Home Things

Feb. 8th, 2017 06:41 am
impossibleway: (Spring in the Stream)
It feels like Spring here, half the time, and I feel like a big mess about it.  That sounds so silly, but I think I must be Henny Penny these days.  I'm really trying hard not to be, but I am wavering!  My children are perplexed by the funny weather, too, though they are happy to run and climb and play without coats (or shoes!).

Felts and Quilts

In other very happy news, the children are getting a playhouse, thanks to a family member who must have longed for one in her own childhood.  They are beyond excited and we are just waiting for the call telling us the delivery date.  I'm curious to see how it will change things inside, what with the furniture we move out to it and the time they may spend out there.  I'm a little cautious about putting anything out there that is too precious, though it is weather tight.  Summer humidity makes me nervous.

Heart Lantern

Valentine's Day is less than a week away, which I'm sure is no surprise.  I always have mixed feeling about this day, what with all its red and pink together.  We'll make some heart cookies and some cards.  I supposed it wouldn't hurt to put a few in the mail today.  Of course, I consider this and the cookies we need for today on a day when the weather will call everyone back outside again.

Junkyard Tales

Here's part of Roan's junkyard play from listening to Sparkle Stories.  This is Mice Central, if you are a fan of the stories.  All the other favorite places were represented, too.  These stories, along with most of the others, have really become an important part of our routine.  Some are a little too much, like the idyllic Martin & Sylvia Valentine audiobook, but I still wholeheartedly recommend them.

And now, well, my little builder is awake and I bet the oven is heated for the German pancake.  TIme to get whisking!
impossibleway: (Ranger Brandy)
Mid-October Nature TableIt's been warm this week, around eighty each day, and we've all been in funny moods about it.  We've had a good taste of cooler weather and are quite anxious for it to stick around.  The nights are still plenty cool, usually in the forties, so that helps.  It's still dry.  The grass in our yard has been brown since some time in August.  The leaves are starting to change noticably now, and that's a help.  I think things should be very nice for Willow's birthday next week.

In other news, that is probably quite boring, I've been painting doors and trim again.  We don't have a lot of painted wood in our house, but what we do have has needed some sprucing up.  I primed them all awhile back, so I'm doing the final coats this week, and maybe next.  I'm a little nervous about the few painted windows!  We've also been working on cutting back this year's plants in the flower beds and tidying up the yard.  The sunflower house is no more and the last of the tomatoes have been pulled up.  It feels good to have things settled and to consider that Advent is not all that many weeks away.

Sewing has been easier, like I said previously, and that has been so nice.  I finally got my mending pile taken care of, though the long-delayed repairs were so minor it was almost laughable.  I don't know why I let them sit for so long!  It won't be too long before sewing on the back porch will be a cold job, even with a space heater.  I'm making some cold weather dresses for the girls and maybe some pants for Laurel.  She still seems to need a fair amount of extra clothes.

I feel really, really ready to go some place with lots of colorful leaves.  Tomorrow is nature school day and I'm not sure where we will go.  I often don't have a strong plan in mind when the day rolls around.  There are so many places to choose from.  Willow and I have this "dream home" just outside of town that's a log cabin on the edge of the woods.  It reminds me of Martin & Sylvia's house, but it remains firmly out of reach for our family.  The forest is always so close by anywhere you live here.

Well, there are some Enki math things I need to watch in these very early hours of the day, so I better get to it.
impossibleway: (Goldenrod Trailhead)
I think I am procrastinating right now or maybe catching up.  It's hard to say at this point, in these last threeish weeks before our school year starts.  It's been hot at the end of this week, terribly hot, and I mowed the yard in it the other day, feeling rather dry near the end.  I kept myself from full heat exhaustion by drinking plenty and taking lots of breaks, but it was still pretty rough.  There are tomatoes roasting the oven and grapes draining for juice.  I picked about 1.5 gallons of blueberries this week, stopping when the heat got too much.  And there are blackberries, still.

