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We are home from our trip, still without answers, unsure of what we want to do….not that’s half a lie, I’m pretty sure I want to stay in New Hampshire, I love the seasons, I love the snow, the cool air, this is home. Toph is still unsure, has talked of us going back down with the kid’s, dogs, cat, fish, and ferret and staying for three months to get a feel and then decide.

We will see, it is beautiful down there but too hot at the same time.

On our first full day we arrived in Amish Country PA

Homemade root beer was purchased

We went on a tour and though I haven’t worked with horses for 20 years, I was complimented by a nice Amish man on how well I handled his team. He didn’t seem to believe me when I told how I grew up on a farm, but driving the horses back to the tour area he looked at me and said “Oh wow, you have done this before!”

We stopped at several beautiful shops and me being me, well…

Wool was a must (then I came home to a greater surprise when my friend down the road gifted me with a 55 gallon trash bag full of alpaca.)

On day two we found ourselves in Virginia, we drove on the Skyline Highway

Went on a 7.9 mile hike

Where we made a friend

Virginia is truly a beautiful state

We stopped overnight in Tennessee before heading to North Carolina to stay with family for a night.

We went on another hike and met another friend

This one did not want to leave the trail, didn’t care that we were there (the other deer was a bit skittish).

We headed back to Virginia and toward the destination of the childhood home of the creator of one of my favorite shows

The museum is set up in the former high school in Schuyler Virginia, just down the road you will find the Hamner house and a little further down the road is a shop that is little gift shop where I purchased a book that was (maybe) signed by Earl Hamner Jr.

I very much enjoyed the little town, it was beautiful and the museum was perfect! Everything at the gift shop was beautiful and affordable. I highly recommend visiting.

The last day in Virginia was spent in Swoope, we have previously been here to visit Joel Salatin from Polyface farm, unfortunately we got there right after closing but it was worth the excursion.

My favorite place at the end of the trip was of course home, sitting around the fire, watching the sunset and enjoying the sound of the critters.

Have a great day folks!

Here and there

We’ve been everywhere.

Enjoying violin lessons, today will be our third lesson. We’ve spent countless hours practicing at home.

We went to my favorite place on earth (well because my sheep aren’t here yet, someday 👏)

I brought home the Christmas version of monopoly and now we all have our own set.

We spent the day at Pine Point in Scarborough Maine last Friday. The water was perfect and the sand just right for building. Our spot on the beach wasn’t overcrowded and the weather was sublime. What felt like an hour was really four and it wasn’t until tummy’s started rumbling for something other than the snacks brought along, did we finally pack up and go in search of dinner…and then ice cream (Bayley’s chocolate raspberry truffle is amazing and highly recommended.)

We’ve been at our own beach where I’ve been working on this ten stitch baby blanket.

For my little nephew due next winter.

And then we have been home

Making chicken sausage from laying hens that went into the freezer last fall, after many failed attempts they were just too hard to eat, so we tried another approach and I must say, they are delicious. I am thankful for this because we had 20+ hens in the freezer and short of feeding them to the dogs, we had no idea what else to do.

Now they will feed us through the winter and continue to keep us from having to rely on the grocery store.

We’ve been in the back pasture moving the 15 remaining laying hens, the rest have found new homes on other farms. We now move our coop on wheels once a week rather than every other day.

What have you been doing to fill your summer days?

Tour De Fleece

For the first time ever, I am taking part in Tour De Fleece….mainly because this is the first time I’ve ever heard of it, also because I can’t seem to stop spinning. I joined team Port Fiber after stopping last weekend to grab more polworth and silk blend to re-create this yarn

I love the color-way so much, yet 155 yards won’t get me very far.

Three 4.1 Oz braids were purchased this time, split up and set to dye

They dried all morning yesterday in the indoor green house

Everyone joined mom outside for some spinning time

By the end of the night, I had decided that I wanted to spin this up thinly, to see how many yards I could get out of a single, especially because this will most likely be a six ply if I want to achieve the same colorway.

This should last me all of Tour De Fleece right? If not, it will keep me busy during the long summer days.

Summer days

Vacation is here and we’ve managed to find ways to entertain ourselves during all the rainstorms.

From canning rhubarb pie filling, from what little we had this year

To 5+ hour long games of monopoly

To combing wool for more spinning

Some of us found ways to entertain ourselves that ended with pain and a trip to the vet

Ouch! (Both dogs are fine, though Moose is sporting a new haircut on his leg)

When the sun came out we had beautiful sights waiting for our eyes

In about a month Toph and I will journey down to south to see if that is really where we want to relocate or if perhaps we should just stay put. We will be looking in PA, WV, VA, and NC. I’ve been compiling a list of places to go (beaches, hikes, sites of interest), searching for celiac friendly places to eat (We will be bringing a lot of snacks, after a close call I just had at a restaurant, I need to be even pickier that already am. Sometimes gluten free menus mean nothing.)

