Sunday, September 16, 2012

Frost

There was a slight coating of frost upon the grass this morning.  As I took Colby out for his morning constitutional, there was a audible bend underfoot.  Not quite the crack or snap of a true frost, a November frost, but it is getting there.  It reminds me that there is much to do before the ground freezes solid.

Soon I will need to find the heater base to the chicken's water dish, and coat the bottom of the coop with the old heat pads and a green tarp.  We have thirteen chickens coming into Fall, and while I know it is likely that Winter will leave us down quite a few, I see no need to assist in that process.  Although, I do have a few nasty birds for whom I probably won't shed a tear, should I not see them next Spring...

We need to harvest the rest of the corn and hang them up to dry.  Other "friends" have been visiting by moon light, and if I don't quicken my step and get that process underway, I might need to bit that food supply adieu.

Additional raised beds will need to be set to rest for the Winter sleep.  Old summer planting, past their prime, will be pulled up and laid upon the beds, only to be tucked in with a layer of soil and chicken manure.  Spring will bring us a richer soil, having invited the earthworms to come and parttake in the remainder of that harvest.

It was a long Summer, and so I welcome this process, this coming of Fall, with a hope of renewal.  I am ready for the break that it will bring, come October and November, before the heavy snows of Winter arrive.  Of course,  I will curse these words come January, when I have decided that Winter has already overstayed its welcome and I am itching to dig into the soil.  But, for now, I am glad.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Greetings of Fall....

Today, Fall felt like it arrived.

At mid morning, we picked a pumpkin.  By mid-afternoon, it was cooked and settled within a pie. 

Dinner was a stew of pickings from the garden, with some ground turkey and spices added.  Thick and hearty to match the season.

Rows of the garden were finished and tucked away for the winter months.  Rain hovered overhead, threatening to come upon us, but thankfully never breaking through.  Spring will find us ready next year, raised beds in hand.

The evening ended with a romp over and above those beds by my own pup, fast as the wind with a huge grin upon his face. 

Such a blessed good day.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Saturdays...

It is nearly 8am and the kids have just risen.  Sleeping in, I say... ;)

Colby and I have been up since 5:30.  I have run my two miles, and he has had his walk.  We have cleaned the chicken coop (more I than him...) and cared for the guinea pigs.  We have walked the garden and harvested the potatoes.

I am now deep within my next cup of coffee.

It has been a good morning.

We are now off for a round of harvesting and baking.  I have crust to make for a lunch time quiche, to be accompanied by home fries from this morning's harvest.  Tomatoes need to be picked and bought in for the makings of sauce, and green beans will need to be prepped  for a round of canning dilly beans.

It will be a busy day.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Mornings...

It is 5:13 am, and I have been up since 3:50am.  The alarm went off like a starting pistol, and we were off. 

By 4:15am, I was hard at work in the kitchen.  The giant garden of the summer, which kept me so very busy weeding and planting, is now keeping me tied to the kitchen.  Cherry tomatoes are slow roasting in the oven, complete with olive oil and spices.  Water is readying to boil to blanch the green beans.  And once that is done, as soon as light hits the sky, we are back out to the garden to see what else can be harvested in the early morning hours.

There is no sleeping in during harvest days.

I know that I have scarcely a post to my name these days.  The summer has run away, and taken me with it, caught up in its warm rays and growing days.  But, I will be back soon with updates and pictures - so much has happened.  The baby chicks are now nearly full grown, and (I think) even saw fit to lay an egg.  We adopted a puppy, who is my new gardening (digging!) companion.

There is so much to write, and so little time.  So, until I can get back again...

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Thursdays....

So, I have been MIA for four weeks now.  No posts, no writing, nothing.  I know. 

It has been a crazy four weeks.  I am glad they are over.  I tried to write about them last night for a post, but it was just too much to say, and too small a period to say it in.  So, we will just say it has been crazy, and move forward.

'K?

Good.

So, anyways.  It is Thursday.  During the summer, this is my extra day off. So, given that it is a day off, it only seems natural to rise at 4:15am, pack the husband and send him off to work, do a 2 mile run, and then weed the insanely large garden for ages....and then tend to the wee ones when they rise...right?  Right?

No, I didn't think so either.  But, hey - at least I squeezed a shower in there, too.

So, let's see what the rest of the day bring, shall we?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A late start....

We are off to a purposeful late start to the morning.

Well, not totally purposeful.  We did not mean to forget to set the alarm clock, which should have awakened us at 4:30am instead of 5, but the husband was still out the door on time and I still got my run in without child related interruptions.  Which is a good thing, as this mom does not begin to wake until the first mile is behind her.

We have decided that the kids will not be attending their school-sponsored all-day field trip today, so there is no early to rise incentive today.  My son awoke around 6:30, and my daughter just graced us with her presense about 20 minutes ago.  She swears that she was up all night - didn't get a wink of sleep....but the lady who checks on her each night knows better ;)

The extra sleep agrees with them.  Voices are lower, there are secret giggles...they are getting along.  Gone is the rush, rush, rush, of the weekday morning.  We will stay, right here, until about 9:15, and then will pack a bag and load van.  Once in town, they will hop in the truck with my husband and head for a (relatively) nearby ice cream factory for a daddy-sponsored field trip.

It will be delicious, I am sure.

I will stay in town to work in the office, enjoying the peace that the post-tax-season environment brings.  Work is still plentiful, but not back breaking.  Enjoyable in many way, I venture to say.  And a very good chance of pace from the weekend gardening marathons....

My hands are just beginning to heal from last weekend.  My sunburn?  Well that is another thing.  Damn sunblock - it just can't keep up.  And the garden is only about a quarter of the way in....  Memorial Day weekend will provide many, many hours to hopefully plant the rest.

Hopefully.

But, until the busy-ness sets in again, I will rest and enjoy.  Soak in this peace and have another cup of coffee.

And enjoy.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Stubborn baby chicks....

The baby chickens refused to get in the coop tonight.

Simply refused.

I don't know that reason - maybe a rude feathered lady.  Something.  But I tried to tuck them in at 8:30, and then at 8:45, to no avail.  So, then, when I just heard some peeping outside the door to the chicken yard, I opened it slowly and pounced.  Scooped all three up and tossed them right into the coop.

Well, not tossed, exactly.  But, it probably wasn't so comfortable.

But now, they are safe.  Annoyed, but safe. No skunk snack here.  Done.

And the night is nearly done.  The kids are watching a movie upstairs, the husband is watching Swamp People or the like downstairs.  And I am here.  Done.  Or at least waiting to be done.  And asleep.

