On any given day you are most likely to find us communing with the gnomes and the fairies Under The Old Oak Tree

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Handmade Holiday

Okay, so I've not posted about our handmade holiday efforts in a while, but I do have some projects done and ready to share.

Again, the disclaimer, if you are a member of my family, please stop reading this blog till Christmas gifts are exchanged!

First a warm wool hat for my husband's cousin who lives in upstate New York.  It was my first Beanie #212 watch cap knitted flat and seamed together.

I then thought that my BIL who works out on a boat for a couple weeks at a time could also use some warm wool on his head and I used the same pattern but knitted in the round and added some cables.  I love how this hat turned out!

Remember my favorite scarf pattern for women?  Well, I made two more of them  A solid rosy color for MIL and a pretty pink and brown colorway for DH's aunt.

When I saw the wool handle cover at Moment to Moment, I knew I had to make my mom one to use with her cast iron skillet.  I ended up following the instructions to knit one from A Hand Made Life and felted some flowers on it.  I want a couple of these too.  Maybe if I get all the other projects finished, I'll find some in my stocking...

Except for a pair of socks that I started for my b-day and am not allowed to work on till all my Christmas gifts are complete, that is everything that I had cast on my needles finished.  I need to go get some more yarn so that I can cast on some slippers for W, and three more beanie # 212's for my hubby, father and FIL.  I also need to get busy on a few cat toys for the pets in our lives but those are super quick kits.

This week I felted down another sweater, unsure of what I was planning to do with it.  Later that evening, I remembered that I had wanted to make little tissue holder pouches for my mom and MIL from felt.  I decided to use this felted sweater instead.  I also needle felted designs on them and stitched up the sides with a blanket stitch.  I loosely based the idea on these.  The needle felting was a great way to add a little "red hat" to the gifts for MIL.

Over the summer, after receiving a batch of pictures of my son, my mom stated that she wanted to "wear a picture of W around her neck".  That became the inspiration for a Christmas gift of course!  I made one for my mom and one for MIL.  I found these little charm frames at Michaels several months ago for 75% off and printed out tiny little pictures of W to put in them.  I need to put the charms on jump rings and then  make them into necklaces, but the hard part of the project (selecting the picture, shrinking it and putting it in the little frame charms) is done.

Speaking of photo gifts, I also found pictures of FIL, DH and W all taken when they were between the ages of 18 months and 2 years old.  I've edited them to make them look fairly similar and will be framing them together as gifts for my hubby and FIL.  I was moved to tears when I put the three pictures together into a collage to see how they sit together.  I think the family resemblances between these three little boys is amazing!  I hope they like this gift as much as I do.

In our house we also allow a few purchased handmade items.  I mostly have used this get a few things for W's stocking so far.

At our Waldorf School Fest of Fall, I purchased these beautiful shooting stars from my table-mate L of Blue Iris Handcrafts.

On Etsy I purchased this cute little tub turtle for W from MamaMadeThem.  I also have purchased him one of her bathtub boats for him as we are trying to transition him away from plastic bath toys.

The other thing I bought for him on Etsy is this set of  creative wood play clips  from Creative Wood Toys.  I am sure that W and A are both going to enjoy these since they have been asking me to make them playsilk tents for the past week.  My plan is to dye a big playsilk to go with these clips as one of W's gifts.

Also at the Waldorf School Fest of Fall, I purchased this beautiful bar of lavender soap from Sweet Cheeks.  Her things are beautiful and I'm thinking there are a couple stocking-stuffers I need to order from her for the hubby!  This soap is going to go to my mom who has always loved all things lavender.

I have a couple more projects in the works here including more photo coasters, and some felted soaps which hopefully will be done for my next handmade holiday post.

Friday, October 22, 2010

A Family Trip to the Pumpkin Patch

This past week we made a trip to Gallmeyer Farms to visit the pumpkin patch.  We had a great time and W and I really enjoyed having Daddy come with us this year!   We told W he needed to wear a hat so he insisted on wearing his fabulous gnome hat made by by very talented friend over at Blue Iris Hand Crafts (she is the friend I have shared a booth with at our Waldorf School's Holiday Bizarre/Fest of Fall for the past two years and her things are beautiful)!  I love this hat and I think W chose the perfect hat for the pumpkin patch!   Daddy of course picked out a huge pumpkin which our little gnome had quite a time trying to push in the wheelbarrow!

W also picked out his own smaller pumpkin which he tried to carry around himself...but it was really heavy!

