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

Friday, January 20, 2012

Simple Joys - A Simple Dinning Room Makeover

So often in life we forget to slow down and observe and appreciate the Simple Joys that come to us.  It might be a child's smile, some flowers on the dining room table, a walk in nature, or whatever little simple thing that brings you joy.  My goal is to acknowledge and document one of my Simple Joys each Friday and share it with you.  I hope you will add a your blog link to the simple little things that have brought joy to your life this week.

Recently, our family dinning room has been really getting to me.  We eat dinner in the dining room each evening and sometimes eat breakfast or lunch there too, though more often those meals are easier for us to eat in the kitchen.  Our dining room table often also seems to have become a catchall for whatever anyone wants to set down during the day.  Cleaning it off and setting the table was becoming quite a big job.  So, yesterday I decided a change is in order.  I fished this tray off of the top of the refrigerator where it was collecting dust. I lined it with a place mat, got a vase out and bought some inexpensive flowers and put our meal candle, salt and pepper shaker and my teapot on it.

I put some clean place mats on the table and the room perked up considerably.  I have set a goal that things are not to just collect on the table anymore.  It's fine if each person would like to leave a glass of water or a cup of tea, but nothing else is to be left sitting on the dining room table except the items on the tray.

I'm looking forward to keeping this going and keeping some fresh flowers on the table.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Yarn Along

I'm joining with Ginnny of Small Things again for the Yarn along.  My current projects on the needles/hook are a rag rug I am crocheting from old clothes and a set of  liners for W's rainboots.  Here is the pattern I am adapting to fit rainboots with a tab in the back instead of the handles on the sides.  I feel like I've been working on these liners for a really really long time given that they are just simple in the round knitting of stockinette with a few decreases periodically.  Not difficult knitting, and perhaps not the most attention grabbing either.  Maybe that's why I keep setting them when other projects come up.   I'll be happy if I finish them for W's rainboots this spring.  I do think they will be very practical for him to have for playgroup and school and they make the boots look so cute!  In terms of reading, I've been a bit all over the place.  I have been re-reading Little Women again on my Kindle.  It's easy night reading that doesn't keep me up since I've read it so many times in the past, but is cozy and comforting like a visit with old friends.  It's definitely one of my all time favorites.

I've finished two other projects since my last Yarn Along.  The first is this scrappy hat for W.  He had a lovely hat with a long floppy point that I had made for him last year.  It was causing some issues on the playground at school however since all of his friends wanted to pull on it, so we decided he needed a new hat.  I had also been thinking about knitting a cowl for him but decided to make him  this instead.  He loves it and was so happy wearing it at school today.

The other project  I finished was this "ranger cowl" for my park ranger husband.  He wanted a brown scarf to wear with his uniform.  I didn't have enough of this yarn for a scarf so I made him this cowl instead.  It's kind of nice knowing that on a cold day at work he can wear something made with love to help him stay nice and warm. 

I want to make W a pair of felted mittens to match his scrappy hat.  Also I'm thinking that it's time the mama in this family makes herself a hat and cowl to help her stay warm this winter too.

For more "wooly" goodness, please stop by my photography project Wool365.  Often these days things I am making are posted there before I manage to post the here at Under The Old Oak Tree.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Yarn Along and announcing Wool 365

It's been quite a while since I've been on this space and I've missed it.  I think I'm back, but I need to figure out how this is now going to work into our family's rhythm.  It seems like joining in the Yarn Along each week might be a good place to start.  Speaking of rhythm, we need to figure that out again now that the holidays are winding down.

I'm also announcing the start of a new project of mine, Wool 365.  DH and I got a new DSLR camera for Christmas and I figured taking pictures each day would be a good way to learn to use the camera.  I decided to use Wool as my subject.  While working on decluttering this week I realized that I have surrounded our family with wool.  My creativity is largely wool based, with the needle felting, knitting and crocheting that I do.  For me, it seems like a natural subject matter.

This fall was super busy for us. It has also been a really lovely blessed time for our family. We had lots of company over the last few months, which was wonderful.  We've celebrated festivals and holidays and birthdays and maybe if I get around to it I'll share more about that later.  W and I have been attending a weekly Waldorf Play group and we also have our parent-child class at the school once a week.  DH and I are attending bi-weekly parent discussions that are being offered by one of the teachers at the school as well.  The school and the school community have been so wonderful for our family this fall and I am eagerly awaiting the spring term, hoping to get involved in the handwork group etc.

Okay, now to the yarn along.  I'm joining with Ginny of Small Things for this week's yarn along. I've got lots of WIP, but the two I've been working on primarily are the Alice shawl in  Green/Plum Malabrigo sock yarn, and what I am calling the Ranger Cowl for DH to be able to wear to work now that the weather seems to be getting colder finally.  I'm using this Easy Unisex Cowl pattern for it and since DH claims a wool allergy (can you believe I'm married to a man with a wool allergy?) I'm using Lion Brand Wool-Ease that is mostly acrylic.  I don't think that will make him too itchy.  This allergy is probably the reason I don't knit many things for him though.

In terms of reading, I received a Kindle for Christmas and I am loving it.  I just finished reading Philippa Gregory's Lady Rivers on it. Philippa Gregory novels (and others about dead British royals too) are one of my big guilty pleasures! I also have put all the pdf's of patterns I'm knitting onto it which is just wonderful!  DH and I are also working through Simplicity Parenting together for the parent discussions that we have been attending at W's school.


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