Tomorrow promises to be a busy day.  I will arise with the sun to get an early morning run in, and then head for the garden.  More seeds to go in, more ground to till.  Then T-Ball plant sales, team picture days, and general kid-related running about.  I will need all of the sleep that tonight will bring.  It will be a long day...



Sunday, May 13, 2012

Busy....

It has been challenging remembering to get online.  The days been taken over by so many things.  By the time I have completed by to-do list for a given day, a new one has begun.

We finally got some new chicks to add to the flock.  I purchased 3 pullets from a breeder in a nearby town.  That trip alone was eye opening.  I drove to a part of a familiar town that I was completely unfamiliar with - I didn't even know section an area existed, but there, on the side of a mountain was the most beautiful sheep farm.  The green rolled on for acres, sheep dotted the field in the way you read about in story books, and their hen house was an actual little house.  So beautiful - I think I fell oh-so-slightly in love.

The garden has been moving forward, more and more raised beds being created each weekend.  I am worried about keeping up with it all once we have passed planting and moved on to the weeding strange, but, well, you don't know until you try.  And try we will....  Dandelions are already popping up with a vengence.

The plants that had been growing full force in our dining room have been moved out to the garage to be hardened off.  The tomato plants average about 18 inches tall, and I am very excited about them.  We have been watching the weather closely, and I think that next weekend may be their weekend....  For planting that is. 

So far, onions & potatoes are the only items that have been actually planted in this years garden.  Asparagus is coming up, but that was planted years ago.  Garlic went in last Fall, and we are hopeful that will be popping up any day.  Time will tell.  We are getting very tired of purchasing our produce from outside sources.  It will lovely to begin our grocery shopping in the back yard once again.

I am continuing to run, training for a 5K that may or may not happen.  That isn't really the point anymore.  I am finding that in running, the thoughts racing through my head each and everyone straighten themselves out and make sense.  So, it is 2 miles every morning and 2 or 3 miles nearly every evening.  It is a good thing. 

It is Mother's Day today...but it really doesn't effect our household.  A few well wishes and token gifts - it is hard to get your heart around a holiday that really doesn't exist outside of Hallmark.  So, the day will filled with some cooking and cleaning, along with a visit from some friends.  I may dig through my seeds packets and see if any should go in today - seeing as how the skys are providing us with a nice light rain and some warm-ish temps.

But, for how, I think that it is breakfast time.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Coming back....



So, we are joining in with the Yarning Along with Ginny and Tami's Amis' Work in Progress and Ambassador Crochet for the first time in ages...and I am happy to be coming back.

At the moment, I am working with some natural tone wool yarn for use in making a cardigan.  I am hoping to make it similar to the one the I made my daughter in the winter...one which is still in her closet, folded and waiting for use.
This is a project that I am only using to hold time as I await the real prize.  The prize which is beautifully dyed wool from sheep at a farm that my friend manages with her family.  Never before have I been about to have any connection to the fiber I use, and this, I am cherishing.

As I have blogged in the past, my friend is Katie from West Bay Farm in Maine.  I would encourage anyone looking to support a small business to give her wool a try.  They don't have a fully working website for yarn sales, but if you visit their FaceBook website and send her a message, she would love to chat.  She does some dyeing ahead of time, but enjoys custom orders.  At the moment, I am eagerly awaiting an order of two skeins of a green and purple color blend which will be crocheted into a lacy shawl.  In the picture above in a scarf done in her aqua and purple color blend. 


As for the literary side of this blog...well, I am at a bit of a stand still.  I am back to the stage of re-reading old favorites...currently being, well....the Twilight series.  Yes, I know.  Crazy.  I just haven't found any thing else that I feel like losing myself in at the moment.  I would, however, love some suggestions.  What are you reading?  Any good story lines out there?

So that is all on this end.  I look forward to doing some blog hopping now and seeing what everyone else in doing.  Want to join me?  Head on over to the Yarn Along with Ginny, Tami's Amis' Work in Progress, and Ambassador Crochet.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Asparagus!!!!


A crafty indulgence....

OK – so while my technical issues have taken a brief break, and it appears that I can actually "blog", I thought that I would continue with an update.

So, as you know, tax season is over, and, well, I thought gardening season was here.  I mean…the tomatoes are ready!
 
 

We had many days in the garden, tilling up the dirt and readying the beds.  I am just itching with the need to plant my seedlings and get some potatoes in the ground.  I mean, we had temps in the 80’s in March.

It is time, isn’t it?

But this weekend, we had a surprise.

Snow!

Yes, snow.  Horrid, isn't it?  I do not love.  The green grass is now crunching underfoot with a fresh coating of frost, and the feathered ladies are staging a sit-in within the coop.

So, I have plenty of time to spend indoors.  Time for cleaning, organizing, ironging…..oh how the list goes on and on…

But, all is not lost, as I have also been a very spoiled girl. 

Why, you ask?  Well, the craft is back!  (And yes, I realize that I rhymed that, and therefore sound a bit like a tool…so goes…)

I have a friend, Katie, who runs West Bay Farm in Maine with her husband and their children.  Katie is a friend from back in the old college days when we were both accounting students learning about deferred tax assets, and business consolidation journal entries….you get the picture.

It very long time ago.

(I would insert a picture to demonstrate just how long ago it was…but honestly, who needs that? ;)  )

But, anyways, on the farm, they have lots of different livestock, but sheep are the highlight of this story.  Cause, as you know, sheep are a fiber animal, and fiber is wool, and wool is yarn... and well, that is one of my most favorite items in the whole wide world.

'Cause yarn means crochet, which means that Lee Ann is very, very happy :).

Katie hand dyes the wool herself, and she even takes custom orders for weight and color….  So, I have indulged.  And I am spoiled.

I am in heaven.

Truely, truely in heaven.

You should check it out - seriously.  It is very, very awesome.  And for wool, it is incredibly soft.  So soft that my daughter already claimed the pink purse I made from their two-ply wool yarn for her very own…to be home to some Littlest Pet Shop friends…

I am thinking about stealing it back, but that would be very un-mommy-like, and we can’t have that…

Their website for yarn sales isn't up and running quite yet, but you can visit their West Bay Farm Face Book page, and send her a message for details….

And don’t forget to tell her I said “Hey” ;)  And that I had this thought…for some yarn…well, you get the idea ;)

Friday, April 27, 2012

Hurray....?

I have been having technical difficulties.

Days before the end of tax season, my netbook just gave up and died. 

My phone, normally quite smart, have been proving that it truely is a baby Droid...

