Archive for August, 2011

the real deal





Just a little show and tell here. My home grown freak of nature….  This is, by far, the most peculiar looking tomato I have ever seen. I remember seeing this tomato start to form, as a wee green thing, and it seemed peculiar even then. Having been buried in a jungle of leaves, it’s donut-like form came as a surprise when it finally came time to pick. A hole runs right through the center. How did it do that?


(In spite of it’s unusual looks, it was seriously delicious.)



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island life



We found a tiny island in the lake, with a sandy beach just big enough for 2, a tiny trail to explore and huckleberries ripe for the picking. Of course, the next most irresistible idea is to pack a bag and have a little camp out. Ooooh summer, stick around just as long as you can, okay?

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The day began with a mental list of ambitious goals, but sometimes the body says otherwise.

I hope you’re off to a great new week everyone.

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I love going out to the garden just before dinner to pick our veggies. Right now we are having an explosion of snow peas and cucumbers, and there are always lots of greens. On this evening I had some company nearby. This doe has a wounded foot and walks with a heavy limp – the left front leg you can see is lifted off the ground. Since a couple weeks ago, she and her baby often hang around our yard much of the day and night. The other day, with all my porch plants moved away from the house for painting, we had the biggest “grazing” event ever. It was a pretty sorry sight, with some plants completely gone and most others left bare like sticks. Feeling pretty sure it was her, it was hard to even feel upset about it though. She doesn’t get around too well, and seems to eat things the others don’t (like even some of these dried up kale stalks I am getting ready to harvest seeds from!). We treat our yard as a sanctuary for the animals, and this summer has sure shown us some amazing things, and some of the harsh realities of life in the wild.

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I have been a bit preoccupied this past week or so, hence the silence around here and the lateness of my shop update.

We’ve been having some work done on our house, and have been doing our own work on the house, and the days have been pretty full. This week we are trying to finalize our decision on exterior paint colors, and I must say, this has been one of the toughest decisions I have had to make in a long time. How could it be so tricky?? Just when I think we have it, it seems all wrong and we are back to the drawing board. The way it looks on the chip never quite converts to reality. I have painted and repainted a little section of siding quite a few times now. Gosh, thank you Ron, for quart-sized testers! Our local paint guy actually gave me 2 free quarts today. I think he sympathized with my predicament. And then he told me a story about a lady that bought FIFTY testers before she finally settled on a color. Let’s hope I don’t repeat anything like that. Looking forward to getting this figured out though – and I think we are getting closer. This house is more than ready for a fresh look.

I have also been soaking up summer as much as I can. It doesn’t last forever and I don’t want to miss any of it. These August days – these are the days we wait all year for.

Thank you for the grand welcome back. The shop sure got busy! It really does feel great to be back to work.

I’ll be back soon. xo

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drying herbs



It’s so rewarding to have enough herbs to harvest, eat, cook, dry, and use whenever we need or want them. And I know that I am not the only one drying herbs this time of year. There is so much abundance of food right now. It’s exciting and it is really testing my proficiency of eating, steeping, drinking and making! I love this time of year so much.

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Monday August 1st

How could it already be August?? I have just re-opened the shop! Feels great to see it full again. Most everything you are used to seeing is now available again, and I should start getting some new bags photographed this week. I’ll add them as I can.

I have a lot of ideas and have been working at kind of a funny, sporadic pace. Sometimes I like to sketch a lot – most every bag begins with a sketch, followed by a pattern created by a series of calculations and dimensions. Other times I have a shape, or concept, or a detail in mind, pick a size that seems appropriate at the time, and then just start cutting and sewing. The latter is usually the most fun for me, and often has the most interesting results because the process ends up being more free; but I have also learned the value of taking the time to fully conceptualize an idea before turning it into a 3 dimensional object. I have changed a lot through the years of teaching myself to sew. So much that there are still a couple running jokes around here about the Abby *then* compared to the Abby *now*. Maybe I will share them sometime… you might get a snicker.

Anyway, it is nearing 2am here, and I need to go to bed. Meant to show you lots of pictures this weekend, of beautiful food from the farmers market, and from our garden, but I’ll save that for another time. Nighty night.


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