knitting by my hands and from my heart

The yarn stash just keeps on growing! I'm a wife, a mom, a sister, a daughter, and a friend who works in Corporate America, lives in the Boston, MA area and is always looking for more time to knit.

Knits4fun at hotmail dot com

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Friday, January 02, 2009

Greetings in the New Year.

Tree on Boston Common

I hope everyone had a happy holiday season, I know I did. I have been off from work from Christmas until today. I'm fortunate in that I usually am able to take this time each year--do some reflecting and getting ready for the New Year ahead. I feel like I'm back in school! Back to work on Monday . . .

Here's what I've been up to since my last post and most of the reason I haven't been on here in quite some time:

We went to Disney World in Orlando, FL for our vacation this year. First plane trip for the kids. All went okay although C had a few meltdowns during the trip (we pushed it with late nights and no naps) and on the plane ride--thankfully it's a plane full of kids. If we go again, it won't be until 2010.

We had B's 5th birthday party at our house the week after we got home (can't believe he's 5 and will be attending kindergarten next Fall)--I've only done birthday parties at the house so far--haven't gotten sucked into the bowling alley/arcade stuff . . . yet. I made him a pirate cake because, well, Pirates of the Carribbean was hands-down the favorite ride while we were in Disney!!

I found the pirate figurines at Michael's and found a quick idea online--used Nilla wafers for sand and hid a Nestle's Treasure in the cake under the 'x.' B got that piece. I made a two-layer--one chocolate and one vanilla 9" x 13."

Next, "Cookie Swap" season started. My next-door neighbor has one and then my aunt has one the following week--every year. It's loads of fun and I love trying all the cookies--although I did eat so many this year that I felt awful for most of December :)

I made spiced snowcaps (from Woman's Day November 11, 2008 issue):
makes 48
Active: 35 min; total 2 hr.
(includes chilling dough)

1½ sticks (¾ cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 Tbsp chai spice blend or pumpkin pie spice (I used Trader Joe's pumpkin pie spice)
1 tsp each baking powder and baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1/3 cup molasses
1 large egg
1½ tsp vanilla extract
2¾ cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup granulated sugar
Nonpareil-covered chocolate candies

1. Beat butter, brown sugar, chai spice, baking powder and soda, and salt in large bowl with mixer on medium speed until well blended and paler in color. Beat in molasses, egg and vanilla. With mixer on low, gradually beat in flour just until blended. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour or until firm enough to handle.

2. Heat oven to 350°F. You'll need a baking sheet(s).

3. Place granulated sugar in a small bowl. Roll rounded teaspoons of dough into balls; roll in sugar to coat. Place 1½ in. apart on ungreased baking sheet(s). Bake 12 minutes or until tops crack but cookies are still soft to the touch.

4. Place baking sheet on a wire rack. Immediately press a nonpareil candy in center of each cookie. Transfer cookies to rack to cool completely.

We celebrate Christmas and it was fun this year. B & C are at the age when it's most fun and believable: 5 and 2.9 yrs. We made dinner at our house and my parents and brother came over (turkey with squash, stuffing, turnip potatoes--like Thanksgiving). One of my sisters, my brother-in-law, and my in-law's came by for dessert (my fudge, pumpkin and cherry pies, wine . . .)

if you're wondering, I didn't make B's sweater vest

While it was enjoyable, I'm itching to take the decorations down--most likely next weekend.

This New Year's Eve was a snowy one here.

Being off from work, I kept the kids home from school and we made the spiced snowcaps (my 3rd friggin' time in one month). I think they had the most fun cracking the egg and C really got into rolling the dough--ya, it was all over her pants, floor, everything, but it kept her occupied. The kids are cooking in school this week so I thought it was appropriate on a day they didn't attend to keep up with the cooking! B is wearing his chef's hat that he made earlier in the week at school:

I love snow days!

And, I finished B's sweater. It's autumn stripes without stripes! from Kids' Knitted Sweaters & More. I made size 4 but lengthed the body. I used Plymouth Encore Bulky in denim with size 10 bamboos:


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Blogger joyce commented at 11:47 PM~  

happy new year!! wow, the kids are growing fast (as are mine)...can you believe how time goes so fast!

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