And then, our old laptop, which I thought was OK, proved that it is truely old.  So old that it runs on a browser that it no longer supported by Blogger, and once I tried to update the browse, the whole thing freaked out and refused to budge.

I wondered when, oh when...I would be back...

But today, I logged in to Blogger, and found that I could type this post.

Of course, it states "Some parts of Blogger will not work and you may experience problems".

But...hurray..?

Yes, let's call it hurray. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Moving forward....

Today marks the third day that I have spent a good part of the afternoon in the soon-to-be garden turning over soil.  This is hard work!  And my body, having spent the better part of the last three months parked in front of a computer, is exhausted.  I keep thinking that if I just keep moving forward, it will start to come together.

I am still working towards that.

Yawn.

Thankfully, we have a solid month before anything actually gets planted in the garden.  Plenty of time to get my act together.  We will get there.  In the meantime, I enjoy browsing all of the seed packets I collected over the past months.  Three types of pumpkins...hordes of onions...more tomatoes that I will know what to do with.

The stuff dreams are made of.

But, for now, we are just maintaining the status quo.

We are now down to 11 chickens.  It is such a small number for us.  I keep counting and recounting them at night, thinking that someone must be missing.  But no - there are just that few.  Once a day or so, I think about adopting a few more, and then promptly change my mind as soon I as I go outside at dawn to find that yet another skunk found their way into the chicken yard.  The ladies are yet unharmed, but those skunks make a horrid mess.

I am not a big fan of cleaning those messes.

I don't even like to do the laundry....

The husband has big plans for the homestead, of which I am only just learning about.  That's the thing about tax season.  You get to put huge blinders on and focus on the task as hand.  And the husband move forward to price out wood stoves, plans to hire a friend to build a wood shed, and looks into buying a camper for use on our property across town.

Should make for an interesting summer...

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Done.

It is done.

Tax season is done.

Sounds surreal, doesn't it?

Done.

I realize that it has been weeks and weeks since I have posted here.  And once my brain has returned, I am sure that I will be back and posting up a storm...

But now?  No, 'fraid not.  I am on empty.  Truely and completely empty.  Not a single fun and creative thought up in my little head.  My head even feels empty.

Today, I met up with some of the ladies from work, and we enjoyed some rest and relaxation at a local spa.  And I attended my much cherished chiropractic appointment, where the good doctor straightened me back into a straight line. 

I am now good and sleepy.  Before 7pm.

So, for blogging...I got noth'in.

But, on a plus side, I did vaccuum my house for the first time in weeks today ( I know, nasty...you don't need to tell me).  And yesterday, I cleaned some bathrooms. 

Good times.

So, I will be back soon.  And it will be lively and inspired.  Really.  Promise.

Is it bed time, yet?

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Mind blowingly busy...

To say that the world is busy on this end would be an understatement.  We are in the dead heat of tax season - the point where it is all hands on deck, your main exercise comes from from run/walking from one end of the office to the other, and the time that I really wish I had those sneakers that have the wheels on the bottoms.  'Course, at that point, I would simply run into the doorways of co-workers...but you get the idea.

I no longer dream regular dreams.  I dream of spreadsheet allocations, tying out trial balances, and tracking foreign investment income.  It is an odd sense of comfort, as lately, in my dreams, my work has been perfect.  I appreciate the lack of a panic-y cold sweat.  And, as my dreams are just a continuation of my days, it is not hard to get back in the groove each morning.  I never left it.

I got up early today get some work in, and now it is time to start moving on some home items.  Chickens, cats, dishwasher.  The day to day affairs.  But rest assured, the end is in sight.  Soon, the summer days of gardening and romping outside will be here.

Just a few more weeks....and I will be back :)

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Here come the peas!



After a week of dancing with the IRS, Sunday mornings are for the homestead.  There is much to do, and a span of hours to get it all done.

During the week, my husband cares for the kids, animals, and house, so indoors, it is only the once weekly necessities that draw us in.  Bathrooms, ironing, vaccuuming - all tackled before 7 am.

Glad to have that behide me.

Once the kids, and the sun, was up, it was onwards and outdoors.  Cleaning chicken coops, hauling wagons full of composted hay to the garden, continuing the annual spring extravanga of raking gravel off of the front yard.  Oh, yeah.  That's the fun stuff.

And lets not forget about those guinea pigs - who need their giant condo of an adobe cleaned out every Sunday...  Not the fun stuff.  But, they are soft, and randomly cute as they beg for carrots everything single time I walk by them on the way to the fridge....

Wonder if that means I am walking by the fridge too often....

Today was also the day to rack the 4 half gallon containers of soon-to-be hard cider.

Or, at least, I hope they will be hard cider....

Really hope.

The seedlings started last weekend are popping up - broccoli, kale, onions.  Tomatoes, however...well, I don't know.  Hidden, they are.  But hidden, I hope they do not stay.  This is the first summer that our garden's bounty will be feeding more than our own family. 

Those tomatoes have a job to do.

And now it is 8am.  And I will probably continue the morning by begging my kids to get dressed, and heading back outside again.  High temps are in our future, and I was to get my share before it is back to the office this afternoon. 

'Cause, that's just how we roll ;)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Wednesday again?

Holy goodness, it is Wednesday already.  Shocking, I know.  Or, maybe you already realized it...

Tax season is here with its gleeful array of documents and forms, so postings here lately are sparse...  So goes the days. 

But these are days made ever sweeter by the knowledge that every hour worked now is an additional hour home in the summer, with family, chickens, and wild expanse of garden.  I may be tired, but I am also very blessed and happy.

It is a good life.

And now, it is to bed I go.  Sleep well, friends :)

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Yarning along, with a throw back in time...



Hi everyone.  It is that time again - we are Yarning Along with Ginny and joining in with Tami's Amis' Work in Progress  and Ambassador Crochet !

As you can see from the picture, my scarf is growing.  It is being done in a spider web lace pattern, and the fiber is a Lions Brand wool. 

The new addition to the line up is a gift for a little one.  The fiber, Paton's Silk Bamboo blend is delightful - so incredibly soft.  The pattern is a bit of a granny stitch, reminiscent of by son's blanket, and is growing fast.

For reading, I have been going back to some old favorites.  The Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon.  Love, love, love it!

Did I say love?

Favorite scene?  In Voyager, when Claire travels back in time to Jamie, entering his printshop, only to have him faint in shock from the sight of her.

Ah, love...

Jamie and Claire can make anything better.

Have you read this series?  What is your favorite scene?
  Head on over to Ginny's, Tami's, and Ambassador's Crochet other interesting ventures of fiber fun. 

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A week gone by...

