NOVEMBER-THE KITCHEN-BOOKS I AM READING-CHICKENS

7 01 2018

GREETINGS

I am back from Ireland and have a working kitchen now.  My next blog I will share the trip to Ireland with you.  Hope to catch up in this blog.  December into January has been super cold  The temps last night went down to over 20 below zero and with wind chill it was way below that.   This morning the temps are eking up but at 11 am its still not above 10 below.  For the first time in 19 years my kitchen is warm and no broken pipes!!!!!!! (knock on wood)

NOVEMBER

I hardly remember November it went by in a whirlwind.  Getting ready for the crafts of Colrain and the trip to Ireland and 2 shows the weekend before I left.   But all these things were getting me ready for the best trip.  Peaceful, fun and adventurous 

THE KITCHEN

The front part of the kitchen is done and it looks great.  It is wonderful to have a kitchen that works and has places for everything.  I wonder how I worked in the old one for so many years.  I have all new appliances and a huge sink or zink as my Mom Mom Morrison use to call them.  Everyone helped and cheered me on when I was washing dishes in the bath tub.  Even though it was a difficult few months it certainly showed me how important family and friends are in one’s life.  I am so grateful.

The back part of the kitchen where the wood stove was will have to wait till warmer weather as the floor has to  come up and a new base for the wood stove has to be built  I sure  do miss the wood stove on these cold days  but it needs to be done  The floor has sunk down about 5 inches.  I am planning on replacing my Vermont casting stove with a smaller more efficient Jotul  wood stove.  I  Don’t need that big of a stove anymore with the new insulated walls.

 

BOOKS I AM READING

I bought some books in Ireland and my favorite magazine    The Lighthouse Keeper a memoir by Gerald Butler  I had read a review on in a newspaper and decided it would be a book I would search for  Every book store was out I was beginning to think that I wouldn’t find it but on a trip to Baltimore in the tiniest of stores there it was   I started reading it that night  It is about the life of one of the last lightkeepers in Ireland.  His great-grandfather was a light keeper and so was both of his parents  Most of his lightkeeping days were on the west coast of Ireland where we were staying    Many exciting tales of his rescues and of his time at Fastnet Lighthouse with waves coming over the top of the light house  A great read

The sea and lighthouses always have fascinated me.  I always though I would live near them.

COUNTRY LIVING MAGAZINE UK

 

As many of my followers know I have been getting this magazine for years  I finally found it at the end of my trip thanks to Cindy and Chris  With stories about topiary, making casks, and so much more.  I find it a back to the rural life plus views of the city magazine   If you have never read this magazine its worth buying  or borrowing a copy .  

 BACKYARD CHICKENS by Dave Ingham

I found this wonderful book at Avoca Weavers on Molls Gap in Ireland.  I do have lots of books on Chickens but love to add to my collection    Every person raises chickens  differently and new ideas and how to handle illnesses are something I always look for in a new book  This has them and  it is a delightful read too

MARGARET

Margaret is in for the winter she is now in the cage I bough for Helen   She is in back part of the kitchen  She has had the sneezing and coughing thing before I left and was in the house  briefly and seemed to be better  But a few days after I got home she was sneezing again   She still has some problems but  is back to her old self talking and cooing  I let her out everyday as it is a smaller cage  She loves the private sleeping area  She will be back with the flock in the spring 

MYRTLE

MYRTLE came in today  I found her standing still just trying to keep warm today not eating or drinking . Like Humans some hens just can’t take the cold and need some  help.  This is exceptional weather we are having and I think she would have been fine with normal winter weather.  She will return out in the spring.

The personalities of these two birds is like night and day.  Margaret is demanding and wants wants wants.  Myrtle is happy with anything  you do for and asks for little.  

JUNIPERS WITH BLUE BERRIES

I have wanted to get 3 of these trees for some time  Not many places carry them but I plan to go to a tree nursery in Hadley, Mass this spring and see if they have them  to further my dream of having all my live Christmas decorations right in my own yard  As a child I remember them in cow and horse pastures 

I found some this Christmas season in a place where I would have never thought to look, Home Depot an it was the last bunch there  I have scattered them around the house and catch their scent when I walk past .

Juniper Oil has been used in many things for years  I love it for a bath  It is said to help arthritis .

Many thanks for reading my blog on this cold winter day.  Carole





HATFIELD HARVEST FAIR-BOOKS I AM READIG-THE BRICK MEETING HOUSE-BUCKLAND HISTORICAL SOCIETY

9 10 2017

GREETINGS

Fall is slow coming this year.  We do have the cooler temps at night, but the leaves are slow to turn.  Turkey’s are gathering in groups on back roads though,

and haying machinery has been stored for the winter.

 Rains from the most recent hurricane have poured down upon us today, we do need the rain.

