About this Blog: Bread making recipes, knit and crochet projects, wood working, gardening, digital imaging, travel, cruise ships, Labrador Retrievers, and more....

About the Header Image: Idlebrook Wendy Darling Evensen "Wendy" one of our three Labrador Retrievers.

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Monday, January 25, 2021

Grumpy Chic Mittens

 Good morning,

It seems Bernie and his mittens are everywhere these days.  For those who knit, there's a free pattern available on the LionBrand.com web site.

I'm not a fan of mittens so won't be making them, but I do have some lovely original coordinating intarsia hats in the shop here.  ;)

This is getting funnier and funnier.  Even the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra had Bernie sitting in the audience at Cincinnati Music Hall on their Facebook page.



Sunday, January 24, 2021

First Place Elsa

 Good morning,

I took this picture last night when Elsa and Catherine got home from this weekend's Agility Trial.  

They did it again!  Congratulations on the First Place Ribbon to Elsa and her trainer/our daughter, Catherine!


Proud Mom

Saturday, January 23, 2021

Winter Blossoms

 Good morning,

It may be cold, gray, and overcast outside, but there are blossoms opening in my needlework studio!  These are for a custom order afghan blanket.  As soon as there are 80 of them, I'll start putting the next colors on them, then the final border and scalloped edging.  There's still a long way to go, but I truly enjoy making these.  

Of course, you'll see it when it is finished.  :)

Similar afghan blankets are available here.

All the best,


Friday, January 22, 2021

Joint Effort Dinner

 Good morning,

My Honey made the sausage soup and

 I made the bread.  The bread was so hot out of the oven that it was difficult to cut but amazing to eat!

What a marvelous home made dinner on a cold winter's night.  



Thursday, January 21, 2021

Seams and Finishing

 Good morning,

I'm making great progress on the custom order basket weave sweater.  Yesterday I finished matching each row and crocheting seams together.  After that I still  had to do all finishing of weaving in ends, sewing in my label, and adding a "hand made" charm.

It's a long process to design and hand knit a sweater, but the rewards are great!  I made a similar one for myself in navy blue more than 15 years ago and I'm still wearing it.  Perhaps it's time to make another for myself, too.

 As soon as I finish this sweater, I'll be back to work on the custom order afghan blanket I started recently.  I move back and forth between knit and crochet projects to give my hands and fingers a rest from the same repetitive movements.  It works!



Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Color Selections

 Good morning,

Yesterday afternoon I played with yarn putting together the colors requested for a custom order afghan blanket.

I just love doing this.This will be a stained glass flower garden design.  

I have other things in the works right now, but had to get started on this anyway.  I always did my homework right away, too.  It's just the way I am....



Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Day Trippin'

 Good morning,

The Covid-19 thing has us staying home most of the time, but there are certain things that we just have to do.  

It has become a joke that our road trips revolve around medical appointments, grocery stores, and the post office.  That's exactly what we did today and it seems to took most of the day.  We are exhausted when we get home.

Anyway., it was fun to take a picture of a freeway sign to remember the trips we used to take to Florida and Texas to cruise ship terminals.  







Monday, January 18, 2021

Gray Winter Day

 Good morning,

It's a gray, cold, overcast winter day here.  I've been hoping for sunshine so I can photo a new hat for the shop, but that is not to happen.  I'll work on another way to do it to get some good pictures with my Canon camera.  However, diffused sunlight is the very best for taking pictures of items for the shop.

All is not lost here.  It's cold and a perfect day to have the fireplace roaring and to cuddle up under one of my afghans and knit.

All the very best,


Sunday, January 17, 2021

Elsa Snuggling After Her Bath

 Good morning,

All three of the pups took his or her turn in Catherine's bath tub, then came to me for toweling off.  Our pups love getting a bath and argue about which one will go first. 

 Here is sweet Elsa after her bath cuddled up on my lap with lots of blankets. 

 So cute!



Saturday, January 16, 2021

Work in Process This Week

 Good morning,

I have four items in the works this week.  

Above is a hat for the shop.  I've been trying to restock a variety of colors after this design sold out completely a few months ago and continues to sell as I make and list them.

