Tuesday, November 25, 2008


This is a turkey candle holder that my husband made for his mother many, many years ago. We still use it at Thanksgiving. Amanda from Joli House was looking forward to hearing about our holiday traditions in the upcoming weeks. That got me thinking about some of the Thanksgiving traditions our family has as I was preparing for Thursday. Of course we have the traditional New England Thanksgiving dinner of turkey, stuffing, potatoes, squash, cranberry sauce, and apple pie, but we also carry on a few smaller traditions too.

My mother-in-law always set a beautiful table at the holidays, and she always had a little handmade favor at each place setting, so we carry on that tradition each Thanksgiving with some little favor. Sometimes it's handmade. Sometimes it is store bought chocolate, but it is always there. This year it is pumpkin shaped sugar cookies drizzled with chocolate.

The other tradition we have is using the turkey plates that were handed down to us from my mother-in-law. I love them. They are so special. I only have eight, so sometimes the kids get to use them, and sometimes it is the lucky adults.

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving, and thank you for stopping by and leaving me messages. They always make my day. Thanks also for all the inspiration you have given me from your blogs and websites too!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Fire Starters

It is really cold here in the Northeast. It's below freezing! I wanted to start a fire in the wood stove, but I ran out of fire starters. It's the only way I can get a fire to start. So, being the "Internet savvy" person that I am, I googled "handmade fire starters" and found this recipe.

I had all the supplies on hand - old candles, wood shavings, and paper baking cups. I sprinkled them with pumpkin pie spice to add a scent.

They really work!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Ol' MacDonald had one...

and now my nephew will have one too!

This was another free tutorial posted by the UK Lass in US. I made this one for my little nephew who is very much into animals and what sounds they make right now. This would make a great doll house or even a little dog house with a stuffed dog inside. The possibilities are endless.

It buttons up and has handles so it can be carried with the little animals and book inside, and then opens out for playtime.


I think the sewing is out of my system now. Back to focusing on knitting. Right now I'm knitting Wisteria by Kate Gilbert from the Fall Twist Collective. I really love how the cables look like vines trailing down from the collar. Another genius design! Have a wonderful weekend.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


I saw this Jingle Mouse Ornament tutorial from Pimp Stitch and thought it would make a great package topper or stocking stuffer. It was very easy to make. It's made out of felt and fabric scraps. The only thing I added that wasn't on the tutorial were some whiskers! I added them by using a double thread to make the french knot for the eye and then pushing the needle out through the side of the nose and making a knot then clipping the thread leaving an inch or so for the whiskers.
Then I made an embroidered felted ornament using the tutorial from Sunshine Creations. It was easy and fun. I love those projects that you can make in a half hour with things you already have on hand.

Friday, November 14, 2008

A little of this and a little of that...

This week really flew by for me. I have been knitting, but just don't have much to show, because I've ripped it out several times. I'm having fun with it though. I've seen a lot of long vests lately that I like. I tried looking for patterns, but couldn't find one that exactly matched what was in my little head, so I'm making up my own - hense all the ripping back. I repeat that I am having fun with it!

I bought the Alabama Stitch Book this week, and that has been fun to look through. Lots of inspiration inside those pages if you like to hand stitch.

I've been working on a tee shirt.

Today, I'm off with my mother for the day, so my servants, crock pot and bread machine, are making dinner for us as I write!

They are making beef stew and oatmeal bread! Have a great weekend!

Recipe for Oatmeal Bread (makes a 1 1/2 pound loaf)

1 1/8 cups(9 ounces) warm water
1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon maple syrup
2 1/4 cups (10-3/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
3/4 cup (3-1/2 ounces) whole wheat flour
1/2 cup (1-1/2 ounces) rolled oats
2 tablespoons powdered milk
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast

Put all the ingredients into the bread pan in the order listed. Select basic wheat cycle, light crust setting, on your bread machine. Press start.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Shalom Cardigan

I had this one skein of Ecological Wool that I received as a gift and I wanted to make something with it. The Shalom Cardigan was a perfect use for it, so last week I knit the Shalom Cardigan (Ravelry link) by Meghan McFarlane, It is a beautiful sweater and a really quick knit. I followed Hapichick's modifications. I made covered buttons out of a plaid fabric I had in my stash.

It was really hard to photograph the sweater today. The photographer (Who, by the way, turned sixteen and got his permit last week!) was more interested in other things on his day off. The lighting wasn't very good either. But trust me it is very pretty in person. I think I might wear it on Thanksgiving Day.

Pattern: Shalom Cardigan by Meghan McFarlane using Hapichick's modifications.

Yarn: CascadeYarns Ecological Wool - 1 skein - 478 yards

Needle: Us 10 circular needle

Notes: I cast on the extra 10 stitches at the yoke. I shortened the yoke ribbing by two rows in each section. I added three button holes. I did seven repeats of the leaf pattern for the front. I used the size 10 needle for the sleeves. I did two repeats of the pattern on each sleeve followed by three rows of the twisted rib used on the yoke and then bound off in the pattern. I would have made the sleeves longer, but was afraid I would run out of yarn. I probably could have added a few more rows of ribbing, but I really didn't have much yarn left.

I love it!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Felted Bangles

Kat Coyle, designer of the Burnished Tunic and Indigo Ripples skirt, has a free pattern for Reverse Stockinette Bangles. They are a great project for kids, because they are quick and easy, while teaching knit and purl stitches. It's a great way to learn how to knit. You can stop right here and have a cute little bracelet, but Gay, from Gaysknits, took these cute little bangles one step further and felted them. They look so good, of course everything Gay does looks great. She pays so much attention to detail.
So naturally I felt (ha!) the need to make some. I used scraps of leftover worsted weight wool. Malabrigo and Lambs Pride felted very nicely.

I casted on 40 stitches using size 7 straight needles, but you may need to experiment with this depending on how big you want to make them. The reverse stockinette naturally causes the bracelet to curl up. Then weave in the tails to make a circle. How easy is that? You can stop here.
But I chose to felt them. This was so easy. I put the bracelets in my hands, added some dish soap and warm water, and scrubbed my hands together like I was washing them. I kept checking the bracelets until I liked how they were felted. This process only took a few minutes.
I rinsed them, squeezed them in a paper towel to get out the extra moisture, straightened them out, and then slid them over the espresso maker funnel to dry. It was the perfect size, but you could use a glass.
When they are dry you can wear them or give them as a gift!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Hard work does pay off!

My husband and I did yard work today. We raked leaves. It was a lot of hard work, but we got paid big time. My husband found a golf ball and I found two roses on the rose bush. One last little reminder of summer. Enjoy the rest of your weekend!