Sunday, September 24, 2017

We Have Company! Cheese, Garden and Knitting Updates! (YOP Week 13)


FIVE dogs in the house! With our three, we have added Stella and dear Pavlov! Our friend in Montreal had to fly back overseas, poor guy, his father passed away. So yesterday at 4:30pm, he called and asked if we could babysit his dogs for 2-3 weeks because his flight was in 6 hours! Omg...at 7pm, we were back in Montreal (oh the horror on a Saturday night), picking up his dogs. We babysat Pavlov for 6 weeks when our friend was trying to find a place to live back in June and July. Now we have him and his mom Stella. I think the next few weeks will be INSANE. Including the cats, there are eight pets in the house! 


Before the whirlwind craziness began yesterday, I did manage to knit something! I found a cute pattern for an engraved-style Pumpkin Dishcloth or place mat. It's the first time I followed a pattern like this, it was easy, just knits and purls, but it required focus! I'm going to make at least one more for place mats for Halloween I think. I saw a few others that I might try as well. (Visit the group on Ravelry for more updates!)


Speaking of knitting, I got my yarn order! These are two of the colours I chose for socks. First time sock-making imminent...since I can't handle double-pointed needles too well, I did some research and found these teensy tiny little circular sock needles. Oh my gosh, they are so small! This will be a learning curve for me!!! I hope I can do a lot of "porch knitting" this week. It's going to be hot and sunny until Thursday. The dogs will dictate my projects for the next little while I think! :)


The tomatoes are ripening and we're getting LOTS of little cherry tomatoes every other day! I'm still waiting to see if my pumpkins will turn orange!


On the cheese front: My Cams are still forming bloomy white mold all over (more on Rainy Day Cheese Making). It may be hard to see, but the raised white areas are the mold. This is all very exciting!! I can't wait to try all these amazing cheeses! I wanted to try making another poutine cheese this weekend, but with the dogs, it might not happen.


I made a baked spaghetti in our new (used) Corningware dishes. Of course, I used my homemade Mozzarella and look how wonderfully it melted! We have one ball of Mozza left so I have to find some time this week to make another batch for aging. I love making my own cheese! :)



And just for fun, I wanted to share these photos I took with my Canon camera. I admit I've been lazy with the photography lately because isn't it just so easy to pull out your cell phone?? But I've been up so early these days, at 5am for some reason, so Friday morning I decided to try to take photos of the sunrise. I had the mode on "burst" - which means it takes hundreds of photos one after the other when you just keep the shutter button pressed. But I kept moving around and look what happened.


Aren't they kind of neat? I love the tree photo, they look so wispy. They give me ideas for paintings too. It just goes to show that you don't always need to take still photography for interesting results! I used to really enjoy photography and that's one thing I've really let slide, but I'm going to make sure I keep it up from now on because it's a great way to be creative; and also in my case, bond with nature!

I hope you all have a lovely week my friends! I still hope I can do some painting this week...canine rules though! :) Wish us luck!!

36 comments:

Mama Pea said...

Canine rules!? Well, I guess so! Your friend is so, so lucky to have you and Alex to take care of his pups in a time of need. But it's easy to see that he would have no qualms about leaving the dogs in your wonderful care. (My first thought is all the poop-scooping you'll have to do!)

The 5 a.am (!) pictures brought to mind your paintings even before you mentioned it.

We're getting tons of cherry tomatoes now, too. That's the vegetable on our dinner plates right now!

I have never seen anything like those tiny circular needles you found for making socks. Can't quite imagine how they work but will have to investigate them further.

Love the pumpkin dishcloth/place mat. I find patterns like that easy but addictive! And, yes, I do have to focus on the pattern so as to not lose my place and have to rip out!

Hope you have a wonderful week to come, too, Rain!

Harry Flashman said...

Rain, it's good of you to give the dogs a place to stay. They're totally dependent on people for their quality of life, and I'm glad they are living with you and not in some kennel for that long.

I liked your pictures you took with your camera on burst mode. I had not heard of that before but I do like the effect.

Tomatoes are about gone down here. From now through until Spring it will be green ones at the big grocery store, or none at all...

Sam I Am...... said...

You are great friends to help out in times of need. So sorry about your friend's dad....it's hard to think at times like that so it was great you could help him out. Pavlov's back! And his Mom, Stella! Yes, you have a houseful! Love your neat photos and your cheeses look so professional in the wheels. I've never made baked spaghetti but it looks mighty tasty in your new bowls and your very own hand made cheese on top.
What a cute cloth with the pumpkin! The cable on those needles looks awfully small....are you trying the 9" cables like Brooklyn Knitfolk uses? There are people out there that swear by that method but I haven't tried it. I haven't tried 2 at a time either but I do like doing them concurrently on different needles. I use 32" cables and Magic Loop as my preferred sock knitting method but you have to see what works best for you. Good luck!

Treey said...

Hi Rain, I used to have a canon too and they're great to use. It's best to keep the camera still for the best results but you'll learn that as you go along. Ask Martha for the best advice. Experiment if you can.

John M said...

