tea_and_toast: (Tea and toast)
tea_and_toast ([personal profile] tea_and_toast) wrote2015-12-31 08:31 pm

Year's End

Oh, hullo. I've been busy. There has been a baby around here, and a novel, and handmade Christmas presents. I don't remember if I mentioned before, but I won't be sharing pictures of the little guy. I'm not comfortable putting his face out there on the internet; better safe than sorry. You'll just have to take my word for it that's he's adorable and hilarious (he is, though).

These pictures are from early November. Dill and Swiss chard (red lettuce not pictured); we've been eating homegrown salad pretty much every day. I mean, it saves two whole dollars a week of buying bags of salad at Trader Joe's... but really I do it so I can have the fun of picking a fresh salad each afternoon. Sometime I bring the baby and pick one handed, keeping him just out of reach of the colander. Sometimes he grabs a big handful of lettuce.

This fall we were told to cut back to watering no more than one day a week. Starvation rations for the yard. It has rained once or twice in December, not enough to keep things alive. We've taken to putting a bucket in the shower to collect the water while we wait for it to get hot; it's enough to water the salad beds, and maybe the blueberry bushes. Please, rain. Please.

Knitting-wise, I made the baby a hat, but being as it was my first fair isle project, it was tighter than expected, and he refuses to wear it. I will have to try again--maybe with more contrasting yarn? It's not that bad in person. Fewer knitted presents this year; I just don't have that much time. I had more time when I was working eight hours a day than I have now that I'm staying home with the baby. I find that curious.

A bit of quilting, a bit of handsewing. I've become very fond of handkerchiefs. They're ideal when you have a sniffle; much softer than paper tissues and you can just throw them in the laundry. If you forget one in your pocket and it goes through the wash, nothing bad happens. Big thumbs up for that.

I made myself some stitch markers for knitting out of swarovski crystals and gold. We're decadent around here, I tell you. They're ever so much fun to use, though.

I made candied tangerine and Meyer lemon peel, and then I made mincemeat with them, and then I made mincemeat cookies. I had some mincemeat left over, so I was thinking tomorrow I would make a mincemeat pie. All of this sounds like a ridiculous amount of trouble to go to, but it was all pretty easy (but please imagine doing it all with a nine month old rattling around in your kitchen making airplane noises and using you as a ladder). There are no pictures of the mincemeat. It is just brown and gooey. But it tastes divine.

My husband made potato skins. Cucumbers in the background; we have taken to using blue cheese dressing instead of any other dressing pretty much ever and I have no regrets. Also we are slowly testing fancy cheeses. Watch out, cheese! You will be judged! (And eaten! Mwahaha!)

There was a Christmas cake. Oh, lordy. So I have to explain. The first picture is what I served at Christmas dinner. The second, a previous rendition, is what it was supposed to taste like (different frosting, but otherwise that dark, moist, delicious raspberry-filled tastiness). Somehow I managed to overbake it by a mile, and then, well, you see those almond pinecones on top? I thought I'd be clever and use sprigs of rosemary to complete the pine theme. Miiiistaaaake.... Rosemary is very strong. We had a dry, rosemary flavored chocolate cake. Oh well. A few days later I made a simple sponge cake for my dad's birthday, and it was far more palatable. I have a lot to learn about cake making.

I sort of took apart our pendulum clock the other day; something was sticking and it was fully wound but wouldn't go. I opened it up, looked at the gears, poked around a very little and pronounced it too complex to take apart, put the face back and it worked. Maybe it just wanted some attention.

So there it is, 2015. I suppose it's customary to put together a post looking back at all the previous entries of the year, but I suspect there weren't that many. Next year may be different. Maybe not. The maker of airplane noises is working on learning to walk run, and someone has to keep an eye out.