Saturday, December 30, 2006
I know it's probably been a hectic month for us all; hopefully your gift knitting is done and you can enjoy your coffee and knit something for yourself now! If you haven't taken the time to post and thank your swap partner, please be sure to show her how much you appreciate her package by posting pics and a big "thank you." It's always a bummer to work hard putting a package together and not hearing much about it. Plus, it's fun to show off your new stuff!!
One boring thing on the big Blogger switch: Does anyone know how that works with group blogs such as this? I want to switch mine over but don't want to mess things up for everyone else. Any ideas?
Edited to add: Okay I found out that once I switch, you guys will need to switch as well to post to this blog (it looks like Blogger will switch everyone eventually anyway). So, I'll be switching over Sunday night; if you want to post aftter that you'll need to make the switch!
I'm looking forward to Coffee Swap Two this spring!!!
Thursday, December 28, 2006
Details, links, and yarn photos up at Fruity Sheep .
Thursday, December 21, 2006
Wednesday, December 20, 2006
PS: On the "coffee front" I discovered, at 5:30 this morning, that 7-11 makes a fantastic Pumpkin Cheesecake Latte. Yummy yummy yummy! (and far cheaper than Starbucks to boot! Whoo hoo!)
Monday, December 18, 2006
Sunday, December 17, 2006
Thanks for everything Deborah.And thanks to Knittymama for putting this all together.Count me in for the next one!
I was overwhelmed by the wonderfulness of all of the items in my box of goodness from strange little mama. I am in a crazy sock knitting mood right now and she sent me enough nummy self patterning sock yarn to knit a pair for me and one for the creep! The chocolate bar was gone before the day was out and I put the coffee and the extra large mug to good use right away as well. The funny thing about the mug, and I didn't tell her this before hand, is that my other favorite mug is a starbucks mug that says "minneapolis/st. paul" - I may have to start a collection! I have always coveted the "ssk" type magnets and stickers, so it was great to see that nestled in with the rest of the goodies. The soap and the incense smell terrific and I can't wait to wear the "my stash is bigger than your stash" button to my next knitting group!
Thank you strange little mama!
Friday, December 15, 2006
Coffee! And mugs! And Peeps! And Jasmine Body Scrub and Cucumber Melon Body Butter~
And, of course, yarn:
Look at that batch...Regia, Trekking, and Opal. In absolutely gorgeous colors.
Thanks so much, Kelly!!!!
"You mean, you send all of this stuff to a practical stranger?" He asked quizzically.
"Um hm, and she's in Texas too!" I said with a happy face.
"Did she send you anything?" He was still puzzled.
"Well, yeah!" I nearly shouted. Everyone on the line was now eavesdropping.
"How many people do this thing, the swapping that is." He had a dirty look on his face.
"Yo, back off, dude, it ain't like that at all!" I put on my sistagirl face from Brooklyn.
"I didn't mean anything, it's just that.., I mean, well, nobody ever gave me anything like that before. Maybe I'm in the wrong business." He looked hurt.
"Ok, we cool, not to worry." I said.
He smiled, I smiled and the other people on the line looked very confused so I popped open the box (again, sorry) and showed everyone on the line. After that, no one else complained about the long line, the wait or government inefficiency any more. I heard someone whisper, "wow, now that's the spirit of the holidays...."
So, LaVerna, your package is in the mail sealed with good karma!!
Look at what the the post brought me . . . I am in COFFEE HEAVEN!!! When I came back from lunch on Monday there was a package on my desk at work from Canada . . . well I knew immediately what that meant . . . ANITA LEE SENT ME GOODIES FROM RICHMOND, BC!!! . . . and what goodies they are . . . Anita wrote in her letter to me (the back side of the letter is shown here . . . Anita cut out ladybugs and put them all over the letter . . . too cute!!!!) that she went to three different coffee shops in the Vancouver area where they roast coffee and sent me organic French Roast beans from Salt Spring Coffee, organic Arabica beans from Viva Java (a local Richmond coffee shop where the beans were roasted the morning that she sent my package-talk about fresh!) and a Christmas blend from JJ Bean House of Coffee . . . and the bonus to all these coffees is that if I fall in love with any of them I will be able to get more by e-mailing my request to the shops. . . isn't that great!!!!! Anita also visited "THE" Canadian coffee & donut shop, Tim Horton's, and sent me a mug with a little package of their blend of coffee.
Now as you can tell from the picture the goodies did not end there . . . Anita also whipped up a batch of homemade (that's right . . . made fresh the morning of the mailing) Peppermint Bark . . . of course my co-workers and I had to try some of that right away . . . WOW its great especially with a cup of coffee . . . who knew that you could make something that tastes so good from Special K cereal . . . and the final goodies in the package were 3 skiens of 100% wool Jojoland yarn if a soft varigated green color . . . I can't wait to start knitting that yarn up!!!!
