Thursday, December 29, 2011

Overheard At Dinner

Our sweet Prince praying:
Deaw Dod, Kank oo for da dood. AMEN!!

Just had to capture his toddler meal time prayer.
He'll be three soon, and prayers spoken like
this one will be just a sweet memory
before I know it.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Just Because He's Cute

One morning last week, the Prince woke up
singing a little song.
A song that one of his sisters taught him.
I will let you guess which one of those three,
and the first two guesses don't count!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Prize Worthy

So, remember that sweater I knit in 23 days.
Well, I entered it in a drawing that Jill Draper
was hosting, and . . .

Best of all.
This is what I won:
Photo slurped from Jill.
It may not look like much, but dear friends,
that is enough yarn to make an adult sweater.
Almost 1,300 yards of yarn.
Made specially for Jill, sheep to skein in New York state.
Now to find something to create with my beautiful prize!!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Random

1.  So I am about ready to scrap Christmas.  

2.  It is just too much. 

3.  It used to feel simple and now it doesn't.

4.  It used to mean traditions and now it feels like one more thing I have to make myself do.

5.  I am not sending out cards or letters or photos.

6.  Super sorry.

7.  Something had to go and that was it.

8.  I overheard a lady at Target, today, tell the cashier that she would be done shopping when her credit card was declined.

9.  That is sad and pathetic, and makes my stomach hurt.

10. My kids get three gifts from us:  a book, a piece of clothing, and something fun.

11. And they are content with that.

12. I like that about my kids.

13. I wish I could have told that lady that it doesn't take *everything* a little heart desires to make it happy.

14. So I am telling you.

15. That way I can't see the crazy look you are shooting me, and the pitying glances to my "deprived" children.{grin}

16. Merry Christmas, dear readers.  I will try for a better post another day.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

23 Days

I did it.  
I started and finished a sweater for myself in 23 days!
Out of lace weight yarn.
With long sleeves.
And stripey goodness.
Best of all . . .
It fits.
Like a pair of favorite jeans.
Like it was meant to be.
So glad I paused the holiday rush to knit this for myself.

I really do love this sweater.
I swear.

It fits! I am in sweater love!

The Details:

Pattern:  Versio by fallmasche (Rav link)

Yarn:  Jill Draper's Aurora wool/silk blend yarn
in the Sterling and Blue Agate color ways. 
Happy Birthday to me!
Gorgeous stuff, my photos do not do it justice!

Verdict:  Doing a lace weight sweater for myself, was a bit on 
the crazy side of things.  But I am so glad I used the 
lighter weight yarn because winter at the Castle
aren't really *that* cold. {grin}

P.S.  Christmas knitting--it's on.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Overheard After a Correction

Queen:  Okay, little man, next time you choose to hit your sister, is hands on the wall time.

Prince:  No.

Queen:  Excuse me??

Prince:  No hands on wall, I "bad hat".

Queen: {grin}

Can any of guess what book the Prince has chosen to have read over and over and over again this week??

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Trust Issues

Prince:  Mama! Look at me!

Queen:  Oh, nice shades mister.

Prince:  They're sunglasses.

Queen:  Yah, those are great.

Prince:  For riding motorcycles.

Queen:  Really?

Prince:  Trust me, Mama.

Queen:  Okay, I will take your word for it.

Prince:  Good.

An oldie from last year, but a favorite. {grin}

Friday, November 11, 2011

Quiet and Crazy

So in a moment of what is hopefully fleeting insanity and perhaps, an over-inflated sense of my knitting speed, I decided to tackle making myself an entire sweater started and completed in the month of November. (It may have also been due to the fact that what is left of my Christmas knitting is uninspiring.)   Anyway, I decided to try.  And being the impulsive freak that I am, I decided to make a long sleeve pullover . . . out of laceweight yarn.  Yep, I am a glutton.  But I am not alone.

And that, dear readers, is why it has been quiet here at the blog.  I am knitting in every spare second that I have and am loving the challenge of this.  So wish me luck.  Wish me speed and accuracy.

Oh, and Christmas knitting, I'll see you in December!!

