Friday, June 15, 2012

garden bits and projects

I got the first dried Bosnian beans today from those I had put on strings two weeks ago. It is a lovely variety that I do want to help preserve! The Provider green beans from last years seeds are starting to put on beans and are producing well. There was a pumpkin the other day and a tiny blue Hubbard that said it was finished and wasn't getting any bigger. The lima beans are beginning to put on pods and there is a tomato or two that is ripe nearly every day - and a few that are working on pinking up. There are eggplants and zucchini and a single cucumber. One ear on the field corn looks ready and all of the rest are still very tiny... end of the row and pollination etc.

The grey basketweave scarf/shawl thing I was working on

Esme is actually wearing two dresses - one over the other, because she thinks it is pretty. It is, but I swear it must be hot! She wants to help me cook and sew in the house and pretended the other day that she was going to work and her toys were children who had to stay home and be good and eat their crackers and watch tv and play. She 'likes you go to work Mama' now.. but of course that won't last very long and she is just working things out to see what results she gets.

She calls this orange dress her cook apron - and is happy she can put it on almost all by herself. She wants me to wear my 'work cook dress' as well and we can cook food downstairs. She helped me make garlic bread last night. I got the garlic down, melted the butter, got the pan and aluminum foil and asked her to spread out the bread, spoon on the butter and then sprinkle the garlic over it. She did all of that very happily! Afterwards, and while I stressed we keep an eye on the garlic bread to see when it browned, she helped spoon ravioli and carrots from cans onto our plates and dump the excess into tupperware containers. She thought she was so big and helping to make dinner - and she ate every last little bit on her plate!

I also got her to eat a piece of cucumber today - not that she liked it. I told her she couldn't be good at cooking unless she knew what things tasted like. She agreed to that idea. Her favorite pretends lately are 'super mailman' who rides a bicycle and throws mail, and a cross between chef and magician. She takes her big rubber frog out in the sand with this tiny 'dissection' looking kit of a playdough plastic knife and a tray and a pot and I ask her what in the world she is pretending - she says she is making pie for the frog to eat and she needs the plastic knife to cut the pie for the frog and the pot has soup and the tray is his plate. Never assume with this child - as Daddy said as well today, you ask her she will have an explanation, but it will rarely be anything we could have thought up ourselves!

Our science experiment today is what will and will not be floated by a helium balloon. I am asking her to 'estimate' if something is heavy or light. If it will go down (be heavy) or go up (be light). She brings me two things and I ask her which one is the heavier one and she has to estimate or guess. She really likes the game and I can see her gears turning!

She is also getting VERY tall. There is this top shelf we store games on so she does not get into them all of the time without asking. She can now get her black chair and reach all the way up there to put something back after she is done with it. She can't quite reach all the way up to get something off yet - but she is so close. It is only a short matter of time!

I saw this pattern in a Japanese craft book and spent about an hour trying to figure out what the English name for it was. I really wanted to try it. For the record the quilt pattern is called 'apple cores' and after using that as a search term I found a template very quickly. I made two patches and put them together and decided this would be a new scrap project for me - build up some little scraps and then take a day to make a few patches and sew them on. It is so pretty and looks a lot more 'complex' than it was, which is always nice! I saw a beautiful Grandmother's Garden (hexagons) pattern again as well... but one thing at a time. Wait, was that ME that said that? I am never one thing at a time. I am, however, often limiting myself to one thing of a TYPE at a time... sometimes not even that.

I have a cotton tank top I was working on knitting last month that may be done soon. And I have that knit garter stitch blanket that is about 3/4 done now (after nearly two years). I have laundry going and soup cooking and an eggplant to decide how to prepare. I cut up and froze everything from the garden that did not go in the soup and prepared all of the dried herbs from a few days ago to put in containers. It has been a nice Friday off :)

Things on my Mind
With vacations (two shorter ones than last year - broken up this year because of scheduling conflicts) coming up I need to keep my eyes on what I want to accomplish.

a.) zippered lunchbox. This is a big project, and one I need to do. My lunchbox is coming to the end of its long useful life. Hey, it's me. Yes I could go buy one. But, I know I don't have to.

b.) harlequin or chevron type blanket - this is just an idea to add to the list, not something to 'get done.' I'm thinking larger squares or triangles at least 4 to 6 inches across.

c.) brush case - Mark says this is a little more 'Martha Stewart' than usual for me - but I am actually basing the idea for this off of what I saw in nomadic household items during my research into weaving. And also, they keep showing up in the Japanese books I am looking through. I'm thinking a sewn one, with a zipper or a button. It keeps the brush (and the hair oil it collects) from gathering dust from the air around it. In our case the brushes are sometimes also hard to locate again after we have used them - and a simple box sometimes collects lots of other things as well.

d.) skirt for me - I have several large swathes of fabric I have been reserving to make some clothes for myself. I have gotten so much use out of the yellow one from last year that it would be worth time to make another one.

e.) Other clothes for Esme, of course... need to finish sewing the sheep shirt I cut out and never sewed while she still has a chance of fitting into it!

f.) sashiko

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