BlueberriesI'm thinking about the house and what tidying needs doing right now and the kitchen, oh, the kitchen.  I've been doing so much cooking in there that I just don't like to be in there right now.  I need to get up from there and organize the whole thing and then I will feel so much better.  I'm thinking about sewing projects, too.  There are things I've put off far too long that need to be done now, or very soon.  I'm wondering if I'll have the supplies to do them and the time, but it's supposed to be 88° for a number of days.  That's good weather for hiding inside.

It's a mish-mash lately, all the stuff to do.  Mike and I are looking toward October, the crowning month of the year, as we see it.  Frosts and leaves and molasses and every day being so pretty.  It feels good to get all this food stored away, to be so thrifty even if it is so exhausting.  Yes, it's Kitchen Time.
impossibleway: (Mike Panorama)
Three out of fve Nichols are asleep on a Sunday afternoon, so it's time to catch up on things.  I can feel the days speeding up as we get near our first day of school on September 5th.  It's time to get all those things done that were Summer Dreams and to work on making the most of what the good Earth is giving us right now.

Settlers Quilt

Wednesday, I think, we went to the Southwest Virginia Settler's Museum.
It's an old farm that's on National Forest land, cared for by volunteers.
I hadn't been since Willow was a baby.

Corn Husk Dolls

The place needs work and people, as most small volunteer projects do,
but it has a lot of potential and there have been numerous improvements in the past seven years.
I really loved these little corn husk dolls--they remind me of the ones at the Asheville Folk Art Center.

Jam and Relish

I did some canning Friday: sweet relish and blackberry jam.
I'm rather nervous that my relish will taste like Aunt Bea's pickles, but Mike is optimistic.
Blackberry jam, on the other hand, never lets me down.

Sentimental Knits

In other news, I spent several HOURS yesterday going through our clothing stockpile for Fall and Winter.
It is early, yes, but school will be in session when the cold weather comes and there is no time like the present.
I'm struggling to find spare time, as it is!
What a trip down memory lane this was--there's Grandad's old hat that I made him and a lot of wee sweaters and hats.
Who were those babies?  Where did they go?

Blackberry Pie

I suppose the crown jewel in our weekend was the blackberry pie/cobbler.
Mike has been after me for years to make a cobbler with a pie crust, as that's what he was used to.
Well, I made a pie crust and pie filling and put it in a square pan.  Haha.

Blackberry Pie

It was absolutely delightful, really. Practically perfect in every way, and with ice cream!  The Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook seldom steers me wrong!
impossibleway: (The Little House)
In the poolYesterday was a full day, a kind of Amazing Work Day.  Maybe it is the Midsummer energy, but we got so much done.  All of us spent the morning doing some serious pruning over at the Roland Estate (where the raspberry patch and garden are).  I trimmed trees, cut back weeds, and pruned bushes in the front of the house.  Mike did some mowing; the children hauled off sticks and carts of weeds.  It looks so much better.  And I picked half a gallon of red raspberries.

In the afternoon, I pruned the tomatoes, which is a weekly job, and set to work really getting the house together.  That's a hard thing to do these days.  There is always something that comes up that gets me off task and quiet times are shorter than they used to be.   The children are more helpful, at times, but it is hard to blame them when the Summer sunshine calls them outside to swing and play.

In the hammockMy camera lens stopped working, which Mike tells me is a known problem with Nikon kit lenses.  He said that four years was twice what he expected out of it.  Talk about planned obsolescence!  Oh, well, he's letting me use his for now.  For awhile, I found the big long lens that also came with my camera and got these pictures from pretty far away.  It was handy for not disturbing Laurel in her quiet moment.  That girl really loves the water.  I wish I could have gotten a picture of her floating in her inner tube at the lake.  Maybe next time.

