Monday, August 15, 2011

Howtown Swap

A great big thank you to Wyndfire for sending me this most amazing taste of Arizona.

I opened a large box that was so full that it was bursting with the State seal on top so I knew where I was visiting right away.

First is a jar of the Absolutely Delightful the most aptly named Prickly Pear and Mesquite honey. It starts with a light floral and fruit notes, explodes with mild sweetness, and ends with a smokey bitter finish. The taste is just dripping of the wild west.
Next is balsamic vinegar made by Queen Creek Olive Mill. Balsamic vinegar is a weakness of mine and I'm exited to add it to my collection. I haven't opened it yet but I'll reach for it first when I make my chickpea chorizo salad this weekend.
At this point I was sensing a theme and right I was. Next out of the box came Arizona grown chilies, a hot pad with an Arizona map, Arizona cook book (I'm making Calabaza Con Queso tonight!), and the sweetest crochet hot pad in the sate colors made by Wyndfire!

As much as I love cooking sometimes a person just wants to snack. The potato chips disappeared so fast that all I have is the empty bag to document they really existed. They were good like a dream and gone just as fast.

The Cactus Candy is made just down the road from Wyndfire's office.
It's deliciousness coated in sugar
(arty photo to make up for the bad one of the vinegar)

Now onto the state with maps and brochures and native flowers. I was flummoxed by Chocolate Flowers until I read Wyndfire's description saying there really are flowers that smell like chocolate. How cool is that? And just now I realized such a brilliant way to send chocolate in the 100 degree heat. Over in the corner is a mixed CD of music. How thoughtful. I'm touched in the care Wyndfire took in making it.

Now that my insides are fed to decorating my outsides. Stunning earrings in my FAVORITE gem amethysts which are found in Arizona along with the state gem turquoise. I lovelovelovelove them. The state mineral is copper represented in the bracelet. Finally, the coolest jade buttons made by the local company Greenbeans.
An Apache Tear (obsidian) and the story to go with it. I have a small display of very special rocks that I added this to.
Pima cotton yarn because pima cotton is native to Arizona named after the Pima Indians that grew it. It's a beautiful color and I can't wait to use it.
Remember the earrings? If anything could be better than those fabulous earring it would be this! Amethysts and turquoise stitch markers!!! And not just the regular stitch markers, oh no, but movable counting stitch markers! You know those patterns that say
repeat pattern 4 times and do decrease row, and about half way through line 11 of the pattern you've forgotten is this is your second or 3rd time through? No more going cross eyed while counting rows because these markers do the counting!!!
Patterns by Arizona designers. Too cool! I can't wait to knit them. (and crochet, although that one looks scary hard)

Looks good, doesn't it?

Thank You Wyndfire for a fabulous swap box.

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