Saturday, March 31, 2018

An Egg-speriment

Later on today, I will be making Easter Egg Bread. I need to dye 6 eggs, and only had blue, green, and yellow dye in the cupboard. No red, The Young One's favorite color. I didn't feel like running out to the store just to buy food coloring so I would have red. 

God bless the Internet as I found people dyed eggs with Kool-Aid powdered drink mix. Great! I didn't have Kool-Aid on hand, 

 but had generic fruit punch and grape. 

I nuked a 1/2 cup of water and added a teaspoon of white vinegar as directed on the food coloring package. The mixture smelled very fruit punch. Popped the egg in the dye bath.

A stringy red residue formed on the egg. You can see where I wiped it off with the paper towel. The residue might have formed because I kept turning the egg over with a metal spoon.I put the egg in for a second bath to get a deeper shade of red. The dye started to fizz. Some sort of chemical reaction between the egg shell, the vinegar, and whatever is in the drink mix. 

The fizzing didn't happen with the purple drink mix. The purple mix actually turned the egg a shade of grey. I wiped the egg with a paper towel and stuck the purple egg in the blue dye. 

There were no issues dyeing the eggs with the green and blue food coloring.   A quick dip in the red and leaving the egg alone for 1 minute yielded a pink egg.

 At this stage of the game where the girlies are grown up, it doesn't really matter what color the eggs are, but I still dyed an egg in favorite colors. Red for the Young One, Purple (mottled like a plantet) for Himself, Blue for me, and even though she is not home for Easter, Pink for The Eldest.

Friday, March 30, 2018

The Friday Five Good Things

Five good things that happened this week.

1. The  Eldest had given Himself a fruit of the month club. This month's fruit was ruby grapefruit. Not a big favorite. I found a recipe to make a grapefruit cake, a take on a lemon cake. Not bad.

2. Went to IHOP and had chicken and waffles for supper. And awesome lunch the next day.

3. Was looking for pussywillows, but couldn't find them. Nan suggested trying Trader Joe's. Great suggestion.

4. Took the car in for service. Got it back washed and vacced.

5. The Young One and I went to see Ponyo. The first movie in the Studio Ghibli Fest for 2018. The films are the anniversary showing of Hayao Miyazaki's animated films. Yeah, you know him if I said My Neighbor Totoro.

How was your week?

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Throwback Thursday

As a kid, Dad loved baseball. In honor of Major League Baseball Opening Day, a few highlights about his favorite players.

One of his favorite players was Carl "Screwball" Hubbell. Hubbell was a left-handed pitcher with the New York Giants from 1928 - 1943. Dad liked Hubbell because he was also left-handed.

Hubbell's claim to fame was a signature screwball pitch. From Wikipedia: that is thrown so as to break in the opposite direction of a slider or curveball. Depending on the pitcher's arm angle, the ball may also have a sinking action. He is perhaps best remembered for his performance in the 1934 All-Star Game, when he struck out five of the game's great hitters in succession, Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Al Simmons and Joe Cronin.

Dad also liked another pair of pitchers brothers, Dizzy (Jerome Herman) and Daffy (Paul Dee) Dean for teams St. Louis Cardinals, Chicago Cubs and the St. Louis Browns.

From Wikpedia: During his rookie season (at the age of 22), Dean pitched a no-hitter on September 21, 1934 in the second game of a doubleheader against the Brooklyn Dodgers. Dizzy (who had pitched a three-hit shutout in the first game) would say afterwards: "Shoot! If I'da known Paul was gonna pitch a no-hitter, I'da pitched me one too." 

And last, but not least, the great Babe Ruth at the end of his career when he was player and supposedly manager of the Boston Braves (before the Braves moved to Milwaukee and now in Atlanta). Dad said he would go down to Braves Field (now Nickerson Field at Boston University) and watch the games through a hole in the fence.

As a kid, I don't ever remember Dad watching a ballgame on the television or listening to a ballgame on the radio. Ma didn't like to see him idle as there was always some chore to do around the house. Maybe he listened to games while he was at his office.

