Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Reusable gift wrapping

In an attempt to be slightly more economical and environmentally friendly, I tried my hand at making reusable wrapping - double layer muslin with zigzagged edge and a piece of cotton ribbon sewn at the middle.

I then made letter tags as reusable gift labels which I thought came out pretty cute :)

space dog

space dog is ready for liftoff!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

my sink has a soap dispenser?!?

Apparently I never noticed it before.

I'm in the midst of redoing my kitchen. The cupboards, walls and most of the trim have fresh paint. I've assembled and installed pantry shelving in the nook. I am most of the way through resizing the kitchen cart, and have hardware to put on the drawers and cupboards. As I was cleaning up for the night I noticed something:

my sink indeed has a soap dispenser.

I've not been living here quite a year yet, but still! Of course it was empty and then didn't work, but after an adjustable wrench, vice grips, an old tooth brush, straw cleaner brush, and a rag later, it does work! Hooray!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Ready for winter and a surprise

Today was lovely - in the low forties - so Jake and I put the hose and the wheel barrow away, vacuumed out my car, found out my new seat cover doesn't fit, and had a surprise visit from my pops. :D

This evening we went to City Steam's Classic Movie Night showing of White Christmas (one of my all time favorite movies!) and even though I've seen the film countless times, there were many things I noticed on the big screen that I'd never seen at home.

Bing Crosby lights the matches for his pipe with one hand! I SO want to go buy a box of non-safety matches and figure it out :D

Sunday, December 13, 2009

mmmm beeswax - decorating beeswax candles

I finally got around to making and decorating some rolled beewax taper candles. :) Oh my dining room smells so wonderful!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

I love winter. :) - Fresh snow

Last night for Joe's Christmas present to his mom, I took her to see A Christmas Carol at The Hartford Stage. It was an absolutely wonderful production of the play (aside from some creepy extra "ghost" dancer parts they added) and still on a high from that I woke up this morning to beautiful snow!

Jake has already been out twice on his line (it's about 9am) to romp around in the snow while I enjoy homemade hazelnut butter on homemade flourless banana bread and a nice cup of gingery-fruity tea. :)

Friday, December 4, 2009


I love that I can open up my front door, brush away some leaves and cut fresh herbs to cook in my morning eggs. :D

I'm a VERY happy bunny. :D

Things for which I am especially grateful part 2: wonderful men

I am so grateful for all the wonderful men I have in my life.

At beer night last night there were six of us and I was the only one of the female persuasion. In the midst of my post-gathering rumination I was struck by how lucky I am to have so many amazing guys to call friends.

I know this may seem like a silly thing to say, and it may well be. The truth of the matter remains, however, that I am honored to call these honorable, courageous, intelligent, insightful, integritous men my friends.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

I love you more than chocolate biscuits.

On my way north for Thanksgiving, I stopped at a red light in Hadley behind this truck. And a photo was too good to pass up.

While Lu is by no means my favorite brand, I do love me a good chocolate biscuit. So, it's no small thing when I say I love you more.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Speaking of Scallops... - Grapefruit and scallops

So, I've made scallops with a sweet grapefruit marmalade sauce a few times because I happened to have some grapefruit marmalade that didn't quite work for anything else.

Last night I made scallops with fresh pink-grapefruit and boy oh boy! AMAZING.


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Hooray for Corner Shelves

A week or so ago when I was at the hardware store I bought myself some corner shelves to put above my bed in my studio.

Yesterday, I finally put them up! :D It's so lovely to have a place to put my bedside things instead of keeping them on the radiator or balancing them on the upended drawer on the floor. :) The light is really lovely at night as well. :)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Felted holiday ball ornaments

Today I made my grandmother's christmas present. Don't worry, she won't read this :)

I'm kind of excited about them. I made the red felted balls a month or so ago by rolling feltable yarn into balls, tying them up in nylon stockings and sending them through the washer and dryer.

The details I felted on using my newly acquired felting needles. For the life of me, I can't find the ones I already had. :)

Monday, November 16, 2009

mmm silk... scarf fabric from Habermans

On my latest adventure to my favorite fabric store in the world, Habermans, (why oh why do you have to be over 600 miles away!) I bought myself a few pieces of silk.

After a few hours of hand stitching, I now have three new scarves.

Deliciously soft fabrics in beautiful colors makes me a very happy bunny. :)

I also got a couple pieces of 100%wool but you'll have to wait to see what I make out of those.

I've been featured...