It is so nice, almost therapeutic, to have a day where you can just get some things done.  As I was experimenting with a different lense, I got this picture of the living room.  It's so calm and tidy and the whole house was this way!  What a gift it was, though I really had to work to get it all done.  For some reason, I had the energy to do so!  I even stained the new wood in the bathroom.  I'm hoping for a sort of bathroom tour later this week.  I've got a shower curtain coming (thanks, Kim!) and I hope to get the staining done today or tomorrow.

There's a storm brewing outside.  The car is free of crumbs and lichen (so much lichen), the garden is hoed for another week, the berries are picked, and the laundry is dry.  It feels so good, even if the sun was blazing down and I was covered in perspiration for most of it.  I'm hoping to get to some mending or second grade planning this afternoon, once Laurel is napping.  Happy Monday!

impossibleway: (Knitting)
It's a chilly thirty degrees here this morning.  I know people are waking up and feeling short-changed, but that's Spring.  Seems that battle we had a couple weeks ago, the one between Summer and Winter, is playing out in real life.  Summer was a little wimpy that day.  That's okay, though.  I got my plants all tucked in last night and we'll see how it goes.  Carrie had me cover the tomatoes with little newspaper tents.  I covered everything else with sheets and tubs and trash cans and a wading pool.  Oh, and the piece of metal that used to cover the chimney!

Mike is back to his travel routine, heading to Louisiana this week.  I am hoping that things are fairly mundane--there are no appointments or big plans, no rennovations.  I really do enjoy getting up and doing the same things each day--the children add enough variety!  The weather looks mild and I am looking forward to the rain tomorrow.  My sunflower seeds need it.  There is still more planting to do: all the squashes and melons and some October beans.  We'll get around to it.  I'm so far ahead of other years.  There were many times I didn't plant a thing until after Memorial Day!  It is nice to look out the window and see healthy broccoli and and little carrot and pea plants.  It's time to thin them, I guess, but I almost don't have the heart.

Whitsun Nature TableI think this will be the best year for yard work, thus far.  Laurel still needs a lot of supervision outside (she doesn't pick on people her own size) and it helps if I am busying myself with some task while they play.  There is plenty to do and I have helpers from time to time.  Children really love to watch people work, people who love their work.  And those who don't, too.  Roan was absolutely fascinated during the whole bathroom project.  He would gather his tools and hang out by the bathroom drilling into the door frame or measuring things.  Luckily, our handyman was extremely patient.

I've got a few minutes before the crowd wakes and the day gets busy.  Time for me to do some copper rods practice and get some things ready for the post office.  Happy Monday!
impossibleway: (The Little House)
Gnomes at HomeTuesday, I declared myself officially done with home disruptions.  Of course, the bathroom is not done and plans had to change and it will definitely go into tomorrow, but I am done.  The roofing, the painting, the out-of-town guests--it has all done me in.  I don't know how we fell into this sort of home remodel, but enough!  These were things that had been put off awhile, things that were issues when we bought this house ten years ago (except the paint), so it was time.  It has been worth it and there is a snug feeling about the new roof and wonderful satisfaction about the paint.  The colors are just perfect.  It gives me to joy see them.

We have mostly kept up our routines.  Quiet time is considerably easier with a plumber than roofers.  School hasn't officially happened this week, but there have been bits and pieces, plenty of reading aloud from Willow and me.  Play has been disjointed.  I get really worked up about good play--real, immersive, involved play.  It did seem that things were a little more comfortable yesterday.  It's close quarters in this little house with one bathroom.  I have a feeling there will be unanimous relief when the bathroom is done.  For now, the children have moved everything to the backporch and set up a house back there.  I think we'll listen to Sparkle Stories there this afternoon.

I took the children hiking in the cold today.  I think it is truly cold for this time of year--mid-forties and overcast and breezy.  Spring is still out there and the woods are really greening up.  The hot tea I put in a thermos was very welcome when we got back to the car.  While I was gone, the plumbers were trying to reach me to ask a question about the shower wall.  Having no phone of my own, I think try called everyone in my family.  My grandmother told them I had run away.  I think I might like that. ;-)  Well, time to tidy up the lunch dishes and move toward quiet time.  I hope this afternoon is a productive one!

