Thursday, January 31, 2008

Lazy Turtles

Simple, Simple, Simple.
Load your pecans or nut of choice on a foil covered cookie sheet (you may want to spray a little cooking spray to keep the caramel from sticking).
Melt a bag of Kraft caramels in the microwave with 2 tbls water (Kraft makes little caramel pellets so you don't even have to unwrap the squares).
Pour caramel over pecans.
Melt semisweet chips (maybe a cup and a half or so) in microwave and pour on caramel.
Stick in refrigerator to cool. Remove from sheet and cut with a big honkin' knife.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Hanging On

Double socks.

Long underwear.


Two shirts.

Snow Pants.

Times Two.
I was exhausted just getting the boys ready for sledding. Took a good 40 minutes to get us out of the house. I took Little Man down the hill the first time and he seemed to enjoy it. Second time, I kind of forced him to go down. He was done. Big Boy isn't a big fan of the sun. Loves the sunshine, but not in his eyes. He made it three or four times. Then, they both cried on the way to the car, one because he wanted to go home, the other because he wanted to do his own thing.
Loads of fun. Then, once home, we decided to "G-Walk". LM led. We didn't make it too far before he started wishing to be held. Have you ever held a two socked, long under-weared, panted, two shirted, booted, snow panted, gloved, jacketed, hatted, snowy little boy that didn't really know what he wanted?
Hang on, were almost home.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Pony Express



For those of you living near a Whole Foods, this may not seem like a big deal. But, for me, this is HUGE.

I was backing in the car with the little guy this afternoon and saw the white box with red and blue text sticking out from my mailbox. I first thought it was a gift for someone else that had been ordered, but no, this one is from Aunt Sandy.

I love Aunt Sandy mail. Aunt Sandy mail is interesting. Aunt Sandy mail is kind, and warm, and filled with sweetness. Aunt Sandy mail is a box of love. One of my favorite Aunt Sandy mail's was a gift to Sam of all but one part needed to make the most stylish, perfectly dressed snowman. This time, Aunt Sandy mail had that distinctive 'thunk'. I know that weight. I know that size box. I know that thunk. O and I rushed inside and opened it up. I said that first "yeah" and as a good, hungry little boy, he replied, "Yeah" with more excitement.

So, we shared a rich, buttery, almost challah-like, Cranberry Orange Scone from the Gluten-Free Bakehouse at Whole Foods.

It has been hard not to have another this evening, especially while writing this. O wanted one as a bedtime snack. Sorry kid, these are mine.

I am so glad I have an Aunt Sandy. Not for her gifts of 'things' but for the pure kind thought behind it.

There is nothing better than an Aunt Sandy! Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Sharing an Apple is Nice

This is one proud Momma.
Sam brought me a tablet of construction paper instead of a bedtime story book the other night. Then, he wanted to use the Craft-Lite Cutter, an "As Seen On TV" product. We don't have the one he loves to watch on TV, but he pretends that the light bulb is broken on ours. He proceeded to cut a single piece of paper into 20 or so 'schniffles'. Then, decided he wanted to make them into a book.
What? Sam? A book? I don't think I ever jumped out of that deep couch so fast as I did the other night. String binding, glue, shipping tape, staples? Here I am rushing around trying to find the best way to make this book - my kid is being creative!!!
Time out, Carrie, he is 4 1/2 - staples will be just fine.
He came up with the title, TRY TO BE NICE. Heart palpitations, creative AND sweet!!! Who is this kid? He has made all the pictures with a little lettering help from Grandma. It really is adorable. This will be one for the keepsakes box.
And since we are talking about Sam, he enjoys talking on bananas.
After dialing his home phone number, he is often heard saying, "Hello, yes, a tree fell on our car, but we're covered."
Maybe he watches too many commercials...

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Knot Not

Not enough time.
Not enough money.
Not enough space in this house.
Not enough sunshine.
Not a skein of yarn without a knot.
The remainder of the yarn from this project (twin 'A' sweater) is in a knot. Some people hate knots. I love them. It is a puzzle. One that causes frustration and complaints. Once the knot is no more, the joy is great. And the complaining didn't help get the knot untied.
One of my two resolutions for this new year is to (try to) stop complaining. When I hear others complain, it does nothing positive for me. It makes me want to join in the complaint party or shoot myself (not literally). Is this issue that is being complained about so bad that we have to complain to everyone with ears? And then there are those people that never stop. On and on about the same thing. How many times do I really need to hear the same negative comment?
The second resolution is to (try to) stop comparing and interrupting others talking. I tend to always compare a story that happened to me, or a friend of a friends uncles cousin twice removed. Interrupting is rude. I need to stop. Comparing stories is rude, unless requested by the conversationalist (is that the right use of that word?).
I am trying to stop. I want to be a happy person. Not a complainer. A listener. Not an interrupter. I'll balance time better.
I will pass on that TiHo's with double cream and save a little money.
I guess I don't REALLY need another v-neck t-shirt.
If I condense my yarns and put it all in one space, I think I'll have more room.
The sun will come out tomorrow.
Knots are not that bad.
Oh, and feel free to KINDLY point out to me if I break a resolution.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

A Good Question

"What are you making with this fabric?"

Simply said, "a Diaper Bag".