 I've gotten a few more inches of this baby sweater finished, but I keep picking up something else to work on.  Of course, I will finish it eventually.

I'm working on a shawl with this gorgeous wool blend.  It would also make a beautiful cowl and hat set.  I may have enough yarn to make them all.

And, finally, I'm making real progress on this custom order basket weave sweater.  This second sleeve is now finished as well as the front and back.  Now I have to knit the collar onto the sweater, attach the arms and complete all seams.   

As I sit and knit or crochet one item, I am constantly thinking about other items to make.  I truly do need more hands!

What are you making, baking, growing this week?


Friday, January 15, 2021

Food for a Cold Winter's Night

 Good morning,

My Honey cooked dinner again last night.  This is the traditional Christmas Norwegian Pork Meat Cakes, sour kraut, peas, potatoes (baked with onions this time instead of boiled), and cranberry sauce.

We decided at Christmas that we needed to enjoy this meal many more times throughout the year.

I hope you're staying warm this January if you're living in the Northern Hemisphere.


Thursday, January 14, 2021

Christmas Cactus?

 Good morning,

My Christmas January Cactus just decided to bloom!  I think it was avoiding 2020.

 How very pretty in the sun.







Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Cake Class

 Good morning,

That masterpiece you see above is the cake Catherine decorated at a cake class yesterday.  

Kjell and I were the beneficiaries of the product of her cake class studies when she got home.  We put on a pot of coffee and all enjoyed slices of this masterpiece.  

Then we went to bed on a sugar high!

Thanks, Catherine, it was delicious!



Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Elsa Got Mail!

 Good morning,

Elsa received mail yesterday!  :)

We are so very proud of Elsa, her trainer/our daughter Catherine, and Elsa's new Agility Trial Title!

I'm so proud I had to show it off.






Monday, January 11, 2021

Elsa's Blue Ribbon Agility Run

 Good morning,

Catherine shared this video of Elsa's blue ribbon Agility run this past weekend.

We are so proud of Elsa and her handler/our daughter, Catherine.

Love you!


Sunday, January 10, 2021

A Very Sweet Gift

 Good morning,

Christmas gifts are still arriving due to delays in just about everything due to Covid-19.

We recently received these four coasters from Aunt Carol.  These are glass coasters with cork backs.  Top left is Erik; bottom left is Wendy;  bottom right is Elsa.   

We also received two large mouse pads with our late Penny's picture.  What a lovely remembrance of our dear Penny.

These were all such thoughtful gifts.

Thank you, Aunt Carol!

Love you,


Saturday, January 9, 2021


 Good morning,

With Covid-19 still raging through the population here in our area, we are still staying home more than we would normally stay home.  We used to be news junkies, but the news is just too depressing these days.  With all of the craziness in the world these days we have been watching more and more entertainment TV.  Of course, I'm knitting my way through all of these evenings at home, too.

While doing other things during the day we have had the Law and Order Marathon on TV and last night we watched Guardians of the Galaxy II (again).  It's fun to watch a movie we've already seen because we pick up details we missed before.  And, then there are those cute little creatures....  

If you are staying home more than you used to stay home, what have you been doing for entertainment?

Stay safe, stay healthy,




Friday, January 8, 2021

Perfect Child

 Good morning,

I happened to grab one of Catherine's cups this morning. The other side of it says, "Dog Mom." Someone gave her this one as a gift.

I must say raising human children is not as easy as raising canine children.  We have three human children and I am so very happy to say they are all potty trained, educated, and employed, the three things I've always joked are the goals of parenting.  They now have or are old enough to have children of their own.  As I look at the world today, I feel so very lucky that I raised my children when I did and blessed that they all turned out so well.  

And, the canine "children?"  We have always had dogs and sometimes some cats, too.  We have had Dachshunds, German Shepherds, and for the past 23 years Labrador Retrievers.  They have all been wonderful, but these Labs are the most energetic, happy dogs I've ever seen.  Just like human children, they get hurt and sick sometimes so need medical care.  They go to school, athletic events, train, practice, and bring home ribbons and awards.  They are shadows wherever we go and are thrilled when we get home if we have gone out without them.   They never complain, argue, talk back.  (Ok, with the "minor" exception of when Erik's tummy clock goes off and he tells us he is ready to eat.)

