eat! craft! live!

Baking, crafting, mama-ing and taking photos of it all. When I remember.

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Operation Try New Restaurants: Shindig

grilled cheese & tomato soup

Amazing grilled cheese. Amazing soup!

While on my nearly-yearly trip to New York for Rhinebeck, we ate at Shindig in Woodstock one evening. It was super cute, and tiny, and I had a grilled cheese and tomato soup that were amazing.


The whole weekend is always a great time. Friends, food, fiber. Last year was no exception.

And now for some photos!

The most amazing buttons!

These button! My heart.


Sheep. What we’re all here for.

Falling leaves

Falling leaves at the fairgrounds.


You are here. At Jill Draper’s, to be specific.

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Day trips with children: Portsmouth Fairy House Tour

Travels with kids! Always fun, right?


On a whim (or…reasons*) I decided to take the kids to Portsmouth on Sunday. I Googled “things to do with kids in Portsmouth” and, lo and behold! The Portsmouth Fairy House Tour just happened to be this past weekend! And my children are completely enamored of fairy houses! Win!

We had an uneventful drive down, with lots of the usual are-we-there-yets and how-much-more-highway-is-theres and please-be-quiet-mama-doesn’t-know-where-she’s-goings.

The arc of our trip went something like this:

What a beautiful day! Isn’t Portsmouth a cute town! I wonder where this fairy house tour is? I think we need to go that way… Look! Dancing fairies! OMG tiny dancing fairies! They’re so cute! So…where are the fairy houses? Oh, lunch, huh? Let’s go find our friends…

Finally find Strawbery Banke. Buy tickets. Get terrible map.

Let’s eat hot dogs! Yeah, you guys like hot dogs! Lady at hot dog stand: “We’re out of hot dogs for right now! I think there’s PBJ inside?”

Head inside. Find friends. Likely scare friend by thrusting map at her and begging for help deciphering it. There is not PBJ inside, but instead lots of delicious-sounding things I know my kids will not eat, especially not for $8.50.

Um. Food. We need food. And a better map.

Head back outside. Try harder to decipher terrible map. Finally get an inkling of what’s where. Event nearly over.

Look, guys, bubbles! Oh, now there’s hot dogs! Let’s eat! Yeah!

H stuffs a too-giant bite into his mouth, gags, spits it all out. $*%&^&#*

OK. Fairy houses! Look there’s one! Look, more! Look! Look! Look! E, “Oh! Mama! This one here must have slept late! We must be quiet so we don’t wake her!” This one is so detailed! OMG, dragonflies made of oak seeds! Tiny windows! Bitty chairs! This is amazing!

See a group of adult fairies I’m pretty sure are in drag. E, “Oh, mama, those fairies are so beautiful!”

Cotton candy cotton candy cotton candy cotton candy, mama, pleeeeease cotton candy! I buy cotton candy fairy floss. The kids turn blue.

Let’s head over to the gardens. Oh, fairy flowers! Let’s look at the water! Ooh, an island! Ooooh, a playground! Oooooh, mama, another island! Maybe it has four trees!

Remember, we have to walk all the way back to the car…

H staggers along. I finally pick him up. He’s a small largish warm inert lump. With wings. I can barely stagger myself, under his weight.

Let’s get going guys! Feel free to fall asleep!

They do. I only take a few wrong turns trying to get on the highway.

* * * * * * *

All in all, a really fun trip, despite the technical difficulties acquiring food and the terrible (really…awful) map of the event. It was a gorgeous day – bright blue skies & cool breezes. The kids were real troopers with all the walking we did – 5 miles! Tiny legs! No wonder H was about to fall asleep standing up by the end. Would definitely do it again, perhaps with a little more planning than just discovering it the night before, on my phone, while lying in bed. But the magic, wonder & awe on their little faces as they looked for fairies in the gardens? Priceless.

*Ingress. In search of 300 UPVs for September. Almost there!


In a giant fairy house.

Spreading her fairy-butterfly wings.

This fairy house was AMAZING. 

It had a tiny window!

E was TOTALLY convinced this fairy was real. And asleep. Perhaps my favorite moment of the whole trip.

Fairy dome.

Fairies gotta bank too.

Cotton candy bigger than their heads.

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348: The Nutcracker

E & I went to The Nutcracker this afternoon! She’s taking a dance class and is obsessed with all things ballet so grandma bought us tickets. It was fantastic! E’s favorite part (which surprised me) was the battle between the soldiers and the mice.

It was a bit iffy if we were even going to be able to get there today – apparently a massive stomach bug has hit our preschool. Over half the staff is sick and H was up all night puking. (Which means I was also up all night, thankfully not puking.) I am so thankful that we were healthy this afternoon and able to attend! Fingers crossed we remain healthy…and wishing a speedy recovery to this who were sickened! H, for the record, has been a chipper little chipmunk all day.

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341: Santa!

This happened today!

This morning E had a play date, I had a photo shoot, then we came home for a quick lunch before heading to my work for Santa filled festivities – Santa himself, holiday “tattoos,” Christmas crafts, cookie decorating, snacks and, most importantly, a big ol’ bounce house with a slide!

She loved it all.

We were supposed to go to our town’s tree lighting festival tonight but we were tired and it was cold and we needed groceries, so we skipped. Totally the right call. Plenty of fun for one day!

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the girl turns 4: bee cake pops and sheep cupcakes!

E turned 4 last Sunday and we had family and friends over to celebrate. She requested chocolate cupcakes and I fancied them up a little bit! Plus, cake pops. Because who doesn’t need more sugar?

The day was gorgeous, for a change, and the kids played outside while various adults wandered in and out of the house, everybody keeping a collective eye on the little ones. I’m so ready for spring! I blogged about the cake pops over here, but I’ll share the photos here too – they’re too cute not to!


bee cake pops


sheep, grazing on gluten free grass