Well, the week got away from me.  I meant to post before now, I REALLY did!  But, I did not.  A blink, a wish, I don't know.  The week as gone by....

March is here.  The start of spring, or so I thought.  However, temps in the 40's have given way to the single digits, and our poor chickens are back to shivering in their coop.  I, however, think that I am adjusting to the temps - a thought made obvious by the fact that I continue, dispite efforts to the contrary, to leave my coat in the car.  Oh well. 

Last weekend, I racked my second batch of hard cider, and I wonder if it might be ready by the end of tax season.  I hope so - it would add to the celebration.  A celebration that is a bit odd, I am realizing.  See, my children have begun referring to the end of tax season as if it was a holiday to rival Christmas.  Easter is has gone by the wayside, and my coming birthday does not get a thought.  But, the end of tax season?  Oh yes - they are excited :) 

This coming weekend, I hope to start some seeds for the garden.  Onions, sweet peas, broccoli...delicious delights.  I ordered the seeds when grass could be seen in the dead of winter.  Now that spring is around the corner, and snow is here, I am not feeling enthused yet.  But, action will bring reaction, and the inside spurt of gardening will be a delightful rousing event. 

Can you tell I am looking forward to the warmer days?

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Onward to a new project!


Hi everyone.  It is that time again - we are Yarning Along with Ginny and joining in with Tami's Amis' Work in Progress  and Ambassador Crochet !

I am happy to report that I finished my daughter's sweater over the weekend - Hurrah!!  Such a relief.  I am really happy with how it turned out, and am thinking that another (maybe in a bigger size....) may be in my future.  

AND....drum roll please....she EVEN wore it!  Well, for about 5 minutes, but in my book, that totally counts!

Next up is a scarf for myself - selfish, I know ;)  *giggles*. 

I am using the spider web lace pattern that I used for a holiday gift back in December.  Something nice and easy.  And a tad bit relaxing :)


  Head on over to Ginny's, Tami's, and Ambassador's Crochet other interesting ventures of fiber fun.


Monday, February 27, 2012

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Fiber, seeds, and trees...


It was a good day. 

I finished my daughter's sweater, which was a huge relief.  She has been asking for it daily since I began work on it 3 weeks ago.  Foolishly, I did not use a pattern, so the process entailed many, many bouts of trying on the interim project.  Next time, though, I will have more of a clue and will know where to start.

Now, I wonder what to do next....socks, anyone?

Our first order to seeds arrived today.  March is typically my seed starting month, so soon I will be spouting greens and turning my dining room into a Chia pet... I ordered 100 Jiffy pellets for seedlings, but I am now realizing that my starting order should have been closer to 200... I will use 100 on onion sets alone.  Oh well.

The logging has begun on our property across town.  Since the land is part of the Vermont Land Use program, there are certain things that need to be done to increase the health of the land and habitat for natural residents.  This year, that is includes a large amount of logging.

We drove by the property today and saw the progress.  The stacks of cut wood was shocking.  I wish I had my wits about me enough to have taken a picture.  Huge trees that used to tower above us...

After seeing the sight, my six year old son immediately cast in to a lecture about how awful we were for having cut down those trees.  It hard to understand how such an act can be good for the land.  But, we know that it is...and dream of a green and lush wildlife preserve of sorts that may occur once the sun is allowed to shine down on more of the ground cover.

It will be a beautiful sight. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Coming along...



Good morning everyone!  It is Wednesday, and we are Yarning Along with Ginny and joining in with Tami's Amis' Work in Progress  and Ambassador Crochet today!

Just a super quick update.  As you can see above, I am working hard to finish my daughter's sweater, which will be a larger version of the sweaters we made for the ladies last week ( picture at left). 

I am not following at pattern, which means that I constantly making my daughter try on the sweater over and over again....but we are getting there!

I am just shocked that she is actually planning to wear the sweater....this, from the girl that I have to BEG to wear a coat during the winter... but that is another story ;)
Cross your fingers for the grand finale this weekend!!

  Head on over to Ginny's, Tami's, and Ambassador's Crochet other interesting ventures of fiber fun.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Not your typical Vermont winter...

Now, I am not complaining - no, not at all - but this is not a typical Vermont winter.


Spike peers out the back screen door and grasps a scent of fresh air.  'Cause it is 38 degrees.  Seriously!!  This time last year, we were stuck in FEET of snow.

Not today.


Sugar is tramping on the strawberry patch.  I just hope the warm weather doesn't take that patch out of winter hibernation too early....


The ladies are enjoying a nice graze in the sun.  Not a normal occurence, which makes it all that much more special.


I can now see the ground that we will be planting in a few short months.  I placed the first seed order yesterday, and am eagerly awaiting the excitement of starting my seedlings.

Spring is truely right around the corner...

Friday, February 17, 2012

Awesome awesomeness....

I have a new love, and she is Juanita the Weasel.

Yes, you read correctly.  A Weasel.

I think that for now on, Juanita will break all of my breaking news. 

If I have breaking new, that is. 

Which is kind of unlikely...given the season.

What season, you ask?


  Mad love to The Bloggess providing this awesome bit of awesomeness.  Did I say she was awesome?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A sweater? Naturally....


Good morning everyone!  It is Wednesday, and we are Yarning Along with Ginny and joining in with Tami's Amis' Work in Progress  and Ambassador Crochet today!

So, after last week's fun of making dresses for the 'ladies', we had to move up in the wardrobe.  Seeing that the ladies arms were bare, and well, it IS winter, it was natural for my daughter to ask for some sweaters to keep them warm this winter.

And then, of course, it makes total sense that up next was a request for sweater for herself.  Naturally!

I asked my son if he would also like me to make him a sweater....

'No", he said, "I want a movie".

Naturally :)
As you can see from the top picture, I am using Fisherman's Wool for the fiber, and it has been delicious.  So good to work with.  The stitches are limited to a V-stitch and a half double stick, so nothing complicated, but quite soothing to work on.

And, on that note, I must bid 'ado'.  The shower is calling me - it is time to begin the morning!

  Head on over to Ginny's, Tami's, and Ambassador's Crochet other interesting ventures of fiber fun.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

The done and undone...

Yesterday, I awoke with the moon shining down from the silvery sky.  The lightness glowed through the room and brought a general happiness to my thoughts.  I love awakening naturally like this.  The fact that it was 3:35 am did not change this feeling.  Instead, I took charge of the morning, resetting the alarm for my husband, who was home and able to care for the kids before they were off for school, and headed down for the start of the day. 

The kitchen found me brewing two double espressos, which I up-ended into a thermos, and after a quick dressing, was out the door.  It is an early morning at the office - which continued into a long productive day. 

