Settling into the long quiet part of Winter.

We are about to settle into what I call “the long quiet part of winter”. This is truly one of my favorite times of year, and is more so now that we have adapted to a “homesteading” style of living. Now it is even more meaningful because of the work that goes in Spring, Summer and Fall to prepare for it. It is a satisfaction that is hard to explain!

We are now on the other side of Christmas but still this side of the New Year. The last few days have been a roller coaster with 3 out of 4 of our parents either ill or walking wounded. Once again we’ve dodged a would be bullet and all parents are in various states of back on their feet. It is a time of constant change and reassessment for all of us. I see how our folks are processing it, how my sister and I are processing it as their children and how my children are processing it as grand children. I’ve even caught a glimpse of my own daughters looking to the future when Hubby and I are up there in years. It is a time of reckoning but also a time of gratefulness and overwhelming blessings.

The holiday was such a nice simple one, with daughter and boyfriend here, and calls to many who are far, we all connected and shared a special day. Our turkey I ordered from a local farm was delicious, and I think I made the best gravy I have ever made! We enjoyed our neighbors potatoes, and his carrots in the stuffing as well. The local cranberries were sweetened with Elder Syrup collected last Spring. It was nice to relax and share a holiday meal. We each opened one gift and then played some games, the evening was just right. The following morning we enjoyed 3 potfuls of coffee, omelets, bacon, toast and cherry jam. Apart from the coffee it was all raised, grown or gathered here. Presents were wonderful, useful items this year. Warm socks, warm clothes for layering, good books, tools, and for me a brand new great big stainless stockpot from all the kids! It was a great holiday.

Many of my gifts this year were homemade. I gifted pickled items, and jams, and bbq sauce, as well as of course granola from my granola business, really granola, and I knitted some gifts this year which was a first for me. My projects changed all the time. Hubby, “what are you making?”, I replied, “a blanket”. Fast forward to a month later and it getting close to Christmas… Hubby, “how is the blanket going?”, I replied, “the blanket is a scarf”. Well, it continued to morph, and somehow my scarf seemed too wide so I got the idea to purchase a pillow form and wrap it in the knitted material I had made. I made one each for the grandchildren. One of the scarves was too long so I overlapped it and it became part of the design.

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They aren’t blankets, or scarves, but the important part is the kids seemed to really like them, and I actually made something! I also am midway through knitting a whole bunch of scarves that may just be January presents for people.

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Additionally I made other fun and easy gifts for the kids in the family, in the form of a Fudge Brownie Mix and Hot Cocoa.

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Uh oh, time out… just got a call from our farmer friend and neighbor who is in need of back up for kitty bandaging. Back soon…

Kitty was a good patient and endured the bandaging with just little fuss, while at the same table my tiniest neighbor worked to complete a tiny 54 piece puzzle I had given them the day before that looks exactly like their new puppy. It’s a busy house with two kids a very senior dog, 2 cats (one wounded) and 1 new puppy. I went home and read my book afterward in my quiet house.

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Stopped to check out the stream on the way home.

Completely odd to not have snow in practically January!

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