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Overheard After Rest Time

Princess #3:  Did you have good sleeps?

Prince:  No. Scary monsters in my room.

Princess #3:  Monsters aren't real.  Maybe it was a shadow.

Prince:  No.  Scary bad guys.

Princess #3:  See here's a shadow (shows him her hand shadow), did the scary guy look like that?

Prince:  Yes.

Princess #3:  Okay, so it was a shadow, not something real.  You don't need to be afraid.

Prince:  Okay, Princess #3.  No be scared now.

I've said it before, but the relationship these two have is AMAZING!  Makes my heart melt to hear her help him conquer his fears.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Overheard While Playing Barbies

Princess #2:  This Barbie is mine.  I know because I got her when I was really little after I begged and begged Mama to get it for me.

Princess #3:  That never works for me.

Queen:  That's right! And don't you forget it!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

A Knit A Week

So I went a little crazy with the photos for this post, 
but when you spend the amount of hours
that I did for one creation . . .
you want to heavily document it! {grin}

This is another mystery shawl knit-a-long.
I have admired the designer's shawls for a long time, 
but had yet to screw up the courage to tackle one
on my own.  It was great to be joined by a 
couple hundred others in making this shawl.

My lame attempt at an artsy photograph!

Princess #1 showing off one wingspan.

Although you can't see them (due to my stellar photo taking skills),
there are about 200+ seed beads knit into the shawl.
I used dental floss to do it!

It has a crescent shape which is awesome, because the
curve keeps it on your shoulders.

So, so pretty!!
Pattern:  Polaris by Susanna IC (Rav link)

Yarn:  Aurora by Jill Draper in the Blue Agate colorway
This is one of Jill's new yarns! In a word: gorgeous!
Wool and silk lace weight yarn with stunning color!

Verdict:  Okay, so this was a challenge for me. My first lace weight shawl and
first time adding beads to my knitting.
 When I saw the first clue said cast on 361 I about threw in the towel.
However, the brilliance of shawls done this way (bottom up, crescent)
is that you tackle the multitude of stitches while the
excitement of starting a new project is highest.  By the time you're done,
you're down to about a couple hundred. Easy peasy! {grin}

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Overheard During Family Devotions

Princess #1:  That is too much to memorize Dad!

King:  If you can memorize the levels on Mario Bros. than I'm pretty sure you can handle this.

Princess #1:  I don't have all the levels memorized!!

King:  I heard you and your friend talking in the car on the way home from the farm, and you knew what level she was on by the music.

((Long pause.))

Princess #2:  Buzzinga.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Reasonable Explanation

A rash of horse-craziness has descended upon the Castle.  It's not just affecting Princess #2 this time, Princess #3 and the Prince have both been diagnosed.  Troubling for the Queen to be sure.  If I thought being a soccer mom was a tough fit, imagine what being equine mom is going to do for my image. {grin}

I decided I needed to get to the bottom of this madness.  Is being horse-crazy contagious?  Is it genetic?  Hmm. Or is there another, more reasonable explanation?

Queen:  So why are you so crazy about horses all of a sudden Princess #3?

Princess #3:  Well, I realized that I will never have a panda for a pet, but I could have a horse someday.

See?  She is only horse crazy because *real* pet pandas are hard to come by.  You can feel my relief.  Can't you?

Friday, October 21, 2011

Soccer Soccer Soccer

It is the last week of soccer here at the Castle.
(Can I get an amen?!)
It's been fun to watch the girls play this year.

And I cannot say enough great and wonderful
things about the Upward Soccer Program
that they play with.
This was our fifth season and each year
it just gets better.

Karate Kid anyone??  Princess #3 played for the 'Hornets'
this year.  Or, as her coach fondly calls the girls,
the 'Annoying Hornets'. {grin} She learned to be an
awesome defender!!

That's Princess #1 there in the blue jersey running toward the goal.
Her 'Freedom' team was awesome!!  And she has scored a lot
of goals this year.

And that is Princess #2 wearing blue chasing after the ball.
Her team the 'Crunch' really improved their teamwork
over the season!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Knit A Week

Okay, so I know it's not the end of the year yet,
and I may end up knitting something else
that is takes the cake, but for now,
this "knit a week" is my favorite knit for 2011.

