Burn the Log, O Fire!

Hope everyone had a Merry Yule and Happy Christmas!!

My short-term plan is to be getting back to fiber soon.
As soon as I get back home, around the 8th.
I want to focus on natural dyes and battsss.
I have some theories as to why I had to stop stitching, for a time anyway,
and one is summed up in these lyrics to a Papa Roach song:

I tear my heart open
I sew myself shut
My weakness is
That I care too much

and the Scars remind us
that the past is Real
I tear my heart open
just to feel.

And btw, check out this interview with me on Spin Artiste!


Spoke too soon...

well, carp. the house thing isn't going to work out.  so we're back to where we were, which is staying put here in our farmhouse. this is a pic i took a couple of yules ago. the ladder's been moved, i'm pretty sure, but it looks much the same and i've always liked this pic.

yesterday i was completely heartbroken, but i talked myself into loving our old house again.  poor ole farmhouse has been good to us and just needs some tlc.  and in many ways, it's better because it's ours, we know it, and we've put so much into it already.  
maybe pinteresting farmhouses instead of cottages would help.  
maybe it just needs a name. 
and then there's the woods.  i would so miss the woods.

and over the last four years, the sheep and donkeys have pretty much made themselves a pasture.  not 13 acres of pasture, but enough.  and we could always fence more woods.  still less expensive than putting in new fencing at the other place.  

i'm thinking of passing on the stove too, even though i wanted it almost as much as that other house!  but one thing i forgot is that they need to be set on stone.  and i'm not sure i'm up for re-doing the kitchen floor here right now, even though it needs to be done eventually.  laika (the wolf-dog) has torn up the linoleum.  she is such a destroyer.  but she's finally a year old, so we are hoping that she learns some manners soon.  
so we could tile the floor, which would be nicer anyway, and then get the stove.  there's already a hole in the wall for it and everything (and this one isn't from laika!)
hmm, thinking..

thanks everyone for the lovely congrats on the move.  i'm just going to backdate them about four years and pretend we are re-moving in here.



So no pics today, but an update!  
The house has a termite bond on it, so the little buggers have already been zapped.  And tomorrow we're meeting to find the corner stakes to try to make sure where the property lines are. A survey you say?  No way, that would be too easy (and expensive).  
But one little problem is that at the back of the Violet Loop 
(a dirt road that encircles this lovely little 13 acres!)
there are some... trailers that look like they have been burnt.
As well as some pickup trucks.  Sofas and stuff.
And a house of sorts, a real charmer, it even has window panes out. 
I peeked a little in a window and do see some evidence of life 
if you count whiskey bottles (which I do).
And, there are four little dogs rush out whenever we've gone back there!
But never any lights or people...
And some of it looks to be encroaching from what we can see of the property lines on the plat.  
So I'm really looking forward to having this conversation with our new neighbor! :/  

And in the midst of all this, my facebook friends like Dani and Kristine have helped me come up with the current name of choice for this place:  Violetcroft.  
It might sound a little hoity-toity amidst the trailers, but a croft was meant to be humble.  
That's the current fave anyway, there are many others!

And tonight, we are going to look at a wood cookstove that I found on Craigslist!
Did I mention that there were no appliances in this house?
Yes, everyone thinks I am insane.
But it looks just like this one.
It's also the one that was in the movie Babe in farmer Hoggett's kitchen, or so the seller says.
I should probably pass, but I just know that then all I will see are more expensive ones in worse condition.  That's what always happens.  This is my dream stove.
And this is *so* much less than the modern equivalent of my dream stove, the Aga.   
My only hesitation is what to do with this kind of stove in the summer.  
I guess then homesteaders have an outdoor kitchen.  
But I think that except for those few brutal summer months, 
the slowness of the wood would really help me find my cooking groove.

And it looks like we will close on the 21st!!  How totally fitting.
Just in time for the rebirth of the Sun!


we're off!

so it looks like we're moving!
and that has given me reason to blog again.
we're getting a real fixer.  
this'll be my third grownup house and my third fixer, maybe the worst yet!
which makes it the best to my mind.  
i am so excited about making it amazing!

i have always wanted a Tudor cottage
when I was little we would drive around and I would say
"Oh mum, I want *that* one!  someday"  
and this has all the hallmarks:  
she's asymmetrical, cross-gabled, with prominent chimney and rounded door.
and even has a window with diamond-shaped panes!
of course need must get rid of those awful awnings and cutify
with paint and lots of flowers.
the outside doesn't look so bad, but the inside is *rough*
oh, i can't wait.

there are so many pretty trees 
like this luscious sycamore in the front yard.
i'm a little stressed that i haven't found an oak tree there yet.
"dru" means "oak" in old gaelic.
and i've always had them around, they are my protectors.
but there are 13 acres.  
most of them are pasture, which will make our critters very happy.
and rocky loves it, which makes it so special!
we've never chosen a house together.  
and there are lots of woods around.

another signal that this was right:  this is in the hoos.  
which is a variation on another one i have!  

there are so many projects that need to be done.
roof repair (& remove ancient antenna)
scrape and paint windows
replace missing masonry tiles
termite inspection/repair
take down hideous awnings and fix any damage
take off the metal panels blocking the basement windows
(bad for moisture, i'm told)
chimney sweep
unbrick fireplace and get it working
reinforce barn so it doesn't fall down
clean out and haul away junk in barn and workshop (oh my)
(but there looks to be some good stuff in there too)
fencing, fencing, fencing
pull up awful old linoleum (hardwoods underneath!)
figure out what hardwoods need:  sanding, patching etc.
demolish ceiling in one room and replace (water damage)
scrape off popcorn on other ceilings
take down and replace tile in bathrooms (see about rot or water damage)
new shower heads and faucets
scrounge craigslist etc for appliances 
(mum is furiously trying to talk me out of a wood-burning cookstove)
cover up insulation on patio
install radio fence for doglets

i'm sure there's more but that's my running list!  
i'm leaving off the decorative stuff for now, although that will be the most fun.
so i'm thinking i'll document this massive labor of love here,
along with my journey toward homesteading.
hope you'll visit!