Wednesday, September 22, 2010

In the kitchen

It has been a busy few weeks around these parts. We've had a few frosts already, which means we (read: my husband) had to work hard to get the garden out of the ground quickly. We were pleased to have a decent harvest of carrots and potatoes, but very upset that all 16 of our tomato plants fell victim to this. We've managed to save precious few, and my grand plans of canning sauces, salsas and straight-up tomatoes have been crushed.

That said, we have been enjoying the rest of our harvest. Though it certainly isn't enough to get us through the winter, it will get us by for a while. We hope to double our garden next year.

My in-laws brought us some big cases of organic B.C. fruit when they came through here a couple weeks ago. The middle child had taken to eating plums, and then throwing the pits haphazardly around the room. I was finding pits everywhere. Hello, can we say baby choking hazard? Yes. So, needless to say, the plums came to a swift end.

Can I just say that we are at jam capacity? Saskatoon jam, blueberry lavender jam, and now plum jam. Our pantry is slowly but surely being taken over by jam. (For the record, the blueberry lavender is still my fave.)


Friday, September 3, 2010

Off the Needles: Pebble

This literally took me two evenings to make. Complete instant gratification. I mean, look how cute it is! How could I not feel gratified! Baby knitting + Sense and Sensibility = obviously perfect!

Adorable, right? Right? (And, if the biased lady may say, the babe under the vest is pretty sweet too.)

The pattern is called Pebble, and can be found (for free!) here. I used Mirasol Akapana, which is soft, tweedy goodness. Seriously. So soft. The yarn is pretty inexpensive (not to mention a really lovely company), and I only used about half a ball. The buttons are from a giant jar o' buttons I scored at the antique mall (I am loving the mismatched-button look lately).

Oh, this baby. My own personal bundle of squishy wool. Love doesn't begin to describe it.


Thursday, September 2, 2010


Last weekend, a booth at the farmers' market had blueberries on sale, 10 lbs for $25. Quite a deal for unsprayed berries, I dare say! The were, of course, a little past their prime, but they had a destiny far greater than the average blueberry.

It started last Friday. I had a hankering for some cookies, so I did a quick flip through my cookbooks, and settled on a recipe for Lavender Chocolate Chunk cookies. (From ExtraVeganZa, which is laden with lavender recipies, for those interested.) One bite, and my love affair with lavender was rekindled. How had I forgotten how delicious lavender was?! I mean, could you say no?

Didn't think so. Anyways, while I was on my lavender high, I was trying to conjure up other ways to use my lovely lavender stash. I knew lavender and blueberries went delicious together, and so it dawned on me: blueberry-lavender jam! A quick google search revealed that many people shared my dream. So, once I had happily acquired my 10 lbs of blueberries, I sterilized some jars and set to work.

I used this recipe, tripling it, which worked perfectly. This is honestly the best jam I have ever had. It is all things delicious. Tripling it gave me 19 250 ml jars, and we have already gone through a few, as well as traded some for apples, and just given some away to share the goodness!

If you have any blueberries hanging around in your neck of the woods, I urge you to make this! Easy! Delicious!

Speaking of those apples... what is your favorite way to preserve apples? Sauce? Butters? Pies? I need to do something with them quickly, and inspiration and ideas are more than welcome!


Monday, August 23, 2010

Hello? Hello?

Some mammals hibernate in the winter. I, it would seem, hibernate in the summer. Contrary to many people, summer is my least favorite season. It is when I'm feeling least inspired. Hot weather makes me grumpy, and I find summer clothes uncomfortable. Give me cool temperatures and layers, I say!

Aside from feeling rather uninspired, our desktop computer decided that it had lived a full enough life, and would work for only 10 minutes at a time before turning off. Combine those factors, and you get a 2 1/2 month chunk of dead air in these parts. But we have been busy doing summery things. Saskatoon berries have been picked with friends, and canned with friends (yielding each family with a whopping 18 jars of jam). We have camped in the mountains. (Aha! Summer's two offerings appreciated by me: bountiful fresh produce, and camping!) We have been mosquito bitten, and sunburned, and have celebrated 3 birthdays! We survived one very long week with the papa out of the country. And here we are... August is nearly over. In just over a week Q will be starting kindergarten at the local Waldorf school, and we'll be finding new rhythms and routines.

I hope you'll join me as we find our footing and embark on my most favorite season (fall!!).

Friday, June 11, 2010

Consistently Inconsistent

If there were an award out there for me, I think it would be 'Most Inconsistent Blogger!'. Seriously. I do one WIP Wednesday, then, a few weeks later, one 'this moment' Friday. Just lame. I do have some excuses, but I won't bore you with those. Instead, we will have a massive 'works-in-progress, favorite photo moment of the week, and what the heck else is going on?' post. My apologies in advance.