There is one thing you can do with canine children that you can't do with human children.  You can leave your two year old dog at home alone for a couple of hours while you run errands.  Not only will you not be arrested, your home will be guarded until your return.

No, our pets are not children, but they certainly are wonderful warm and loving creatures that add to the richness of our lives.  


Thursday, January 7, 2021

Work in Process This Week

 Good morning,

On the needles this week is this intarsia knit hat.  Well, I think it will be a hat.  I'm developing a new design and a hat is a great way to test it out without committing to a bigger project.  I'll show it to you when I get it finished.

 I have finished the back of this sweater that I showed you last time, as well as the front and have joined the two at the shoulders with a three needle bind off for a neat and tidy flat seam.  I'm working on the first sleeve now.  I write out my patterns for sleeves with Excel so I can compute where I want increases, then print it all out so I can check it off row by row as I knit.  This sweater is a local custom order.

I have other things in my sketch book, too, that will be fun to get started.  I have some pretty gray wool textured yarn that will be a beautiful shawl.  I've also still got the off white baby sweater next to my knitting chair that will take center stage after I've finished the basket weave sweater pictured above.

What are you making, baking, growing this week?  I love reading so many of your blogs and seeing what you are doing and making!

All the very best,


Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Elsa's Birthday Party

Good morning,

Elsa (top) and Wendy had a fantastic time celebrating Elsa's birthday!

 Of course, Erik was on hand, too!

They had lots of dog cookies and played with new toys.

Elsa's new froggie looks like he's enjoying the party, too!

While the pups had dog cookies and snacks, we people enjoyed cake.

It wasn't long before...
the pups had...
all had enough partying.  Sweet Elsa fell asleep on the end of the couch after a wonderful celebration of her birthday and first two years as a treasured member of our family.



Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Happy Second Birthday Millstone Elsa Astrid Evensen!

 Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday to you!
Happy Birthday, sweet Elsa!
Happy Birthday to you!

Monday, January 4, 2021

New Toy

 Good morning,

Santa brought My Honey a 3D Printer this year!

My Honey has been reading a great deal about and working on his own new programs to make parts for his CNC and other machines with his new printer. 

While writing his own programs, he used this available one to make himself a mascot who now sits on top of the printer to keep My Honey company.

So cute!

Santa sure knew how to bring just the right presents this year!



Sunday, January 3, 2021

Needlework and Wood Working Update - January, 2021

  Good morning!  

Happy New Year!  We've all managed to get through 2020 and have high expectations for 2021 for health and happiness for everyone! 

 During the past month I've been extremely busy restocking the shop and adding new designs.  Above is a Scandinavian Intarsia Knit Hat that is a very stylish way to keep you warm!  $38.  More images and information here.

 And, here's another in a different color scheme.  $38.  More images of the hat above here.  There are other colors and styles also available here.

I made this Large Stained Glass Afghan Blanket and it sold seven days after I listed it in the shop.  We have similar blankets in an assortment of colors here.  Prices vary by size.

I made a number of this style of cloche hat this month and several area already sold, however...

 ...there are many others available here.  Prices vary by design and fabric type.  This is a sample of available colors:

This was a big month for custom order Toilet Tissue Toppers, too.  I made and sold 16 of them for Covid-19 Survival Kits that were given as Christmas gifts.  These brought huge smiles.  Who would have guessed in 2019 that in 2020 Toilet Tissue Gift Bags would be a big deal!  I'm still smiling about this!

Kjell made this gorgeous carving entitled American Strength.  It is not yet in the shop, but I'm working on it.  We invite you to browse the large collection of available wood items here.

And, finally, Kjell had a fabulous time making this remote control tea dipper.  He's keeping this one.    Perhaps we'll get lucky and he'll make one for the shop, too.  Of course, every household needs one right?  ;)  Would you like to see it in action?  Here's his Facebook post featuring this nifty item.  

That's what we've been doing during the past month.  Of course, we have other projects in the queue now, too, that will appear in next month's Update.  

We sincerely appreciate your comments, likes, favorites, shares, and purchases, too!  

All the very best for a wonderful 2021!



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