handmade christmas: thumb-print cards

We had fun making these cards. My tot and I thumbed out penguins, frogs, mice, rabbits, elephants, and more.

I have been thinking about other animals to try ever since -- ladybugs, hippos, giraffes, hedgehogs, deer... oh my.


handmade christmas: socktopus

It's kind of funny to me that the main reason I haven't done any knitting these past several months (my baby) received the only knitted gift I made this year.  

This little socktopus is a fun pattern from knitty.  I put a couple of bells in the head/body so it softly jingles when the baby is whippin' it around the room, but mostly it just gets sucked on. All those feet are good for wee teething gums. 


handmade christmas: cross stitch

Life in pixels!

My family got pixelated portraits this year for Christmas. This was my first attempt at cross stitch since high school and I am hooked. When I had completed my family, I kept going with one for the in-laws. (Thanks to good ol' Martha Stewart for the idea.)

The stitching is very therapeutic. (Unless of course you are stitching while bouncing on an exercise ball with a sleeping baby strapped to your chest. I can't recommend that too much.)

But actually I had the most fun with the design phase of these. Trying to capture an age and stage in just a few pixels was fun, even though I went through quite a bit of graph paper to get the details right. In some cases I still fell short (that darn baseball cap! glasses look like unibrows!) but I'm happy with the results overall. Hairstyles make a big difference, as does choice of shirt.

But man, you think you know someone until you try to remember the details... what colour are their eyes? what colours do they usually wear? on what side of their head do they usually part their hair?

I have one more in mind to make for another sweet family, but then I'm not sure where to go with this new addiction. I don't really like a lot of the cross stitch patterns I see. I mean, I love the stuff Wee Little Stitches does, but what to do with all of it when you're done? I don't really see myself with lots of cross stitches hanging on my walls. So watch out family and friends, that means I'll be giving it away.

my brother's sweater vest, my favourite detail 


for the love of cardamom

I love cardamom and I like butter so I tried to make these cardamom shortbreads. I must've done something wrong  (not measure out enough butter?) because my dough was a crumbly mess.

I ended up pressing it into ball-like shapes, rolling in powdered sugar and baking that way because the dough just laughed and fell into a million pieces when I took out my rolling pin. Even though the flavour was fantastic, the texture of the final cookie was still disappointingly crumbly and dry. Sad.

Still, I'm excited to try other recipes on that Remedial Eating blog -- lots of beautiful pictures of stuff I want to eat.

My craving for cardamom cookies not yet satisfied, I went for this Martha Stewart recipe. To quote my now-three year old, 'That's what I'm talkin' about!' Now I have a recipe that I can haul out year after year.  Happy.