Wednesday, December 28, 2011

twas the days after Christmas.......

Ho - ho - ho - hope your Christmas was filled with delight. I purposely stayed away from the keyboard over the holidays so I would spend my time doing fun stuff like baking cookies, visiting, sleigh riding, napping, eating, watching cheesy Christmas movies......... all that good stuff that goes along with Christmas and the holiday season. Fortunately , unlike my friend Karen, (poor Karen)
I didn't catch a cold nor did my hubby.
I did try some new Christmas cookie recipes though. I LOVE baking and this year I tried 3 new recipes.

The first was peppermint snowballs. They are cookies that get filled with a peppermint cream, baked and rolled in crushed candy canes and powdered sugar. Yummy! Speaking of candy canes my D.H. made me a set of 3 candy cane decorations for the yard. He's a real handy guy.

The next cookies were coco-mints. You make coco wafers and then sandwich them with green mint filling. Also yummy!
The third new recipe was double peanut butter cookies. You make the dough, which is peanut butter dough, form into logs, chill, slice and then add a small dollop of peanut butter, cover with second slice, seal the edges and bake. They are super peanuty flavorful! double yum!

Christmas eve we drove around to see some Christmas lights but didn't go to our usual light display neighborhood because we go there so much we know it by heart. So we picked a different neighborhood and we did catch a few ambitious displays.

We spent Christmas eve at my D.H.'s step brothers house for a tappas party and wow did they have a wonderful assortment! There were 2 kinds of shrimp, salmon and capers, lots of cheeses, chutneys, fruit, carved ham sandwiches, 3 kinds of ravioli, the squash ravioli was awesome! They had sausages, Italian wedding soup and then of course desserts - I will post the recipe for the nut yule log in a day or two for you.  It was unbelievable and it's a super easy no bake recipe. I usually don't even try fruit cake type loafs because they are not always very appetizing. You know all the jokes about doorstops and anchors right? Well, I had 3 pieces of this one - oink -oink!
Christmas Day was going to be in laws over for brunch but my FIL was in the hospital until late Christmas eve. He was too weak still to bring on an outing, so we shared the mid day meal with my FIL and MIL at their assisted living center then came home and took a short nap and then eventually got around to opening gifts.
Our Christmas dinner was quiet, we threw some nice beef tenderloins on the grill and relaxed the rest of the evening. 
I still have a few Christmas cards to mail out - yes really. I know it's almost 2012 but that's another story.......

Sunday, December 18, 2011

and the giveaway winners are......

..... hopefully going to be very happy with their prizes. I so enjoyed the comments that were shared and I truly wish everyone a glorious Christmas season. The reason I didn't post sooner is because I was busy wrapping gifts so I could get them mailed off to my family to the north. I was also pouting because the Packers lost the game today. I guess I shouldn't pout though,  it's the first game they lost this year.
Anyway, I also want to get the prizes mailed off to the lucky winners....
The first winner is Mippy and she will receive the $20.00 gift card Congratulations Mippy, I hope you enjoy treating yourself to something fun and unexpected. 

The second winner is Iluvmybugs and she will receive the big stack of wool squares. I would love to see what she will make with them wouldn't you. 

Thank you to everyone for entering and perhaps you won on another blog in the blog hop party. Thanks once again to Michele from quilting gallery for putting this all together and a happy birthday to

Tomorrow it's time to bake some Christmas cookies!

Friday, December 16, 2011

a stitch in (double) time.....

Calling all procrastinators.......If you know me, you know that I am the reining queen of procrastinators.
All hail the queen! NOT. Today was spent in my studio stitching in double time. I thought I would be farther along with my gift making but alas here it is a week before Christmas and I am frantically stitching away. Please tell me I am not alone....please don't tell me that you had your gifts done and wrapped before Thanksgiving, don't tell me your cards are mailed and your cookies are baked. That would just be cruel.
One of the gifts I am determined to finish tonight is a scarf made with this really fascinating yarn I found at the last quilt show I went to. Have you seen this yarn? Have you tried knitting with it yet?  I am knitting with 7 stitches cast on and as you knit it kind of twirls itself around and makes a unique accent scarf.

this is the yarn
this is the scarf, so far

I must say it was a challenge to cast on,  and will probably be just as much of a challenge to cast off. Guess I'll find out later.  Next up is to finish an apron....

this is an apron yet to be completed....
 I better step away from the computer now if I want to get these done tonight...tomorrow is another day.
Speaking of tomorrow - (Saturday) it's the last day to enter my giveaway. Scroll down to the last post for entry info. 
It's super easy, and I am loving all the delightful comments you are all posting about Christmas. 
I so miss my family up north. I guess the only thing I don't like about Christmas is not being with them.  (don't mind me, just a small pity party in progress. If you're missing your family you're welcome to join in )

Well... off to knit and hug my darling DH

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Holiday giveaway..... with a little extra something

Do you like gift cards? How would you like a $20.00 gift card to Barnes & Noble?  Then you'll want to enter my new (and long overdue) giveaway and perhaps you'll be the one to win it.
In this giveaway I wanted to give a gift that everyone can use and I'm sure that you can find something fun there to treat yourself to.

The $20.00 Barnes & Noble gift card will come in a little handmade gift card holder (yes, I made it)  that you can keep, or reuse to give a gift card to someone on your list. (yes, you can even re-gift this gift card - I won't tell).

This is to help celebrate the 4th birthday of the host of the Blog Hop Party. Happy 4th Michele and thanks for throwing the party!  There are oodles of other fabulous blogs participating in the Blog Hop Party with oodles of other great giveaways. Click here or over on the link box to the right for the Blog Hop Party to join in if you want to have fun hopping around.
But wait there's more......

Also for this giveaway there will be a second place winner. The second place winner will receive a stack pack of 35 100% Wool 5"squares, after all, this is a blog about creative pursuits.
p.s. just so you know, Woolfelt by National Nonwovens is made in the U.S.A. Hooray for that.
If you're not a stitcher or you don't want to win the Woolfelt charm pack just put a note in your comment and we'll draw another winner. 

So how do you win one of these giveaway prizes? All you have to do is answer the question  "what is your favorite part of the Christmas season" That's it. I'm not going to make you jump through a bunch of hoops.  You do need to post your answer on this (Dec. 9th) post but you have until Dec. 17th to do so. The winners will be chosen by random and announced Dec. 18th. 
Good luck and be sweet and share this event with your friends. If this is your first visit to my blog welcome and read on there's more........

An extra little something for all of my creative friends.....
I put a free download on my site for the instructions on how to make these holiday napkins ties. They're easy and you still have plenty of time to make them to add a cute little accent to your holiday table or to give as a gift.  Click here to get the free project download.
holly and sleigh bell napkins tie
gift box napkin ties

 Now I have to go get busy in the studio with some Christmas gifts I'm making and finish trimming the tree.  Have fun and savor the moments of the Christmas season - Linda