Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Winterfest knitting

 The Winterfest sweater is coming along.  Slowly.  Very, very slowly.

I can't keep up with the stripes on a nightly basis.  Sitting outside at Winterfest, my hands get so cold and stiff I can't knit with any speed at all.  I'd gotten caught up last week and started fresh this past Friday night but...  I now have a gallon ziplock bag crammed full of yarns waiting to be knit into sweater stripes.  

Two things are amazing me about this project.  One, is how many nine and ten year olds there are visiting our booth.  I'd bet eight out of every ten kids are either nine or ten.  I find that mathmatically weird.

The other thing that amazes me is that I can remember what order I'm supposed to knit each of the little balls of yarn crammed into that ziplock bag, although half the time I have to ask the kids how old they are multiple times.  I can't remember where I parked my car, where I set my phone down, my kids' names (only occasionally,) or what I ate for breakfast but I can remember what order the colors go and even which little ball of the same color goes first, second or third.  It must be a knitter thing.

I'm pleasantly surprised how okay the colorful sweater is looking so far.  I fully expected it to be THE most hideous mess of color but it's not.  It's sort of like those scrap sock yarn blankets where all the wild colors that clash horribly somehow just magically work when put all together.

And in the event I ever participate in another Winterfest or attempt a similar sweater, I think I'll knit the year into the hem for posterity.  Of course, my fingers will need to thaw out enough to knit to the hem...

On a different note, we had a few visitors at our booth Sunday night.

Mr. Peppermint and Miss Candy Cane stopped by.  And admittedly, Mr. Peppermint is not really his name.  I have, of course, forgotten his official name but I do remember that his lady friend is Candy Cane.

This couple is John Dough and Ginny Gingerbread.  And no, Gingerbread is not Ginny's official last name.  I've forgotten it too, but personally, I think Ginny Gingerbread sounds okay so I'm going with it.  

And last but not least,

I have no idea what these folks' names are but they walk past our booth frequently and always give us a smile and a wave.  I call them The Christmas Couple.  The Mister reminds me of Mr. French from Family Affair.  And yes, I'm definitely showing my age with that comment!

And now, now I'm off to knit a few Christmas gifts for family members and then knit a few thousand sweater stripes.

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Sunday Supper - Turkey Soup

Got leftover turkey?  Normally we use up our leftover turkey in sandwiches then all the teeny tiny little scrap pieces get tossed into some kind of casserole.  But this year, I thought I'd do something different.

Okay, not all That different.  You know me - I like the tried and true.  But instead of a casserole, I thought I'd give soup a try this year.  I don't think I've ever made turkey soup before.  Chicken soup, yes.  Constantly!  But not turkey soup for some odd reason.  So, this year I'll be trying A Taste of Home's homemade turkey soup.

And to keep you updated, I didn't get very far teaching Hayden to sing Alice's Restaurant. There's always next year and it is a pretty wordy song.  But, hey - there's always Christmas carols.  She definitely knows the word "no" so I think the first song we'll work on will be Noel.  She's already halfway there!  Her parents are going to love me! Ha!

Tuesday, November 23, 2021


I have either lost my mind completely or had a wonderful, fun idea.  I'm hoping for wonderful and fun.

I have a bunch of, as in, a whole dresser full, of Palette from Knit Picks that I'd like to use up.  Or at least make a noticable dent in.  So I thought I'd knit a striped sweater.

And that's where the craziness kicked in.  I decided to take as many different colored skeins as I could cram into a large container with me to Winterfest.  While the moms are shopping in our booth, the kids can look through the yarn and choose a color.  Then I pull their age in yards off the skein and use that yarn to knit the next color stripe.  

And to make it more fun, I plan to post updates weekly?? Maybe every other week??  I haven't really decided that yet.  We'll just have to see how quickly the sweater progresses.  Since the kids seemed interested in seeing photos of their color choices knit up, I am hoping to post more frequently on Instagram.   

