Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Introducing Rosebelle

Hello! My name is Rosebelle. Beth made me with the help of a very talented lady named Juliane. This is me in summer looking at all the pretty flowers in our yard.
Beth and all the other ladies in the dollmaking class decided to have a little swap. Everyone was assigned a secret partner to send a gift to. They all had to make an outfit for the dolly and send some little treats and sewing supplies by December 6th. That way we would all have a special present for Christkindle/St. Nicolas Day!

Here is what a nice lady named Nathalie sent to me all the way from Lebanon! Aren't I lucky? I love my warm, furry cape and my soft pants. As soon as I was dressed in my new outfit I was ready to go outside and play in the fall leaves.

Hello little bunny. What shall we do today?

Hmm. Bunny says I should climb the tree and he will find tasty leaves to eat. I'm good at climbing trees so that sounds like fun to me.

I climb very high in the peach tree and find a nice little spot to sit. I look up and remember the peaches we picked this summer and the ugly black bug that was crawling on one. I also remember the birds that shared the peaches with us and built nests in the tree.

I think I can climb a little higher, up to where the nest used to be. But it is hard work and I begin to get hot in my warm cape and hat!

So I let my cape drop down...It catches the air and floats right onto a rock! That's a good spot to leave it.

Now it's time to climb down, but going down is much more difficult than going up! My pretty dress gets caught, and I get bark on my nose!

I drop into a big pile of leaves and lose my hat on the way down. The leaves are fun to jump in!

I sit very still and the Bunny doesn't even see me. But now it's getting cold again and I am ready to go back inside and warm up.

Inside, I sit at my little table by the Christmas tree and drink warm apple cider and eat the yummy Baklava that Nathalie sent from Lebanon. My cheeks get very rosy, and my tummy is warm and happy! I watch the little Santa on my schwibbogen go round and round...

Later, I am very sleepy, but I look at the Christmas tree all lit up and think about Santa again. I wonder what he will bring me for Christmas....

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Will You Walk Into My Parlour...(Halloween 2010)

...said the Spider to the Fly,
'Tis the prettiest little parlour that ever you did spy;

The way into my parlour is up a winding stair,
And I've a many curious things to shew when you are there."

"Oh, no, no," said the little Fly, to ask me is in vain,
For who goes up your winding stair, can ne'er come down again."
"I'm sure you must be weary, dear, with soaring up so high;
Will you rest upon my little bed?" said the Spider to the Fly.
..."Oh, no, no," said the little Fly, "for I've often heard it said,
They never, never wake again, who sleep upon your bed."

..."I have within my pantry, good store of all that's nice;
I'm sure you're very welcome--will you please to take a slice?"
"Oh, no, no," said the little Fly, "kind Sir, that cannot be,
I've heard what's in your pantry, and I do not wish to see!"

Our Halloween Party this year was a Spider was as creepy as we get around here! I didn't take pictures of the mummified (fake) owl and skeleton - eek!
The very weird big spider was made by Lucy out of a large, standing ghost we have. She took it apart, made spider legs out of wire and fake fur, gave it a big beach ball under it's cloak for an abdomen - ugh! I don't like spiders much!
Our entire orchard was wrapped in spider web to make a spooky den for the kids to explore. It was complete with a big web tunnel entrance, a foggy graveyard, spider eggsacks, and the web-wrapped mummies. All the kids loved it!

Click on the top picture of Lucy to see the amazing spider coat she made! She designed and sewed it herself, spun blue wool for the decorative stitching, added angora fur cuffs and netting collar, peacock feather epaulettes, and a pair of spider legs coming out the back.

The little girl cousins divided and swapped candy for hours!

Our party was on Saturday night, so on Halloween itself we had another celebration at Gramie's house. The teenagers and Robin all coordinated with Steampunk inspired costumes. They made quite an impression on the neighborhood! Apparently Barry was proposed to several times by admiring neighbor girls...he's sure it was just the vintage tailcoat :)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Finding Fall

~Tiny mushrooms, pine needle wishes, and a forest throne~

~Katydids and coreopsis, geodes and brown pine needles, a secret forest hideaway~

~Treasures found in a tiny vintage shop and our gifts from the forest~

Autumn can be tricky to find here in Arizona. Last week, Lucy, Robin, Elsa and I journeyed to the Mogollon Rim to see if we could find any signs of Fall. Because our natural forest has very few deciduous trees, the colors tend more towards yellows and browns, and as you can see we found many shades of lovely, warm Autumn Brown. The aspens and oaks were just beginning to change colors, as were the ferns. But the air was cool and crisp and every now and then we caught a wisp of woodsmoke from nearby homesteads. A visit to a goat dairy and a tiny bakery provided us with cheese and fresh bread to eat with our apples and hummus and salad as we sat among the ferns and listened to the woodpeckers and chattering squirrels.