Me? An artist? Oh, ok. I guess I'll give you that one. :)

My dear friend Jim has a lovely blog and I'm the latest feature artist!: Land of Slack

Thanks Jim!

So be sure to check it out. He's got a great collection of fantastic artist and some of their work.

And, inspired by that honor, I've added a couple quick things to my own website:

Sunday, November 15, 2009

thankful for the ladies

I am so thankful for the Women's Tub Day at East Heaven. ($10 for as long as you like!)

Two of the same other ladies were there as the last time we went and I have to say there is something incredibly soothing about communal bathing with a group of wonderful women.

After was a low-key couple of hours with Joanna (all to myself!) and then joining in with others to help her celebrate her birthday. I didn't stay too long so that I could be sure to stay awake for my drive home but it was lovely to see some of the wonderful people she has collected around her.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I have a kitchen sink that works! neenerneener!

After surviving yet another trip to lalalalaland I arrived home to find a spankin'shiney new sink drain!

Hooray for Ben!

Monday, November 2, 2009

They all plinked! - ginger-pearsauce

My first attempt at solo-canning was victorious!

I now am the proud owner of ten jars of ginger-pearsauce - applesauce only made with pears + a ginger kick for intrigue.

I got to hear ten, very satisfying "plink"s as the jars cooled. A sure sound of success. :)

Ben is HERE!!!!

My Dear Cousin Ben called a couple of weeks ago. After chatting for a minute I discovered that not only had he accepted a job and was moving to the area, but was moving to the very next town over.

He arrived last night, unpacked a bit into the bedroom upstairs and is off at his first day at his new job.

I am so excited to have him here. :)


Thursday, October 29, 2009

Hooray for GirlieBeerz!

As many of you know, I have a weekly gathering with local friends. It's usually on Thursday and usually at City Steam in Hartford. It was roaming for a little bit but now it's more regular.

Every once and a great while, when boyz are busy us girls get together for GirlieBeerz. The times it has happened I come away so completely grateful to have found such wonderful women that I am so lucky as to have for amazing friends.

Thank you ladies for a fantastic pick-me-up night. :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Progress, not perfection.

Well, after a bit of a funk and a lot of a breakdown I managed to get a lot done today :)

I finally had both time and the knowledge of Jake's papers so I could take him to get his toenails clipped. After a good long walk (complete with rocks) we went up to petco. The ladies were lovely and more than willing to hold him still until his nails were all set. It is such a relief to have that done.

I finished priming the fence - there are two panels left to paint but the paint is much more pleasant than the oil-base primer (awful stuff!)Then I carried the granite blocks up from the hill and laid them out at the base of the fence. Jake can be a digger so I want to discourage any of that.

I raked most of the front lawn and the patch in front of the fence filling in some of the stump-dents with leaves.

I did the dishes and cleaned up the kitchen. There is still so much to do but it feels so good to cross a few items off the list that have been there for far too long.

Now I am tired but awake :) This week's work load is looking a little more manageable now. :)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Rest In Peace Blender

I killed the blender. hehheh.

I tried to get a photo of the smoke plumes curling out from the base, but my little camera just couldn't capture the essence of the destruction.

Of all the appliances that I've been waiting to have die, this wasn't one I was expecting. Although, now that it has died... I have to decide if I want a new blender, or a food processor...


heh heh.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

cornucopia of goodnesses

Pumpkin festival, Burdicks, sleepover, long fall walks, getting cases of things, sleeping diagonally, an emailed photo from my man (smiling) and much more rounded out the weekend.

Since then I've primed/sealed 2/3 of the front fence, painted 1/3 (primer needs to be top-coated within 24 hours), made almond milk (SO easy), handmade skinless gyoza, moved back into the big bed so I could continue to sleep diagonally :D, and discovered that my dearest cousin Ben is moving to the area! In less than two weeks!!!

I'm sure I'm forgetting things. :) Oh! The weather! I painted outside without having to wear shoes! I've been wearing shoes for a couple of months because it's been so cold.

                                                   wahoo!! I adore fall!


Thursday, October 15, 2009

I got a card I got a card!

I got a card in the mail today from my husband!

This is the best day evar! :D

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Fall is my favorite.

I'm so happy it is fall.

Fall only really lasts two months and I love the whole thing. :)

I had such a lovely visit with my brother and we got SO much done. I have some in-progress pictures to post

soon but for the mean time I'll leave you with my treasure-full lunch - cider and a little bit of aged sharp cheddar (from the windsor cider and cheese booth the grace church sets up every weekend in the fall) whole wheat bread, a handmade cherry-wood bowl from Garlic & Arts (see earlier post) yarn in fall colors, felted (in progress) coin purses, and experiments in felted-balls, oh and honeycrisp apple slices (my new favorite eating apple). All in all a grand day.

