Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Machine Embroidery

I love to use my embroidery machine. It might not be the lastest greatest one out there but it gets the job done. I've used it to personalize everything under the sun. When I first got my machine years ago I found this great website called ArtisticThreadWorks (ATW). After reading a few posts and seeing some of the designs I knew that my best investment would be to join ATW. I have never once regretted my membership. When I ever I have a question or need some advice there are always people on the forums to help. I also love browsing through the photos section to see what other are doing. Both of those are great but the real bang for your buck comes with the designs. They have thousands of designs you can choose from and I always find the one I'm looking for on the site.

If you have an embroidery machine or are thinking about getting one you MUST join ATW. It will be well worth the money! Have questions? Feel free to ask me or any of the lovely ATW folks.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

I'm in an Etsy Treasury!

"Aaahh, Wash Day! Who doesn't love clean laundry?" Treasury includes my vintage clothespins! This treasury does expire soon so you are reading this at a later date sorry you missed it. I just wanted to share the fun with everyone. The clothes pins she included are really cool. I found them at an estate sale in a hanging clothespin bag. I do have some more in my store so feel free to check them out. Such brightly colored pins should make anyone's laundry day a little brighter.

Monday, April 28, 2008

In the garden

Spring is here! I've been longing for the beginning of spring since the beginning of March. I guess that is what happens after you live in the Southwest for a few years. Now that we are up north again spring never seems to come fast enough. Just the thought of planting my garden and working in the yard makes me happy.

Yesterday was our frost free date and I'm glad I did not try to rush it this year since we did have a hard freeze two nights before. So far I have planted my pea and carrot seeds along with starter potatoes and onion sets. One of the many things I love about my garden is the asparagus patch. How I love the taste of asparagus! It has started to grow and I'm longing for the first of many dinners with asparagus this spring.

Along with my many daffidils and tulips, I have a varity of native woodland flowers in our ravine that are blooming. Here is a photo of one of them.

For more farmgirl gardening info and tips join me over at Mary Janes Farm forums.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

In the Kitchen

I have to fully admit that my "weak point" as a farmgirl is in the kitchen. BUT I do have a thing for canning. I guess it goes back to my frugal farm girl roots. Nothing goes to waste. What you can not eat fresh should be saved for a rainy day (ie. the winter or off season). This past year I have learned a lot about canning. On of the best resources I found for canning online I actually stumbed upon while looking up u-pick locations. The website is called Pick Your Own. I have followed their easy to use canning, freezing and pie recipes and they have all worked great! Who knew I'd find one more reason to wear my aprons?

For more kitchen fun check out the kitchen section of Mary Jane Farm's forums or for some of MJ's yummy foods check out her online store. I can say that everything I've tried from her store is yummy!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Farm Girl Heart!

So who is a farm girl at heart? What does that mean? My definition of a farm girl at heart can not be summed up by one action or thing. For starters it is a state of mind not a location. Growing up on farm I saw farmer's wives who where not farmgirls and then living in a big city after college I saw farmgirls living in urban areas!

Being a farmgirl is all about caring. Caring for people, livestock, veggies and flowers, the woods, and woodland creatures. It is about stewardship, sustainable living, family/neighbors and a frugal life style.

Am I a farmgirl at heart? You bet I am! 100% farmgirl. I've been known to say " You can take the girl off the farm but you can't take the farm out of the girl.". I was raised on a farm while watching my dad, uncle and grandfather farm. My first job was picking up rocks in my dad's field while I was in grade school. By 7th grade I was working in test plots for a local seed corn company. And of course I was 10 year 4-H member!

Now I'm grown up with two small daughters of my own. I don't live on a farm at the moment but we have 1 1/4 acres in a small town. It feels like the country because our house sets way back off the road and our backyard is a wooded ravine with a winter view of the river below. I have a large garden (100ft x 40ft) that I love. I also spend a lot of time during the summer visiting local fruit farms getting yummy things like blueberries, apples, peaches and more. When I'm not doing that I'm busy canning and freezing all these fresh foods in my non-air conditioned kitchen.

When the weather doesn't let me be outside I'm busy sewing in my sewing room. If you have been following this blog you have seen my many creations. I sew anything and everything. One of my many farmgirl attributes I learned from my family growing up is to survival. Some years where good on my dad's farm but others where not. Sometimes it rains, sometimes it doesn't. That make do attitude has stuck with me. My family has a written budget every month and we always live within our means even if that means going without. But we usually can find away to get what we want. There are always garage sales, auctions, coupons, and making it yourself.

I could go on and on about all my farmgirl traits but I'm sure you are painting the picture by now. Do you think that I just described you? Does this sound the person you strive to be? If so you are a farmgirl at heart or at least on your way! Join myself and overs over at Mary Janes Farm Forums to meet others like us and learn more about Farmgirl Heart.

So when you think about a farmgirl throw out the location because it is all in the heart!

Tie One On!

I love aprons! I'm not sure when it started or exactly why but I do know why I love them.

I have an apron for all my needs and my families also. I have a clothes pin apron, a half apron (great for going over a big baby belly), a full apron, a basic black for hubby and several for my oldest daughter. I don't have one for the baby yet but I'm still not sure how that would work since she is only three months!

It's a toss up for which one is my favorite apron. As you can see in the two photos I made my daughter and I matching aprons. She loves to wear hers and it makes me proud to think that she wants to be a hard working farm girl. My other favorite apron is hanging in the background of my daughter's photo. I made it using the same style as my grandmother's apron but with a strawberry print fabric because I LOVE my fond memories of her strawberry patch and her yummy homemade strawberry jam.

I might be addicted to aprons but they are sooo useful and beautiful. I can not image how dirty my clothes would get if I did not wear one or how much harder a job like hanging clothes could be. My addiction has meant that I also collect vintage aprons. I love to look at them and think of the other hard working women who once wore that apron or the women who lovingly stitched it into a piece of working art.

To meet other apron loving farmgirls check out Mary Janes Farm website and forums. She has an excellent magazine called "Artists in Aprons". If you love aprons you have to get the magazine.

Howdy Friends!

Long time no see! For those of you who have been checking my blog I'm sorry there has not been any posts in about two months. Life has been very busy and crazy at Auntie Em's house. My newest baby (just turned three months this weekend) was born with a tumor on her leg. As one could imagine, I have spent the last two months dealing with insurance and doctors appointments. We where able to have it removed and it was benign. Praise God! Her leg has been healing very well and things in our house are getting back to "normal". We do have have a few more follow up appointments but I'm not expecting anything big.

To help me get back into the blogging mood I'm going to be participating in a blog-a-thon. It should be a lot of fun and you will be able to learn a lot about me I'm sure. It the Farmgirl Blog-a-thon. Garden Goose at http://gardengoose.blogspot.com/ is leading it and it's open to any farmgirls who would like to participate. I'm sure it will be full of the FG's over at MaryJane's forum. If you have not checked out Mary Jane's website or forums you are really missing out. I have the link on my blog. Check it out!