old niece.  My mother was going to buy her a dress but I stopped her.  It seems so impractical to buy little girl's dresses when they're so simple to make.
I hunted all over the fabric store for something pink or purple (LIlly has three older brothers - she's always in a girl color) but I kept coming back to this sweet little print.

I went ahead and added a belt so I could make the dress bigger.  The shoulders are quite broad but the belt keeps everything together pretty well.  I wouldn't be surprised if she fit in it until she turns one.  

happy new year!