Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Goats, Hens, Odds and Ends

It was a cool, dry weekend, so I thought it might be fun to go back to Split Creek Farm.  It's all about the goats!

Well, that's not true.  We saw some feathered friends...

...and a few other odds and ends.

I love the "guard animals" there.  So sweet.  What a pair!

Todd, as always, was a big hit.

At home, though, it's all about the turkeys.  It's been raining a lot, so on some days I've just gotten a glimpse of them feeding through my office window.  I counted 14 here!

Sometimes they come out into the sun.

It's been really busy here, with the uptick in business sales and the usual hustle-bustle that comes with the holidays.  But I'm more organized this year.  Christmas cards - mailed!  Christmas gifts - purchased, and some are actually wrapped!  I finished up a few last-minute craft projects and have started mailing them out.  I embroidered these napkins for a housewarming gift.  I *love* them and I think I'm going to make some for myself!

But for the most part, I haven't worked on anything for myself in about 2 weeks, and I might not have a chance until after the new year.  I have 2 quilts in the works, the ornament project from last week's blog, a knitted cowl I want to make, and some random embroidery projects...not to mention the massive cross stitch project I bought earlier this year that I'd like to start on soon!  So next year will be a busy one! 

But for now, I'm just going to make notes and prepare my project list.  It makes me feel organized and creates a great sense of anticipation!

Have a great week!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Pom Poms and Polar Bears

Rain, rain, rain!  It's probably been two months since we've had more than a 10-minute sprinkle.  I have missed it so much!

Not just rain, but quite a bit of wind.

Some bigger branches came down...

...and the pond filled with leaves, like it does every fall.

Our back Japanese Maple has very few leaves left, but the remaining ones are nice to look at!

We have a dwarf Japanese Maple in the front.  The leaves are the most beautiful brilliant red color!

Even the peonies are showing off today!

Between storms, squirrels are out and digging.

It's a lot easier to see their nests now, big tangles of leaves tucked away between branches.

The turkeys are out every morning, but it's always too dark to get a good picture.  Thankfully, our goslings - all grown up now! - are back.  I love to see them in the pond!

Since it's still quite warm (70 today!), I keep the windows open, both for the fresh air and for cat entertainment.  Tabitha is content to sit on a window sill and contemplate...

...but Bosewichte's long face is deliberately trying to make me feel guilty for keeping him indoors!

This is my busy season for work, so I don't have nearly as much time to craft.  I did recently finish a secret Christmas knitting project, with homemade pom poms!  I love them and am going to pom pom my next hat.

I spray-basted my 3 quilt layers together...hot, sweaty work crawling around on the stone tile and trying to straighten every wrinkle.  When finished, I tossed it over a rocking chair and am thinking about starting to machine quilt it...when I have time!

I recently got a good deal on some fat quarters of fabric, so named because they're one quarter of a yard.  Normally $2.50, I got these for around .40 each!  I'm not sure what I'll do with them, but it's nice to start growing a stash.

I recently bought this Alicia Paulson ornament-making kit that I ***LOVE***.  The tiny felt mitten design will be hand-stitched.  I want a white / brown / red theme for our Christmas tree so this is PERFECT!  And how cute is this coat?  I want this in a full-size model!

A clerk at the local Salvation Army gave me this mug for free when I asked about the price.  I brought it home and filled it with holly from the yard.  Now it's starting to feel a little festive!

It's dark and overcast now, and a storm is coming in this afternoon.  I just can't wait.  It reminds me of a book passage I read this week: 

"She rearranged the fire a little, mostly for the pleasure of handling the fluted steel poker, and sat down beside it.  Tea was already laid; there were honey sandwiches, brandy-snaps, and small ratafia biscuits; and there would, she knew, be crumpets.  Three new library books lay virginally on the fender stool, their bright paper wrappers unsullied by the subscriber's hand.  The clock on the mantlepiece chimed, very softly and precisely, five times.  A tug hooted from the river.  A sudden breeze brought the sharp tang of a bonfire in through the open window.  The jigsaw was almost complete, but there was still one piece missing...Mrs. Miniver, with a little sigh of contentment, rang for tea."  [Jan Struther, author]  

Doesn't that paint a lovely picture?  This weekend is supposed to be much cooler.  I'm going to make crumpets and curl up by the fire with a good book.  One of the many pleasures of my beloved fall.

Have a great week! 

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Scallops and Stars

A yarn haul!  Knitpicks has their annual sale right before Thanksgiving, and I always take advantage of their great deals.  I spent $50 and got ALL THIS YARN!

The back row is going to be a slate blue fair isle sweater with a mustard, red, grey, tan, cream, and green yoke.  The grey yarn in front on the left is going to be a shoulder-covering cowl.  The rest of the yarn is fingering weight.  I bought it because I like the colors (a little more subdued than appears in this photo) and they'll be great for hats and other stranded projects.  Hooray!

I finally got to wear my recently-knitted mittens in Missouri last week and I love them.  They're my favorite mittens ever because they're so snug and warm. 

Every night I've slowly been working on a scarf with scalloped wedges.  It's knitted and purled through the back loop on BOTH sides of the project, so I won't be done any time soon.  It's all right...I'm not in a hurry.

I haven't done a bit of quilting in the past 2 weeks...no time.  Before my trip, though, I did select a pattern for my new quilt and did a sample block with "junk" fabric.

It's a star within a star.  I'm going to be using peach, cream, sage green, and mustard colored fabric.  I can't WAIT to get started!!

The weather has been cooling off here, and the leaves are beautiful.  This is the view from my home office window:

I admire it daily!  Todd and I were out in the yard this weekend and I took more pictures of beautiful leaves. 

Borga kept an eye on things while Todd moved loads of dirt for a project he's working on.

Red berries!

An early camellia!

And still, more acorns than I've ever seen in my life.

We've finally turned the heat on, which means that we've gone from having 3 pets to having 1.  The cats stay under the main couch in the back living room and soak up the warmth from the floor vents.  They only venture out when I open a can of cat food.  ;)

It's been a bit of a sober few weeks at our house.  Todd and I have been disheartened over this election and all the ugliness that it's uncovered.  We're both committed as Christians to protecting the disenfranchised groups that are being marginalized by the Trump train, but reading the daily rhetoric has been so discouraging.  This will be a poignant Thanksgiving for us as we reflect on our blessings and see how we can move forward with our social justice aims.

Have a great week!