Back at the cabin, we cracked open the geodes to find the treasure inside, then scoured a little antique shop for treasures of the vintage sort. Lucy was thrilled to find a beautiful old trunk to restore, Robin's wish for a cool old lock was fulfilled, Elsa found another sweet lacy bonnet and a teeny tiny mixer, and I found a beautiful doily for our table. We all returned home to the desert with Autumn in our hearts - so excited for the season ahead!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Late Summer

The last, lingering days of summer. Here in Arizona, our summer is very long. In fact, Mrs. Summer sometimes makes us wonder if she will ever leave! We love her though, with her long, carefree days, shooting-star nights, and all the sweet summer fruits and flowers.

Isn't this a sweet bonnet? Elsa wore it all over the antique store, and how could I resist? The vintage blouse is seeing lots of summer action. It's made of the lightest batiste, hand embroidered with colorful summer flowers...

Paired with linen pants it's the perfect late summer outfit.

Our beautiful peach trees surprised us with a bountiful harvest this year. Late summer peaches aren't actually ideal here in the desert, but these are really thriving. When we first moved in to our house we considered taking them out and replacing them with early peaches. The trees were very small then, and when the peaches ripened, well, there were just enough for the birds and bugs, and none for us! We didn't do it though, and now are so glad...

For several weeks we harvested this many peaches every few days! Most we ate fresh, warm and juicy... some went in the freezer, lots went in to peach cobbler and cake. And there were still plenty for birds and bugs and chickens and goats...

The peach tree is so big now, that she can shelter little ones in an impromptu hammock...

Gently swaying, cradled in the warmth of a late summer day.

Thursday, September 9, 2010


She is just so sweet and cute, I couldn't resist posting her picture. This little baby was born last Monday. She is about 1/3 the size of her twin brother - I think she weighs barely a pound! She's lively and vivacious though, so no worries. I do so love the little babies. New life is always such a miracle.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Mushrooms, Cupcakes, and Vintage Sweetness

A little peek at some sweetness I've been working on.

Vanilla Cupcakes filled with Lemon Curd.

Wee chairs and vintage hankies.

A bit of lace and a peek of a hem...

A sleeve...

...maybe it will go with this!

It's looking like it will be a perfect outfit!

Last week I visited some antique shops and found some very sweet vintage finds. The most exciting was the little embroidered blouse, shown above, which fits my little elsa perfectly! Not only that, but matches just perfectly with the linen pants I am sewing her inspired by the book "Carefree Clothes for Girls". Do you see the little friend peeking out of the pocket? She's a tiny German dollhouse dolly that Elsa's sharp little eyes spied at the antique shop!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Seven Candles On My Cake

Birthday gifts presented by a rosy little fairy.

Wearing her Birthday Crown and holding her favorite gift.

Making a wish and blowing out seven candles.

Smelling the zinnias (do they smell good?) at our favorite local restaurant.

Best friends and cousins, exactly one month apart in age, in coordinating unicorn dresses, beloved rainbow unicorn still in hand!
Our little Elsa turned seven a couple of weeks ago! We celebrated with presents and birthday breakfast cake and strawberries in the morning, a visit to an indoor play place in the afternoon, and dinner at Joe's Farm Grill, our favorite local restaurant. Joe's has it's own garden and Elsa loves to wander through and see the flowers and try to guess what she ate that was picked fresh! She had a magical day, full of beauty and sweetness. Happy birthday little princess!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

...And Summer Nights

The magic of glow-stick art on a warm summer night...

Monday, July 5, 2010

Summer Days

I know, I have been absent for a long time. But the days have been so full of summer fun that it's been hard to sit down at the computer. Here's a little glimpse of what we have been up to....

...our days have been busy with new pets, birthday celebrations, midsummer festival, some crafting, some acting (Elsa was in two plays! She was adorable as Cinderella's stepmother and the Magic Mirror in Snow White.) and even some sewing inspired by the ripe strawberries growing in the garden.
Hopefully your summer days are just as full and fun. I will try to post a little more frequently, especially with all the exciting activities going on this month!