A little bit of planting (and a shop update)

Small Things-4538

This week has been such a perfect, spring week (minus the fact that our van broke and I had to abandon it half an hour away from home!) I took my younger children down to the creek and we planted Virginia bluebells. They all went barefoot, and so did I. I’m not sure that I’ll plant a vegetable garden this year, which is kind of crazy because I have for the past sixteen years or so. But, I do have some more native wildflowers on order (ebay) to plant along the little creek in our woods here. So if not a vegetable garden, at least some flowers? We’ll see.

I have been playing with all sorts of natural dyes, mainly dyeing up playsilks with spring and Easter in mind. I have so many beautifully colored silks ready for you! Most of them are the standard 35″ by 35″ squares, but I also dyed a handful of silk “rivers.” These are 11″ by 60″ and are a muted aqua, perfect for a make-believe river (pictured above). I also have (for the first time) some bulky weight American wool yarn ready, in some lovely pinks, yellows, and one wasabi green skein which is probably my favorite because I am such a fan of green. There’s also a bit of single ply fingering and some sport weight as well. I’ll list some undyed gray sport weight too. I made lots of cold process goat milk soap early this year, and it is ready now! I added kaolin clay to a batch of lavender tea tree, so it’s a prefect facial bar or shaving soap. I use it for both. There’s also lemongrass, mint, bergamot, and rosemary. My little studio kitchen smells amazing!

The shop will be updated on Friday, March 31st at 11:30 a.m. EST (I previously said 11, but realized I have a conflict. Sorry about that!) Thank you so much for supporting my little home business!

p.s. Jonny will be making up a storm in a few months, but right now he’s swamped with house and moving related projects! Oh, and Mabel’s vest above was a gift knitted in some of my walnut dyed yarn. The pattern is called “plain vest” and it is on Ravelry.

p.p.s. I almost forgot! Seth recently added some new items to his shop, including fossil sets with a photo key. Those would be a perfect addition to an Easter basket! If you order from both of our shops we will combine shipping and refund the extra shipping charge (give us a few days as I will be shipping orders through next week). Just make sure to leave Seth a note with your order letting him know you ordered from me too! His listings are already live, so if you order from him before my shop is update tomorrow, just leave me a note. (sorry, I’m getting confusing now.) Thanks!

fossil lot-0001

Sharing Gifts

As I scrolled through a preview of the photos in this post, I thought to myself, “Wow! All seven kids are in this post! That doesn’t usually happen.” Then I remembered that actually, there are eight of them. The weather seems like it has warmed up for good, and everyone is spending lots of time outdoors. The goats’ fence was completed, and a gate hung. Jonny is almost finished with his small chicken coop and we got it set up to house our chicks. Next up, he’ll work on our large portable coop. I’ve been working on spring playsilks, perfect for lining Easter baskets! I’ve also dyed a bit of yarn and I’ll be updating my shop on Friday, March 31st at 11 a.m. EST  11:30 a.m. EST with the yarn, playsilks, and goat milk soap!

Keats and Gabe were both confirmed over the weekend. Jonny and I led their confirmation team through all the required service projects over the past year and a half, and we are pleased and somewhat relieved that the boys passed this milestone!

All three of our older boys attended a youth group over the weekend for the first time. To say that they didn’t like it would be an understatement. Afterwards, Seth shared with me all the reasons he’d rather not go back, convinced that it isn’t going to benefit him or his brothers. Today, in discussion with me and my friend Eve about it, she turned things around by asking Seth if he had thought about how he might benefit others by being there. “Have you thought about what you might have to offer them?” It totally stumped him. No, he hadn’t thought about that.  He didn’t argue, knowing she had made a valid point. Another friend and I exchanged glances, “Whoa–that was good.”  It’s easy to get caught up in thinking about how we can get our kids involved in this or that, with only their benefit in mind. As parents we are constantly asking ourselves if we are making the right choices for the good of our children. Sometimes we might make the right choices, but for the wrong reasons. I need to step outside that mindset and work harder to remind each of my kids that they have gifts to offer. “It’s not just about you!” Yeah, youth group may not be their favorite thing, maybe they didn’t connect with anyone their first time. Maybe they don’t even want to right now. But what if there’s a kid there that could benefit from what one of my boys has to say? Tonight we got into another discussion about this and my boys all claimed that they don’t have any gifts to share. So I started naming their gifts. The little girls overheard, and of course they wanted me to tell them what I think their gifts are as well. I was a little surprised by how much they needed to hear these things. Sometimes we all need a reminder. Every single one of us has gifts we can share with others. Right now, I need to focus my gifts on helping my children uncover theirs and learn how to use them for the greater good. I’m definitely going to work on that.