stewing on a dark day

Meet the le Creuset dutch oven I bought this weekend. I'm hopeful that we will be very happy together in the years to come.

The saleswoman at the le Creuset outlet store tried her darnedest to sell me the 7 1/4 quart. When upon lifting it (empty and without the lid) I felt a muscle tear in my back, I opted for the 5 1/2 quart. It seems ample for our family of three.

The weather has turned cold and foggy. As much as I enjoy seasonal changes, it does get a bit depressing when the entire day is dark. There's nothing like a new piece of cookware to motivate a little comfort food cooking. I tried out my new red hot love with a beef stew recipe from Ina Garten today.

Chuck roast meat marinated in an entire bottle of good red wine, two cloves of smashed garlic, and three bay leaves in the dark depths of the refrigerator all night.

A little side note story: at our local New Seasons grocery store yesterday I told the butcher, "I need chuck." As he was giving me the scoop on the various stew meat choices, I noticed a rather goofy looking guy peering from behind him listening intently to our conversation. When I acknowledged his presence, the butcher said, "His name is Chuck."  True story! Okay, you had to be there, it was funny at the time.

I'll post a photo or two tomorrow along with a recipe... or two.


The girls absolutely loved swinging. They were all smiles and laughs. They also loved to watch each other swing.
Ellie was up first!

Lola's turn!

Check out Lola laugh'n in the video

Ellie's having fun in her video too!

100 Online Sales

Tonight I had my first one hundred online sales if I count both of my shops. My hundredths sale will include a little gift and will be shipped to Honolulu, Hawaii soon. (I have been on the Hawaiian Islands several times and I am very familiar with this beautiful spot on our planet. How wonderful that one of my dolls will be there soon!)
I want to thank all of my customers especially Shelley the owner of the blog Waldorfmama for being my very first online customer and encourageing me so much.

My first online sale

Happy Thanksgiving!

One of my all time favorite things to do on Thanksgiving is stay in my pjs and watch the Macy's Day Parade. This year was the best yet, I got to watch the parade while my baby girls fell asleep in my lap. I am so thankful for mornings like this!
Yes, I made Tony watch the parade with me instead of morning football, but he did get to watch football the rest of the day!
We headed off to "Emma's" for Turkey and Fun! The girls played all day regardless of being all dressed up! They take a bit after their mom. We are so Thankful for our happy, healthy girls!
The girls had their first Thanksgiving dinner , which included turkey, sweet potatoes, and mash potatoes. They even got to have baby peach cobbler for desert!
No "kids" table here, Lola and Ellie got to sit at the grown up table.
They loved it!
We are so thankful for family, friends, and time spent together.
Ellie looks like she enjoyed her first Thanksgiving, she now just wants to get out and play some more. She ended up staying awake until 8:30- 2 hours past her bed time.
Lola looks like she ate a bit too much on her first Thanksgiving and just wanted out of her highchair and straight to bed!
The Mezzadri Family
Stacie, Ellie, Uncle Drew, Tony, Aunt Sara, Lola, and Emma.
Some shots of the girls in their Thanksgiving outfits

This picture sums up what I am most Thankful for!!

Ellie Belle

Lola Grace

We hope you all had a great Thanksgiving too!


pecan tart

pumpkin pie

Today I am thankful for stretch jeans and oversized sweaters. Yesterday while I spent a good part of my day creating these two desserts to take to my brother's house today, I was thankful we had stores within a few miles of our house. For some reason I had a few senior moments and had to make a couple trips to the store for things I forgot the first time. I am thankful that my sister-in-law is cooking the turkey and hosting our large family this year.

I am thankful for expressive, beautiful poems like this one written by my daughter a few years back. I found this while cleaning out my office this week...


Wishing all of you a wonderful day spent with family and friends.

Knecht Ruprecht featured on Frontier Dreams

I had the pleasure to do an interview on Frontier Dreams. Thank You Nicole!
If You want read the interview here

Here is the Interview:

Interview with Marie of Knecht Ruprecht & a Giveaway

{All photos by Marie}

Marie is the very talented owner of Knecht Ruprecht, a shop dedicated to handcrafted treasures for babies and children made from natural, organic, ecologically friendly and pure materials. I first came across Marie through Waldorf Mama and instantly fell in love with her creations. After my recent purchase of one of her beautiful lanterns, I thought I really needed to share her amazing work with all of you. I asked her is she would be willing to do a short interview and she kindly agreed.

