Friday, August 31, 2012

Apple Pies

The apple tree in our yard makes the best apple pies, hands down. It's too bad they're too little to fit in my apple peeler machine, because it takes awhile to cut them up. But I just leave the peels right on and it tastes amazing!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Toy Making!

I think I have the toy making bug! I've been having lots of fun designing, experimenting, and making little toys. This is something I liked doing when I was a kid too. I made my own dolls for my dollhouse and I made my own "petshop" animals out of fimo. I think I had more fun making the toys than I did playing with them!
Here is a picture of the felted "rattle" I made a few weeks ago.
The rattle isn't too loud, I need to come up with a way of making a louder rattle sound.
 Today, I tried to make another wood toy out of maple with a pine inlay. It was very difficult to do! Way above my skill level. It turned out ok, but I probably won't be making too many toys with different inlays.
 I plan for the owl to be part of a set of little woodland critters and make a playhouse for them out of a log. I have drawn the designs for the other animals, I just need to make patterns and then cut them out.

 And here are all the little toys I've made so far!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Northern Animals Wooden Toys

My friends gave me some scrap wood a few months ago, knowing that I love to recycle things. This wood was a hardwood (I think Maple) and it gave me the idea to make some wooden toys for Kesten. Hardwood is so strong and dense that it makes a nice durable toy. I wanted to make some Northern animals for Kesten to play with, as he was born in the North. I looked at various animals photographs on google images and then I drew some silhouettes to make patterns. I then traced them onto the hardwood and cut the images out with my scrollsaw. I sanded the toys down and then polished them with some beeswax wood polish that I made.

The animals on the left don't have polish on yet, and the cougar on the right does.
A bear, fox, wolf, beaver, moose, cougar, and frog. (The four Nak'azdli clans are bear, cariboo [I did a moose though, they look similar], beaver and frog.)
 This one is my favourite!
 Woodburned with my logo. HN for Honey Nutbrown's.
 The moose and fox.
 Cougar and wolf.
 Bear, frog, and beaver.
When he's old enough, I'll give them to him to play with. Hopefully he'll like them! I've got lots of wood left over and I'm thinking of some more projects...

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

A Backyard Feast

When we got home from our trip, a bounty was waiting to be harvested in our yard. I cooked up a backyard feast for us!
 Homegrown lettuce, cherry tomatoes, peas, and green onions to make a salad, sauteed veggies (beans, tomatoes, onions, kale, and fresh herbs) and an omelette from our eggs with onions, tomatoes, and kale all eaten with a bouquet of our brown-eyed susans for decoration and with strawberries and blueberries for dessert.
I just love it when we can eat a meal completely grown by us.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

A Trip to Remember

On Saturday we headed out to Burns Lake for my husband's mountain bike race and Kesten's first camping trip. Saturday was a beautifully hot day. About 15 minutes outside of Burns Lake, we stopped our car at a construction site and turned it off. Unfortunately, it wouldn't turn back on again. erk. Well, after a lot of running around and jump starts and calling, some very helpful people at Tirecraft helped us get a new car battery. Whew. That is probably the easiest and cheapest thing to fix that could have gone wrong. So now our car works again, yay! We missed all the downhill races that day, but we had fun setting up camp, swimming in the beautiful lake, and eating dinner in town. We got all cozy and warm and settled down for the night. Kesten did amazing and slept 7 hours in a row! We got more sleep this year than last year at the race (all the campsites were taken and we had to sleep in the parking lot. And then we discovered that our air mattress was missing its plug, so we basically just slept on the hard parking lot ground). In the morning, this little guy's smile greeted us!
 And this was the view from our tent!
 I headed down to the lake in the early morning for a solitary dip. The air was very cool from the drizzling rain and the lake felt so refreshing. I loved watching all the dragonflies dip and skim across the surface of the water and the fish were jumping in the distance.
 The race was 60km long and got off to a good start.
 I took Kesten in the chariot and we waited at various points to cheer on my husband.
 Off he goes!
 Yay Daddy!!!
 Coming across the finish line with a huge smile in second place. We were so proud!
 This mountain biking race/festival is very relaxed. The medals are cookies. Here he is testing the purity of his medal!
 After the race, we packed up camp and headed off to beautiful Smithers in Northern BC. (For those of you Simpsons fans out there, Burns Lake and Smithers are very close together. Coincidence?) We stayed at a very nice motel, The Fireweed Motor Inn. We walked around town and headed off on a couple of hikes. The first was a walk to Twin Falls.
Look at the lush foliage!
 A glimpse of the falls.
 Kesten had so much fun, he was sound asleep!
 Next we took to the road to Driftwood Canyon. What a view!
 The old Driftwood Canyon school.
 There is a provincial park there with a fossil bed. Unfortunately, you are no longer allowed to search for fossils in order to preserve them, but you used to be able to explore and even take some home. There are a few pieces of shale that have fallen down to the guard rail.
And that just about wrapped up the trip. We got home this afternoon and I am looking forward to getting everything unpacked and settling back in to our routine. But it was a wonderful vacation!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Knitting! Woodland Fox Baby

* New! There is now a Norwegian translation, thanks to MereteIsabell from Ravelry. Click here for the link.*

 Time for a new knitting pattern! This one I designed for my little boy's Halloween costume. Since we have a lot of foxes in the Fort, I thought it would be cute if he dressed like one. I only have one size available for the hat, if you require a bigger size, you could always use any other plain hat pattern and then attach the ears on top.
 Woodland Fox Baby Hat