Back Again

Apr. 11th, 2016 06:32 am
impossibleway: (Movingthe Soul with Color)
Word Family PicnicTo work and school, that is.  This week "off" really took a lot out of us grownups.  I did something funny to my neck yesterday afternoon that is really testing my limits for pain.  Oh, well, today is the day to dig out the heating pad and try to transcend it.  It is time for life to get back to normal (and slow down).

Having few pictures right now (who wants to see a room with no curtains and nothing on the walls?), here's one from week before last.  Willow is starting to take off on reading.  She's reading her word family coloring book here.  Yesterday, she made a sign using words she already knew.  These are simple things, but they are significant and evidence of discovery-based learning at work.

In other news, it snowed over the weekend and there was a killing freeze.  I'm not sure how apples and cherries and blueberries will do this year.  Time will tell, as I told Roan.  We did our best to cover (and re-cover) things in the driving winds.  I feel glad that I have been a little slow at things and that we got the violet jelly made last weekend.  Winter's last roar?  I kind of hope so.

This is a bit dismal, I know.  I hope today's sunshine and warmth help things along.  I am getting excited for Roan's birthday and then our first May day celebration with a May pole.  More of that forward, yes.
impossibleway: (Berries)
Shovel in the SnowSuppose we did our work
Like the snow, quietly, quietly.
Leaving nothing out.

~Wendell Berry

Oh, it is another week.  It seems the weekend ran me over.  All that snow and life and just too much.  Laurel hurt one of her fingers badly and that has cast a shadow over things.  I hardly even dare to mention it, honestly.  The sun was out yesterday, thawing things, and it just wasn't bright enough for me.  The house feels dull and dingy and a little like a prison.  I suppose that is Winter.  Summer can be blinding and unending, too, with nights that seem to be no reprieve from the day.

Mike made it home Saturday, only to leave again today.  It is only for a night, and then he'll be gone again Thursday.  The forecast looks quite bland and I am happy about that.  Seems we got the gentle part of the storm, a mere dusting compared to those North and East of us.  After a follow-up visit with the doctor this morning, we get on with a new week.  I cannot say that I am too thrilled about it.  There is the promise of weather in the upper forties by the end of the week and I think we will have to take to the woods.  I need it.

In all the anxiety of the past few weeks, I think I have held it together pretty well for the children.  There have been times I have fallen apart, but it has been brief.  I feel like bursting into tears right now.  Life can be grinding at times, just in its relentless march forward.  I don't know how Mike does his job sometimes.  I suppose it is his willfull nature that makes it work.  He is not someone to give up or be told what to do when it doesn't suit him.  It is an asset and a curse, like many things.

I have been trying to channel Ma and Pa Ingalls from The Long Winter lately.  Keeping up spirits has been more keeping up routines for me.  The verses in the Goodnight book are as much for me as they are for the children, "safe in [their] little bed[s] a'lying."  I think I need to learn the sunflower song Pa sang.  I sang lantern walk songs with Laurel while we waited for stitches and so on.  "I go outside with my Laurel, my Laurel goes with me, above the stars are shining bright, down here on Earth shines she. . . "  A new week, let me find new energy, too.
impossibleway: (Winter)
NappingSo far, I feel like hibernating this Winter.  There's no snow to make us excited to be outside and the wind is just so windy.  I am so sleepy, too.  We have been in bed by eight, with me falling asleep on the couch, most every night.  I have been up by 4:30, too, so I guess it all evens out.  I'd love to sleep later, but I need some time each day to just be me.

Mike has been gone all week and next week will be more of the same.  I guess I just need to find my stride with the season, but I am having trouble.  I've been on my feet so much, that my right big toenail looks as though it is probably going to fall off.  Needless to say, I have taken that as a sign to sit more and waste less time on the computer.  I can say that I can't help it, that the communities I need are here, and that is true to a degree.  It's either books or computers for me in this season of hibernation.

