Easter Dress

22 Apr

Heya folks!

Our whole weekend was glorious and I spent much of it outside tidying up, hanging up laundry, sending roosters to “freezer camp” and getting things done around the homestead.  We also celebrated Easter with the kiddos which involved a fun little egg hunt and WAY too much candy being eaten overall.

I wanted to show ya’ll the dress I wore because it fits in with my previously unblogged series. I may have stated this before, but I have a bad habit of pretty much copying the fabric choices on pattern envelopes. This dress is a perfect case in point. Here is the pattern:

McCall 6895And here is my dress:

Showing off my stripes

Showing off my stripes

Yeah I pretty much copied the dress on the left EXACTLY. I used a crisp green and white striped cotton fabric. Unfortunately, I made it so long ago, much of the details that went into its construction have escaped me. I remember trying to be as careful as possible to match the stripes on the front detail.

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Peek a boo!

I accessorized with a thrifted leather belt and my number one go to pair of sandals for summer; Saltwater Sandals! I spent a good part of the day basking in the sun. I swear it was at least 80 degrees out!

Trying to get a tan

Trying to get a tan

These poor limbs of mine haven’t seen the light of day since at least September. It was so nice to just soak up the rays and toss back a cool one. My cool one of choice on this particular day was a delicious Woodchuck hard cider.

???????????????????Because I’m not getting any younger, I shielded my face with my favorite “outside” hat. This is a funny hat I picked up in “China” at Epcot in Florida. It’s perfect for keeping sun off your face, but not great for staying on your head when it’s windy! So I guess I actually did wear an Easter hat!

This is only the second time I’ve worn this dress, which is a shame because I really do like the way it looks on. It made it’s original debut a long time ago when I met Casey for a thrift store/tea room/fabric store jaunt. That means this poor dress hasn’t been worn in at least three years. Wow! Surprised I kept it this long since I’m typically pretty good about getting rid of things I don’t wear so much. Oh well! I predict that it will get a lot of wear during this Spring and Summer season.

Until next time dears,

Eileen

Around the Farm Friday

18 Apr

I thought I’d do a quick “farm status” post for those folks who are interested in that aspect of my life. As you may know, this Winter was a rough one. We had temps down to -18 I think was the lowest. Surprisingly, all our animals (three sheep and 18 chickens) pulled through! The worst thing that happened was that the pump in the barn froze pretty much daily which made making sure everyone had enough water a real chore!

It’s amazing when I think how far my life has come. About four years ago, I turned to my husband and told him I wanted to be a farmer. He laughed and chalked it up to one of my fancies. But here I am today, a year into owning livestock and I love it. In fact, on the anniversary of us having chickens for a year (heck yes I’m keeping track of that!) I went out and bought MORE chickens.

Look at these little cuties!

Look at these little cuties!

Close up of their cutie little faces!

Close up of their cutie little faces!

I currently have a few types of chickens, namely Buckeyes which are an Ohio Heritage breed. These here are Buff Orpingtons and some “Easter eggers” thrown in for good measure. They’ll lay pink, green, and blue eggs! I know my egg customers will get a kick out of them! This brings our grand total up to 28 after I dispatch the roosters to “freezer camp.”

Unfortunately, after a year of keeping chickens with no issues, this past weekend I had three “chicken issues” come up. One hen was clearly limping, I isolated her and am watching her this week, hoping it’s merely a sprain. Another hen  is clearly very um. . . popular with the roosters to the point where she has gashes on her back from their zealous mating. I also isolated her and treated the wound and finally I have decided that I will no longer keep roosters as they are more trouble than they are worth. Out of the three I have, two are mean as hell and you really have to watch your back when you’re in the henhouse, so I’m going to take care of the problem this weekend with the upside being that we won’t have to buy chicken for a few weeks. Sad but true.

I had big, big plans for farming this year, which originally included dairy goats, a large garden, meat birds (chickens and turkeys) and beehives, but my husband and I actually OWE taxes this year for the first time in my life of paying taxes and so a lot of plans got shelved unfortunately. This year the push is more egg layers, which actually end up paying for themselves, and growing a few extra of the things we eat a lot of, veggie wise.