And then found me returning home with the stars.

Today is a different story.  My husband was the early riser, setting off before the dawn for a hunting excursion with a friend.  I remained warm and sleeping in our bed until my son awoke and snuggled in.  Soon after was my daughter, who, with a new sense of independence, set about to beginning her day without us.  She feels, that a the ripe age of seven and one half, a new need to take more responsibility for starting her own morning, heading downstairs, turning on the heat, and finding her breakfast.  I can't complain for this new movement, but is does leave me a bit nostalgic for the days that I was a bit more needed.

Now the day is seriously underway and I am trying to right my sails and figure out just what needs to be done.  The chickens are cared for, but the guinea pigs still need their cage to be cleaned out.  A quiche is in the oven, but I have not yet started a new batch of hard cider.  The list of done and undone is spread out before me, and I may need some more fortification before I can jump on board.

It will be a busy day.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Chicken gold...


I went out to the coop this morning to let the ladies out, and found a lovely surprise.

Six beautiful eggs lay in waiting.

And these six were in addition to the several my husband uncovered late yesterday evening.

What a wonderful late winter gift to see that our chickens are well and thriving, despite the crazy weather we have been having.

We are lucky indeed.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Three little dresses

 
 

Good morning everyone!  It is Wednesday, and we are Yarning Along with Ginny and joining in with Tami's Amis' Work in Progress  and Ambassador Crochet today!

This past week, my daughter had that nasty stomach bug that has been going around.  So, to make her feel better - or at least put a smile on her- we whipped up a few gifts for 'the ladies' ('cause goodness forbid that we call them dolls....).  It was nice to work on something smaller that I could actually start and finish in a few
hours.

That is all on this end :)  With the ramping up of tax season, any literary fun is limited to IRS publications and tax literature...and I just have a feeling you would rather I didn't share all of that fun ;).  So, three little dresses it is...
  Head on over to Ginny's, Tami's, and Ambassador's Crochet other interesting ventures of fiber fun.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

A new home...

A new home for the fair guinea pigs.  Spoiled?  Maybe...

But, the ladies are happy, with plenty of room to stretch their legs. :)  We had no idea that guinea pigs would grow so big! This is their third, and hopefully last, home.






Monday, February 6, 2012

Blessings - from a weary weekend.


Joining in today with He Sows and She Sews today, for "I'm Blessed"

And my blessing for today may sound a bit odd, but from this Monday morning tired momma, it is is true one.

I feel blessed that my kids are at the age where they can tell me what hurts.  Gone are the days where I blindly guess why they are sick - they are not shy at telling me what hurts, why they feel sick, and just what I can do about it.  And that there - is a great blessing.

'Course, if we could get the illness to leave the house entirely, that would be a GREAT blessing, but we'll save that for another day.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

A great night and a early morning...

It was a good evening.  A very good evening.

The kids had been planning it all day.  Since around ten in the morning yesterday, my son was asking "is it time?".  The sun may have still been shining, but he didn't want to be late.  He put on his pajamas at one in the afternoon and started packing his bag.  Heavens, even my daughter came around and began to admit she was excited.

Where were we going, you ask?  Why, the local elementary school for movie night, of course.

See, it is a great affair.  Families from all around gather together and pull up space in the gym.  The floor is decorated in a patchwork of blankets, quilts and Pillow Pets.  Kids arrive clad in pajamas and dig into burgers and hot dogs purchased on site.  It is something that my children love. Delightfully organized chaos.  The kids run about before the start of the movie and during intermission, enjoying the sheer joy of being in the school after hours and in their pajamas.  The parents gather and chat.  Snacks flow in plentiful abundance.  It is good times.

I am really loving this community and the way you can just sit down and join up.  As a matter of fact, upon walking in the gym door, I got the "Hey Lee Ann!" call and was motioned over by one of the volunteer mothers.  They were needing a parent volunteer to help with the recycling and composting program for the cafeteria and thought I might be interested.  And I am...just need to know some details on the where and when....and how I am going to fit it in between tax returns...but we will get there. 

But, like all good things, the fun did come to an end.  At 2:35am, to be exact.  Right about when my daughter came down with the stomach bug that has been haunting the corners of this house.  I will spare you the details - it wasn't pretty.  And now that she has fully exhausted herself, and is starting to doze off, I am finding some reprieve as I ready to prep another espresso and consider some work.  Naps will come later.  Many, many naps. 

It was a great night, but a very early morning...

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Random thoughts....

I am a woman of many random thoughts this morning.

For starters, it occurs to me that there are two types of people in my tax season mind.  Those who take to the caffeine, and those who don't.  And, of those who do, there are the ones who are satisfied with a nice cup of coffee and those who prefer mainlining the darkest espresso they can brew.  I am of the latter company.

I had to clean the guinea pig cage this morning.  We always use a bedding of wood shavings, but, today, I am out.  So, I have borrowed hay from the chicken shed and used that instead.  A riot broke out in the guinea pig cage - I think that they have been spoiled by the soft cleaning shavings of the past.  Either that, or I am really just a bad guinea pig owner.

My son just woke up.  There are two sides to my view point on this one...1) Oh man!  This means I need to share the laptop; and 2) You know, he really is quite warm and cozy.  Almost wish he got up sooner.  And than, maybe he could have cleaned the guinea pig cage!  Well, not really....

There are more thoughts to share, but now my son really wants the laptop.  So, my time here is done!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The first day of February....

So, it is official.  February is here and the days are escaping me.  Wednesday has arrived, and while I normally linked up to some crafting sites to share what I have been working on...the day has arrived, and I have nothing to share!  Oh well - 'tis the season.

I am looking forward to the weekend.  And not for a football reason.  This weekend, I will rack the first batch of hard cider and start another.  I will make some chili and package it up for a week of lunches.  I will hopefully order my seeds for the gardening season, and make a final decision about bees.  All big happenings.

But, until then, I will continue taking one moment at a time and work through this first day of February.  Happy February everyone....

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Cleanings....and growth.

It has been pretty peaceful, yet productive, on the homestead for the last couple of days.  It has been nice, but such rhythm lets one day roll into the other, until you sudden realize that it is Sunday already.

Yesterday was spent cleaning.  Our house, like many others, have been run over by all things 'kid' for the last several years or so...  We have purposely had hand-me-downs and upcycled furniture to get us through these growing years, as we know that many things will go to ruin by basic wear and tear of two active children before their growing is done.

