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11 December 2008 @ 09:30 am
Happier things  
According to the forecast, we're going to have some snow this weekend. :D Must remember to go stock up on some things at the grocery store, in case I can't get down the hill for a couple of days.

I made fudge last night.* As always, it turned out perfectly, smoooooooth and rich. I have the simplest, best fudge recipe ever. My Mom, who used to complain about her fudge always drying and cracking, now uses this recipe and it turns out perfectly every time. It's from Ghirardelli chocolate, so really, not too surprising:

San Francisco Fudge

* 2 1/4 C Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
* 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
* 1 C miniature marshmallows
* 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
* 1 C chopped walnuts (optional)

Melt everything in a pan together until rich and smooth, then pour it into whatever dish you want it to harden in.

I never add the nuts, as I'm allergic to walnuts, and my entire family has the same sensitivity. Trust me, this is delicious!

And in one last happy bit of news, I have received a most unexpected and fantastic Christmas gift:

That, my friends, is a serger. Not just ANY serger, a Janome (Very Good Brand) with differential feed and auto-threading loopers. I don't even know what I'm saying, but I'm SO EXCITED. And also intimidated. Sergers are...well, complicated looking, and kind of scary. But OMG, they edge things and sew them together at the same time. They gather and make ruffles and do all sorts of fantastic things easily and so much more quickly than a sewing machine can. I mean, I'll still need my sewing machine for topstitching stuff, for sure. This doesn't replace my Pfaff. It merely supplements it in the best possible way, taking over some of the heavier duty tasks the Pfaff isn't really meant for. This could take my costume making time and cut it in half easily, maybe even more! I have to know everything about everything, so I've looked this baby up six ways to Sunday - it retailed for $999, but recently has been clearanced out for as low as under $298 as the newer model takes the floor. Now, I contributed exactly $98 to this, so I'm basically getting a machine that I have yet to read a bad review on, one that will last me ten years, minimum, for less than $100. Merry Christmas to me!

I don't actually have it yet. I don't think i'm getting until Christmas day, actually. But this is still so exciting! And also kind of scary. I've never used a serger before. i have no idea what I'm doing. But hey, I was like that with sewing before I got my Pfaff Hobby, so who am I to be put off by such a small thing?

Anyone out there have a serger? Thoughts? Opinions? Advice??

(*machineplay, you were right. Fudge - or otherwise copious amounts of sugar - is an excellent cure for depression, however fleeting.)
Current Mood: fudge induced sugar high
anneteanneten on December 11th, 2008 06:52 pm (UTC)
I am so jealous! I've wanted a serger for years!

I can't justify the cost, since I don't sew as much as I used to... but I'm still jealous.

rhienellethrhienelleth on December 11th, 2008 06:54 pm (UTC)
I still feels totally unreal that I'm even getting a serger. I'm thrilled, but I don't think it'll really sink in until I have it in front of me. :)
purple_shoes on December 12th, 2008 12:03 am (UTC)
I am nicking your fudge recipe. Shall make it and enjoy it muchly because OMG looks so good.....

That sewing machine looks awesome! I've decided to take up sewing, so I have to find some good machines... I'll check that one out! (My mum already knows sewing and wants to start out with a more complex one, since she's already "outgrown" the basic ones and says I probably will pretty quick, too.)
rhienellethrhienelleth on December 12th, 2008 12:33 am (UTC)
You will definitely need a sewing machine before investing in a serger - though if you get seriously into sewing a sewing machine AND a serger (like this one) will be pretty hard to do without.

My recommendation - there are a ton of really good sewing machine brands out there, and a ton of bad ones. Go to a real sewing machine dealer, look at what they have. Babylock, Pfaff, Janome - all great brands.

My personal vote is for a Pfaff. They are awesome machines. I started out with a Pfaff Hobby 1142. It is a great basic machine, hard to mess up, easy to learn on, does an incredible job on most tasks. I loved it so much, I'm reluctant to give it up, even though I've upgraded to the Pfaff Select 3.0. But now that I'm getting a serger as well, I'm thinking I really don't need the extra sewing machine...
purple_shoes on December 12th, 2008 03:02 am (UTC)
Actually, my mum mentioned Pfaff too. She said that was the one my Nana got once she outgrew her first machine, and said it was pretty solid. I think she still has it actually! I looked up the Pfaff Hobby 1142, and it seems really good! Is it good with thicker materials, such as denim? I think that could be the one that we aim for.

Oh, and I suppose, if you decide you don't want it, do you think you would consider selling it? (Me and mum decided we are gonna have to wait a while, at least to get a good one, with Christmas financial stuff and whatnot. But if you decide at any point you might want to sell it, I may be able to meet your offer. :-) ) But I don't blame you for being attached, it looks like a very solid little machine, and with as much as you sew it probably does no harm to have a few around!
patron saint of neglected female characters: chocolate plzrose_griffes on December 16th, 2008 02:54 am (UTC)
lizardbeth_j linked me to the fudge recipe here, which I just made. Obviously I won't know about the final product until it hardens but right now? SOOO GOOOOOD.

Oh, and I'm adding you to my reading list--mostly because you post about beads.
rhienellethrhienelleth on December 16th, 2008 03:09 am (UTC)
Oooooh - I always treat myself with the warm scrapings left in the pan. Yummy!

And welcome. I talk about beads...kind of incessantly. :D