Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Twirl Test

I made this dress for my granddaughter for Christmas.  I bought her lacy socks and sparkly red shoes to match.  She loved it - "mine dress?" she asked.  She immediately wanted to put on the whole outfit (new cami and undies too), toddled upstairs to the big mirror,

and did the twirl test.

Then came the jumping on the bed in sheer joy,

followed by a pensive pose by the window.

This is probably THE most gratifying project I have ever made. 

~big thanks to cottagemama for the free pattern (click link above)~

Monday, November 22, 2010

Yes, I Feed Them Cheerios!

We have had two resident rabbits for a number of years now.  They periodically "change" ~ we have had a black one and a brown one, a black one and a grey one, and, most recently, these two brown ones.  Cottontails.  One is very tame and comes right to us, the other is a little shy and waits until his/her buddy has approached and he/she knows it is safe.  The different pairs have burrowed in the garden and we have seen a few babies (which are the cutest things) but the hawks soon grab them.  Cruel but necessary, I suppose.

I also put out carrot peelings, broccoli stalks, etc. for them but they prefer Cheerios and crusts of my homemade bread.  Bunnies after my own heart.

The tame one pokes his/her head right in the door ~

It is snowing like crazy right now.  I am not getting out of my jammies today (again).  The bird feeders are full and it is wonderful to watch all the activity.  There are juncos, a flicker (on the suet feeder), a varied thrush, towhees, pine siskins.  I haven't seen any chickadees today.  Perhaps -4C is too cold for them.  I know it is too cold for me.

This is what I will be working on today ~ Kinsol Trestle Vest 

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Christmas Cakes

I made these cakes about six weeks ago and they are presently in their sherry-soaked cheesecloth blankies in tins in the garage.  I must bring them in today for a little top-up of Harvey's Bristol Cream.  

The recipe is my grandmother's and whenever I make it I return to childhood memories of the tasks I was charged with.  First of all, I would chop the fruit.  The cherries had to be halved and the pineapple cut into chunks.  The candied peel came already chopped ~

Mixed up in a large bowl with currants and raisins, soaked with sherry and allowed to soak overnight ~

Add in the nuts, eggs and flour mixture ~

My next job was to line the pans.  Mum taught me how to carefully cut the parchment paper (which in those days was brown) so that it fit the pans.  I loved this part ~

 The mixture is so stiff you have to get in there with your hands to get every piece of fruit and nut coated ~

Then into the oven for a long slow bake ~

And, voila ~

Once they were cooled, my next job was to soak the cheesecloth in brandy or sherry (I used sherry this year) and wrap up the cakes ~

The tins I store them in must be at least 50 years old, passed from my grandmother to my mum to me ~

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Froggy Days

No, I haven't been doing any frogging in the knitting department.  Oldest grandson once referred to the fog as frog and that is what we are experiencing most mornings now.  It burns off during the day, thankfully, and the weather has actually been quite beautiful.  Cool and damp but blue skies and lots of lovely trees changing colour.  The pink climbing rose on the arbor is still blooming as are the hardy fuschias and a few geraniums (why isn't it gerania?  Maybe it is.) out front.  The birds (flickers, Stellar's jays, juncos, chickadees, towhees, hairy and downy woodpeckers) are very active at the feeders, loading up for winter.  We have had a raccoon chowing down on fallen grapes at dusk.  When we went outside to see what the noise under the grapevine was, he darted out of the brush, stood and faced us and hissed.  We decided to let him finish off the grapes.  The deer are loving the last of the Scarlet Runner beans from the garden.  Hubby tosses them (the beans, not the deer) over the fence and mums and babes appear from nowhere within minutes.  I think they actually hear him open the sliding door from the house and wait expectantly for their veggie treats.

I have completed a few projects lately and, of course, have cast on a few more.  

Socks for Kathy ~

Happy Baby knit in Bernat Softee Baby Solids & Marls for great-niece in Scotland ~

Drops 117-43 knit in Aslan Trends Bariloche ~

Drops 103-1 knit in Debbie Bliss Luxury Donegal Tweed ~

and these adorable Salute Hats which I made for my grandsons but somehow ended up being loved by their friends, Anna and Lucas ~

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Pumpkin Patch

This past weekend it was Thanksgiving here in our parts.  We walked, played, laughed, ate and cuddled.  It was wonderful.  Yesterday we took a trip to the nearby Pumpkin Patch.  The owners, Mike and Shannon, do a great job of decorating up their farm, complete with scary witches, spiders, skeletons, etc. in the barn.  We took the boys in a wagon out into the field and they picked out their very own pumpkins.

 A fuzzy caterpillar ~

Earlier in the day we had been down to the Puntledge River to see the run of spawning salmon and take a walk through the trails ~

What a beautiful place we live in!  And to top it all off, both my kids and all three grandkids were together for a few hours - first time in two years.  That just about made my heart explode.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Fall Is In The Air

Once again the shorter days and cooler weather have caught me off guard.  If only summer lasted just a couple more months.  We often have a lovely fall in the Pacific Northwest but I'm greedy.  I am so happy in bare legs, the thought of yanking up tights.........shudder.  

The good news is that I have three new pairs of socks to wear:

29 July 2010 013

rivulet 004

Leyburn socks 003

A cozy hat narcissistically named Julietta:
Etta ~ knit in Merisoft Hand Painted Aran (a birthday gift from Tink)

Julietta 007

and a couple of fun knits:
Starfish Washcloths  in Lion Brand Cotton-Ease

Reading jacket 004

For the new baby girl in England, Lexi:

Lexi 002

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Her Royal Cuteness

Sewing for little girls, especially a sweet grand-daughter, is so much fun.  The projects are quick to do up, fit isn't paramount (unless it's too small of course), and you can dress them in anything you want because you're the grown-up!

The dress is Kwik Sew 3775  and the hat is Butterick 3405