Sunday, December 16, 2012

oh, this busy holiday

such beautiful colors we are getting now... it's like a special easter egg hunt every time i go out to the coop.... duck eggs too! our americanas lay the minty green beauties, and either our cuckoo maran or our welsummer (or both) lay the deep chocolate brown ones... just lovely.

carrots and parsnips sauteed in butter.... kale steamed with a little water and drizzled with a sauce made up of apple cider vinegar, honey, and olive oil... currently two of my favorite things (especially together).

i just love the sweet little christmas programs... although i vow every year that i will quit trying to record it... the recordings never turn out very nice and it really takes away from the show. do you see my little eislee in the back there? she had a very special part this year pulling the little wagon at the back of the train... she was perfect.... so brave.... so oblivious.... so adorable.

one of my favorite things about the christmas programs is all the singing done absentmindedly at home. often times in the car eislee will sing "a fleece navee dad!"

we wrapped some presents up in newspaper and topped them with ribbon... i love how perfectly simple it looks... i wrap all of my presents with newspaper now... i just really like it.

we are planning to make jewelry for all the teachers with these pretty wooden beads, but of course we haven't even started yet.... hmmm.

my lentil soup... lentils, tomatoes, carrots, parsnips, celery, yams, and spinich... my favorite soup.... actually it's more like a stew really... but either way... i finally wrote down a bit of recipe as i was making it this time... i do a lot of that "a pinch of that" and "just add it until it looks right" kind of cooking... so making a real recipe is pretty hard for me.

i can't believe how close it is to christmas! we don't even have a tree yet... i suppose we will get one soon and keep it through new years. i do love christmas trees. the reason we don't have one yet is we were finishing the painting in our living room (thanks to someone called thomas... and to lisa for recommending him). thomas has not only finished our living but he is almost finished painting the entire upstairs... yes! 
if you like christmas music you should check out pandora's christmas station. it is wonderful! i can't get enough of it. they play every single one of my favorites! nothing makes it feel like the holidays more than nat king cole singing "have yourself a merry little christmas"... in my opinion anyway. 
enjoy the season friends! it is already almost over!

Friday, December 7, 2012

a little bit of christmas

so what do you think of the chocolate door? be honest. i'm not quite sure about it...

our new advent tradition (we changed it last year) is as soon as they are ready for school they get their treat for the day.... chocolate is wonderful motivation.

half of the little village that finds a new spot every year.

christmas books on the bed stand... a sure sign of the season.

eislee's favorites.... her favorites she must hear every night are "frosty the snowman" and "gingerbread mouse" which she calls "snow white and the mousey one" and she expects me to sing both of them.

layla's mess of a desk... next to my mess of a desk.... i sure have enjoyed the company but sharing the mess is driving me a little crazy.

they all love to "borrow" mommy and daddy's camelbak water bottles so this year in their stockings they will each get one of their own.

the painting is complete in layla's room (thanks to some outside help). i just love the colors... two shades of beautiful sage greeen. you can hardly tell (even when your in the room) but the ceiling is a much lighter shade than the walls.

i just love the holiday artwork they bring home when they're small... i have started keeping it in an envelope packed away with all the christmas decorations so that i can bring them all out each year.

the last of the winter squash.... i save these pretty green ones for last because i love the way they look next to red.

paperwhites... i don't think mine will bloom by christmas but i love the idea of them blooming along with the new year.

it's been very busy around here lately and i know i have been neglecting this space but i am so excited to show you all that has been happening! so much progress! happy holidays friends!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

around the house : : progress

these two deer come every afternoon to eat fallen apples... we have been enjoying them so much... maiko is sure that one day he will get close enough to pet one

grammy and grampy's chuckers.... they visit often too.... they are really fun birds... great markings and they make the most interesting sounds

a new space for me... right now it's crowded into a corner but i am still thoroughly enjoying this little space of my own... and i'm beginning to realize how badly i needed it

in this new space i can feel free to leave out my sewing projects as well because it is my space.... and being able to leave them out makes it so much easier to make progress

have i mentioned how much i love succulents? seriously.... a plant that thrives on neglect.... and is beautiful... the one on the right literally came back from the dead this year... like i said.... love them

search and rescue... awesome game... we can't get enough of it right now.... it's a cooperative game so we all work together to find and rescue a missing little girl, an older man, a young woman, and a family..... if you click on my "book shop" tab up above it will take you to my amazon shop and in the games section you can find this game and many of our other favorites.... if your interested

painting progress... i have actually painted up that stairway now and it looks so good.... i am almost finished with the living room.... i bought a beautiful chocolate colored brown for the door (below) this weekend along with about eight gallons for the upstairs!!! so exciting!! this method of painting has been working so well for me... just a little bit at a time.... it takes patience.... but it is working

isn't it amazing how a few well placed hooks can make life so much simpler? and so much more tidy

we recently adopted eight more chickens and two more ducks bringing us up to a grand total of fourteen chickens and four ducks.... and we love them.... it's such a beautiful group.... the pictures i took really don't do that duck any justice... it has such a beautiful sheen of colors

i feel so excited about so many things right now. i can't wait to share more of them with you as they all progress. it seems like we have so many little and big things happening all at once. i must say the one i'm the most excited about is something i've been calling "the great room swap around" because that is pretty much exactly what it is (more on that soon). then of course there is christmas right around the corner.... it's funny... i never would have pictured myself getting this excited about a holiday, but oh, it is so much fun when you are sharing it with children. we have so many little traditions now... which i think is a huge part of why we have so much fun. 

do you have any special christmas traditions?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

learning to let go

apple picking grampy style

i just love her style.... layers upon layers.... and usually backwards too

the beginning of yet another project (what i should really show you is the one he just finished...... beautiful)

layla's office..... i swear she can make it look like this in an hour.... sigh.... i think some office organizing supplies are in order for christmas

the "issue" of maiko doing his evening reading was instantly solved as soon as i gave in and let him read to his little sister instead of me....

one of the many deer that have been enjoying the apples that i didn't get picked

taking breakfast to daddy

the chuckers scratching up my bark chips... they are lucky i like them so much

one sick sweetheart snuggling another

each year i have raised my expectations of myself and what i should be able to accomplish in a season but i have discovered that this year it has gotten quite hard to keep up. so, i am slowly but steadily letting go of some of those expectations and trying very hard not to feel guilty about it.... the apples are still getting eaten right?.... and little bit by little bit as i carefully decide which projects are the best use of my dwindling time i am suddenly finding my life so much more manageable and i really like it that way.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

letting the bad bring us together

A horrid flu is passing through our house and has forced us to finally slow down. It is always so hard watching your loved ones feel so miserable. I must admit that i have enjoyed the slowing down part though. Many busy weeks accompanied by many busy weekends, although quite fun, has been very tiring on all of us. Then there was this last long weekend where we were forced to cancel everything, stay home, and take care of each other. It made me realize that we need some more of these without any sickness. We snuggled by the fire, played board games, read books, and carved those pumpkins. It was wonderful (all except for the horrible flu that is). And how about those pumpkins, huh? I was so impressed with how capable they were this year! Maiko and Layla did almost everything themselves (i just helped draw on the faces), and Eislee scooped out her pumpkin i just helped her carve it. Just another little thing that gives me so much hope... it really is getting easier, and soon i will have the time i've been waiting for.

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