We are finally trying to move past this, and yesterday was a great step in that direction.  Yesterday morning, the kids went off to a day with their grandparents, and the husband and I tore much of the house apart.  We are overrun with the outgrown toys and clothes that the kids had no use or need for anymore.  At the end of our work, we had a minivan full of contributions to the local GoodWill and 1 lone bag of trash.  That bag was mostly filled with broken items that would have no second use...but I still hate the thought ot it.  Joel Salatin's words ring in my ears, saying there is no "away"...but I am glad that the reuseables far out weighed those items headed for the landfill.

Today will hopefully bring a new-to-us dining room table and chairs.  Since we moved to this house, we have been using a table and chairs set that has taken quite the beating.  They have been used for every possible reason...craft...paint...play doh...and some eating, of course, and they are showing their wear.  The table leaf was crafted by my husband in the hours before a long ago Thankgiving dinner when seating expansion was needed, and the chairs are especially on their last legs.  The seats have been replaced by wooden boards and covered with seat cushions, and the legs are held in place by lots of spare wood screws.  I am looking forward to chairs that do not arc and threaten to tumble each time we sit on them. 

The rest of the possible future happenings are quiet.  The dog frenzy has calmed down to a mere whisper, and my search for bees this spring has led me to point of reconsideration.  But, for now I will table those items to the back of my mind and just look forward to a day home with my children.  The rest may unfold as it may.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Dogs???

So, there might be dogs on the horizon on this homestead.  And not just any dogs, but 100 plus pound purebreed German Shepards to be precise.  Oh yes.  Two of them.

See, its kind of a long rambling story.  My husband has to take a trip next year - a fairly long trip.  He has done this kind of long trip before, having gone to Texas several years ago, so that kids are familiar with the idea.

My son, however, now thinks that everyone going on a long trip must be going to Texas.  'Cause that were people go, right?  Hmmm....sounds good to me - bet its warmer than Vermont right now...

But anyways, I come home two days ago to learn that the kids now know about the pending trip.  Or rather, I come home to hear "MOM!  DAD IS GOING ON A TRIP TO TEXAS AND WE ARE GETTING A DOG!!".

Well, I think, a good evening to you too!

A dog had been a discussion point, but had been tabled until after the husband had returned from the trip.  Now it was past the table, and flying straight to reality.

So, the discussion moves on.

It is my daughter who is most excited.  "Mom, Dad said we are getting a dog!  I want to name it Watcher or Hunter, or Ranger...or Princess!  Yes!  Princess!"

Giggles..."OK darl'in, go tell that to your Dad...."

Then the discussion ensues..."This can be my dog, right?  The rest of you can get your own dog.  Right?"

Then I worry about the dog not having a canine friend.  'Cause I am just that crazy.

So, I ask my son "Do you want a dog?".

My son answers "No.  I want a movie"

Oh, well that is easier...

My daughter carries on "I am going to get a dog named Princess and I will enter him (yes, HIM) into a dog show, and with all of my winning, I will buy my dog toys".

Now, that spurs an idea with my son. 

He follows with "Yes!  I need a dog too!  I will enter him in a dog show and with all of my winnings, I will buy my dog a MOVIE!!".

Oh my goodness, I love the way he thinks.

So, stay posted....time can only tell how this turn out!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Fiber updates...



Good morning everyone!  It is Wednesday, and we are Yarning Along with Ginny and joining in with Tami's Amis' Work in Progress  and Ambassador Crochet today!

As you can see from the pic, I am still working on the same sweater, which is looking oddly like a tube skirt that this point....but I have gone through my bag 'o projects and found a nearly forgotten one WIP.  The colorful friend above is the start of a shawl done up in a woolen Paton's fiber.

And since I can think of several shirts to match, I hope to finish that one soon! 

Is it normal to feel like I am 'cheating' on my sweater-in-process?  *giggles*

Any who - that's all on this end.  My cats are sending me dagger eyes, waiting to be fed, so I must get moving!

  Head on over to Ginny's, Tami's, and Ambassador's Crochet other interesting ventures of fiber fun.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Blessings of independence....


Joining in today with He Sows and She Sews today, for "I'm Blessed"

I am blessed with kids that are growing and becoming more responsible and independent each day.

Today, as I was hiding away in the bathroom, covertly putting on my makeup, I heard the bang of dishes falling into the sink. 

My kids had finished their breakfast and cleared their dishes without any reminders or prompting.

A huge blessing, for sure!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Big happenings....

Such happenings on the homestead these days!

As you know, we were hoping to get bees this year.  Yesterday, I finally took the steps to email a company in southern Vermont who sells bees and bee equipment.  They are a solid 3+ hours away, but well worth the travels I think.  As long as we get our names on the list, we can reserve a bundle of bees for pick up in May.  Something tells me we will be taking the truck for that trip ;).

On other news, we are seriously considering installing a wood burning fireplace in the homestead.  Currently, we do not have any secondary heating source, but if we ever want to begin to step away from even part of the grid, we will have to start somewhere.  And, with our forested land across town, we should have plenty of food for the fire.  I am very excited, as I envision cosy warm nights, crocheting by the light of the flame.

Big happening down on the homestead!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

House rules...

I am realizing that we have some weird rules in our house.  Most families have rules for their kids like, "Don't jump on the furniture", or "Wash your hands before dinner".  You know, things that make sense.

In our house, our rules are much more specific.  We have to be.  These kids are creative, and they try to out think us at every turn. 

You want some examples?  Hmmm...let's see.

Well, for starters, we have, "No Candy Canes in the Bathtub",

And "No Stockpiling Water Balloons in Your Bedroom".

There is also "No Climbing into Chicken Coops",

"No Watergun Standoffs in the Bathroom When Your Mother is Trying to Get You Out of the Water."

And "No Climbing Up the Front of the Refridgerator".

Necessary rules include "No Drawing on Your Brother"

And "No Sitting on Your Sister's Head".

I really think that I shouldn't have to say these things....but, in this house, we do. We have learned from experience, if we don't make a rule for it, it will happen.  And these kids have limitless energy and creativity....

I, on the other hand, am running out of energy... ;)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Technical difficulties....

I have tech issues.

This dang old computer is positively refusing to let me navigate to more than two web screen before it is freezing up.  This ole guy is slowing me down!

I am beginning to wonder if it is trying to send me a message.

Each morning, I am in a battle to do quite a bit. 

I get up way before the roosters (not that we have any...nasty old buggar), to make my husband's breakfast and pack his lunch.  Once he is on his way to work, it is a mad dash to care for all of the pets (including the chickens, 'cause, in our house, those ladies are never going to be dinner....), start some wash, deal with dishes, consider vaccuuming (and then settle on sweeping, since it doesn't require lugging a big machine around), and getting dressed.  Then it is time for the kids to get up. 

