After shoveling and taking care of the animals on Saturday morning, the first thing I thought of was how much I wanted to take a walk in the Orphaned Woods. I wanted to see how she’d changed since the snow fell. To look for animal tracks and take notice of which branches broke under the weight of the heavy snow, which standing stumps fell over.
But it’s hunting season, till December 15th, I was told by the couple who park their truck on the side of the dirt road where I walk with the dogs this time of year. They spend their afternoons in camouflage with rifles in the tree stand on the edge of the cornfield. “I hope you catch something,” I said to the woman, immediately realizing how ignorant I sounded. Even I know you catch fish, not deer.
My yearning for a walk in the woods was still strong today, so I decided to take a walk around the pasture instead.
I followed the thin trail made by the donkeys and sheep, the width of my boots, side by side, varying in color from snow beige to mud black. Fate stayed behind with the sheep and Zinnia ran ahead, jumping into the pond, and then quickly out.
The animal’s trail was easy to follow when I started out, the edges distinct where the animals had walked. But it became less precise the further I got away from the barn. Near the north most fence it disappeared altogether, becoming thousands of muddy footprints trampling the snow.
I walked under an Adler bent with snow, the tiny pinecones letting me know what kind of tree it was. One or two brown shriveled pears still clung on a high branch of the pear tree. From there I made a bee-line to the Winterberry. Though faded, still brighter than anything else in the pasture.
I could hear the hammers from our neighbors building their new house. I thought how if it was anyone but an Amish family building a house I would have been listening to the thwack and echo of a single nail gun instead of many hammers.
Then the thorny thistle, with its downy fluff caught my eye. The white feathery seeds still packed in the now dried sepal. It looked so soft, I had to touch it.
That’s when I saw the tiny spider silk clothesline strung with snowflakes. I still remember the first time I saw such a thing. It was about 20 years ago when I was walking in a friend’s woods. I didn’t have a way of taking a picture of it then, but I never forgot it.
At the time I thought I’d never see such a thing again. But now I know to look for them, I know they occur more often than I can even imagine.
As I was about to turn back to the barn, Fate showed up. She looked at me eagerly, only wanting to get back to the sheep. When we got to the pasture gate, Zinnia jumped into the pond. Back on dry land, her wet body brushed up against my boots as she ran after Fate who was by now “getting the sheep.”
December 15th and the end of hunting season is a little over two weeks away. The snow may be gone by then, but it’s almost certain that if it is, more will be on the way.
My first batch of Dog Potholders is done and for sale in my Etsy Shop. You can see them all and buy them here. They’re $20 each + $5 shipping for one or more.
The dogs in these potholders came from a linen towel that someone sent me. The rest of the fabric comes from one 1960s quilt top. So you get a dog and vintage fabric all in one potholder.
You’ll also see Suzy’s Woodland Shawlin my Etsy Shop for sale and my Dirty Dishes Magnet. I only have five of them left and I don’t plan on making more. And I still have all of my other magnets, on sale for $1 each. Just click here to get to my Etsy Shop.
I’m going to be taking the weekend off. I always take Saturdays off, but this weekend, I’m taking both days off. I don’t have anything planned, I could just use another day off.
I’ll be back on Monday with my Monday Morning Video.
“Warm and woodsy is what comes to mind” I wrote the other day when Suzy described the colors she was using in her new shawl.
Yesterday she sent me a picture of that shawl all done and I thought I was right. It feels to me like walking in the winter woods.
Take a close look and you’ll see the subtle shift of color in the natural variations of browns and grays above the snowy white. Then there’s the thin strip of green, like the lacy ferns that pop up though the early snow. Or it’s the moss that stays green all winter long, clinging to the bark of a tree.
It’s a Woods Woman’s shawl. A way to wrap yourself in nature, no matter where you are.
Suzy hand spins and knits her shawls from the wool of her mohair goats Lucy, Ruth,April, Alice and Larry. She’s dedicated to detail, and also uses wool that she buys throughout the year from other farmer’s. The light gray locks spun into the white mohair of Woodland Shawl, come from a Wensleydale lamb.
Suzy’s washes each shawl in a natural solution so it’s as soft and warm as it looks.
Woodland Shawl is 59″x19″ and is $150 + $10 shipping. You can buy it in my Etsy Shop, just click here. Or you can email me here at [email protected]. I take checks, PayPal and Venmo.
Detail of the Wensleydale lambs locks spun into the white mohair.
Suzy’s goats are pretty popular on YouTube with over a thousand views. See where move of her wool comes from….
Rachel’s landscape was lit up this yesterday in-between the shadow of the plants and curtain on the window. I love watching the shadow the sun throws as the season’s change. And Rachels painting is a reminder of warmer days.