So a BIG THANK YOU Anita . . . you did good and as you said . . . we may have had a slow start (wrong email and blog addresses - we were driving our poor hostess crazy) but we did get on track . . . I am now going to enjoy a cup of Viva Java coffee while I look through some knitting books for the perfect pattern for the yarn!!!
Thursday, December 14, 2006
I can't believe that I haven't shared this recipe with you all yet. Though what I'm truly sad about is that I didn't know about it until *after* sending my package to my Coffee Swap Pal. What a lovely addition this would have made! Without further ado, I present to you - my Fine Coffee Friends - Heaven in a Cookie:
Yield: 25 squares or 50 triangles
Prep: 15 min., bake: 20 min., cool: 30 min.
• 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
• 1/2 cup powdered sugar
• 2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
• 2/3 cup butter or margarine, softened
• 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
• 2 cups (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate morsels, divided
• Vanilla or coffee ice cream (optional)
Combine first 3 ingredients in a medium bowl; add butter and vanilla, and beat at low speed with an electric mixer until blended. Stir in 1 cup chocolate morsels.
Press dough into an ungreased 9-inch square pan; prick dough with a fork.
Bake at 325° for 20 minutes or until lightly browned. Sprinkle remaining cup of morsels over top, and spread to cover as it melts. Cut shortbread into 25 (about 1 3⁄4-inch) squares; cut each square into 2 triangles if desired. Let cool 30 minutes in pan before removing. Serve with ice cream, if desired.
I have ridiculously low willpower when these little cookies are in my home. Yet I keep making them... Ah, well. It IS December after all. Merry, merry!
Thanks, Knittymama for hosting my first ever swap! It's been so much fun, and I look forward to the next one!!
Chocolate, Peace Coffee, more chocolate, some lucious Celestial BFL from Lucy Neatby, and other goodies.
Thanks so much. Can't wait for the next one. This was so much fun.
I've been getting a lot of inquiries as to Coffee Swap Two. Yes, there will be one! I'll open it to more swappers next time and I'm hoping to get some donated gifts so we can have more contests and prizes. (If you want to donate let me know). Sign ups for the next swap will open up in April and the swap will run through May. I'll be sure to make plenty of announcements on my blog beforehand so you won't miss it. I'll announce it here as well.
In the meantime, enjoy your coffee, start a new project, and keep posting at this blog as much as you want. I'm sure people would love to see what you've knit up with all that yarn by now!
Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
I thought the chocolate spoons were for my daughter. Then Ruth informed me that i am supposed to stir it into my coffee. (her comment was that I am sometimes so South African)
Monday, December 11, 2006
The Art of giving
Being involved with this swap has really been a fun experience. I have gotten know a lot other people. I have gotten to know my friend Ruth better. I have gotten to know the area I live in and the products on offer better. I liked the fact that it was an open swap and that you could ask your partner questions.
The only down side was that I had to watch the weight of my parcel because of the cost of sending it overseas.
I was involved with a secret friend group in Church one year. Half way through the year my partner moved and the gifts stopped and no-one knew. I will still sending to my partner but I was not receiving anything. Not nice.
There is definitely a joy one gets in buying gifts (as long as you are not stressed about money).
Its wonderful to get a gift that you actually like. You know someone has taken care to think about you.
WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE INVOLVED THEMED SWAP ONCE A QUARTER?
Sunday, December 10, 2006
Thank you, Susan! From San Antonio she sent me Rio Grande blend coffee ("Hints of cinnamon and chocolate" -- my favorite two flavors!), orange-cranberry biscotti (now, sadly, all eaten, but lovely while they lasted), Dagoba chocolate* ("Dark chocolate, chilies & nibs" -- wowza, yum!), and yarn. Oh, the yarn. Two skeins of Atacama alpaca worsted in gorgeous shades of turquoise and black/brown. Come see some more pictures of its lusciousness at my blog.
* The sharp-eyed among you will notice that only the outer wrapper of this chocolate is present. Hey, the package came 3 days ago! You didn't think chocolate would hang around that long uneaten, did you? :-)
The yarn and coffee is scrumptious -
I got stitch markers and a coffee mug and mints and moisturizer and note paper and chocolate and so much more! Thank you LaVerna for being so generous and thoughtful! I'm going to start on that hat right away! The sock pattern is aptly entitled, "sell your sole socks" because after my disaster with my first knitted sock attempt, I just may have to do that in order to be successful the second time around!
Someone asked about the colorway for the Sweetgeorgia Yarn - it's Boheme and it is gorgeous!
Friday, December 08, 2006
Thursday, December 07, 2006
I have really enjoyed this and it has lifted my gift giving spirits this holiday season!