I don't know if it's the combination of the 
yarn with the pattern.  Or the pattern with the yarn. {grin}
But . . .
 something about this project, just makes me happy!

Fall colors--love.  Pattern so simple it is stunning.

♥ Maybe it is my model?  She is gorgeous too! ♥
Pattern:  Hitchhiker by:  Martina Behm

Yarn:  Miss Babs Windsor Sock Yarn in the Mums colorway
(purchased at Sock Summit)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Happiness Is . . .

. . . picking apples with your soon-to-be 98 (eep!) year old Grandpa, your Mom, and your four kids.  Despite feeling cruddy, it was one of the best afternoons I have had in recent history.  What a blessing!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Happiness Is . . .

. . . wearing hand-knit socks on a blustery day!! I'm wearing this pair of woolly goodness on my feet.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

The One Where I Should Have Licked His Finger

The Prince:  Mama, lick my finger please.  ((Holding out a finger covered in chocolate cake crumbs and a few token wisps of animal hair.))

Queen:  No thank you.

The Prince:  Okay Mama.  ((Hops down from the table and proceeds to offer the finger to the patient, eternal optimist of the family . . . Jackson . . . the dog.))

Monday, October 03, 2011

A Knit A Week

Just in time for that first bite of fall weather
a new pair of socks.

These are by far the laciest socks I've knit thus far.
So feminine and so delicate looking in this yarn color.

Yarn:  Malabrigo Sock Yarn in the natural colorway

Verdict:  This yarn is so soft, but I do wonder how it will
end up wearing, it just feels flimsy. It would knit up a
fabulous shawl though. 
The pattern was well-written and fun to do.
However, definitely not a project to just
toss in the purse and work on during soccer practice.
I worked on this with a group of other knitters 
I met through Ravelry and it was 
a good thing to have that accountability . . .
these might have languished a bit longer if I hadn't had their

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The One Where I Buy a Semi-Pornographic Thermometer

So, as I've mentioned before change is evil here at the Castle.  And change is upon us in the form of cooler weather.  For the last four years we have battled with Fall and every year he kicks our, well, you know.  So I just purchased a little something that I hope will help us win this round . . . a somewhat risque thermometer for our spirited miss.

As well as telling the temperature, there is a picture of a lady, who bears a striking resemblance to "Barbie" who is in various states of dress (or undress) as the weather dictates.  I am hopeful that this will help reinforce what I am telling my spirited little girl in terms of choosing weather appropriate clothing.  It was a relief to finally find one that fit her specific requirements (this is not our first attempt at this):  not a boy, not a little girl, not a girl that really looks like a boy.  Thank you for having this lovely option this year!!

Fingers crossed that our little miss sees this as
"such a hot day, I should wear a tank top dress" and
"whoo-hoo I can get away with just wearing my unders".

Friday, September 16, 2011

Happiness Is . . .

. . . hearing your spirited child tell you how she is feeling instead of losing it.  Yay Princess #3!!!

The above may sound trivial, I know that I would have thought so if I had read this post four years ago.  However, this is a huge step of progress.  One that makes me teary and grateful that this may be the start of hearing more articulate and effective communication from my little girl!!  Thank you Lord!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

A Knit A Week

I can still remember when I learned about dinosaurs.  
It was 2nd grade.
Mrs. Scherr's class.
I was hooked.
I checked out books from the library.
Wrote reports. 
Wrote stories.
I was enamored with the things.
Probably drove my parents and siblings nuts.
Or maybe I kept it to myself, as a secret love.
I don't quite remember.

Anyway, Princess #3 has a best friend.
That special little gal is a lover of dinosaurs.
I can't tell you how giddy this has made me.
So when I saw this sweater, I knew I had to make it for her.
Because when I was her age I would have wanted one.

Princess #3 was willing to model for me!

