Tag Archives: food

Early Light

Good morning friends!  While I made my coffee on this ‘still dark’ morning it was cozy inside with Christmas lights  and candles flickering in every room–such a magical time of year.  I thought I’d share some of my cozy Christmas-y places with you this morning.

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We’ve decided to definitely forgo the real tree this year.  Our 2019 Christmas tree is this 4′ tree set atop our vintage drum table.  (This drum table originally belonged to my grandfather’s sister, then to my mother, then we recently inherited it.  I love it and treasure it!)  I added some of my favorite ornaments to the tree on Sunday; it is festive  and feels ‘just fine’ to me.

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I’ve shown you our dining room before, but in the morning it is extra inviting.  The dining room set is from my parents.  I couldn’t bear to have it sold, so I asked for it when they wanted to get rid of it.  When I was young it was in its natural wood state.  This set is only slightly older than I am, and has been in my possession since my daughter was a preschooler.

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2019 kitchen table 355

In the kitchen we have this tiny tree all lit up with lights around the bay window.  We actually leave the lights around the bay window up all year.

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And outside the window above the kitchen sink is this little tree all aglow on the back deck.

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My sister-in-law brought this cranberry salsa to Thanksgiving dinner.  It was really good and fresh tasting.  I wanted to share it with you.  I’m hoping to make it for our Christmas dinner this year.

Cranberry Salsa

1 lb. cranberries (or 2-12oz. bags of fresh), fresh or frozen (thawed)

1/2 c. or 1 c. sugar (the recipe calls for 1, but my sil used 1/2)

2 t. grated orange zest

3 Granny Smith apples, peeled, and diced

3 oranges, peeled, and diced

2-4 Serrano chiles, stemmed and diced, with seeds, optional

1 bunch cilantro, chopped

1 bunch scallions, white and light green parts, chopped

Chop up the cranberries, if desired.  Mix together all ingredients.  Enjoy!

Not much new going on with dolly ensembles right now.  I still have something for Gracie in the works, but am not sure it will get completed this year.  We’ll see…, but most likely not. 😦  Poor Gracie!

Have a beautiful Wednesday! ❤  Just realized–this is the last Wednesday before Christmas!!!


Hello from soggy northern Illinois!  How are you?  I hope your week is moving along nicely.  I am keeping busy with a few different projects.

Over the weekend I finished my cozy and snuggly Bobble Cowl.  The pattern is by Joji Locatelli and can be purchased on Ravelry.  It uses one skein on sock yarn.  I used Knit Picks Preciosa which I hand dyed.

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I added three extra pattern repeats to get my cowl as long as possible.  That tiny ball of yarn is all that’s remaining.  I used a scale to make it easier to predict how many more repeats I could add—I added three.  Still, I was wondering if I’d have enough to finish the last one.

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Previously, I’ve shown you the shoeboxes (2016 and 2017) I put together for Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child program.  Last year, I stumbled upon this video of Eva whom I haven’t been able to forget.  She is 100 (now 101) and sews dresses for the little girls who receive her shoeboxes.  I think she is amazing!  Eva has inspired me to make some dresses of my own for my shoeboxes for 2018.

I found some patterns and measurements on Pinterest and set to work on Saturday to make my first dress.  It took awhile—I hadn’t sewn any human clothing since my daughter was quite small, but everything slowly came back to me.  I used to make practically all my own clothes, so I guess it’s like riding a bike.

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This dress was made with lots of love for the little girl who will wear it.  I hope she likes it and can find lots of little treasures to put in the pocket.

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This morning I made a pattern so that the future dresses I make can be cut out without measuring each one; that was quite time consuming.

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My Little Darlings, Lucy and Alice couldn’t let me write a blog post without saying hello.  They’re hanging out in the studio and having a fun day playing together.  Alice is waiting for me to finish her ensemble so she can put on her shoes and be ready for a proper photo shoot.

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This morning, I made some time for puppy cuddles and making granola.

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Right now I have a load of laundry in the washing machine and I’m going to slip out between the rain clouds for a walk.  I think I can do it; for now it’s 51° (11°)—springtime temps!

Enjoy your day, my friends! ❤



It’s Beginning to Feel a Lot Like Christmas

Hello!  What a beautiful morning we have here in northern Illinois!  It snowed last night, only a tiny bit, but enough to make everything white and beautiful, and oh so peaceful.   The front porch light was on, and it was still dark when I took this photo.  It’s so magical.

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christmas tree 2017 330

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And as light comes to the day, so do the birds come for breakfast.

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birds in trees 355

snowy morning 358

I love learning something new this time of year.  This year sock knitting has caught my interest.  Sock knitting seems like something impossibly hard, so I knew I needed a visual class to learn.  So far this Craftsy class by Susan B. Anderson has taught me Judy’s magic cast on, which is how she starts the sock.  I have the toe completed, and am now knitting away at lengthening the foot.  Slowing down the lessons has helped me a lot, and Susan is very thorough.  I have no doubts that I’ll be able to figure out how to make the whole sock.

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This past week I baked another apple crumble.  If you need dessert, like we seem to in our house, this is one of the healthier (Is there such a thing?) ones—lots of apples, oatmeal, nuts, and little sugar.    My recipe is from here, but I keep adapting it.  I found that half the topping seems to work fine for 2 pounds of sliced apples.  We prefer lots of baked apple yumminess and not super sweet—you can eat more that way. 😉

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Even though I have no photos to show you, I have been working on dolly things.  One dress needs a new sweater, and one cape/cuddle cap set needs a new dress.  Sometimes things don’t go as planned.

I hope you all have a most festive weekend.  Take it slow, and enjoy every moment.

Ah, it’s snowing again here, big white flakes!  Bye for now, my friends.