Our schoolwork is going well and I am looking forward to sharing more about it soon.  We've done our first word family story and the digestion and artistic output has been fun.  We'll do another next week and then move to math, I think.  I don't get a whole lot of time for planning these days, when a plan would be so helpful.  My meal plan for the month is just a list of different main dishes, which is clearly not enough for me.  But, it will work out.  The days will pass just the same.

I had a lot of crafting things to share this week (and from last week, too!), but uploading pictures wasn't working.  So, there will be a whole heap to share next week.  I wish I had more knitting in that, but maybe my More Sitting strategy will help that along.  I'd like to get past some big projects and move on to smaller things that are, for me, more fun.

Well, it's almost nine.  Time for school!
impossibleway: (Club Moss in the Leaves)
Grey ChristmasThe picture here is from Christmas day.  It was rather dreary, even by my standards.  It was hard to feel in the spirit when it was warm enough to go without a coat or sweater.  It was so wet, too.   Our basement flooded on Christmas Eve.  The days are cold and windy and sunny now.  I always feel the need to mention the weather.

The late afternoon sun often shines on Laurel's face when she's in the hammock and wakes her.  I sway her back to sleep and tentatively go one with my afternoon.  I'm decluttering recipes, of all things, and working on meal plans.  There are lessons to plan, too, and various things to do to tie up the old year.  Roan has been napping again, which is so nice, all around.  He has always slept so sweetly.  He falls asleep very early, otherwise.  I'm just not a 7:00 bedtime person, though these days leave me feeling very sleepy at their ends.

Tomorrow is our return to our school rhythm and I am nervously looking forward to it.  I say that I am nervous because I feel overwhelmed by all there is to do until then.  But, I am mentally very, very ready.  We've been off for three weeks and the lack of discipline in our days (that is, the pattern of them) has me out of sorts.  Advent, though I tried my best to keep up good spirits, really drained me.  We don't have tasks for every day or anything like that.  This is just a busy time in my life and adding another thing feels like too much.

We are still Christmas-ing, which is keeping up spirits.  I really want more celebrating to be during this time next Christmas.  Becky comes over tonight for us to launch our nut boats and get fortunes for the coming year.  Jody and Katherine may come over for our Twelfth Night talent show.  Mike will be gone then, another long week of travel, but that is our normal.  It seems we hardly know what to do when he is here.  That was an issue when he worked in town, too, and his crazy shifts left us struggling to find routine.  It is always something to work on.

I suppose I has better get to my to-do list this afternoon (yes, I acutally made one!) so that I will be ready to meet Becky when she arrives and tomorrow when it comes.  I've got to go to the grocery store at 7:00 to get the shopping done before Mike leaves. 


Nov. 29th, 2015 09:08 am
impossibleway: (The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree)

Holes in a Tree


I can't think of a time that I was happier to be pulling into our driveway again.  It's been a long few days, like time stood still while we were away Tuesday to Friday.  I feel like I do not want to leave this place again for a long time.  Winter is coming, of course, so that will help tremendously.  I always count on time away, even a day, to give me appreciation for the daily routines.  This trip, especially, took a lot out of us.  Laurel wasn't rested, Willow and Roan were spent, and I was just beyond ready to be home.  Mike kept us going and saw us through what might have been a giant family tantrum last night over some canned peaches.  No one wants to be grumpy or say that their Thanksgiving wasn't all that great, but that is what happens sometimes.  We are on the other side of it now, and are happily looking forward to the first week of Advent.  Carrie and I are making Advent wreaths this morning and I am so excited.

