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We have been threatened with snow by Monday morning. We figured if we jumped on the winterizing, it will stay away!

We spent the whole day outside since the weather decided to be sunny and clear. We rerouted electrical cords and hoses for their winter purposes. Eric drained the little hot water heater in the barn. I now have a dry sink until spring.

The stock tanks all have floating heater units in them this season. We finally have a bucket big and tough enough for the bucks water. I have one smart aleck buck that thinks he ought to try chewing on the power supply cord. You have no idea how tempted I was to let him find out why we don’t chew on power cords! My more rational side took in to consideration the effort to replace the gnawed cord, and/or the expense to replace the tank heater if it couldn’t be repaired. This solution seemed more logical.

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A 90 degree PVC elbow with a length of pipe kept teeth from nibbling, and yet will be able to move with the water level.

Here is to hoping the snow is merely a pretty thought instead of a nasty traffic maker!

 

It is nice when people gift you things. In this case, it is fabric. I am always glad to have more fabric, especially if I don’t have to spend a bunch of money to get it!

In this case, a friend of a coworker needed to have some help clearing out their parent’s place. He came across the fabric and yarn stash that was slated for either the Goodwill or the dump. He asked if he could take it home for a friend. Ten totes worth!

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This is what it looked like when we unloaded them into my dining room. Unfortunately, Eric forgot to mention that he thought he smelled cigarette smoke. Now my house has the smell of stale cigarettes in several rooms, as the fabric is steeped in it. My free fabric now has the added cost of laundering before I can use it. That cost is still much less expensive than if I went out and bought all of this.

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After some searching on the internet and several practice runs, I figured that the first wash with the powdered detergent followed by a wash of Dairy Du with 3/4 cup of white vinegar will remove the smoke smell from the cottons. The poly/cotton blends seem to hold the smell no matter what combo I try.

I lost count on the number of loads I have washed, but I’ve been working on it for about three days. I pre-sorted the fabrics into stuff I want. Stuff that will make good pillow cases for our Cyber Elves project and blocks for the Circle of Comfort quilts. And finally materials that will be usable for the After ‘Ours sewing class. There is at least one tote of fabric that will go to the Angel Guild (the community thrift store) as I have no use for it, and certainly no space!

This is where I am so far with several more loads to do.

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My sister will be heading out to choose what yarns she is going to take. With her new loom habit, she is cooking through the yarn in a big way. Thankfully for her, the yarn doesn’t seem to be as smelly.

This is the second quilter’s stash I have inherited. It has really made me think about what I have and what I am doing with it. I have specific projects in mind for fabrics, but may not have stuck instructions with them. I know getting through all of the fabric I have will take a while, but I am being much more diligent about shopping my own supply first. I’m even being very selective with the “free” stuff I’m accepting.

I will say, if you have a unfinished project, you should probably leave a set of instructions, diagram, or at least the name of the thing with it. It will help whomever inherits your stash after you are gone.

Back to folding my “free” laundry!

 

 

I signed up for a secret Santa swap on the Missouri Star Quilt Co forum. There was a clue for each month and you added an item of your choosing to the box each month. We had to wait until October to receive the names of our  swap partners.

It was a lot of fun making and picking up little things that our swap partner might like in her basket of goodies.

Secret Santa Decoy Pkg

This is what my partner sent me! Sue from New York received my name. I thought she might have gotten this box mixed up with the “Office Supply” Santa swap, but it was just some clever decoy packaging!

Hidden Treasures!

In addition to the tasty salsa, thread snips, lovely pincushion & books was all of this loot!

I have some beautiful new fabrics to play with, fresh needles for my machine, authentic Maple Syrup, & a handy new bag made in lovely Christmas fabrics & lined in flannel! I’d really like to crawl in there and take a nap! The box of color catchers is great. I’m sure I’ll be trying them out when I make Em’s red quilt. The chocolates in the adorable fabric box have been well hidden from non-sewing fingers! Those quilt labels are just about the truth on every project!

I also have two rolls of adding machine tape – Sue sent me a link for a project to make with them. Whew! I thought she was going to make me add up my fabric stash! The apple cider soap smells fantastic and is still sitting in my sewing room. I think the thing that tickled me the most was the snail measuring tape. I’m not sure why, but it just makes me smile!

So, THANK YOU Sue! Your box of goodies certainly added to the festivities around here! I’m off to go see if one of those recipes in the baking book might work for tonight’s meal.

Sweetie is both.

