CLOSED: Nerd Games - Fall 2021

Those beets sound amazing. So do the dilly beans. I’ve never actually tried dilly beans before, but I like green beans and I love dill pickles, so I assume I’d love those. I wish I had a kitchen large enough to try canning. :blush:

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Dilly beans are super easy, and you don’t need much space or fancy equipment. My go-to canning expert, Marisa McClellan (author of Food in Jars plus 3 other canning books), cans in a small galley-style kitchen in her apartment. You just need a pot deep enough to cover the jars with about 2 inches of water. Dilly beans are a nice and easy thing to start with- you trim and cut the beans to size, and the spices, make the brine, pour it over and process in the hot water bath. You could totally do it!

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We may have a stock pot tall enough. We have about 8 inches of counter space. We often have to prep on the stove or in the pan because there is so little space in our kitchen. Our apartment is so small, we can’t even put a set of chairs or a loveseat in the living room. We use our living room as our storage space/yarn room. We live in our bedroom. Our lease is up at the end of January. I’m looking forward to not living in this place anymore :grin:

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I feel your pain! One of the reasons I drive up to my friend’s house in NH is because I don’t have much more counter space than you do (I probably have about 18" of space), and she has a gorgeous kitchen with a nice big center island. I did buy 2 cutting boards that are designed to fit over the stove burners so I can use them for additional prep space, and it really makes a difference! I also have a kitchen cart, but it is currently covered with stuff.


Oy! So, I had the perfect project for the October Battle (Falling Leaves), but I just couldn’t get it together. I had a commitment yesterday that overlapped (unexpectedly) into today and it took just enough time that I couldn’t get any crafting done. I really need to carve out some time for it in the next week because I think I’ll need it in about 2 weeks. But, while I wait for the laundry to finish in the dryer, I’ll go back and comment on the projects I haven’t commented on yet!

@ezrib - I really like your spider web! My beaded spider and your beaded spider could hang out together! I love the name Spinderella, too. And, I’m drooling over your Apple Cider Donut Ice Cream Sandwiches! What a fantastic idea! Adding apple chunks and caramel would definitely make it even better… yum!!! Your Starmie cushion came out fantastic! And, I bet that adding that second layer of the star in the back made it a bit challenging, but since your son likes it, it’s probably worth it. And, how did you get the cake to glow under blacklight? I’ll have to pop over to the post to check it out.

@gozer- What an adorable little Halloween Countdown- the little pumpkin figure is so cute!

@storerboughtcreation- That polar bear biscornu is simply fantastic. I love that you used a dark blue background- it’s the perfect choice to set off the polar bears. Great job on the GIF, too! The Norwegian biscornu is gorgeous! I love the contrast of the red and white and the pattern is so pretty! Adorable Halloween dolls, too! That pumpkin outfit is so cute. How big are they? I’d guess at least 12" tall.

@roler- I love that you did a Gravity themed Pokemon ATC- what a cool image! And, your little witch is so cute! Your crochet skills continue to impress! You’ve come so far in such a short time.

@megwell- I am really enjoying following along as you add to your junk journal. It’s fun to see the different techniques you’ve used on each page. I think the “Thrive” page is my favorite- such a neat idea to paint the background and then frame out the letters.


They’re about 9.5 inches tall. The witch is 12 inches tall from tips of her toes to the tip of her hat.

Prompt: October - Mulled Cider
Team: Don’t Stop Beleafing
Project Name: Droopy Faced Pepper
Project Link: Sad droopy jack o’lantern pepper 🫑
Brief Description: This recipe definitely did not work out how I expected :rofl:
Project Photo(s):

I will not share the after photo here. I want you to be surprised by the droopy face in the project link I shared :jack_o_lantern: :ghost: :joy:


Oh my gourd, @storerboughtcreation those blankets are amazing, and that snail is ADORABLE! And your cross stitch biscornus are utterly awesome, as usual! And your amigurumi! You are a FANTABULOUS crochter! And I have to laugh about the craved bell peppers…

@craftaddchick, that is a FABULOUS Halloween wreath! One of these days I’ll decorate my house for Halloween… and I wish I lived near you for a canning lesson, your canning endeavors always make me jealous!

@ezrib, that spider decoration is GORGEOUS! And that doughnut ice cream sandwich is making me drool! And that pillow looks very difficult, but it did turn out great. I bet your son loved that cake, it’s so well done!

@gozer, that calendar is pumpkinly PERFECT! Lucky swap partner!

@roler your Pokemon themed crafts are remarkable, but… that witch is SO CUTE!

