Mary Oliver

"Tell me, what is it you plan to do

with your one wild and precious life?"

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Christmas, 2015

The weather has been crazy warm; so warm in fact, that our roses are blooming.

This was the extent of my tree decorating this year. Our Christmas decorations weren't put away in an organized way the past couple of years, so today, Steve and I took advantage of the great weather and pulled everything out on the deck and went through it all. Next year should go smooth as silk.

We always have the kids over the day after Christmas, as it makes it easier on them.

Stephanie had this shirt made for Steve in Togo; he's a Georgia Tech graduate, and it was clear that this was his favorite gift.

Steve and I love preparing lots of food for the kids; some are vegetarians and some are major meat eaters so we have quite a variety, including some leftovers from my parents.

I have another full week off of work and I'm planning to take Gracie's advice: relax in the sun.

Although I do hope to knit a bit. Cheers!


Wednesday, December 23, 2015


I was able to hang out with my youngest today for our annual making party. These are some of our supplies.

We made soy candles using essential oils and dried herbs and flowers, and thrifted containers.


We also potted some more succulents, also using thrifted vessels.

I made some repairs to 30 year old decorations; the banner was hand sewn for me by my sister, and she also gave me the advent calendar. Funny thing about the calendar: I saw one just like it in my favorite consignment shop selling for $35, as it's vintage!


Add to all that a chance to make gifts with my girl while listening to Christmas music and eating freshly baked cookies and I'd say my Christmas is a perfect one. Here's hoping yours is too!


Monday, December 21, 2015

Winter Solstice

My winter break has begun and it is a sweet, sweet time. I spent Saturday wrapping gifts and tidying up the living room, but I'm afraid wrapping won't be completely done until Christmas Day, no matter how much I work at it. There always seems to be one or two last minute gifts, doesn't there? I went to a lovely church service of Lessons and Carols with my parents on Sunday, followed by a long afternoon nap.

I have hats blocking on top of the refrigerator and one or two hats on the needles, but I don't feel particularly pressured to finish anything. They'll be finished when they're finished.

I bought a bunch of succulents last weekend for gifting; theses are the two I gave to the school secretaries. I used espresso cups I had either bought or been gifted long ago. Trying to use up stash of all sorts these days, although I'm afraid I'm still susceptible to buying cute things from the thrift store.

My knit night group, wearing personalized Christmas aprons that were made by one of the women in the group for us; such a sweet gift. Love the knit night ladies!

Tomorrow's agenda is more knitting, and I must admit, I'm looking forward to it. Hope you are having some relaxing moments this week too.

Happy Solstice!


Sunday, December 13, 2015

5 More Days

...before I begin my winter break! I made cinnamon ornaments; they're inedible but I think they may make nice car fresheners. I'll let you know. They're too heavy to hang on our tree, which we put up today. The lights are on but no decorations hung yet, which is really ok with me. Fresh pine and fairy lights are enough.
I also made two batches of my signature holiday gift: Toffee Pecans, although I think they'd be more accurately named Toffee Brittle. Or Christmas Crack. They are super addictive and my friends want them every year. I didn't get around to making this last year for some reason so they'll be super happy to see them this year. I'm giving this batch away tomorrow night.

It only takes four ingredients: butter, sugar, kosher salt, and pecans, but it's a magical combination.

Hope you're enjoying your Christmas season as much as I am, even if the weather is unseasonably warm.



  • Toffee Pecans

    1 cup (2 sticks) plus 2 T unsalted butter
    1 3/4 cup plus 2 T sugar
    1 T kosher salt
    3 ½ cup raw pecan halves

    · Line baking sheet with parchment paper
    · Place butter in a large heavy bottomed skillet over med-low heat until melted. Add sugar and salt and stir briskly until mixture comes together. Add nuts and cook stirring evenly and constantly until sugar caramelizes and coats nuts.
    · Cook until the sugar turns a beautiful oak brown—5 to 7 minutes and quickly/carefully pour hot mass onto the prepared sheet. Quickly separate with tongs
    or a fork.
    · When cooled, transfer to an airtight container.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Short and Sweet

I probably posted this photo already, but it's such a cheerful Christmas picture I wanted to use it again.

Busy finishing hats, knitting often, and working. Back soon. Wishing you a Peace-filled Advent season.


Monday, November 30, 2015

Back Home Again


The weather on Saturday was the complete opposite of the beautiful weather on Friday, so I went to the Brooklyn Flea at Industry City.













I loved all the colors, glassware, and textiles, but I only bought an ice cream and a little bag of ribbons.

I took a picture of each of my grand pets before I left.


This cat isn't one of my grand pets, but I love seeing cats on brownstone steps; it seems such a quintessentially Brooklyn sight.

I love the Departures board at Penn Station fo some reason, even though I'm always sad to leave my daughter.

I got a lot of knitting done on my trip, including what seemed to be miles of ribbing; I think I can begin decreasing now.

I also worked on my first color work project, Saugerties Hat, and I love it!

I took a photo of these hats at an Eddie Bauer store so I can try to replicate them; I love the colors and the thick-thin yarn.

I went back to work this morning and although it's only 8:00, I'm ready for bed. Hope you have a great week! (Only 14 more school days before my winter break!!!!!)


Saturday, November 28, 2015

Thanksgiving Treat

I went to New York to gift myself with a visit to my daughter and her husband for Thanksgiving. A nice, quiet ride up on Amtrak and dinner ready when I arrived, along with my "grandchildren" patiently waiting for me.

Meredith had to work on Friday, so I wandered around the city by myself, one of my favorite things to do. I started out at the Fulton Fish Market area and wound up on a bench at the foot of the Brooklyn Bridge, where I sat and knit for a while, just enjoying the gorgeous day.

While I was there, I took a couple of pictures for tourists, but this guy told me he wanted to use his timer. It didn't take me long to see why: he had set it on video so he could record his marriage proposal! Isn't that so cool?

Christmas tree at the Fulton shopping area, with lots of cobblestone streets and boutique shops that I didn't visit. Much too beautiful a day to be indoors.


I even ate my lunch on a park bench at Union Square Park.




After lunch, I visited the Lion Brand Yarn Studio to see their gorgeous window.


Despite the unseasonably warm weather, the day definitely put me in the mood for Christmas! Hope you enjoyed your weekend, no matter what you did.