HATFIELD HARVEST FAIR

I haven’t spun at this fair for 4 or more years.  It has changed so much with more vendors, fresh Hatfield veggies for sale, who can resist Hatfield potatoes or onions.  Library book sale and so much more.  I was with the Springfield Weavers who let children weave on Structo Looms and gave them a card with a hand woven piece of cloth in it for their efforts.  

We were in  the tobacco barn with all the wonderful old things.  The day went by quickly with lots of questions from children and adults about spinning and sheep.  Looking forward to next years show.

BOOKS I AM READING

I have read this book some time ago and am revisiting it for my next trip to Ireland.  The reviews say it’s a unique travelogue for the mobile but not agile.  I remember when reading it before that it contained some really unique out of the way places which we hope to explore on this trip.   A good read for anyone thinking of traveling to Claire, Kerry and West Cork.

THE BRICK MEETING HOUSE

Brenda and Cookie who bought The Brick Meeting House had  Oktoberfest on Saturday.  It was quite successful 3 vendors, face painting and games for the kids, good Homemade food.  Lots of people stopped by on their way to vacation destinations and many towns folk came to support the project.  They still haven’t decided what will be in The meeting House but are open to suggestions.  They will be having many more of these events and maybe a farmers market next year.  A great addition to  our town.

BUCKLAND HISTORICAL SOCIETY

Yesterday was their open house.  I was there spinning with Marti Ferguson and Sandy Cardinal was weaving on an old barn loom.  The setting was lovely, there were a team of Oxen and some ponies there.

 The house was open for viewing.  It is a beautiful historic house.  Hope you will put this on your list for next year.

View from the bathroom widow

SOME PARTING THOUGHTS FROM THE WILDER HOMESTEAD

I couldn’t resist taking this picture.  The view to the hills with rain clouds and crisp white curtains,  made me think how many people looked out this window in the past, checking  out their fields and animals, worried about wars, and freedom, not so unlike today.  I would have thought things would have changed in these over two hundred years but alas I think they have gotten worse.  Bigotry, racism, white supremacist, and other hate groups abound.  People are all upset about kneeling in front of the flag.  The flag is a symbol of our freedom and that is it.  It is cloth.  People show their patriotism in many ways and when people don’t have the freedoms that the rest of us have they should let it be known.  That is what this country is all about.  We all should have the same freedoms and rights not just a limited few.  It really bothers me that people are all over the kneeling but won’t do anything about some laws to prevent mass killings.  We have let the wrong people have too much influences over our elected officials.  What is the matter with people?  Somehow they missed history in school at least in the schools that I attended we had many lessons  of what it means to be a patriot. My rant not for the day but ever since these evil people have come out of the woodwork.  
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SPINNING AND KNITTING FOR A PROJECT-BOOKS I AM READING-IRELAND IS CALLING-NEW LIFE ON THE FARM

21 09 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

GREETINGS

We had a bout of cool days and cooler nights now its very humid.  The leaves are changing so fall weather approaches.

SPINNING AND KNITTING FOR A PROJECT

Usually I just spin and don’t really care what I am spinning.  I have such a supply of wool that I want to get spun that it doesn’t really matter.  This year I skirted Carol K and Maude’s fleeces and threw the skirting’s into a bag.  I usually throw away the really messy stuff and keep the rest for a small project.  But this year there was a lot.  I decided to dye it and use some one old dye and another dye that I had plenty of.  They were both Pro Chemical dyes, Mallard Green and mustard. I love the way the colored blended together.

Well then  this Debbie Bliss pattern book, which I bought a long time ago surfaced and I found a pattern that was simple and I liked .  So this is what I am spinning and knitting..  I want to get the sweater finished and make an outfit to wear on my November trip.  I am not a good finisher I have loads of started projects around and am determined to finish a lot of them this winter and get the sweater done by mid October.   I am working on it every day.

 

THE FRANKLIN COUNTY FAIR

I do love doing this fair, meeting old friends and new customers.  People love to stop and chat while I am spinning and I do enjoy answering their questions about spinning.  It was a lovely two days.

BOOKS I AM READING

Rag Rugs of England and AMerica

I was able to purchase this book online and am so glad that I did

.Rag Rugs of England and Americait has wonderful stories and pictures of old rugs.   The two people who influenced my rug hooking most were Heather Richie and Deanne Fitzpatrick.  Both of them in totally different ways inspire me to do things in a different way.   To breathe while rug hooking and not worry about straight lines . This book reminds me of Heather as it has a story which she told in class and the same picture that is in the book she showed us.  The print is called Geordie ha’ ad a Bairn by Ralph Hedley around 1890.    In the picture is a clippie rug which Heather showed us how to make.

