a quiet friday

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How can it be Friday already?  It’s been a good week, and what feels like a productive one.  Alana is sleeping well at night so I no longer hunt and hope for a afternoon nap, and a nice daytime routine is forming.  The weather is lovely today so we took Penny for a surprise lunchtime walk.  Its so nice to be on these same paths as always, pass the same dog walkers and even walk past the tree I held onto while feeling the first contractions of labour.  All is the same, but now there are three of us breathing the spring air.  Walkers I haven’t seen for a while come rushing up to meet our girl and tuck money into her knitwear, a local tradition that I find bemusing, but sweet.

Friday is becoming a day of quiet here.  I was thinking today about what how different it is, going from spending my days with only my pup, to having another tiny human at home and always with me.  It’s a wonderful adjustment, but an adjustment all the same.  And so we are enjoying it today, with baby naps and snuggles, and our new trick – feeding in the sling, on the move, and taking pictures of it at the same time! (the last photo).  We’ve been trying it at home this week, and when Alana got thirsty on the walk, she just latched on and we kept on going.  Penny was grateful, Alana (and her mama) were happy and none of the other dog walkers looked twice.

 

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nestling back home

I’m home.  We went for a little relaxing trip, which got extended at each end as we visited family.  In two weeks, I took one photograph, and its not a particularly good one –

 

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A lot has changed in two weeks, especially when you leave as the seasons are changing.  We got home to leaves, leaves and more leaves, different colours and ripening pumpkins in the garden.  I had to buy a warmer jacket, and now walking Penny by the river is delightful.  She seems equally delighted that things have returned to normal and her people are home.

We got home to surprises too.  Imagine opening your front door, to see that your rickety old, marked and hand-knit sock-snagging hall floorboards had been magically replaced with solid oak flooring, completely perfect, beautiful and homely.  I gaped at it from the doorstep and wept.  I am nowhere near done with showering my father-in-law and Mr Saz in kisses.

That wasn’t even everything – all our internal doors had been taken down, made to fit properly and rehung.  I have been so used to kicking the bottom of the doors to make them close I didn’t even notice I was doing it.  My garage now looks like a garage/workshop, rather than a room with the sole purpose of housing a huge pile of crap.  There is a new, sturdy chicken run which I can see the ladies eyeing up excitedly, they’ll be moved there at the weekend.

All this, the beginning of my favourite season, and knowing that things are still fine.  I feel so lucky.

 

 

quietly rambling

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It was a very peaceful weekend.  I read, knit a hat and slept, a lot.  The hours I spent conscious were pretty few and far between, but I think my body needed it.  This doesn’t make for the most interesting blog post, so I’m sorry.  But mainly I just wanted to appear to here to thank you for the comments, and many PM’s and emails of love given what I hinted at in my last post.

Things are still fine, though I most likely won’t mention it much here.  If I ever do, I’ll warn you so if you want to, for whatever reason, skip it.  There was a time not too long ago where I found sudden mentions of babies and pregnancy jarring and there were several places both online and in real life that were just too difficult to visit.  As strange as this sounds given my current situation, I often still find this to be true.

Soon it will be a full year since our terrible loss, and I realised this morning that more than a full season has passed with me growing my second little one.  Where has the time gone?  The coming weeks will be busy – I have some wonderful friends coming to visit, and there will be adventures as we try to show them as much of Scotland as we can manage, including a trip to Shetland.  I had a crazy idea this weekend that it’ll be possible to make a quilt for the newly-decorated guest bedroom in time for their arrival.  Still trying to talk myself down from that one…

marielle skirt

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Right now I am happily riding the wave of my sewing mojo.  My Cambie is finished (a reveal will follow after the wedding I’ve made it to wear at next weekend), and I celebrated by starting something new, straight away.

Maybe this puts me in the realms of weird fan girl, but when I saw the Marielle Skirt on Tilly’s blog I knew I needed this skirt in my wardrobe.

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The directions (even in a magazine which I guess might have been edited) were perfectly clear and lovely.  Somehow though my skirt ended up with the opening on the opposite side.  I don’t think I made any whoopsies and my fabric was the correct way up, but clearly something happened, not that it matters.

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(There is a strange chicken v dog territory war going on behind me in these photos.  Penny tries to look for squirrels in the tress.  The chickens are unimpressed and charge her, trying to peck her tail as she runs away.  Chickens look triumphant.)

The fabric is some navy cord, and I lined it with a little cotton print I picked up somewhere.  Buttons are from my rescued/frogged Levenwick.