The dinosaurs march around the entire sweater.
The Details:

Pattern:  Diplodocus by Kate Oates

Yarn:  Knit Picks Swish Worsted

Verdict:  When I gave her the sweater, I blanked on the dinosaur's name.
This little sweet, took one look and told me:
It's a Diplodocus.
I believe that says it all!!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Life. Now.

Sorry for the absence of posting dear, faithful readers.

My life has been full to overflowing these past days.

Filled with stuff.  Good stuff. Fun stuff.
But at the end of the day it is just stuff.

Stuff like:

playing with friends
soccer games
soccer practice
kids choir
Prince chasing
playing trucks and guys
did I mention school??

Fall is busy.
I do my best to find balance with how we choose to spend
our family's time.  
Making sure that our busy-ness is productive
and not stress causing.
Taking care to not overwhelm.
So far, it is feeling good.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

A knit A Week

More Socks!

These socks were made for walking . . .

Check out my matchy-matchy pooling on these babies.
Cool huh?!

Modeled by Princess #1.
Yes, my 11 year old and I wear the same size.
She's gonna be tall like her Daddy methinks.

Pattern:  Artichoke Socks

Yarn:  Jill Draper's Splendor Sock in the Yarmouth colorway

Verdict:  These socks have been a royal pain.
I started them at Sock Summit, which apparently made
my guage funky.  However, I didn't realize that
Sock Summit knitting affected my guage til I got into the
second sock.  The colors of the yarn pooled
completely differently!! UGH!
So I ended up cutting off (literally, gulp) the cuff of the
first sock (since it refused to be unraveled nicely),
putting the live heel and foot stitches onto a holder and
re-knit the cuff.  It came out looking just like I wanted, phew.
Then using the Kitchener stitch, I joined the new
cuff with the live stitches from the foot.
And . . . it worked!!
Hurry up Fall weather.  I need to wear some woolies!!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Happiness Is . . .

. . . listening to my girls' play house, the way their mama does.

Princess #2:  Well, the kids are all in bed.

Princess #3:  Oh good.  It's time to knit!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

You Know You Live . . .

in the desert,
when your toddler mistakes the sound of a thunderstorm . . . 
for that of a Harley.

Friday, August 26, 2011

A Little Insight

Have you ever thought of your day
in terms of transitions?
I do.

Wanna know why?
Because transitions in my spirited child's world

Everytime you switch tasks is a transition.
Try thinking about it this way . . .

#1- Wake up.

#2- Get out of pj's and get dressed.

#3- Eat breakfast.

#4- Brush teeth/hair.

#5- Play or School time

That's at least 5 transitions all before 9 am at our house!!

Think about a trip out to do errands.

#1- Get in car and buckle.

#2- Get to destination and get out of car.

#3- Errand.

#4- Get back into car and buckle..

#5- Get to destination and get out of car.

You get the picture right?
That's 5 transitions (at least) just for one errand.
It's a red letter day here at the Castle if we
get in more than one stop per trip because
of the affect that change has on our spirited child.

You may be wondering as to the point of this post.
Not sure, dear readers.
Just something I thought I'd share with you.
A little glimpse of my life.
And maybe, a little perspective to those of you with
children that may struggle with transitions as well.
Like a mom with a toddler! {grin}

Now granted we have come a long way in
dealing with the daily transition struggles.
 It involves a lot of prep work from a Mama's standpoint.
Lots of thinking ahead.
Lots of being flexible with how much time may be needed to transition.
It's exhausting some days.
Especially now, as summer is winding down
and fall is looming. . .

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Interesting Assumption

So I was given the privilege, inconvenience, chance, opportunity to be a part of our system of justice here in America this week. You guessed it, jury duty!

During the first stretch of waiting (if you've ever served, you know what I mean by that, right?), an older gentleman sat next to me and struck up a conversation with me about the sock I was knitting and it continued on to family life.  It went a little like this:

Nice Old Guy (NOG): So do you have any children?

Queen: Yep. Four.

NOG: Wow. How old?

Queen:  11, 9, 6, and 2.

NOG:  You must stay home with them.

Queen:  I do actually.  Out of curiosity, how did you guess?

NOG:  Well, daycare for that many kids would be awfully expensive . . . plus you're knitting.