I think letting the kids choose the colors will make a fun and interesting sweater while taking the decision making pressure off me.  I'm going to do my very best to keep the stripes in the order the kids pick out but I may occasionally have to apply a little artistic license.  For example, three kids picked out the same color, one after the other Sunday night.  And one of those kids was 16 and the other two were both 10.  That would have made 36 yards of one color - so I decided to break them up a little.  But other than instances like that, I'm going to do my very best to (1) not influence the kids' color choices, and (2) keep the yarns they choose in the right order.

Wish me luck and a wearable sweater. 😊

Oh, and HAPPY THANKSGIVING!  I'm having a hard time believing it's Thanksgiving already.

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Sunday Supper - Chocolate Rum Pie

It's not even Thanksgiving yet and I'm already over pumpkin pie.  Plus, if we're going to have pumpkin soup to start our meal, we'll need a different kind of pie for dessert.

And since I recently stumbled across a mention of rum pie in a very old cookbook... and I have been slightly obsessed with the idea ever since...

I bring you Grandma's Chocolate Rum Pie from Pinch and Swirl.  I can't say the recipe sounds super simple but hey - there's Vitamin A in it.  That makes it a healthy pie! Right??

And maybe the rum will help Hayden pronounce her L's. 😊

Friday, November 19, 2021


 So, the Winterfest booth isn't looking like much yet.  

But by tomorrow....

Winterfest starts tomorrow night so we have our work cut out for us today.  

If you're local, or feel like traveling for that matter, come experience Winterfest and make sure to stop by our booth in Artisian Alley.  Our booth will have a little bit for everyone.  Besides my knits, we have a paper artist & painter, a fabric artist/sewer, a many talents but mostly baby item maker and a jeweler.  And our booth is right beside the "Cupcake People."  I don't know their actual name but they seem to be fairly famous within the park and everyone just calls them The Cupcake People.

Wish us luck with the set up.  

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Let there be light

It's been a very exciting week around here.  Remember our power outage problem this past summer? 

The power company finally got back out here to replace our street light.

Can you call it a "street light" when it lights up a private driveway??


The  power company people showed up and replaced our light.  They apologized for it taking so long for them to get back out here.  Apparently they are very short staffed and we'd been on the schedule four different times but each time, a car had wiped out a power pole somewhere else and that repair job took presedence.  Understandabley.

But it sure is nice to not need a flashlight to get from the car to the door at night.

So, in other words, I did Winterfest admin stuff all weekend and haven't even picked up the knitting needles in three days.  Yikes!

Sunday, November 14, 2021

Sunday Supper - Roasted Potatoes with Bacon and Cheese

My mouth is watering just thinking about today's Sunday Supper recipe.

Forget the mashed potatoes and macaroni and cheese.  Let's go with roasted potatoes with bacon and cheese from Natasha's Kitchen.  Personally, I'm not sure there could be a better dish to go with turkey than roasted potatoes with bacon and cheese.  Yum!

In keeping up with Hayden's Alice's Restaurant progress...  It's interesting.  And her parents are ready to kill me.  Hayden has learned Alice's name but.... She leaves out the "L."  To get the effect, just say Alice to yourself, but leave that L out.  Yikes!

Friday, November 12, 2021

So Close

The third and final needlepoint pillow top is SO close to being finished.  Needlepoint wise at least. 

I tried so hard to finish the needlepoint last night but I started yawning every five seconds and my eyes were watering from all that yarning and I just couldn't properly see the wholes in the canvas.  But today...  Today this baby will be finished!

I have mixed emotions about completing this piece.  It's the third and final one and I've really enjoyed the meditative aspect of stitching the larger sections.  I'm also quite excited to scratch it off the crafty to-do list but at the same time, I want to start another. And more importantly, I don't want to have to add "sew pillow backing to the needlepoint pillows" to my craft to-do list.

