Thursday, November 29, 2012

Dawn's Early Light

I love winter (or late fall) mornings.  There's something so nice about getting up when it's still dark and going to do chores while the sun is starting to rise.  The light is beautiful, the air is crisp, and the frost crunches on the ground when I walk.  The animals are all snuggly and warm, and I love waking them up to eat.  I love hearing them munch on their hay, I love breaking the frozen water troughs, and I love knowing they're all taken care of and have plenty of food for the cold morning. 

The chicken coop is lit up in the mornings now.  I have been getting only an egg every other day, and I've got 21 hens that should be laying.  I am trying a coop light to see if I can trick them into thinking the days are longer.  It's on a timer and comes on at 4 AM and goes off at 7 AM.  Hopefuly it works. 

Sorry for the blurry picture, but the full moon was so pretty this morning.

After I get the animals fed, I head off to work.  I love the drive to work.  It's about 18 miles from home to work, and I don't have a single stoplight or stop sign on my way to the office.  The route is a rural one past beautiful flat farm land. 

I love the drive to work in the winter because the sky is just so pretty, all shades of pinks and purples and blues.  This is one of the reasons I love winter so much. 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Operation Christmas Tree 2012

I grew up with real Christmas trees, and always loved them. They just looked and smelled so pretty and I couldn't ever imagine having a fake one.  But then when I left home and moved to college, a fake tree was so much easier (and cheaper), so that's what we've had ever since.  Every year I'd say, "Maybe we could get a real tree this year", but each year we'd just put up our fake one.  Last year we even bought a new fake one on clearance, pre-lit, which was pretty convenient. 

So a few days ago I mentioned getting a real tree this year, and David agreed!  We found Coleman's Christmas Tree Farm, just outside of Middletown, Delaware.  We all loaded up today and went over to the farm to pick out our tree!  They have a great place, lots to do and see.  They had a Santa shop, with Santa and Mrs. Claus! 

The kids got to visit and get some pictures taken.

Then we set out to find our tree and cut it down.  I have to be honest, we cheated on the cutting part.  We found less expensive trees in the pre-cut/Charlie Brown lot, and decided to go with one of those.  We found a great tree though!

But it's not the one above.  No, that one was just a photo prop.  It's not the one below either.

We took a picture together, but of course David can't take a serious one without begging and pleading on my part...

This one is better, even if he is trying to saw me in half. 

Finally we found our tree and were headed home.

We got one of the smallest ones on the lot, and it looked puny on top of the car, but it's actually pretty big for our space.  I didn't get any pictures of it in place, but I'll blog again one we've decorated it! 

I'm so excited it's finally Christmas time!  WOOO!!!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Quick Beach Trip

Earlier this week I went to Ocean City, MD for a 3 day work conference.  I think the off-season is my favorite time to go to the beach!  It's so quiet.

I stayed at the Princess Royale, and had a little suite all to myself.     Here's the little sitting room.

And here's the little eating nook and kitchen.

And then the bedroom, which had a Tempur-Pedic mattress.  I'm not really sold on those. 

Here was my view from the balcony, if I turned my head to the left (the room was a "side ocean view".

I did make it out to the beach on the second day, once our classes let out. 

It was very pretty, though cold!  It was a nice little get away, even if I had to go to classes!  Hopefully we can get back there sometime soon.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Now That's Better!

Before and after a much needed haircut!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Crafty Bastards

This past Saturday, I helped my friend Jen at the Crafty Bastards craft show in D.C.  Jen has a block printing business called Home Sweet.  She hand cuts each pattern, and prints them by hand on sustainable fabrics.  She's got all kinds of products, from pillows to table runners to kitchen towels, and now even Christmas stockings! 

Crafty Bastards is a huge show, and I couldn't wait to go help out.  Jen has perfected her display, which is hard to do, in my opinion.  Each vendor only has about a 10'x10' space to set up a shop, so you have to get creative.  So we set up her corner and got ready for the crowds!

I love how she uses the door as a backdrop for her towels.   

And I love these stockings.  Check out the mock mantel she built.  Her son even made a fire for her!

Here I am later in the afternoon (boy, I'm in need of a haircut!).  It was a super busy day, and there must have been thousands of people there.  The aisles of the huge tents were so crowded, people were shoulder to shoulder and it was hard to move!  It was a great show, and maybe one day Purl & June will be there!

Here's a view of the tents and Union Market after the show.

If you're local, Home Sweet will be at the Holiday Heap craft show in Baltimore on December 1st!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Bandana Cowl

 I've been wanting to make a Bandana Cowl since I saw the blog post. What is that, only a year?  Not too bad!  I knew what yarn I wanted to use, but I just never got around to making it.  The weather has gotten really chilly lately, and I figured it was time to go ahead and make it so I could get some use out of it this winter.

I decided to frog the cabled hat I knit, because I just didn't love it.   The yarn is Cascade Baby Alpaca Chunky (in Ecru), which I bought when we were on vacation in Pigeon Forge last summer.  I ran out halfway through the cowl, and switched to Plymouth Yarn Baby Alpaca Grande (in colorway 100 I think) (and I think I prefer the Baby Alpaca Grande yarn), and it was a pretty close match.  If you look, you can see the difference, but when I'm wearing the cowl it's not noticeable.  

The cowl came out slightly large I think, but I still like it.  The bind off instructions were to bind off very loosely, or to go up a needle size, and I think I bound off way too loosely.  Next time I'll just bind off like regular I think.   I'd like to knit another one of these cowls or two.  They're very easy and quick to knit!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day! And Other Updates

 It's Election Day! That means it's our opportunity to decide what we want for the future of our country.  I hope each and every one of you goes out and votes today!  It only takes a few minutes and every vote counts!  Kylee helped me vote this morning.  

I never did update after Hurricane Sandy, but we made it through the storm with no damage.  I wish others were as lucky.  The poor people from Staten Island, NY are having a really rough time.   Here's an updated picture of the soaps I made that day.  The one on the left is Gingerbread, the middle is evergreen (still thinking of a name), and the one on the right is Hot Cocoa. 

And here's a new soap I made a few days ago, Cranberry. 

And here are three little knitting sheep I made recently.  The two brown ones are made from Barley's wool.   They're in the shop!

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