Queen:  Ah, well, there you go, it was the knitting that gave it away.
What can we take away from this dear readers?

Some in the world assume you are a stay at home mom

when you have four children 


(the best caveat of all)

you knit!!

Hope you got a grin out of this one.  I know I did!!
Wonder what he would have said if I would have
also confessed to educating my children at home!!
Probably would assume that I also know how to sew!
The horror! {grin}

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Overheard After Rest-Time

Queen: Who is hiding in my curtain?

The Prince: Jertain in the curtain, Mama!!

Can any of you guess which book is the Prince's current obsession?!?

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A Knit A Week

So, did I mention that I attended Sock Summit 2011?
I didn't?
Well, I did.
And, it was, in a word: amazing.
To be surrounded by knitters from all walks of life, 
who were wearing the most fabulous hand knits I have ever seen,
to not get any funny looks or feel as if you
might be the tiniest bit rude by pulling out your knitting
whenever you get the chance,
to have the sensory experience to see, touch, and
talk with the creators of incredible sock yarns and patterns was
I want to go back.

I got the chance to meet Jill Draper.
She's the gal I buy most of my sock yarn from,
as you faithful readers know.
Just meeting her, was worth making the trip.
To give her a hug and squish her yarn in person,
the icing on the cake that was Sock Summit!

I took some classes.
I met the Yarn Harlot.
I bought some yarn.
I met the Yarn Harlot.
I bought some patterns.
I met the Yarn Harlot.

I finished these socks while there.
Stood in line forever waiting for the chance
for the Yarn Harlot to "hold" my sock
as she so willingly does, rock star knitter that she is..
And realized that I forgot to take my camera [*&%@]
to document such a momentous occasion.

Anyway, as you may have guessed I am thoroughly 
enamored with creating hand knit socks.
Sock Summit, just convinced me that this
obsession is right and true!

The Details:
Pattern:  Socks For Euni a freebie from Liz Abinante

Yarn:  Socks that Rock Lightweight by Blue Moon Fiber Arts
in a mystery color Mill End.

Verdict:  These babies just flew off the needles.  I love it when 
that happens.  Fab pattern and fab yarn!  One more
Christmas gift off the list!!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Wonder No Longer

Now I'm sure you've wondered dear readers,
how does the Queen make meals
that all the Royals will eat?
I'm sure you've thought to yourself, she doesn't seem to post 
much about cooking,
yet her kids are getting bigger and
seem to be healthy, hmmm. 
Or, her recipes must go through rigorous testing and
approval before she tries them out on her family.

Well, wonder no longer my friends.
I do have *a* stringent quality control measure in place.
His name is Clyde.

First Clyde cautiously does a sniff test.

Then, takes an aerial overview. 

Finally, the all important taste test.
If Clyde approves, then I know I have a crowd pleaser! {grin}

Just having a little fun with you all this fine Monday morning.
Best Wishes for a fine, mid-August week, dear readers.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Happiness Is Not . . .

 . . . finding "Potsie" in the sink, when you go to drain the pasta and the corn on the cob.

Anybody else hear "Chucky" music playing??

Monday, August 08, 2011

A Knit A Week

So by now, dear readers, most
of you know (or have figured out) that
I have the teeniest, tiniest obsession
with knitting.
I know, hard to believe. {grin}

But I also have a deep, deep love
for the written word.
I love to find fabulous, fun
books to read to my kids.
And I love to read, well, just about
anything for my own personal enjoyment.

I also love to give gifts. Handmade ones in particular.
Especially ones that I've knit with a specific
person in mind.

For the following "Knit A Week" post, 
prepare to be astounded, dear ones for
I've combined all three loves!

Meet the Princess.

See all those mattresses.  And her wee pillow.

Will she be able to sleep??
Hope so.

But will it be comfortable sleep is the question!

 The Details:

Pattern:  Princess and the Pea by Susan B. Anderson
from her Itty Bitty Toys book.  Love this book!!

Yarn:  Every last bit was from scraps!  Fabulous 
stash-busting project.

