bread.

This winter has been all about turning the oven on for extra warmth. It was 3 degrees here without the wind chill this morning when I left for work. I’m thinking baking a loaf of bread when I get home tonight is in order.

What are your favorite bread books? I know its easy to get recipes online now, but I sometimes feel overwhelmed by the sheer quantity of recipes available. It feels endless. In that way, I just love recipe books. You can flip through pages and snuggle up with them, marking pages and dreaming of all the things you’ll make.

I love Bernard Clayton’s New Complete Book of Breads and Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day.

cabin fever.

I call these basic after thought heel socks “Cabin Fever” because they were knit up during one of the multiple snowstorms we’ve experienced here in Boston in the last month. It’s been brutal, but a great opportunity to sit in and knit.

I used two skeins of Knit Picks Felici Fingering in the rustic cabin colorway, hence the association, as well, with cabin fever. I used little bits of Alchemy Yarns of Transformation Juniper in the vintage jade colorway (leftover from my Leah’s Lovely Cardigan, which I still haven’t taken proper snaps of) for the heels and toes, because I think there’s nothing better than different pops of color in socks.

These were gifted to my guy for Valentine’s Day this year. I’m incredibly pleased with the finished result and want to dive back into the stockpile of felici to knit a few more pairs.

See more of my hand knit socks here.

tortilla chips / nachos / pintos.

During winter storm # million here in Boston (no, but our second official blizzard in 3 weeks–known as the Valentine’s Day massacre), I decided that the necessary reward for shoveling was homemade tortilla chips for nachos.

Do you ever go this far? The thing I find about homemade chips is they are thicker than store bought chips, so they hold toppings really well and don’t get soggy in the oven.

My toppings for these nachos included jalapeno, green pepper, red onion, grilled cubes of chicken, and homemade pinto beans. Cheese, of course, a blend of Mexican, and fresh salsa and fresh avocado after the oven.

too fucking cold.

This winter really does deserve as many of the Winter Blues hats as humanely possible. Not only is it snowpocalypse, but the bitter arctic blast still plaguing us and not melting any of the great white is an equally oppressive problem.

My guy Sean was visiting from sunny Phoenix this past holiday weekend, only to be afforded the following: a blizzard, the coldest temperatures on record in 20 years, and a gorgeous new hand knit.

This one was knit up using one skein of Malabrigo Merino Worsted in the black forest colorway for the main, and some natural for the color work. Modification again of removing the hearts in the color work section and replacing them with snowflakes.

I love this hat; I will make it for everyone that wants it here in Boston. It’s too good not to. Oh, and his scarf is a knit I made for him several years back–a Noro Silk Garden striped scarf, which he wears any time he visits. Make one of those, too!

baking.

We’ve had four major winter storms here in just under 3 weeks. It’s been hell trying to dig out, and this coming from a seasoned New Englander who does in fact enjoy snow. Dare I say Mother Nature can have this one–I give, I can’t take much more.

On top of all this great white stuff comes bitter cold. The kind of cold that begs for you to throw on the oven for added warmth. And so, last week, when we had yet another two consecutive days off from school, I baked. This honey oat loaf. And reaped its rewards the entire weekend.

It’s definitely one of my favorite loaves of bread to bake. It comes out perfect every time, is full of flavor, and usually I have all the required ingredients on hand. Win.

snow joke.

We are drowning here in Boston. Historic snowfall has left the entire city crippled. The only benefits to this collapse is all the snow days dedicated to making things. In all the years I’ve lived in Boston, I haven’t seen it this debilitating. Where I live, there is nowhere to put the snow, as evidence by this photo I snapped on Tuesday in my alley. But, make all the things during a snowpocalypse.

snow.

There’s nothing better than a blizzard bringing a major city to a halt. I love how quiet the city gets; my normally busy block is filled with prancing pups in the snow, people on cross country skis skating down Beacon Street, and kids on sleds on major roadways.

Plus, when school closes (since I’m a librarian at one), it affords me the opportunity to nurture my hobbies. Days are spent knitting, reading, baking, and of course, shoveling, too.

It wasn’t the most monumental storm I’ve seen in my 15 years here in this city, but it was a good one nonetheless. Thanks Juno, you’ve been fun.

If you want to see more snaps of my winters here, take a look here.

arctic mac.

It’s been frigid here. Absolutely frigid. Sub zero temperatures. And so, that means the oven is a great extra heat source. Plus, you want comforting foods like homemade pot pie, and mac n cheese of course. Here’s two little serving boats of mac I made this week; one to eat right then, and one just in case for another day.

I’ve really mastered cooking the right amount for just 2 boats. Not too much, not too little.

diamonds.

I made this ridiculously quick hat out of leftover bits of Brooklyn Tweed Shelter I had after finishing my Chevrons sweater. Diamond Waves by Kaleigh McLelland is so quick and the finished product is amazing. Plus, its free on ravelry.

I recommend everyone make this hat. I will be gifting it to my guy for Christmas. Knit up using BT Shelter in cast iron for the main color and fossil for the fair isle details.

cold as…

F*ck. Progress on those cheeky fair isle mittens I’ve been working on for the past few days. I have tiny hands; these will for sure be far too long for my puny self. Will likely be a gift for someone else.

But loving them, nonetheless. Knit up using two skeins of Knit Picks Palette in garnet heather for the main and mist for the contrast. The underside also features a gorgeous striping pattern. Will post proper snaps when they are finished.