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
Have a great day, everybody!
I am sooooo blown away I won! I know I was picked randomly but its so cool! Yeah for me! Thank you, Thank You so much, I feel so blessed! This swap has been so fun, every day I rush to the computer, knocking kids and dog outta my way to be first to check out the new posts. We have to do another one, this is way too much fun.
Thanks again !!!!
Tuesday, December 05, 2006
Thanks to everyone who shared. I really enjoyed everyone's entries...makes me want to take a serious cross-contiental coffee/yarn crawl! I wish I had a prize for every single one of you. You are such wonderful, generous swappers!
Monday, December 04, 2006
Here's a sneak peek of what she sent.
Want to see more come on over and visit my blog. The yarn gorgeous!
Thanks Gunifer, your the best:D and your box is on it's way to you.......
Sunday, December 03, 2006
Saturday's mail contained the most awesome parcel. The aroma of freshly roasted coffee wafted from the box and filled the entire room before it was even opened. And once the hindering tape, cardboard and paper were removed I squealed in delight at the contents. There were not one or two, or even three or four, but FIVE different roasts of coffee from the Bostons Best Coffee Roasters. And two amazing new cups will ensure that my morning coffee ritual is completely amazing. Also there were three gourmet chocolate bars and 400 yards of amazing hand dyed yarn from Mind's Eye Yarns in Cambridge. And just who is responsible for all of these fibery and caffeinated delights? That would be Miss V from KnittingSpells! Thank you so very much to Miss V and thank you to the organizers of this wonderful swap.
Friday, December 01, 2006
Caribou started in Minnesota. The founders started it with their trip to Alaska in mind, but really it seems more Minnesota-themed to me. The Ho Ho Mocha, topped with a generous dollop of whipped cream and crushed candy cane, is to die for, and the Gingerbread Latte isn't half bad, either.
I hope everyone has a lovely and well caffinate weekend!
Caffeine is my shepherd; I shall not doze.
It maketh me to wake in green pastures:
It leadeth me beyond the sleeping masses.
It restoreth my buzz:
It leadeth me in the paths of consciousness for its name's sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of addiction, I
will fear no Equal (tm):
For thou art with me;
Thy cream and thy sugar they comfort me.
Thou preparest a carafe before me in the presence of Juan Valdez:
Thou anointest my day with pep; my mug runneth over.
Surely richness and taste shall follow me all the days of my life:
and I will dwell in the House of Maxwell for ever.
Thursday, November 30, 2006
Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Imagine opening your front door to be greated with the incredible aroma of fresh coffee. Such was my fortunate experience this afternoon when my KCS package from Catherine arrived on my doorstep. This is by far, one of the best swap packages I've ever received. Moreover, it couldn't have come on a better day ... just in time to snap me out of the bad mood I was in due to being couped up in the house recovering from surgery.
Everything was neatly and carefully packed, my first indication of the care and consideration Catherine took in putting this wonderful treat together for me. The fragrant whole bean Peace Coffee will be in my mug tomorrow morning. Something tells me I won't need anything extra to start my engines after a cup of this stuff! Catherine totally rocked my stash of goodies with lots of gourmet chocolate, buttery cookies and my favorite treat - delicous caramels. (There were six but two quickly found their way to my mouth ... mmmm.) And while I'm enjoying my coffee and treats, I'll be listening to the special CD my swap partner so thoughtfully included. I was thrilled to receive two skeins of Manos del Uruguay in rich shades of chocolate covered cherry. I made a felted hat from this same yarn and now I'll be able to make a matching scarf! Catherine also sent me a skein of Patons SWS and even went to the trouble of writing out a beret pattern using the yarn. Last and certainly not least, hidden in an adorable rhinestone studded envelope I found a gift card for Starbucks with a note from my sweet swap partner inviting me to treat myself to a fancy latte - which I will with great pleasure when my knitting group meets at "Bucks" on Saturday morning.
What is truly wonderful is that when the coffee is gone, the treats consumed and the yarn knitted, Catherine and I will have a lasting connection. And all because of two pointy sticks and a ball of string!
• scrumptious decaf Rainforest Supreme coffee
• a maple cinnamon scone mix from Harry & David
• scented mug mats that release cinnamon-y smells when you put your hot mug down (also H&D)
• Anna's Swedish cappucino shortbread cookies
• milk chocolate Pastilles
• a perfect little coffee mug with a matching lid/coaster that says "Life is too short for bad coffee"
• an adorable coffee-themed retractable measuring tape (I cannot even express how badly I wanted/needed one of those!)
• sweet coffee magnets and an adorable knitter-themed card from Susan
...and for the yarn...
• My very first Malabrigo in saphire green...who said this is butter? You're right! It's heavenly!