Shall we get through the current WIP's first? Alright then. Three of my men have birthdays this summer. Three birthdays in one month. Yowza. This is keeping me mighty busy. First up is the middle child's birthday. He will be three (!!), and has requested a turtle and a blue sweater. Done and done!
I am about half done the blue sweater, but have no photographic evidence of that, so we'll have to wait for photos of the finished product, and for now just stare at that pile of bright bright blue. And, how adorable is that little turtle shell!? That was made with my first ever ball of Noro, a yarn loved by many, that has always scared me quite a bit. Anyways. This is the pattern I'm using for the sweet, adorable turtle. Or is it a tortoise...?

Next up, favorite photo of the week, or, 'this moment' (aha! it's totally Friday today, so I didn't completely drop the ball on this one... although, those posts are meant to be wordless...).

Q's last morning at the Waldorf nursery school was today. We made each of his teachers gifts, and he (with my help) wrote each of them a little note. So very sweet.

They are amazing, beautiful people, and I am more than a bit sad that our year with them has come to an end!

And, does that about catch us up? Not really, but we'll get there.


P.S. Blessings, love, and so so many hugs to VeganDietitian, who gave birth to a beautiful baby boy, at home, on Wednesday. Congratulations, and happy babymoon!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Off the Needles: Shalom-y and Manda Ruth

I just remembered that I never posted about my Shalom sweater! I made this back in March, in the weeks right after Guthrie's birth (back when the husband was still off work, and I could just hang out in the rocking chair, nurse the baby, and knit all the live long day).

So, the details. This took me about 3 weeks to knit up. I used Cascades Eco-Wool, 2 hanks. I made a few mods (namely adding sleeves), that are all on the Ravelry page.

Though this sweater is getting lots of Ravelry-love, it is a tad itchy, and my Coraline is still worn far more. (Though, lately I've been layering them, because, ahem, it freaking snowed here yesterday. Yes.) Also, try as I might, I just think I'm more of a lightweight cardi kinda gal than a bulky sweater kinda gal.

Next up: the Manda Ruth (which I affectionately named 'Man...duh!', seeing as it's for my little lad, as opposed to a little lass).

I love this sweater! It took exactly 2 weeks from start to finish. I made the 6 month size, and used Punta Yarns Meritwist Space Dyed. (Warning: to those who may make this cardi with this yarn in the future, I ran out binding off, and had to cut off other yarn ends from around the sweater and tie them on in order to finish.) The very bulky yarn, combined with the seed stitch, makes for a very very firmly knit, warm, thick sweater. Which is good, seeing as it will (hopefully) still fit in autumn, and, um, that lovely end-of-May snowfall we received. I finished it off with a few toggles from the fancy-pants 'fine European fabrics' store, and ta da! Cue the cuteness.

Oh, hi. I'm adorable.

I hope you all are enjoying flower-filled, snow-free ends of May!

Friday, May 21, 2010

this moment

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see. (Inspired by Soulemama)


Thursday, May 13, 2010

WIP Wednesday (on, uh, Thursday)

Hello, sweet friends!

This is my first Work In Progress Wednesday post (just a little fashionably late. ahem.), and I hope to make it a ritual. (On time, of course.)

On the needles this week:

A shawl for me!

It's the Aestlight Shawl by Gudrun Johnston, and I'm making it with Malabrigo sock yarn. It's been in my queue forever, and I'm excited to finally be working on it.

Also, I'm working on a jacket for my sweet littlest, but alas, blogger won't let my upload the photo of it. Nor will blogger let me upload any of my Mother's-Day-stash photos, so those too will have to wait for another day.

But, because I feel sort of sad leaving you with just one project photo, here are some gnomes the husband and the older lads made on Sunday (while I was out being a yarn floozy).

So cute, right? I just bought The Gnome Craft Book, and am kind of freaking out about it. So many good projects in there. I foresee gnomes overtaking our home in the very near future.

We have been enjoying oodles of warm weather (finally), and lots of time outdoors. I hope you are as lucky!

Toodles for now, lovelies!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

I hope your day was filled with mama-honouring*. I was treated to chocolate chip pancakes, a secret gift, that has yet-t0-be revealed, a beeswax candle made by Quinn, and my dear husband, who said, "go buy as much yarn as you like". Oh, twist my arm! To the yarn store I did go (with baby in tow). I promise I showed great restraint, and will reveal my gifts-to-myself soon.

For now though, I leave you with my favorite image from the week.