Friday, October 9, 2009

He sent me flowers! + a project update - back fence work

I got a mysterious package in the mail and it was a beautiful bouquet of peach colored roses and some beautiful red flower that i don't know what it is. (anyone?)

We're making progress in the back (and by "we" I mostly mean Jason, with NO help from Jake so don't believe a word Jake says ;)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

mmmmmmmmm - switching to beeswax candles

Oh, and I got myself a beeswax candle.

I might have to get rid of all my other candles and only use beeswax, it is just SO delicious.

The room still smells like heaven.

Four down, three to go! - front fence work

The progress continues!

Today we started putting in the stones for the front walk (and I got a few more

bags on the way home from the grocery store)

carried the granite blocks up from the back yard,

managed to get four of the seven stumps dug out (from the "bushes") of the front yard

got the rest of the fence posts for the front and back fences as well as the 2x4s for the shelves in the basement

put in the posts for the front fence and put up two sections! eee!


oh it is starting to look so lovely! It's also pretty impressive that I've had more people stop by today than the entire rest of the time I've lived here - one was even just a lady on her way who stopped mid-turn, while on her cell phone, to yell out how much she likes what we've done. :)

I can imagine all the people who drive out from the sub-division across the street won't miss the eyesore that was the "bushes"

I really love this neighborhood. Just about everyone I meet has lived here for more than 15 years and says "we've got everything!" Of course the "everything" means completely different things to each of them (a state trooper, a town cop, and a military guy, or a construction foreman, an excavator, and a furnace guy :) ) I'm so thankful to have a safe neighborhood with people who love to live here.

It's good to put down some roots.

Monday, October 5, 2009

New life for the lawn

Home from house-sitting and the North Quabbin Garlic and Arts Festival with a lovely stop in at East Heaven's Women's Tub Day with Joanna, picked up my Brother on the way back home.

So far we have cut down the "bushes" in the back, taken out two in the front, broken up half of the concrete front walk (turns out there's a whole layer of bricks cemented to the bottom of the concrete slabs) taken down a limb off of one of the trees in the front that was hanging down over the "bushes" in the front (see picture :D ) did a trip to the lumber yard for fencing, fence posts, sledge hammer, post-hole-digger (which I had intended to borrow, but now we have one we can lend :) ) had fantastic lunches and dinners, made fresh applesauce, and froze some apple slices for pies, amidst lots of fun and chit chat. :) It's so lovely to have another body around and to have it be my dearest brother AND to be getting so much done at the outside of the house.

When the colder weather sets in I can focus on some of the inside stuff and it's going to be so lovely to have so much done in the front and it's only October!

What a lovely day! Can't wait to do it again today!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Hooray for Fall!

I love the change of seasons. I do appreciate and enjoy each season, and love that each one is distinct here. While I do love each season, about two months into every single season I begin to long for the next.

Today was an ultimate fall day. Knitting, sunshine, family lunch, apple picking, sheeping, fresh apple cider, making applesauce, homemade garden tomato sauce, beautiful fall leaves, crisp fall evening, warm cozy sweaters, toes and fingers that are still warm, crunching leaves underfoot.

While I may appreciate all the seasons, fall is my favorite.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Fall food and putting up squash

Oh it is so good to be home (for at least a couple days ;) ) and it's fall!

The leaves on the trees are starting to turn here and there and it's getting chillier.

Over the past couple of days I have made:

Spaghetti Squash

Homemade Tomato Sauce

Delicata Squash

Garlic Baked Squash Seeds

Vinegar and Coriander Baked Squash Seeds

Roast Chicken Legs


The first three are on their way to the freezer to be pulled out over the winter months and the last three won't make it to tomorrow :)

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Things for which I am especially grateful:


Friends who keep me sane.

Friends who are still willing to take care of me and help me out.

Having a beautiful (if untidy) house.

Things that are red/peach/orange/salmon/golden/pink.

Fresh air, sunshine, shade trees and fresh produce.

All the times I have been able to talk to my husband.

Safe travels.

Natural fibers and chemical free living.

Yarn and bamboo knitting needles.

This life in this world.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Aaaaaand... He's gone.

I cannot express how truly grateful I am to have had the chance to spend the last few days with my husband, including our one year anniversary.

