Monday, January 27, 2014

Surgery and a Blanket

I will be having surgery in a little less than two weeks, so I decided that it was time to start working on a blanket project since I will be laid up soon and will be captive to my crochet hook. I am using a wave pattern in three colors. Here is a photo of the inspiration blanket for my project:


Friday, January 17, 2014

Coquena, The Llama

I think we need this little llama to go in our llama barn house. I just can't get over how cute she is. Something tells me that she is cuter in the photo than she would be if I made her. I don't think I am there yet, but I have purchased the pattern for later after I have more practice.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Crochet the Day Away

I have recently learned to crochet and have made a few things. I started out learning stitches and then making granny squares.

Next I made a crochet hook case, and while the red piece inside is crooked, I just didn't care by the time I realized that was the case.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Let's Get Newcomers Up to Speed

After the fiasco that prompted the abrupt deletion of all my blog posts relating to our barn-into-house renovation, there is no background on what the heck is going on with this big project. Let's call that event D-Day (for Deletion Day, not for the WWII event, it wasn't THAT bad). I thought it would be a good idea to post something with some snapshots in time so that anyone who wasn't reading about what we are doing before D-Day could get some idea of what the heck is going on.

My original opening post on this blog went something like this:

Once upon a time there was a little barn. At one time this barn was the home of some cute and cuddly llamas, but they moved out many years ago.... blah, blah, blah. Pictures were included and the whole thing was cute and clever. I can't remember what all was said, though, and can't recreate the cuteness and cleverness that used to be.

The point is, the barn started out something like this, and we affectionately refer to it as "the llama barn" even though no animals have lived in it for going-on 15 years. These photos were taken after tons of demo-work had happened, but I can't find photos farther back at the moment.

Monday, October 21, 2013

I'm back! Back in Business!

Hello, world!

After a several-month hiatus and moving to another blog where I just wasn't feeling it, I have decided to start blogging here again. The drama that sparked my move is behind me as much as it ever will be. After some changing of blog settings and blocking some people on Facebook so they cannot see my links, I have decided to return.

I hope that some of my original readers will find their way back here. I intend to begin updating about our house progress again along with adding in some other things I do. No, I am not a professional blogger. I will not have a million and one DIY projects and tutorials for you every month, but I will attempt to entertain you and maybe even teach you how to do a few things now and then. If I start to see more followers and higher stats, then I might consider spending more time and energy here, but for the time being, I am happy to see friends and family here to see what we are up to in our country life adventures.

So, if you are here and reading this, welcome (or welcome back)! If you like what you see and know someone else who would, too, please share a link to my blog with them. In the meantime, I am happy to see YOU (and I always will be)!

Winning Smile

Friday, October 18, 2013

Pumpkin Cupcakes with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Today is "Sugar Shock Friday" at work. The university I work for has a United Way campaign every fall and departments can compete against each other for highest participation percentage and for highest dollar amount raised. Our first fundraiser this year involves food. Food is the way to people's participation (and wallets) in our department without a doubt.

This year I brought my almost-famous pumpkin cupcakes with cinnamon cream cheese frosting. I even put them in cute little jack-o-lantern cupcake wrappers. Within about 15 minutes of my arrival at work and putting out my little treats I had a couple requests for the recipe.

The recipe is written at the bottom of this post if you prefer a concise version. I will walk you though the steps first, though, for anyone who wants more details.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Our house is slowly becoming a home - Part 2

For those of you keeping tabs on our house status, here is a text heavy update. Please forgive the state of the photos that are here...I wasn't thinking of public viewing when they were taken, I was just sharing updates with my mom.

All of the cedar we currently have is on the walls. We are waiting for more trees to be milled...I think we are waiting for the guy with the mill to have time for us.

The cabinet doors are finally on with the exception of the dummy drawers under the kitchen sink and the bathroom sink and one door that has to be made (the cabinet was built when we moved in because we didn't already have a second corner cabinet - we needed two). I want to turn one cabinet door around so it opens the other direction and I also need to put cabinet pulls on the doors, I already put on the drawer pulls. Just a little measuring and drilling and that will be finished. Once these things are complete the kitchen will be basically done except for the floor.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Our house is slowly becoming a home

We moved into our new house almost two months ago. When we moved in the electrical in the kitchen was unfinished (we had power on only one wall and no light fixture), we had no exterior walls - I mean, we had walls framed, siding on the outside and insulation, but no walls on the inside of those exterior walls, just insulation and studs - there were no appliances except for our microwave that we brought with us from our old house and a refrigerator, there was no kitchen sink (washing dishes in the bathtub is for the birds), there was no counter top in the kitchen, and the list goes on.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Butter Business

It has been a very long time since I posted anything on my blog, but I think it's time to give it another go. 

Today I visited the local dairy for the first time. I have purchased their milk at the local co-op before but had never been to the store at the farm. I bought a half gallon of milk and a pint of cream. When I got home, I made butter for the first time. 

I love butter and refuse to eat any butter substitutes, especially margarine which just freaks me out. I cook only with butter and never use shortening or margarine. I had heard that homemade butter is leaps and bounds better than anything you can buy in a store and I also hate store-bought buttermilk, so this seemed like killing two birds with one stone to me. I enjoy the fact that I know where the milk came from, know that the cream came from a cow milked yesterday and know exactly what is in my butter. 

Monday, July 1, 2013

Green Thumb?

Once we move (which will be THIS MONTH! Holy smokes!), we will be able to start a garden. Right now we have just two containers at our house that we will take with us. One is full of (very tart) strawberries and the other contains lavender. We also have about 15 tulip bulbs in red and yellow that are already out of the ground and inside the house in a box.  All the other plants at our current house (irises, lilies, vinca, peonies, yucca and other mystery shrubs) will stay behind since they were already there when we moved in. I thought I would take a minute to talk about what kinds of things I am hoping to grow over the next few years that will eventually add up to a full garden.

I currently subscribe to Garden Gate Magazine which I love. It is all about gardening flowers, not vegetables, but it contains no advertisements and has beautiful photographs and great articles and tips. Not only do they release a full-color magazine bi-monthly, but they also have special issues that you can purchase from the newsstand and books on specific topics that you can also purchase, often at a discount if you are a subscriber. The magazines that come in the mail with your subscription are 3-hole-punched for easy organization and you can buy back issues of the magazine bound as books from their website (or a DVD of every page of every issue ever published through 2012). I have looked at a TON of gardening magazines, but this one is by far my favorite and the only one I have ever wanted to purchase a subscription to. (No, this post is not sponsored, I just love this magazine this much.)