Monday, January 26, 2009

Let it Snow.......

Dearest Readers,


What a glorious time of year.....Winter!  Here in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains we welcome Winter with wide open arms.  It is a time for recreation....skiing, skating, sledding and snowball fights!


In honor of this beloved season, Honey Hill Farm celebrates the Season of Snow......


Icicles, skates, scarves, mittens, sleds and snowmen are welcome to decorate our front porch.


The farm rests, cozily tucked under a layer of snow.  Soon enough Spring will be here and the busy season will be upon us. But for now, it is time to sip hot chocolate in front of a warm fire after a day spent laughing and frolicking in the fresh white snowflakes!



I hope you can feel the frosty air even from far away!


Yours so kindredly,


Shan

Friday, January 23, 2009

Puttering About.....

Dearest Readers,


Just let me thank you for the kind and generous comments on my "Blog Birthday" post.  You are indeed the most delightful kindred spirits to be found. 


Today was a gentle day spent puttering....I love to putter, to put a little effort into a few small activities that when all added together make for a complete and utterly lovely day.



I spent time in the warmth of my sweet little kitchen making Green Chile Stew and brownies.  I don't have a recipe for the Stew so next time I make it I will have to "watch" myself and jot down the measurements so that I can share it with you.  It is a genuine Southwestern treat, perfect for a cloudy, cold day.


In between my bits and bobs in the kitchen, I looked over some of my Valentine projects and did a little embroidery on my tea towels. Of course, tending to both wood-stoves is always necessary. 



Dearest had a meeting in town today, but before he left I made sure he had a large glass of milk and a warm brownie......he was quite happy, you can be sure. Our oldest Darling Boy is in residence today and has just come upstairs for his brownie and milk....spoiled you say, I think not!  LOL


I also went through my blog photos and dug up this picture of the little treasure I made for my Darling Girl at Christmas.  I didn't post a picture during the holidays for fear of spoiling the surprise.


She was quite delighted and has worn it on several occasions. (It is velvet brocade and has Victorian trim...I didn't take a very good photo and you can't see the trim on the bottom of the cape...so sorry.)


I have just looked out my window and my but it is snowing!  Great big flakes coming down in large numbers!  How this climate does change...yesterday it was 70 degrees outside!  What a cozy evening we have in store for us here on the homestead. Hmmmm...a warm meal, slippers on our feet, a fire in the woodstove and an old movie...pure delight.


Well, I have a few things to do before I serve supper, so I will leave you for now, but I am looking forward to our next visit.


Yours kindredly,


Shan


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Abundant Treasures......


Dearest Readers,


I have been thinking of my dear Grandparents these last few days, they were happy people, content with what they had and glad to share it with all of those around them......


Grandpa Matt was a coal miner and Grandma Fern was a hairdresser.  They raised 5 daughters during the Great Depression and the Dirty 30's dust bowl here in the southwest.  Grandma had a little beauty shop in the front bedroom of their house and let ladies barter for their waves, perms and haircuts.  Grandpa worked hard at mining and when there was no work at the mine he would work odd jobs. 


I loved to hear their stories and always admired them for their grit, resourcefulness and courage as they struggled during those dark years.  Grandma remembered that she did not even have a nickel for the picture show when it came to town! 


They are gone now, but they still influence all the generations of my family.  We were taught thankfulness, kindness, humor and faith.  There was always room at their home for a meal, a bed or a gentle, loving afternoon spent picking strawberries or making a pie.  Family was their treasure and they were abundantly blessed...there are quite a few of us!


Grandma's greatest love was being at home, tending to everyday things....baking, laundry, gardening and feeding anyone and everyone who came to visit. Grandpa loved to visit and was wonderful to sit next to, leaning in so you could hear his deep voice coming out of his chest.  They loved to play cards and games and let us girls take out every (and I mean every) pot and pan onto the covered porch to play "Little House on the Prairie". Gran actually had to come outside and "borrow" a pan to make supper! They were the picture of love that's for sure.


I hope to pass these lessons on to my children and all the generations to come.  I want them to love the sunshine and the rain.  To look with wonder on a garden that is growing right before their eyes.  To be happy right where they are....because He put them there. To smile at each person, everyday. To LOVE the laughter of a child, any child. To gently live on this earth and treat everyone with kindness and love. 


I think that my Grandparents would like that.....yes, I think they would.


Yours so kindredly,


Shan


This absolutely precious photo shows my Gran in her beauty shop "whites" and my Grandpa in his coal miner's "blacks"!



Friday, January 16, 2009

A Bloggy Birthday.....

