Dec 23, 2011

ECF - Santa on a Firetruck Edition 2011

For our family the holiday season isn't complete without a sighting of Santa on the Firetruck. This was Miss M's first experience with it but it surely won't be her last. Here it is for all our friends who are celebrating Christmas this weekend.


Dec 22, 2011

Holidays in Cupcake Form

Among all the cards and cookies and Starbx cards that I got at work this year, one gift stood out... G-town cupcakes.


These suckers tasted just as good as they look. My family and I would highly recommend them if our mouths weren't full. Yum!

Dec 21, 2011

Happy Hanukkah


May the candles burn bright.

Dec 20, 2011

Ten on Tuesday - 10 Things to do before the weekend/ Hanukkah/ Christmas

I still can't wrap my head around the idea that Christmas and Hanukkah are here already. It seems like just yesterday that I was planning for my summer - last summer. Now the holidays are here and I'm getting reminders of stuff I must do to get ready for next summer. Ugh! First things first. I need to get through the holidays and all that goes with them. Here's a list of stuff I need to do before the weekend.


1. Knit - I didn't discuss gift knitting this year because I didn't plan on any but.... they asked.
2. Wrap - I did most of the wrapping already but there is still a little bit left.
3. Plan - this should be a great weekend for family time. I think that my girls are as excited about it as I am. That means I need to come up with great ideas for what to do..
4. Shop - I still need a few things. Not much thankfully, just one or two.
5. Cook - clearly we need to eat latkes. Bruce suggested chili too. Yum!
6. Go to the library - maybe I'll have time to read a little bit.
7. Set up the menorahs - we have new ones this year!
8. Go food shopping - if I'm going to cook then this is a must.
9. Take out the ice cream maker - peppermint ice cream anyone?
10. Check the movie times - movies on Christmas? Oh yes!

Dec 19, 2011

Party Weekend

We were at a family event this weekend. It was lovely. Lot's of people I haven't seen in years. Good food and a lovely setting.


Truthfully though, I could've been wearing sweats in a hole in the wall diner. My grandparents were there which is a gift in itself. Look at how happy my girl was to be dancing with her Zayde. They were dancing to My Girl. How perfect is that?


My siblings were there with their spouses and kids. It's been years since we've all been together and my brother hadn't even met Miss M yet. There was lot's of baby passing going on.


It's enough to wear anyone out. Miss M was fortunate to find a cozy spot for a quick nap during the party.

Dec 15, 2011

Marley Baby

This is the second hat I made for Miss M from Susan B Anderson's Itty-Bitty Hats book. It won't be the last but I am taking a break. I'm being forced to. My family says that it's time to move on to sweaters and scarves and socks, they're demanding socks again.

Anyway, I'll start with the reason why this hat got made so fast (aside from wicked cuteness). The yarn was all in my stash! Hooray! I had bought a supply of Elann Sonata and Tahki Cotton Classic for crocheting and it was perfect for this hat.


This hat really isn't that difficult. It's mostly knit with a few strategic purl and seed stitch sections. What makes it interesting is the color changes. They also make the finish work ugly. Tons of ends to weave in.

Then there is the icing on this cake - the marley topper. Here is a closeup of the marly bits. Suprisingly, these were pretty easy to make. They look fiddly but they're not. They do add to the number of ends that need to woven in though. Ugh - weaving in ends.

The hat may look just a little bit different in this picture (where she is being held by a friend of DQ). That's because this was taken after it went through the washer and dryer. It seems to have softened the look of it. The yarn is less shiny and crisp.

I really love the way it came out. Totally worth the effort.

Dec 14, 2011

A Week of Note

I was struggling with a way to describe this week and I came up with "notable". It's the best I can do because this week has been really full of peaks and valleys. First, the valley. Stinkette was really sick and missed 4 days of school. For the second time in her life she had a stomache ailment that was so serious that it required attention at an ER. Today, after IV fluids, anti-nausea meds and lots of rest, she is back in school. I am so relieved.

The same day that Stinkette was getting treated at the ER, DQ was taking her road test.... and she passed! I can say it without freaking out because, due to funky rules here, she won't be legal to go anywhere without parental supervision until March. I can and will worry or then.

Another event that is notable in a really positive way is that last night Miss M had her first solid food. If you can call puréed sweet potatoes solid. We decided to start solids on the spur of the moment because she really seemed to want it. She was watching us all eat very intently and grabbed at anything within reach. It went like this:

Hmmm... interesting.

On second thought, I'm really not so sure about this.

That's what all the fuss was about? So disappointed.

And yes, she is wearing her Halloween outfit there. Why not? It still fits and the sweet potatoes don't show on the orange shirt.

Dec 8, 2011

Itty Bitty Earflap Hat

Like many people, my Rav queue is amazingly long. There are so many designers and books and magazines... so many sources for more new and fabulous patterns. Because of all the possibilities it's always a little surprising when I find myself favoriting multiple patters from he same source. Maybe it's a sign. I should probably go get that book right away.


Often I do but then they sit because, like my queue, my collection of books is way too big for me to ever get to all the stuff within them that I'd like to. So I didn't get Susan B Anderson's Itty-Bitty Hats right away. Then came Marissa, a sweet baby without much hair. Let the hat knitting begin. I want to make them all.

I started with one that my husband chose called the Inca Snowflake. It started off really well. Noro Kureyon is always a fun knit and happily there weren't many ends to weave in when I was finished. The only negative was that it was a little bit big. Even more so after I blocked it.