And I am sure you can imagine what that entails. 

And the end of it all, I can't wait to finally land at the office, 'cause they let me sit down there.  And I do so appreciate sitting down.  It is a good place to be.

Once the work day is done, it is the 45 minute drive home (longer, of course, when the Vermont weather decides to act up), during which I eat popcorn, which in turn is considered dinner, and land home just in time to get the kids to bed.

Once they are tucked away, it is off to the treadmill for 30 minutes, then a quick shower, and back to bed.

Then we get up the next time and do it again!

My life has become a race from morning to night.

Why is that?

And could the computer be telling me something?  By freezing up, is it telling me to slow down, enjoy the moments, exist in each second of each day instead of constantly planning the next one?

Or is the dang old computer breaking?  'Cause that would really mess up my rhythm! ;)

Just a thought.... ;)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

No real changes...a fiber and literary non-update....


Good morning everyone!  It is Wednesday, and we are Yarning Along with Ginny and joining in with Tami's Amis' Work in Progress  and Ambassador Crochet today!

And I feel a bit silly joining in.  See, I am working on the same sweater, and reading the same book.  Nothing new here....

Except for a really bad photo....sorry about that!
But both are going well, and the book especially is eye opening.  This is one that I would love to see introduced to some high school reading lists....Even if you don't agree with Joel Salatin, his style is bluntly honest and refreshing.

Very, very thought provoking.

Well, that is all that I have for now.  The morning hours are coming upon me, and I have some lunches to pack...and kids to drag out of their beds to get ready for a day at school

  Head on over to Ginny's, Tami's, and Ambassador's Crochet other interesting ventures into literary and fiber fun.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Homebrewing...an update - Day 3


Just an early morning update on the home brew excitement.

The balloons filled with gas from the fermentation about 1 hour after they were capped on the bottles on Saturday.  Since then, they have remained filled.  I know that some of the gas is leaking through the pin pricks in the balloons, but those holes are so very small that I can't find them...oh well....details, details... ;)

In a close look at the bottles, you can really see that the fermentation is still in process, as tiny bubbles are in a constant race to the surface.

Homebrew, here we come!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The run to no where....is going somewhere!

So, it just occured to me that I haven't updated on the run to no where is ages!

Well, I am happy to report that it is back on and better than imagined.

After a week of no activity, and another week of slloowwwlllllyyyyy getting back in the groove, I am back to my daily dates with the treadmill.  And after a delicious dinner with friends, a plan has been made. 

We are doing a 5K!

Or, actually, we are doing 2 of them.

Now, I know that a 5K isn't all that daunting, and it isn't a marathon or anything, but this is brand new territory.  Organized anything is really not my scene....

But, with my friend by my side, we are going to tackle them.

So, we are in training. 'Course, this being the middle of winter, we have plenty of time for training (the runs taking place in the summer and all...) but such great motivation it is!

So, this is a Hurray!  We are IN!  And very excited!!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Adventures in homebrewing...

OK - the Day is Here!

No, I am not speaking of the Broncos v. Patroits (aka Tebow v. Brady).  While that game may dominate my house at the moment (Go Tebow!  Let 'Em Go!), this is not what we are speaking of today.

Today for the big homebrewing event!

Now, first to give proper credit - the recipe I based my brew on can be found here, but I will recap my fun below. 

And as you all know from my post earlier in the week, the recipe I used called for glass bottles.  And, as you all know, glass bottles are hard to find these days.  Plastic has taken over our world, and that is not all good.

So, where do we turn, you ask?  The trusty natural foods store, of course.  This was the only place that I could find glass bottles bigger than a beer bottle.  And what were these bottles holding?  Why, Vermont Organic Milk, of course! 

Feel free to cue angels singing...Now!

OK, but to be serious, and get now to business, the first course of action was to free up 2 of those glass bottles.  And my family can only drink so much milk.  So, into holding tanks they went (more about that later) and the now empty bottles had to be cleaned and sanitized.  I know that there was probably fancy ways to sanitize bottles for brewing and I found plenty of products on homebrewing sites, but here, we gotta work with what we got.  Which was bleach.

Yuck.

A small amount went into each bottle, and then we rinsed, rinsed, rinsed...and then rinsed again.  When absolutely no trace of bleach could be smelled, it was time to move forward.


The ingredients for this brew were very simple.  A gallon of unfiltered apple cider, four to six cups of sugar (white and/or brown), bread yeast, and some party balloons (more about that later, too).  The rule of thumb, as I read it, was that the more sugar, the sweeter the brew and the higher the alcohol content.  Now, as a complete novice, I can't vouch for this, but this is what I read.  So, to stick with a middle ground, I decided on 5 cups of brown sugar.

To start, you pour the sugar into a large sauce pan and then add about half of the cider.  Set another cup of cider aside for later.  On a low heat on the stove top, you mix the sugary solution until all of the sugar is dissolved.  This, of course, involves near constant stirring - burning would not be so good.
 
When the sugar is dissolved, turn off the heat and let it cool a moment.  Then take the other half of the cider and split it between to the two clean 1/2 gallon containers.  You, of course, do all of this with 1 full gallon container, but I am just working with what I have.


Once the clean containers are each about 1/2 full with the cold cider, add equal parts of the warm ultra sweetened cider to each.  You want to leave about  2-3 inches open at the top, so if you fall short, this is when you use the cider you set aside to top it off. 


And then, it is time to add the yeast.  Just 1/4 teaspoon of yeast into each and it is set. 

All that is left is to get the balloons, rinse them out (cause of the non stick stuff inside), and put a pin prick into each.  The stretch one over the mouth of each balloon.  Now, as the yeast is working its magic, the fermentation will happen, and then the balloon will blow up.  As this happens, gas will be able to escape the pin prick, but no bacteria will get back in.  Simple enough.


And now the work for today is done.  I will just keep an eye on the fermenting brew for the next two to three weeks, making sure that the balloon remains secure.  Then we will "rack" it, and sent aside for another couple of weeks.  Come summer or early fall, we will have our own brew to enjoy!

And, before I forget...we did find a home for all of that milk.  How, you ask?  Well, for cheese, of course!!

Quiet contemplation ...



The morning has quietly come upon us.  I closed my eyes last night and 7 am raced to the forefront.  With snow....

Lots of snow...

Other years, pre-wanna-be-farmer years, this wouldn't have bothered me.  I would have simply creeped downstairs, brewed some coffee and poured juice into cups for the kids, laid on the couch, awaiting wakefulness.

Not anymore.

We still have strict rules regarding our coffee-first approach around here, but if daylight has broken, the chickens have gotta come first.