It's odd to think that one year ago we were filled up with wedding planning, relatives visiting, and just staying sane. Now he has been deployed for a month and a half, we have a new house, a 10 month old puppy, and life seems to have slowed down.

Nothing puts life into perspective like having your husband leave for a deployment.

I am so thankful for this opportunity to be present to what really matters, the chance to step back and reassess what is important, and the luxury of leaving out the rest.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

knots in my stomach - leave in Baltimore

One might not think that having knots in ones stomach would be a good thing... But in this case, it is.

A month and a week ago my husband, Joe, left for pre-deployment. Tonight, god willing, I get to pick him up at the Baltimore airport. I will have to drop him back off at that same airport, but only after a few days together!

Aside from all sorts of reservations about driving in general and unnecessary worries about what I'll leave behind: I get to see my husband! I get to see my husband!


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Another strawberry?!?!?!? MY FAVORARRGTHMMGPTHOMNOMNOM!!!!!!!1!!!“

( The Happiest Tortoises on the Planet )

Life is pretty great. This is my conclusion.

I finally feel like I'm getting into my own rhythm again. It feels so good and it has been far too long - years, not months.

I feel like I am where I'm supposed to be and doing what I'm supposed to be doing. I have so many wonderful, loving, caring, inspiring, supportive people around me.

I like this. I think I'll keep it.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Yay for the Franklin County Fair

As I was out of town last weekend for the Tri-County Fair in Northampton, the Franklin County Fair was my first of the season.

As always I left the roundhouse inspired and heartily ashamed at myself for not having been more crafty over this past year, left the baby animal exhibit with a full cute-o-meter (hooray for baby bunnies, pygmy goats, and chicks :) ) and left the 4H display full of wonderful nostalgic memories.

After lunch at the Leyden Church booth and some fried dough with maple creme (from the only local fried dough vender) my stomach was also well satisfied. :)

I have a tradition of having fried dough once a year and cotton candy once a year, although since my first experience of maple cotton candy no other kind will do, so that tradition will have to wait a few weeks for the North Quabbin Garlic and Arts festival. :)

Yet another reason not to mow the lawn...

I've pretty much stopped mowing the lawn.

I insisted that we buy a reel mower instead of a gas or electric model on the grounds that I wouldn't use either of the latter.

Aside from wanting to keep as much greenery alive on our property as possible for ecological reasons, I like allowing whatever is there to bloom and thus having the delight of watching the bees, bumble and otherwise, in addition to the beauty of the flowers.

Delightfully I've also discovered that other than the front patch (in front of the bushes) none of the plants in our lawn get higher than four or five inches on average. The air smells wonderful and even in our semi-suburban area we have wildlife.

This morning, while listening to The No Impact Man on the back deck while knitting away at christmas presents, our little wild bunny was perusing the delightful bunny-banquet that is our lower lawn.

While fencing the side to keep jake from hopping down onto the neighbor's driveway I love that nature has full access to our lawn from the woods.

Hooray for bunnies :)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

There's treasure everywhere! - Wild blackberry harvest

What a delightful place. I love it up here in Surry and always think of this as "home" in addition to wherever I happen to be living.

Jake and I just got back from a walk out to the closer swimming hole on the
river out back and returned with rocks in my pocket for my garden and these wild blackberries bundled up in my shirt. There used to be blackberries all throughout the gravel pits in the army corps land behind their house, but now there are only a few secret stands at the edge by the marsh. I am so delighted to find them out there again. Annie, one of my childhood dogs used to eat them straight off the bushes :D Jake is pretty good at finding the dropped ones on the ground, but he's young yet. :)

I did a bit more painting on the upstairs bathroom. I won't be able to finish it until next visit but I think it will come out really well when I'm through. It's so lovely to get to give back to Fred and Mary who make such a wonderful contribution to my life and use my talents, doing something I love, to make a difference.

Doin' Art - Lakehouse view

For our wedding my dear brother and his lovely lady gave us a gift card to Pearl Art. One of the fantastic things we got was a travel water color set.

This weekend, at the lakehouse of my wonderful friend Jesse-pancake, I finally got to break it out and use it. Amidst numerous distractions I was able to eke out this little study.

It truly does not do justice to the view and with my artistic license I cut out many of the details. It was so lovely to sit and create.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Thank goodness I'm not the only one... - Why I still need to be told I look nice

Without My Husband, I Still Need Good Hair

Katie Dyer

May 21, 2009 By myheroesathome
Posted at YouServed - military blog and podcast

I did a magazine interview yesterday about what it’s like to be the wife of a deployed soldier.