I know, crazy. Well, this is just the lining. The outside is black pleather.

And it will fit perfectly to the recipient!
Current UFO's:
1 diaper bag in black pleather with red glitter vinyl trim
2 baby sweater coats for twins
1 baby dress/coat for baby girl
Warp of yarn on loom to be woven

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

New Project, New Fabric

This is the type of fabric I NEVER thought I would EVER purchase. And, now that I have, I kind of like it. The beauty of the roses mixed with the thorny vines have always been conflicting images, but throw in the skulls - and you have a crazy cut of fabric.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Airport Waiting

I used to dread it.

After kids, I look forward to it.

My brother and I were talking last week before my trip about waiting in the airport. He finds it the worst part of the trip. He is newly married and has no children (unless you count the dogs). I love sitting down and watching people. This time, with my camera, I saw things I never really appreciated.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Sunshine Above the Clouds

Flying on gray, dreary days are the best. The flights to and from Chicago, just a short hour and a half, gave me the sunshine I needed. I had been feeling a little slumpy. My pictures needed some sunlight. Although the sun didn't make it through the clouds here in Buffalo, I stored enough in my mind to get me through January (I hope).

I traveled to Chicago for business (sounds so official) mixed with a bit of pleasure and stayed at Kern Towers (I highly recommend it, ask for the gluten free pancakes and muffins!). It was great to see all my co-workers and friends again, and to have good conversation with people I never really knew. It was as if I had only been gone months, instead of years. We had our annual meeting at this cute little Italian place near the El, where I was fortunate to get a great meal of grilled chicken and veggies and plenty of wine.

Obviously, the boys didn't make the trip (thanks Tom and Mom(s)). I love my boys, but, not hearing the word "Mommy" for two full days and two partial days was invigorating. I missed them, but I could have participated in adult conversation and stories and complaints and gossip and jokes all night long.

Chicago is my most loved city. Living there for six years qualifies it as my second home. The energy in the city is incredible, even on a gray, rainy day in January, enjoying a glass of wine with friends at a tiny little restaurant near the El.

One Down, One to Go

Update on the little guy: Little Man is feeling better, tonight, after his two donut holes in the car, he ate almost a full piece of pizza, a banana, a caramel rice cake, a cookie (found in the depths of the corner cupboard), milk, handful of rice square cereal and a bite of graham cracker. Had I not put him in bed, he could have finished my chicken wings.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

The Wind Down

We took down the tree on Friday and now I am procrastinating (one of my fav's!) about taking all the other decorations down. Tom was so excited about getting the decorations ("stuff" or "clutter") into boxes and out of sight, and I was a little sad about the same idea. Little Man keeps pointing at all the decorations and saying, "On", even if they don't come with lights. I think I'll be sad for his frustration when the lights are gone.
That was Friday, today is Sunday and I am totally ready to see the red and green go to their dark home for 11 months. Not sure what changed in a mere two day period.
Perhaps the lack of places to put things like mail or keys.
Or the rain and warm(er) weather that is coming our way.
Or maybe I just caught a little of the excitement of the season from Tom.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

On the Boardwalk

It's a long Saturday and Tom is at work, so we bundled up and hit the boardwalk. There was a constant drizzle, but hats and hoods solvedthat. And, yes, I did run to catch up after this photo.
The contrast of shape and textures against the white snow and brown (dead) color was interesting. The first couple pics I took were of the bright white snow against a curving water edge, and by the end, it was more about the texture and bits of color amidst the January beige.
This is a very short video to test the video feature of blogger. Let me know if it works for you.
Enjoy the rest of the weekend, I'll be catching up to these two for another day!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

No Nut

Sometimes, the best cure is a donut - or as Little Man says, 'no-nut'.

Something is passing from person to person. This morning, LM woke up with a rash that we think is due to the amoxicillian he is (was) on for his double ear infection. The Doc said the infection is gone, so we will stop the amoxicillian and hope the rash goes away. Tom is sick as well, he has something quite debilitating. Hoping he gets well soon, and that I don't catch that one.

Having a hard time with the lighting in the basement studio...imagine that. The two little windows aren't bringing nearly the right lighting. I played with the camera last night and found some interesting features. Still enjoying the weaving, the clock that is down there, not so much. Maybe that will be the pic tonight...

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

My Other Love

It's like riding a bike. Sometimes you forget when to change gears or how soon into a turn you should lean. In my head, there were five steps to setting up a loom. Each time I got to a new task, I had forgotten two other things that had to be done first. But all the while, I was in love. In love with the idea of having the time to weave. In love with getting to the next step and ultimately cutting the piece free from the knots that I tied in the very beginning.
Weaving does something else for me. It gives me time for my mind to wander. Wander to the days when my kids are grown. Wander back to my first weaving class. Wander back to conversations I have had and what I 'should' have said, or what I wish I would have (or have not) said. Wander to thoughts of loved ones who have passed. It isn't unusual for my mind to take me on this crazy ride through all of the above places and come out laughing and crying at the same time.
I can't really think of any other time when my mind wanders like this. I either have the radio, TV, or kids to keep me grounded. When I come up from the basement (my new 'loom room'), I feel refreshed and rejuvenated. It amazes me how a craft can do that to me.
May I suggest that you all (all four of you) take time today to let your mind wander, it is truly worth it.