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seasons — Page 2

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Bubble Wands

June 18, 2014

Summer is almost here! This was by far the craft I loved designing most for Rhythm of the Home. These wands are still made every year during our summer solstice party, and they will be party favors at Emma Jeanne’s first birthday party. Nothing says summer quite like bubbles.

Bubbles and summertime go hand in hand. There is something magical about spending the afternoon watching bubbles float across the warm air, and even more so when you make the bubbles and blower yourself.

My kiddos have recently fallen in love with making their own wands, and they have become a staple gift in our household. A jar of homemade bubbles, and a magical wand always bring a smile to any little one’s face. They are also a staple at all of our family picnics. Galvanized steel buckets are filled to the brim with bubble sauce, as my middle son likes to call it, and we eat our corn on the corn to the sounds of popping bubbles and the taste of dishwashing soap.

Bubble wands are easy to make, and require just a few tools to transform wire and beads into the perfect wands for many different sized bubbles.

Bubble Wands

Materials

18″ gauge wire
Beads
Pliers
Plastic or metal pipe 1″ in diameter.

There are two ways to make these wands. The first is to fold your wire in half and place it over over the pipe, wrap a few times around itself at the neck and secure. In this version you have two equal length of wire and a round head. You will need larger beads for this version.

The second is to fold just the top of the wire over the pipe and secure it at the neck. This leaves you with just one length of wire, and the head. This allows for smaller beads, but it can also be a little bit more flimsy.

Place your beads on the rest of the wire, and secure with a decorative pattern to keep beads from falling off.

Dip in bubbles for hours of magical fun!

Homemade Bubbles

My mother gave me a bubble wand for my 16th birthday, and I remember the most beautiful afternoon spent eating and playing on the beach of Half Moon Bay. The recipe was attached to the bubble wand, and I have kept the concoction with me all these years. The recipe produces beautiful (and huge!) bubbles that will bring a smile to parent and child alike.

4 cups water
1 cup Dawn dish soap
1/4 cup corn syrup

Fill a bucket with your water, and gently add the other two ingredients. Stir without creating foam/bubbles and enjoy!

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The-Apple-Cart

Aspens

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Baby-Knitting

POPCORN

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Autumn has been absolutely spectacular here on the Front Range, and we could not have asked for more golden hues and tones to photograph and play in.

Our days have been filled with mid-autumn activities: soccer tournaments, apple picking, pumpkin carving, and leaf burning to name a few. The boys have been outdoors more this year than in any other autumn in the past, and Emma Jeanne and I have enjoyed the abundant sunshine and lack of wind that is normally so prevalent in these parts. The colder days are coming, but how nice to get all the way into November until they do.

There is still a good amount of casting on, and coming off of the needles, and while I am loving knitting, I have to admit that the recording of the knit wear has been a little slow going. Ravelry is a gift of a site, for so many reasons, but lately I have done a terrible job of cataloging what I have completed. I find myself a good 20+ projects behind, and in desperate need of getting it done before I flat forget just what pattern or yarn was used. If only the sun would go in for just a little bit, perhaps then such a task could get done.

Currently I am working on the Emma Tunic for my Emma Jeanne. This is my second go with this wonderful pattern, as I knit one in Malabrigo Lettuce when she first arrived. The tunic works well for a young babe, and it leaves a bit of growing room, going from a dress to a top over time. I am crazy for pink right now. Not bright, neon pink, but more of a muted rose. It is funny how each of my children have had their own colors, and so clearly, since they first arrived. Jacob was the deepest of blues, Elwood a sea green, and Landon a soft yellow and natural toned little dude. Emma is an earth girl, for sure. Those sage greens, muted roses, and soft creams suit her well, and I now find myself enjoying an entirely new color palette in my yarns.

The boys spent the entire weekend on the soccer field, as did their coach of a dad. Emma Jeanne and I, along with grandparents and friends, popped in and out when we could, but there is only so much soccer that a 3 month old can take. Elwood brought home the championship in his age division for the third season in a row, and he was a very happy guy. One of the concession stands was selling pumpkin and apple and cinnamon popcorn, and of course, both boys were begging up a storm. As we were leaving the field on that last day, I agreed to let them try each of flavors, only to find out that both contained gluten. In my mothering moment of seeing their eyes drop, I agreed to immediately go home and try my hand at a recipe. I am not really sure what I was thinking of here, as those two flavors are not exactly easy to recreate in a home kitchen. I gave it my best shot, but the pumpkin spice is still a work in progress. We did, however, manage a recipe for an apple cinnamon flavor that I think may become a family favorite.

Apple Cinnamon Popcorn

1/3 cup coconut oil
1 cup popcorn kernels
1/4 cup coconut oil – melted
3 tbsp maple syrup
1/2 cup freeze dried apples
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 cup candied walnuts (optional), chopped

Place your freeze dried apples in the bowl of a food processor, and pulse into a fine powder. Add you salt and spices, and pulse only until combined.

We love to cook our popcorn on the stove in the Whirly Pop. I am not afraid to admit how much I love this popcorn pan. Never once have I had anything burn or stick, and the popcorn just comes out so fresh and light. My friend Heidi recommended it to me a few years back, and I am oh so grateful she did.

Melt your 1/3 cup of coconut oil over med-high heat, and cook your popcorn any way you choose. While the popcorn is popping, melt your 1/4 cup of coconut oil over low heat. Remove from the stove, and add your maple syrup, apple and spices.

Place your popped popcorn into a large bowl, and stir in your oil mixture. Add in your walnuts, if using, and eat right away.

This popcorn has a nice, tart bite, and can even be enjoyed topped with nutritional yeast.

 

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