“What’s the thing you miss you the most while your husband is gone?” The interviewer asked.
“Being told that I’m pretty,” I said.


“Don’t print that,” I added quickly. “I meant to say, I miss having someone tell me my hair looks nice.”


As embarrassing as it is to admit, it’s true. When your husband is gone for a year, it’s the little, intimate, romantic things that you miss the most. Things you never really noticed until they were gone. I’m not talking about sex. You will notice that the sex is missing. But you won’t wake up three months into the deployment thinking ‘no one has said they like my outfit in a really long time.’ You will just feel less sexy, less attractive, less confident, and you will wonder why. Maybe you get your haircut differently. But you come home to an empty house and no one is there to notice, so the thrill of ‘the new, fresh-from-the-salon you’ is gone. Maybe you buy a new dress, but there is no one to take you out to dinner in it.

In those tiny, everyday moments, I feel the loneliest. At the office, I have work to keep me occupied. I can take girlfriends to plays or gallery openings and have more fun than if I had dragged Paul along. Even on holidays, extended family keeps me busy and we usually get a special phone call from overseas. But on random Tuesday nights when I am watching the Dancing With The Stars results show and there is no one there to rub my feet or listen to me complain that Giles’ scores should have been higher… those are the moments when I hate the deployment.

Supporting our troops is critical. But supporting the families of deployed military personnel is important, too, and it’s easy. You don’t have to babysit their kids or mow their lawns for them. (Although, I don’t know many military spouses who would turn down those offers of help!) Instead, just treat them with kindness. Remember that they are doing it all alone right now, and that gentle support and love that we get from our spouses is missing from their lives.

Give hugs. Never under-estimate the power of physical touch. When Paul is deployed and I’m sleeping alone every night, it’s hard to get used to not having that contact. No one hugs you or kisses you or holds your hand. I know I can’t ask my girlfriends to make up for the kissing or hand-holding, but a heartfelt hug and a ‘how you doing?’ can mean the world to me on a stressful day.

Complement me. Everyone likes to know their outfit is pretty or their hair looks good. Usually, we count on our spouses for that validation – but sometimes it can mean even more coming from girlfriends (my husband has no idea whether my shoes are cute or not!) Or better yet, when is the last time you sincerely complemented a neighbor or co-worker? It doesn’t have to be physical. How about throwing a little praise my way because my yard looks great, or because I’m holding on to my poise even though you know it must be hard being without my soldier.

Include me. Just because my other half is missing, doesn’t mean I don’t want to hang out with you and your significant other. People are so afraid of drawing attention to my married-but-single status and making me uncomfortable as the ‘third wheel,’ they don’t invite me to do anything at all. Maybe a table for 3 would be awkward at our favorite restaurant, but I would still love to come to your house for a BBQ. Please, make the call.

Talk about my soldier. He’s in a foreign country, but he still exists. I assure you; not mentioning him does NOT make me miss him any less. Even if we’re not talking about him, I’m still thinking about him; wondering if he’s safe; obsessively checking my cell phone for his call. It would make me feel good to know that you’re thinking about him, too. Just keep it brief and upbeat.

Say ‘Thank You.’ It really doesn’t take any more than that. Just two words. Remind me that you know that I am serving our country, too; that I am also making sacrifices. And that you appreciate it. It may not make me feel pretty, but it will always make the burden of deployment a little easier to bear.

Read more from Katie Dyer at Heroes At Home

Friday, September 4, 2009

lovely invitations from lovely people

Yesterday my dear friend Chandra emailed me with an invitation to spend yesterday evening together.

It was so lovely to walk around the reservoir, chat, and head back for a bowl of fresh cooked greens from their farm share.

what a delightful time for which to be grateful.


Sunday, August 30, 2009

peaches! - picking and canning

Oh goodness I am so tired!

I left my grandparents' house at around 8:30 this morning, went picking with my mum (10lbs of blueberries and 30+lbs of peaches) then proceeded to spend the rest of the day making 9 jars of peach chutney 19 jars of peach jam and then helping Bill make however many gallons of his amazing tomato sauce to be canned tomorrow!

I lost count of the number of dish-drainer-fulls of dishes I washed today around 2pm :D

I've just gotten back to Surry, it's 9:34pm and I'm off to a shower and a comfy bed.

zzzzz :D


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Critter count and birthday packages

On the drive from my mum's to surry (about a 20 minute drive) I saw a white mouse, two hopping frogs, a cat and a hawk of some sort. :) This is all at night. I love the backroad drive with almost no cars, lots of turns and hills and trees and fields and air that makes you wish your lungs were bigger so you could breathe in longer each breath.

