Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Fuzzy Little Ears

Our annual May Day festival (All Species Day)  is swiftly approaching. "All Species Day" is a wonderful celebration where you get to dress as your favorites species and march in a parade as well as attend a beautiful nature ceremony and May pole dance. It's my favorite holiday. One little girl knew exactly what her favorite species would be this year. A mouse! Eee! But not just any mouse, a grasshopper mouse... an incredible mouse that both fights scorpions and howls like a wolf... a perfect fit for a feisty little girl ready to take on the world. I feel like I have made so many ears since becoming a mom... cat ears, unicorn ears and horn, deer ears and probably more that I'm forgetting. Usually I turn to fabric, but for this, I wanted something fuzzy and a light bulb went off. Felt! Indeed! I needle felted two mousey ears and a tail with brown, grey and pink wool. I was able to needle felt the ears to a headband by leaving extra room at the bottom of the ears and overlapping over the band being careful not to hit the band with my needles. I needed to do a few stitches to get them to stay in place and curve in a little, but it didn't take too long and I think the results are adorable. I can't wait to hear her howl on All Species Day. Hopefully she'll actually wear her costume this time, unlike last Halloween, but if not, they'll be a cute addition to the dress up box.

Joining in with KCCO over at Frontier Dreams .

Monday, April 18, 2016

In the Garden: Opening Weekend

Hurray for gardening weather! I was so excited to start digging in the soil this weekend and today, and so thankful for beautiful weather. The first daffodils opened in a full chorus of singing flowers. Spring is like Christmas to me... always something new opening up, and something new to plant. I'm so glad I got some of the early starters in the ground, as well as the children's garden started. I planted broccoli, lettuce, spinach and cabbage in the big garden and we planted , snap peas, radishes and carrots in the kid's garden. New to me, I also planted bok choy and beets. I'm planning on using the beets exclusively for dying because I don't really care for the taste. I'm hopeful to start a small dye garden this year so I can experiment with dying fabric and yarn. I have no idea if I like bok choy, but our library gave out free seed packets this year, and it seemed worth a try. I still have a few more things to start this week, and some new patches to prepare. I've also got seedlings going indoors and more to start. I'm struggling with egg plant and onions seedlings, once again, despite buying a grow mat, and might resort to buying starters again this year. My friend recommended making a kelp meal spray, and that has been helpful. Anyone else doing a garden this year? I plan on sharing regular updates this year, too, and please feel free to share your garden updates in the comments. I love to see what other people are growing.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The Unicorn

Shh! It's a secret! There's a new unicorn in the house.  I had one magical afternoon to myself, and I made this little "stuffy", as my kids call them, for Elsa's birthday in early May. There have been a few cute unicorns that she has been smitten with on outings and also several I've seen online that I have been sorely tempted by, but the temptation to make my own won out. It's so soft and quite a squishy thing, so I hope she digs it. We'll see... three year old's can be both easy to please and impossible to please. She told me that she wants "a pony and a pair of slippers for her birthday". When I asked what size pony (crossing my fingers that she meant a toy and not a real one), she said a little one... a little plastic one that she wanted to name "Cloud". She has two others named "Moon" and "Sun". The slipper request was a big surprise as I've never been able to get her to wear slippers! Hmm... we'll see. Anyways, I think I can swing the little plastic pony, too... I just wanted her to have something cozy and magical to cuddle, and she is a great lover of all things equine, even of the mythical variety. We're also planning to have a wild pony for her with a few friends... no real ponies involved, unfortunately. I can't wait to share the silly things I'm going to make for that.

Joining in with KCCO over at Frontier Dreams .

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Spring Lantern

I've wanted to make a silhouette lantern for the table for a while and when I mentioned it to Oona, she set me to work on it straight away. I love that about children... they never wait for the perfect time to start something... you don't need to wait until tomorrow... until you have the right supplies, until the stars are aligned...  anything you dream can happen now. I wish practical things like keeping your house from collapsing into total chaos, feeding your ever-hungry children and kitties, paying bills, and all of those other things that have their importance, but often thwart such spontaneous outbursts of creativity as an adult,  could take a backseat more often. Anyways, it was indeed a spontaneous project and there are many imperfections, including glue spots and an uneven base that doesn't sit perfectly on the table, but it was still fun... and the picture I made was very much inspired by my two little adventurers (carrying their dollies, by request, as well as wearing lots of bows). Oona has one in progress too, that I'll have to share when we can steal some more time to assemble it.

Joining in with KCCO over at Frontier Dreams .

Monday, April 4, 2016

From Scratch: Romantic Ravioli and Blueberry Apple Pizza

Sometimes I think convenience steals all the joy out of modern cooking. Don't get me wrong, there are many nights when quick and simple does the trick and allows us to do other things, but I do so love the times when I can slow down and take joy in cooking. It's especially rewarding when I get to do it with someone I love. Last week I had two such awesome nights, first, trying out my new hand crank pasta roller, and making ravioli with Jake... he cranked and I cut them out and put them together... so much easier and sweeter with two people on the job. Then later in the week, Oona and I made pizza dough and she rolled her own pizza complete with apple and blueberry topping. Oona seldom eats our homemade pizza... crazy, I know. Jake usually does pizza night and just cranks it out with some store bought dough. But we took over the job last Friday... making both calzones and pizza with homemade dough, and the result was amazing. Oona did so much of the work herself, and she couldn't stop talking about how awesome it was, and she ate every bite. She even looked curious to try our calzones. I told her we're going to make it a new Friday night tradition. Hurray for cooking with family!