Monday, January 10, 2011

Winter Weekend, Thoughts on Homesteading

I went into the weekend wanting to focus on my family, even with a work deadline looming near. The weekend came off pretty well, despite Nathan thwarting my two attempts to sit down at the computer before he woke up in the morning.

So I worked for a few hours on Sunday in place of my original plans to bake whole wheat bread. (Then I really thought about it—I don’t have time to make bread from scratch (who does, anyway?), and I still have an uneaten loaf of store-bought whole wheat bread sitting on the counter. Untouched.) So I guess it worked out okay. More on this later.

We had more snow on Friday and Saturday mornings, so in an effort to not duplicate my last post on our sledding adventures, I’ll share my unrelated thoughts between similar, but unique-to-me, photos.

He: "Why are you looking at my like that?"

Me: "I'm waiting for you to turn your head so I can take a picture of your ski mask."  I knit it for his birthday present a few years ago, not really thinking abou the fact that the man wears GLASSES every waking minute.  I'm such a thoughtful gift knitter.

I finally get to be in some photos!  Sometimes it's like I don't exist, since I'm always the one taking the photos.

After sledding and hot chocolate for the grown-ups, we continued our much-needed family time in the fort my husband made out of a crocheted blanket. Nathan looooooves being in the fort with Daddy. It’s the perfect place to stack blocks, be super smiley and get really staticky hair.

Back on the subject of baking bread. Baking [really, really good] bread from scratch is something I’ve always wanted to do. My husband and I attempted Italian bread three separate times from three different recipes with just okay results. But instead of Italian or whole wheat bread, I really want to make really crusty country bread from a homemade starter (which I also don’t have time every day over the course of three weeks to make).

But it’s about more than just baking my own fresh bread—I want to do things the old-fashioned way for my family. Like homesteading. I want to grow most of my own vegetables and store and can them for winter, instead of growing what I have room or time for and not having time to can or a place to store. I want to knit our sweaters and cold-weather gear from the wool of sheep I tend in the back yard, not yarn I buy from a catalog. I want to pick up my eggs from a coop our backyard, instead of from the egg farm down the road. I like the idea of being resourceful and self-sufficient.  But I don’t have time for these “hobbies,” between work, raising a baby and managing a household. So instead, I resorted to darning socks for the first time.

It wasn’t the most fun thing I’ve ever done, but it quelled my urge to pile more [unnecessary] chores and work on myself when all I really want to do is sit down and knit and drink tea. Plus, it was pretty boring. Maybe someday I’ll have more free time to make homesteading my hobby. Like when I retire.

It was much more exciting to start knitting the little sweaters of Knit Picks’ Snow Day ornament collection. They knit up quick and are super cute. The purple doohicky in my photo below really speeds up the stranded colorwork/intarsia/fairisle—with it, I feel ready to take on the craziest mitten and sock designs from spillyjane!


  1. I know your post is about SO much more... but I love that LL bean snug ride. So cute.

    You have nobel goals...start small and you seem like you can attain them all!

  2. Noble... I am a horrible speller...

  3. Oh, that tree lined laneway is stunning in its winter starkness! And Nathan's rosy cheeked smile is superb. How wonderful to see glimpses of your farm. The silo is massive! I too have high hopes of becoming more of a homesteader, but it really is looking like a retirement dream. Ah well, there are babies to be played with, which takes the sting out of it all, to be sure.

  4. Lovely stuff. I'm almost certain I don't exist, myself. Maybe ten pictures of me in twenty years. The children may complain in the future - but I am fine with it. I want one of those finger tip things.


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