So, it was out to the garage for me, to don my winter wear and grab a shovel.  Although I shoveled a great amount (twice!) last night, Vermont come upon us during the sleeping hours, and there are still more to go before I could out the coop door.

But now, the work is done for the moment, and I can enjoy these moments of quiet comtemplation - my coffee by my side and my cat by my feet.

It is a good way to be.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Homebrew planning...



So, first let me say that I am not a big drinker.  I don't like beer, can't stand most wine, and straight liquor might as well be rubbing alcohal to my taste buds.

But, I love hard cider. 

Truely, truely love.

So, inspired by another blogger, I am going to try my own home brew of the good ole stuff. 

The ingredients are pretty simple.  Unfiltered apple juice (aka apple cider), bread yeast (!!) and sugar.  And glass bottles.

Ah yes, the glass bottles.

Until I started looking around, I didn't realize just home much plastic has taken over.  Hardly anything larger than a bottle of beer is in glass.  And I needed big containers.  Like gallon or half gallon size.

But, after much racking of the brain, I found a solution.

Vermont Organic Milk!

It is still packaged and sold in glass bottles!  So, I headed to the local natural foods store and bought four of these breakable babies. 

And due to their precious cargo status, I proceeded to secure their safety by buckling them up in my daughter's booster seat.  Fitting, don't you think?

Just don't tell her....

I am hoping to get down to the nitty gritty of the homebrewing this weekend, and will post some updates them.  Until then, wish me luck.

I think I will need it....

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

On the fiber, and literary, front...


Good morning everyone!  It is Wednesday, and we are Yarning Along with Ginny and joining in with Tami's Amis' Work in Progress  and Ambassador Crochet today!

Once I finished my son's blanket last week, I was a bit at odds.  But, that didn't last long.  I am now working on a sweater - for myself!  I am using Lion Brand Yarn Fisherman's Wool which has been lovely to work with.

Now, this is my first time working on a sweater, and I am taking a bottoms up approach, so we will have to see how it goes.  But, I am hoping to finish it before the end of winter.

Wearing wool in summer isn't so much fun.

On the literary side, I have a few books going.  I read and finished Barnheart by Jenna Woginrich (check out her blog Cold Antler Farm - love it) and it inspired me to move on to Joel Salatin's Folks, This Ain't Normal.  It is wonderfully thought provoking, making me reconsider quite a few things in my day to day practices.  I appreciate his absolute blunt honesty about how he sees the world. 

I would easily put both of these books up with Barbara Kingssolver's Animal Vegetable Miracle, a book that I found to be completely life changing.

Well, that is all that I have for now.  The morning hours are coming upon me, and I have chickens to let out of their coop :)
  Head on over to Ginny's, Tami's, and Ambassador's Crochet other interesting ventures into literary and fiber fun.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

6am...

It is 6am.

The calm before the storm.

Does everyone else have this period of time?  You know, that small matter of minutes between when you finish your morning chores and the kids wake up?  That tiny period of time when you can sneak just one more cup of coffee before it all takes off at a flying leap?

I love this moment.  It never lasts long, and frankly, some mornings, it doesn't exist at all, but it is beautiful when it is here.  The time is yours, and is only halted by the sound of feet hitting floor up above you.  That's when the mad dash to be the first to get down stairs, the first for the biggest blanket, the ONE who gets the blue cup...when it all begins.

I know that I should fill this time for productive events.  Or at least eat breakfast.  But the cup of coffee and banana from 4:30 will have to do for now.  'Cause I am not getting off this couch until the house wakes up.  The kids are sleeping and the animals are cared for.  And for now, that is enough.

All is quiet.

Monday, January 9, 2012

I'm Blessed.


Joining in for the first time with He Sows and She Sews today, for "I'm Blessed"

Such a wonderful way to remember our blessings today, on a weekday that can get oh-so-crazy.

And I have so many blessings to be thank for for.

I am blessed by the extraodinary people in my life. 

My husband who understands that it is tax season, and that the brunt of the home and family responsibilities fall to him - and he jumps in without complaint. 

My children that are constantly questioning all facts of life and making me look deeper into my own assumptions and actions.

My co-workers who truly *get* the need for a work-home balance, in even the craziness of times, and are so very understanding of the many directions we are all pulled in everyday.  Such an positive environment makes your office space like a second home and your co-workers like family.

Oh yes, I am very blessed.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Multitasking...


Today is a day for puttering and getting stuff done.

The morning started a bit later than normal, with everyone arising at 6am instead of 4 or 5am.  I rather quite enjoyed it.  4am always comes way to early and is often unavoidable.  The husband is off for his 'one weekend a month' commitment, so it is just me and the kids at home.  An oddly quiet setting, with short loud bursts of kid noises...I am sure it will get much louder later, when the husband returns....

First up was the letting the chicken out in their yard.  The warmish temps have been to melting some of the snow fall, so we can begin to see some dirt again.  That may not sound too exciting, but to a chicken?  Oh yeah - its the good stuff.  You should see the crazy rolling, squacking, jostling as they all try for a turn at the best dirt patch.  I know, I don't really get it either, but I have had many a garden bed fall at the feet of a rolling chicken.

I know that this sounds a bit odd for a Vermonter, but, frankly, I am OK with the lack of snow.

However, it is with the aid of the snow that is still on the ground that I am able to see the stalking of *something* around the yard again last night.  I don't know what's been hanging around, but I feel confident in saying that it is up to no good.  The husband plans to set up his trail camera in the back yard, so I hope we will find out soon.  Based on the paw print, it looks to be a very large feral dog or a coyote.  Not so good.

After the chickens were freed and running around, I took some time to indulge.  The kids were catching up on their TV programing from last night (mommy yawn....), so I had a few moments to myself to gather the computer and log into High Mowing seed catalog online.  I am slowly building my wish list for the next growing season.  There are so many choices, and for once, I am excited to let loose a bit.  Imagine, green and PURPLE bush beans.  Oh yeah.  It's gonna be good....

Once I had to withdrawn from the computer, it was time to wash up, and clean up the abode, and then head to the dreaded grocery store.  It wasn't horrible, but it wasn't great.  I can't help it - I just don't like to grocery shop.  And no matter how great my list is, I alway forget something important.  Like dinner.  You know how it goes....

And now we are home.  The house is chill and not being able to decide what to do next, I am multitasking.  Many birds, one 30 minute time period...Riding the exercise bike (the knee is thankfully much, much better!), while taking turns writing and crocheting a a sweater that I really want to wear this winter.  I only hope that I can finish it this winter....

That, only time will tell.