Road Trip Frenzy

Several hectic weeks kept me away from my computer, but didn’t stop me from starting new projects. This past week we drove to Niagara Falls- our first ever long road trip with the kids. I was nervous about how things might go and, thus, went straight to Pinterest for all that essential parenting advice on how to keep kids occupied. (How did our parents take us anywhere before Pinterest? Oh yeah, they set us loose in the “way back” of the van with a carton of gummy worms.)

I Spy Jars

I Spy Jars made with brightly colored rice, buttons, tiny cars, legos and other found objects. Hint: Use Wilton oil based candy dye for beautiful colored rice.

I’ve been wanting to make some I Spy Jars for a while now and figured this was the perfect time. I found a fantastic recipe for dying rice on the Happy Hooligans blog. Jackie suggests using vinegar instead of alcohol and Wilton brand candy dye for extra vivid color. I was so happy with the results! The rice dried quickly on cookie trays and was ready to put in jars in no time. I realize that using glass mason jars was probably not the best choice, but it was what I had on hand and I’m just hoped my kids wouldn’t try to launch them out the window. They didn’t, so I am going to call this project a success. Now, you know you’re a stressed out and somewhat crazed traveler when you decide to fit in that one extra activity you just know your kids will love. Take my advice. Spend your time going through your packing list instead. I forgot my kids’ shoes, but spent all kinds of time that day before we left trying to make them a magnetic dinosaur play set. I had seen a couple of cute ideas for magnet boards and thought something like this would be quick and easy. But if you’re a slob and in a huge hurry, then nothing involving mod podge is going to be quick and easy. I am most definitely not Martha. So, here’s what I ended up with.

Dinosaur project fail

Do you know how hard it is to glue little magnets to their tiny little dinosaur feet? And the mere use of scrap book paper does not make a dollar store cookie sheet interesting to play with.

Anyway, we left this one at home. Who’s interested in a slightly used cookie tray? I’ll sell it to you cheap!

For me, the car ride was pretty much pure bliss because in addition to my love of Canadian Highways (No billboards! So peaceful!) I had about 3 hours each way of relatively uninterrupted knitting time- enough to complete two pieces of a lovely baby blanket that I cannot wait to give to my friend for her little girl. This yarn is so soft that my kids wanted to cuddle with the skein and each of them asked me to please make them a blankie when I am done with this one. I’m pretty sure that once I attach the hood and ears, this little piece is going to be one of the cutest things I’ve made in a long time. Both the pattern and the yarn are by James C Brett. Get them at your local independent knitting store buy them online if you don’t have one near you. The main square of the blanket is an easy double seed stitch, but I do recommend a stitch counter to keep track of rows. The individual stitches are a little tricky to see with this fuzzy yarn. Stay tuned because I hope to have a completed blanket to show you this weekend! (Can it really be done??? If this isn’t suspense, I don’t know what is.)

Sweet and soft chunky knit baby blanket.

Sweet and soft chunky knit baby blanket.


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