Thursday, December 26, 2013

A Baby Boy is Born!

Meet our new baby lamb, Cocoa!  We are so excited that he has come to our flock of American Black Belly sheep!  It's going to be hard to take these cuties to market!My son left to work for a few hours today, and we had no babies, and voila! when he came home, we had a very exciting new addition to the family!  We got these three sheep a couple of months ago for free.  Well, of course they cost money to feed, but they came pregnant.  We knew that they should be due in December, so we've been anxiously awaiting!

 The great thing about this breed, is that they need very little assistance lambing.  We had no idea it was going on.  You can see the happy family here.  Yes, I am aware that the dark sheep is fixing to have a birth soon!  She stopped while we were watching, so we'll be checking on them frequently.
 We decided on Cocoa for a name and we know he's a boy, because of where he was peeing from!  He is very tired, but that didn't stop us from oohing and ahing over him!
This breed of sheep are used for meat.  They have hair instead of wool, so are very low maintenance.

Mama, is very skittish (none of these sheep were handled.  The darker one will come up and sniff, but won't allow you to pet her.)  but she is doing a great job getting her baby up and nursing.  I have to say, this is my favorite picture, since I've nursed more than 14 years myself!  Makes me proud!

It's so exciting to have these little ones.  We feel very blessed.  Now to wean ourselves off them, so they can go to market next fall!  We need to recover our feed bills for sure! I'm up for any recipe ideas for lamb, by the way.  Mr. Right and I have never liked lamb before, so we need something that will be enjoyable for us.  We figured it was worth a try, since the sheep were free.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Homemade Christmas Cards

Getting ready for the craft show has kept me pretty busy, but I still wanted to make my Christmas cards.  I think that it's a nice touch to make my cards each year.  I know, most people are going to e-cards, or not even doing them.  I have revamped who received cards though.  Those that send a physical card receive them.  Simple. I used to send them out to everyone I knew, but decided it wasn't worth the cost.
Here's one of the cards that I made.  They vary, because I used double sided paper and the pack had several different patterns.
I did the cards in steps, so here's the piles of partial pieces waiting to be assembled in my living room.  I even got Mr. Right involved in the process!

 I had the pieces that I sliced off the papers to make the back ground fit.  I made a mistake on one of the cards, and to cover up the smeared stamp, I used one of these strips to cover it up and try again.  Then I realized that I liked it better that way, so I slid the strips onto all the cards I had already made.  A little more work, but I liked them a lot better!
I made up these white cards with the Stampin' Up Hostess Stamp set "Warm & Wonder."  I earned it as a host.  I went through the stack and stamped the trees in Old Olive and then put the ornaments on in Real Red.  I put two dark trees on each card and then stamped off more trees without re-inking.  It gives the appearance of the trees being at different distances.

Inside the card, I used Old Olive to stamp the sentiment and one more tree.  I was able to put both stamps on the clear block at the same time and stamp both stamps at the same time.

Here's how I started with the card fronts, but ended up covering the Christmas Greetings with strips of the paper, and then re-stamped the Christmas Greetings.
One trick that I often use in Scrapbooking to use more of my paper and to make my albums lighter, is to cut shapes out of the background behind the picture.  I did this to get the flower behind the reindeer.  You never see it behind the tree cards.
Here's what the back side of the ribbon and background looks like.  I just used scotch tape to take the ribbon down.

I used foam adhesive to raise up the flower and reindeer stamp on the front.
Here's what the strip with the greeting stamped on it looks like.
Another finished card.  I was one short for the background (because when I was trying my first one, I used a whole sheet of back ground paper to cut a flower out), so I pieced together some of the strips to make the background.  It looks a little different, but it doesn't really matter.  I actually like the greeting on the top of this one.  Too late to change them all this year!  (Although, I did think about it!)
I have no affiliation to Stampin' Up, but liked their papers this year for the holidays.  The flower and 1 1/2 inch circle were cut with Creative Memories Makers (which are no longer available - sorry!)  Oh, I stamped the deer with Espresso ink.  I'm running out, so that's why they look light, that will be my next purchase, refill!
Let me know what you think.  I have ordered a family photo to put inside, everyone will sign the card, and then address them all, hopefully before Christmas!  Oh, and still pondering doing a Christmas newsletter.  I might just skip it this year to save time and money.  What do you do for Christmas cards?

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Craft Show Success

 Whew!  Our craft show was a success!  I will warn you know, this post is picture heavy, but hey, our booth has so much stuff, it's hard to take it all in!  We had a late start and overslept our alarm by two hours.  Fortunately, I had everything packed the day before, so it wasn't much more than showering and getting a breakfast packed (which my 7 year did for me!)
On looking back at the pictures, we were stationed outside of the art room, so it's got a very busy back ground.  I'm already thinking about what to do to fix that for next year, because we really like this spot.  We were right in the entryway of the craft fair (the unwanted spot).  Granted, it was chilly, because it was only 8 degrees outside, but we got people coming in and leaving.

Overall view

 After entering the doors, our booth was on the right side and then you could go to the right or left down the halls to see other booths and then also straight ahead to the gym.  We were able to use both sides of our booth to display, so the pegboard we used on both sides for items.

I love this pegboard with shelves on the bottom. The backside was rough, so we hung burlap across the back and hung stockings on it.

A look towards the front doors to the school.

 We had enough room in our booth to have a middle island, too.
 I had my bets on that  cute chalkboard suitcase being one of our first sales, but it didn't go until the afternoon. That's ok, it went to another great friend!

 Even the back side of our middle crates got things on them to look at.
Our ladder shelves covered a trophy case, and the more narrow area of the booth.  Because our booth was awkward in shape, we were allowed to spread out more than the other crafters.

We're pretty tired, and now sorting through all of our stuff to get them listed to try to sell them.  Oh, and of course, Christmas is waiting to come to my own house....

Thursday, December 5, 2013

"Oh the weather outside is frightful...."

We are experiencing record lows at zero degrees outside, but the crafting is in full swing getting ready for a craft show on Saturday!  We even had to move our painting projects indoors with a very large paint cloth down!  Praying we don't spread the paint mess!

I'm sharing some photos of some of the things I'm really excited about!  In fact, many of them I don't want to sell!  All the proceeds for this sale are going to my daughter's 4-H trip to Japan, so this seems more important than ever to sell, sell, sell!  Sorry, not much writing or how-to's, I have too much to get finished.
Christmas Metal Basket

Burlap covered chair with "socks"
Sweater Jar
Pillows in hound's-tooth, wool, and sweaters - I have just one more to make!
 One of the burlap wreaths, finished.
Chalk Paint Jars
Now for the pricing and  getting it all together and set up at 5am on Sautrday!  Let me know what you think!