Sunday, December 13, 2015

Merry Making and Taking

The 2015 Bachman's Holiday Ideas House closes today. Here are a few photos to show just how thoroughly the design team carried out the Make it Merry theme. 

Have gnomes, will travel. 

We wish for you much merriment in your household, and suggest you take some "merry" with you wherever you may go this holiday season.

Monday, December 7, 2015

We don't do Cats

But there are exceptions to everything. This is a great commercial. Enjoy.

Be kind to your four-footed friends this holiday season and always!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

It's Christmas Cryin' Time Again

The annual John Lewis department store advert is guaranteed to be poignant and good for a sniffle. Enjoy.

Our wish for you... peace, tranquility, and time to savor the small pleasures and joys of the season right where you live with those you love.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Knitting for Babies

Is so fun! 

Tiny knit items are so sweet.

But when put on babies the cuteness factor takes an exponential leap.

Of course we think this little model is absolutely adorable with or without a hat. 

As a matter of fact, we do believe he is The Cutest Baby Ever.

Top Knot Baby Hat

Worsted weight yarn (½ skein for most sizes)
#6 or #7 double point needles, or needle to obtain gauge of 5.5 stitches/inch
Row marker
Wool needle

  1. Cast on 77 stitches
  2. Knit for 4 (newborn)  to 5 (for bigger sizes) inches, begin decreases as follows
  3. K9, K2tog (7 times), then
  4. K8, K2tog (7 times), then
  5. K7, K2tog (7 times) and so on until 7 stitches remain.
  6. Knit these 7 stitches around until needed length for tying top knot is reached.
  7. Cut yarn leaving tail of several inches, use tail to pull remaining stitches together, weave in end of yarn.
  8. Tie knot.

For larger or smaller hats increase or decrease the number of cast-on stitches in multiples of 7 (63, 70, 77, 84, etc.) Then when you get to the first decrease row add or subtract 1 stitch to the first number on line 3 for each 7 stitches.

63 stitches cast on starts decrease with K7, K2tog (This is a tiny newborn size.)
70 stitches cast on starts decrease with K8, K2tog
77 stitches cast on starts decrease with K9, K2tog
84 stitches cast on starts decrease with K10, K2tog

Friday, November 6, 2015


Due to a series of alternating fortunate and unfortunate events, it was discovered that NDL has been operating for the last two decades under a serious misconception.

It was a shock to learn that the height we thought we were had changed by minus two inches since 1995. We have always felt that our problem was being too short for our weight and had come to grips with that. Yes, when the inseam that matches the waist size of your off-the-rack pants is dragging a few inches on the ground you can pretend that cuffing is in style whether it is or not, and there is always the chunky sole to help out, but finding out that the extra pant length was due the loss of two inches of spine was a bit of a shock. 

Just after the realization that that is why we can barely see over the steering wheel anymore without pulling up to our full dwarfish height, or reach the top kitchen shelf without standing on tiptoes and using a wooden spoon to fish down the object we need came the Most Horrible Thought of All - different height equals different BMI category! Egads! We had just managed to settle into the "normal" range. This terrible setback meant we would now need to deal with the same amount of bulk on an shorter skeleton.

After months of being in denial we finally looked to see just how bad it was. Bad! But then our rationalization defense kicked in and we posed the question - 
"Do we need to use our new height for these calculations even if it is not at all our fault that we shrunk?".

We are nothing if not expert at finding the answer we want to hear. So, after sifting through many internet answers that didn't suit us we found the link we were looking for and a new hero.

To paraphrase our hero, Dr. Hirsch - It's not our fault we got shorter. The fat mass hasn't changed (although there may be a bit more of a spare tire effect on a shorter torso) and fat  makes estrogen which helps prevent bone loss so maybe we won't get quite as short as we would if we were dangerously thin. He did refer to us as "the poor soul" so we know he feels our pain. He even said we should try to keep our fat. Whoo hoo!

Sadly, we also found in our internet search that Dr. Jules Hirsch died this summer. You can read about his life here. His colleagues said that he had a deep sympathy for patients who struggled with the lifelong effort of maintaining a healthy weight. Thank you Dr. Hirsch.

Gotta go re-hem some slacks and eat a celery stick now.

Image from The Graphics Fairy.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Wash Day

Here's the thing.

Our modern lifestyle used to be more modern. When NDL started on Groundhog's Day in 2010, few in our acquaintance were on Facebook, and Pinterest was an infant enterprise. When we surfed the web and shared a find it typically hadn't already been seen by millions. Now we feel that NDL, for the purpose of spreading the wonders of the internet has has become redundant. Obsolete. Peripheral. Irrelevant. 

Phrases such as 'fold the tent", "turn the page", "end of an era", "move on", "reinvent" - all whirl around as we think, "what are we doing here?". 

We don't usually indulge in naval gazing in this forum, but feel like the evolution of daily posts in 2010 to weekly in 2015, and now only the rare post as 2016 approaches deserves a word for those faithful few who still look at this space.

Many of the blogs we used to enjoy and repost from have completely gone away. Some slowly. Some abruptly. 
Times change. Lives change. Facebook pages are easier.

We have never cared greatly how many views the posts at NDL receive. Although there were times when we were glad for a comment or two just to know that we weren't talking to ourselves. This week the views from Russia are twice that from the U.S.. Interesting don't you think, comrade robot?

In searching for something to share with you today we found this image at the Graphics Fairy. It shows one of our favorite activities. 

Check out those bluebirds of happiness. We see them all the time when hanging wash. 
Well, not really. But we do see robins, orioles, and bald eagles, and they make us just as happy.

Hanging out the wash gives us a sense of peace.  It allows us to enjoy the beauty of the day, observe nature, and listen to the sounds of the neighborhood. We have time to think of the people who wear the clothes and use the linens we are rhythmically pinning to the line. It connects us to traditions of the past and makes us feel like we are more gently using our natural resources. 

And there is nothing better than the smell of line-dried laundry.You get it when you hug your husband and press your nose into his shoulder, or when you climb into the sheets at night, or dry yourself off with a rough, wind-dried towel. 

So, if it's just the same to you, rather than disappearing completely from the blogisphere we're reverting to the pace and rhythm that feels right for us. Until we are ready, if ever, to pin our tastes and show our face online we will keep a presence here for musings, finds, and projects to be hung on our NDL line as they occasionally, naturally occur.

Hope you will still peek over the real or virtual back fence from time to time and say "hi".

Saturday, September 26, 2015


We have been blessed with a bonus, beautiful,  post-last day of summer weekend.

Whoo hoo!

Anybody who crossed their fingers and planned a wedding, picnic, ballgame, or last fishing or camping trips for this weekend got really lucky. The rest of us are the beneficiaries of their optimism and cramped pointer and middle digits too. Get out there and play.

We're going Fall Festing. In shorts!

Friday, September 18, 2015

A Gift of Plums

Became a beautiful clafouti,

and two batches of sparkling red jelly.

And gave us another opportunity to play with the jam labelelizer.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

We Heart Butterflies

We found this little guy having a siesta after a heart-healthy, milkweed munch.

Good call little larva. There is still plenty of exhausting eating and metamorphosing ahead.

Our alley monarch watch gives us reason for optimism. Many more were spotted this year than last.

Overall forecasts for the monarch population are not so rosy, but maybe, with a little help from their friends, they will get by.

Let's do it!