Verdict:  I'm enchanted.  And not just because it
was based on a fairy tale!  I included a copy 
of the story along with the princess for 
my niece to enjoy listening to, while
she plays with her princess set.

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Princess #2 is 9!!

Whew.  Sometimes the passage
of time hits you all at once.
The birthday girl with her Palomino cake!

Here are a few little things you should know about
my sweet Princess #2.
She (is a/an):

*fast and furious bicyclist.

*reader of anime.

*fabulous seamstress.



*songwriting wonder.

*aspiring singer.

*has yet to meet a stranger. {grin}

*lover of animals . . . especially horses.

*aspiring equestrienne.

*daughter of the risen KING!

*fun-loving and always fun-seeking!

God knew when He blessed us with Princess #2
that our castle was lacking in the adventure
seeking dept., the spontaneity dept., the
extroverted dept., and the flair dept.

So. . .

Nine years ago, 
in a big, ol' hurry,
Princess #2 was born
with the loudest cry I have ever
heard a newborn make.

And she has been making herself heard
ever since.  Our castle would
be awfully boring without her
to liven up the joint!
We love our free-spirited little miss very much.

Monday, August 01, 2011

A Knit A Week

Princess #2's Birthday Sweater!
Completed completely (read: blocked!)
before her birthday!
Yay me!

She originally chose a swing cardigan
sweater, but after she saw the feather and fan
stitch pattern on her baby cousin's sweater,
she just had to have that.
What was this Mama to do??
Order more yarn and find a new pattern . . .

I found a feather and fan sweater pattern that I ended
up modifying a bit in order to make it in 
my aspiring Fashionista's vision!

Yarn:  Cascade 220 Paints/Hand Dyed

Verdict:  She loves it!  And I loved fiddling around
making the modifications that personalized this one.
The buttons are from the same fab etsy seller 
as previous projects.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Same Game, New Name

Prince:  Go outside please with seesters?

Queen:  What are you going to play outside with your sisters?

Prince:  Play neener-neener*, Mama.

*the seesters were playing tag {grin}

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Dear Void,

Seriously, Void, seriously?  

You know I get a very limited time alone during the Royals' waking hours.  So why then, oh Void, do they have to start in on some nonsense right when I sneak away for some much needed alone time?  It's one thing when my alone time is on the computer or knitting, but when their nonsense interrupts my five minutes in the throne room?!?  

C'mon, five minutes of peace, it's not too much to ask for, is it?

Wait, don't answer.


The Queen

Monday, July 18, 2011

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Overheard at the Store

Princess #3:  Mama, I really want that Barbie car. 
Queen's side note:  It was one of those battery operated, kid-sized Barbie cars!

Queen:  It's $250, sweetie, Mama doesn't have $250 to spend on that.

Princess #3:  Well, you could save up for it Mama.
Queen's side note:  Doncha just love it when your own words come back to roost?

King:  Do you really think that if Mama had $250 to spend, she would spend it on a Barbie car for you?

Princess #2:  NO WAY! She would spend it on yarn!!
Queen's side note:  What can I say?  They know me well!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Knit A Week

My sister just sent me a picture of my niece in her
welcome baby knitwear and I had to
share because she is such a little doll!

Patterns:  Sourball Bonnet by: Larissa Brown (Rav. link)
Lillie Baby Cardigan by: Laura Edwards (Rav. link)
Both patterns are fab freebies!

Yarn:  Jill Draper's Hudson in the Dainty Bess colorway.
Buttons are from a wonderful maker of fabric-covered
creations.  I love her buttons!!

Verdict:  I could not ask for sweeter, quicker, more
fabulous projects than these two.  Jill's amazing, soft, squishy 
Hudson yarn paired with my sweet niece. . . scrumptious!
Both the hat and the cardy were made with just one skein 
of yarn and a wee bit of some left over 
Hudson from a different project.
Love, love, love!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Happiness Is . . .

. . . not generally insomnia.  However, last night, I was grateful to be awake in the wee hours so I was able to hear the coyote conversation that was taking place.  I love the mournfulness of their cries.  So haunting and beautiful.