The children will be staying behind to enjoy time with the grandparents and help out taking care of the animals and the garden.

We are definitely looking forward to this adventure!

Have a great day folks!

What season is it?

With the chilly weather outside, one could hardly believe that it is almost summer time, the bugs, flowers, and allergies are here, but we have been lacking the warmth from the sunshine.

I’ve found ways to distract myself though, in the form of canning and you guessed it, spinning.

For the first time ever I have canned some jelly/honey like concoction from lilacs

More like honey, less like jelly. A little of both but not at the same time. We enjoy it though.

I love lilacs, my grandmother’s loved lilacs as well and each year I look forward to smelling their sweet scent in the air.

I’m really enjoying my new wheel, it’s so smooth and easy to use.

This is Doodle/Romney blend I spun up for a friend who lost her pooch a while back.

This is a Polworth/Silk blend that I dyed myself

Thoughts of the beach were my inspiration for the colors

Around this time however I started to realize the sad truth about my wheel…or my bobbin per say. It can only hold so much yarn, that would not do.

So I placed an order and while I awaited for my parcel, I spun up this beautiful chocolate mint Shetland/Merino combo.

The super flyer kit was exactly what I needed for my wheel

It’s huge and will hold a 500gms of yarn compared to the smaller bobbin that only holds 130gm.

I can also make bulky yarn now if I chose to!

With my order came this lovely merino wool to sample

Shades of blues and grays

I hope your day is more sunny than gray wherever you are!

Have a great day folks!

Spinning

When I went to the New Hampshire Sheep and wool a few weeks ago, I learned something new and it changed my life….

I can now spin “thick” yarn, the entire time I’ve been spinning I’ve struggled to spin anything thicker than the picture on the left and it kind left me in a funk. My yarn was nice, but it wasn’t what I was going for.

So after the lesson at NHSW I took a deep breath, took up the merino/silk I had dyed and went to town

I was happy with the result of the single I had spun up and those colors 😍

I made three of these and started to ply

So dreamy

Folks, when I spin yarn it usually takes months because I’m just not happy with how things are looking and I tend to avoid my wheel. I did this in ONE day! Okay so it was only 120 yards but this is absolutely the best yarn I’ve ever spun, my favorite.

And it is working up nicely too!

Have a great weekend folks!

Hello May

First I just wanted to say, that I am not disappointed about the snow that is supposed to arrive tomorrow. Yes, I know it’s spring, I can’t help it.

I am however worried about these little creatures

Hopefully they will stay nice and warm under the heat lamp.

I would also very much like to get these veggies in the garden

May is here and along with it a birthday (My 35th 😳), Mother’s Day, and well, a weekend that I can compare to Christmas.

Yes folks that’s right, New Hampshire Sheep and Wool! I went alone this year but was specifically told that I was not allowed to bring home any animals…and believe me, there were a few for sale, so I very well could have.

Instead I had to settle for sheep and alpaca cuddles, browsing all the fine wool and yarns, and of course I purchased three fleeces

Cotswold, though I just realized I still have a pound from last year I haven’t even touched (whoops!), Finn which is a new one for me, and then coopworth 😍, I also purchased a new bobbin for my wheel and believe it or not I actually came home with cash.

Yesterday for Mother’s Day was spent shivering under layers and layers of fleece sweaters, though it got up to 57, the sun never came out to say hello. My mother in law and I spent our day working on my walkway

I am not the best gardener, almost all the flowers on my property were planted by the previous owner who won awards for gardens. Thankfully they are almost effortless to maintain. My mother in law use to work at a nursery and is very helpful, helping me get flowers that are low maintenance.

Last week I purchased some beautiful merino and silk roving from Port Fiber over in Portland Maine, every time I go there I make sure to stop in a peruse all of the beautiful fibers Casey has in her shop. (If you are a fan of Taproot, they are less than two minutes down the road)

I was on a mission as soon as I purchased this wool, I knew the exact colors I wanted to dye this wool and holy moly…I’m blown away!

I have to finish the doodle/romney blend I am spinning up for a friend and then I will start spinning this up, I took a short five minute class at the Sheep and Wool Festival and was taught how to spin my yarn just a little thicker, so I have high hopes for this yarn!

Speaking of homespun

The Bandana cowl is finally complete, I need to give it a soak in something (I don’t know what) to soften it up, but I am a happy camper.

Have a great day folks, and for all you snow lovers in Maine and New Hampshire, enjoy!