He got his birthday package :) :) :) I love hearing him happy.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Today - lots of wonderful things

Things that are great about today:

I took myself on a movie date

The pants I'm wearing are a size smaller and fit better than the size larger did a month ago :)

I got to chat, text, AND talk on the phone with my husband, with lots of happiness, smiles, silliness, and most of all love.

I made a tough decision to take care of myself rather than extend myself too far.

Heard a silly story about a hampster/dog (miniature chihuahua) falling in a lake (hilarious!)

Finally ordered a new compost crock and a couple of other things that have been on "get when money is a little looser" list.

Lots of love and support from Joanna

It rained! Thunder and lightening and rain! (I was in a movie so it took me a minute to realize that it was not part of the soundtrack :D )

Got to get a shower present for my dear friend Lara and do some window shopping

Took some really cute pictures for my Joe

Did I mention I got to talk to him? Well... I did. :)

oh oh oh! I KNEW there was something really good I was missing:
I made myself a dinner entirely from leftover parts of a few different meals from the fridge (plus an egg) and swiss chard from my garden. :D And I made a girly pink drink :) with lots of baby ice cubes.

So now, I'm relaxed, tired, happy, and content. I just have to figure out how I'm rearranging my studio.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Pancake's back!

Hooray for Jesse Pancake!

One of my dear friends who's been away working in different states is back in the area. It is such a delight to have the option of hanging out in person.

While we may talk a minimum of every few weeks or so, it is still lovely to have someone as fun as him to call up last minute and have playdates.

Today: errands turned into errands and ice cream and swimming in waterfalls in our clothes. :D

= happybunny

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

we don't have a pepper anymore!

Well, remember that pepper?

The one I wrote about?

Well... I ate it. :D

That is all.


A delight and an honor

Last night I was delightfully invited (Jake too!)

over to dinner with my dear friends Chandra

and Mike (they're engaged! wahoo!! :D )

I had the pleasure of meeting Chandra's dear parents,

eating delicious food (amazing cheese, bacon/avacado+

appetizer, shrimp, couscous, and having, perhaps, a

little too much pisco :D )

Monday, August 17, 2009

hooray for voip!

I have just concluded my first ever internet chat with my dear husband.

Oh it is so good to be able to see his face no matter how far away he is.



week in review - and he's gone.

The past week has been very tough for me, but as that's not the subject of this blog, I'll move on.

On the way home from spending a few days in Maine (the highlights of which are swimming, polar bearing, visiting with family and getting unexpected support from people I only see once a year or so) I had dinner with my mum. Yesterday, I was able to get local peaches, juicy and delicious, and my dear friend Diana moved in!

It will be so uplifting to have her here, and such a relief to have someone looking after the place when I'm off adventuring.

I posted this blog there but never posted here about the revamp of my website.

Looks like the next few days are going to be pretty dreadful hot. Maybe I should go to New Hampshire.

Saturday, August 8, 2009


We got the photos back from Joanna's Bachelorette/Pinup party. Here's the one of me :)

Funny (and by "funny" I mean "disgusting" :) ) how thick the makeup they/we wore was. It took me a minute to recognize that it was me because none of my moles/freckles are visible.

In other news, my dearest darling husband and I have been getting time to really be with each other. Quite a blessing in the face of his imminent departure. It has been really wonderful to connect on deeper levels and be able to stand strong together rather than having the stress and the separation tear us apart.

Thank you to all our dear friends for all of your love and support. We could not do this without you all.

Monday, August 3, 2009

conglomerate and a breather - love yourself and let her see

Fantastic visit over at Michael and Joy's house complete with flying dog chases, grilled fish caught by our host, lovely conversation, girlie time with accompanying manly time in the other room and just a wonderful night all together.

Listening to a podcast, I came across a concept that I love. I'm mostly paraphrasing but here's the gist:

The interviewee was given advice from a mentor when he was about to become a father:

You have two jobs with your daughter.

The first job, which is the easier, and you'll mess it up along the way but you'll figure it out and it's still important is to teach her how to be in the world - how to blow her nose and cross the street and say please and thank you and all that.

The second job is to teach her how to love herself.

The man said that he then asked how he was supposed to do that.

The mentor told him to love himself and let her see.


Thursday, July 30, 2009

Our first pepper

pepper! We have a pepper growing! A real pepper :-D

Not just the flowers and bud-lets of potential peppers but a recognizable pepper! Yay!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

holy crip - countdown to his departure

well with the business of everything I haven't managed to post!

