Showing posts with label gnome. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gnome. Show all posts

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Saint Nicholas' Day



Nicholas, St. Nicholas, come to us today, Ride upon your white horse from far, far away. Bring us golden treasure, Fill our hearts with love, Ready for the Christ Child coming from above. Nicholas, St. Nicholas, come to us today, Ride upon your white horse from far, far away.


Good Day Friends! 

Saint Nicholas just finished visiting our house today. Addy, our advent gnome, has been helping us the past 2 days to get ready for him. On the 2nd day of advent we made cookies for him and his white horse. On the 3rd day we made letters for him as well as prepared our shoes for him and set them outside. 

I know that the 6th is traditionally Saint Nicholas' feast day, but the children will be with their father on the 6th and they were worried he would miss their house since they weren't home. I informed them to fear not, that he'd come a few days early this year. 

This year Saint Nicholas brought them all their oranges, gold coins, and sweets. They also got a small wooden pet toy set- a kitty, a rabbit, and a dog. Each pet came with a little food dish and house. Their pets are going to live in their farm house. 

Here are our celebrations from years past:
2012:
I did not blog it but here are our photos of it! 



So here are some photos of our past few days and advent fun. Most of our fun times are had at night after I get off work, so apologize for the poor photos. But that is the reality for the full time working mom gig I suppose. I don't mind however. Life is good. It is calm and seeped in love. Now more than ever I get to focus on quality versus quantity. And the few hours we have work and school free each day are definitely quality ridden. I just cannot get over how amazing keeping our Waldorf rhythm has been through this life transition. I am just a blessed lady. 

As we adjust and slow down more and more, I am able to add back in things into our lives that we had to set to the side. One of those things being more planned craft time. Most of our craft time has been free form based around our artelier using loose parts. I'd like to bring back our water color day, our wax day, and our bread day- after work. I also have more time with the children on the weekends, so I want to plan more day trips. 

But for now, this is beautiful and bright. 

May the patron saint of sailors and children shine God's love and light upon you! 


Day 2
Cookie baking! Sometimes I don't have time to change our of my colonial clothes before we do craft and dinner time! 
Day 3
Writing letters

Finding their shoes filled!

They we're so excited!! 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Our New Advent

Our gingerbread house
Addy our advent gnome


Hello Dear Online Village!

It has been quite a long time since I last visited this place. I have missed this... the peace that I get while reflecting and writing about my day. But sometimes, absence is necessary. Since I wrote last in April, our little lives have changed happily quite a bit. 

I am now working full time and have been since late May for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation as an Orientation Interpreter. After some soul searching and patience, I found the right job for us. A job that allows me to have regular work hours, good benefits, stability- but one that also allows me to be emotional present at the end of the day. A job that I don't have to bring work home with me and I can go back to my favorite job, that of being a mother. The best part of my job? It combines two of my passions, history and teaching- minus the grading and paperwork. If you ever happen to be in colonial Williamsburg, stop by and say hello! I don't think I can gush enough about how blessed I feel to have the job that I have. 

The little ones are now in school part-time and Deirdre is in first grade. They all love their schools and teachers. I am so blessed at the amazing schools we were given here. And while it wasn't my plan or desire fro them to go to public school or for me to work full time away from them, this has proven to be an easy transition and they're thriving immensely. I think they are doing so well due to all the time I did spend at home with them. Our rhythm hasn't changed when we are home and Waldorf has set them all up to do well in school, and they each are excelling. My gratitude for Waldorf never ceases to end. It works. And boy does keeping the same rhythm help. 

In addition to the new job, we also have a new house! Another benefit to working of CWF is that we can rent their homes. The kids, their godmother, and I were lucky enough to get one of the homes and it just so happens to be one of CW's 88 original buildings, the Seymour Powell Tenement. I still cannot get over how neat it is every day when I come home to this house that was built in 1753. The history major inside of me is constantly geeking out. Not to mention, but the house has a hidden staircase and doorways, so the kids LOVE it. Did I also mention that we have woods in the backyard and we live walking distance form the historic area? Be still my heart. 

Lastly, I have met the most amazing, kind, and brilliant people in the past few months. My new church Bruton, which is just amazing. Basically, I have found a new voluntary family. People who chose to be in my life and stand by me not because they feel obligated to do so, but because they want to do so. While in no way do they replace my blood family or my ladies, it has been a huge affirmation to meet them all in this place. I am where I should be.