Pictures and information from Wikipedia.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

T Stands For Baby Shower

A baby shower was thrown for the Nephew and his Wife. They are expecting their first child in early April. Back in November, they had a Gender Reveal party and we learned the baby is a Girl.

The shower was held in a small, function room of the Slate Bar and Grill in Leominster, Massachusetts. There was a gift table which groaned with gifts and gifts on the floor. I was an early arrival. The gift I brought is in the purple unicorn bag.

The room was decorated in pink. The couple have already picked out the name for their Little Princess. Her name was spelled out on the mantle in white, wooden letters and decorated with pink carnations.

Instead of signing a guest book, using markers guests signed their name to a onesie. And the cake was fit for a Little Princess.

There was also an cute diaper cake.

Part of the buffet. 

Adorable little, girlie clothes hung on a line decorated the bar.

The only disappointment to the brunch was the Slate didn't have tea. Just coffee. Tea was asked for and a server brought out a carafe and a few tea bags. The water in the carafe was tepid as if someone had filled the jug from the tap instead of boiling some water. The only tea bags were an assortment of green or herbal teas. No black tea.  I chose peppermint, not exactly my cuppa. Usually, I carry a few teabags of my own. Just in case. Only that morning, I switched handbags, and figured I wouldn't need them at a restaurant. Lesson learned.

Their brunch offerings more than made up for the lackluster tea service especially the French toast. There was also home-fried potatoes, scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, an assortment of fruit, and homemade donuts, like a beignet. Did I mention the French toast was to die for? So were the donuts. I went back for a second along with some fruit.

In the invitation, we were asked to bring a favorite childhood book instead of a greeting card. I made belly bands about why each book was selected and included a gift receipt to the bookstore just in case a return was needed or wanted.

 I brought Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss which was the very first book I could read all by myself.

Both of my girlies loved Good Night Moon by Margaret Wise Brown. The Young One especially adored this story and had to have it read to her every. single. Good. Night. 

Himself's favorite childhood story is Make Way for Ducklings by Robert McCloskey. This story takes place in Boston and is a book we give to out of town guests when they visit Boston as a souvenir.

As soon as I found out The Nephew and his Wife were expecting, I began to crochet this adorable owl cocoon and hat. I found the pattern on Etsy by GrammiesHats when I was looking for a different kind of baby blanket to crochet. A cuddly owlet friend completes the ensemble. 

When the cocoon is no longer needed, it can be stuffed and the top sewed shut to make a cuddly pillow pal.

Drop by hosts, Bleubeard and Elizabeth's blog to find out what the rest of the T Stands For gang is up to. If you want to play, include in your Tuesday post a beverage or container for a beverage. Don't forget to link your blog to Bleubeard and Elizabeth's page.

Monday, March 26, 2018

What I'm Working On

I have three projects I am working on. Two of them I can't talk about just yet.

The Young One has been invited to a wedding in May. She was told the bridal party would be wearing lilac and grey. Though red is her color, she decided she didn't want to stand out. So, she found this pretty, sage, blouse. She loved the bell sleeves, but wished the blouse came in a print. I told her I could make a shawl or wrap out of variegated yarn that would give a punch of color. She liked the idea. 

While talking about the shawl and looking for patterns I'd be able to crochet, she decided she didn't want to fuss with a shawl. So I found a circular vest pattern Pocket Full of Posies at the Lavender Chair.

The pattern called for one Caron Cake round. The Caron cakes are nothing more than variegated yarn packaged into a "cake" instead of a skein or ball. The Young One couldn't find a color she liked in the Cakes, but found Blue Hawaiian in the Big Cakes which is a larger version. No biggie.  I'll have yarn left over to make something else. 

I'm about halfway done. This is the front.

This is the back. The circle forms a shawl collar. With the vest, she'll be free to move without worrying about losing her wrap.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

How Does Your Garden Grow?

The week started sunny and cold, but the sun is high so

lots of melting took place. That's my shovel where I left it after the last big storm, and I was tired, sore, and disgusted with shoveling. Another storm was on the way, so I had to go get my shovel and put it in the front porch.

