It's been a while since we chatted. And though it was good to take a break from the pressure of having to write a daily blog... I have to tell you - I missed our chats. This has become an exchange that I look forward to each day.... a mutual sharing from which I hope we both benefit. Although just living life without documenting it is liberating... I find that I miss the company of my friends. And we are friends, aren't we? Some I have met - some not. Many of you have shared snippets of your own lives - and I appreciate that more than you can imagine. And... some of you remain silent - and I understand and respect that as well. I tend to be a "silent" reader, myself, but I am trying to work on that.
After 15 years of writing this blog, it is so much a part of my life that I cannot imagine not writing it. However, there are times when life throws its little curve balls and I find myself lacking inspiration and fearing that I have become stale. It's in those moments that a little self-doubt creeps in and I feel the need to retreat for a day or two. And so... I retreat and regroup and resurface!
Balm for my soul is always spending time with my grand-loves; and this past weekend I had the pleasure of some time well-spent with the oldest of them... Tyler.
We had a fun overnight visit from Friday into Saturday - adventuring and playing together.
Tyler has turned into quite a good little competitive swimmer (an experience that he and I share - and that makes it all the more special).
Saturday he did well at "Divisionals" and Sunday he swam in the All Star meet. He placed in all three of his events on Sunday, and so will have the opportunity to swim in the league championship this coming Saturday... the perfect ending for a great season.
When we were not at swim meets, we spent the rest of the weekend here on the farm...
harvesting oodles of vegetables!
I have been trying to pick blackberries every day so that I can get them at their peak of ripeness. Insects suck the juices out of ripe fruit, dessicating it, so it is important to get the berries off of the vine as soon as they are ripe.
A little foraging along the back roads near the farm also yielded a good amount of wineberries (Japanese raspberries)... a surprise, as I had never seen them locally before. All of these berries went into the freezer so that I can make fresh jams during the winter months.
There's nothing like fresh, homemade jam on home-baked bread.
This weekend I made a loaf of Rosemary-Sea salt and a loaf of Field Blend (a mixture of white, wheat and rye.). Would you be surprised to know that both loaves are almost gone? A certain 11-year-old made a pretty good dent in them!
It was a big weekend for our young hens, as they finally were able to leave their yard and free-range around the farm.
Every evening when we tuck the chickens in, she waits for Hubbs who picks her up and carries her back to her home. It's a nightly occurrence. I am wondering if this is the chicken, who, as a chick, I carried down to the barn to bathe when I found her with a bad case of pasty butt. It's amazing to me the relationships that we form with all of the different species of animals. I've said it before, but animals have much more depth to their emotions than they are credited with.
A couple weeks ago I had noticed that most of the equine fly masks were looking a little worn and tattered. Holes allow insects to enter - so I ordered everyone new masks. And yes.... they can see perfectly out of them... the fabric is a mesh.
The Littles are now sporting pink plaid (and with no hole between the ears for their forelocks, I have been pulling that mass of hair out of the ear holes... so they look a bit silly.) Who said pink isn't for guys!
And the donkeys have the standard long-ear fly mask ... no frills, but quite effective. The nose covers on these masks are so long that I have to fold it back... very strange!
Finally, after weeks of sporadic evening knitting, I finished the sweater I had been working on.
Here it is with the Picasso pants that I sewed a couple weeks ago. I am quite happy with it - but will have to wait til autumn to wear it as it is merino wool. It's super-soft and cozy!
I also tried my hand at making macrame earrings. Macrame is something I did a lot of when I was a teenager, so it was quite easy to get back to. I am not entirely happy with these as they don't match. I definitely need more practice!
Lastly... thanks for weighing in with things you would like to hear about. I have taken notes and will include answers to your questions in the coming posts. I always appreciate questions and suggestions!!