Wednesday, January 21, 2015

52 weeks of making - week three - granny square blanket

dear readers, i think it's finally time to put this blog to bed (no pun intended) and i'm glad to be finally showing you the granny square blanket i made for the guestroom that oh, only took me almost three years to put together! just like starting the blog, i had no idea what i was doing or getting myself into when i began this blanket, nor was i aware of all the energy it was going to take to make it good.

i started the 52 week challenge to get myself to blog more consistently, but to be honest, i'm sort of sick of this space! everything needs updating - the title, header, layout, my picture from 2011, and the cellphone i use to take my mediocre pictures. my computer skills/equipment in general could use a huge update actually. everything is changing too fast!

a friend once said to me you won't be great at something if you can't focus most of your attention on it. this is disheartening because there are so many things i want to do! unfortunately, revamping my blog is at the bottom of my list right now (but it's still on my list! i love blogs and will continue to read others!)

i want to thank my blogging buddies who have stuck around so long... elizabeth, nelly and cosmic... you have encouraged me and been faithful commenters for years! i also want to thank everyone else who read and showed me support... uncle george, aunt patti, uncle tommy, mom, dad, carol and anyone else i'm forgetting... it meant the world to know you visited my little old blog!:)

the past several years i've been mentally creating a new space to share my adventures with you. i've come up with dozens of quirky titles and have drawn out cute little logos. i may even check in here every once in awhile if i'm feeling up to it. (it's my blog and i'll do what i want!:)

so this isn't really goodbye... it's more like i'm giving myself permission to let this blogging thing go for now, without feeling i'm disappointing anyone or leaving too many loose ends. i just realized this is the last of my social media ties, so its gonna be like 1999 over here, which is funny because i've been thinking about scrapbooking and journaling like i did back then. it's great to openly share and have everything documented neatly on the web, but it's also nice to get more personal and have something tangible to pass on someday. so now scrapbooking is added to my list before blogging... as if i needed another hobby!

try not to miss me too much!:) though i will miss you!!!


Monday, January 19, 2015

around here

it's been all yarn and seeds over here lately. i'm trying to finish a bobble blanket for a friend's baby boy born last week as well as master the braided gladiator sandal pattern - after two years, three mess-ups and at least fifteen redo's, i've almost got it!

last year we started our brassica seeds (cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower) indoors under a shop light on february 22nd. since it felt like those plants could have used more time to mature before summer, i'm starting them early. a whole month early in fact. but now i'm wondering if this is too early. we shall see!

i also planted pansies and black-eyed susans. those seeds require stratification, a process of cold, winter treatment to mimic natural outdoor growing conditions, so they're siting in the fridge. yes, there are small pots of soil in my refrigerator, but only for a month!:)


Wednesday, January 14, 2015

52 weeks of making - week two - felt cat toy

looking to entertain your cat for about five minutes? give her some catnip! or better yet, sew her a toy stuffed with catnip! it doesn't have to be cute. your cat won't care. just don't forget the catnip!:)


Sunday, January 11, 2015

winter greens

the best cure for the winter blues is a pleasant day like today. kati got me to go out for a walk, and i also spent time in the sunny kitchen making roasted veggies and a spicy bean chili. i did laundry and john dusted and vacuumed out of his own volition.

here's to more pleasant winter days all around!:)


p.s. the brussels sprouts stalk came from whole foods. i wish i could say we grew it!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

52 weeks of making - week one - winter wreath

inspired by the talented dani ives from be good natured blog, i've taken on a personal challenge to make something every week this year and share it with you here. i was going to call this "52 weeks of crafting" but i wanted to leave room for food and other things, you know, for those weeks i'm not feeling so crafty. 

our winter wreath was made with an old branch hoop that i had been temporarily decorating for years. one year it had little fabric ties... another time it was covered in fake gold poinsettias. this time i wanted something permanent and real on there, so i used the goldenrod flowers that were dried from the garden last summer and hot-glued on some tiny pine cones i had collected from outside. john recommended the fake berries (he remembered those from a previous wreath) and though i didn't want to add them at first, i like the way it all looks together now. what do you guys think?


Saturday, January 3, 2015

recent eats

since it's usually dark by dinnertime, it's been hard to get a nice shot of our meals. the other day i was able to capture a semi-sunny picture of our steam-roasted vegetables pre-roasting. we're crazy about brussels sprouts, and i know we aren't the only ones! we really hope to grow some of our own this year, to eat and share.

there's the roasted brussels and carrots with rosemary and thyme plus a delicious quinoa salad i made with mango, avocado and coconut aminos. below is another variation with local potatoes. brussels sprouts are so yummy with dried cranberries!

we grew rutabagas for the first time last fall and have been enjoying them in all sorts of vegetable soups with beets and garden herbs.

this soup with red lentils, rutabaga, beets, and carrots was so good. we'll probably have it again this week.
i can eat vegetable soup everyday in the winter, especially when it contains lentils. a few weeks ago i sprouted green lentils to make a more easily digestible soup.

john has been helping with dinner, and one night he used leftover rice and frozen csa veggies to make us some scrumptious tacos topped with tapitio. mmm!
here's a healthier dessert he created for us a few nights ago - sliced bananas with peanut butter and chocolate chips. white chocolate is my favorite.

we are mindful to consume raw fruits and vegetables everyday, and i've been enjoying what i call supplement boats: superfood avocado halves filled with vitamin and mineral-rich sprinkles like pumpkin or hemp seeds, turmeric, kelp powder and nutritional yeast. i'm craving one now!

here's a shot of what i got last week from the whole foods salad bar. i love salad bars!

today i've got dried chick peas cooking in the crock pot, and i'm thinking about making another batch of kombucha tea. i'd also like to get my butt to the community garden to make mashed rutabaga for dinner, but if that doesn't happen i got potato flakes for back-up. oh, and i want to bake chocolate chip cookies for my johnny bear (like i won't be eating half of 'em:). are you making any messes in the kitchen this weekend?


Friday, January 2, 2015

winter harvest

it's been on my list of things to do: build a small hoop house covered in plastic for a winter garden. we didn't get around to it last year, but we've still got some kale, carrots, arugula, beets, and rutabaga to pick. once the snow comes the greens will most likely die, but the root veggies should be ok underground.

in the spring the hoops can serve as a frame to cover our greens with netting, to keep the moths from laying eggs on the leaves. it's been such a process to use kale from the garden, since each leaf has been covered in bugs. as someone who doesn't like to kill anything, i feel bad when i see drowned caterpillars in my salad spinner. fingers crossed we can keep that situation under control in 2015.

this pretty sweet william perennial has me so excited for spring. don't get me wrong, i'm enjoying winter and the break i'm having from garden work, but it's about that time to start thinking about seeds again.

and look what nick the mailman just brought as i was typing this post...the stars are aligning my friends!:) will you be gardening this year?

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