This phase of my life hasn't been without darkness or hardship. It will always be there in some capacity I suppose. But it is nice to know, I no longer have to be apart of that or associate with it. That my life is separate. My soul is free. I never knew how bright life could be except through my children. It's nice for my whole life to be bright again, as it should have always been. And for once, I get to plan a real future and not just be forced to meander by daily with no long term vision. 

So here we are, celebrating our new advent in a new place. Addy, our advent gnome, is out and about leaving fun notes and activities for the kids. Aunt and Uncle J bought the children advent bible verse calendars which we began tonight. For our first day, we made a gingerbread house and hung our stockings. Addy also left the children 3 chocolate coins. Tomorrow we'll get out our advent ring and decorate more. This advent is going to be so so much fun!! 

So dear friends, I'll leave you all now. I think this update is enough to get you all up to speed on our lives. It's my goal to be in this place more now that our lives have hit their happy calm. Enjoy the photos and please share what you're doing this advent! 



Our stockings!

The bible verse advent calenders

Jonas found Addy

They loved Addy and his note!



Clearly for Brynna chocolate was the best part!


Thursday, May 31, 2012

Bud the Blackberry Gnome





With Virginia's berry picking season upon our doorstep, I received some much needed crafting inspiration. I am happy to introduce to you all, Bud, our blackberry gnome. His job, according to my 4 year old daughter Deirdre, is to guard the berries from 'pesky animals' whom 'take more than their share of the blackberries'. He also keeps the 'unfriendly insects' at bay- as well as 'helps the berries ripen up just right'. 


I made him using 50/50 wool felt. I find that using blends is easier to embroider, after using 100% wool felt for awhile. His blackberry hat was made using french knots. His cloak and outfit were made using Wee Folk's pattern and a running blanket stitch. 






The blueberry bush and cherry tree behind him were made by myself last summer. If you're interested in how I did it, I wrote an article for Rhythm of the Home magazine detailing the process. Bud now resides on our Spring/Summer nature table. I plan on also making him some other berry friends to keep him company! If you'd like to read about our blackberry picking trip last year you can find it here


Summer is still officially a month away, however we are having days up into the nineties already. With a tiny baby, I am finding it hard to enjoy the outdoors as much since she can't wear bug spray or sunscreen yet. But I am making do. I set up our back yard porch (which is just a large paved area surrounded by our plum tree and fairy gardens) so that my older kids can play out there alone. 


Now when I say alone, they're really not alone. They just think they are! I am actually right next to them, since our living room sliding glass and screen door opens up right out onto the porch.  I can and hear them as if they were in the next room, yet they're outside. I have a mud kitchen, wading pool, chalk, art supplies, trucks, a table and chairs, our fairy garden, and some riding toys all out there for them. And once Brynna is asleep, I then set her in a cradle near the door inside, so I can hear her, and then join Deirdre and Jonas outdoors. Let's just say this set up has been a hit on both ends. Now they don't have to wait for me to stop nursing to go outside. 


Plus I think that this little bit of perceived independence helps build their confidence and let's them play a bit more freely. Jonas and Deirdre have been working out their sibling squabbles more on their own out there too, which is nice. 






I will post some photos of our porch soon, behind the star is a glimpse. I lost my camera for a few days but I've found it again, yippee! Oh and yes, we've been making Waldorf window stars over here. Deirdre and I are addicted! 


I also am starting up my craft for the 'Bits of Goodness' Wizardry World themed swap I joined. Thank you Kelly over at Happy Whimsical Hearts for introducing me to this group. I am making 5 wooden Hungarian Horn-tail dragons and 5 golden eggs, as inspired by the Harry Potter series. I hope they turn out well. 


Until next time, 
Nicole 


Daily Verse or Quote:

He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.


– Matthew 18:2-3 (NIV)

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Farm Girl Sewing and Garden Updates



This week went by in flash. These three kids keep me on my toes for sure, but I don't mind. I am loving this new busy full life of ours. 

I did however get to steal away a few hours in my sewing room during nap time. I was determined to sew something for Deirdre since as I was sorting out seasonal clothes and I saw that she grew out of two of the dresses I've made for her- which really saddens me. 

But thankfully Mommy can sew more and I had some very cute fabric on hand to sew something for my farm girl. I especially love this fabric because we own a Dominique hen, who is black with white polka dots. The result was the above dress. I used Oliver and S's free pop-over sundress pattern. You can find the link to the pattern here.

I think I can now say that I am past being a beginner sewer. However this dress was easy. It took me two hours from cutting to finish. I highly recommend it as a beginner project. It is even easier than a pillowcase dress. I even sewed in some ribbon to the dress yoke for some added flare. 