Tidying Up

Nov. 7th, 2015 06:07 am
impossibleway: (Tulip Tree in the Hemlock)
Tidying UpOh, it has been a week.  I spent a portion of Sunday through Thursday working on paintint our front porch.  It looked awful--paint flaking up everywhere--and it needed some attention long before I got around to it.  We bought the paint back in the Spring of 2009, in fact.  Willow was six months old then!  So, two days of scraping and sanding and sweeping and mopping.  Three days of painting while the children watched (mostly) out the window.  It looks a lot better now.  I'll take a picture for Crafting On.

Every week seems both long and short.  There are good times and there are hard times.  For me, hard times seem to be winning lately.  There are just some elements of the past seven and a half years that I am extremely tired of.  There are also many times when I feel like I have lost the very essence of myself.  The things that have made me who I am (or was) seem to have fallen away and I feel as if I am in a foreign mind and body.  There are times, of course, when I bolster myself with the idea that I have grown so much and learned so much and that the Working World was really getting me down.  But, the sad times are outnumbering the happy ones for me right now.  I am actively working on changing that.

Today is Laurel's birthday and it is going to be another rainy one.  The temperature is supposed to fall over the course of the day, so that pleases me.  I like days like that.  We're going to bake a cake and hope that her Apple Cake book arrives in the mail today.  We were supposed to get nice haircuts, Mike and me, but the budget just won't permit it.  I'm pretty disappointed about that, but I've waited six months already, so what's a bit more?  I think I will take to the woods today, maybe dragging along everyone else.  We've got rain boots and paints and coats, and I really need to get out of this house and its unending work and see a different place.
impossibleway: (Ranger Brandy)
Hurricane WoodsThis whole Autumn has felt so off-kilter to me.  As much as I have anticipated it, it seems Fall got here too soon and went away too quickly.  I have been too caught up with my work and have had to really force myself to drop what I'm doing to simple go out and see things.  I don't like that, of course.  As we drove on Saturday (a leaf-peeping tour for Mike's parents), I looked up at the hillsides and longed to walk them alone.  The rains this week will knock most of the leaves down, I think.

I am having a hard time living in What Is.  I am all the time thinking about What Isn't.  I could list the things that aren't right here, but I don't want to.  That would seem to further my gloomy mood.  So, what is?  A warm house, a full freezer, a little girl in her very last day at age six, a husband home most of this week, blueberry buckle to warm up for breakfast, plenty of yarn to knit (the time, though!), another week of homeschooling with wonderful stories, plenty of wood for the fireplace and weather to suit it.  Yes, these are all good things.

Yesterday was so terribly gloomy.  We were just so spent from having guests and from Mike's whirlwind schedule.  Mike took the children to Lowe's and Katherine and I worked on her Halloween costumes.  It was nice to have the camaraderie with another mothering friend.  After she left, I resolved to make the evening cheery--I built a fire, made blueberry buckle, and we watched half of White Christmas.  It did help and I think we were able to turn the day around.
impossibleway: (Ranger Brandy)
Time has really gotten away from me.  Even October and the beautiful leaves have, too.  I think these must be the busiest days of my parenting, so far.  Mike being gone most of the time, children who still need a lot of help or supervision, outside work still to be done and school work, too.  It's a lot!  When I present our lives here, this is really it for us.  We're not doing any secret extra stuff, and what is here is absolutely enough to keep me on my toes and needing to hit the ground running each day.  I am trying to live more in the moment this year, instead of thinking so far ahead.  Turns out, this season of life is mainly about living in the moment, as getting ahead is just a dream!


SteinerBooks sends out several catalogs a year, each one with a theme.  This one must be my absolute favorite--it has all the parenting books, picture books, board books, Elsa Beskow books, and educational books.  Enki has me covered on most of my educational materials, at this point.  However, I am a big fan of Floris Books and Hawthorn Press, and SteinerBooks is their distributor here in the US.  It is rather fun to see all the books that we have that are in this catalog, even if I have bought most of them used (some for a penny!).


