Wisconsin Wake-Up

February 16, 2017 at 6:50 a.m.

Awesome sunrise while driving into work this morning. I'm loving the longer days!



Yarn Along: Braving Button Loom Cowl

I'm linking up with Ginny for this week's Yarn Along.

Reading: Braving it: A Father, a Daughter, and an Unforgettable Journey into the Alaskan Wild by James Campbell
Wisconsin native James takes his 15-year-old daughter, Aidan, to the Arctic to help his friend build a cabin. He is hoping the hard work and harsh yet beautiful landscape will affect her as deeply as it has him. Alaska gets in Aidan's bones so the book follows the father/daughter duo as they make more adventures back to the Arctic. I am loving this book. 

Knitting: 3-in-1 Button Boots
These slippers showed up in my pattern highlights on Rav. The designer is having a KAL so I joined in. Why not? They're beautiful slippers. The construction is very unique and it's a pattern that you have to concentrate on but so far I'm loving it. The sole is double-knit so it's super squishy and thick. There's no way I'll get both slippers done by the time the KAL ends but that's okay by me.
Pattern: 3-in-1 Button Boots by Bekah Knits
Yarn:  Cascade Yarns Tivoli in colorway 8 Nutmeg for the sole and Cascade Yarns Ecological Wool in colorway 9004 for the rest. Yay for stash-busting!

Also Knitting: Simply Soft Cowl
This is my mindless knit for when I don't want to work on the slippers. I'm teaching a friend to knit and this is the pattern she picked out so I thought I would knit it along with her.
Pattern: Simply Soft Cowl by Melissa Thomson (free on Rav)
Yarn: Cascade Yarns Longwood in colorway 13 Rose. Stash-busting again! 

A few years ago my mom bought me a little loom at a yard sale and it sat under my bed for the longest time. I finally dug it out and took it to my LYS where we are now having "weaving day" the 2nd Friday of every month. Right now I'm just having fun playing around with different stitch patterns. Have you tried weaving? It's pretty fun!

What are you knitting/reading this week?


Wisconsin Wake-Up

January 21, 2017 at 9:53 a.m.

The Little Wolf River just down the road from our farm.
Warm air + cold ground = foggy days. 


Yarn Along: The Ice Storm

The freezing rain started Monday afternoon and continued through most of Tuesday. Our driveway looked like an ice rink. Impossible to walk on!

Christian braved the icy roads and made the trek to work. His 1-hour commute took him 2 hours. Once he was safe at work he called and ordered me to stay home. Gladly! I started the day by trying a new recipe from a book I borrowed from the library.

Into the oven went a pumpkin, cranberry & almond baked oatmeal. The recipe called for cherries and macadamia nuts but it wasn't like I was going to run to the grocery store! My version turned out just as yummy.

I'm taking a class at my LYS on knitting short rows so I spent a good part of the day working on my "homework." Inspiration for the colors came from my project bag. Isn't it pretty?

The dogs and I finally braved the gloomy day and headed out into the field for some soggy snowshoeing. (Too dangerous trying to walk down the road.) That's our farm in the distance.

Back inside to dry out and warm up. I tried another new recipe: golden milk. It's turmeric, ginger, honey, cinnamon, pepper, coconut oil and milk. Interesting combination and not half bad once the chunks settled to the bottom. Have you tried it?

More knitting then back into the kitchen to make homemade soup and skillet apple cornbread for when Christian got home from work. How's the weather in your neck of the woods?

I'm linking up with Ginny for this week's Yarn Along.


Yarn Along: 2016 Knitting Recap

I'm linking up with Ginny for this week's Yarn Along.

Click HERE for project details.

In this new year I wanted to reflect on the knitting projects I completed in 2016. I'm kind of surprised that I only finished 10 knits but I think I did a bit more spinning than I have in the past. And I also started dyeing yarn so it's not like I haven't been getting my fill of fiber.  :)

Favorite Knit Gift: Autumn Leaves Cardigan

I knit this little cardigan for my cousin's baby. I got a special treat when we received their Christmas card in the mail and Moriah was wearing the cardigan in their family photo! Oftentimes I knit baby gifts and then never get to see the little one wearing them.

Hardest Knit: Christmas Stocking for Christian

My husband's mom's side of the family is from Norway so I wanted to knit Christian a stocking that reflected his ancestry and love of nature. I modified/redesigned some elements of the Henrik chart from the book Scandinavian Christmas Stockings. I charted my design out in Illustrator to make it easier to follow. Getting the name to turn out was the hardest part and I had to design/knit that section twice before I liked it.

Most Worn Knit: Heartwood Cape

Terrible photo of me but I really love this knit. In fact, if you look back at my other "most worn knits" they are all ponchos/capes. Must be those cold Wisconsin winters! Honestly, wearing this is like being wrapped up in a cozy blanket but you don't have to worry about it falling off your shoulders. The only problem is that it doesn't really fit under a coat so you either have to take it off or bunch it up around your neck so you can get your arm in the sleeve of your coat.

What did you knit in 2016 that you are most proud of? I would love to hear!


Books of 2016

I love tracking what books I read throughout the year. I tend to get through more audiobooks than paper books due to my long commute. (I spend about 2 hours a day in the car.) According to Goodreads I got through 55 books in 2016. That's 5 less books than last year but a number I'm still proud of. I wanted to mention my favorites in case you're looking for some recommendations. Here are the books I rated 4 out of 5 stars. (In no particular order.)
My favorite audiobooks of 2016: 
The Lost Island: A Gideon Crew Novel by Douglas Preston
Rainwater by Sandra Brown
Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer
The Water Diviner by Andrew Anastasios
Flawed by Cecelia Ahern
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris

My favorite print books of 2016:

A Kiss from Maddalena by Christopher Castellani
My Kitchen Year: 136 Recipes That Saved My Life by Ruth Reichl 
The Firebird (Slains #2) by Susanna Kearsley
Dairy Queen by Catherine Gilbert Murdock 
Letters to the Lost by Iona Grey
The Secret Wisdom of the Earth by Christopher Scotton
Vintage by Susan Gloss
The Magician's Lie by Greer Macallister
Lost in the Forest by Sue Miller
Baby Catcher by Peggy Vincent
Into the Wilderness by Sara Donati

Do you have any must-reads that I should add to my list for 2017? 

PS - My username on Goodreads is Kelly JR if you wish to follow me.