Monday, May 16, 2011

Must Milk Cow

Childhood is not complete without a few basic events.

1) scraped knees.
2) getting lost in the grocery store.
3) family dog chewing the legs off of Barbie.
4) milking a cow on a school field trip.

Well, my kids can check #4 off the list.

Real Life Farm was the most hands-on field trip I've ever been on.

The farmer kept asking for parent volunteers for this or that, and my hand kept on raising itself.

So I was able to help children bottle feed an Angora goat kid named Angel. And I somehow ended up leading the mini horse around the corral after lunch.

My kids also were able to pet, feed, and generally snuggle all manner of farm animals, including piglets, ducklings, chicks, kittens, and sheep.

With a sack lunch and a hayride thrown in, that was one packed field trip.

And my kids are one step further along on their journey of childhood.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

What's this I hear about the Farmers' Market?

Well, I got to thinking...

I've got all these hobbies. Sustainability hobbies. These things take time. Not everybody has lots of time. But many people want eco-friendly options. Simple options.

So I'm taking my hobbies public.

My booth is called the Eventual Farmer, which reflects my realization that the more I learn about mainstream production of food and goods, the more I'd like to be able to make things for myself and my family. I'm trying to, in my small way, move away from our love affair with consumption and get back to the simpler way of producing my own necessities. And, in the process, help my family produce less trash (even recyclables).

And the Farmers' Market is one way for me to share these homemade, simple options with others.

And so I offer four items, each with at least one repurposed or reclaimed component:

Simple Laundry Soap

Sandwich Wrap

Fabric Gift Bags

Lavender Sugar Scrub

If you'd like to see these simple options in person, find me on Tuesdays, 2 - 6pm, at the Market. I'll be there these days:

May 10 and 31,
June 7 and 21,
July 5 and 26,
Aug 9 and 23,
Sept 13 and 27,
Oct 11 and 25.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Accidental Field Trip

Last Friday's forecast: rain, and more rain.

Our emotional status: missing Grandma Sheila.

Calender says: Easter weekend.

The result: trip to Grandma's and field trip to .....

... a family friend's art gallery. This long-time friend melts glass and shapes it into beautiful and interesting forms.


Dangly things.


Your general wall art.

Although I loved seeing her Glass With Sass show, I really enjoyed the tour she gave us of her work studio.

It's housed in a purple barn that's next to her purple house and I loved seeing her supplies, works in progress, and interesting things tucked into every corner.

Look what I spied up in the rafters.

Here's the kiln.

Why on earth would anyone have a plain set of drawers, when they could have a multi-colored one?

A few generations of artists in this family.

By Saturday, we were back home, the sun had come out, and somebody felt like a good ol' fashioned game of Easter tug-of-war.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

What's new in the yarden?

The other day I let the word yarden slip when speaking in a group of people. What do they say, "Out of the mouth comes the overflow of the heart?" or something like that. But it's true, whenever we have an uncertain area of the yard, someone in the family suggests planting berries or perennials there. So, slowly but surely, our yard is shrinking and the garden is growing. Hence, yarden.

The Music Man pulled out the power tools and built me this charming gate. Hopefully that will cut down on the unauthorized munching.

One afternoon last fall I got possessed and pulled up all the unruly plants around the Japanese maple and made a serene, little rock garden from the stones we had discovered buried elsewhere in the yard. Since this is what I see from the kitchen sink, the dinner table, and our bedroom windows, I really wanted it to whisper "peace."

Spring surprises me every year with these beauties.

As always, I've got a surplus of green onions in the herb spiral. Anyone want some? They do well just about anywhere, even containers.

Only two more weeks till (vegetable) planting time!