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November 24, 2015

The house is clean.  The china has been taken out of the hutch and washed.  Beer and wine, cider and eggnog, and cranberry juice have been acquired.

Here’s the final menu:

  • stuffed mushrooms
  • pasta e fagioli
  • cornbread stuffing
  • garlic mashed potatoes
  • parmesan roasted butternut squash
  • dry fried pecan green beans
  • ravioli tossed with spinach and bacon
  • deep fried turkey
  • boneless turkey breast (in case of emergency and for bonus leftovers)

Earlier today I baked the cornbread, then let it cool, crumbled it up and toasted it in the oven.  I cubed up a whole loaf of bread and then toasted that in the oven.  That is my first step in cooking for Thanksgiving – they go into the stuffing, which I will make tomorrow.

I always make the soup and the stuffing the day before; both improve with an overnight rest.  I will also prep all of the vegetables tomorrow.

It might sound ridiculous to spread out the prep so much, but I’ve found over the years that nipping away at it beforehand makes Thursday go so much more smoothly.

Best wishes for a happy, safe, and stress-free Thanksgiving.


November 17, 2015

Chugging along, getting things staged for Thanksgiving (I’ve made the ingredient pivot list, washed curtains and tablecloths, etc), etc. I’m not working next week, so the cleaning and cooking will begin on Monday.

Drawing close to Thanksgiving means it won’t be too long until Christmas is upon us.  The knitting is ongoing, and the shopping list is probably 85% complete.  I have made a few purchases, but I have begun to watch the prices of other items…my goal is always to have the shopping done before Thanksgiving, but I never actually finish until right around Larry’s birthday (December 7th). Which is still pretty respectable, in my opinion.




November 10, 2015

Went to the fifth annual Fiber Festival of New England on Saturday.  This was our second time, we went last year too.IMG_7365

It’s a two-hour drive, so Carolyn and I met up at 8, stopped at Dunks, and headed west.

Over the years we’ve gone to many of these festivals – Rhinebeck, Stitches, Massachusetts Sheep and Wool – we have a method.  We browse our way through the whole thing, making a list of the vendors we want to revisit; then eat lunch, and then get to the shopping.  This year we knew better than to rely on  sheer memory, so I kept a list of booth numbers on my phone.

All in all, we were pretty discriminating (for once).  I only bought from three vendors, and Carolyn from only one.




I look forward to spending quality time with these yarns.  As soon as I’m through the Christmas knitting.


November 6, 2015

I’m thrilled to say that our CSA is still going strong.  And even prouder to report that the boys continue to try new vegetables every week.

We’ve been getting rainbow carrots for the past few weeks, and I am always a little surprised by just how colorful they are once they’ve been cleaned and peeled.  Here are a few that went into our chicken soup earlier this week.


Funnily enough, I did not make the connection between the purple one staining my cutting board and what it might do to the other ingredients of soup.  The pasta, chicken and broth all turned various shades of purple, and the previously-purple carrots turned brown.  I wish I’d thought to take a photo of my bowl!

Last night we had spaghetti squash tossed with cheddar cheese, topped with garlic-fried broccoli and steak tips.  This was the first time I baked the squash cut-side up, and am happy to report that the strings remained a little more firm (not to say crunchy) and not at all soggy that way.


Larson said “squash that looks like spaghetti is pretty tricky”.  I agree.  Keep eating your veggies, kid.


November 3, 2015

Hope you had a wonderful Halloween weekend.  I kicked the weekend off with a 5k on Saturday morning.  I beat my personal record by over a minute!  I think it was the pants :)


We always go to Larry’s mom’s neighborhood for trick-or-treating.



I have finished the first pair of thrummed socks.  Here you see one with the outside out, and the other with the inside out.  I expect they will be cozy and warm…


We changed the clocks on Sunday, too, and while I am not a fan of the 4pm sunset, I do like the 6am sunrise.  It makes my weekday morning runs much safer.



October 27, 2015

Living in a smallish house, we have no room for a home office.  For several years I worked from the coffee table in the living room, or the dining room table.  A few months ago I put my old makeup table in the back of the dining room.  It was better, but still not ideal.


I turned 45 last week and decided it is high time I have a dedicated workspace of my own.  Off to Ikea we went, and viola!


We’re still working on removing all of the clutter from the surrounding area, but this will do until the boys move out and I can finally have the home office/craft room of my dreams.  Note, my kids are 9 and 5, it’s gonna be a while.

On Sunday Alistair’s art school had a public art exhibit.


This year he submitted two pieces for display.



The apples have been hanging over my desk at work for the past couple of years; he made me take it down and bring it home.  I’m looking forward to having them back in place soon.


October 20, 2015

This past week I finally finished the infinity cowl that has been my throw-in-the-bag knitting project since last spring.


Perfect timing; there’s a chill in the air and we had our first frost over the weekend.

I am deep into the Christmas knitting.  Three hats are complete, and I’m almost finished with the first slipper sock.


It’s my first time doing thrumming and although it’s a little fiddly, it’s pretty straightforward stuff.  I think these socks will be crazy warm.  Probably a little slippy too.  Need to think about that a bit.

Notice the videogame in the photo above; Larson got it for his birthday and the textures are AMAZING.  There is yarn (in knitted and crochet form), felt, leather, denim, canvas, corduroy…and who knows what else.  Watching videogames almost always makes me dizzy.


Yes, he’s five.

Saturday we went to the annual Boo at the Zoo event.  So. Much. Fun!!




This year we carved plastic (well, foamcore) pumpkins.  So much easier.  There’s a lot of dust, but there’s no slop.  I don’t think the squirrels will be interested in them, either.  Win-win.



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