Window on the Weather – Day 7

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I held out a little longer for a photo this morning. When I got up around 8am, it was pretty blah, though I did get a good action shot of squirrels running across the snow. Then the sun came out, and that was the photo I decided to use.

The four squirrels must have signed a peace treaty, as hunting in the snow for buried walnuts is taking precedence over territorial squabbles. Since Mr Fixit cleared out the broken lilac, their superhighway across the treetops has been slightly interrupted, and a black squirrel was on the cherry tree at the end of the main branch, and I could hear its thoughts as it hesitated……….WTF happened to my usual commute??? After a moment, it decided to jump anyway!

After all my manic sewing pre-Christmas, I haven’t done much this week. But I did finish these:

two more cuffs

A few days ago, I traced a seahorse from a colouring book onto fabric using a Frixion pen. After layering with batting and backing I free-motion-quilted the seahorse in three different colours of thread, then ironed it to remove the lines. The stitching is a little rough but I have a lot more control now that I wear the non-slip gloves with the little plastic dots all over. I didn’t know what I was going to make, but in the end I decided to make a small bag using some flowery fabric that echoed the thread colours for the back and the lining.

This is the last day of my week off. I’ve done a little sewing, some knitting, some reading, a lot of cooking and eating and relaxing. It’s been great! Tomorrow I’ll have to switch on the work brain and get back into the swing of things.

Window on the Weather – Day 6

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Two photos, taken a minute apart, at around 8.30am. Fresh snow. What you can’t see in that photo above is that there are four squirrels in that walnut tree, running around and making clouds of falling snow!

The sun was creating a beautiful glow through the pines. My phone camera isn’t great. Mr Fixit has promised that we will be getting new phones soon. I can’t wait!

Window on the weather – Day 5

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Another calm cold day, cloudy this morning but with the potential for brightening up later. The snow on the railing melted off, but there’s still lots of it weighing the trees down. Mr Fixit was outside yesterday while I cooked Christmas dinner – on the right of this photo, behind the railing, you’ll see a large pile of wood that he cut off the lilac. Some of it broke with the heavy snow.

Much of my day was spent in the kitchen yesterday, and I am always grateful for this view: the mountains, the lake, the trees. I am grateful to live in a safe place, with light and warmth and abundant food. I am grateful that my family is around me and we are well. I am grateful for the ability to talk to my mum and sister via the internet, because they are a long way away.

Our Christmas dinner, traditionally for us eaten on Christmas Eve, was a Greek feast this year. Vegan pastitsio (pasta layered with a mushroom walnut tomato sauce and Bechamel sauce), lemon roasted potatoes, Greek salad (with tofu “feta”), olive rosemary bread, three new recipes (which can often be a recipe for disaster 😛 but in this case worked out great) followed by apple crumble and mince pies with whipped coconut cream. Oh yes, and apple cider and vegan nog too.

Everyone enjoyed the food, we played Mexican Train Dominoes after dinner while the food digested, and then the men finished cleaning up the kitchen.

Links to the recipes I used are here:

Pastitsio

Lemony roasted potatoes

Olive bread

I tweaked the recipes to my preferences (no garlic and onions) and when it came time to baking the olive bread I just used a baking sheet rather than a Dutch oven and baked it like I would focaccia.

Have a wonderful Solstice/Christmas/Yule time. May you have a calm and peaceful turn-of-the-year and an optimistic attitude to carry you into 2021.

Window on the weather – Day 2

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As you can see, the snow really built up over the course of the last 24 hours. I think we have a couple more casualties of the heavy weight on the tree branches out there – a branch on one of our hawthorn trees looks to have cracked, and the lilac is bent down to the ground.

There is some blue sky today, and the temperature is hovering around freezing, so most of the snow will probably hang around, except on the roads.

Progress has been made on the Turtle Dove swoncho.

The twisted rib hem has been finished on the front and I have a couple of inches to go on the back. Then I’ll need to add the sleeves, which will be pretty short because of the style of this garment. I think I only need to do 6 inches of stockinette and a couple of inches of ribbing.