Sunday, July 10, 2011


I seem to have a lot of weird associations.  Most of them stemming from a certain food that holds a sweet memory. Hmmm, Sweet and Sour Chicken from Leeann Chin's comes to mind.  (The King will know what I'm talking about . . .) {grin}

Today I realized another.  While making strawberry freezer jam, I was overcome by the urge to make biscuits.  I blame my Mom.  Whenever my Mom made jam when I was kid, which was basically all summer long, she usually made the real deal--cooked jam., and one of the steps to making cooked jam is to skim the foam off the top.

She would ladle it into one of her peach lustre Fire King bowls and add to it from each of the batches she made that day.  Then for dinner she would make a big batch of baking powder biscuits and we could slather the fresh foamy goodness on and enjoy.

So tonight in honor of my Mom I will make a big batch of baking powder biscuits to go with my freshly made jam.  It won't be foamy, but I won't be hot and sweaty from stirring jam over the stove either.  Sounds like a win-win to me!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

All Before 8 AM

. . . lest you have the mistaken idea that life here at the Castle is
idyllic on a daily basis I give you a typical morning 
of my life that happened this week.
Here it is by the numbers:

. . . 1 child out of 4 happy to start the day.

. . . 2 1/2 children dressed for the day.

. . . 1 pot of Scottish Oatmeal overflowing onto the stovetop.

. . . 1 Queen swearing . . . softly. (Just keeping it real people.)

. . . 1 child screaming for MOMMY.

. . . 1 child screaming that they didn't *want* Scottish Oatmeal for breakfast.

. . . 1 child running around with no unders on. (The happy one.){grin}

. . . 1 can of caffeinated beverage of choice consumed by the Queen.

. . . 5 bowls of oatmeal dished up.

. . . 1 wrong spoon used causing more screaming.

. . . 4 children eating.

. . . 1 Queen sighing.

. . . 1 pot of water on, to make the second dose of 
caffeinated beverage for the Queen.

And all this, before 8 AM, my dear friends.

. . . 

Monday, June 27, 2011

One For the Frog Pond

I decided early on in my latest knitting project to turn a blind eye to what common sense was telling me.  I mean, I was spot-on for gauge, so what if the baby sweater appeared to be growing in width rather than height.  I continued on because darn it, this was my mindless knitting project, my reward for completing a lacy scarf out of over 400 yards of fingering weight yarn, this little sweater was my sanity saver.

However, today as I laid it out on the school table in preparation of adding sleeves, I opened my eyes and began to laugh, because surely this was a joke from the knitting gods.  The shape was supposed to be boxy, but this little baby sweater for a three month old, would have fit my 2 year old for width!!!  Yikes.

Common sense took over.

I began to frog.

And frog.

I told the girls it was rather ironic that taking apart a sweater only takes about 15 minutes as opposed to the solid week I've knitting I had already put into it.

I hated to do it, but it is for the best.

Sometimes taking things down to the beginning is important.  Sometimes rebuilding, or in this case, re-knitting, is the best action.  Sometimes, you've got to start from scratch, even if it hurts to take it there.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Just Another Day . . .

. . . here at the Castle.  However, this day is starting with a trial.  It is the case of The Castle vs. Princess #1 aka the girl who didn't take her allergy meds.

I give you the cast in order of appearance:

The Judge--Princess #2 (finally her chance to boss the big sis legally)

The Defendant--Princess #1

Jury--Princess #3  (look out Princess #1, you're goin' down)

Witnesses--Mama, Princess #2, and Princess #3 (you can see where this trial is headed, can't you??)

Bailiff--The Prince who is patrolling the trial while riding his fire truck.

Verdict:  Apparently we'll find out after a commercial break (the Queen wonders if they have been secretly watching Judge Judy when she's not looking).
Aaaaannnnd we're back.  In a surprise twist, no one saw coming, the allergy medication is guilty because it forgot to tell Princess #1 that she needed to take it.
Justice has been served?!

The Queen thinks that this was a great intro into Civics, don't you?!?