• A gorgeous skein of Mountain Colors Handpainted in "Wildflower" which is totally serendipitous: Susan and I have a swap partner in common from previous swaps (Hege in Norway!) - I sent this exact same Mountain Colors "Wildflower" yarn to Hege for the Hot Socks Swap but had a *really* hard time parting with it because it was so beautiful. Hege and Susan were partners for the Knitters' Tea Swap recently and then Susan and I ended up as partners for this swap (all by chance!). Susan sent me the "Wildflowers" yarn not knowing that she was fulfilling my little knitter dream of having this yarn.
How incredibly perfect is this picture? And how small is our knitting world after all? FUN!
The hard to see cello package is three Chocolate Ginger Shortbread cookies from Alchemy Baking Company. Spicy and sweet is one of my favorite combinations...these will be saved for when I am alone! The coffee is from a local cafe in Montreal and tastes as good as it smells. The yarn is some I have been coveting: Favourite Soft Mitts/Socks Kit by Fleece Artist in Origin! The yarn is sooo soft and feels heavenly. I will make mittens out of it and they are sure to be warm! Thank you so much, Amanda! The package is wonderful. Here is a, albeit blurry, close-up of the yarn.
I I live in a town with one stop light, 2 pizza shops, a grocery store and 2 coffee shops.
One of the shops has a comfy sofa, table and chairs and a gift shop.
However, my favorite of the two is a little shop called Main Street Sweets. There is only 1 table with two chairs and lots of marvelous desserts.
The coffee shop is owned by two really nice ladies, Wendy and Jennifer. They make the best desserts and even through the place is so small that it only has one table and two chairs, I love walking down to talk to them and see what dessert I should get. I love their Gingerbread Latte. That is heavenly stuff.
I went down to take the photos today and not only got my coffee but found myself walking down the street eating a piece of something pecan that was very yummy. They have a lot off bite size desserts for 50 cents. I do not feel as guilty because the pieces are so small.
I just noticed that I do not have milk for my coffee in the morning. Guess I will have to walk down to the coffee shop. Glad that it is only 5 minutes away and opens at 6AM.
Here is the top three fav mugs around here.
The black one is my daughters, she is into chinese motifs and she received this last Christmas, it reads double happiness. The pink one is mine that my daughters gave me for Mother's day a few years back. Its a bit of an enigma, it says on it "The grapes a day" hmmmm
we haven't figured that one out yet. The blue one is from the starbucks in Seattle when we were there in 2000, my husband will not drink his coffee unless he has his special little cup. The booties are what I'm feverishly knitting for a fundraiser. Only 26 knitting days left! YIKES!!!!!
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
I live in Montreal and cafes are everywhere. I'm incredibly lucky and spoiled in that way.
About six months ago I began taking photos of all the different styles of coffee (cafe au lait, latte, espresso con panna, etc) that I encountered. Here are some of my favorites :
These photos were taken at Second Cup, a Canadian chain. It was the company that day that made the coffee memorable. Second Cup chains are everywhere, so it's usually the best place to meet up with friends between classes and other obligations. I've had many intense conversations with my favorite people over cups like these.
...is from Caffe Art Java. The creative presentation of the coffee is truly the best thing about this place. Even the food is laid out with aesthetics in mind! It's the kind of place that is so impressive that you're almost afraid to eat what they serve you for fear of messing it up.
Finally, one of my favorite places to go for the best tasting cup of coffee is Pharmacie Esperanza.
The coffee is served in cups and saucers that look like they came right out of your grandmother's kitchen and on each table there's a jar of brown sugar. I like to sweeten my cafe au lait with a big heap of it and enjoy it slowly along with a homemade ginger cookie.
So, there you have some of my favorite places for a cup of coffee in Montreal.
Monday, November 27, 2006
I'm glad to see the first packages going out. Hope everyone has exchanged addresses by now and is getting their package together. Remember, they should be received by December 10th. If you think you may be a bit late be sure to let them know. Don't forget to post when you receive your package and show us your goodies.
Keep those contest entries coming! You've got until December 1st, and then we'll draw for that fabulous Malabrigo...
I am pleased to report that my swap partner, Susan, and I have sent our packages and it happened to be on the same day! Very cool indeed. So we're both excited and watching our mailboxes now. Updates on the awesome Knitty-Coffee-Loot to follow!
Sunday, November 26, 2006
I received the most awesome package from my Coffeeswap Pal, Chris (aka Stumbling Over Chaos), and I just had to share. Here are some pictures of all the booty that was inside the package!
Tons of really cool flavored coffee, my favorite!!
Then, sock yarn, chocolate, a tape measure, and a coffee music mix - oh my!!! I am just totally overwhelmed.
Anyway, if you'd like to read more about the details, check out my latest blog entry at: