A Christmas Owl

IMG_1589Some months ago my delightful niece, Lexi, sent me this picture wondering if I could make one of these little phone pockets that she could give her mom for Christmas.

Of course I was happy to take up the challenge.

A Google search revealed several gorgeous pictures of owls (click on the picture to enlarge it, click again to close the image):

camoflaged owl 1                   owl-tree             Camouflaged-Owl-16

Inspired by these photos I created this cell phone cozy (of course, I didn’t dare post this before today):

Cheryl's owl
Cheryl’s owl

For the body and wings I used a bit of leftover variegated wool from a previous project and a 3mm hook and an alternating dc/sc pattern. The eyes and beak are done with #8 perle cotton. I didn’t use a pattern, just invented as I went. I had to make it somewhat generic as I’m not even sure what model of phone Cheryl has. I used my iPod Touch (first generation) as a model.

Trina suggested I make a pattern and tutorial for this little guy. Perhaps I shall, someday.

Christmas makings

As the kids and I chose not to give each other Christmas gifts this year, but old habits die hard, I decided to make them something. I tried knitting again, and did make fingerless gloves for the wee girl, but it was looking like, at the rate I was going, it would take till Christmas 2011 to knit something for everyone, so I returned to crochet. But here is a picture of Trina wearing hers on Christmas morning. I made hers from “Stretchy Sock” yarn, 75% cotton 25% wool blend. Christine’s were in green Peruvian wool and Heidi’s in a blue and white Queensland Collection Merino Spray 100% extra fine merino wool. Christine and Trina also got headbands.

Trina's gloves

For the men I made hats. I used Diamond Lima Luxury Collection 100% Peruvian Highland Wool trimmed in Sirdar Clik Aran with wool (70% acrylic 30% wool). I used the pattern in the Fall 2009 Interveave Crochet magazine “Leaf Peeper hats” (p.62) for Simon and Masood. I made one like that for Gary, but Trina said it would need to fit under his bike helmet, so I did hte Tahoe hat (p. 54) in the Sidar Clik for him.

Christmas hats
Christmas hats

The little hat on the bottom of the photo is for my wee girl. Here she is modeling:

the wee model
Mina models her hat and gloves

My mother saw me making these hats and requested one, too. So I also made her one with the Sidar Clik, mostly light with the darker trim.

The Christmas Turkey

Christmas Turkey

Rick Lishman received a free turkey before Christmas, but as he and Nancy didn’t want to cook it themselves I was fortunate enough to also receive a free turkey. The Gingeriches were gathering on Boxing Day (Sunday) and Trish and I determined we would supply the meat.

I picked up the frozen bird on Wednesday evening and put it into the fridge to start defrosting. On Christmas Day I borrowed Grandma Roth LARGE roaster from Mom. In order to judge how long to roast this turkey I hauled out the bathroom scale and weighed the sucker — about 22 pounds! My Betty Crocker cookbook said it would take 6.5-7.5 hours at 325 degrees. I put it into the oven at 3:00 p.m.

I had other things to do — made supper for us, mostly leftover lentils from another night. Great-Grandma joined us for supper. After eating Mina wanted Great-Grandma to hold her. I got some nice pictures:

Mina with Great Grandma
Mina with Great Grandma

We had a fairly quiet evening at home.

At nine o’clock it finally registered in my brain that I was no longer smelling turkey. I checked the oven — the temperature dial was turned off. I can only guess that my wee helper had managed to do that (the dials are at a level where she could reach them). What to do? I decided to simply turn the oven on again and roast the bird for another couple hours. Maybe till midnight…

Soon the house was smelling great again. I dozed off and on, waking at 12:20 a.m. I went and turned off the oven without even opening the door. I slept till just before 6:00.

I got up as quietly as I could, I didn’t want to take Billie outside, nor did I want her ‘help’ as I dealt with the turkey. The roasting pan was still warm, the bird inside even warmer and looking good! I took all the meat off the bones, put it back into the roaster, poured a bit of the juice over all, and returned all to the oven. I set the oven at 180 degrees, hoping it would keep the meat warm without drying it out. It worked wonderfully! At noon we had far more turkey than we needed to feed the Gingeriches that gathered at Queen Street Commons.

Happy Hallowe’en!

Jack O'Lantern

Scott, a boarder at Cheryl’s neighbour turn 41 today — and woke up to 41 pumpkins on the front lawn! Rita told Cheryl to invite everyone to come and get a pumpkin. So Billie and I walked over and chose a pumpkin, brought it home and carved it  (that is, I carved it; Billie just watched intently, hoping she could eat it). Jack spent the evening glowing on my balcony.

Monday – baked the pumpkin and put 8 packages of pumpkin puree into the freezer. i do love pumpkin chocolate chip cookies!