Showing posts from December, 2012

last day of 2012...

Image's hard to believe! And only two more days of vacation...sigh.

This morning's sunrise was clear, with just a few wispy clouds:

I've been working in my studio the last few days and finally finished the Jungle Songs quilt. Here it is:

Started May 2010
Finished 12/29/12
Laurel Burch fabric
Quilt kit contained the fabrics and the pattern; origin of the kit is unknown.
Things I like about this quilt: The fabrics are bright and cheery. It's Laurel Burch. It's done!Things I don't like: The pattern was too fussy (don't like one-inch squares). The fabric pieces limited how I could use them in the quilt--some were cut slightly crooked so I couldn't get straight lines in the border pieces. Machine quilting around the animals was a PITA. I'm not sure where I'll use this quilt. For now, it will stay in the studio.

I also finished assembling the top of the Going Snow Global Christmas quilt. I can't get a decent picture of the top because the gree…

Last Eye Candy Friday of the year...

...a little late posting today, but at least I'm posting!

First, the eye candy: this morning's sunrise:

I've spent the last couple of days wrapping cookies and biscotti for mailing. I mailed 10 boxes of goodies today to various family members and friends.  As for the rest of the goodie bags, there are only 3 left to deliver. I've assembled 32 goodie bags and boxes this year...I think that's 3 more than last year.

When I wasn't packing cookies, I was playing with one of my Christmas presents: an Ashford Inkle loom.

I have warped it a couple of times. The first time I didn't get it taut enough so I undid it and warped it again. I figured I needed the practice, so I didn't mind. I'm weaving a simple strap using black, blue, and copper colored crochet cotton.

For now, I am just trying to get into the rhythm of weaving with this loom. Once I feel comfortable with it, I want to weave a strap to use as a yoga mat carrier.

Up this weekend: Finish the Jungl…

Merry Christmas!

...while we are waiting for Christmas to start (read: waiting for the Daughter to arrive), I'm taking the opportunity to post.

Christmas Eve dinner went very well...the cioppino was delicious, the dessert worked, and the company was wonderful.

For dessert, I made the Pomegranate and Cocount Panna Cotta I found on Pinterest. I garnished it with toasted coconut and pomegranate seeds. It looked festive!

I'd like a little more coconut flavor in the panna cotta itself, so I might add some shredded coconut to it the next time.

After every one left, the Husband and I watched a little TV before going to bed.

This morning there is a threat of rain, so there are a lot of clouds.

We have the unexpected gift of staying home on Christmas Day, so things are moving at a slow pace. It's nice to be able to relax and not have to rush around to leave by 11am!  I'm making a Chile Relleno casserole with fresh guacamole and my grandma's chocolate atole (more like a champurrado).  I actu…

Eye Candy Friday, rolling into headlong into Christmas...

...Happy Solstice! It's my last day of work for the year and I'm looking forward to my vacation.

First, look at this morning's sunset:

The clouds were amazing!

Up this weekend: Pack all the goodie bags, finish decorating my house for Christmas, wrap gifts, clean my house, and go grocery shopping. We host Christmas Eve dinner, so I'd like to get most everything done this weekend. If something has to wait until Monday, it will be wrapping the gifts.  It won't be the first Christmas Eve that I'm up late wrapping gifts, and probably not the last!

My plan for tonight, however, is to relax and get reacquainted with The Husband. The poor guy gets ignored while I'm in baking mode!

The end is in sight!

WIP-it Wednesday...

Image which most of my WIPs are from the kitchen.

Yeah, I missed Monday and Tuesday...not a lot of time to post right now.  Between trying to wrap things up for the year at work and the Christmas madness in the kitchen, I've been going non-stop.

Christmas WIPs:
Finish the Chile-Chocolate Truffles. They need to be formed into balls and rolled in cocoa powderFinish the snowflake cookies. They need luster dust and edible glitter (tonight's task) Wrap and assemble the goodie bags for the people at work (6) and deliver on Friday, 12/21Bake one more cookie if there's time using a new recipe. Maybe a revamp (or new recipe) of the Green Tea cookie or the Churro cookie recipe I saw in Pinterest.Bake one more batch of biscotti, probably Grand Marnier orangeWrap and assemble the goodie bags for Christmas delivery (15)Package and mail the goodie boxes for mailing after Christmas (9) (These never get out until later because I never have time to go to the post office before Christmas.)Fi…

Eye-can't-believe-Christmas-is-in-11-days Candy Friday...

...and I only have 6 more days of work for the year!  I'm behind on decorating and baking. And the Husband and Daughter haven't given me their wish lists yet either, so I'm behind on shopping, too!  ACK!!!! that out of my system now. 

Today's Eye Candy is brought to you by the color orange:

This morning's sunrise:

And because there are no flowers to photograph and I've already shown you most of the cookies, how about a persimmon?

My friend Linda brought over some persimmons to share. I'm not sure what to make with them yet, but they need to get used soon. Maybe some cookies since I'm already in cookie mode? Hmmm...

