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Archive for the ‘My Bliss’ Category

Today marks day four of  “spring break” for the institution where I teach.  This year I have been reveling in a number of projects at a relaxing pace.  Yesterday L4 was sorely disappointed because I wouldn’t let her go play in the fickle, yet harsh weather.  To distract her I said, “Do you want to paint with me?”  This is almost universally greeted with shouts of joy and yesterday was no exception.

Box of Paints

She pulled out a canvas, brushes and her old paint smock.  Then she went to town squeezing out colors into her little paint tray while I pulled out a few muted shades and squirted a bit onto my tray and rolled the brayer through them.

L4's Pallete

L4 began dabbing colors about and painting the word “love” on her canvas.

L4's full canvas

I pulled out my canvas prepped from the day before with a symbolic-to-me collage.

Growth in progress

Side by side we sunk into our respective projects.  It was just plain good.  All too soon it was time to stop and put away our materials and get my girl out to her bus.  Just a day in a life, but it a happy one.

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My Bliss: The Little Things

Little things making me smile lately:

Frosty LeaveFrost coated leaves in the morning

Shop PackageWrapping up a shop order

New SlippersNew slippers after wearing holes through my knitted pair, again.

It’s an exciting life, I know.  🙂  What little things have been making you smile this week?

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Clearing the Counters

My counters are full of produce, as is the  norm for this time of year.  In fact, they’re not quite as full as usual as my tomatoes are incredibly slow in ripening this year.  (Might have something to do with the pruning the deer gave them early in the summer from which they’re several weeks behind!)

Canning and preserving as the weather cools is so much more pleasant than in the heat of summer.  Any of you who have ever canned before know I speak truth.  Over the weekend I was able to work on some preserving with all of the other life happenings.  Saturday everything for a cucumber relish was cut and allowed to soak, and then cooked on Sunday.

Relish Cooking

It’s for L1 & L4, as I’ve never been a fan of relish, and neither is L3.  Maybe I’ll try it since I put so much into making it.  L1 tasted it as I spooned it into jars and deemed it better than the organic brand we buy, which makes the work worth the effort.  There’s enough to last the year, generously.

Relish Canned

I also managed to make a couple of quarts of pear sauce yesterday, a pear berry crisp, and froze filling for two more crisps.  Next up: the apples.  Our big tree has produced again this year, yippie! We have plans for sauce, crisps, pie fillings, dehydrated apples, and pressing cider!  Oh, how happy we are that the tree is not dormant again this year.

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Early Morning Pond

Our camping trip was fantastic, but much too short. Both kids kept saying so over and over. Our Adirondack days were filled with the beautifully familiar and the sweetly new. We ate, we laughed, we adventured. We even stayed dry during a rain storm our second night (unlike 2008!)

Babes on the Rock Edge

Family on Bald Mountain 2010

Site on High
The kids made friends with the kids in the neighboring sites that surrounded us and they all had their own grand adventures (frog catching in the dark, any one?). In short, the trip was everything we hoped it would be and more. Though we have some lovely pictures, more often than not the camera was put aside so we could simply be. No pictures of jumping off of rocks into the water this year (though it was grand!) and only a glimpse of our site. The photographs just can’t capture the smell of campfire or pine needles so pungent in the air, nor the feeling of heart-swelling gratitude that we were able to fit this last adventure into our summer before school begins.

Sunset on the Pond

What end-of-season adventures are you having?

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Brown Tract 09 -13

We head out soon to this beauty, the great Adirondack Mountains of NYS. It’s going to be such a short trip, but we were determined to squeeze it in. Soon I’ll be pitching our tent, canoeing, hiking, hunkering down by a fire, and seeing the velvet black studded with more stars than we can see at home. This region is huge, gorgeous, ethereal, and forever in my heart. If you ever want to see more of its beauty, check out Julia’s Adirondack Mama blog or her collaborative blog with Heather, We Deserve This. Your heart, too, will be snared by the region.

One last tidbit: if you haven’t already been, go check out the Autumn Edition of Rhythm of the Home and the generous give-away that is happening on the ROTH blog.  Both will surely knock your socks off. 🙂

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Bellamy Stairs

Every visit to NH is bittersweet.  There are happy times with dear friends, there are memory traces from the life we once had there, and there are the signs of time passing and “progress” marching on in our old hometown, even as there are where we now are planted.

Bellamy Woods 4

Across the Creek

Today, while looking for something completely different, I found an old journal entry of mine from August 2002 about Bellamy Woods, where we went for a walk during our visit.

After our walk we played on the swings for a time, in quiet & peace as we watched twilight descent after the soft, warm hues of sunset. During that time I discovered the simple pleasure of swinging, feeling my body work and move through the air like that. . . joy wasn’t the right word to describe it, that word seeming too intense. I’d always known that I enjoyed to swing, but I hadn’t ever stopped to pay attention to how it felt WHILE I was doing it.

I might tell my twenty-six-year-old self that I was feeling harmony.  But that might just be my thirty-four-year-old-self interpretation. (Thanks for all the birthday wishes, everyone!)

Dragonfly SwingingIt looks like 8 years later, I still feel the same way. And I wasn’t alone, either. 🙂

What echoes of your own past have you noticed lately?

More pictures from our trip here.

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Treehugging with the X Sweater

Every year as my boy’s birthday nears I find myself in a bit of a panic when I start contemplating the birthday sweater for that year. A similar process happens for my girl’s birthday, but in that it is usually, “Which pattern should I choose?” while in the case of my boy it is, “There aren’t any to choose!” While there are fewer “boy” patterns in general, the older he gets, the more this becomes the case.

X Sweater Sleeve close up

This year, with a little help from the Inside Out e-course, I finally made it a goal to write and knit a pattern for my son. I sketched, read, started doing the math (which I loved!), wrote out what I thought I’d do, knitted, RIPPED, rewrote the pattern, re-knitted, added to the pattern, kept trying it on him, and finally finished it.

Raspberry Treasure X Marks the Spot

The Sneeze

The Stats:

Pattern: X Marks the Spot, be me, front stitch pattern inspired by B. Walker’s “Inverness Diamonds” in A Treasury of Knitting.

Meg asked about this name, since he was turned 9, not 10.  🙂 The X pattern is knitted over his heart.  I wasn’t thinking of that when I sketched what I wanted to make him, but it came to me when I was trying to name it and realized where it was.

Yarn: Spud & Chloe Sweater

Needles: US7s

Thoughts: It’s isn’t exactly how I pictured/sketched it. I needed a lighter weight yarn for that. In the end, he likes it and that’s what matters, right?

Just Being Himself

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