Currently listening to: Driving to a meeting across the city with a co-worker the other day, “Let Me Clear My Throat” by DJ Kool came on the satellite radio, and I couldn’t help but flip over to it. It has been stuck in my head ever since. It’s an old-school hip hop jam that I had forgotten about until the Buffalo Sabres started using it as their goal song last season. And it’s still awesome.
Currently watching: Among the myriad of programs that pile up on our DVR is The Great American Baking Show. It’s a Christmas-centric take on The Great British Bake Off, but aside from the same production company, the only common thread between the two shows is judge Mary Berry. British hosts Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc are replaced by Americans Nia Vardalos and Ian Gomez, who do their level best but don’t quite measure up to Mel and Sue’s standard. And Mary’s fellow judge from the U.K. show, Paul Hollywood, is replaced by American baking bad boy Johnny Iuzzini, which is pretty much a wash. Still, it’s good to tide us over until the next series of Bake Off airs, and with the switch over to Channel 4, who knows when that will be?
Currently reading: My Lovely Wife brought home Carol Burnett’s latest memoir, In Such Good Company, from the library about a week ago, and while she started in on some other books, I yoinked this one from the pile. I’d heard some of the stories she tells in the book when we saw her live at the Winspear Centre this past June, but there are plenty of othet interesting ones in there. The Carol Burnett Show was a little before my time, unfortunately, but I still have a lot of respect for the trails she blazed for women in comedy.
Also going on this week in the world of DIY and YEG:
- It seems My Lovely Wife has also caught the DIY bug! She recently made a kissing bough (seen at right) from holly, juniper, a bit of ivy and a plastic pear. A kissing bough is a traditional English Christmas decoration that dates back to the Middle Ages. I think it looks nice hanging over our dining room table! You can find the instructions to make one of your own here. My wife adds that, if you find that a number of holly leaves fall off in the course of making the bough, you can add some glitter and arrange them in a bowl for a festive centrepiece.
- My Lovely Wife has also been hard at work making these 2016 dumpster fire ornaments out of felt for some friends. Between celebrities like David Bowie, Prince, Leonard Cohen and Florence Henderson passing away and some personal troubles that befell us and friends of ours, 2016 truly did feel like a dumpster fire. Here’s hoping 2017 is a little better.
- Another traditional Christmas decoration is a pomander, which were first made for religious purposes but became useful as something of a medieval air freshener. Here’s a video with instructions on how to make your own. Keep an eye out for mould, though. Blech!
- Over on Reddit’s woodworking subreddit this week, a Redditor posted a photo of an amazing cutting board he (she?) made. I love geometric patterns like this. If I had any sort of woodworking skill, I would try to replicate that on my own.
- Molly from almost makes perfect is back with another DIY project, this time a leather luggage rack. It’s a great idea if you have houseguests and their luggage paying an extended visit for the Christmas holidays.
- What post on this blog would be complete without a mention of Nick Offerman? Here’s a video I first saw this week where he talks with This Old House about his book Good Clean Fun and the inspiration behind it:
- Pantone just announced its Color of the Year for 2017, a colour that could be used for a fair number of DIY projects over the next year. And it already has at least one famous fan.
- I found this video on the Japanese art of yosegi just fascinating. Basically, you take pieces of wood that are different colours, glue them together, then cut it into really thin sheets and use those to decorate boxes. It’s some varsity-level stuff, though; I don’t think I’ll be trying to do that at home anytime soon.
Ever tried making your own Christmas decorations? How did it go? Anything I’ve missed that you think our readers should know about? Let me know in the comments below.