Friday, October 18, 2013

Catch up

Here we are, playing catch-up again! We have been busy with birthdays, homeschooling, garden work, canning and preserving, visits from family and trying to find a general balance to it all!


Sunday, September 1, 2013

In preparation.

In preparation for the changing colors, and needing some autumn-hued silks, we have decided to use this opportunity to dye our own! This is somewhat for my own records as well, so please forgive the businesslike presentation of it all!

Silk ordered from Dharma Trading

Onion Skins:
      - We decided to mix red and brown to see what happens
      - Boiled the onion skins for an hour
      - Rinsed the silk in hot water
      - Boiled skins and silk together for an hour
      - Let them cool together in the pot, and sit overnight
      - On a whim, the next day added white vinegar in hopes of making the dye more colorfast
      - Rinsed thoroughly with cold water, until water ran clear
      - Turned out a bit mottled, but love it!


Saffron:
      - Brought a pot of hot water and one silk to a simmer
      - Added several oz. of saffron (a gift from Turkey from my mother-in-law)
      - Decided that the colors was not strong enough, and added a packet of peach mango Koolaid
      - Boiled silk and dye bath together for 3 hours
      - Let sit overnight
      - On a whim, the next day added white vinegar in hopes of making the dye more colorfast
      - Rinsed thoroughly with cold water, until water ran clear
      - Turned out a lovely golden color when dried...our favorite so far.



Elderberries & Goldenrod:
      - Had some elderberries dried in bulk, and some frozen fresh
      - We picked a whole bunch fresh, but the kids lost interest after a while, which is why we
         combined the two...
      - Boiled both of the above together for about an hour (and hoped they weren't off-gassing some
        deadly poison being mixed together)
      - Boiled the silk with a 1/2 cup salt, a cup of vinegar, and some water, for one hour.

     

Friday, August 30, 2013

Summer's end.

It's coming to a close. Summer. The air has certainly shifted, although still hot and a little humid. The crickets are chirping all day, and the evenings are quite cool. Yesterday, we decided, was the first unofficial day of homeschooling. We hiked our favorite mountain, and were reminded, on a foggy, drizzly, quiet day, why we have chosen this path. This, instead of sitting at a desk with fluorescent lights overhead. This, instead of lines in the lunchroom and barely a breath of fresh air all day long. Climbing trees instead of jungle gyms. Testing the waters of a mountain-top lake instead of being told to be quiet and sit still.

Yes...I think it's going to be a great year.




Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Staycation 2013 - Part II

...So after the thunderstorm passed, we proceeded to unpack the car and make dinner. All of a sudden, during dinner, we looked out and saw the most unbelievable rainbow any of us has ever witnessed. Really, there are no words to describe it. It was crystal clear, we could see where it began and ended, it was a double rainbow...and we were right smack underneath it. I'd say this was one of the top ten most magical experiences I have ever been a part of. Otherworldly doesn't even capture it. As the rainbow faded, the colors in the sky turned pink and gold, and were reflected in the water. We all felt as if we were a part of something really important, and felt truly blessed for that.

At the end of the images is a short video of the rainbow, which was really the only way to capture the entirety of it.

  video

Staycation 2013 - Part I

Oh what a lovely week we had, and because I took so many photos, I am going to have to break these posts up a bit. The first day alone warrants a post all to itself.

We left, car packed to the gills, in 90 degree heat...with no air conditioning. But, by the time we hit Belfast, there was a cool breeze coming off the ocean. That brought the temps down to, say, 89 degrees. We walked around Belfast for a bit, and I got to visit my favorite fabric store of all time. That alone made my week. But, we also got ice cream, wandered, visited a few stores, and generally soaked our clothes with sweat.

Needless to say, by the time we got to Blue Hill, we were all ready to strip and dive into the ocean. They had been calling for severe thunderstorms all day, and we rolled in to our cottage just ahead of one. I seriously could have just gone in naked, it looked that good. Had Judy not been with us, I probably would have. We had about 10 minutes before the thunder started, and we took advantage.

These photos are the progression from the beginning of the trip to just after the thunderstorm.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Mid Summer

This has been a strange summer. The days have alternated between 90's and humid and 60's and rainy. The garden has loved it, though I am left wondering where our picturesque Maine summers have disappeared to. Nonetheless, life moves forward, and so do our plans. On one sticky evening, we gathered out at the new land to have a bonfire, and a christening of sorts, for the property that is slowly becoming lived into. It was so lovely to be in that magical place on such a warm and slow evening.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

The Fourth.

What a wonderful, beautiful, lovely day with family at our most favorite beach. Favorite because you have to work for it. Favorite because it's nearly empty every time we go. Favorite because it's still accessible when, not just on the fourth of July, many other areas of our State's waterfront are closed off to the people who live here. Favorite because it still feels like a secret place...