Never a dull moment, although they are prayed for daily.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A Knit A Week

I don't know if I mentioned on this blog that
I am striving for a pair of socks knitted
for each month.  That is why, my knitting
projects may seem a bit heavy on the sock projects.
(And it may also because I have the teeniest tiniest bit of a sock yarn obsession.  Maybe.)

Yarn:  Mountain Colors Crazyfoot in the Harmony Lake colorway

Verdict:  I really like Mountain Colors yarn.  The colors are so rich
and lush.  I wish my pictures did justice to the 
beautiful green that is subtly striped in this yarn.
The pattern is another fab freebie.  Complete
with cables and lace, short row heels and toes.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Happiness Is . . .

. . . hearing the Prince singing, "Jesus Love the Little Children", Papa Al style* at the top of his lungs!

*Papa Al's version has a twist, "Red and yellow, blue and green, strangest kids you've ever seen." {grin}

Queen's disclaimer:  This is not crystal clear singing mind you.  I could pick out the tune and then hear the green and blue very clearly.  It's his maniacal laughter after, that clued me in that this was his Papa's way of singing it!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Good Answer

As I was rocking the Prince at rest time today, we had this little conversation.  Again.  We seem to have it at least once a week.  It's cute.  And he always makes a good choice with his answers! {grin}

It starts with the Prince burying his little nose into the Queen's shirt and inhaling loudly.

Queen:  Whatcha doing?

Prince:  Smell you.

Queen:  So, how do I smell?

Prince:  Mmmm, good, like Mama.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Dear Void,

Why, oh sweet Void, why, must the ice cream truck man drive around my neighborhood at dinner time?

Get back to me quick will ya, my kids are crying 'bout their mean mama.



The [mean] Queen

Thursday, June 09, 2011

I Felt A Need

Felting is addicting.
It is so much fun to make a huge giant project
throw it in the wash for 15 minutes
and watch it shrink before your very eyes
to a normal sized object.

I've been on a stash-busting mission.
Because I couldn't shut the doors on 
my yarn storage cupboard anymore.
It was a wee bit embarrassing.

Here are the results of the felting madness . . .
for now.

 A little iPod wristlet for Princess #2.
It is made out of  some left-over Tilli Tomas Flurries which
is a wool yarn with glass beads woven in it.
Her gadget fits just right and has just
enough bling to make my girl happy.
I closed it with a snap and she found a
rhinestone button from the button box to put on top.

 A Rainbow Waves bag made out of left-over
Elann Peruvian Wool and some Brown Sheep Wool.
I've never felted with either of these yarns before, but
I definitely will again.
I love the end result!!

Another Rainbow Waves bag, this one
done in Noro Kureyon Wool and Cascade 220.
Love it!
Noro is such an interesting yarn to work with, not only 
because of the beautiful color changes, but it's texture too.
It is rough to the touch and as you knit you may come across
some organic stuff-like bits of dried grass (?).
But once it is felted it is so soft and fuzzy.
Interesting stuff.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Overheard At/After School

Princess #1 (while trying to finish up school):  May I order something please?

Princess #3 (waitressing for Chef Princess #2):  Sure.

Princess #1:  Peace and quiet.

Princess #3:  I'm sorry, we don't have that.  We're just swamped with orders for veggie burgers and cotton candy.

Princess #1:  I tried.

Queen's side note:  It's hard to be the last one at the school table some days.  Especially on those days when the kitchen is busy cooking. {grin}
Thankfully Princess #1 is an old pro at tuning out her siblings' noise!

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Current Fave

So the Prince talks a lot.
Do I understand what he's communicating?  Mostly.
Would you?  Probably not. {grin}

Anyway.  My current favorite of his little Prince-ism's is this one:

"Mama, juice me, pwease!"

Which of course, means more juice please! Stat!

Thursday, June 02, 2011

A Knit A Week

A fabulous freebie that works great with semi-solid sock yarn.

Yarn:  Jill Draper Makes Stuff Splendor Sock in the Moonless colorway.
**Color is truest in the top photo.**
This is the deepest, richest navy blue.
Oh how I love the color blue!!

Verdict:  Mine.  All.  Mine.
These were my first toe up's and it was fun to 
try something new when it comes to sock design.