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Saturday, December 2, 2017

Falling into the Flow

I love it when I seem to be in sync with the energies of the universe. It doesn't happen all the time, and especially during the time of maximum change in day length at spring and autumn, I struggle. Finally, though, it seems I have once again fallen into the flow for winter.

I look forward to winter, more maybe than some of the other seasons. While I love the busy days of spring promise, seedlings and new birth, tolerate - more or less well - the summer heat for the abundance of produce and growing critters and enjoy the winding down of autumn, with its crunchy leaves and often awesome color displays, I need the rest that winter brings. I relish the short days that call me to sit by the fire, to study, to knit, to spin by lamplight or the light of the low, cold sun. The slower days, I think, makes it easier to find the flow. There is less daylight (and as you know if you have read my blog for any time at all, it is my nature to take my cues from the sun, not from human clocks and electric "man-light."

Being on the farm, our work is often guided by the weather and the short days, coupled with bouts of cold rain and hopefully eventually snow, have an impact. Dry days, when the mercury rises just a bit, call us to work quickly on outside projects and today we did just that. Tractor Guy spent the morning laying out extension cords to power two "heated dog bowls" of 6 quart capacity which will hopefully eliminate our need to break ice, and therefore allow watering of fowl with the hauling of less water. We may have to haul morning and afternoon, if they prove to be heavy drinkers, but if so, so be it.

6 foot long "tip"
I spent the afternoon gleaning more greenery and making our wreath. I had planned to "go tipping" on a friend's place earlier in the week, but missed them on my visit. On the way home, I realized that our past storm had felled sufficient trees that I would be able to gather sufficient branches from those down along the road, and that realization came as I passed what I thought was a small bit of tree in the roadside ditch. I stopped and loaded the bit of greenery, left, into my truck. LOL I dropped it in back, by the picnic table and the goats have been looking longingly at it ever since.

Since I prefer wreaths with different textures, I took a walk yesterday, to find other bits from our road to go with. I had learned my lesson, though, and walked down the road with just my small cart, not the pickup truck! I was only planning to make a few wreaths at best, not to go into production! As I walked, with eyes and mind open, I found three other types of evergreen and several other plants that wanted to be included: red dogwood twigs, bit of birch, with the catkins still attached, and bit of moss and lichen, some still attached to downed dead branches.

With the addition of the birch, a tree sacred to Frigga, I knew this wreath would be more than just decoration. Then I discovered that moss has a floral meaning of charity and maternal love, which fits nicely into a project for AllMother.
I have not yet got the bow on it, though I will do so. It is my first attempt at a two-sided wreath, as it hangs on our glass front door. I hung it immediately on account of the itty bitty destruction committee, kitty version.

And in further keeping with the flow of the season, I realized that, with the payment in hand from last month big design project, I could easily afford to haul my collected non-Icelandic wool to the mill for cleaning, carding and turning into roving. And furthermore, doing so would be in tune with the tradition of finishing fiber projects before the 12 days of Yule commence (or else risk displeasing the Goddess (Frau Holle by some traditions, Frigga in others), as this is the one project that I have been wanting to complete for some time. I have collected many bags of free fleece, which are being stored here, there and everywhere about, taking up space and as I have been organizing and sorting, I determined that it needs to be made into an effecient to use form. I do enjoy carding and working "in the grease" but will reserve that for my special wool... the fleeces from Elenor and her offspring, Rigby, who came to live with us this year.

So, skirting the wool will be a project for this next week, along with making more cookies (which will be fun, because I was planning to use the kitchen table for both projects... just not at once!)  Current plans are to take Tractor Guy on a day long explorationg and rambling drive, now starting with a visit to the mill, then on to visit Liberty Tool Company, whose stock I fell in love with at the last Common Ground Fair, where I hope to find a drawknife for a Yule present for TG, then on to Unity for a visit to the Amish Charcuterie and nearby Community Market and ending in Belfast, for a visit to The Green Store and an art gallery where a friend has a large work currently on display. It will be a long, tiring day on the road, but I am hoping it will be fun for both of us.