Wednesday, December 31, 2014

What Are You Doing New Years Eve?

I'll be with my church family for a fun time of fellowship, food, & probably some games.
Afterwards I'll be staying the night at my little sister, Kelsey's, house.
I can't say whether we'll actually make it to midnight...
we're getting to be a couple of old farts.
(Plus she's been potty training'll probably be really tired.)
What are YOU doing New Year's Eve?

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

family photos...

I had the privilege of taking both of my married sisters' family photos this year.
I had a lot of fun editing & making up Christmas cards.
I thought I'd share my favorites with you all.
(Cuz some of them are too darn cute not to, in my humble opinion.)

My sister Beth's beautiful family.
This 1st picture is the Christmas card she went with.

Mother & daughter
These above are the kids' pics for the wall.
Below are some "just for fun" ones.

My handsome Wes.
(Stuck in a faux snowstorm.)
My sweet Abbey-girl.
"Be sure to get my ring in the picture." was her request. ;)
Joyful Jack
I defy you to not to smile when you look at that little round face!
Do you remember this sweet baby?
He's now a feisty little 2 year old.
(With very sharp teeth. I speak from experience.)
Kelsey's beautiful family
Aren't they a sweet little family?

Brother & Sister
My sweet James.
(Behind the scenes info: His momma took this pic.
I'm actually behind him tickling him to make him smile.
 He was in a bit of a stinky mood that day.)

Baby Annelise.
Isn't she the sweetest thing?
(I think she's waving "Hi" to Auntie.)
Blessed beyond measure.

Monday, December 29, 2014

the rest of my knitted gifts...

I finished Mom's shawl on Christmas Eve Eve. (December 23rd)
I'm really pleased with how it turned out.
Mom was quite pleased with it too!
It's so pretty & soooo soft!
The photo below looks like the sort of gift I would love to receive...
it's not for me!

This is what happens when you don't get all your knitting projects done!
It is supposed to be a cabled sweater for my sister Aimee.

I got her a necklace & headband & stuck them in the bottom of the box.
Then I piled in the yarn for her cabled sweater & a "learn to knit" booklet!
Inside the booklet was a little note.
I think I thought it was a lot funnier than she did!
(I can't help it if I crack myself up!)
Thankfully her birthday is in February - a more realistic goal.
We should still have some winter weather left to wear it in too -
if this year turns out anything like the last.

Friday, December 26, 2014

'twas a very Merry Christmas...

I wanted a picture holding Annelise in her little hat.
I think she liked relaxing with Billy better than being held by Auntie.

 I think she found Auntie to be rather a bore. ;)
 These cookies are but a memory now.
Aren't these little "NOEL" angel these sweetest thing?
One of my lovely gifts from my dear sisters.

Perhaps my favorite gift:
A turquoise vintage style portable record player.
Now I finally have something stylish to play my record collection on.
(I previously had a 1970s monstrosity with speakers as big as end tables.
Great sound, but poor use of space.)
I'm so happy it can play 78s! Lots of times they'll only play 45s & 33s.
Kitty isn't quite sure how she feels about it - being the embodiment of the phrase scaredy-cat.
She makes me think of the RCA dog here! :D
Was your Christmas merry?

Friday, December 19, 2014

frosted windowpanes...

The frost this morning was breathtaking.
I just had to attempt to capture it.

 I just love moss.
It's so cute.

Nosy little birds. ;)
Now back to my knitting. :)

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

vintage pixie hat & a squirrel purse...

I don't believe I've ever introduced you all to my newest niece, Annelise!
Isn't she just the cutest thing?
I made her this hat for Christmas & gave it to her early so she could get some good use out of it.
She also received a wee bolero just like her cousin Abbey, only smaller. ;)
This squirrel purse was made for my Aunt Becky.
She LOVES squirrels.
She feeds them cookies.
So they love her back. ;)

Acorn fabric for the lining, naturally.