Happy day, all! I'm off for dinner with my mama and sisters (and baby, of course).


*Or birthday celebrating, as the case may be. Happy birthday, Ms. Rebekah!!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Look what I made!

This past weekend, I attended a Waldorf conference in Calgary. It was an amazing weekend. The people were completely lovely (both the Calgary Waldorf community, and the group of Waldorf-mamas I went with -including Quinn's amazing nursery school teacher), and the workshops were so so good. (The keynote speaker was Suzanne Down, who was featured in last month's Living Crafts. She was so inspiring and beautiful to listen to.)

One of the workshops I participated in was a woodworking workshop. I am amazed at what we accomplished in such a short time. The instructor was great. I have very little experience working with wood, and this was so fun! (It helps that Guthrie slept peacefully in the sling the whole time, despite the sawing, hammering, and drilling going on around him... well mostly.)

Above photos courtesy of the lovely Gudrun! Quinn's nursery school teacher.

And here's what I made! A catapult.

Perfect for launching pinecones. Perfect for my little lads.


Monday, April 19, 2010


I am grateful for:

strawberry popsicles

warm weather

multitasking (read: nursing baby in the mei tai, while doing laundry/ putting away groceries -- thank you, mei tai!)

iced yerba mate

a weekend full of friends

Image courtesy of my dear friend Kirsten.

What are you grateful for?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Happiness is...

(Made with local apples, saskatoons, and flour, and topped with
crazy-good Celestial Cream from Dreena's most recent book.)

Finger knitting:

And this sweet, sweet face:

Happy weekend, everyone! What's making you happy at the moment?


Sunday, April 4, 2010


However you are spending this weekend, I hope you are enjoying it!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Off the Needles: Coraline

I cast on for this sweater at the end of December, and worked on it occasionally over the next couple months. In the last two weeks of pregnancy, I got back into it, and really did most of the work on it in those two weeks, and the first week after Guthrie's birth. (Because, if you're going to spend the day in the rocking chair, staring at a sweet newborn face, you'd might as well be knitting, right?)

I am completely in love with the sweater. I have worn it quite a few times, and it is perfect. I am already planning another one. The pattern (by Ysolda Teague) is very well-written and easy to follow. And, although I was initially apprehensive about the colour (that Ms. Becka talked me into buying over a year ago), I am completely enamored with it now. It's sunshine!!

This sweater = happiness.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Thank you!

Thank you, thank you for all the well wishes! We are doing well, and settling into a new rhythm (this is made much easier with papa being home for 6 weeks and a village of lovely people bringing us food and love).
I have many more things to post about (I made myself a sweater! and pie! and it's spring!*), but for now, I just wanted to say thank you. Thank you, all you beautiful, lovely people. Thank you.


*Ahem. So, it is meant to be spring, and, while we have mostly switched up the nature table, it was -10 this morning, and has been snowing heavily for the past two days. Mother Nature, do you hear me? Bring back the sunshine!

Sunday, March 7, 2010


We have a third little lad! Born at home, in the water, yesterday afternoon. He weighs a hearty 8 1/2 lbs, and is mellow and sweet and lovely. The birth was smooth and easy, and we are all doing very well.

Introducing Guthrie Walker Cecil.

May you be as strong as the oak, yet flexible as the birch;
may you stand tall as the redwood, live gracefully as the willow;
and may you always bear fruit all your days on this earth.
~ Native American Prayer

Monday, March 1, 2010


"Life is always a rich and steady time when you are waiting for something to happen or to hatch." ~ E.B. White, from Charlotte's Web

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Off the Needles

A 'Milo' vest for each of them.

(To put into perspective just how crazy-teeny this baby-vest is: the hanger it's on? A children's garment hanger. So so small.)

And a wee head-warmer for the one with the bluest eyes.

And plenty of longies, waiting impatiently for a teeny person to wear them. (Hear that, baby?)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Getting Crafty

Chilly temperatures, and a mama that is too tired and heavy to do much in the way of outdoor fun these days, means that we've been spending time inside, getting crafty. The watercolours make an almost daily appearance, and these books have been dusted off as we work our way through whatever projects capture the attention of the littles.

A few projects from the last week:

Wet-felted roving balls, "for the baby". These are quickly becoming a favorite. The weight and size of the balls is perfect, and wrapping them in yarn scraps makes them a treat for the eyes. I'm addicted.

A wee bunny:

And a nature mobile for the boys' bedroom (to help convince us that spring truly might be around the corner...)
(I can't take credit for the Spring Fairy. She is beautifully made by the lovely people at MapleRose)

What is keeping your hands busy these days?