My dearest darling Joanna got married! I had the privilege and the pleasure of being her maid of honor (matron really but that sounds... well... matronly) it was such a lovely affair! Such fun to meet so many people dear to her and her lovely husband.

Joe managed to defend our vacation time and so was able to take a little bit of time off before he heads back to the pre-deployment countdown. I'm so thankful we were able to escape to Surry to one of our favorite little getaways.

Now we're home and getting stuff done around the house to get everything in order for his departure, my trip to camp and (fingers crossed) our friend Diana who is moving in around the middle of next month.

At the moment we have the lovely Kara visiting Jake who just thinks it's the best thing ever to have a sleepover friend. They have a mutual annoy/enjoyment club going.

Even with the craziness I've had some time for crafting and I have to say it's wonderful to be busy making things again.


Saturday, July 11, 2009

Thank goodness for porches

Light breeze, not too warm, sitting out on the back porch with Jake (who's crammed into the little bit of direct sun to roast himself) crocheting, listening to a good book and sipping a delicious teadrink.

So good to get a minute to breathe.

I may be procrastinating but at least I'm being productive ;)

Monday, July 6, 2009

what an amazing weekend! - Red Sox game

Great visit with my brother (see previous post) fantastic (and hugely attended!) sendoff party for Joe on Saturday, then Sunday we spent at Fenway Park watching the Red Sox beat the pants off the Seattle Mariners. :D

Go Red Sox!

Three Home Runs for the Sox and a stolen home base :) What a delightful day.

Plus I got a purty hat. :)


Saturday, July 4, 2009

yay for brothers :)

I got to go pick up my brother in northampton last night and hang out until I finally cut us off a couple hours after my bed time :)

I don't get to see him very often but it's always such a treat when I do.


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

breathing. In and out. - preparing to send him off

Things seem to be coming together nicely for Joe's sendoff party this weekend and thankfully without too much stress from yours truly.

Looks like I'll be making some coleslaw and possibly getting together some veggies and dips.

If the rain holds out it also looks like there's some fun social plans shaping up, possibly including fireworks, and definitely including a chain saw. :D

Monday, June 29, 2009

Hooray for The Whiskey Boys

Yet another fantastic beer night at Union Street Tavern with live music (second week in a row!) from The Whiskey Boys!

What a delightful time. So good I even stayed up about four hours past my bed time! Again!

Saturday we were so tired but we laughed more than we have in ages. :) Another good evening around our firepit and then sunday at the firing range. After a little refresher course I didn't do half bad :)

Saturday, June 13, 2009

He's home he's home he's home!!

Joe is back from his three week drill in VA. He's got a couple more days to go but at least those he gets to do from home. :) My girlie plans would make it so that I wouldn't get to spend time with him this weekend anyway but it's so good to get to see him in the wee hours.


I haven't seen Jake so excited or happy in quite awhile.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Yay for friends!

Hooray for getting some good one on one time with two of my favorite people!

A movie this afternoon and a girlie date for beerz :)

I don't think it's been so hard to drag myself away from beerz in a while. Granted we don't usually start at 6:30 when there are boys involved :)

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

ooo! Shiny! - first firefly of the year

Last night I saw a firefly in the back yard for the first time!

Then Jake almost sat on it.


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

random things that make me happy - highlights from away

I just got back from a fantastic few days in New Hampshire.

I cannot remember being so happy or giggly (or stress free) in quite some time.

Some of the highlights:

LONG walks through the army corps land behind my grandparents where there were several bullfrog choruses, skinny-wading (wasn't quite warm enough for real swimming)

Making Jack-a-l'oranges :D (jack-a-lanterns out of oranges and filling them with fruit salad)

Making jello with the leftover fruit and putting in leftover colored tapioca balls :D Wiggly food with floaty spungy balls and fruit in it is fun. :D

Found a pair of fun sneakers (finally found converse I love on me) and then when we got home Jake decided to hang out in the trunk while I was unloading the rest of the car. :)

I know there are lots of happy thoughts I've forgotten but they will have to wait until another day :)


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

:D Lazy day happy thoughts

I finally found a decent knife block that wasn't a hundred dollars. It's so nice to have my knives within easy access of my cutting board. (instead of in a drawer in blade guards or the original packaging)

Now I'm sitting here enjoying a glass of peach lambic with my lazy lunch. :)

What a day!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Introspection, extroversion and a crazy puppy

Some good time to do some internal work - focus on some inner struggles and actually have a moment to breathe and let go.

