Thursday, September 30, 2010

Knitting and Cookies

I'm knitting this sweater from Kristeen Griffin-Grimes' French Girl Knits book with this yarn (best picture I could find, I bought it a while ago) and it's really quite lovely. I love the yarn - it's like knitting a fairytale.

That said, I've been waiting to post because I keep hoping I'll have stuff to post about...

...but life's pretty slow right now. Well, not slow-slow. But there's not a lot of change as yet.

Until then...

1.) If you're anywhere near Eugene, don't miss the Simply Sara book signing even at Barnes & Noble this Sunday, October 3rd, 4pm.

2.) I've been on a chocolate chip cookie making kick. I have the best chocolate chip cookie recipe in the world - that is, if brown sugary, chewing chocolate chip cookies are your thing. The recipe goes like this:


1/3 c. butter, softened (I use salted, and don't even think about using margarine. And if you do, stop it.)
1/3 c. Crisco (and I do use butter flavor. So help me.)
1/2 c. granulated sugar
1/2 c. dark brown sugar (don't even think about using light. It will affect the consistency of the cookie)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

Mix together separately...

1 1/2 c. flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

Combine dry ingredients with wet ingredients. Stir in a heaping cup of chocolate chips. Bake at 375 degrees (preheated oven, naturally) for 8 or so minutes on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet, until they've just just browned on top but still look pretty doughy. They'll collapse, finish baking, and look perfect later.

Most baking people use wire racks to cool. For cookies, I don't. This is partly because I don't own a wire rack. But if you cool cookies on newsprint or some other kind of paper product, the paper absorbs some of the grease (read: fat), giving you a somewhat healthier cookie.

Everyone wins.

3.) I'm crazy mad at Glee right now. The first episode was lame, the second was a mess. The characters, whom I love much, have been reduced to caricatures. The plot...there really isn't one yet, and we're two weeks in.

The way I see it, TV episodes are like chapters. And in the first three chapters of your book, you want to come in with guns blazing. Great characters. Lots of plot. Those chapters are your springboard.

With Glee, not only did they use the cheap voice-over "what everyone did this summer" bit, but instead of working any of the Britney numbers into the plot, they were thrown into a dream sequence. A dream sequence.

The way it's going, we'll have flashback sequences and people falling into pools, just so we can hit as many writing clichés as possible. We're supposed to believe that Mr. Schuester is uptight, but hey, this is the guy who started a boy band with Ken Tenaka. Sang Aerosmith. How uptight can he be? He doesn't think Britney is appropriate but he has no issues with Lady Gaga? Really? I don't like when shows tweak characters (or in this case, flat out maul) to suit a flimsy plot twist. They think viewers won't notice. They think wrong.

4.) I'm also crazy mad at Fringe, though for different reasons. I'm sooooo mad that Walter and Peter haven't figured out that the Olivia sitting next to them is Alternate Olivia. I mean, they're both geniuses. And I'm deeply concerned that the real Olivia has truly been brainwashed by Walternate...

...But I realize this feeling of discontent is the result of things going well in the writing room. So for now, I'm letting it slide.

For now.

Don't watch Fringe? You should start. Really, you should. Because it's better than Glee right now.

5.) Also? The Good Wife? Very good season premier. There was plot. There was character. Makes me want to clap my hands.

6.) If you have a spare minute, watch this bit of ye olde Hollywood joy. Do. It's grand.

7.) Just finished Sophie Kinsella's Mini Shopaholic. Love!

I think that's it by now. In case you were wondering, no I haven't unpacked from ACFW yet. Because that's how we roll...


  1. Hillary, I just might have to take you on -- I'm known as the VERY best chocolate chip cookie maker, at least here in my neck of the woods. :-)

    Course, it's pretty hard to go wrong with chocolate chip cookies.

  2. Well...I've had some bad ones. Bake them up when you're up to it and let me know what you think! Feel free to share your recipe :-)

    Oh - and I'll also use this cookie base for white chocolate and macadamia nut cookies (a heaping 1/2 cup of each or so, if I remember right. You can adjust as you see moral).

  3. Hillary, I just finished reading Plain Jayne and I LOVE IT!! Jayne is hilarious and to a point a lot like me! lol!

    I knew I was going to be one of your dedicated readers when you mentioned Spencer being a Trekkie! I am also a Trekkie. And before you ask, I do not have any Star Fleet uniforms.

    Anyone person that can mix in Amish culture with Star Trek, has my vote.

    God bless you and I look forward to reading, "Simply Sara."


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