Dearest Readers,


I could not believe it when I realized that my dear little blog, Honey Hill Farm, toddled forward to celebrate it's first "Birthday"!  What a marvelous adventure this has been for me.  I have been delighted to make new friends who are truly kindred spirits.  You, Dear Readers, have been such a blessing to me each time you leave your heartfelt comments.  I am uplifted and inspired when I visit your lovely blogs as you share your life, your homes and your faith.


May we celebrate many more years together....


Yours kindredly,


Shan

Thursday, January 15, 2009

A Loving Spoonful.....


Dearest Readers,


Dearest has succumbed to a dreadful cold and I have been administering lots of love and affection along with pots of tea and hot soup.  He doesn't take ill very often and finds it difficult to "be still" and just rest.


Time has passed so quickly that I was unaware of my absence from your delightful presence here in our little blog world.  I have been gently organizing and putting things in order here in our cozy nest.


Before Dearest became ill, he and I worked downstairs in our basement fruit cellar.  We had a shelving unit, for the stock pantry, that was made out of plastic and had begun to sag most dreadfully in the middle.  Not wanting to spend a red cent to replace it, Dearest constructed a very sturdy shelving unit using lumber he purchased at auction this summer.  He also hung two very large hooks so that I could hang up my various wreaths for the holidays. This hand dug cellar is such a useful little space!


The "boys" are now at school and excited about their classes.  Books have been purchased and pencils sharpened...they are ready for the semester.  Today they met on campus and had lunch together. I love that all three of my children are very close...they really are best of friends.  I used to tell them that they best get along with one another....there weren't any other children for a few miles!


Dearest begins his class next week, so I hope he is feeling better by then.  Hmmmm....I think some hot Italian Meatball Sandwiches might just lift his spirits......


Yours so very kindredly,


Shan


 


 

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Warm and Cozy....

Dearest Readers,


Brrrr.....It is most assuredly winter here at Honey Hill Farm.  This morning Dearest already had both stoves blazing before he left for hockey out on the pond.  He and his brothers along with some dear friends played until noon.  He was awfully glad to come inside to a pot of freshly brewed coffee and the warmth of the parlour.



I stayed inside and began working on my HomeKeeping Binder for the new year.  It certainly helps me stay organized and on top of things throughout the upcoming months.  I wanted to personalize some blank templates that I came across here.  Would home management topics interest you, Dear Reader?  I will share my binder and recipe binder in future posts.



I have a little laundry in the washer and plan to sit down in the back parlour, put my feet up and read my old copies of Victorian Homes, Victoria, and Victorian Lifestyles.  Some of these "friends" are almost 15 years old. but I drag them out every once in awhile and soak up inspiration.


Not a very busy day to be sure, but sometimes a little quiet time is just the right thing.


UPDATE:  I have recently added my e-mail address to the right sidebar for those of you who cannot leave a comment.  I would love to hear from you!


Yours kindredly,


Shan



Friday, January 2, 2009

Settling In......

Dearest Readers,


With a new year upon me it is now time to settle in....a time to turn inward and set things back to that gentle pace and rhythm..... 


First, I need to take down and carefully re-pack all of the beloved Christmas decorations.  Of course, a thorough cleaning is needed, as dusting amongst the pine garlands doesn't work very well and there are quite a few dust bunnies to be shepherded to the dust bin.


Second, my pantry, fruit cellar pantry and freezer are in need of cleaning, straightening and most importantly, food.  I must get back to a wholesome meal plan...we have eaten far too much from the groaning board!  So the coming weeks will have me baking, freezing and cooking to my heart's delight.



Finally, I plan to organize all my drawers, cupboards and files. Not all at once, of course, but little by little, until the whole house feels tidy and calm. 


Come January, all three of my boys will be taking classes at college.  Our two Darling Boys at the University and Dearest at our local community college.  This means that I will have quite a bit of "alone" time and I plan to spend it in my craft/sewing room.  It will be a pleasure to finally finish some long neglected projects.


Speaking of crafts......here is one I would like to share......


Don't throw away those old calendars or cards, or even scraps of wrapping paper you have received throughout the year....make a scrap picture!  Oh, this is so much fun and your littles can share in this delightfully old-fashioned pursuit.  Find yourself a frame, cut out a large picture and then fill in around it with small cut-outs, layering as you go. It is a nice slow project, perfect for setting up in front of a lazy fire on a cold evening.


While I dearly love the holidays, I find it very rewarding to return my dear Honey Hill back to a normal routine.  Gentle Homekeeping suits me best!!


I hope you are finding yourself happily returning to "normal" after this long season of festivities Dear Reader.


Yours kindredly as always,


Shan