Only gifts left to make are a lacy shawl (on the needles now) for Momma.
Made of the finest fuzzy lace yarn I have ever used. (Finer than frog's hair as Dad would say.)
& a cable knit sweater for my sister Aimee.
Made of grey wool. Cuz Aims likes her "Sombertown" garb. (Just kidding Aim!)
Oh, and a couple pies for the Bros.
Made of deliciousness.
The end is near! :P
How are your projects coming along?

Monday, December 8, 2014

two checkmarks on the Christmas knit list...

This little bolero is for my niece Abbey.
Though it's not actually her Christmas present it is to wear on Christmas.
She'll be wearing a lovely off-white dress
that she wore as a flower girl this past summer.
The yarn used is Knit Pick's Wool of the Andes Sport in Hollyberry.
The pattern is a Debbie Bliss pattern for babies
 that I adapted from 12-18 month to fit a 6 year old.
I also added the bobble trim cuz I'm just fond of it! ;)
This next knit is probably the manliest thing I've ever featured on this blog. ;)
For Dad, ever the war history buff.
This "trigger mitt" pattern is from 1951.
Here they are in progress.
And here they are all finished!

Along with a stocking cap made from the 1934 pattern book.
Honestly a stocking cap is a stocking cap. I'm sure the pattern hasn't changed much.
BUT I know the that it's made from a 1934 pattern & that makes me happy. :)

Saturday, December 6, 2014

a very Calico Critter Christmas - the sequel...

You may recall my post last Christmas entitled a very Calico Critter Christmas.
I thought it might be fun to create a sequel this year. :D
With the help of PicMonkey I even added snow & photo corners
 to make it seem more like an old family album.

 "Do come in for some hot cocoa when you're through, children!"


Yep, this is what I do when I should be knitting Christmas gifts...

Friday, December 5, 2014

haul out the holly...

It's that time of year!

Check out this adorable vintage enamel bucket my Momma got me!
I thought it would be perfect base for my Christmas tree.
Still has the label! Whaaaat?!

Isn't this old photo of my Aunt Becky just too cute?
Me thinks she doesn't completely trust this Santa fella.

This little item is my favorite Etc. Shop find.
Christmas. Toilet. Paper.
It doesn't get much more festive than that.
And, what a relief to know it's printed with non-irritating ink.
Best 25 cents I've ever spent.
Next post: another Calico Critter Christmas. ;)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Me Oh My Cherry Pie!

Without the red dye!

Ok, I'm done rhyming now. ;)

First things first you'll need some crust.
I make my Grandma Linda's Lard Pie Crust.
You can find the recipe on my old blog, birds of the air, here.
You'll need a couple lovely egg yolks such as these laid by my own dear Jemima Puddle Duck.

Now for the filling!
You need 3 cans of tart cherries in water.
I normally have to buy Oregon brand cherries,
but thankfully my beloved Aldi was offering their own canned cherries recently.
(For about 1/2 the price! Score!)
You'll drain the cherry "juice" into a pyrex measuring cup & use 1/2 of it in the filling.
Here are what the cherries look like before you cook them.
Rather pale, but never fear they'll turn a lovely ruby red before we're through!
After a few minutes of simmering they are beautiful!
Here is the recipe:
3 cans red tart cherries in water
4T cornstarch
1 1/4c sugar
1/8t salt
2 pie crusts
In a heavy bottomed saucepan combine cherries with 1 1/2 cans worth of their "juice", cornstarch, sugar, & salt. Bring to a simmer and cook over med-low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring regularly. Set aside to cool. Preheat oven to 425*F. Roll out crusts. Line pie plate with one. Pour in the filling. Make a lattice top. Brush with egg white. Bake on a foil lined baking sheet for 20 minutes. Lower temperature to 375*F, cover crust with a foil shield & bake for 30-40 minutes more. Let cool about 3 hours to allow pie to set properly.
(I found this great recipe via Pinterest.  Here is the original recipe source.)
I've always had trouble with cherry pies not setting up properly & not having that beautiful red without red dye #40. This recipe solved both problems. Yay!
All ready for tomorrow!
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!!