Roan is drawing people again.  He hadn't drawn any for about a year.  I don't really know why (and yes, I have books that talk specifically about children's drawings).  He would just scribble or draw train tracks over and over, so I asked him if he could draw a person.  He did!  And I think he feels very proud about it.  Roan really needs all the chances he can get to feel competent and in control of himself, I think.

The Bookstore

I did some agressive furniture moving on Saturday.  The hutch got moved and the homeschool and decorative things got switched to different cabinets.  Mainly, I was tired of having to keep all the lesson books and things up high, only to fall on me and dent the hutch when I tried to get them.  I know Grandma Lois would not be pleased, or maybe she would. . . I made a little spot with a bench, a lamp, and a playstand.  Willow turned it into her bookstore, which has been really nice.  She gets lots of customers for her seasonal selection.  That book, When Autumn Comes, is really a treasure. It has wonderful photos and takes you from the start to the end, when Winter is in the air. It feels like that lately--it's in the low twenties right now!

Pumpkin Witch

And here's another sweet thing Willow made. She saw this tiny detail in Babybug magazine (which is Roan's) and recreated it with our pumpkins. Speaking of magazines, the children get them as birthday gifts and I have intentionally kept them young, which I think has turned out well. Babybug goes to three, but Roan loves it at 4.5. It's a quick read and something for him to share with me. I honestly don't think that Laurel would get much out of it, at nearly two. Willow still gets Ladybug, which goes to six (I think) and we'll keep that going until she is able to read it herself. I don't say all this to advertise for magazines, but I have found these to be suitable and I think we are too often in a hurry to have children grow up. It's okay to find contentment where you are. Life provides many completely free opportunities to stretch and grow without toys or books to push things along.

You know me, this is nothing new. ;-) And with that, it's time to get started on breakfast and wake up Mike for yet another week in Arkansas.
impossibleway: (Goldenrod Trailhead)
Late Summer BouquetThe end of Summer is proving to be difficult for me.  All this past week I have felt terribly burnt out and alone.  Months of travel with no weeks in town for Mike have been very hard on us all.  I can honestly say that I have never felt more lonely than here at home with three children and no other adults, including very few friends.  All of my family are on vacations and I think that has compounded things.  I don't say it often, but I'm really and truly on my own nearly all the time.  It has been increasingly hard to keep it together as the months pass, though Mike tries very hard on the weekends.  We both want things to change, but don't see a way out right now.

I seem to fluctuate between the Ideal and the harsh Reality that lurks beneath, always chiseling away at me.  The truth is that I have been overwhelmed and mildly depressed for the past seven years.  The beginning and continuation of poverty is difficult, no matter how you look at it.  I completely understand how people fall into bad situations.  I have always felt that ours was buffered a little, by having had a fairly solid start and by living in a place with a somewhat cashless society.  I don't know where I am going here.  All I know is that I am tired.

We have been taking trips to the woods and fields lately.  It is mostly an escape for me and a way to share something good with the children.  The fresh air helps them so much and I find it hard to get myself outside when I am here at home.  I have some hope for Fall.  I think the change in weather will be good for me. 
impossibleway: (Dodecahedron Lantern)
I took a few books and a small cooler to the thrift store downtown. It's hard for me to get there, but I made it with Becky's help.  And how lucky I was!  Come see my treasures.

Mission Falls 1824

Ten skeins of Mission Falls 1824 Superwash Merino!
This is Mike's color, so I'll make something for him.  Roan, too.
Nevermind that I am still stuck on that Tomten sleeve.
And that Becky's sparkly birthday hat is waiting.
$12 for something that retailed at $65 was too good to pass up.

Beeswax lantern

And this sweet-smelling beeswax lantern.  I am just in love.
I've had a couple smaller ones, but they've both cracked and chipped.
This one, I am going to fiercely guard with the help of the gnomes.

I found some juice glasses, too, but the camera ate the photo.  Oh, well.  Here's a picture.  I paid a quarter.


