Whimsical and Homespun Art Creations with a Little Rural Living Thrown In

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Twin Lambs from Ariel

Although I have never been fond of the damp chilly winds of Springtime in Northern Illinois, the rural scenery is amazing-- filled with fields dotted here and there with calves and lambs.  Every once in a while, I have spied a little newbie only a few minutes old.  *sigh*
Farmerboy's sheep Ariel gave birth two weeks ago.  She had twin lambs-- a  boy and a girl! :)  Unfortunately, the little girl ran into some problems immediately after birth.  As luck would have it, Farmergirl was there to give her some help.  Ariel only cleaned her half way and was determined to get her out of the pen and in with her father, which would NOT be a good situation.  Farmergirl finished cleaning her up and got her to nurse off of Ariel, but the little lamb had some major issues with her hind legs, and her Mom did not really want her around.  So, a bottle of colostrum milk (very important for a lambs immune system) was retrieved from Ariel, and the little one was taken home for the night.       
Ariel's little girl is named Alice.  She was returned to Mom, after a long night of special care.  So far, everything is going fine.  Alice is learning to work with the problems in her legs with extra help from Farmergirl's Grandpa who is always getting her up and moving during the day.  She had her first taste of the outdoors this weekend, and she would run a little ways then lock up and flop over exhausted.  :)  She is making great strides towards a healthy normal life.  She is a beautiful brown color and as you can tell by this photo with Farmergirl... A little love can go a long way. :)

Not forgetting the new man in the pen... Here is Ace.  I know, he looks a little tired from just entering this big world and greets you all with an enormous yawn!  If you look on top of his head, the funny little spot to the side is one of his horns.  He has such tiny little brown curls like his sister and was blessed to be born perfectly healthy.

Spring lambing season has come to a close for Lego and Ariel.  It wouldn't be right to forget to give a little recognition to our Papa in the group, Brick.  I am amazed, after looking at old photos, to see how much his horns have grown.  He has turned into a handsome little ram.  :)

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Sleeping Bunnies WIP ~ Embroidery Floss Dispenser Tip

I had a relaxing evening last night watching the Pink Panther on STARZ with my son and working on my Janlynn quilt "Sleeping Bunnies".  This quilt got put on the back burner for a while, because I was having difficulty deciding the color of the bowed border.  Here is the progress to date...
Since going out on a limb and veering away from assigned pattern colors, there is a lot of relief in writing that I am very happy with how the colors are intermingling on this quilt.  The darker border makes a nice frame and adds some dimension to the piece.  Hopefully, this quilt will see a finish by the end of May.  :) 

While working on my various baby quilts, I have tried different ways of storing and dispensing floss.  (My storage bins can be viewed here.)  But while working on my projects over the years, I was not happy with the methods that I was using for keeping the floss handy.  The individual baggies worked great for organizing the amounts of skeins needed, but my problems began once the thread was being dispensed.  On lazy days, I wrapped the thread back around the skeins and used a baggie for the odd divided strands.  On days that I was more organized, I tried the small cardboard dividers.  If my work consisted of counted cross stitch, I might have been more satisfied with the cardboard dividers and the cases that could be purchased, but they seemed too small and were just not working out for me...

While catching up on blog reading, I caught one of Lisa's beautiful pictures at her blog Lil' Fish Studios.  She was doing some embroidery on one of her fantastic felted stones and sitting next to her project was an assortment of floss wrapped around clothespins.  It was absolutely homespun dispensing and right up my alley! :)  Maybe this idea was not new, but it certainly was to me.  So I headed out to the store and purchased a few packages, because let's face it... clothespins are cheap and have a 101 uses! ;)

I am happy to report that the clothespins are working out great.  Size wise, they are easy for me to grab and not loose in the couch cushions, and I can still wrap the cut threads onto the pins and clamp them securely into place.  As with everything in life... this method was just suited for me, and I am glad that I stumbled upon it.  Plus... the clothespins look cool! ;)

The handles on the pins are perfect for labeling the floss number with a fine sharpie marker. :)

With the day off from work today, my "Sister's Choice Quilt" will be getting a border to finish it into a flimsy ***Yay!!***,  a few butterflies will get added to my baby quilt at lunch time, and then I have a date with a graphite drawing that has been waiting patiently in my studio... A perfect plan to settle down to on a rainy day. :) 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Sampling TLC's DC Cupcakes :)

I just love surprises left at my doorstep... Especially if they are edible! ;)  Here are some photos of a sweet gift  from Georgetown Cupcakes that was sent to my family from my younger sister's family.  **Note**  In case the name sounds familiar, Georgetown Cupcake, owned and operated by sisters Katherine Kallinis Berman and Sophie Kallinis LaMontagne, was catapulted into cupcake stardom with the show DC Cupcakes on the TLC network.

I spotted the pink box outside my front door immediately while turning into my driveway.  It was quite the contrast to our normal brown box deliveries!    

The inside box was covered in special wrapping along with a cooling pack to keep the cupcakes frozen for their journey.  Once that was removed, there was another pink box tied with a black ribbon that was emblazoned with the Georgetown Cupcake brand.

Look at this! :)  It was beautiful and fascinating all at the same time.  All of these wonderful cupcakes traveled to my home and arrived in pristine condition.  They began their trip frozen and had a stick placed centrally in each one to keep them from moving in transit.  I kept the packaging closed for a few hours so that the cupcakes could adjust to room temperature.

What an assortment!  It didn't take my hubby long before he grabbed up a chocolate cupcake.  For me it was a little harder of a choice. My sister had sent such a wide range of flavors... Hmmmmm.  But then, I caved in and went for the maple. :)

This was not only a thoughtful gift but a fun one also.  It made the week a special one and  brought smiles to the faces of everyone in our household.  Plus... They were DELICIOUS!  :)

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Little Lambs

I held off posting for awhile thinking that these little bundles of joy were going to arrive in time for Easter.  They ended up being 7 days late.  Of course, they waited until I started a 44 hour week at work to make their appearance!  Anyways... Farmerboy called me at 9:10 pm  on April 7th to let me know that his ewe Lego had given birth to twin girls.  Thankfully, there were no complications
Lego is such a kind and gentle soul and a wonderful Mom. :) 

Let Farmerboy proudly introduce you to Leah... a jet black little sweetie

 and her sister Lucy... She is sporting white on her inner ears and muzzle.

Leah is a little escape artist already... extremely curious.  The pen had to be lamb proofed for fear she would sneak in with her father who lives to head butt everything.  Her favorite hangout is the grain bin.  Of course, Lucy is never far from her sister.  They are both getting plenty of attention from their Mom and their caretakers!

Farmerboy is guessing that they will mellow into a grey color as they age.  We are still awaiting Ariel's baby or babies.  I pray that everything goes as smooth as these little one's arrivals. :)