Tuesday, March 3, 2015

a petaline feature.

My little student got caught up in a visit with his grandparents this morning, so while I'm smelling my cookies that are baking, I thought I would use this extra time to pop in and share a blog post written by a new, dear friend of mine, Chelsea. She is starting a new series on her blog called Maker Monday, making its debut with Petaline as Maker 001. It's a bit humbling to be written about & photographed in such a sweet way, but the funny thing is that I would probably say the same thing about Chelsea if the tables were turned....


I am so excited to follow along with this series (you should too!) and see the other makers she spotlights, and hopefully make some new connections if they are local. It is always so nice to meet other like-minded folks!

So, yeah, check out the first installment of Maker Monday here.


Thursday, February 26, 2015

lately...

Lately I’ve been enjoying the major snowfall we’ve gotten in the past week (with more tonight possibly), and loving how it causes a general "slow down" to local society. Snow always takes me back to being a kid too…waking up bright-eyed and bushy-tailed to peek out of my window and immediately running to the tv to see if my school ran across the screen. Then I’d stay in my pjs all day…even throwing snow pants over them…and get the most out of my free day as I could. To this day, I find myself still checking out the window first thing in the morning, and love that sense of excitement I still feel when I see all of the white. So magical.

Lately I’m working on being more intentional with my purchases. We all know that I’ve mentioned a household overhaul, so I really shouldn’t be bringing anything into my home, but if I do it’s because it’s utilitarian or something I know I will cherish as the years pass. Like this sweet-as-heck honey jar. I went down to Pastiche at Main (where I sell some of my goods) to drop some stuff off, and it was like all of the stars had aligned the 10 minutes I was in there. I work out of a half gallon jar of honey, where there is about 2 inches of honey left at the very bottom…nightmare when I just need a little spoonful for my tea. Could this vintage trinket be anymore perfect?!

Lately I’ve been working on lots and lots of foldover clutches and random-sized pouches to use up my first round of fabric from the Fall. I’m heading to the fabric store next week to choose and stock up on material for the second collection of foldovers for Spring. This stack will be heading down to Pastiche at the end of this week, and a few will be available at the farm store. I want to keep one, but I can’t decide which one! It’s definitely between the black/white or blue with crosses. Although, I am thinking about continuing on the black/white pattern for Spring…I don’t think I did many in that print for the first collection and it’s such a nice pattern & weight. So maybe I’ll grab that last blue one…arghh…I just can’t decide!

Lately I’ve been thoroughly enjoying my new couch! It took me a trip to Charlottesville and a couple of trips to Roanoke to find the one, but I knew it the second I sat on it…my hardheaded self just didn’t want to believe it at first. I sat on this couch at the store in Roanoke while I was looking at fabric options for another couch I thought I wanted, but couldn’t stop petting this one saying how much I loved it. I thought it was too big for my space, so I didn’t even think it was an option. Then we went back to the store a second time to look at fabric again and I was drawn to this one, again, like a magnet. So, I listened to my gut and had her delivered a couple days later! She’s perfect in my living room, so comfortable, and just feels right. Love it when that happens.

Lately I’ve been totally obsessed with Julia Rothman’s new book Nature Anatomy. I look through it over and over, the cover is great, the size of the book is great, and it’s full of so much important and useful information carried out in such a perfectly illustrated way. We use it in homeschool as a reference book - we just did a Weather block and used one of the clouds/environment illustrations to copy. I went ahead and ordered Farm Anatomy (that had been sitting in my Wish List cart for ages), and look forward to using that one during our Farming & Gardening block this Spring. My little student loves them too, which makes our lessons all the more exciting! Thumbs up!!

So that’s the first installment of what’s being going on lately at mi casa…I’d say 2015 is off to a good start….

Monday, January 26, 2015

a good place to start is...now.

       
                                       
2015. 

Like most folks I've seen in the virtual world, I start the new year off feeling ready to set intentions and take on goals. I don't really start it off feeling refreshed and ready to take on the world like some, I just realize that it is a new year and a can be taken as a fresh palette to put whatever I want on it. All the years matter, so I try not to think of it as a redo. It's just another go to make whatever year it is different than the last...if that is desired.

START.

That is my word for this year, following be in 2013, and make for 2014. It sits in my head all day long coaxing me to get on it...whatever that "it" may be. Being that we are a month in already, I feel like I picked a good one.

