Saturday morning started with ballet class.  she danced, I knitted and drank tea while listening to the prancing and dancing of little ones.
afterwards, childcare swapping finally initiated with dear friends.  Claire and her buddy spent the morning playing, arguing, watching a yoga dvd, and eating lots of popcorn.  it felt so good to help a good friend get some time to herself, and since the girls were entertaining each other I got to spend most of the morning in the kitchen making bread and granola.  and getting excited about new labels for my dry goods jars. win-win-win.  soon she (said grown-up friend) will reciprocate so that Mike and I can go out on a date for the second time in a year and a half.  (that would be considered 'on a roll', for us)

I also got to sneak in some time working on her own little cowl.  a bit different from mama's, but with the same red yarn mixed in.  made me think about how the last time I knit something for her it was her legwarmers for her first birthday (I am not one of those very knitterly mamas with something always on the needles.  obviously).  and here we are at number four just around the bend.  I could probably up that a bit.  she now uses those legwarmers as arm warmers (see above photo).  sometimes they warm her legs, but only from her ankles to the middle of her shins.

also, her little dolly (my first attempt at such craftiness) got herself a lil' face.  and so now I can't store the needle in her head like I was.  because of the face and all.

after a rainy and thundery start, the day turned to warm and sunny.  I even saw some activity by the hives.  mostly by one hive, which appears to be just fine.  the other.... well, fingers crossed.  those several days in row of zero (or so) degree weather had me worrying just a bit about my tiny insect friends.

and then today~
it was a warm(ish) morning
hot tea, granola.

windows open.

papa off to kayak with friends so it was
Claire and I

we picked a purple carrot
I was surprised by how much had been going on under the surface

we had a toes-in-the-sun picnic

I started a new book, knit a few rows,

spied on the bees again and was elated to see activity at the entrances of both hives.

I had to crack open the last bottle of maple syrup for the granola.  but it's a big one- a half gallon.  still, it's good timing, seeing as how we'll likely tap the trees again within the next week (things happen a bit earlier down here than they do in New England when it comes to sugaring season).  and so... we made it!  we successfully produced enough syrup last year to share a little with the people whose trees we tapped, and to get us through an entire year of syrup!  this afternoon Claire and I went walking around the neighborhood and got permission to tap 5 more trees (which will bring our total to 9, just over double what we did last year).  with an additional wood stove at the ready and a little boiling-off lean-to being constructed by papa, I think it will be a good second year at this sugaring gig.  we may even make enough to sell a little bit in an attempt to recoup some of the costs involved.  or not.  either way, it's loads of fun.  two weeks (or so) of continuously feeding the fires and boiling, boiling, boiling the sap away.  not to mention the warm drinks of milk and hot on-its-way-to-syrup sap.  (mmm mmm good!)

this weekend I also did a little planning for a fun blogger 'event' I will be hosting in a couple weeks.  I'll wait a few days before sharing much more, but if you are the crafty/bake-y/make-y type (in just about any capacity), stay tuned for something fun.  because you will be invited.

*playing along with amanda at habit of being


  1. Bare feet?! What happened to the snow? Glad you got some childcare sorted finally. It's hard when you don't have family close by (like us). My attempts to swap with friends failed as everyone I know either has a nursing babe or family to rely on. I found a babysitter before xmas but she seems really busy now....it is so important to get some time to yourself/as a couple.
    This maple syrup tapping thing fascinates me...never ever heard of it apart from on here.

    1. I know! a week prior it was 0 degrees with a windchill of -15, and yesterday we were sitting on a blanket with bare feet in 54 degrees! crazy, crazy. I am SO excited about the childcare thing- we just never really even put much thought into before. Mike works 24 hour shifts but is home 3-4 days a week, so I just did things I needed to when he was home. of course, that left no time for the two of us, which this should hopefully remedy :)

      ah, right- not many sugar maples over there, are there? well, it's quite simple, really. I'll post pictures again of our tapping this year when we do it- probably by this time next week!

  2. OK I'm totally jealous. My feet won't see the sunshine for at least 4 months! I miss the sounds of little feet dancing. I got a lot of knitting done in those days! Sounds like you had a great weekend.

    1. this was a nice treat after the zero/minus temperatures of last week. we do expect to have winter around here, but that was a bit much! a mid fifties day was a surprise, but I decided to just go with it! it was a pretty nice weekend, yes.

  3. oh my goodness, that jar of syrup is making my mouth water! it's so great the way you are making use of the trees in your neighborhood! the little doll is just adorable... is she for her birthday? and speaking of her birthday... it hit me just the other day how you made a comment about her birthday being the 30th and my little ollie is also born on january 30th! she will be 3... crazy huh?

    1. oh it's SO good! we made just shy of 3 gallons last year, hoping to double that this year... we'll see! I'm glad so many of our neighbors are open to it. thank you! yes, it is. was going to be for Christmas, but mama was a bit slow. oh that's sweet- little birthday buddies just a year apart :)

  4. oh to be sitting in the sun!! It's still a bit chilly here but Saturday was an outing without a winter coat or woolens! Love that you packed your weekend with ultra goodness :)

    1. it was quite a treat. back to high 30s/low 40s during the day and 20s at night starting wednesday..... but that is perfect sugaring season weather, so I'm happy for that, too!

  5. Love seeing those bees!!
    Lovely photos as always, mama.

    1. oh it made me SO happy to see some action out there. I was trying to surrender to the possibility that they may not have weathered the 'polar vortex' all that well, but I wasn't doing so well with that ;)

      thank you~ LOVE the updated blog, by the way


thanks for taking the time to read and comment~