Mr Fixit was commenting last night that his fingerless mitts were getting worn out. I have darned them a little in the past. We couldn’t remember how long he’d had them – our guesses were way off – turns out I knitted them in January 2010! The beauty of Ravelry is that I was able to look at the project page and find out that they are 11 years old. No wonder they are wearing out, but I’m impressed that they’ve lasted this long. He uses them every winter around the house. Not sure I feel like knitting him some new ones, but maybe I should just do it anyway!

Winter Solstice

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OK, I’m a day late with my Happy Solstice wishes, but I hope you are appreciating this time of the year. I really love it and I’m a bit sad that it’s over in the blink of an eye. Long nights, short days, cold weather, warm house, lots of pretty lights around the neighbourhood.

I thought I’d do a few days of “window on the weather” sort of posts. Knowing me I will forget to keep it up, but here’s Day 1 – Monday, through the pane in my kitchen door and looking over my backyard.

Monday was the first day of a vacation week for me. Of course we’re not going anywhere so I am appreciating the chance to feel like it’s a bit of a hibernation time. I started my day with some Netflix and knitting. NOT my usual practice, as those activities are usually saved for the evening. but I had nowhere to go and to add to the Let It Snow vibe it started snowing at about 8am and continued ALL DAY!

It was wet and heavy and the driveway was cleared more than once. I had my new crown fitted at the dentist in the evening and got Mr Fixit to drive me because we are on a lowest-priority road when it comes to ploughing. We made it there and back okay. It’s a short drive thankfully.

I baked two fruit cakes, one of which has already been attacked! And cleaned up the house, did some laundry, and generally had a very domestic day.

What are you doing today?

Any excuse for a bit more sewing…

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Any excuse for a bit more sewing…

I sewed Saturday, Sunday AND Monday. And wrapped things Monday evening so I could start giving my co-workers small gifts on Tuesday. Because we are on shift at different times, with most of us being part-time and scheduled different days, I allowed five shifts over the course of the week to see everyone before my holiday week starts on the 21st.

Usually all I feel like doing is vegging on the couch after work. I DID intend to do some knitting tonight but then I remembered that I had seen a poster at work advertising a new tutorial on the blog for a coffee cup sleeve. Coincidentally I had seen it mentioned on Facebook too, and had actually made one, but I messed it up, and the one-way print was upside down!

Well, I looked at the clock tonight at about 8pm and thought to myself, hmmm, lots of time to pop downstairs and run up a quick coffee sleeve, eh! So I did. Rather than make it in Christmassy colours, I went for a gorgeous leafy print. And because a coffee sleeve can get lonely without company, I made a mug rug (coaster) in a leaf shape, just for fun. It’s pretty big, about 9 x 7″, so perhaps more of a mug and a cookie rug.

The button is a ceramic one from the stash. And the mug rug is made with raw edge strip applique, but wider strips than I usually use, and a prettier stitch. Somehow I lost track of time and it was nearly 10pm by the time I emerged!

Other things that I have finished this week include:

this cuff
this zipper pouch with scrappy scrap trees

and this journal which you’ve seen the cover of before, but once I had made my mind up about the person I wanted to give it to, I changed a lot of the pages to be more relevant to her interests.

And now it’s time to hit the sack as I have work again tomorrow.

More scrappy gifty things

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It’s been a good Sunday. We’ve been to the library and I came home with a huge pile of crafty books and magazines to browse through at my leisure. We picked up tea at our favourite tea shop, where Mr Fixit had them smiling at his gnome mask! We went to the gym and burned off a microscopic percentage of the calories we have ingested since the Christmas season’s baking started. And I spent two hours in my sewing rom making two more cuffs.

These cuffs take about ten minutes to make. However the rectangle of scrappy strip fabric that I used to make them took about an hour and a half to create! Not a quick project if you do it this way. I’m happy that I finally used the turtle button from Maui. The one with the silver button is a gift.

When we returned home from the gym, ds3 was in the process of baking more gingerbread cookies. Jeepers, we’re still working on finishing the chocolate babka. And I plan to make some berry crumble bars tomorrow because I have been craving them since the last time I made them. I am thankful for loose comfy pyjamas right now!