This is what she looked like when she was born. Alpine coloring.

Alpine Sweetie

This is what she looked like after she was clipped for the fair. Hmm. That’s more of a Toggenburg color, but not the correct white markings. There is to much white on her belly.

Togg Sweetie

This is just odd. It will be interesting to see which way her hair grows back.

Toggpine Sweetie

OK, the trip was a few weeks ago, but we had fun.

We have some dear friends who live on Whidbey Island. They have been pestering us for a few years to come for a visit. It’s not super easy to just pack up and go for a weekend with the farm and the critters. We found a farm sitter, packed up the car and headed out.

We went up the peninsula towards Port Townsend. The drive was pretty and the incentive of salt bagels with red onion & bacon cream cheese spread at the Metro Bagel shop was enough for Eric to agree to take that ferry crossing. It was a smart move, as we heard that there were long waits at the other ferry crossing.

Ferry Ride

Em loved the ferry. I swear she ran from one end to the other at least six times. On the trip over we saw a couple of seals, but no whales or mermaids.

We brought the tent. It rained. We’ll need to seal the seams in the floor, but it was pretty water tight other wise. The new air mattress held it’s air very well.

Em made fast friends with their daughters, Sarah and Cheryl. Instant big sisters! Whoo Hoo!

Mr. Pat sent her over the moon by letting her ride the horses. Oh, she liked playing on the beach and looking for fish, crabs, cool shells, rocks, and sticks. I think she even won a hand or two of Uno (with a little help). But the super huge smile was brought on by Vern the horse.

Horse Breath?

Mr. Pat & Miss Wendy showed her how to brush Vern to get him ready for his saddle. Vern wanted to snuffle Em. Apparently he doesn’t do this, to anyone, ever. I think it was love at first sight for both of them. We made sure we brought her bicycle helmet, because riding without a brain bucket is just crazy.

Riding Vern

Mr. Pat helped Em up into the saddle and lead Vern around while she held on. Her legs are a bit short for the stirrups yet, but that won’t last too long with as quickly as she is growing.

Buster & his Momma

The cutest member of the farm was Buster, the miniature horse colt. The chickens, goats, and llamas were OK, but we can see those at home.

There were tears when it came time to leave. Em’s slice of heaven trip finally came to an end. She loved having “big sisters” if even for only the weekend. She did stop sobbing with the aid of M&M’s and the return ferry ride.

I don’t think it will be hard to get us to come back for a visit.

Well, I’m having some technical issues with WordPress & my blog. It seems to think the operating system on the iMacasaurus is a bit antiquated. It will still let me post words, but it’s not wanting to upload photos.

I’ll see if I can get some photos to load from Mom’s computer and work them in from there. Until then, I hope you all enjoy Christmas break and have a Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!

Kidding season hit us today. Those crazy white goats, the Saanens kicked it off.

I am pretty sure Yukyra Rose (Rosie) was due at the end of the week. Since the girls are selective readers and the calendar is a bit hard to see from the pen, she went with today.

We are starting off the 2012 kid count with a pair of doelings out of an AI to Tim-Tam Perfect Timing. I think one of the Toggenburgs are up next unless we get an Alpine that jumps the line.

OK, this is going to sound crazy. I don’t care.

I am the new Training Director for the Washington State Animal Response Team and that has been an adventure so far. We held our annual core training at the maintenance center for the City of Redmond. It the garage off of the main room they had all of their snows plows parked in a pretty row. Those things are huge! The maintenance staff have them all washed up nice and shiny.

I want to drive one. Did I mention they are huge and shiny? I did manage to control myself and not go joy-riding about the town of Redmond in their snow plow. Although I wasn’t the only one who had the same idea. There were four of these shiny huge monsters. Drag racing was indeed mentioned, but we thought it might reflect poorly on our organization if the majority of the Board of Directors was arrested for unauthorized use of city equipment.

So, I will add this to the list of things I’d like to do someday. I’ll have to see if our local public works department ever offers a ride-a-long program.

Thanks for the photo Jason!

It is now just after 5AM, and I have finished sewing on the last snap and wrapped the last gift for under our tree. I should go out and feed, but I think the girls might object to me sleeping in their hay feeder. I’m a lot bigger than the Baby Jesus!

May you all have a wonderful day with family and friends!

I LOVE this feature on WordPress! I look forward to it every year! It even follows your mouse around.

I have to get back to the sewing machine or it will be pretty bare under the tree!

Enjoy the electronic snow!