I picked start for many reasons, some personal, some business, and some in between. I feel that it is a pretty versatile word and that's part of the reason I think it spoke to me. I have realized that I currently wear quite a handful of hats, so start can fit right on in. I am working on staying true to goals that I have set (more on that later), finishing projects that have piled up (more on that later), and starting new ones that have been on my mind (you guessed it...more on that later). And that little word...start...is the trigger that gets me going.

I am documenting the process of my "One Little Word" using Ali Edwards' class she teaches every year. I kind of fell through with documenting my word and process last year, so I am just using those prompts over again and probably do the formal class again next year. It is SUCH a great class and community of people to keep you inspired, so definitely look into it if it something of interest. I plan to check in throughout the year with my current progress and how my word is fitting in to my life. Please let me know if you are currently in this class or have taken it in the past...I'd love to hear about it!

**So, yeah, here I am...after about 8 months. And I thought I would just jump right on it. No excuses and no explanations...it just happened. And I'm hope to keep it up a little better, so continue joining me if you'd like! I'm thinking about a whole new design, direction, and maybe even switching platforms, but I think I am going to see if I can be a little more consistent before I switch things over. It's all part of that word...start....

//photo of my old-as-methuzel donkey plant courtesy of Chelsea Laine Francis//

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

currently

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feeling so calm and chill when craziness is all around me. I’m really not sure where it’s coming from….

thinking about fresh starts and how I can continue to release some extra baggage.

planning my vendor display for the Vintage Lynchburg Spring Market and Artisan Fair.

spending most of my free time weaving. I feel like I have yarn coming out of my eyeballs.

wondering if I should add some new stamp designs or just keep hanging out with what I have and phase ‘em out.

excited to play around with my new Photoshop Elements 12 purchase. (The above photo was my first edit using the ABM actions!)

watching old seasons of Modern Family. Cam and Manny are still my faves.

planting some new flowers around the house and seriously considering getting some more. I don’t think you can ever go overboard.

taking supplement after supplement to get my physical health ready for the next step. And it can’t come soon enough.

going through spaces in my house that need redistributing and cleaning out. All in the name of that next step.

reading this book in hopes of becoming empowered and strong and free and open and ready for that next step.

obsessed with my new lids. The cuteness actually encourages me to drink more water. Yes, I know it’s ridiculous.

stoked that it’s that CSA time of year and I can depend on fresh goodies for nourishment.

freshening up this virtual space of mine and figuring out in what direction I want to take it.

listening to the new First Aid Kit song over and over. Gotta keep on keeping on.

looking forward to seeing them live for the first time next month in North Carolina. I might be going solo & that is just fine with me.

 

What’s going on with you? 

 

 

 

 

Monday, April 21, 2014

baggage begone.

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I am so ready to start fresh.

Is it spring fever? I’m not sure. But sometimes I just want to walk away from everything and become free again. Free of all that weighs me down even when I don’t know it. Free of that mental, emotional, and physical baggage that I have collected throughout my years on this earth.

But I want to do it with gratitude. It’s not that things aren’t good…because they are (for the most part). It’s just that I know I am missing things that I’m not sure will come forth with all this baggage around me. My brother told me somewhat recently that all of the unfinished projects or ideas or conversations add an immense amount of subconscious stress on a person and it’s almost like they are ties to keep you from moving forward. It’s Native American wisdom he shared from his readings, and I’ll have to find it because I know I’m not giving it justice. But, that is the main gist. And for me currently, it absolutely holds true and I can feel it everyday.

I am thinking about making a list of all of my unfinished business from all areas of my life, i.e. creative, home, personal, etc. and seeing what I can cross out and let go and then prioritizing what is left. Maybe then they will get out of my physical body and leave me alone, but visible so I can trudge through them. I don’t know - sometimes I just make lists because I love the paper and pen and it just gets lost in a notebook somewhere…and becomes more baggage.

I’m thinking of starting over with this space of mine. I want to do better, but I feel like starting fresh is what I need to really pinpoint the direction I want to go in. I don’t even know what my blog is about or what purpose it serves me, so I’m in the process of figuring all of that out too. I really enjoy blogging when I actually do it, but I sometimes feel like I’m trying to measure up to what’s out there inside of being completely me. I want to talk about my recent craft ventures or project ideas; but I also want to share my outlooks on life which are not all pleasant, in hopes of connecting with readers who may feel the same. I am not going to sit here and say “I’m gonna do better” and then not follow through, but I hope that I will if I feel like what I have and want to say is real and not trying to fit into a mold. So, we’ll see how that turns out…I need to let it percolate a bit.

