Monday, December 05, 2011

Drank the last of our Thanksgiving leftovers and tricked my family into an all-day yarn boondoggle.  


I'll start with the leftovers, as the boondoggle requires much explanation and you may bail before getting to the drink.

Pear- Lemon-Sage Martinis 
Because why let the last of the fresh herbs go to waste...

In the bottom of each glass add a squirt of lemon and a sage leaf and muddle.   
In a jigger (this makes two):  4 oz spiced pear vodka (regular pear would work), 1.5 oz vermouth and two drops of lemon bitters, plus 4-5 ice cubes.  Shake.    Pour over the sage and lemon juice and add a strip of lemon zest. 

If you make yourself one, you may have the patience to read the rest of this blog post.   Or not. 


See, I've been dying to get to Harrisville Designs, way the fuck up in NH, and there just isn't enough time in a school day to get there and back before pickup.   It finally dawned on me that the only way I was getting up there was to plan a day and convince my family that it was going to be a day with a little fun for all. 

I went on the internet and planned such a day.  It started with an awesome diner lunch (we love diners),  and included a quaint town to explore, a gorgeous hike, a post-hike pie stop at a second diner,  and maybe a little bit of yarn.   Just a side stop for it on this otherwise great day, right?


Lunch at the world's shiniest diner was great.  Maya had homemade pot pie and Craig had a meatloaf sandwich.

Everyone loved this joint and it was kind of awesome.  The bathroom doors were old coke machines you could open.   Very cool.

The next stop was Harrisville,  which was billed on some of the  websites I checked as a quaint village.  The drive is long and beautiful, but loooong.  You drive up and the first thing you see is the mill, so we stopped,  fought each other for first into the bathroom, and went in for a bit.  It's a gorgeous shop, and the yarns are addictive, so we may have been there for about an hour.   

Then it was time for the exploring, which didn't go as planned.   Quaint villages are supposed to have shops and a sidewalk and maybe a bookstore, right?   Not this one.  It's a yarn shop and a general store.  Both of which are awesome, but people, that's IT.   Walking along the main road was a little death defying, so exploring on foot was out.  My family was not pleased with me and cried foul.  

This here photo sums it up.  Pretty, yes.  Entertaining?  Not so much.  

We took a lot of pictures and walked around the mill buildings, and then I bribed them with amazing cookies from the general store. 

However,  I did find what I wanted:  The perfect red tweed.  Plus yarn for colorwork mittens for everyone, as they got carried away in the colors and I did owe them for their troubles.  The orange/blue/pink is Maya, and the blue/purple/green is Zoe.  The other's mine.

While in the shop, I met a knitter buying yarn to make Allegheny!  How funny is that?   Maya was floored that I was recognized by a stranger in a yarn shop, and my status has gone from totally dorky to maybe a little bit cool in the big one's eyes.  So, nice knitter from NH, if you are reading this, I thank you for my newly earned  pre-teen respect and hope you enjoy your Allegheny!

 Here was the haul.

We drove a little and finally gave up on finding trails for hiking or spots to explore on foot, and as it was getting late, we drove back towards Boston.   And even though everyone was in a good mood, they were fully aware that we'd done nothing all day but eat, drive and buy yarn.  So I was happy to see this sign on the way back.

  There was skeeball and air hockey and we won lots of stupid little tickets you can redeem for crap.

You don't grow up in New Jersey without a love for skeeball.   Talent's another story, but we do love to play.

 Maya kicked my ass at air hockey and Zoe got glowy bracelets with her tickets.

 The second diner was close by, so it was time for pie.  The pies were good. 

We did wander around this town for a little bit, admiring the rural New Hampshire style holiday cheer. 

We actually had a great time, even though my well laid hiking and exploring plans all fell through.   But I have a feeling they aren't going to believe me the next time I bill a great family outing that may just involve a yarn detour.


Nina (Burlington, VT) said...

It was a pleasure to run into you in the Harrisville store! (Very happy to add to coolness quotients where kids are concerned.) And I am right with you on (a) the distance away of the place, and (b) the tiny-ness of the town. I also found it surprisingly tricky to get out of said town, in the direction I wanted to go. Oh well!

Chris said...

Sounds awesome! I'd love to check out Harrisville and their gorgeous yarn. I think you lucked out on the diners, too.

Mini said... the lit up truck :)

Anonymous said...

I was in Harrisville, NH on Friday. We left from Peabody, MA and drove to Henniker NH to The Fiber Loft, then down to Hancock for a quick look around a tiny tiny downtown and on to Harrisville. I was on a quest for Shelter. It really is a idyllic setting for a yarn shop, right on the river and all. But your right when you say in the middle of nowhere with nothing in site. Which weight of Harrisville did you end up getting? And is there any way you'd give up the name of the shiny diner, I'm sure another trip to Harrisville is in my future, and I like to lure my husband to drive with promises of great lunches and hikes. He's a kid at heart.


Thea said...

Of course, Jan --

The shiny diner is in Amherst and it's called Joey's and it's on 101A. The second diner is Red Arrow in Milford, right on the town square, which they call an oval, kind of funny.

The yarn was Shetland (sport) for the misc colors, and Highland for the red (aran)

Turtle said...

lol, wiping a tear from the corner of my overly hormonal eye, makes me homesick! See, harrisville was way the fuck 2 hours south from where i grew up, so.... but diners are still way cool! My mom and i always look for new ones when we are together, hubby doesnt wuite get it , even 20 years later, lol.... poor city boy!

What a great day though overall, and lol, at the supermom from being identified!

janna said...

I think the day sounds absolutely wonderful! Also -- I love Maya's color selection. She'll have nice, cheery mittens for grey winter days.

Kym said...

What a fun day! I think any day with skee ball is a good day, indeed. (And you can tell your pre-teen that I earned huge amounts of knitter-cred in my LYS's knitting group because I have test-knit a sweater (or two) for YOU!) :-)

Hilary said...

So kids don't just happily comply when you say you want to make a trip to a yarn shop? Crap...

It sounds like a really fun day, and how cool you ran into someone making Allegheny!! Also, thanks for the cocktail idea...I've been wanting to get some new sort of booze for my dad and the Hangar One spiced pear will be perfect! (Neill and I keep meaning to visit Hangar One since it's right across the Bay. Apparently there's even a tasting room.)

From Beyond My Kitchen Window said...

The diner looks like Joeys Diner in Merrimac NH. I'm wonderfing if it could be? My husband and I go for breakfast there quite a bit.