Seamus the Leprechaun garden flag, got to ride his perch for a couple of days and St. Patrick's Day. His holiday was over, and I debated putting out the Spring flag, but another storm was due. So the flag would have to wait.

We waited all day Wednesday for the big storm to arrive.

And it arrived with "not a bang, but a whimper" T.S. Eliot. Storm predictions started out with close to a foot of snow, and in the end we only got a couple of inches. Not enough snow to plow, so the mailbox was left unscathed.

A new toy had arrived the week before. Himself got me a new garden cart that doubles as a dolly. He also got a plow attachment for it which arrived just in time. The snow was heavy and wet so I had a hard time pushing the plow, but it worked well for Himself since he's having problems with his back and can't shovel.

Saturday, the sun came out, and it was glorious. Even though there was still a good foot of snow on the ground. The bright sun made it feel just like the above photo. Happy days are here, again...

And then we woke up to this. A dusting of snow and squalls predicted for the day. 

Show of hands. Who's sick of seeing snow? Even a little bit of snow?

I was all set to go out and see if I could find a Spring garden flag. The one I have has seen better days. But I bid you 

I might have to paint a coating of snow on the Easter eggs in the basket for a more realistic representation.

How does your garden grow?

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Baby Pool

The Nephew and his Wife are expecting their first child sometime during April. The countdown is getting close as their Little Princess is expected to arrive on 4. April.

Babies have their own schedules. I thought it might be fun to have a baby pool. Want to play? Pick a day and time between now and 30. April when you think Baby G will make her grand entrance.

I think she'll arrive on Tuesday, 10. April at 6 AM.

Friday, March 23, 2018

The Friday Five Good Things

Five good things that happened this week.

1. The last day of Himself's Spring Break, we went out to lunch and then went to see The Black Panther.

2. Just as we were sitting down to St. Patrick's Day dinner, I saw the male cardinal at the feeder. Dad stopping by for his birthday celebration.

3. The Young One picked out yarn for a shawl to complete her outfit for a wedding she'll be attending in May.

4. Went out to dinner and then went with Himself to a QiGong session.

5. The Four'easter, the fourth Nor'easter storm this month, fizzled before it got to us. I'm not complaining.

How was your week?

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Throwback Thursday - The Notebook

To clear up some confusion, the Notebook passages posted on Throwback Thursday were written by my father and found by me after he passed away. They were his attempt to tell the family history. He was in his late 80s or early 90s when he wrote them. Today's chapter:

Science was one of the subjects I had besides reading, math, writing, etc. At that time, I was into astronomy and other sciences. I would go to the library up the street from the Samuel Adams School. We were allowed to take out 2 books. And I could not go to the real library in the other section of our district until 14 years old.

The library was a house that became a library. It was owned by the Kennedys [ed: Pres. John F. Kennedy's parents] who gave it to the city. I enjoyed it and I would get my two books and take them, return them in the same eek. At one time when I was checking my books , the then librarian asked me if I knew what I was reading this was an astronomy book and I answered that I did and rattled off what it was all about. She was surprised and another night as  was leaving with my checked out books, her friend came in and she said you should see the books he reads.

Other than that my 7th and 8 th grades were uneventful. Things got somewhat exciting in the 9th grade. There we had two homeroom teachers. Miss Sullivan who was a veteran teacher and assistant principal. And a very young teacher Miss Lavonia who taught French. She looked more like a student than a teacher.

In fact, when it was changing classes, many a time the older teachers looking down the hall when she was directing would shout to her to get in line. And walk down and be mollified as they approached her and apologize.

As students we gave her a hard time. I did not complete a full period in her room. At some point, I would act up and disturb the class and spend my time in the hallways roaming the corridors. And go back when the bell rang. Once I ran into my homeroom teacher, Miss Sullivan and she asked what I was doing out of class.

