Thursday, February 27, 2014

Blog Swap

Boy was this a fun week! I received a package in the mail here at our new house, and what a package it was! I participated in a blog swap this month, and my little package was received by a new friend in CA. She writes about it here. It's fun to see pictures of my things in someone else's home!

So, back to my package :) My kids stood around (and helped) as we unwrapped each item - it was like my birthday or something! Each item is just something that I can use/love/enjoy. Here, let me show you a picture:

I cannot wait to get my fingers moving on that yarn! Thanks, Stephinie!! Thoses pictures on the right are actually gorgeous notecards that Stephinie makes/sells. Their quality is just wonderful; I think I might hang a few as art by my desk. That lavender satchet is going in my knitting bag :) Stephinie has a space here for her blog and shop. What fun!!

This was the first time I've participated in a blog swap. I would do it again in a hearbeat!!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Garden Plans

With all the cold weather, Big Fish and I find our thoughts turning to warmer times to come! With a lot of the unpacking accomplished, we have some spare minutes to sit and dream. Namely, we have been discussing the spring garden.

The property does not currently have a recent garden patch, so we must begin at the beginning. Turing the sod/grass over is a daunting job! We hope to start an area and work with the dirt as the season progresses.

Our immediate plans are to put in the plants/bushes/trees that will take some time to get established. We are eager, EA-GER, to see what the mature apple trees already on the property will do! We learned a lot when we tried to put in baby apple trees at our old house (deer are destructive - so very destructive and baby trees take forevah! to grow). While we recognize that everything has a price tag we hope to find some bigger trees/bushes to put around.

Here is a brief list: asparagus, rhubarb, grapevines, blueberry bushes, red raspberry bushes, and possibly a form of fruit tree (cherry? pear?). Does anyone have any thoughts or suggestions or recommendations on this list? We hope to start with these things and then go from there as far as regular garden vegetables. It still might not be the year to put in canning amounts of tomatoes and beans.

The planting part is easy; it's the deer deterrents that seem to take the most time and money! Another summer project is to work on the pasture fence. Currently it will contain horses (electric wires), but we would like to work toward some goats (meat mainly - possibly a dairy goat). Goats are smart animals and very nimble. Their fencing needs are more involved.

Have you made it thus far? Whew....feel rather rambly right now. My last major list item is a kitchen herb garden. Basil and chives are used a lot around here, and I am determined to find a lavender that likes southwest PA. Oregano and mint have done fine for me in the past, but that mint can really turn into a menace with how much it spreads (maybe just a container?).

What are your spring thoughts? Who keeps a garden journal?

TTFN with a happy birthday to my love today...pumpkin cake is cooling and waiting the cream cheese frosting :)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Attempt at a Few Pictures

Sorry, no pictures of the new house yet! But! Big Fish gave me this fancy apparatus for Christmas that helps me transport pictures from my camera to the computer WITHOUT a cable. It's all in the microchips....I think. Me? Why yes, if you need any help with technical writing/descriptions; I'm your girl :)

So, without further ado, let's give this a shot:

Picture the first is my oldest baby with me at a Christmas performance of "The Nutcracker". It was wonderful; we even had brunch at a posh eatery beforehand replete with eggnog French toast and the like.

Picture the next is my mom with Lydia doing, you know, princess things. My kids love stickers - especially those sticker books that have repositionable (new word?) stickers.

Why can I not get the above picture to be straight? Arg!

Picture the last is of the baby warming her toes under the dog. The dog is mesmerized with the cookie in Susanna's hand. Susanna was way too busy to look at me.

Alas, there is no picture of my son today. Every picture has him with too much red-eye. I know! There is a red-eye reducer somewhere on my camera that I will have to find someday. Me and technology - we just click so well!!

So, if this all works, watch out for some photo shoots of the house/children/pets/whathaveyou.

What's this? Temperatures above freezing today!! TTFN!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day

Business for Today (in no particular order):

O Cut out lots of paper hearts

O Help 4 small humans cut out paper hearts

O Pass out Princess and Spiderman candy boxes (the lengths stores go to now to doll up a box of chocolates - humorous - Spiderman chocolate?)

O Bake oatmeal raisin cookies for the man of the house

O Bake cherry pie bars for the rest of us

O Make cornbread to go along with our chili - attempt to turn the cornbread pink

O Clean up paper scraps from all.the.cutting (my kids would cut paper all day long! It's their favorite!)

O Build the very first fire in our fireplace in our new home

O Enjoy a glass of wine by the fire while watching something cheesy on Netflix with the man of the house.

O Thank you, Lord, for this day! Amen.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Creating and Making

We are home! At least it is starting to feel like home. The mountain of boxes is now relegated to the garage, and we started this week with some normal routines. Monday-laundry-folding has happened, and is still happening. The vacuum has been unearthed, and the broom and dustpan stand ready for me to finish this blog post. We have carpet in the living room and bedrooms; and the dining room, kitchen, laundry room and bathrooms are some kind of laminate.

I also am quite excited with some prospects for my raw materials: three orders for body butters and lip balms have been placed. I have a secret pal, a pen pal, and a blog swap pal all awaiting a fun package. And, my local shop is running low on lotion bars. It is high time, High Time to get some making and creating going on :)

Funny sidenote: my poor chickens are as confused as ever. With all the cold weather, I've been running a heat lamp for them. They think daylight is all-the-time. We've been inundated with eggs!

Good news on the camera front - it has been located. Now to find the cable! Someday, little blog, we will have a picture or two.

XOXO to you!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Moving and Unpacking

Hi, friends!

Last Friday, January 31st we signed lots of papers: we sold our house and turned around and bought another one all in one day! I think that my husband and I would agree that last week was, um, hard. The owners of the new-to-us house graciously allowed us to start moving our belongings in during the week. This was the week of all kinds of weather events; namely, cold, cold, COLD, temperatures. After the moving truck would not start for an entire day the repairman said that our best course of action was to leave the truck running! That baby ran for 60 hours straight.

So, here we are in a new location about 13 minutes from our old house. We love the house and are learning how to take care of an outdoor wood burner. Oh - I almost forgot...due to the cold weather our chicken coop was frozen to the ground. The buyers have graciously allowed us to leave it there until the weather thaws. In God's providence there is a coop at our new house, so my husband dutifully packed the hens in boxes along with the rest of our belongings :) I took a tumble in the snow when we were carrying the honey bee hive, but no bees seemed to have been harmed in the process!

Maybe one of these days I'll find the camera! The kids are buzzing around finding toys in boxes and enjoying the spaciousness of the new place. I can't wait until they can go crazy outside too!

Now for a hot cup of coffee and unpacking the china cabinet! Have a warm day; TTFN!