Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Keep Calm Craft On {crafting on}

The act of creating, in one form or another, preserves my sanity amongst the chaos of life. This explains why I always have more than one project going at a time as well as why my housework tends to fall behind. I enjoy seeing what others are working on and keeping calm with, too. What are you creating? What is keeping you going? Snap a picture or two and share it with the rest of us by leaving your link below.

KCCO ?

A few weeks ago I shared this shawl-cowl hybrid pattern on the facebook page asking you which color (from my stash) I should use for it - Red or green. Well, as you can see, I followed the majority vote and went with green. Although I really like the idea of knitting a second one in red, too. We'll see how this one comes out first. I've been working on it a stitch at a time here and there and am about halfway through. But now it's time to start my knitting projects for C's birthday next month so my progress will probably slow down for a bit. I am still deciding what sweater to make her this year and would love your suggestions! In the meantime I have a smaller project I am working on for her that I will share next week.

What are you working on?! Happy creating!

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Sunday, March 1, 2015

New Beginnings

water kefir water kefir grains water kefir/kombucha bottles Beowulf eyes another compost container made by K seeds waiting for spring mourning dove fermented salsa fermented carrots and salsa fermented carrots Spring is coming. I can feel it in my bones. And with its arrival comes new beginnings.

I was recently gifted some water kefir grains. Can you guess where I am going with this? Yeah, a new obsession - fermentation! I felt that our kefir grains needed to have a name since they have to be fed and cared for daily (I tend to name everything - have you met my sewing machine Betty?). I chose the name Beatrice originally but then K said it should be Beatrix like Beatrix Potter so that's what we went with. Beatrix is happily hanging out on our counter keeping us busy with different variations of water kefir drinks. Those blue glass kombucha bottles you see above turn our water kefir into a delicious carbonated beverage on the second ferment. We were doing kombucha originally but we really began to slow down awhile back. I think it was due to the strong flavor, and for me personally, it tasted too much like alcohol - something I've never desired to partake in. Nothing wrong with it,  it's just not for me. Hey, I may be in my thirties now but I've still got the edge ;)

After our first batch of water kefir I wanted to ferment everything. I started searching for simple, beginner recipes online and came up with quite a few. K and I spent all yesterday morning fermenting in our pjs. We made some lacto-fermented carrots as well as some fermented salsa. We can't wait to try them both. I think I might try a batch of fermented bananas for my next adventure in fermenting and then maybe some cauliflower. I kind of just want to spend all day fermenting anything I can get my hands on in the kitchen, is that normal??

Kevin and I got our tax refund last week and we instantly paid off a few of our smaller debts. I can't tell you how amazing that feels. Now we are able to throw more money at the rest of the debt, thanks to no longer having as many bills, and even have a little extra for additional groceries, homeschool supplies or whatever is really needed each month.

Our garden seeds arrived. The children and I sat sorting through them for at least an hour dreaming about digging our hands in the earth and enjoying our bounty on hot summer days. Then I felt the need to put the seed packets in a pretty basket and keep them where we would all see them. A nice little daily reminder of what is to come. But looking at the photograph above of our compost container sitting on the ground of our future garden, I am becoming a bit concerned. We worked that ground last fall, emptying bags upon bags of organic soil and compost into it and now it is right back to looking like desert dirt. I pray that their is still good soil hiding under there.

Speaking of our garden, K made another compost container for us because our first one was already nearly filled to the brim, making it quite tricky for children to roll. She shoveled some of the compost off the top of the full container into the new container to help even it out a bit. We found pumpkin sprouts growing! Well then, I guess if my garden doesn't work out I could always just grow our food in the compost container. Eh, maybe not.
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