So she beckoned me to follow her and at that time the class was over as we went in our homeroom and she questioned our young teacher and she [ed: Miss Sullivan] went for her rattan. Punishment was to be administered . She had Miss Lavonia witness this episode. and i was told to put out my left hand and she began swinging away. Aiming for the finger tips or hitting the palms. It didn't bother me. It was baseball time and my hands were toughened from playing catch [ed: without a baseball glove]. It hurt Miss Lavonia more than me. I stayed there without changing my facial look. Or moving my hand. This upset Miss Sullivan she got angry she was bent on having me cry or she a tear etc. Nothing. I gave her a workout.

And Miss Lavonia one day said that it was time that students were to take the annual tests. And I would make her look bad because I had spent too much time out of her that that I would flunk the test.

I told her not to worry. I said I would pass. She said I would not. So I said I will promise you a C+. I f I get that you will give me an A for the year. She said she would.

Well we took the tests and they were sent to the school headquarters in Boston for correction. In due course the marks were returned and she came to see me and said, "you evidently stayed in my class long enough to learn something. You got your C+" I said, "I told you so. I get an A." She backed out saying that if she did she would get in trouble. Because she would need to change the records.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

T Stands for Pi Day Apple Pie

To celebrate Pi Day on March 14, I baked an apple pie. Himself's favorite pie. For the steam vent, I cut the symbol for Pi. Apples used were McIntosh and Granny Smith apples. The pie crust was courtesy of the Dough Boy. Next to the pie is my evening cuppa. Himself had a glass of milk.

Did you celebrate Pi Day?

Drop by hosts, Bleubeard and Elizabeth's blog to find out what the rest of the T Stands For gang is up to. If you want to play, include in your Tuesday post a beverage or container for a beverage. Don't forget to link your blog to Bleubeard and Elizabeth's page.

Monday, March 19, 2018

My Little Corner

Himself spent the beginning of his Spring break putting together storage units. The bookcase fits in the closet for all the calligraphy books. There's even enough room for the teaching bag.

A small, microwave cart holds yarn and hopefully, all the genealogy research. 

I was looking at window decals. The Young One suggested Ink looking up at the birds. The decals were all permanently applied to a surface. I wanted removable, reusable vinyl. What to do? DIY, of course. I found some window cling at Michael's. Traced an image of a cat on it, and what's the phrase all you mixed media people use? Ah, fussy cut the cat for a fun window decoration.

I love using essential oils for aromatherapy. They are also helpful during allergy season, if it ever arrives. I found a cute diffuser to go with the bird theme. Ok, technically it's a duck, but it could be a yellow canary. If you look through one eye and squint.

Sunday, March 18, 2018

How Does Your Garden Grow?

With an impossible blue sky and puffy lamb clouds, it was hard to believe a big storm was barreling its way up the coast. Again.

It was so nice, the day before the storm, I was tempted to put Seaumus back out. I didn't.

At the start of the storm, poor Ben Dover curled into a fetal position and cried. If the window ledge had been wider, I would have gotten up there and joined him.

Barely at the beginning of the storm, the plow went by and murdered the poor mailbox..

The storm was supposed to let up mid-afternoon, but it didn't. After supper, Himself and I decided to get out for the first pass at clearing the walk and the driveway. It was still snowing lightly. The (haunted) solar lights came on to create a festive atmosphere for shoveling.

We got a healthy 18 inches (45.72 cm) of snow.

The following morning the mailbox is barely visible.

After much digging, I was able to right the mailbox. The sanding truck came by while I was digging out the mailbox and I gave him my Mama is not happy face.

After shoveling the path to the back feeder, the first one to show up was the cardinal. Hi, Dad! 

Through the dirty kitchen window, the over hanging snow looked like lace. If you close one and and squint.

The sun was out, the winds died down, and no storms on the horizon for St. Patrick's Day, at least. Seamus was back on his perch as official St. Paddy's Day greeter.

Red sky at night, sailors delight.

With sunshine and blue skies behind him, Ben Dover chants,  "Nohm-more snow....nohm-more snow....nohm-more snow."

How does your garden grow?