Above you can also see our new family rhythm watercolor chart. The kids helped me paint it. So far it is working wonderfully for us. I was inspired by Becca's chart here on her blog, Chocolate Eyes. 

I hope you all had a great week too. Below is an update on our fairy garden. It is coming along nicely. Now all we have to do is keep the deer out! 

Cheers, 
Nicole 

PS: Does anyone know of any good summer craft swaps going on? I'd love to join one. 






Friday, February 17, 2012

A New *No Stitch* Heart Gnome Tutorial



As you all know, I love gnomes. My daughter is responsible for this love and in an effort to make her gnome play things- since you can't really find gnomes in the store- I set about learning how to make my own gnomes. 


About a year and a half ago, I stumbled upon Wee Folk Art's peg gnome tutorial. Since then I have made my own wee folk gnomes, as well as modified them to make my own versions. It seems to me once you work with two artistic mediums enough, in this case peg people and felt, the possibilities are limitless. 


When talking with my friends about my gnome crafting, a lot of them remark, "well what about the blanket stitching and embroidery... all that for one little gnome?" It is true, doing all the stitching does take more time and I do like the look, but it isn't for everyone for sure. I am all about practicality and empowering anyone to craft. If the stitches are a deterrent for you then ditch them! This makes crafting peg gnome even easier for kids as well


I will show you how to avoid stitching all together, except for sewing the cloak closed and sewing the hat together. Both of these are essential and easy. They're just joining stitches. If you're especially great with fabric glue then I bet you can figure out a way to avoid this as well, but alas I am not and my gnomes come out looking to gummy. 


Ok, Let's do this!! 

Step One: Go to Wee Folk Art's Blog and download their 'Waldorf peg gnome pattern' and directions. It is free. 

Step Two: Cut out all the pieces for your gnomes as directed. For a girl heart gnome cut a pink hat and body piece and a red cloak and small heart. For a boy heart gnome, cut a blue hat and body with a purple cape and heart. 

Step Three: Instead of stitching all the edges of the hats and cloaks, just don't! 

Step Four: Fabric glue the gnome body piece on. Then, once dry, glue the heart on the middle of the body. 

Step Five: Thread a needle with either blue (boy) or pink (girl) embroidery thread. Drape the cloak around the gnome's shoulders and gather stitch the cloak closed around the gnome's neck. Then if desired, to prevent the cloak from shifting, glue the back of the cloak to the gnome's body. 

Step Six: Take the gnome hat piece and turn it inside out. Stitch the open sides shut with a simple running stitch. Then turn the hat inside out. Stuff the hat with wool. 

Step Seven: Take a copious amount of fabric glue and place it inside the hat. Place the hat on your gnome's head. The gnome should have a large rim on his hat. Gently pucker the edge of the hat down onto the gnome forehead using the glue seeping out from under the hat. If you're not sure what this looks like then see the hats above. 

Then ta-ad, you should be done! Mine took me under 10 minutes per gnome. They are just as cute and as fun for the kids. Enjoy, and I hope you craft many of these gnomies too for your little ones. 




Also don't forget my current giveaway for Sarah Silks. You still have until the 23rd to enter and win a playsilk or silk streamer! 


Always, Nicole 

Friday, June 24, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual created by Amanda Blake Soule. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week (or month- and sometimes for me whats on your mind at the end of the week) A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.
If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.
Have a lovely weekend!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Gnome-ville!

Tonight is a short late night post. It has been a busy holiday weekend for us with a sad teething baby. But thankfully today was Craig;s day off and I got to get the house back in order. The best part- besides having him home- was getting some crafting time in. 


This weekend I have made six gnomes. Two felt peg and four wood burned ones. I am very pleased with them all and so will my gnome obsessed daughter! Tomorrow I will post more on them and a tutorial. Until enjoy the night and morning! 










Daily Verse: (A poem I read to Deirdre tonight at bed) 

By Rowena Bennett

Down in the grasses
Where the grasshoppers hop
And the katydids quarrel
And the flutter-moths flop --

Down in the grasses
Where the beetle goes "plop"
An old withered fairy
Keeps a second-hand shop.

She sells lost thimbles
For Fairy milk pails
And burnt-out matches
For fence posts and rails.

She sells stray marbles
To bowl on the green,
And bright scattered beads
For the crown of the queen.

Oh, Don't feel badly
Over things that you lose
Like spin tops or whistles
Or dolls buckled shoes;

They may be things that
Fairy folk can use:

For down in the grasses
Where the grasshoppers hop
A withered old fairy
Keeps a second-hand shop.