 

Geordie Haa'd the Bairn

Lots of pictures of old rugs with interesting information about them.  A must read for rug hookers and historians..

IRELAND IS CALLING

My daughter Cindy, grandson Chris and I are heading back to IRELAND in November.  Its been 4 years since we went last.  A hiatus for Cindy to attend Law School.    We are heading to Cork to show Chris that beautiful county with side trips to Kerry and a few other counties.   We rented a beautiful stone cottage and I know there will be at least a day of fishing for Chris.  I can’t wait to get there I have always felt at home in Ireland.  We may take a trip to Tipperary to see an odd breed of sheep called Zwartbles, they look like badgers!  We got wonderful prices on Norwegian Air and will fly from Providence directly to Cork.  Counting the days.

DOT AND HATTIE

This week I picked up two hens from the Chicken Man.  It is hard for people and chickens to adjust to new living situations but they are adjusting,

                          DOT

Dot has ventured out once and I see her getting accumulated to the flock soon. Hattie is living with the Bantam’s and is now sleeping with them.  Morticia treats her like her daughter, bossing her around.  She is young and probably won’t start laying till the end of November.

HATTIE

Dot is really a rescue.  She is a two-year old bird who the chicken man said is spent. What he means by that is worthless, she probably won’t lay anymore and is sent with another 25 or so birds to the auction (an awful and terrifying place).  He is of the mentality, which is old school, that hens lay very few eggs after their second year.  Well I have never found that true..  My  13-year-old hen laid  beautiful blue eggs almost every day of the summer before she passed as most of my other old hens do.  Change in animal care comes slow here in the states but in other countries like England it is way ahead of us.   I am so glad to see new farmers give animals loving care and a chance  to live on green grass and fresh air the way their suppose to live. (My rant for the day.)

Many thank for reading my blog on this cloudy fall day.  Leaves are slowing  changing.  Carole





BOOKS I AM READING-THE FRANKLIN COUNTY FAIR-COSMO

7 09 2017

GREETINGS

Hot and humid. cold and damp, torrential rains and some early frost in the hills.  Hurricanes doing so much damage.  Global warming is not knocking on our door anymore it’s here.  The hazel nuts are drying nicely in the car and I have decided to get a few more trees and plan to plant one in an open spot in the woods for the animals.  They are so easy to grow and don’t take up a lot of room.

BOOKS I AM READING

 

One of the things I love about The Heath Fair is the Library Book Sale.  I bring bags of books and take away a bag.    One never knows what will be there but there are always do it yourself books, cookbooks, novels, children’s books and travel, this year there were even foreign language learning books.  Books are one of my favorite things and I have been surrounded with them since I could walk.  My parents and other family members read to me and when I was old enough I could take my allowance and buy a book at the  McCauselan and Wakelin department store in Holyoke.

In my bag this year was a book on how to make greenhouses, a wonderful knitting book, a fishing guide for my grandson, a Christmas project book and a small book by Daniel Gottlieb called Letters to Sam.  I didn’t know that I bought a treasure.  On the cover its says A Grandfather’s lessons on love, Loss, and the gifts of life.   It is so much more.  It’s about a man who has had loss and hardship in his life.  Dan suffered a near fatal accident which left him paralyzed from the neck down some years ago and Sam his grandson was diagnosed  with a form of autism at 14 months.   Dan is a Psychologist 

One of my favorite parts of this books is  when he talks of the jobs parents and children have.  A parents job is to love theIr child protect them as best they can and give them roots and wings.  

At the end of the book is this quote which I would like to share it is from Rumi, a 13th century poet, theologian, jurist, scholar and mystic.

                                GUEST HOUSE

This being human is a guest house

Every morning a new arrival

A joy, a depression, a meanness

some momentary awareness comes,

as an unexpected guest.

Welcome and entertain them all!

Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,

who violently sweep your house

empty of its furniture,

still treat each guest honorably.

He may be clearing you out for some new delight.

The dark thought, the sham. the malice.

     meet them at the door laughing,

and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,

because each has been sent 

as a guide from beyond.

RUMI

 

THE FRANKLIN COUNTY FAIR

 

I will be in the craft tent Saturday and Sunday.  Come on down and enjoy the wonderful fair.

Many thanks for reading my blog on this September day.  Carole.

 

My wonderful cat Cosmo.  Taking a break from running up and down the stairs (and eating many cans of Fancy Feast) making sure no other cats have come into his domain.  For those of you who know of Cosmo his cancer is growing slowly.  I hope he will be here for many more years but we enjoy each day that he is given.





THE ELUSIVE CAT-HAY-BOOKS I AM READING

22 06 2017

GREETINGS

The hot stiffleing weather is gone and we have had a couple of wonderful days  and cool sleeping nights.  Welcome rain for the crops came and went.  Summertime in New England.
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