Finally, our big barn clean up is going down this weekend so I’ll have to post pictures of before and after!

TTFN!

Eileen

The “From the Stash” Sock Club of the Month

14 Apr

I wish I could say that this idea was my own, but it wasn’t. My good friend and knitting buddy Kimberly (whose popular blog/podcast can be found here) posted on FaceBook that she was going to do a “sock of the month club” using her own stash. The premise is so simple and genius! Allow me to digress for a minute.

If you like knitting as much as I do, I’ll bet you have amassed a large stash of sock yarn. For those not yet initiated, sock yarn comes in a dizzying array of styles and colors. Most of them are relatively inexpensive, especially compared to the cost of knitting, say, a sweater. It is very easy to justify popping into the yarn store for a skein or two of something beautiful. Often this results in stashes bursting at the seams with sock yarns. Which is where I found myself this past December.

Enter the “From the Stash” sock of the month club! I chose 12 skeins of sock yarns; anything from hand paints, stripes, and plain colors, and put them into brown paper bags, one per bag. On the first of the month, I choose one bag and MUST knit (it doesn’t have to be socks but so far that’s all I’ve made) the yarn enclosed inside by the end of the month.

January I drew some raspberry hand painted sock yarn and used it to make “Waving Lace” socks. Raveled here.

Oooh wavy!

Oooh wavy!

February’s yarn was a really interesting one. I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it and I think I tried out three different patterns before I settled on one. Raveled here.

Heelless

Heelless

The pattern ended up coming out so small despite the fact that I got gauge and so these ended up being begrudgingly gifted to my daughter. I say begrudgingly because one time I knit her a gorgeous merino/silk beanie and darned if we didn’t find it in the lost and found box at her school at open house. I swore to NEVER AGAIN! knit for her (not true, she actually has another pair of knee high socks that I knit at her request).

Finally, last month I fortuitously drew some lovely mint green yarn and decided I wanted to make something decidedly Spring-y after the long cold Winter we had suffered. Raveled here.

Leafy AND lacey!

Leafy AND lacey!

I love the way these turned out. They are probably my favorite of the lot! Also, how do you like my amazing new sheets? Don’t they remind you of feed sack fabric? As soon as I saw them, I knew they must grace our bed. I’m currently sewing an Irish Chain quilt in feed sack repro fabric that will go with these sheets so well. Poor my husband, the house is going to be so feminine when I’m through with it!

Stay tuned for upcoming “sock o’ the month” posts!

Eileen

My Deco Dining Room

10 Apr

We have been in our lovely Bungalow for just about two years now, and it is only this year that I’m FINALLY getting serious about decorating. I particularly wanted to start with the downstairs, since,  let’s face it, these are the areas that the public sees the most when they visit you. To date, I’ve gotten two out of four rooms downstairs just about where I want them, decor-wise.

Indulge me if you please. A week and a half ago, I was scrolling through my local Craigslist ads when I came across an ad for a vintage dining room set that was pretty much EXACTLY what I wanted. The price was unbelievably reasonable, but the ad had been posted thirty days before and I was pretty sure the set had been snapped up. I emailed the seller anyway on the off-chance that it was still around. Days passed and . . . nothing. I figured it was gone.

Then, last Wednesday, I got a call and darned if the set wasn’t still for sale! They just weren’t the type of sellers who doggedly update their ads on a daily basis. I made arrangements to pick up the set this past weekend (which ended up being a total hassle involving a borrowed too-small truck and last minute U-Haul arrangements needing to be made) but thankfully we got them home and all set up.

The set included a table which expands, six chairs (one of which a captain’s chair with arms), a sideboard, and a china hutch. And here they are.

 

Clean lines and surfaces

Clean lines and surfaces

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Lovely Deco style chairs

China Cabinet

Could finally put out my Limoges tea set and jade-ite collection!

Room with a view

View from the window seat

They fit perfectly into our dining room. The only things I’d like to do now to make the room exactly how I want it would be to rip out the carpet and restore the wood floors below,  replace the garish gold fan/light with something more period correct, find some great art for the walls, and re-cover the seats to something a bit more neutral.

