Friday, November 25, 2005

Harry

 
I have now been to see lovely HP4 twice, and I loved it both times! My sister and I went together on opening weekend (I'm the VERY round one on the left) and wore our scarves. The usher stopped my sis on the way out and went on about how her scarf looked so authentic to the movie. She told him that I had knit it and I felt a little swell of pride. Of course, he didn't say anything about my scarf, so obviously mine didn't look so authentic. Either that, or he was trying to pick up my sister, lol!

My husband wasn't thrilled with the movie. He complained that the book was better (well, duh!) and that they left too many important things out. But just as it is with any book that is made into a movie, you have to take each as a separate entity. They are never going to be able to include all of the very wonderful things that J.K. Rowling puts into her stories and keep it under three hours.

This is now my favorite of the four. It's funnier than the rest, but also scarier. The soundtrack was a little disappointing (only a little wisp of the original John Williams pieces), but the great scenes made up for that tenfold. (I heard three different moms complaining as we left that the movie was too scary. They all brought six and seven year olds to a PG-13 movie. What did they expect?) All in all, this is a great movie. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Book Report

Today saw our first 'real' snow of the season, so I found myself snuggled up inside digging through my piles of books (shocker!) and catching up on a few things. At any given moment, I'm usually reading at least four books, and though it may seem like it would be confusing (my husband says he gets a headache just looking at my nightstand, lol) it really is the only way I know to quench my reading habit. So, for your amusement, I thought I'd give you a little peek at my current reading list.

"KnitLit" edited by Linda Roghaar & Molly Wolf

This is a soothing collection of essays by and about knitters and their experiences. Some of them are hilariously funny and really hit home, others are sad and touching. I have really been enjoying this one, as essays are short and it makes good before bed reading. There are also two more volumes in this series.


"The Book of New Family Traditions" by Meg Cox

I have found a lot of good suggestions in this book. The author has gathered together all sorts of little rituals and traditions that you can use to mark holidays and special days in your family. She also talks a little about the importance of traditions to family life and the consequences that a lot of families are suffering today because of the loss of the home as the centralized hub of activity and comfort in most families. A great read for those of us who are big believers in the need to bring back the idea of strong, "old-fashioned", extended family groups!

"Retro Happy Hour" by Linda Everett

Contrary to the title, this is not a book of cocktail recipes (although there is a slim chapter in the back of the book devoted to alcoholic drinks), but fun little upbeat book of great '50s style party food recipes. With appetizers that have names like 'Creole Clementine's Ham Balls' and 'Hoowee Loowee's Crepes Supreme' how could you have anything but a raging fun time at your next bash. I picked this up on a whim at the library and have been so pleased. I have found so many good 'nibbles' recipes for our little at-home Christmas Party this year. They also have loads of recipes for delicious sounding, non-alcoholic slushy pitcher drinks and punches. Plus the book is full of great retro '50s and '60s style party ads and graphics. All I can say is Yum!

"Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" by J.K. Rowling

Now, as anyone who has read my blog more than once can tell you, I am a Potter fan. And I have one of the HP books going at all times, be it in written or audio form. But this is my first time through the UK versions of Rowling's books and I am enjoying finding the differences between the versions. Although the books are essentially the same, especially the later titles, there is a difference in the editing and wording that makes the UK version seem to ring a little truer in my mind. I don't know if it's the result of a British editor editing a British writer or the fact that all of the little 'Britisisms" are left in but I think I like the UK versions better. Besides, if I sit down to read a book that I have read a dozen times before and it all seems fresh and new to me, I'd say it's worth the time and energy!

"AlterKnits" by Leigh Radford

This is a beautiful book! Full of off-beat ideas to shake off that 'scarves and hats' rut that it is very easy to find yourself in as a knitter, you can sit and goggle at the beautiful photos and dream up wonderful projects. She even has a pattern for knitting your own screen door out of nylon-coated upholstery thread! Definitely not your grandma's knitting pattern book.



Well, there you have it! Go out and look for one of these (or two or three, if you are anything like me!) and snuggle away the holiday!

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

My Huffle is Done!

 
 Posted by Picasa Well, here is my Hufflepuff scarf in all of it's buttery glory! I have to say that I love this yarn (KnitPicks Merino Style)! Thank you so much for the suggestion and advice, Erin!









 
 Posted by PicasaThe next project on the needles is a fluffy pink poncho for Peanut. I'm knitting both halves at once because I am terrible with matching gauge from one piece to another. This way, they will both be lumpy in the same sections, lol!

I can't wait for Saturday! GoF, here we come!

Monday, November 14, 2005

Getting Close

Well, I should be putting the fringe on my Huffle scarf before I go to bed tonight. I'm kinda glad. It's starting to feel like a job instead of a labour of love. But I will look so chic Saturday night! I'll post pictures tomorrow.