@megwell, your art pages are so INSPIRING! I love all of them!

ACK! I need to at least post my battle prompt, and I will try to get November prompts up soon (I know the theme I want to go with) but it might have to be when I get home from work tomorrow, so please be patient!


Prompt: October Battle: Falling Leaves
Team: Don’t Stop Beleafing
Project Name: Moldy Pumpkin
Project Link: N/A
Brief Description: I followed a Monster Tutorials YT video (Easy Rotten Pumpkins Tutorial - YouTube) and it worked perfectly! I did end up spraying another coat of matte varnish on it after this picture, because the spray paint options were pretty thin when I went shopping and I ended up with a glossy black. And it looks TONS better in person. Falling leaves create damp, moldy conditions, but they also shelter a lot of insects and critters so if you can, leave leaves in flowerbeds and other places to give butterflies and other pollinators places to overwinter!
Project Photo(s):


What a fun pumpkin! It’s what my pumpkins look like after the squirrels and the weather have attacked them, so I love that you’ve embraced the inevitability!

And, I would absolutely give you a lesson if we were closer (I drive to NH to can at my friend’s house) but you’re too many states away :frowning: You should check out your local extension office to see if they offer classes. I took a class several summers ago through Massachusetts Agriculture in the Classroom. We picked local blueberries then went to a local HS and used their home ec kitchen to turn them into jam. It got me over my fear of canning- it wasn’t hard at all. But, it was hella hot that day, and with 6 stoves going in the classroom… It’s the one downside to canning in the summer!


New prompts have been posted! Sorry that took so long! And while I feel we’ve probably done something similar before (there have been a LOT of seasons of the Nerd Games!) hopefully these are “new” enough!


Ha, just because I’m halfway across the country! It’s probably only a 24 hour drive! :wink: But that’s a good idea, I should check that or even the city offered a lot of classes (less so now, but I’m sure they’ll eventually get back to it). There is something about doing it in a class around people for the first time that gets you over that bump of just TRYING it once… it’s hard to muster up the courage to do it yourself sometimes!


Prompt: October - Cozy Sweater
Team: Gourd of the Rings
Project Name: Halloween Mug Rug
Project Link: -0-
Brief Description: This was made for the Halloween Spooktacular swap but I forgot to post it here. Sorry, life has been a rollercoaster. It is a little poofy and keeps your drink cozy.
Project Photo(s):


Prompt: Advent- Candy Corn
Team: :corn: So corn fused
Project Name: Crochet skeleton cushion
Project Link:
Brief Description: I had a vision & started charting what I wanted, then as I got into it I stopped looking at the chart and went rogue as I eyeballed the multiple orange pumpkins, my skeles & checker board. so it is almost entirely freehand/no pattern
Project Pic


I love the one rowdy skeleton. He or she looks so happy and it’s great! :hearts:


LOL! Perhaps one day I can hop on a plane :laughing: Taking the class was a game changer! I first learned to make jam in junior high, and made that one recipe a couple of times since, but they were sealed with wax, and never canned. After the blueberry jam class, I thought, “That’s all there is to it?” The actual canning part is easy… it’s all of the prep work that makes it seem hard. But, canning with a friend or two makes the workload lighter.

@gozer- What fantastic fabric! I really love the spider fabric, and you perfectly cut that zombie fabric. Nicely done!

@ezrib- Utterly impressed that you essentially made that pattern up as you went along! It’s amazing!


I saw an episode about canning on America’s Test Kitchen and found this guide on their website. There are also recipes for small batch jams there.


Prompt: October - Hay Rides
Team: Don’t Stop Beleafing
Project Name: ghostly biscornu
Project Link: Halloween biscornu 👻
Brief Description: This is made using two parts. I tried to finish it before Halloween, but I just couldn’t get it done in time.
Project Photo(s):


I put up the advent prompt early again. At least I haven’t forgotten to post the last two weeks :crazy_face:

advent-4623521_1280 (7)

  • Nov. 7 - flannel sheets - craft something that is soft, that has stripes, that is a set, has purple on it, or is physically large

Prompt: Advent- Apple Orchard
Team: :corn: so cornfused
Project Name: Spiced Applesauce
Project Link:
Brief Description: recipe from Spiced Applesauce Recipe
really delicious, we’re halfway through our third batch
Project Pic


Prompt: November- Romance
Team: :corn:
Project Name: Hot Fuzz Birthday cake
Project Link: Hot Fuzz Birthday Cake
Brief Description: My husband whom I love, loves the movie Hot Fuzz, so this is his birthday cake
Project Pic