I bought this book based on a short description I read on Ali Edwards’ blog, and I’m looking forward to gain perspective on this baggage we take through life. I see a lot of parallels between the author and I, so it was almost uncanny how perfect it seems for me at this exact time. I’ll be sure to report back.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

holding down the farm.

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I was left “in charge” of the farm last Friday and Saturday while the tribe went to a Virginia Biological Farmers conference in Richmond. My brother was asked to speak on “Harmonious Herd Management” so we spent all week reviewing, editing, and finalizing this slideshow. I was pretty excited for him to show it - speaking about the everyday passion of his comes so naturally to him so I knew he had it in the bag. I stayed back with my youngest niece, who is two, and we had our fun feeding pigs, checking a new mama milk cow & her calf, and just being ready for anything the day threw at us.

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I used to work on the farm, not really tending animals, but I did occasionally have a run at it. None of it was new to me, but it has definitely been a while since I carried water and feed buckets. All of our farm animals are free-roamers, but the predominately grass-fed pigs need some supplemental food that is carefully curated by my brother and local feed company, not to mention the occasional kitchen scraps we throw at ‘em every now and then. The pigs were all nested in the hay barn when we got there and came running out as soon as they saw those buckets being emptied. I just love watching their ears flop when they run and I can’t help but imagine their feet as high heels. They are quite comical to watch. I mean, look at big mama just laid back in the middle of them all…you can’t help but smile at her.

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The herd was beside us on the hillside eating and lounging about so we had to go and say hi to them and see Hippie. We only have one like him, but we all know he is just happy as a lark with this cold weather. And yes, he actually does know his name. :)

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Next up was feeding some neighbor’s pigs we have in the barn and checking on a mama and her calf who was rescued from the freezing weather. The calf seems to be doing great all huddled in the hay pile and even stood up to greet me when I went closer to visit. So sweet.

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My copilot all bundled up and snuggly.

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We went over to my brothers to check on everybody and it was my first time seeing the newest member of the milk cow family, Blackbird. He had them huddled up in the barn with a ton of hay for comfort and eating, so we just needed to check on her water, feed hay, and make sure the calf was nursing good. Oh yeah, and I had to shovel out manure into the compost pile to keep the barn clean for them…so you know that was fun. That little thing was jumping all around the barn, feet flying in the air, hopping up and over hay bales with no trouble at all…so darn cute. Her mama, Piedra, wasn’t tooooooo keen on me being so close to her new baby, but she soon got more concerned with her delicious hay than me.

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It was fun to throw on my newly-purchased and much-anticipated coveralls over all the layers and head out early to tend everyone. I’d say we made a pretty good team.

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Thursday, January 30, 2014

simplifying.

If you’ve been visiting here recently, you may have gotten the hint that I am on this quest for simplifying my home. If its not as apparent as I think…well, now you know. I am so tired of piles forming and shifting all over the house, covered tabletops, and items taking up space that are not being used or really needed. I mean, I’m no hoarder status, but it’s too much for me to be completely happy and content in my own home. There is absolutely no reason one person should have/need/collect so much stuff. No reason at all. And I know that about myself and I embrace it…but now I just want to minimize.

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In the past, I have made conscious efforts to collect those items that I could sell and list them on eBay, which I have been quite successful in doing so. I’m pretty good at collecting items for Goodwill, and probably do a drop every couple of months or so. Although, I’ve now switched from Goodwill to the DAV because of Goodwill’s gouging prices and other than that, I’m not really sure of its purpose? I don’t know. So I start a bag during a regular clean-up, and I just add to it as the days go along. When I feel like it’s full enough, I drop it off. Sometimes I drop just the one bag, sometimes I’ve collected a couple - but now I want to collect more. Get that ahhhhhh feeling.

I was reading down my Twitter feed the other day Grace Bonney of Design*Sponge made mention of a 30-day Minimalist challenge she is taking part put together by her contributor, Amy. Well, obviously this intrigued me so I clicked my way through mentions and links, and finally came across this:

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Yes.

Not that I am the greatest with challenges, but this is more of a calendar’s view on doing something everyday to minimize my space inhabitants with the ultimate goal of having less. I’m not totally ready to get started, I’d like to clean first, but this challenge is a great start. And I can’t say I’ll complete ALL of the days, but I just love the idea of having specific small, daily goals to keep me inspired and motivated.

 // images directly linked with a click and rounded up from my “abode” Pinterest board //