Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Wendy At The Post Office

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016
Wendy at the Cambridge Post Office

Wendy at the Cambridge Post Office

I’ve been spending a lot of time at the Cambridge Post Office the past couple of weeks.  There are some days I’ve been there more than once.

It’s always a pleasure.  I look forward to getting out and into town. Visiting with Wendy or Martha for a while.

Because I work alone, I see doing things like going to the post office and the bank as a chance to make contact with other people.   I always enjoy my conversations with Wendy and Martha.  In a way it’s like we work together.  Or at least we’re doing work together.

And they couldn’t be more patient or helpful.   It’s a small town Post Office,  and both Wendy and Martha are well aware of the idiosyncracies of their customers and how to deal with them.  Professionals both, who don’t let things get to them, or let on that they do anyway.

I never would have imagined I would enjoy going to the Post Office as much as I do.


How We Start Our Day

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016


This is how Jon and I start our day.  Taking photos and videos is as much a part of our morning as feeding the animals and mucking out the pole barn.  It’s an interesting combination of activities.   One the repetitive busy work of chores the other a creative act.  They both feed each other.  The animals are inspiration and our observing them creatively makes us see them in ways we might not otherwise.

The Bedlam Farm Hens and Minnie Too

Tuesday, October 25th, 2016

The hens have stopped laying with the change in light and weather.  Over the weekend I plugged in the light and got them a new  red bulb so now they have light throughout the night.

They should start laying again soon.

Last winter we got at least an egg a day having the light in the coop.  I’m spoiled when it comes to fresh eggs.  Jon bought some free range eggs from the market, but they taste nothing like fresh eggs which are creamy and have a bright yellow yolk.  The other thing about fresh eggs is they’re harder to peel.  A good indication of how long its been in the fridge.

I’m looking forward to the first fresh egg of the winter.

Bookkeeping and Shipping and Farm Art

Monday, October 24th, 2016
Flo in the Apple Tree

Flo in the Apple Tree

Except for our visit to the Gulley’s farm today, I was holed up in the upstairs guestroom/office doing paper work.

I’m finishing up shipping the online sales from the Open House and getting the artists their commission checks from those sales.

Then it’s just the usual balancing the check book, and figuring out the sales and other taxes.   I always give thanks to my bookkeeper Anne at times like these because I know she’ll inform me of my mistakes and help me figure out the things I have a hard time with.

But this is the boring stuff to write about.  Necessary and good of course, without the money coming in, I wouldn’t be doing what I am.

It’s just not as interesting as our visit with Ed Gulley today.  Seeing his studio and his wonderous collection of materials, the organic crossover of art and life that goes on at Bejosh Farm every day.

Ed’s wife Carol didn’t stay for the visit.  She took off in her tractor  to warn people of an electrical line that came down and was in the road near a house her son is fixing up.

You can see a video that Jon took at Bejosh Farm today here.


Good Monday Morning From Bedlam Farm 10/24/16

Monday, October 24th, 2016

The Root Cellar

Sunday, October 23rd, 2016


Our root cellar

Our root cellar with the bushels and bags of dahlia blubs

I’ve been in a lot of old houses, but I’ve never seen a root cellar in such original condition as the one in our house.   I think because Florence, who lived in the house for 80 years till she was 104 years old, used it until the last years of her life.  When we looked at the house before we bought it, it still had some preserves in ball jars on the old gray painted shelves.

There’s two  thermometers on the wall that always read 50 degrees.  One, a tiny glass tube about 2 inches long surrounded by metal and a newer, bigger plastic one.   Above them is a bare bulb with a pull chain.

The door to the Root Cellar is made from two pieces of hand planed wood, one of them 20 inches wide.   The walls are white washed plaster and there’s bars on the windows  (you can’t see the bars in this photo because of the sunlight).

At some point, probably Florence’s husband Harold, laid a slate and cement floor.  Maybe at the same time he put the electric in.

Jon and I  use the root cellar to store the dahlia bulbs and our fig tree  for the winter.  We keep metal garbage cans  there with extra bags of dog and cat food. All our paper files from the past 6 or 7 years sit on the shelves in cardboard boxes.

I don’t go there a lot, but when I do I always image what it must have looked like with its selves full of ball jars, bushels of apples and potatoes on the floor.   As I press my thumb on the old worn latch and push open the door I can almost see the blue jars glowing in the sunlight, that comes in from the small windows over head.  I imagine that having  all those shelves full of food is like having a woodshed full of wood and a barn full of hay.  A sense of security, survival for a season.

