we started the year off in the way many southern households (and beyond) did; with black-eyed peas and collards. we threw in some smoked ham from the local butcher shop as well. yum, yum, yum.
there was a birthday party for her little buddy. I made a dress-up crown about an hour before the party, cursing my way through it as I ran out of both bobbin thread and top thread during the process. it's a little wonky, but overall I was pleased with it and I think the recipient was, too. thinking I may work on them and make a bunch to bring to the market in the spring. maybe.
|bunny loves tea|
we top them, of course, with our syrup. we tapped on January 19th the last two years. we'll see if that holds for this year as well pretty soon, although I don't feel like either of us are really ready for the weeks of nonstop work that will bring. not that we have to do it, of course. the grocery store nearby does actually stock maple syrup. but there's just something about all of that collecting and boiling and fire-feeding and fire-tending that nourishes me on a deep, deep level. it's good stuff, sitting out by the wood stoves for hours breathing in that sweet boiling sap smell and doing pretty much nothing else. unless you count pondering life and such.
pictured below are two of the remaining jars (we've got a bit over 1/2 gallon left) we have from last year's sugaring. it is incredible how different they are in color. we always boil it the same and finish it just the same, but there can be such difference in color over the short season. I typically prefer the darker stuff. mmmmm mmmmm.
the lemon and lime trees are in the dining room for the winter and they are covered with the sweetest smelling little flowers. the lemon tree has recently moved on to fruiting, and we're crossing fingers that some of them make it to maturity. how happy that would be. tasty little yellow orbs growing in January.
Mike asked the other day (when they were still only flowering) if they were wind-pollinated. I didn't know the answer, but I can assure you that our dining room is not windy and I've been rubbing my fingers all over those little flowers ever since, trying to do my part to facilitate the pollination as best I can. if that's even necessary, I have no clue. maybe they don't even like it. but it makes me feel like I'm somehow contributing to what is going on.
the beginning of a little painting by my little artist. she told me "mama, it's going to be the best painting ever!"
some fabric I picked up last week because it was on sale. it was on sale because it is Christmas fabric. clearly it just screams Christmas. thinking a first try at a couple skirts for her. any suggestions for beginning sewing projects?