Monday, November 17, 2014


'Tis the season for doing cozy things. I had fun with my knitting class at church on Saturday, and I think everyone else did, as well. There was a range of skill levels and I was yet again deeply grateful for the irresistible urge that causes people who already know how to knit to jump in and help the newbies - I wouldn't have been able to manage so many people otherwise (I think there were about 18 - I never even stopped to count - ranging in age from middle schoolers to grandmas). No one did horribly (not that people do, usually, but there are people in the world that are not meant to knit), a couple of people did amazingly, and I'm looking forward to this week's follow-up class.

Along with putting Pentatonix' new Christmas album on repeat (I highly recommend it, if you're in need of new Christmas music - their take on Mary Did You Know is stunning. Also, who knew an a capella version of the Dance of the Sugarplum Fairies was possible?) I've been drinking ridiculous amounts of Hot Vanilla. Mum happened onto the recipe when I was a kid (she doesn't eat chocolate, so she'd drink it instead of cocoa), and I've loved it since (Little Rock locals, a Cafe con Miel from Mugs, or for Fayetteville residents an Onyx Delight from Onyx is the same thing but with a shot of espresso in it, which never hurt anything). The dairy-free version is especially nice when you have a sore throat, and made with any kind of milk it's lovely before bed.

Fill your mug of choice with milk (any kind will do - I've been using So Delicious vanilla coconut milk) and heat, either in a pot on the stove or in the microwave (1.5 to 2.5 minutes). Add honey to taste (I like a couple of spoonfuls), a splash of vanilla extract (unless you use vanilla coconut or almond milk, in which case it's plenty vanilla-y), and top with a sprinkle of cinnamon.

I finished Brooklyn's legwarmers yesterday (just in time - she had a growth spurt and most of her pants are too short now) and got started on a pair for myself, with some yarn I got at Handheld last time we visited Fayetteville. The yarn is a delight to work with, and it's working up beautifully (no awkward striping or pooling) and I'm looking forward to being able to wear them. I'll post the pattern as soon as they're finished and photographed.

Which may not take very long. This morning I got over an inch done on them, between sitting in the waiting room for my ob/gyn appointment and the subsequent 20 minutes of monitoring. Sprout's a bit small (for no readily apparent reason), so I'm going to have twice-weekly visits for the foreseeable future. Laying on my back knitting and listening to Sprout's heartbeat isn't a bad way to spend half an hour, and stressing will only make it worse so I might as well focus on the good in the situation.

And there's plenty of good to focus on. The reading plan our church put out at the beginning of this sermon series is currently in Proverbs and Romans, and while catching up a few days ago I came across this in Proverbs (12:21) - No ills befall the righteous, but the wicked are filled with trouble. It derailed me, since ills do befall the righteous, but then I remembered Ann Voskamp talking about how everything is a gift, and realized that that statement is true because it's a matter of attitude. I've still struggled to come up with 33 gifts a few days this month, but it's becoming more of habit/lifestyle. Gratitude is kind of like dieting... if you set an end number at which point you can go back to how you were before, then it's not going to do any lasting good. And only being grateful for the month of November won't cause me to be in-my-heart grateful if I switch back to being entitled on the first of December.

While I was inventorying the fridge and cabinets in order to make an updated grocery list, I was amazed to realize that Thanksgiving is next week and I need to get pumpkin pie fixin's the next time I'm at the store (that's my contribution - we're hopefully spending the holiday at my parents'). Wish me luck - I've never made pumpkin pie before, but Adam requested it and the recipe his mom gave me at least looks doable!

Prayers for Sprout would be appreciated (horror stories would not, thanks though). 
Also, do you travel to spend Thanksgiving with family (extended or otherwise) or open your own home to host friends and relations?

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