Thursday, December 29, 2011


I got a bread machine for Yule and it's got me thinking. 

I love the smell of baking bread.  It reminds me of Saturday mornings with Grandma K.  Watching her knead the dough on the kitchen counter, her arms working and working until the dough turned from floury lumps into glistening rounds.  She'd place the dough in the bread pans and set them on the counter to rise, while we went of to the Farmer's Market and Harding's for the weekly groceries.  By the time we got home, the bread was ready for the oven.  We'd share a pot of tea and cookies while the bread baked.

It was always my job to get the bread out of the pans and spread butter over the crust.  The hardest part was waiting for the bread to cool enough to slice.  Once, I couldn't resist and dug out warm bread from the bottom of a loaf.  Like no one would notice the missing chunk.  When picking up the bread to slice, Grandma commented that she must have a mouse in the kitchen, who liked bread as much as I did.  No direct accusation, but I knew I couldn't get away with sneaking bread like that again.

So bread... flour, water, yeast, a touch of salt, a bit of milk, maybe some spices or butter.  Mix everything together and let it rise and you have a miracle.  A lot like living a life.  With bread, you have to trust that the yeast will help everything rise.  With life, you have to trust.  Period.

I have a new little love in my life, as of December 22nd.  A tiny 2 lbs, 9 oz baby boy - Aadi.  He's absolutely perfect and amazing.  Watching his long fingers and wiggly toes, his miniature forehead wrinkling in determination, I pray, and trust, that there's enough yeast to help him grow.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Winter Challenge

I admit it.  I am not a fan of winter.  Too cold, too much white stuff on the ground - just makes me want to hide out until things bloom again.  And, most of all, I hate wearing a coat.  Bleh.

But, I admit, watching the snow fall from inside my cozy house, knowing I don't have to fight the icy roads, well, that gives me a certain sense of joy.  There's a quiet that comes over my neighborhood that's so pleasant.  And the white carpet that develops over the resting gardens in broken only by flashes of green from the pine tree and my hellebore plants.  Gorgeous.  These are the first flowers to bloom in the spring, even before the crocuses.

So when the Etsy Bead Embroidery Guild decided on a theme of "Winter" for its first team challenge, I set out to create a necklace that would have the same feel as hellebores in snow.  Here's what I came up with:

May you enjoy the best of what winter has to offer.  (And may it not snow until February!)