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I love how this skirt is going to go with so many things in my wardrobe.  Penny likes it too.

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silence

These days I am not as sociable as I used to be.  This past weekend was lovely, filled with loved ones and laughing and fresh air.  Every day I feel fortunate to have such wonderful family.  But suddenly now it is silent, and just as lovely.

This afternoon there will be quiet work in my office, with just Penny curled up behind me.  Chocolate cake.  Maybe a little seed planting.  Maybe a little snooker.  And definitely an epic, muddy hike.  (We can’t say the ‘w’ word around here anymore, it puts sweet Penny into a frenzy.  Soon that will happen for the ‘h’ word too and we will have to find an new one.)

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sniffing out spring

So according to the calendar it’s spring.  The snow might have gone but I’m not so sure.  Penny and I went hunting for evidence.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAA worm buddy!  I love worms.  I wish there were more of them in my garden and I’m working on it.  I picked this one up and put it into the grass, to make it less likely to be snaffled by a bird – is that the wrong thing to do?  It seemed grateful, I think.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERALambs!  I was getting worried, usually I can hear them bleating when I let out the chickens, but nothing so far.  Turns out they’re just in a different field this year, and all is fine.  I couldn’t get that close without spooking them, but the muncher above was totally uninterested in me or Penny.  Clearly the grass was too tasty.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMy garden!  I spent the weekend in the front garden carrying out what felt like an archeological dig.  Clearing away 15 years worth of dead plants was a big task.  I found a rockery, paths, and these lovely daffodils which have been flowering every year under a mass of dead branches.  It feels like I haven’t even scratched the surface, but the two-car loads of weeds I took to the community recycling centre tells me otherwise.  (I am starting to make friends with the guys who work there.  I love too that they take away my weeds and stuff I don’t want to compost, and then give me free compost in return.)  I am utterly determined that this will be the year my garden will be returned to former glories.  I’ve heard that 15 years ago it was loved and a thing of beauty, but the previous owners obviously neglected it, and did nothing but cut the grass occasionally.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERANew plants for my doorstep…

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis might look like a picture of soil.  I guess it does, really.  But right in the centre, that teeny tiny speak of green is actually a baby carrot!  I had one good carrot year back in 2006(?), and have had no success since then, struggling even to get them to germinate.  I have a good feeling about this year…

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOut of the 100+ teeny seedlings in my greenhouse, this little cauliflower is my favourite.  Something about the way it stands seems so earnest, and it looks like it waves to me whenever I go in.  It’s so friendly.

Our local ice-cream man says that May is going to be a hot month.  It doesn’t feel like it, but he is wise and all-knowing, so I’m choosing to believe him and be optimistic.

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crafting for the animals…and the winner

So…to the exciting thing first – the winner of the Dropcloth sampler, Yarn Yarn silk embroidery threads and possibly a couple of other goodies from the depths of my craft room.  Congratulations Nicola!  Your post was picked at random and I will send you an email in the next few minutes…  Thank you to everyone who entered x

And so back to usual business…the new chickens are settling in well, and I am most definitely head-over-heels in love with them.  These girls are much more active that our last lot of rescue chickens.  This is due to a change in the law for these kind of caged hens in the UK, who must now have (a little) more space, and a place to scratch and roost.  It’s better, but still not good enough in my opinion.  They have a some natural behaviour, but looked frankly amazed when I carried one outside for a wander.  Fresh air is something completely new for my girls.

And so the names – Lady Dorothea Featherbottom (Dotty), Scarlet o’Hara (Scarlet), WPC Polly Parker (Parker) and Duchess Mimi the Second (Mimi).  Here’s little timid Mimi.  I knit her a wee sweater as she’s in the worst shape physically and is completely bald on her belly.  She’s very pale and has been over-heated, so the sweater should help her adjust more gradually.  She seemed quite happy as I got her dressed, but a little less tolerant a few minutes later.  I’ll try it again when we put them outside, she’ll need it then and might be a bit more grateful!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAEveryone in our house is getting new things this week.  Mr Saz and I treated ourselves to a fancy new mattress and bedding and it is lovely.  And so last night after the men were relaxing after getting the mattress upstairs, I sat down at my sewing machine and bound a little quilt for Penny that I pieced and quilted a while ago.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is made from leftovers of a large quilt I’m making for the humans and as you can see above, is nothing really to be proud of!  But the top is a lovely soft cotton flannel, and Penny seems very attached to it already…

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