Main colour (mc): Bernat Softee Chunky in Pumpkin
Contrast Colour 1 (cc1): Patons Shetland Chunky in Charcoal
Contrast Colour 2 (cc2): Patons Shetland Chunky in White

5mm double pointed needles (dpn's) and 5mm straight needles

Gauge: 6 stitches and 8 rows = 2inches

circumference 16-18 inches (My baby is 1.5 months and it is very loose on him. He will have lots of room to grow into it)

cc1-contrast colour 1
cc2-contrast colour 2
dpn's-double pointed needles
k2tog-knit two together
k1f&b-knit one front and back
mc-main colour
p2tog-purl two together
ssk-slip slip knit

 Hat Pattern:
With main colour, cast on 48 st on dpn's. Join in the round, being careful not to twist stitches.
row 1: k1, p1 around
Continue for 3 more rows.
Next row: k around and repeat until hat measures 3.5inches from the start.
next row: k6, k2tog, repeat around circle
next row: k around
next row:k5, k2tog, repeat around circle
next row: k around
next row: k4, k2tog, repeat around circle
next row: k around
next row: k3, k2tog, repeat around circle
next row: k2, k2tog, repeat around circle
next row: k1, k2tog, repeat around circle
next row: k2tog, repeat around circle
last row: k2tog, repeat around circle. Cut yarn, weave through remaining 3 stitches, pull tight, bind off and weave in ends.

 Outer Ear Pattern:
With mc on 5mm straight needles cast on 10st, leaving a long tail (for sewing later)
Row 1: k
Row 2: p
Repeat rows 1 and 2, two more times.
Row 7: k1,ssk, k4, k2tog, k1
Row 8: p
Row 9: k1, ssk, k2, k2tog, k1
Row10: p
Row 11: Switch to contrast colour 1 (charcoal), k1, ssk, k2tog, k1
Row 12: p
Row 13: ssk, k2tog
Row 14: p
Row 15: k2tog, bind off, weave in ends, except for long tail at the base (use it to sew ear onto the hat.)

Inner Ear:
With cc2 (white), cast on 8st on 5mm straight needles, leaving a long tail (for sewing later).
Row 1: k
Row 2: p
Repeat the first 2 rows  1 more time.
Row 5: k1, ssk, k2, k2tog, k1
Row 6: p
Row 7: k1, ssk, k2tog, k1
Row 8: p
Row 9: ssk, k2tog
Row 10: p2tog. Bind off, weave in top end and use long tail at the base to sew the inner ear onto the outer ear in the center, being careful to only sew through the top knitted loops on the the outer year so that no white stitches show through on the back of the ear.
Make two ears and then sew to the top of the hat.

Tail Pattern:

With dpn's and mc, cast on 6 st. Join in the round.
k 3 rows.
Next row: k1, k1f&b, around the circle
Next row: k

Repeat these two rows three more times (28st on needles)

Next row: k. Continue to knit in the round until tail measures 7inches from the start.
Switch to cc2 (white). Knit in the round until work measures 9 inches from the start. Stuff with polyester stuffing as you go.
Next row: k1, k2tog, around the circle until there is one stitch in that row, k1.
Next row: k
Repeat these last 2 rows two more times.
Next row: k1, k2tog, around the circle 
Next row: k2tog around circle. Bind off, weave in ends. Sew or pin tail onto pants.

Also check out my pattern for the Woodland Stag/Deer Baby!

And that's it! Please let me know if you find any errors in the pattern and if you have any suggestions. I also love to hear from people who made the pattern and enjoyed it. Please check out my other patterns on my blog and add me on raverly :honeynutbrown.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Salmon and Gardens

Well this picture is a little gruesome, but it is hard to get a picture of the live fish! The salmon have started coming upstream of Nahounli Creek. Salmon are such amazing animals, aren't they? They make such a long journey, then struggle upstream, sometimes even up little waterfalls, to return back to the stream of their birth to lay their eggs (or fertilize them) and then die. Sad and amazing at the same time. There aren't very many salmon in this stream, but I have seen streams and creeks packed with the red and green fish, making their way back to the beginning. Every four years there is a larger than usual run, which is incredible to see. Have you ever seen the salmon run?
 Parts of Nahounli creek are just beautiful, while other parts have lots of litter. Too bad!
 And now back to the garden: My first sunflower is in bloom! I love my sunflowers so much.
 The lettuce and kale are thriving in the border. It is nice to be able to go out and pick it whenever we want a salad. I planted the garden a little too thickly this year. It is an absolute jungle! But I knew I wouldn't get much time to go out and weed it (and I was right!) so it is better to have it thick with plants I want there, rather than with weeds.
 I made another planter out of an olive oil can and some nasturtiums have started blooming in it.
 Such a wild jungle! But I think the chickens have been grateful for all the shade the garden has provided, as it has been such a hot Summer!
 Brown Eyed Susans in the garden. Perhaps my second favourite flower after sunflowers.
 There are always ripe peas to be picked, hanging off the teepees and growing up the sunflowers.
 Neon calendula! I have been saving the spent flowers to make calendula infused oil for making salves.
 Rudbeckia: Brown Eyed Susans and another variety that I forget the name of...

And here is some of the random wheat that has been springing up all over the yard from the chicken scratch that the birds spread around. Very cool!

Things are shaping up for a nice weekend. We are going to the Prince George Exhibition tomorrow and then hopefully camping out in our yard to give it a trial run with Kesten! What are your weekend plans?
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