You're a great friend Rain.
I'm waiting for the last of my tomatoes to ripen. They're still on the vine and slowly turning yellow then orange. Some will be red in a day or two.
The last tree photo almost looks like a forest fire!
Take care and have a good week.

Christine said...

Enjoy all those dogs! Nice to catch up with your week.

Mary said...

Yum Rain, I'm really hungry looking at your dishes of goodness - cheese does that to me!

Rain, what amazing friends you must be - that really was so kind of you guys to go back to Montreal for the doggies - and to keep them for such a long time! I hope your friend appreciates you doing this for him. I just helped - along with my granddaughter - caring for my neighbors' two dogs while they were at Disney in Florida for a week. I tell you, you not a simple job, but at least they stayed in their own home.

Take care - looking forward to hearing how the camenbert turns out - must be hard to not want to sneak a bite!
Mary -

Marsha said...

You have your hands full with all those furry critters. I am sure in a few days you will settle into a routine and all will be well. Your cheeses make my mouth water. Congrats on the pumpkin cloth. It is quite cute. Let us know how you like working on the 9 inch needles for socks. I prefer double point even though I learned on magic loops. I had though about trying the 9 inch ones but am waiting for someone I'know' to describe their experience. (Looking at you my dear lol)

You asked which wine was my favorite......I have a few. Late Harvest Ice is wonderful but extremley pricey where I live. I do like Moscato, both white and pink. Pinot griegio is another one I like but some can be quite bitter. There are a few brands I know are ok and purchase those. Chardonnay is a good one for dinner. I can not drink any reds as I get a screaming headache after just a few sips. I am allergic to the sulfates in it. Wow.......sounds like I drink a lot of wine lol. It has taken me 43 years to determine my favorites.

Lucy Bowen said...

You do have a full house! Hope they allow you a little time. I love your cloth, I'm knitting some little ones myself at the moment, minus the pumpkin.

Becki said...

I love the knitted pumpkin dishcloth. I need to try me one of those patterns. That would stretch my simple knitting skills a bit, I think. While I'd be running for the hills if someone asked me to keep their dogs for 2 (or yikes - 3?) weeks, I admire the heart that enjoys doing that. What a kindness you've given your friend (and his beloved pets).

Plowing Through Life (Martha) said...

Pet overload! Holy moly...how do you keep up with everything? But they sure are cute, aren't they? You are such a good friend to take care of these dogs. I imagine they are a bit confused and miss their human.

That baked spaghetti! That looks sooooo good. You're pretty awesome with that cheese making.

I hope you had a nice weekend. And I hope you find a little time for yourself this week between taking care of all these furry babies.

Kristina said...

You are brave with all those pets. I wouldn't get a lick of work done with all that going on. Have fun!

Susan said...

Love the photographs! I knit socks either on two circular needles or via the Magic Loop - I cannot handle DP needles, either! Such cute dogs - it will be so....cozy... in your house. :)

Rain said...

Hi Mama Pea :)) Yeah...canine rules...with that many, they dictate my schedule! :) Oh my gosh, the poop-scooping...lol...it's crazy. Feels like we have horses lol...Oh thanks for noticing that the photos are like my paintings! I saw that too! :) Those circular needles...ain't happening! I tried to cast on, no luck, I need tinier less stiff fingers for them. And thank you, honestly I'll do anything for a dog in need, so I'm really glad he called us. :)

Rain said...

Hi Harry :) Thank you, we would never let those dogs go to a kennel, they are so sweet, it's like they're at summer camp here lol...I wish the weather had been better this summer because tomatoes at the market are stupidly expensive this year and I just used 4 of the last 6 jars I canned last summer!

Rain said...

Hi Sam :)) I'm glad we could help him too, and I get Pavlov again!!! :))) He totally remembered us. Our friend is bilingual but is French at home, and Pavlov actually remembered the English commands we taught him! One thing I didn't miss what his hot stinky breath lol...I got reminded REAL fast this morning lol...Stella is so sweet but her and Charlie are NOT getting along...we have to keep them separated. Two un-fixed females, eek.

Sam, I TRIED the 9" circulars (yes that's what they are), size 1...I couldn't even cast on, I feel so clunky with them, I can't get used to them. I'm going to return them I think. I may have to settle with DPN's or use the Magic Loop which I have to learn how to do.

Rain said...

Hi Terry :) That camera is so wonderful. Alex got it for me a few years back for my birthday and I need to use it more. I've been lazy I admit! I need to experiment as you say, and I'll definitely call on Martha for advice, thanks!

Rain said...

Hi John :) I looked again at the last photo and you're right, forest fire! I think if I paint that one, I have my title :) The tomatoes are getting more red today and my pumpkins are starting to turn a wee bit orange! :)

Rain said...

Thanks Christine! :) We love our pets...and it's fun with all the dogs, just the two "alpha" females are being a pain in the butt!

Rain said...

Hi Mary :) Thank you so much! I think that in times of need, you really see who your reliable friends are. He knows he can always count on us because we love his dogs, and we wouldn't want to see them in a kennel or separated again. He actually called a half dozen friends in Montreal and none of them would help him, though he said they always offered. Poor him, he felt so desperate. He's at ease now! Driving to Montreal and back is a horror for us...I'm just glad it's over with! You're right it's not easy to take in a few extra dogs, it's nice that you could help your neighbours! You and me both about the Cam! :)

Rain said...