Let me just say that I’m extremely grateful that I don’t intend to move again if I can help it because lifting these pieces, the day after I did a rather ill-timed intense weight lifting workout, was not pleasant!

Well chickadees, thanks for dropping by!

Eileen

Oh Hai!

8 Apr

Is anyone still out there and reading this??

I know I’ve been MORE than remiss, but I’m feeling the pull to blog again and so here I am. We had a long rough winter here in the Midwest as I’m sure most of you have heard, but now that Spring is on the horizon I’m beginning to sew and dust off the vintage dresses.

Example: here is an outfit I wore to work the other day. As a government employee, I typically won’t go so “vintage” at work, but I had a hot date with the hubs that night to see “The Grand Budapest Hotel” (my new favorite Wes film) and not a lot of time to get ready in between work and home.

My first work bathroom selfie!

My first work bathroom selfie!

That there is an entirely me made outfit consisting of my FIRST dress sewn from a vintage pattern (which I blogged here) and my favorite hand knit sweater (also blogged here). I had never combined them together before but they made quite a colorful pair! I wore this with nude fishnets; seriously my favorite legwear since they go with everything and are very va-va-voom and my brand new Frye’s.

New Frye's!

New Frye’s!

For the longest time I’ve loved Frye’s but the price tag was always a bit prohibitive; I mean seriously, do you know how much fabric/yarn you could buy with that much dough? But I got this pair for a song and let me tell you, now that I have them, they are definitely worth the price tag. They are quality shoes. I have been pairing these with nearly everything I can since they are so versatile.

Well friends . . . if there are any still out there, that concludes this little post dashed off before I head to work. I hope you have a lovely day and I’ll talk to you soon.

Eileen

Homesteading and Hairstyles

25 Aug

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It has been a summer of wonders. Eggs are coming in regularly now. The awesomeness of going out to the barn and gathering breakfast has yet to wear off. We have not found any with double-yolks, but we have found eggs of all manner of shapes and sizes.

The sheep are doing well. We unfortunately lost one, Hemingway, in early July. It’s hard to talk about because I feel like my own ignorance is the cause of the loss. See, unlike people, when they get a cold sheep do not “just get over it.” No, the solution is rounds of antibiotics. I learned this too late to save poor Hemingway and my husband buried him on Independence Day. Hub clipped some of his wool for me to remember him by.

I signed up for a home butchering class and took one of our nine roosters with me. He was a beautiful boy and had a wonderful chicken life. It was not easy to do but I didn’t take it lightly. I very nearly cried but found that I could with good conscious still eat meat. That’s the hub above ready to carve. He tasted as my friend said “of happiness and freedom.” Tomorrow the rest of the roosters will join him. We will then have a total of thirteen chickens in all. Eleven hens and two roosters.

Finally, I cut my hair! The last time I cut “Bettie Page” bangs, I hated them due to my silly cowlick. However, my new hairdresser assured me that she could show me how to beat that bad ol’ cowlick and I think they look pretty good! I’m very happy, I hadn’t cut my hair in over two years and it was very overdue!

I hope you are all having a great summer!

Eileen

Passing it On

20 Aug

I always imagined that when I had a daughter we would spend hours crafting together and it would be all sunshine and lollipops. Up until the present it has been anything but. My daughter is VERY concerned about what her Momma thinks and any comment that corrects her makes her freeze up which sucks any fun out of the project in question. Lately though, this has been changing as she realizes that I’m just trying to help her learn how to do things the correct way (aka MY way ;) and we were recently able to make a Barbie dress! Huzzah!

SAMSUNG

SAMSUNG

We used scraps of the pretty print lawn that I used to make this blouse and a Vogue pattern that I picked up ages ago for just this moment which features Barbie clothes inspired by the 1940s! How perfect is that?

Barbie patternWe had a lot of fun making this dress and I had a lot of fun teaching her about fabric grain, the importance of seam allowances and not striving for “perfect.” I look forward to sewing the rest of the outfits with her soon!

Eileen