Home, Sweet Home

Do you ever get tired of hearing me say how much I love it here? Don’t answer that.  There is not a single day that we don’t say to each other “Can you believe we live here?” or “We were so lucky to get this place!”

Today it was like Grand Central Station around here, which is so unusual but the guy was here on the dozer clearing some paths where we can ride the RTV.  Some of the woods were kinda grown up.  We needed some cedar trees dozed down.  They suck up a lot of water and we’ll chip them for mulch.

The propane tank guy was here almost four hours.  Vince was here for a while and the propane guy must have said a dozen times how much he loved it here.  Once I said something about how hard it was for us to find a house here and he said “But when you found one, you really found a fabulous place!”  It always makes me feel good when others think this place is fantastic.

The washer repairman was here and he drove up and said “I wish I lived in a place like this!”

Then I went out tonight and here’s what I see:

I know . . the moon is beautiful everywhere tonight but I loved standing out in my back yard seeing it through the trees.

There are two people who don’t like it here . . wouldn’t live here if we gave them the place and don’t even like to visit — my parents!  My mom cannot figure out why I like it here and she would be most miserable here.  I don’t understand those folks!

There are days when I still have to pinch myself to see if it’s all real — just what I always wanted:  Not too far from town, enough land that I have no close neighbors, wildlife, chicken, peace and quiet  . . and a gas stove!  :)


Those Darned Yarn Sales

One of my favorite yarn shops is Eat, Sleep, Knit.  They have a “Yarnathon”.  You get prizes . . the more yarn you buy, the more prizes you get.  Grand idea, right?  For them . . not so grand for my credit card!  :)

They also have a Black Friday sale.  The way it works is this:  You put your yarn in your cart. You check out and then you determine how much “surprise” discount you got.  It could be anywhere from 10% to 100%.  If you’re a member of the “10K Club”, you get to start shopping one hour earlier than those who are not members.

I got to start early and I placed my first order. I got a 10% discount but that order put me into the next level on the yarnathon and I got a $20 gift certificate.  I explained to Vince . . oh, should I buy more while there’s a discount or should I just wait??  I knew what he was going to say because he was so sure I would get a bigger discount.  I placed another order and again got a 10% discount.  I was still going through my patterns in my Ravelry library and decided I wanted yarn for another project.  Another 10% discount.  But, once again, that put me into another level on the Yarnathon and I got another $20 gift certificate.  What’s a girl to do? Place another order.  This time I got 15% off.

The boxes . . all four of them . . arrived yesterday  For a while Vince was ordering old fountain pens off ebay.  When Vince orders something, if 20 are good, he orders 50.  The mail lady kept saying “what is he ordering?”  I told her pens and she didn’t quite get it.  That’s ok . . because I didn’t either.  But when my mail lady handed me those four boxes, I sheepishly said “The yarn shop had a sale.”  She said “Thank goodness the pen shop didn’t!”  I thought that was funny because Vince hasn’t gotten any pens in probably 3 months.

So . . here’s the yarn!

It’s not as much as it looks like.  That’s what I keep telling myself.  That’s what I keep telling Vince.  I think I’m beginning to believe it.  Not so sure about him though.

Another prize I got was when I reached the 5 mile mark. A cute little Namaste bag.

The little bag was full of goodies.

There’s a button, a measuring tape, stitch markers, puppy snips and a sample of Soak (for washing socks).

As an added perk, with each package from Eat, Sleep, Knit, you get a “lotto card”.  You scratch it off and you can win more prizes!

We send these back in and get credit in our account.  I’ve never sent any of them in but I’m doing it soon.  I have 11 – $5 gift certificates and 1 for a free skein of Malabrigo yarn.

Can’t beat that, huh?

About that yarn buying . . I have a plan for next year.  I had a plan for this year and I failed pretty miserably.  We’ll see if I can do better in 2013.  If not, I’m going to have to add a “Yarn Room” to my house.

Quiltmaker – Jan/Feb Issue

In the January/February issue of Quiltmaker, which is out now . .

. . . has a quilt designed and made by me!  Dawn and Dusk!  In neutrals.  Imagine that! :)

 It’s a big quilt .  . 91″ x 91″.