Someday I want to clean up the root cellar.  Sweep the floor and wash down the shelves.     I want to take care of it and preserve it just as it is now.  I can’t see myself ever using it for anything more than I already am.  But I think that maybe the next people who move into the house will appreciate in a way I can’t.    Maybe they’ll want to grow and can their own food and the root cellar will be one of the reasons they want to live here.

Digging Dahlia’s At Bedlam Farm

Sunday, October 23rd, 2016

Skirt Wool When The Sun Shines

Friday, October 21st, 2016
Liam's wool

Liam’s wool

I’ve learned that skirting wool in the cold isn’t fun.  So this morning, when I went outside to feed the animals  and it was too warm for my sweatshirt, I decided it was a good morning to skirt my wool.

I’m working at the Cambridge Co-op this afternoon, which gives me just enough time to get all the wool done.

It was windy, but warm and I set up my plastic bags, one for the good wool and one for the junk, laid down a sheet on the grass and one bag at time, emptied the wool from my sheep onto the ground.   Then began picking through it, pulling out the twigs and leaves and burrs and feces.

Jon and I thought it would make a good video, I usually write twice a year about skirting wool, but we’ve never done a video before.   You can see it on the side bar of my blog (just to the right of this post) or  here.

Whenever I skirt wool, the animals come around.  Flo tries to sit on my lap, Fate gobbles up as much wool as she can before we can stop her and Fanny, Lulu and Chloe hang around the fence.  Minnie usually shows up too and Red sits next to Jon when he helps.

We have the wool from the Romney’s this year.  Lots of it was matted and so dirty it was unusable.  But I still got two bags from Griselle and Biddy.

We didn’t get all the sheep shorn, some of their wool was too short.   But I’m going to mix Suzy’s gray wool with Biddy’s.  And Liam and Kim’s white wool with Rosemary’s.

I’m curious to see what color Izzy and Griselle’s wool is.  And to see how they all turn out.  It’s the first time I’m mixing wool.  I’ve been told by my spinner friends that it makes for nice strong and soft wool.

We’ll probably bring the wool to Deb at the Vermont Fiber Mill next weekend.  And we’ll get it back in the spring.  I can’t wait!


“Rain Quilt” The Tradition of Diversity

Thursday, October 20th, 2016



My Rain Quilt gave me a hard time.  It looked a lot different when I went into my studio this morning.  There were flowered pieces of fabric on either side of the dark blue.  I really like the way they looked.  They worked in the way that when I looked at them I knew they were right.

But the quilt needed more and I couldn’t figure out  to do after that.

So I tore off the two strips of flowered fabric and added the red.

I looked at it wondering what I had done.  I can’t remember the last time I used so much blue in a quilt.  And I was intentionally trying not to use red because I didn’t want to go in the direction of red, white and blue.

But there it was.  Yeah, maybe it’s mixed up with a bunch of other colors, but it said “flag” to me now no matter how I looked at it.

I gave into it.  Acknowledging that the election is there in my mind and my heart and now in my quilt.

Not sure what  to do next, I wanted to keep it moving.  That play of darks and lights and brights moving in and out.

When I laid down the black and brown fabric next to the red, it all came together.  It picked up on the blue and orange border around the triangle quilt pieces.  And when I didn’t have enough of it to go around the whole quilt I found pieces of fabric with similar colors.

And then  I found the elephant.

A little hard to see in the top photo, it’s in the bottom left corner, made up of all the colors in the quilt.

Detail of the Elephant

Detail of the Elephant

There is fabric in this quilt from the United States, the Philippines and Africa (that I know of) . I didn’t set  out to make a quilt about anything in particular. But now that it’s done  I see the coming together of the tradition of diversity.  Which to me, is what our country has always been about.

I still have to back and tack Rain Quilt, but I think it may be sold.  If not, I’ll be sure to let you all know when it’s done.

Cathy Wearing Her Vintage Hankie Scarf

Thursday, October 20th, 2016
Cathy wearing her Vintage Hankie Scarf

Cathy wearing her Vintage Hankie Scarf

Cathy sent me this photo of her wearing the Vintage Hankie Scarf she bought from me.   It’s called Violets, because a few of the hankies have violets on them.

Cathy told me she always gets compliments when she wears it.  What more could I ask for?

I’m so glad she sent me this beautiful picture of her and let me know.