Making

Elderberry Syrup (recipe in their free catalog) for keeping the sniffles at bay

Rosemary Garlic Crackers for delicious snacking (sorry, no recipe available, but such a fantastic course)

Baby’s Bath Bundle for nourishing sensitive skin

food, homeschooling, nature • Tuesday, March 27th, 2012 • 6 Comments »

Wood and Light

I am loving the light that is arriving with the spring, it is such a breath of fresh air.

home, nature • Monday, March 12th, 2012 • 4 Comments »

Resting

We’ve all been down with nasty colds these past two weeks and everyone is now recovering except for me. I’m still resting, trying to shake the stuffy head and harsh cough. I have been able to get quite a bit of knitting done though, using that stash up bit by bit. I’ll show you some glimpses of completed projects soon.

We are all loving the feeling that the seasons are changing soon, it’s no longer pitch black when we sit down to eat supper. There are some warmer days, and the sun seems to be shining that much brighter. This will be our first spring in Maine and I am definitely looking forward to watching things bloom.

For now though I will enjoy hot oatmeal, and plenty of cups of tea. Rest is easier said than done but Hubby is brilliant and has been doing most everything around here on top of his work while I am trying to recover. I love him so!

family, food • Monday, February 27th, 2012 • 3 Comments »

Use It Up…..

One of the projects I’ve been working on this year is to use it up, in particular, wool. Not that I have a huge stash to begin with, my yarn for the most part fits in one basket, but in order to appreciate what I have and save a few pennies at the same time I have decided to use up all the yarn I have before purchasing any more.

About half of what I have had been given to me, so there were a lot of odd skeins without exact yardage. I had been avoiding using those up because honestly I had no project in mind, but I am now having lots of fun being creative and searching out free patterns or ones that I already had to make some new projects.

This has been a great motivator as well, I have already gotten a gift for a friend done, using a chart as well. I was always too intimidated by charts before and have now found out that it is quite easy, at least the one I did. A Christmas gift for next year has been finished and tucked away and I am almost done with a hat for the children. Oh, and also a sweet little hat for the new little one of a friend. My basket is slowly emptying and at this rate I should have six months of knitting to do without spending a penny. Of course it helps the motivation that I have a couple of projects in mind for when I do use up my stash, and quite frankly I am excited to get to those.

I’m also hoping that at the end of it all I will have a nice little stash of scraps for a granny square blanket. Do you prefer to have a nice big stash, or would you rather only have what you need for your next project or two?

crochet, gifts, green, knitting • Wednesday, February 8th, 2012 • 2 Comments »

Cables and Buttons

I do enjoy colour, but I also enjoy neutrals. I find them somewhat calming, the natural feel to a wooden button, the gentle twist of a creamy cable.

I am enjoying finding depth in texture and style as opposed to colour.

knitting, sewing • Friday, February 3rd, 2012 • 6 Comments »

The Warmth of Bread

Baking bread is about so much more than nourishment. Sure it tastes great, and fills up hungry bellies, but it is as much about the process for me as the end result. I have made my own bread occasionally for years, not every loaf, but quite often. In the last month I started making all of our bread, I used the bread machine to knead and rise the dough, but then would take it out, shape it, and bake it in the oven. I loved the result, but have wanted to get into baking my own truly from scratch for a while now. A couple of weeks ago, we made bagels, and they could knock the socks off of any store-bought bagels. I found I truly enjoyed the process of working the dough by hand, feeling it change from lumpy to smooth, fragile to elastic.

Seeing the dough rise in a bowl and gently pushing the air back out to shape it and let it rise again. Putting the loaves into the oven and the smell of bread baking, and the warmth from the oven warming the kitchen. I also love that I can make enough dough for two loaves in one batch, which means that I won’t necessarily have to make bread every day, or at the very least all that hard work won’t be gone in one sitting. Not to mention the side effect of a good workout, kneading dough for 10-15 minutes is very good for the arms.

I am looking forward to getting into the rhythm of baking bread from start to finish with my own hands, or like this morning, with the help of my two girls. I think I’ll put the boys to work on the next batch.

family, food, green, homeschooling • Monday, January 30th, 2012 • 5 Comments »

Enjoying the Weather

We are snuggling in for a cozy weekend of blankets, movies, yummy food and snuggles. I hope you have a great one too!

family, home, nature • Friday, January 27th, 2012 • 2 Comments »

Under the Weather

 

We’ve been a bit under the weather here, first I was down for a couple of days and then one of the girls was down with a bug. Everyone seems to be fine today, but I need to catch up on some basics like laundry and dishes. I hope to be back tomorrow, see you then.

family, nature • Thursday, January 26th, 2012 • 2 Comments »

From Orchard to Table

Back in October we all went to an apple orchard about an hour away for a day of apple picking. It was a gorgeous autumn day and the orchard was beautiful. We had such fun picking apples, the only problem was that it went way too fast. Picking apples is a lot less time consuming than picking blueberries.

We enjoyed a tractor ride out to a couple of different locations in the orchard, which the kids loved. We were invited to sample the apples, the best you’ll ever taste he said, and he was right. After filling baskets and bags of apples we brought our haul home.

After eating more apples than we could count, and making half a dozen crumbles over a few weeks I was also able to freeze nine quarts of apple pie filling and also can four quarts of applesauce and use a few apples to help make a batch of jelly as well. This was the first year I have really canned anything, I have done a few things before but I never really felt like I got the hang of it.

I used several different varieties to make the applesauce and they were plenty sweet without using any sugar. We just opened the first jar last week and boy was it scrumptious, just like autumn in a jar. We picked forty-seven pounds, but next year I want to do more now that I feel a little more confidant. I would love to be able to do quite a bit more applesauce and even some apple butter. I have to admit it is quite exciting to see jars of food in the pantry that we picked and made. It’s so much more than a jar of applesauce, it’s the memories that went with the day and the knowledge that something we did with our own hands has provided food for our table.

family, food, nature, travelling • Friday, January 20th, 2012 • 3 Comments »

Children of the Forest

Children of the Forest is one of the babe’s favourite books. It’s about a family of tiny forest people who happen to have four children, two boys, two girls, just like us. Daisy, the littlest has platinum blond hair just like the babe. They live in the forest, our house backs up into forest, and my littlest just loves blending into things just like the forest children have to do sometimes. They gather nuts, berries, and mushrooms for the winter and their mama knits them hats and sweaters too. They have toadstool caps so that if they need to blend in and not be seen, they can just squat down and disappear into their surroundings.

I knew that the babe would absolutely adore to have her own toadstool cap, so the search was on. I couldn’t find a pattern that was quite right until I found this pattern. I tweaked it slightly by eliminating the little tail at the top of the hat and it turned out perfectly. Then I needle felted some creamy roving into little toadstool spots all around the outside. She adores the hat, and I am so thrilled that I was able to pull it off. This was my first time needle felting and despite the fact that I broke a few needles, it was a lot of fun.

The babe always wants to take pictures with mommy’s camera, so I knew this adorable wooden camera would be absolutely perfect. It is used on a daily basis as she goes around snapping her own pictures. It’s really well made and the detail is fantastic, I know it’s going to get lots and lots of use over the years.

books, Christmas, family, gifts, knitting • Tuesday, January 17th, 2012 • 10 Comments »