Then I picked up half a bale (three quarters REALLY) of straw from a freecycler on our way to the Bark Park where Jake ran around like a crazy dog for a couple hours. Not long after we arrived our good friends Michael and Joy (and Kara too) joined us for some good chatting followed by soft serve ice cream (with rainbow sprinkles!)

My plantlets are all so happy with their new mulch.

A bit more work on my first BIG painting, and I've got another blank BIG canvas waiting!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Fantastic birthday weekend!

Resting up from a fantastic birthday weekend. Lovely family dinner on Saturday complete with the surprise attendance of my fairy-godmother, dinner at Burdick's delicious chocolate, strawberries, whipped cream, angelfood cake, exquisite coffee. A restful day at home while Joe was off at drill on Sunday and then cooking, relaxing, purging no-longer-wanted stuffs from the house, and having a last night with my man before he leaves for VA for three weeks.

I'm excited to read Amy Stuarts new book which was a birthday gift from my grandparents.Here's her little preview for the book:

Watered my new garden beds filled with birthday-present veggie plants with my shiny new cherry red watering can. :)

hooray for birthday revelry!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Yarn and gardens and and and! - Farmstead Raised Beds

After a fantastic few days in New Hampshire that resulted in a FULL car load of dirt, top soil, llama beans, plants, two raised bed kits (picture not my garden) plus my dog and me :) I hit the annual tent sale at Webs. :drool:

I managed to only spend about $75 on yarn and needles and now have lots of deliciously soft and vibrantly colored yarns for exciting new projects now I just have to find time to do all of this delightful knitting and to actually dig up a couple patches of lawn!


Monday, May 11, 2009


House is looking great - the spare room is turning into an office for Joe, there is significantly less dog hair, dishes are clean, apron is still great :D and a fantastically positive (if brief) visit from my aunt as she blew through town.


on to other things!


Thursday, May 7, 2009

Yay for domestic-goddesshood :) - new apron

Pretty new apron :) Yay etsy!

Fantastic huge grocery shop with lots of great food to come, tons of little plantlets coming up in the yard, a happy puppy, exciting visiting plans this weekend, terrific complement, progress on my studio, and general happiness and excitment!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

gettin'r'done! - happy thoughts

Tuna pasta salad on hot days, popsicles, brandinew grasslets coming up, leaves on the trees, fans in the window and sleeping in. :)

Now I'm making breakfast for lunch and might get to see my Man shortly thereafter!


Monday, April 27, 2009

Swimming! - first of the year

Wahoo! Usually I take my first swim of each year on my birthday in Maine, but as it looks like I'll not be able to make it to maine for my birthday this year, I figured heck, I'll swim in Connecticut in April!

Jake the dog still isn't sure about the idea of going in water but we'll get there.

Fantastic hot day yesterday complete with swimming, popsicles, watering my new little grasslets, a good walk, not to mention some getting stuff done and some fantastic food!


Friday, April 24, 2009

Beer night!

We finally made it back to City Steam for our (usually regular) Beer night.

Oh it was so lovely to see the gang again (when I wasn't feeling poorly) and just relax on our couches. That's right... OUR couches. :)

Looks like there's some girlie dates in the near future too!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

:) Surprise lunch visits

Joe "forgot" his work ID and so "had" to stop by home for lunch. I love that our house (eek!) is close enough for him to stop by.

He also said with all of his extra training and travel before he deploys he'll be trying to do this kind of thing more often.

More time with my guy and during the day? ok!


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Fantastic NYC Trip!

Lord Willy's, McSorleys, Obscura, and Ninja! Wow! What a trip (even with some chocolate lunch thrown in!)

Ninja was a riot and I'll want to go to Lord Willy's and Obscura every time I'm in town. :)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

tee hee :) - jaker in a laundry basket

Last night when we were all downstairs with the boys, Jake was getting tired and looking for a place to settle in. He decided that the lined laundry basket seemed like a good option so he hopped in. Sitting there he looked a little embarrassed because he wouldn't quite fit laying down. :lol:

Plus I picked up our new reel mower. :D wushwushwushwushwushwush :D

Monday, April 13, 2009

Happy Thoughts - Welcome

Welcome  to my blog!

Happy thoughts:

Grapefruit and new techniques for cutting grapefruits, possible trip to NYC this weekend with a few extra bonus days with my guy, people stepping out of the woodwork and really supporting me it really being ok i didn't get anyting done today.