Then came the finishing stuff. Lot's and lot's of finishing stuff. Embroidered snowflakes, crocheted edging and a pom-pom. I visited so many stores looking for just the right yarn. White but not too bright. Just the right degree of imperfect. The crocheting was easy but the embroidery was challenging. It's really not my thing but it can't be the Inca Snowflake hat without snowflakes. Right?

And then I started working on the lining. Stinkette and I chose purple and I really think it worked well. I am proud to say that I hand sewed the whole lining myself and I doesn't look bad at all.


Lots of finishing on this sucker! I'm not sure that I would've chosen it if I'd read through the pattern and realized just how much effort it would take but, I'm happy with the results. On this hat, everything just came together well. Even the accidents worked out ok. Like DQ put it through the wash with the rest of Miss M's clothes but it didn't shrink and the Noro is a bit softer now. Additionally, installing he lining made the ear flaps lay flat so it no longer links like my baby is going to fly away.


I'm definitely calling this a win.

Dec 6, 2011

Ten on Tuesday - 10 Favorite Holiday Traditions

Have you started preparing for the holidays yet. I have but I'm not making nearly as much progress as I'd like. I thought that I was doing really good but then I started making lists and it got ugly. Apparently, even though there is a constant stream of boxes arriving at my door, more are yet to come. Keep shopping.


At least there is lots of other fun stuff to enjoy about the holidays. Here are ten of my favorite holiday traditions.
  1. Eat Latkes - Yum! Even if your house does smell like latkes for the next week they're still so good and so worth making
  2. Decorate - l really love it when the house looks festive. For us, it starts with all the brightly covered gifts that we stack up on top of the entertainment center. A bowl of dreidls and gelt here, some window art there and presto!
  3. Light Candles - this year it will be extra fun because we have 2 new menorahs
  4. Eat Chinese Food - I don't know why but Jews eat Chinese food on Christmas. Just check you're local Chinese food joint if you don't believe me.
  5. Play games - Oh dreidl, dreidl, dreidl
  6. Party - Holiday parties are awesome. They're best with friends and some family but office parties can be good too.
  7. Holiday music - I'm not talking about the kind they play in the stores. I much prefer the irreverent spins that people like Adam Sandler put on it.
  8. Making cookies - my girls have always loved to bake and holiday cookies are an excellent excuse. My favorite part is decorating them.
  9. Watching parades - I am a sucker for them. There is something about the bands, the floats, and, let's face it... having a perfect reason to start the morning very slowly relaxing on the couch.
  10. Giving gifts - getting gifts is lovely too but I much prefer giving them. Really! There is something about finding exactly the right thing
    and seeing the surprise and excitement on the recipients face that is just so gratifying

Dec 5, 2011

Birthdays - DQ turns 16!

Today would have been my dads 69th birthday. I am reminded daily of all the really good stuff that he's missing but now more than ever. I am busy with so many things and I know that he would be really excited by all of them. It seems like every day Bruce, the girls and I are imagining his reaction to stuff. The election antics, the construction updates, the baby milestones, the Bat Mitzvah prep. All of it. And I know that he'd be only too happy to take credit for DQ's academic accolades. It makes me wish that he was still here.


Speaking of DQ, it was her birthday on Saturday and she celebrated it in style with a few close friends. I couldn't pull together a Sweet 16 party (brain is already overloaded) so I came up with an idea that I thought was a winner. I got tickets for Lindsey and 4 friends to go see Jersey Boys at the National Theatre. Then, because I had neither the time or the space in my car to ferry the 5 of them downtown, I got a car service to take them to the show and back. This may have been one of my best ideas ever. Very little cleaning or prep required and the girls had a blast. Teenage girls chauffered to and from a show in Washington DC on a Saturday night in a big, black, suv. Win! And for me too because I felt confident that they were safe. Letting go is soooo hard. Most importantly the show was really good (amazing according to the girls) and they had a blast. I'm sure my girl will always remember her Sweet 16.

The weirdest part for me was seeing 2 of her 4 friends arrive - driving themselves. I tell you, it was so weird. Seeing the collection of cars in front of the house, including the one that DQ will be driving in a few short months, made the fact that they're growing up so clear. Thank goodness I have Miss M at home for many years to come. Can you imagine what a basket case I'll be when she turns 16?

Dec 2, 2011

ECF - 5 Month Old Edition

It's been a little while since I posted a picture of Miss M and what better occasion than to note her reaching the 5 month mark.


This was actually taken while we were away for Thanksgiving. It's kind of a funny face that she's making here but that's something we'll just have to get used to. I think it'll be quite a while before I get a really good posed shot of her because these days, if her eyes are open then she's moving. It should make it really interesting to get pictures of her modeling her new hats.

Dec 1, 2011

December 1


I have to say, it's way to easy to take blog breaks these days. I seems like any time things get busy at home the first thing to get squeezed out of my schedule is the blog. It's a shame too because Thanksgiving is very bloggable. The travel, the food, the stuff we're thankful for. Rather than doing a full recap or posting all the stuff I didn't post last week I can just say that we had a fabulous Thanksgiving. Truly wonderful. We saw lot's of family and friends, ate plenty of good food and even the travel was way better than expected. Shockingly so. Try 4.5 hours of drive time from DC to NY on the day before Thanksgiving. I told you it was shocking.

Anyway, now it's December and I expect more of the same. Crazy of all kinds. We'll travel a bit to see some family. We'll be super busy just about every weekend. And we'll hopefully have a good time. I promose that there are finished knits coming too. Really. A bunch of them.