I really amy going to miss having some needlepoint on standbye when I need a break from knitting.  I may have to go in search of more canvases to buy.  I'm not sure where to start looking though.  I haven't seen needlepoint in stores in, well, a very, very long time.  I'm sure someone out there in craft-land sells them though.  I'm sure Google will help me but if any of you have a favorite needlepoint shop, I'd love to hear about it.

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Next week

I am totally panicking!  Winterfest starts next week!  Okay, granted, today is Tuesday of this week and Wiinterfest officially starts on Saturday of next week so there's really almost two weeks but...   Aack!  I'm so not ready! 

I really am freaking out a little bit.  It will be okay though.  An hour or two into the first night of Winterfest and I'll calm down and chill out.  Hopefully not literally - it is an outdoor, night time festival in December!  Another Aack!  But mainly, I just don't like not knowing what to expect.  I've never done anything close to something this size, I'm shy and introverted (I know - based on my ramblings here, who'd have guessed that right? But I am,) the festival runs 26 nights and did I mention it's outdoors, at night, in November and December?  What have I gotten myself into??  Aack!

But as one of the Hallmark Christmas movies said, fear is just another form of excitement.  I'm not afraid, I'm excited.  

Yeah, I'm excited.  That's it.  Excited.

And I will be very, very excited when I finish knitting four more f-bombs and reach my inventory goal.

I've been having trouble meeting my inventory goal with these f-bombs because every time someone sees me knitting them, they want one.  No, that's not correct.  They want five!  They seem to be selling faster than I can knit them.  

I sure am glad I discovered Brava from Knit Picks.  The first few bombs I knit, I was using some horrible, by-the-pound acrylic from the big box craft store.  It was horrible to knit with.  It was stiff, made my hands ache, and it clung to my fingers weirdly so that my gauge was, well, let's just say, not consistent.  But thankfully I gave Brava a try.  It is also worsted acrylic but knits up more like a nice wool.  It looks like wool too.  It doesn't have that flat, solid black tone that many acrylics, specially the cheap ones, have.  And Brava is inexpensive.  Actually, yardage wise, it's within pennies of that horrible by-the-pound skein I bought.  

Ooh!  AND, I just noticed - it's on sale!  I think I'll be stocking up.  Hayden probably needs a few more hats and sweaters.

Sunday, November 7, 2021

Sunday Supper - Pumpkin Soup

Before we start talking food, make sure you've changed your clocks.  Daylight Savings ended in the wee hours of this morning.

I thought I'd share a few Thanksgiving ideas for November's Sunday Suppers.  And, since, with the exception of the turkey, Thanksgiving always seems to be centered around pumpkins, I thought I'd share a pumpkin soup recipe today.

This pumpkin soup recipe from Delish.com sounds yummy and super easy to make.  We've never had a Thanksgiving soup course before, but there's always a first time.

Hopefully on the day, I will fill up on healthy pumpkin soup rather than carb-filled stuffing and mashed potatoes.

And don't forget, make sure Alice's Restaurant is playing in the background while you're cooking.  The food always tastes better with Alice's help.

And on an Alice's Restaurant note, Hayden isn't singing the words yet but she does say, "choo choo" when it gets to the, "...just a half a mile from the railroad track..." verse.  In Hayden's world, all trains and train tracks are choo choo's.  She won't sing with me yet, but at least I know she's listening to the words. πŸ˜ƒ

Friday, November 5, 2021

The season has begun

 It's that time of year!

I'm playing it everyday for Hayden.  My hope is that by Thanksgiving, she'll know some of the words.

And yes, my family hates me. 😊

Tuesday, November 2, 2021


The wintertime ladybugs have arrived. Which is actually pretty appropriate since Hayden was a ladybug for Halloween.

She obviously had a good time and mastered the art of asking for candy.  She leaves out the trick part and just walks around putting her hand out while shouting "Treat!"  

We've created a monster.

An adorable little monster!

Hope your Halloween was as joyous.