Wednesday, July 31, 2013

sometimes I like my to-do list

Today I will:

stitch on some stones
mail some packages
pick the basil and freeze it
eat some zucchini (is there no end??)
find lots of things for these wild children to do, since they have so much energy
check on those red raspberries growing by the garden
think about writing some needle-felting tutorials (any requests?)
think about packing for my trip but put it off until the last moment
gather the yarrow and mullein and hang them to dry
have a look at my red amaranth to see if it's ready for harvest (dye stuff!)
hang some laundry
not be overwhelmed by all the things that will be left undone
be thankful that "write cost/benefit analysis" is not on my list
hug my duck
cook dinner with my family
adapt as new chores land on my plate

What's pressing on your to-do list today?

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

supplies in the shop for a limited time

If you've ever wanted to try needle-felting, you can now get a sampler of wool and needles in my shop for a limited time.

When I first started needle-felting I used whatever kind of wool I could get my hands on.  As I progressed I realized that some of those wools just weren't cutting it.  After much trial and error I found a wool that I love- it felts quickly, forms a solid core, and has a nice surface texture.  It's the only wool I use for needle-felting.

 The fact that it's a rambouillet grown right here in Minnesota is the cherry on top.  I've hand-dyed it using Greener Shades dyes which are free of heavy metals, making them a more environmentally conscious option than most commercial dyes.

I have just a couple of samplers in my shop right now along with sets of felting needles to get you started.
Interested in becoming addicted  exploring a new hobby?  Have a look in my shop.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

a busy and wonderful week

This past week has been a flurry of activity.  We had guests here for the week and spent lots of time exploring, fishing, swimming, climbing tall things, smelling the linden flowers, feasting, and enjoying each others company.  It was so busy and fun and somehow restorative at the same time.

Yesterday I wound up the week with an event at the St. Mathias Farm where I spent the day talking to people about needle-felting.  Though the weather was less than desirable, the people more than made up for it.  What a fine bunch.  I had such a nice time.

While there I made that little mushroom duo.  It allowed me to show people exactly how that whole needle-felting thing works, and it was fun for me because we all know how much I love mushrooms, right? 

This coming week I'll be working on some stones that I hope to have finished before I leave on a trip the following week.  I'll also be putting several wool acorn ornaments in my shop this week.  They'll go in to the shop as groups but if anyone wants just one or two, send me an email and I can get them together for you.  They'll be $3 each and I can quote you shipping depending upon your location.

Hope you all have a great week ahead of you!
Happy Sunday.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

they grow up so fast

Our little guineas are growing up so fast.  They're getting their big-guinea feathers already and are more than twice the size they were when I pulled them out of the incubator.
With 4 curious kids in the house,our birds get picked up and carried around a lot, which makes for more tolerant and tame birds once they're adults.

That's not to say we don't get this look from them now and then though...

We have guests coming in to town today so my presence here will be spotty at best for the next week or so.

Enjoy your weekend, everyone. See you soon.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

shop update soon

Another stone completed in my hand.  This one with trapped pebbles too, a reflection on holding pieces close that make you whole.  Nature does that for me, makes me feel whole, (other things too of course, the love of my family, laughter, and more) and when I'm too far from it I find I pull things to me in an effort to duplicate that wholeness that may not fit as well.

This stone, along with the brooches and stone I showed you in my last post (and maybe another) will be in my shop on Thursday morning at 8am central daylight time. (I'm the same time zone as Chicago if you need to calculate for your area)  I'll be putting the listings up for preview soon so you can have a look before they go "live".

Wishing you all a lovely, and whole, day.


Saturday, July 13, 2013

I'm not glorifying busy, I'm just... busy

Some new work to show, a handful of landscape brooches and one completed stone.

A palm-sized stone with pebbles trapped in its stitches.  One more on my worktable waiting for my attention.

9 growing babies in the brooder, enjoying their days out in the yard and their nights in the guest room.  7 more eggs in the incubator, because apparently 9 baby guineas just isn't enough.
4 birthdays in this house in the span of a month, an unexpected party to host, expected (and eagerly awaited) guests coming to stay, a festival to attend, traveling to do...  Not to mention the day-to-day stuff, the working, the gardening, the chasing of the children.  And don't even get me started on my plans to summit (the ever-growing) Mount Washmore.  It's enough to wear a girl out.

I plan to find a little peace in between the busy parts.  Not sure how, but that's my plan.  Right after I weed the tomatoes and bake a cake.

And feed the chickens.

And mop the floors.

But right after that, peace!

Hope you're finding some too.

Saturday, July 06, 2013

very fancy

I've been putting together some little wool acorn ornaments for an event I'm doing later this month, and when I fit the wool bead into its cap, I nip off just a little of it to make it fit snugly.  My youngest  took those nipped off bits and strung them up to wear.

She's very fancy with her new necklace and her "Mary" dress. 
 (we're reading the Little House on the Prairie series and she thinks this is her calico, and since she has golden curls, she thinks she's Mary.  Though I know she's far more like Laura than Mary)

Enjoy your weekend, everyone!

Thursday, July 04, 2013

second edition of Art-o-mat stones on the go

 I've finished my second edition of Art-o-mat stones.
50 all packed in their boxes and headed out to  Art-o-mat.

If you find one in a machine near you, I'd love it if you'd let me know. I'll travel vicariously through them.

 Have a good day, everyone, and a Happy 4th of July to my American friends!
Have a fun and safe holiday.

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

we made guineas!

They made it!  Not 7, as I originally had hoped, but 9 little fluffy guinea keets to add to our flock.  There are a few more eggs in the incubator that haven't hatched and we'll give them a few more days, just in case, but I'm thrilled with 9 babies in the house.

We've hatched chickens before and last year I hatched out Goose the duck, who is now a big handsome boy (who still loves his momma), but this was our first experience with guineas.

There's always that one guy who stands in the food dish.

They'll be in our makeshift brooder (a plastic bin with rags and grass in the bottom and a stuffed animal to cuddle under) in the dining room for the first few days before we move them out to the brooder box in the garage.  That will give me a chance to keep a close eye on them and give them a chance to thrive in the crucial first few days.

Hey dude, someone's peeping on you.

It amazes me how quickly instinct kicks in.  Even before they were fully dried off they were wobbling around the brooder, pecking at the bits of grass.  Just overnight they went from wobbling to running and that's the only way they travel, no strolling for these guys, run, run, run.  In a few days if the weather is warm enough they'll get to spend time out in the tractor (a moveable cage we pull around the yard so they can run in the grass) and then the hilarity will really begin as they try to catch bugs and learn about the world.

There's always something going on around here.  The kids have already started gathering eggs from the chickens to hatch next.  Maybe Kit was right, maybe I am the Keeper.

Happy mid-week, everyone.

Tuesday, July 02, 2013

something new on the workbench

For the past several weeks I've been sharing my workroom with the incubator.  Yesterday as I was sewing I heard the faintest little peeps coming from the guinea eggs, telling me that hatch time was near.

 Yesterday afternoon two had pipped through their shells (meaning they had poked a hole but hadn't full hatched yet) and this morning they were out and wobbling around the incubator, knocking into the other eggs.  We call that "bowling for brothers".

After I took these photos a third hatched out and I am counting 4 more that have pipped.  We'd be thrilled with 7 new guineas in the flock so we're really hoping all these little guys (and more, hopefully) make it.  We lost our only male guinea just this past week, probably to the coyote we've had visiting, and we rely on them for tick-control.

Hopefully I'll have some fluffy chick pics for you tomorrow.
Cross your fingers for us!


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