Jun. 15th, 2015 06:56 am
impossibleway: (Feet at the Lump)
Late Spring loose ends.  It's still Spring, you know.  The Solstice is next Sunday and we have been planning a big bonfire for some time.  I suppose this is the week to prepare the fire ring.  It's supposed to be pretty hot this week--high eighties--and I am hoping to hole up in the house or on the front porch.  I'm just not a fan of the heat, though I do enjoy all the fresh foods that Summer brings.

Ice Cream Ball

The clear-outs continue for our friends and family.  Last week saw us add a big washtub, a snow shovel (mine is rusting out), beeswax candles, more books, and this ice cream ball.  Now we have three ice cream makers.  This one is pretty quick, though it only makes enough ice cream for one sitting.  We made kefir ice cream, which is frugal and tasty.   No worries about taking on too much clutter, though.  The box of books is still sitting on the front porch with a few more having joined it.

Tea Time

In spite of the bright outside world and long days, we've been having more candle-lit meals.  In part, it is for privacy as our dining room oversees the neighbor's busy yard, which is tremendously distracting for Roan.  Willow says it is like Green Valley to have a candle.  With Mike home for the weekend, we certainly did luxuriate over our meals.

Mike Mows

We made a trip to the cabin yesterday.  Does anyone remember it?  We hadn't been in years.  My parents are such busy people that they always had something else to do whenever I asked about going.  So, we went ourselves.  The place was, well, in rough shape.  The yard had small trees growing in it, so Mike and I took turns mowing it.  About like mowing the forest--soft and lumpy and full of old leaves, with all manner of things growing in it.

Swallowtail Azalea

Always faithful, the azaleas did not disappoint.  We got done with our work just a rain shower blew in.  It was good timing, I suppose, though the whole visit was fraught with oddities--multiple road closures, an old stone house we had loved was burned, there was a bear cub, a general off feeling about the whole thing.  I really hope we can nudge my parents to go back and tidy up (oh, the mice!) and make it a family place once more.


Jun. 10th, 2015 06:58 am
impossibleway: (Berries)

My mornings have been different lately.  I have wanted to spend more time writing, but there's a lot to do when you are the only grownup four days a week.  There is grass to mow (though not much in this drought),  laundry to fold, plants to water, basement junk to move out, papers to find, and berries to pick.  I am trying to spend less time working when the children are awake so that I can be more involved and maybe craft more.  There is so much to be done, that a few chores in the morning don't hurt.  My routine now includes berrypicking again.  Each day is a little more than the last and I think the children will be pleased with today's results.


Jun. 5th, 2015 06:36 am
impossibleway: (Barefeet)
FiresideWe have been having the coolest weather this almost-Summer, it seems.  It's been dry, really dry, but has only been truly hot for a handful of days.  Yesterday was so cool for the first half of the day that the children were happy to have sweaters on and even wanted hats!  The afternoon was warm, but not overwhelmingly.  The previous day, I mowed the yard at sixty-four degrees.  My only complaint is the dry weather--it has been hard to get the garden going, even with watering every morning (which it is time for me to do).  I keep wishing for an all-day rain to tackle some projects, but it hasn't happened yet.

In other news, Forest Kindergarten starts next week.  We'll go hiking with Becky.  She and I have always had the resolution for weekly hikes, but haven't managed it yet.  This year!  Right?  I am looking forward to being in my favorite places more often.  While it can seem a little silly to drive somewhere to walk around, it really changes the energy to be in the wilderness.  Elk Garden and White Top have been calling to me for awhile.

We had a fire last night, as you can see.  It was an ancient fire log, like a giant firestarter, that I found in my grandmother's basement.  She's always begging me to take things, so I happily did.  It burned a surprisingly long time.  I also picked up a few dozen jelly and pint jars and a railroad hardhat for Roan.  It is so nice to find things we need or want in the surplus of other people.  I'm really trying to live by the adage of "Leaf to leaf, root to root, seed to seed.  May all the we have be all that we need."  And with that, time to water some little plants and wish them well.


impossibleway: (Default)

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