So we put it in the wheelbarrow with Daddy's and let him try to push both pumpkins.

We also took a family trip through the hay maze.

And ended our trip with hayride.  W especially loved riding behind the tractor and getting to see the turkeys they keep at the farm.

We are eagerly awaiting carving our pumpkins for Halloween but enjoying them while they grace our front steps!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Apple Picking for My Birthday

I celebrated my birthday last week and had a wonderful time! I took a break from preparing for the Fest of Fall and W and I went apple picking with some of our neighbors at Carter Mountain. It was a beautiful day.

We picked lots of Jonagold apples and then had apple doughnuts and what I think must be the best apple cider I've had in a long time.  It was so much fun watching the kids picking the apples.

Of course we all had to sample some as well.  They were delicious!  One of our neighbor girls declared them "the best apples ever" and she might have been right.  Eating them while sitting between rows of trees in  the orchard, you really couldn't get any better than that!

 W ate one that was almost as big as he is and he loved every bite of it.  We've been eating our wonderful apples all week and have been so grateful to have them and happy that we know exactly where they came from.  It was a wonderful morning!

We finished off the day having a dinner out with Daddy at one of our favorite Italian places and then topped it off with gelato from DeLuca's.  I had pumpkin and amaretto gelato.......yummmm!  DeLuca's is one of my favorite places.  We rarely go there but when we do it is such a wonderful treat!

The day after, W and I went to the Richmond Folk Festival.  It was wonderful! Our family always says how lucky we are to live in a place that has such wonderful festivals and I think this one is the best of them all!

 W and  I listened to lots of bluegrass and oldtime music (which luckily he enjoys as much as I do at this point), and both particularly enjoyed the female Cajun group BonSoir, Catin.  W gave me the cd for my birthday and we've been listening to it all week.  W claps for many of the songs each time he hears them and we've been dancing and singing along when I manage to figure out the French words.  We topped the folk festival off by listening to the Sand Mountain Sacred Harp Singers.  I love shape note singing and it was a real treat to see  a live performance of it!  If you've not heard it before, there's a sample on the Richmond Folk Festival's Performer's page. This music gives me goose bumps!

I had a wonderful couple of days celebration and then it was back to work.  The Fest of Fall at our local Waldorf School is tomorrow, and surprisingly, I'm ready and really looking forward to it! Of course, best of all is that unlike last year, I'll actually get to sleep the night before the sale.  I won't say I haven't pulled a couple of all nighters this week, but at least these last couple days before the sale I'm able to catch up on my sleep and I should be able to go and be present and really enjoy it!  I'll be back afterwards with pictures!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Fest of Fall Items

I finally have pictures of a few of the items I have made so far to sell at the Fest of Fall.

And since we are also trying to enjoy this beautiful fall season, here's a photo of  W and I picking apples this morning.  We had such a wonderful time!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

We've Been Under The Weather...and The Pressure's On!

I haven't posted since Michaelmas because W and I have both been a bit under the weather.  I've been hit with a not so fun cold and W seems to have a combination of teething (those 2 year molars) and possible allergies.  He never seemed to get a cold like I did, but he has had a runny nose and is drooling like nothing I have ever seen.  When he was an infant I soaked up all that drool with the constant use of bibs but now he's such a big boy he won't wear one and his front is constantly drenched.  I am tempted to  knit up some sort of wool drool soaker to go around his neck but under his clothes.  With the weather changing I'm so afraid he will end up really getting chilled going outside sopping wet from the drool.  Of course, I have next to no time to work on this right now.

Time is short and the pressure is on.  Our rhythm is all over the place and I have suspended all Christmas present making (as well as most house keeping) till after October 16th!  "Why?" you might ask.  Because earlier this week I agreed to share a table with my friend L at our local Waldorf school's Fest of Fall selling my wool creations.  Last year we shared a table for the Holiday Bizarre at the school and had such a wonderful time and I am really looking forward to this year's event!

Here are some pictures L took of our table from last year.  Her beautiful items are on the left and my things are on the right.  W is a big fan of her gnome hats and her little gnomes!  He  wears the hat and plays with his little gnome almost daily.

I am deep into production mode here at the moment and have been keeping my hands busy during the day knitting and working intensely on needle felting items during nap times and late into the night. I need to take some pictures or the items I have finished (if I ever can get  a hold of the camera during daylight hours to take these pictures) and post them here to give you all a taste of what I will be selling.  Okay, back to work!  I'll be back to blogging after we get through the festival.


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