Liverpool Pt. II

My second day in Liverpool started with a nice breakfast at Brasco Lounge. They have an entirely separate vegan menu, and I ended up settling on their vegan breakfast plate. This was my first time trying baked beans since getting to Britain, and I was pleasantly surprised that I liked these. I usually find the American kind much too sweet. I’m more of a fan of savory breakfasts, so this hearty plate was right up my alley.

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The restaurant was conveniently located near the Liverpool Museum, which is a great free (!) place to explore. The best part for me was their large exhibit on the history and movement of transgender people.

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Albert Dock is also nearby and holds a few entertaining things to see. My favorite of which was the giant Echo Wheel. Although I’m not a huge fan of heights, I rode it anyway and had a great time being terrified on the squeaky ride.

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While wandering around the dock, I was drawn into a candy shop due to their amazing jelly bean portrait of The Beatles. Inside, I found some vegan vanilla Liverpool candy canes, which my inner tourist insisted I try.

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As a bonus: here’s a yarnbombing I saw at St. John’s Gardens.

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Easter Treats and Eats

I hope everyone had a good Easter! My Easter was full of friends and good food, so I would count it a success.

The University of Montevallo’s Family and Consumer Sciences Student Group had an Easter-themed bake sale on Wednesday. For that I made pumpkin spice cake bunnies with cream cheez frosting.

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I also made cookie dough bites from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar. These were a great hit and multiple people kept asking “There aren’t any eggs in these?!” Um, no. I’d prefer vegan cookies over a case of salmonella any day.
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For actual Easter day I had a lovely lunch with Peter and our friends Charlie and Sierra. Then afterwards we spent time playing board games and making Easter things.

For a festive look, I knitted this adorable bunny hat. I used Slip Slip Knit’s knitting chart for the bunnies.
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Instead of the traditional egg-dyeing, I went an animal friendly route and got some blank plastic toys from Hobby Lobby and decorated them with markers.

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For lunch we had a mish-mash of snacks.

I made some tea sandwiches with whole wheat bread, sliced cucumber, spicy sriracha bean dip, and Vegenaise.
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Avocado hummus with pita chips
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I used my go-to potato skins recipe, but got lazy and boiled the potatoes with the skins on and mashed them with the other ingredients (minus the onions and Tofutti cheese). They had all the taste of potato skins, but without the added effort of scooping out the filling.
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Harry Potter Craft Swap

Yet another Craftster swap, this time with a Harry Potter theme!

Here’s what I sent my partner:

Knitted Mandrake baby (it is ridiculously hard to get a good photo of its face)

Hufflepuff badger t-shirt

Luna Lovegood cross-stitch bookmark

Lots of candy from Honeydukes in Hogsmeade

My partner, Smeddley, was amazing. She kept checking with me to make sure that the things she was using to craft with were vegan-friendly. And on top of that she sent me some useful and amazing crafts!

My personal favorite, the Mandrake painting. I love that it says “Repotting Station”

A lovely green crocheted bag with stones carved with runes (ancient runes is my favorite class)

Hufflepuff bag with beaded stitch markers (which I actually needed)

And lastly, an adorable Honeydukes candy themed needle case

Adventure Time Craft Swap

 

I am off from school now for the week, so I have time to catch up on my blogging! I have been doing many craft swaps on Craftster.org since my first one started my on-going addiction to it. I haven’t had time to write about them all, but I will keep you guys up to date on my favorite swaps. This one was extremely fun because its theme was Adventure Time! Which is one of my favorite shows ever.

Here’s what I sent my partner:

Hot Dog Princess scarf

Tree Trunks bath salts (apple scent), Jake sugar scrub (orange scent), and Wildberry Princess lip-balm (fruit punch flavored)
My partner’s “big wish” in the swap was for Adventure Time themed yarn, so I made her some!

Finn yarn and Marceline yarn

My partner sent me a ridiculously awesome package:

Adventure Time charm bracelet

 
Fiona and Cake embroidery hoop

Peppermint Butler and Lumpy Space Princess headbands
And lastly, some adorable Adventure Time paint by numbers

Dyed Yarn – First Try

Last week I tried dyeing yarn for the first time. Sadly, most websites only focus on dyeing animal fibers (usually sheep or alpaca wool) which doesn’t fit with my vegan lifestyle. So I just bought a skein of white Peaches and Cream 100% cotton yarn, a tie dye kit, and tried to give it a go!

Thankfully Peter helped me, because I probably couldn’t have done it myself. Before the dyeing began, I wrapped the yarn around a large notebook and slid it off, so it was longer and easier to dye than a wrapped skein. Then we mixed up the dyes from the kit (the colors were blue, green, and pink), gloved up, and got to dyeing!

We just separated the yarn into three sections by using rubberbands and then put each different dye on each section. Then we wrapped it up and left it for 7 hours. Afterwards I washed it out and the picture above is what I got. I was pretty happy with it. The colors stayed bright and I liked the random white spots and purple (where the blue and pink mixed). My only problem was that the yarn got extremely tangled after washing it and it took me a few hours to untangle it. Before I try this again, I will find a better method where it won’t become a big knotty mess.

I used the dyed yarn to make a knitted kitty! Which shows off the yarn’s different colors nicely.

My First Craft Swap

I have recently become involved in the website Craftster, a forum for crafters of all sorts. They have organized swaps all the time, each with different categories, where you get a partner, make a few crafts, then mail ’em in. Last week I sent in the crafts for my first ever swap! The theme was the Walking Dead and I loved it. I had a great partner and can’t wait to participate in more swaps soon.

The first craft was coasters with covers of the Walking Dead books, one through six.

Since Rick was my partner’s favorite character, I also made her a Team Rick bag.

And lastly, a knitted zombie hat! The teeth were my favorite part in making this.

In return, my partner sent me this sweet t-shirt with Daryl and his nifty cross-bow screenprinted onto it. She also drew me an awesome version of that creepy hospital door saying “Don’t open, dead inside” (not pictured).

I greatly encourage anyone with a crafty streak to check out Craftster and their swaps.

Earrings and Summer Knitting

Thankfully this summer’s classes have not been too strenuous and I have had plenty of time to craft.

I have an unhealthy addiction to buttons and decided to turn some of my favorite ones into earrings. I cut off the button’s back shank with a mini jewelry clipper and then super-glued plain earring studs to the backs. Once the glue dries, voila! You have new earrings.

The sewing machine buttons above are my personal favorites.

And despite it being an unpleasant 80+ degrees here in Alabama, that has not stopped me from knitting. I made a daisy stitch hat which is quite comfy and I love the swirly bumps that go around the hat. It was my first time trying daisy stitch, but after a few rows it’s easy and fun to do.

One of my cousins was having issues with her “girly bits” and I made her this uterus with asymmetrical tubes and an angry face in hopes of making her feel better after surgery. I loosely based it after another pattern, but made it on straight needles and wonkied around with the stitches.

I have also started a larger project, similar to the Mario afghan that I made for Peter, but with Harry Potter themed patches. It is slow going because the pattern isn’t written out and is a chart instead, but it’s still progressing as my chart-reading skills improve. My first patch was from a Wimbourne Wasps dishcloth pattern, which is based around the Wimbourne Wasps Quidditch team.