My hubby is now starting to pout because I'm going with my sister to see GOF the first time. Even though he hates big crowds at the movies and had no interest in going on opening weekend when I bought the tickets a month ago. And even though we are going to see it together over the Thanksgiving Holidays. I think he is feeling left out because in all of the time that we have been dating and married I have only gone to the movies two other times without him. But he will really be much happier if he waits a week. He would spend the whole time scaring small children with his dirty looks because they won't be quiet, lol. This is the same man that will not allow you to even answer the phone in the same room that he is watching a movie in when we are at home. Trust me, he'll thank me in the long run!

Tuesday, November 8, 2005

Nothing New Under the Sun

My first Christmas edition magazine arrived in the mail today (Woman's Day) and, after sorting the rest of the mail, I set it aside to be devoured once the Peanut was asleep. I'm excited when the holiday editions of women's magazines hit the newsstand. They always have at least one idea that I love and have to try. The crafter in me feeds off of ideas,lol!

So, this evening, I sat down with my cup of peppermint tea and excitedly began scanning the pages. Instantly, I was struck by how familiar the decorations looked. Every page seemed to be covered in pictures that I had seen somewhere before. And then it hit me. Most of this years "fresh, new, holiday ideas" seemed to be exact copies of decorations and recipes that my Grandma has been using since 1953.

"Add some color and up-to-date style to your tree by making [ornaments] in blue, pink, turquoise"

"Spray paint berry garlands white to hang across window tops and mantles"

They have directions for little glitter houses and star toothpick ornaments in jazzy retro blues, pinks, and greens.

And yes, a silver tinsel tree, decorated in candy buttons, safe-t-y pops, and candy necklaces

There is also a recipe for a cheese ball in the shape of a bell decorated with what looks like parsley, pimento, and almonds


I'm telling you that they must have raided my Gram's attic for their ideas. Not that it doesn't look beautiful in their magazine spreads. It's just that I can remember looking through some of my Grandparent's old decorations when I was a kid and thinking, "Who in their right mind thought that plastic, glitter coated, pink and blue houses and fruit say 'Merry Christmas'?" And the wreath on page 109 made up of little glittery bells, balls, and be-ribboned packages? Lets just say that I'd better give Gram a call, because I'm pretty sure that she has been robbed!

Everything really is beautiful though. Not quite what I like in holiday decorations, but beautiful nonetheless. And I'm sure that someday my grandchildren (please Lord, let there be grandchildren!) will look through my decorations and think "Does Grandma have some kind of crafting disease or maybe a glue fetish? How many things can you make out of sticks, felt, and mulberry paper?"

Frankly, I can't wait!

Monday, November 7, 2005

Emmit

Took another trip down memory lane today. I was browsing in my favorite big-box-economy-killing-Mart and came across the Christmas DVD section. Being the Christmas junkie that I am, I just had to stop and take a look, lol. There, right in front was a little show called "Emmit Otter's Jugband Christmas". I almost squealed with delight!

"EOJBC" is a wonderful special that Jim Henson did for HBO back in 1977, while he was still doing "The Muppet Show". It's based on a sweet little book of the same name by Russell and Lillian Hoban that tells the story of a widow otter and her son who are struggling to make ends meet and wishing they had the means to give each other "real, store-bought Christmas presents". It's not an overtly Christmas themed show, just a sweet story with beautiful bluegrass and folk songs that ring true with most of the music created by Paul Williams for other Muppet productions. You won't find Kermit or Piggy here, but it's definitely worth the watch.

I can remember this show from early childhood. It first aired when I was one or two, but I'm sure that I remember it from a slightly later date. I had searched for it for a long time with no luck, even calling our movie supply house (when I worked for 'International Video Rental Store') to see if they had any leads on where I might be able to find a copy. I'm so happy to have found it today!

While watching this afternoon, I was reminded of why I had been searching so hard. This is such a great story! Not to mention the beautiful work by Jim Henson and Company. Henson was such an artist and this special really shows it. The music is so lovely and it often brought tears to my grown-up eyes that never would have been understood by my childhood self. The fact that he accomplishes "suspension of disbelief" using puppets is a true testament to his labors. And he did it all without CGI!

Go out, find this one, and enjoy it with your family! You won't be sorry!

Friday, November 4, 2005

Singin' In the Rain

My little Peanut is a movie watcher just like her mama. She loves to stand at the shelves and flip through all of the DVD and VHS boxes, and since mama spent many years (too many!) working for various video chains, there are a lot of boxes to play with. Most of the time, it's The Wiggles who rule the viewing roost around here, as Peanut is crazy about anything with music, but I got a pleasant little shock the other day when she brought me "Singin' In the Rain" and asked to watch it. She loves it! I must admit, with such great songs and the likes of Gene Kelly's lightly tripping toes, not to mention the scads of oh-so-yummy shoes featured throughout, how could you go wrong? Peanut has been making me sing "Lucky Star" and "Singin'" every night this week. Maybe I'll dig out all of my old musical favorites and see if anything else strikes a chord with her!

Wednesday, November 2, 2005

Today's Lunch

 
Even though this will have mostly disappeared into my husband in about ten minutes. Even though my hour's worth of work will be non-exsistent by dinner time. Sometimes you just have to Martha things up for yourself and brag about it a little! Posted by Picasa