As always, this issue of Quiltmaker is a great one and you’ll want to get one for yourself if you don’t have a subscription.

Now you know that sometimes when I go for weeks and weeks with nothing new on my design wall, I’m really sewing and getting a lot done but I just can’t always show you.

The Renegades

Having chickens is so fun.  If you’re getting your eggs from the grocery store, you don’t know what you’re missing.  Take my word for it and don’t ask Vince though!  He might say getting them from the grocery store is a better idea.

These three are the renegades.

You recognize Miss Hattie in the front — the dark red chicken.  She lets herself out each morning.  Each evening I put her back into the coop.  I think the hens all go to sleep listening to Hattie talk about what all she did during the day.  I’m sure glad I can’t understand “chicken”.  It’s kinda like not wanting to know what your teens are talking about.

Then there’s Roscoe.  He was in the coop with the bantams.  Once Thelma turned out to be a rooster, he and Roscoe didn’t get along so Roscoe got booted from the coop and set up housekeeping around the run where the 13 hens spend their days.

See the lighter red chicken in the back?  She’s the pecking chicken.  I let all the chickens out last week and she followed them around pecking them on the back . . for no reason so, she got booted from the big coop.  She sleeps on top of the ramp that leads from the coop to the run and she seems happy enough running around with Roscoe and Miss Hattie.  Roscoe has no interest in her . . he only has eyes for Miss Hattie.

Miss Hattie had been laying her eggs under the ramp.

Way up under there where the ramp meets the ground.  I had to use a piece of PVC pipe to rake the eggs out.  Looks like it might’ve once been a piece of one of Vince’s homemade faucets.

The light red hen is still laying her eggs there.  But Miss Hattie had stopped.  I didn’t have a clue where she was laying them.  I had tried to watch to see where she often went, I looked everywhere I thought she might have been laying them and had decided that she was such a smart chicken (NOT) that she was probably laying them in the coop each morning before sneaking out.  I began counting those eggs and was usually getting 10 eggs which means of the 11 chickens left in there, one was not laying and Miss Hattie surely wasn’t laying in there.

Saturday Vince and I were sitting in the house and heard the most awful commotion . . chickens squawking and screeching.  We went running out and Miss Hattie and the light red hen were having a serious and quite hostile discussion.  I told Vince it looked like two mad shoppers fighting for a parking spot at Wal-Mart!

Vince asked if I thought one of them might have a nest around there and we got to looking and Miss Hattie had shaped herself a little nest in the rocks behind a bunch of boxes and in it were 9 eggs.  No way!  I don’t even think her eggs are fertile because every time Roscoe gets romantic, since he’s a mini-chicken and she’s a full size chicken, she just shakes him off.  She hasn’t been setting on the nest but she might have been getting ready to start.  We took the eggs and threw them out because, even though it’s been cool outside, I have no idea how long they’ve been there . . probably 9 days and it was cool enough they would have been ok but there’s no reason to take a chance.

Since she seems determined to lay her eggs there, Vince took a cardboard box lid and filled it with wood shavings and put it back there behind the boxes so she could lay her eggs in there but . . no, that’s not what she had in mind.

See her little box of shavings there?  Nice and comfy!  See her past the box?  On the rocks?  Here’s a zoomed in shot.

There she sits.  I guess we’ll just leave her alone and see what happens.  When I looked yesterday, there were two eggs in there.  Probably one from her and one from the other chicken.

It so happens that the new Mother Earth News that arrived yesterday has an article on broody hens and has instructions for building a brooder box.

At lunch yesterday, Vince and I had this conversation:

Vince:  We’ll just let her set there and see what happens.
Me:  No!  Something might get her.  She’s my favorite chicken!
Vince:  What do you want me to do?  (so glad he asked!)
Me:  It just so happens, the new Mother Earth News has an article . .

And, Vince left to go back to work .  .

In the pickup, which he never drives to town any more, because he has to go by the lumber yard and get the makings for a brooder box.

As he drove out of sight, I heard him exclaim . . The chicken population around here is getting out of hand!  :)