1. What is your inspiration for your beautiful creations?

My daughter Klara Alma is inspiring my work very much. She shows me in our daily life what is essential with dolls and toys in general and what is not. My claim in doll making is always to find what is essential, to limit it on that and put soul into my creations.
Also the memories of my own childhood spent in a very natural and rural countryside and also the processes going on in the cycle of the year in nature are a great source of inspiration for me as a doll maker.

2. We love dolls in our house. They are involved in everything that my daughters do. Why do you think dolls are so important to children's play?

I would like to start my answer with Words by Shariffa Oppenheimer in regards to Waldorf dolls.
"As the child nurtures & mothers the doll, he is - not simply metaphorically but also in reality - caring for himself. It is important therefore, that we offer a doll that closely resembles him/her, not so much in features but rather in proportion. The child's "felt experience" of the doll will remain with him/her. So let's keep the doll simple, proportional & tactfully truthful."
It can be said that a doll for a child is something like the "second I". Everything learned and experienced by the child can be repeated in doll play. If the child is progressing something, the doll will do the same very soon, too. If the child is sick for example and has some fever, it's doll will get in contact with the thermometer soon too.

3. I read in your Etsy Bio that you grew up in an artistic family. How do you think that influenced you?

I grew up in a family of artists, with lots of self made and handcrafted things around me. My parents made most of my toys by themselves. I was always around in the atelier of my parents and was raised to be creative very soon. Since I had my daughter, I started to make her things just like my mother did for me when I was a child. I just love all things handmade and unique and I choose to provide and surround my family and myself with beautiful and lovingly handmade goods. I think that things that are made by hand, using only natural materials, are instilled with a spiritedness that is not present in other kinds of things.

4. What role, if any, has your Waldorf education played in shaping you as a parent?

Waldorf with all its facets feels just home for me. It is just natural and absolutely no question for me to parent "waldorf" since I felt very comfortable with it when I was young.

(un)lucky number 3

Now Little T has been struck down by the vomiting bug. She wasn't too impressed at all, but managed to limit damage to the soft furnishings (unlike her brother).

Only myself left, now - how long can I hold out ?

Davy Crockett

Davy Crockett aka Mr. George Shinn came to the preschool classes to tell them about this great Tennessean. The children were able to see his outfit, bull horn, satchel. Mr. George told the children all about the wonderful things that Davy Crockett did in his lifetime.

And then it was two...

Unfortunately, Mrs K/C/KC has also succumbed to the vomiting bug.

Luckily I had Doctor Little T on hand to help with both of the patients.

Thanksgiving Party

We enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving Day party. The children enjoyed the yummy cupcakes, juice and cheetos. Thank you to the parents for bringing in the yummy treats for us to enjoy. I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving.

All my little turkeys with their turkey head bands.

All aboard the baby train!

Simple Pleasures!

Who needs store bought toys when you have an empty laundry basket? Believe it or not they did this all on their own. Lola crawled in, then Ellie tried to crawl in and couldn't so she just pushed her big sister around for a while. What a team player!

You know you're a parent when....... have to purchase a carpet cleaner to remove the stubborn odour of vomit from your 1 yr olds bedroom.

After 14 mths, Little O was quite distraught to experience retrograde digestion for the first time (he looked particularly horrified when part digested yoghurt came out of his nose !!).

Comment spam

No, not a dialogue about processed meat products, but a newly discovered problem with our blog of late.

I have noticed that from time to time am receiving fake comments (similar to emails inviting me to enlarge my Pen15 etc !!!)

As a result, I have now had to enable word verification which means that commentors need to type in the word displayed before comment is used.

Many apologies for this, but please do keep commenting !!!!!!


From Marzipan to Chocolate - Von Marzipan bis Schokolade

I am very happy to announce that from now on all Knecht Ruprecht Dolls are available in five different skincolors.
Ab jetzt sind alle Knecht Ruprecht Puppen in fünf unterschiedlichen Hautfarben erhältlich.

Writing Letters to Santa Claus

Mrs. Tammy Clayton's 4th grade class came to help the preschoolers in Mrs. Eileen's class write their letters to Santa Claus. The older children wrote so neatly were so wonderful with the little ones. All the children had a great time writing the letters. Thank you so much to Mrs. Tammy's class. We hope you come back to preschool to visit soon.