Speaking of which, I baked 118 Mexican Wedding Cookies Wednesday night. This was the last chilled dough I had in the refrigerator, so it was pretty easy to get them going.  That upped the total cookie output to 618. I also made 12 cups of the Grand Marnier Pecans. I need to make a lot more sugared nuts, but they are a stove-top i…

WIP-it Wednesday, holiday style...

...short and sweet.

My main WIP right now is Christmas: baking and decorating.

The Husband helped me bring down the 14-or-so boxes of Christmas decorations last night. We got the lights on the tree and he went off to the other room to watch TV while I started unpacking the boxes. He claims that I have OCD (Obsessive Christmas Disorder), which is probably true. And he's probably safer out of the room when I'm decorating. :)

Unpacking and decorating takes several days as I'm usually burned out after work and I'm busy baking all weekend. But it starting to look a little like Christmas with the lights on the tree. The Husband put up the outside lights on Saturday and the house looks cheery all lit up.

Edited to add a picture:

Nothing crafty has happened since Spin-In on Saturday, so nothing new to report there.

Tonight, I hope to bake the last batch of chilled cookie dough so I can cross that off my To Do List.


Top-of-the-waves Tuesday...

...I know blogging has been a little sparse lately. Chalk it up to being busy and trying to wind things up so I can go on Christmas vacation on the 22nd.

I've been taking vacation between Christmas and New Year's since at least 1980. I've had different employers along the way and there were a couple of years where it wasn't possible, but I need this time to recover recharge after the Christmas baking madness.

Anyway, here's the weekend recap.

Got our Christmas tree from Summerwinds Nursery. It is an 8-foot Nordman Fir. The nursery is very good about trimming the trunk and any extra branches at the bottom of the tree, and they are very close to home. We got it into water as soon as we got home. The plan was to move it into the house when we had a chance....that was not going to be during the weekend because of baking, though.Baked a double batch of the Faux-bucks Lemon bread. After taste-testing the first batch, we decided it needed more lemon flavor. I add…

Eye Candy Friday, blog and run...

...too many things going on today. More later if I have a chance.

This morning's sunrise:


November 2013 recap...

...such as it is.

11/23 Midnight Botanical Cowl [Ravelry]11/24 Heather handspun (spinning) [Ravelry]
Chasing Rainbows top: 2 oz. Merino-Bombyx and 2 oz. Merino
Skein #1: 320.1 yards, 2-ply, 15 WPI
Skein #2: 46 yds singles, about 13 WPI
Books: Rosemary and Rue, Seanan McGuireBlue-Blooded Vamp, Jaye WellsSilver-Tongued Devil, Jaye WellsGreen-Eyed Demon, Jaye WellsThe Mage in Black, Jaye WellsRed-Headed Step-Child, Jaye WellsFury's Kiss, Karen ChanceStarted:
11/3 Midnight Botanical Cowl [Ravelry]
Pattern by Megan Goodacre
Yarn: Midnight Derby Smooshy by Dream In Color
Worked on:
Jungle Songs quiltRecipe for Summer by Pine Mountain Designs (cross stitch)Going Snow Global quilt
Works In Progress, did not work on:
Anasazi by Susan Portra (needlepoint)Celaeno Shawl (knitting) [Ravelry]Happy Pumpkin Scissor Fob by Shepherd's Bush (cross stitch)Halloween Phat Fiber samples (spinning) [Ravelry] Mediterranean Mermaid by Mirabilia (cross stitch)Natural Dyes batts from Yarn Wench (spinni…

random Thursday...'s been one of those weeks where I rapidly run out of "day" and there's very little to show for it.

One thing that's taking time is our company's annual card signing party, which it tomorrow. I'm responsible for the food. I researched options for party trays and placed the order for what we need.

Rather than spend an enormous amount of money for a spinach dip tray, I'm just making it myself.  I made the dip last night and plan on assembling the tray right before the party.  I'm also doing the cheese and cracker tray for the same reason.

At Tuesday's Craft Night, I cast-on a pair of fingerless gloves. I had a lot of yarn leftover for the cowl and decided a pair of fingerless gloves to match might be nice. No pix yet because it doesn't look like much yet!

Other than that, I've been a slug. :) I figure that's OK for work nights because I'm going to work my @$$ off over the weekend.

It's all about the Cookie this weekend!

weekend report...

...I baked. :) What, you want more details?

On Saturday, I did my Smart and Final run to buy flour, sugar, chocolate chips, butter, and other baking supplies that I need in large quantities.  Then I did my Safeway run to buy most everything else. I say most, because I didn't realize that we were perilously close to running out of canola oil.

Now what I consider being close to "out" is probably not your "close." I only had  1.5 cups of oil left. I needed a whole, large bottle.


When I make double batches of Almond Fruitcake and Pumpkin Bread, and one batch of Lemon Bread, I need lots of oil. I made 24 mini-bundt fruitcakes, 19 mini-loaves of pumpkin bread, and 6 mini-loaves of lemon bread. I still need to make another batch of Lemon Bread and some Gingerbread loaves. The Husband went to the store for me and brought home 2 large bottles of canola oil. (Thanks, J!)

That was Saturday. On Sunday, I started making the cookie dough that must be chilled before it c…