Hi Marsha! :) So sorry, but I can't be your "guinea pig" lol...I really cannot use those teeny little needles...I did try a few times, but my gosh, I need more slender fingers or something! I had such a hard time casting on...you'll have to find someone else to encourage you on that one! Lol...Oh, I love your wine list, although I find the Pinot Greggio a little too acidic for me. Alex loves Moscatos too. My go-to is Chardonnay for sure, but not from France, the grapes don't stay in the sun long enough to reduce that acidity. Oh too bad about the red wine, I have issues with too many sulfates too, my cheeks turn red depending on the wine!

Rain said...

Hi Lucy :) Those little dishcloths are really cute, I found some Christmas ones online too. I think it might be fun to learn how to make my own patterns!

Rain said...

Hi Becki :) That pattern is really easy, but I had a hard time paying attention at some points (because of the pets distracting me) so I had to keep jotting down where I was! Lol...the first night...Saturday night, Alex and I both looked at each other and said "what were we thinking..." NO SLEEP. Lol...but things are starting to get better now! :)

Rain said...

Hi Martha :) DOG overload lol...the cats are being smart and keeping to the "high country" (the mantle and the cat trees!)...but yeah, 5 dogs is more than a handful because our Charlie and Stella are not getting along too well. Neither of them are fixed and Stella is JUST ending her heat which makes her "moodiness" instense... I guess we ladies can kind of relate lol...but Charlie is our Alpha and Stella is an Alpha too...there were some fights...we have to keep them pretty much separate so it's even more work for now...but yes, they are adorable. They must be confused poor things. He just got them all settled again at the end of July in a new apartment and just over a month later, they are all upheaved again. At least they know us and can feel a bit more secure!

The spaghetti is really good baked! I load on that cheese! :))

Rain said...

Hi Kristina :) Brave or crazy? I think it's a fine line lol...

Rain said...

Hi Susan :)) I have to look into this Magic Loop, those wee little needles were impossible for me and I'm returning them...I need the hands of a 10-year old to make them work lol...it will definitely be COZY...among other things with eight animals roaming the house lol! :)

Stefanie said...

Thank you for liking my jellyfish. You do read more probably, maybe not books so much although I'm sure you read some cheese ones when you started learning how to make them and reading blogs counts. Eight pets in one house? Oh boy what a slumber party for them! I like your pumpkin washcloth and how red your tomatoes are; they're perfect. The Bernat Sox yarn look fun. I haven't tried that yet.

Nicole Thomas said...

OMG i love those pictures. They turned out so neat. I miss taking pictures...
Love the little pumpkin knittings and those sock needles are so cute...lol why arent u using 4 ?
Your cheeses look delicious. I got all my mozza supply and am waiting fir the right moment to try it ;)
My mom is here til the end of january tho...so jt might not happen too soon. She could help ... maybe 😁
You will have so much fun with the 5 pups :)

Rain said...

Hi Stefanie :) The sox yarn is nice and soft and I love the colours...but I did have to return those needles, I can't handle them so small lol...so I have to think of another way. And you are right, I read lots of blogs. Winter is more my reading season though! The pets are having a summer camp holiday I think lol!

Rain said...

HI Nik :) I don't like the DPN's so I was looking for another way to make socks. I might have to use them anyway because that circular needle is way too small for my hands! Oh that's great about the Mozza! Are you doing the 30-minute one or the Traditional Mozza? I think if you mom watched the kids while you made the cheese, that would be the greatest help!! :)

Minding My Own Stitches said...

Eight pets, including five dogs? Wow! I think that would be non-stop commotion!

Nice sock yarn colours! I hope the sock yarn knitting works out. You may want to try cuff down first - a lot less fiddle than trying to cast on for toe up! The pumpkin dishcloth looks great!

All the cheeses look yummy! I hope the Camembert tastes as good as it looks :)

Rain said...

Hi Lynn :) Yes, eight pets...it is non-stop for sure. We're a little worn out and we've only had the two extra dogs for the last 4 days lol...thanks for the tip about the cuff...I can't use those needles, so I'm learning the Magic Loop method, I hope I can find time to try it this week! I hope the Camembert turns out well too! Stay tuned :))

Cozy Thyme Cottage said...

Pets, pets and more pets! i will watch my friend's two little dogs along with Coco and just three wear me out trying to keep up to the pottying and making sure they don't eat each other's food. Would you share your baked spaghetti recipe? it looks so yummy! Nany

Breathing Life said...

Tomatoes and cheese - yum!!! five dogs and you still have time to knit. Very impressive.

Rain said...

Hi Nancy :) Our three dogs together are very easy...but the added two is a challenge, that's for sure!! Still though, nobody else would help out our friend, I felt so bad for him and the dogs...we'll manage! I'll post the recipe for the baked spaghetti tomorrow! :) It is yummy!

Rain said...

Hi Mary-Anne :) I luckily got the knitting done before the dogs arrived. I haven't done one stitch this week yet though!